World Hepatitis Day 2021: Symptoms of Hepatitis B and Precautions to Prevent the Disease

Hepatitis B is a serious liver infection, which might also lead to liver failure, and is caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV). In some cases, hepatitis B infection becomes chronic (long-lasting), and it might also lead to liver cancer or cirrhosis. It has been seen that the majority of adults with hepatitis B are able to recover fully, even if they have severe symptoms. However, it’s not the same for infants and children as they are more likely to develop a chronic hepatitis B infection.

Though a vaccine can prevent hepatitis B, there’s no cure discovered for it yet, if you have the condition. But if you undertake certain precautions and are aware of the symptoms, you can help prevent spreading the virus.

Symptoms of Hepatitis B:

It is always beneficial to detect a disease at an early stage. Timely detection of a disease is easy to cure. For hepatitis B, the signs and symptoms can range from mild to severe. Usually, the symptoms appear about one to four months after a person has been infected. However, you could also see them as early as two weeks after being infected. In some cases, especially children, they don’t have any symptoms, which makes it difficult to detect.

Some of the signs and symptoms of Hepatitis B include abdominal pain, dark urine, fever, joint pain, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, weakness, and loss of appetite. Along with this, people also encounter jaundice, which is yellowing of the skin and the white of your eyes.

Here are the precautions you can undertake to prevent the Hepatitis B virus: 

The first thing you can do to prevent the virus is to take the vaccine on time. The hepatitis B vaccine is usually given in the form of three or four injections over six months. It is always advised to know the HBV status of your sexual partner. Condoms can reduce the risk of contracting HBV, but they don’t eliminate the risk of contracting.

Do not use illegal drugs, and if you do, then get help to stop yourself from consuming them. This is because the needle with which the illicit drug is injected can carry the HBV virus. You have to be very cautious about body piercing and getting a tattoo. Always go for a reputable shop and ensure that the equipment is cleaned. Make sure the needles are sterile, and if they don’t do as desired, look for another shop.

Just in case, if you are traveling to a region that is prone to Hepatitis B virus, make sure you have taken the hepatitis B vaccine in advance.

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