Monsoon related health problems
It’s monsoon time! While onset of monsoon brings much needed relief from the scorching summer heat, it is also brings about health concerns. Here is a checklist of health problems related to monsoon along with precautions one can take according to Dr Aftab Ahmed, Senior Consultant and Physician at Apollo Hospital.
Mosquito borne diseases:
The rainy season is associated with frequent water logging. The stagnant water is a favourable breeding site for mosquitoes, which can cause a host of febrile illness like malaria, filarial, dengue and chikungunya. Every year we have many people falling sick to these infections. While malaria has specific treatment, dengue and chikungunya are mostly treated symptomatically. Sometimes, improper care and delayed treatment can cause serious complications.
Unfortunately, as there is no vaccine available for these diseases, prevention is an important strategy.
Protection from mosquito bites
a) Usage of mosquito nets and meshes on windows and doors
b) Mosquito repellants, coils
c) Wearing long sleeved shirts and full trousers.
d) Eradication of water logging sites
e) Cover all water containers
f) Empty the water in unused tyres and water drums
g) Keep all drains clear
The monsoon is also the time when water borne diseases like viral hepatitis A, cholera, typhoid and gastroenteritis rise due to contamination of food and water. They can manifest as fever, diarrhea or jaundice.
a) Wash hands before and after preparing food or eating.
b) Wash food thoroughly before cooking
c) Drink only properly treated boiled, filtered or bottled water.
d) Avoid unhygienic street food.
e) Vaccines for hepatitis A and typhoid are available.
The damp and humid weather provides good conditions for spread of fungal infections in skin, particularly on the feet. Keep toenails short, avoid wading through dirty water, and wash feet thoroughly.
Respiratory diseases and COVID-19
The change in weather can precipitate or exacerbate asthma and sinus problems. With regard to C0VID-19, how temperature and humidity will influence transmission in India is largely unknown and unpredictable. We have not seen the expected drop in numbers during the summer and we may or may not see a surge in monsoon. In case of any flooding, the social behaviour of people or overcrowding in relief camps may impact the spread of disease.