Posts Tagged ‘MRSA’
No, they aren’t tiny, tentacled creatures wearing microscopic capes. No, they can’t leap tall buildings in a single bound. But they can stand up to even the strongest antibiotics that modern medicine can throw at them. They are superbugs. Or, more accurately, they are drug-resistant strains of the bacteria known as MRSA.
They don’t live in a fortress of solitude. Often, they can be found in hospitals and other closed settings. But they may be looking for new digs: Scientists last year found that the superbugs have taken up residence in bedbugs.
Bed Bugs and MRSA
Bedbugs come by their name honestly. They are small, parasitic creatures that are most often found in or near beds. Though not nocturnal, they often make their appearance at night, when their hosts are sleeping and still and they can dine on their flesh in peace.
Bedbugs can multiply rapidly, and they spread through infected furniture, clothing, and other personal items. They are often found in places where large quantities of people congregate, such as hotels, apartment buildings, and hospitals.
Last year, Canadian researchers found that some bedbugs in a Vancouver hospital were carrying some hosts of their own: The drug-resistant MRSA bacteria, which can be deadly if it spreads from the skin to the bloodstream.
Health Risks of Bedbugs
Bedbugs have not been known to traditionally carry disease, but the discovery of MRSA on the bugs has raised new questions about their health risk. Researchers said that there was no evidence the bedbugs spread the bacteria, and it’s unclear if the bugs were the source of the bacteria or if they were simply carrying it. If the bugs were the source of the bacteria, it could suggest the potential for the bugs to spread the bacteria.
The bites of bedbugs also cause severe itching, which can lead to incessant scratching that breaks the skin, leaving it vulnerable to infection from MRSA and other bacteria. Skin rash, pustules, and allergic reaction can also be caused by bedbug bites.
Though bedbugs have not been known to spread disease, they do carry 28 known pathogens, and they do pierce the skin when they bite. Time and further research may prove that they have been able to spread disease or serious infection.
If you suspect that you have bedbugs, you should act right away to treat them. They can multiply quickly and can become a major disruption, if not a health risk.
The primary treatments for getting rid of bedbugs include:
- Vacuuming seams of furniture and cracks in walls and baseboards to draw out bugs
- Using steam heat around cracks in furniture and walls to kill bugs
- Specially designed mattress cover to trap and kill bugs in mattress and to prevent new infestation
- Wiping down surfaces with rubbing alcohol to kill eggs and visible bugs
- Professional pesticide application
The earlier you act, the better. The longer you wait, the more they will multiply and the harder they will be to eliminate.
Whether you have bedbugs or bedbugs with superbugs, you have a pest on your hands that will be a nuisance at best and a health hazard at worst. If you can’t get rid of the bugs on your own, call a professional for help.
Sarah Rexman is the main researcher and writer for bedbugs.org. Her most recent accomplishment includes graduating from Florida State, with a degree in environmental science. Her current focus for the site involves researching bed bug sites and ways to pest control bed bugs.
Tags: bedbug, MRSA, Sarah Rexman, superbug
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Professor Yiannis Samaras and Dr Effimia Eriotou, from Technological Educational Institute of Ionian Islands, Greece, presented their research about essential oils as cheaper and effective alternative to kill hospital superbugs in Society for General Microbiology’s spring meeting in Edinburgh that.
Superbugs are drug-resistant bacteria. The researchers tested the antimicrobial activities of eight different plant essential oils, and they found that thyme essential oil is the most effective, followed by cinnamon. Thyme essential oil was able to kill almost all bacteria, in particular Staphylococcus species, within an hour time. Infection caused by drug-resistant bacteria, such as meticillin-resistant Straphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is hard to treat.
Tags: alternative medicine, antibiotics, aromatherapy, bacteria, cinnamon, cinnamon essential oil, Dr Effimia Eriotou, Edinburgh, essential oil, Greece, meticillin-resistant Straphylococcus aureus, MRSA, Professor Yiannis Samaras, Society for General Microbiology, Staphylococcus, superbug, Technological Educational Institute of Ionian Islands, thyme, thyme essential oil
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