What Is Your Reaction to the Swine Flu Scare?
Posted April 30, 2009, 2:43 pm
Growing Bolder asks leaders, thinkers, writers, life coaches, entertainers and role models to weigh in on issues affecting our lives.
What is your reaction to the Swine Flu scare?
I consider myself an extremely healthy person but...I'm one of those people who adopts the "Flu of the year bug". That means I've had the flu 58 times. Ninety percent of the time its a 24 to 48 hour variety. The other 10 percent I call the "Flu from hell". These last up to one week or more and seem to hit me once every 8 to 10 years. I call those the "Lord take me now flu" which hit me last November. I can wash my hands all day long and still contact the virus. Remember, if we have to name a hurricane, we have to name a flu. Whatever the name is, a flu is a flu!
About Ted Skup
He believes that with obesity levels at an all-time high, fitness needs be a national priority. He says despite the fact we have an arsenal of exercise options at our disposal, the ultimate choice is, the simple push-up. Skup takes on the 35-billion-dollar fitness industry and explains why it is failing us, with its bogus claims, magic bullets, and quick fixes. Although the fitness industry may not want to hear it, push-ups are free, no equipment, no gimmicks and totally portable. He is the author of Death, Taxes & Push-ups.
I suppose there are lots of deadly diseases out there, but so far the Swine flu epidemic seems to be affecting young people and I don't find myself in that age division anymore.
I believe that my lifestyle doesn't put me at great risk. About the only places I frequent where I encounter other people are the grocery store and the YMCA.
I always try to go both places in the middle of the day when they are least crowded. I also try to eat sensibly, get plenty of exercise and sleep.
Lots of things scare me more than Swine Flu. Getting old has been an adventure to this point, but I don't see this epidemic as anything to be concerned about.
About Pat Bond
It's never too late to get in the game and she is proof! Pat decided in her 40s to give sports a try. It may have been the best idea she ever had! Now, she is a multi-sport athlete who has been involved in the Senior Games for many years and thrives on the competition. She won 8 gold medals in 2007 Games in the 65-69 age group. She is the Chair of the Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee of Manatee County. She's also an avid photographer.
I just got back this week from a short trip from San Francisco to Medford Oregon to give a talk on my book Rightsizing Your Life.
Besides my Power Point presentation, I packed an N95 mask (considered less penetrable than the blue surgical masks and available at places like Home Depot and Lowe's) and a prescription for Tamaflu.
With that in my carryon, and being vigilant to wash my hands and consciously not touch my face, this Road Warrior (or Air Warrior? went about her business with no need to use either, and no apparent ill effects from having taken this business trip.
Hillary Clinton was asked why it was she didn't get a serious bout of anything nasty while on the campaign last year and her answer was: "After each interaction with the public shaking hands, etc. I immediately washed my own!"
Just simple precautions will hopefully keep this outbreak from being a true pandemic.
About Ciji Ware
She is an expert and author specializing in baby boomer books. She has a lot to say about the downturn in the housing market. Her latest book "Rightsizing Your Life" has become a must-read for the boomer generation. Ciji is one of GB's favorite guests. Saying she's multi-talented is an understatement. She was a reporter/commentator on radio and television in Los Angeles for over 20 years. She's the first female Harvard grad to serve as president of the Harvard Alumni Association. She's also written three novels. Old time radio fans will recognize her last name. Her father, Harlan Ware was one of the main writers of the long-time classic One Man's Family.
Shirley W. Mitchell
The Swine Flu scare has not caused me to panic. I am more careful about keeping my hands clean, covering my mouth when I cough, etc.
My personal concern is my grandchildren who go to school with 60% of the class from Mexico.
The hype over the Swine Flu scare will be a big problem for people who always think the worst about everything; people who are negative thinkers.
People who have a positive attitude, takes life as it comes, uses common sense, and expects the best, will deal with the situation without panic.
About Shirley W. Mitchell
After 7 decades on this earth, Shirley has more energy than people half her age! She's the author of Fabulous after 50, Sensational after 60, and a number of other highly motivating reads. She's the host of radio's Aging Outside the Box. She is an internet tour de force, with a number of web sites of her own. She is a passionate member of Growing Bolder where her user name is Fabulous (be sure to send her a note!). Shirly is proof of the philosophy she spreads, that age is just a number, not a limit.
Regarding the Swine Flu scare (and, the poor pigs – we aren’t supposed to refer to it as the Swine Flu, but by H1N1, as it really isn’t Swine Flu.)
