And it’s so easy to prevent.
In truth, it isn’t the nail that will get you-it’s something else. But the nail IS involved in the whole scheme to bring you down. So, you’re best to steer clear, if you find one.
Here’s what can happen: a nail that’s been around long enough to be rusty has likely been sitting about lazily in the dust and wind, exposing itself to the elements. Just like a farmer in from the field on a hot summer’s day, it’s likely to be covered in dirt. And in that dirt can be found bacteria. This is where things get nasty.
If the gunk on the nail contains Clostridium tetani, a type of bacteria commonly found in soil, dust and animal feces, (yuck, but there you have it), and you cut yourself with it, you could be in trouble. Big trouble.
Why? Clostridium tetani is dangerous stuff. It can only reproduce in an oxygen-deprived setting, and a cut on your skin is the perfect place.
When it does settle in and start having children, C. tetani releases a neurotoxin. And you’re infected.
Related: Why Paper Cuts Hurt So Damn Much
Your body reacts to it by going into painful spasms. These can last several minutes, and can be caused by simple things such as the phone ringing.
There is no cure for a tetanus infection once it sets in. Your body can recover, but it can take up to several months as you need to grow new nerve endings, to replace those the toxin has bonded to.
In the meantime, you can develop a stiff neck, trouble breathing and have your jaw lock up, so that you can’t eat or drink. High blood pressure ensues, along with a rapid heart rate, sweating, and a fever.
Your muscle spasms can be so great they break your bones.
You can also develop blood clots, and your breathing difficulties can become so pronounced that they’re fatal, which is usually how people die of a tetanus infection.
Why haven’t you heard of this before, and how can you prevent it?
Most people nowadays don’t have to worry about all this happening to them. It isn’t because they aren’t farmers, but because they’ve had their tetanus vaccination. It’s cheap and easy to get. Most people get it as a child, and receive a booster every ten years or so as an adult, to continue protecting themselves.
Some people don’t get it, and suffer the consequences, like this 6-year old boy in Oregon.
One last comment. (Well, two. First, the link between autism and vaccines has been proven to be false).
Secondly, you know, great scientists are quirky people who often think outside the norm. They live strange lives, avoid the common crowds, break the rules and come up with weird inventions.
These are the very people who invented vaccines. People who thought on their own. It just so happened that governments and doctors actually grabbed onto their ideas. People listened and saw that these inventions are great and can actually save lives.
Vaccines aren’t a crazy invention the government is trying to corrupt you with. They come from the “crazy” people- so crazy, they were geniuses who were gifted, insightful, extremely kind and trying to save your life.