With Zika Virus in the news, it is normal for expecting and new parents to have concerns about the health and safety of their children. The most important thing with any new concern is to be educated. At DayOne Baby, we see our role as the discerning filter of information to give you a clear and thorough guide to navigate this matter.
What is Zika virus?
Zika virus spreads to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito (Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting up to a week, and many people do not have symptoms or will have only mild symptoms. However, Zika virus infection during pregnancy can cause a serious birth defect called microcephaly and other severe brain defects.
How do people get infected with Zika?
Zika is spread to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito (Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus). A pregnant woman can pass Zika to her fetus during pregnancy or around the time of birth. Also, a man with Zika can pass it to sex partners. We encourage people who have traveled to or live in places with Zika to protect themselves by preventing mosquito bites and sexual transmission of Zika.
What are the best ways to protect against Zika Virus?
The best way to prevent Zika is to protect yourself and your family from mosquito bites:
- Use bug repellent
- Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants
- Sleep under a mosquito bed net if air conditioned or screened rooms are not available or if sleeping outdoors.
Zika can be spread by men to their sex partners. People whose male sex partners have traveled to or live in an area with Zika can prevent Zika by using condoms condoms correctly every time they have sex or by not having sex.
Where are the high risk areas for Zika virus?
You can see the full map of high risk areas here.
What should I do if I recently traveled to one of these countries?
Zika virus testing is performed at CDC and some state and territorial health departments. See your doctor if you have Zika symptoms and have recently visited an area with Zika. Your doctor may order tests to look for Zika or similar viruses like dengue and chikungunya.
Pregnant women who have recently traveled to an area with Zika should talk to their doctor about their travel, even if they don’t feel sick. Pregnant women should see a doctor if they have any Zika symptoms during their trip or within 2 weeks after traveling. All pregnant women can protect themselves by avoiding travel to an area with Zika, preventing mosquito bites, and following recommended precautions against getting Zika through sex.
What bug repellents do you sell at DayOne Baby?
Scientists have generally found bug repellents to be safe for pregnant women and their unborn children. The risk of Zika infection is far more serious than side effects from repellent chemicals, provided you use products as directed.
In our San Francisco and Palo Alto stores we sell Sawyer’s Picaridin Insect Repellent Spray and Lotion and Clothing Insect Repellent.
This is one time where the most “natural” product is definitely not the most effective product. Both Consumer Reports and the Environmental Working Group (EWG) recommend the Picaridin 20% ingredient found in Sawyer’s insect repellents that we carry as their top choice in terms of being the most effective while minimizing risks of potential side effects such as neurotoxicity, a concern of DEET use.
All the Sawyer products we carry are equally effective but in different forms since some individuals prefer sprays over lotions etc. The Clothing Insect Repellent contains Premethrin, a chemical that will be effective for 42 days once sprayed on clothing, tents, backpacks, strollers and carriers. It is another layer of protection, especially if the person is going camping or headed into an area prone to mosquitoes. Bug repellents should not be used directly on children under 6 months.
While no repellent is 100 percent effective, it is important to take extra precautions to avoid mosquito bites. Cover up with pants and long sleeves when possible, especially when you need protection from sun and mosquitoes.
If you need both sun and mosquito protection, the CDC recommends buying two separate products and applying sunscreen first and then mosquito repellent. Remember to reapply after swimming and sweating.
Important to remember:
Before you travel, test the bug spray in your backyard to see for irritation.
If you have any additional questions or concerns you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Source: CDC Website