Know The Different Hiding Places Of Parasites In The Human Body

Don’t make the mistake of assuming that vegetarians do not get affected by parasites. Irrespective of the type of food you eat, every human body is the hiding place of several parasites. It doesn’t matter if you eat fish, chicken or vegetables. They are fond of the human body and it is the favorite place for them to grow and multiply causing various diseases though most of them are not fatal. In most of the cases, we recognize parasitic infection only through drastic weight loss. Let us understand the different types of parasites and the favorite spots they are found in our body:

Common Symptoms of Parasitic entry

You may experience the following symptoms after a parasitic infection.

  • Severe headache
  • Digestive problems
  • Tiredness
  • Allergies and rashes on the skin
  • Breathing problems
  • Weakness of muscle
  • Swelling and pain in the joints
  • High susceptibility to infections by bacteria, virus, and fungus
  • Drastic weight loss 

Now let us move on to the favorite location of parasites in the human body and the diseases caused by them. The interesting fact about parasites is that only 70% of them can be seen by our naked eye.

Parasites that Live in the Gut

The parasites that live in the intestine can affect the different stages of digestion and absorption causing various symptoms.  Some of the symptoms are diarrhea, constipation, gas trouble, itching, rashes, eczema, joint pain, fatigue, and anemia.  Some people may also experience a lack of satiety, stomach pain, grinding of teeth while sleeping, itching of vagina and anus, and extreme weight loss. Some examples of intestinal parasites are tapeworm, pinworm, hookworm, etc.

  1. Tapeworm: Tapeworm lives on the intestinal wall of the host body. Some of the species exist in beef, pork, and fish and make their entry into the human body while eating the raw and undercooked meat. Some are found in water, so it is not advised to drink contaminated or unclean water. The infection caused by this worm that exists in pork is known as cysticercosis.
  2. Pinworm: These are roundworms, thin and small. They reside in the colon and rectum of human being and causes itching especially at night disturbing our sleep.  They are spread through direct contact or through contaminated things that come in contact with the human body. 
  3. Giardia: Giardia causes an intestinal infection that is the most common waterborne disease known as giardiasis. This parasite can be found in different water bodies like streams, well, lakes, swimming pools and water supplied by municipalities. This parasite can be washed away from the human intestine by the use of effective microbe formulas and supplements. There are effective treatments and cure for parasites, check to get more information about natural parasite cleansing food to consume.  Giardiasis shows symptoms like nausea, fatigue, watery or greasy stools, bloating, abdominal cramps, flatulence, weight loss, etc.
  4. Hookworm: it has a needle-like or pin-like tapering body and enters through the skin from soil contaminated with an infected person’s feces. They live in the small intestine of the human body and the infection shows gastrointestinal symptoms. 
  5. Ascaris: It is a roundworm similar to hookworm and seen in contaminated soil and makes its entry into the human body by ingesting parasite eggs and they are settled in the intestine of the human body. Infection caused is known as ascariasis and in severe cases, blockage of intestine happens or in children, it leads to impaired growth.
  6. Trichinella: A roundworm that causes an infection called trichinosis. They make their entry into the human intestine through raw or undercooked meat and grow there. Later on, they are moved to muscle tissues and settles there. It causes symptoms like muscle pain, joint pain, etc and when severe, it causes heart and respiratory problems that can even lead to death.

Parasites that Live in the Lymphatic and Circulatory System

Some parasitic flukes and protozoan cause infection to the circulatory system as mentioned below.

  1. Malaria: A protozoan parasite that belongs to the Plasmodium genus causes Malaria infection and is spread by mosquito bites. These parasites infect the RBC’s in the human body. This is considered the most widespread infectious disease in the world. 
  2. Toxoplasmosis: A protozoan by name Toxoplasma gondii that lives on cats spread this infection to the human body while they come in direct contact with the infected cats. 
  3. Babesiosis: A protozoan called babesia makes their entry into the human body through ticks and causes infection of the RBCs until they rupture. The infection is known as babesiosis.
  4. Leishmaniasis: A protozoan Leishmania causes this condition and is transmitted by sandflies and affects WBCs causing them to rupture. These patients become immune suppressed and lead to fatal infections.

Parasites that live in the Brain, Spinal cord, and Central nervous system

  1. Trichinellosis: Trichinella roundworms cause this condition. When we eat undercooked pork meat, this nematode larva gets into the human body and grows in the wall of the small intestine. The adult worm releases the eggs that form a cyst in the muscles. Severe infection causes meningoencephalitis in the brain.
  2. African trypanosomiasis: A protozoan parasite Trypanosoma brucei gambiense or Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense causes trypanosomiasis that is also known as ‘sleeping sickness’. It is spread by the tsetse fly and if the infection is extended for a long time, the infected blood is spread into the brain and becomes fatal.
  3. Echinococcosis: This condition is caused by echinococcus tapeworm that forms a cyst in the brain or spinal cord of the human body. The cyst in the brain can lead to seizures. If the spinal cord is infected by the cysts it can lead to paralysis.

Parasites that Live in the Lungs

  1. Strongyloidiasis: A nematode Strongyloides stercoralis causes this condition. This parasite completes its life cycle in the human body. The larva penetrates through the skin and reaches the blood vessels and from there migrate to lungs and heart. Through alveoli of the lungs, they get into the trachea. Then they are swallowed and reach the small intestine where it grows as adult worms. 
  2. Dirofilariasis: Dirofilaria immitis, causes the disease pulmonary dirofilariasis. The adult worms are transmitted from canine host to right ventricle of the human body and slowly move to pulmonary arteries causing this infection.

Parasites that Live in the Eyes

  1. Toxocariasis: An infection caused by Toxocara canis, the dog roundworm causes ocular lesions in the human eye.
  2. Thelazia: it is a group of parasitic worms that live in the human eye.

Apart from the above-mentioned conditions, some parasites live in the ear, nasal cavity, sinus, liver and other parts of the human body causing parasitic infections. They not only stick to one of the organs but also travel to other organs and damage them. Mostly we tend to neglect parasitic infections and correlate the symptoms with other diseases. Hence it is recommended to identify whether you have a parasitic infection at an early stage and overcome them effectively before it becomes fatal.

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