Is this flue dangerous?


Winter can be a difficult time on both your physical and mental health, and navigating potential illnesses can almost feel impossible. One particular physical health worry each winter is the flu. If you were wondering how bad this year's flu season will be, experts are warning that it might be dangerous. A perspective published in The New England Journal of Medicine on Nov. 29 suggests that your annual flu vaccine may not be as effective as it has been in previous years.

“If you look historically and put things into perspective, there’s variability in flu seasons. Some of them are very mild, and some of them are severe,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, the Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID), tells Bustle. And this year, Dr. Fauci and the co-authors of the perspective believe this flu season could be one of the rougher ones.

The authors of the piece predicted that the United States could potentially experience a “severe” flu season — with...

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If you live in California and it seems like every single person you know has a terrible case of the flu, that’s because there’s a vicious strain going around.

Emergency rooms are crowded, pharmacies are running out of medicine, and the death toll is rising, the LA Times reports. As of Friday, Jan. 5, 27 people younger than the age of 65 have died from the flu in California since October—only three died last year within the same timeframe, according to the report.

Dr. Wally Ghurabi, the ER director of UCLA's Medical Center in Santa Monica, told the LA Times that on a typical day the medical center treats 140 patients. However last week, hospital staff treated over 200 patients in one day.

“The Northridge earthquake was the last time we saw over 200 patients,” Ghurabi told the LA Times.

Some officials note it’s still tough to say if this year is worse than last year’s flu season. In 2017, the flu had taken 68 lives by the end of February. According to the...

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Avian influenza also referred to as bird flu is a viral infection which usually affects birds. A strain of this influenza virus- H5N1- is particularly dangerous and continues to affect poultry. The prevalence is high in certain parts of North Africa and Asia. Humans and other mammals can get infected with this virus from birds.

The first case of human infection was reported in 1997. Bird flu is not transmitted from person to person, unless it is associated with exceptionally close contact e.g. from a mother to her infant.

Wild ducks are natural carriers of this flu and it is suspected that wild fowl can cause infections among domestic poultry.

The flu can spread from wild birds to pigs and donkeys and is considered very difficult to eradicate. Currently six nations have been identified which have high prevalence of this disease namely China, India, Indonesia, Vietnam, Bangladesh and Egypt.

Why Is Avian Flu So Dangerous?

Individuals coming in...

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Not dangerous necessarily, as if it’s been long enough you’ve forgotten whether you’ve had it or not then it’s been long enough not to cause serious problems, unless you have a problem with memory in which case you should see your doctor.

One question though, why haven’t you just checked your medical records to see whether or not you’ve had the vaccine? That seems like the logical first step for me.

Also, ignore the anti vaccine person spreading misconceptions about vaccine danger rates. Flu can be very serious, the vaccine does work for the strain of flu that you are being vaccinated against, the chemicals in vaccines aren’t dangerous, especially not in the minute amounts that are actually in vaccines. Despite many conspiracy theories there is no conclusive evidence that vaccines cause Alzheimer's disease, nor aluminium or mercury toxicity. Anyone saying otherwise is...

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Op-ed by Paul A. Philips

Now, here’s a warning to you all. There have been disturbing reports describing the ill-effects of a new flu vaccine. In the USA, on a scale never seen before, the illnesses caused, including thousands of paralyzed children or even deaths by the new flu vaccine has not been explained.

To make matters worse, it coincides with a recent Obama signed Presidential Executive Order promoting a policy ‘Advancing Global Health Security Agenda to Achieve a World Safe and secure from Infectious Diseases.’ The global medical establishment are more demanding than ever in their guidelines to get vaccinated as part the advancement of the agenda related to this quietly signed Executive Order.

Developed for the 2016/2017 flu season, the flu vaccine comes with a number of new features as documented by the CDC. There is a recommendations list, recommending people suffering from allergies such as an egg allergy to get vaccinated. This recommendation hasn’t...

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(also called stove pipe, smoke pipe, chimney connector, etc.)

The rules provided here are based on the CSA installation code used in Canada. For the exact rules in your area, check with a local wood heat retailer, chimney sweep or building inspector.

