The West Nile virus is spread to people through the bite of an infected mosquito and is not transmitted person to person. Health officials say few mosquitoes actually carry the virus and the chances of a person getting it is very low and most people infected will not have any symptoms.
Symptoms may begin three to 15 days after being bitten and can include fever, headache, muscle and joint aches, nausea, vomiting, rash and fatigue that can last a few days.
There is no specific treatment for West Nile virus other than to treat the symptoms. If you think you have West Nile virus, contact your health provider.
To eliminate your contact with mosquitoes possibly carrying the virus:
- Avoid being outside during times of high mosquito activity, specifically during dawn and dusk
- Use effective mosquito repellent
- Keep window screens repaired so mosquitoes can not enter your home
- Ensure containers with standing water are not left outside
- Change water in bird baths, pet dishes and wading pools every 3-4 days