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What is Dengue?

If you are planning on traveling anywhere where mosquitoes are common it is important to know what Dengue, Dengue Virus, and Dengue Fever mean.

Dengue Virus is the virus transmitted from mosquitoes to people and monkeys. Dengue is the term used to refer to the illness caused by the Dengue Virus. Dengue Fever is one of the symptoms of being infected by the Dengue Virus.

Mosquitoes carrying the Dengue Virus can be found in over 100 countries around the world. About 3 billion people, or 40% of the world’s population, live in areas where Dengue is common. Up to Forty Million people get infected with the Dengue Virus. About 100 million of those get sick from the virus. About 22,000 people die every year from severe Dengue.

What is Dengue Virus?

Dengue Virus is actually a group of viruses: Dengue Virus 1, 2, 3, and 4. A person can get infected with Dengue up to four times since there are four different strains of the virus. 1 in 4 people who are infected will get sick. Symptoms can be mild or severe. Severe symptoms are often life threatening.

Mild Symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Aches
  • Pains
  • Rashes
  • Nausea
  • Warning signs (which could hint at severe symptoms)

Symptoms of Dengue can last anywhere from 2-7 days on average. Depending on your immune system’s ability to fight the virus and the severity of the virus, it may take longer.

Severe Dengue

Severe Dengue hits about 1 in 20 people who have been infected with the Dengue Virus. If you have had Dengue before you are more likely to get Severe Dengue. Severe Dengue can cause shock, internal bleeding, and death. Women who are pregnant and infants, as well as people with compromised immune systems, are more likely to have severe symptoms.

Severe Symptoms include:

  • Feeling tired, irritable, or restless
  • Belly Pain and/or tenderness
  • Severe Vomiting (at least 3 times in 24 hours)
  • Vomiting blood
  • Bleeding from the nose or gums
  • Blood in stool

These warning signs will usually appear within 24-48 hours after your fever ends. If any of these symptoms present themselves, you need to immediately go to a clinic or emergency room.

What is Dengue fever?

Is dengue fever contagious? Dengue Fever is another name used to refer to the Dengue infection. Dengue Fever is also a symptom of the Dengue Virus. If you are worried about whether Dengue Fever and the Dengue Virus are contagious, they are not an airborne contagion. The only way to contract Dengue is to get bitten by a mosquito carrying the Dengue virus.

How to Treat Dengue Virus and Dengue Fever

Dengue treatment varies based on if you have mild or severe symptoms. There is no specific medicine to treat Dengue, instead you will need to treat the symptoms. Even if symptoms are mild, you should see your healthcare provider and tell them about any trips you have taken recently. 

  • Getting a lot of rest is important for helping your immune system fight off the Dengue Virus. 
  • To control pain and fever take Acetaminophen (also called Paracetamol) 
  • Do Not Take Aspirin or Ibuprofen
  • Drink lots of fluids to stay hydrated. Water or drinks with electrolytes are best.

Dengue fever treatment for severe symptoms is a medical emergency and requires a stay in either a hospital or medical clinic where they can monitor your symptoms. Go to the nearest emergency room, even if you are traveling.

What Kinds of Mosquitoes Carry Dengue?

Dengue Viruses are spread through mosquito bites. The Aedes species of mosquitoes is the one that carries the virus. There are two subspecies Aedes Aegypti and Aedes Albopictus. These mosquitoes are also carriers of Zika and Chikungunya.

Mosquitoes get Dengue and other viruses by biting people with the virus. They then transfer it to someone else when they bite them. These mosquitoes like tropical and subtropical regions. Does dengue mosquito live in clean water? Dengue-carrying mosquitoes can be found in both dirty and clean water. 

Does Dengue Mosquito Breed in Dirty Water?

Dengue Mosquitoes breed in standing water. This water may be dirty, or it may be clean. The key is that the water is not moving. Dengue Mosquitoes do not breed in rivers, lakes, streams, or other sources of moving water.

Dengue Mosquitoes can and will breed in water tanks, flower pots, and any other sources of still water.

When Do Aedes Mosquitoes Bite?

Aedes Mosquitoes prefer to bite humans. They are active in the daytime and nighttime. Dawn and Dusk are their most active times, but they are not the only times that an Aedes Mosquito might bite you.

How To Know Dengue Mosquito Bite?

The first thing to consider when trying to determine if a Mosquito Bite has transmitted Dengue is whether you have traveled to a Dengue Hotspot. A Hotspot is an area where a disease, in this case, Dengue disease, is common.

The areas where there is a greater risk of Dengue include:

  • South America
  • Central America
  • Mexico
  • The Caribbean
  • The Pacific Islands
  • The Indian Subcontinent
  • Southeast Asia
  • China
  • Taiwan

Knowing and recognizing the symptoms is the only real way to know how to recognize a Mosquito Dengue Bite. Symptoms will most often appear quickly, within 1-3 days of being bitten.

How to Get Rid of Aedes Mosquito

If you live in an area that is home to the Aedes Mosquito there is no getting rid of them completely. Unfortunately, any area where they live is just too big. However, you can do your best to keep them out of your yard and house.

To kill mosquitoes use a bug zapper such as BuzzBGone. Using Citronella candles or torches as well as planting vegetation that mosquitoes do not like will keep them away.

Plants that Repel Mosquitoes:

  • Citronella grass
  • Lavender
  • Marigolds
  • Catnip
  • Basil
  • Scented Geraniums
  • Rosemary
  • Mint
  • Sage
  • Bee Balm
  • Foss Flower
  • Allium
  • Lemongrass
  • Lemon Balm
  • And more.

While the scent of some of these plants will make mosquitoes warry, you will need to crush and burn leaves, petals, or other parts of the plants to truly repel mosquitoes. 

How to Prevent  Aedes Mosquito Bite

The easiest way to avoid Dengue is to avoid getting bitten by an aedes mosquito. Here is how to avoid an aedes mosquito bite:

  • Avoid bogs or stale, stagnant water. Mosquitoes lay their eggs in or around standing water.
  • Use Mosquito repellent
  • Use a bug zapper such as BuzzBGone
  • Use Mosquito repelling candles
  • If you live in a region where these mosquitoes live, plant mosquito repelling plants
  • Stay indoors during Dawn and Dusk, a mosquito’s favorite time of day
  • Keep screen doors and windows closed and in good condition to keep mosquitoes out of your house.
  • Wear long sleeved shirts and long pants
  • Wear clothing treated with clothing Insect Repellent 
  • Use Mosquito netting

Final Thoughts

If you are planning on traveling to a Dengue Mosquito Area, make sure to talk to your doctor and look into heavy duty repellents. Your local camping, hiking, backpacking, and outdoors store will have plenty of ideas on what to take and use to help prevent mosquito bites.

These other products are a great addition to your travel bag.


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