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What is whooping cough? What you need to know…

2022-12-24T15:00:26+00:00
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  • Everything you need to know about this disease.
  • Whooping Cough is a highly contagious disease.
  • You must be extremely careful with children.

Winter often means children and adults experience respiratory problems and illnesses that affect the lungs. One of the diseases you should watch out for is whooping cough.

Whooping cough is a highly contagious disease that is transmitted by a bacterium called Bordetella pertussis. This disease, like many others, is transmitted by a person who coughs or sneezes without covering their mouth. It is easily spread and here’s what you need to know about it.

What is whooping cough?

What is whooping cough
PHOTO: Shutterstock

According to Walgreens, this bacteria can enter the airways, adhere to the small hairs that cover them and cause the lungs to become inflamed. Symptoms of whooping cough include a distinctive dry cough.

This disease can worsen over time if it is not treated. It can occur in children, young people, and adults but it’s most serious for babies under 2 months.

Who can get whooping cough?

What is whooping cough
PHOTO: Shutterstock

According to Walgreens, early symptoms of whooping cough include a runny nose, low-grade fever and mild or occasional cough. Babies may not have a cough at all and instead may just experience pauses in their breathing.

According to the CDC, whooping cough (pertussis) can cause serious illness in people of all ages, but is most dangerous for babies. Human parainfluenza viruses (HPIV) also commonly cause upper and lower respiratory tract illness in infants and young children.

Symptoms of other respiratory diseases

PHOTO: Shutterstock

Some symptoms of lower respiratory diseases include: croup (infection of the vocal cords (larynx), trachea (windpipe), and bronchi (bronchial tubes), bronchitis (infection of the main airways that connect the trachea to the lungs).

Other symptoms are: bronchiolitis (infection in the smallest airways of the lungs) and pneumonia (an infection of the lungs). Some people experience sore throat, sneezing wheezing, earache, irritability and decreased appetite.

What’s in a vaccine?

PHOTO: Shutterstock

The components of the vaccine are extremely important to protect you from disease. One component is the antigen. It is a dead or weakened form of a pathogen that is to say (a virus or a bacterium) that helps teach your body to fight a disease in the future.

According to Sanofi, another component is the adjuvant, which helps increase the immune response. This helps the vaccine act quickly and continuously to prime the immune system.

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