Author Topic: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?  (Read 4381 times)

Miss Piggy

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"I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« on: December 27, 2017, 02:38:17 PM »
Warning: This is a rant.

If I had a nickel for every time I hear the phrase "I'm not contagious" or "I'm not sick, it's just allergies..." I could effing FIRE ten times over by now. Okay, maybe that's an exaggeration, but I'd have at least $4 this flu season alone. 

Seriously, where does this mentality come from? When someone is actively coughing and sneezing, how in the world can they possibly conclude that whatever they have is not contagious, and therefore it's okay for them to be at work, at a party, out in public, etc.? HOW???????  If it's not contagious, how the f**k did you get it?????

Multiple web sources indicate that as long as you have symptoms, whatever you have is contagious.

From webmd:

How long is the flu contagious?

About a week. Youíre contagious from 1 day before you have any symptoms. You stay that way for 5 to 7 days after you start feeling sick. Kids may be able to spread the virus for even longer, until all of their symptoms fade.

How do I spread it?

Most of the time, itís through droplets in the air. Sick people sneeze or cough out beads of moisture that contain the flu virus. They can travel up to 6 feet. Youíre exposed to the flu virus when you breathe the droplets in, or if they land in your mouth, nose, or eyes. You can also get it if you touch a place those droplets land -- like a desk, counter, or doorknob -- and then touch your face. The virus can live on hard surfaces for up to 48 hours.


And here's where it gets non-Mustachian:

For Christmas, the lasting gift I received was Influenza A, confirmed via nasal swab.
Cost of visit to urgent care clinic: $50
Cost of Tamiflu for me: $5 (LOVE this insurance! Unfortunately, it's ending December 31.)
Cost of Tamiflu as a prophylactic for my husband: $5
Our out of pocket cost of hospitalization which is certain to occur if my husband gets this illness: $6,750, which is our new deductible before our insurance pays anything. He's in a high-risk category and even a common cold will turn into pneumonia for him, guaran-damn-teed.


Here are a couple of examples of poor judgment I've witnessed recently:

Example 1 - Christmas party - we walk in and start greeting people we haven't seen in a while. THREE PEOPLE indicated we should not get too close to them because they are fighting a nasty cold. SERIOUSLY, THEN WHY ARE YOU HERE?????  (These people don't even know about my husband's health challenges, so this was just their common courtesy to everyone at the party.)

Example 2 - Symphony event (hundreds of people) - woman behind me is coughing. And coughing. And coughing. NOT ONCE did she cover her mouth. (I know this because during intermission, I was turned to the side facing my friend and I could see this woman coughing into the air. Unfortunately, by the time I realized it, I had already been coughed on multiple times.) I mean, isn't this just something people know to do--cover your cough with your hand, a tissue, or ideally, your elbow? What the f**k? I almost said something, but I couldn't think of a nice way to say "How can you be so fucking stupid, lady? Please cover your mouth when you cough so you don't spread your germs. Better yet, stay home when you are this sick."  I'm 99.9% certain this is how I got the flu. The timing is right, not to mention the behavior.


I'm genuinely curious...where does the "I'm not contagious" mentality come from? How did/do people come to this conclusion? If you hold this belief, please educate me because I need to know what I'm up against in today's world. At what point do you believe you become not contagious?

I fully acknowledge that I am a certified germophobe out of necessity, and I am overly sensitive about the spread of germs, but I really need to know how other reasonably intelligent people think about this topic.

scottish

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2017, 03:21:13 PM »
I think people feel cooped up at home, especially in the winter.   Also, some of us don't get sick leave, so our employers are actively incentivizing (sp?) us to come into work.   

Actually, throughout my life, my two greatest assets have been mental stability and being, like, really smart.

daverobev

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2017, 03:23:03 PM »
I saw a thing once where one person sneezed in a tube train car, and the disease hung around for like 2 days.

By the time you're showing symptoms you're mostly over it. So while I get the rant... truth is, you're going to get the cold anyway, so it's not worth worrying about it.
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ncornilsen

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #3 on: December 27, 2017, 03:23:53 PM »
If I infect everyone at work, I am a hero for coming to work while sick (so indespensible, noone else can do my job, #teamplayer etc), and then I can take it easy for a week after I recover while everyone else is out sick. Need to do my credit card statements sometime, ya know?



