DO’S AND DONT’S FOR A TB PATIENT
A TB patient must read, re-read and memorize this page; it will help protect his kids and family members.
These precautions are absolutely essential for a lung TB patient who is infectious i.e. his sputum tests positive for germs.
1. Cover your mouth with a hanky (piece of cloth) while coughing. Wash and put this hanky in boiling water for 10 minutes daily before reuse.
2. Spit only in a cup or a can and keep its lid closed. After 2-3 days pour kerosene oil, burn and bury it. Then take a fresh can. Don’t spit here and there.
3. Or spit on small pieces of old newspaper and fold and collect them carefully in a corner; light a matchstick and burn them every evening.
4. Give a good sputum sample for testing. Cough deeply, forcefully and repeatedly to bring out your phlegm; keep collecting the sputum for 2 hours and then hand over the cup with your name written on it to the laboratory.
5. Take your medicines regularly and religiously as directed.
6. Be an out door person. Spend most of your time out in the open – in a field, park, courtyard or roof. Don’t stay in closed, unventilated, crowded and congested rooms.
7. Eat a healthy balanced diet that includes milk, green vegetables, pulses (daals), cheese, meat, eggs and fruits etc. Don’t waste money on non-seasonal costly fruits, which hardly provide any added advantage.
8. Maintain your temperature chart; use thermometer twice a day and jot down the readings and prepare this chart.
9. Maintain your bi-weekly weight chart.
1. Don’t give up treatment midway. TB treatment must always be taken for a minimum of 6 – 8 months. Incomplete treatment is a blunder. 60% patients discontinue medication as soon as symptoms subside and they begin to feel better. They are bound to suffer.
2. No self-medication please.
3. Don’t accept treatment from quacks. Consult only a qualified doctor (with at least an MBBS degree)
4. Don’t ever miss even a single dose.
5. Don’t leave behind even one tablet out of your quota of dose; swallow each and every pill religiously.
6. Don’t accept substandard medicines. Take drugs manufactured only by well-known firms of international repute – reconfirm this diligently with your chemist and doctor.
7. Don’t forget to check the date of expiry of medicines.
8. Don’t change doctors and drug-regimes frequently and recklessly.
9. No smoking, drinking alcohol, tobacco-chewing or drug addictions please.
10. Don’t hesitate in giving your sputum samples repetitively, to record your weight every month or to seek a second opinion, if required.
11. As long as you are still sputum positive, don’t pick up infants and small kids or kiss them. Don’t sleep with them or in the same room. Simply stay away from kids.
Within a month or two of effective treatment, sputum turns free from germs and the risk of transmission of infection recedes.