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When most people hear the term “pathogen,” they’re going to at least have a surface-level understanding of what it means. You probably know that pathogens are related to disease and that they can be dangerous. What you might not know is exactly what pathogens are. Read on to learn more about pathogens as well as how they work. 

There Are Various Types of Pathogens

There are various types of pathogens out there that you need to be aware of. You will find pathogens that take the form of bacteria, viruses, fungi, protists, prions, and even types of parasitic worms. Pathogens can cause a number of different illnesses, but not all microbes are pathogenic. You have many types of bacteria in your body that are beneficial, but pathogenic organisms seek to survive inside your body by multiplying and infecting you. 

How Pathogens Are Transmitted

Pathogens are transmitted by various different means. Some pathogens are airborne, which means they can be transferred through things such as coughing, sneezing, or even laughing. Pathogens can be transmitted through droplets as well. Other ways that pathogens can be transmitted include contaminated food, contaminated water, and through animals such as insects. 

Understanding the different ways that pathogens are transmitted will make it easier for you to protect yourself properly. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused many people to look up information about pathogens so that they can better understand how to protect themselves. Experts say that this virus is transmitted through droplets, and you need to keep your distance from others to keep from being infected. You can avoid droplets and airborne transmission by avoiding getting close to others who might be carrying the virus. 

Knowing more about pathogens makes it easier to see how things work. In the case of contaminated food and water sources, you know that you have to be careful about what you consume. For example, you don’t just drink water from a river without boiling it first to eliminate potential contaminants. This is also why you don’t eat spoiled meat or food that might have been exposed to bad bacteria or other things.