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Alert: Incidents of dengue fever rising in Taiwan
Are you traveling Taipei, Taiwan soon?
How do you stay safe from the reach of dengue fever? What precautions can you reasonably take to avoid mosquito bites which transmit the dengue disease?
The situation is worsened by Taiwan’s ongoing humid yet rainy weather, floodings, and also the damp environment after Typhoon Fanapi:
• Taiwan Centres for Disease Control (Taiwan CDC) urging the public to stay vigilant..
• Taipei Times reported on the indigenous dengue fever cases..
Travel escape Taiwan safely with TaipeiDreams
If you have not already know (just read my free EBook – grab it here), I advocate being prepared.
Being prepared when one travels – away from the safety, comfort and familiarity of one’s home ground.
Make no mistake: Although I wrote this travel Taiwan health tip post in a light-hearted tone, the dengue message is serious. As are the suggested anti-mosquito steps for you Taiwan travelers.
Now go kick some flying Aedes suckers!
Know thy enemy!
What is dengue?
Dengue is a mosquito-borne infection that causes a severe flu-like illness, and sometimes a potentially lethal complication called dengue haemorrhagic fever (WHO dengue factsheet).
What is the Aedes mosquito?
The Aedes aegypti mosquito is the predominantly urban species of mosquitoes that transmit dengue disease. Infected female Aedes mosquitoes spread the disease when they bite and feed on human blood.
Singaporean travelers to Taiwan may find this next dengue info familiar. And yes, you can learn more about dengue in this campaign against dengue.
Anti-bug your Taiwan hotel stay – defensive
Target 1: The hotel premises
Within your Taiwan hotel and outside, keep yourself, the kids and elderly – and your eyes over these places:
Places where stagnant water may gather – and got forgotten.
Watch out for places like vases, water containers, trash piles, and other spaces where water collected and are left unattended.
Dark, shady spaces where those mosquitoes party.
Corners around hotel pantry, restaurant, public access toilet, lobby, carpark and other facilities.
Target 2: Your hotel suite
Check the windows.
Ensure that windows are well-shut, and can be properly closed.
If you are the type that need to see outside the window (like I do), then make quick business of your peeking out the window.
Just don’t do it in the early morning or evening like I foolishly did! Aedes suckers are most active in those hours!
Check the bathroom.
Just like you hotel guests, mosquitoes love the hotel bathroom too.
They love it there so much they actually make their home where there are pockets of undisturbed water, in dark, shady places around where you bath (and poop). Aren’t those bugs sneaky!
Anti-bug – offensive – get those Aedes blood-suckers!
Secure your Taiwan hotel, your “home away from home”!
Why not take some good action to protect yourself from the mosquitoes in the hotel room – just like you safeguard from those nasties in your own home!
Where to kick some flying (blood-filled) behinds:
Spray the hotel room with insecticide. Or request the hotel to do it.
Know their hideouts, where to kick some Aedes butts – yeah, before they gorge up with (yikes!) your blood:
• Dark, cool places such as in closets;
• Under beds (never mind those hairballs this time!);
• Behind curtains;
• In bathrooms.
Tip: Spray insecticide in the hotel room in the evening before you sleep.
Get cold and behind doors
Fear not, we’re not talking imprisonment-style travel restriction. You want to enjoy your Taiwan travel as much as you can, don’t you? So just tour protected..
Stay and move in air-conditioned accommodation and indoor places where possible.
Get behind doors:
Get and stay indoor whenever you can. If a mosquito bed netting is available in your hotel room, use it.
If you are staying in a minsu with no air-conditioning, be sure the windows are well-screened. And use a mosquito net – in true rustic style, when available.
Be repulsive and repel!
Repel mosquitoes – make yourself repulsive with insect repellent!
Try insect repellent with DEET or not? Go herbal with Citronella or others? Perspiration-resistant? Kids-safe? Fragrance-free? Spray, roll, or apply on? Stick on patch convenience? Repellent-impregnated wrists and ankle bands?
The selection of insect repellents available today is mind-boggling. Take your pick – and be sure to follow the advice on the labels!
3 more powerful tips to stay repulsive (to those pests!):
1. Re-apply repellent to exposed skin (for skin-friendly repellent) every 6 hours.
2. For further protection, allow repellent onto your clothes (again, read instructions).
3. If you are wearing sunscreen, apply repellent on top of it.
Dress to kill (the Aedes)
Actually I mean, dress to prevent bites, from those femme fatale Aedes:
Keep arms, legs, even head covered with clothing to lower risk of bites. Dress in lightweight long-sleeves, long pants, and a hat to wear outside, whenever possible. And fashionably too, please.
Shoes and boots, thick denim jeans also make bites more difficult for those deadly suckers!
Stay in the light!
Avoid wearing dark colours, as bad fashion sense can attract mosquitoes. Seriously, dark colours do draw the evil bugs – avoid them.
Don’t smell good!
Avoid strong perfumes, hair sprays or after-shaves as they can attract mosquitoes! But hey, with layers of insect repellent on you – who need or can smell great anymore! 😉
Travel in high standards
Observe these real-travel high standards as you traverse Taiwan island:
Stay strong, traveler!
Rest and sleep. Drink to hydrate your system. Stay alert against the tiny Aedes foes!
Practise proper water, food and environmental hygiene.
Don’t spit or litter. Keep yourself and surroundings clean. Don’t let water collect and unattended.
Into enemy Aedes territory?
If you’re traveling in rural areas, take strong precautions, such as covering up in protective wear and insect repellent.
No need to visit them. Avoid evening walks beside rivers and ponds as this is where mosquitoes breed.
Final words (touch wood!)
Signs of the Aedes infected kiss
Seek medical attention in Taiwan, and inform your Taiwan hotel, should anyone in your travel group develop these signs of discomfort: Sudden fever; intense headaches; joint pains; nausea; vomiting; skin rashes; bleeding in gum, nose, stools, urine..
Also, anyone showing such symptoms after traveling Taiwan should seek medical attention in their country.
Fight dengue in Taiwan
For further info on dengue in Taiwan, you can reach:
• Communicable Disease Reporting and Consultation Hotline 1922, or,
• Taiwan Centres for Disease Control (Taiwan CDC) website.
The Taiwan dengue health alert is a serious matter. For locals and you Taipei, Taiwan traveler.
While you’re entertained by my wacky humor here, I hope you take serious precautions to stay safe from dengue when traveling Taiwan.
I provided these anti-dengue traveler tips with help from various competent resources online. Read our cheerful disclaimer for using this article responsibly.
I wish you best of travel health!