Prevent Dengue this Rainy Season
Dengue Virus (DENV) is no strange concept to Filipinos as it is an epidemic in the Philippines. Epidemic diseases are described as “as an unexpected increase in the number of disease cases in a specific geographical area.” This mosquito-borne disease that transports through mosquito bites affected the country with 79,872 dengue cases in 2021. Additionally, it severely affects children aged 5 to 14 years old with the highest incident rate and accounting for over 80% of deaths for people under the age of 20.
With the rainy season this July, the country becomes a highly suitable breeding condition for mosquitos with the increased presence of stagnant water both indoors and outdoors. Now is a good time to be reminded that it is important to take precautions against Dengue.
4-S Against Dengue
The Department of Health (DOH) prompts the public to practice the 4-S to prevent dengue: Search and destroy, Self-protection measures, Seek early consultation, and Support fogging and spraying hotspots.
Search and Destroy refers to searching for mosquito breeding sites and destroying them. These breeding sites contain stagnant water. Some of these include old tires, trash cans, wood piles, and garden pots.
Self-protection measures refer to ways to avoid mosquito bites. This may include wearing long pants and long sleeved shirts, applying mosquito repellants regularly, and utilizing mosquito net or mesh doors and windows.
Seek early consultation refers to being wary of Dengue symptoms and seeking medical attention immediately. According to DOH, Dengue symptoms include sudden onset of fever of 2 to 7 days, plus two of the following:
- Body weakness
- Joint and muscle pains
- Pain behind the eyes
- Loss of appetite, vomiting
- Skin rashes
When fever has been identified, it is important to go to the hospital or clinic within 1 to 3 days for an early consultation to recognize the disease and get a prescription from a medical professional. It is important to note that early detection and access to medical care for Dengue significantly lower the fatality rate to 1%, especially since there is no cure to this disease yet.
Lastly, support fogging and spraying hotpots for areas that have increased in cases for two consecutive weeks prevents an outbreak and effectively prevents further cases. To know more about Dengue, access the DOH website at https://doh.gov.ph/Health-Advisory/Dengue and its hotline https://doh.gov.ph/dengvaxia-hotline-and-dengue-expresslane. Practice the 4-S against Dengue and stay safe this rainy season.