In all seriousness, I'm with you. I was headed to Germany a few weeks ago, and some jerk lady on the airplane next to me was coughing without covering (between screaming at the guy infront of her for leaning his seat back and passing me religous pamphlets.) I couldn't beleive it. I loaded up with Emergen-C and seem to have escaped without illness.

Daisy

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2017, 05:40:04 PM »
I have used this term, but when my eczema symptoms were really bad. People would look at my skin and cringe. Yes, that made me feel uncomfortable and added to my anxiety about the eczema. I had to assure people that it was nothing contagious.

Some people do have over-the-air type of allergies due to allergens in the air and may be sneezing and have a runny nose because of that. I don't understand why you don't believe them.

Miss Piggy

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2017, 06:19:18 PM »
I have used this term, but when my eczema symptoms were really bad. People would look at my skin and cringe. Yes, that made me feel uncomfortable and added to my anxiety about the eczema. I had to assure people that it was nothing contagious.
Ouch. This is entirely different, and dare I say rude for those people to comment/stare? I'm sorry others (myself included) can be rude like that. I have no good excuse, other than maybe trying to better understand what others are experiencing...yeah, not a good excuse. I have a family member who has psoriasis, and although she's sensitive about it, I have to admit that most of the time, I forget she even has it. I don't even see it, or maybe I just ignore it. I was just with her a few days before Christmas, and a couple of days later, I was thinking "Hey, I wonder how so-and-so's psoriasis is doing..." Seriously, I had forgotten all about it when I was with her.

If it's any consolation, I have never once seen eczema or psoriasis on someone and thought "Is that contagious?" Never even crossed my mind.


Some people do have over-the-air type of allergies due to allergens in the air and may be sneezing and have a runny nose because of that. I don't understand why you don't believe them.

Yeah, I get that, but seasonal allergies are pretty uncommon in the winter, and would generally last longer than the 5 to 7-day cold. And half the time the "It's just allergies" person I work with admits a few days later that it's "just a cold" and her family now has it, too. Or the "allergy" includes a deep-lung cough that sounds suspiciously like anything but an allergy. Like I said, I probably pay WAY more attention to this stuff than the average person, and it's just a trend I see. It just sounds a lot like "I'm sick, but I'm going to go out and about anyway, so how can I make this seem acceptable to the people I'm around?"

Primm

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2017, 06:19:44 PM »
I have used this term, but when my eczema symptoms were really bad. People would look at my skin and cringe. Yes, that made me feel uncomfortable and added to my anxiety about the eczema. I had to assure people that it was nothing contagious.

Some people do have over-the-air type of allergies due to allergens in the air and may be sneezing and have a runny nose because of that. I don't understand why you don't believe them.

This. From August until February I have chronic allergies. I can either take antihistamines constantly (not in love with that option) or I can spend 6 months of the year sneezing and blowing my nose. I am absolutely not contagious, and there's no way I'm going to stay away from people just to make someone who is a self-confessed germaphobe feel better.

I get looks on the train, and probably get blamed for infecting others. But it wasn't me.

Miss Piggy

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2017, 06:26:42 PM »
I have used this term, but when my eczema symptoms were really bad. People would look at my skin and cringe. Yes, that made me feel uncomfortable and added to my anxiety about the eczema. I had to assure people that it was nothing contagious.

Some people do have over-the-air type of allergies due to allergens in the air and may be sneezing and have a runny nose because of that. I don't understand why you don't believe them.

This. From August until February I have chronic allergies. I can either take antihistamines constantly (not in love with that option) or I can spend 6 months of the year sneezing and blowing my nose. I am absolutely not contagious, and there's no way I'm going to stay away from people just to make someone who is a self-confessed germaphobe feel better.

I get looks on the train, and probably get blamed for infecting others. But it wasn't me.

Fair enough. And since you're in Australia, this sounds like a summer issue for you. Out of curiosity, does your allergy include a deep, gunky cough? Or is it "just" eyes/nose/sneezing? I don't have any seasonal allergies, but I always picture them as more in the head than the chest.

boarder42

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2017, 06:40:35 PM »
My work doesn't give me sick days they give me PTO which I prefer to use for fun things. So im coming to work sick. Or I'll work from home if I get really sick.

