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Can someone explain the Swine Flu hoopla?

I feel kind of stupid, because I really don't get it.  Embarrassed  The symptoms and risks seem like they're pretty much the same as normal strains of the flu virus.  Obviously the swine flu virus wouldn't be covered by standard flu vaccines, but is that the only reason it's getting so much attention?  Is there a reason that someone would be more likely to die from swine flu rather than from the regular flu?  Even according to the CDC website, it seems that the serious risks are essentially the same as for seasonal influenza. Why is everyone so worried about this?

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Re: Can someone explain the Swine Flu hoopla?

  • Great to see you back on, GilliC!

    The symptoms and risks really are the same as other flu strains, but since there's no immunity to this new strain (and no vaccines), people are more worried. Honestly, most people would only get sick if they caught it, but certain weaker people might experience more severe consequences. As long as you seek out medical attention if you experience any of the symptoms, you will receive the medication (Tamiflu apparently works particularly well for this strain, since it hasn't become resistant to the medication yet, as other strains have) and attention needed, and you should recover just fine.  I think the big deal is just that it's a new strain, and people are worried because there is no immunity, and because the media hype is making it seem worse than it is.

  • I admit that I was quite concerned a few days ago, but have since read up on it. IMO, there is one main reason why this is getting so much attention: it is a slow news week and pandemics sell newspapers.

    I think the reason some people are worried is because usually it's children, the elderly and people with compromised immune systems that die from the flu and the swine flu seems to affect young, healthy people. I'm still not worried.

    BabyFruit Ticker
  • LOL @ filleviolette. Definitely a slow news week ;-)

    I heard one doctor theorize that the reason this flu seems to affect more young, healthy people, is because they are less likely to seek timely medical attention. They assume it's just a normal flu, and continue on with their daily lives, underestimating the consequences. Plus, it's mostly young, healthy people who travel, and have therefore been spreading the flu around the world. And we all know jetlag and airplanes wreak havoc on the immune system... 

  • image vivjek:

    LOL @ filleviolette. Definitely a slow news week ;-)

    I heard one doctor theorize that the reason this flu seems to affect more young, healthy people, is because they are less likely to seek timely medical attention. They assume it's just a normal flu, and continue on with their daily lives, underestimating the consequences. Plus, it's mostly young, healthy people who travel, and have therefore been spreading the flu around the world. And we all know jetlag and airplanes wreak havoc on the immune system... 

    I'm sure that's a huge part of it.

    And as far as I know, no one has contracted it who wasn't at the "source" in Mexico. That means that even though a couple in the UK have it, they might not transmit it to others, which is the real worry.

    BabyFruit Ticker
  • I don't understand the hoopla. ?36,000 people die of the flu in the U.S. alone every year. ?I agree that it must be a slow news week.
  • I kind of had the feeling that it was a lot of media hype, but I wasn't sure, since there haven't been any reported/suspected cases in this area yet.  And especially people on the travel board seem a little worked up about it.  I can understand thinking twice about traveling to Mexico, but worrying that the US isn't going to let you back into the country to me seems a little overboard for a flu.
    image
  • I read yesterday that there are a few suspected cases in Germany and Austria. ?I don't know if they have been confirmed yet though.
  • The closest to us so far seems to be Copenhagen, but I don't know how up-to-date this is:
    http://tinyurl.com/cywddc

    image
  • I just hope this gets people to realize a couple things. There's a reason it's a really bad idea to go to work when sick. That's how you get other people sick! And guess what, a coworker may have a compromised immune system. You could kill them. And it's sad when only 2/3 of people wash their hands after going to the bathroom. **shudder** Be great if the fear of swine flu would get more people to wash their hands at certain appropriate times.
    imageimage
  • I am confused about all the hype too. My boss is in Florida and everyone is actually wearing masks.

    What is frightening to me is that for most of my friends in the states, staying home while sick isn't even an option - my BF has 5 sick days per year, total. She uses all of them for when her son is sick so literally has no option for taking off if she catches something. I'm just so thankful to live in the UK where I can make sure I'm healthy and know everyone around me is too.  

    TTC #1 since Aug 2010 * BFP Aug 2011, EDD April 16 2012 * MMC @ 7w5d, D&C @ 10w5d
    BFP Apr 2012, EDD Dec 19 2012 * twin h/b at 6wk, 9wk scan * Baby A lost at 12wks, Baby B was my rainbow born at 36wks
    Lilypie First Birthday tickers
  • I had to LOL at the washing hands comment. I know women don't always wash their hands but men seem to be a lot worse. DH usually comes out of public bathrooms cringing saying he was the only one to wash his hands and he opens/closes doors with his foot ALL THE TIME! It's quite funny to watch.
  • image GilliC:

    The closest to us so far seems to be Copenhagen, but I don't know how up-to-date this is:
    http://tinyurl.com/cywddc

    As of yesterday there had been 12 suspected cases in Denmark and all were cleared, so still none here as far as I know. ?Regardless, I'm not worried. ?I wash my hands and I go to the doctor when I'm sick. ?Yawn.?

  • Yay!  No cases in Denmark!  You and Sweden are our buffer zones.  Wink
    image
  • And it's sad when only 2/3 of people wash their hands after going to the bathroom.

    Can I say that I think this number is too high? I don't see many kids washing their hands AND the number of adults who don't is scary. Especially men. And running the tips of your fingers under the tap doesn't not count as washing. Washing includes soap.I think only 2/3 wash their hands before eating. I think less than 1/5 of the people actually wash their hands after using the restroom. 

    We have quite a few male friends who don't wash. I freaked out on one once and as soon as he got back from the rest room and put his non-washed hand in my "everyone eats from it" bowl of nuts I screamed "OMG did you just put your peni$ hands in our nuts?!?! That's a freakin' bio hazard!!!" He doesn't like me very much anymore. And now "that's a freakin' biohazard" has become a very popular statement when my family wants to tease me.

  • image xnickerx:

    "OMG did you just put your peni$ hands in our nuts?!?! That's a freakin' bio hazard!!!"

    I'm glad I didn't have a mouth full of soda when I read that!  LOL!

    image
  • I'm trying in vain to keep a straight face after reading this and especially considering a male co-worker just 'adjusted' himself without realising infront of everyone. lol
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