It’s common knowledge that you shouldn’t bite your nails, but it’s a tough habit to unlearn.
Countless studies indicate that anxiety and stress are the main causes behind a lot of nail-biting behavior, and it can become almost compulsive.
Some people wave off advice to stop biting at their nails, thinking that all it does is shorten them and make them look unappealing – a small price to pay for indulging in nervous habits.
But the fact is that the act of biting nails can actually bring serious health problems.
That’s what happened to Ricky Kennedy, a 57-year-old man and grandfather who has always had a habit of biting nails.
But after nibbling on the nail of his thumb too much, he contracted an infection.
He experienced pain in his finger, and then it began to spread outwards to the rest of his body – eventually reaching his chest.
Kennedy, who is Scottish, had to be rushed to the hospital in tremendous pain. He was suffering so much that he genuinely believed it was a heart attack.
He couldn’t move, was absolutely terrified, and by that point thought he would die.
Doctors diagnosed him with sepsis and told him that he had a mere 50% chance of living through the infection.
Subsequently, Kennedy had to be hospitalized for months and months on end. Being stuck there caused him to experience bouts of depression.
Thankfully, Kennedy survived the ordeal, but he’s weaker now than he was before. He developed septic arthritis, suffered erosion in his collarbone, and even has asthma now.
It’s also likely that he will require some form of surgery again one day soon. Regardless, he’s just glad to be with his family again.
What Are The Dangers Of Sepsis?
Sepsis is, in simple terms, a poisoning of the blood. It happens when an infection enters the bloodstream and begins to spread.
The immune system, in an attempt to quell the infection, but that only leads to inflammation.
The condition is so fatal that it is known as a silent killer. While it can be treated, it’s hard for doctors to easily diagnose it.
Worse still, it can cause septic shock in severe circumstances – and that requires immediate medical attention in order to avoid a fatality.
Approximately 1.5 million sepsis cases are reported in America annually. Of that number, a shocking 250,000 will end with no survivors.
To understand sepsis symptoms, you must first know that there are three stages to this disease. Here is each stage and its corresponding symptom.
2. Severe Sepsis
- Extreme body temperatures higher than 101ºF or lower than 96.8ºF
- An unusual heart rate (resting)
- Quick and rapid breathing
3. Septic Shock
- Low body temperature
- Discoloration of the skin
- An unusual heart rate
- Decreased urination
- Extreme weakness
- All of the aforementioned symptoms
- Blood pressure decrease
Here are steps you can take to stay clear of sepsis.
- Do not bite your nails
- Wash hands regularly
- Wash hands before and after dressing or caring for wounds
- Keep your vaccinations up to date
Speak to a doctor immediately if you suspect a sepsis infection. It’s a life or death situation!