The weather is warming up, which is great. But it also brings its own set of health issues if you're not careful.

Around this time last year, reports were circulating, including one out of Idaho about a "brain-swelling" virus called "Powassan" that was spreading. The latest statistics show that it's been most prevalent to our midwest neighbors in Minnesota and Wisconsin.

CDC

Though no known cases have been reported according to the most recent available statistics in Iowa, it is certainly a threat worth taking seriously here. Other mosquito and tick-borne diseases are still a real and dangerous threat. One of these in particular is Lyme disease.

Health officials told the Gazette that lyme disease cases are on the rise in Iowa. 254 cases were reported in 2017, up from 232 the previous year.

What can you do to avoid Lyme and other tick-borne diseases?

  • Avoid direct contact with ticks
  • Use repellent with a minimum of 20 percent DEET
  • Find and remove ticks as soon as they're found
  • Stay indoors as much as possible (although that's no fun)

Have a safe, happy and bug-free summer!

 

[Via WOW 104.3, Gazette, Center For Disease Control and Prevention]