What is the flu?
Influenza (the flu) is a contagious viral infection of the respiratory tract (nose, throat, bronchial tubes, and lungs). People often use the term "flu" to describe a variety of mild illnesses, such as a cold or a stomach virus that has symptoms like the flu. But real flu is different. Flu hits hard and fast; its symptoms are usually worse and last longer than a cold.
If you have the flu your symptoms may be mild or more severe. You may feel some or all of these symptoms:
- Fever* or feeling feverish/chills
- Sore throat
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Muscle or body aches
- Possibly vomiting and/or diarrhea
*Not everyone with the flu will have a fever.
Flu Prevention Tips
The most effective way to avoid getting the flu is to get a flu shot. If you have not yet gotten a flu shot, there is still time to protect yourself against the flu. The flu shot strain is less effective this year (2017-18) than in past years, but the Centers for Disease Control still recommends that you get the vaccine as it will either the prevent the flu or at least lessen consequences from the flu.
Flu shot providers
Loyola Wellness Center: Available for free at the Loyola Wellness Fair on October 3rd and by appointment while supplies last.
CVS Pharmacy (6510 N. Sheridan), by the Loyola red line stop
Walgreens (6121 N Broadway).
Water Tower Campus:
Walgreens, 757 N Michigan Ave
Influenza can be easily spread from one person to another through contact with saliva or mucus droplets. To reduce your chances of getting sick, please wash your hands frequently with soap and water, and limit contact with peers who have the flu. Also, if a roommate is sick, avoid sharing utensils and dishes and make sure that common surfaces like kitchen counters are disinfected and wiped down. For more information about flu symptoms and prevention, see the Centers for Disease Control's flu page.