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Dengue Fever: Increasing Within the United States

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What is it?

Dengue Fever is one variation of the four closely related dengue viruses that is a painful mosquito-borne disease. It is related to viruses that cause West Nile infection and Yellow Fever. Dengue fever is spread by Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes.

Where is Dengue Fever most common?

Most cases in the U.S. occur in individuals who got the infection while traveling outside the United States. However, there have been confirmed local transmission cases in Miami and in Hillsborough County, Florida. In 2013, outbreaks started in Brownsville, Texas and Key West Florida. This can be due to these states being so close to the Caribbean.

Symptoms

Symptoms usually start to occur 4-6 days after being infected and can last up to 10 days. Symptoms can include a sudden, high fever, severe headaches, pain behind the eyes, joint and muscle pain, fatigue, nausea/vomiting, skin rash (appears 2-5 days after onset fever), and mild bleeding (i.e. nosebleed, gums bleeding, easily bruising). Having any of the symptoms listed above and a travel history in countries where Dengue Fever is common leads to a healthcare provider to suspect Dengue Fever. Doctors can diagnose with a blood test.

Is there treatment?

There is not a specific medicine that treats Dengue Fever. Using pain relievers with acetaminophen and avoiding medicines with aspirin, which could worsen bleeding, is instructed. Along with taking pain relievers with acetaminophen, resting as well as drinking plenty of fluids is also encouraged.

What can I do to prevent Dengue Fever?

There is one FDA approved vaccine as of 2019 called Dengvaxia. This vaccine helps prevent Dengue from reoccurring in 9-16 year olds who have already been infected with Dengue. Unfortunately, there is currently not a vaccine or another type of prevention for the general public, but there are other remedies that people can do to help prevent getting but by an infected mosquito.

  • Use mosquito repellents (even inside)
  • Outdoors: wear long-sleeve shirts and long pants that can be tucked into socks
  • Indoors: Use air conditioning when available
  • Ensure windows and screen doors are secure and free of holes or rips

Words from our expert, Dr. Mackenzie

Dengue Virus is a serious disease that is more common in the United States and the Americas than most people realize. In the US, we have hundreds of travel related cases of Dengue Fever as well as some more critical Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever, each year. This year marked an “outbreak” year for Florida with multiple cases of locally transmitted cases in Miami-Dade County as well as Hillsborough County. The virus is transmitted by Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus, both of which are more active during the day and use artificial as well as natural containers as larval habitats.

Remember mosquito season isn’t over because it’s fall. Mosquito season is only over once we are seeing freezing temperatures. So if you have to go out at dusk or dawn make sure that you are using EPA registered/CDC recommended repellents. Around your home remove or refresh larval habitats (i.e. empty containers and bird baths) and if possible, wear long sleeves and long pants. Adding a Flying Insect trap to your mosquito control strategy can help protect you and your family by collecting mosquitoes that are in your yard.

To help protect your yard and your home from infected mosquitoes, check out the DynaTrap website for indoor and outdoor traps!

For more information on Dengue Fever, check out this article!

Eastern Equine Encephalitis: It’s More Common Thank You Think

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What is it?

Within the past year or so, Easter Equine Encephalitis (also called triple E) has been on the rise. Triple E is a viral illness that is transmitted into people and animals through the bite of an infected mosquito. One cannot get triple E from another person or animal that has triple E. There are usually only a few human cases annually reported in the U.S., which is typically 4-10 cases.

What are the symptoms?

Symptoms can occur 4-10 days after an individual has been bit by an infected mosquito. Symptoms can include high fever, chills, headache, tiredness, nausea/vomiting, neck stiffness, seizures, confusion (disorientation), or a coma. Symptoms can differ depending on the part of the brain that is inflamed, amount of inflammation, and a person’s age and health. This is a serious virus that can lead to permanent brain damage, being in a coma, or even death. Triple E can be diagnosed by a blood test or testing spinal fluids.

Is there treatment?

