There’s a lot of information and misinformation about the Zika Virus, and it’s important to sort out what’s true from what’s not.
Perhaps the most important question to be answered is, why is Zika Virus so scary?
For many individuals, the Zika Virus is not immediately dangerous with high fatality rates. In fact, many individuals who contract the disease will only exhibit mild symptoms.
Counter-intuitively, however, that poses its own dangers.
When the Symptoms Are Mild, the Disease Spreads
Zika Virus is known mostly for being passed on by mosquitoes. Besides that, Zika Virus can be passed from a pregnant woman to her child.
What many don’t know is that Zika is also transmitted through sexual contact and blood transfusion.
The scariest part about Zika is its ability to cause a number of birthing issues for pregnant women. These include microcephaly, various brain defects, Guillain-Barre Syndrome, and even stillbirths and miscarriages.
Because Zika has such mild and nondescript symptoms, such as fever, rash headache, joint pain, or muscle pain, many individuals with the virus may have no idea that they have the disease. In fact, carriers might be completely asymptomatic.
This puts pregnant women at serious risk.
Avoid Traveling to at Risk Areas
If you are pregnant, the easiest way to avoid the virus is to avoid traveling to areas at risk for the Zika Virus. Pregnant women are especially strongly cautioned not to do so, but this applies to all travelers.
If you are forced to travel to one of these areas, then the most important act you can do is protecting yourself from mosquito bites. Wear clothing with long sleeves and long pants. Treat your gear with permethrin.
Concerned you might have Zika Virus? Traveling somewhere and want to know more to minimize your chances of contracting the virus? Call Capital Medical Associates‘ Travel Clinic today to schedule your appointment.