Fight the Bite: With the Heat Come the Mosquitoes

Published on May 16, 2017

The forecast calls for some unusually hot days in May. And with the heat come the pests.

As County public health chief Reuben Varghese puts it bluntly, "Mosquito bites can be more than just annoying and itchy - they can make you really sick." 

Last summer's global Zika scare drove many Arlington residents to step up their mosquito control efforts. While the County saw some travel-related Zika cases, no local transmissions were recorded.

As Dr. Varghese explains, it's critical "to protect yourself and your family, especially when traveling.  Zika, dengue and chikungunya are spread to people through the bite of an infected mosquito."

As another season of warm weather settles in, Arlingtonians can resume the fight against disease-carrying nuisances with a few simple precautions.

Remember "the 3-Ds":

  • Dress in long sleeves and pants. These will help protect your skin from mosquito bites. Don't forget the socks!

  • Drain or dump standing water. The most common mosquito breeding grounds are water in flower pots, gutters and downspout extenders, pet bowls, inflatable pools and birdbaths.

  • Defend with a mosquito repellent that has been registered by the Environmental Protection Agency and follow label directions. Repellents with DEET, Picaridin or Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus are most effective.

And stay informed. Visit the County Mosquito Information Center for more tips and updates. Also, check out tips on staying cool during hot days.