Malaria is a vector-based disease that in consideration is a communicable disease. This means it can be spread though not directly from human to human.
The illness is spread by a female anopheles mosquito. It carries the Plasmodium parasite and bites you. The parasite releases the infection into your bloodstream. However, when the parasites are inside your body, they travel to the liver where they mature. After several days, the parasites enter the bloodstream and begin to infect red blood cells. The parasites continue to infect red blood cells, resulting in symptoms that occur in cycles that last in 2 to 3 days at a time.
Malaria symptoms develop within 10 days to 4 weeks following the infectious bite. However, some malarial parasites enter the body and stay dormant for a long time.
Common symptoms of malaria include:
- Muscle pains
- Profuse sweating
- High fever
- Bloody stool
A doctor will prescribe medicines based on the type of parasite you have. Therefore, it is advisable to seek advice from them.
In some instances, the medicine given may not clear the infection because of the parasite’s resistance to drugs. However, If this occurs, you may need to change your medication or use more than one type of medicine for your treatment.
Furthermore, for pediatric patients, the treatment options are the same as for adults except for the drug dose that is adjusted depending on the patient’s weight.
Types of medicine
The main prevention of malaria is through the destruction of places where mosquitoes live.
The following are some tips;
- Removal of stagnant water from containers and get rid of them. The places where we live should be free from stagnant water.
- Tall grasses and bushes should be cut around the house we live in.
- Disposing litters.
- Spraying of oil on stagnant water.
- Sleeping under mosquito nets – i.e treated mosquito nets.
- Taking anti-malarial drugs.
- Burn mosquito coils and spraying of insecticides.
- Apply mosquito repellant on the body to keep away the mosquitoes.