Swine flu, or the H1N1 variant of the virus, has brought chaos all across the world. Educational Institutions shut, offices closed, people running around with masks on their face. Many in the comfy homes are glued to the idiot box watching the media, who are culpable for creating a mania on this virus, telling the people on how dangerous the epidemic has become, and the possible cure and prevention against this. People have come to frown on their young kids, for they hear that they are the most susceptible in getting infected. The so called epidemic has created a pandemonium in this world, where people believe that humans are on the verge of extinction.
I was a victim of a seasonal flu. Swine flu? I don’t know, I never gave my blood for testing, and I never would, for still a normal blood test cannot differentiate between a common cold virus strain and a H1N1 virus. Even the advanced testing, where in India only a few centres of Medicine are certified, cannot really tell if it’s the H1N1 we are talking about. So I might or might not have been affected with this virus. But I’m not worried. True, I’d to endure few days of high fever, sore throat, body weakness and all, but it’s the normal symptoms for cold. The speciality of this flu is that there is no cure, I repeat NO CURE for flu. All we can do is wait for it to wear off from your body, and control your body’s defensive reactions to this, for your body too goes haywire when the virus attacks. The viruses are programmed to self destruct after few days, so you need not worry about it prolonging to many many days.
Swine flu is just like common cold, it attacks for few days, causes cold like symptoms, and dies off after few days. What is being hyped about is the fact that it has caused deaths. Yes, it can cause death, but it is perfectly preventable. The reason being so is that Swine flu affects the respiratory system, it causes the air sacs (alveolar) inside the lungs to bloat, thus blocking the air passage coming through the wind pipe (bronchus), and thus as one boxer have described, it’s like ” a ton of pressure on my chest when taking air in “. In this case, you have no other option but to head to the nearest hospital which has ventilator facilities, to assist in artificial breathing. After a few days, everything will come back to normal, and also become immune to other diseases as well!
A few days ago, my friend and I have talking to the faculties, telling them that swine flu is not that dangerous, and that the college should not be closed down because of that. But the same guy did a turn coat, and he was forcing me to head to the best hospitals and get treated when I got a seasonal flu. I’d already shown to doctor who told me that what I have is just normal cold and need take rest for a few days only. But the guy won’t listen, and cared for himself more than anything else, trying hard not to get close to me. At times of crisis, I noticed people tend to become self-centred, and care only for their well-being. They won’t even mind a sick person, let alone help him. And ever thinking of staying aloof from it, chances are that you might get it some day, for the virus does not die off soon once it’s airborne. It will spread like wildfire, from one individual to another, affecting the weakest most. The best one can do is keep themselves healthy by doing exercises and eating healthy food, and pray that you don’t have to lie down sick for a few days!
People are scared more now due to swine flu, than they are about other deadly diseases. AIDS kills 2 people every minute. Every year, seasonal flu has taken 3000 lives in Kerala alone. People die of snake bites more than of swine flu. People don’t understand the real situation. According to WHO reports, 1 in every 3 Indians will be infected by the H1N1 virus, but out which, a maximum of 3000 may die. That is a ratio of 1 in every 3 lakh people die of swine flu. Considering such a small ratio of death, swine flu can never be considered deadly. It’s just media hype that has made this virus a life-threatening one. Wake up people! More people die due to AIDS than swine flu, yet they don’t advocate the use of condoms, when the same cover their faces with masks which does not stop the virus from penetrating.
Please stop raising the agenda of swine flu being an epidemic. Please educate others that swine flu is nothing but common cold variant, except in rare cases where one needs to head to the best hospitals around. Please stop wearing that masks for it serve no purpose in preventing the virus from entering, it more so stifles your breath than anything else! And also it has been reported in the news media that there is a cure for such a virus. My dad (a doc) reiterated that there is no cure to any viral infection, you can’t take control of the virus. You have to let the virus die down, and be prepared for that. If at all if you feel your breathing getting tougher, then rush to the hospital, nothing other than that. We must not be subdued because a virus is on the prowl. We must live life as normal, and never bother about the epidemic. And also look to help people who are the ones needing care, like those affected by AIDS, and others. Let’s not make Earth a fool’s haven, let’s make it a better place to live in.
“Swine Flu:No Time To Lose” , Reader’s Digest India Edition August 2009.
Courtesy: Mails sent to me by my Dad.