Lifestyle Changes to Manage Viral Hepatitis
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Lifestyle changes can help you prevent further damage to your liver and prevent the spread of the disease to others.
General Guidelines for Managing Hepatitis
Prevent Further Damage to Your Liver
To do so, avoid ingesting anything that can cause additional liver damage, such as:
) and herbs that can affect your liver
- Always check with your doctor before using any new prescription, over-the-counter medication, or any dietary supplement (vitamins, herbs, or liquid nutritional formulas).
Prevent the Spread of Hepatitis to Others
Practicing proper hygiene techniques will help prevent the spread of infection. Do the following:
- Wash your hands with soap and water after using the bathroom or changing a diaper.
- Wash your hands with soap and water before eating or preparing food.
- Do not prepare food for others without your doctor's permission if you have any form of hepatitis. Some types of hepatitis may be spread by food handling.
- Carefully clean all household utensils after use.
- Avoid injected ]]>drug use]]> , especially with shared needles. If you use IV drugs, get ]]>treatment]]> .
- Tell your doctors, dentists, sexual partner, and close personal contacts that you have hepatitis.
- Never donate blood, organs, or tissue if you have hepatitis.
- Discuss your hepatitis status with your doctor during pregnancy or, preferably, before becoming pregnant to ensure the baby receives appropriate treatment.
- Use ]]>condoms]]> or abstain from sex.
- Limit your number of sexual partners. A mutually monogamous relationship is best.
Do not share personal items that might have blood or body fluids on them, such as:
- Manicuring tools
- Pierced earrings
When to Contact Your Doctor
- If you suspect you have hepatitis but have not received medical care
- If you have any questions about hepatitis
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/ .
National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse website. Available at: http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ .
Last reviewed January 2010 by ]]>David L. Horn, MD, FACP]]>
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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