Singapore is facing new Dengue epidemic with over 600 cases [Link Here] reported / confirmed end of this week. Dengue fever claimed two lives, first – Ang Yong Han (20) who is staying in Hougang area and second – 60 year old man who is staying in Ang Mo Kio area. With cases already reached above 7000 mark (more than doubled compared last year), NEA has already begin to step up measures to prevent major dengue epidemic that happened in 2005 where it claimed 19 lives [Link Here].
Check your area for mosquito breeding
There is no available drug to prevent Dengue. You are advised to check your premises of any possible breeding ground for Aedes mosquitoes especially stagnant waters. More details can be found at Dengue.Gov.Sg.
Dengue fever is an illness caused by the dengue virus, transmittable only through the bite of an infected Aedes mosquito. Unfortunately, the Aedes mosquito is one of the most common types of mosquito found in Singapore.
Dengue symptoms include a fever (which can last up to 7 days), accompanied by intense headache, body aches, joint pains, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting and skin rashes. Complete recovery can take up to a month.
Dengue haemorrhagic fever, a more severe form of dengue, has similar symptoms. However, it presents with more serious bleeding problems (e.g. gum bleeding, nose bleeding and bleeding into the skin and internal organs). If left untreated, dengue haemorrhagic fever can be fatal.
When should you get checked for dengue fever?
If you suspect that you or a loved one has contracted dengue, visit your GP, rest and drink plenty of fluids. For the safety of others, you should also stay away from places where you are likely to get bitten by mosquitoes (which would then propagate your virus).
Go to the hospital only if you suffer from severe stomach pain and persistent vomiting as these are symptoms of more serious dengue haemorrhagic fever.
There is no dengue fever vaccine yet in Singapore. However, researchers from the Singapore General Hospital (SGH) and Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School (Duke-NUS) have begun clinical trials in July last year. Results will be published later this year.
Prevent Dengue, Prevent Breeding Places for Aedes
Non-flammable mosquito trap / magnet below from Amazon can help. Consider in getting a few and place around in your homes near the windows especially.
Associate Professor Leo Yee Sin predicted that Singapore will head to ‘big-time Dengue epidemic‘ this year. It is a warning that we should heed and remind each other of its potential threats if precaution is not taken. Let’s hope something that happened in 2005 wont happen again.