More to worry about from mozzies than the buzz and itch

It's important to take precautions against mosquito bites to protect against diseases like Barmah Forest virus and Ross River fever.
It's important to take precautions against mosquito bites to protect against diseases like Barmah Forest virus and Ross River fever. Contributed

CLARENCE Valley residents are five to eight times more likely to contract a nasty disease from a mosquito bite than the average for the State.

The North Coast Public Health Unit is reminding residents and visitors to the region to protect themselves against mosquitoes, which are increasing in numbers as summer progresses.

"Mosquito numbers increase in summer and when there is water lying around," said senior environmental health officer Tony Kohlenberg.

"As it is predicted that rainfall will be above average over the next three months, there will be more mosquito breeding sites around and a greater risk of being bitten."

Ross River and Barmah Forest viruses are common on the north coast and are transmitted by infected mosquitoes that breed in flooded, grassy and swampy areas and around waterways.

On average in each year, over the past decade about 500 people living on NSW north coast were diagnosed with either Ross River virus or Barmah Forest virus - in about equal numbers (about 250 cases of each are reported on average each year.)

Compared to the NSW average, people living on north coast are five to eight times more likely to be infected with Barmah Forest virus and three to five times more likely to be infected with Ross River virus.

Simple steps to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes include:

  •  When outside cover up as much as possible with light-coloured, loose-fitting clothing and covered footwear.
  •  Use an effective repellent on all exposed skin. Re-apply repellent within a few hours, as protection wears off with perspiration. The best mosquito repellents contain Diethyl Toluamide (DEET) or Picaridin.
  •  Light mosquito coils or use vapourising mats indoors. Devices that use light to attract and electrocute insects are not effective.
  •  Cover all windows, doors, vents and other entrances with insect screens.
  •  When camping, use flyscreens on caravans and tents or sleep under mosquito nets.

"Preventing these viruses depends on avoiding mosquito bites, especially in the warmer months of the year when mosquitoes are most active," Mr Kohlenberg said.

Topics:  barmah forest fever mosquitos ross river virus

Richmond MP continues to fights for MRI

Able Medico managing partner Mark Grahame, Richmond MP Justine Elliot with Medical Staff Council chariman Dr Mike Lindley-Jones.

Justine Elliot continues to fight for an MRI at Tweed Hospital.

Learning peace of mind

BEING MINDFUL: The children of St Anthony's Catholic Primary School learn mindfulness from Angela Lockwood.

Children learn how to handle stressful stituations.

Local Partners

Family's new arrival in face of tragedy

MEL Small had already gone into labour when she learned of the tragic fate of her sister Jodie Spears.

Barry Gibb is coming to Bluesfest 2017

FANS: Barry Gibb talks to a fan next to a cardboard cutout of his young self.

Aged 70, Gibb has re-launched his solo music career with a new album

Declan Kelly and the Rising Sun to shine bright at festival

Declan Kelly & The Rising Sun is one of the headlining acts at this year's festival.

Main stage set to pump with radiant reggae and dub vibes

Expert's talk on Olley's life is not to be missed

THE ARTIST: Artist Margaret Olley at the Tweed Regional Art Gallery in 2006.

RARE insight into the life of one of most cherished hoarders

In Flames are super 'proud' of new album

In Flames album to be released in November.  Photo Contributed

In Flames to release new album in November

Selma Blair blames flight outburst on 'psychotic blackout'

Selma Blair

"I am someone who should never drink, and I rarely do"

Bob Dylan acknowledges Nobel Prize win

Bob Dylan has finally acknowledged his Nobel Prize win

WATCH: Trailer for Jackman's final Wolverine film released

First trailer for the last Wolverine film with Hugh Jackman.

Thrilling trailer promises a dark, dystopian finale for Wolverine

CCTV footage surfaces of Kim Kardashian West's robbers

The blurry footage shows three men on bikes and two on foot

Cathriona White's mother claims to have Jim Carrey's results

Jim Carrey and late ex-girlfriend Cathriona White

SHE claims Carrey exposed White to herpes, chlamydia, Hepatitis A

New $200 million development will create 580 jobs

Cassie And Josh with baby Alfie and daughter Andee. They have bought at new Lennox Head development Epiq.

Majority of new positions will be given to Northern Rivers locals

Cherrabah's mega resort plans axed

PLANS for a massive development at Cherrabah have been scrapped.

Dusit Thani finance crisis 'just a small hiccup'

ON TRACK: Springfield Land Chairman, Maha Sinnathamby, Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale, Developer Richard Turner and Springfield Land Deputy Chairman, Bob Sharpless, at the recent resort sod turning ceremony.

Property developer says project remains firmly on track

Heavyweight enters real estate market

Des Besanko principal and director of Raine and Horne Springfield.

Major rebranding which has seen two big name brands merge

Bank could add towns to 'high-risk' home loan list

Suburban housing in Glenvale, Toowoomba, Friday, October 17, 2014. Photo Kevin Farmer / The Chronicle

NEW Gladstone region towns could be added unwanted bank list.

Tenants renting rooms on Airbnb breaching lease

Rental properties.

Tenants renting rooms on Airbnb is a no no