This Is Dr Joydeep Ghosh's Advice On How You Can Keep Your Loved Ones Safe From Zika Virus
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India is facing the worst Zika epidemic ever and we asked Dr Joydeep Ghosh, Consultant, Internal Medicine, Fortis Hospital, how you could protect yourself from it.
Swine flu has claimed more than 1,000 lives in India just this year alone, with August seeing close to 350 people breathe their last, due to this disease. With the number of cases rising in an alarming fashion, we spoke to Dr Joydeep Ghosh, Consultant, Internal Medicine, Fortis Hospital.
What are the symptoms of swine flu that most people miss?
When people are infected with swine flu viruses, their symptoms are usually similar to those of seasonal influenza. These include fever, tiredness, a lack of appetite, coughing, and a sore throat. Some people may also have vomiting and diarrhoea. Some people infected with influenza A (H1N1) have had severe illness and died. However, in most of the cases, the symptoms of influenza A (H1N1) have been mild, and people have made complete recovery.
The common symptoms of swine flu are (which may be little more severe than normal flu):
- Body ache
- Throat pain
- Red and itchy eyes
- Joint pain
How do you keep yourself safe from swine flu? What are the precautions to take?
- Good hygiene can help reduce the spread of a wide range of viruses, including swine flu. The following precautions should be taken :
- Frequently wash your hands with soap and water, especially before eating or touching your eyes.
- When coughing or sneezing, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue if possible. If not, then sneeze or cough in the crook of your elbow.
- Dispose of used tissues promptly and carefully. Put them in a bag and then bin them.
- Clean hard surfaces (for example, door handles) frequently.
- Avoid proximity with others if you have any of the above-mentioned symptoms.
- Don't come close to any sputum; keep at least a 6 feet distance.
- Use surgical masks or N95 masks when you have to get close to a person suffering from the symptoms of swine flu.
- Ensure that children also follow this advice.
Is the swine flu vaccine effective in preventing the infection?
The seasonal flu shot will help protect you against 2 or 3 influenza viruses, including the H1N1 virus. The vaccine is available as an injection or a nasal spray. Please consult your physician for the same. Till date, vaccination is the best possible way to prevent the disease, though 100 per cent protection cannot be provided.
Dr. Joydeep Ghosh, Consultant Internal Medicine - Fortis Hospital, Anandapur