Malaria – Causes, Symptoms And Prevention
As per a report of WHO, some 3.2 billion people in the world are at risk of Malaria. So, when a disease can risk the lives of half the world’s population, you can imagine its universal prevalence. It’s after all life-threatening in nature and transmitted through the bite of an infected Anopheles mosquito.
So, it’s one of those deadly diseases for which mosquitoes are responsible in a direct manner. Infected mosquitoes carry the Plasmodium parasite whose bites help the parasite to enter the bloodstream and cause the disease. These parasites mature in the liver and then enter the bloodstream to infect red blood cells.
The parasites inside the red blood cells multiply at a great rate and within two to three days cause the infected cells to burst open and let symptoms occur in cycles. The parasites causing malaria are predominant in tropical and subtropical climates and that’s why people in those areas are at a greater risk.
Symptoms and severe complications of Malaria
Many people don’t take malaria as seriously as they should which is not the right thing to do. It’s a disease which can put the life of the afflicted at risk if not treated in a timely manner. Even though malaria test kits are available online, one should not ignore the symptoms and meet the doctor and get a proper diagnosis conducted.
Here are some of symptoms of malaria –
- It generally takes 10 days to four weeks for the symptoms to surface post the infection
- In some people, no symptoms can develop for months
- One of the most common symptoms include shaking chills of moderate to severe variety
- High fever and profuse sweating
- Persistent headaches
- Nausea and vomiting
- Diarrhoea and anaemia
- Muscle pain and convulsions
- Blood in the stool
- Low blood sugar in severe cases
- Anaemia caused due to destruction of red blood cells
- Accumulation of fluid in the lungs
- Organ failure of the liver, spleen or kidneys,
- Swelling of the blood vessels in the brain
Prevention of Malaria
Preventing malaria is not very complicated anymore provided you are fully aware of what steps are required. Today, it’s possible to buy malaria test kit online, diagnose the disease and then consult a doctor. To avoid that stage, make sure you take the right preventive steps, including –
- Avoid heading to places where risks of malaria are greater and if you can’t, stay safe
- Avoid being close to places where mosquitoes are found on a regular basis
- Don’t spend time in areas not screened well and don’t sleep in those areas
- Avoid sleeping outside or in the open as such places may be close to breeding spots for mosquitoes
- Always use bed-nets to minimize the risks of malaria
- If possible, stay in cool places and keep the AC on as mosquitoes avoid such places
- Use mosquito repellents during evening and night-time hours
- Wear long sleeve shirts and trousers particularly at night and in the evening
- Make sure the skin is not exposed as less the exposure of the skin, lower the risk of malaria
- Apply some lotions or cream that serve as mosquito repellents so that you keep the mosquitoes away