Dr.Vimala Kumari, MBBS, MD(Obstetrics & Gynecology), DRME, ISOM (MUNICH), Ankura Hospital for women & children
It’s that time of the year again when the monsoon arrives, bringing much needed respite from the hot summers. However, the rainy season demands extra care for good health, especially amongst pregnant women and children, who are both sensitive to unwanted infections during this time says Dr.Vimala Kumari, MBBS, MD(Obstetrics & Gynecology), DRME, ISOM (MUNICH), Consultant Obstetrics & gynaecologist at Ankura Hospital for women & children
With rain, come mosquitoes. Mosquitoes are responsible for dangerous diseases such as dengue and malaria. The mandatory precaution to be taken to prevent breeding of such mosquitoes is prevention of any kind of water logging in and around the house. The surroundings, including the balcony need to be kept spic and span. All precautions like usage of mosquito net, mosquito repellents and wearing clothes with full sleeves is important for both a pregnant woman and a child to prevent mosquito bites.
Infections due to contaminated food and water is also common in monsoons. For the prevention of infections like typhoid and cholera care should be taken to eat freshly cooked food and have filtered water. While going out carrying a small box of snacks should be preferred over eating street food, especially the one soaked in oil. Pregnant women are recommended to drink plenty of water even during monsoon, to prevent headaches, nausea and fainting. Green and leafy vegetables though highly recommended at other times can harbour insects during this season and should be consumed with utmost caution.
During these times, pregnant women & kids with inherent health conditions like allergies, deviated nasal septum etc are more prone to nasal block, sore throat, sinusitis and asthma attacks. Since the air has more moisture, wearing clothes which are airy and dry is recommended to avoid fungal infections. Cotton clothes should be preferred. For babies diapers should be avoided to prevent diaper rash and the little clothes are recommended to be ironed and kept to keep them free of any residual moisture.
Keeping one’s hygiene up to the mark is essential during monsoon season. As a part of this hand hygiene should be followed perfectly by washing one’s hands frequently and by frequently using hand sanitiser. Since hands are a direct gateway of germs in the body this prevents infections.
Along with the above, maintaining a healthy diet with a balance of vitamins, minerals and proteins for a pregnant woman is recommended to keep her immunity boosted. Children on the other hand should be supervised for the time they spend outdoors and no matter how tempting the rain be, both should avoid getting drenched in the rain to avoid flu.
It is prudent to vaccinate all kids for Typhoid, Cholera, Rota virus, Hepatitis A and Influenza. Influenza vaccine is safe in pregnancy and ideally offered to all pregnant women to prevent severe illness as high grade fevers, respiratory distress can have deleterious effects on both mother and fetus.
These little sustainable measures and precautions go a long way to protect your loved ones from big troubles, and enjoy the rains. The mantra is simple: Clean Habits, Clean Food, Clean Water & Clean Surroundings. Happy monsoons!
MBBS, MD(Obstetrics & Gynecology), DRME, ISOM (MUNICH)
Consultant Obstetrics & gynaecologist
Ankura Hospital for women & children