The wet season in Jakarta has arrived, so families living in the tropics should be extra cautious of dengue fever. Dengue fever is an illness caused by the dengue virus transmitted by the yellow fever mosquito known as Aedes aegypti.
Symptoms include fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, rash, pain in the eyes, joints, and muscles, and minor bleeding. If you are bitten by an infected mosquito, symptoms can take up to 2 weeks to develop but usually last less than a week. In severe cases, symptoms may include hemorrhage, shock, organ failure, and even death.
Here are 10 steps you can take to minimize the risk of catching dengue fever:
- When you are inside your home, you should take one of the first steps to get rid of as many mosquitoes as you can. Close doors and windows that open up to the outside at night, as that’s when mosquitoes like to roam around.
- If you want to keep the windows open, be sure to install a mosquito screen to prevent mosquitoes from entering.
- When mosquitoes are found inside the house or when you have to go outside, try using natural mosquito repellents like Citronella and Lemon Eucalyptus. We found that Terrashield, the outdoor blend from doTerra, works like a charm.
- It’s important to keep the place clean since mosquitoes tend to hide in messy and dirty places.
- There are mosquito traps with lights that you can install in the corners of your home, and the mosquito zappers rackets work well though it requires some physical exercise.
- Mosquitoes with the dengue virus are often found in public areas, so be careful when going out and try to stay away from dustbins and bushes where they like to linger.
- Wear clothes with long sleeves so that the mosquitoes have fewer opportunities to bite you.
- You can also check your neighborhood if they do mosquito fogging regularly. Some companies provide fogging services in houses and neighborhoods.
- If you have a garden or a backyard, try planting mosquito-repelling plants like lemongrass and zodia to keep them away.
- If you keep small tubs or dishes of shallow water lying around, try to drain the water or cover it every night. Mosquitoes lay their eggs in the water, and the eggs are tiny and are difficult to see.