Preventing Cholera

Cholera Prevention
Recognize Cholera and take steps to prevent it

How will cholera come back to America and what can you do?
Cholera is an acute waterborne bacterial disease that causes
severe diarrhea and dehydration and comes quickly. Usually
spread in drinking water, Cholera is marked by the bacterium
Vibrio cholorae. It can kill in hours if left untreated.

The telltale signs of cholera are not so easy to discern until it's
too late ~ after painful cramps, excessive vomiting and violent
diarrhea, a person's face turns blue and pinched. You may
wonder, do they make water filters for cholera? Find out below
with these Cholera prevention ideas...

How to Prevent Cholera
Cholera happens often in malnourished countries and could
happen in the United States through biowarfare or an epidemic.

Here are the prepper steps to cholera prevention:

#1: Wash hands.
Hand washing is critically important in preventing the spread of
cholera, so think of this even before treating your drinking water.
Unwashed hands spread cholera from person to person. From
fingers to food, or fingers to the water, germs and bacteria can
spread quickly to sicken masses of people. Keep hygiene at the
top of your list for cholera prevention when crisis hits.

As a prepper you may even want to post a sign reminding
everyone in your group about the critical importance of
handwashing. It's that important in cholera prevention.

#2: Treat your water.
The second line of defense against cholera is safe drinking water.
Filter and boil water! Water that's boiled or properly treated with
chlorine or
iodine is safe to drink. Avoid ice.

Every prepper should have water disinfectant tablets.
above top right, are effervescent tablets which will kill micro-
organisms in water to prevent cholera, typhoid, dysentery and
other water borne disease. The pack pictured above can treat 200
quarts of water from rivers and lakes.

Do they make water filters for cholera?
It's standard practice for a prepper to have good water filtration
methods. A water filter can prevent many illnesses and save you
money, but will your water filter get rid of the cholera?

  • A Brita water filter won't protect you from Cholera. No!
    These filters will take away chlorine, lead, copper and other
    impurities in your tap water ~ they won't help you prevent

  • What about a LifeStraw? Lifestraw products use a hollow
    fiber membrane with microscopic pores that trap
    contaminants. Bacteria and parasites are bigger than the
    pores in these kinds of filters and water is able to pass
    through, but contaminants larger than 0.2 microns remain
    trapped. It's a good start. Lifestraw removes a minimum of
    99.9999% of waterborne bacteria and 99.9% of waterborne
    protozoan parasites, making it an ideal choice for a bugout
    bag. So is a Lifestraw enough to trap cholera? The bacteria
    responsible for cholera are tiny, but they cling to plankton
    and generally are too big to squeeze through the pores of a
    Lifestraw Water filter. Water filtration is important, but for
    100% prevention of cholera a disinfectant is necessary.

  • What about a Big Berkey? Again, a Big Berkey will kill
    99.99% Bacteria and is trusted by the Red Cross, UNICEF
    and the Peace Corps! A Big Berkey will kill 99.99% of the
    Vibrio Cholerae Cholera bacteria. Combine your treatment
    plan with AquaTabs in a cholera outbreak emergency.

Best Water Disinfectants:
Aquatabs are effervescent tablets which kill micro-organisms in
water to prevent cholera, typhoid, dysentery and other water
borne disease. This 200 Pack treats up to 400 quarts of water.
This product is recommended for disinfecting raw or pre-treated
water. The source of water to be treated may be collected rain,
rivers, lakes, wells, cisterns or similar sources. Fast acting,
Aquatabs make water ready to drink in 30 minutes.

Good water disinfectant tablets include:

Another good reason to use water disinfectant tablets:
Beware that water you purify at the source can be re-infected by
the container you transport in! When used as directed,
disinfectant tablets help protect against recontamination in the
container so your water remains bacteriologically suitable to drink
at the point of use. They're easy to use: just drop tablets into 1
quart or liter of water, cap loosely and wait 5 minutes. Then
shake container to sanitize screw threads, then tighten cap. Wait
30 minutes, then drink!  

#3: Have a proper latrine.
Another thing you can do to help prevent cholera is to have a
proper latrine. A camping toilet is a good start and all the better
if you have biohazard waste bags. Either way, bury the bodily

  • Bury poop! Set up a prepper toilet for sanitation if
    emergency has you living off grid, and ensure you do not
    defecate in or around a body of water.

#4: Stay away from antacids.
If you're taking antacids, you are contributing to a lowered
acidity. Your stomach is an acid barrier to bacteria. The Vibrio
cholerae bacterium is sensitive to low gastric acidity, so keep
your stomach as acidic as possible!

#5: Beware of grains.
During an cholera epidemic, be mindful that rice and millet are
grains most often contaminated after cooking, so throw away any
leftovers. If these grains remain at room temperature for several
hours they can grow the cholera bacteria very easily.

