Monday, July 4, 2011

Rainy Season Health Alert - Dengue


Dengue is another disease that we should look out for especially this rainy season.

I remember when an outbreak occurred in this all boys school that I used to stay in. We thought one classmate is just playing by running fast and in circles in the second floor lobby. It turns out that he was already deliriously infected and his case was already life-threathening. He told us that he could not control anymore what he was doing as if he is not control of his mind and actions anymore.

Dengue is an acute infectious disease manifested initially with fever. Aedes aegypti, the transmitter of the disease, is a day-biting mosquito which lays eggs in clear and stagnant water found in flower vases, cans, rain barrels, old rubber tires, etc. The adult mosquitoes rest in dark places of the house.

The following are the most common symptoms of Dengue:

• high fever
• headaches
• joint and muscle pain
• vomiting
• rashes

Most people with dengue recover within 2 weeks. Until then, drinking lots of fluids, resting and taking non-aspirin feverreducing medicines might help. Sometimes dengue turns into dengue hemorrhagic fever, which causes bleeding from your nose, gums or under your skin. It can also become dengue shock syndrome, which causes massive bleeding and shock. These forms of dengue are life-threatening

How to Treat

• There is no specific medicine or vaccine to treat dengue because it is caused by a virus. The treatment is to relieve the patient of the symptoms.
• To treat dehydration and electrolyte imbalances, intravenous fluids and electrolytes are necessary.
• Blood transfusions may be needed to control bleeding.
• Rest is important

How to Prevent

• The best prevention measure is to maintain a clean environment.
• Properly dispose tin cans, bottles, tires and other containers so that these do not become artificial mosquito-breeding places.
• Water drums should be kept covered at all times
• Roof gutters should be kept clean and dry, all the time.
• Keep all vacant lots clean and make sure that no puddle of water exists.
• Turn empty pots, pails, wash basins and coconut shells upside down in order to keep it free of water.

Let us keep our surroundings clean. Be safe everyone.


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