onsoon rains are going to pick up momentum. Grown-up boys are accustomed to the Mumbai type of monsoon rains but the tiny tots and the new entrant will have to face music initially. It is time to follow some simple precaution for an illness-free monsoon for children.
BMC conducted a survey, where we found samples of contaminated water and ice sold by hawkers. These should be avoided to prevent gastroenteritis and hepatitis. Diet control is also important, particularly for children, who are more vulnerable. Homes that have plants in pots of water need to be careful. While the number of malaria cases among construction workers has come under control through measures such as fogging operations, water in pots at residences remains a concern. It is time to be cautious.
Child protection during monsoon season is of utmost importance. Contamination of drinking water and walking through waterlogged roads are among the two main health concerns for Mumbaikars this monsoon. Children going through the motions during the monsoon season suffer in one way or other. Water contamination leads to Dengue, Malaria and Cholera and other water-bound diseases that make children sick most of the time. It all starts from common cold leading to cough and viral type of fever hitting all over the metro city.
Children playing outside should maintain cleanliness. Dettol in a promotional event gave a sample soap as the hand wash in the Malls outside Mumbai. Hand cleaning before taking food lead to cleanliness and does not allow the bacteria to enter your body through the hand. Again cleaning of legs after playing in rainwater can prevent diseases like Leptospirosis cause innumerable health problems. Leptospirosis or rat fever is a potentially serious bacterial infection that can affect many parts of the body. It is caused by Leptospira interrogans, a corkscrew-shaped bacterium. Since rats are the most common source of human infection by the bacteria, the disease is also called rat fever. Rainwater is infected by the rats.
Avoiding consumption of roadside food and drinks, particularly those mixed with ice, and staying alert to fevers after walking on flooded roads is a precaution. Doctors also warned against self-medication. The monsoon hit Mumbai from this weekend and may cause initial hiccups. Civic health officials say they are prepared, adding people should take precautions. Given that schools have reopened only a few days before the monsoon, parents need to be cautious and ensure their child does not pick food from the roadside stalls.
Both raincoat and umbrella will save the children from the initial rains. But it is to avoid heavy to very heavy rains as umbrellas will be blown away in wind and rainwater. Children, particularly those with heart and lung diseases, need to be careful and should see a doctor in the event of fever. Hand hygiene is the most effective way to prevent infections. Keep a hand sanitiser with you, and use it frequently. Avoid self-medicating, and use of over-the-counter antibiotics to treat viral infections.
Time-tested methods show taking a shower when caught in the rain will protect you from infections. Increase the intake of hot drinks such as milk, ginger tea or vegetable soup. This will help children avoid cold, or save them from any infection that can occur because of the sudden change in body temperature. Doctors are mainly concerned about Leptospirosis as there had been many cases last year. It is time to take simple precautions from illness during monsoon. ‘Prevention better than cure’ is true.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)