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Hepatitis refers to an inflammatory condition of the liver worldwide. The most common cause of hepatitis is a viral infection, but there are many possible causes of the same. Hepatitis is known to claims 1.5 million lives annually around the world and millions of people live with this condition. But the infections that cause hepatitis can be prevented but people don’t know how. On World Hepatitis Day, events take place around the world to make people aware of this condition and to help them understand that it can be prevented and how.
In this article, we will tell you in brief about World Hepatitis Day. We will also cover some important information on Hepatitis and tell you about the health resolutions you should make this World Hepatitis for a healthier and happy you! Let’s get started!
World Hepatitis Day
World Hepatitis Day is observed on 28th July every year. This date was chosen to honour the birthday of Nobel Laureate Professor Baruch Samuel Blumberg, who discovered the hepatitis B virus and also developed the first hepatitis B vaccine. World Hepatitis Day is celebrated to honour him and to raise awareness about hepatitis. On World Hepatitis Day, events take around the globe to raise awareness about the prevention of hepatitis B and C. Millions of people around the world live with hepatitis unaware and as the condition remains undiagnosed, they continue to suffer. In 2020, the theme of World Hepatitis Day is ‘Find the Missing Millions’. For a hepatitis-free future, finding the people who are suffering from the condition is important!
What You Must Know About Hepatitis
Here’s what you should know about hepatitis.
- There are five types of hepatitis namely A, B, C, D and E. While Hepatitis A is a milder version of the disease, Hepatitis D is the most severe one. They are all caused by viruses.
- Hepatitis A is caused by consuming contaminated food or water while Hepatitis B is a sexually transmitted disease.
- Hepatitis C is commonly spread via direct contact with the blood of a person who has the disease. A person can only become infected with Hepatitis D if they are already infected with hepatitis B. A person can become infected with the hepatitis E virus (HEV) by drinking contaminated water.
- Hepatitis that cannot be attributed to one of the viral forms of the disease is called hepatitis X. Plus, there is another form of the disease called Hepatitis G which is caused by a specific virus (HGV).
5 Health Resolutions to Make on World Hepatitis Day
Practising good hygiene has never been more important. The best way to avoid being infected with the virus that causes Hepatitis or any other condition is by maintaining good hygiene. As a part of World Hepatitis Day activities, make these health resolutions and ask your children and family members to make them too in order to lead a healthy and active lifestyle!
1. I will vaccinate myself and my children against hepatitis.
There are vaccines available for Hepatitis A and B, which have shown positive results. The Hepatitis B vaccine is also said to prevent hepatitis D. So as a responsible citizen, you must get yourself vaccinated against hepatitis. You should also consult your child’s paediatrician for a vaccination chart to protect your children from the deadly disease.
2. I will cook with utmost care and make sure that my family eats healthy food.
Certain types of Hepatitis virus are transmitted by the intake of unhygienic food and contaminated water. So you must make sure that you and your family eat healthy food, prepared in hygienic conditions and drinks pure water. Make a resolution to teach your kids the importance of eating food cooked with clean water and in a clean environment. Carry your own water bottles if you go out somewhere and while travelling. In case, you forget to carry your own water bottle, buy packaged drinking water that is sealed properly.
3. I will keep myself and my family safe from disease carriers.
Hepatitis can spread from an infected person to others. Check with your doctor or nurse to ensure that the syringes they are using are fresh ones in case you need an injection. Do not share needles and razors, even with your close ones. Instruct your children not to mix up their toothbrushes.
4. I will maintain proper hygiene at my home.
Maintaining hygiene is of utmost importance, we all know it. So make it a point to wash your hands frequently with soap and water for 20 seconds; remember to wash your hands after you use the toilet, right after you enter your home, before and after eating, after coughing or sneezing, after blowing your nose, changing your baby’s diaper, etc. Teach your child the importance of handwashing and how to do it right. Also, wash fruits and vegetables before consuming them. Clean your home every alternate day and dust daily, if possible. If your partner is infected, use condoms while having sex and get them vaccinated too!
5. I will get tested for Hepatitis during pregnancy.
If you are pregnant and have tested positive for Hepatitis during pregnancy, then your unborn child will need medical attention too! If you are pregnant and have the symptoms of Hepatitis, talk to your doctor. Depending upon the type of Hepatitis, your child will be given vaccines and further treatment.
With proper care and awareness, a Hepatitis-free world is not a far-fetched dream. Who knows, we may eventually be celebrating World Hepatitis Day as the date we completely uprooted the disease from the world!