Once the fear of flood vanishes, all you need to worry is about the waterborne diseases that follows. A little care in food, drinking water and personal hygiene can keep you safe from monsoon diseases to an extent. Things to note.
Typhoid, cholera, hepatitis, rat fever
Diseases like typhoid, cholera, vomiting, rat fever and diarrhea that spread through contaminated drinking water and food are common during monsoon season. Jaundice, hepatitis A and hepatitis E also spread through contaminated food. Such food could also bring amoebiasis and ascariasis. People who have no wounds on hands and legs are also prone to rat fever. Bacteria in contaminated drinking water can get into human body through thin membranes of mouth and throat.
Use boiled water
Boiling is the simple and pragmatic way to purify water. Within few seconds after water reaches the boiling temperature, bacteria that causes cholera, vomiting and diarrhea are killed. Few minutes after the boiling state, bacteria of amebiasis and typhoid would be killed. However, bacteria that causes jaundice will be killed only when the water continues to boil for a minimum of 5 minutes. Be cautious to keep the boiled water in the same container used for boiling.
Avoid frozen food
Typhoid bacteria can live in ice creams and frozen food for months. Bacteria of cholera also can live for weeks in frozen food. Avoid cold and mouldy food. Keep cooked food in safe and covered containers. Practise eating them hot.
Preventive medicine for flood relief volunteers
People who are engaged in flood relief activities and those who have any contact with contaminated water should take doxycycline tablets, a preventive medicine for rat fever.