Enjoy the Buzz of Summer not the Bite- Plumas Public Health Warns of Increased Risk of Insect Borne Illnesses


While the heat of summer is welcomed after the long winter days, the warming weather also increases your risk of mosquito- and tick-borne illnesses.

As the temperature rises, mosquitoes become more active, raising the risk of West Nile Virus (WNV) being spread by mosquito bites. According to Plumas Public Health, the virus can cause severe illness, especially in those over 50 or with weakened immune systems.

Yet there are ways you can protect yourself; Plumas Public Health shares a few prevention tips:

  • Use insect repellent with DEET, picaridin, or other EPA-registered ingredients.
  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and pants, especially during dawn and dusk when the pests are most prevalent.
  • Remove standing water to reduce mosquito breeding sites.
  • Install screens on windows and doors.

Ticks can transmit Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever, requiring prompt diagnosis and treatment.

  • Ways to protect yourself include:
  • Avoid Tick-Infested Areas: such as wooded, brushy areas with high grass and leaf litter; stay on trail centers when hiking.
  • Use Tick Repellents: Apply 20-30% DEET on skin and clothing; use permethrin on clothing.
  • Perform Tick Checks: After outdoor activities, thoroughly inspect your body and clothing for ticks, focusing on your armpits, behind your knees, and hair.
  • Shower After Outdoors: Shower within two hours of coming indoors to wash off unattached ticks and conduct a thorough tick check.

The health agency says that If you are bitten by a tick, remove it immediately and monitor for symptoms like fever, rash, aches, and pains.

To stay healthy this summer, visit the CDPH Vector-Borne Disease webpage to learn more about these insect-borne illnesses.