The terror of mosquitoes increases during the rainy season. It gives rise to many diseases like malaria, dengue fever, chikungunya, etc. Dengue fever is the most prevalent viral infection caused by the bite of the Aedes, the female mosquito. Children are more susceptible to Dengue fever. So, let's understand more about Dengue fever and its symptoms.
Dengue fever does not transmit through the air or from person to person; a virus carried by a mosquito causes it. In other words, Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne disease.
Symptoms of Dengue fever are mild in younger children or those who have got infected for the first time. In contrast, older kids and adults have higher chances to show moderate to severe symptoms.
According to the Directorate of the National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP), there were 67,000 cases of Dengue fever as of 13th October 2019 in India.
Dengue Symptoms In Kids
High Fever - the fever can increase to 105 degrees Fahrenheit, and at an early stage, Dengue fever will look like any regular flu infection symptoms, i.e., cough, runny nose, and weakness.
Severe Headache - Children may experience severe headaches accompanied by dull throbbing pain behind eyes, muscles and joint pains.
Dull and irritable behaviour - Children start behaving fussy and irritable because of headaches and fever. Their appetite drops, and sleep patterns also change.
Rashes over the body - It is one of the most common symptoms observed in children. In Dengue fever, skin gets itchy and red patches appears at the major parts of the body.
Bleeding from nose and gums.
Nausea and Vomiting.
Remember, the dengue symptoms are generally not visible in kids as it looks pretty similar to Flu infection. Instead, symptoms start showing up after four days to 2 weeks, depending upon the severity of the illness.
Treatment for Dengue
There is no specific treatment available for Dengue. The best you can do is to prevent your child as well as your family from mosquitoes. Children are more susceptible to Dengue because their immune system is at the developing stage. So, when they are playing out, they come in contact with mosquitoes.
Dengue mosquitoes are more active during the dusk and the dawn.
Still, if your child gets infected with Dengue, give your child plenty of water to drink because dengue inflicts pain all over the body and causes dehydration. Thus, patients with severe dengue infections require IV fluids and electrolyte replacement.
Please consult with your paediatrician as he will advise going for a blood test. This blood test will help to check the Platelets counts in the blood. Follow the instruction given by them and keep a proper check on the fever.
How To Prevent Dengue Infection?
Since there is no specific medicine or treatment available for dengue, prevention is highly recommended. You can adopt the following measures to keep your child and family safe from Dengue fever:
Mosquito Repellants - Keeping children away from mosquitoes is the priority, especially during monsoons. For this, it is necessary to use repellents so that mosquitoes cannot bite children. Use that kind of mosquito repellent which has DEET (N, N-Diethyl-meta-toluamide) as a significant ingredient. The mosquito repellent with DEET can prevent a child from mosquito bites for about 4 to 5 hours. Alternatively, you may also apply Eucalyptus oil.
Proper Hygiene in House - Keep your house clutter-free and do not accumulate water unnecessarily. If there is a need to store water for consumption, make sure you keep it appropriately covered. Aedes mosquitoes breed in open water and make it contaminated.
Mosquito Nets and Window Screens - Mosquito nets can be of great help while sleeping. It prevents mosquito bites during sleep, and your child stays safe and comfortable. Secondly, the usage of window screens can help you and your family avoid the mosquito's entrance during the dusk and the dawn.
Full Sleeves Clothes - Make your child wear full sleeves clothes, especially while playing and sleeping. The full sleeves clothes give less exposure to mosquitoes, thus preventing your child from getting bitten by any mosquito.
Dengue fever does not display any significant symptoms in its initial stage. It looks more or less similar to normal fever, but the situation can be dealt with efficiently with proper caution and observation. Do not avoid consulting with your paediatrician and going for a blood test. Make sure you serve your child with plenty of freshwater to drink.
A simple change in a lifestyle can protect your child from the clutches of dengue.
Stay Safe. Stay Informed.