Colds affect more than a few students. Living in close quarters often adds to the transmission of illness from student to student. As the next few months approach more students will become victims of a common cold or even the flu.
What many students are unaware of is that with only a few simple changes in one’s everyday routine, one can ward off many illnesses.
Susan Fitzgerald, a registered nurse at Cabrini, gives all students who walk in her office a plastic bag filled with an assortment of different items they can use if they are feeling a cold coming on or even after they already picked a cold up.
All the bags were made by Health Services and students. Even those without a sign of a cold can pick up a bag at any time.
The bag comes with three different items such as extra-strength, non-aspirin pain reliever for minor aches and pains that are associated with the common cold, headache and flu.
Sore throat lozenges can also be found inside the bag. These can be great for someone with an itchy throat. Miniature packets of salt for gargling are also included for a sore throat.
The most important part of the bag would be the “Tips for Good Health” that is tucked inside with everything else. On this compact piece of paper are tips for preventing the cold and flu, as well as tips for what you can do if you have already caught either.
Some of the tips recommended are to stay home when you are sick and cover one’s mouth and nose with a tissue or arm when coughing or sneezing.
Washing our hands is a must and probably the most effective in preventing illness. One should also avoid touching eyes, nose or mouth and practice good health habits such as getting plenty of sleep, managing stress, eating healthy meals and being physically active.
Shane Evans, a senior English and communication major, said, “I try to take daily vitamins which keeps my immune system working properly and then I try to keep my room clean and free of dust and other things that inhibit me from staying healthy.”
Although these are things one can do to prevent getting sick, there are also actions one can take if one is already ill.
The “Tips for Good Health” sheet recommends ibuprofen for fever and muscle aches and Tylenol for fever alone.
Also, drinking plenty of water and getting a substantial amount of rest can also help when already sick. Over-the-counter cold medicine can be used as long as the directions are followed properly.
Kimberly Cummings, a senior human resources major, said, “When I am already sick I try to drink lots of fluids, get plenty of rest and take Nyquil before bed each night.”
Health Services advises anyone who continues to feel ill to come see them immediately for additional care.
Also, for students who wish to receive a flu vaccination for this upcoming season they can do so in Health Services.
Vaccinations begin on Monday, Oct.15. For more information on the flu vaccine or any other information visit one of the nurses in Health Services in Founder’s Hall room 88.