Meningitis is most commonly caused because of infection with bacteria or virus. These germs are contagious i.e. the bacteria or viruses that cause meningitis can spread from one person to another through coughing, sneezing, kissing or sharing eating utensils, a toothbrush or a cigarette. Working or living with someone, who has the disease increases your risk of developing the infection.
Steps that can help to prevent meningitis
Wash your hands.
Washing hands with soap and water is one of the best ways to prevent exposure to infectious agents. Wash your hands thoroughly, especially before eating, handling or preparing food and every time you use the toilet. If soap and water is not available, an alcohol-based hand sanitiser can be used. Children should be taught to wash their hands often, especially before they eat and after using the toilet or handling animals.
Eat healthy, take adequate rest, do exercises regularly, avoid smoking and alcohol. All these help maintain and boost your immune system.
Vaccines to prevent infection with bacteria that can cause meningitis are available. Some vaccines that can help to prevent bacterial meningitis are:
In addition to self-protection, take measures to avoid infecting others if you are ill such as cover your mouth when you need to cough or sneeze and dispose the tissue in a waste basket.
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