Cholera is an infectious disorder that triggers severe watery diahrrea, which can lead to dehydration and even death if untreated. It is produced by the consuming food or drinking water contaminated with a bacterium known as Vibrio cholerae.
This infectious disease is very common in the regions of poor sanitation, crowding, war, and famine. Common areas comprise some parts of Africa, Latin America and south Asia.
Causes of Cholera
Cholera is caused by bacterium Vibrio choleraewhich is commonly found in water or food contaminated by feces from an infected person. Following are the most common sources of the Cholera infection:
- Municipal water supplies
- Foods and drinks sold by street sellers
- Vegetables grown with water comprising human wastes
- Raw or undercooked fish and seafood caught in waters contaminated with sewage
- By consuming the contaminated food or water, the bacteria release a toxin in the intestines that causes severe diahrrea.
Symptoms of cholera can start as soon as a few hours or as long as five days after infection. Often, symptoms are mild. But sometimes they are very serious. The infected person having severe watery diarrhea and vomiting, which can cause dehydration. In some cases, the infected people may have less or no symptoms but still spread the infection.
Signs and symptoms of due to dehydration include:
- Fast heartrate
- Loss the elasticity of skin
- Dry mucous membranes (insidemouth, throat, nose, and eyelids)
- Low blood pressure
- Muscle cramps
Cholera Treatment and Prevention
Cholera vaccines are present. A person can be kept himself and his family away from cholera by drinking boiled, bottled or chemically disinfected water. Used the bottled, boiled, or chemically disinfected water for the following purposes:
- Cooking food or drinks
- Preparing ice
- Washing your face and hands
- Washing utensils that you use to eat or cook food
- Washing vegetables and fruits
Avoid the following raw foods:
- Unpeeled vegetables and fruits
- Unpasteurized milk and milk products
- Raw or undercooked meat or shellfish
Hydration is the strength of treatment for cholera. The cholera treatment comprises of oral or intravenous solutions to substitute lost fluids and antibiotics.