Fever Awareness and Remedies
We are now embarking on the fever season. Fever cases are on the rise and it is our duty to equip ourselves with sufficient knowledge so that we know how to deal with it. We should also be aware of the symptoms to watch out for. Dr R Varun Prasanna, general physician at Kauvery Hospital, enlightens us on fever symptoms and remedies.
The Doctor Explains
Chikungunya, dengue, etc. are caused by mosquito bites. Usually these infections start off with high fever; temperature typically ranges between 102-103 degrees for the first 2-3 days. Along with this high-grade fever, patients will also suffer from severe joint pain. It is for this reason that these fevers are also known as bone breaking fevers. Extreme pain in the knee joints, back pain and headache will be experienced by these patients. In addition to these symptoms, patients will also feel some mouth dryness. This is because these viruses cause severe dehydration. Muscle myopathy is another symptom wherein patients will have severe muscle pain.
What to Watch out for
When body pain continues even after the fever has subsided, patients should be on the alert even more as it is a symptom of the platelet count dropping. This is because the platelet count dropping due to dengue and other viruses is a life-threatening condition. Platelets are those critical components of the blood that help in the clotting of blood. Hence when there is a drop in the platelets, there is a chance that the patient could bleed naturally. Does this mean that all patients who exhibit a drop in platelet count are at a risk of bleeding? The answer is no, 95 – 99% of patients will not bleed and only the remaining 1% are at risk. It is this 1% that have to be identified and treated carefully.
Treatment at Home
These patients are advised to drink lots of fluids to keep themselves hydrated – tender coconut water, fresh juices and of course plenty of water is recommended. Keeping the body hydrated lessens the chances of bleeding. When patients experience persistent body pain, they should recognize it as a warning sign and get a blood test done to check the platelet count. They should get themselves tested for dengue as well.
As Always, Prevention Is Better Than Cure
It is essential to get rid of any stagnant water around your living area – discarded tyres, buckets, etc. often become containers for rain water and as a result a breeding ground for mosquitoes. These places become ideal spots for mosquitoes to lay eggs and propagate. When a mosquito bites a person with dengue and then bites a healthy person, it transmits the virus. It is to be noted that dengue does not spread by sharing food or by interacting with an infected person.
The usage of mosquito nets for cots and mosquito repellent creams are advised. Preventing mosquito bites is indeed the best way to stay clear of mosquito borne diseases and in case a person is suffering from fever, getting a blood test done is definitely recommended.
Watch Dr R Varun Prasanna’s talk on fever awareness at https://youtu.be/ZPmgWNkyCkk
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