Flu season is here. Although it really seemed to prevail in February, everyone knows this bug is always out to wreak havoc on our immune systems.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Web site, about five to 20 percent of U.S. citizens get the flu. About 36,000 of those people die from the flu every year.
Living on a college campus, we all know that diseases get spread easily. For instance, the random outbreaks of Staphylococcus, or Staph, infection and let's not even get started on the sexually transmitted diseases people have and don't talk about.
The flu seems to spread much more quickly on college campuses. I have come up with three possible reasons why it seems like the flu epidemic has students breaking down the doors to the UT Student Health Clinic.
The first reason I propose that students are so prone to get the flu is their living situations. Most of us either live in an apartment or on campus, which is probably a little cramped and shared with many people.
When everyone is spreading the love, they are actually spreading viruses.I currently live in Andy Holt. For those that have ever lived, been in or seen a dorm, you know that it is small, dirty and gives the word contagious a new meaning. If you live with someone that gets sick, it is a miracle if you and all of your roommates don't get sick too. I believe the way I avoided getting sick was staying too busy to be in my apartment for anything but sleep.
The second reason is because inconsiderate people don't cover their mouths when they sneeze or cough. We all know "that guy" that coughs throughout an entire class and doesn't even try to cover his mouth. If you're like me, you're usually the one sitting in front of him when the coughing attacks start.
The third reason college students get the flu is because of their hormones. It seems like people just can't resist kissing their significant other when they are sick. I don't know if it is like that episode of "Friends" when Monica is sick and Chandler becomes irresistible, but people can't help it.
Maybe it has something to do with comfort. When people are sick, especially men, they want someone to comfort them, to make hot soup and give them a kiss on the cheek. But that cheek is riddled with bacteria and things that can infect your immune system. When everyone is spreading the love, they are actually spreading viruses.
Ok, maybe I'm being a little facetious, but regardless of sicknesses, students still increase their likelihood of getting viruses like the flu by doing things like kissing, to say the least.
Now, all we have to do is get through March, and flu season will be over. So try to stay warm, away from roommates and coughers, and resist making out until you feel better.