Flu and Wildfire: Spot the Difference.

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By Andi Goddeyne

bio picI love fall. I love the leaves changing, I love apple cider and I love the fashion.

I love it all, except flu season. Flu season I don’t love so much.

The real kicker? I attend a large university. There are thousands of humans running around one campus. We are all tired and we are all overworked. College students, in my experience, are not the best at taking care of themselves.

Flu season really loves people who don’t take care of themselves. I bet it is like Christmas morning to the flu.

I think of the flu like wildfire. Once one of us has it, everyone in the house has it. I think the same applies for an office too. It definitely applies to school. One kid in the dorm gets sick, suddenly it is the entire floor, which ends up in the classrooms, and finally, it makes its way through the entire campus. I’m not saying all of us get sick, but a good portion of us certainly do.

I always manage to be in that crowd. I would say 9 out of 10 times I am one of the sick kids. Of course, I try my best not to spread it. Sometimes there is just no stopping it.

So, I somehow manage to struggle through the day of sneezes and finish my homework. Then I go to work and try not to fall asleep every hour on the hour. Being sick isn’t fun for anyone. Having a packed schedule doesn’t help.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a study showed flu shots were associated with a 71% reduction in flu-related hospitalizations among adults. Flu shots help!

In addition to getting a shot, these simple steps help prevent spreading the flu and other illness:

  • Wash your hands regularly.
  • Avoid spending time with infected individuals. And if you’re the one sick, try to limit your contact with others.
  • Try not to touch your eyes, nose and mouth. These are breeding grounds for germs!
  • Clean surrounding surfaces. Don’t be afraid to carry some sanitation wipes to clean your desk or computer, whether it is a public place or your personal space.

I think it can be done. I’m going to try anyway, not getting sick that is. Flu? Cold? I don’t think so. Not. This. Year.

For more information on the flu, please visit

http://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/qa/vaccineeffect.htm or

http://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/preventing.htm 

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