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Hepatitis A is a liver disease caused by the Hepatitis A virus. The virus attacks the liver and causes it to swell. The liver is the organ responsible for helping digestion and filtering impurities from the blood. It keeps our system clean. So if the liver is infected, it isn’t able to do its job properly. This can cause a lot of other health problems, as a result of poor liver function.

Hepatitis A is a common disease in the US. The Hepatitis A virus is found in the stools of people infected with the virus. This can be spread to another person by putting anything in the mouth that has been contaminated with the fecal matter of an infected person. This can include touching a toilet handle that someone else has used, and not washing the hands immediately afterward. Not washing your hands before cooking and eating can also spread contamination.

Hand washing is one of the best ways to prevent getting Hepatitis A. Think about how many things you touch in a single day. And do you remember to wash your hands often, or just after using the restroom?

Hepatitis A can also be spread to sexual partners as well. So if you are in a relationship or are married, you both should be vaccinated. This would also apply to a roommate situation. You would be exposed to those same risks. Taking precautions and getting vaccinated are the best ways to protect you from getting this infection.

Who is at risk of getting Hepatitis A:

* The sexual partner of an infected person
* Prostitutes or anyone who exchanges sex for money
* Travelers to countries without proper sanitation and good water filtering

Tips for preventing Hepatitis A:

* Get a Hepatitis A Vaccination. The vaccine is given in a series of two injections. You will need to get both to be fully protected. Once you have had the vaccine or if you had previously been infected, you cannot get it again. You will have immunity to the disease.
* Good Hygiene. Wash your hands several times a day with soap and water. You should always wash your hands after using the bathroom, changing a diaper, or before preparing or eating food.
* Use bottled water for drinking and cooking when traveling in areas with poor sanitation practices.
* Wash all fruits and vegetables.
* Cook foods thoroughly, and follow safe food handling procedures. Keep meats from touching vegetables while cutting and preparing. Use a separate knife and cutting board if necessary.


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