WEB DESK: Most people assume they have a flu when they actually just have a runny nose. Dr Dr Elodie Ghedin, of New York University, dispelled four common myths of the flu.
1- Having a runny nose
People jump to conclusions. So if they have a runny nose they feel they have flu. Many viruses have ‘flu-like symptoms’ – such as aches, fever, runny nose or sneezing.
Most people have flu only once or twice in a decade. “If a person is ‘totally debilitated and completely knocked out’, Dr Ghedin explained, then ‘that might have been the flu.
‘But in general, it’s usually not the flu that you have.’
She noted that the only way to be 100 per cent sure that you have the flu is to have a sample taken and sent to a lab for testing.
2- The Flu vaccine will make you sick
The Flu vaccine introduces the virus into your body so that you develop immunity against it. But the virus has many different sub sets, and a different type of it may attack you making you sick. But that does not mean that the flu shot itself made you sick.
3- Anti-viral drugs treat flu symptom
The flu virus multiplies very quickly. Once the virus infects you, symptoms begin to develop two days later. At that time it is probably too late to take medicine. The flu will take its course and then go away.
4- Surgical masks stop the spread of flu
Asking your co-worker who has flu to wear a surgical mask at office will not help matters. The flu virus is very contagious. When you sneeze, you project fine particles of different sizes. The large ones fall on the ground. The medium ones travel up to three feet. The mask will prevent larger particles, but the smaller ones will fly through it.