Deciphering Dengue Fever: Insights and Implications

Deciphering Dengue Fever: Insights and Implications

Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne viral illness that poses a significant health threat to millions of people worldwide, particularly in tropical and subtropical regions. Often referred to as “breakbone fever” due to the severe joint and muscle pain it causes, Dengue poses a significant public health challenge in many countries. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 390 million dengue infections occur every year. Understanding the symptoms, causes, and prevention strategies for this disease is crucial to reduce its incidence and ensure timely treatment.

What is Dengue Fever?

Dengue fever is caused by the dengue virus (DENV), which has four distinct serotypes (DENV-1, DENV-2, DENV-3, DENV-4). Infection with one serotype provides lifelong immunity against that specific serotype but only short-term protection against the others.

The primary mode of transmission of dengue fever is through the bite of an infected female mosquito, specifically the Aedes aegypti and, to a lesser extent, the Aedes albopictus. When a mosquito bites an infected person and ingests blood containing the virus, it becomes a carrier. After an incubation period, the mosquito can transmit the virus to other humans through its bite.

Symptoms

The incubation period after a bite from an infected mosquito ranges from 3 to 14 days. The symptoms of dengue fever can vary, ranging from mild to severe, and include:

  • High fever

  • Severe headache with pain behind the eyes

  • Joint and muscle pain

  • Nausea and vomiting

  • Fatigue

  • Skin rash, which might appear a few days after the fever starts

  • Mild bleeding, such as nosebleeds or gum bleeding

In severe cases, the disease can progress to Dengue Haemorrhagic Fever (DHF) or Dengue Shock Syndrome (DSS). These conditions can lead to bleeding, blood plasma leakage, and organ impairment, potentially being life-threatening if not treated promptly.

Causes

The direct cause of dengue fever is infection with the dengue virus, typically via the bite of an infected mosquito. There are several factors that contribute to the spread and incidence of dengue, including:

Urbanization

The rapid growth of urban areas provides ample breeding grounds for Aedes mosquitoes. Dense populations facilitate faster transmission. Especially in places with inadequate sanitation, stagnant water sources can become perfect breeding grounds for mosquitoes.

Travel

International travel can introduce the virus into new areas. A person infected with dengue can travel to a non-endemic area, get bitten by a local Aedes mosquito, which then becomes infected and can spread the virus to other people.

Climate Change

Changes in climate can expand the range of the mosquitoes and influence dengue transmission. Rainy seasons can provide more breeding grounds for mosquitoes, while warm temperatures can accelerate the mosquito lifecycle and increase the frequency of blood feeding.

Lack of Public Awareness

In areas where dengue is not endemic or is newly emergent, the general population might not be aware of the risks and preventive measures, leading to increased vulnerability.

Prevention Strategies

Mosquito Control

Reducing mosquito populations is the primary strategy for preventing dengue fever. This can be achieved by eliminating breeding sites (stagnant water), using insecticides, and introducing natural predators like fish that consume mosquito larvae.

Personal Protection 

Mosquito Nets: Sleeping under mosquito nets, especially those treated with insecticides, can help prevent mosquito bites.

Repellents: Applying mosquito repellents on exposed skin. DEET, picaridin, and oil of lemon eucalyptus are commonly recommended repellents.

Clothing: Wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants, socks, and shoes can reduce the risk of mosquito bites. Clothing can also be treated with repellents.

Community Awareness

Engaging communities in vector control measures, awareness campaigns, and educational programs can be very effective. A well-informed public can take proactive steps both individually and collectively.

Travel Precautions

If traveling to areas with dengue outbreaks, taking steps to avoid mosquito bites can reduce the risk of infection.

Vaccination

There is a dengue vaccine (Dengvaxia) that is licensed for use in some countries for specific age groups. While the vaccine does not guarantee complete immunity, it can reduce the risk of severe disease in those who get infected. It is important to note that the vaccine is not recommended for everyone and has some controversies associated with its use. Always consult with healthcare professionals before considering vaccination.

Conclusion

Dengue fever is a global health challenge that requires combined efforts from individuals, communities, and governments to tackle. Recognizing its symptoms can lead to timely medical intervention, and adopting preventive measures can significantly reduce the risk of transmission. As research continues, it is hoped that more effective treatments and prevention strategies will emerge, eventually bringing this debilitating disease under control.

Sustainability at Verminator: Our Eco-Friendly Approach & Practices

Sustainability at Verminator: Our Eco-Friendly Approach & Practices

Sustainability has never been more important than it is today. As it lies at the forefront of the global agenda, Singapore has taken significant strides in addressing this issue. The general direction is to create a greener, healthier, and more resilient future.

