Chikungunya is caused by a virus that is spread by the bite of a mosquito carrying it. These mosquitoes are found near stagnated water and they bite during daytime. Children who are outdoors and stray near close to the breeding spot for Aedes Aegypti (the chikungunya carrying mosquito), can get infected. Anyone who has been bitten by this virus can develop chikungunya fever and other symptoms after incubation period of 2 to 12 days.
Symptoms of chikungunya in children are mostly the same as adults. These include:
It has been found that children are not as greatly affected by the infection as the adults. Some children do not show any symptoms despite being infected. This is a natural case of their immunity being strong and hence the virus does not cause illness. Moreover in affected kids, the main symptom is often skin rashes and not joint pain. Joint pain is not as obvious in kids as it is in adults affected with the chikungunya virus.
If you find your child suffering with high fever that is not responding to medication, and skin rashes with sharp joint pain, consult a doctor immediately. Medical attention on time is very important for avoiding complications. The doctor will recommend a blood test to confirm whether it is chikungunya or dengue since both these viral diseases have similar symptoms.
Chikungunya infection lasts for 8 days or less but complete recovery from complications can take around 2 weeks. Easily digestible nutritious food, medicines or ice packs for the fever and lots of rest give relief to the child suffering from the complications of chikungunya.
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