Did you know an infected mosquito can infect you with the west nile virus when it bites you? However, most people don’t get sick or have minor signs, such as rash or fever. In rare cases, WNV can cause a severe brain infection that needs to be treated as soon as possible. The blog will highlight every important aspect related to this virus.
What is West Nile Virus?
Microscopic germs cause the west nile virus that can make you sick. West Nile virus mosquitoes can pass this virus to people or animals when they bite the skin. In rare cases, this virus can cause neurological infection. A neurological infection can cause severe health problems that can result in a threat to your health.
Symptoms of West Nile Virus
Unfortunately, if you are infected with the west nile virus infection, then you will notice warning signs within 3 to 14 days of being bitten by a mosquito. Severe symptoms may include:
Severe infection can long last for several weeks. In rare instances, a severe infection can lead to permanent brain damage. A mild infection doesn’t long last. Mild symptoms of this infection may be confused with the flu. Symptoms include:
swollen lymph glands
rash on your back, chest or stomach
What are the Causes of West Nile Disease?
Infected mosquitoes can spread the west nile virus when they bite you. Firstly, the mosquito bites an infected bird and then bites a human or animal. In rare cases, organ transplant, blood transfusion, pregnancy, or breastfeeding can transfer the virus and spread the disease.
How is West Nile Virus Diagnosed?
With a simple blood test, it can be diagnosed whether a person has been infected with WNV or not. This test will look for antibodies of the west nile virus in your blood. If you are experiencing severe signs, your doctor will suggest a spinal tap. During this procedure, your doctor uses a needle to get a small sample of fluid from your spine. It looks for symptoms of serious infection.
Also Checkout: Viral Fever Symptoms
Is there any Treatment for West Nile Virus?
It is a viral infection, so it doesn’t have a cure. However, you can take over-the-counter medications to reduce symptoms of WNV such as headaches and muscle aches. If you notice brain swelling or other symptoms, your healthcare provider may suggest intravenous fluid and medications to reduce the risk of infections. Immune system-produced chemicals are used by interferon therapy to treat encephalitis in West Nile virus-infected patients. The utility of these medicines for encephalitis is still under investigation, but the findings seem encouraging.
What is the Prevention of West Nile Virus?
No vaccine can prevent this virus. The best way to reduce the risk is by protecting yourself from mosquito bites. You can:
Cover your skin: Wear light-colored, lightweight clothes and a long-sleeved shirt to cover your body parts.
Keep mosquitoes outside: Keep windows or doors closed to keep mosquitoes outside.
Don’t touch dead birds: It is not likely to get a virus from dead birds. However, still, it is suggested to stay away from dead birds.
Drain clogged water: In order to prevent mosquitoes from breeding there, regularly empty and clean any spots that may gather water, such as a birdbath or blocked gutters.
Avoid high-risk times: When mosquitoes are most active, particularly at dawn (early morning) and dusk (when the sun sets), stay inside or exercise additional caution.
Do All Mosquitoes Carry West Nile Virus?
The chances of contracting the WNV are quite low. Only one out of every 500 mosquitoes in locations where the virus is carried by mosquitoes is affected. Additionally, the likelihood of contracting the disease after being bitten by an infected mosquito is about one in 300.
Can You Get West Nile Virus Twice?
Healthcare providers don’t believe so. Like other types of viruses, medical tests state that after getting affected with WNV, then an individual develops natural immunity to forthcoming infection by the virus for life. However, this immunity may minimize after some time.
How do Birds get West Nile Virus?
Birds get the west nile virus with the bite of an infected mosquito. And, mosquito gets infected by biting affected birds. Some birds may get affected after eating dead or sick birds that were already affected west nile virus infection.
Although, there is a vaccine available for horses, but not for people. Make sure to seek help from a medical professional after getting bitten by a mosquito if you notice any symptoms mentioned above. Moreover, get the latest update on health-related blogs by subscribing to Personal Care N Heal.