What Types of Diseases do Mosquitoes Carry?

Posted by David Outhous on Jun 28, 2019 9:00:00 AM

Over one million people in the world die each year from diseases they contract from mosquitoes. Some of these parasites and disease also affect horses and dogs. If you are allergic to the mosquito’s bite, you may suffer from skin irritation. The mosquito’s saliva is what causes the allergic reaction and the red bumps and itching. Protozoan diseases such as malaria and viruses such as encephalitis and dengue affect humans. Filarial diseases such as heartworm affect horses and dogs.

You may be at risk for mosquito bites if you work outside, travel to areas with mosquito borne diseases, healthcare workers who work with patients who are infected and lab workers who work with cultures, arthropods and infected samples.

Mosquito-Borne Diseases

Mosquito-borne diseases vary based on the species of mosquito. Some species could be carriers of more than one type of disease. The list of diseases carried by mosquitoes include:

  • Malaria: This disease is transmitted by the female Anopheles mosquito. This disease was mostly eradicated in the 20th Century in temperate areas of the world, but is common in sub-tropical and tropical areas. Still, up to 500 million deaths are reported each year throughout the world.

  • Dengue: This arboviral disease is common in Asia, Africa and the Americas. It does have a low mortality rate, but the mosquito disease symptoms could become serious and very uncomfortable. The Aedes aegypi and the Ae. Albopictus mosquitoes carry dengue. These mosquitoes lay eggs in containers near humans. The disease is becoming more common.

  • Chikungunya: This pathogen is common in the Caribbean. In 2014, Florida had two cases of chikungunya. By the middle of July 2014, 497 cases were found in 35 states, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. This disease causes joint pain that may last for several weeks. No vaccine exists for chikungunya. The pathogen is spread by the Asian tiger and yellow fever mosquitoes.

  • Yellow Fever: This disease is mostly in the African and American tropical areas. The illness is rare because of the yellow fever vaccination. Yellow fever affects about 200,000 people every year and causes about 30,000 deaths in 33 countries.

  • Dog Heart Worm: This disease could be fatal for dogs. It is caused by a roundworm. Sometimes foxes, raccoons and even cats could get heartworm. It is transmitted through the bite of a mosquito that is carrying the larvae of the worm. Heartworm is found in all 50 states.

  • Eastern Equine Encephalitis: This disease affects the central nervous system of humans and horses. Complications may be severe and it could even kill its host. It is found in the eastern part of North America, in Central and South America, and in the Caribbean. The Culex and Culiseta melanura species carry Eastern equine encephalitis. The mosquitoes pick up the disease from infected birds and then pass it on to horses and humans.

Other diseases include Culex mosquito disease, St. Louis encephalitis, Lacrosse encephalitis, Western equine encephalitis, West Nile virus and Zika virus. The Zika virus is related to West Nile virus, the equine encephalitides and St. Louis encephalitis. The Aedes agypti and the Aedes albopictus mosquitoes carry the Zika virus.

How Can Mosquito Control Keep Your Family Safe?

Take several steps to avoid mosquito diseases in US, including:

  • Keep all empty flower pots and other vessels that collect water, including tires, empty. Turn flower pots upside down and store tires inside a garage or dispose of them properly.

  • Spray for mosquitoes and other pests frequently throughout the mosquito season.

  • If you have a pool, fishpond or other bodies of water, keep the water moving if possible. Pumps in fishponds help keep the water from becoming a breeding haven for mosquitoes. A fountain pump helps circulate water in ponds and retaining ponds.

Contact RichPro Pest Management

Contact RichPro Exterminating for an appointment to spray your yard for mosquitoes and other pests.

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mosquito control