Simply put bacteria are microscopic, single-celled organisms. Thought to be the first organisms to appear on earth they occur in their millions in every environment and organism. Bacteria range in shape, structure and function with estimates of at least 5 nonillion thought to cover the earth. Bacteria are known as prokaryotes, meaning they have no nucleus. However, they have a structure which makes them incredibly hardy and resistant, capable of surviving extreme temperatures and radiation. A bacterium makeup usually includes DNA, ribosomes, cytoplasm, flagella, pili, a capsule, cell wall, and plasma membrane. This simple structure coupled with their proliferation makes them expert survivalists. Bacteria can be good or bad for your health with some bacteria forming the first layer of security into the body. However, while most bacteria are not harmful there are pathogens out there that can infect and harm your health and well-being. Infectious diseases such as pneumonia, tuberculosis, leprosy, typhoid fever, tetanus, diphtheria, and chlamydia are all caused by pathogenic bacteria and have led to the development of hygienic practices to prevent these hardy invaders.

Dangerous Types of Bacteria

There is a plethora of bacteria with several methods of classification but one of the most popular methods of definition is through their basic shape. These different types of bacteria can be dangerous to your health and thorough cleaning techniques are needed to ensure your workplace or home remain safe for you, your family, your customers or your employees. · Spherical bacteria are shaped like a ball and are named cocci with a common example being the streptococcus group responsible for ‘strep throat’. · Spiral bacteria are called spirilla with a subgroup of tightly-wound spirals known as spirochetes. Lyme disease and Leptospirosis are common examples of this shape. · Rod-shaped bacteria are known as bacilli with curved rods in a sub-group known as vibrio. Examples of rod-shaped bacteria include the botulism pathogen Listeria.

Fighting Bacteria

With such a vast array of bacteria human beings have developed strategies to fight and ensure a healthy ecosystem. Antibiotics are a common treatment. Usually designed to destroy the cell wall expelling the pathogen’s DNA, antibiotics are a cornerstone of modern medicine. Prevention is better than cure however so avoid the need for antibiotics and ensure you live or work in a clean space instead. The CDC estimates that 80% of all infections occur through contact with contaminated surfaces making this an important step in health and safety. By removing bacteria from your person or surroundings you can ensure a healthy environment.

Gadgets and Gizmos

Consumer watchdog Which? recently did a study of tech gadgets and work surfaces revealing some scary results. An office toilet had under 20 units of bacteria while keyboards had 480 units, smartphones 120 units, and tablets an incredible 600 units. A simple shake of the keyboard will dislodge skin flakes, food crumbs, and the like while anti-bacterial wipes will help reduce bacteria build up on electronic devices. Regular cleaning rosters are a must, either through a professional service, or relying on your own steam. Toilets, elevators, kitchens, and other high-traffic areas are incredibly important to keep clean and using high-quality cleaning tools and products are a must. Knowledge is power and knowing more about bad bacteria will ensure you understand why a clean-living space is essential.

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