Be careful about measles infections during Qingming Festival

If you plan to make a trip overseas during the Qingming Festival, be careful of measles infections, especially when traveling to the Philippines and China, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said Thursday.

The symptoms of measles are similar to those of a cold. For example, high fever, a runny nose, coughing, red eye, even a red rash that spreads over the body. If you have been to infected areas recently, please wear a face mask and go to see the doctor as soon as possible.

Measles are a highly contagious virus that lives in the nose and throat mucus of infected patients. The disease can spread to others through coughing and sneezing. Also, the measles virus can live for over two hours in the air where the infected patients coughed or sneezed. If other people breathe contaminated air or touch infected surfaces, and then touch their eyes, nose, or mouth, they can become infected.

Measles are so contagious that if one person has it, 90 percent of the people close to that person who are not immunized will also get measles. Moreover, infected people can spread measles to others from four days before to four days after the rash appears.

Measles can even cause serious health complications, especially in children who are younger than one year, which means your children need to have MMR vaccine for best protection before taking a trip to infected areas. Besides, since measles are so contagious, even adults should be vaccinated, especially when you will travel overseas and visit an infected zone.