Our View: Stubborn flu bugs Utah

Tuesday , March 18, 2014 - 5:03 PM

Editorial Board

As just about anyone in the Top of Utah has experienced, December, and the first few couple of days of 2013, have provided a large amount of persons with runny noses, hacking coughs, hoarse voices, frequent sneezing, aches, fatigue, fevers and sore throats. It’s been a bad season for colds and the flu in Utah. In fact, the subtype B of the flu, which has afflicted a lot of Utahns, was not included in the vaccine.

The best advice to stop spreading colds and flu is to stay home if you feel ill. These illnesses are carried easily to others; even talking can transmit the flu to another. Also, if you haven’t gotten a flu shot, get one. Even if the subtype B is not included in the vaccine, enough other variants are to make the shot a smart choice.

According to Utah health officials, since Sept. 30, there have been 686 confirmed cases of this flu subtype in Utah. Given that most persons with the flu don’t go to the hospital, the actual number must be far higher. However, Utah hospital emergency rooms are experiencing upticks in visits for flu illnesses, as well as a virus, RSV, that can be serious for babies. Also, strep throat and sinus infections are well reported.

Here’s a few more suggestions on beating colds and the flu, courtesy of the Utah Department of Health:

• Avoid close contact with those who are sick.

• Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when sneezing and coughing.

• Wash your hands often.

• Try to avoid touching your face, mouth and nose.

• Sleep a sufficient amount of time, keep physically active, try not to get too stressed, eat smart and drink lots of fluids.

With colds and flu as persistence as they are now, we need to make every effort to avoid getting sick and making others sick.

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