Lichen

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2017, 06:48:24 PM »
I can answer a few things about winter allergies. I'm allergic to most of the perfumed stuff people smear on their bodies. My symptoms are worse in winter because I am more likely to be trapped indoors in a closed loop HVAC systems that recycle this poisoned air, as well as people seem to smear on more of this stuff in winter  (so it can be smelled through heavy coats and sweaters, maybe?) Add in the fake scents permeating most places (pumpkin spice, cinnamon, etc), and I'm red-eyed and sneezing.

When forced to be around it often, it sometimes turns into a sinus infection. This can lead to a deep, hacking cough thanks to drainage. For me, personally, this is rare, since this sort of non-contagious cough can last weeks.

On the other hand, most people in my experience are full of it and it's not allergies. They are the same people that don't get flu shots or cover their mouth when they cough. They are also often the same people that douse themselves with cheap "eau de pop star" perfume and then invade my personal space. They should stay home, even when they are feeling well! (Okay, that came across curmudgeonly a bit ;) )

justchristine

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2017, 06:52:19 PM »
I have used this term, but when my eczema symptoms were really bad. People would look at my skin and cringe. Yes, that made me feel uncomfortable and added to my anxiety about the eczema. I had to assure people that it was nothing contagious.

Some people do have over-the-air type of allergies due to allergens in the air and may be sneezing and have a runny nose because of that. I don't understand why you don't believe them.

This. From August until February I have chronic allergies. I can either take antihistamines constantly (not in love with that option) or I can spend 6 months of the year sneezing and blowing my nose. I am absolutely not contagious, and there's no way I'm going to stay away from people just to make someone who is a self-confessed germaphobe feel better.

I get looks on the train, and probably get blamed for infecting others. But it wasn't me.

Fair enough. And since you're in Australia, this sounds like a summer issue for you. Out of curiosity, does your allergy include a deep, gunky cough? Or is it "just" eyes/nose/sneezing? I don't have any seasonal allergies, but I always picture them as more in the head than the chest.

I'm a year round allergy sufferer.  My nose runs all year round.  Ive gotten lots of remarks about being sick and coming to work.  Ive given up trying to explain to people.  What's worse is that in the winter the combination of my allergies and extremely dry air can trigger a bad sinus infection which invariably migrates to my chest in the form of a nasty cough.  I can usually clear things up with massive amounts of Benadryl but it takes a while.  With that said,. I do stay home if I suspect something more than allergies and God I wish more people would.  My coworkers are horrible about coming in sick even though we can work from home without question/problems.

Primm

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2017, 06:53:57 PM »
I have used this term, but when my eczema symptoms were really bad. People would look at my skin and cringe. Yes, that made me feel uncomfortable and added to my anxiety about the eczema. I had to assure people that it was nothing contagious.

Some people do have over-the-air type of allergies due to allergens in the air and may be sneezing and have a runny nose because of that. I don't understand why you don't believe them.

This. From August until February I have chronic allergies. I can either take antihistamines constantly (not in love with that option) or I can spend 6 months of the year sneezing and blowing my nose. I am absolutely not contagious, and there's no way I'm going to stay away from people just to make someone who is a self-confessed germaphobe feel better.

I get looks on the train, and probably get blamed for infecting others. But it wasn't me.

Fair enough. And since you're in Australia, this sounds like a summer issue for you. Out of curiosity, does your allergy include a deep, gunky cough? Or is it "just" eyes/nose/sneezing? I don't have any seasonal allergies, but I always picture them as more in the head than the chest.

It can become a cough if I'm exposed to stuff for long enough. I'm going camping with friends (on their property) this weekend for example, and I know for a fact I'll be shit there and when I get home. That's actually one of those occasions where I will succumb to the drugs, just so I enjoy myself more.

I keep meaning to do the desensitisation program my allergist recommended to me. About 4 years ago...

ixtap

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2017, 06:55:02 PM »
My allergy induced asthma cough probably sounds like death come calling. It sure feels like it.

FIRE Artist

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #13 on: December 27, 2017, 07:44:47 PM »
Ditto to all the comments from allergy sufferers, my allergies are year round, increased by recycled air in office buildings, and frequently causes coughing. I tell colleagues it is because I am allergic to work.

