How Are Non-Enveloped Viruses Transmitted?

Gabby MartinBio Recovery General, Biohazard Cleanup, Infectious Disease Cleanup, Infectious Disease Superbug Cleaning

Key-Points

  • Examples of Non-Enveloped Viruses

  • How Do You Get C. Diff?

  • How Do You Contract Herpes?

  • Is Polio Contagious?


Examples of Non Enveloped Viruses

Non-enveloped viruses are similar to enveloped viruses, the major difference being a lack of lipid coating. A non-enveloped virus attaches to a host differently because it lacks the protein coating an enveloped virus has.

Because of this, non-enveloped viruses stand a better chance of surviving because they do not have a fragile envelope coating.

Unfortunately, non-enveloped viruses are not less dangerous than enveloped viruses. It is only by the way they hook to their host that they differ in name. That’s why it’s important to have areas that may have been exposed disinfected professionally.

Since “non-enveloped viruses” is a general term, the reality is that they are transmitted in all different ways. Like most other viruses, including enveloped viruses, they can be spread through physical surfaces, human skin, sneezing, and contact through blood. 

Examples of non-enveloped viruses include:

  • C. Diff
  • Herpes
  • Poliovirus

How do you get C Diff?

When a susceptible individual comes into contact with C. Diff (also known as C. Diff Colitis) by touching a contaminated surface or belonging, the body may not be able to inhibit the spread due to antibiotics or a weakened immune system. C. Diff spreads in the colon, causes diarrhea and vomiting, which in turn causes dehydration. This dehydration is the primary reason why around 15,000 individuals die from CDI (C. difficile infection) a year.

Most of us use antibiotics when we’re fighting off an infection. Antibiotics are great when they inhibit the growth of bad bacteria in the body, but they come at a disadvantage when they inhibit the growth of good bacteria in the body.

When this balance is interrupted, the body is vulnerable to further infection. Unfortunately, treating C. Diff requires using more antibiotics, and this could lead to recurrent infections from stronger strains when the individual is exposed when visiting the doctor or hospital.

Did you know?

C. Diff is highly vigilant because the balance of good gut flora is difficult to maintain after a first time infection. This is why a recurring C. Diff infection is so common. Individuals that have a history of two C. Diff infections are at risk of redeveloping the infection by 60%.

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How do you contract Herpes?

The herpes simplex virus is another non-enveloped virus that is usually spread through physical contact. There are two types of herpes, one often caused through sexual contact (HSV-2) and the other spread orally or by skin-to-skin contact.

Because this infection has no potentially life-threatening symptoms, herpes simplex is less potentially fatal than C. Diff. A herpes outbreak is still a serious concern, however, and should be removed when discovered in public settings.

Did you know?

Those cold sores in your mouth? They're caused by HSV-1! It’s always a wise idea to replace your toothbrush after your cold sores disappear.

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Is Polio Contagious?

Poliovirus is a highly contagious virus that most have unknowingly. This increases the likelihood that a carrier will spread the virus to someone that will have symptoms.

In the best case, a polio-positive person will feel like they have the flu (fever, sore throat, stiffness, etc.). In the worst scenario, poliovirus attacks the nerves and spine, leading to paralysis.

Even in the best case, recovery can be difficult due to the possibility of developing sleep disorders (e.g. sleep apnea), muscle and joint weakness, and nerve abnormalities as a result of post-polio syndrome.

Did you know?

The reason why you don't hear a lot about Polio in the U.S. anymore is because the last U.S. outbreak was in 1979. But Polio is still a continuing problem in some parts of Asia and Africa. This is why vaccinations are required before traveling to these areas.

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