It’s Raining Monsoon Illnesses - Watch Out For These Diseases!

Soak in the rain and not the illness!

4 min read

It’s a yearly affair. When rains pound the country, bacteria and viruses go into overdrive mode to make us sick and rob the fun of monsoons. And judging by the surge in crowds at hospitals, looks like this year it’s raining water-borne diseases on people.

Read below to find out all about the viruses and bacteria doing the rounds this season


Fever/Flu, Or You’re Just Dying?

Soak in the rain and not the illness!
During rains the temperature dips by at least 10 degrees overnight causing the virus ecosystem to go into a zombie mode, spreading like wildfire from your co-worker’s hands to the coffee machine, from desks to doors, and before you know the whole office calls in sick. (Photo courtesy: Tumblr/GifArt)

Sick and tired of being sick and tired, that’s just everyone around you!

Even if your body aches like it’s breaking into a million pieces and the temperature still doesn’t dip on the third day, I’ve seen enough House to know that it’s probably just viral fever and not Lupus. On a serious note, if it looks like the fever isn’t taking a chill pill, get a blood test done on the third day to be sure you don’t have malaria or dengue without popping in antibiotics on your own.

If you’re one of those whose used up all their sick leaves and will have to call in dead the next time, remember:

1. Use a Hand Sanitizer

It cuts the chain of germs. Each time you touch a communal surface, you pick up 30 to 50% of the germs. Medicated wipes or sanitizers, regularly washing hands with soap, will dramatically cut down your chances of catching an infection.

2. Stay Away From the Office If You’ve Flu Like Symptoms

And if your boss insists on having you at work, just cover your face, don’t touch anything other than your keyboard and dare you shake hands!

3. If You’re Vulnerable, Talk To Your Doctor About Vaccination

If you suffer from an underlying disease, are pregnant or have a little kid who can’t afford another bout of flu, talk to your doctor about getting a shot a month before the infections start. It’s pretty late this time, but next year don’t be too busy preparing for a zombie apocalypse because a flu apocalypse is more likely.

Troubled Waters: Gastro Infections Are Everywhere

Soak in the rain and not the illness!
This ain’t cool! Consult a doc immediately. (Photo courtesy: Tumblr/GifArt)

The sick side of monsoons is pretty peculiar this time. You can call it a blessing because the usual suspects, dengue, malaria and jaundice are in control but bone-breaking viral infections and cases of stomach flu have seen a huge spike.

People with gastroenteritis, that’s diarrhoea and vomiting are crippling. The OPDs are full of patients in all age groups suffering from a stomach infection or the other. Surprisingly there’s no jaundice this time around, but intestinal infections are causing borderline typhoid. 
Dr Hemant Thacker, Senior Physician

What You Can Do:

1. Don’t Eat Out

Reaching out to hot pakodas, samosas and chai during rains is so tempting but it’s not without its share of bounty and bane. So stop right there. And if you really have to eat out, stick with well cooked, hot meals.

2. Foods To Avoid

Mushrooms, golgappas, salads, roadside fresh juice, sherbets and leafy greens - yes, you read that right. All your life your mommy was preaching about the benefits of leafy greens but in monsoons, the dampness and the grime make them the perfect hotspot for germs. So no seafood (unless the fish is fresh), cabbage, palak or methi till the rains subside. (*yippee... happy dance*)

3. Keep A Bottle Of Boiled Drinking Water Handy

And make sure to get your water purifier serviced. Often the water quality in monsoons is so heavily contaminated that it can choke the filters of your purifier which can take a toll on your body.


Raining Typhoid Infections

Soak in the rain and not the illness!
Your body’s digestive system is pretty darn weak during the rainy season making you prone to all kinds of infections. (Photo Courtesy: Tumblr/piratstudenterna)

Typhoid is a bacterial disease, usually caused by contaminated water. It’s pretty easy to spot for a doctor since the symptoms are a mix of viral fever and diarrhoea - so if you have high grade fever with loosies, book yourself a medical appointment ASAP.

It’s easily curable but the disease leaves your liver weak for months. So bear in mind:

1. Swimming Pools Are All Fun and Games Till You Get an Infection

Public pools can be disgustingly dirty, don’t get me started on the feces and e coli. You get the drift? Keep away during the rains.

2. Shared Meals

Sharing is not caring in the rains. Eat nutritious, well balanced home cooked meals which are light on the tummy and kick seasonal diseases in their ass!

3. Keep Your Immunity High

Increase the intake of vitamin C to up your chances of naturally warding off diseases or just don’t talk to anyone who is (infectiously) sick.

That’s it. Keep safe and continue the rain dance ritual.

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