When it rains, it hails. Another cause of concern for Malaysians; polio is on the rise in our country again. Malaysia was once a polio-free country. However, we are now we are seeing a rise in the number of children contracting the virus in Sabah. Although the majority of the children with polio are not Malaysian, the fact that there IS an outbreak of the poliovirus in Malaysia after 27 years is worrying. Source: Adobe Stock Polio Virus The Ministry of Health Putrajaya (MOH) confirmed a total of 4 positive polio cases found in Sabah. According to the MOH's newsletter dated 10th March, only one of the children who contracted the virus is Malaysian. The youngest child to contract is 3 months old and the rest range from 3 to 8 years old. Moreover, the other 3 children have never been vaccinated for the poliovirus. Poliovirus is also known as poliomyelitis or infantile paralysis. It is an infectious disease that occurs naturally only in humans. Polio has two major symptoms patterns, one involving the central nervous system (CNS), and the other called abortive poliomyelitis, which does not involve the CNS. Minor Polio Symptoms include: Source: Centers For Disease Control and Prevention However, Poliovirus infection can be asymptomatic (no symptoms) in most people with a normal immune system. This is one of the reasons why it is important for parents to bring their children for regular checkups and get them vaccinated. Poliovirus enters the central nervous system in about 1% of total infections. Most patients with central nervous system (CNS) involvement, developed nonparalytic aseptic meningitis (inflammation of the brain membrane). Infants in particular are the main suspect. These are the few symptoms in CNS: \tHeadache \tNeck, back, abdominal and extremity pain \tFever \tVomiting \tand Lethargy Campaigns for the Prevention and Vaccination of Polio The virus usually spreads from contaminated food or water that has been in contact human faeces, as well as, although not very common from infected saliva as well. Thus, the Ministry of Health (MOH) in collaboration with the Sabah\u2019s Health Department has been running the Immunization of Polio Campaign since December 2019. Source: Adobe Stock Places with poor hygiene have a higher rate of people contracting Polio. In the effort of eradicating Polio, samples from sewage waste were taken from all states in Malaysia. This is to help monitor water sources for contamination of the Poliovirus. More importantly, the government is also implementing vaccinations for polio for all three types. Oral Polio Vaccines (OPV) \t2 doses of bivalent oral polio type 1 and 3 (bOPV) \t1 dose of monovalent oral polio (mOPV2) Schedule your children's vaccination, and most importantly, do not miss free vaccinations from the government. These vaccinations are administered in stages for children below 13 years old. No matter how much you would want to avoid these vaccines for your little one, you should know (and admit that) these vaccines that are provided by the government will help them in the future. Parents just need to be aware of the different types of vaccinations so you can keep track and understand the benefits of each vaccine. Check Malaysia\u2019s Vaccination Schedule here to know which vaccinations your children should have, how to get it, and when. Parents are pressed to visit the nearest clinic or hospital if their children missed out on any of the vaccinations mentioned above. Let us be responsible for the health of our young ones by taking extra precautions. It is never wrong to go the extra mile just for our loved ones especially during these outbreaks that are happening around the world. Stay safe and remember to always sanitize yourself using the proper hand sanitizer and hand soap that is suitable for the entire family, only at Motherhood.com.my.