Mexican Murals – A Cartoon with a Public Health Message

in murals •  2 years ago  (edited)

With so many projects going on, it may be easy to skip over the fantastic murals Mazunte has to offer, but since it’s a day of rest, I want to dedicate a post to this interesting street art. There is one particularly impressive piece I remembered seeing two years ago. Amazingly, it is still up, without any evidence of vandalism, which may be attributed to its public health related content. 

Chinche de Chagas – A Bug from your Nightmares 

The protagonist of this mural, painted in the style of a comic-book, is the infamous Chinche de Chagas, or Kissing Bug in English. Known to the educated Latin as Triatominae, this black-and-red colored parasite has the nasty habit of feeding on warm blood, such as that of humans. Nothing too unusual so far. What sets it apart the benign mosquito, however, is its even nastier habit of defecating where it eats. The unsuspecting victim scratches the itch from the insect bite, rubbing the excrement into the small wound. And that’s where the real problems start. 

The Real Problem – The Bug of the Bug 

The real problem is not even the bug itself, but the disease it may be carrying, called American trypanosomiasis. It can have fatal consequences to its host, if not treated right away. An infected person will show symptoms of fever, swollen lymph-nodes, etc. with the final culmination of their heart growing to a humongous size before exploding in a big KRABOOM!!! Probably, a horrible and painful way to die. 

Cure or Prevention – Is There a Solution?

So how can we keep our heart from pulling such a Grinch on us? As the locals in the cartoon put it very clearly, the first step is not to be afraid. If everything is cleaned, and the garbage put away, it can be avoided that this beast sets up camp in our living area. (Of course, this doesn’t say anything about its natural habitat, which we are encroaching on…!) But should such a kissing bug actually bite us, testing and treatment are provided for free at any local health center. Thus goes the official message of this impressive street cartoon. 

The rest, pictures of Super Corazon, the gigantic heart, combating the farting bug are great additions to make the most out of this message. It is street-art at its best, enduring through the years.

If you liked this, check out my developing series on Mexican murals:  

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Wow that's both fascinating and scary. What a clever way to relay this point via an eye catching street mural. Hey when you get a chance check your fb messages.

Ahhh... the long abandoned facebook. Sure I will, just let me post a post quickly (there's nothing quick about the internet around here, but at least there is some connectivity).