Seriously. I’ve had it with the H1N1 news already. I am really getting sick and tired of hearing about H1N1 and about “you need to get vaccinated”.
People here in the US are freaking the ‘eff’ out. When I drove to work this morning, I was listening to NPR and they were talking about the vaccine shortage and how angry people get at the health care workers who give out the vaccine. But they were also bringing up questions like what are the risks of getting or not getting vaccinated.
If you ask me, the whole H1N1 hype is just scare tactics to keep people afraid.
As far as I know, in Germany the vaccine is not even widely available to the public yet (correct me if I am wrong – sometimes the channels of communication are slow.)
Maybe I am treating this too lightly, maybe not.
I honestly think that whole scaremongering is really not helping. I personally am not planning on getting vaccinated. First of all, I am not even sure the vaccine – whose production has been fast tracked because of the fear of a pandemic – is doing it’s job and what about potential side effects? Secondly, I am not in any of the risk groups, so I would probably stand in line somewhere for hours only to be sent away unvaccinated at the end of the day.
I am also a little concerned: is this just one big scam in favor of the vaccine manufactures who have the potential to make windfall profits with little risk? The government has already awarded 2 billion dollars to the companies that make the H1N1 vaccine. The Congress has also passed a law that protects vaccine manufacturers from being sued for damages, if they had ‘no willful knowledge’ of potential side effects.
That screams “gain for the pharmaceutical industry”, does it not?
I am not trying to play down the threat of the swine flu. However, I am still not convinced that it is any more dangerous than the regular flu (which annually on average costs 40,000 people their lives in the US).
I still believe that common sense and a healthy lifestyle are the best way to prevent (or fight) a virus like the flu.
- Exercise. Regularly. Period.
- Eat healthy. Whole grains, vegetables, unprocessed food, a fruit a day. It’s fairly simple.
- Drink more water (or tea – I can only do it with more tea!)
- Avoid salt and high fructose corn syrup ( = all processed foods!).
- Get enough sleep. That seems like a no-brainer, but most people function on too little sleep. That extra hour every night might just give your immune system the rest that it needs.
It also won’t hurt if your practice simple precautions like washing your hands regularly and avoiding contact with people who are sick.
How about you? Are you planning to get vaccinated?