Tag Archive: Bacterial Infections

  1. RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus): What You Need to Know

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    RSV girl in mask

    What You Should Know About RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus)

    The Respiratory Syncytial Virus is a contagious viral infection that is most commonly found in children and infants. It usually affects the lungs of the person and it can last up to 2 weeks. While this disease is not considered to be extremely dangerous for healthy people, it can cause major problems among infants as well as those who may be already suffering from lung or heart problems.

    Respiratory Syncytial Virus in Babies

    Children that are born prematurely are most susceptible to this virus. When a premature birth takes place, the baby’s lungs are not formed completely. This makes the lungs weak and more susceptible to catching RSV. It can cause severe symptoms of bronchitis and lung problems, leading to pneumonia and other complications. This can be life-threatening for the child and requires immediate hospitalization.

    Other children often suffer from RSV and get cured in a couple of weeks. A lot of them usually get RSV before they turn 2 years old and it lasts for a week or two. RSV is an infectious disease and it spreads very quickly among children and you will often find a sudden outbreak of RSV in your area.

    How to Detect RSV

    RSV usually comes on with a simple cold or cough that lasts for a couple of weeks. If you have a baby that shows any of the below mentioned virus symptoms along with a prolonged cough or cold, you should get in touch with a doctor at Pediatric Partners and make an appointment:

    • A high fever

    • Sudden onset of irritability

    • Problems with breathing normally

    • Refusing to eat

    • Any kind of dehydration

    How to Prevent RSV

    RSV is spread very easily. The most common way of catching this virus is through touching other people who are infected by it or by touching infected surfaces. Especially when a baby is small, it is very important to try to keep the baby away from any kind of infection. Here are some ways to reduce the risk of catching any viral infections, bacterial infections and respiratory system diseases:

    • Wash your hands after touching other people and unfamiliar surfaces.

    • Ask others to wash their hands before they touch or carry your baby.

    • Regularly clean your house with a disinfectant.

    • Stay away from crowded areas.

    • If you hear of a lot of people getting RSV, try to keep your child at home and do not send him or her to school or day care.

    If you suspect that your child is ill, bring them to Pediatric Partners of Winter Haven or take them to the doctor immediately and ask for RSV treatment so that it can be treated before it gets severe.

  2. Bacterial Infections

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    LEARNING TO RECOGNIZE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN BACTERIAL AND VIRAL INFECTIONS

    Viruses and bacteria are both essentially pathogens, or dangerous microscopic organisms that have the capacity to cause one or the other form of illness in human beings. Children are generally more affected by infections, either bacterial or viral, because their immune system still does not have the ability to fight diseases as effectively as an adult’s system can.

    CHARACTERISTICS OF VIRUSES VERSUS BACTERIA

    All viruses are simple parasites that cause us harm. On the other hand, most bacteria are beneficial to our health. Barely 10% are harmful.

    Viral infection – Viruses are parasitic microscopic organisms. When left to themselves in the air, they are potentially harmless. It is only when they come in contact with a host’s body that they turn active and start reproducing and multiplying at super-fast speed. In humans, the uncovered mucous membrane cells are the most prone to being attacked by viruses. This is what makes colds and the flu so common.

    Bacterial infection – Unlike multi-cell viruses, bacteria are single-cell organisms and reproduce asexually. Several bacteria are actually beneficial to humans and are not parasitic organisms. They can reproduce even outside a host’s body. The minute any harmful bacteria enter the human bod,y the defense mechanism kicks off and starts producing antibodies. Any antibiotics that are administered will help in this process.

    HOW THEY ARE TRANSMITTED

    Viral infections are highly contagious and can be transferred even without touching. These viruses get transmitted via sneezing, coughing and vomiting. A person can get infected by a virus due to an insect or animal bite or lack of personal hygiene.

    Bacterial infections can be transmitted by being in very close contact with an infected person. Contaminated water or food can be another cause. Touching objects or surfaces that have been contaminated can cause an infection and bacteria can enter the body through abrasions and cuts on the skin surface.

    DIFFERENCES IN DURATION AND SYMPTOMS

    Viral infections commonly last for a period of ten days. Dizziness, a sore throat, runny nose, watery eyes, diarrhea and a persistent joint ache are common symptoms.

    Bacterial infections can last for up to 2 weeks. Continuous high fever, persistent cough and a thick nasal discharge are the common symptoms. Sinus infection and ear infection are also very common bacterial afflictions.

    Effective vaccinations are available for both bacterial and viral infections. It is imperative to consult a doctor if any of the symptoms above persist beyond a couple of days.

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