Why are children more prone to Japanese Encephalitis virus?
Since time immemorial, India had been known as the land of mosquitos. Although sad, but true. The reason is very simple..India's climate is very favourable for every kind of creature to survive...from humans to plants to animals to insects. We neither have harsh winters like that of Scandinavia nor scalding heat like Libya. So we are in fact blessed that we have a moderate climate. But with blessing comes bane too. Disease causing insects like mosquitoes are a part of our lives. Instead of cribbing, what we can do is that we can take utmost prevention and be healthy and hearty.
Being a father has taught me to be more responsible and protective of my family. Kids are more vulnerable to any type of disease and especially mosquito borne ones. They spend too much time outdoors and play in the bushes in the dark...which are swarming with mosquitoes. Also they are less aware how to ward them off or slap them so they are commonest victims of mosquito bites. So as a doctor and as well as a parent, it's imperative to know about certain diseases so that it can be nipped right at the bud.
What are the major ailments borne by mosquitoes?
We all know that malaria. chikungunya and dengue are the commonest diseases that are spread by mosquitoes. However there is also a threatening, lesser known mosquito borne disease which is known as Japanese Encephalitis.
So what is Japanese encephalitis and what are its symptoms?
It is a mosquito borne disease which is spread mainly by Culex mosquito. The pathogen involved is Japanese encephalitis virus. This disease is common in rural parts of Asia and West Pacific. Humans are accidental hosts of the virus.
In most cases, the disease does not manifest any symptoms. It takes 5 to 15 days for the disease to spread. However in 1%, it manifests itself in the form of neurological symptoms. Apart from fever and headache, there can also be seizures, tremors, neck stiffness, disorientation, paralysis and lack of coordination. If it is not treated timely, it can cause permanent nervous system damage or even death.
How can this deadly disease be prevented?
There are vaccines available which are recommended for those who spend too much time in rural areas or outdoors or are going to spend more than 30 days in endemic areas. Travellers should get immunized too.
Our primary target should be prevention. It's imperative that we protect our family especially kids from mosquito bites.
Here is how we can do:
- Get rid of stagnant water in the house as well as in the neighborhood which are the breeding ground for mosquitoes.
- Wear full sleeve clothes and full trousers outdoors. This applies especially to children who play in parks in the dark which are often haven for mosquitoes.
- Sleep under mosquito nets at night.
- Use effective mosquito repellants throughout.
Goodknight has a wide range of very effective mosquito repellants to suit every age, situation or need.
1. Goodknight Patches: These are best for kids. These are 100% natural and are paeditrician certified. These offer 8 hours of protection so a couple of patches are enough for the entire day for your kid. Children love these as they have cute animal motifs. Whether it's school or playground, this is the safest way to ward of mosquitoes especially when outdoors.
2. Goodknight Fabric Roll On: This is a revolutionary way to ward off mosquitoes. Each bottle of Fabric roll on consists of Citronella and Eucalyptus oils and are therefore 100% safe. Just apply four dots on your child's cloth and it would provide an eight hour protection. It is paediatrician certified and absolutely safe for babies too. For infants less than 2 months, it can be applied on prams/ strollers.
3. Goodknight Express System: This is the best and the easiest way to ward off mosquitoes while indoors. It provides protection in all corners of the room as it drives away mosquitoes immediately after switching on. It has a 9 minute Instant action. It works faster in the initial few minutes to have an express action. It's 100% safe for children and hence apt for the entire family.
I have taken all measures to protect my family from all sorts of mosquito borne diseases. What is your approach?
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