Tips to prevent viral infections in this Monsoon

Tips to prevent viral infections in this Monsoon

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There’s finally some respite from the heat. It’s time for the colorful umbrellas, waterproof bags and raincoats to come out of the closet. While the monsoons usher in cooler, rain-drenched days, it also increases the capacity for bacterial infection in one’s body. Cold, cough, sore throat, viral fever, allergies, diarrhea, and malaria are common problems that affect people during this season.

Three types of infections:

Mosquito-borne diseases: During this season, people can be prone to mosquito-borne diseases like malaria, dengue fever, and avian influenza or Bird Flu (H5N1). Malaria can be lethal if left untreated. A spell of Bird Flu (H5N1) can reason severe joint pains, which can last for weeks and months. Dengue fever can also be very serious in certain cases. However, early detection and treatment can help one recover faster from dengue.

Air-borne diseases: Air-borne viral infections are often mild and can reason minor infections in adults. However, senior citizens and young children are more vulnerable to these infections and need to take proper care.

Water-borne diseases: Moulds growing on humid surfaces including your clothes and moist areas of the skin can also be dangerous during the season. However, mold-induced infections are often mild in nature and can be treated simply.

Prevention is better than cure

One must drink only clean water and use boiled water or water purifiers.

  • One should keep their wet and soggy clothes or shoes away from dry garments.
  • Avoid eating out and consume as much fresh food as possible.
  • Drink warm water every two hours and carry home-boiled water while travelling.
  • One should change their hand towels after a day’s use.
  • One should cover their mouth and nose with a handkerchief while coughing or sneezing.
  • Use mosquito repellents and nets.
  • Avoid visiting crowded places such as theatres or exhibitions.
  • Use hand sanitizers while travelling.
  • Cover your nose while travelling on a bike/while seated next to the window in a bus or train.
  • Avoid getting wet in the rain.

 

Prevention for kids-

  • Parents should take care of themselves so that they don’t transmit their virus or infection to their children.
  • Parents must keep their children away from those with infectious illnesses while playing with friends in the neighborhood or at school.
  • Parents should also ensure that their child’s nails are always clean to prevent the accumulation of germs and dirt; to ensure proper washing of hands and legs and give nutritious food with a balanced diet.
  • Keep your child indoors during the first rain of the season as it contains acidic elements that can reason skin problems. It is advised to keep young kids and infants inside during the rain or during monsoon season as young children tend to fall sick frequently during this season. Kids should be kept away from rain till the weather stabilizes.

 

The treatment-

Infections during the monsoon generally start with tonsillitis, cold and cough and gradually spread to the rest of the body. Symptoms of viral fever are body and muscle pain, headache, joint pain, redness of eyes, skin rash and nasal congestion. Some people also experience nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

The treatment of viral fever is entirely symptomatic and it generally comes down after four or five days. Here are some home remedies for viral symptoms:

  • Adequate hydration by drinking a lot of liquids
  • Antipyretics and analgesics for fever and body pain.
  • Steam inhalation for nasal congestion and sinus pain.
  • Saltwater gargle for sore throat.

 

To keep in mind-

Avoid self-medication with antibiotics. Though it is highly contagious, the chances of it turning life-threatening are quite rare. If symptoms are severe or long-lasting, visit your doctor to rule out any bacterial infection. Flu vaccines can often prove useful and one required to take a booster every year.

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