Mosquitoes & Mosquito-borne Illnesses
Protect Yourself From Mosquitoes
Late summer is the most common time of year for mosquito activity but they can breed and bite during all warm weather months.
How to protect yourself from mosquitoes
Dusk and Dawn — avoid being outdoors when mosquitoes are most active.
Dress — wear long-sleeve shirts and long pants. For extra protection, treat clothing with permethrin.
DEET — Use EPA-registered insect repellents. When used as directed, EPA-registered insect repellents are proven safe and effective.
Drainage — eliminate standing water around the home in places such as buckets, cans, old tires and plant containers.
How to protect your home from mosquitoes
Install or repair screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes outside. Use your air conditioning, if you have it.
Help reduce the number of mosquitoes around your home by emptying standing water from flowerpots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, pet water dishes, discarded tires, and birdbaths on a regular basis.
Place screen on rain barrels or water collecting containers and use the water within a week.
Report illegal dumping, abandoned swimming pools and water leaks by calling 311.
On January 15, 2016 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a travel alert for people traveling to regions where Zika virus transmission is ongoing. For an up-to-date list of travel notice countries visit CDC Travel.
Pregnant women in any trimester should consider postponing travel to the areas where Zika virus transmission is ongoing.
Early detection of the symptoms and avoiding mosquito bites will help prevent the disease from spreading. If you have traveled to any travel advisory countries and have symptoms within 2 weeks of travel seek medical attention immediately; notify your physician of your travel history and avoid mosquito bites.
Mosquito-borne illnesses are any diseases that can be passed from a mosquito to a human. It is important to protect yourself from mosquito bites so you do not get these diseases. For more information read this fact sheet on mosquito bite prevention.
Need more information?
For more information on mosquitoes visit New Orleans Mosquito and Termite Control Board.
There are currently no locally transmitted cases of Zika in New Orleans.
Zika virus is spread to people through mosquito bites. The most common symptoms of Zika are fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting for several days to a week. About one in five people infected with Zika virus will have symptoms. For more information about Zika visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
West Nile Virus
West Nile virus is the most common mosquito-borne illness in the United States and is found in Louisiana. Common symptoms of West Nile virus include headache, body aches, joint pain, vomiting, diarrhea, rash, fatigue and weakness. For more information about West Nile virus visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
St. Louis Encephalitis
St. Louis encephalitis is found in Louisiana. Symptoms are rare with St. Louis encephalitis and typically occur 5-15 days after the bite and tend to be more severe in the elderly. Symptoms may include fever, headache, dizziness, nausea, weakness and encephalitis (inflammation of the brain). For more information about St. Louis encephalitis visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Chikungunya is not found in Louisiana but is common in other parts of the world including the Caribbean, South America, Central America, and the Pacific Islands. Travelers should protect themselves from mosquitoes while traveling and after returning home in order to prevent transmitting Chikungunya to local mosquitoes. For more information about Chikungunya review at this factsheet or visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
For the latest health travel notice information visit CDC.gov/travel/notices.