Message for U.S. Citizens: Dengue Fever/Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever in Singapore

Dengue cases are on the rise in Singapore with the total Dengue cases reported this year five times higher than last year.  Already in 2019 there have been more cases of Dengue in Singapore than in the years of 2017 and 2018 combined. Please read below to learn:

  • What are the symptoms of Dengue
  • How do you prevent Dengue
  • General information about Dengue in Singapore

Symptoms of Dengue:

  • Sudden onset of fever for 2-7 days
  • Severe headache with pain behind the eyes
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Skin rashes
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Mild bleeding (e.g. nose or gum bleed)
  • Easy bruising of the skin

Symptoms usually appear 4-7 days after being bitten (ranges from 3-14 days).

If you are concerned that you may have Dengue it would be wise to be seen by a medical provider.  Although 75% of those infected with Dengue are without symptoms, 1 in 5 people will end up in the hospital.  In some people Dengue fever can develop into Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever, or “Severe Dengue”.  For these cases proper treatment can save lives, reducing the mortality rate from more than 20% to less than 1%.

How do you prevent Dengue?

You can prevent mosquito bites by applying insect repellent, wearing long, covered clothing and keeping windows and doors closed to inhibit mosquitos from entering your apartment.  Preventing the spread of Dengue is also about maintaining vigilance in your environment.  The Aedes mosquito has a distinctive black and white striped body, and prefers to breed in clean, stagnant water.  By frequently checking and removing stagnant water from your home, you can help to prevent the spread of Dengue fever.

Those planning to go on vacation should bring and apply insect repellent while travelling, as well as mosquito-proof their homes before they travel. You can keep your neighborhood safe from dengue by taking these mosquito prevention measures:

  • Covering toilet bowls in the home and sealing off overflow pipes of the flushing cisterns
  • Covering floor traps
  • Adding sand granular insecticide to places that mosquitoes could potentially breed, and places where stagnant water cannot be removed
  • Clearing debris and blockages, and adding BTI insecticide in roof gutters
  • Turning over water storage containers & wiping the rims dry
  • Asking a relative or close friend to check your home regularly for stagnant water if you are going away for a long period of time

General Information about Dengue in Singapore:

As of 12 July 2019, there were 182 active dengue clusters in Singapore, with 60% of the mosquito breeding habitats found in residential premises.

NEA has conducted multiple rounds of inspections for mosquito breeding in the cluster areas, as well as outreach activities such as community events and house visits. Dengue cluster alert banners and alert posters have been put up around the estates and at the lift lobbies, to heighten awareness of both residents as well as members of the public. NEA will continue to work with Grassroots Advisers, Grassroots Leaders, Dengue Prevention Volunteers (DPVs) and members of the community, to conduct house visits to increase awareness and remind residents to practice the 5-step Mozzie Wipeout. Educational pamphlets and insect repellent are distributed to the residents during the house visits.

For more information please reference the National Environment Agency website:  https://www.nea.gov.sg/dengue-zika/dengue

For other general questions, or urgent matters regarding U.S. citizens, please contact: SingaporeACS@state.gov