I'm going to make this as easy as possible to read, because I know some people just don't have the attention span to read a whole bunch. I don't even have the attention span to write out everything. If you want more info, just click on the any of the websites above.
WHAT IS EBOLA?
Ebola is a virus. It causes Ebola Virus Disease (formerly known as Ebola Haemorrhagic Fever), which is severe and has up to a 90% fatality rate in humans.
WHERE DID IT COME FROM?
The natural hosts of the virus are considered to be fruit bats in Africa. (I know some parts of Nigeria eat bats - STAY AWAY OOO). The first Ebola outbreak happened in 1976 in Sudan and Democratic Republic of Congo. In fact, it gets its name from the Ebola River in DRC.
HOW DOES SOMEONE GET IT?
Initially, someone has to have come in contact with the blood, secretions, organs, or other bodily fluids of an infected animal. Then human-to-human transmission occurs when a person comes in contact with bodily fluids of someone who is infected. Exposure to objects, such as needles, that have been contaminated with secretions of an infected person, can also lead to transmission of the disease. Additionally, it's probable that mourners of people who died, that come in contact with the corpse, may also get it.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?
- Joint and muscle aches
- Stomach pain
- Lack of appetite
Some patients may experience:
- A Rash
- Red Eyes
- Sore throat
- Chest pain
- Difficulty breathing
- Difficulty swallowing
- Bleeding inside and outside of the body
Symptoms may appear anywhere from 2 to 21 days after exposure to ebolavirus though 8-10 days is most common.
Just because you have the symptoms above, doesn't necessarily mean you have Ebola. Malaria, Typhoid fever, Meningitis, Cholera, as well as a few other illnesses, have similar symptoms. It's important that you get yourself to a hospital immediately anyways, and get tested.
Unfortunately, no vaccine or cure is available against Ebola. Vaccines and treatments are being researched, but none are available for clinical use. The only thing that can be done is to manage those who are already infected. They are usually severely dehydrated, and therefore need oral rehydration with electrolyte solutions or intravenous fluids.
All infected people and animals must be immediately quarantined to prevent further spread of the disease.
HOW CAN I PROTECT MYSELF?
1. Be AWARE! Read up what you can on Ebola - Google is your friend. And help to spread the word around.
2. Wash your hands regularly. Cakes and I have bought hand sanitizers to carry around with us. They have little bottles available in stores and pharmacies.
3. I would also limit bodily contact with strangers right now.
4. If you're in the healthcare field, make sure to wear gloves, masks, goggles, etc, keep instruments sanitized/sterilized. This should be the case with any ill person who comes in for care, because you only find out it's Ebola AFTER they've been tested.
5. DON'T EAT BATS!
Okay, that's about all I think is necessary for now. Stay safe everyone!
*no hugs and definitely no kisses today*