Hepatitis B Prevention

Hepatitis B prevention requires two approaches. Getting the hepatitis B vaccine is the first way to prevent hepatitis B. The second thing you can do to prevent infection with hepatitis B is avoid behaviors that would put you at high risk of contracting the disease. Among the things you can do to avoid these high-risk behaviors are using latex condoms correctly every time you have sex; and never sharing toothbrushes, razors, nail clippers, washcloths, or anything else that could have an infected person's blood on it.

Hepatitis B Prevention Suggestions

Hepatitis B is an infection caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV). It is most commonly spread through contact with infected blood or other bodily fluids, such as semen, vaginal fluids, or saliva.
There are a number of ways to prevent a hepatitis B infection. The best way to protect yourself from hepatitis B is to get the hepatitis B vaccine and avoid high-risk behaviors.

Hepatitis B Prevention -- The Hepatitis B Vaccine

The best way to prevent hepatitis B is to get vaccinated. A vaccine is a drug that you take when you are healthy that keeps you from getting sick. Vaccines teach your body to attack certain viruses, like the hepatitis B virus.
The hepatitis B vaccine is usually given through three injections over six months. Candidates for hepatitis B vaccination include the following groups of people:
  • All girls and boys from 0 to 18 years old
  • Anyone whose sex partner has chronic hepatitis B
  • Men who have sex with men
  • Someone who has been recently diagnosed with a sexually transmitted disease
  • People with multiple sex partners
  • Anyone who shoots drugs
  • Someone who lives with a person with chronic hepatitis B
  • People whose jobs expose them to human blood.
A combination vaccine exists for hepatitis A and hepatitis B.
(Click Hepatitis B Vaccine for more information on how this medicine can prevent hepatitis B.)

What Is Hepatitis B?

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