Now, with respect to people being out in the world with a cold (few people are physically able to be out with an actual case of the flu), that is on you to protect your own health, nothing is stopping you from wearing a mask if you are worried.

golden1

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #14 on: December 27, 2017, 08:00:31 PM »
Ugh, this post shows some serious ignorance of how communicable diseases work and lack of awareness of how society and the workplace treats illnesses.

I get illnesses and colds occasionally.  Usually, by the time I know I have it, I have probably already spread it to a bunch of people unknowingly.  But I suppose that I am supposed to be omniscient and know before I get sick, so I can stay at home accordingly.  /sarcasm.

Once I have symptoms, I do try to isolate myself if at all possible, and try to be hygienic. 

Also, sometimes when I do get sick with respiratory illnesses, I get a chronic cough.  It is simple post nasal drip, and there is pretty much nothing I can do besides ride it out and suck on cough medicine.  My workplace would be be pretty pissed if I took sick days until it passes, since it can last for weeks.  Maybe you can talk to them for me?

I love how people blame people for illnesses with no proof that they caught it from the people they think they caught it from.  You could have contracted your illnesses from other sources. 

And yeah, this post also is insulting to those with allergies. 

Dollar Slice

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #15 on: December 27, 2017, 08:12:58 PM »
There really are people who think every cold is 'allergies,' though. I have worked with one of them for almost 20 years. She will go on and on about how she never gets sick ever (she even tried to sell us some high-priced scammy supplement she's using because that's totally why she and her husband simply don't get sick). But 2-3 times a year she comes into work coughing and sneezing and congested and obviously feeling horrible. "I don't know where these awful allergies came from all of a sudden!! What could I even be allergic to in the dead of winter? So weird." Right, is it more likely that you have allergies during random seasons with the exact symptoms of the bug that's going around for 5-7 days each time, or that you get colds like 99% of humanity...

Never covers her mouth, has zero concept of germs/hygiene. She'll come into your office coughing and sniffling and rifle through all the papers on your desk to make sure you're thoroughly exposed. Half the office ends up catching her 'allergies' every time. It got to the point where I would keep cold medicine in my desk and give it to her with instructions (take this in the morning when you get up, take this before bed, etc.) because she is incapable of diagnosing or medicating herself and I felt sorry for her.

I'm a person who can get extremely ill for weeks from a cold or flu, so I do take it pretty personally if someone is exposing me to germs with their carelessness. Obviously you'll never eliminate exposure 100% but we can all try to contain our illnesses with things like hand-washing, covering your mouth, sneezing into the elbow, etc. etc.
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Sibley

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #16 on: December 27, 2017, 08:39:40 PM »
Miss Piggy, I sympathize with your situation, but I'm going to require you to sympathize with mine. My allergies aren't serious, but they're annoying and inconvenient and can cause much more significant problems. If we meet in real life and I'm sneezing/coughing and I tell you that it's really just allergies, remember that it ACTUALLY might be just allergies. Not everyone is oblivious. Some of us are just exasperated that we sneeze.

I have year round allergy/sinus crap. Spring, some summer, and OMG I'm going to die in the fall from pure allergies. Post nasal drip year round makes me cough. I also have problems with dust, perfumes (really anything smelly), dry or cold air, and a tiny bit with cats. My sinuses really don't like dry air, weather swings, etc, and will frequently make me suffer. Not much I can do, and it means year round symptoms.

Even better, at some point the asthma gets triggered and that is a god awful cough. I can develop muscle spasms, which will make me vomit. Which can take weeks or even months to properly control depending on how bad it is, what the triggers are, etc. It took 3 months last fall to knock the asthma out and involved doubling the dosage.

The single most effective treatment for a bunch of this is a nasal spray. I can't use them. Neti pots also don't work (there's something slightly weird with my sinus structure). I did allergy shots, which helped a lot, but they don't eliminate everything. So I have to muddle through. I buy kleenix in bulk, and I'm damn picky about what I get.

I can't always tell if I have a cold or bad allergies. If it's 2 weeks in and I'm still the same, it's allergies. Colds don't last that long. If I'm sick, or just plain miserable, I do my best to stay home. But I haven't had sick time, ever, and I have had limited vacation time. I will have sick time starting in January, and I'll use it when appropriate.

