Giving women a legging up against mosquitos

Health authorities in Thailand are urging young women not to wear fashionable black leggings to avoid attracting unwanted attention from dengue-carrying mosquitoes.

"It's worrying how people dress, especially the youth," deputy health Minister Pansiri Kulanartsiri said in a statement which warned of a dengue outbreak and reminded that mosquitoes are attracted to dark clothing.

Thailand has recorded 43 deaths and more than 45,000 cases of dengue in the first seven months of the year, an increase of about 40 per cent from the 31,929 cases and 30 deaths in same period last year. Dengue cases typically rise during the rainy season, which runs roughly from June to September.

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Of this year's fatalities, 26 were between the ages of ten and 24, prompting the Public Health Ministry to warn about the hazards of the must-have fashion item worn by girls and young women.

"I suggest people avoid wearing black leggings - or any dark coloured clothing - so as not to attract mosquitoes," Ms Pansiri said, calling the leggings a "Korean fashion phenomenon".

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