#6: Cover your food.
Protect food and food surfaces from flies. The flies can spread
Cholera through their feet. Use
fly covers to help keep your food
protected. Incidentally, flies spread cholera as well as
E.Coli and
Salmonella, and typhoid.

#7: Brush teeth with safe water.
During an epidemic, it's important to be mindful about how you
use water. Remember the importance of brushing teeth only with
safe water.

  • Brush teeth only with safe water. Bottled water is safe to
    drink provided it has not been swimming in floodwaters. and
    if that's not available to brush your teeth use water you've
    boiled for at least a minute.

#8: Use bleach to help battle cholera!
Germicidal bleach is effective at helping combat cholera.
"Chlorination and boiling are often the least expensive and most
effective means of halting transmission" of cholera according to
the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Bleach and germacidal
bleach is not for purifying drinking water. Read up on it before
you buy too much. Bleach effectiveness expires in 6 months!

Bleach is great for cleaning food surfaces. Another solution to
help you clean food surfaces is
Steramine, pictured right.
Steramine is an economical household sanitizer for preppers
that's great for emergencies. Dissolve Steramine tablets in water  
~ one tablet makes a gallon of sanitizing solution and one bottle
makes up to 150 gallons. You mix it fresh so it's more powerful,
and it costs just pennies to make. Steramine also is not for
drinking water. Ensure you have water purification tablets.

#9: Avoid raw foods.
During an outbreak, you must not only wash hands and used
filtered water, but cook all foods.

  • Avoid raw fruits and veggies. Do not eat anything raw
    whether it's fruit or vegetables.

  • Peel fruits and vegetables. Fruit peels can also sometimes
    aggravate intestinal problems, so before cooking, peel your
    fruits and vegetables. This is the same procedure for dealing
    with parasites.

  • Skip the sushi. Seafood must be thoroughly cooked to avoid

#10: Know your blood type.
If you have Type O blood, beware! The Mayo Clinic reports that,
for reasons yet unknown,
people with Type O blood are more
susceptible to cholera. If you are type O blood, you should
quarantine yourself for safety!

#11: Know the symptoms of Cholera
When Cholera hits, will you know it? If you're a prepper you'll
recognize the symptoms:

  • Incubation: The incubation period of cholera is 12-hours to 4-
    1/2 days, which is rather sudden by comparison with other
    kinds of disease.

  • Color of diarrhea. The diarrhea of a cholera victim will look
    like grey wate  (pale and milky) and it will come on rather
    quickly and violently along with vomiting and also possible
    muscle cramps.

  • Severe dehydration. Cholera attacks the digestive track
    with cholerage, a protein that attacks the gut leaving victims
    severely dehydrated.

  • Fatigue and weakness. Dangerously low blood pressure and
    lethargy will take on, along with a rapid heart beat that
    often accompanies severe dehydration.

  • Disease progression: As the disease progresses, the
    cholera patient may show sunken eyes, cold skin, decreased
    skin elasticity, and wrinkling of hands and feet. Ultimately,
    the dehydration may result in the skin turning a deadly
    bluish hue.

#12: Know how to treat cholera.
Treat Cholera immediately with replacement of fluid and salts lost
through diarrhea.
Stockpile electroyltes.

If there's an outbreak, you can make a hydration solution to help
nurse patients back to health or to get good running start to
protect the body in case it's already running through your system.
Rapid rehydration is the most important factor in saving a life!

  • Make your own oral hydration solution: Help treat the
    cholera patient, by administering special fluids. To make
    your own oral hydration solution, use safe water, which is
    water that's been both filtered and boiled. Mix this safe
    water with 1/2 teaspoon of salt with six teaspoons of sugar
    in a liter of water. (One liter = 4 8-ounce glasses).

If you suspect someone has cholera, seek medical treatment
immediately if possible if it's available. Dehydration is a medical

Think of cholera as a deadly sibling to
E. coli or typhoid. It's
almost impossible to discern cholera from other diarrheal
diseases without a stool sample, but during an outbreak acute
watery diarrhea is a helpful indicator. Cholera also has a
remarkably similar appearance to arsenic poisoning. While it has
the initial appearance of many diseases, it is a deadly illness that
could have you seeing someone well and happy by morning and
dead by nightfall.

How will cholera come to America?
As in the movie Love in the Time of Cholera, back in the day
doctors would order you to raise the yellow flag of cholera, to
inform neighbors of the deadly disease lurking in your home. This
would help them stay away and help avoid the outbreak.

What is North Korea Planning?
Could anthrax, botulism, cholera, smallpox, or the plague be
carried out by missiles, a bomb or a plane-sprayer? You never
know what North Korea is planning. Learn about these diseases,
bioterrorism and prepare for an attack from North Korea.

