Wit's end -
I can totally agree with you that reading causes new illnesses! Sometimes reading stuff can even cause new symptoms in me...
If you've just been on antibiotic recently (last couple of weeks), any symptoms you are having are probably not related to c diff. It takes a while for the c diff to populate your intestines to the point that you get ill. Symptoms resemble UC closely...bloody stools, diarhea, urgency, gas, dehydration. As far as your mother-in-laws, it sounds extremely un-hygienic and gross, but you sound like you are taking very good care of yourself when going there. Yes, c diff can be spread via those conditions, but as long as you wash your hands constantly with anti-bacterial soap, especially before eating or drinking, you should be okay. If you are really worried, have your doc do a stool test, just to ease your mind.
Giardia is a whole different bacteria, with different conditions in which it is passed along. I've had giardia before as well (I get all the cool bacterial infections!). Giardia is usually found in water that has been tainted with animal waste. People mostly get it from drinking untreated water while out hiking or rafting. I got it after spending a few days out white water rafting on a river that passes through a lot of farmland upstream of the rapids. My companions and I managed to flip our raft several times, and ended up doing quite a bit of swimming. I think of the 6 of us, 4 got giardia. A few days of flagyll cleared me up. Never had a problem with it since.
Hopefully you'll be feeling better soon enough from your UTI, then can get back to relative healthiness, and you can forget about
your recent affixiation on c diff and giardia. Keep in mind that neither bacteria are very common, and as long as you take decent precautions, you should be fine.
Mild to moderate UC diagnosed May '06, prone to c diff infections
Had UC symptoms since 1999
Allergic to the 5ASA family of drugs
Probiotics 3x day
Multivitamin, Wellbutrin XL 300mg, Prozac 20mg, Allegra 180mg 1x day
Fiber supplement 2 caps 1x day
Currently experiencing a flare due to being in med limbo...