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Updated: April 2, 2014 01:11 IST

Stay cool this summer

M. Sai Gopal
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Ice consumed from roadside juice stalls is not fit for consumption, warn water analysts. Doctors also advise parents to take special care of children, because they are susceptible to viral ailments like chicken pox and measles.

Dreaded months of summer are back in Hyderabad. Soaring mercury levels and tendency to compromise and cut corners while consuming treated drinking water is sure to cause distress and throw spanner into well laid out plans during summer holidays with family.

The most common ailments to watch out for are water-borne ailments like typhoid, jaundice and gastroenteritis.

Doctors also advise parents to take special care of children, because they are susceptible to viral ailments like chicken pox and measles.

Cases of chicken pox and measles among children have started to spike in twin cities while other ailments, including heat strokes and food poisoning too have started to get reported in large numbers. Every year, in Hyderabad, the Varicella zoster virus (VZV) that causes chicken pox among children (below 11 years), is active between January and May.

“Chicken pox occurs to children with weak immunity levels. There are vaccines for chicken pox but quite often, parents forget to administer booster dose to children. Recent research says that children who had chicken pox could face neurological disorders in future and that’s why vaccines are very vital,” insists Professor, Paediatrics, Gandhi Hospitals, Dr. Vasudeva Murali.

Lack of safe drinking water remains a major source of ailments.

In fact, the ice consumed from roadside juice and fruit stalls is not fit for consumption.

“There are no quality standards and guidelines to manufacture consumable ice. Manufactured ice is meant only to store goods and not for consumption,” warn water analysts from Institute of Preventive Medicine (IPM).

Heat strokes are another common ailment and its symptoms include breathlessness, vomiting, fatigue, headache, muscle cramps, aches, high body temperature and dizziness.

“Marriage season is on in full swing and organisers should take precautions while serving cold water in banquets,” District Medical & Health Officer Dr. Narendrudu advises.

So what happens to our body during heat strokes?

“In extreme heat conditions, body loses its ability to dissipate heat and this increases our body temperatures. Heat strokes are also caused due to dehydration when the body does not sweat quickly and dissipate heat, leading to rise in body temperature,” explains former Superintendent, Gandhi Hospital, Dr. B. Balraju. Doctors also urge citizens to stop venturing out between 12 noon and 4 p.m. when the heat is at its searing best.

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