YOU SHOULD KNOW THESE ABOUT DENGUE
How do I know if my child has dengue? How soon should I see a doctor?
If your child has fever, headache, chills, joint pain, pain when moving the eyes, go see your doctor AVOID SELF MEDICATION. Some medications can lead to decreased platet counts, bleeding and may be mask fever which may be misleading. Your doctor may be able to pick up early signs of dengue and decide the further course of action. Usually blood tests are done to confirm the diagnosis.</p?
How dangerous is it?
Dengue can be dangerous in children under 10 years of age as they can contract Dengue Hemorrhagic fever which can be life threatening. Children develop abdominal pain, bleeding and circulatory collapse. Usually this requires hospitalization and constant monitoring.
In general, early detection and proper supportive care can restore the patient back to good health. The acute phase of the illness lasts for about 1-2 weeks. But recovery to good health takes several weeks following the acute phase.
What are the treatment options?
There are no curative medicines or vaccines for dengue. As of now, only symptomatic relief can be provided and there are no medicines to fight the virus. Adequate hydration and rest must be taken. Use of medicines must be under the direction of a doctor as aspirin and other non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs can be dangerous.
Can the illness repeat?
This disease is caused by one of the 4 sero types of the virus. So if once infected with one sero type of the virus, you get lifetime immunity against that serotype only and you are still vulnerable to the other 3 serotypes.
What preventive methods can I adopt?
Dengue is not spread directly from man to man. Instead, if a particular variety of mosquito (aedes mosquito) bites an infected person and then bites another person, it transmits the virus. So mosquito eradication and preventive methods can help you stay safe.
Here is what to do:
Avoid stagnant water. As dengue breeds in rainy season, ensure water that gets filled in pots, open pits is drained. Also in urban areas, this mosquito breeds in cool interiors such as cupboards, under beds, curtains etc so make sure to keep them clean. As this mosquito is more active during sunrise and sunset, avoid exposure to mosquito bites hours around these times. But remember this mosquito can bite any time of the day. Wear covered dresses; apply mosquito repellent creams to escape mosquito bites.