Salmonellosis is a common type of food poisoning infection that children and adults experience. It is caused by the Salmonella bacteria which contaminates our food. An infected person shows signs of abdominal cramps, diarrhea, vomiting and fever 12 to 72 hours after ingestion of contaminated food or water.
People who suffer from Salmonellosis usually recover without medications. It is a self-limiting disease that goes away on its own. To help in the convalescence period, patients are advised to drink water or rehydration fluids to replace electrolytes lost during diarrhea. Hospitalization may be needed for people with severe diarrhea and high risk patients. Infants, young children, the elderly and patients with impaired immune system are prone to severe diarrhea.
Salmonella contamination may occur during food processing or food handling when the food handler fails to wash hands properly after bathroom use or contacts with animals and/or their feces.
Rodents and other household pests are also known carriers of the Salmonella bacteria. Even pet animals such as hamsters, chicks, ducklings, turtles and other reptiles may carry the bacteria. Food may also be contaminated by using utensils or surfaces that have been in contact with urine, saliva or droppings of these carriers.
To prevent Salmonellosis exercise proper hygiene by washing hands thoroughly before handling food and utensils. Avoid raw or undercooked eggs and unpasteurized milk, cook food thoroughly especially beef and poultry, wash produce properly, and maintain cleanliness in your food preparation area. Cleanliness is the best protection we can get from food poisoning caused by bacteria.