Diet, cleanliness, shots help combat flu season

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Catching the flu will raise the body temperature while plummeting the GPA, but students can take measures to keep healthy this flu season.

Until spring, the odds of becoming ill are high, particularly of the flu. Strep throat, sinus and respiratory infections and the common cold are all prevalent during this time as well.

With so many viruses and so many ways to contract them, particularly being around thousands of other people on campus, there are also a variety of ways to decrease susceptibility to illness.

Pharmacist John LoPorto said getting a flu shot early can combat the flu head-on. There are numerous pharmacies and clinics that give flu shots, and LoPorto said those who are around children often should especially consider getting the flu shot.

In most circumstances flu shots significantly decrease the likeliness of getting the flu. What about sore throats, runny noses and earaches, though?

Lauren Randall, a sophomore psychology major from Upland, Calif., said she keeps hand sanitizer in her dorm and doesn’t leave herself vulnerable to viruses other people may have.

“I don’t share a lot of my stuff with others, especially living in the dorms,” Randall said. 

Strictly monitoring diet and physical activity will not only keep students in great physical shape but will also scare away sickness.

Tevin Glover, a sophomore criminal justice major from Las Vegas, said last year he didn’t eat well or exercise often; he missed multiple weeks of school due to illness. This year, though, Glover said he upped his water and Vitamin C intake, started avoiding soda and set a goal to jog nightly. Doing these things, he has been able to show up for classes in peak condition. 

Many times, following basic advice received since kindergarten can decrease chances of becoming ill. Shauna Zundel, registered nurse at the Dixie State College Health and Wellness Center, said washing hands and getting plenty of rest can remedy most things, particularly the cold. If students suspect they are sick, they can come to the Health and Wellness Center, located at 34 N. 600 East.

“If [students] are sick, the best thing to do is go to the Health and Wellness Center, and let us check [them] out,” Zundel said. “We can give you a release for your teacher, so you don’t go to class and spread illnesses.”

Some students are hesitant to address illness and take necessary steps to clear things up, such as missing class in order to rest because they fear they will get behind. Addressing symptoms early is key to preventing things from escalating.

Bryce Powell, a sophomore general education major from Park City, said once the signs show up, it is inevitable they will make people feel under the weather, but there are steps to take in order to make things milder.

“Once symptoms show, drinking water and orange juice can work as damage control,” Powell said. “Keeping yourself from getting hurt [is also necessary], so you don’t compromise your immune system.”

Sometime during flu season, throats may scratch and mucus may pour out of noses. However, by approaching the situation quickly, students will not fall behind.