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Staying Healthy this Semester

Now more than ever, it’s important to prioritize staying healthy this fall and winter. In addition to COVID-19, catching the flu is also a major concern this fall. There are plenty of things you can do that will help you stay healthy and ready to take on the rest of the semester. 

The Student Health Center recommends that all students respond quickly to flu-like symptoms. Typical symptoms include fever, cough, runny nose, headache, and a sore throat. With cases increasing during the winter months, the Student Health Center encourages everyone to take the following actions to minimize the risk of getting sick: 

  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for a minimum of 20 seconds (Try singing the chorus to “Rocky Top” twice!) 
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick 
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth 
  • Stay home when you are sick 
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash 
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe 
  • Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze 
  • Do not share your food, drink, or utensils with others 

Looking to get a flu shot? There will be free flu clinics hosted regularly this semester for you to attend! Learn more about flu vaccines for students.  

As COVID-19 remains a threat to the UT community, it is more important than ever to remember the Volunteer Commitment, our community’s promise to protect ourselves and one another, prevent the spread of illness, and help maintain an on-campus experience. The Volunteer Commitment includes:

  • Wearing a mask on campus as instructed, including in classrooms. 
  • Washing hands frequently with soap and water and using hand sanitizer. 
  • Practicing social distancing and following protective guidelines when social distancing is not possible. 
  • Acting quickly to follow instructions for testing and contact tracing. 
  • Monitoring personal health and following medical instructions. 
  • Following instructions for cleaning and hygiene on campus. 

Have you caught the flu? Here are some treatment measures you can take:

  • Use a cool-mist humidifier to increase air moisture for a cough 
  • Gargle with warm or cold double-strength tea or saltwater or use over-the-counter throat lozenges for a sore throat 
  • Use salt-water drops or over-the-counter nasal sprays or oral decongestants for a runny nose or congestion 
  • Use warm compresses for muscle aches 
  • Stay home until you have been fever-free for 24 hours 
  • Get plenty of rest, which helps your body fight the virus 
  • If you have a diminished appetite, you may prefer liquids at first 
  • Drink at least eight glasses of water a day 

If you need to schedule a same-day appointment at the Student Health Center, call the triage nurse at 865-974-5080.