This post was created in partnership with the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS). All opinions are my own.
We have a long mosquito eason in Texas. It runs from early spring, throughout the summer, and well into fall. In some areas, mosquitoes are prevalent all four seasons of the year. These tiny insects are a common nuisance that cause irritating bites to both humans and pets.
I feel like I am always reminding my girls to protect themselves when going outdoors. It is because their skin welts up really bad with mosquito bites.
In addition to those itchy pink welts on the skin, mosquitoes can transmit a variety of diseases. Some of the common diseases carried by mosquitoes include West Nile Virus, Malaria, Zika Virus, and Chikungunya Virus. Outbreaks of mosquito-borne illnesses can vary from year to year.
That’s why it is really important get educated about mosquito-borne illnesses in Texas and the current level of outbreak in any given area. Texas DSHS recommends we take the necessary precautions to limit exposure to mosquito bites.
Declare WAR Against Mosquitos: Wear, Apply, Remove
Wear Protective Clothing: If possible I encourage the kids to wear socks, long pants, and long-sleeved tops when outside. Especially when in a wooded area. Tucking pants into socks is also a good practice. You can also find clothing online that contains permethrin that works to deter both mosquitoes and ticks.
Apply Insect Repellents: Use EPA approved insect repellents on clothing. These are the ones containing DEET, picaridin, or permethrin.You can also use ones that have essential oils like lemon eucalyptus.
Remove Standing Water: Ponded or standing water is a major attraction for mosquitoes. Be mindful of things that can collect water and empty them regularly. These can include kiddy pools, toys, rain gutters, bird baths, flower pots, pet bowls, and areas where a sprinkler system may need some adjustment.
At Home: Windows and doors should have screens to keep the bugs out of your home. Repair any holes in damaged screens.
Help Spread the Word about Texas Mosquitoes
You can help spread the word about mosquito-borne diseases and prevention by practicing some of the tips suggested and by posting pictures on social media of what you have done to protect you and your family. For more information, please visit TexasMosquitoes.org.