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Preventing A Killer Disease As World Celebrates Malaria Day

by Abbey Lily

Preventing A Killer Disease As World Celebrates Malaria Day

Preventing A Killer Disease As World Celebrates Malaria Day

Preventing A Killer Disease As World Celebrates Malaria Day

…6.8 million deaths averted worldwide

According to the latest WHO estimates, released in December 2016, there were 212 million cases of malaria in 2015 and 429 000 deaths. Between 2010 and 2015, malaria incidence among populations at risk fell by 21% globally; during the same period, malaria mortality rates among populations at risk decreased by 29%. An estimated 6.8 million malaria deaths have been averted globally since 2001.

Sub-Saharan Africa, Nigeria inclusive continues to carry a disproportionately high share of the global malaria burden. In 2016, the region was home to 90% of malaria cases and 92% of malaria deaths.

Malaria is mostly transmitted through the bites of female Anopheles mosquitoes.

There are more than 400 different species of Anopheles mosquito; around 30 are malaria vectors of major importance. All of the important vector species bite between dusk and dawn. The intensity of transmission depends on factors related to the parasite, the vector, the human host, and the environment.

Prevention

WHO recommends protection for all people at risk of malaria with effective malaria vector control. Two forms of vector control – insecticide-treated mosquito nets and indoor residual spraying – are effective in a wide range of circumstances.

Antimalarial drugs

Antimalarial medicines can also be used to prevent malaria. For travelers, malaria can be prevented through chemoprophylaxis, which suppresses the blood stage of malaria infections, thereby preventing malaria disease.

For pregnant women living in moderate-to-high transmission areas, WHO recommends intermittent preventive treatment with sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine, at each scheduled antenatal visit after the first trimester. Similarly, for infants living in high-transmission areas of Africa, 3 doses of intermittent preventive treatment with sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine are recommended, delivered alongside routine vaccinations.

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Other preventive measures are:

Use mosquito repellents and wear long sleeve dress when you are outside.

Sleep under bed net especially treated nets. This will help prevent mosquito bite and it is very effective

Try as much as possible to avoid mosquito bite

Wear light coloured clothes and not dark ones because dark colours naturally attract mosquitoes

Make sure windows and door nets have no hole

If you know you are at higher risk of contracting malaria, like pregnant women, the elderly or very young children, avoid areas where malaria and mosquitoes are present

The most important preventive measure against malaria is to eat healthy meals (such as fruits and vegetables), stay away from anxiety, stress and be happy

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Photo Credit: Google

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