When the monsoon season begins, we truly feel rejuvenated throughout the day with the first spray of water. As soon as we see rain, we would all like to leap in it. Teenagers and children are more than thrilled to see rain and explore the splashes of it. People eat a variety of snacks and appetizing dishes. However, while enjoying the rainy days, this idyllic situation vanishes the moment you step outside.
Because of the unsanitary environment and lack of adherence to fundamental preventive measures, there is a very significant risk of contracting numerous diseases throughout the monsoon season. Many of these monsoon illnesses go undetected until they develop severe side effects.
Because of this, it’s critical to diagnose illnesses quickly and treat them during the rainy season to prevent mortality. You should be aware of the following frequent illnesses that are very common during this time of year. It is also advisable to be aware of the steps that you and your family can take to prevent these infections.
Influenza (Cold and Flu):
In India, the monsoon season is when the common cold is most frequently contracted. Due to the airborne virus that affects the upper respiratory tract and therefore the nose and throat, it is a sickness that is very contagious. Runny or stuffy nose, fever, bodily aches, throat discomfort and soreness, and all of these symptoms. It is always advisable to see a doctor and receive the necessary prescription medications to recover from the infection.
The body’s immune system will be strengthened and resistance will be improved if you eat a good, balanced, and nutritious food on a regular basis.
“Cholera” is another extremely prevalent and fatal bacterial disease that spreads during the monsoon season. This illness is brought on by tainted food, water, and unsanitary living circumstances. Severe diarrhoea with watery stools, or “rice water stools,” and vomiting that results in quick water loss and cramping are typical cholera symptoms. Diarrhea can be so bad that it causes electrolyte imbalance and severe dehydration within hours. To quickly assess whether V. cholera bacteria are present in a stool sample, a dipstick test is available.
Since cholera can result in death within hours, it needs to be treated right away. Use of oral rehydration salts, a straightforward rehydration solution, is intended to replenish lost fluids and electrolytes (ORS). The ORS solution is offered as a powder that can be mixed with hot or bottled water to create a liquid. The treatment for cholera may not must include antibiotics. The provision of clean drinking water, improved sanitation, and improved hand washing are examples of preventive interventions.
“Typhoid” is another waterborne bacterial infection brought on by the Salmonella bacteria, which results in gastrointestinal ulcers and fever. This illness is brought on by eating or drinking food or water that has been contaminated with an infected person’s faeces. The Widal test, together with any blood, bone marrow, or stool cultures, are used to diagnose.
Yes, it would be good to avoid the famous but sickeningly unsanitary roadside eateries’ pani puri and samosas in order to avoid the most terrifying of the rainy season’s illnesses.
The disease’s symptoms include a persistent high temperature, excruciating abdominal discomfort, headaches, and frequent vomiting.
The worst aspect is that, even after a patient is cured, the disease’s infection may still be present in the gall bladder. Providing clean drinking water, improving sanitation, and improving hand washing are all examples of preventive interventions.
During the monsoon season, a highly contagious and communicable illness spreads through tainted food and water. The primary cause of typhoid fever is poor sanitation and hygiene. Fever, headaches, sore throats, and abdominal pain are typical symptoms. Typhoid can be diagnosed by the Blood Culture, Rapid Typhoid, and Widal tests.
The hepatitis A virus is responsible for the highly contagious liver ailment known as hepatitis A. It is a waterborne viral infection that is typically brought on by contaminated food or drink that has been infected with the virus’ insects. Consuming items that were contaminated during handling, such as fruits, vegetables, or other foods, can spread an infection. The virus-induced liver inflammation that is a direct result of this disease is a symptom.
Jaundice (yellow eyes, skin, and black urine), stomach pain, loss of appetite, nausea, fever, diarrhoea, and fatigue are some of the symptoms. In order to determine whether you have hepatitis A, blood tests are used.
Hepatitis A has no specific treatment. Hepatitis A often cures the liver within six months with no long-term effects. Rest, treatment of motion sickness, and liver rest are all part of management.
One of the greatest methods to prevent hepatitis A is to maintain excellent hygiene, which includes often washing your hands. For those who are most at risk, vaccines are available.
A family of viruses that are spread by mosquitoes produce dengue fever, which is a disease. The tiger mosquito (Aedes aegypti), which has black and white stripes and often bites in the early morning or at dawn, is responsible for spreading it. Other names for dengue include “break bone fever.”
Severe joint and muscle pain, swollen lymph nodes, headache, fever, tiredness, and rash are all signs of dengue fever.
Dengue hemorrhagic fever is a dengue fever complication (DHF). It is a particular syndrome that typically affects kids under the age of ten. This dengue consequence results in bleeding, stomach agony, and circulatory collapse (shock).
