What Causes Tetanus ?

What Causes Tetanus ?

Tetanus is a bacterial infection, and it is caused by bacteria known as clostridium tetani. These bacteria live in our natural environment in unhygienic and wet places, and they are also found in sewers and animal or human feces. In countries where there is no proper sewage system and unhygienic conditions, bacterial infections like tetanus are more prevalent.

There is a widespread awareness about tetanus and people across the world know that they have to get vaccinated in order to prevent the onset of this infection. Tetanus is more common among children because their immunity levels are low and they get hurt frequently. Tetanus enters the human body through open wounds. Tetanus causes excessive muscle spasms and pain, and it eventually paralyzes the entire body. It has an effect on the central nervous system, and takes over all the muscle groups. It is also called lockjaw because it affects the muscles of the jaw first.

The bacterium that leads to tetanus, clostridium tetani produces spores, which enter the human body, and these spores release a toxin or poison that causes muscle pains. There may be no fever present, but excessive pain and headaches are common in a person infected with tetanus. Tetanus bacteria can lie dormant in the soil and even dust for several years. They can stay that way for more than 40 years. The bacteria can activate itself when it finds the right circumstances. That is why we always hear people telling us to take a tetanus shot whenever we step on a rusty nail or cut ourselves with some kind of metal.

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What Causes Tetanus