Maximum overall length of straight pipe: 3 m (10 ft.) The assembly should be as short and direct as possible between the stove and chimney. The use of two 45 degree elbows is often preferable to a single 90 degree elbow because less turbulence is created in the exhaust flow and they result in less horizontal run. Maximum number of 90-degree elbows: 2. Maximum unsupported horizontal length: 1 m (3 feet). Galvanized flue pipes must not be used because the coatings vaporize at high temperatures and release dangerous gases. Use black painted flue pipes. 6-, 7-, and 8-inch diameter flue pipes must be at least 24 gauge in thickness. Flue pipe joints should overlap 30 mm (1 1/4 in.) Each joint in the assembly must be fastened with...
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It is important to match the internal diameter of the flue with the outlet on the appliance. It should never be less than the outlet diameter of the appliance. The appliance manufacturer’s chimney sizing recommendations should always be followed. For free-standing stoves, boilers and cookers up to a maximum of 20KW, that are not in a fireplace recess, the minimum flue size is 125mm round or square if the appliance has passed the DEFRA requirements for smokless zones and 150mm if this is not the case.

For open fires with a standard fire opening up to 500mm wide by 550mm high the minimum required flue diameter is 200mm round or 175mm square. For larger open fires, such as inglenooks, dog grate installations or special appliances and stoves designed to operate with a fire opening greater than 500mm x 550mm, the flue size should be at least 15% of the free unobstructed area of the fire opening (including sides if open). Many Decorative Fuel Effect gas fires (DFE's) that imitate...

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The Majority of Chimney Fires Go Undetected
Slow-burning chimney fires don’t get enough air or have fuel to be dramatic or visible and they often go undetected until a later chimney inspection, but, the temperatures they reach are very high and can cause as much damage to the chimney structure – and nearby combustible parts of the house – as their more spectacular cousins.

Creosote & Chimney Fires: What You Must Know
Fireplaces and wood stoves are designed to safely contain wood-fuel fires, while providing heat for a home. The chimneys that serve them have the job of expelling the by-products of combustion – the substances produced when wood burns. These include smoke, water vapor, gases, unburned wood particles, hydrocarbon, tar fog and assorted minerals. As these substances exit the fireplace or wood stove, and flow up into the relatively cooler chimney, condensation occurs. The resulting residue that sticks to the inner walls of the chimney is called creosote....
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Over the years we have we have lined hundreds of chimneys and supplied literally miles of flexible liner. This has given us the opportunity to see how the different makes of liner stand up to the stresses and strains of being pulled down a chimney and how the flexible flue liner reacts to being subjected to continuous high temperatures with occasional bursts of very high heat. It also gives us the opportunity to see how the flexible flue liner puts up with being in a damp chimney and how it copes when unseasoned, tar filled wood or high output cokes and coal are burnt. We have subjected the various chimney liners to other tests as well, such as how quickly will the inner skin of the flexible liner crease when the liner is curved, thus compromising its integrity (and you won't see that from the outside of the liner).

Our 316 grade FlexLine flue liner comes with a 10 year warranty, the 904 grade with a 20 year warranty.

The liner fittings that we use are made of...

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The Aerocowl energy efficient chimney cowl works by smoothing out the fluctuations of pressure in the flue. Downdraughts which blow dirt and dangerous fumes into your room and choke the fire can be completely eliminated and the excessive fuel burning due to overdraw can be substantially reduced. And having no moving parts the Aerocowl chimney cowl creates no noise, maintenance or jamming.

The aerofoil section on the Aerocowl chimney cowl between the upper vanes deflects wind from any direction to the horizontal - even if it is blowing vertically downwards. Wind entering between the lower vanes is accelerated by the narrowing space or venturi. The combined effect is to convert all winds to the laminar, horizontal flow across the chimney opening. The bleed system below the lowest vane compensates for wind speed by allowing more air to be drawn in underneath the aerocowl chimney cowl rather than up the...

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Chimneys should be cleaned regularly.

Failure to clean a chimney can lead to two main problems – a chimney fire, or an inefficient heater. If left uncleaned, a substance called creosote builds up on the walls of the chimney or flue. If this build-up gets too heavy, it may prevent smoke from properly venting through the chimney and cause a subsequent leak of smoke and dangerous carbon monoxide fumes into your home. The other potential hazard with a creosote build-up in a chimney or flue is a chimney fire. If the creosote catches fire it will burn very intensely, which has the potential to damage the structure of the house or the chimney.

Creosote is a thick black tar-like substance, which obviously makes it difficult to clean. The easiest, cleanest and safest thing to do is to call a professional chimney sweep, although it may be cheaper to do it yourself if it's safe to do so.

Different methods and their advantages

There are two main ways to clean a...

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