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What Diseases Do Mosquitoes Spread?

Mosquitoes are feared for their ability to spread and transmit diseases that are dangerous to communities worldwide. There are more than 700,000 deaths from vector-borne diseases each year, making the threat of these pests extreme. Most of these diseases have disproportionately affected populations in tropical and subtropical regions, but they remain a global threat. A few of the most common mosquito-borne diseases include:

  • Malaria
  • Dengue
  • Schistosomiasis
  • Chagas disease
  • Yellow fever
  • Zika virus
  • Rift Valley fever
  • West Nile virus
What diseases do mosquitoes spread? | Knoxville TN | Russell's Pest Control

Do All Mosquitoes Transmit Disease?

There are three mosquitoes in particular that are known to contribute to the spread of disease: the Aedes, Culex, and Anopheles mosquitoes. Within these families of mosquitoes, there are a number of species. The good news is that most types of mosquitoes do not transmit disease, even if they bite. In Knoxville, there have been reported cases of both the Aedes and the Culex mosquito.

Mosquito-Borne Disease in Knoxville

Across the United States, more than 200 types of mosquitoes are found. However, only about 12 types are capable of transmitting disease. The diseases that have been found in the United States include Dengue, chikungunya, Zika virus, and Malaria; these outbreaks occurred in Florida, Texas, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, and the US Virgin Islands. Cases of malaria in the states typically occur only when travelers return from tropical regions where it is more common. The types of mosquitoes we encounter here in Knoxville are nuisance mosquitoes that are incapable of transmitting the diseases that make people sick.

Symptoms of Dangerous Mosquito Diseases

Mosquito bites from nuisance species will result in mild symptoms. So what symptoms alert you that you may be suffering from something more serious? Keep an eye out for the following symptoms, which may suggest a more serious reaction to a mosquito bite:

  • Sudden high fever
  • Stiff neck
  • Confusion
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Muscle tremors or seizures
  • Severe headaches
  • Rash

If you begin to experience any of the above symptoms, it’s important to get in front of your doctor as soon as possible.