Intestinal worms affect animals as well as humans. There are different kinds of worms which can infect humans. In this write up, we will read about causes, symptoms and treatment for intestinal parasites in humans.
There are several bacteria and worms that reside in the human body. These are most commonly found in the intestines and thus obtain their nutrition directly from the food that is consumed. Since a human body becomes their host, they are also called endoparasites. Intestinal infection is more commonly seen in children as compared to adults. Although the worms are normally found in the intestines, they may also be present in the stomach and the rectum.
Most worms spend their entire life in the human intestines, and some may even lay their eggs around the rectum area. Although every human has intestinal parasites, when their number goes beyond a certain limit, the digestive health of the person suffers. The most common complaint caused by intestinal worms is stomach aches. There are two types of intestinal worms–the flatworms and the roundworms. Flatworms are commonly known as tapeworms. The common type of roundworms are the pinworms or threadworms.
Humans may be infected with intestinal worms through a number of ways. One of the common cause of intestinal parasite infection is through poorly cooked meat. It is more commonly seen in pork and beef. In some cases, sea water fish can also be the carriers of worm infection. Contaminated water is the other common cause of intestinal parasites. Coming in contact with feces can also give rise to the condition. They can also be transmitted during sexual contact.
People coming in contact with the soil are also more prone to this infection. Unhygienic habits are also known to cause worms. There are certain worms which make their way into the human body through the soles of the feet. Therefore, people with cracked heels commonly suffer from intestinal worms. The eggs, larvae or even adults can make their way into the human body through the skin, nose, mouth or anus. Once inside the body, these worms make their way to the intestinal tract.
The first symptom of pinworms is anemia. They stay in the intestine and suck out nutrients. If the person is infected with a large number of worms, they can cause enough blood loss to lead to an iron deficiency. Intestinal worms cause fatigue in humans. The Immune system may be affected due to the worms, therefore people should be on the look out for immune dysfunction. Worms can even cause constipation if they obstruct the colon, bile duct, liver, etc.
If the worms have made colonies in the upper intestinal region, they can also lead to gas and stomach bloating. Adding to that, the parasitic waste is known to irritate the nervous system as well. This causes nervousness, anxiety and restlessness. Pinworms in children can give rise to bed wetting, grinding of teeth while sleeping, and hyperactivity. Other symptoms include sensitivity to light, headaches, dark circles under the eyes, and blisters in the insides of the mouth.
The best treatment for pinworm and roundworm infection in humans is to prevent infection altogether. It is important to pay attention to hygiene. Drinking filtered or boiled water is recommended. Along with this, it is important to launder linens, towels and clothing regularly. It is commonly seen that people do not wash their towels everyday, which is not a healthy practice.
For the right treatment for roundworms, pinworms, and tapeworms, there are prescription medicines available. But it is important that you go through a health care professional before you take any of these medicines. At the same time, there are a number of home remedies, which can be used for treating worms in adults and children. For tapeworm treatment, pumpkin seeds, garlic, capsicum, and thyme can be used. Walnut leaves, garlic, carrots, papaya, rock salt, cloves, and male fern can also be used in the treatment of pinworms, roundworms and threadworms. Camphor is also a good remedy for treating human tapeworms and other intestinal worms.
It is important to identify the type of intestinal worm infection at the earliest because some of these worms are also known to enter the blood stream and give rise to a number of health complications. Hence, taking the necessary hygiene precautions becomes extremely important.