There is not a human vaccine or specific antivirus currently available. Patients with triple E should be properly evaluated by a physician or healthcare provider. Severe cases are typically hospitalized and get respiratory support, fluids through an IV, and prevention of other possible infections that may arise.

What can I do to prevent triple E?

For the individual:

  • wear long sleeve shirts and pants outdoors
  • wear EPA registered/CDC recommended insect repellents
  • cover strollers and baby carriers with a mosquito net
  • avoid outdoor activities from dusk until dawn

For the home/outdoors:

  • remove areas with standing water (pool covers, bird baths, trash cans, tires, etc.)
  • repair screens if there are holes, keep windows and doors shut to prevent mosquitoes from entering the home
  • remove leaf debris from yard and garden areas
  • ensure roof gutters drain correctly and clean clogged gutters in fall and spring

Words from Our Expert, Dr. Karen McKenzie

“The 2019 mosquito season has been pretty bad all over the country due to weather patterns in later 2018 and earlier this year that dumped a lot of rain and snow around the country. In July, NOAA even stated that the U.S. had set a new record for the ‘wettest 12 month period’, which created prime mosquito habitats. The overabundance of mosquitoes mixed with a large number of birds hat were susceptible to both West Nile Virus and Eastern Equine Encephalitis has created a ‘perfect storm’ situation. All the right pieces have fallen into place to allow these diseases to really bloom. This year has marked a record year for triple E, with 31 cases so far and more deaths than the average number of cases reported each year. Remember mosquito season isn’t over because it’s fall. Mosquito season is only over once we are seeing freezing temperatures. Adding a flying insect trap to your mosquito control strategy can help you protect you and your family by collecting mosquitoes that are in your yard.

To help protect your yard and your home from infected mosquitoes, check out the DynaTrap website for indoor and outdoor traps!

20 Years of the West Nile Virus

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The West Nile Virus is a disease transmitted to humans through infected mosquitoes. West Nile was first recorded in the United States in Queens, New York in 1999. A few years after the West Nile Virus was introduced in the United States, it spread from New York to the contiguous states, Canada, Mexico, as well as Central and South America. Learning more about this virus can bring awareness to it as well as learning more on how to prevent it.

When someone is bit by a mosquito that is a carrier of the West Nile, only 1 in 5 people will develop some type of symptom(s). These symptoms include fever, body aches, skin rash, and swollen lymph nodes. The more severe symptoms include stiff neck, sleepiness, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, and paralysis. It is very common in most cases that the symptoms are mild and go unreported, but it is important to be aware of how severe symptoms can be when infected with West Nile.

It has been twenty years since West Nile has been spotted in the United States. Several researchers have spent time digging deeper into West Nile and the different species of mosquitoes that can be infected and carry the virus. The most common way to diagnose West Nile is with a blood test, but sometimes a spinal tap is necessary to confirm in extreme cases.

There are several ways to get rid of mosquitoes to help prevent getting infected with the West Nile Virus. To lower your risk, use insect repellent, wear long sleeve shirts and pants, treat your clothing and gear with repellent, and of course use DynaTrap products inside and outside your home!

For more information on the West Nile Virus, click here.

Flies: What You Need To Know

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Flies are always flying around. Whether it’s in your yard or inside your home, flies are around and can be a distraction. With all the flies that are flying around your surroundings, here are some different types of flies you should be aware of.

House Fly

As it says in their name, these flies are usually found within your home. They are attracted to all types of food, including human food, animal food, and food waste.

Fruit Fly

These flies are commonly found near your fruit found in the kitchen. They are also found hovering around fermenting residue in places like a pub, brewery, and fruit orchards.

Horse Fly

These flies are typically pests to livestock, but can also be pests towards humans. Horse fly bites can be painful to humans as well as animals.

Bluebottle Fly

This type of fly typically hands out around your garbage cans. Bluebottle flies are attracted to food scraps or dead animals. This causes them to become carriers of diseases.

Cluster Fly

These flies are typically found in the undisturbed areas of your home such as attics. Sometimes they can be found close to windows, especially this time of year when they are looking for warmth. The cluster fly requires warm places to hibernate for the winter months.

