How Mosquito Spread & Transmit Disease

Every year, when the weather starts getting warmer, it's important to take steps to protect yourself and your family from mosquito bites. Not only do these pests cover humans and animals alike with itchy welts, they also spread serious infectious diseases amongst humans, dogs and horses. However small the risk of being infected may seem, it's always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to dealing with the possibility of serious illness.

Be sure to browse our selection of misting systems, fogging treatments, portable mosquito control and other general mosquito control options as you prepare for mosquito season.

How Mosquitoes Spread Diseases

Mosquito-borne diseases kill over 1 million people worldwide every year. This number is so high because mosquitoes have the unique ability to transmit diseases without ever being infected themselves. This means that they can continue to spread the disease throughout their entire lifespan without being weakened or debilitated.

These flying insects need to drink blood in order to have the nutrients necessary to lay eggs. For this reason, the females fly from mammal to mammal drinking blood along the way. At each stop, they can pick up a variety of different bacteria, viruses or parasites. After they've picked up these infections, they can then pass that disease on to each of the next animals or people they bite. Because of the ease with which these insects spread diseases, the best method of prevention is to keep them away from your home or business altogether.

Which Diseases Are Commonly Spread by Mosquitoes

  • Zika Virus - Due to its prevalence in Brazil during the 2016 Summer Olympics, Zika virus has been in and out of the media several times over the past couple of years. This infection causes fever-like symptoms in adults, but is rarely fatal. The real danger of this disease lies in its ability to cause birth defects when pregnant women are infected.
  • West Nile Virus - West Nile virus can often be asymptomatic, but can also cause fatigue, body aches, weakness and vomiting for weeks or months in certain vulnerable patients. This disease is the greatest risk to the elderly as well as those with preexisting conditions, such as cancer or diabetes.
  • Malaria - Malaria is caused by a parasite and causes severe illness in infected humans. Some symptoms include fever, chills and a flu-like sickness. This serious disease can sometimes be fatal if the proper treatment isn't received.
  • Dengue Fever - This tropical disease is typically non-fatal and is characterized by symptoms such as headaches, joint pain, fever and rash. However, severe cases can include internal bleeding, difficulty breathing, hemorrhagic fever and even death.
  • Chikungunya - Chikungunya is a disease that typically occurs in Africa and Asia, but has been recorded in Europe and the U.S. It presents as fever, muscle and joint pain, headache, rash, fatigue and nausea. Most patients recover completely from this virus, but some have symptoms and complications that last for years.
  • Dog Heartworm - Heartworms are dangerous parasites that live inside a dog's body. These nasty worms can cause serious damage to your pet's heart, lungs and arteries if they aren't prevented. Mosquito control paired with heartworm prevention medicine is your best defense.
  • Other Human, Dog and Horse Diseases - There are many other diseases that can be spread to humans and other mammals by mosquitoes. The best way to prevent contracting one of these serious illnesses is to ensure that you have a good mosquito repellant system in place.