Dengue is a disease that is common in tropical and sub-tropical countries around the world. Those who are infected usually manifest flu-like symptoms like high-grade fever, muscle and joint aches, severe headache, rashes, and pain behind the eyes. Symptoms can range from mild to severe and can last from 3 days to about 2 weeks.
The saying “an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure” has never been more true in the case of Dengue. Since there is no known single cure for the disease, it is important to take preventive measures to protect the ones we love from contracting it in the first place. Here are some tips to dengue-proof your home:
- Wear insect-repelling lotion - The best way to guard your loved ones against contracting Dengue is by ensuring you reduce the chances of them being bitten by the virus-carrying mosquito.
- Wear protective clothing - If you’re not wearing insect repelling lotion, best to protect your exposed skin from mosquito bites especially if you’re entering noxious dengue infested areas.
- Remove stagnant water - This is another important preventive measure cited by the Department of Health Center for Health Development of Metro Manila.
- Install screens and nets - If you haven't installed door and window screens yet, now is the time.
- Maintain your plants - When you water plants in pots, drain water that accumulates under them, especially if placed on pot plates.
- Clean your car - Every nook and cranny where rainwater can deposit and stagnate must be cleaned out regularly.
- Be aware of the public statistics - Be vigilant especially if you live in Manila, Pasig, Caloocan, Quezon City, Valenzuela or Paranaque – these are areas that have reported the most number of dengue cases in the country.
- Get to know the culprits - It would help to know that the main dengue-carrying culprit, Aedes aegypti, has been observed to go on its feeding spree between 6 to 8 AM and between 4 to 6 PM.
- Join the community watch - Many barangay officers and volunteers actively meet to help keep their community free from dengue.
- Check out the Dengue Vector Surveillance website - The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has launched a website called “Dengue Vector Surveillance” which aims help keep track of dengue incidence in various cities in the country.
- Get vaccinated - The government has already approved the provision of the vaccine to over 1 million 9-year-old Filipino children enrolled in government schools located in Central Luzon, Calabarzon and the National Capital Region.
The key to keeping a dengue-free home is vigilance, taking extra precaution and maintaining cleanliness. If your home isn’t conducive to breeding mosquitoes to begin with, then you have already successfully lowered the chances of contracting the infection for your loved ones.