Pueblo County Reports First West Nile Case

Health officials in Pueblo County have confirmed the first human case of West Nile virus in the county.

Now health officials are urging everyone to take the necessary precautions to protect themselves from the illness.

With the high water levels because of all of the recent rain, there is potential for the mosquito population to increase. However, health experts say the risk of being infected with the West Nile virus is low right now because it's so late in the season.

It is still possible to contract the disease through September and into October.

Symptoms of West Nile include fever, fatigue, headache, muscle weakness, rash, stiff neck, and changed mental state.

If infected, people can feel extremely tired or weak for several weeks.

If you have any of these symptoms, contact your doctor right away.

Here are some tips from the Pueblo City-County Health Department:
· DRAIN: Eliminate standing water in tires or similar water-holding containers as these may serve as mosquito breeding sites. Change the water in birdbaths, empty tires or flower pots, at least weekly.
· DUSK AND DAWN: Avoid outdoor activities, such as gardening, at dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.
· DEET, picaridin and oil of lemon eucalyptus are effective ingredients to look for in insect repellents. Always follow label instructions for application.
· DRESS: If outside during the periods when mosquitoes are most active, cover up by wearing long-sleeved shirts, pants, shoes and socks.