Mosquito bites drain small quantities of blood from the vessels of victims. They leave behind itchy, red, swollen bumps that, when scratched, can easily become infected. However, the greater danger of mosquitoes are the germs and bacteria that can get transferred during these bites. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises that two of the most common and potentially dangerous illnesses caused by mosquito bites are:
- West Nile Virus: Symptoms include headaches, fever, body aches, and intestinal issues. While some people experience no ill effects, others can take weeks or even months to recover. In severe cases, it can result in inflammation of the spinal cord or brain.
- Zika Virus: This virus can cause fever, rashes, and joint pain, which can impact victims for weeks after. Once a person has Zika, they can spread it to others. The virus can result in birth defects in unborn children, putting expectant mothers at increased risk.
Other diseases that are known to be spread through mosquito bites include yellow fever and malaria.