India in 2015, recorded a total of 99,913 incidences of dengue, out of which there were nearly 220 deaths. Dengue flourishes in the tropical and subtropical regions of the world including Asia, parts of the Americas, the Caribbean and Africa.
It is one of the fastest-growing mosquito-borne diseases in the world. In the past 50 years, the number of dengue incidences has increased 30-fold and spread across 128 countries. Almost 40% of the habitable regions on the planet are prone to dengue.
Dengue is a flu-like illness largely noticed in rural regions, slum areas, and overpopulated neighbourhoods. It is caused by the DEN virus, which consists of 4 serotypes – DEN 1, DEN 2, DEN 3, and DEN 4. These viruses are carried by the females of the mosquito genus, Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus.
It is also known as the breakbone fever and individuals infected with it exhibit dengue fever symptoms which are akin to that of flu.
What are the symptoms of dengue?
Dengue fever is noticed in individuals of all ages – infants, toddlers, and adults. The clinical characteristics of it, though, vary depending on the age of the infected individual. It also depends on the severity of the disease.
There are primarily 3 types of dengue fever – mild dengue fever, dengue shock syndrome, and dengue hemorrhagic fever.
Among the 4 serotypes, DEN-2 and DEN-3 contain genotype associated with extreme dengue fever causes. These serotypes are majorly noticed in the Asian region.
Dengue fever sets off 3 – 10 days (incubation period) post the mosquito bite when it starts with a high fever, usually of 104°F or 40°C.
The symptoms for mild dengue fever are –
- Muscle and joint pains.
- Rashes all over the body.
- Intense and frequent headaches.
- Pain in the eye socket region.
- Swollen glands.
In case you have any of the aforementioned dengue fever symptoms along with high fever, you can suspect dengue. In case of mild dengue fever, the symptoms last for only a period of 2 – 7 days.
The symptoms for dengue shock syndrome include –
- An ache in the abdominal region.
- Stomach pain.
- Blood pressure fall, which results in blackouts.
- Leakage of fluid in blood vessels.
- Regular vomiting.
- Bleeding in gums and nose.
- Rapid breathing.
DSS usually starts with dengue symptoms noticed during mild dengue fever and gradually escalates with a fall in temperature to 100°F. In most cases, it takes 3 – 7 days for DSS symptoms to appear. Once you notice any of these symptoms, it can stay for nearly 2 days. These two days can prove to be vital and potentially lead to fatality if not treated immediately.
Required healthcare involves substantial expenses which may include hospitalisation, doctor’s fee and medicines. You can cover these expenses through Pocket Insurance and Subscriptions like the Dengue Cover.
The dengue fever symptoms seen in dengue haemorrhagic fever or DHF are –
- Clammy skin.
- Stomach sensitivity.
- Weakened pulse.
- Blackened vomit and stool due to internal bleeding.
- Tiny blood spots.
DHF is an equally lethal dengue fever complication which can potentially lead to death. Hence, immediate hospitalisation is a must.
What are the methods of dengue fever prevention?
Dengue fever is one of the most commonly witnessed vector-borne diseases in India. It is primarily noticed during the monsoon season.
There are no standard dengue treatment measures. In the case of mild dengue, you need to consume plenty of fluids and take bed rest.
In case of severe dengue, you need hospitalization and medical care by physicians and nurses. The treatment procedure for severe dengue fever cost significantly and can put you under immense financial burden. You can claim compensation for these expenses if you have purchased Pocket Insurance and Subscriptions such as the Hospital Cash Cover insurance policy offered by Bajaj Finserv.
You can take the following measures to prevent dengue –
- Cover your hands and legs when going out.
- Apply mosquito repellent.
- Keep your surroundings clean.
- Clear any water-clogged areas near your house.
- Use mosquito nets when sleeping.
- Keep your doors and windows closed.
Apart from these, proper sanitation, waste disposal, and clean water are some of the measures which should be taken through community-based programs.
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