How to Prevent from Dengue Fever – An Ultimate Health Guide
Before discussing what is and how to prevent from Dengue fever, let us know where it has affected the people most across the world.
An estimated 390 million dengue infections occur worldwide each year, with about 96 million resulting in illness. Most cases occur in tropical areas of the world, with the greatest risk occurring in The Indian subcontinent, Southeast Asia, Southern China, Taiwan, The Pacific Islands, The Caribbean (except Cuba and the Cayman Islands), Mexico, Africa, Central, and South America (except Chile, Paraguay, and Argentina).
If you ever wonder about pieces of gold and silver being the real wealth, then my dear friends it’s just an illusion we have been believing over time. It is health that is the real wealth.
Health is wealth.
Hence, the foremost duty of every person is to take care of his or her respective health, only then one can think of himself as an asset rather than a liability to everyone around. Well, it wouldn’t be false to say that articles and blogs are the critical precursors to successful change implementation.
The objective here is to raise awareness about one such lethal disease – DENGUE.
What is Dengue and how to prevent from dengue fever?
Dengue fever is basically an infection, on a large scale caused by dengue viruses. Of these viruses, four different serotypes are known to infect humans.
So, here we need to first understand Serotypes, only then this deadly disease can be understood well.
Serotype refers to a group of microorganisms that are closely related to a great extent but can be distinguished from each other based on a few antigens (a foreign substance which causes the body to produce antibodies) or causing the body to produce slightly different antibodies.
This disease is known to occur more frequently in tropical and subtropical areas of the world like Central and South America, parts of Africa, parts of Asia, the Caribbean, and the Pacific including northern Australia.
Is Dengue Contagious?
No, it is not contagious, that is, it doesn’t spread from person to person by means of contact. But that calls for a little more light on its mode of transmission.
Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne viral disease which is caused by the dengue virus is transmitted through the bite of an infected Aedes mosquito.
Only, the female mosquito transmits the dengue virus. Well, this mosquito is quite particular in the time when it bites. It’s usually a daytime biter, inside as well as outside homes, most active at dusk and dawn.
Modes of transmission Aedes aegypti mosquito breed inside as well as outside our homes in containers holding stagnant water. These mosquitoes rarely fly over a distance of 200 meters from their breeding site.
However, they do not breed in places like creeks, swamps, pools or any other forms of water.
Types of Dengue fever
It’s known as the breakdown fever, a mosquito-borne infection that can lead to severe flu-like illness.
It can range from being mild to severe, however, it could go to the extent of including dengue shock syndrome (DSS) and dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF). This usually cannot be treated without hospitalizing.
A person going through dengue hemorrhagic fever might experience the following:
* Clammy skin
* Damage to lymph and blood vessels.
* Internal bleeding which can lead to black vomit or feces.
* Most importantly the lower number of platelets in the blood.
* Sensitive stomach.
* Small blood spots under the skin.
* Weak pulse.
Without prompt treatment, DHF can be fatal.
On the other hand, we can see below that we have a different set of symptoms for DSS, that is, dengue shock syndrome.
* Intense stomach pain.
* Sudden hypertension, or fast drop in blood pressure.
* Heavy bleeding.
* Regular vomiting,
* Blood vessels leaking fluid.
At this stage, without treatment, it is next to impossible for the person to live.
An additional piece of information that needs to be shared here is that dengue fever may spread from an infected pregnant mother to her fetus, so extra care has to be taken to avoid keeping pregnant women around areas with stagnant and still water.
Two Phases of Dengue Fever
This is the time period between becoming infected and developing symptoms. 3-14 days, usually 4 to 7 days.
Well, these terms seem to be troublesome to understand but to be honest it can save lives. This is the time when an infected person can infect others.
A mosquito becomes infected after biting an infected person while the fever is still on (an average period of about 3 to 5 days).
However, after biting the infected person it usually takes 8-12 days before the mosquito can infect other people. Well, the interesting yet scary part is that the mosquito remains infectious for the lifetime.
Diagnosis of Dengue Fever
Fortunately, with a lot of advancement in our field of medical research, the diagnosis of certain diseases has become fast and efficient having saved time and lives.
