What is the flu?
Flu is a respiratory illness caused by the influenza virus. Symptoms include fever, headache, sore throat, congestion, cough, and muscle aches.
How the flu is spread
The flu virus is spread from person to person through wet droplets that are produced when people cough, sneeze, or speak. If these droplets enter your nose, mouth, or eyes they can cause the flu. The infectious droplets can also contaminate objects such as door handles, desks, and computer keyboards. If you touch a contaminated surface with your hands then touch your eyes, nose, or mouth you can become infected.
Protect yourself and others from the flu
- Get a flu shot annually. UMD has a flu shot clinic scheduled for Tuesday, January 29, from 1-5pm in the commuter cafeteria.
- Cover your mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. If you do not have a tissue, cough or sneeze into the crook of your elbow.
- Throw away used tissues.
- Clean things that are touched often, such as door or refrigerator handles, computer keyboards, and water faucets.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. If you are not near water, use an alcohol-based cleaner.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance (at least 3 feet) from others to protect them from getting sick too. Consider wearing a surgical mask.
- If you get the flu, stay home from work, school and social gatherings until your temperature has been under100 degrees for 24 hours without the use of fever lowering medications.
- Try not to touch your eyes, nose or mouth.
- Sheila Dorgan, Director Student Health Services: firstname.lastname@example.org or 508.910.6527
- Flu Facts/Massachusetts Office of Health and Human Services
- Your own healthcare provider
- Flu/Centers for Disease Control