The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides indirect evidence that the little bloodsucking mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas are becoming more numerous.
These findings are in the latest Vital Signs report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. According to the CDC, “Illnesses from mosquito, tick, and flea bites have tripled in the U.S., with more than 640,000 cases reported during the 13 years from 2004 through 2016. Nine new germs spread by mosquitoes and ticks were discovered or introduced into the United States during this time.” The increase of diseases caused by the bite of an infected mosquito, tick, or flea in the U.S. is likely due to many factors that include:
- Mosquitoes and ticks and the germs they spread are increasing in number and moving into new areas.
- New germs spread by mosquito and tick bites have been discovered and the list of nationally notifiable diseases has grown.
Cities, States & U.S. Not Prepared
The growing number and spread of these diseases pose an increasing risk in the U.S. The report found that the nation needs to be better prepared to face this public health threat. The CDC also stated that 4 out of 5 states are not fully prepared to manage the increase of mosquito, tick, and flea bites. The report found that the nation needs to be better prepared to face this public health threat. According to the CDC, “Reducing the spread of these diseases and responding to outbreaks effectively will require additional capacity at the state and local level for tracking, diagnosing, and reporting cases; controlling mosquitoes and ticks; and preventing new infections; and for the public and private sector to develop new diagnostic and vector control tools.”
What You Can Do To Guard Against Mosquitoes, Ticks, & Flea Bites
Widespread and difficult to control, diseases from mosquito, tick, and flea bites are major causes of sickness and death worldwide. Ticks can transmit serious and potentially fatal diseases like Lyme disease, ehrlichiosis and tularemia. The most common mosquito-borne viruses were West Nile, dengue, and Zika. Though rare, plague was the most common disease resulting from the bite of an infected flea.
Many of these illnesses can be treated effectively when caught early, so see your doctor right away if you have a fever, rash or flu-like symptoms after being in tick-infested areas. Frequent tick checks increase the likelihood of finding a tick before it can transmit disease.
- Shower after returning from the outdoors.
- Perform daily tick checks – See CDC Image on where to inspect for ticks.
- If you see a tick, remove it immediately using tweezers.
- Use an Environmental Protection Agency-registered insect repellent. [http://bit.ly/2tIJyLl]
- Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
- Treat items, such as boots, pants, socks, and tents, with permethrin or use permethrin-treated clothing and gear.
- Take steps to control ticks and fleas on pets.
- Find and remove ticks daily from family and pets. [http://bit.ly/2nSlO3S]
- Take steps to control mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas inside and outside your home. [http://bit.ly/2aexzI4 and http://bit.ly/2DbY6E3]