Whooping Cough Reminds Students of Sickness Prevention

Emily Barmore & Alexis Lage, News Writers

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As students begin to settle into their  routines while balancing school work, jobs, sports, and more, sickness appears to disrupt it all. This year alone, there have already been seven confirmed cases of pertussis, or whooping cough at SVHS, each one keeping a student trapped at home and away from school for days.

  Many students in the past have received the vaccine called Tdap, but it is necessary to repeat vaccinations to remain effective. Sonoma’s District Nurse, Diane Ziemer, claims, “Antibiotics can treat illness and prevent the spread of whooping cough to others, but needs to be given within three weeks of infection.”

 Ziemer still recommends receiving the Tdap shot in advance to avoid the sickness in the first place. Along with whooping cough, students should begin to be aware of the incoming flu season.

  Many students come to school while sick, making themselves more sick, and possibly infecting others, because they are worried about missing classes and work. As SVHS attendance specialist Crystal Morgan says, “If you’re sick, stay home!” Morgan believes that students need recovery time to stay healthy and should email their teachers to get work and check google classroom.

  Students get stressed about missing school and sacrifice their health to keep up their grades. Ziemer and Morgan support staying home and communicating with teachers over email to endure the 2018-2019 epidemics.

  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), last year’s flu season killed 181 children in the US, becoming the first season ever to be classified as high severity across all ages.

  Ziemer and the CDC endorse obtaining a flu shot. The CDC determined that in the 2016-2017 season, “…the flu vaccine prevented an estimated 5.3 million illnesses, 2.6 million medical visits, and 85,000 hospitalizations associated with influenza.”

  The CDC  recommends to get the flu shot now in order to be prepared for the upcoming season. In addition to the shot, rest and an abundance of fluids will shorten the length of symptoms and treat the infection.

  Ziemer’s other tips for avoiding sickness are getting plenty of sleep, dressing appropriately for the weather, covering a cough, not sharing drinks, and most importantly, washing your hands frequently.