Everything You Need to Know About Dengue Fever

According to a report in Arab News, there was an increase in the number of dengue cases in Jeddah in 2015, as compared to 2014. This prompted the Jeddah municipality to implement a number of measures to curtail this rise in numbers. These measures include instructing all building owners in the region to clear standing water or to cover exposed water, which can act as a conducive environment for mosquitoes to breed. Severe penalties are to be charged in case of non-compliance with these measures. It is not just the people of the Kingdom who are at risk but the pilgrims from around the world gathering for the Hajj pilgrimage are also vulnerable to this epidemic. So, it is best to prevent the growth of this epidemic and visit a doctor as soon as you encounter any dengue fever symptoms. Here are a few things to keep in mind about this disease.

What is the Cause?

There are types of dengue viruses that cause fever, three of which have been identified in Saudi Arabia. The disease is transmitted by the aedes mosquito. When this mosquito bites an infected human, the virus is transmitted. This mosquito then goes on to bite another human, injecting the dengue virus into his/her blood stream, thereby spreading the disease to them. Once you have recovered from a particular dengue virus, you will only have immunity to that strain, still leaving you vulnerable to the other dengue strains.

What are Symptoms?

There is a possibility that some people do not exhibit any dengue fever symptoms at all. But in most cases, the symptoms to look out for are:


  • High fever with temperatures as high as 106oF
  • Severe Headaches
  • Symptoms of flu
  • Joint and muscle pains
  • Bad stomach ache
  • Pain behind your eyes
  • Vomiting and nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Skin rashes
  • Minor bleeding from the gums

How to prevent it?

Apart from initiatives by the government agencies, we also can play an important role in controlling the spread of this disease. Several steps can be taken in this regard. These include:


  • Use mosquito repellant products on the skin and clothing to protect yourself against getting bitten.
  • Leave no part of the body exposed to mosquitoes. Wear clothes that cover your arms and legs.
  • Make sure to not let stagnant water settle in your surrounding areas. If you have to store water, make sure it is properly covered.
  • Take extra care during the day time, since this is when there is the highest chance of contracting this disease. If you have to go out during this time, it is advisable to wear long, loose fitting clothes.

Out, damn (chocolate) spot!

Chocolate can leave behind tell-tale signs. Here’s how you clean it out of your clothes.

Ah, the sweet caress of chocolate against the tongue! There is nothing more pleasurable than a bar of chocolate on a cold winter’s night, or a square of it after a tiring day at work. Nobody should feel guilty about eating a little chocolate every day – after all, it is a mood enhancer and it is also good for the body!

But if there’s one thing that absolutely annoys you about chocolate, it is that it leaves the most terrible stains on your clothes. You will have noticed this by now – chocolate dropped on the clothes leaves a permanent brownish or yellowish mark. This problem is most common with children’s clothes, because our precious tiny humans tend to wipe their sticky, chocolatey hands on their clothes! Washing the clothes at once does not erase the marks completely.

So do you raise a white flag in surrender to chocolate stains? Or is there a way to rid your clothes of chocolate stains forever? There is, and we outline it below:

Get the chocolate out by hand. If chocolate has been spilled on the clothes, get a spoon and scrape off the excess without rubbing the chocolate into the fabric. If the chocolate has been spilled some time ago and has now dried up, apply some liquid detergent to the area and let it set for a while so that it may break up the dried chocolate without spreading it. Scrape off gently with a knife.

Rinse out the clothing. Turn the clothing inside out and flush with running water so that the chocolate stain does not set through the cloth’s fibres.

Soak the garment. Fill half a bucket with warm water (not hot) and add a scoop of stain removing powder to the water. Mix well and soak the stained garment in it for minimum one hour. The stain removing powder gets to work on the chocolate residue and stain left behind on the garment.

Wash as usual. Now take the soaked garment and wash it in the washing machine. To make sure that all of the stain is gone, you can add a scoop of stain removing powder to the clothing load. Once this step is done, you will have pristine clothes without the trace of a chocolate stain.

You may be out of doors when a chocolate accident takes place with your clothes. The first thing to do when you spill chocolate on yourself is to blot out the chocolate using a clean tissue paper or a white cloth. Do not rub the cloth, simply blot the chocolate out. You can then follow the steps outlined above to clean out the chocolate stain.

You Think You Know Cockroaches? Think Again!

Cockroaches have six legs, a pair of antennae and some even have wings, which are not particularly for flying. While most of us are aware of these characteristics, did you know that these insects can measure over 50 cm in length and can be even larger in tropical areas?

They are carriers of many diseases and the only way to get rid of them is to use cockroach killers. However, before you do that, here are some interesting facts about your enemy.

They are Older than the Dinosaurs

You are not the only one being troubled by them. They have been here for ages and, guess what, the first humans didn’t even have a spray to get rid of them. In fact, a recent study revealed that these pests have been on the planet longer than humans.

Their origins are reported to be as far back as 359 million years ago, making them older than even the dinosaurs. While other animals of that time have become extinct, these insects have managed to survive every cycle of extinction.

