Risk and Prevention
Risk and Prevention

Who is at risk for MRSA?

A partial list of risk factors:

  •  Elderly
  •  Infants
  •  Health care workers, Law Enforcement Officers
  •  Children, especially those in daycare or school
  •  Chronically ill
  •  Immune compromised (HIV, diabetes, etc)
  •  Lactating mothers (breastfeeding)**
  •  Surgical patients
  •  High stress lifestyles
  •  Drug addicts, prisoners, homeless
  •  Athletes and surfers

It is important to note that many young, seemingly healthy people are
getting MRSA, especially CA-MRSA.  Some doctors believe that your
DNA make up is what makes you more or less susceptible to
developing an infection.  It is also highly likely that many of us have
depressed immune function due to our food choices and/or the use of
antibiotics.

** Special note to nursing moms:  Do NOT stop breastfeeding your baby if you have MRSA.  
Do NOT stop holding and touching your baby if you have MRSA.  Your milk and touch gives
your baby a daily dose of immune protection and the love and nurturing he/she needs to live
as stress-free as possible.  Slow down and get rest during this time of your life.  This information
comes from the best Infectious Disease Doctor in our large metropolitan city.  See our Moms &
Babies page.

Prevention

THERE ARE 10 TIMES AS MANY BACTERIAL CELLS ON YOUR BODY
THAN HUMAN CELLS (
this is possible because bacteria cells are smaller
than human cells
).  The majority of bacteria are helpful to us and even
necessary.  The largest numbers of bacteria are on your skin and in
your digestive tract.  The best prevention against MRSA is a strong
immune system, a healthy balance of different bacteria and good
hygeine.  Living in a warm, moist climate may exasperate the problem.  
Please note that, even if you do all the following things, you will still be
exposed to MRSA and you may still get infected.

Avoid elective, unnecessary surgery.

Wash your hands often.  Sounds simple but, of course, this is always a
good idea.  It will probably not keep you from coming into contact with
microscopic bacteria but it may reduce your overall risk of contracting
an infection.  Do not use hand soap with Triclosan (an antibiotic).  
Exposing bacteria to antibiotic chemicals, even topically on your skin,
increases the risk of it becoming more resistant.  

Use natural antimicrobial products on minor wounds and cuts
whenever possible.  Instead of
ointment, try:

  •  tea tea oil (or for a gel, try MelaGel brand)
  •  fresh aloe vera
  •  garlic / stable allicin
  •  calendula (try Borion's brand)
  •  comfrey
  •  lavendar oil
  •  raw honey (a little messy but tasty)
  •  spider webs (if you get cut while in the woods... strange but true!)
  •  any homeopathic wound ointment

Use oral antibiotics judiciously.  Some doctors give you antibiotics out
of habit and many patients even expect to get them.  Always ask, "Is
this antibiotic necessary?".  Let your doctor know that you are trying to
save antibiotics for serious infections only.  Please read "Germ
Warfare" on our "Links" page.  Do not use antibiotics for colds and
flus.  There are a variety of natural anti-microbials you can use
instead.  


Clean your house and linens often.  Use detergents without allergens
(perfumes, etc) because you need your immune system to fight off
other things besides your laundry detergent.  Few things top bleach
for surface cleaning but be sure to use it in a well-vented area.
 Do not
clean to the point of stress... just do your best.


Eat a healthy diet.  Stay away from processed foods as much as
possible.  Keep mostly fresh (organic preferred) fruit and vegetables in
your refrigerator so you will get used to reaching for them as snacks.  
Eat them raw as much as possible.  Eat grass-fed meat and eggs from
pastured chickens whenever possible.  Reduce the use of processed
flour products and avoid wheat, white flour and gluten.  Reduce or
eliminate beef and all cow products including dairy.  Whether you eat
meat or are a vegetarian, never eat soy (you will find it in most
processed foods).  See our "Links" page for websites that support
healthy eating for both lifestyles.  Again, you need your immune
system free to fight off other things beside the food you eat.  See our
new "MRSA Diet" page!


Where does MRSA live?

The following section is from our "What Is MRSA?" page.  We think it's
important enough to repeat.

Some doctors say that MRSA lives in the nose, in the gut (aka the
digestive tract or intestines) and on the skin.  However, that doesn't
really paint the whole picture.  Consider that MRSA infections can turn
up inside your brain, spine, jaw, arms, legs, hands, feet, ears, armpits,
eyes, face, throat, lungs... you get the picture.  Common sense leads
us to think that, since MRSA is a microscopic organism that can pass
through the tissues of the body, it can live anywhere on or in your
body given the proper opportunity.  Possible points of entry are your
nose, your mouth, your eyes or anywhere on your skin whether you
have a cut or not.  MRSA infections usually affect some but not all
members of a family, leading doctors to the theory that your DNA make
up determines how well you can fight it off.  It is estimated that up to 53
million people carry MRSA.

Besides on and in humans, MRSA is known to live for weeks on
everyday surfaces like computer keypads, doorknobs, light switches,
cell phones... the list is endless. Think about this... your skin cells shed
every 35 days (not all at the same time, of course).  Now imagine the
vast amount of skin cells laying about.  MRSA or, more specifically,
bacterial resistance, can be passed to and from our pets and
livestock.  MRSA could also possibly be transmitted by handling or
consuming infected meat.  
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