One common saying that has always proved true is, “prevention is better than cure.”
Fittingly, that applies to Lassa fever.
Currently, no vaccine protects against Lassa fever. But yes, you heard well, you can prevent it!
When many got the news of the outbreak of Lassa fever;
Their primary concern was how to stay safe.
It is difficult to detect in its early stage.
Because its symptoms do not become evident until one to three weeks after contact.
So, below, read practical tips on how to protect yourself from Lassa fever to help you stay safe.
- 5 Suggestions on How to Protect Yourself from Lassa Fever
- Facts You Should Know About Lassa Fever
- Final Thoughts
5 Suggestions on How to Protect Yourself from Lassa Fever
1. What to do About Food Items
The Lassa virus can be transmitted to humans.
This happens when you eat food items contaminated with waste products from rodents.
- Keep foodstuffs in rodent-proof containers.
- Cook all foods properly
- Rewash plates, utensils, and pots with soap and hot water before use
- Dispose of food/fruits that have been eaten by rats; do not be tempted to cut the part away and eat.
- Wash fruits thoroughly before you eat
- Avoid drying food in open places.
- Do not keep tomatoes, onions, pepper, or other cooking ingredients on the floor.
2. What Laboratory Transmissions Means
Contact with blood, urine, or saliva of an infected person can transmit Lassa fever to an uninfected person.
Are you wondering how to protect yourself from Lassa fever via laboratory transmissions?
Here are quick tips!
- If you need to carry out a medical test, do so only in hospitals with a reputation for adequate infection prevention measures.
- Wash hands with soap and running water after visiting any hospital.
3. You need to Worry About Home Contact
Even at the comfort of your home, you are at risk of the virus.
No, this is not to scare you; you can limit the possibility.
- Use traps or other means to prevent the stay of rats in your house.
- Fill all holes in the house to prevent the entry of rodents.
- Block all possible rat hideouts.
- Regularly clean your home and surroundings.
- Make regular handwashing a habit.
Also Read on How to Ensure Safety at Home: 11 Excellent Tips
4. Physical Contact Matters too
As with many other diseases, direct contact with an infected person can also transfer the Lassa virus.
- Avoid touching rats with bare hands.
- Avoid person-to-person contact with someone infected.
- Wash hands with soap and running water after visiting a sick person.
- Limit hug and handshake.
- Bathe with soap and hot or warm water each night before bed
If it’s not your custom to bathe every night, insert it in your to-do-list.
That will give you the drive. Then, remember, prevention is better than cure.
5. What Can be Done about Household Items
Contaminated items can be a carrier.
These are bedsheets, clothes, eating utensils, and papers.
- Do not store bed sheets or clothes in places where they are at risk of being walked on by rats.
- Avoid buying roadside snacks in newspapers; take a clean container along if you must buy them.
- Washcloth items before use if they have been stored for a long time.
- Wash eating utensils before use.
In case of any suspicion of the virus, avoid self-medication.
Visiting a hospital for confirmation is the best thing.
You either get rest of mind or increased chances of survival through early treatment.
If you apply these, you can be sure of preventing yourself from Lassa Fever.
But before you go, quickly educate yourself with these facts about Lassa fever.
There are myths about Lassa fever; thus, you can be in the know with these listed facts.
Facts You Should Know About Lassa Fever
What do facts about Lassa fever have to do with how to protect yourself from Lassa fever?
It keeps you off unnecessary panic and presents you with the right information.
- Lassa fever was identified in 1969, although it’s possible that the first occurrences were in the 1950s.
- It belongs to a group of hemorrhagic fevers caused by highly infectious viruses.
- It is native to West African countries, including Nigeria, Ghana, and Liberia.
- The virus shows no symptoms in most cases. It can result in dysfunction in organs in some cases.
- Lassa fever shows symptoms gradually, starting with fever and tiredness and, in some severe cases, facial swelling and bleeding, amongst others.
- Deafness, alopecia, and gait disturbance are common cases among patients who survive this deadly plague.
- This fever can cause death within 14 days of contact, especially in pregnant women.
- The virus is transmitted to humans through contact with contaminated food or household items.
- It can also be transmitted from person to person or via laboratory transmissions.
- Age and gender are not criteria for contracting the disease, although those in rural communities and health workers are at higher risk.
- Treatment at an early stage improves the chances of surviving the disease.
The Lassa virus causes Lassa fever.
As discussed, they can be transmitted by exposure to waste products of infected Mastomys rats.
With such easy transmission and less apparent symptoms;
It is critical to consider protecting yourself from Lassa fever.
With these tips on how to protect yourself from Lassa fever, what’s next?
Good community and personal hygiene will go a long way in helping you keep free from this deadly plague.
While we all pray for good health, it is crucial to take action to stay healthy.
Ensure to apply the tips discussed above; good health to you! I repeat, good health to you!