Infection facts for kids
Infection is the invasion of an organism's body tissues by disease-causing agents. The disease is caused by the invading agents multiplying. As they multiply, they produce toxins and damage host tissues. Infectious disease, also known as 'transmissible disease' or 'communicable disease', is illness resulting from an infection.
- Common infectious diseases
- Getting infectious disease
- Stopping infectious disease
- Treating infectious disease
- Images for kids
Common infectious diseases
Diseases caused by bacteria
- Tuberculosis - also called TB.
- Bubonic plague
- Pertussis - also called whooping cough
Diseases caused by viruses
Diseases caused by fungus
- athlete's foot
Diseases caused by parasites
- Malaria (carried by mosquitos)
- Schistosomiasis (flat worms)
- Chagas disease
Diseases caused by proteins
- Prions are proteins which act as infectious diseases.
Diseases caused by many infectious agents
Some infections are caused by different infectious agents at different times. For example, some diarrhea is caused by bacteria. Some is caused by viruses.
This is a very short list. There are many more diseases from infection and other causes: common diseases.
Getting infectious disease
Some diseases can be passed from one person to another easily. Other infectious diseases are harder to get. If a person kiss or touches another person who is infected with the flu, a cold, measles, or a sore throat, he or she may get their disease. They may also give the person their disease if they cough on them. Other medical conditions such as AIDS, herpes, and hepatitis B, are only passed by closer contact. Blood transfusions, or touching their blood or urine can sometimes pass on these conditions or diseases.
Stopping infectious disease
People can stop disease by:
- Covering the mouth every time during coughing
- Only drinking clean water
- Only eating very cooked meat
Treating infectious disease
Bacteria are usually treated with antibiotic medicines like Tetracycline and Penicillin. Viruses will not be killed by antibiotics. They must be treated with special medicines called antivirals. Medicines to treat HIV/AIDS like zidovudine are antivirals. Antifungals like miconazole and fluconazole treat infections from fungus. Anti-parasitic medicines like Praziquantel and mebendazole.
Some infectious diseases have no treatments that work well. For example, there is no medicine that works well to cure West Nile Virus and Rabies. So it is important to avoid getting these diseases.
Some infectious disease goes away on its own. These mild diseases do not need to be treated. For example colds are caused by viruses and they do not need medicines.
Some diseases can be prevented by immunizations. Immunizations try to make a person have an immune reaction to an infectious agent. This is usually done before the person gets the disease. Examples of diseases prevented by immunizations are: polio, tetanus, and pertussis. In some cases, if all of the disease can be removed from society, we can get rid of the disease completely. An example of this is smallpox. This virus used to kill people, cause blindness, and bad scars. Now there has not been a person who had smallpox in over thirty years.
Images for kids
Four nutrient agar plates growing colonies of common Gram negative bacteria.
Washing one's hands, a form of hygiene, is an effective way to prevent the spread of infectious disease.
Mary Mallon (a.k.a. Typhoid Mary) was an asymptomatic carrier of typhoid fever. Over the course of her career as a cook, she infected 53 people, three of whom died.
East German postage stamps depicting four antique microscopes. Advancements in microscopy were essential to the early study of infectious diseases.
|Mary the Jewess|