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Posted on: September 27, 2019

EEE and West Nile Virus Prevention: Prevention of Mosquito Bites

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Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) and West Nile Virus are both mosquito-born infections that are transmissible to humans through mosquito bites. The most important measure to prevent mosquito bites is to avoid outdoor activities during the hours around the dawn of the day and around dusk/sunset.

The Longmeadow Board of Health also strongly recommends the following measures to prevent mosquito bites:

1. Employ personal protection to prevent mosquito bites:

  • When possible. Wear long sleeves and long pants
  •  Apply insect repellents containing DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus to the skin.  DEET products should not be used on infants less than two months of age; concentrations of DEET in repellents should not exceed 30% when used to protect older children. Oil of lemon eucalyptus should not be used on children under three years of age. In addition, products containing permethrin are effective repellents but are meant to be applied to clothing and shoes and not directly on the skin.

2. Activate/recheck your property to ensure environmental controls are in place to prevent mosquito breeding or mosquito bites:

  • Verify that all screens on windows and doors are intact
  • Make sure that all gutters and downspouts operate properly
  • Remove/ turn upside down all empty containers, barrels, planters/flower pots; do not allow water to remain in bird feeders or pools which are not being continuously filtered or treated more than three days without emptying and refilling

Aerial/truck-mounted pesticide spraying and/or the application of larvicide in storm drains will only be undertaken should these measures be recommended by the Mass. Department of Public Health. Public notification for initiation of these measures is required.

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