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Malaria is Prevention is Manageable

January 26, 2010 - 10:11 -- John Adams

Few basics:
1. Close doors and windows once it is around 6.00pm. This keeps out the mosquitoes.

2. Clear bushes and other sorts of vegetation around your house. They breed in them.

3. If you have any unused container like a pot or jerrycan, ensure it is closed or not in the open, for once water collects in it, they easily breed.

4. If you lucky enough, kindly stay in your nets while having your night's rest.

5. If you don't have a net yet, ensure your body is fully covered while you rest.

6. Occasionally if not frequently, try to use the anti-mosquito sprays to keep them damn insects out of your house.

7. Leave no stagnant water like puddles or ponds near your sleeping area.

Comments

Bart G.J. Knols's picture
Submitted by Bart G.J. Knols on

Dear John,

Thanks for your contribution. Some additional points relating to your above:

1) Good point. Anopheline malaria vectors are active from dusk onwards. Keeping them out of the house is useful and provides protection;
2) There is no solid evidence that 'bush clearance' helps in any way to keep malaria mosquitoes at bay. Nor do they breed in these (as you point out they need aquatic habitat);
3) Malaria mosquitoes do not normally breed in containers our flower pots. That's the home of Aedes species that transmit dengue, chikungunya etc. Nevertheless, always good to prevent any mosquito from breeding;
4) Nets have been proven to provide excellent protection against malaria vectors. Make sure the net is impregnated with insecticide;
5) Clothing will provide some protection but is not adequate by itself. Additional protection is recommended;
6) Use of sprays may help but needs to be practiced judiciously;
7) If you can clear water bodies than that's a good thing.

Unfortunately, many of the above methods are outside reach of the rural poor in developing countries (sprays, screening etc). Nets are becoming used more widely as a first line of defence.

Bart

Submitted by Ricardo Ataide on

hi John,

Thanks for your post.

I couldn't help to notice that some of your ideas, though theoretically sound, have some practical issues. Some of them were already mentioned, but others include the fact that malaria is prevalent in countries where heat and humidity are high which means that it's not very pleasant to be inside a hut with doors and windows closed from 6pm till morning... or even to sleep completely dressed up.

I think avoiding mosquito breeding places to be near your house, bed nets, and indoor spraying (for some of the mosquitos) should be the way to go...

Cheers,
Ricardo

Ricardo Ataíde