Saturday, May 2, 2009

Swine Flu

The panic and all the idiot remarks are driving me nuts. I could not hold my tongue any longer. I am trying to stay on the simple side of this discussion.
Lets get Educated:
  • 1- The flu is a virus, not a bacteria- therefore it can't be treated with an antibiotic.
  • 2- The flu is an upper respiratory virus.
  • 3- The flu is doesn't effect your stomach, there is so such thing as a "stomach flu".
  • 4- Swine Flu is not something you can get from eating pig, pork, or any pig product.
  • 5- Symptoms of the Flu are fever, coughing, sore throat, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue.
  • 6- How did the Swine Flue become a human flu?- There are many types of flu viruses. Just as with most viruses there are different types that are adapted to different species. This particular virus was adapted to pigs/swine. The flu virus is a quick evolving virus, the main reason its so hard to make an effective vaccine for the flu. In some areas of the world, humans live in close contact with animals. All of these animals have their own strains of flu, on occasion a strain has mutated enough to effect a human, and then sometimes that strain mutates again enough to effect another human who is around the first human who contracted the flu from the animal. Once it has made this mutation it is now a human virus with various levels of strength.
  • 7- How to protect yourself?- Wash your hands WELL on a regular basis (not just using a hand sanitizer and not just after you use the bathroom). Get a good nights rest, exercise, and eat well (these things will keep your immune system strong). Clean surfaces that are touched regularly (especially if you work in a public place- help everyone out by cleaning door knobs, counter tops, and other high traffic areas). Avoid coughing/sneezing on others, or allowing others to cough/sneeze on you (face masks do their job, but are a little extreme, if you live in an area that has a high confirmed case rate then you might consider this extreme method of protection).
  • 8- The flu, as with many viruses, have an incubation stage (a stage where you are infected but not showing signs of being sick). During this stage and the next stage (where you are showing symptoms) you too are contagious. Please take precautions when you are feeling unwell and even when you feel fine.
  • 9- If you think you have the flu (swine or otherwise) or any other virus- you should stay home. Don't be going everywhere trying to function and possibly getting others sick. Wash your hands even more often than before and don't sneeze/cough on others. Take lots of Vit C (it may only be a placebo but its a placebo that apparently works) and take lots of Zinc (it has less of an effect in mass studies of people but very effective on the flu in lab tests) - so take both and lots of it. Get sleep- it will give your immune system do its job. Its sad that people only take these precautions when there is "Pandemic scare" going on. But there is always a possibility of a pandemic, and we should be taking these precautions everyday. I'm not trying to make people paranoid, because I am one of the least paranoid people out there. Instead I am trying to educate people so they will be aware and make smart choices- like washing your hands.

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