WACO, Texas – In a time when health concerns are high, we can’t forget about health problems related to mosquitoes.

“They really do affect our area so much,” says Kelly Crane, with the McLennan County Public Health District.

Mosquitoes are often thought of as pesky nuisances, but some of them can actually be deadly.

“Mosquitoes carry a variety of diseases – including West Nile, Zika in humans and heartworms in dogs,” says Crane.

It is important that you take the necessary precautions to protect yourself and your pets.

“Use mosquito repellent. Mosquito repellent with Deet is recommended. And if you’re going to be out for a long period of time, be sure to reapply,” says Crane.

Mosquitoes are also out at all times of the day, but you’re most likely to run into them at dusk or dawn.

“Some mosquitoes are dawn and dusk mosquitoes, so they like to be out during that time. When it’s nice and cool and the sun is not full in the sky, they really like to come out and bite,” says Crane.

The best way to avoid running into mosquitoes in your own backyard?

“Look around your yard, your patio, your potted plants, anywhere where there might be a shallow part of water. That would be a great place for a mosquito to lay its eggs. Think about any areas where you have any areas of standing water. Think about if you have a tarp covering your boat or your grill. That would be a good place for water to hide and for mosquitoes to go and lay their eggs,” says Crane.