Helminthiases are common among people. The reason for this is the wide habitat of various types of helminths in nature, besides, it is not at all difficult to become infected with them: water, food, dirty hands, contact with pets can act as a source of infection. Signs of infection with worms can proceed differently for each person, but most often patients complain of general malaise, stomach pain, fever and other manifestations of the disease. So, today we will talk about the symptoms and treatment of helminths in humans.
Helminths in the human body
Worms are scientifically called helminths. Helminths are any worms that parasitize in the organisms of humans, animals, plants. Accordingly, worms are not a specific type of parasite, but a whole group of different worms, three of which are the most common.
In modern society, worms are still widespread. Especially often helminthic invasion occurs in children, hunters, fishermen and their families, as well as rural residents. Worms are a large detachment of parasitic worms that live off animals and plants, feeding and multiplying inside the donor's body
Worms are a large detachment of parasitic worms that live off animals and plants, feeding and reproducing inside the donor's body. Man is no exception. Only on the territory of our country there are more than 70 species of parasites. According to statistics, every third inhabitant of the Earth is infected with parasitic worms. It is assumed that there is not a single adult during whose life a single worm would not have settled in his body.
No matter how carefully parents monitor the cleanliness of the hands of their children, it is almost impossible to protect them from worms (pinworms). Children explore the outside world, nature awakens a special interest. They want to touch everything with their hands, taste it. People who eat fish, meat of wild animals and birds, homemade milk are at risk of contracting trichinosis and diphyllobothriasis.
Modern medical data show that many diseases occur due to helminthic invasion. For example, oncology has been clinically proven to be associated with long-term parasite infestation. Signs of the presence of worms in humans are often misinterpreted by doctors and patients. They begin to treat non-existent diseases of the gastrointestinal tract.
Patients can go to doctors for a long time, complaining of malaise. They waste time, money and further damage their health by taking unnecessary medicines. Ultimately, recovery occurs only when the cause of the symptoms is eliminated. After proper treatment, all associated symptoms cease to bother patients.
In what organs can parasites live?
Worm parasites are divided into two categories, which correspond to the site of activity in the body of the donor:
- abdominal - worms that live in various parts of the digestive tract. There are about 100 varieties of intestinal parasites, and for each section of the intestine there are a couple of dozen species. The small intestine is ready to receive ascaris, antilost, wide tapeworms and other less common "brothers". The small intestine will "share its living space" with pinworms, tapeworms and the rest. In the medical literature, cases are described when one person was infected simultaneously with several types of parasites;
- tissue - worms localized in organs, tissues and even in the blood. Modern medicine successfully copes with paragonimiasis (lungs), cysticercosis (brain), echinococcosis (liver) and filariasis (lymphatic vessels). Some worm larvae move through the body through the circulatory system and randomly attach to any organ. If a lot of eggs are introduced, the whole organism can be infected.
How can you get worms
Infection with helminths through the soil
Almost any contact with the soil poses a danger in terms of infection with parasites, therefore, after working with the earth, it is necessary not only to wash your hands with soap and water, but to carefully treat your nails. It is important to monitor the length of nails in children and cut them off in a timely manner. All products that grow in the ground and that a person consumes raw must be washed under running water and scalded with boiling water. Almost any contact with the soil poses a danger in terms of infection with parasites, therefore, after working with the earth, it is necessary not only to wash your hands with soap and water, but to carefully treat your nails.
This applies to vegetables, fruits and herbs. Pets that walk on the street are able to bring on themselves a huge amount of dirt, including parasites. Therefore, the contact of children and pets always carries the risk of infection. Moreover, cats and dogs can be carriers of almost all types of helminths. Among the insects that spread the infection, flies are recognized as the most dangerous. They are frequent inhabitants of toilets, cattle pens, after which they can crawl completely freely on food, carrying helminth eggs on their paws and wings;
Infection with helminths from a sick person
When female pinworms mature in the body of a child, they crawl out onto the skin of the anal folds in order to lay eggs. One individual leaves about 5000 eggs near the anus. The process of laying them provokes the appearance of severe itching, as a result of which the child begins to comb the problem area. Eggs spread to underwear, to bedding, to the hands of the child. Then he touches toys, door handles, furniture and other household items with these hands. They are touched by other children and adults.
Helminth eggs are attached to their hands, after which they are brought into the mouth during meals. The risk of invasion increases many times if you neglect the rules of hygiene and do not wash your hands before eating, after visiting the toilet and public places. This is the mechanism of transmission of helminths from person to person;
Infection with helminths through water
The water way of distribution of helminths is also an actual problem. A huge number of eggs fall into open water, into wells, springs, etc. Therefore, it is so important to use filters with a bactericidal effect, especially for those people who live in rural areas. It should always be boiled before drinking. The water way of distribution of helminths is also an actual problem.
