Don’t try working through it.
Fever? Check. Cough? Check. Sore throat? Check.
Thus far in Washington state alone, 29 influenza-associated deaths have been reported. The one that seems to be hitting home for a lot of people is the death of 21-year-old fitness enthusiast, Kyler Baughman from Pittsburgh.
The short story: A perfectly healthy young adult came down with the flu. According to his parents, he figured it wasn’t a big deal. Rested during Christmas, then tried going back to his job as a mover at a local furniture store. His health declined quickly, he made it to a hospital and was then flown to UPMC Presbyterian where, soon after, he died of “organ failure due to septic shock caused by influenza”.
Basic mechanics of the flu are you contract a virus, which your body’s immune system responds to in order to fight it. This fighting triggers inflammation – fever, coughing, sore throat, body aches. If you don’t take care of your body while it’s fighting, it wears down and the flu wins. Your body gets overworked and starts to fail. Meaning, you die.
What’s the best way to take care of yourself?
- Hydrate (water, electrolytes, broth)
- Rest (no work, no workouts, no chores, get back in bed)
- Avoid contact with others
- Seek medical care if your symptoms worsen or you are worried about your illness (unable to breath, dizziness, severe vomiting)
We’ve all had friends and coworkers who come into work despite feeling under the weather. Myself included. What we need to start practicing is staying home and off our feet.
Also, go get your shot.