Don't Let the Flu Bug You
By Lori Hanson, RN, BC
Let's face it, you are too busy to get the flu. Influenza symptoms can include fatigue, fever, dry cough, sore throat, headache, chills and body aches typically lasting 3-5 days, with the cough and fatigue sometimes lasting 2 or more weeks. You are generally too sick to go to class, work or to have any fun.
Influenza is spread through the air when an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks. Symptoms usually present more rapidly than cold symptoms. Influenza can cause serious complications including: pneumonia, dehydration, and even death. An average of 36,000 people die every year in the U.S. from influenza.
The single best way to prevent the flu is to be vaccinated. Anyone who wants to reduce his or her risk should be vaccinated. Those who are at particularly high risk include: people with weakened immune systems, those with chronic medical conditions (asthma, diabetes, kidney and heart disease), pregnant women, parents of young children, foreign travelers, health care workers, those living in crowded conditions, people coming into close contact with those at risk of influenza, individuals who are 50 years of age or older. Watch for flu shot clinics beginning the end of October. For information, contact Student Health at 777-4500 or undstudenthealth.com
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