All About Lyme Disease

 

Lyme’s disease is one of the most well-known disease that is carried by ticks. It is spread by the blacklegged tick and it is most common in the states bordering the northern part of the Atlantic Ocean. According to the CDC Virginia is one of the 14 states where 95% of Lyme disease cases are reported. It is important to know the symptoms of Lyme disease so that you can seek treatment for the disease.

Symptoms of Lyme’s Diseasetick extermination

 

The first sign of Lyme disease is the bull’s eye rash that will appear on your body. It may be around the tick bite, but it can appear anywhere on your body a few days after the tick bite. It can take up to 30 days to appear and it only appears about 80 percent of the time. Other symptoms include fever, chills, tiredness, muscle aches, headache, joint pain and swollen lymph nodes. If you have these symptoms, and you know you were bitten by a tick, you should seek medical care.

Symptoms of Untreated Lyme Disease

Lyme disease will not clear up on its own, and the symptoms can turn into permanent damage that is difficult to treat. If you do not seek medical attention because you think it is a cold or virus, you may end up with more complications including severe headache and neck stiffness. Arthritis in the larger joints and pain that comes and goes in your muscles, joints and bones. Other symptoms include an irregular hear beat and nerve pain.

Diagnosing Lyme Disease

The doctor may look for the rash to see if you have signs or symptoms of Lyme disease. There is also a blood test that the doctor can complete. This is more likely to be used in cases where the rash is not present and you know that you were bitten by a tick or that you are someone that frequently visits area where you may be more likely to be bitten by a tick.

Treating for Lyme Disease

There is an antibiotic that can treat for Lyme disease. The sooner you get treated, the better the prognosis for a full recovery. If you waited to get treated, you may need to go on the antibiotics more than one time. There are a few antibiotics that your doctor may prescribe based on your medical history. The treatments may take up to three weeks to complete. You may also develop Post treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome, which means that you can still be tired and have muscle aches for up to six months afterwards.

Learn about ticks in Virginia and the diseases they cause.

5 Ways Fleas Can Make People Sick

adult fleaWhen you think about fleas, most people tend to think about the nuisance of dealing with a flea infestation with your pets. You may be concerned about the illnesses that they may cause in your pets, but most people do not think about the dangers that fleas can pose to humans. Here are five diseases that you can catch from fleas.

Typhus

Typhus is a serious illness that can be spread by flea bites. Symptoms of typhus include fever, chills, aches, vomiting, stomach pain and loss of appetite. A rash will usually develop about five days after the onset of the disease. Some people can recover on their own, but other people may have serious complications and need treatment with antibiotics.

Tapeworms

Tapeworms are more common in cats and dogs, but they can spread to humans. The tapeworms are spread through fleas. Most people with tapeworms experience unexplained weight loss. They may be more tired than normal and have abdominal pain. Some people do not have any symptoms, but you may notice rice size pieces in your stool. This can be treated with medication.

Mycoplasma Haemofelis

This is a disease that can be spread through fleas, ticks and mosquitoes. It usually affects cats, but it has been known to spread to humans with weak immune systems. In cats, it destroys red blood cells and can cause severe anemia.  If your cat is diagnosed with this, and you have a compromised immune system, you should talk to your doctor about being tested for the disease.

Plague

Fleas are known carriers of the plague which wiped out millions of people in the 14th and 17th centuries. There are three different types of plague. Some symptoms include fever, chills and headaches. Depending on the type you may develop swollen lymph nodes, a sever cough or severe abdominal pain. It is important to seek medical treatment if you think you have the plague since it can be treated with antibiotics.

Cat Scratch Fever

Cat scratch fever is transmitted to cats through fleas, and then the cat will spread it to humans. In order for a person to catch it, an infected cat must either scratch a person and break the skin or lick an open would or scab.  Small children and people with weakened immune systems are more at risk of contracting the disease.

Read Why Are Some People Bitten More by Mosquitoes?

4 Most Common Mosquito Borne Illnesses in Virginia Beach

mosquito bite illnessesMosquitoes are a big issue in the Virginia Beach area. With the number of waterways and humid climate, it is an ongoing issue. In fact, the City of Virginia Beach has a clear mosquito control program in place because of the diseases that mosquitoes can carry. Here is information on the four most common mosquito borne diseases in Virginia Beach.

