Dengue fever, a mosquito-borne viral illness, is a significant public health concern in many parts of the world. As the number of dengue cases continues to rise, it's crucial to be aware of the warning signs and different stages of the disease for early detection and prompt medical attention.
The warning signs of dengue fever typically appear within four to 10 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito. Symptoms may vary depending on the stage of the disease. Here are the key stages and their associated warning signs:
1. Febrile Stage
This initial phase is characterised by high fever, often accompanied by severe headache, joint and muscle pain, and a rash. Other symptoms may include fatigue, nausea, vomiting, and mild bleeding, such as nosebleeds or gum bleeding. It is essential to monitor body temperature regularly and seek medical advice if symptoms worsen.
2. Critical Stage
In some cases, dengue fever progresses to a critical stage known as severe dengue or dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF). Warning signs during this stage may include severe abdominal pain, persistent vomiting, rapid breathing, bleeding gums, blood in urine, and fatigue. It is crucial to seek immediate medical attention if any of these warning signs occur, as severe dengue can be life-threatening.
3. Recovery Stage
After the critical stage, patients typically enter the recovery phase. During this stage, fever subsides, and the overall condition improves. However, fatigue and weakness may persist for some time. Adequate rest, hydration, and following medical advice are important for a full recovery.
To prevent dengue fever, it is crucial to eliminate mosquito breeding sites by removing stagnant water, using mosquito repellents, and wearing protective clothing. Communities and health authorities should work together to implement effective vector control measures and raise awareness about dengue prevention.