Infections and disorders are more common during the monsoon season, primarily due to the weather change, increased humidity, waterlogging, mosquito breeding and so on. Infections transmitted by water and the air during the monsoon commonly manifest as diarrhoea, dengue fever, typhoid and viral fevers.
TYPES OF SEASONAL GASTRIC INFECTION
Acute gastroenteritis is a common problem during the monsoon. This is because excessive rainfall has a negative impact on water quality. The most common complaints we receive are abdominal pain, low grade fever, watery stools and vomitting. These symptoms are more common in children and the elderly. Furthermore, due to poor hygiene and eating habits, especially during the monsoon, people are prone to gastroenteritis.
The second most common problem that people face during the monsoon season is viral hepatitis, which is caused by faecal oral contamination. Faecal oral contamination or faecal oral disease transmission occurs because of inadequate sanitation, poor hygiene practices, drinking untreated water, and other factors, which can result in high grade fever, a high level of jaundice and the onset of hepatitis A and hepatitis E virus. We use symptomatic treatment to manage conditions such as fever, vomiting, and jaundice in various patients.
There are gastrointestinal diseases that are caused by micro-organisms such as viruses, bacteria, and parasites. They are classified as acute or chronic enteric diseases. Chronic enteric disease, also known as inflammatory bowel disease, is a group of conditions characterised by chronic inflammation of the digestive tract. Chronic enteric disease symptoms last for several months to a year, whereas acute gastroenteritis symptoms last for three to five days.
The symptoms are similar, such as abdominal pain, loose motions, and blood in the stool. Often patients suffering from the same require a colonoscopy examination. Once diagnosed, it is easier to understand the type and treat accordingly.
There are some enteric diseases that occur in the upper GI tract, such as celiac disease, which causes anaemia and loose motions. To diagnose the condition, an endoscopy is performed, and such patients require long-term antibiotics to recover.
HOW YOU CAN PREVENT DISEASES
Following are some guidelines to prevent gastrointestinal problems during the monsoon:
1. Boil or use purified water for cooking and drinking.
2. Maintain hygiene and keep the surroundings clean at all times as moisture holds microbes.
3. Don’t leave the food uncovered and outside for a longer period.
4. Wash hands regularly with soap before and after having the meal.
5. Steer clear of fast food, especially during the rainy season. First, most of these are half cooked and prepared on re-heated oil. And for street foods like chaats and paani puri, the water could be contaminated and carry various infection-causing microbes.
6. Eat meals on time.
7. Avoid eating raw, junk and unhygienic food.
8. Drink water from purified sources only.
9. Consume light, home-cooked hot meals in moderation.
10. Include probiotics in your diet like curd and buttermilk. Also have ginger tea.