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What is ZIKA Virus?
Zika virus disease is caused by a virus that is transmitted by mosquitoes that are found in the tropics and bite most often during the day, but can also bite at night.
How can I contract the ZIKA Virus?
Wayne County Department of Health, Veterans and Community Wellness reminds residents traveling to Latin America and the Caribbean to take precautions while traveling to these areas to prevent being bitten by mosquitoes that carry Zika. These mosquitoes are NOT found in Michigan. Zika virus can also be sexually transmitted.
What are the symptoms of the ZIKA Virus?
Most People who are infected with Zika do not get sick. If they do, symptoms begin 3-14 days after the mosquito bite. Symptoms are usually mild, and include, fever, rash, red eyes and joint pains. Zika has been associated with a birth defect in babies born to mothers who were infected while pregnant. Zika is also associated with a neurological disease Guillain-Barre Syndrome, which can cause paralysis.
How is ZIKA Virus treated?
There is no specific treatment for ZIKA and no vaccine to prevent it.
How can I prevent from contracting the ZIKA Virus?
You can prevent Zika by doing the following things:
  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
  • Stay in places with air conditioning or that use window and door screens to keep mosquitoes outside.
  • Sleep under a mosquito bed net if you are overseas or outside and are not able to protect yourself from mosquito bites.
  • Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellents. When used as directed, EPA-registered insect repellents are proven safe and effective, even for pregnant and breastfeeding women.
    • Always follow the product label instructions.
    • Reapply insect repellent as directed.
    • Do not spray repellent on the skin under clothing.
    • If you are also using sunscreen, apply sunscreen before applying insect repellent.
  • If you have a baby or child:
    • Do not use insect repellent on babies younger than 2 months of age.
    • Dress your child in clothing that covers arms and legs, or
    • Cover crib, stroller, and baby carrier with mosquito netting.
    • Do not apply insect repellent onto a child's hands, eyes, mouth, and cut or irritated skin.
    • Adults: Spray insect repellent onto your hands and then apply to a child's face.
  • Treat clothing and gear with permethrin or purchase permethrin-treated items.
    • Treated clothing remains protective after multiple washings. See product information to learn how long the protection will last.
    • If treating items yourself, follow the product instructions carefully.
    • Do NOT use permethrin products directly on skin. They are intended to treat clothing.
What if I'm trying to conceive a child?
Zika can also be transmitted through sexual contact. CDC recommends the following to prevent sexual transmission
  • Women who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant should talk to their health care providers, and consider postponing travel to areas with active Zika transmission.
  • Potentially exposed men whose partners are currently pregnant should abstain from sex, or use condoms consistently, for the duration of the pregnancy
  • Men who are returning from areas, with current Zika transmission, who have symptoms of Zika, should abstain from sex or use condoms consistently for 6 months.
  • Men who are returning from areas with current Zika transmission who do not have symptoms of Zika, should abstain from sex or use condoms consistently for 8 weeks.
  • Women who are returning from areas with current Zika transmission should abstain from sex, or use condoms consistently for 8 weeks.

For more information please see the CDC website at http://www.cdc.gov/zika/index.html