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Causes, Symptoms and Treatment of Typhoid

Nithya Lakshmi | September 27, 2018

Typhoid is an infection caused by the bacteria Salmonella Typhi. This infection is often caused due to contaminated food and water. So it is always advisable to wash your hands regularly. Salmonella typhi bacteria is detected from a person’s urine, stool and blood samples. If left untreated for long, this might prove to be fatal. Though this disease has been treated effectively and the overall infection rate has declined over the years, still 3-5%  of humans remain as carriers of this bacteria. This is spread only from human to human as animals don’t carry this bacteria.


What kind of phenomenon gives rise to typhoid fever?

An unhygienic environment is the trigger point. These bacteria are mostly present in the stool of humans. This contaminates the water all around the patients and this, in turn, will affect the food that is cooked using this contaminated water. Washing fruits and vegetables with contaminated water will lead to further ingestion of this bacteria. Such a bacteria can survive for long in the stool, water and sewage. The worst part is, people affected by this bacteria might not be aware of it until it starts showing some serious ill effects.

On consumption of such contaminated food, the bacteria enters the mouth, reaches the gallbladder, intestines, liver, the entire bloodstream, other organs and will reach the bowel. It rests in a patient’s body hiding from the host immune system for weeks.


Symptoms of Typhoid

  • Severe fever up to 30-40 degree Celsius
  • Lethargy or laziness
  • A headache
  • Muscle ache
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Lack of appetite
  • Rashes or red spots over the neck and abdomen region

The symptoms start to develop after a week’s time and will show up even after a month or 30 days from the day of infection. If left untreated, the inner bowel tissues might become perforated. This case is considered to be fatal.


Treatment of Typhoid and Preventive Measures

The only way to treat a typhoid infection is through antibiotics. Consult your doctor and take the appropriate measures if you notice any of the above-mentioned symptoms. Apart from antibiotics, one has to cleanse their body by drinking lots of water to get rid of this bacteria.


Vaccination for Typhoid

If you are traveling to places that are more prone to typhoid disease, then it is advisable to get yourself vaccinated before you leave.


Ways to Prevent Typhoid

  • Drinking only bottled water that’s carbonated or you can have hot water.
  • Refrain from eating at roadside stalls.
  • Pluck fruits on your own if you are eating one and remove the peel. Wash before you eat.
  • Wash your hands before you eat.
  • Do not eat anything being handled by anybody else.

Sanitation/cleanliness is mandatory. This chronic disease can be avoided by maintaining a clean environment.  

Image source: pixabay, max pixel, flickr , public domain

Nithya Lakshmi


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