Boston Mayor Thomas Menino has declared a public health emergency in response to the unusual virulence of this winter’s flu epidemic. With midterm exams coming up week after next, the recent spike in flu cases couldn’t come at a worse time, as stress is known to weaken the immune system and being absent this month means missing valuable review time in class – but coming to school sick puts everyone else at risk, so please stay home if you have a fever or other flu symptoms:
• Temperature > 100.0 F (stay home for 24 hours until after fever has returned to normal)
• Sore throat
• See a doctor of your symptoms persist for 3 days or more.
CCSC School Nurse Pamela Bajada offers some tips on staying healthy this flu season:
• Get the flu shot! Contact your doctor or health clinic to find out where to get vaccinated. Many pharmacies offer flu shots.
• Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze. Use a tissue or you inner elbow (“bat cape”), not your hands.
• Wash your hands often with soap and warm water, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
• If you take the T to school, wear gloves and wash your hands upon arriving at school.
• Get plenty of sleep.
• Drink lots of water to stay hydrated.
You can find more flu resources from the Mass. Dept. of Public Health.