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Meningitis: Causes, Symptoms,Preventions and possible Treatments

Posted: 06 April, 2017 at 10:04 am
Meningitis: Causes, Symptoms,Preventions and possible Treatments
Meningitis: Causes, Symptoms,Preventions And Possible Treatments Photo 1

The outbreak of Meningitis in Nigeria came as a surprise to many and more are still contemplating on what Meningitis is all about and what it looks like.

For those who survive, they are left with serious and permanent health problems. E.g. deafness, epilepsy, mental retardation or cerebral palsy.

Meningitis is inflammation of the meninges ( a collective name for the three membranes that envelope the brain and spinal cord). The meninges' main function, alongside the cerebrospinal fluid, s to protect the central nervous system.

The swelling from meningitis typically triggers symptoms such as a headache, fever and a stiff neck.

Causes of Meningitis

The most common cause of meningitis is a virus, followed by bacteria, and rarely fungi, and other certain organisms.

Bacterial Meningitis

Bacterial meningitis is generally a serious infection. Several strains of bacteria can cause meningitis, most commonly: Haemophilus influenzae (Haemophilus), Neisseria meningitides (meningococcus), Listeria monocytogenes (listeria), and Streptococcus pneumonia (pneumococcus) bacteria. People become infected when they are in close contact with the discharges from the nose or throat of a person who is infected.

Viral meningitis

Although viral meningitis is the most common, it is rarely a serious infection. It is usually mild and often clears on its own. Most cases are caused by a group of viruses known as enterovirusesThere is no specific treatment for this type of meningitis. Viruses such as herpes simplex virus, HIV, mumps, West Nile virus and others also can cause viral meningitis.

Chronic meningitis

Slow-growing organisms (such as fungi and Mycobacterium tuberculosis) that invade the membranes and fluid surrounding your brain cause chronic meningitis. Chronic meningitis develops over two weeks or more. The symptoms include — headaches, fever, vomiting and mental cloudiness.

Fungal meningitis

Fungal meningitis is relatively uncommon and causes chronic meningitis. It may mimic acute bacterial meningitis. Fungal meningitis isn't contagious from person to person.

Symptoms/Signs of Meningitis

(These include symptoms for babies)

• Fever (can also have cold hands and feet)

• Reluctance to feed

• Vomiting and/or diarrhoea

• Irritability/dislike being handled

• Floppy/difficult to wake/unresponsive

• Difficulties breathing or grunting

• Faster or slower than normal breathing rate

• Pale/blotchy skin

• Red/purple spots/rash that do not fade under pressure

• High pitched cry/moaning/whimpering

• Bulging fontanelle (soft spot)

• Convulsions/seizures

• Arched back

• Swollen abdomen

• Dry nappies

Meningitis: Causes, Symptoms,Preventions and possible Treatments

Your family doctor or pediatrician can diagnose meningitis based on a medical history, a physical exam and certain diagnostic tests.

You may personally undergo the following gnostic tests:

Blood cultures. Blood samples are placed in a special dish to see if it grows microorganisms, particularly bacteria.

Imaging. Computerized tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance (MR) scans of the head may show swelling or inflammation.

How to Prevent Meningitis

Antibiotics can be given to help prevent meningitis.

Antibiotics are typically given three times a day for 7 to 21 days, depending on the type of bacteria organism causing the meningitis and the type of antibiotic chosen.

Patients are often in an intensive care unit of a hospital during meningitis treatment so that they can be watched carefully to be sure the antibiotic treatment is effective.

Avoid close contact with someone who has meningitis

Try to avoid any contact with fluid secrets from the victim's mouth and nose (for example, kissing, mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, sharing drinks or utensils)

Get vaccinated

Getting vaccinated against meningitis is considered as the most popular and effective way to prevent the disease.

There are two main types of vaccines that are commonly used to protect you from meningitis. It is recommended that you should take a vaccine at age 11 or 12 and then have the second one when you are 16 or 18 years old.

Don't Share Personal Items

Meningitis can be contracted when you come in contact with respiratory or throat secretions — saliva, sputum, nasal mucus — of someone who is infected, either through kissing or sharing personal items.

Strengthen your immune system

It is very important to protect from inside by strengthening your immune system.

Eating healthy is very necessary for a system to work effectively.

Also, combine healthy eating with regular exercise and sleeping enough will bring more good results.

Take some supplements

Vitamins like A, C, E and D are very helpful in maintaining good health and decreasing the possibility of developing inflammation around the brain and spinal cord.

Home Remedies/Home Cure for Meningitis

(1) Astragalus: This often overlooked herb is able to rapidly bring the immune system back to normal and clear up many of the most uncomfortable symptoms of meningitis. Astragalus is considered one of the most effective home remedies for this terrible condition.

(2) Chlorella: It is a small plant that contains more quantity of chlorophyll, which carries oxygen around the blood and prepares the red blood cell count. The blood streams will be purified and cleaned by this process. More than 20 vitamins and minerals are available in chlorophyll, and all are in highly bio-available form. For the recovery of the meningitis, it is used as a supernatural remedy.

(3) Garlic Garlic:Garlic is used both medicinally and as a food spice. Preliminary research suggests that oral plus intravenous garlic may help manage symptoms of cryptococcal meningitis, a fungal infection that commonly occurs in HIV patients.

(4) Cold Packs: The body temperature of the meningitis patient remains very high due to fever. So, cold packs should be applied to the body if the body temperature is above 102 degrees Fahrenheit.

(5) Neutral Bath: When suffering from meningitis, the body experiences a wide temperature array. When you slide into a neutral temperature bath, your blood will respond accordingly and redistribute properly throughout your body, thereby easing the inflammation and discomfort in the brain and spinal cord.

(6) Olive Leaf Extract: olive leaf extract is praised for its antiviral and antioxidant properties, in addition to its proven anti-inflammatory abilities. When it comes to meningitis, you can take olive leaf extracts in any number of forms to reduce inflammation, lower fever, and ease pain and discomfort associated with this serious condition.

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