Malaria prevention for travelers can be done by applying anti-mosquito repellent as a way to avoid mosquito bites, especially in areas where malaria is common.
Malaria is a contagious and infectious disease that spreads through mosquito bites. People infected with malaria will show symptoms like fever and chills. In Indonesia, the number of malaria sufferers tends to decrease from year to year. However, several provinces in Indonesia still suffer from malaria, especially in eastern Indonesia, such as Papua and West Papua. If you have symptoms of malaria, immediately find a doctor and the doctor will check if you live or have just traveled to an area where there are many cases of malaria. After that, the doctor will do a physical and blood examination. If you’re going to countries with a malaria outbreak, the doctor can prescribe anti-malarial medicine as malaria prevention for travelers.
Malaria is a common disease in tropical and subtropical countries caused by parasites called plasmodium. Humans can get malaria after being bitten by a mosquito that carries malaria parasite in the mosquito’s body. The mosquitoes that transmit this parasite are the female Anopheles. Transmission happen when parasites enter the human body through mosquito bites. The parasite will live in the liver and later will start attacking red blood cells. In most cases, a person with malaria can have a full recovery only if treated appropriately. But if it’s left untreated, this disease can be fatal and cause severe anemia, kidney failure, and even death. Tourists can do some efforts as malaria prevention for travelers before going to high risk locations.
Symptoms of Malaria
Symptoms of malaria will show in about 10-15 days after infection. Symptoms occur in three stages, such as shivering, fever and headaches, then the infected person will feel weak and sweat a lot before body temperature returns to normal. Stages of malaria symptoms can occur depending on the cycle, it can be once in 3 days or once in 4 days. If it’s left unchecked, malaria can cause some serious complications, such as anemia, brain damage, and organ dysfunction. Toddlers and elderly are more likely to experience these conditions. Other symptoms of malaria are as follows:
- Fever and chills
- Muscle pain
- Chest or abdominal pain
Treatment and Malaria Prevention for Travelers
Malaria must be treated immediately to prevent the risk of dangerous complications. Malaria treatment can be done by administering anti-malarial medicine as malaria prevention for travelers. The medicine need to be adjusted according to the type of parasite that causes it, the severity, and the potential place that causes it. There is no vaccination to prevent malaria, doctors can prescribe anti-malarial medicine as malaria prevention for travelers if someone plans to travel or live in a location where there are many cases of malaria. In addition, malaria prevention for travelers can be done by avoiding mosquito bites by installing mosquito nets on the bed while sleeping, wearing socks, long-sleeved shirt and pants, and using a protective cream or spray for mosquito bites. Moreover, malaria prevention for travelers can also be done by avoiding going out when mosquitoes are most active, for example at dawn.
If you or someone you know shows the symptoms of malaria after being bitten by a mosquito, do not hesitate to book a doctor through Medi-Call application or simply contact Medi-Call Hotline at +62 81210783387.