Best home remedies and tricks to fight off the mosquitoes once and for all

The recent dengue epidemic has caused not only the city but the entire country in a chaotic situation. However as the days pass by, we have to make sure our surroundings are safe and clean. With the help safer steps and tricks, we can protect ourselves from dengue and other flu-like diseases.

Separate your indoor and outdoor plants

One of the common mistakes we often do while decorating our house with plants is we misinterpret the types of indoor and outdoor plants. Plants such as spider plant, rubber fig, devils ivy are indoor plants while verbena, coleus, sweet potato vine are outdoor plants. It is important to water and take care of both plants and clean the surrounding areas properly. Basil, lemon balm, catnip, citrosum, peppermint, rosemary, lavender, and sage are mosquito repelling plants.

DIY your own essential oil spray

Spraying coconut oil on your skin is a natural way if you want to avoid using chemical mosquito repellent creams. With the help of adding rosemary, lavender or tea tree oil can help you reduce stress add moisture to your skin as well.

Burn some incense

Burning incense around your balcony can stop mosquitoes more entering you house. While buying, do remember that some incense can smell more pungent than others. So try to find some which are more soothing and infused with essential oils.

Set out scented candles

Scented candles will not only help you release stress but it also acts as a mosquito repellent. Scented candles are easy to make at home given you have the right ingredients. However, if you want to buy candles infused with essential oils, Newton’s Archive can be your choice.

Try to keep your home clean and organised

A home with clean rooms will help the insects and mosquitoes from hiding out and building nests from time to time. Bathrooms and kitchens should be emphasized more because they are used frequently and known to be insect-prone areas. Try to keep the bathroom floors dry, the kitchen closets and sink less clotted.

If you catch experience fever for more than two days, it is essential to get a blood test or see a doctor as soon as possible.

Read more: Preventing dengue: Steps that you must take

Dengue in Bangladesh

The IEDCR has records of the number of cases reported since 2014.

16,223 Reported cases in July 2019.

Dengue Reporting from Different Districts in 2019

Dengue has spread to all of Bangladesh’s country’s 64 districts, but Directorate of General Health Services (DGHS) records show more than 86 percent of cases in the country are concentrated in the capital.

Who has been infected?

Both men and women in the age range of 15 to 35 years old. More women than men are dengue patients. View this chart on Tableau.

How are these cases distributed across Dhaka?

There are a greater number of cases reported in Moghbazar, Rampura, Jatrabari , Malibag  than other areas in Dhaka city.

The Aedes aegypti mosquito is the primary vector of dengue. The virus is transmitted to humans through the bites of infected female mosquitoes. The dengue mosquito can breed in just a teaspoon of standing or stagnant water. The Aedes aegypti mosquito lives in urban habitats and breeds mostly in man-made containers. Common breeding areas are discarded tires, barrels, plastic drums and jerry cans. Unlike other mosquitoes Ae. aegypti is a day-time feeder; its peak biting periods are early in the morning and in the evening before dusk.

“Cities like Dhaka, where development is taking place in an unplanned manner, the grounds are ripe for mosquitoes to breed and procreate.”

Bangladeshi urban planner Dr Sarwar Jahan told Al Jazeera.

Cases reported earlier in the year, more recorded cases in 2009 than any year in the last 10 years

Reported cases of Dengue over the years. View chart on Tableau.

Dengue reporting related deaths over the years in Bangladesh. View chart on Tableau.

The incidence of dengue has grown dramatically around the world in recent decades. (WHO, https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/dengue-and-severe-dengue). This is the case for Bangladesh as well.

Usually, the first cases of dengue are reported in late May or June and go away by late August or early September. However, this year, the number of reported cases begin in January and drastically increased in 2019.

Who is the data source?

These data are sourced from the Institute of Epidemiology Disease Control and Research

The present Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) were established in 1976. The institute conducts research on epidemiological and communicable diseases and runs disease control programs mainly in the form of parasitic and entomological containment of vector-borne diseases through the application of epidemiological principles. For example, in recent years, they have conducted tuberculosis prevalence survey, a national serosurvey of dengue exposure in Bangladesh and estimated the incidence of maternal deaths from HEV in Bangladesh. Other activities include surveillance, outbreak investigation and training and workshops on related issues.

PDF versions of these reports are also available for download from this URL (https://www.iedcr.gov.bd/index.php/dengue/dengue-current-situation).

Preventing dengue: Steps that you must take

The dengue situation in the country has reached an epidemic level at this point. Hospitals are getting filled up fast by the affected and many are dying due to lack or delay of treatment.

The situation is only made worse by the unique type of dengue that is being observed this year. The symptoms are not being visible early on, leaving many unsuspicious of their dengue fever.

Here are 6 steps that you can take to make sure you stay safe from the epidemic disease:

  1. If you have water clogging around the room or your house, clear them at least every three days
  2. Do not let water accumulate anywhere, including flower pots, containers, used up cans and other similar objects
  3. Use a mosquito net while sleeping, whether it is night or day. Aedes mosquitos are known for flying around during daytime as much as the night
  4. If possible, consider wearing light coloured full-sleeved tops and pants at all times
  5. Use mosquito repellants on the hands, legs and uncovered area of the face whenever possible
  6. Shut the windows, doors and nets during dawn and dusk

Dengue is deadly, but it is preventable and treatable. If you are caught off guard with a fever, get yourself checked as early as possible. Don’t wait for the symptoms to show up. Stay safe and spread awareness.