Health & Wellness

Edison Warns Residents to take Preventative Measures against West Nile Virus

West Nile Virus is an infectious disease that is transmitted by mosquito bites. Credits: CDC

EDISON, NJ — Edison Township is warning residents to take preventative measures against mosquitoes to minimize the risk of West Nile Virus which saw an increased number of cases across Middlesex County last year.

The American Mosquito Control Association (AMCA) and Middlesex County have designed the week of June 22–28 as National Mosquito Control Awareness week, and Mayor Lankey is calling upon Edison residents to take precautions that may help protect their health.

“It only takes a few easy steps to prevent mosquito from breeding and to minimize the risk of mosquito-borne diseases like West Nile Virus,” Mayor Lankey said. “Everyone is at risk, but these diseases pose a particular risk to children, senior citizens and people already vulnerable to illness.”

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West Nile Virus is a mosquito-borne disease that can cause encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) or meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain and spinal cord). Symptoms may include headaches, high fever, stiff neck, confusion, loss of consciousness, and muscle weakness.

Responding to a statewide increase of invasive Asian Tiger mosquitoes and a rise in Middlesex County’s incidents of West Nile Virus last year, Deepak Matadham, superintendent of the county’s Mosquito Control Commission has released a series of preventative measures that Edison residents can take. These include:

  • Eliminate sources of standing water outdoors to discourage mosquito breeding.
  • Make sure doors and windows have tight-fitting screens; repair any tears or holes.
  • Prune shrubs, cut grass and remove weeds to reduce vegetation that harbors mosquitoes.
  • Remain indoors at dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most active.
  • If you must be outdoors, wear long-sleeve shirts and trousers instead of shorts.
  • Use-as-directed insect repellants that contain EPA-approved ingredients including DEET, Picaridin, IR3535, and oil of lemon eucalyptus.
  • Report mosquito problems to the Mosquito Control Commission at (732) 549-0665.

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