According to Wikipedia, the 2009 flu outbreak in humans that is widely known as "swine flu" technically is not swine flu. It is due to a new strain of influenza A virus subtype H1N1 that derives from one strain of human influenza, one strain of avian influenza and two separate strains of swine influenza.
The origins of this new strain are unknown, and the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) reports that this strain has not been isolated in swine.
I personally feel we are getting too much “hype” over this outbreak and people throughout our country - and the world - are getting scared. I think people need to be informed, however, there needs to be a balance.
I’d suggest to continue the gentle reminder “to wash your hands and to cough in your elbow” and cut out the hysteria.
About Joan Hansen
Joan is the director of the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program in Orange County, Fla. RSVP is designed to help people 55 or better to participate more fully in the life of their community through significant volunteer services. She has worked with seniors for 28 years. She is a supporter and long-time volunteer for the Amachi program which finds mentors for the children of prisoners. After cancer took the life of her daughter, Joan stepped up to raise her granddaughter and takes her on adventures all over the world.
Once again many people in our country are cowering in fear of a health problem that has affected very few Americans.
It seems every year, the media, politicians, and health officials have the population poised for extinction. This year the health crisis is the Swine Flu.
Last year we didn't have enough medicine to vaccinate people against pneumonia.
Prior to that, the Bird Flu struck more fear in us than a famous Alfred Hitchcock movie. The facts are that to this point their have been fewer than 100 deaths worldwide, and no one has died in the United States.
Meanwhile, at least 30,000,000 people die from common flu related illness every year, and nobody hits the panic button. Should you be current on what is happening with this new strain of flu? Of course.
But wearing surgical masks and avoiding public transportation is overkill. In reality, if you can't help being a hypochondriac, the best prevention is simply washing your hands.
About Pat Paciello
Pat Paciello is pushing 60 these days, has three grown children, and has been happily married for over 30 years. (He says the first year wasn't so hot!) He has been retired from the workforce for almost a decade. During that time span Pat has been particularly adept at enjoying leisure pursuits, and earning the highest recommendation from his peers for his "I do nothing, but I do it well attitude." His book, Has Anyone Seen My Reading Glasses? offers a unique and fresh approach to the subject of Baby Boomer retirement. First, it's written by a Baby Boomer who is actually retired. Second, the book is long on humor and personal anecdotes, and short on statistical analysis.
Nancy Merz Nordstrom
As with so much in the media, I think, and hope, the Swine Flu is being over-hyped. The media tends to "grab on" to one particular topic and run it into the ground.
Yes, we live in a global society now and constant travel back and forth makes such outbreaks more possible. But, as has been said, at any given time there are many, many cases of different types of flu in the U.S. and elsewhere.
But we hear little or nothing about that. Making people aware of what's out there and how to take precautions, should be enough, certainly not the constant live broadcasts that are flowing over the airwaves here in the New England area and probably elsewhere too - at least not yet, and hopefully, never!
About Nancy Nordstrom
Nancy Merz Nordstrom didn't publish her first book, or even write her first book, until she turned 61 and she hasn't slowed down since. She had to take new chances after her husband died of a heart attack in 1993. Nordstrom's book, "Learning Later, Living Greater: The Secret for Making the Most of Your After 50 Years," focuses on her recovery, and her belief in lifelong learning.
I am so tired of hyped up scares and sensationalized "news". Is this really a big danger to us?
Should we all go Michael Jackson and start living our lives in surgical masks and gloves? Do we hide in our houses shaking in fear?
Where are some links to the really sensible information and reasonable precautions we can take? Because I'm not getting it from the news or the internet!
About Terri Dennis
The Pop Art Diva is an artist unlike any other. She's a baby boomer
and proud of it! So proud, that even though she grew up during the
Golden Age of TV, Rock 'N Roll and other classics of American Pop
Culture she has embraced modern technology to advance her art. She's
found the computer to be a great tool to feed her passion in art
inspired by pop culture. She's also fascinated in how American history
relates to pop culture mythology and understanding the influence it's
had on our society.
Considering many many people do die of the flu every year it seems a little of an overreaction to this particular one. However it is good that the government is on top of things...for a change!
About Susan Silver
Susan was a writer for many of the greatest TV series of all time, including "The Bob Newhart Show," "Mary Tyler Moore," and "Maude." These days, she writes a hilarious relationship column called, "The Search for Mr. Adequate." She is a frequent guest on the Growing Bolder Radio Show and is often called in to discuss relationship issues on The Today Show on NBC.
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