Health

Mandy Kloppers

Polio Disease: Overview, Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments

mother and child

Poliovirus causes the deadly disease known as Polio. The most concerning thing about Polio is that it spreads in the body without showing any symptoms. Only a few people show mild symptoms before it gets out of hand. Polio has been a silent killer for decades; thousands have been paralysed at the time of the Polio outbreak. However, the disease is easily prevented with Polio vaccination. Fortunately, wild poliovirus types 2 and 3 have been eliminated. Unfortunately, type 1 is still spreading in some parts of the world.

Vaccination is the only preventive measure for Polio, as there is no cure after the disease has manifested.

Causes Of Polio:

Poliovirus is highly contagious. The reason why it spreads so fast is the fact that it spreads from person to person. The primary cause of poliovirus is unsanitary conditions. Polio spread through the following,

  • Coming in contact with the feces of an infected individual.
  • Inhaling cough and sneeze droplets of an infected individual.
  • Touching anything infected with the virus and touching your mouth can cause the virus to enter your body.

Kids contract the disease when they put objects contaminated with feces. An infected person can spread the virus up to two weeks after getting it in their system. Most people show few or no symptoms but can still spread the virus.

 

Symptoms

1 in 4 people show mild symptoms like flu; the rest, however, show zero signs,

  • Sore throat
  • Fever
  • Tiredness
  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Stomach pain

More severe symptoms are,

  • Meningitis
  • Paralysis

Paralysis in Polio can lead to permanent disability and death. 10 out of 100 people die due to severe symptoms. Even when kids recover, they still develop muscle aches, weakness, or paralysis decades later after the disease.

Types OF Polio:

Polio is a deadly virus, and it has serious consequences. The severity of polio symptoms depends on how fast the virus multiplies and attacks. Following are the two types of Polio,

  • Abortive Poliomyelitis: This type of Polio causes mild flu and intestinal symptoms. Fortunately, this type doesn’t cause any long-lasting issues.
  • Non-Paralytic Poliomyelitis: This type causes swelling in and around the brain. This type may also cause aseptic meningitis. In this type, the virus attacks the spinal cord and the brain. This type can cause paralysis that may lead to problems in breathing, speaking and moving parts of the body. These symptoms are called spinal Polio or bulbar Polio.

Treatment:

Cure for Polio is more of a preventive measure; once you have the virus, your doctor will make sure you are comfortable and your condition doesn’t worsen. The treatment for Polio includes,

  • Pain killers
  • Ventilator to help you breathe
  • Physical therapy
  • Bed rest and fluids to keep your energy up
  • Antispasmodic medications
  • Antibiotics for infections
  • A heating pad therapy
  • Corrective braces
  • Pulmonary rehabilitation
  • A mobility aid tools

The best way to combat and prevent Polio is to spread awareness and administer the polio vaccination timely.

 

 

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