As soon as the air takes on a chilly nip, the radio plays Christmas songs and the streets explode with colorful lights, you know that the holiday season is just around the corner. By this time, we say goodbye to typhoons (although a couple might try to sneak through) and expect good, cool weather until January of next year. What doesn’t leave, however, is dengue which has now become a year-round issue. Falling ill with the infection amid the merriment of the season is not only a depressing thought but a real concern, since most of us will be exposed outdoors (doing our shopping, attending parties, hearing the early morning Mass) more than the usual. Fortunately, we can arm ourselves with a handful of precautions against dengue-lamok. Here’s a list of them:
Click and know dengue status of the place you’re visiting. The Department of Science and Technology has put up a website called Dengue Vector Surveillance that helps you keep track of dengue incidence in a particular city. Visit http://oltrap.pchrd.dost.gov.ph and you will see a search panel where you can input the time frame, the region and the city you wish to visit. The site also lists the schools where cases of dengue have been reported. A red marker on the place signals an alert level, which means that you have to take extra precautions if you still intend to push through with your trip.
Keep your car spic-and-span clean. Holiday season means a lot of motoring around and it pays to have your car tuned-up and spic-and-span clean. Not too many people know that dengue-lamok can propagate in a pool of water as small as a coin so be sure your car doesn’t provide any breeding ground. Regularly empty water coolers and have your trash disposed. The cleaner the car, or any place for that matter, the less likely that mosquitoes are able to breed.
Do a last-quarter check of your house. Have you been putting off making your house dengue-proof? Now is the best time to do a house check-up. Replace your window and door screen, your first line of defense not only against mosquitoes but other insects, if it already shows visible tear. Apply insect spray on damp, dark places if you suspect them be as breeding grounds. Of course, always empty vases and containers of water that are ideal places for mosquitoes to lay their eggs. If your village already has a high incidence rate of dengue, perhaps it’s time to explore the idea of fumigating your house.
Wear the right clothes. When going out, be sure to dress in long-sleeved clothes. You may choose something made of cotton, linen or nylon for comfort. Dengue-lamok usually bites below the knee, so be sure to wear long pants and socks as well.
Know your dengue-lamok and apply protection accordingly. Aedes aegypti has been identified as the main dengue-carrying culprit, biting between 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Another dengue-lamok, Aedes albopictus, has been discovered to have peak biting hours from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. to 1 a.m. In tandem, these mosquito strains now make dengue a round-the-clock concern. An insect repellent offers the quickest, most effective protection so be sure you always have a bottle in handy—in your house and in your car. Green Cross Insect Repellent Lotion Gentle Protect offers barrier against dengue-lamok for up to 8 hours and is clinically formulated to be safe for the young ones. Apply it most especially on the skin that is not covered by clothing. With a fresh, clean scent, and a light, non-greasy consistency, Green Cross Insect Repellent Gentle Protect helps you keep the holidays merry.