All You Need to Know About Hepatitis Prevention
Hepatitis is a condition that affects the liver and causes inflammation. It may be one of many types – mainly A, B, C, D, and E – and can be acute or chronic. Hepatitis viruses are predominantly spread through contaminated water & food and infected fluids. The major modes of transmission are, consumption of contaminated food, coming in close contact with an infected person or having sexual relations with an infected person. Some viruses can also be transmitted from a mother to the baby during childbirth.
Here are some ways to prevent hepatitis infection:
- Following hygienic practices
Hepatitis A and E are passed on through faecal matter and by consuming contaminated food and water. Types B, C, and D are spread through infected fluids. This may be through sexual contact, sharing of needles, etc. Knowing how the disease spreads and avoiding placing yourself at a risk is one way to prevent the disease. Always use sterilised equipment, watch what you eat and stay away from places without proper sanitation.
Taking the strictest care may sometimes not work, because it is difficult to identify infected people when there are no symptoms. There are vaccines available for hepatitis A and B, but not for C, D, and E. However, since hepatitis D virus can attack only if the hepatitis B virus is already present, getting immunisation against HBV (before it attacks) will protect you from HDV too.
- Practice safe sex
Always practice safe sex and avoid unprotected sexual contact or sexual intercourse with multiple partners.
- Avoid alcohol and drugs
Excessive alcohol consumption and certain medications can be toxic to the liver, leading to inflammation. Stay away from such toxic substances.
- Take precautions during travel
Some types of hepatitis are highly prevalent in areas without proper sanitation, such as parts of Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Mexico, etc. Check for travel advisories and get a vaccine before going to these areas and make sure you consume uncontaminated food and clean water.
Basic steps such as these can stand you in good stead. Just that extra bit of care – keeping yourself clean, washing your hands before and after eating, avoiding street food, etc. – can keep the hepatitis virus away. Get vaccinated as early as possible, just to be sure. To get quick and accurate testing for Hepatitis, in a hygienic facility, contact Apollo Diagnostics to book an appointment.