No specific antibiotics or antiviral drugs are available to treat it. Treatment for normal dengue focuses on easing the symptoms. The importance of oral rehydration and rest cannot be overstated. Due to the potential for exacerbating bleeding issues, pain medications including aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicines should only be taken under a doctor’s care. Pain
Drugs can be administered to treat joint and muscle pain as well as headaches (myalgia). Throughout the course of the illness, the platelet count should be checked. Depending on the patient’s health and whether they are receiving IV fluids, hospitalization for dengue may occasionally be indicated.
It is a disease spread by mosquitoes, and symptoms include high fever, rash, and headache. Eliminating mosquito breeding grounds is a necessary part of the dengue fever prevention strategy. The tests which can be done are CBC, Dengue NS1 Antigen and Dengue IgM.
- As it’s transmitted via mosquitoes, one should wear a strong insect repellent containing DEET to prevent getting bitten.
- People should also wear full sleeve clothing when out in the day.
- It is important to remember that the dengue mosquito usually bites only in the day time and breeds in clean, fresh water. So any water
accumulation should be avoided.
Some mosquito species grow in the contaminated water, which is the source of one of the most prevalent monsoon-related illnesses, malaria. During the rainy season, there is a problem with water logging, which creates ideal breeding grounds for mosquitoes. This illness is spread via Anopheles mosquito female. P. falciparum. The most severe form of malaria also known as cerebral malaria, is responsible for the majority of fatalities. P. vivax, P. ovale, and P. malariae are further types of malaria.
Antigen-based fast diagnostic tests or microscopic inspection of blood on blood films are frequently used to diagnose malaria.
It is characterized by fever, body ache, chills, and sweating. If untreated, it can lead to complications like jaundice, severe anemia or even liver and kidney failure. Malaria is treated with antimalarial medications successfully.
Maximum cases of Malarial Fever are seen in monsoons. Mosquitoes are responsible for transmission. Rain provides opportunities for the breeding of mosquitoes in water- logged areas. Symptoms range from mild to severe, like fever with chills, headache, jaundice, severe exhaustion, and fluctuating state of consciousness. The tests which can be done are Malarial Parasite (MP) Smear and Malarial Parasite (MP) Antigen.
Preventive measures –
- Take an antimalarial drug as a precautionary measure in mosquito prone areas.
- Also take measures to prevent mosquito bites such as wearing full sleeve clothing.
- Application of anti repellant mosquito creams and Electronic mosquito repellent devices can be used during the monsoon season to avoid mosquito’s at home.
- Accumulation of dirty water must be kept in check to prevent malaria mosquito breeding.
- Insecticide-treated mosquito nets (ITNs) and indoor residual spraying (IRS) have been shown to be highly effective in preventing malaria in your neighbourhood and can reduce breeding of mosquitos also.
Any fever due to virus is termed as VIRAL. Sudden weather change often causes viral fever characterized by fatigue, chills, body aches and fever. The illness is contagious and spreads through infection droplets in the air or by coming into physical contact with infected secretions. General duration of a viral fever lasts from 3 to 7 days, with the severity of the fever being the highest in the first three days.
The general treatment if side effects and symptoms using OTC drugs in consultation with their doctor, antihistamines, decongestants and antipyretic drugs are usually recommended, Viral disease are generally self-limiting and generally do not need antibiotic unless there is a secondary infection.
Some Preventive measures –
- One must ensure that they do not get wet in the rain or stay in wet clothes for a long period
- Wash their hands often,
- Boost their immunity by eating Vitamin C rich foods and green leafy vegetables. They must also keep a distance from an infected person.
Gastroenteritis and food poisoning are quite common during the monsoon season, and the high humidity helps in the growth of disease-
causing bacteria. The general symptoms of gastroenteritis are stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea. Fever can develop and one
may feel sense of malaise and weakness through the course of the illness.
It is very important that you keep yourself hydrated at all times and bland diet is recommended such as rice, curds, fruits such as banana, apple. Rice kanji water or coconut water is also good line of treatment for hydration. ORS is generally recommended. Course of treatment is mainly to prevent dehydration, control fever. Antibiotics are prescribed after evaluation of the condition of the patient. Antiprotozoal
can also be prescribed accordingly.
- Try and avoid eating raw food like salads because it is difficult to ascertain whether they have been washed, cleaned and stored at the right temperature
- Avoid roadside food which may be made in contaminated water and trigger diarrhoea.
Prevention is better than cure:
Some measures to ensure that monsoons become an enjoyable experience without hampering health.
- One must drink only clean water and use boiled water or water purifiers.
- 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 (dengue transmitting mosquitoes usually bite during day time; either early morning or late evening).
- 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.
- 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.
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 needs to take a booster every year.