However, the experience of becoming ill from diseases caused by bacteria primes the immune system for the next encounter with the same bacteria. In fact, it is not all that bad to encounter disease causing bacteria because the body’s immune system will recognize the bacteria’s antigens and develop antibodies to block those bacteria from entering the body again. Antigens and antibodies are like the customs documents for the nation of human body. Antigens are chemical signals that indicate the presence of foreign organisms living in the body. The second these chemical signals appear in the blood stream, an immune response is triggered. Oftentimes, symptoms associated with diseases caused by bacteria do not occur as a result of the bacteria that attacks tissues themselves. Autoimmune responses are triggered by the presence of a foreign entity in the human body.
Symptoms like fevers, encephalitis, and fatigue are all consequences of autoimmune response instead of the bacteria itself. Fevers are a physiological feedback loop that attempt to raise the temperature of the body as an effort to kill bacteria that white blood cells could not handle. The danger of fevers is that the autoimmune response could lead to the body’s own self destruction. Encephalitis is an autoimmune response that involves the swelling of the brain. It is an effort to protect the brain from bacterial infection. This physiological response works well; it is a last resort for diseases caused by bacteria that infect the brain. It is among the riskiest physiological responses to disease as encephalitis could lead to permanent brain damage or death. Fatigue just before the onset of symptoms happens as a result of the body producing “reinforcement” white blood cells. The body keeps its regular army of white blood cells, when the enlisted ranks of the infantry cannot handle the bacterial invaders; the body’s own army reserves are called to the battlefield. The symptom of fatigue happens as a result of the extra expense of calories in the increased production of lymphocytes (immune cells).The symptoms of many diseases caused by bacteria happen as a result of the body’s response to invaders. These are uncomfortable because they are not normal conditions. However, the onset of symptoms is always a good sign; failure to respond to bacterial infection will invariably result in death.
Some rare diseases caused by bacteria actually attack the body’s organ tissues. Flesh eating bacteria are the most infamous form of aggressive bacteria that attack their hosts instead of attempting to nest or inhabit the human body. Flesh eating bacteria cause tissue necrosis. Necrosis is the condition in which tissues are rendered dead. Tissue necrosis requires drastic medical interventions like organ removal or amputation. Antibiotics are also extremely effective in killing these aggressive bacteria. Flesh eating bacteria are caused by a type of streptococcus; that normally live on the skin. However, they generally do not eat the flesh of people with healthy immune systems because the immune cells are powerful enough to deter the virulent bacteria. People with compromised immune systems such as HIV/AIDS patients are more likely to contract this disease caused by bacteria because immune responses are weaker.