As a special tribute to World Tuberculosis Day 2016, you as the healthy community should know that you can control and stop TB from spreading. Tuberculosis is an infectious disease which is an airborne disease that caused by the germ called Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
Overall, this disease can affect the patient’s lungs but some other cases Tuberculosis or TB also can affect another part of your bodies such as bones, brain and kidneys. The window period of this disease might be within weeks or 2 years later for the symptoms to show up.
How do you catch Tuberculosis in general?
Tuberculosis is easily infecting people because it is one of the airborne diseases that easy to spread such as H1N1 and Mers-Cov. What makes it so contagious is the germ is released to nearest contact via sneezes and coughs. So the nearest contact will inhale the air that contains the infected droplets and introduce the germ inside of the body.
The easiest contact to get Tuberculosis is among the family members and colleagues because they happen to be in the same place with the infected person. The risk to be infected is high if you are among the person that frequently having contact with the infected person every day. Furthermore, if you have another health issue, it is also the helping factors for you to be more susceptible to be infected. The health concerns are such as:
- Diabetes patient, HIV patient, pregnant woman, or receiving cancer treatment because these people are the one who in the weakest immune condition;
- Poor lifestyle such as smoking, didn’t take a proper diet or a balanced meal, and drinking alcohol;
- The young children and the elder person are also vulnerable because their immunity can be easily compromised;
Can tuberculosis be treated?
The good news is, this terrible and deadly disease is treatable. Once you are diagnosed with Tuberculosis, you have to make sure that you take the medication as prescribed and do not forget to pay attention to your doctor’s advice. 2 weeks after your first medicine intake is the time that you have to pay a high attention to your medication because you need to make the germ got weakened before you can go to work or school like usual.
This germ is a little bit tricky to kill, it has 3 layers of skin and the medication is killing it by destructing the layers one by one. In early medication, you will feel very healthy like a horse again because the first layer of the germ was destructed and the germ was successfully weakened. But, do not stop taking your medication because you still have another 2 layers left to take care off. This is why you have to take the medicine accordingly without missing a single dose to ensure the germ is completely removed from your body or it will be back stronger and attack your body even greater.
How can I help from spreading TB?
No matter if you are the patient or the healthy person, you can help your own community from spreading TB. These are the steps for you to help TB from spreading:
- Always remember to take all of your medications accordingly and never skip a dose.
- Meet your doctor as instructed to monitor your health condition.
- Whenever you feel like sneezing or coughing, you need to cover your mouth with a tissue and then put the tissue in a plastic bag or any closed bag before throwing it away into the garbage bin.
- Bring along a small hand sanitizer so you can clean your hands every time you are coughing and sneezing immediately to reduce germ spreading by hand contact.
- You have to wait at least 2 weeks at home before you can go to school, college or work again. Sleep in the different bedroom to avoid them from getting infected at least 2 weeks after you diagnosed and taking Tuberculosis prescription.
- Enhance the air ventilation in your house to avoid the germ density and potential of spreading.
- If your family member is a Tuberculosis patient, you should take Mantoux test or sputum check to ensure if you are infected so you can straight to get the medication if needed. If you have HIV or other health concern, it is better for you to get Mantoux test as an early precaution.
- If you feel like your weight is suddenly dropping, you don’t have the appetite to eat and you can’t sleep at night due to body heat or sweating, please see your doctor immediately for the suspect of TB.
- Self-hygiene is important so you better bring along a hand sanitizer to keep your hand free of germs.
- Do not hesitate to educate your family and friends about TB if there are TB cases in your community.
- If you know any TB patient who is under treatment but doesn’t take their prescription accordingly, please let the authority know as fast as possible so immediate action can be taken.
- Give your help and support to the TB patients so they can keep following the doctor’s advice and take their medications on time.
By taking preventive measures you are helping your family and friends to stay aware of this disease and you can avoid it from spreading to each other. Together you really can make the difference and stop Tuberculosis from spreading for a better community and free of Tuberculosis.