Heat Related Diseases: Hot Season is when Most diseases Strive -Experts
Zainab Tanimu –Kaduna, NIGERIA
Diseases like Malaria fever, chicken pox and meningitis strive more during hot season.
The Nigerian medical Doctors, climatologists and environmental experts disclosed this during a sensitization program organized to sensitize the people on cautions to be taken during the heat period.
The sensitization program which cuts across the nation had opened up to the public measures to be taken to avoid all tendencies that could lead to spread of diseases because it is the season when diseases usually multiply.
The medical Doctor of Kagoro Shehaan Medical clinic ,Dr Abubakar Usman yalwa while educating the general public on the various preventive measures against such diseases like Malaria fever, Cholera, meningitis and chicken pox said, as environment warms-up, temperature rises, so also does the body tends to warm-up. He explained.
The body’s internal “thermostat” maintains a constant inner body temperature by pumping more blood to the skin and increasing sweat production. The body he said increases the rate of heat loss to balance the heat burden.
In a very hot environment, the rate of “heat gain” is more than the rate of “heat loss” and the body temperature begins to rise. A rise in the body temperature results in heat illnesses. He said.
During a season like this, he added, they usually receive several reports of outbreak of diseases and disasters because almost all the diseases round the world ‘like’ hot season because it enables them to spread within a short period of time.
“This is the season when diseases usually multiply due to the nature of the season, hence the need to rise up together and fight.”
Abubakar pointed out that the fear of outbreak of deadly diseases associated with heat related illnesses most especially during hot season is the reason why Nigerian doctors, climatologists and environmental experts deemed it necessary to embark on a Campaign to raise the awareness of the general public against such deadly diseases that have claimed the lives of many Nigerians.
“Hot season is the best season for most diseases like malaria fever, chicken pox and meningitis to strive. It is also the season where you find notorious flies disturbing human lives and plants and also a season where many hidden sicknesses do usually manifest as a result of the heat temperature.”
All hands he said therefore must be on deck during this period while calling on the Ministry of Health, all relevant stakeholders and humanitarian organizations like NEMA,SEMA ,RED CROSS and agencies such as the environmental sanitation and the Civil societies organizations to help fight the spread of the diseases.
Doctor Abubakar also called on both the state and federal government to as a matter of urgency start an aggressive awareness campaign on the dangers of sleeping in an unventilated room, stressing that it is dangerous to sleep in a room without cross ventilation.
In his contribution, a medical and environmental expert from school of health science Makarfi kaduna state , comrade Nuruddeen Bello said,
“As climate change continues to have a negative impact on Africa, so also the region may likely have high-risk transmission of malaria and other emergencies diseases which may affect human and his environment including the aquatic animals. The devastating effects of climate change are already here with us in Nigeria.” He said.
Nigerian should use the following in reducing the hot temperature. He suggested the setting up of fans in living areas and bedrooms. Check the air-conditioning units to ensure its efficiency. Make sure that the cool function is clearly marked on the remote control.
The organization had appealed to teachers to avoid over crowdedness of pupils in classes to avert the outbreak of infectious diseases during the season. They should always make it a point of duty that pupils open up their windows for fresh air while in class.
Parents are advised to be up and doing at this period to ensure that there is free flow of air in the home by opening up all the windows, setting up of fans in the rooms and where there are air conditioners, ascertain that they function effectively. They should also make sure that their children sleep under mosquito nets.
Religious leaders, temple masters should educate their followers on the importance of keeping the environment clean for, “cleanliness is said to be next to Godliness”.
Meanwhile African climate reporters has released a press statement urging Nigerians and African countries to educate rural dwellers on the importance of cleaning the environment while urging citizens to be drinking plenty of water during the hot season.