West Nile Virus

The West Nile Virus is common in North America. Most people who contract will not have any symptoms. About 1 in five people develop a fever. Other symptoms can include diarrhea, vomiting, joint pains and a headache. Although most people recover, the fatigue and weakness can go on for several months. A few people can develop encephalitis or meningitis because of the infection—if you experience neck stiffness, stupor or convulsions, you should seek medical attention right away. The treatment focuses primarily on controlling the symptoms.

Eastern Equine Encephalitis

Eastern Equine encephalitis is transmitted through mosquito bites. Most people who are infected have no symptoms. The symptoms include headache, high fever and chills, as well as vomiting. It will progress and may lead to seizures or coma. There is about a 33% mortality rate for Eastern Equine encephalitis. Treatment is to treat and reduce the symptoms while the disease runs its course.

La Crosse Encephalitis

La Crosse Encephalitis is transmitted through mosquito bites. Most people who are infected do not have any symptoms, but those who develop symptoms will have fever, nausea, headache and exhaustion. This can develop into encephalitis with serious complications including coma, paralysis and seizures.  Children under the age of 16 are the most vulnerable to serious complications. All treatments are for the symptoms and not the disease itself.

Saint Louis Encephalitis

Saint Louis Encephalitis has similar symptoms as the other diseases on this page. Many people do not experience symptoms, but those who do may have a sudden headache, and fever with nausea and vomiting. This may become more complication if encephalitis develops. Older adults are more vulnerable to the diseases. All treatments are based around controlling symptoms.

The best protection against these four illnesses is to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes. Once way to do this is to wear mosquito repellent when you go outside. You can also set up a mosquito control program for your yard which will eliminate the mosquitoes that may bother you when you are enjoying time outside on your patio. Contact the professionals at Mosquito Tek to learn more about exterminating mosquitoes at your home or business.

Read Help! My Cat Has Fleas and find out what to do if your pet gets fleas

Life Cycle of Mosquitoes

mosquito biteMosquitoes are pesky insects. When you think about them, you likely think about the itchy annoying bites that they leave behind. There are over 3500 species of mosquitoes, with about 175 species living in the United States. In order to prevent mosquitoes, it is important to understand the different stages in their life cycle.

Eggs

Mosquitoes begin as eggs, and the eggs only hatch when exposed to water. Mosquitoes will look for standing water to lay their eggs, but they may also choose a swampy area that will become wet after they are laid. The time that the eggs take to hatch is dependent on the current conditions. Some mosquitoes lay a raft of eggs, where the eggs stick together, while others will lay single eggs.

Larvae

When mosquitoes are larvae they are water insects. They spend their time feeding and swimming in the water. Some will come to the surface to breathe. During this time, the larvae will molt several times until they become pupae.

Pupae

During this stage, the mosquito will swim around the water and not eat. They are inside a cocoon and changing into an adult mosquito.  This stage can take between two to four days.

Adult Mosquito

Once the adult mosquito hatches from the cocoon, they will rest on the water until their wings dry. An adult mosquito has two wings, a thorax and six legs. The male mosquitoes have a lifespan of about ten days. They do not feed on the blood of animals or humans. Female mosquitoes have a longer life span and can live between 42-56 days. They may also hibernate if the water gets too cold. Others will lay their eggs in freezing water.

The key to eliminating mosquitoes is to prevent them from developing into adults. Addressing the standing water around your property can help, but using larvicide is another option that will prevent the mosquitoes from developing into adults. If you truly want to stop mosquitoes, you can contact the experts at Mosquito Tek to learn about the treatment options available to you.

Learn more about mosquito extermination from Mosquito Tek of Virginia Beach: https://virginia-beach.mosquitofreeliving.com/services/mosquito-control/

Is Your Home Ready for Winter?

Winter brings a variety of challenges and issues to any household. The colder weather can be hard on your home, your car and your family. There are steps that you can take to prepare yourself for the winter weather.

Prepare Your Garden and Yard

Clearing out the underbrush and raking up leaves is just one part of getting ready for winter. There are plants that are best planted in the fall, and if you plan on having tulips or other plants from bulbs, you should plant them now. You can lay mulch or straw bedding on your flower beds to protect them for winter. You should also take the time to trim your trees as needed. These steps can protect the hard work you did all summer long and make it easier to maintain your garden in the spring.

