South Carolina is home to several different kinds of pests. While some damage property, others are more of a threat to you and your family. These pests can carry diseases that can make people seriously ill in some cases. Mosquitoes, ticks and fleas are a few of the most common pests that can spread infectious diseases. Find out more about these pests, and make sure you get help from a Hilton Head exterminator if you have any of them in your home or yard.

Infectious Diseases and Pests

Pests that carry infectious diseases in SC are abundant, and experts warn that they’ve been finding evidence of new diseases that are being seen in our state. For example, Zika and chikungaya, which are diseases normally seen in South America, have been showing up in the U.S. These diseases are both spread through bites from infected mosquitoes. The mosquito species that carry these diseases are known to be in SC.

Diseases that have already been around for awhile, such as West Nile virus and Lyme disease, are on the rise. In fact, cases of these illnesses were three times higher in 2016 compared to 2004. Experts expect these numbers to continue rising in the coming years. Warmer climates and more adverse weather conditions are allowing some of these pests to thrive.

SC Ticks

Some tick species are spreading far beyond their normal range and reaching new areas. This is resulting in diseases being seen in more and more areas. Some of the diseases that ticks can carry include Lyme disease, ehrlichiosis and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. Cases of Lyme disease in SC went from 10 in 2005 to 77 in 2017. Cases of Rocky Mountain spotted fever went from 45 in 2005 to 95 in 2017. These increases illustrate why it’s important to hire a Hilton Head exterminator for ticks.

Mosquitoes in SC

Mosquitoes in SC are mainly a problem when it comes to West Nile virus. Zika, dengue and other illnesses that these pests carry aren’t as common but still a concern. West Nile virus occurs more often and can cause serious problems in some individuals, such as those with weakened immune systems. Chikungaya is another disease that has been on the rise in SC. Our state had 17 cases in 2017, including one death. In 2016, the state had eight cases of chikungaya.

Fleas in SC

Illnesses from fleas aren’t as much of a concern compared to mosquitoes and ticks. Flea illnesses, such as tularemia, aren’t common. However, flea bites can cause allergic reactions in some people, such as itching and a rash.

Causes of Disease Increase

Diseases from mosquitoes and other pests are on the rise for different reasons. Rising temperatures and increased moisture from rain and storms have been leading to larger populations. Other factors that are causing an increase in these diseases include doctors being more aware of what to look for and diagnosing them more often. Travel to warmer climates where these diseases are more common has also led to more cases in the U.S. when travelers bring these illnesses home with them.

Protecting Yourself from Pests

You can lower your risk of getting sick from pests by taking a few precautions.

– Cover your arms and legs when you’re outside to prevent bites.

– Check for ticks often when walking in areas of tall grass and wooded areas.

– Hire a Hilton Head exterminator to get rid of infestations promptly.

– Eliminate standing sources of water to prevent mosquitoes from reproducing.

– Wear insect repellent that keeps mosquitoes and ticks away.

– Use flea and tick control products on your pets.

If you need a Hilton Head exterminator for ticks, mosquitoes or fleas, contact Island Pest Control. Our team of skilled technicians can rid your home and property of these pests to protect you from the diseases they carry.