Dengue is a fever which spreads by the bite of Aedes aegypti mosquito infected with a dengue virus. This fever does not spread directly from a person to another, but only through a dengue infected mosquito. This mosquito bites during daylight hours. For the past ten years, the number of dengue cases has gradually increased in India.
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Know The Symptoms of Dengue:
Usually, the symptoms of dengue fever begin about four to seven days after the initial infection and last up to 10 days. These symptoms may include:
- Sudden, high fever
- Severe joint and muscle pains
- Skin rash (appearing within 2-5 days after the initial fever)
- Mild to severe nausea
- Mild to severe vomiting
- Swollen lymph glands
- Mild bleeding from the nose or gums
- Mild bruising on the skin Febrile convulsions
In many cases, symptoms will be mild, which may be mistaken for symptoms of the flu or other infections.
What are the Risk Factors of Dengue Fever?
Here are some risk factors which can put you at risk of dengue fever:
- Living in or traveling to tropical areas where dengue is endemic, which increases your exposure to the virus that causes the fever.
- If you have previously been exposed to the dengue virus, chances are you are more prone to the virus and vulnerable to its effects.
How to Diagnose Dengue Fever?
The doctor may ask the patient about his medical and travel history. Based on this he might suggest a blood test to examine the presence of virus or antibodies in the bloodstream.
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Treatment of Dengue Fever
There is no known cure for dengue. However, your doctor may prescribe medication such as Acetaminophen which can help relieve pain and reduce fever. If you are suffering from dengue hemorrhagic fever, the doctor may recommend:
- Supportive care in a hospital
- IV fluid and electrolyte replacement
- Transfusion to replace blood loss
How Can You Prevent Dengue Fever?
As of now, there is no vaccine to prevent dengue, so if children live in or visit areas where dengue fever is likely, the only way to protect them from the disease is to minimize their chances of being bitten by an infected Aedes mosquito.
Some general way to prevent dengue :
- Use screens on doors and windows, and promptly repair broken or damaged screens. Keep unscreened doors and windows shut.
- Wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts, shoes, and socks when you go outside, and also use mosquito netting over beds at night.
- Use insect repellant for your child. Choose a repellant with DEET or oil of lemon eucalyptus.
- Limit the time kids spend outside during a day, especially in the hours around dawn and dusk, when mosquitoes are most active.
- Don’t give mosquitoes the space to breed. Mosquitoes lay their eggs in water, so get rid of standing water in things like containers and discarded tires, and be sure to change the water in birdbaths, dog bowls, and flower vases at least once a week.
- By taking these precautions and staying away from areas that have a dengue fever epidemic, the risk of contracting dengue fever is small for international travelers.
In the end, do not ignore any symptoms of dengue fever and consult your doctor as soon as possible. He/She is the one who can help you to get relief from these symptoms.
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