It’s not the only Zika virus-related Zika travel warning to travel warnings in recent months; in April, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a similar Zika warning for travelers to Latin America, urging pregnant women to avoid areas with Zika and other diseases, too.
So, this Zika issue isn’t new, and travelers are going to need some guidance if they catch it while on vacation.
First of all, it’s important to understand that the virus is transmitted through the bite of an infected Aedes aegypti mosquito, which are found in an enormous number of regions across the globe. The Aedes aegypti mosquito is also responsible for dengue fever and chikungunya.
But here’s the reason why Zika is most commonly transmitted during travel: According to CDC advisories, the virus is spread via sexual contact and unprotected sex with an infected person.
So, if you’re planning to go away for the holidays, do remember: Although it’s transmitted through Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, you can catch Zika from either an infected person or a contaminated blood donation.
Now, back to your third grader! Here’s what happens when a traveler tests positive for the Zika virus (or dengue and chikungunya).
Symptoms for Zika
Although Zika is a virus that causes illness, the symptoms are very mild at first, lasting for seven to 10 days. Symptoms of the Zika virus, which are typically mild, include:
Muscle aches and pains
Restlessness and/or fatigue
If symptoms are severe, patients may develop Guillain-Barre Syndrome, in which the immune system attacks the nerves and can lead to paralysis.