“Stay away from anyone who is coughing or sneezing!”
“Don’t go to Mexico!”
“Don’t touch anything!”
“Put on a mask!”
We’ve all heard the numerous warnings about the swine flu and how to avoid catching it. The media has updated the public daily with new warnings, vaccine updates, deaths and regulations. But has the media gone too far? Have people in general gotten worked up over nothing? Is everyone just paranoid?
The bottom line is, people need to know how to be prepared for any type of disease or infection, but sometimes the issue gets overplayed, which can lead to paranoia. Sometimes it can even lead to annoyance. For example, Facebook has a page called “Not Panicking Over Swine Flu.”
Those who are most likely to catch the swine flu have a reason to be worried, though worrying and overreacting usually accomplish nothing, except to annoy those around and possibly cause anxiety problems.
In one Fox News article, the issue of paranoia versus preparedness was brought up. Fox stated the possibility of the government creating a quarantine, though personally I haven’t heard anything about this. Considering the swine flu doesn’t seem more deadly than the seasonal flu, a quarantine would probably be more of a move in favor of paranoia instead of preparedness. More people probably die from car crashes than the swine flu. Should bad drivers be quarantined? Besides, vaccines are coming for those who truly need it.
A Washington Post article was completely devoted to swine flu paranoia and talked about people buying hand sanitizer like crazy, wearing face masks and wrapping poles in the bus with newspapers in order to avoid touching them. OK, so maybe the bus isn’t that clean and maybe hand sanitizer is a good idea once in a while, but really? Don’t be afraid to breathe some fresh air. Maybe just stay away from that person coughing like a maniac and the pole in the bus that someone just sneezed on or that just looks discolored and sticky.
Cut the paranoia out of your life and see how horrible relaxing and forgetting about the swine flu can be. Sure, keep updated with the news, but don’t read into the paranoia and exaggeration that can be commonplace.