- by Motherhood Hospital
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- Aug 08 2017
Dengue and malaria could be dangerous for pregnant women!
Dengue, malaria, chikungunya, swine flu are common in the monsoon season. While these conditions are life threatening, it could be more dangerous for pregnant women. During pregnancy, their immunity is at an all time low, and the health of the fetus could be compromised if the mother gets infected with any of the viruses.
According to the Directorate of National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP), so far, the total dengue cases in the country are 28,702. Last one week alone saw 2,536 cases with ten deaths. While we are trying hard to fight the malaria epidemic, the NVBDCP states that about 90 percent of the Indian population lives in malaria prone areas.
Here Dr Asha Hiremath, consultant obstetrics and gynaecology, Motherhood Hospitals, Bengaluru explains why pregnant women should take adequate care to safeguard themselves from dengue and malaria:
Why is dengue dangerous?
Dengue infection in pregnancy carries the risk of haemorrhage for both the mother and the baby. Also, there is a serious risk of premature delivery and fetal death if the mother contracts dengue infection during the later stage of pregnancy. In the case of infection developing close to the delivery, there is a risk of vertical transmission which means the infection might pass from the mother to baby across the placenta, through the breast milk, or by direct contact during or after birth.
Why is malaria dangerous?
Similar to dengue, malaria during pregnancy can lead to miscarriage, congenital infections, etc. Malaria can also cause anaemia in pregnant women and may result in convulsion, kidney failure or other major organ damage. Like dengue, this can also lead to fetal death and miscarriage.
What to do to avoid dengue and malaria during pregnancy
- Don’t travel to areas where dengue, malaria are prevalent
- Keep your surroundings clean. Close the window in the morning and evening to avoid mosquitoes from entering the house
- Wear protective clothing like long pants, long sleeve dresses
- Use bed nets, preferably treated with an insecticide to prevent mosquito bites
How to treat dengue and malaria during pregnancy
- Drink plenty of fluids like water, fresh juice, coconut water. This will help to prevent dehydration.
- Avoid taking medicines like aspirin for fever. This may lead to bleeding. and other complication and if that happens, report the same to your doctor immediately.
- Antipyretics prescribed should be taken on time to help manage fever and body pain.
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