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Swine Flu Symptoms & Prevention

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Swine Flu Symptoms & Prevention

By Melissa Breyer, Senior Editor, Healthy & Green Living

There’ a new flu in town. I personally think the media can do an excellent job of scaring the daylights out of people with something like this–from the looks of the newspapers you’d think this was some deadly apocalyptic pandemic worthy of the big screen and an action hero. That said, this particular flu does have its troublesome aspects. It may not affect people any more severely than the common seasonal flu does–and we don’t go into media overdrive about the common seasonal flu even though around 36,000 people in the US die from flu-related causes every year. But what worries officials is that a new strain of the flu virus–especially one that has leapt from animals to humans–can spread quickly because people do not have natural immunity. The geographical spread of multiple community outbreaks, plus the somewhat unusual age groups affected, are matters of concern to officials.

About the new flu. Swine flu, is a contagious respiratory disease that affects pigs. It is caused by a type-A influenza virus. Outbreaks in pigs occur year-round–the most common version is H1N1. The current strain is a new variation of an H1N1 virus, which is a mix of human and animal versions. While the virus causes regular outbreaks in pigs, people usually are not struck by swine flu unless they have been in close contact with infected pigs. In general, it doesn’t spread from people to people, which this strain seems to be doing.

Symptoms of swine flu in people. The symptoms of swine flu in people are similar to the symptoms of regular human flu and include fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, runny nose, headache, chills and fatigue. Some people have reported diarrhea and vomiting associated with swine flu. In the past, severe illness (pneumonia and respiratory failure) and deaths have been reported with swine flu infection in people. Like seasonal flu, swine flu may cause a worsening of underlying chronic medical conditions.

Next: Emergency warning signs and flu prevention

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Melissa Breyer

Melissa Breyer is a writer and editor with a background in sustainable living, specializing in food, science and design. She is the co-author of True Food (National Geographic) and has edited and written for regional and international books and periodicals, including The New York Times Magazine. Melissa lives in Brooklyn, NY.

83 comments

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1:24AM PDT on Apr 27, 2013

Thank you for info.

1:24AM PDT on Apr 27, 2013

Thank you for info.

7:57AM PDT on Apr 9, 2012

Thanks.

7:43AM PST on Feb 26, 2012

Oh, it's an old post.

2:23AM PST on Mar 2, 2011

Thanks for the info.

3:48PM PST on Jan 4, 2010

WARNING::Sad thing happened in New Zealand-Personal story-Swine Flu was MISTAKENLY diagnosed(Bec of the scare?)and Patient died of Heart attack-PLease please BE doubly sure of what symptoms you tell your Doctor?

10:18AM PST on Jan 4, 2010

Thanks for the info.

1:53PM PST on Jan 2, 2010

This is what I do in general to stay in good health during the flu season:

1. Drink lots of fluids, especially water and herbal teas
2. Wash my hands regularly and thoroughly
3. Eat garlic regularly (anti viral/bacterial)
4. Drink ginger tea (from fresh ginger root)
5. Take usnea and echinecae tincture if the slightest of symptoms occur
6. Make sure to get lots of sleep (and regularly)
7. Drink raw and fresh lemon juice every day (1 lemon)
8. Eat lots of vegetables, both fresh as salads and cooked

It keeps me in general good health and if I get a cold or flu its usually a very mild one.

5:40AM PST on Jan 1, 2010

I think it is so sad that there has to be an antidote against an antidote.

7:48PM PST on Nov 4, 2009

elderberry is wonderfu. thank you for the reminder, amy.

will root through my vitamin cabinet to see if i still have a bottle. if not, will get some from super supplements.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

Good article - thank you!

Just because Australian money is called dollars doesn't mean that it is worth the same.

Beautiful reminder. Thank you!:))

It's good to know that people are there to help. TY

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