Causes and Spread of Infection

1. 1Identify the differences between bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites. Bacterial and fungi infections are easy to cure with the use of antibiotics, where as viruses can be hard to cure or vaccinate against, such as the common cold. Bacteria can be found everywhere and anywhere Soil, Water, Plants, Animals, material and even deep in the earth’s crust. Bacteria feed themselves by making there food with the use of sunlight and water. We would not be able to live without Bacteria.

The human body consists of lots of friendly bacteria which also protect us from dangerous ones by occupying places in the body. Some of the most deadly diseases and devastating epidemics in human history have been caused by Bacteria. Pneumonia, Tuberculosis and Typhoid are three Bacterial diseases which have destroyed hundreds of millions of human lives. Fungi are similar to plants in many ways but Fungi cannot make there own food. Fungi have to release digestive enzymes that decompose things around them, turning them into food.

The fungus then absorbs the dissolved foods through the walls of its cells. Fungi can cause serious diseases to humans a example is vaginal yeast infection which is caused by overgrowth of fungus Small amounts of yeast are always in the vagina. But when too much yeast grows, you can get an infection. We also use Fungi for example yeast in food manufacturing. Yeast is needed for the fermentation of wine, beers and other alcoholic drinks. We add yeast to dough to make the bread rise when we bake it. Fungi are also used in agriculture for pest control and to protect crops from diseases.

Many types of antibiotics come from fungi, such as penicillin. Penicillin works by destroying the wall of a bacterial cell. Fungal antibiotics are extensively used for treating tuberculosis. Fungi also cause athletes foot and thrush. A parasite is an organism that lives in another organism, called the host, and often harms it. It is dependent on its host for survival, it has to be in the host to live, grow and multiply. A parasite cannot live independently. There are three main types of parasitic diseases, one of which is Protozoa this parasite is a single-cell organism which causes malaria.

Another one is Helminths which is the cause for worm parasites such as roundworm, pinworm, trichina spiralis, and tapeworm. You can be infected with parasites mostly from eating uncooked fish, beef, pork or lamb. Also from drinking dirty water which is infected with human or animal feces and even from skin to skin contact, sharing bedding and wearing the same clothes. Viruses are not living but bacteria, fungi and parasites are. They cannot grow or multiply on their own and need to enter a human or animal cell and take over the cell to help them multiply.

These viruses may also infect bacterial cells. The virus particles are 100 times smaller than a single bacteria cell. Viruses are tiny organisms that may lead to mild to severe illnesses in humans, animals and plants. This may include flu or a cold to something more life threatening like HIV/AIDS. Viruses enter the body from the environment or other individuals from soil to water to air via nose, mouth, or any breaks in the skin and seek a cell to infect. cold or flu virus for example will target cells that line the respiratory or digestive tracts.

Viruses also cause chicken pox, measles, mumps, rubella and German measles. 1. 2– Identify common illnesses and infections caused by bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites. Diseases caused by fungi are Athlete’s foot and Thrush these can both be treated with anti fungal cream. Diseases caused by bacteria are tonsillitis, Meningitis, tuberculosis, salmonella, and whooping cough and can be treated with antibiotics. Here are some diseases caused by viruses, chicken pox, common cold, influenza, flu, measles, mumps, rubella and German measles these viruses cannot be treated.

1. 3– Describe what is meant by infection and colonisation. Colonisation is when your body is being invaded by disease and bacteria that can cause the body’s immune system to break down. Infection is when foreign bodies such as bacteria, fungi and parasites invade your body these germs can cause disease and can even lead to amputation or even death in the host body. An infection may cause no symptoms or it may cause symptoms where you become really symptomatic and be hospitalized. 1. 4-Explain what is meant by systemic infection and localised infection.

A localised infection is an infection that is limited to a specific body part or region. Localised infection for example is tonsillitis, ear infection, and sinusitis A systemic infection is the opposite, which is when the infection is throughout the whole body or can affect a number of organs and tissues, so any infection in your blood stream is known as a systemic infection such as HIV/AIDS. Another example is Diabetes and hyper or hypo tension. 1. 5-Identify poor practices that may lead to the spread of infection.

Poor practices that can lead to the spread of infection can be: Poor hand hygiene – spread of germs from one patient to another or spread for hands to surfaces. Dirty equipment – having dirty equipment which is not cleaned between patients can spread infection very fast lots of bacteria can be spread on a blood pressure cuff for example. Over flowing waste bins, personal hygiene, keeping work spaces clean and tidy and washing of uniform. Understanding the transmission of infection. 2. 1- Explain the conditions needed for growth of micro-organisms.

Most micro organisms need warmth and grow best within temperatures ranging from 20°C to 40°C although some micro organisms can grow at temperatures 0°C to 20°C and some higher at 40°C below is a picture diagram of which organisms grow at different temperatures. They need moisture and air to multiply but some can without. A single micro organism can become two in around 20 minutes, this varies on the type of different micro organism. 2. 2-Explain the ways an affective agent might enter the body Most people get infections of some sort or another. Infections can enter your body several ways for example breaks in the skin.

If you have a cut or breakage on your skin it provides a route for infection to enter although bites scratches, needles stick injuries increase the risk of infection. Another way for infection to enter the body is into your mouth or nose where food, drink or other infected products can be swallowed and infect the stomach or bowels. Most people have had diarrhoea and or vomiting which can be a sign of eating something bad. Or even food poisoning which is the infection of bacteria in undercooked food. Also infection can be transmitted up your Up the urinary and reproductive system, from small yeast infections to sexually transmitted diseases.

2. 3- Identify common sources of infection: 2. 4- Explain how infective agents can be transmitted to a person: Humans can catch infection from several different ways these can be air bourn, blood Bourne, sexually transmitted, direct contact, faecal or oral transmission or from water or animals. Air Bourne: Tuberculosis for example is Air Bourne and is transmitted from small particles carrying bacteria, these particles are spread by coughing and sneezing by patients. Blood Bourne: Many health care workers have risk to exposure to blood borne viruses.

Direct contact of infected patient blood with skin cuts area a source of transmission. Accidental needle pricks with infected blood can also be a source of transmission. Sexually transmitted diseases: Many diseases can be spread through sexual intercourse for example, Syphilis, Gonorrhoea, Hepatitis C, Hepatitis B, HIV, HPV. Faecal or oral transmission: Oral transmissions of infection are usually transmitted via contamination of drinking water or food with faeces and by people not washing their hands before preparing food. Also this can be from untreated sewage being released into a drinking water supply.

Water as a source of infection: A common and dangerous disease transmitted through water is called Legionella and can be found in warm water systems such as showers, cooling towers and humidifiers. 2. 5-Identify the key factors that will make it more likely that infection will occur: Infections are more likely to occur if a patient already has a low immune system for example a cancer patient. Another big key factor is if patients have a raised BMI (body mass index). If patients are around dirty or contaminated areas there is more likely to be more infection risk.

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