...we should not be stressed.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Improving clean and healthy living behavior (PHBS) is important to curb the transmission of monkeypox in Indonesia, the monkeypox task force of the executive board of the Indonesian Medical Association (IDI) has said.

"(We appeal) to the community: please strengthen PHBS. We learned a lot from the COVID-19 outbreak that hygiene is very important, thus (please) use masks, especially in public areas," head of the task force, Hanny Nilasari, said during a media briefing, which was followed online from here on Wednesday.

Furthermore, she stressed the importance of using masks in places where social distancing is difficult to implement, such as while taking public transportation.

People suffering from skin infection must wear clothing to cover the infected area so that they do not transmit the infection to other people or contaminate the surfaces they touch, she said.

"Thus, if you have an infection on the skin, you have to pay attention and cover your lesions (wounds). It (the lesion) must be taken care of," she emphasized.

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The head of the task force also urged the community to consume an adequate and balanced diet.

Consuming healthy food and drinks is important to maintain excellent body condition and immunity so that people are not easily infected, she explained.

There are no specific foods that people exposed to monkeypox need to avoid, she said. Patients are advised to eat healthy and nutritious food that is high in minerals and vitamins.

However, Nilasari said that if the skin lesions feel itchy, patients must avoid foods that are high in protein, such as meat, egg whites, and fish, to prevent more serious complications.

"In the healing phase, usually it (the lesion) is itchy. At this stage, the patient must be careful. Usually, high protein foods will affect it (itchiness). If the patient is itchy and they eat (a meal with) high protein, they will tend to scratch (the lesion more),” she explained.

Scratching a lesion can create stretch marks, which could lead to a secondary infection, thus prolonging the healing phase, she added.

"Furthermore, (we must) also avoid things which can weaken our physical and psychological conditions. Thus, we have to prepare -- we should not be stressed. If we are stressed, we can be exposed to various kinds of diseases more easily," she said.

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Translator: Suci Nurhaliza, Uyu Liman
Editor: Suharto
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