 

Now that you are a little more familiar with a few of the different types of flies out there, DynaTrap has products that will help minimize the flies in your home. The fly light is an indoor insect trap that helps catch those pesky flies inside your home. Look at the various FlyLight options as well as the other indoor insect traps we have available. Let us help you with those pests that enter your home!

https://dynatrap.com/products/#indoor

 

Bluebottle Fly

Fruit Flies

House Fly

Bugs in Fall: Which Ones to Look Out For

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As the seasons are changing, the typical bugs we come across tend to change too. Mosquitoes are not the only concern anymore. As we enter the season of fall, here are some pests to look out for.

  • Ants:
    • Seek warmth as the temperature decreases
  • Bees & Wasps:
    • Fall is the time when bees and wasps feed and store up on food for the winter
  • Spiders:
    • Spiders might enter your home in the fall, but do not reproduce indoors
    • Species to look for: American House spider, cellar spider, domestic house spider, and cupboard spider
    • If there’s a spider in your home, simply move it outside and you’ll be good
  • Flies:
    • South- and west-facing walls may be attracting flies into your home that are looking for a warm place to be
    • Common flies to look for: cluster flies, fruit flies, and house flies
  • Prevention:
    • Clean Up Outdoors
      • These pests tend to find warmth in piles of leaves and the like.
      • Ensure they don’t enter your house by clearing the piles often.
    • Clean Around the House
      • Pests thrive off left-over food and water. Wipe down the kitchen to ensure there are no left-over crumbs
      • Keep garbage bins closed tightly
      • Pests will find warmth in dirty clothes piles like they would with a pile of leaves outside. Don’t accumulate piles of dirty laundry around the home.
    • Check for Holes and Clearings
      • Walk around the perimeter of your home to check if there are any holes or crevices the pests could use to enter your home.
      • Holes close to the gutters give pests a way to get into the walls of your home (they might stay there all season if you don’t catch them)

Now that you’re more familiar about the pests you might come across this season, DynaTrap has a few products that can help! From outdoor to indoor, DynaTrap has products to kill bugs without chemicals. Try DynaTrap to help take care of those pests during the fall season.

Fight the Bite!

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Lets face it, mosquito bites suck! Here’s six home remedies to help soothe the pain.

1.) ICE –

Cool it down with an ice pack. Cold temperatures help slow the rate of inflammation. Applying an ice pack to the area soon after the bite will help reduce inflammation, itching and discomfort.

2.) ANTIHISTAMINES –

Histamine is a chemical that the body releases as part of the inflammatory response to a mosquito bite.  Antihistamines help fight of this chemical and can be found in a pill or topical cream form.

3.) CALAMINE –

Calamine is a great defense for itchy mosquito bites. It has a cooling sensation that temporarily relieves itching and discomfort.

4.) SOOTHING HEAT-

A Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology study looked at the effectiveness of a device that emits concentrated heat. In most cases, the device was able to reduce the discomfort resulting from insect bites within 10 minutes of its application.

5.) ALOE VERA-

Aloe vera has anti-inflammatory and wound-healing properties that can help heal mosquito bites.

6.) HONEY-

Honey has properties that make it useful for healing wounds. Applying it to bites may help reduce inflammation and prevent infection.

Fight the bite with DynaTrap! Find our products here.

How to Make Yourself Less Attractive to Mosquitoes?

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Do mosquitoes come buzzing straight for you as soon as you step outside? Do you always end up with annoying mosquito bites? Mosquitoes love humans, especially our scent. They have very acute receptors in their antennae and heads that can detect human scents up to a 100 feet away.

Here are the top human scents mosquitoes are attracted to-

1.) Carbon Dioxide: Mosquitoes are attracted to the carbon dioxide we exhale, both the scent and the amount. Every time we exhale, we release chemicals like lactic acid, octenol, uric acid and fatty acids that combine with CO2. This combination of scents is what clues mosquitoes that there is a human target nearby. Get yourself a DynaTrap to fix this problem.

This insect trap mimics human breath allowing mosquitoes to follow the CO2 trail into the trap.

