Thursday, April 30, 2009
TIP SHEET: K-STATE EXPERTS SAY QUALITY OF PERSONAL HYGIENE, LEVEL OF CONTACT WITH OTHERS KEY TO PREVENTING THE SPREAD OF ILLNESS LIKE SWINE FLU
MANHATTAN -- Whether it's the seasonal flu or swine flu, the rules for keeping disease from spreading are the same and come down to personal hygiene, according to experts at Kansas State University.
The symptoms of swine flu in humans are similar to the symptoms of seasonal flu and include: fever greater than 100 degrees, body aches, coughing, sore throat, respiratory congestion and, in some cases, diarrhea and vomiting. Individuals at K-State who experience these symptoms should contact their physician or Lafene Health Center at 785-532-6544.
To prevent the spread of diseases like flu, K-State experts recommend:
* Washing your hands vigorously with adequate soap and water and avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. A video produced by K-State's Doug Powell, associate professor of diagnostic medicine and pathobiology, shows proper hand-washing techniques and can be viewed at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=piwl-Mfwc_s
* Staying home when you are sick to avoid spreading illness to co-workers, classmates and friends.
* Coughing or sneezing into your elbow or a tissue and properly dispose of used tissues.
* Staying healthy by getting plenty of sleep, managing your stress, eating a balanced diet and drinking plenty of water.
* Trying to avoid people who appear to be sick and avoid others when you are ill.
To ensure students, their parents, K-State staff and the public have the latest information, a swine flu hotline is available at 785-532-7233 or 532-SAFE. The hotline provides general information and can connect callers to K-State's Lafene Health Center or the office of student life.
As defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, swine flu H1N1 is a respiratory disease of pigs caused by type A influenza, the strain that regularly causes outbreaks of flu in pigs. Though the disease does not normally infect humans, they can contract the disease if they are exposed to infected pigs. Unique to the current swine flu outbreak is the ability of the virus to be transmitted from person to person.