Tackling common illnesses in monsoon

Dr Upasana Sharma, Head, Emergency and Trauma, Fortis Hospital, Kalyan, shares her insights about the monsoon-related ailments, its symptoms, and its prevention

monsoon

Enjoying the first showers of the season, eating at roadside stalls, and playing in puddles, is how many of us wish to be associated with the monsoon.

However, it is a busy time for doctors, as the season brings with it a multitude of illnesses; Prompt examination and treatment is of utmost importance.

It is also significant to understand the preventive measures against these diseases, which could safeguard you and your family. Cold, cough, malaria, dengue, stomach infection, diarrhoea, fever, typhoid, and Pneumonia are some of the diseases, which make it to the top of the list.

Here’s how you can tackle these:

Fever, cold, and cough: Viral diseases are common all over the world, but during monsoon, they are more prevalent. Constant sneezing, sore throat, and fever are the common symptoms of this disease.

Prevention:

  • Avoid getting drenched in the rain, or being in wet clothes for a long time
  • Gargling with warm water will help if you have a sore throat
  • Medicine to treat fever (like Paracetamol)
  • Keep a safe distance from an infected person

Malaria, dengue, and chikungunya: Fever at regular intervals, bouts of shivering, muscle pain, and weakness, are signs of mosquito-borne illnesses.

Prevention:

Since this disease is spread by mosquitoes, using mosquito repellents and nets will keep them at bay. Make sure that water does not stagnate in your area, which becomes a breeding point for mosquitos. Let’s understand the ABCD of malaria prevention.

Awareness of the risk of malaria

Wear long-sleeved clothes and trousers while going outdoors. Apply insect repellents on clothes and exposed body parts, especially when travelling

Chemoprophylaxis (taking anti-Malarial medications)

Prompt Diagnosis and treatment

Diarrhoea/Stomach Infection: Monsoon brings stomach infections such as gastroenteritis and food poisoning with it; it causes vomiting, diarrhoea, and fever. The reason is characteristically a bacterial infection or viral.

Prevention:

  • Wash your hands thoroughly before every meal and after using the washroom
  • Do not eat or drink contaminated food or liquids
  • Drink plenty of water every day to stay hydrated; ensure that the water is filtered
  • Keep ORS in your First Aid Kit

Leptospirosis: Leptospirosis is an uncommon bacterial infection, often transmitted by animal urine or water containing animal urine, which can come into contact through cracks in the skin, around eyes, mouth, nose or feet.

Prevention:  If you have an occupation, where you come into contact with animals sources of contaminated water, such as farming, construction, or working with sewers or drains, wear adequate protective clothing. It could include waterproof gloves, boots, goggles, and a mask.

If you have fever or body pain, avoid contact with muddy water and take anti-Pyretic medicines

Consult a doctor, if the symptoms don’t subside

Jaundice and typhoid: These are caused by the intake of contaminated water and food; symptoms are high-grade fever, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, and fatigue.

Prevention:

  • Drink clean water and consume fresh and covered food
  • Proper hand sanitation is important
  • Take antipyretics/ ORS/ antiemetics as per symptoms; if symptoms increase, consult a doctor

In case of trauma, falls, or accidents, follow these steps:

  • Wash the wound and remove any dirt, apply an antiseptic solution, and dress the wound
  • Keep the wound clean and dry to avoid other infections
  • In cases like pain, deep wounds, deformity or extreme bleeding, seek medical help.