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Zika Outbreak: What you need to know


The sudden outbreak of Zika Virus has raised an epidemic alarm throughout the world. Popularly known for causing birth deformities in new-borns, Zika affects humans just like any other virus. India needs to be extremely cautious since Zika is spread through the same Aedes Aegypti mosquito that’s responsible for Dengue and Chikungunya. The virus has been infamous for causing birth defects in new born babies but Zika Virus effects on adults is completely different.

Zika Virus Symptoms in adults

Zika Virus symptoms are almost similar to Dengue and Chikungunya and may include:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Skin rashes
  • Muscle and joint pain
  • Conjunctivitis (Red eyes)

Treating Zika symptoms

  • Give yourself plenty of rest.
  • Keep yourself hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids.
  • Take symptomatic medicines for pain and fever.
  • Don’t take any non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

What doctors say?

The Indian Medial Association has advised pregnant women not to travel to Latin America, Brazil and Caribbean as a precaution. There hasn’t been any Zika Virus case in India yet, but we need to take extra care. The key pointer would be to avoid contact with any kind of mosquitos. There’s no available drug or vaccine for the disease and treatment is often symptomatic. The good news is that the virus is hardly fatal and most of the cases don’t require hospitalization.

The Aedes Aegypti only breeds in clean water, hence a special care has to be taken to clean such spots. Mosquito repellents and nets should be used in houses to eliminate mosquitos. Cover your body to avoid contact with the mosquito and if dengue like symptoms appear, consult with a doctor immediately.

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