water borne diseases

Water borne and vector borne diseases after the rains – Symptoms and prevention

Rains are more vital to a country but they also create health menace when there is much water stagnation around the people living areas. When these waters do not drain out properly it causes serious health issues which may be fatal to the infected persons.

Vector borne diseases: This kind of diseases is mainly transmitted by mosquitoes that breed in the stagnant water. Water collected in the tires, unused containers and coolers are also suitable places for propagation of mosquitoes. Some of the diseases that are transmitted by mosquito include,

  • Malaria:
  • It kills more people during the monsoon season and is spread by female Anopheles mosquito that bites during the night and early morning. It is characterized high fever with chills and starts after 72 hrs of the bite, body pain, tiredness, sweating, cold like symptoms. Sometimes diarrhea and jaundice can occur.
  • Dengue:
It is one of most tarnished illness that occurs in the rainy season. The dengue virus is carried out by the Aedes mosquito that bites during the day time. It is characterized by high temperature that occurs after 4 to 7 days of the mosquito bite. There will be rashes all over the body with muscle and joint aches. Loss of appetite and there will be unusual pain at the back of the eyes, bleeding in the gums.

Precautionary Measures:

  • Try to wear full sleeve clothes while stepping out during morning and night hours.
  • Mosquito repellents in the form of lotions spray and wrist bands are available in the market. You can make use of it in order to protect yourself from the mosquito bites.
  • Stagnation of water around your residential places should be avoided. Also inform the municipal people to apply insecticides regularly.
  • Cultivation of Gambusia fish in the nearby pond or lake helps to prevent the breeding of mosquitoes.
  • Insecticide treated nets can be used at night.
Water borne diseases: This kind of diseases is spread from unhygienic water or food materials. It can occur as an epidemic out break where there is poor sanitation, low hygiene and improper sewage system. Contaminated food and water from street shops can also carry on the disease.
Cholera:
It spreads through infected water and food with human fecal matter and flies can also transmit the disease. People who live in areas with low sanitation and unhygienic practices are widely affected. Signs of cholera:
  • Rigorous diarrhea and continuous vomiting
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Muscle cramps because of dehydration
  • Decrease blood pressure
  • Dryness in the mucous membranes that includes mouth, throat, nose and eyes
  • Reduced flexibility of skin
Typhoid fever:
It is caused by intake of infected food or water that has Salmonella typhi in it. The bacteria can be alive in water and sewage for several weeks and enters by feco-oral route. Signs of typhoid:
  • Lack of desire for food and tiredness
  • High fever of 104 degree
  • Severe aching of the abdomen
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Sever head and body aches
Hepatitis A infection:
This is caused by hepatitis A virus and mainly affects the liver. It is transmitted by infected fecal matter, water, food or close contact with the hepatitis A patients. The symptoms start after 2-7 weeks after virus enters the body. Signs of hepatitis A:
  • Jaundice, the skin and eyes becomes yellow
  • Tiredness
  • Nausea
  • Urine will be dark colored
  • Loss of desire to eat
  • Stool will be clay colored
Leptospirosis:
It is passed from animals to human beings by means of infected urine and commonly called as ‘Rat fever’. Due to rains and floods many rats have been killed and washed away, this poses main threat to us. When a person with open skin comes in contact with leptospira bacteria while walking in the water the illness starts. Signs:
  • Fever ranging between 38C to 40C
  • Shivering
  • Headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Coughing
  • Rashes in some cases
  • Pain in the calves and back
  • Irritation and redness of the eyes
Some people have severe leptospirosis called as ‘Weil’s disease’ and it is portrayed by kidney failure and bleeding of the lungs and even death.
Precautionary measures:
  • Foods and water shop be avoided where there is high probability of infection.
  • Personal hygiene should be followed and practiced as it can prevent most water borne illness
  • Eat fresh foods and always keep them covered
  • Consume clean and boiled water
  • If you have fever do not neglect and consult the doctor immediately because it leads to serious health issues if left untreated at the right time.
  • Have ORS solution at short intervals as it avoids dehydration that is caused by diarrhea.
  • Try to wear shoes, gloves when working in water surrounded areas as the leptospira bacteria can enter the break skin.
  • Rodent control measures should be taken by the municipal authorities.