Who doesn't know Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever, or what we usually know about DHF? This infectious disease is caused by the dengue virus which is often transmitted by the Aedes Aegypti mosquito, and has been an epidemic in Indonesia since 1968. The disease is still haunting until now, every time the rainy season arrives.
Where do the Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes usually nest?
The rainy season is usually accompanied by the appearance of puddles. Even though according to the Indonesian Ministry of Health, the breeding place of the Aedes mosquito is in a water reservoir, which consists of:
- Water reservoirs for daily use both inside and outside the home, such as buckets, drums, jars and bathtubs /toilets.
- Water reservoirs are not for daily needs, such as bird drinking places, flower vases, ant traps, used goods, and gutters.
- Natural water reservoirs, such as tree holes, stone holes, leaf midribs, coconut shells, bamboo pieces, and banana midribs.
Water that pooles in a place then becomes a breeding ground for mosquitoes, causing mosquito eggs to hatch, and after 10 to 12 days it will turn into a mosquito. If humans are bitten by mosquitoes with dengue virus, then after 4 to 7 days, the symptoms of DHF will begin to appear.
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The interesting thing is, in recent years it has been agreed that the clinical symptoms of DHF vary, so that the course of the disease is no longer predictable. This is due to the difference in case findings in the field with the existing theories. Though there are several diseases that have similarities with the initial symptoms of DHF.
One of the symptoms of dengue that is still common is the appearance of red spots on the skin. But apparently, these symptoms are still often misinterpreted with symptoms of other diseases such as measles.
How do you distinguish red spots from dengue fever?
According to a Pediatrician, Dokter Widodo Judarwanto, the red rash at the onset of DHF symptoms usually occurs on the face, neck and chest area. The red rash will usually decrease into the 4th and 5th day until it finally disappears after the 6th day. Even though the skin is stretched, the red spots also appear to be visible.
This is different from measles. The rash in measles usually occurs on the 3rd day, then it will increase on the 6th and 7th days. Until finally the color turned black and lasted for a week.
Symptoms of DHF also often begin with high heat that occurs suddenly. Usually, this is what distinguishes red spots from dengue symptoms with red spots due to other things.
Red rash on the skin, which distinguishes DHF from other diseases, then followed by other symptoms such as the occurrence of shock (critical phase) which is accelerated by a condition of lack of fluids. This can occur because the platelets drop which results in abnormalities in the blood vessels (bleeding). This condition is often associated with the cause of death of DHF sufferers. Death can be avoided, if the patient gets fast and correct treatment. This can be done by laboratory examination immediately after experiencing high heat for 3 consecutive days.
What should be done to prevent dengue fever?
In order to prevent DHF, community participation is needed. Therefore, recently the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Indonesia introduced a program called 3M Plus PSN, or Eradication of Mosquito Nests by 3M Plus.
The PSN program is done with:
- Clean up places that are often used as water reservoirs such as bathtubs, water buckets, drinking water reservoirs, fridges (drain)
- Closing tightly water reservoirs such as drums, jars, toren water
- Reuse or recycle used goods that have the potential to become mosquito breeding sites that transmit DHF.
Whereas 3M Plus is all forms of preventive activities, such as:
- Spread larvicidal powder in a water reservoir that is difficult to clean.
- Use insect repellent or anti-mosquito repellent
- Using a mosquito net during sleep
- Maintain mosquito larvae
- Plant mosquito repellent plants
- Adjust the light and ventilation in the house
- Avoid the habit of hanging clothes in a house that can be a place for resting mosquitoes, etc.