Sunday, March 5, 2017


In the U.S. we are currently in the middle of peak season for Norovirus outbreaks. Just google the term and you’ll find a number of reported outbreaks, including huge outbreaks in schools.

So here’s some bad news and good news about this virus.

The bad news about Norovirus is that it is a very contagious virus which you can catch not just from food (especially salad bars) but also all kinds of surfaces such as hand rails, countertops and even plastic bags. Don’t suck your thumb or bite your fingernails and wash your hands thoroughly before eating (Is my son reading this?). What is more, you can feel truly awful if you have it. Also bad news is the fact that it is often caught in places where you go to have fun – not get sick – such as cruises, restaurants, weddings, parties and celebrations of all kinds (I won’t put schools and nursing homes on that “fun” list). Another piece of bad news is that you can catch it more than once. Having been ill with Norovirus once will not protect you from getting it. As in the case of the flu, there are many types of noroviruses.

The good news is that while you may feel absolutely awful for what seems like a million years, you’re likely to get better quickly – usually between one to three days. Another piece of good news is that if you are fairly healthy to start off with and keep yourself well hydrated while vomiting all over the place, you will be OK once it’s over. This could be another plus - you may find that you have just undergone a crash weight loss program. And the final good news is that if you work outside your home, or are in charge of cooking for your household, you will have a couple of days of rest afterwards, as no one will want you anywhere near them or preparing any food while you could still be contagious.


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