Last month we discussed the many mosquito-born illnesses that pose a threat to humans during the warm summer months and well into the fall. This month, we are discussing some common sense methods to protect yourself and your loved ones from mosquitoes in order to not only avoid the itchy bumps of their bite, but also to protect yourself from diseases and viruses. Here are a few methods that you should make a regular part of your family’s routine to protect yourselves from mosquito bites.
- Call Pro-Tech Lawn Care about yard treatment plans to reduce and in some cases eliminate mosquitoes from your area.
- Wear mosquito repellent. We recommend repellents containing 30% to 50% DEET (N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide) for adults and children over 2 months of age. We also recommend repellents containing up to 15% picaridin, which must be applied often.
- Dress for protection. Clothing that are light colored and cover all parts of your skin is preferred. Many people choose, even in the heat of the summer, to wear lightweight long sleeves and long pants to avoid bites. Repellents or insecticides, such as permethrin, can be applied to clothing and gear for added protection. The more skin that is exposed to a bite, the greater the possibility of getting a bite.
- Be aware of time. According to the Centers for Disease Control, mosquitoes may bite at any time of day, peak biting activity for vectors of some diseases (such as dengue and chikungunya) is during daylight hours. Vectors of other diseases (such as malaria) are most active in twilight periods (dawn and dusk) or in the evening after dark.
If you want more information about mosquitoes in your area, call Pro-Tech Lawn Care to discuss treatment methods.
Who doesn’t love to sit out by the grill and enjoy the company of friends and family? Summer is just around the corner and that means BBQ’s and outdoor entertaining is just weeks away. Memorial Day Weekend is traditionally the kick off to summer and outdoor activities, so here are a few tips to make all of your get-togethers pest free!
- Call Pro-Tech Lawn Care to have an estimate done for treatments that will keep mosquitoes, bees and ticks at bay during the warm weather months.
- Mosquitoes tend to be most active at dusk and dawn, so if you are planning a barbeque around sunset or after, plan on having plenty of insect repellant containing an EPA-registered active ingredient like DEET, picaridin or IR3535 available for you and your guests.
- Wear long sleeves or pants to avoid bites and encourage your guests to cover up.
- Use tightly sealed containers when preparing BBQ fare. Ants and flies are attracted to food so take steps to keep food safe by using tightly sealed containers or coolers.
- Clean crumbs and spills from patio tables immediately and keep food that is out – covered.
- Store all trash away from the party and always keep your garbage bins covered.
- Yellowjackets and other stinging insects are attracted to fragrances from shampoo, perfume, and candles, so avoid using these scented items beforehand.
- Provide covered cups for your guests as aluminum cans and plastic bottles are good hiding spots for stinging insects.
- Prior to the party, check screen doors and repair any holes. Once the guests have arrived, remind them to shut the door behind them in order to keep pests from entering your home.
Unless you live in a bubble, you probably have gotten a bug bite or bee sting at some point in your life. The problem is that unless the little pest sticks around it is hard to find out what it was, appropriate treatment and possible reactions. Let’s examine the different types of biting bugs and what the bite may look like as well as any special treatment methods.
- Tick Bites – Ticks can carry many diseases including Lyme Disease and Relapsing Fever so identifying and treating these bites becomes critically important. Once a tick has transferred from leaves or brush onto a person’s body they tend to attach to a warm, moist area such as the groin or armpits. The first sign of infection is often a circular skin rash many times a telltale bullseye gives the clue that it was a tick. Most cases of Lyme disease can be treated successfully with antibiotics.
- Lice – Just hearing the word lice may make your head itch. The itching and finding these little white bugs or their eggs in your hair will be alarming. Treatment to kill lice and their eggs (called nits), include lotions, creams, or shampoos from the drug store or prescribed by your doctor which are designed specifically for lice.
- Fleas – Fleas are small, wingless, agile insects that live off the blood of their host — and they don’t just bite pets. They dine on people, too. Multiple small, red bites over an infected area are a first symptom of this itchy bite. WebMD suggests the best solution is to get rid of fleas on pets and in your home. Keep pets out of your bed and be sure to vacuum rugs daily. Spray insecticides tend to be not terribly effective at eliminating a problem. Contact Pest-End or Pro-Tech professionals to discuss flea control programs.
- Bee stings – Most bee stings include a welt surrounding a single puncture hole. Oral antihistamines are usually enough treatment if you are not allergic to the sting. Ibuprofen or acetaminophen can be used for pain relief.
- Bed Bugs – These tiny insects live in the sheets and mattresses of your bed. They are often found in hotels, shelters, and apartment complexes — and can hitch a ride into your home aboard luggage, pets, and boxes. Patchy red bites usually begin itching after a night of being eaten by these little pests. Oral antihistamines and creams can help with the itch. If the bites are scratched too much, they may get infected and need a doctor’s care.