How To Eradicate Malaria, Filaria, Dengue, & Yellow Fever.
Mosquito borne diseases are prevalent in more than 100 countries, infecting more than 500 million people around the world and causing about one million deaths every year.
There are a number of diseases borne by mosquitoes. They are malaria, filaria, dengue, brain fever and yellow fever.
Yellow fever is caused by mosquitoes in jungle areas in part of Africa and South America.
In India, malaria, filaria and dengue are the most prevalent diseases spread by mosquitoes. Over two million cases of malaria alone are reported. Even more astonishing is the fact that India spends 100 million dollars on malaria. In spite of spending so much, the diseases continue to explode from time to time. The reason is that these mosquitoes develop resistance to medicines and chemicals. Hence fighting mosquitoes and the diseases spread by them is a continuous process. Eradication of mosquitoes is the only way to protect mankind. Is it possible?
To a great extent, mosquito disease can be prevented. This booklet is created to make people aware of the various diseases and how to protect themselves. In fact every household, village and township must participate in this process.
The mosquito borne diseases are no more downmarket diseases, since you find them in boardrom, in the lifts, in the cars, in the theatres, in the golf clubs, etc. However it is also not to be forgotten that mosquitoes and mosquito borne diseases are the result of low hygiene and sanitation in the downmarket areas and poor insect control in the upmarket areas.
Malaria is a common disease caused by a microscopic parasite that is passed along from one infected person to another by mosquitoes. It is prevalent in Latin America, the Carribbean, Africa, Arabian peninsula, Central Asia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, India, Southeast Asia and Southern China.
How do people get afflicted with malaria?
Four species of parasites cause malaria in man. The most dangerous of these is the plasmodium falciparum that can cause cerebral malaria. This species afflicts about one-tenth of total malaria victims and might even prove fatal. The parasite enters the body by the bite of the female anopheles mosquito, which is the only mosquito type that transmits human malaria. You cannot catch malaria directly from another human being - the infecting parasite has to pass through a mosquito first. Even if a mosquito that has bitten you, the disease is unlikely to get transmitted as malaria parasite has an incubation period in mosquitoes, just as it has in human beings.
Life cycle of the malaria parasite.
These enter red cells where both sexual and asexual cycles continue.
What are its symptoms?
Look for bouts of shivering, accompanied by severe chill that cause chattering of teeth and "goose pimples" on the skin.
This will be followed by rise in body temperature. It might go to 40.5 degree C. And accompanied by severe headaches, body aches, etc. This usually lasts for 4 to 6 hours after which the temperature declines, profuse sweating occurs, and the symptoms disappear, leaving a feeling of great weakness. But symptoms are not always clear-cut. They might mimic other illness. Sometimes it is accompanied by abdominal, vomiting, diarrhoea, it might be mistaken for a stomach upset. Plasmodium falciparum in particular exhibits symptoms of jaundice, convulsion, etc., and can be confused with gastroenteritis, hepatitis, meningitis or viral encephalitis.
What are the dangers of malaria?
While most malarial parasites need not be fatal, the resulting bouts of fever, shivering etc., can cause a lot of weakness. The palasmodium falciparum parasite, however, can cause serious complications including low blood sugar levels, abnormal accumulation of fluids in the lungs, spontaneous bleeding, circulatory collapse, and shock. It might be even fatal as when it causes the much-feared cerebral malaria - often described as un-rpisable coma. Malaria is highly dangerous for the pregnant women and the unborn child, who are likely to develop the more severe cases of malaria.
Why are treatments not so effective?
Unfortunately, the more the anti-malarial drugs are used, the greater the resistance the parasite develops to them, making it difficult to control the ailment. Quite often malaria is not easy to diagnose, and by the time it is correctly identified, the severity of attack has intensified. Also, most people tend to make medication only until the fever and more severe symptoms abate; after which they become negligent. But for the treatment to be really effective, it is essential that the patient go through the entire course of medication prescribed.
How can I reduce the risk?
You shouldn't allow water to stagnate, as this forms a breeding ground for malaria's deadly carriers, the Anopheles mosquito. At community level water shouldn't be allowed to stagnate and whenever feasible, water should be drained. For efficient control, spraying can be undertaken using pesticides by certified authority. At home, you should change water in flower pots, buckets, coolers etc. at least twice a week. Ventilation of socket outlet pipes should be properly covered with nets. Mosquito nets and door screens also help. But these methods are not convenient. Mosquito repellants like mats, coils, refills, etc., should be used regularly to keep mosquitoes away.
