Abdominal cramps, diarrhea, vomiting with slight fever and fatigue are some uncomfortable symptoms we often face and it might continue for a week before we get better. When you visit the doctor, he may mention that you have got e.coli, but what is it? We’ll discuss in details about what e.coli is and how we can get rid of it.
E. Coli is the shortened name of Escherichia coli bacterium found in the gut of individuals and animals. Since it is part of our intestines, so they are not harmful but some of the bacterium called the E. coli O157: H7 are nasty and cause severe abdominal cramps with bloody diarrhea. The bacterium is especially contracted from contaminated water, undercooked beef and raw vegetables and healthy adults have the chances of recovering from this infection within a week. This bacterium if consumed makes you feel extremely sick and causes cramps in the abdomen, vomiting and bloody diarrhea. In children, it can cause acute kidney failure. Some life-threatening symptoms can include:
- Acute kidney failure
In case you experience any of these symptoms, seek medical assistance.
How can you get infected with the E.coli bacteria?
The strain of bacteria that causes the infection can enter the human body in a number of ways:
Improper handling of food
It is important to wash and prepare foods at a safe temperature before consumption; otherwise, it may cause contamination. Some common food poisoning causes are –
- Not washing hands well before cooking and eating food
- Using chopping boards, utensils and serving dishes that are not cleaned well can lead to cross-contamination
- Consuming foods that are not stored at the right temperature
- Consuming meat and poultry that are undercooked
- Having raw seafood products
- Drinking unpasteurized milk
Ground meat carries E.coli bacteria that are harmful. If the meat is not properly cooked at the right temperature that will kill the bacteria, you can get contaminated. In the processing house, sometimes these bacteria from the intestines of the animals enter the meat contaminating them.
Fruits and veggies
You might fruits and vegetables from a farm that is tainted with contaminated water. Spinach and lettuce are vulnerable to this type of contamination.
Other infected people
If you are cleaning up after an infected child and do not wash your hands properly, you are at risk of getting E.Coli. So if you have cleaned your kid, wash your hands really well followed by a sanitizer before eating.
Contamination in kitchen
You must have different sets of knives for a different purpose to avoid contamination. If you have cut raw meat with a particular knife don’t use it to cut veggies for a salad. That way you are allowing contamination in your own kitchen.
Treatment of E.coli
There are particularly no medications to treat E.Coli. The infection can be effectively treated with home care like taking rest, drinking a lot of fluids and easily digestible food. If your symptoms get severe, call your doctor at once. Don’t consume any OTC anti-diarrheal medications. If your infant or children is having E.coli consult a doctor at once.