Due to the recent heavy rainfalls and floods all over Pakistan, Dengue in Pakistan and other mosquito-borne diseases outbreak has been immensely prevalent. Leading to water stagnation and a poor drainage system, many areas all over the country paved the way for breeding grounds.
Dengue has been listed as a global threat all across the world. Severe Dengue, if not treated earlier on, can be fatal in some cases. Therefore, it is important to know the signs and symptoms of Dengue to get proper treatment.
WHICH MOSQUITO CAUSES DENGUE?
Dengue is transmitted by the mosquito Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus, which are found worldwide, particularly in tropical regions. In Pakistan, Dengue fever is often on the rise after the monsoon season. This particular Dengue mosquito has a predilection toward freshwater bodies and thus, lakes, ponds, and stagnant water are perfect breeding grounds for it.
HOW IS DENGUE CAUSED?
Dengue fever is caused by any one of four types of dengue virus spread by mosquitoes that thrive in and near human lodgings. The Dengue virus enters the mosquito when a mosquito bites a person infected with the virus. When the infected mosquito then bites another person, the virus enters that person’s bloodstream.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF DENGUE FEVER?
The severity of the Dengue virus varies. There are multiple strains of this virus and depending upon which one a person gets infected by, the symptoms vary. Symptoms of Dengue usually develop after 3 to 14 days after the infected Dengue mosquito bite and how long does dengue fever last depends on the severity levels of it.
Here are some of the signs of the dengue fever:
Mild dengue fever
Symptoms can appear up to 7 days after being bitten by a mosquito that carries the virus.
- Aching muscles and joints
- Body rash that can disappear and then reappear
- High fever
- Intense headache
- Pain behind the eyes
- Vomiting and feeling nauseous
Symptoms usually disappear after a week, and mild dengue rarely causes serious or fatal complications.
Dengue hemorrhagic fever
- Bleeding from the mouth, gums, or nose
- Clammy skin
- Damage to lymph and blood vessels
- Internal bleeding, which can lead to black vomit and feces, or stools
- A lower number of platelets in the blood
- Sensitive stomach
- Small blood spots under the skin
- Weak pulse
Without immediate treatment, this type can be extremely dangerous.
Dengue shock syndrome
- Intense stomach pain
- Sudden,or a fast drop in blood pressure
- Heavy bleeding
- Regular vomiting
- Blood vessels leaking fluid
Without treatment, this can result in death.
HOW CAN YOU PREVENT BEING INFECTED?
Many health organizations suggest the following to protect yourself from this virus:
- Wear long-sleeve shirts and long pants.
- Eat foods to increase platelet count (leafy vegetables, cereals etc)
- Treat clothes with mosquito repellents like permethrin.
- Apply mosquito repellant on exposed areas of the body, like hands, arms and feet
- Consider using mosquito netting if you will be in an area with many mosquitoes.
- Make sure windows and doors screens are closed to avoid allowing mosquitoes into inclosed spaces.
- Avoid areas with standing water. Especially at times of high mosquito activity like dawn and dusk.
What is the difference between Dengue and Malaria?
One question that arises in everyone’s dengue and malaria the same? The simple answer is no. Dengue and Malaria, are not the same diseases although they are both caused by a mosquito bite. It is immensely important to be able to distinguish between the two, as both have different treatments and symptoms.
Malaria will generally exhibit symptoms such as:
- Fever and chills, as a specific time of the day
- Nausea and vomiting.
- Muscle pain and fatigue.
Whereas the symptoms of Dengue are such as the ones we have described above.
What is the name of the Dengue test?
The lab test recommended for dengue is Dengue NS1 Antigen. You can get the dengue test in Pakistan. However, consult your doctor for a better diagnosis.