How To Protect Yourself And Others Against Measles
The Ministry of Health recommends that anyone who isn't protected against measles, either through vaccination or past infection, should get vaccinated, including before international travel.
Travellers should see their health care provider at least 4-6 weeks before any international travel to complete a vaccine series, and for the body to build up immunity.
Measles is one of the most contagious of all infectious diseases; it spreads when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The virus can live for up to 2 hours in the air or on surfaces.
Two doses of MMR (measles, mumps & rubella) vaccine is nearly 100% effective at preventing measles.
- Measles - Mumps - Rubella vaccine - 1st Dose 9 months
- Interval between 1st & 2nd Dose - 6 months
Teenagers & adults who have not had measles or have not been vaccinated should get 2 doses, separated by at least 28 days.
WHO SHOULD NOT BE VACCINATED?
Do not vaccinate if the child has:
- High fever or other serious disease (Eg: unconscious, convulsions, etc.)
- Hospitalized children
- History of a severe allergic reaction to measles/rubella vaccine in the past
- Known immune-compromised, child on steroid therapy or on immunosuppressant drugs
Symptoms of measles generally appear within 14 days of exposure to the virus. Symptoms include:
- A widespread skin rash is a classic sign of measles that lasts up to seven days, typically appearing within the first 3 to 5 days of exposure to the virus
- Red eyes
- Light sensitivity
- Muscle aches
- Runny nose
- Sore throat
- White spots inside the mouth
There are no prescription medicines to treat measles or its symptoms. Measles symptoms usually disappear within 2 to 3 weeks. However, your doctor may recommend:
- Acetaminophen to relieve fever and muscle aches
- Rest to help boost your immune system
- Plenty of fluids (6 to 8 glasses of water a day) as per your physician advice
- Humidifier to ease cough and sore throat
- Vitamin A & C Supplements