Untamed Lowcountry

Fourth South Carolina city hit by West Nile virus. Here’s how to keep yourself safer

Here’s how West Nile is spread — and what symptoms to look for after a mosquito bite

West Nile Virus can be deadly — but only one in five people who are infected by a mosquito bite will develop any symptoms, according to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control. Here's what to look for.
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West Nile Virus can be deadly — but only one in five people who are infected by a mosquito bite will develop any symptoms, according to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control. Here's what to look for.

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West Nile virus was reported in Columbia on Wednesday night, the fourth Carolina city this year to face a threat from the virus.

Columbia officials found a dead bird that tested positive for the disease, according to The State.

The city will use spray to address the threat, targeting the adult mosquitoes which are more likely to carry the disease, a city news release said..

There have been other reports in South Carolina of the virus, including one in Boiling Springs, Greenwood and Anderson County, according to multiple news reports.

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In Georgia, there have been seven confirmed cases of West Nile this year, including one in which someone died, according to a report by the Georgia Department of Public Health.

Here are some things you need to know about the virus:

It can be difficult to even tell if you even have it. Eight out of ten people do not exhibit any symptoms, according to the Center of Disease Control.

One out of five sufferers could have a fever with a headache, body aches, vomiting, diarrhea, or even a rash. In this strain of the illness, recovery is likely though serious fatigue and weakness can last for weeks, or even months.

An even more dangerous strain of West Nile affects one out of 150 people. It is the deadliest and its symptoms Include inflammation in the brain.

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Mosquitoes will be around for another few months, so it’s important to take the extra precautionary measures needed to protect yourself and your family.

Here’s how you can help protect yourself from West Nile:

  • Wear long sleeves and pants. The more you cover, the less likely a mosquito can find a spot on your body for a meal.
  • Get rid of standing, still water. Mosquitoes love water, so it’s important to get rid of this potential breeding ground.

  • Make sure to apply bug repellent.
  • Check your doors, windows and foundations. Mosquitoes can fly in through the tiniest hole, so make sure to caulk and cover any you see.



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