There are More than 4,000 Species in the World

You can find cockroaches even in parts of the world where there are no human beings. Approximately 4,600 species of these pests have been identified, spread all across the globe, except Antarctica. However, only 30 species have the capability to become pests.

So, before you start a war, remember that first bit from Men in Black! Yeah, these insects might have even gone where no man has gone before.

They Can Eat Anything

By anything, we mean absolutely every organic matter you could think of. They can eat dead insects, soaps, cloth, paper, glue, hair and, how can we forget, human food.

We are not the only foodies on this planet. In fact, these creatures will never run out of food. And while they are cold-blooded like snakes and crocodiles, they cannot survive for more than 2 weeks without water and this is the leading cause of death among them.

They Can Hold Their Breath

Yes, you read that right. So, you can’t kill them by starving them to death and you can’t kill them by flushing them down the toilet either. The reason? They can hold their breath for up to 40 minutes in water. This is because they can breathe in air through holes present in their body. This gives them enough time to crawl to safety.

They can even exist without their head for a week. This leaves you with just one option to get rid of an infestation in your home – get yourself the best cockroach killer, whether a product or an extermination service, as soon as possible.

Coffee can – and will – stain your clothes. Here’s how you remove it

Your favourite morning cuppa can wreck your shirt with just one spill. The earlier you catch the stain, the better for your clothes.

We’ve all been there: ready for a big meeting at work, our best clothes on, bag ready with important papers, when you stopped for a cup of coffee before heading out. Your pet padded into the room and brushed past you; startled, you choked on your coffee and got a lot of it down your shirt.

Yikes! It’s a disaster! Coffee tends to stain everything in its path – clothes, teeth, furniture – and lends a beige colour to whatever it comes in contact with. If you’ve been brushing your teeth regularly but noticing that your pearly whites are now light brown in colour, you can safely blame your coffee for the same. However, coffee spilled on the clothes is a serious problem – it can leave behind a permanent stain and ruin your best clothing.

So what should you do? Follow our go-guide on how to remove coffee stains:

First things first. Blot the stain gently, do not rub. Use a clean tissue paper to do so.

Rinse in warm water. Stretch the fabric and hold it directly under a stream of warm water (not boiling hot) for about a minute. Let the water run through the stain and out the other side of the fabric. It is important to get to the back of the stain to remove it completely.

Apply liquid detergent. Pour a small quantity of stain removing liquid detergent on the stain and gently rub over it with a finger. Now let water run on the stain again and rub the fibres gently till all the detergent is washed off. By this time, the stain will have become much lighter or will have disappeared altogether. If it hasn’t gone completely, wash the garment in the washing machine using a stain removing agent, as directed.

Kitchen remedies work, too. If you think that simple kitchen ingredients can work on coffee stains, you can try those – but be careful, as these ingredients might be abrasive on the fibres. Always test a small area of the fabric before proceeding so that you are sure that the ingredient does not leech away colour or cause fraying.

Some kitchen remedies to remove coffee stains:

  • Wet the stain with water and apply baking soda directly on the stain. Let the soda settle for at least one hour before washing in warm water. This remedy works best with fresh stains only, but do not use it on delicate fabrics.
  • Vinegar can be diluted in plain water and sprayed directly on a fresh stain. Wash off with cold water and you will see the stain is visibly lighter. Repeat if necessary.
  • Fizzy soda is also great at lifting coffee stains. Simply pour some on the stain, rub and keep pouring and rubbing till the stain is gone.

3 ways to get clean, germ free hands

Washing your hands clean is the first step in ensuring good personal hygiene. But are you washing your hands right?

There really cannot be any compromises when it comes to personal health and hygiene. All of us like to wear crisp, clean clothes and use the best deodorants and soaps. We also ensure that our homes are clean and free of pests.

But many of us slip up on a vital part of personal hygiene, and this lacuna makes us fall ill without understanding why. We fail to see why we contract seasonal flu, common cold and every other infection going around. And to think that the answer (literally) lies in our hands!

Not washing your hands enough times in the day and not devoting enough time to the activity results in germs flourishing on the hands and spreading to other people and whichever surfaces you touch. This can make both you and another person ill. It is especially dangerous to handle a young child or cook raw food with unclean hands. The simple process of hand washing can spare you the trouble of undergoing an illness, wasting valuable working days in bed and then taking the painful road to recovery.

There are three hand washing ways for you to incorporate into your daily life, starting today:

Using soap and water. Traditionally, people all over the world have been using soap and water to wash their hands. The soap may be a solid bar or a liquid hand wash. It is recommended that you use a liquid hand wash in a dispensing bottle – the soap does not get contaminated and the hands become super clean in seconds. As opposed to this, a soap carries the germs from one’s hands and passes them on to another, plus it remains exposed to the air for long and gathers other impurities. When washing your hands with soap, rub your palms together and work up a lather. Now wash off with clean water and dry on a clean towel.

