We know that bacteria and viruses can cause various infections. These microorganisms are different from each other in many ways. Physically, virus particles are much smaller than bacteria. Their composition is different, too. Bacteria come in various shapes, like rods, spheres, spirals, and curved rods. Not all bacteria are harmful. There are also certain types of bacteria that are normally found in the human body. These are “healthy” bacteria and they play a role in the normal functioning of the body.
Some bacteria can be very harmful. Viruses can be harmful, too. However, bacterial infections cannot be treated in the same way as viral infections. In most cases, bacterial infections are treated with antibiotics. On the other hand, viral infections cannot be treated with these medications. Now, let us learn more about bacteria and viruses.
What Is the Difference between Virus and Bacteria? Read on…
Viruses can be described as small microbes, composed of a certain type of genetic material. Once the virus gets inside a living cell, it becomes active and starts reproducing. They will use their own DNA and release it into these cells. Some viruses can actually use their own genetic material and insert it right into the host cells’ DNA. That is one of the replication methods seen in viruses. In some cases, a virus can remain dormant for decades.
Bacteria can be defined as small prokaryotic organisms, found anywhere – in the soil, air, water and in all living organisms. There are bad bacteria and good bacteria. The good bacteria play a role in many important processes, such as taking vitamins, food digestion processes, preventing infections, etc. Some bacteria can be harmful. These bacteria can cause infections of the urinary tract, throat, ear, sinuses, etc.
The main difference between viruses and bacteria is related to the conditions needed for their reproduction. Bacteria can reproduce in any environment (they don’t have to be inside a living creature). Viruses need to be inside a living host.
As we said, some bacteria can be useful, but viruses are always harmful. Bacteria and viruses can cause various infections. The treatment used in bacterial infections will be different from the treatment applied in viral infections. Bacterial infections are usually treated with antibiotics. However, these medications will be useless in treating viral infections. Sometimes, the symptoms of viral infection can be quite similar to those of bacterial infection. That is why it is important to visit a doctor and see whether the illness is caused by bacteria or some virus.