Viruses You Need to Protect Yourself From

By: Editor in Illness on 10-11-2017

We only get so many sick days from work. Viruses and the time they infect us tend to take up a lot of these days from us. Viruses can really lay us out. No one enjoys time in bed with a headache, stuffy nose and a terrible cough.

Viruses are out there looking to find hosts to infect. Sometimes viruses are mundane in a creature, but when they get transferred to a different species they react very differently. There’s a reason new strains of flu keep being named after the species they seem to originate from. We need to thank the avian and swine flus for that.

What is a Virus?

A virus is a microscopic organism. They exist nearly everywhere. They commonly infect humans, animals plants and many other things. Viruses aren’t inherently bad things. While they are technically parasitic, they can have different effects on different creatures. This means that a virus that is deadly to a cow can have absolutely zero effect on a horse.

Viruses are made up of genetic material like DNA or RNA that is coated in a protein shell. These forms are known as virions. Once they infect a host, then they can reproduce. A Virus will reproduce in the new host until it is transmitted once again.

Difference Between Viruses and Bacteria

Viruses are much smaller than bacteria. Before they infect something, they are roughly 1% as big as bacterium. Viruses can’t reproduce without the host that they have infected. Bacteria however can expand and reproduce so long as it has the right conditions for growth.

Viral Infection Symptoms

The thing about viral infections is that they don’t have only one set of symptoms. The symptoms you are going to experience depend on the type of virus you are afflicted with. There are however some common symptoms that are often shared across various viruses.

Many viruses cause fever. This is because fever is a natural bodily reaction to your immune system working harder. Many viruses cause fatigue as the body has less energy to work as it is fighting to get rid of the virus. In this case, it’s arguably better to put your symptoms into one of the online web services and allow it to filter through to help determine if you may have a virus.

Types of Viruses

There are more than a few types of viruses out there that affect humans and provide us with ailments. Some are relatively mundane, but some can have serious effects or be fatal! Here are some of the most common viruses that humans get:

  • Flu - There have been so many different strains of flu over the years. Most people think of the flu as something that results in you needing to stay home from work for a few days. It causes headache, fever and fatigue. However there was a time when influenza strains were very dangerous and often caused fatalities.
  • Stomach Viruses - There are a large variety of different stomach and intestinal viruses that can cause some serious pain to people. Heavy cramps, diarrhea, vomiting and dehydration are common results from these viruses. Just ask anyone who has suffered from a serious stomach virus how they feel during the middle of one of these bouts. It’s horrifying.
  • Hepatitis - There are three versions of Hepatitis that are likely to be contacted in the United States. They are termed A,B and C. There are types D and E as well, but they aren’t particularly common anymore.
  • Ebola - Ebola is an example of a rare but more dangerous virus. Ebola is incredibly dangerous to those affected by it. While most cases have occurred in Africa, there have been a few cases that have cropped up in the United States.
  • Rabies - Rabies is an example of a virus that has the same effect cross species. Rabies is well known to make animals lose control and vicious. The virus is transferred through the bite of the creature to the next creature.

There are a huge amount of other viruses that humans can come into contact with that it’s impossible to really mention them all.