We have all learned about germs the hard way - common colds, stomach infections, the flu, and the like. It is an underrated fact about germs that exist on every surface imaginable, and everything tangible is vulnerable. For humans, the most important thing is the body. Your body's immunity protects you against most germs, but some remain persistent, becoming challenging to neutralize with drugs or other treatment.
The only feasible option is knowing what kinds of diseases these infectious agents can cause and what can be done to disinfect spaces you might encounter. For starters, it's always wise to stick with hygienic practices and use modern sanitization products like UVC germicidal lamps to maintain the health and well-being of your loved ones. Today, we'll discuss the most common infectious agents, how they can hurt your health, and practical solutions to eliminate them from your environment.
Common Infectious Agents - Your Worst Enemies
Infectious agents come in various shapes and sizes but they can be broadly classified into five categories:
One-celled organisms that can be seen only through a microscope, bacteria is the most well-known infectious agent. They derive their energy from photosynthesis or directly from the sun, or even by oxidizing inorganic compounds. Some generate energy by breaking down organic compounds such as amino acids and sugars in a respiratory process. Some bacteria like the Staphylococcus aureus can cause skin, respiratory, and wound infections, or the Clostridium tetani, which produces a toxin that can be fatal for humans. Although they are infectious agents, not all bacteria are harmful. Lactobacillus, Acidophilus, which resides in the gut, helps in the digestion of food. Some also help in the fermentation of food, giving way to culinary wonders like kombucha or yogurt. Disease-causing bacteria can produce toxins, which are potent chemicals that damage cells and tissues.
Viruses are capsules that contain genetic material, are smaller than cells, and contain protein and lipid molecules that protect them. They need host cells to reproduce in the body, taking control of the cells to multiply the virus and infecting new cells. Often, host cells are destroyed during the process. But more potent strains of the virus can, unfortunately, change the function of the cell, causing a plethora of diseases, including the one currently threatening populations globally.
Chickenpox, AIDS, SARS are all caused due to viruses. Certain age groups are more prone to contracting viruses, especially those whose immune system has been compromised either by age or comorbidity, like diabetes or cardiovascular disease. They can also infect plants, animals, and other pathogens like fungi and bacteria. Most treatments aim to relieve symptoms while the immune system is left to fight the virus naturally, without external medication.
One of the lesser toxic agents, fungi, is used in various cuisines and meals worldwide, for example, mushrooms. They also help in the decomposition of natural materials yet, not all fungi are the same. Some can cause yeast infections in the genitals, mouth, and throat. Some fungi also affect the skin, causing ringworm or histoplasmosis, a kind of lung infection. Several types of fungi can cause infections in patients who are undergoing antibiotic treatment or are immunocompromised. Usually, a rash may signify a fungal skin infection.
Single-celled organisms that act like microscopic animals due to their hunter- gatherer process, protozoans are primarily found in the intestinal tract and are relatively harmless. Still, a few cause diseases like malaria, which is caused by the Plasmodium parasite. Part of their life span is spent outside the host body, residing in food, insects, water, or soil. Therefore, ingesting the wrong food or being bitten by a particular insect can cause various diseases to flare.
Helminths are larger parasites, often known as 'worms.' When these helminths or their eggs enter the body, residing in the organs, they feed off your body's nutrients. Common helminths include tapeworms and roundworms. Once they develop fully, they become visible to the naked eye. Since their physiology is similar to humans, sometimes it becomes difficult to treat the diseases that surface due to an infection as the drugs that would kill helminths are toxic to human cells.
Infection vs. Disease
Infection occurs after the agents enter and cause harm to the body's cells. A disease occurs when the cells are damaged due to infection, and the body begins to emit signs of illness. The immune system uses its white blood cells, antibodies, and other mechanisms to fight off the infection before it becomes a disease. Usually, symptoms of a more significant illness are a result of this process.
How to safeguard your body Since there is no 100% solution to immunity from these infectious agents, prevention works better than cure. In the backdrop of the pandemic, it is necessary to increase tactics that prevent infections.
1. Washing your hands regularly
- One of the easiest failsafe methods to prevent infections is by making sure you wash your hands after coming in contact with things that are in public spaces or even within your own home that might be vulnerable to retaining these agents for an extended period.
2. Invest in a UVC technology
- A disinfection method that uses short-wavelength ultraviolet light (UV-C) to kill or neutralize microorganisms can be used to disinfect objects or spaces frequently touched. These UVC sanitizing products can be found in various shapes and sizes. From a compact handheld device to a tower that can radiate UV light in all corners of a large room, the options in the market are many.
3. Avoid close contact with people who are sick
Although visiting a sick friend or relative might feel kind, it is vital to keep physical intimacy with sick people at bay in light of the pandemic. It may not be that the person might infect you, but the chances are that agents on your cloth or inside your body might enter the patient's system and derail the process of treatment.
4. Clean surfaces that are touched often
- Sanitization is critical. Whether UVC products or alcohol-based sanitizers, the main idea is to minimize the risk of touching an infected area, especially in public places.
- Many vaccines have been developed to prevent severely debilitating diseases, and your best bet might be to get a shot from your local hospital to keep infections at bay. When to Seek Medical Care? Medical care becomes imperative when the body begins to deteriorate rapidly, causing fever, rapid heartbeat, difficulty breathing or vision, or persistent headaches or vomiting. SmartUV hosts the best UV-C disinfection lamps for commercial and household purposes.
Contact our team today if you have any queries or concerns regarding UV-C light, disinfection products like lamps and wands, wavelength, safety, and other general UV light questions. Get in touch with us to buy UVC germicidal lamps suitable for any purpose.We've got you covered.
*Scientific laboratory tests do show that UVC light, like the one radiated by The Apollo, SmartUV Wand, SmartAir, and SmartAir Pro,