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Diseases DOUBLE TAP TO ZOOM WITH PHONE OR TABLET Hepatitis Hepatitis is a disease that causes inflammation of the liver. This disease can be deadly. There are several types of hepatitis. Each is caused by a different virus and is spread, treated, and prevented differently. Hepatitis A can be spread when someone who is infected does not wash hands properly after using the toilet. It is also found in sewage. You can get hepatitis A by eating raw oysters and shellfish from water contaminated by sewage. Hepatitis B is spread through infected blood and blood products. Children can also be infected if they stick or cut themselves with a contaminated object, such as a needle or razor. Teach children to avoid touching blood and objects that may have blood on them. Hepatitis C is also spread through infected blood. In past years, it was usually spread by blood transfusions, but the blood supply in the United States is now screened and treated to be safe for transfusions. The number of people with hepatitis is increasing. You can help protect children and yourself by getting immunized against hepatitis A and hepatitis B. Doctors often give the first shot to newborn infants before they leave the hospital. Be sure children have all the recommended immunizations. From Hip on Health: Health Information for Caregivers and Families by Charlotte M. Hendricks. Published by Redleaf Press. www.redleafpress.org. 6 COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL