Contributing factors for hepatitis in children

Contributing factors for hepatitis in children

Contributing factors for hepatitis in children
The liver is the body’s largest organ. It is a vital help in digesting food, storing energy, and eliminating toxins. Hepatitis is described as a condition where the liver experiences inflammation, which is, essentially, a tissue’s reaction to injury or irritation.

Most cases of hepatitis are a result of being infected with viruses, and the types of hepatitis are named after the virus that is responsible for it. In some cases, the patient’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy liver cells, which leads to liver damage, among many other liver issues. Any of the types of hepatitis can affect people of all ages. Here are some contributing factors that lead to hepatitis in children. Understanding these can help in preventing the transmission and in maintaining hygiene:

Hepatitis A
The virus that causes hepatitis A is usually present in fecal matter. It can infect children in the following ways:

  • Eating food cooked by an infected person who failed to properly wash their hands after going to the bathroom
  • Drinking water that has been contaminated by infected feces
  • Coming into direct or indirect contact with an infected person’s feces
  • Traveling to areas with a common occurrence of hepatitis A
  • Infections during blood transfusions

Hepatitis B
Hepatitis B is usually transmitted through blood and the most common way in which people contract this type is when an infected person’s blood is introduced into another person’s bloodstream. Getting injured through needle sticks and sharp instruments can also lead to hepatitis B. Another common way through which people contract hepatitis B is by sharing items of personal use like toothbrushes and razors with an infected person. If an expecting mother has hepatitis B, her baby may develop the illness. Children can contract this disease through cuts, scrapes, and different types of contact. Here’s a list of the children with a higher chance of developing hepatitis B:

  • Children born to women who live in countries with higher occurrences of hepatitis B
  • Children who have to live in care facilities for prolonged periods as outbreaks may result from unhygienic conditions
  • Children suffering from blood-clotting issues and need blood products
  • Children who have to undergo dialysis

Hepatitis C
Hepatitis C is probably one of the most dangerous types of hepatitis and usually spreads through blood taken from an infected source. Another way of transmission of the disease is sexual contact. Expecting mothers suffering from hepatitis C deal with a great deal of risk that endangers the health of both the mother and the child. Here’s a list of children who are highly susceptible to hepatitis C:

  • Children born to mothers who are infected with the hepatitis C virus
  • Children suffering from blood-related issues like hemophilia or those who require blood transfusions
  • Children suffering from kidney failure and those requiring dialysis
  • Teenagers indulging in activities like intravenous drug use and unprotected intercourse
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