Sum­mer’s still here

Fall is around the cor­ner, but sum­mer­time risks aren’t gone

Standard-Freeholder (Cornwall) - - NEWS - DR. PAUL ROUMELIOTIS

As we en­ter the fall months, we tend to for­get some of the pre­cau­tions and sum­mer-re­lated risks and threats.

I wanted to list some of them as a re­minder they are still nec­es­sary even though we are in the fall months:

West Nile virus (WNV)

The mos­qui­toes that carry WNV will be around and ac­tive un­til the colder weather per­ma­nently ar­rives, which may be at least a few more months. In fact, typ­i­cally, most hu­man cases of WNV oc­cur dur­ing Septem­ber and Oc­to­ber.

Make sure you take the nec­es­sary pre­cau­tions when out­doors. These include: con­tin­u­ing to use DEET or other ap­proved re­pel­lants, wear­ing long sleeves, avoid­ing dark cloth­ing and per­fumes and fi­nally, en­sur­ing that you re­move/ pre­vent any stag­nant wa­ter around your home and prop­erty.

Sea­sonal al­ler­gies/ hay fever

One of the three com­mon pol­lens that cause sea­sonal al­ler­gies is rag­weed, typ­i­cally present in the air from the mid­dle of Au­gust un­til the ground per­ma­nently frosts for the win­ter. When the cold frost is de­layed, like many are pre­dict­ing this year, rag­weed pollen will still be in the air for the next while.

Rag­weed is no­to­ri­ous as a ma­jor cause of asthma hos­pi­tal­iza­tions and the per­sis­tence of un­com­fort­able al­lergy symp­toms well into late fall.

If you are al­ler­gic to rag­weed, please con­tinue with your usual pre­cau­tions and med­i­ca­tions. If you or your child has asthma, your health­care provider may ad­vise you (or your child) to take spe­cific asthma med­i­ca­tions daily dur­ing rag­weed sea­son as a pre­ven­ta­tive ap­proach.

Lyme dis­ease

Lyme dis­ease is an in­fec­tion caused by a bac­terium called Bor­re­lia. Hu­mans are ex­posed by get­ting bit­ten by the black­legged tick, also known as a deer tick that car­ries the in­fec­tion.

These ticks do not fly, jump or drop from trees; they love the woods, tall grass and lurk in grassy ar­eas cling­ing onto hu­mans who hap­pen to pass by.

Just like mos­qui­toes, black­legged ticks re­main ac­tive as long as the tem­per­a­ture is above freez­ing.

There­fore, it is im­por­tant to con­tinue with tick aware­ness and preven­tion pre­cau­tions, in­clud­ing check­ing your­self, chil­dren and pets af­ter you have been in a grassy or wooded area, par­tic­u­larly if you area in high risk area for Lyme dis­ease.

Sun safety

We know the more a per­son is ex­posed to sun early in life, the higher the chances are that skin can­cer de­vel­ops at an older age.

In Canada, the sun’s rays are the strong­est usu­ally be­tween 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. from April to Septem­ber. Al­though the amount of day­light sun­shine will de­crease as win­ter ap­proaches, the po­ten­tially dan­ger­ous sun UV waves are a threat all year round.

Sun rays can go through clouds and can cause dam­age even on cloudy days and, in the shade, the rays can bounce from sand, con­crete or snow.

Please re­mem­ber to use sun­screen and wear sun­glasses with UV pro­tec­tion all year round. This ap­plies to the whole fam­ily.

JULIO CORTEZ/THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Niko Anas­ta­sopou­los, 6, of Up­per Sad­dle River, N.J., ap­plies sun­screen from a dis­penser at the New York Gi­ants NFL foot­ball train­ing camp on Aug. 2, in East Ruther­ford, N.J.

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