National Dengue Day 2019: Some debunked myths and prevention
Dengue occurs as a result of a virus known as DENV. There are 4 types of the DENV virus and is transferred by the Aedes aegypti mosquito which can be affected by any of the 4 variants of virus. An interesting fact about this mosquito is that it only bites during the day.
In India, National Dengue Day is recognized on 16th May every year with the help of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in a bid to alert and educate people about the disease which infects around 400 million people around the world every year (WHO). 2017 was a pivotal year in this context as the country saw the highest number of reported dengue cases from states such as Karnataka, West Bengal, Maharashtra, Assam, to name a few and Tamil Nadu being the highest afflicted state.
On National Dengue Day 2019 we want to debunk some commonly believed myths.
- Myth: We live in affluent places and therefore we won’t get dengue.
Reality: Apartments and homes at the best of environment are still prone to dengue. The surroundings might be clean but there are places like toilet bowls, plant, and pots which can be breeding grounds for mosquitoes. It the responsibility of the owners to keep the insides of the house clean on a regular basis to reduce the risk of mosquitoes breeding and in turn endangering the residents.
- Myth: Mosquito repellent vaporizers are the answer.
Reality: After research, it has been found that most of the repellents have allethrin or pyrethrin (analogue). The mixture of these substances are not that strong to repel mosquitoes and that’s why it is often seen that they are not affected by it. Despite applying these vaporizers throughout the rooms in the house, one is still vulnerable to bites.
As we have cleared some myths, here are some prevention which actually works.
- Water from containers such as buckets, coolers, flower vases, should be taken out at least one day per week
- All water containers must be covered with a lid
- Use the relevant larvicides for the water containers which cannot be covered
- Use aerosol for protection from mosquito bites during the day
- Wear clothes which cover the legs and arms during the rainy season
- A dengue patient should be kept safe from any more mosquito bites which can avert the spreading of the disease
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