Get Your Car Ready for Winter

The cold winter nights can be hard on your car. Be sure to check your battery to make sure it can hold a good charge. If it is older, it might be a good idea to replace it. Check the antifreeze levels in your car. Be sure to top them up and to monitor closely throughout the winter. Check your tires. If you live in an area with a lot of bad weather, you may want to switch to snow tires or consider getting chains for your tires. As a precaution prepare a winter survival box for your car. This should include a way to keep warm, food and water that you can drink if you are stranded for some reason. In the south, there are snowstorms that shut down entire communities and people may be stuck in their cars or forced to hike home to safety. The winter survival kit can help with that.

Get Your Home Ready for Winter

Look for ways that you can reduce your energy bills over the winter. Finding drafty windows and addressing them by applying a thin plastic sheet with heat so that it shrinks to provide a barrier. You can also wrap your pipes and water heater to help conserve energy. Adding extra insulation to your roof is another way you can reduce your power bill.

It is also important to check for any areas that animals may be able to sneak in to find shelter in the window. Look for holes around your foundation and check your attic to make sure there is not a way for rodents or other wildlife to get in. If you find evidence contact a professional to help you deal with the infestation.  The experts at EcoTek can help you trap any wildlife, clean up and install barriers so they cannot get in again.

 

The Life Cycle of Ticks

life cycle of ticksTicks are a nuisance, and they can carry a number of diseases. In order to understand the best way to treat and prevent ticks, it is important to understand the life cycle of ticks. Ticks have four different stages and can live up to three years. At each stage, the tick will need to consume blood in order to continue to develop.

Eggs

The tick life cycle begins as eggs. A Female will lay up to 4000 eggs at time. Some ticks will lay of all their eggs at once, while others lay them is several smaller batches. The eggs are usually laid in the spring and will hatch at some point during the late spring and early summer.

Larvae

When the ticks first hatch they are referred to as larvae. These are very small ticks and may be difficult to see if they attach themselves to you. Tick larvae only have six legs instead of the eight that the adults have. The larvae will need to feed on blood so that they can mature. If they cannot find a host they will eventually die. Larvae are also known as seed ticks, and most people will not notice them unless they find several in a group.

Nymph

A nymph occurs after the first feeding and molting of the tick larvae. A nymph will have eight legs like an adult tick, but it is still much smaller than the adults. Some species of ticks will look for larger hosts as they get bigger, while others will stick to the same host throughout their life cycle. However, ticks are opportunists and may feed on your or your pet at any stage. Once the nymphs feed, they will molt their shell and grow. Some ticks will only do this once, while other ticks will need to do it several times—they must feed before each molting. Many ticks will not mature into nymphs until the fall.

Adult

Once ticks reach adulthood—often by the spring following their hatching, they will need to feed and then mate. The female ticks tend to feed more in part so they have more protein for laying their eggs. After laying the eggs, the female tick will die and then the cycle begins again.

Ticks will contract a disease if they attach to a host that already have it. They will pass it on to their next host when they bit and their saliva mixes with the blood of the host. It is best to prevent ticks from maturing. The experts at Mosquito Tek can apply a treatment to your yard that will eliminate the ticks at any stage. It is possible to enjoy time in your yard without worrying about bug repellent for you and your family members. This spray can also help protect your pets from contracting ticks in your yard. Contact Mosquito Tek to learn more about tick treatments available for your yard.

Find out about the 3 Ticks in Virginia and the Diseases They Cause

All About the West Nile Virus

The West Nile Virus is a common mosquito borne disease throughout the United States. It has been found throughout the continental United States and is not just contained to one region or area. It affects birds, and often the birds will die once they become infected.  This is one of the signs that the West Nile virus is active in the area.

How Does the West Nile Virus Affect People?

According to the CDC, most people do not have any symptoms when they contract the West Nile virus. However about twenty percent of people who catch it end up with a fever. They may have additional symptoms include achy joints, a headache, nausea and vomiting or a rash. About 1 in 150 of people end up developing more serious complications that can cause meningitis and encephalitis.

What Is the Treatment Plan for West Nile Virus?

Currently there is no specific treatment for the West Nile virus. Instead, medical professionals will manage the symptoms. They will need to closely monitor the patient if they develop meningitis or encephalitis. They will work to mitigate the symptoms and to prevent further complications from the disease.

How is the West Nile Virus Spread?

