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Photo by Jayson Ildefonso. 

Your nose is running, you feel warm and you can’t stop sneezing in class. You’re getting sick and it’s mid February. This can only mean one thing—you have the flu.

The flu is everywhere and 4,000 Americans have died from influenza in 2018, according to the Center for Disease Control. Here are some tips to prevent the flu from spreading any further on Saint Peter’s campus.

1. Stay away from campus

If you feel like you’ve been hit by a train but the PATH was working just fine this morning, it’s probably the flu. If you’ve now convinced yourself you have the flu, please stay as far away from campus as possible. Email your professors, let your student organizations know and find a friend in class willing to share notes with you as soon as possible. The best way to handle the flu is to be alone in a self imposed quarantine. Don’t worry too much, your buddies Netflix and sleep will help you get through this difficult time.

2. Don’t freak yourself out

Mental health is just as crucial as physical health. Looking up your symptoms online can oftentimes lead to a downward spiral of anxiety and worry—do I have the flu or is it something worse? Seek professional help and advice on whether you have the flu or the common cold and how to treat it. You can also drive yourself crazy thinking about how much work you’re missing and how difficult it will be to catch up. Keeping an open line of communication between your peers, your professors and yourself will help you recover while also not fall behind this semester.

3. Take care of yourself

Boosting your body’s immune system and tackling the early stages of getting sick can prevent the flu altogether. Staying hydrated and exercising are some of the best preventative medicines we have. However, if you have not been sick this flu season you should make the effort to receive the flu vaccine. Vaccines work best if a majority of the population is vaccinated, and a majority of those who die from the flu were not vaccinated.

Although Saint Peter’s Health Services has not responded to our request for a comment, they can be a valuable resource for those looking to receive real medical advice on campus.

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