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The present study examined how dimensions of perceived risk contributed to mosquito avoidance behaviors in a flood-prone area. Mosquito avoidance behaviors were classified into proactive (i.e. used repellant sources) and withdrawal/reactive (i.e. reduced outside activities) behaviors. After controlling for level of mosquito bites, increased scores for above normal perceived risk were associated with withdrawal/reactive avoidance behaviors; whereas, increased scores for normal perceived risk were associated with proactive avoidance behaviors. Efforts to improve mosquito avoidance behaviors should distinguish the type of perceived risk and the type of avoidance behavior. Greater congruence between perceived risk (i.e. normal risk of mosquito-borne illnesses) and avoidance behaviors (i.e. planning avoidance behaviors) will increase the effectiveness of education programs for disease prevention.

Citation

Daryl G Kroner, Pamela Plunkett, Michael J Lydy. Taking the Bite out of Mosquito Bites: The Role of Perceived Risk. International journal of environmental health research. 2022 Jan;32(1):18-28

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PMID: 32013545

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