Fight Back This Cold Season With Remedies from ESU’s Health Center

Get in the habit of washing your hands frequently to avoid these germs in the cold weather months. Photo Courtesy / Peggy Diaco
Get in the habit of washing your hands frequently to avoid these germs in the cold weather months. Photo Courtesy / Peggy Diaco
Get in the habit of washing your hands frequently to avoid these germs in the cold weather months. Photo Courtesy / Peggy Diaco

Get in the habit of washing your hands frequently to avoid these germs in the cold weather months.
Photo Courtesy / Peggy Diaco

By Peggy Diaco
Staff Writer

Coughing. Sneezing. Stuffy nose. Headache. It is that time of year when everyone seems to be coming down with something at ESU, but don’t despair. There are
resources here to help you.

The Health Services department located in the Flagler-Metzgar building is there to treat all your ailments.

A self-care cart is located in the hallway packed with all good things to help you deal with a cold. Cough drops, nose spray, cold-sore medicine, Tylenol
and Ibuprofen are just a few of the items in the cart.

If you feel like you are coming down with something more serious, it is time to see the physician or registered nurse available at Health Services walk-in
medical clinic.

Peggy McCann, the nurse supervisor at the clinic states that there is no charge. A visit with a nurse or doctor is covered under your student fees.

Nurse McCann advises students not to wait if you feel like you have something serious.

They are able to prescribe prescription antibiotics and if you have a serious illness like the flu or a strep throat, they will also write you an excuse for
your classes.

They will not, however, write excuses for minor ailments. Also, do not wait until after your illness passes. If you ask for an excuse after your illness has
passed, they will not write you an excuse.

For those times when you are lying flat on your back in bed and don’t feel like getting up to eat, your roommate can help you out by getting a free wellness
package from the cafeteria.

Your roommate needs to bring your ID to the Dansbury Cafeteria and ask for a wellness package. The package contains instant soup, Gatorade, banana and
crackers. Not as good as Mom, but a comfort nonetheless.

Rather than dealing with illness, it is best to get a free flu shot in the fall. Many students do not take advantage of this benefit and wind up miserable
and losing class time because of the flu.

Marissa Zito, a freshman and biology major said that she usually gets the flu shot, but forgot this year.

“I definitely think it’s important for college students to get an extra measure of protection by getting the flu shot,” said Zito.

Glenn Smith, a grad student with a major in political science said he is scared the flu shot will make him sick so he does not get one.

This is a common misconception and the Centers for Disease Control website states that “in randomized blinded studies, where some people get inactivated flu
shots and others get salt-water shots, the only differences in symptoms was increased soreness in the arm and redness at the injection site among people who
got the flu shot.

There were no differences in terms of body aches, fever, cough, runny nose or sore throat.”

Another important way to avoid illness is to wash your hands.

“You should wash your hands for the length of time it takes for you to sing “Happy Birthday” two times.” said Dr. Doreen Tobin, Vice President of Student
Affairs.

Flu germs stay alive on surface areas such as doorknobs, keyboards, desks, chairs, etc. for several hours according to the Mayo Clinic website. Cell phones
are exceptionally germy and should be wiped down daily.

Get in the habit of washing your hands frequently to avoid these germs in the cold weather months.

Do not go to class if you are sick. Let your professors know by email that you are not feeling well. Going to class sick means spreading the germs around to
your classmates.

Thankfully, next month is spring although the ground hog predicted six more weeks of winter. Keep washing your hands and remember to get your flu shot next
fall!

Email Peggy at:
mdiaco@esu.edu

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