With limited land and resources at its disposal, Singapore recognises the importance of sustainability in preserving its natural heritage, enhancing the well-being of its citizens, and ensuring a prosperous and thriving nation. Consequently this is also the reason why every business out there is now focused on embedding sustainability into their brand’s agenda to keep up with the times, as well as the nation’s interests.

Why?

Eco-friendly solutions are the future. Even in the pest management field, both individuals and businesses everywhere acknowledge the importance of preserving the environment all while safeguarding public health. All for the sake of our, as well as the earth’s future, such cautionary measures are taken to ensure that our resources, environment, and quality of life is preserved.

Here at Verminator, we are dedicated to the cause. We believe that as the leading player within the pest management industry, it is up to us to not only lead by example, but to place sustainability at the forefront of all that we do—to protect our beloved communities and the environment we all live in.

Why are Eco-Friendly Practices Important?

Eco-friendly practices in pest management are key for a variety of reasons, of which are:

  • Preserving biodiversity and ecosystems:
    It preserves Singapore’s rich biodiversity and delicate ecosystems. By avoiding the indiscriminate use of chemical pesticides, insects and wildlife are protected, ensuring a balanced and thriving ecosystem.
  • Protecting public health:
    Eco-friendly pest management would effectively safeguard public health by minimising the community’s exposure to harmful chemicals, many of which are carried by traditional pesticides.
  • Reducing environmental pollution:
    Chemical pesticides are known to contaminate soil, water bodies, as well as the air, all of which are causes of environmental pollution. Sustainable pest management focuses on reducing or eliminating the use of such chemicals, significantly lowering pollution levels and their adverse effects.

 

How Does Verminator Practice Sustainability?

As Verminator embeds sustainability into all of operations, our solutions are non-chemical and environmentally-friendly, and we make it a point to secure the relevant accreditations and practice waste management in the work that we do as well.

Let’s delve into it!

Non-Chemical Solutions:

  1. Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (BTI):
    A microbial insecticide made from naturally occuring soil bacteria, it is proven to be highly effective in killing off agents of mosquito larvae and black flies, as well as several species of midges. It is a form of biological control with a highly specific mode of action against a narrow host spectrum, and therefore, does not pose any risk to other non-target organisms or the environment when used correctly and properly.

  1. Traps:
    Traps or cages (such as rodent snap trap, insect light trap, rodent cage and more) operate without pesticides and therefore have little to no effect on the environment on other organisms. Not only do they prevent secondary animal posining, but they are reusable as well.

  1. Xterm Termite Baiting System:
    A non-invasive and environmentally-friendly defence against termite infestations, the active ingredient of chitin synthesis inhibitor is embedded within its catridge system and is employed to disrupt termite molding. With a specific target only on termites, it virtually has zero effect on non-target organisms or the environment.

  1. Pest-proofing:
    The very first line of pest control and management, it is effective, cost-efficient, and does not bring any harm to people nor the environment. In essence, pest-proofing is all about sealing entry points with appropriate materials to prevent entry.

  2. Digital Rodent Monitoring System:
    Integrated with proprietary rodent sensors, it is a 24/7 rodent data collection device. It is built to be flexible and capable of withstanding harsh environments (both indoors and outdoors) and can be used with non-toxic bait, therefore making it reusable.

  3. Heat treatment:
    Steam generators superheat steam to 180°C, eliminating bedbugs and their eggs through thermal shocks. As bedbugs are very sensitive to temperature changes, it focuses on the manipulation of the temperature to high levels and avoids the use of any chemicals whatsoever.

 

Environmentally-Friendly Products:

The Singapore Green Labelling Scheme (SGLS) endorses industrial and consumer products that are produced sustainably. As Singapore’s foremost environmental standard and certification label, it’s there to help the public identify products that meet the set eco-standards.

At Verminator, our us of termiticides, office supplies, and equipment are all certified by as ‘Green Label’, which is the accreditation in line with the environmental standards of authority, which impacts the environment as minimal as possible.

Accreditation:

Even though the accredited certification to ISO 14001 isn’t mandatory, Verminator adopts the standard and acknowledges it as a key to improve our environmental-friendly performance through more efficient use of resources and reduction of waste. The ISO 14001 is an international standard that specifies requirements for an effective environmental management system (EMS).

With our compliance to the ISO 14001, we ensure that we:

  • Improve resource efficiency;
  • Reduce waste;
  • Drive down costs;
  • Provide assurance that environmental impact is being measured;
  • Improve overall environmental impact; and
  • Manage environmental obligations with consistency.

