Prevent Chikungunya: The best prevention of Chikungunya is to avoid mosquito bites. Preventing Mosquito breeding also prevents Chikungunya.
There are no preventive drugs or vaccines to prevent chikungunya fever. The best way you can prevent chikungunya fever is by taking steps to avoid mosquitoes bites and control breeding of mosquito.
Measures to avoid mosquito bites include
- Wear protective clothing such as long pants and long-sleeved shirts.
- If required use permethrin (a common synthetic chemical insecticide) on your clothing and shoes. Clothes pretreated with permethrin are also available.
- Use insect repellent if needed. DEET insect repellent is available as liquids, lotions, and sprays. Apply DEET insect repellent on your exposed skin. Choose the concentration of DEET insect repellent depending on the hours of protection you need. Higher concentration of DEET, gives you longer protection.
- Keep the unscreened windows and doors closed to prevent mosquitoes from entering your house.
- Aedes aegypti mosquito that transmits chikungunya infection usually lives indoor and is found in dark, cool places like in closets, under beds, behind curtains, and in bathrooms. Use flying-insect spray to kill mosquitoes in these areas.
Measures to prevent mosquito breeding
- Remove the place where the Aedes mosquitoes lives and breeds (i.e. their habitat which includes a wide variety of manmade containers commonly found around human dwellings). Remove collected water from places such as containers, birdbaths, discarded tires, pots etc.
- Regularly change the water in coolers, pools, rain barrels, and potted plant trays to eradicate potential mosquito habitats.
Public education on risk of transmission to others and the ways to minimize the risk of transmission are required. Besides this appropriate measures have to be taken by public health authorities to control chikungunya infection.
It is important to control vector-patient contact. The Aedes mosquito bites at daytime mostly in the morning and late afternoon.
- At home patient and infants should use bed-nets, preferably permethrin-impregnated nets while resting
- Use insecticide sprays in dark, cool places like in closets, under beds, behind curtains, and in bathrooms. Aedes aegypti mosquito is found in these places. Alternatives to spray include coils , mats, vapourizers, etc
- Have wire-mesh/nets on doors and windows
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