Diseases, have you ever wonder how can you fight against it, how can you protect yourself and others from being infected, how you can stop the spread of diseases? Protecting yourself and others from diseases is very simple. In this article, we will explain what is disease, types of diseases, causes of diseases, what brings about diseases and how you can protect yourself and others from diseases. We will also look at how you can protect yourself and others from infectious diseases transmission.
On daily basis, your body fight against diseases that are silent and unseen but potentially deadly. These diseases are foreign invaders such as bacteria, viruses, and parasite which threaten your health. When your body fights against this diseases you are not likely to be aware of it because your immune system repels or destroys most of the invaders before the onset of symptoms. When the harmful germs gain the upper hand in your body, you may need to bolster your defences with medicine and other treatments.
What is a Disease
A disease is any condition that leads to the disorder of a structure or function in a living organism that is not due to any external injury. In humans, a disease is always used to refer to any condition that causes pain, distress, suffering, dysfunction, social problems, or death to the person afflicted or similar problems for those in contact with the afflicted person. In this broader sense, it sometimes includes injuries, disorders, disabilities, syndromes, infections, deviant behaviours, and atypical variations of structure and function.
Types of Diseases
Diseases are classified into two main type, namely:
Communicable and noncommunicable diseases.
Communicable diseases are also known as contagious diseases. These are those diseases that can be transmitted from one organism to another. There is also another type of disease known as infectious diseases, these type of diseases are caused by infections. It replicates microorganisms such as animal parasites, fungi, bacteria, or viruses which can be transmitted from host to another. Practically, these two types of disease are the same, because, infectious diseases generally transmittable or communicable.
Communicable or infectious diseases include; Lower respiratory infections, tuberculosis, influenza, diarrhoea diseases, smallpox, polio, yellow fever, dengue, measles etc.
Noncommunicable diseases are those diseases that can not be transmitted from one organism to another. Noncommunicable diseases are sometimes referred to as chronic disease because noncommunicable diseases are generally long-lasting and progressed slowly. Noncommunicable diseases can arise from environmental exposures or from genetically determined abnormalities. This diseases can be evident at birth or may become apparent later in life.
According to World Health Organization, (WHO), there are four type of noncommunicable diseases, namely;
- Cardiovascular diseases (e.g, stroke, heart attack).
- Chronic respiratory diseases (e.g, asthma).
- Diabetes mellitus.
Noncommunicable diseases that arise from inherited genetic abnormalities often requires constant treatment to keep the individual Leaving. Examples of inherited disease include; Inborn errors of metabolism, cystic fibrosis and down syndrome etc. This types of inherited disease are always evident right at birth. But there are some inherited diseases that emerged in adulthood, like some certain forms of cancer (familial breast cancer) and Huntington disease etc.
You need to learn about the dangers of microscopic or other small harmful organisms so as to be better equipped to defend yourself. You can seek advice from medical advisers on how to eliminate or greatly reduce the threat of some infectious diseases such as smallpox, polio, yellow fever, dengue, measles, tuberculosis, influenza, and diarrhoea.
Causes of Diseases
- Viruses: Viruses are microscopic infective agents. When infected by a virus, a host cell is forced to produce thousands of identical copies of the original virus at a faster rate. Viruses cause thousands of diseases — ranging from the common cold to AIDS.
- Bacteria: Bacteria are microscopic single-celled organisms that can cause illnesses like, urinary tract infections and tuberculosis.
- Fungi: Fungi causes many skin diseases such as ringworm, Candidiasis (Yeast Infection) Athlete’s Foot (Tinea Pedis). Other types of fungi can infect your lungs or nervous system.
- Parasites: Tiny parasites cause disease like malaria, and this parasite is transmitted by mosquito. Other parasites may be transmitted to humans from animal faeces.
Factors That Brings About Diseases
Every year, millions of people travel around the globe, often transporting disease-causing agents. International travellers spread virtually all contagious virulent infections.
Some bacteria have developed resistance to antibiotics.
Many people have less or no practical knowledge of how to prevent disease.
Poverty and poor economy often hinder government effort to control the spread of disease.
Ways You Can Contact disease
Direct contact: This is an easy way to catch most infectious diseases is by coming in contact with the individual or animal who has the infection. Infectious disease can spread through the following ways;
- Human to human: This is one of the common ways infectious diseases can spread from one person to another through the direct transfer of the viruses, bacteria or other germs. This happens when the person with the bacterium or virus touches or shakes your hand, hugs, coughs or sneezes on a noninfected person, or by riding on tiny droplets in someone’s cough or sneeze. These germs can also spread through the exchange of body fluids from sexual contact.
- Animal to Human: Some microbes that live harmlessly inside an animal can cause disease you. If any animal or pet scratch or bite or scratch you, or you are exposed to its feces, you can be infected with diseases.
- Mother to Unborn Chilld: If a pregnant woman is infected with disease, the disease can infect the unborn child. During birth germs in the vagina can be transmitted to the baby. Some germs can also pass through the placenta.
