Flu season affects Colorado – here’s how to protect yourself

February 6, 2018

Tamera Twitty

ttwitty@uccs.edu

    As winter approaches, it’s time to bundle up, but it also might be time for students to get their annual flu shot.

    Roughly 1,600 people have been admitted to the hospital for the flu in Colorado since 2018 started, according to The Denver Post. Students have been affected by the flu as well, although there have been only a flu cases, according to Vicki Schober, medical director at the Gallogly Recreation and Wellness Center.

    “We have had 12 total positive flu cases: five of Type A and seven of Type B,” said Schober in an email. “There are likely more that have been seen and diagnosed at other health care facilities in the community.”

    According to the Center for Disease Control, the common strain this year is adaptable to the immune system.     

     Both direct and indirect contact with an infected person can result in transmission of the virus. For students, contracting the flu can cause general physical discomfort as well as decreased in-class performance due to missed classes.  

    Students can take proper precautions to avoid being affected by the disease, according to Schober.

     “Reduce stress with meditation, relaxation techniques, physical activity.  Maintain a healthy diet with plenty of vegetables, fruits, protein and healthy fats (seeds, avocados, nuts…etc) and water.  Avoid smoking or contact with second hand smoke.  Avoid excess sugar intake,” she said.

   Alongside this advice, students should also avoid class, if they can, should they have the flu. Not only will participating in strenuous activity, such as walking, hinder the recovery process, but it will expose every person the student speaks with to the flu.

    Washing hands regularly is also a way to prevent the spread of illnesses. In some ways, contact with other people is unavoidable, so washing your hands ensures safe interactions.

     Also, regularly sanitize surfaces and objects that students come in contact with while they are sick.  

    Finally, if students think they have the flu, they should  pay a visit to a doctor in the first 48 hours of the first signs of sickness.

    Common symptoms of this flu strain include: fever, chills, muscle aches, sore throat, diarrhea, vomiting, fatigue, and/or runny nose.

    The campus Gallogly Recreation and Wellness Center offers same day appointments for only $15. There, they offer flu shots and other vaccinations to avert illness.

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