If we know correctly how a germ can enter into our body then perhaps, we can prevent the occurrence of that disease. In fact, different kinds of germs enter into us in different ways.
In certain cases, you need to be in direct physical contact with an affected person to get the germs transmitted while few germs can get transmitted through air itself.
In any case, wearing of any personal respiratory mask can always be useful and it can protect us from the germ transmission to a great extent.
Following are few ways that you may get infected with any kind of germ.
Mostly, the viruses of flu or cold are transmitted through droplets. It can spread from one person to the other as the affected person may send droplets in the environment with the help of saliva or mucus, while coughing, sneezing or talking.
Any normal person generally will catch droplets through nose, eyes or mouth if they are in very close proximity with any affected person.
Also, if someone touches any object where droplets were present and thereafter by touching their eyes, mouth or nose can transmit the virus.
This kind of virus may remain in air for considerable amount of time. If a healthy person ever inhales the air then it can affect him. Germs that are capable of making airborne transmission will reach lower respiratory tract after inhaling.
Few diseases like measles, chicken pox and tuberculosis generally spread through airborne transmission.
Direct contact transmission
Few germs can get transmitted through close direct physical contact, as the germs may not survive for any host body and usually get transmitted via saliva, sexual contact, and wound secretions or contacting with blood.
All STDs will come under this category. Few other germs may also be passed on through an additional mode like kissing.
Indirect contact transmission
Few germs can live either for shorter or longer period on any contaminated surface. These germs can spread to surfaces through droplets or with transfer of blood, mucus, faeces, and saliva or wound secretions.
Touching any surface frequently by many people may carry the higher risk, like door handles, restroom surfaces, and tables, drinking or eating utensils and so on.
Also, sharing personal items can raise the risk, which is contaminated, like needles, razors and utensils.
Another mode of virus transmission can be through contaminated food or water that can infect digestive system and shed in faeces.
Waterborne illness will result from bathing, ingesting or swimming in any contaminated water.
Municipal water supplies of developed countries may not be so risky but while traveling to other countries, one can be infected from water of stream, river or pond.
Rats, dogs, mosquitoes, ticks and few other animals also can transmit to humans few disease-causing germs. In such cases, the germ has to pass through host animal before infecting humans, like malaria.
However, it is not necessary that germ always have to remain inside the vector and it can also be adhered to outside of vector’s body.