AS khareef season in Dhofar is nearing the end, the problem of insect bites at tourist spots has taken away the pleasure of visitors, as almost all of them are complaining of such a problem once they return.
Everyone who has visited Dhofar during the khareef season returns with bites, itching and redness of the skin in the exposed body parts like hands and legs.
“Dhofar Governorate is so beautiful with a magnificent view of waterfalls, greenery and great weather, but the only problem is the insect bites. They cause itchy papules, the scars of which stay more than two weeks, Saada al Numani, who was in Salalah recently, said.
Hammam al Badi, another visitor, said, “Salalah is a great idea, but during khareef season, you should take some precautions. Salalah was not bad on my first visit. This time, I faced the problem of mosquitoes. Despite government efforts to curb the menace, mosquitoes spread in many places in Salalah.” “Salalah visitors, however, are taking anti-mosquito sprays to avoid mosquito bites. Mosquito bite jelly helped me recover after I got bitten by mosquitoes. There are some dry places, such as Ittin Plain and others you won’t see mosquitoes,” he added.
To some extent, such a situation keeps the general practitioners busy in Salalah hospitals. “In most cases, mosquito bites are treated with recommended antihistamine. But in some cases, patients come with complaints of fever. If it persists, we prescribe antibiotics,” said one of the general practitioners in Salalah.
According to him, around five patients are coming daily with complaints of insect bites having stereotyped symptoms of itching, redness of the skin and papules in the affected body parts.
“Mostly, those affected are male adults who love to stay outdoors to enjoy green bushes and waterfalls. The victims are generally those adults who visited such places wearing half-sleeve clothes. Generally, their hands and leg parts are affected,” he said.
He added that women are affected less since they keep themselves and their children covered. “I advised every visitor to mountain and spring areas to try covering body parts as much as possible, putting a cap and applying mosquito repellent before going to such places,” he said.
Visitors who have been there suggest some awareness by the civic authorities to enlighten people about the menace. “Authorities can spread the awareness messages by putting pamphlets in hotels and restaurants telling the visitors about the caution they should keep in mind while visiting various places in Salalah because most of the visitors end up visiting a hospital which spoils the whole holiday mood,” Mohammed al Harthy, another visitor to Salalah said.