Have you been feeling a little woozy lately? High fever? Sore throat? Nausea?
It could be a case of that dreaded influenza virus - or it couldn’t.
While flu season is beginning relatively late at the College and surrounding area, the occurence of flu cases has remained low. The Student Health Center reported between four and six positive cases per week for the past few weeks, but the number of cases has been slowly rising:
“We’ve already seen four cases this week, and it’s only Wednesday,” noted Christine Britton, Business Manager for the King Student Health Center. She added, however, that there have been several cases of “flu-like” illnesses.
The disease known as the flu is a contagious respiratory disease caused by the influenza virus. Common flu symptoms include high fever, sneezing, coughing, runny nose, sore throat, headache, and nausea. However, several flu-like viruses also induce these symptoms. To avoid contracting the flu, the health center offers flu vaccinations each fall, which the Center for Disease Control cites as the single most effective way to prevent developing the disease.
If you didn’t manage to receive a flu vaccination, there are several steps you can take to prevent being exposed to the disease, which the health center outlined in their 2005 Flu Information sheet. It is important to remember that the flu virus is highly contagious and can be spread a day before symptoms appear and a week after symptoms seem to have dissipated. The health center suggests some of the following to prevent the spread of the disease: