Dengue fever and dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) are viral diseases transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes, usually Ae. aegypti. The four dengue viruses (DEN-1 through DEN-4) are immunologically related, but do not provide cross-protective immunity against each other. What this means is if you get one, you can still get the other three.
Plain Dengue Fever, while certainly an annoyance, is much like catching a nasty flu virus. The symptoms start about 4-7 days after being bitten, and are characterized by sudden onset of a high fever, severe headache (frontal), and joint and muscle pain. Many people also experience nausea, vomiting, and rash. The rash appears 3–5 days after onset of fever and sometimes spreads from the body to the arms, legs, and face. It is nasty, but rarely fatal.
On the other end, is the Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever (DHF). This version CAN be fatal, so if you are suffering the symptoms described above, see a doctor ASAP, even if you have returned to your home country. Do not ignore these symptoms.
More bad news is that there is no vaccine is available. so there is nothing you can do before you come. However, as of June 2012, a new vaccine is in its phase 3 trial. If all goes well, expect a possible vaccine in 2015.
Even if Dengue is NOT epidemic in Costa Rica and minor outbreaks have been reported in various and secluded regions of Costa Rica you should not ignore this and take precaution to protect yourself while out in areas where there are a lot of mosquitoes. The #1 way, just use a good bug repellent!
Recently we read a Facebook fan post that had a simple,but effected way of helping reduce the mosquitoes population in an home or place you may be staying at.
CARBON DIOXIDE AND MOSQUITOES
Mosquitoes detect carbon dioxide in the air, so the more you breathe, the more likely you are to become a blood meal or you become a host (animals that provide blood). Carbon dioxide clues the mosquitoes in to the presence of a living, breathing, blood-pumping animal nearby. Once they sense it, mosquitoes usually fly in a zigzag pattern through the CO2 plume until they locate the source.
This simple and effective trap only takes a few minutes to build and you can build as many as you like. One of the cool things, this is environmental friendly, natural products, and uses recycled plastic bottles.
What you need is:
- 200 ml (around 3/4s cup) water
- 50 grams (1/4 cup) of brown sugar,
- 1 gram (about a teaspoon) of yeast (yeast bread, found in any supermarket) and a 2-liter plastic bottle.
Steps and How to Make the Trap:
- Cut the plastic bottle (PET type) in half. Storing the neck portion:
- Mix brown sugar with hot water. Let cool. When cold, pour in the bottom half of the bottle.
- Add the yeast. No need to mix. It creates carbon dioxide.
- Place the funnel part, upside down, into the other half of the bottle.
- Wrap the bottle with something black, minus the top, and put in some corner of your house and/or around your yard or porch.
In two weeks you will see the amount of mosquitoes who died inside the bottle. In addition to cleaning their homes, breeding sites of mosquitoes, you can use this method very useful in: Schools, Nurseries, Hospitals, homes, ranches, farms, ranches, nurseries. etc.
Special thanks to Ramon Reyes's for this information for the Mosquito Trap.