Helpful and Harmful Bacteria
Good and bad germs in our world...
What is bacteria?
Bacteria are microscopic organisms that are all around us. They are in the air, on our skin, in our bodies, in the ground, and all throughout nature. Bacteria are single- celled organisms and are unique because they lack a nucleus, the part of a cell that helps control eating, reproduction, and movement. Bacteria come in all sorts of shapes including rods, spirals, and spheres. Some “swim” around using long tails called flagella. The others (without flagella) just hang out or glide along.
Even though some bacteria can make us sick, most are not dangerous. For many years bacteria have been used by us to create food products like cheese, yoghurt, pickles, soy sauce and vinegar. Many bacteria reproduce quickly. Some can double their amount in as little as twenty minutes!
There are more than 80 species of the rod-shaped Lactobacillus! One of these species, Lactobacillus acidophilus, is found in the acidic environment of the intestines where it divides as colonies or chains. This bacteria helps you digest food. As part of the digestion process, L. acidophilus attaches to the lining of the intestines to make lactic acid and hydrogen peroxide from sugars which create conditions that stop the growth of other harmful bacteria.
2) Staphylococcus epidermidis
3) Escherichia Coli
5) Bacillus brevis
Only a handful of bacteria are capable of causing disease. These are called pathogens. Pathogens can cause food poisoning, leprosy, pneumonia, tetanus and more. Fortunately, we have antibiotics. We can take antibiotics to kill the pathogens. Other ways to fight of pathogens include washing your hands, keeping wounds clean, and preventing physical contact with someone who is sick.