Symptoms: headache following by fever and profuse perspiration, then chills, then a spiking fever. The symptoms subside then recur, usually in the evenings. Other symptoms are diarrhea and abdominal pains. In general, a person with malaria feels weak and ill. When you recognize your symptoms as malaria, treat it immediately. If you cannot get to a doctor, have a doctor brought to you. Certain types of malaria are fatal, but in India, malaria seldom causes death. The disease develops at least five to ten days after the carrier mosquito bites one. It may take up to a year for symptoms to develop, especially if anti-malaria drugs have been taken. Malaria is detected through a blood test. The symptoms will worsen over time if the disease is not treated. Vivax Malaria, the most common strain of malaria in India, is rarely fatal, but if left untreated, the attacks will become more frequent and will weaken your overall health. Malaria is caused by a bite from the female anopheles mosquito, which usually bites at night. Between 200 and 300 million people get malaria a year worldwide. Many doctors say that Paludrine once a day and Maloprim once a week are good preventatives. No pills are entirely effective and many types often cause severe side effects. Chloroquine and Doxcycline are common malaria medications. They too can have serious side effects if used improperly, so follow the directions. I have seen people who have taken malaria medicine improperly end up in the hospital because of the medicine, not the malaria. Chloroquine is also used to prevent malaria, but there is now a strain of malaria resistant to this drug.
Avoiding Mosquito Bites
The best way to avoid malaria is to avoid the cause, the mosquitoes. Mosquitoes usually begin to bite at dusk. Avoid them by covering your skin and using insect repellent. Also, wear light-colored clothing. Mosquitoes are attracted to scented perfumes. Aerosols are the best way to put repellent on your clothes. Spraying your clothing helps to avoid mosquitoes biting through the cloth. Sleeping under a mosquito net is good protection during sleep. Mosquito repellent (permethrin) should be sprayed on the mosquito net.