Parents need to ensure that children do not swallow water while swimming in lakes and rivers. Moreover, you should not drink water from open sources, even from springs. Children are the most susceptible to helminthiases. This is due to certain reasons. Firstly, it is easier for helminths to get along in the body of a child, since his defenses are not yet fully formed, and the acidity of gastric juice is low compared to the acidity of adult gastric juice. Secondly, the child learns to follow hygiene rules on his own by about 5-6 years. Until that time, he "tastes" the whole world around him.
Therefore, the risk of invasion not only of the child, but also of all members of his family remains, at least until the baby enters school. No helminths are capable of endlessly multiplying and existing in the human body. All of them have a certain life expectancy and after a while they simply die. For example, roundworms live no more than a year, and pinworms no more than 2 months. In order for a person to become infected again, it is necessary to re-enter the eggs in the digestive tract. Only in this way can the life cycle of helminths continue.
If you exclude the possibility of re-infection, that is, reduce the likelihood of swallowing invasive helminth eggs to zero, you can get rid of them without any treatment. But for this it is necessary to observe strict hygiene rules. Thus, pinworms can be removed from the body in 3-4 weeks. However, children of preschool and primary school age will definitely not be able to follow all the recommendations.
Definition of infection with worms in humans
The test for determining possible helminthiasis involves counting positive answers to the questions presented. By their number, conclusions can be drawn regarding the risk of the presence of helminths in the body:
- itching in the anus disturbs periodically or constantly; headache often, dizziness occurs; rashes appear on the skin; nausea often occurs, which can result in vomiting; concerned about bloating, unstable stool (constipation is replaced by diarrhea);
- the quality of sleep at night has deteriorated. Worried about insomnia, screams in a dream; the lower extremities often swell; lymph nodes are enlarged; allergic reactions occur (bronchial asthma, urticaria, cough and rhinitis of an allergic nature); periodically there are pains in the abdomen, which pass on their own; a bitter taste appears in the mouth; pursues chronic fatigue and fatigue; there are preschool children in the house. Work in a preschool educational institution;
- skin and mucous membranes have a yellow tint; body temperature periodically rises for no apparent reason; sometimes joints and muscles hurt; grinding teeth or snoring during sleep; the diet includes such products as: sushi, dried fish, lard with meat inclusions; weight is reduced. Appetite increased or decreased; fruits and vegetables that a person eats may not be washed or scalded with boiling water.
If there are more than seven positive answers, then there is a risk of the presence of helminths in the body. If there are more than 15 positive answers, then the probability of helminthiasis is very high and it is necessary to seek the advice of a specialist.
Symptoms of infection with worms in humans
Signs that worms have started in the body are not always easily distinguishable. Very often they are confused with symptoms of other diseases or completely ignored, believing that nothing special is happening, and the body is just tired. However, this carelessness can eventually end up with a visit to the surgical table due to an advanced case, instead of buying pills, if the person immediately went to the doctor.
Therefore, you should definitely consult a doctor if you have any suspicions or if you have several symptoms of the appearance of helminths from the list below. And it’s definitely time to take care of yourself if suddenly the worms come out with feces (it’s hard to believe, but there are people who can’t be scared even by this unambiguous symptom of helminthiasis! ):
- itching (irresistible desire to scratch) near the anus. Usually this feeling is pronounced at night before going to bed. This symptom of pinworms can be called almost the main sign that parasites have wound up in your body;
- rashes and skin irritation. Helminths are not the first thing that comes to mind when such changes occur to the body. Usually people think of allergies, exposure to chemicals, or mild poisoning. However, some worms cause symptoms in adults and children similar to these. The reason is simple - the struggle of the immune system with unexpected "parasite guests";
- headache. This symptom is suitable for almost every disease, but it was still worth mentioning. Dizziness and pain occur again due to the work of the immune system and the release of harmful substances by helminths;
- involuntary pains in the abdomen and mustard taste in the mouth. This is due to the fact that human worms do not behave peacefully enough, stick to the circulatory systems, travel through the body, set their own rules in the gastrointestinal tract (gastrointestinal tract) and release harmful substances in the course of their life;
- dead worms come out with feces. They are not always distinguishable, but in which case they are a sure symptom of helminthiasis. Do not think that feces with worms are a sign that they are leaving, and the body will defeat the parasites on its own. Not at all! The fact is that some types of helminths (for example, pinworms or roundworms) can live no more than a month or two. But this does not mean that they did not have time to leave offspring and through you infect people with whom you closely communicate;
- loss or increase in appetite and inexorable weight loss. As much as you would like to lose weight, getting worms is unlikely to be the best idea. And although there are clinics that offer weight loss services by introducing parasites into the body, the safety of their services is questionable (more on fecal and microorganism transplantation;
- a symptom of worms in humans, but a clear provoking factor of the disease. So if you have other symptoms and you have a pet, don't forget to get checked for the presence of worms in the body. It is possible to become infected with worms from a cat or dog, and this often happens to their owners if preventive measures are abandoned;
- diarrhea, constipation, flatulence. The main symptoms of worms in humans are manifested in their habitat, usually the area of \u200b\u200bthe abdomen, intestines and all nearby places;
- it is impossible to get enough sleep, grinding of teeth, frequent change of positions for sleeping. In most types of helminths, the main activity occurs at night, and therefore while you are sleeping, inside you are "boiling with life";
- work around animals or in public places. If you work in a kindergarten, school, farm, or store clerk, you are much more likely to get helminths from someone than if you worked in an office or at home.
