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What is E. coli and how can you prevent it?

Would you like to have a good understanding of e coli causes, and take steps in e coli prevention for your household? Read on for valuable strategies and advice!


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What is E. coli? E. coli infection can result in Diarrhoea, blood when you go to the bathroom, throwing up, stomach pains and a high temperature can be the result of E.coli infection.  E. coli causes mostly originate from the E. coli O157 strain, which lives in the belly and excrement of some animals, particularly sheep and cows.

Following a thorough hand washing routine, and keeping key surfaces hygienic are two simple preventative measures to avoid E. coli infection in your home. A cleaning product such as Domestos can help you – just read the directions on the label and test on a small area first.

What are the most common E. coli causes?

It is possible to catch an E.coli infection in the following ways:

  • Coming into contact with people who are infected after an insufficient hand wash, or prior to preparing a meal.

  • By ingesting food that is infected, whether raw milk or meat that isn’t cooked properly.

  • Touching animals that are infected

  • Swimming in streams or ponds that are infected

  • Drinking water that hasn’t been treated sufficiently

E. coli Prevention

E. coli can be a nasty bug with the potential to cause sickness in people of all ages. With the following preventative measures, you can avoid the risk of infection in your home – or if infection ever strikes, there are ways to stop it spreading:

  • It’s important for every person in your household to wash their hands after touching animals, after going to the bathroom or changing babies’ diapers, following being in contact with a person who is infected, or handling their clothes or bedding, before eating, and preparing or serving food.

  • If one of your friends or family has been infected, they should not prepare or cook food for 48 hours after the symptoms have stopped.

  • Use a cleaning product, such as Jif to wipe surfaces regularly touched, such as toilet seats, door handles and taps.

  • Never share diaper changing mats or towels.

  • Throw away cloths after cleaning, and ensure they don’t spread germs by placing them in a plastic bag, tying off the neck and disposing of the bag in your household waste.

  • Separate clothing and bedding used by infected people and wash apart from other clothes, at a high temperature.

  • Don’t forget to carefully wash your rubber gloves after use.

E. coli symptoms can include the following:

  • diarrhoea

  • bloody stool

  • vomiting

  • stomach cramps

  • fever

People tend to notice symptoms 3–4 days after they’ve been infected, but symptoms can start any time within 1 and 14 days. These symptoms can last up to two weeks. If you are concerned about your E. coli symptoms, or those of a loved one, you should call your doctor or health professional for further advice.

Now you have a good understanding of E. coli infection, put these E. coli prevention tips into action and ensure your household is an infection-free zone!

  • Is E. coli contagious? Yes. Only tiny numbers of E. coli bacteria are needed to cause illness, which makes E. coli infection very contagious

  • Washing hands frequently and carefully prevents spreading E. coli at home

  • Thick household bleach such as Domestos is very effective at keeping surfaces free of E. coli infection

Originally published