Mosquitoes are one of, if not the most aggravating of all flying pests. They swarm in large numbers, feed on human blood, and transmit some pretty nasty illnesses. Though they may seem to exist for the sole purpose of terrorizing your backyard, they do serve a purpose in the natural environment.
Mosquitoes serve as a significant food source for fish, birds, frogs, bats, and other creatures. Another little-known fact is that certain species of mosquitoes play an essential role in pollination. With mosquitoes' aptitude for carrying sickness and disease, a valid concern is whether or not they can spread the COVID-19 virus. Let's explore this concern.
What Are Mosquitoes?
Simply stated, mosquitoes are flying insects. They are in the family Culicidae and are classified in the order Diptera and are considered true flies. They have one pair of wings, six long and thin legs, and adults can be 3 millimeters to 9 millimeters in length. On their head, mosquitoes have a prominent feature known as a proboscis, which is used for feeding. Their wings and bodies are often covered in tiny scales, and they are typically dark brown or black.
How Do Mosquitoes Transmit Diseases?
Diseases known to be transmitted by mosquitoes include dengue, West Nile virus, malaria, Zika virus, and certain types of encephalitis. These diseases can replicate in mosquitoes, allowing infected mosquitoes to transmit the corresponding sickness to humans. When mosquitoes bite, they use piercing mouthparts to puncture their victim's skin and inject saliva to numb the area and increase blood flow for feeding. This is where the transmission occurs as infectious diseases are passed along through the mosquito's saliva as it absorbs blood.
If a noninfected mosquito bites you, the bite is not as severe and will subside after a few days. There are circumstances where people with immune deficiency or immune disorders can display worse symptoms.
Commonly observed symptoms from mosquito bites are:
- A reddish bump
- A white bump with a red dot in the middle
- Dark spots that are similar to bruises
- Small blisters
Possible symptoms from mosquito bites for people with compromised immune systems are:
- Low-grade fever
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Large areas of redness and swelling
When you know a mosquito has bitten you, it is wise to seek counsel from your medical professional. Mosquito bites should never be taken lightly as your health and well-being could be at risk from exposure to viral and parasitic diseases.
What Is COVID-19 and How Is it Transmitted?
COVID-19, the disease caused by a new strain of coronavirus, is a respiratory illness with many symptoms that are similar to other respiratory illnesses. Two of the most common signs of COVID-19 are the loss of taste and smell. If you feel that you have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it, contact your medical professional for more information or visit a local testing facility near you.
The spread of COVID-19 is predominantly done through the droplets created when an infected person sneezes or coughs. It can be transmitted through saliva or discharge from an infected person's nose as well.
The best way to protect yourself from COVID-19 is to:
- Practice physical distancing
- Avoid all close contact with people who are sneezing or coughing
- Use an alcohol-based hand rub
- Wash your hands with soap and water
Can Mosquitoes Transmit COVID-19?
The simplest answer to this question is no. According to the World Health Organization, there's no empirical data or evidence suggesting COVID-19 or coronaviruses, in general, can be transmitted or spread by mosquitoes. Data collected from tests have shown that COVID-19 cannot replicate in mosquitoes. This means that a mosquito can feed on a person infected with COVID-19 and still not pass the virus on to others.
This doesn't mean that you shouldn't worry about mosquito bites because they are still very capable of carrying and spreading other serious illnesses. Contact Bulwark Exterminating if you have a mosquito infestation on your property, at your place of business, or elsewhere. Bulwark's highly trained professionals can assess your situation and implement a plan of action to eliminate the threat of mosquitoes to you and others.
As mosquito season ramps up in 2021, you won't have to worry about one of these little pests giving you the nasty surprise of COVID-19. Though that may be a relief, you will still need to guard your family, friends, and employees from other prominent threats associated with a mosquito's bite. Let Bulwark Exterminating take care of the mosquitoes, so you can enjoy the summer and all the outdoor activities you love.