Lifestyle and home remediesBy Mayo Clinic staff
If you've been infected with hepatitis B, take steps to protect others from the virus. For instance:
- Take precautions to make sex safer. The only way to protect your sexual partner or partners from your hepatitis B infection is to avoid sexual contact. If you choose to have sex, talk to your partners about the risk of transmitting HBV. Use a new latex condom every time you have sexual contact. But remember that while condoms may reduce the risk of spreading HBV, they don't eliminate the risk completely.
- Tell your sexual partner(s) you have HBV. Let anyone with whom you've had sex know that you have HBV. Your partners need to be tested and receive medical care if they have the virus. They also need to know their HBV status so that they don't infect others.
- Don't share needles or syringes. If you use IV drugs, never share your needles and syringes with anyone.
- Don't donate blood or organs. Donating infected blood or organs spreads the virus.
- Don't share razor blades or toothbrushes. These items may carry traces of infected blood.
- If you're pregnant, tell your doctor you have HBV. That way, your baby can be treated soon after birth.
- Perillo R. Hepatitis B and D. In: Feldman M, et al. Sleisenger & Fordtran's Gastrointestinal and Liver Disease: Pathophysiology, Diagnosis, Management. 9th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4160-6189-2..X0001-7--TOP&isbn=978-1-4160-6189-2&about=true&uniqId=229935664-2192. Accessed July 25, 2011.
- Lok ASF, et al. Chronic hepatitis B: Update 2009. Hepatology. 2009;50:1.
- Hepatitis B FAQs for the public. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/hepatitis/B/bFAQ.htm. Accessed July 25, 2011.
- What I need to know about hepatitis B. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/pubs/hepb_ez/. Accessed July 25, 2011.
- Hepatitis B. Lab Tests Online. http://labtestsonline.org/understanding/analytes/hepatitis-b/tab/glance. Accessed Aug. 1, 2011.
- Milk thistle. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. http://nccam.nih.gov/health/milkthistle/ataglance.htm. Accessed July 25, 2011.