Parasites are the worms which live and feed on the living host and often harm it. Without a host, the parasite cannot live, grow, and multiply.
It is very rare for a parasite to kill the host but it can spread the disease and some of them can be fatal.
The risk of parasitic infection is more in places with poor sanitation where the food and drinking water is contaminated.
Symptoms of Parasitic Worm Infection Are:
5 Different Parasitic Worms Which Live In A Human Body
- Tapeworm is a type of flatworm and looks like a long white ribbon. The eggs or larvae of which are present in contaminated water. A person can get tapeworm by drinking this water.
- Tapeworm can also find their way into people through raw and uncooked meat.
- Tapeworms can live in human for up to 30 years.
Along with the other symptoms of parasitic infection, the tape worm can lead to:
- allergic reactions
Flukes are also a type of flatworms which live in the intestine, blood, and tissues of a human. They do not reach more than a few inches in length.1
Humans are less likely to get infected from flukes when compared with animals. Flukes gain access to the human body through raw watercress and other freshwater plants,
and also by drinking contaminated water.
Additional symptoms of fluke infection are:
Hookworms live in the small intestine of humans. They attach themselves to the intestinal wall with a hook. Their length is usually less than half an inch long.2
They are transmitted through feces and contaminated soil. One can get the infection by walking bare feet on the soil contaminated with the hookworm larvae.
Hookworm infection symptoms include:
- Itchy rash
Pinworms are most commonly occurring parasites in the children. They are tiny and harmless worms. When fully matured they live in the colon and rectum.
A female pinworm lays eggs in the anus at night. The eggs can survive in the bedding, clothing and other materials. It is transferred when a person touches them and takes the contaminated hand in the mouth. They can easily be transferred to the caregivers and in the institutions.
Pinworms can be easily treated. The research found pinworm as a rare cause of acute appendicitis.3
Trichinosis worms are passed among animals. Human gets it by eating undercooked meat which contains larvae.
The larva matures in the intestine and reproduces. They can also travel outside the intestine to blood and other tissue. This can cause symptoms such as:
- swelling of face
- light sensitivity
- muscle pain and tenderness
- Worms can be diagnosed by a stool test, colonoscopy, blood test or other imaging tests.
How Can You Prevent Parasitic Infection?
Following tips can help prevent parasitic worm infection.
- Do not eat raw and uncooked meat, fish or poultry
- Clean animal waste
- Disinfect cutting boards, utensils, and countertops
- Avoid walking bare feet in the soil which may be contaminated
- Wash hands before eating, after using the toilet, changing diaper, or touching the animal waste.
- While traveling, be aware of where food is prepared, drink only bottled water, and carry hand sanitizer for places where soap and water are not available.