Health experts offer a word of caution against excessive fogging as Guwahati, braces itself for a rise in cases of dengue and Japanese Encephalitis during the monsoons.
Fogging is considered to be one of the most effective steps in controlling the breeding of disease transmitting mosquitoes. But health experts point out that fogging an area frequently emits toxic gases that adversely affects other insects in the region.
This is the challenge that the state health department has to contend with as fogging remains an effective way of destroying mosquitoes that carry the vector-borne diseases.
“Fogging kills the mosquitoes in an area and it is also a particularly effective way to stop the breeding the Aedes aegypti which carries the dengue virus. But we have to remember that fogging cannot be conducted frequently as the pesticide that is used in the process also kills other insects and micro-organisms in the environment. The survival of these organisms is necessary to maintain a balance in nature,” said Kumerandra Nath, assistant director of state directorate of health services, reports TOI.
During fogging, the pesticide Pyrethrin is mixed with diesel in a 1:9 ratio. Cutting down on fogging can also be tricky as viral diseases like dengue have no definite treatment and doctors can only administer symptomatic treatment to patients.
“People want fogging to be done frequently in affected areas, not realizing the harmful effect it has on other insects and organisms,” Nath said.