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By Greg Garner
Microorganisms that live in the bloodstream of humans are called blood borne pathogens. They are a major cause of various types of illness and disease in humans. They can be transmitted through exposure to contaminated blood. If even the smallest amount of blood contaminated with blood borne pathogens enters your bloodstream, you can contract whatever disease is in that blood. In fact, contamination through the blood is almost a guarantee, depending on the disease. Some of these pathogens can be contracted in other ways, without blood-to-blood transference. Some examples of blood transference include a blood transfusion, blood spatter contacting the eyes, mouth, or mucus membranes in the nose, or allowing contaminated blood to come into contact with your skin where there is a break or cut in the skin.
The Many Ways Of Contracting BBP
There are many ways that blood pathogens can be transmitted from person to person. Blood pathogens can exist on needles, razors, a non-sterilized scalpel, or even broken glass or jagged edged rocks. If you come into contact with any of the objects that have been contaminated with blood borne pathogens, seek emergency medical assistance immediately. If you have an open cut or abrasion that comes into contact with any blood or even other common bodily fluids like sperm or mucus, you can contract a blood borne disease. Sexual relations is one of the most common ways to transmit disease.
The Many Myths Of Contracting BBP
There are just as many myths about how you can contract a blood borne pathogen, as there are ways to contract one. A good for instance of this is the pool scare of the early 1990s as all across the world, public pools were shut down when a news report raised the question of whether AIDS could be contracted from swimming in the same swimming pool as a person with HIV. HIV is a very weak disease as far as infection goes. For instance, the HIV virus is not found in urine. However, Hepatitis is very infectious. If a swimming pool is not treated with chlorine and other chemicals that all pools are supposed to be treated with, the chance of contracting a blood borne pathogen exists. All public pools are supposed to be treated with these chemicals. This is especially true of state or local government controlled pools.
Variations Of Blood Borne Pathogens
Some blood borne pathogens are more infectious than others are. You cannot contract AIDS or Hepatitis from a mosquito bite but you can contract other blood borne pathogens, such as malaria. You cannot contract a blood borne pathogen by sitting on a toilet seat that a carrier of a blood borne pathogen has used. Blood borne pathogens are not airborne so they cannot be contracted from sneezing or coughing. You cannot contract a blood borne pathogen from just touching someone unless you have an open wound and you touch their blood.
Common Sense And Blood Borne Pathogens
There are many diseases that are considered blood borne pathogens and more are being discovered every year. As the list of these diseases continues to grow, the need for public awareness becomes more important. Everyone should know how to protect them selves from blood contamination but there is no substitute for common sense. If you know someone who has a blood borne pathogen, do not be afraid. Take every precaution to avoid contact with anything that could have blood contamination.
About the Author: For more information please visit our Bloodborne Pathogen Training website.
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