Everything You Need to Know About the Dengue

Dengue: Symptoms, Causes and Prevention - Companion4health
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Dengue is a mosquito-borne viral infection. There are four types of the DENV virus. That means you can contract this disease four times in your life.

The fever spreads through the breed of the Aedes aegypti mosquito. Once you contract it in your life, you develop immunity towards it.

But it is possible to contract the other three types of other DENV viruses in the further part of your life. In your entire life, you can contract all four types of dengue.

The virus that causes the fever is related to yellow fever and West Nile virus infection.

According to the statistic of The Center for Disease Control, and Prevention (CDC), 400 million people contract this fever. Tropical areas like Central America, Mexico, Pacific Islands, Taiwan, Northern Australia, Central Americal are most prone to this disease.

Even though very few cases occur in the United States, the risk of dengue is increasing in Texas. In the Southern United States, the cases have been on the rise. In Key West, Florida, there has been an outbreak of dengue fever.

This ‘sometimes deadly’ fever spreads through mosquitos and not a communicable disease.

The number of cases have increased in the last two years by 505,430 cases in 2000 to over 2,400,138 in 2010 and 3,312,040 in 2015. Deaths from 2000 to 2015 increased from 960 to more than 4032.

 

Diagnosis of dengue

Doctors do a blood test to check the viral antibodies or the presence of infection. If you have returned from a different country and see any symptoms, you should get yourself checked immediately. 

 

Complications of dengue 

It is possible that if you have fever from this disease, you will develop a severe disease that is dengue hemorrhagic fever.

Here are a few risk factors of dengue haemorrhage fever:

  • Having antibodies to dengue virus from an earlier infection
  • Being under the age of 12
  • Weakened immune system

You can characterize the disease by:

  • High fever
  • Damage to the lymphatic system
  • Damage to blood vessels
  • Bleeding from the nose
  • Bleeding from the gums
  • Liver enlargement
  • Circulatory system failure

 

Dengue Symptoms

If you come on with dengue, the symptoms generally start after 4-7 days after the initial infection. In many cases, symptoms are mild, and sometimes you can mistake symptoms for the symptoms of flu.

Young children and people who have never experienced dengue may experience milder symptoms of it than older people. Symptoms of dengue last for ten days:

  • Unexpected and high fever (up to 106 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • Terrible headache
  • Swollen lymph glands
  • Heavy joint and muscle pains
  • Skin rash (lasting from two and five days after the initial fever)
  • Mild to severe nausea
  • Mild to severe vomiting

Some people recover soon like in a week or so, but in some cases, it can also get life-threatening. 

Go to see a doctor if you get dengue fever, and if you experience severe symptoms of dengue like abdominal pain, vomiting, difficulty breathing, or blood in your nose, gums, vomit or stools.

 

Risk factors

There is a higher risk of dengue fever when:

  • Living or travelling to tropical areas

There is a higher risk if you live in tropical areas or subtropical areas—especially high-risk regions including Southeast Asia, the western Pacific islands, Latin America and the Caribbean.

  • Prior infection of dengue fever

Any previous dengue fever infections create an even more high risk of having severe symptoms if you get dengue again.

 

Treatment

There are no such treatments of dengue, but if you think that you are having dengue symptoms, you should take counter pain relievers to reduce your fever, headache, and joint pain.

Avoid aspirin and ibuprofen as they cause more bleeding. But most importantly, see your doctor.

Your doctor will run a lot of medical examinations, and you should take enough rest and let your fever calm down.

As soon as your fever goes down, it would be best if you went to the hospital to run some other tests. Consult your doctor if your fever does not go down in the first 24 hours. 

 

Preventions

There are few preventions from dengue, the main thing you can do is reduce the mosquito population around you, where you live to avoid mosquito bites. 

When in a high-risk area of mosquito:

  • Avoid heavily populated areas
  • Use mosquito repellent creams everywhere you go, indoors and outdoors
  • Wear fully covered clothes, as long-sleeved shirts and pants tucked into socks
  • Use air conditioning and avoid opening windows or any other channel where mosquitos can enter. 
  • Ensure that window and door are secure and closed, and repair any damaged holes.
  • Use mosquito nets for your protection if sleeping areas are not screened.

You can help and reduce mosquitos by cleaning the areas where they lay eggs. Clean containers that hold water, such as planting containers, animal dishes and flower vases once a week. 

Contact professionals from the local health department or mosquito control district who have developed mosquito control plans, to reduce mosquitos in your area. 

You, your family, friends, and community can take a step to reduce mosquitos in your home and around your areas. 

WHO says, “Dengue prevention and control depends on effective vector control measures. Sustained community involvement can improve vector control efforts substantially.”

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