7 Cystic Fibrosis Risks and How to Protect Yourself

For those suffering Cystic fibrosis (CF), knowing the risks and how to best protect yourself could mean the difference between being healthy or contacting a lung infection. CF is a progressive disease caused by a defective gene that causes a sticky and thick buildup of mucus in the lungs, pancreas, and other organs. This mucus is known to block airways, leading to bacterial infections, lung damage, and even respiratory failure.

Cystic Fibrosis Risks

Because people with cystic fibrosis are at a greater risk of infections, it is important to learn what risks are involved and how to protect yourself. Here are seven cystic fibrosis risk areas you might not have thought about, but are very important to take into consideration for better overall health and quality of life.

  1. The Gym
  2. Kitchen Sinks
  3. Cutting Boards
  4. Pillows
  5. Ice Cubes
  6. Condiment Holders
  7. Escalator Rails

1) The Gym

Did you know that there are 74% more bacteria on a treadmill compared to on a water faucet? The gym is a perfect breeding ground for dangerous germs and bacteria. Click To TweetMake sure to clean weights and equipment prior to using them and make sure to wash your hands thoroughly afterward.

2) Kitchen Sinks & Sponges

Kitchen sinks and sponges (or cleaning clothes) are prime for growing dangerous bacteria, such as E. Coli. Sinks and scrubbies stay wet, allowing the perfect breeding environment for germs to feed on. Throw your kitchen sponge away often and do not leave dirty plates sitting in the wash basin.

3) Cutting Boards

Cutting boards also harbor harmful germs. Some people use the same board to cut vegetables, as well as meats, and this cross-contamination makes cutting your salad on a toilet seat a safer option. Be sure to have cutting boards specifically allocated for each food group.

4) Pillows

You might not know, but pillows absorb your sweat, dead skin, and carry fungi and dust mites which can trigger asthma or respiratory infections. Use a dust mite cover and replace your pillow every few months.

5) Ice Cubes

It is scary, but bacteria such as Pseudomonas, Staphylococcus, Bacillus, and Acinetobacter can all live and thrive on ice. This causes your drink to be contaminated and the germs eventually aspirated into your lungs.

6) Condiment Holders & Menus

Menus, salt shakers, ketchup bottles, and other condiment holders are rich with bacteria. Think about how many people have used these items prior to you. How many of them have washed their hands? In fact, menus are some of the germiest things in a restaurant. Be sure to wash your hands after touching any of these items.

7) Escalator Rails

When you are out and about, try to keep from using escalator and stair rails. When was the last time these handrails were cleaned and sanitized? Maybe never! If you must use the rails when climbing or descending the stairs, be sure to wash your hands immediately.

Protecting Yourself from Cystic Fibrosis Risks

CF patients have to be extra wary of germs and harmful bacteria. To help protect yourself from an infection you must minimize your contact with germs and prevent them from thriving and multiplying. A great way to do this is to not only practice frequent hand washing and avoiding things that are heavily contaminated, but to also consider household microbial testing.

Staying Healthy with Cystic Fibrosis

Unfortunately, there is no cure for cystic fibrosis, making it vital for you to do your part in stopping the spread of menacing germs and bacteria. By understanding the risks and how to protect yourself is the first step in staying healthy and free from infections.

Contact us to learn more about the risks of cystic fibrosis and how to protect yourself with microbiology testing.

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