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Rain brings mosquitoes, with a vengeance

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Posted at 9:34 PM, Sep 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-20 22:50:33-04

The most recent rain seems to have brought some unwanted visitors to Central Texas.

Lots of us, especially those of us living near the water, have seen and felt more mosquitoes.

Jennifer Warnick went on a hunt for mosquito breeding grounds after she noticed the bites on her daughter’s ankles and neck.

"With all the rain and stuff, we’ve seen an increase in mosquitoes. Can’t leave a door open, not even for a minute without ‘em coming in," Warnick said.

After a hot dry summer, recent rain has helped the mosquito population boom and many of us make the problem worse by allowing standing water around our homes.

"Mosquitoes love moisture. They like to lay their eggs in water, so you get a lot of rain, you get a lot of pockets of moisture, and water around your yard and all they need is a teaspoon to lay their eggs," said Kelly Craine of the Waco-McLennan County Health Department.

So, just a little rain… and it’s slap… slap… and scratch.

What’s the big concern? Zika, West Nile, in fact, Brazos County reported its first case of West Nile just this week.

Brazos County says it’s the first human case of the potentially deadly disease since 2016.

And most of us can’t resist scratching… but doctors warn against that.

"If you’re continually scratching and you’ve got ‘em open and you come into contact with, it could be dirt, most definitely, but anything like a shopping cart and then scratch, you could be possibly infected," said Holly Ivy, emergency room nurse at Hillcrest Hospital.

She recommends cold compresses, and maybe some Tylenol or Benadryl and maybe an anti-itch cream.

And when we go outside?

"Defend against mosquitoes so that means using mosquito repellent," said Craine.

Jennifer Warnick has used plenty of that, so that’s why she hunts down mosquito breeding grounds around the house.

"I'm prayin’ for fall, I’m ready for next week a little cooler temperature. Do I think that will make the mosquitoes go away? No!" Warnick said.

The best insect repellents use the chemical DEET in concentrations of at least 25 percent. But health department experts say, use whatever works for you to keep the pests away.

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