 

Waste Management

In line with Singapore’s Zero Waste Masterplan, we adopt the following practices for a sustainable waste management system, all to push Singapore to be a step closer towards becoming a Zero Waste Nation.

  • Advocate the 3Rs of reduce, reuse, and recycle. We avoid any excessive consumption and promote the efficient use of resources, as well as adopt viable and efficient recycling methods for environmental sustainability.

  • Brief and educate our team on proper waste management, on top of circulating education 3R materials or collaterals to further the cause.

  • Provide reusable items for team use instead of disposable ones.

All in all, we’d like to reiterate our commitment towards sustainability and eco-friendly practices within the pest management industry, because we are truly committed to protecting both our communities and the environment around us—both come hand-in-hand. As we grow, we’ll continue in this direction, encouraging knowledge and innovation to keep bettering ourselves as well as our solutions and practices to serve Singapore’s community to the best of our abilities.

5 Pests Treated by Pest Control in Landed Property

5 Pests Treated by Pest Control in Landed Property

Pest Control in Landed Property usually look for the 5 most common pests in Singapore. As a landed property owner, it’s natural to run into the risk of pest infestations. Pests can come from absolutely anywhere—any unattended nook and cranny in your house that isn’t clean, neat, or sealed could serve as an entry point that’ll flare up an infestation.

Of course, that isn’t what you would want at all. Pests are unhygienic and carriers of a variety of diseases and illnesses that could threaten the health of any tenants, and they could damage your property as well. They’re not a sight that you’d want to catch in your home when all you want to do is rest and relax.

With that said, it’s important that you’re aware of what type of pests you should look out for! No matter how spotless your house is or how many times you spring-clean it, a small mistake could lead any of these pests in and you’re in for a real ride after. It’s best to keep yourself informed on the type of risks that you’re exposed to so that you can make the right decisions if the time should ever come.

What makes your property prone to pest infestations?

In a simplified view of it, pest infestations start whenever there’s an entry point that allows them to sneak in, and resources or conditions that they’re attracted to such as food, water, moisture, or humidity. Any cracks or holes in your property is their way into your home, and whatever clutter left around is where they’ll seek refuge.

Very evidently, the factor that will, more often than not, decide if your house is pest-free, is if you keep it clutter-free, and have proper sanitation and cleanliness. If you’re often forgetting to throw the trash, leaving food all around, and spilling liquids everywhere, you’re breeding grounds for a pest infestation. On top of that, messy areas all round the house allow pests to enter without being identified, giving them the perfect hideaway.

There are other factors that play a role in pest infestations as well, such as property location. If your home is located near old dilapidated buildings, parks, or even stretches of restaurants, you can expect to bump into pests very frequently.

What are the main pests that you should look out and how do you know if its an infestation?

Mosquitoes
Mosquitoes are easy to identify in your homes because usually, they’ll be flying all around you and your premises, making them easy to spot. If you hear high buzzing sounds, see quick movement in your line of eyesight, or are ridden with red bites all over your skin, high chances are that you have a mosquito infestation on hand.

Cockroaches
Cockroaches are every homeowner’s nightmare. Upon finding any live or dead cockroaches around your grounds, its shedded skin, droppings, or egg cases, you’re most likely to have an infestation in your home. Other than that, if your house smells foul with an unpleasant odour, it indicates that cockroaches are in your nearby environment.

Ants
While small, ants can be very frustrating to deal with. It can be apparent when you have ant infestations—if you find ant trails in your house trudging along your counters, floors, or tables, find live or dead ants along the way, or even their main nest, then action must be taken quick to remove it before it gets out of hand.

Subterranean termites
Subterranean termites will severely damage your property, and so, you’ll often find structural damage following termite tapping or hollow wood sounds. They’ll leave mud trails all over or their alates, or discarded wings, and you may even stumble upon termite galleries and mounds. Whatever you decide to do – Do Not Spray Baygon on it.

Rodents
After seeking refuge in your house, you can expect to find sightings of rodents and their burrows, droppings, or themselves in an alive or dead state. What follows is usually unusual smells, gnawing and rub marks and damage along your property, and hearing rodent-like sounds from time to time.

There are other infestations that you could be exposed to and that any good Pest Control in Landed Property service will treat just fine. Anyway these are the main ones that you should always keep an eye out for. The best way to protect yourself and your property is to have regular pest assessments and management, and we have that right here at Verminator. As a matter of fact, we’re offering a one-time free assessment now, so do reach out to us!