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What Is Bacteria?

Bacteria are living things that are neither plants nor animals, but belong to a group all by themselves. They are very small — individually not more than one single cell — however there are normally millions of them together, for they can multiply really fast.

Bacteria come in three main shapes:

  • Spherical (like a ball) These are usually the simplest ones. Bacteria shaped like this are called cocci (singular coccus).

  • Rod shaped These are known as bacilli (singular bacillus). Some of the rod-shaped bacteria are curved; these are known as vibrio.

  • Spiral These known are as spirilla (singular spirillus).
    If their coil is very tight they are known as spirochetes.

Sneezing and coughing are two efficient ways to ensure bacteria is spread. If you sneeze, cough or blow your nose while in a crowd, you are essentially sharing your bodily fluids with the people around you, and therefore ensuring their contamination. Any time bacteria could possibly be present, it's best to avoid the exchange of bodily fluids whether it's through coughing, sneezing or even kissing.

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