Flu shots and stress at USD

Prepare for the flu season and the stress of midterms by staying well


In the midst of midterms and in preparation for the holiday season, it is important that USD students do their best to stay healthy. Flu season is here and it is crucial that students do what they can to protect themselves from getting sick.

Not only is getting sick unpleasant, it also begins a downward cycle that makes you feel even worse. As a result of getting sick, students miss class to get their rest, this leads to missing school work and lectures. Poor exam grades, which lead to a lot of stress, are usually due to missing a substantial amount of class. Stress is one of the worst things for your immune system, making it easy for you to get sick and begin this downward cycle all over again. Students who do not receive immunizations and are under a lot of pressure are the most susceptible to getting the flu.

This past week, the University of San Diego Health Center offered free flu shots right on campus Oct. 28, 30 and 31 in front of the Student Life Pavilion. Veronica Bedon, a nurse at the Student Health Center, recommends that every student at USD get this vaccination.

“On campus you are exposed to a lot of germs because people congregate in classrooms and dorms, easily allowing the flu to spread through close contact with other people. Getting the flu vaccine is important because it helps prevent the spread of the flu from person to person” Bedon said.

She went on to say that many students ignore signs of the flu because they believe it is just a common cold. Some flu symptoms include coughing, sneezing, fever, sore throat, and aching.

If you have had any of these symptoms for an extended period of time, you should consider going to the health center and being evaluated. Although the flu is currently very prominent on the USD campus, the health center is available to students with any health concerns.

Junior Taylor Archer agrees that flu shots are helpful in fighting off the flu during this time of year and that as with any medical treatments, it is important to do your research.

“Certain groups are at more of a risk than others, there are also misconceptions that vaccines cause neurological disorders, overall it is important to make sure the benefits outweigh the costs,” Archer said.

Although the flu shots are recommended to stay well during the flu season, not everyone supports the idea of receiving the vaccine. Sophomore Alexis Hilson believes that the flu shot is not for everyone due to the differences in everyone’s individual immune systems.

“There are many people who do not build up the antibodies very well.

People then get that strain of flu that was introduced with the vaccines with more severe symptoms because it has been introduced into the system when it potentially would not have been there otherwise,” Hilson said.

In addition, the USD Center for Health and Wellness Promotion is also a helpful resource for students trying to maintain healthy lifestyles.

Almost every single USD student experiences some level of stress throughout the week. Stress causes our bodies to release cortisol, which is an extremely powerful hormone that actually suppresses the immune system. For people trying to stay healthy, stress management is crucial. Stephanie Lynch, the assistant director for the Center for Health and Wellness Promotion believes that the center is a great resource for students.

“The health and wellness center is an area that works to promote health and wellness in order to meet needs of the USD community.

We do a lot of promotion, outreach, and education programs, acknowledging the topics that most affect college students; these topics include stress management, healthy sleep behaviors, alcohol education and awareness, and many others,” Lynch said.

The health and wellness center, located in UC 161, offers counseling and education programs to help students maximize their potential.

It is necessary for college students to be mentally, physically and emotionally healthy. Both the Student Health Center and the Center for Health and Wellness Promotion are great ways to find support in maintaining an all-around healthy lifestyle.