Islamabad - Health experts have advised dengue patients to use fresh seasonal juices and lemon grass tea as repellent to avert the disease.

“Dengue is a viral disease and its better treatment is use of fresh juices and lemon grass and mint plant,” said Director Health Services, Dr Hassan Urooj, talking to state-run TV channel.

Dr Urooj said as there is no specific medicine or vaccination for dengue, it can be better treated by using juices and lemon grass while people should also grow mint plant and merry gold flower in their houses to help boost immunity for fighting the virus.

He quoted a recent research by the young doctors in Rawalpindi and Islamabad and said, dengue patients should use papaya, pomegranate, lemon, pineapple and guava, garlic, ginger juices and as they carry neutral components and vitamins C which help cure dengue on a faster pace.

He said dengue situation in Rawalpindi, Multan, Lahore, Karachi, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is worrisome and mostly the affectees are children and women.

Dr Hassan appreciated Holy Family hospial for better dengue treatment as it has the latest equipments and a standard operating procedure (SOP) relating to receiving and handling of the dengue patients. He said dengue virus has two aspects one is pre-plan strategy and other is after dengue attack, and added, we should use winter as a window period to clean dengue remains from affected places to stop recurrence in upcoming summer.

He said CDA has identified garbage and water blockage areas, broken roads and places where larva of the dengue could flourish in summer also planning an action to repair and clean these sites of dengue larvae.

He said there are four kinds of viral infection of dengue which are different from each other and their vaccination are also not effective for each other so the experts are working on making one joint vaccine to be used for all the four kinds of dengue virus.

He added there is no specific antibiotic for curing dengue virus patient except to shift the patient to the hospital timely.

Antibiotics might cause weight gain in kids

Repeated antibiotic use is linked to greater weight gains in children, and it could affect their weight for the rest of their lives, a new study suggests. Researchers from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore analyzed data from nearly 164,000 youngsters in the United States, and found that about 21 percent of them received seven or more prescriptions for antibiotics during childhood.

At age 15, those who took antibiotics seven or more times at earlier ages weighed about 3 pounds more than those who took no antibiotics.

This weight gain among those who frequently took antibiotics was likely underestimated due to lack of complete data, the researchers said.

“Your BMI [an estimate of body fat] may be forever altered by the antibiotics you take as a child,” said study leader Dr. Brian Schwartz, a professor in the department of environmental health sciences. “Our data suggest that every time we give an antibiotic to kids they gain weight faster over time.”

But the study only showed an association, and not cause-and-effect relationship, between antibiotic use and weight gain.

The findings were published online Oct. 21 in the International Journal of Obesity.

“While the magnitude of the weight increase attributable to antibiotics may be modest by the end of childhood, our finding that the effects are cumulative raises the possibility that these effects continue and are compounded into adulthood,” Schwartz said in a Hopkins news release.

Prior research suggests that repeated antibiotic use permanently changes the balance of bacteria in the digestive tract, the researchers said. This alters the way food is broken down and increases the amount of calories absorbed, resulting in greater weight gain, they noted.

“Systematic antibiotics should be avoided, except when strongly indicated. From everything we are learning, it is more important than ever for physicians to be the gatekeepers and keep their young patients from getting drugs that not only won’t help them but may hurt them in the long run,” Schwartz concluded.