Which Is The Difference Between Zika And Dengue?
If there is one thing that Dengue and Zika have in common, then it is the fact that they are both mosquito borne viruses spread especially by the Aedes Aegypti mosquito. Even though dengue is a very common and known disease, Zika seems to have hit the headlines thanks to the recent outbreaks in the different parts of the world. It is not a new virus, but it in the past didn’t seem to wreak as much havoc as it is now in terms of transmissions. What makes the situation worse is that the mosquito Aedes Aegypti is an aggressive daytime bitter making it harder for people to protect themselves from the infectious bites.
The other similarity between the two is that they both do not have any vaccine or medicine. Only the symptoms can be treated hence the infected get medicines to deal with the pain and fever. Rest and drinking plenty of fluids make part of the treatment that the infected get for quicker recovery from the viral diseases. But are there are differences between Dengue and Zika?
Both Zika and Dengue have similar symptoms which include conjunctivitis, muscle and joint pain, rashes, headaches and fever. The difference is that Zika symptoms last for a few days or weeks and then they subside, but as for dengue the fever can last for weeks and can lead to bleeding and bruising. The dengue hemorrhagic fever can be dangerous and even fatal, hence medical attention is needed. Zika infected people rarely get very sick to go to hospital and are unlikely to die, but those infected with dengue usually needs hospital care because of the severity of persistent symptoms.
Zika and dengue are known to be transmitted by mosquitos especially the Aedes Aegypti species. It is for this reason that mosquito reduction and protection from the bites are the major ways of protecting yourself from the diseases. However, evidence has emerged that the Zika virus can actually be transmitted through sex and blood transfusion. This is an element that has also created some difference between the two even though the sexual transmissions are still on the low. Apart from exercising mosquito related preventions, people need to exercise safer sex to reduce Zika infections.
Microcephaly is the known possible Zika complication, but Dengue does not lead to such. There also seems to be a close link between Zika virus and Guillain-Barre syndrome, but this hasn’t been the case with Dengue. It means, therefore that Zika infections can have long term implications, especially for unborn babies, hence pregnant women need to be extra careful especially when living in affected areas or when travelling.
By taking the right measures you could manage to control Dengue and Zika. The best control measure is to ensure that you do not create any favorable conditions for the mosquitos to thrive in. Other measures such as using repellents that have DEET and other effective chemical and using screens for your doors and windows can go a long way in keeping infections at bay.