Fumigation begins in San Pedro Town ahead of expected Dengue season

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2020

On Tuesday, June 2nd, personnel from the Health Department on the island began fumigating across the subdivisions of San Pedro Town in an attempt to contain the swarm of mosquitoes that have been triggered by the recent rains. The fumigation effort is not only to contain the blood-sucking insects, but also to mitigate any Dengue outbreaks and any other diseases transmitted by the bites of infected mosquitoes.  Fumigation is expected to continue through the end of the week as health personnel intends to target all potential mosquito breeding sites on the island.

Dengue causes painful fever, rashes, and is a very debilitating illness. It is transmitted via the bite of an infected Aedes Egypti mosquito. This species of mosquito can also infect people with other diseases like Zika and Chikungunya. The fumigation is expected to alleviate the mosquito situation to some extent, but according to health authorities the best method of mitigation is by everyone keeping their yards free of items that can hold rainwater/stagnant water where these insects reproduce.

As the rainy season continues, a high-rate Dengue season is being predicted by the health authorities. As such, they are urging the community to rid their areas of mosquito breeding grounds. Dengue has become a yearly occurrence in Belize, and in 2019, a surge of cases on the island almost set San Pedro on the verge of an epidemic.

With no vaccine or specific treatment, the best way to prevent this serious illness is to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes. Early in the mornings and later in the evenings, the use of mosquito repellent and long sleeves and pants is recommended. If anyone develops painful fevers and rashes, they should seek medical attention immediately to be tested for Dengue. Someone with Dengue usually recovers by resting, staying hydrated, and taking acetaminophen for fever and pain. Aspirin-based medications are NOT recommended.


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