Bacterial diseases include any type of illness caused by bacteria. Bacteria are a type of microorganism, which are tiny forms of life that can only be seen with a microscope. Other types of microorganisms include viruses, some fungi, and some parasites.
Millions of bacteria normally live on the skin, in the intestines, and on the genitalia. The vast majority of bacteria do not cause disease, and many bacteria are actually helpful and even necessary for good health. These bacteria are sometimes referred to as “good bacteria” or “healthy bacteria.”
Harmful bacteria that cause bacterial infections and disease are called pathogenic bacteria. Bacterial diseases occur when pathogenic bacteria get into the body and begin to reproduce and crowd out healthy bacteria, or to grow in tissues that are normally sterile. Harmful bacteria may also emit toxins that damage the body.
COMMON PATHOGENIC BACTERIA AND THE TYPES OF BACTERIAL DISEASES THEY CAUSE INCLUDE :
1. Escherichia coli and Salmonella cause food poisoning.
2. Helicobacter pylori cause gastritis and ulcers.
3. Neisseria gonorrhoeae causes the sexually transmitted disease gonorrhea.
4. Neisseria meningitides cause meningitis.
5. Staphylococcus aureus causes a variety of infections in the body, including boils, cellulitis, abscesses, wound infections, toxic shock syndrome, pneumonia, and food poisoning.
6. Streptococcal bacteria cause a variety of infections in the body, including pneumonia, meningitis, ear infections, and strep throat.
These Bacterial diseases are contagious and can result in many serious or life-threatening complications, such as blood poisoning (bacteremia), kidney failure, and toxic shock syndrome.
SYMPTOMS OF BACTERIAL DISEASES :
1. Bloody urine and painful, frequent urination
3. Flu-like symptoms (fatigue, fever, sore throat, headache, cough, aches and pains)
5. Nausea and vomiting
6. Pain such as joint, ear or abdominal pain.
7. Rashes, lesions, and abscesses
8. Stiff neck
In infants, signs of a bacterial disease can also include:
- Bulging of the soft spot on the top of the head
- Difficulty with feeding
- Excessive crying or fussiness
- Excessive sleepiness
SERIOUS SYMPTOMS THAT MIGHT INDICATE A LIFE-THREATENING CONDITION :
- Confusion or delirium
- Deep, wet chest cough that produces yellow, green or brownish phlegm
- Difficulty breathing, wheezing or shortness of breath
- High fever (higher than 101 degrees)
- Inappropriate change in alertness or level of consciousness
- Infants: sunken fontanel (soft spot) on the top of the head, lethargy, no tears with crying, and few or no wet diapers
- Lethargy or unresponsiveness
- Not urinating or urinating small amounts of tea-colored urine
CAUSES OF BACTERIAL DISEASES :
Bacterial diseases are caused by harmful bacteria (pathogenic bacteria). The vast majority of bacteria do not cause disease, and many bacteria are actually helpful and even necessary for good health. Bacterial diseases occur when pathogenic bacteria get into an area of the body that is normally sterile, such as the bladder, or when they crowd out the helpful bacteria in places such as the intestines, vagina or mouth. Less common, bacterial infections can occur when healthy bacteria multiply uncontrollably.
WAYS THROUGH WHICH PATHOGENIC BACTERIA CAN ENTER THE BODY :
1. Contamination of bites, cuts, rashes, abrasions, and other breaks in the skin, gums and tissues
2. Eating contaminated food
3. Getting bitten by an infected insect
4. Having sexual contact with an infected person
5. Inhaling contaminated air-borne droplets into the nose and lungs
6. Kissing an infected person
7. Sharing needles for tattooing or drug use