COLUMBIA, SC (WMBF) – A person in the Pee Dee has been identified as the first to be sick with the West Nile Virus in South Carolina this year, according to the state Department of Health and Environmental Control.

DHEC officials did not name the Pee Dee community where the person lives. Symptoms of West Nile Virus [can] include a fever, headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea, or rash.

Most people with this type of West Nile virus disease recover completely, but fatigue and weakness can last for weeks or months, a press release stated.

According to DHEC, the most effective ways of preventing mosquito-borne illnesses include:

  • Repellents, which help keep mosquitoes from biting. Apply insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or IR 3535 according to label instructions.
  • Making sure that doors and windows have tight-fitting screens to keep out mosquitoes.
  • Eliminating all sources of standing water on the property, including flowerpots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, birdbaths, old car tires, rain gutters and pet bowls.
  • Wearing light-colored clothing to cover the skin to reduce the risk of bites.

For more information on mosquito-borne illnesses, click here.

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