Disinfecting with hand sanitizer. Hand washing does not necessarily entail using water. Using a hand sanitizer is an excellent option when you do not have access to soap and water. A good hand sanitizer rids your hands of at least 99.9% germs and bacteria. Use one after having a meal, or after touching a surface that many others have touched (such as elevator buttons and computer keyboard) or to simply keep the hands clean while you are seated at your desk or travelling by public transport.

Use hot water. Hot water is effective in killing germs, so if your hands have been exposed to infected persons or waste matter or some kind of virus that may make you ill, you can soak them in hot water infused with an antibacterial hand wash. This is a good sanitising remedy for flu season. Use water with a slightly elevated temperature than warm water, but not heated to boiling point.

Learn the art of how to remove carpet stains from your gorgeous carpet!

Carpets enhance the look of any room and it looks very classy. It happens many times that your carpets become stained and you need to remove those stains instantly. There are various ways to remove rigid stains from the carpet but one of the main things you need to learn is to how to remove carpet stains immediately. The primary thing you need to take care is to spill as much water as required when your carpet is stained.

Stop the spill getting inside the carpet:

Make sure that the blot doesn’t go inside the carpet and blemishes. When the stain gets deep inside the carpet then it becomes quite difficult to clean the carpet and it will destroy the look of the room as well. So don’t let the stain get deep inside the carpet. Your second step to clean the carpet is to use soft detergent instead of using harsh soap or activator as it may discolor your carpet. You should provide proper cure to your carpet stains by employing cleaner that is tolerable for carpet fibers. In many cases, substitute cleansers such as carpet cleaning solution, vinegar, and ammonia are used to clean the stains.

Call some professional help:

If you can’t remove the stains from the rugs, it is always advisable to call some professional help who can perform the job ideally. Removing stains is not a tough job but when the stain is rigid then it is always good to call an expert. It depends up on carpet to carpet quality and the stain because that makes it rigid and tough to clean. Here are some easy ways to remove stains from the carpet and some cleaning tips:

·         In many cases of stains, quick reaction as well as water is what all you require to debar the stain from getting rigid. You need to take instant step when you see the stain is fresh. You need to primary remove the solid substance by using a clean tissue or towel to check and clean the dribble as much as possible.

·         You need to completely remove the stain from the carpet by using some mild detergent or else if you use just normal water then stain may occur again in few days. It might happen again that the stain pop up after some days of cleaning or when a few quantity of liquid is accumulated at the carpet bottom. When you considered that you have cleaned the stain then you simply had just cleaned the carpet.

·         It will make your job tough and the procedure of cleaning the carpet more difficult. You can debar this by providing shelter to the stained area with towel or paper or a thicker cloth, then putting some heavy item on it. Leave this overnight to let the cloth or paper to soak the remaining liquid from the carpets. You can clean your carpet next day in a proper way.

·         Most of the stains are caused by different food products that needs extra care when you try to remove the stains. Food stains are very stubborn and need a liquid soap or non bleaching laundry detergent plus water.

How to Avoid Mosquito Bites

In 1897, Sir Ronald Ross identified a tropical species as the vector for deadly malaria and named it the “mosquito.” Ever since then, humans have been wary of this insect and rightly so. Out of all the disease-transmitting insects, mosquitoes are the most dangerous, spreading malaria, yellow fever and dengue. Malaria is endemic in 91 countries and about 40% of the population of the world is at risk. Saudi Arabia is not different.

Every year, 500 million cases of malaria are registered and around 2.7 million people die annually across the world, with 90% of these cases occurring in Africa. Dengue is another deadly disease caused by a mosquito bite, with 2,500 million people at risk worldwide in more than 100 countries. According to a local survey in Saudi Arabia, several doctors reported a dramatic rise in the number of patients bitten by mosquitoes due to the rise in warm weather in the country.

To avoid mosquito bites, you should always keep mosquito repellents handy. Here are some other ways to stay protected.

Keep a Check on Breeding

The best way to get rid of mosquitoes from your home and even locality is to keep a check on their breeding sites. According to Jim Fredericks, PhD, chief entomologist for the National Pest Management Association, “Something as small as a bottle cap can be a breeding spot for mosquitoes.” So, make sure that there is no stagnant water in and around your home. Ponds, garbage bins and improperly drained yards also attract mosquitoes. Remove all cans or canisters that can collect rain water or keep them under a shed. If you have a bird bath, then replace the water every two days.

Precaution and Protection

Wear full sleeved clothes whenever possible. Less exposed skin naturally means less mosquito bites. Keep the windows and doors of the house closed to reduce the entry of these insects and turn on the fan of the room where you are sitting. A strong breeze can deter mosquitoes from landing on you.

Lastly, use mosquito repellents. Use a bug spray to get rid of insects but make sure not to use it in a way that makes contact with sensitive body parts like the eyes or mouth. Apply ointment based mosquito repellents on the skin before sleeping to avoid bites at night.

Eat Healthy

Maintaining a healthy diet is the key to staying healthy. Ensure a balanced diet for yourself and your family and keep all leftovers well covered and away from insects of any kind.