On Monday Barack Obama made another in a series of embarrassing goofs by suggesting that the swine flu pandemic was "not a cause for concern." Just two days later, Obama has reversed his stance, saying the outbreak of swine flu had created a "serious situation" in the United States requiring the "utmost precautions," such as closing down schools where cases of swine flu are reported.
The cases of swine flu has risen in the U.S. to 91, including one death -- an infant who died in a Houston hospital.
Be aware that there are no vaccines for this particular strain of swine flu. Also, antiviral medications do not kill the virus that causes swine flu. They only interfere with the ability of the virus to bind to certain cells in the body. Antivirals are only effective against specific virus, and only if administered in the early stages of infection (up to 48 hours). There is no known cure for a virus.
What can you do to protect yourself? Wash your hands frequently with soap and water (as warm as you can stand it) or alcohol-based hand sanitizers. Remember when using public restrooms to use a paper towel when turning off the faucet and when opening restroom doors.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth especially when out in public.
It's important to note that the majority of people infected with swine flu do make a full recovery, so don't panic. Remember, it isn't the virus that kills, it's the body's inflammatory response to the virus.
If you have flu-like symptoms (cough, sneezing, runny nose), don't go to work or school. If you have accompanying joint pain, fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, go to the emergency room or notify your doctor immediately.
Information about swine flu on the web: