Dengue outbreak is causing havoc in various parts of India. As reports suggest, until October 15th, there have been a total of 87,018 dengue cases and 151 deaths across India. The Southern states are worst hit by this deadly disease. Maximum dengue cases were reported in Kerala (with 13,913 cases), followed by Tamil Nadu (with 5,474 cases) and Karnataka (with 4,186 cases). With the fear of dengue looming large over the Indian populace, everyone today wants to learn about this severe fever and safeguard themselves against it. So, let us first understand what this disease is all about.
What is Dengue?
Dengue is a type of severe mosquito-borne viral fever. Such fever outbreaks are common among the tropical countries, especially during and after the monsoons. The dengue virus is transmitted into the body by the bite of an infected Aedes mosquito. Patients infected with the dengue virus suffer from common symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, body ache, joint pain, vomiting, and loss of appetite and skin rashes. Based on the symptoms there are three classifications of Dengue. Treatment methodologies for dengue are still in its nascent stage. There are no vaccines presently available to ward off the disease. The best way to treat this fever is to gulp plenty of fluids and take ample bed rest.
How to Prevent Dengue?
But all is not as bleak as it seems. With adequate preventions, you can stay safe from dengue. Some such precautions include:
- Stay clear of mosquito-infested areas.
- Use adequate protection to avoid mosquito bites.
- Do not allow the mosquitoes to use your home interiors or exteriors as their breeding grounds.
And all this can be achieved with small changes in everyday acts. So, what are the best ways to safeguard yourself against dengue? Let us read about them.
Tip #1: Apply Mosquito Repellent Cream on the exposed skin
When you are venturing out of the house, you need to take extra precautions. You never know when you might have to pass through a mosquito-prone area. So, make sure you apply a good mosquito repellent cream on the exposed areas of the body. There are certain dos and don’ts of this application as well. First of all, you should not apply the cream on wounds, cuts or irritated skin. Similarly, do not apply this around your eyes or mouth and only limited amounts around the ears. If you have opted for the repellent sprays, do not spray it on the face. First try it on the hands, and if it proves to be a safe option then apply it on the face. Under no circumstances should you allow the kids to handle any of these products. The repellents should not be applied on the hands (especially palms) of the kids. Also, do not apply the repellent on infants who are below two months of age.
Tip #2: Wear Long Sleeves and Pants
Your primary goal, when venturing out, should be to minimize the amount of exposed skin. While you cannot cover up your entire body, the effort has to be put to minimize the mosquito biting areas as much as possible. This is where a wise choice of clothing pays dividends. Forget fashion; choose long lowers and dresses or shirts with long sleeves. And as mentioned before, apply mosquito repellents on the limited areas that are still left exposed.
Tip #3: Use Mosquito Nets
It is high time that you started using mosquito nets while sleeping at night. Even if you are dwelling in a clean neighbourhood with cleanliness all around, you are still not safe from the Aedes mosquito. While there are many types of mosquito repellent products available in the market, nothing does the job better than the good old mosquito nets. If you do not have one, rush to the store and purchase one for a safe night’s sleep.
Tip #4: Avoid areas with Dengue cases
As the fear of dengue is everywhere, it’s easy to get news about areas where dengue cases have been recently reported. You have to try to the best of your abilities to stay clear of such areas. Remember: one Aedes mosquito can lead to multiple dengue infections, so it is best to avoid such areas. Also, a slight change in your everyday schedule could keep you protected from dengue. The dengue-causing mosquitoes are known to stay active during the sunrise and sunset hours. By staying indoors during such hours, you largely minimize the chances of infection.
Tip #5: Clean the House
Mosquitoes are known to use standstill water as their breeding grounds. This is why you should minutely check your home premises for any traces of stagnant water. Start by clearing the water from air cooler units. Also, change the water in flower vase or plant pot plates. Fallen leaves in the garden and stagnant water in the drains should be quickly cleaned. Stagnant water should be eradicated from your house at all costs.
Tip #6: Spray them out
You might be a very busy person, but you need to make some time to spray insecticides in every corner of your house. Pay special attention to dark corners of the house. Do spray under the sofa, bed and behind the curtains. Keep the repellent oils burning during the dusk and dawn hours, when the Aedes mosquitoes are most active.
Tip #7: Clean up the Locality
You cannot stay isolated, so you have to care about the neighbourhood as well. You can start a cleanliness drive to maintain cleanliness and hygiene levels in the neighbourhood. If this seems like a very hard task, you may use private service providers to attain the desired cleanliness levels.
There is no need to panic or halt your regular life just because dengue cases are being reported in your city. All that you need to do is to take adequate preventive measures on time. We have kept our tips simple so that you can adhere to them without much of an inconvenience.