Tag Archives: sickness

Flu Kills; CDC Announces That 80,000 Died From Flu Last Year

We know that influenza, commonly known to us as the flu, is a very deadly illness that kills a number of people every year. But last year was no ordinary year.

information about the flu; photo from uab.edu
information about the flu; photo from uab.edu

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention announced on Tuesday that over 80,000 people died from the flu last year, the highest death toll in decades. It was also announced by the CDC that over 900,000 people were hospitalized because of the flu.

Dr. Robert Redfield, the director of the CDC, revealed the numbers in an interview to the Associated Press (AP).

Most experts and people knew that last year’s flu season was going to be bad, but nobody had expected to see numbers this high. An average flu season can claim any from 12,000 to 56,000 deaths, which of course depends on how bad a flu season is. However, this past year exceeded those estimates.

CDC’s flu division director, Dr. Daniel Jernigan, told NBC News that while the numbers were very high, it was consistent with what happened last year.

The Surgeon General of the United States, Dr. Jerome Adams, flat out said in a news conference that the reason the flu had killed 80,000 people was that “they got it from someone. Someone gave them the flu.”

Adams noted that most of the people who had died did not have a flu shot.

The CDC does not count exactly how many adults die from the flu, but they do count how many children die from it. It was found that 180 children died from the flu last year, another high number of deaths.

The best way to prevent the flu is to get a flu shot and also tell your friends and family to get one as well. Just because you got your flu shot does not mean that you cannot get the flu.

If you do get sick from the flu, try to avoid people that are vulnerable to getting the flu. This includes children, elderly, and those who get sick easily. Lastly, do expect to go to the hospital if you get the flu. It can and will kill you if you do not prepare for it enough.

 

Ebola Crisis, Part II: Virus Likely to Spread to Uganda, says WHO

Most of us remember when Ebola made its way to the United States, infecting four citizens. One of them, Thomas Eric Duncan, a visitor from Liberia, ended up dying from the lethal disease. Since the scare, most have forgotten about the deadly virus and the main area it comes from.

An image of what Ebola looks like; photo from cdc.gov
An image of what Ebola looks like; photo from cdc.gov

On Thursday, the World Health Organization (WHO) stated that the Ebola crisis has a very high chance of moving from the Democratic Republic of the Congo to Uganda. However, WHO did state that the risk of Ebola spreading globally remains very low.

The reason for the rise in Ebola cases is the result of the actions of local militias. These militias have slowed down WHO and other health organizations that are making an effort to treat the outbreak that started in the Congo back in August.

Uganda, which is noted as a poor country, does have a well-organized health care system. Since the beginning of the decade, there have only been three confirmed cases of Ebola in the country, lower than the numbers in the United States.

But the Congo does not have the same benefits. A health crisis has resulted due to not only fighting, but people affected by the virus refusing treatment.

Ebola is a virus that spreads through direct contact with body fluids, normally blood. It can take weeks before symptoms and signs appear, but after that, it will only take days before a person dies from it. The only carrier of the disease that can not be affected by the illness is a fruit bat, a relatively large bat.

The craziest thing about Ebola is after a person recovers, their semen or breast milk will carry the virus for several weeks or months.

For those that are worried about the virus, do not be worried about it for now. Just keep a eye on what is going on in Africa and hope for the best for those battling the virus.

Surviving the Radford Plague

If you’re a student at Radford, chances are you’ve heard of the Radford Plague. It’s about as well-known to Radford students as bad parking options, the Dalton Dash, and the phrases light side and dark side. Unfortunately, it seems to be as big a part of Radford’s culture as the lack of A/C in Muse is, and we’re not sure which is worse. The Radford Plague, if you’ve been fortunate enough to have never heard of it or experienced it, is an epidemic of illness, whether that be the flu, flu-like symptoms, or a really bad cold, that spreads like wildfire. Perhaps it stems from our friendly nature here at Raddy and our love of hanging out and being with others that allows any kind of sickness to be so easily spread.

So if you’ve been like the majority of us and have gotten the Plague, here are a few tips that will help you make it through.

Drink fluids

Drinking fluids helps flush out your system and, of course, keeps you hydrated. If you have a fever, it helps you stay cool and replaces any fluids that you may lose. Water, soup, and tea are the best options. Juice with vitamin C is alright, but avoid sugary sodas and even drinks such as Gatorade which have a high sugar content. These will just make you more thirsty.

Get Plenty of Rest

When you’re sick, you need more sleep than usual so your body can fight off whatever’s making you sick, whether it be a virus or bacterial infection. Try not to stay up too late and avoid strenuous activities until you’ve felt better for at least a few days. If you push yourself too hard without having enough rest, you might have a relapse which will put you right back where you started. So rest up. I’m sure you don’t need too much convincing to skip a class and get some extra sleep.

sick
“When you’re sick, you need more sleep than usual so your body can fight off whatever’s making you sick, whether it be a virus or bacterial infection.” Photo from: www.images.medicaldaily.com

Take the right kind of medication

If you have a fever, make sure you’re taking something with acetaminophen (Tylenol), which will help bring the fever down. Acetaminophen also helps relieve aches, pains, and a sore throat. If you have bad cough, take something with dextromethorphan (Robitussin/Delsym). If you have a stuffy head and bad nasal congestion, make sure you take something with pseudoephedrine (Sudafed). If you have the full-blown Plague/flu (fever, aches and pains, fatigue, nasal congestion, cough, sore throat) Dayquil and Nyquil cover just about all those symptoms. Nyquil, of course, makes you tired and helps you sleep, so don’t do anything you wouldn’t be comfortable doing while sleeping, like driving or operating a forklift. Follow the dosage instructions on the box, and take the medication after you start to feel better to make sure you don’t relapse.

Note: If your symptoms are severe and don’t get better over time, go see a doctor.

WASH YOUR HANDS

This is by far the best way to stop spreading the Plague and to prevent getting it in the first place. Wash your hands all the time—before you eat, before you snack, before you touch your face, mouth, or eyes, after touching germy things like keyboards, door handles, and remote controls, and, of course, after you use the bathroom. Hand sanitizer works in a pinch, but soap and warm water are the most effective.

Foamapalooza: A wonderful party during an inopportune season

Foamapalooza: The easiest way to catch pneumonia this side of Radford University.

All joking aside, Foamapalooza was a lot of fun, even if it may have happened at an inconvenient time. For those of you who don’t know, the outdoor dance party was held on Oct. 18, from 8 p.m. to midnight. The DJ knew what he was doing; most of the songs were well-known dance anthems, and he even got the crowd involved in Dance Battles. At the top of an inflatable pit was a foam machine, which produced tons of suds that rained down on the audience. The bubbles that drifted up into the sky looked somewhat like stars. It was quite lovely, and the foam added a nice touch.

Continue reading Foamapalooza: A wonderful party during an inopportune season

Under the weather and overwhelmed?

As the seasons and the leaves on the trees begin to change, many Radford University students are finding themselves ill. Whether it’s the rumored pneumonia said to have originated from one freshman’s trip home last weekend or the infamous yet evasive swine flu, being sick is no fun when you have a college life to take care of.

Have your thermometers ready when it starts to rain. Graphic by Caitlin Lewis.

High stress levels and a lack of sleep are both very common among college students, making campus the watering hole for the lions of the germ world. If you find yourself with a runny nose, scratchy throat, raspy voice or clogged sinuses, follow these tips to ensure you get better fast. Continue reading Under the weather and overwhelmed?