The South Korean Defense Ministry says that North Korea has 13
types of biological weapons which it can weaponize.

Here's how cholera can come to America:

  • International travel. Most all cholera cases reported in the
    United States have come from international travel, including
    Africa, Haiti, and Southeast Asia. Travellers consume water
    or food infected with cholera. Consider vaccination if you
    travel to the areas mentioned above.

  • Food borne outbreak. Food borne outbreaks could bring
    Cholera to the United State and in fact, imported seafood
    has caused cholera infections in the past.

  • Water outbreak. Cholera is a free-living organism that
    survive in seawater or freshwater.

  • Flooding. Flooding inevitably increases potential exposure to
    contaminated water.

  • Biological weapon. Another way cholera could get to the
    United States is through bioterrorism. Symptoms of cholera
    could appear rather quickly as a biological weapon. Cholera
    causes severe dehydration that quickly can lead to shock and
    even death in mere hours if left untreated.

Cholera can be endemic, epidemic, or a pandemic.

  • Endemic (geographic location). A reservoir can be the
    source of an endemic case of cholera. Endemic is the spread
    of a disease in a certain area or found among a certain
    people. An endemic is when the number of cases of the
    disease in a particular area exceeds what's expected.

  • Epidemic: An epidemic of cholera can be traced to a water
    pump handle of a community water source. An epidemic is
    the spread of an infectious disease at a particular time in a

  • Pandemic (global): A pandemic is a global problem and
    cholera spread from 1961-1991 affecting five continents of

Cholera comes to us from India
Did you know cholera originated from India? The truth about
Cholera is that originated in the Ganges delta in India and spread
across the continents during the 19th Century and continues to

Cholera in Haiti
In 2010 a deadly cholera epidemic spread across Haiti's capital,
Port-au-Prince. This large-scale cholera outbreak was the first in
modern times. The outbreak followed the devastating
They keys to recovery from cholera are cleanliness and IV

Haiti today, continues to suffer from cholera after the epic
earthquake and the United Nations relief help, which
inadvertently brought cholera to the region exacerbating their

Les Misérables
You may have thought that Les Misérables is a story of the
French Revolution, but it's actually about the severe economic
crisis after the deadly cholera epidemic of 1832 swept through
Paris. Cholera exacerbated a severe economic crisis and left many
poor and miserable people.

On the Oregon trail pioneers didn't die of attacks from Native
Americans, they died of Cholera! Pioneers suffered from cholera
and dysentery. Cholera, from the bacterium Vibrio Cholerae, can
be caused from contaminated drinking water. Symptoms of
cholera may range from none, to mild, to severe ~ some along
the Oregon trail survived, while others perished. Dysentery can be
caused by bacteria, virus or parasite.

Poor sanitation is a major risk factor.
Thankfully modern sewage treatment systems in the United
States have helped eliminate cholera as an everyday threat;
however, cholera is a very real threat to developing nations world
wide with poor sanitation or a fragile system of sanitation. The
people of Yemen in July 2017 have suffered deaths numbering the

With knowledge, you can help prevent cholera in your community
in a large scale disaster, such as an electromagnetic pulse EMP or
a severe earthquake.

In Haiti poor sanitation conditions quickly spread cholera, likely
from aid workers who brought the disease. The same could
happen if the world comes together to help your community.

Knowledge weighs nothing!
Like they say, knowledge weighs nothing ~ and now you know a
little more about cholera. Now you can help! Rapid rehydration is
the most important factor in saving lives from cholera along with
education about how to prevent, such as washing hands.
------------------------------------------------- Revised 2/1/21
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Above, the cholera outbreak killed thousands of people and continues to
sicken people years later.

Zambia Cholera Outbreaks
Thankfully the last active case of cholera as an epidemic was in
1911, but preppers should be aware that it could happen again and
there have been some cases in the United States.

Without an emergency plan for cholera violence can quickly erupt. A
case in point is the
Zambia Outbreaks of January 2018, where
violence began following the government's curfew policies and
street vending restrictions. People in the slums didn't like the
regulations, though they were set up to protect them.

Happy endings...
Thankfully, Cholera prevention is very easy and extremely rare in
the United States because we have excellent sewage treatment
plants. The most important considerations during an epidemic is to
drink and cook only with safe water. Also be sure wash your hands
often and cook food well, especially seafood, and have proper
latrine! These are generally good prepper habits.

The danger of Cholera is that it spreads extremely rapidly and can
kill within hours if left untreated. The good news about cholera is
that as fast as it comes on ~ the body can also quickly recover!
Treatment of cholera is relatively easy: oral hydration solutions and
antibiotics in part provide the answer ~ the other part is education.

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