According to the Mayo Clinic, tapeworms are a type of parasite that live in your intestines. Most often found in animals, like dogs and cats, humans can also get tapeworms by ingesting food or liquid that contains tapeworm eggs or larvae.
How to Keep Tapeworms Out of Your Home
The Mayo Clinic asserts that if you believe that you or your pet may have tapeworms, you must first contact a physician or veterinarian for diagnosis. The only way to fully eradicate a tapeworm epidemic from your home is to first rid your body of the worms.
Next, it is necessary that you carefully handle all meat to prevent tapeworm infections. The Mayo Clinic explains that you should cook meat at temperatures of at least 125 degrees Fahrenheit to kill tapeworm eggs or larvae. For further protection, freeze your meat for at least 12 hours before cooking to more thoroughly eliminate the threat of tapeworm eggs and larvae. Also, clean all surfaces that raw meat touches with hot water and soap.
Another important step to keeping your home and body free from tapeworms involves careful, meticulous hand washing. The Mayo Clinic recommends washing your hands with soap and hot water before eating or handling food, after handling raw meat and especially after going to the bathroom.
If you own a pet, be sure to clean any fecal matter that your home is exposed to. If you own a cat, clean the litter box regularly. If your pet goes to the bathroom in your home, dispose of the fecal matter and then disinfect the area thoroughly, and be sure to wash your hands promptly before touching anything else.
Maintaining a clean home atmosphere is the best way to prevent and recover from parasites such as tapeworms. Vacuum the floor and upholstered furniture regularly, launder clothing and bedding once a week and clean all kitchen and bathroom surfaces with a disinfectant or bleach at least once a week.
Maintain a clean home environment, particularly in areas where your pets often go. Hire a maid service, if necessary.
The Mayo Clinic notes that tapeworms are a serious parasite, and you should immediately call a doctor if you are unsure of how to proceed, and to seek to medical advice.
Writing professionally since 2007, Sarah Weddle has published articles in “Health View Magazine” and “Metal Architecture Magazine.” Weddle graduated with her Bachelor of Arts from Ursinus College. She went on to earn her Master of Arts from American University.