Considering the Covid-19 scenario, people must be doubly careful in the coming months as climate transition takes place in Qatar, resulting in seasonal illnesses, leading Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) specialist Dr Mohan Thomas cautioned Friday.
“Summer is over and the rainy and cold season is setting in. This is the time when many are affected with several seasonal illnesses. This year it is all the more important that we must be extremely careful as the world is still facing Covid-19 in a big way. Though we have succeeded in containing Covid-19 in Qatar to a great extent, people have to follow all the preventive and precautionary measures until a vaccine is made available,” he told Gulf Times.
According to Dr Thomas, who has over three decades of experience in Qatar alone, people must not take any of the symptoms of these illnesses lightly. “Generally many people are affected by influenza in this season. Many might feel symptoms such as sneezing, running nose, cough and fever and body pain among other symptoms. Many of these symptoms are similar to Covid-19 and one has to be very careful and must seek urgent medical advice if they are affected by any of these,” he explained.
The physician also warned that there is a feeling among the population that Covid-19 impact is almost over in the country.
“Several people who come for consultation feel that Covid-19 is done with in Qatar. It is a false belief as the pandemic can spread again any time as we see in many countries. We have to strictly follow all the practices such as wearing mask, social distancing, using soap and sanitiser as well as maintaining personal hygiene. Until we get an effective vaccine, people must make sure that all the protocols regarding Covid-19 are in place.”
Dr Thomas also advised all Qatar residents, especially the vulnerable groups, to get the flu vaccine as and when it is rolled out in the country.
“Getting a flu shot is very important, especially this year in the Covid-19 scenario as it can help prevent all the seasonal illnesses for most people. Once the flu vaccine is taken, people can be rest assured that they are free from most such diseases and keep themselves fit. This will also help in fighting and preventing the spread of Covid-19. So I would advise everyone to get a flu shot when the government announces the campaign,” he pointed out.
The specialist also suggested that people should not go for self-treatment in case they find any symptoms of seasonal diseases or Covid-19. “If anyone develops symptoms of seasonal illnesses or Covid-19, they should always seek expert medical attention. Self-treatment can worsen the situation and even complicate the situation. Symptoms such as fever, throat pain, and cough among others are common for both diseases. They should also be careful, if they feel loss of taste or smell or suffer from vomiting or diarrhoea. Since many symptoms are similar in both illnesses, people may get confused,” he warned.
Dr Thomas pointed out that everyone have to make changes in their clothing, lifestyle as well as diet in the winter months. “One should try to wear warm and long sleeved clothing. The room temperature also should be maintained at about 24C. Have a healthy diet, with more vegetables and fruits. This will help in improving the immunity and prevent most of the diseases,” he added.