Unfortunately, there are no identical symptoms for all types of worms in an adult or children, since each species manifests itself in different ways, is located in different places and parasitizes on various aspects of our body.
Treatment of helminths in humans
Treatment of helminths is called deworming. It can be medical or surgical (some helminths can only be removed by surgery). Folk methods for the treatment of helminthic invasion are also popular. In addition, you should also take care of personal hygiene and follow the rules of cooking. It is very important to take measures to stimulate the immune system, because during helminthiases it is depressed. To rid the human body of helminths, you will need to take antiparasitic drugs. They have activity against various types of worms, so a doctor should prescribe them. In addition, there are broad-spectrum drugs, but this does not mean that they can be used on their own.
About 70 species of helminths parasitize, including: trematodes, nematodes and cestodes. Only a doctor can determine which parasite lives in the human body on the basis of laboratory tests (fecal analysis, scraping for enterobiasis, blood test for giardiasis, etc. ).
Currently, parasitologists have in their arsenal about 10 different drugs that allow treating patients with helminthiases. The dosage and course of treatment is selected in each case individually and depends on the age of the patient, on the type of helminths, on the presence of concomitant diseases.
Since some drugs are not able to destroy helminth larvae, but only act on adults, the risk of re-infection remains. To minimize it, it is necessary to undergo a second course of treatment after 14-21 days.
Folk remedies for worms in humans
To get rid of helminthiasis, you can try various foods that have proven themselves quite well in the fight against parasites. Even our grandmothers were treated for such a scourge by cracking pumpkin seeds (by the way, they still have a lot of zinc).
Red beet juice helps well - you need to drink it 1 tbsp. l. daily throughout the week. Watermelon is considered an effective remedy, but pregnant women should not get too carried away with it: after all, there is a lot of liquid in watermelons, and this is fraught with an additional burden on the kidneys and swelling. A useful remedy for worms during pregnancy is pomegranate fresh. In addition to the fact that it cleanses the body of helminths, everyone knows its magical property - to increase hemoglobin, and it is recommended to pregnant women very often. So it turns out a double benefit for the body.
Herbal teas are useful and effective: cranberries, marigolds, valerian. Moreover, they can be drunk both in pure form and combined with each other. The leaves of these medicinal herbs will help get rid of helminths, but at the same time they have a mild, gentle effect.
You can use not only teas, but also healing decoctions. In your case, chamomile, lavender and strawberry will be the best option.
Prevention of infection with worms in humans
Despite the significant difference in the development cycles of various worms, a number of preventive measures can be identified, the observance of which will help to avoid the disease. Mandatory washing of hands with soap after contact with the earth and animals, visiting the toilet and the street, as well as before eating - parasite prevention
It is important to remember that the likelihood of infection with worms depends on a person's compliance with the simplest rules of personal hygiene, the most important of which are:
- obligatory washing of hands with soap after contact with the earth and animals, visiting the toilet and the street, as well as before eating;
- short cutting of fingernails and toenails (especially in children), as well as keeping them clean;
- thorough washing of vegetables, fruits, berries, herbs and other products that could get soil and worm eggs;
- eating meat and fish purchased only in reliable places (trade and public catering establishments) and subjected to thorough heat treatment to destroy the eggs of worms;
- use of water only from well-maintained water supply sources;
- refusal to swim in water bodies located near pastures and watering places due to the high probability of getting worm eggs into them with animal feces;
- the destruction of flies and other insects that carry the eggs of worms on their paws.
Currently, there are recommendations for regular preventive deworming (treatment of worms) with drugs without prior laboratory testing.
To prevent re-infection with worms, such events should be carried out by all family members at the same time, as well as by pets, since they are often the source of helminthic invasion. Nevertheless, it is important to remember that the prevention of worms with such drugs is carried out only by a doctor and only after an in-person consultation.