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Mosquitoes are insects that need blood to reproduce. Since female mosquitoes are the ones that lay eggs, they constantly seek blood from both animals and people. When they bite, they leave a small welt on their victims. Humans can protect themselves from mosquito bites by using mosquito repellent, wearing clothes that cover all the body, avoiding being outside during peak hours, and controlling the mosquito population.
People who wish to prevent mosquito bites should use mosquito repellent on their bodies. They should choose a mosquito repellent that contains oil of lemon eucalyptus, DEET, or Picaridin. These repellents cause human skin to become unappealing to a mosquito.
Another way to prevent mosquito bites is to wear clothing that completely covers the body. For example, wearing pants, long socks, and a long-sleeved shirt are ways to keep mosquitoes from biting the skin. Spraying the clothes with mosquito repellent is an extra layer of protection from mosquitoes. Light colored clothing is also considered unattractive to the common mosquito.
Several species of mosquitoes feed on blood mainly during early morning and early evening hours. For this reason, people who stay inside during these times of the day have a better chance of avoiding mosquito bites. Those who cannot avoid outdoor activities during these peak hours should make sure they apply mosquito repellent before leaving the house.
Mosquitoes like to live and breed around standing water. Homeowners should take steps to eliminate standing water around the home to discourage the presence of these blood-thirsty insects. Rain water collected in pet dishes, flower pots, buckets, and other objects that hold liquid should be periodically emptied. People who have small ponds in their yards should stock the ponds with fish so they can eat mosquito larvae.
Screens in windows and doors should be in good repair to prevent mosquitoes from entering the home. Communities can conduct pesticide spraying throughout the area that will kill the local mosquito population as well. All of these methods are ways to prevent mosquito bites.
People should take precautions against mosquito bites because mosquitoes carry diseases that can adversely affect the lives of their victims. For example, some mosquitoes carry West Nile virus, a virus that can cause serious brain infections. Yellow fever and malaria are other diseases that can be contracted from mosquitoes. Dengue fever, a disease that is caused by the bite of an Asian tiger mosquito, can cause symptoms ranging from hemorrhagic fever to a viral flu.
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