Chikungunya has symptoms that are common to dengue and Zika, and can often be misdiagnosed in the beginning. Asia, Africa, and the Indian sub-continent are the most affected areas by this virus. Chikungunya translates to “to become contorted” in the Kimokonde language. Most patients of Chikungunya recover within a few weeks. However, in some rare instances, the disease can last up to a few months or even years for some patients. In older people, Chikungunya can even lead to death. In 2005, a major outbreak of Chikungunya was recorded near the Indian ocean. Other cases of Chikungunya outbreaks around the world have been recorded in different parts of Europe and the United States. With the onset of monsoons, guarding against Chikungunya becomes a priority of every parent. Read on for all you need to know about the symptoms, treatment, and prevention of this disease.
Chikungunya is a viral infection and a mosquito-borne disease that may affect anyone, including children. Often confused with dengue, Chikungunya affects babies the most and is more dangerous because it is difficult to detect. Rarely fatal, it is characterised by fever, painful joints, and a stooped posture. Joint pain caused by the Chikungunya virus usually lasts between one to two weeks. The mosquitoes involved in the spreading of this disease are the Aedes Agypti and Aedes Albopictus. These two species of mosquitoes also contribute to the spread of dengue.
The Chikungunya virus does not spread from one individual to another as it cannot be transmitted between people. The only way one can get infected with the Chikungunya virus is by getting bitten by the mosquitoes carrying it.
Cases of Chikungunya-based mosquito bites can be eliminated by removing stagnant water in containers, maintaining proper hygiene, and cleaning the surrounding environment by getting rid of places that provide a breeding ground for mosquitoes. It is believed that once a person is affected by this virus, their bodies become immune to it.
Mosquito activity peaks during the daytime hours, and this is when children are usually out and about. Whether it is when they are at schools or playing outside, they are vulnerable to mosquito bites.
Chikungunya is characterised by several signs and symptoms in children. The most common ones are:
Another lesser-known symptom of this disease is temporary damage to the liver.
The Chikungunya virus can be diagnosed through laboratory testing. This is done by serum or plasma examinations.
Did you know that in the United States of America, Biosafety Level III precautions are exercised in areas affected with Chikungunya as it is considered a category C priority pathogen?
There is no specific treatment or vaccines designed to combat Chikungunya. However, the following tips can be followed to help with recovery:
Alternative medications such as home remedies, ayurvedic treatments, and herbal medicines can help with the treatment of joint pain post-Chikungunya. Some of the natural remedies for treating joint pain associated with this virus are:
Conclusion: With the number of Chikungunya cases on the rise globally, countermeasures such as good hygiene, proper clothing, and incorporating nutritious diets can go a long way in the treatment of Chikungunya.
Dengue Fever in Kids
Viral Fever in Children
This post was last modified on July 14, 2022 6:26 pm
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