Ways to protect yourself from the Aedes mosquito: IMA
New Delhi, : Dengue takes on an epidemic form almost every year and creates panic among the public. Dengue fever is a preventable disease and prevention is the first step in its management. But, without community participation, it is not possible to do so.
Given the health implications of dengue on the entire Indian population as well as the panic that it causes amongst the masses, the Indian Medical Association today conducted an educational webcast for over 2000 doctors on the ways in which the medical fraternity can help in disease prevention and management. The panel for the same consisted of pubic health experts Dr Charanjit Singh, Dr SNP Singh, Dr VK Monga, Dr Ramesh Kumar. The webcast was conducted and moderated by Dr KK Aggarwal.
IMA also recently launched a campaign ‘DENG-WAR’ to fight the menace of the Aedes mosquito, which transmits the virus causing dengue fever.
The Aedes aegypti mosquito lives in proximity to human settlements, breeding primarily in artificial as well as natural receptacles, which collect water. Its life cycle is closely associated with human activities. The Aedes aegypti larvae can be found in containers such as drums, buckets, water vases, flowerpots, air conditioner trays, old tins and cans, old shoes, old pet containers, amongst others.
Human beings are primarily responsible for the presence of the Aedes aegypti in their environment through poor sanitation practices; improper solid-waste disposal practices; unsafe water storage practices and poor pool management.
Speaking about the need for prevention Dr. SS Agarwal, National President IMA & Padma Shri Awardee Dr. K.K.Aggarwal, President HCFI and Honorary Secretary General IMA said, “Community participation is vital to prevent and control the spread of diseases transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which includes Zika, Chikungunya and yellow fever besides dengue. In community participation, individuals, families and communities are involved in the planning and conduct of local vector control activities. The Government cannot employ enough persons to search every backyard to identify and destroy breeding sites on a consistent basis to prevent this mosquito from breeding. We at IMA are committed to raising awareness amongst the medical fraternity as well as the public about the need for prevention and proper management of diseases caused due to the Aedes Aegypti.“
Ways to protect yourself from the bite of the Aedes Aegypti
· Use Environmental Protection Agency-registered insect repellents that contain DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535.
· Use insect repellent with 20% to 35% of the chemical DEET; more than 35% of the chemical known as diethyltoluamide can irritate skin.
· Make sure you apply it to all exposed skin.
· Apply insect repellent correctly. Apply sunscreen before repellent, not on top of it.
· Apply and let sunscreen dry before using insect repellent. You want the mosquito to land on the repellent, not your sunscreen.
· Minimize exposed skin and wear light-colored long sleeved shirts and pants. Mosquitoes are drawn to dark colors, floral patterns and sweet perfumes.
· Wear clothing treated with permethrin, a chemical used as an insecticide.
· Treat your own clothes, shoes, tents, etc. with a permethrin spray.
· Sleep under mosquito nets with windows and doors closed or securely screened if there is no air conditioning.
· Make sure there's no standing water outside your lodging because mosquito eggs hatch in water.
· Make yourself less appealing to mosquitoes by wearing deodorant and by avoiding drinking quite so much beer.