Dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) is one of the causes of child mortality which is quite high in some Asian countries, including Indonesia. This disease is carried by the virus through female mosquitoes from Aedes aegypti.
DHF is classified as mild in children, often in the form of fever without following certain symptoms. If symptoms appear, it generally occurs around 4-7 days after being bitten by a mosquito that causes dengue fever.
Symptoms of DHF in Children
In more severe cases of DHF, children can experience symptoms that generally include:
- High fever up to 40 degrees Celsius
- Pain in the back of the eye
- Pain in bones, muscles, and joints
- Nausea and vomiting
- Swelling of the gland.
In addition, children can experience red spots on several parts of the body. Symptoms generally last for 7 days.
However, in certain situations, symptoms can worsen so that it triggers dengue shock syndrome. This condition can be life threatening, due to leakage of blood vessels and decreased platelet count. If not treated immediately, can cause bleeding from the gums and nose, bleeding under the skin, difficulty breathing, weakness, constant vomiting, cold sweat and severe pain in the abdomen.
What is the right handling?
Immediately take it to the doctor if your child experiences some of the symptoms of DHF above. The doctor will do a blood test to confirm the diagnosis.
Actually there is no specific treatment for DHF, but doctors can help reduce the severity of symptoms and improve the immune system to fight the virus, namely:
- If the doctor prescribes the drug paracetamol to reduce fever, make sure the child takes it. In addition, you can use a compress on the forehead to reduce fever.
- Make sure the child gets enough rest.
- Give plenty of fluids to children to prevent dehydration.
- Give foods that are rich in nutrients.
Avoid giving pain relievers such as aspirin and ibuprofen because it can affect platelet levels in the blood and increase the risk of bleeding.
It is not uncommon for children affected by DHF to be hospitalized. As a step to replace fluids lost due to diarrhea, vomiting or loss of appetite, the doctor will give fluids through an IV. In the case of children who have lost a lot of blood, a blood transfusion is needed.
DHF Vaccine Administration
There is now a vaccine to prevent DHF. Based on research that has been done in several countries, this vaccine can be used. However, many factors are still of concern. As the price of this vaccine that still cannot reach all levels of society. However, the Indonesian Pediatrician Association (IDAI) has included it in the recommendations for a child’s immunization schedule as a preventive measure for DHF.
To prevent dengue fever in children, you can do several ways. Among others, applying anti-mosquito lotion that is safe for use by children, in the morning and evening, to the body that is not covered by clothes. This method can protect children from mosquito bites while on the move, both indoors and outdoors. In addition, you can use insect repellent, clean water reservoirs, install mosquito repellent wire, and use closed clothing to protect from mosquito bites.