C Diff contagious infections are caused by a bacteria carried in the intestine. Many people are carriers without it making them ill. Their infection is often activated by antibiotics taken to treat other illness. These damage the balance of the intestine while treating the other illness and allow the c. difficile to flourish.
Why is C Diff contagious? It is potentially contagious when it results in diarrhea. This can cause fecal contamination of the person who is ill and their surroundings. Other people can then become colonized by the c. difficile spores.
How is c diff contagious?
Often the hand picks up c. difficile from a surface that has minute amounts of fecal waste. The bacteria can then find it’s way into the mouth via touch, food etc. C Diff is also thought to be found in the environment and investigations continue as to how it may infect people with no contact with other sufferers. C Diff can be caught in many different contexts. Many people do not catch it in hospital but arrive already colonized.
Protecting yourself and others
Family and friends of a C Diff sufferer can usually protect themselves by hand washing. This should take place after personal contact, before meals and after toilet visits. The action of running water over the hands is important. It helps dislodge c. difficile traces. You may also want to purchase Clorox type cleaners for use on high touch areas around the sufferer and around your home. C. difficile spores are very hardy and can persist for long periods. The use of certified cleaning agents is advised.
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