HSE concerned about outbreak of cryptosporidiosis- here's everything you need to know
The HSE is concerned about an outbreak of cryptosporidiosis.
A recent outbreak was discovered on a farm in the midwest of Ireland.
According to The Irish Mirror, the midwest has seen a concerning increase in cases.
Cases are at their highest in over 10 years in the midwest.
Public Health Mid-West tweeted: "We are advising the public to improve handwashing in and around farm settings."
The public has also been told to "test and treat their well water".
"Because it is the start of petting zoo season, there is an increased risk of exposure to Cryptosporidium, especially among children.”
But what exactly is cryptosporidiosis?
According to the HSE, cryptosporidiosis is a diarrhoeal disease.
A parasite called Cryptosporidium causes the illness.
Unfortunately, the parasite is very resistant to disinfectants. It can also survive temperatures as high as 70oC.
What are the symptoms?
Symptoms include watery diarrhea and dehydration.
However, people may also suffer from fever, stomach cramps, weight loss, nausea, and vomiting.
However, others may have no symptoms at all.
Symptoms often last between 1 and 2 weeks in people who have a healthy immune system.
The elderly and immunocompromised may have more severe cases.
Luckily, most people tend to feel better after two weeks.
To help stop the spread of cryptosporidiosis, washing your hands is key.
You should always wash your hands with soap and water after using the toilet.
The same goes for when you're changing a child's nappy.
You should also always wash your hands thoroughly before preparing and eating food.
Anyone with cryptosporidiosis should avoid swimming in public areas.