It's the time of year again where people are getting their properties ready for the summer by cleaning up everything that accumulated over the winter.
 
With that in mind, Alberta Health Services wants to make sure you don't fall victim to Hantavirus.
 
"When people are doing their spring cleaning, cleaning out the garage, the dust from this can contain infected particles that, when humans inhale it, they can get sick from Hantavirus," warned Dr. Ifoema Achebe, Medical Director of Health for the Central Zone.
 
"Infected people will normally show symptoms between one to two weeks after they were exposed," she explained. "The symptoms resemble that of the flu: things like cough, body aches and pains, fever and chills and, sometimes, even difficulty breathing." 
 
In rare cases it can be fatal. Hantavirus is spread through the droppings of infected mice, in particular, deer mice.
 
"We advise people never to vacuum or sweep dust and droppings because this can create dust in the air that can be easily inhaled," cautioned Dr. Achebe. "Spray it down (first) with bleach and water." 
 
More details on Hantavirus, including how to avoid it, can be found through this link.
 

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