2.) Body odor:  Bacterial colonies help generate the human scent we call body odor. Without the bacteria, our sweat would be odorless.

There are measures you can take like washing regularly to reduce body odor.

3.)  Secretions: About 80% of us are “secretors” or people who secrete compounds known as saccharides and antigens through their skin. Mosquitoes are magnets for secretors.

Unfortunately, there isn’t anything we can do about this except seeking other preventative measures to fight off these pests.

4.) Blood type:  Different blood types give off different scents. Studies have shown that mosquitoes are most attracted to Type O blood and least attracted to Type A.

Sorry Type O’s, you can’t change your blood type.

Fight the scent with DynaTrap. Get yours today!

Ouch! That Stings!

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We all know insect stings are the worst, but how much do they really hurt? Dr. Justin O. Schmidt, entomologist, and creator of the Schmidt Pain Scale Index took it upon himself to find out!

Here are some of the results so you know what to watch out for!

Index: 0 = the least amount of pain  4+ = the most amount of pain

Sweat bee: Light & fruity.  These pests will barely harm a hair on your head.

1.2 Fire ant: Sharp, sudden & a little alarming.

2.0 Bald-faced hornet: Similar to slamming the car door on your hand.

3.0 Paper wasp: This one will leave a burn. Imagine spilling a beaker of Hydrochloric acid on a paper cut.

4.0 Pepsis wasp: A blinding electric shock that will leave you paralyzed and screaming.

4.0+ Bullet ant: An unfathomable pain that lasts more than 12 hours. According to Schmidt, it will leave you feeling “Like fire-walking over flaming charcoal with a 3-inch rusty nail in your heel.”

Our suggestion? Prevent the pain & get a DynaTrap today!

Are Mosquitoes a Danger to Our Beloved Pets?

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Your dogs, cats and horses could be in danger! We adore our pets and strive to protect them at all costs but are they really safe from mosquito bites?

The answer is NO!

Summertime means insect time! While our four-legged adventurers want to have some fun, it’s important to understand that a single mosquito bite can lead to serious health complications in even the healthiest of pets.

What Can You Do?

1.) Research: Know the types of  dangerous mosquito diseases, infections and  allergies  your pets are susceptible to. For example, one of the most serious and most common disease that can be transmitted by mosquito bites to dogs is heartworm. A single bite from an infected mosquito is all it takes to infect your dog. West Nile Virus is another deadly disease that your dogs, cats or even horses could contract through mosquito bites.

2.) Spot the Symptoms:  Allergies and Infections develop when a pet excessively scratches, chews or licks at even a single itchy mosquito bite. Oh, those pesky mosquitoes! Here’s how they make our pets suffer, just like people:  raised red welts on the skin, an overwhelming urge to itch and vomiting, diarrhea and lethargy in severe cases.

3.) Take Precaution: Prevention is key especially during the height of mosquito season! Attempt to keep your dog indoors during early morning and early evening hours when mosquitoes are the most active. Keep your doors and windows closed when mosquitoes are in season and use dog-safe insect repellents.

And of course… get a pet-friendly DynaTrap to keep your beloved creatures happy and healthy!! Visit our site to get yours before it’s too late!

Don’t Rain on Our Parade!

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Do Mosquitoes Really Like the Rain?

This summer has been a wet one, especially in the Midwest! We all have heard the warnings of the rain bringing in a swarm of mosquitoes. It turns out mosquitoes don’t really like rain. They love puddles!

The female mosquito lays her eggs in stagnant water, and larvae need only ½ inch of water to survive. With so much rainfall, water gathers quickly and cannot easily evaporate or soak into the ground. This means more mosquitoes!

Here are some steps you can take to prevent mosquitoes on your property after it rains:

1.) Dump out any standing water that can collect in items such as flower pots and old tires.

2.) Clear water off pool covers after it rains.

3.) Maintain your landscape: Mosquitoes can hide under trees, bushes & shrubs.

And of course you can armor up with DynaTrap. Get one now and take precaution!

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