The wretched flu virus is a hard one to shake off. When it strikes, it can prove mighty hard to keep a grasp on your regular routine. More often than not, patients have no choice but to incubate themselves in a dark doona dungeon with fluids aplenty and TV reruns.
There’s no doubt about it: flu is rotten. The symptoms exhibited are universal (fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle and body aches, headaches and fatigue) and should be taken very seriously.
But some believe they cop it far worse than others. The phenomenon known as ‘man flu’ exists on the understanding that a virus is able to discriminate its victims based on gender.
So what’s the deal with man flu? Is it fact or fiction? Are we right to be cynical?
We know men can suffer from higher body temperatures when they’re ill. We also know women have a much more robust and enhanced immune response when their body encounters infection. In comparison, the male immune response is lower and shorter, meaning they’re more likely to get the flu and for longer. What’s more, men with high levels of testosterone have poorer antibody responses to a standard flu vaccine than women or men with lower levels of testosterone.
So, there’s some evidence to show that man flu is the real deal.
If you’re struggling to shake off your cynicism and can’t quite give the fellas with man flu the sympathy they strive for, just remember: the flu virus is rotten and there’s a bloody high chance they’re suffering.
Never fear: as usual, your trusty pharmacists at Blooms The Chemist have got you covered.
Drop into your local pharmacy before you show symptoms to discuss the preventative measures you can take. Your pharmacist will suggest options for medications and vaccines, as well as ways to relieve your discomfort if you’re already showing symptoms.