Dr. Mack’s Medical Minute: Flu Season

Curtis Mack, Copy Chief

During the months when we are transitioning from the summer to fall, sickness is prevailing. It spreads like wildfire due to the fact that students are in school most of the day and germs are omnipresent. One certainly cannot run from it unless everyone is quarantined, but who enjoys life that way? There are many viruses one may be affected by, but influenza (the flu) seems to be one of the most notorious viruses many receive.  Flu season is at its peak in February, nonetheless, it starts to proliferate in the month of October.

But what exactly is the flu? It is a virus that affects the respiratory system that causes fevers, body aches, headaches, dry cough, and a sore/dry throat. Other side effects may vary. The flu is comparable to a cold yet, it may have differentiating symptoms and it may also last longer. It is well known to be very contagious, so at times, the flu happens in epidemics and even pandemics. When the harmful, virus-filled bacteria comes in contact with one’s eyes, mouth, or nose then it is more than likely, they can contract it as well.

Many can see how lethal a flu outbreak can be, so can it be avoided? There are three viruses that cause the flu, but only two can be avoided. There are the type A and B viruses that occur in seasonal outbreaks, which can be avoided. There is also virus C which is usually milder respiratory symptoms. But the first step to avoid it is to keep you hands clean. Clean hands, of course, eliminates majority of the germs from your hands. Get a flu shot. It causes antibodies to develop in the body after two weeks of vaccination. Anyone is able to get a flu shot at their local pharmacy or family doctor.

These just are a few simple ways to avoid the prevailing sickness spreading this season.  With this in mind, it will be much easier to enjoy the sublime weather that has yet to come in the near future.