If you are currently pregnant and living at Serangoon North Avenue 1, please be very alert.
According to the National Environmental Agency (NEA) three cases of locally transmitted Zika virus infections have been confirmed in this area, all three being residents.
The cluster was reported just yesterday (26 July), and the NEA has “started vector control operations and outreach efforts at the cluster area.”
These include detecting and destroying any potential mosquito breeding grounds.
Clear your home and surroundings of potential mosquito breeding grounds.
If you are a resident of this area, please remain vigilant about potential mosquito breeding sites around you, including (but not limited to) emptying containers that could collect water such as vases, flower pot water collectors and unused toilets.
Click this link for tips on how to avoid creating mosquito breeding grounds.
The NEA has cautioned that “there could still be asymptomatic or mild, undiagnosed cases which might result in further transmission of the virus if there are mosquitoes in the vicinity.”
Earlier, in June this year, two locally transmitted Zika cases were reported at Kensington Park Drive and another two cases of Zika were confirmed at Parry Avenue, says Channel NewsAsia.
Both these areas are located at the Serangoon Garden area.
Use a repellent that has been approved by your doctor.
Why do mosquitoes like biting pregnant women?
The Zika virus may affect a foetus’s brain development, which is why pregnant women are asked to be extra cautious.
Unfortunately, mosquitoes love pregnant women for two reasons, according to a British Medical Journal article:
- Pregnant women exhale more carbon dioxide than non-pregnant women, and mosquitoes are attracted to exhaled carbon dioxide.
- A pregnant woman’s tummy is 0.7°C hotter that the rest of their bodies. Mosquitoes sense this, and use it as a cue to land and bite.
Safety tips for pregnant mums
- Use mosquito repellent on all all exposed areas of your body, especially when going out of the house, and during dawn and dusk. Check with your doctor on a safe brand to use in pregnancy. Carry a bottle of it in your bag when heading out, and reapply when needed.
- Mosquitoes are attracted to dark clothing, so wear light clothing always.
- Choose loose long-sleeved tops and pants in light-coloured cotton or linen materials.
- The Zika virus can survive for longer in semen than other body fluids, so consider avoiding sex until the threat passes to avoid infection. Or insist that your partner wears a condom.
- Close all windows and doors in your bedroom at night. Use the air-conditioner or fan, and sleep under a mosquito net if possible. Lazada has this option for you.
Stay safe, pregnant mummies!
For latest Zika virus related updates, please click this NEA link
Reference: Channel NewsAsia