Stomach parasites also known as intestinal parasites are organisms that cause infection of the digestive system. They are capable of living anywhere in the body but love to reside on the walls of intestine. Any person can get infected with parasites by eating uncooked meat or by drinking infected water. Sometimes they can enter the body through cuts/wounds on the skin. There are many types of stomach parasites but two of them are significant.
Humans can get infected with parasites when he/she comes into direct contact of infected feces. Some of the common symptoms of stomach parasites are nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain. They can be treated and controlled by anti-parasitic group of drugs but can be prevented by eating hygienic foods and by following good hygiene in toilet.
Stomach parasites are of two types basically. They are protozoa (single celled organisms) and helminths (multicellular). Some examples of multicellular parasites are tapeworms and roundworms. Helminths are not capable of multiplying inside the human body in their adult form but protozoa can and hence for this reason protozoans are serious. Some of the common protozoans are giardia and cryptosporidium.
Stomach parasites generally live in our body/intestine without any symptoms for years together. But when the immunity gets weakened for some reasons they start multiplying causing infection. Some of the common signs of parasitic infection are abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and feeling of fullness in stomach. Some people may develop bloating sensation in stomach and severe itching in and around the anus/rectum area. The person may feel tired and sick due to above symptoms.
Stomach parasites can enter into human body by many ways. It can be directly swallowed by eating undercooked/infected meat or by drinking contaminated water. Drinking impure water in public places like restaurants can also cause infection. Improper hygiene in toilet can become another cause for getting infected. Infected fecal particles lying in the open ground can be easily contracted by children and adults by walking barefooted on such places. Not washing hands properly after using toilet can also cause infection.
Parasites can gain entry into our body by skin through open wounds or cuts. They can also get transmitted through oral sex with infected persons. Once the parasites get entry into the body they can easily move into the intestine residing in the walls. Here they grow and multiply causing serious infections. People who travel frequently are at risk of getting infected with stomach parasites. Children at day care centers are likely to get infected easily through infected child. People with weak immunity are at high risk of developing this infection.
After listening to the symptoms your GP may order for stool test which would be tested in the lab for presence of parasites. In some case a paste like substance will be applied on the anus region to detect eggs of parasites.
It is more easy to prevent stomach parasites than treating it. You need to follow good hygiene while eating and drinking and when using toilet.
- Wash hands properly before eating anything.
- Drink only pure water without any contamination.
- Avoid eating in restaurants frequently.
- Wash hands with mild soap water after using toilet.
- Do not send your child to day care centers if he is infected.
- Instruct the children to wear shoes while walking in open grounds to prevent risk of getting infected.
- Eat thoroughly washed fresh vegetables and fruits daily to develop immunity.
After detecting the presence of parasites in the stool, your doctor may prescribe anti-parasitic drugs like anti-helminthic medications. Medications are given suitably for destroying the parasites inside the stomach completely. You need to follow the course of medication therapy failing which infection is likely to recur. Drugs like Praziquantel is prescribed for killing tapeworms. For those with symptoms of diarrhea and stomach pain, probiotics like lactobacillus acidophilus or saccharomyces boulardii are prescribed.
Home Remedies :
Eating raw carrot each day in empty stomach can get rid of parasites and prevent further infection also. Including papaya and pomegranate fruits can get rid of stomach parasites. Eat few pods of garlic each day to flush off the toxins from the stomach along with parasites.