Prevention of Hantavirus: 8 Measures That Can Stop Hantavirus From Spreading

Hantavirus in China has created quite a buzz and state of panic among people as it was shared on Twitter over 6000 times. Amidst the terror of coronavirus, it is quite natural for the people to panic when they heard about this allegedly new virus from China. The hantavirus can be clearly seen among people, as they have been taking all the measures required to prevent the spread of coronavirus. The situation is quite complicated already.

No one could handle the spread of another new virus. But fortunately for us, the spread of hantavirus is not a new case. The virus originates as far back as the Korean war. The prevention of this outbreak is quite doable. Let us learn about the measures that successfully prevented the outbreak from spreading in the past and can help now too in the prevention of Hantavirus.

Prevention of Hantavirus from Spreading

prevention of hantavirus andRATS

The main carrier of the disease is rats or rodents. The first known cases of the outbreaks were isolated in fields near the South Korean river Hantan. The farmers in the field that came in contact with the infected rat residue like dropping and urine were the ones that were tested positive to the hantavirus infection. The transmission of the virus, as it turns out, is airborne. When tiny bits the infected rodent residue gets mixed up with the air droplets, the virus gets into the air too.

If a person breaths it, they get might sick within 1 to 5 weeks. Therefore, the main focus of the preventive measures is to eliminate or at least limit the population of rats and the contact of humans with them. Making sure that the rat residue does not get to stir up with the air is another focus.

Killing Rodents helps in prevention of Hantavirus to a Great Extent

Killing the rodent population infesting your house and farms, where you run the risk of coming in contact with them is a pretty solid step in the prevention of hantavirus diseases. The hantavirus from mice spreads and kills people, better we kill the mice before that happens. Now we are not suggesting getting rid of the whole species of mice as that may include unforeseeable consequences. But at least getting rid of them from where we reside and grow and store our food is quite necessary. Here are a few ways available to kill rats.

Using Chemical Rat Killers

rat poison mixed with grains

Chemical rat killers are more commonly known as rat poison. Some normally used rat killers available on the market are arsenic, cyanide, zinc phosphide, calcium phosphide, etc. They are mixed with grains or other foods and left open in order to trick the rats into eating them.

These chemicals affect the rats’ ability to produce energy shutting it down and making them motionless. Calcium based rat poisons enter the rodents’ bloodstream and result in organ failure. Some rat poisons cause internal bleeding in case of the rodents. Some rat poisons are quite effective at killing the rats and some require the consumption of large dosage in order to be effective.

Using rat poison, however, is highly risky for pets and for humans too. One should be careful so that no human or pet consumes the rat poison accidentally, as it can show negative effects in their body if consumed in a sufficient amount.

Using Rat Traps

RAT-TRAP PREVENTS HANTAVIRUS

Rat traps or rat baits are a much more efficient and safer way to catch rats and kill or get rid of them and prevention of hantavirus. Food like peanuts or meat is used to attract the rats to the traps. The traps should be placed in the areas that are frequented by rats, for example along the walls, near any cracks or holes, in dark corners, etc.

There are many kinds of rat traps including the glue traps, snap traps, and live animal traps. When the rats enter the traps in order to eat the food inside the trap, they are trapped inside. Some traps include poison that kills the rats inside the trap. Ones caught the rats can be killed and discarded.

Preventing Further Entrance of Rats

Along with killing the existing rat population, it is important to prevent any further entrance of rat in your household too for the prevention of hantavirus. Keep a rat unfriendly home. Seal up any cracks and holes that may allow the rat from entering. Use items like dried urea, peppermint, pungent vegetables like onion, mothballs, etc to keep the rats away. Rats are repelled by strong-smelling items. You can use this to your advantage in order to keep the rats away from your households, storage facilities, and farms.

Being Careful While Cleaning Rat Infested Areas

Be very careful while cleaning areas that used to be abandoned and is populated by rats. Dusty old apartments populated by rats can be a perfect tool for the spread of the hantaviruses. If the dust containing the infected rat droppings gets into the air it can infect people. That is why it is important to make sure to not let the dust get in air when cleaning areas infested by rats for the prevention of hantavirus. Also, face masks are an important tool to use along with the cleaning tool while cleaning rat-infested areas. Washing hands after cleaning is also a must.

Limiting Or Avoiding Contact With Rats

If you can avoid rat contact altogether. Keep children away from rats. They have immune systems that are not very strong. Moreover, it is very hard to say that a child will make sure to not touch his or her face after touching an infected rat. Adults should also stay away from rats altogether if they can. If even by mistake they happen to inhale the virus they are very much likely to get sick. Therefore rat contact should be reduced to a minimum in order to prevent the spread of hantavirus caused diseases.

Washing Your Hands Helps in Prevention of Hantavirus

washing-hands-to-prevent-hantavirus

Washing hands can save from a lot of diseases and infections. Examples of such infections include the hantavirus infection and also the Covid-19 outbreak terrorizing the world right now.

Washing hands using soap, or disinfectants or alcohol-based sanitizers can remove germs from our hands. That way they can not enter our body through touch. It is important to wash our hands and feet after traveling, before eating food, after using the bathroom, etc. In the case of hantavirus prevention, handwashing is a must after coming in contact with rats or any rat residue. Face, especially mouth and nose should never be touched without washing hands after contact with rats has been made.

Cleaning Floors And Other Surfaces Using Disinfectants

CLEAN FLOOR TO PREVENT HANTAVIRUS

Just sweeping rodent droppings and urine off of any surface would not be enough to get rid of the hantavirus. Viruses might remain on the surfaces even after sweeping. That is why it is important to kill the viruses that could be present on any floor or surface in order to get rid of them and for the prevention of hantavirus. Using disinfectants while cleaning can accomplish that goal. A good alcohol-based disinfectant should be regularly used while cleaning floors and any other surfaces to keep ourselves safe from germs and subsequently diseases.

Maintaining Good Hygiene While Cooking Food

Anything that you consume should be hygienic, not just during an outbreak, but in general. Unhygienic food can lead to diseases along with filling our stomachs. Food that came in contact with the virus in any way has the potential to spread the virus. That is why eating clean food is important for the prevention of hantavirus.

The contact between food and germ might happen in storage where the rat might leave droppings that directly came in contact with the food. Or it may happen due to the careless nature of the one who prepared or served the food. If they do not follow proper hygiene while cooking and serving the food, the virus can infect people through food. That is why it is important to keep your food storage clean and rat-free. Also using clean utensils and cooking tools is also important. Washing hands before and after cooking and serving food is also an important step in the prevention of Hantavirus.

Being Careful While Treating The Hantavirus Patients

While some types of hantavirus specifically the kind in the United States do not transmit to people from coming in any kind of contact with sick people, the kind that was found in Argentian and Chile did infect people treating and taking care of the sick ones. So, we really should be a bit careful while coming in contact with a hantavirus patient, as it may spread to us. Taking proper precautions like wearing a mask while treating a hantavirus patient are also crucial steps in the prevention of Hantavirus. It is also advisable to wash hands properly after treating a hantavirus patient.

TREATING HANTAVIRUS

Thank you for reading this post. If you liked this one and want to know more about virus borne diseases please do visit our other posts related to Hantavirus and coronavirus:

So friends, now you know the measures for the prevention of Hantavirus. So if you are in an area which is prone to Hantavirus, make sure you are following the preventive measure because-

PREVENTION IS BETTER THAN CURE

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