Warding off & minimisation of exposure to mosquitoes.
Use a dependant insecticide aerosol in the room to kill mosquitoes before retiring. Use knock down sprays.
Use mosquito coils or vaporising mats.
Use electronic repellents.
You cannot depend on medication alone to prevent malaria. Avoidance of bites is the best protective plan. Consistent use of these measures both during day and night will not only prevent just malaria and filaria, but also dengue, a day-time biting mosquito disease. It is adivsable to carry some form of mosquito repellent while travelling, either sprays, creams, lotions, mats or coils.
Control of mosquito borne diseases.
Treatment for malaria.
A malaria vaccine is under development but is not available. However, the following prescription drugs can prevent malaria infection and always should be taken with travellers visiting areas with high rate of medication recommended depends on the rate of resistance to the drug. Chloroquine in the countries you are living or visiting.
Chloroquine is a treatment of choice for malaria. But it is recommended only in countries where the malaria parasites are not yet resistant to it.
Mefloquine is now being used widely because many malaria causing parasites have become resistant to Chloroquine.
Doxycycline is an antibiotic also effective in suppressing malaria parasites. This drug has one disadvantage. It makes some people hypersensitive to the sun. A hat and sunscreen should be used when taking this drug.
Note:- Please consult a doctor for the exact prescription combination, dosage, usage and duration.
Dengue or dengue-like epidemics were reported throughout the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in the Americas, Southern Europe, North Africa, the Eastern Mediterranean, Asia and Australia and on various islands in the Indian Ocean, the south and central Pecific and the Carribbean. It has steadily increased in both incidence and distribution over the past 40 years. Annually, it is estimated that there are 20 million cases of dengue infections, resulting in around 24,000 deaths.
What is Dengue?
Dengue is an acute flu like fever caused by virus. It occurs in two forms:
* Dengue fever(DF).
* Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever(DHF).
Dengue Fever is marked by an onset of sudden high fever, severe headache, pain behind the eyes and in the muscles and joints.
Dengue hemorrhagic fever is an acute infectious viral disease usually affecting infants and young children. It is characterised by fever during the initial phase and other symptoms like headache, pain in the eye, joint pain and muscle pain, followed by signs of bleeding such as petechiae (red tiny spots on the skin), nosebleed and gum-bleed. If there is blood in the stools and/or blood in the vomit and accompanied by shock, this is called Dengue Shock Syndrome and is often fatal. Aedes Aegypti, the transmitter of the disease is a day-biting mosquito that lays eggs in clear water containers, such as flower vases, cans, rain barrels, old rubber tyres, etc. The adult mosquitoes rest in dark places of the house.
Recognition of Dengue Fever.
The Dengue fever has a number of distinct symptoms and can be recognised with:
Recognition of Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever and shock.
Symptoms similar to Dengue fever, plus any one or a combination of the following:
How does Dengue spread?
Dengue is spread through the bite of an infected Aedes Aegypti mosquito. The mosquito gets the virus by biting an infected person. The first symptoms of the disease occur about 5-7 days after the infected bite.
There is no way to tell if a mosquito is carrying the dengue virus. Therefore people must protect themselves from all mosquito bites.
Where does this mosquito live?
This mosquito rests indoors, in closets and other dark places. Outside, it rests where it is cool and shaded. The female mosquito lays her eggs in water containers, in a around homes, schools and other areas in towns or villages. These eggs become adults in about ten days.
Where does the mosquito bread?
Dengue mosquitoes breed in stored, exposed water collection systems. The favoured breeding places are:
Barrels, drums, jars, pots, buckets, flower vases, plant-pots, tanks, discarded bottles, tins, tyres, water coolers and a lot more places where rain water is collected or is stored.
Prevention of Dengue mosquito bites.
Dengue mosquitoes bite during daytime. Protect yourself from the bite.
Wear full-sleeve clothes or long dresses to cover the hands and legs.
Use mosquito coils and electric vapour mats during the day to prevent dengue.
Use mosquito nets to protect babies and old people and others who may rest during the day.
Make sure that water storage containers are covered to prevent breeding of mosquitoes.
You can also clean the house gutters to prevent stagnation of rainwater.
Patients suffering from dengue H-fever must be isolated for at least five days.
Please report to the nearest health centre if any suspected case of dengue H-fever is in the neighbourhood.