Indirect Contact:This another way you can contact diseases. Microorganisms from other people may lurk on such items as doorknobs, handrails, telephones, remote controls, or computer screens and keyboards. for example if you touched a remote control handled by someone ill with the flu or a cold, You are likely to pick up that disease. If youuse that hand to touched your eyes, nose or mouth bfore washing your hands, you can be infected with the flu or cold.
Food Contamination: Another way that health treathening disease can invade your body is when your food and water is contaminated. This mechanism of transmission allows germs to be spread to many people through a single source. Contaminated food sometimes still look fresh but when eaten it infect your body with disease.
Insect Bites: Some germs are carried to humans body by insect. Examples of disease carrying insects are mosquitoes, fleas, lice or ticks. Mosquitoes can carry the malaria parasite or West Nile virus, and deer ticks may carry the bacterium that causes Lyme disease.
How to Protect Yourself And Other From Diseases
Just like a walled city that protects its inhabitance need maintenance for proper safety, Your body needs the care to bolster your defences. We have carefully examined ways you can protect yourself and others from diseases. Consider the following steps on how to protect yourself and others from disease.
1. Protect your water
Water is what you need every day for drinking, washing, bathing, cooking and cleaning. You need clean and uncontaminated water for a better living. Because harmful organisms can get into your body by way of contaminated water. Protect your water supply from contamination. If you know that your water supply is contaminated treat the water at home and make it safe, either by adding chlorine, filtering, and boiling. Store potable water in a closed vessel, and dispense it hygienically with a clean ladle or through a tap. Never put your hand into a clean water supply. Try to live in a community that properly disposes of human waste so that it does not contaminate local water sources. When your water is free of contamination you can protect yourself and others from diseases.
2. Protect your food
Food safety has been a problem for many people. But protecting your food is simple if you can make a habit. Harmful organisms can be present in or on your food but unknown to us. Contaminated food may look fresh and nutritious to our eyes. So always wash all fruits, vegetables raw meats thoroughly before use. Always wash your food utensils and your hands before and after preparing or serving food. Make sure your food is done when cooking so as to destroy dangerous microbes and store them at the proper temperature. Avoid preparing food for others when you are sick. Refrigerate unused food as soon as possible.
3. Protect yourself from disease-carrying insects
Some insect such as houseflies and mosquitoes can infect you with harmful microorganisms that live inside them. This can happen if this insect steps on your open food and fruits or direct contact with you. Try to limit contact with disease-carrying insects by wearing protective clothing, such as long sleeves and trousers or by staying indoors when they are active. Dispose of all waste properly to scare aware houseflies. Sleep under treated insects nets, and use personal insect repellent. Eliminate containers of stagnant water where mosquitoes can breed.
4. Protect yourself from sick people
Avoid direct contact with a sick person. When you are visiting a sick person do not hug or shake hand with them to avoid spreading through skin contact. Avoid contact with body fluids from other people, including blood and products derived blood. Wash your hands thoroughly and frequently.
5. Protect yourself from animals
Microbes that live harmlessly inside an animal can threaten your health. If you are bitten or scratched by a pet or another animal or expose to it faeces, you could be at risk. Wash your hands after touching a domestic animal and avoid all contact with wild animals. If you are bitten or scratched wash the wound thoroughly and seek advice from the doctor. Minimize your contact with your animals by keeping them outside your living room.
6. Wash Your Hands Frequently
Microorganisms from other people may lurk on such items as doorknobs, handrails, remote controls telephones or computer screens and keyboards. Wash your hands after using such items. Wash your hands before and after preparing food, before eating, after using the toilet and after helping a young child to use the toilet. Washing of your hands often and often with soap and rushing can protect you and others from disease
7. Stay Home When Sick
Do not go out when you have diarrhoea or fever. Do not allow your child to go to school or play with other children if they are sick to avoid the spread of the disease.
8. Cough or Sneeze into Tissue or Sleeve
Do not cough or sneeze into your hand to avoid using the hand to touch eyes, nose and mouth since this that is a common way germ enters the body.
9. Get Vaccinated
Immunization can prevent many infectious diseases. There are vaccines for children and adults that can provide protection against many communicable diseases. Be sure to keep up to date on your recommended vaccinations, as well as your children’s.
10. Travel Wisely
When you are planning a travel outside your region or country, talk to your doctor about any special vaccinations that you may need to go with that you can take to bolster your defence against disease.
11. Do Not Share Personal Item
Do not share personal items, such as razors, toothbrushes, drinking glasses or towel. Dispose of all used items like needles, razors etc properly.
12. Clean and Disinfect Common Used Surfaces
Clean all surfaces with soap and water after use to avoid germs living the surface. Try to regularly disinfect your bathroom and kitchen. Disinfect other areas if someone in the house is ill.
Practising the above steps can help to protect you and others from diseases. So inform yourself by consulting local health services and conceal yourself from danger by practising good hygiene. Bolster your defences and protect your self and others from disease transmission.
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