Zika is a virus spread by a daytime mosquito. This mosquito is of the Aedes species, and it also spreads such epidemics as dengue fever and the chikungunya virus. As much as this mosquito bites during the day time, it can also spread this virus at night, although this is a bit rare.
How Is the Virus Spread?
- The virus is spread through being bit by an infected Aedes mosquito. When a mosquito bites an infected person, they spread this infection through bites to other healthy people.
- This virus is also spread to unborn children through their infected pregnant mother, or during childbirth. There is no evidence that children can get infected by this virus through breast milk.
- Blood transfusion of infected blood: This has been evidenced mostly in Brazil than in any other area.
- Sexual intercourse: Carriers of the Zika virus can infect healthy people even when the symptoms are not visible yet.
- During the most recent outbreak, there were reports of laboratory exposure outbreak. In this case, studies and investigations are still underway as to how this occurred.
These are the sure ways of getting this virus. Any other method has not been investigated or documented yet.
Zika Signs and Symptoms
Most people who have been infected with the virus exhibit no symptoms whatsoever. Those who have previously been infected are then protected from the virus henceforth. Once you get infected, there is a high chance that you’ll need a doctor’s attention. This virus also rarely kills anyone.
Some of the signs of this virus include the following:
- Joint pain
- Reddish eyes (Conjunctivitis)
- Headaches, and
- Muscle pains
Clearly, these aren’t severe enough symptoms for grown-ups to rush to the hospital, but you ought to go. The reason why you need to check in with your health consultant is that Zika is very risky to a particular group of people.
Zika Risk Group
The group that is most at risk with this virus are the pregnant women. If a pregnant woman happens to pass this virus to her child, then it becomes a detrimental issue. A baby born with the Zika virus is highly likely to develop fetal brain defects.
An example of a fetal brain disorder is microcephaly. Other defects include growth impediments, hearing disorders and eye defects. Areas that are mostly affected by Zika have also reported the rare nervous disorder called Guillain-Bare syndrome.
Zika Prevention and Treatment
Zika is preventable by wearing long-sleeved clothing, sleeping under mosquito nets, using protection or abstinence during intercourse, using insect repellants.
In case you have the virus already, have plenty of sleep, avoid dehydration by taking lots of fluids, and take medication from a consultant specifically.
Do not attempt to self-medicate, as other medication like aspirin aggravate the situation.