“A college is like a cruise ship,” says Dr. Guy Napolitana, and not necessarily in a good way.
Students going to college are susceptible to a whole new variety of illnesses because they are constantly in close quarters, whether it’s a classroom, recreational center or dorm. In 2009, H1N1 flu virus was rampantly spread across many campuses. Everyday Health states that colds and flu viruses thrive on college campuses because students are sharing close quarters and aren’t always taking the preventative steps they can to curb sickness.
Health centers and doctor’s offices are flooded with college students every year needing treatment for a variety of ailments.
Five Most Common Illnesses on Campus
- The Flu
- Bladder infections
- Staph infections
Keep Your Students Healthy
Make sure your students are up to date on all vaccinations. Meningococcal meningitis and the flu are two of the of the most contagious illnesses to sweep college campuses. These illnesses are easily preventable with a simple vaccination. Most campuses require students to have the meningococcal meningitis vaccine before registering for their first semester. Doctor’s offices and pharmacies advertise the flu shots so suggest to your students to get one ASAP.
Hand washing is something we learn we have to do as small children but it’s even more important when you’re in close quarters with so many other people. Wipe down your gym equipment before and after use to prevent staph infections. Sanitize your desk before sitting down in class and your hands when entering or leaving the room.
Telling college students to get rest and have a healthy, balanced diet can be a redundant point because of their hectic schedules. However, passing up that Friday night party to get an extra night’s sleep or having a hearty salad instead of burgers and fries can make a big difference in their body’s ability to fight off illness.