The Five Most Important Things You Should Know About: Hepatitis

Many people have heard of hepatitis C from Naomi Judd’s public battle with the disease and her crusade to make people aware of it. However, there are seven additional forms of hepatitis in existence that few people are aware of, including the kind you can get from having sex.

  1. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), hepatitis is the inflammation of the liver, but it’s not quite that simple.
  2. There are eight different types of hepatitis, viral and nonviral. Hepatitis B is the type is primarily transmitted through sexual contact. It can be acute or chronic, and acute hepatitis B can become chronic, resulting in long-term health problems and even death.
  3. Hepatitis symptoms can include but aren’t limited to fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, clay-colored bowel movements, joint pain, and jaundice. Symptoms usually appear about three months after exposure.
  4. Hepatitis A and B are the only viral forms with a vaccine available, so make sure you’ve received the series of three to four shots.
  5. Common preventive measures can protect you against the various types of hepatitis. Get the vaccines for hepatitis A or B, practice good hygiene, practice safe sex, don’t share needles, limit or stop alcohol consumption, and read food and drug labels for possible affects to the liver.