Drive dengue away | Inquirer Business

Drive dengue away

Drive dengue away

illustration by Steph Bravo

With the alarming rise in the number of dengue cases in the country, everyone is incessantly urged to take extra precaution to combat the dreaded illness.

“Dengue is a febrile illness that affects infants, young children and adults,” explained Dr. Pauleen R. Faustino of Medicard Philippines Inc.


The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that about 40 percent of the world’s population is at risk of being infected. Cases have risen throughout the country, thus prompting the declaration of a national epidemic. Latest data from the Department of Health showed that the number has already climbed to over 160,000, of which 700 resulted in deaths.


Continued Dr. Faustino, “Dengue is transmitted by the bite of a mosquito infected with one of the four dengue virus serotypes.” Aedes aegypti, the transmitter of the disease, is a day-biting mosquito which lays eggs in clear and stagnant water found in flower vases, cans, rain barrels, old rubber tires, among others. The adult mosquitoes rest in dark places of the house.

Dr. Faustino is thus encouraging the public to follow the Department of Health’s recommended 5S Strategy for Dengue

S-earch and Destroy

Mosquitoes breed in stagnant, standing water. So best to search your house for empty tin cans, discarded tires, unused buckets and other containers that may have collected stagnant water and empty these out. If you have an untended pool, birdbath and clogged rain gutters, these may also become breeding areas for mosquitoes so clean these out as well.

S-eek Early Consultation

Sudden high fever, severe headache, joint and muscle pain, vomiting and skin rashes are some of the symptoms of dengue. If you, a family member or a friend are showing these, go and see a doctor immediately.


S-elf Protection Measures

Better safe than sorry. Protect yourself from mosquito bites by using mosquito repellents at all times. From bug sprays and bracelets to clip-ons and stickers, there are a myriad of mosquito repellent products that are available in the market. Dark colored clothing attracts mosquitoes so it is better to dress in white or light colors.

S-ay yes to fogging only during outbreaks

Conducted in early mornings or late afternoons, fogging is done to knock down adult mosquitoes that may be carrying dengue virus. WHO assures that the insecticide used in fogging is not harmful to humans at the low concentrations used.

S-tart hydration

According to Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, hydration is key to help those with dengue recover. Dr. Faustino meanwhile added that there is no specific medication for treatment of a dengue infection but early detection and access to proper medical care lowers complication. She suggests the following home care for dengue:

Rest at home

Make sure to get enough fluids to drink, especially if eating is not tolerated.

Take paracetamol for headaches and pains.

“If no improvement is felt in the first 24 hours after the fever declines, go immediately to the hospital for evaluation,” concluded Dr. Faustino.

Health maintenance organization Medicard has free-standing clinics all over the metro that are ready to attend to its members—and even nonmembers—who may be showing symptoms of dengue, especially with today’s rising number of dengue cases. Again, it’s best to be safe than sorry.

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TAGS: dengue, HOME REMEDIES, Medicard Philippines Inc.

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