I’ve largely been deaf to all the media frenzy surrounding H1N1. But this week, the vaccines will be available to the public. This means I need to make a decision. Ugh, I don’t like decisions.
And there are just so many darn decisions related to H1N1.
To school or not to school? The school has repeatedly asked parents not to send their children to school if they are sick. But how sick is sick? The most common symptoms of H1N1, according to the Public Health Agency of Canada, include fever, cough, fatigue, sore throat, decreased appetite, muscle aches, headache, and runny nose. I would have thought that a “flu” meant vomiting or diarrhea, but apparently these are only “sometimes” symptoms. If I am to use these common symptoms as my decision-marker as to going to school or not, my entire family would not have attended school or work for the past 2.5 weeks. Three out of four of us have been to the doctor during this time and no one tested us for H1N1. We were told that we have bad colds.
To worry or not to worry? I’m having a hard time working out if I should even worry about it, actually. I don’t get in a panic about seasonal flu every winter. Sure, it’s awful to live through, but I don’t tend to fret about whether we’ll catch it or not. The H1N1 flu, however, is classified as “pandemic.” Yet, according to the National Post, “H1N1 has killed fewer people over the past six months than the seasonal flu kills every six days.” I’m confused, people.
To vaccinate or not to vaccinate? This is the biggie. This means that I need to make a decision and act on it. When it comes to menengitis, polio — yes, please give my children vaccines. But the flu? Yikes, I just don’t know. Have I been touched by the anti-vaccine campaigns? Yes, I guess I have to a degree. Words like “vaccine-injury,” “thimerosol” and “Guillain-Barre Syndrome” make me twitchy.
I wish I knew what side of the fence to fall. But I just don’t know what to do about the flu.