Breaking the cycle of mosquito-human-mosquito infection.
Mosquitoes become infected when they bite people who are sick with dengue. Mosquito nets and mosquito repellents effectively prevent more mosquitoes from biting sick people and help stop the spread of dengue.
What is Filaria?
Filaria is a long, threadlike roundworm called Wuchereria Bancrofti that lives as a parasite in the bodies of human beings and animals. The male worm is shorter than the female and it has a curved tail. This is mainly found in Central Africa, Asia and the Southwest Pacific.
The young worms can be seen in the blood near the body surface of the host or the animal in which the larvae live. When a mosquito bites an infected person at night, it takes up the larvae with the blood. These larvae develop in the mosquito, near the mouth. Then when the insect bites a man or another animal, the larvae enter the wound and infect a new host.
The adult worms live in the lymph - a body fluid. When the worms block the flow of lymph, a disease claled Elephantiasis results. This disease is characterised by severe swelling of the limbs, usually the legs. Sometimes it even can affect the breast or the scrotum.
This gross swelling in the legs and other parts of the body and the the thickening of the skin due to blockage of the vessels of the lymphatic system is called Elephantiasis.
While medicines are available to treat filaria, the gross swelling of the leg makes a person look noticeable and ugly. Hence, it is better to protect oneself from the bites of filaria mosquitoes. Use aerosols, mosquito repellents, creams, mats, coils, nets and prevent breeding of mosquitoes with better practice of hygiene and sanitation.
The Kufe Cycle Of Wuchereria Bancrofti And Brugia Malayi (Lymphatic Filariasis or Elephantiasis).
The vector, a mosquito, ingests microfilaria when it takes a blood meal.
The microfilariae develop into infective juveniles in the mosquito.
The mosquito injects infective juveniles when it feeds.
The Juveniles migrate to the lymph nodes, grow to sexual maturity.
The females produce microfilariae which end up in the blood stream.
Yellow fever is a tropical disease, caused by the yellow fever virus, that is spread in humans by infected mosquitoes. The infections are mild, but the disease can cause severe, life-threatening illness.
There are two types of yellow fever: jungle yellow fever and urban yellow fever. The later is a disease of humans. It is spread by mosquitoes that have been infected by other people. Aedes aegypti is the type of mosquito that usually carries yellow fever from human to human. These mosquitoes have adopted to live among humans in cities, towns, and villages. They breed in discarded tyres, flower pots, oil drums, and water storage containers close to human dwellings. Urban yellow fever is the cause of most yellow fever outbreaks and epidemics.
Pople get yellow fever from the bite of an infected female mosquito injects the yellow virus into the bite.
Many yellow fever infections are mild, but the disease can cause severe, life-threatening illness. Symptoms of severe infection are high fever, chills, headache, muscle aches, vomiting, and backache. After a brief recovery period, the infection can lead to shock, bleeding, and kidney and liver failure. Liver failure causes jaundice (yellowing of the skin and the whites of the eyes), which gives yellow fever its name.
Symptoms start 3 to 6 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito. Yellow fever is diagnosed by a blood test.
Treatment for yellow fever.
There is no specific treatment for yellow fever. Persons with yellow fever should test and drink plenty of fluids. They should be kept away from mosquitoes for the protection of others. Most people get better after a long recovery period.
Yellow fever can be prevented by vaccination. Travellers should also take precautions against mosquito bites when in areas with yellow fever transmission.
If necessary, get vaccinated for yellow fever before travel.
Avoid mosquito bites when travelling in tropical areas.
Mosquitoes that spread yellow fever usually bite during the day. Travellers should take steps to reduce contact with mosquitoes when outdoors and inside.
The most effective repellent contain 20% to 30% DEET (N,N-diethylmethyltoluamide). Follow application instructions carefully when using these products.
Useful tips for better usage of repellent products to keep away mosquitoes.
Don't let mosquitoes bug you!
REPELLENT, LOTIONS, CREAMS.
Allethrin is safe.
Allethrin is chemical used in the leading mosquito repellent products.
Protect your lives and lead a happy healthy and hygienic life.
Declare war on mosquitoes. They are easier to kill.
Malaria & dengue are not.....
So repel them.
All it takes is a few precautionary measures.
Let's maintain a clean environment.
Have healthy, hygienic habits.
Always use personal protection like mosquito repellents, aerosols, creams, coils, vaporising mats and nets.