What is Zika?
Well, if we already didn’t hate the f*ck out of mosquitos already, here’s the straw! Zika is a new mosquito-borne virus causing pregnant women to give birth to babies with abnormally small heads.
Can it be cured or treated?
While no claims have been filed about the U.S. mosquitos, there have been complaints from those who’ve recently returned to the U.S. from abroad and gave birth. Yeah, it’s happening. Be careful.
What about your plans to go?
Major shout outs to the airlines that are refunding pregnant women, and women looking to get pregnant in the very near future who are going to countries presently being bitten by these stupid little bugs. United Airlines, British Airways, American Airlines, LAN, and TAM are among the airlines refunding their passengers. Make the call if you must.
Side Note To Those Not Pregnant (Completely Related): To avoid foolishness and Zika-affected children, wear protection when traveling to these places (and other places; all places actually). Hell, even El Salvador is asking women not to get pregnant until 2018.
If you’re hard-headed and still going to go, here’s how you protect yourself (According to the CDC):
- Use insect repellents.
- Do not use products containing oil of lemon eucalyptus in children under the age of three years.
- Repellents containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, and some oil of lemon eucalyptus and para-menthane-diol products provide long lasting protection.
- If you use both sunscreen and insect repellent, apply the sunscreen first and then the repellent.
- Do not spray insect repellent on the skin under your clothing.
- Treat clothing with permethrin or purchase permethrin-treated clothing.
- When weather permits, wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.
- Use air conditioning or window/door screens to keep mosquitoes outside. If you are not able to protect yourself from mosquitoes inside your home or hotel, sleep under a mosquito bed net.
- Help reduce the number of mosquitoes inside and outside your home or hotel room by emptying standing water from containers such as flowerpots or buckets.
Countries presently affected by Zika according to the CDC:
U.S. Virgin Islands
“Man, they got mosquitoes ’round this place big enough to rape a chicken.”
― Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love
Darnell Lamont Walker, a self-professed traveling foodie, has been found sitting at tables eating baby goat sweetbreads, drinking tequila, and laughing loudly with strangers. The writer, filmmaker, artist, and sometimes photographer puts happiness above all.