Although the symptoms of mosquito-borne dengue fever are similar to those of the flu, the disease can be fatal. From the beginning of the monsoon season, dengue fever patients flock to hospitals and doctors with various symptoms. However, symptoms may include high fever from the first day, severe headache, pain in the eyes, body aches, reddening of the skin, and in some cases, rashes on the skin.
It should be remembered that the fever at this time does not mean only dengue. Other fevers with nearby symptoms are also appearing. In addition to other viral fevers, waterborne typhoid fever is also occurring. Therefore, in case of fever, it is better to take the treatment after confirming the symptoms and, if necessary, examination. With that note, let's know the causes, symptoms, treatment, prevention of dengue.
Dengue vs. Severe Dengue
We should not be sure without any test. But, if a high fever of 40°C or 104°F is accompanied with any 2 of the following symptoms should be suspected as dengue.
- pain behind the eyes
- severe headache
- muscle and joint pains
- swollen glands
A patient enters the critical phase, usually after 3-7 days after the illness started. During this phase, the fever may drop below 38°C or 100°F. But the potentially fatal complications may start due to respiratory distress, plasma leaking, severe bleeding, or organ impairment, and fluid accumulation. All these can lead to severe dengue. The symptoms may include-
- persistent vomiting
- severe abdominal pain
- blood in vomit
- bleeding gums
- rapid breathing
If these symptoms appear, the patient might have a chance to fall into a critical phase. Hence, a close observation becomes obvious for the next 24-28 hours. Furthermore, proper medical care is needed to avoid any complications and risk of death.
What Causes Dengue Fever?
Dengue is a mosquito-borne disease spread by Aedes mosquito bites. The mosquito became infected with one of the four viruses closely related to the DENV virus, causing dengue fever. Aedes mosquitoes can be carriers of any one of the four viruses, and as a result, individuals can be infected by that particular virus. The Aedes mosquito can breed in stagnant water inside or outside the house and cannot fly more than 200 meters from its birthplace. However, these mosquitoes do not breed in ponds, ditches, and other reservoirs. This species of mosquito is more active in the morning and in the afternoon after sunset.
How Does the Aedes Mosquito Spread Dengue?
When an infected Aedes mosquito bites a healthy person, the mosquito transmits the dengue virus (one in four viruses) to that person. As a result, when an uninfected mosquito bites the person, the mosquito becomes a carrier of the dengue virus. Thus, it becomes a part of the process of spreading the disease.
The infected mosquito then bites another healthy person, and the disease spreads. A person who has once been infected with dengue can be infected with any one of the four viruses. However, a person who has already been infected with a particular virus cannot be re-infected with that particular virus. However, the symptoms of second-time infection are more severe than the first-time infection.
According to research, 40 percent of the world's population or 3 billion people live in places where dengue is most likely to be transmitted. Symptoms of dengue fever usually appear 4 to 7 days after a mosquito bite and last for 3 to 7 days. Although dengue fever is a highly contagious disease, it can be easily cured if the symptoms are detected at an early stage.
Therefore, it is very important to know the symptoms of this disease in order to get timely treatment to avoid complications like heart, lung, or liver damage. Also, in some cases, dengue can cause blood pressure to drop drastically, which can lead to injury and even death.