The West Nile virus is primarily spread by mosquitoes. A person who handles a bird that has died from West Nile virus is not likely to contract the disease. However, there is the possibility of contracting it if you eat an infected bird. You need to be bitten by a mosquito that is carrying it. However, it can be passed in other ways as well. A human can contract the West Nile virus through a blood transfusion, organ transplant, or through lab exposure. A mother can pass it do her child during pregnancy, childbirth or by nursing.

Do I Need to Worry About the West Nile Virus?

The West Nile Virus is prevalent throughout the United States. However, it does not have a negative impact on the majority of people who contract it. If you are exhibiting symptoms of the West Nile virus, especially the more serious ones you should contact your medical provider immediately. They can help you deal with the symptoms and monitor you. There is currently no vaccination to prevent contracting the disease.

How Can I Prevent Myself or My Family Members from Contracting the West Nile Virus?

The best way to avoid contracting the West Nile virus is to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes. One way to do this is to use an effective bug repellent. DEET is the most effective insect repellent on the market. It is important to use this anytime that you are exposed to mosquitoes. If you do not want to worry about using mosquito repellent every time you go into your yard, you should consider getting professional mosquito control treatments. These can virtually eliminate all of the mosquitoes in your yard and allow you and your family to enjoy it without worrying about mosquitoes. Contact Mosquito Tek today to learn more about the different options available.

 

Protecting Yourself from Ticks and the Diseases They Carry

tickTicks are a very small insect that’s capable of creating a lot of problems for whatever it decides to latch onto. And because of their size they’re often difficult to spot. And worst of all is the fact that ticks are known carriers of several serious diseases, such as Babeosis, Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Lyme Disease. Luckily, with a bit of information and foresight there are a number of things you can do to mitigate the amount of damage a tick can cause–as well as prevent encounters with them all together. Read more Protecting Yourself from Ticks and the Diseases They Carry

Mosquito Borne Diseases

mosquito biteAre you worried about the mosquitoes plaguing your home and family? Although most people are annoyed by itchy mosquito bites, mosquitoes can carry viruses that can cause serious complications in many people. Many people may initially think about diseases like malaria or yellow fever, which are more common in other countries. However, there are still serious mosquito spread illnesses in the United States. Learn about five diseases that affect people in the Mid-Atlantic region.

The West Nile Virus

The West Nile Virus is spread through infected mosquitoes. According to the CDC most people who are infected will not have any symptoms, but about 1 in 5 will develop a fever, while 1% will end up a serious sometimes fatal illness. There is not vaccine or treatment available for treatment of the West Nile Virus.

Zika Virus

The Zika Virus is new to the United States. Although the initial symptoms are mild and generally resolve on their own, Zika has been shown to be dangerous to pregnant women because it can cause birth defects. The Zika virus is also considered a sexually transmitted disease.

Saint Louis Encephalitis

Saint Louise Encephalitis (SEL) is a disease that is primarily found in the eastern and central United States. Symptoms of SEL include tiredness, fever, headache and nausea. Encephalitis can develop, and older adults are more at risk of developing complications.

La Crosse Encephalitis

La Crosse encephalitis virus (LACV) occurs in the Midwest and mid-Atlantic states. Although many people who are infected develop no symptoms, an infection may cause severe neuroinvasive disease and encephalitis. Those most at risk are children under 16 years old.

Eastern Equine Encephalitis

Eastern Equine Encephalitis is one of the most serious mosquito borne illnesses in the United States. Although many people experience no symptoms, the CDC reports a 33% mortality rate and significant brain damage in most survivors of a severe case of EEE.

You can prevent mosquito bites by wearing long sleeves and pants and liberally applying insect repellent. You may also want to stay inside when mosquitoes are most active. However, there are steps that you can take to give you the freedom to enjoy your yard in the evening and the summer months.

  1. Make sure to keep your yard clear of standing water. Look for buckets and gardening tools that may collect standing water. Also check your yard for areas where stagnant water may collect and work to remedy the issue.
  2. Consider buying mosquito repellent candles or fans to help prevent mosquitoes from gathering around your guests. These are not as effective as using insect repellent.
  3. Hire a mosquito control expert to look for problem area and spray your yard for mosquitoes around your home. Treatments in the summer can allow you to start enjoying the outdoors again.

Doing your best to prevent mosquito bites can help you avoid the annoying itch and protect yourself and your family from the serious risks associated with mosquito borne illnesses. A few simple steps can help you enjoy the outdoors again while protecting yourself and your family.