Mumbai: The monsoon-related ailments are hitting Mumbaikars even as Covid-19 is still very much around. The sudden drop in temperature, higher humidity, and stagnant water after the rains and in the homes have all contributed to air, water, and mosquito-borne illnesses. “Dengue, malaria, and chikungunya are associated with high fever, severe body pains, rashes, vomiting, and abdominal pain. Treatment is adequate fluid intake and rest. Severe symptoms such as abdominal pain, persistent vomiting, lethargy, and bleeding that occur in dengue require immediate medical attention,” said Dr Prashant Moralwar, consultant paediatrician at Motherhood Hospital in Kharghar.
Dr Moralkar said food and water-borne diseases are witnessed in children due to increased breeding of houseflies during monsoons, causing contamination of water and food items. Typhoid, hepatitis, diarrhoea, dysentery, and worm infestations occur due to contaminated food and water. “Antibiotics are given to treat typhoid and dysentery along with a healthy diet and hydration. These food and water-borne diseases also cause dehydration in infants and toddlers. Hence ORS and other liquids like dal water, buttermilk can be advised,” he said.
Dr Suresh Birajdar, consultant, paediatrics and neonatology, Motherhood Hospital, said flu was also an “epidemic” and if children fail to take the jab to protect against it, they might end up getting hospitalised. “The flu shot is a preventive measure against viral infection and reduces the risk of developing respiratory problems such as pneumonia, which aggravates one’s risk of getting infected with Covid-19. Moreover, changing weather brings in several respiratory issues among children,” he said.
“The flu can raise the chances of children suffering from pneumonia and even mortality. Every year influenza virus mutates, and the body’s immunity to influenza either through natural infection or vaccination goes down over time. It is the need of the hour to get the flu shot every year. Flu vaccines can help a person develop antibodies about two weeks after taking the vaccine,” Dr Birajdar said.
Common colds and flu caused by viruses are accompanied by fatigue, fever, and body ache, and generally last for around a week. A child who is down with flu should be given warm foods such as soup, and should rest enough. He/she should not come in close contact with other children. Washing hands frequently and covering the mouth and nose while coughing or sneezing is the need of the hour. Allergies and asthmatic conditions trigger in children due to increased humidity, fungus growth, and pollen in the environment, doctors cautioned.