Unhealthy flogging: perforation of the nose spreads dangerous bacteria
Although it is generally considered unhygienic, not only children, but also many adults snap their noses. This can help spread dangerous bacteria, as shown in a study by British scientists.
Potentially lethal diseases caused by diffuse bacteria
Pneumococci are bacteria that are found in many people in the nose and throat, usually without causing any disease. However, if the immune system can not control pathogens, they can spread and cause infections such as sinusitis or otitis media. However, these bacteria can also cause life-threatening diseases like meningitis and blood poisoning. And even a large part of pneumonia is triggered by pneumococci. So far it has been hypothesized that the transmission of pathogens occurs by means of a droplet infection. However, a study suggests that nose rubbing and nasal dryness contribute significantly to the spread of pneumococci.
Children are the main carriers
As the UK researchers have explained, understanding the transmission of pneumococci is important because more than 1.2 million childhood deaths are due to bacteria.
"We know that children are more likely to have pneumococcus in the nose than adults, and other studies have shown that children are the main carriers of these bacteria in the community," Drs said. Victoria Connor of the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine and Royal Liverpool Hospital, according to an article in the magazine "Healio".
"Therefore, the results of the study in adults are probably of great importance to children."
The study was published in the journal "European Respiratory Journal".
Easier transmission of pneumococci in humid environments
To reach their conclusions, between April and May 2017, scientists placed the pneumococci on the fingertip or the back of the hand in 40 healthy adult participants.
Once the bacteria were administered, the subjects were instructed to smell the bacteria or to establish direct contact with the surface of the nasal mucosa, similar to the nasal drip or the rubbing of the nose.
Contact with bacteria occurred while the solution was still wet or one or two minutes after the application of the pneumococci.
Nine days later, Connor and his colleagues observed bacterial colonization in 20% of participants treated with pneumococci.
Those who were asked to touch their noses with a moist bacterial solution had the highest colonization rate (40%), followed by those who were asked to smell the wet bacterial solution on the back of their hands (30%) .
According to the researchers, the germination was much lower in the same procedure with a dry bacterial substance. In the "drill nose" it was only ten percent and the "sniffers" were not evidence of bacteria.
In the humid environment, pneumococcal transmission was easier.
Pay attention to coherent hand hygiene
Connor said that the hands of adults can spread the bacteria, and this can be important if they come into contact with children and the elderly with a weakened immune system.
The researcher suggested that adults should pay particular attention to hand hygiene when they come into contact with these populations.
In addition, toys and surfaces must be cleaned regularly to reduce the likelihood of transmission.
"For parents, this research shows that hands are likely to spread pneumococci, which is important when children come into contact with elderly relatives or relatives with compromised immune systems," says Connor.
"In such situations, good hand hygiene and cleaning of toys and surfaces would reduce transmission."
It may also be useful to have a preventive vaccination.
For all persons to whom the permanent vaccination committee (STIKO) recommends the pneumococcal vaccine, health insurance companies bear the costs: for children up to two years and for adults over 60 years as well as for immunodeficiency and people with certain chronic diseases.
Pneumococcal vaccination is carried out with a dead vaccine that can be injected in parallel with others, for example with the flu vaccine, but not in the same arm or thigh.
Children up to two years are vaccinated against the pneumococcus three times during some months of life.
This is also possible at the same time as another six-month vaccination (for diphtheria, tetanus, poliomyelitis, pertussis (whooping cough), Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) and hepatitis B). (To)