The Zika Virus and why YOU should care

The Zika Virus is a well known proper noun around the world, but you may not know all the details. Before I delve into the facts, I will be frank. You should care. I care. The Zika Virus is not a distant or foreign disease. Almost every location in the United States excluding Wyoming, Alaska and two territories have reported cases of the virus being present. That means that becoming infected is not unlikely, therefore the need for education of this disease is high. zika-by-state-report-08-25-2016

The virus is spread mostly by a certain species of infected mosquitos, but can also be spread via sex and from a pregnant mother to her fetus. Symptoms include fever, rash, joint pain and red eyes, but can also entail muscle pain and headache. Luckily, people do not typically die from this and also usually do not get sick enough to go to the hospital. Zika Virus has been connected to the brain disease Guillain-Barré syndrome which makes the immune system attack nerves. The infection is also risky to pregnant women as the disease is linked to a number of birth defects including microcephaly which is caused by an underdeveloped brain.

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Long sleeve clothing, insect repellent and staying inside mosquito free environments are proven ways of protection. You should protect yourself because even if you are not concerned with getting ill, you should care about those around you. If you become infected then you are perpetuating the spread of Zika Virus and could harm those in your community, nation, and over all world.

There are no available vaccines to this disease, so knowledge is one of the best tools we can use to protect ourselves.

Karl Popper once said, “True ignorance is not the absence of knowledge, but the refusal to acquire it.”

 

sources:

https://www.cdc.gov/zika/about/overview.html

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