World Hepatitis Day 2023: Let's Understand Its Types & Tips To Prevent Them
World Hepatitis Day 2023: Below we discuss different types of hepatitis diseases and how to prevent them.
World Hepatitis Day 2023: Hepatitis diseases often lead to liver health issues
World Hepatitis Day is observed on July 28th each year to raise awareness about viral hepatitis and its impact on the global population. It is an opportunity to highlight the need for better access to prevention, testing, and treatment services.
We can utilise this day to bring attention to hepatitis. There are several types of hepatitis diseases, which differ in terms of their causes, transmission routes, durations, and potential outcomes. Keep reading as we list types of hepatitis diseases and how to prevent them.
Here are the different kinds of hepatitis diseases:
1. Hepatitis A (HAV)
It is a highly contagious viral infection transmitted through the fecal-oral route. It typically spreads through contaminated food or water. Vaccines are available for prevention.
2. Hepatitis B (HBV)
It is a viral infection transmitted through blood, sexual contact, or from mother to child during childbirth. It can be acute (short-term) or chronic (long-term). Vaccines are available to help prevent it.
3. Hepatitis C (HCV)
It is a viral infection transmitted mainly through blood-to-blood contact, such as sharing needles or improperly sterilized medical equipment. There is no vaccine for hepatitis C, but antiviral medications are available for treatment.
4. Hepatitis D (HDV)
It is a viral infection that occurs only in individuals already infected with hepatitis B. It is transmitted through contact with infected blood or sexual contact with an infected person.
5. Hepatitis E (HEV)
It is a viral infection transmitted predominantly through contaminated water sources. It is most common in developing countries with inadequate sanitation. There is no specific treatment or vaccine for hepatitis E.
6. Autoimmune Hepatitis
It is a rare chronic liver disease where the immune system mistakenly attacks healthy liver cells. The cause is unknown, but experts believe it may be due to genetic or environmental factors.
7. Alcoholic Hepatitis
It is liver inflammation caused by excessive alcohol consumption over an extended period. The severity of alcoholic hepatitis can range from mild to severe and can lead to cirrhosis if the individual continues to consume alcohol.
Now that we understand the different tips, let's understand how we can prevent them altogether.
Preventive tips to reduce the risk of hepatitis diseases:
- Stay up to date with all recommended hepatitis vaccines (such as Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B vaccines) to protect against these specific viruses.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after using the bathroom, before preparing food, and before eating.
- Ensure that food is properly cooked and stored at safe temperatures. Avoid consuming raw or undercooked seafood, shellfish, or meats.
- Use safe drinking water sources such as bottled water or water that has been filtered or boiled.
- Use barrier methods such as condoms during sexual activity to reduce the risk of hepatitis B and other sexually transmitted infections.
- Hepatitis viruses can be transmitted through sharing personal items such as toothbrushes, razors, or needles. Avoid sharing these items to prevent infection.
- If you require injections or medical procedures, ensure that all needles and medical equipment are properly sterilised or used only once.
- Ensure that the tattoo or piercing studio you visit follows strict hygiene practices, including the use of sterile equipment and disposable needles.
- If you are providing care to someone who is infected with hepatitis, wear gloves and take precautions to avoid direct contact with blood or bodily fluids.
It is important to consult a healthcare professional for a proper diagnosis and appropriate management of any suspected hepatitis infection.
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for a qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.
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