Meningitis doesn’t always kill but it has a great ability to do just that. It is important to know if you are at high risk for getting meningitis and find ways to avoid getting it where possible. Meningitis can take many different forms and no matter what form you get, it can debilitate you, at least for a while if not permanently. It is especially important for those at high risk to be aware of what causes meningitis, what you can do to avoid getting it and what to do if you suspect you have it.
People at High Risk for Meningitis (as reported by EverydayHealth.com)
Child Care Workers- If you are a child care worker who has to change diapers on a daily basis, you are put at higher risk for meningitis because fecal matter can carry the virus that can cause the meningitis. This is true for parents, babysitters or anyone else who changes diapers. You can avoid getting this virus if you take good care to wash your hands thoroughly after changing a diaper and using an antiseptic cleanser to do so. This will help alleviate your higher risk of getting the disease.
People with Low Immunity- People who have HIV, AIDS or any other type of disease that can cause low immunity, including diabetes, can contract meningitis easier because they don’t have the ability to fight off diseases like meningitis. Your system is much weaker if you have a low immunity disease.
High Risk Behaviors- Smoking or drinking alcohol can put you at a higher risk for meningitis. These behaviors lowers the immune system and as stated above, when your immune system is lower, your body can’t fight off things like meningitis.
College Students- Anyone who is in close contact with anyone carrying the meningitis virus can catch it quickly. College students are more susceptible because they are in close quarters with a lot of other people all the time. There are ways that you can avoid it though.
Be careful what you share. Just as you were taught as a young child, don’t share straws, cigarettes or anything else that can pass on this virus. When you share anything that exchanges bodily fluids, you take the chance on getting meningitis. When you use the bathroom, make sure that it is clean before you use it. Wash your hands thoroughly after you go to the bathroom and make sure that you also don’t eat after anyone else. Anything that you were taught as a young child about keeping clean, follow those instructions to the letter.
Meningitis is a horrible virus that can kill you. There is no reason that you should take any extra chances on getting it. If you think that you may have contracted it, get to the hospital as quickly as possible to get checked out. It could save your life. It can come on very quickly. It is important to take care of it quickly because just as quickly as it comes on, it can take over your body and you could die within hours. Don’t risk it, it’s not worth your life.
Sources: Everyday Health- Meningitis Risk Factors