Health and fitness

7 Most common rainy-day illnesses

Rain brings temporary mayhem, especially in the streets of Metro Manila: floods, traffic, and a slew of diseases, which, if left untreated, can cause you a lot of grief, pain, and money. Learn about the most common rainy-day illnesses, so you can better prepare your body for them.

By Ethel Nolasco

It’s practically typhoon season in the Philippines from June to February (that’s more than half the year), and it seems that staying home is the best way to prevent yourself from getting sick. But unless you work or study from home, there is most probably a job or school you need to get to, so you can’t stay holed up in your house forever. We’ve listed down the most common diseases you can get during the rainy season so that if you do get sick, you’ll have an idea of what you might have and how to deal with it. Here are the seven things you’re most likely to catch.

1. Colds and coughs

Commonly caused by rhinoviruses, colds usually start with the inflammation of the throat, often leading to a runny nose. Prolonged colds can later bring on a cough. These two may seem very common. However, if left untreated, they may lead to serious illnesses like sinusitis and bronchitis. If you have been struck by the virus, then make sure to take lots of water and Vitamin C.

2. Influenza

Continuing colds and coughs, accompanied by fever, headache, or body aches, can be caused by another kind of microorganism: the flu virus. This virus usually targets the respiratory system. As much as possible, visit a doctor once you feel your symptoms start to get worse and before any complications develop.

3. Dengue fever

Rainwater can fill up empty containers scattered around your house. The resulting stagnant water is the favorite breeding ground for mosquitoes, especially the Aedes aegypti female mosquitoes that carry the dengue virus. Dengue can be fatal, so if you’ve been running a high fever for three days without any other signs of infection (like a cough or a cold) you should get a blood test done, just to be on the safe side.

4. Scabies

Scabies is a kind of skin infection caused by the Sarcoptes scabiei parasite. Their presence causes extreme itching, and rashes on the skin. If left untreated, these mites can make the surface of your skin their home. There are oral and cream medications that you can use to stop scabies, as prescribed by your physician.

5. Athlete’s foot

Floodwaters are a source of fungus, especially the ones that cause athlete’s foot—a skin infection that makes the skin flaky, later causing cracks on the skin, which may eventually lead to sores. Antifungal topical solutions are available to get rid of the fungus that causes athlete’s foot.

6. Leptospirosis

Bacteria from the wastes of rats also thrive in floodwaters and this cause leptospirosis. You get infected through open wounds. Leptospirosis is accompanied by high fever, chills, muscle aches, vomiting, and diarrhea. These are also common symptoms for other illnesses, so it is best to consult your doctor if you feel like you have an infection.

7. Cholera

This one is an intestinal infection caused by a bacterium called Vibrio cholerae. You usually get this when you consume contaminated food and water. Signs of cholera include watery diarrhea and vomiting, and extreme cases can lead to dehydration. When experiencing early signs, you need to make sure that you replace all the fluids your body loses. Consult your doctor if the symptoms persist for more than three days.

These seven rainy-day illnesses may seem commonplace that you may dismiss them as trivial. But they can actually lead to complications. So, it’s better to be sure and be prepared. Take one less thing off your plate by taking care of the financial side of your health. FWD health protection plans have built-in benefits that cover not just your physical health but your holistic wellbeing. Go beyond taking care of a common illness and remember that health is an entire lifestyle. Sign upto talk to a financial advisor and know which plans fit you.