Dengue fever is a flu-like viral illness that is transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected female Aedes mosquito. It is common in tropical and sub-tropical regions around the world. This acute and infectious disease is characterized by common signs and symptoms that include high fever, severe headache, muscle and joint pains, rashes, nausea, vomiting and pain behind the eyes. Fever reducers and pain killers can be given in mild cases. But in severe cases, patients should be under medical care by experienced physicians and nurses and are typically admitted in a hospital.
On December 17, 2020, there have been 34,844 reported cases of dengue in Singapore. The total number of cases reported in Singapore last year has surpassed the largest dengue outbreak in 2013. There is still no specific treatment for dengue fever but it can be prevented. Taking precautionary measures can help reduce the risk of you and your child contracting this disease.
SuperMom has created a checklist of easy and effective ways to help you protect your child from dengue fever.
1. Use Screens on Doors and Windows
Take an extra layer of protection in your home. Use screens on doors and windows to prevent mosquitoes and other insects from entering your home. If you already have one installed, make sure to regularly check and promptly repair any broken or damaged screens. If you have unscreened doors or windows, keep them shut as much as possible and limit how often you open them.
2. Use Protective Clothing
A dose of the outdoors is a great way to relieve stress and anxiety, both for parents and children. When your kids need to go outside, have them wear clothing that can cover their body as much of possible. Full-sleeved shirts and long pants can be the best type of clothing your kids can wear outside. Additionally, have your kids put on a pair of socks and shoes stop mosquitoes from biting their ankles and feet.
3. Repel Mosquitoes
Mosquito repellent is one of the most effective ways to ward off pesky mosquitoes from biting your little one. An all-natural and DEET-free mosquito repellent is the best choice to keep your child protected at all times. Babyganics Natural Insect Repellent is proven to be gentle and safe on your kid’s sensitive and delicate skin. It is made from plant-based ingredients and formulated with essential oils leaving a great smell and a non-greasy feel.
4. Mosquito Control
Inside your homes, you can spray insecticides to kill mosquitoes focusing on dark areas like under the bed and behind the closets. Another safe and effective way to have mosquitoes under control is with the use of electric mosquito lamps. The UV 360° Mosquito Killer Lamp is designed to trap mosquitoes inside and is safe around children and pregnant women. It has low power consumption so you can leave it on all day.
5. Limit Outdoor Activities
You can limit the number of hours your kids spend outside especially during dawn and dusk. These are the times when dengue-infected mosquitoes are said to be most active. Allow your kids to have fun and educational activities indoors, like playing board games, reading a new book together or cooking simple meals with your kids. Take this time to bond and teach your child a new skill.
6. Prevent Mosquito Breeding
Stagnant water, even in small amounts, is a breeding ground for mosquitoes. Mosquitoes can lay their eggs and breed where there is water. Regularly clean places and drain out container like objects that can collect water. At least once a week, check and clear out water from flower pots base plates, gardening tools, birdbaths, discarded tires and roof gutters. Ensure proper disposal of or recycle household waste such as bottles and plastic containers. Doing this can help you stop the spread of mosquitoes in your area.
Everyone should make an effort to stop the spread of dengue! Dengue is a serious illness and can be a life-threatening condition, particularly for individuals with a weak immune system. If you or your child experience any of the symptoms, it is advisable to see a doctor so you can be assessed, tested and treated immediately.
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You should also call a doctor if your child has recently been to a region that has dengue fever and has a fever or severe headache.