You may think they’re only a problem in poor or developing countries, but parasites affect millions of people in the United States every year.
What is a parasite?
Before you go self-diagnosing your parasite symptoms, it’s necessary to know what a parasite is. “A parasite is AN organism that lives on or in an exceeding host organism and gets its food from or at the expense of its host,” per the government agency. There are three classes of parasites: Protozoa, which are tiny, one-celled organisms that typically live in the intestines, blood, or tissue; helminths, which are parasitic worms such as tapeworms, roundworms, and thorny-headed worms; and ectoparasites, which are ticks, fleas, lice, and mites that attach to or burrow into the skin. Parasites will cause unwellness and even death, however luckily, if caught early, the infections will sometimes be treated with medication. Here are some silent signs and parasite symptoms that could mean you are hosting one of these tiny invaders, including the parasite that millions of people in the United States have and don’t know it!