CHICAGO (WLS) -- Recent rains have helped the mosquito population grow in Chicagoland, said North Shore Mosquito Abatement District Executive Director Mark Clifton.
Clifton's agency tests mosquitoes for West Nile virus, which killed 8 people last year according to the Illinois Department of Public Health's count.
Tips to avoid a mosquito bite and potential infection.
Insect repellents are first on the CDC prevention list. "EPA-registered" repellents containing the following active ingredients are recommended: DEET, Picaridin, IR3535, Oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE), Para-menthane-diol (PMD), 2-undecanone.
The CDC also says to wear long-sleeved shirts and pants, adding that you should keep mosquitoes outside (use the air-conditioner or a window with screen). "If you are not able to protect yourself from mosquitoes inside your home or hotel, sleep under a mosquito bed net," the CDC's website reads.
The CDC also lists travel advice catered to whichever country you're visiting. More broadly, the CDC tells travelers to "prevent mosquito bites for 3 weeks after their trip so they do not spread viruses like dengue, Zika, or chikungunya to uninfected mosquitoes," adding in its online article, "If you have been travelling and have symptoms including fever, headache, muscle and joint pain, and rash, see your healthcare provider immediately and be sure to share your travel history."
What can I do in my own yard?
Get rid of any standing water, recommended Mosquito Joe franchise owner Jim Dunbar to ABC 7's Michelle Gallardo.
"One bottle cap of water can house 300 eggs, believe it or not," he said, adding, "One of the worst culprits are tires. If you have a tire swing, drill holes into the bottom. It's the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes."
Companies like Mosquito Joe offer spraying treatments that will help keep mosquitoes away from your yard for two to three weeks.
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