The heavy downpour coupled with the drop in temperature that the city had witnessed will have a ripple effect on the health of the people states Narayana Health City. According to the doctors at Narayana Health City, the cold weather that the city has been seeing is conducive to viral replications and there has been a progressive increase in the number and severity of asthma attacks. Similarly, due to water logging the cases of dengue is also on a rise.
Elaborating about the impact of the weather on the health of the people in Bengaluru, Dr. Mahesh Kumar, Consultant, Internal Medicine, Narayana Health City, Bengaluru, said, “There is a 15% to 20% rise in number of patients being admitted with asthma attacks in the last 2 weeks compared to same time last year. There is a surge in the number of dengue and Chikungunya incidents. But what is worrying is the severity of the infections. The severity of infections is higher especially in the case of dengue the infection is relatively higher this time in those who have had a history of COVID infection. Due to reduced cell mediated immunity in patients recovered from COVID, the infection tends to cause more severe symptoms, prolonged illness and sometimes dangerous drop in platelet counts to as low as 20,000 and below calling for utmost care and strict following of preventive measures.”
While cough, breathing difficulty and low grade fever are the early symptoms of asthma attack. High fever, severe headache and joint pains which doesn’t recede with oral paracetamol and home remedies are the symptoms for dengue and Chikungunya.
Regular hand wash, social distancing and follow up with the doctor and following their advice can help in bringing down the possibility of an asthma attack. Further, as Influenza and pneumococcal vaccinations given at the beginning of monsoon have shown to significantly reduce asthma exacerbations it would be advisable for people who have a history of asthma to consider immunisation.
Wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants and closed-toe shoes instead of sandals, using mosquito repellents whenever possible, keeping windows and doors closed during evening hours as the mosquitoes that carry the dengue viruses are most active from dawn to dusk and keeping oneself hydrated by drinking plenty of water and fresh fruit juices as well as eating fresh fruits are recommended. Keeping yourself fit and active by practicing exercises and yoga is also a good practice that can help keep infections at bay. Apart from personal well-being keeping the buckets and drums that are used for storing water always closed, cleaning out all empty flower pots, as it becomes the breeding places for mosquitoes are other aspects that can help in preventing a possible outbreak of mosquito borne diseases. In case anyone has a pet they should ensure the water bowls are clean and kept empty during this season as the held up water irrespective of big or small quantity can enable breeding of mosquitoes that carry in infections.