Every Now and then, India experiences a disease outbreak. While the COVID pandemic was one of the most dire ones, not only for India but for the rest of the world as well, mosquito-induced outbreaks are the next in line when it comes to severity and magnitude. 

One such outbreak is Dengue. It is usually during the monsoons when India witnesses a rise in dengue cases. More awareness needs to be raised on the subject to help India and the rest of the world battle the disease smoothly. 

As the nation celebrates National Dengue Day on 16th May, let us become more aware and spread awareness for healthier, dengue-free days. Today, we will be sharing some tips that can help each and every one of us fight the disease. But before that, let us take a moment to talk about how dengue spreads.

How does dengue spread?

Unlike some other serious diseases, dengue is not contagious. It does not spread through contact but through the bite of a mosquito called Aedes aegypti. The mosquito is most commonly found in urban and suburban areas. Dirty water is usually the breeding ground of the mosquito; the mosquito bites during the day. 

In case a person is bitten by a mosquito, the virus circulates in the blood for 3-7 days. It is in this window that fever develops. Apart from fever, joint pains are another common symptom. Even though dengue is curable, and can be mild,  but the situation can begin to be critical if the plasma count in the blood begins to drop. On the contrary, if a person recovers from dengue fever, they become permanently immune to the disease.

Some tips to prevent dengue 

Here are some tips that can help you prevent contracting the disease: 

Wear full-sleeves

It is essential that you wear protective clothing to prevent mosquito bites. Wearing full sleeves tops, and long trousers is recommended to avoid exposure. The less exposure you have, the less chance you have of a mosquito bite. 

Apply mosquito repellent 

A mosquito repellent might not be your favourite thing to apply, given the smell. However, mosquito repellent is a must during an outbreak. However, you need to ensure that you do not apply it more than 3 times a day. This number can differ according to the duration of protection offered by the brand. The higher the concentration, the longer will be the protection. 

Some creams might cause irritation, it is recommended that you do a patch test first. 

A mosquito repellent comes in various forms. If you are not in on the idea of a mosquito repellent cream, you can try mosquito repellent patches, repellent wipes and repellent bands. 

Keep away from mosquito breeding grounds

Remember, the idea is to avoid exposure to a mosquito bite, as well as the breeding corners of the mosquito that causes dengue. Aedes aegypti mosquitoes can breed in clear or muddy waters. This can include sewers, garbage etc. It is important to note that your internal spaces count as well. The mosquitoes can breed in your very homes. Some of these common places can include water coolers, pools, drinking bowls, plant pots, water tanks, etc. 

Having said that here are some tips you can follow to eliminate breeding grounds: 

  • Throw away, or change the water in your water coolers and containers. This also includes rainwater collected on your rooftop. 
  • Ensure that you place a tight lid on the containers. 
  • Check for larvae or pupae in containers. 
  • Maintain running water in artificial lakes and fountains. 
  • Ask the water authority of your city to replace broken water meters. 
  • Protect vehicles from rain with tarps that do not accumulate water. Empty swimming pools and plastic tubs when they are not in use.
  • Refrain from overwatering your plant. 

Keep your room well-lit 

Small dark places with moisture are the breeding homes for dengue mosquitoes. Hence, you must keep your home well-lit to prevent dengue larvae from breeding. 

The bottom line

In 2021 alone, India recorded over 1.64 million cases of dengue. As these numbers remain concerning, we must follow the above tips to ensure complete protection from dengue. National Dengue Day serves as a vital reminder of the significant impact that dengue fever has on communities worldwide. Through increased awareness, prevention, and collaborative efforts, we can work towards controlling and eliminating this disease. The observance of National Dengue Day provides an opportunity to educate individuals about the causes, symptoms, and preventive measures associated with dengue. By adopting proactive measures such as proper sanitation, mosquito control, and community engagement, we can effectively reduce the incidence of dengue infections. Together, let us strive towards a dengue-free future, where every individual is equipped with the knowledge and resources to protect themselves and their communities. Remember, our collective actions today can pave the way for healthier and safer environments tomorrow.

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