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‘Kissing disease’ attacks campus, several students with mono

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A sickness typically caused by the spread of saliva, mononucleosis, better known as the “kissing disease” has lately been spreading over campus.

“I got mono from other people in my (sorority) house,” Meg Blanford, sophomore, explained. “It was going around.”

According to Iowa Health System’s MyNurse.com, common symptoms of mono include fatigue, vomiting, lack of appetite, sore throat and a fever.

“I was really sick and would forget a lot of things (when having mono),” Blanford said. “The moment I knew I was really sick was when I was climbing the G(oodwin) – K(irk) stairs up to my room and got lost in the staircase — there really is only two directions you can go on a staircase!”

Other cases of mono can get even more extreme. First-year Kailey Hopkins was in the hospital after contracting mono.

“I had a really severe case (of mono) because I was in the hospital,” Hopkins explained. “I had a really high fever and experienced a lot of sharp pain. (If you get mono) go to a doctor and get tested. Better to know than just assume you’re fine.”

Steps can be taken however, to avoid getting this infectious sickness. Third world countries often expose their children at a younger age to mono so they don’t contract it later on.

“(To avoid getting sick) I should have been a lot more careful around those who had it already,” Blanford said. “I think Drake students should get the flu shot and disinfect their living spaces on a regular basis. I keep a bottle of Clorox wipes in my room and clean everything every Sunday — it helps a lot.”

Sleep has also been noted as a key factor to avoid getting sick. A recent article in the “Stallseat Journal,” explained that students want to “avoid mounting sleep debt” by acquiring at least eight hours a night.

“I slept all day to get over my sickness,” Annie Basham, first-year, said. “I probably could have gotten more sleep to avoid being sick. That’s always helpful. Bodies do not work well when deprived of energy.”

If you want to decrease your chances of getting sick, sleep and drink a lot of water. Try to lessen your stress and wash your hands.

A controversy about getting sick is how professors deal with students that are sick.

“One thing I noted with professors is that they insist on coming to class sick,” Blanford said. “I have even had some talk about how sick they are and tell us not to get too close to them. In these cases, I think it’s better not to hold class because the kids in the class get exposed, and then later expose all the other people they are around.”

Although professors could be more cooperative with the issue, they also want to avoid having numerous absences with students due to sickness.

“Many of the professors do what they can (when students are sick) and are pretty considerate for those that are ill,” Basham said. “Unfortunately, they can’t be too lenient or everyone would play the sick card 24/7, especially on Friday mornings if you know what I mean.”

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