Dengue diagnosis-By clinical representation and a blood test.
Signs and symptoms of Dengue Fever
A brief knowledge on the symptoms of every disease helps us to diagnose a fatal disease at a stage from where recovery is possible. This confirms the necessity of knowing the symptoms of this disease being discussed here:
In the extreme stage, bleeding usually from nose or gums.
Prevention from Dengue Fever – Prevention Is Always Better Than Cure!
Many problems can completely be prevented, but it would be difficult to say that they can be completely cured. Apart from such an explanation, prevention is always cheaper and easy, whereas finding the cure can be troublesome and expensive.
It can now be believed that each one of us is right now quite convinced at preventing dengue, rather than getting infected and cure.
Here are some measures that ought to be taken to prevent getting infected by the Aedes mosquito:
Some measures to protect your home from mosquitoes which comprise of the “10 min 5-step Mozzie Wipe-out” developed by NEA –
Use insecticide sprays in dark corners, the sand granular insecticide in gully traps and roof gutters, and burn repellent oils (at least 10% concentration of diethyltoluamide DEET) inside your house.
Ensure that all water storage containers are emptied have them stored under a shelter.
Cover bamboo pole holders when not in use, if you have any.
To prevent accumulation of stagnant water on the surface of the soil in potted plants, loosen it up.
Change the water in vases/bowls every alternate day.
Clear fallen leaves and stagnant water in drains, roof gutters and gardens once a week.
Clear the residual water in air coolers, at least once in a week.
Here are some preventions that can be taken on a personal basis:
Protect yourself from mosquito bites at all in dengue-affected areas.
Avoid access of mosquitoes to an infected person with a fever.
People infected with dengue shouldn’t be in the environment where they can be bitten by mosquitoes. That way they can infect other mosquitoes and hence are suggested to stay home until they have no fever.
Stay indoors or under a mosquito net during peak mosquito times.
Apply insect repellent to all exposed areas of your skin before heading outside.
Wear covered clothes like loose, long-sleeved shirts, socks, long pants while traveling to mosquito infected areas.
You can spray your clothing with repellent containing permethrin or other EPA for greater protection, but care should be taken not to spray it on the skin.
Try to avoid being outside at dawn, dusk and early evening
Follow the color-coded banners(yellow, red or green) suggested by NEA to indicate an active dengue cluster and preventive measures residents can take. Alert Red: More than 10 cases in the same neighborhood.
Treatment of Dengue Fever
Besides taking every measure against having any fatal disease, at times, fate plays other games. And we should always prepare ourselves for the worst.
It is said accordingly to the doctors of the World Health Organization (2009) case classification, dengue is a disease without warning signs and hence severe dengue requires aggressive emergency treatment and hospitalization.
Well, there is no specific antiviral treatment available.
Consult a doctor as soon as possible if it is suspected that you might be having dengue. Fever and pain are generally controlled by recommending paracetamol rather than aspirin. This might be due to the chances of bleeding which might be caused by consumption of aspirin.
Increase in fluid intake or staying hydrated is the most important yet simple part of dengue treatment. This is because in such period diarrhea as well as vomiting is very usual which causes dehydration.
Hence, drinking plenty of water is very important if the dengue fever is contracted which is achieved at times by intravenous fluid supplementation if the person isn’t able to take it orally.
However, in cases of severity, the patient may require blood pressure monitoring, blood transfusions and other interventions that must be administered by medical professionals.
Also, Acetaminophen is recommended for the pain accompanied by dengue fever which helps to bring down the temperature as well. It is also less likely to increase bleeding than NSAID pain relievers.
Other relevant painkillers that can be mentioned here are Tylenol, NSAIDs as Ibuprofen although it is not advised on a general encounter.
Conclusion – Fight against all odds to live…
Good health is central to a blissful life, happiness and well being. It definitely makes an important contribution to the economic and personal progress, as healthy folks can live longer and be more productive and save more too.
Hence, it’s not advised to procrastinate any effort which is needed to keep you healthy, safe and disease free.
The above article surely is a complete piece of information regarding one of the deadliest disease – dengue. If ignored it can take your life as well as of everyone you care for.
It has to end with the note again – Prevention is better than cure!
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