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June 9, 2017

Houston Health Department urges residents to learn the 3D Zika Defense

Zika Virus Graphic
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Mosquito season is underway and will intensify during upcoming summer months. That's why the Houston Health Department urges you to learn its 3D Zika Defense; it is the best way to protect your family against mosquito bites that could result in severe birth defects in newborn babies.

The three Ds stand for DEET, dress and drain. First, spray insect repellent with DEET on exposed skin while outdoors. Dress in long pants and long-sleeve shirts as the weather permits. Make sure door and window screens are in good condition to stop mosquitoes from entering your home. Finally, drain outdoor items that hold water, such as flower pots or old tires, at least once a week.

The Zika virus can spread from a pregnant woman to her unborn baby during pregnancy. It is spread to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito. It also can be spread by people who are infected to their sex partners.

All Zika cases in the Houston area are among people who traveled to regions with outbreaks, mostly Latin America and the Caribbean.

Many people infected with Zika have no symptoms. Of those who do have symptoms, the most common are fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). There is no vaccine or treatment for Zika.

Watch a 3D Zika Defense video and get more information about protecting your family against the Zika virus at