Bugs, bugs, bugs everywhere you look there are bugs. But now there is a new bug and it’s the “kissing bug”. You need to pay close attention to this guy.
The “kissing bug,” also known as triatomines, spreads a dangerous parasitic illness called Chagas disease, which is believed to cause life-threatening heart issues.
You can get this disease by having the insect bite you usually around the mouth.
According to the American Heart Association‘s, approximately 300,000 cases in the U.S. have been reported.
Beaware of the signs of this silent killer that is spreading into more than 27 states.
The bug is especially dangerous not just because it can cause strokes, heart failure, and heart disease, but because many people don’t show any symptoms of this illness until it’s too late.
“Early detection of Chagas disease is critical, allowing prompt initiation of therapy when the evidence for a cure is strong,” co-author Caryn Bern, M.D., M.P.H., professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of California in San Francisco, said in a statement.
Here’s what it looks like:
There are two stages of the Chagas disease.
The first: Is the acute phase. This can last a couple weeks. Symptoms include fever, headache, fatigue, rash, body aches, vomiting, and swelling near bite wounds.
The second stage: Is the chronic phase. This can occur 10 to 20 years after getting infected.
Heart issues, difficulty swallowing, abdominal pain and constipation are other signs that a person has entered the chronic phase.
How to protect you and your family:
The Kissing bug generally lives in mud, thatch, or huts.
They hide in cracks in the wall and feed their appetites on sleeping humans during the night.
Other ways of becoming infected include eating uncooked food contaminated with feces of the bug and receiving a blood or organ transfusion from someone who was infected.
Avoid “unpasteurized sugar cane juice, açai fruit juice, and other juices when visiting affected countries.”
So far, states in the south and southwest have reported a rise in cases.