Oh, and everyone, please stop with the smelly stuff. Trust me, if I can smell you you're wearing WAY too much. Even if I can't smell you, it's contributing to my issues. Just, stop.

cchrissyy

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #17 on: December 27, 2017, 08:46:41 PM »
when my kid had cancer and we didn't know it yet, he had a cough for a long time. maybe 6-8 weeks?

anyway, he was going to school and parties and such during that time because he didn't have any of the usual symptoms of cold or flu. he didn't seems sick. just had this funny cough that wouldn't go away.

and yeah, during that time I told people "don't worry he's not contagious". 

and I was right (ha ha?) because eventually he got more symptoms and it turned out he had an aggressive cancer. but it wasn't contagious.


(edit to let everybody know he is OK now!)
« Last Edit: December 27, 2017, 09:00:55 PM by cchrissyy »

Miss Piggy

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #18 on: December 27, 2017, 08:53:21 PM »
As the OP, I appreciate all of the insightful replies to this thread. Thank you. My post was not meant to insult anyone, so I apologize that it did. I simply wanted to vent some frustrations.

Regarding the scents and perfumes, I've met so many people who are sensitive to this stuff that I stopped wearing perfumes and using candles/scents several years ago. Even though my olfactory system isn't as sensitive as some of yours (here and IRL), I've become more attuned to flowery/perfumey smells and try to avoid making others uncomfortable. (I will admit that one of my deodorants is a bit more flowery than I'd prefer, but I assume that beats my B.O.  Perhaps I should rethink this.)

Those of you with legit allergies, you have my sympathies. I wish there was a good solution for you.

Imma

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #19 on: December 28, 2017, 02:22:39 AM »
I have an autoimmune disease, so when I get a cold, it's not just a cold but a serious respiratory tract infection that sometimes requires hospitalisation. I understand the germ paranoia - for someone else it's just a minor inconvenience, I can get really ill.

I am currently recovering from an URTI that lasted for 3 weeks. I didn't just have the runny nose thing, but also an ear infection, sinus infection, fever and a nasty sounding cough. I haven't been to work for a part of that period and my boss was pretty upset about that (I mean, who doesn't go to work if you've 'only' got a cold?) but I still need to go to places sometimes. I take tissues with me and try to cough into my elbow, but I still need to go out to see the doctor, buy food and medication. I wish I could stay home and have all that stuff delivered to me, but it doesn't work like that sadly. And I'm in the lucky situation that my boss eventually accepted I was ill and let me stay home. Not everyone can afford to stay home with a cold.

As for the deep, gunky cough: my sis gets that from her asthma and that's definitely not contagious.

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #20 on: December 29, 2017, 08:59:36 AM »
As someone who suffers from allergies year-round, I also find the OP's sentiment... strange. Are my allergies worse in the spring and summer? Sure. Do I still react to dust and other indoor allergens during the winter? Well, yeah. Oh, and don't forget ragweed in the fall. And if I'm around cats, it doesn't matter what time of year it is. I will be sneezing.

You simply don't understand what it's like to have all-the-time allergies because you happen not to have them yourself. Lucky you.

Now go be nice.

Miss Piggy

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #21 on: December 29, 2017, 12:40:22 PM »
I'm the OP. To clarify, my original post, although it obviously wasn't clear, was not directed at people who legitimately have allergies. My frustrations are around people who DON'T have allergies, but instead have something contagious, and don't give a damn that they're openly coughing/sneezing/spreading it to others.

But I've obviously hit a nerve among some of you who have legit seasonal allergies. That was not at all my intent. Honest.

To further clarify another point I was unclear on previously about the woman who was coughing on people without covering her mouth...she sounded awful, and when the friends she was with asked her "How's your cold" she said "Terrible." So she absolutely falls into the category of people I'm frustrated with. I get it that she didn't want to stay home when she had expensive tickets to a seldom-run event. Fine. But she could have at least TRIED not to spread her nasty cold/flu/whatever germs!

Wise Virgin

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #22 on: December 31, 2017, 07:27:00 AM »
Here goes, I'll contribute a tiny little rant of my own: not about colds & flu, or seasonal/asthma allergies, but about food allergies and intolerances.

I once worked with a woman who had perpetual sticky throat-harrumphing drainage. She always had two black eyes and the flesh under her eyes was always swollen. This can be a sign of a dairy intolerance, dairy is mucus-building. We were talking about my gluten problem (it comes up every time we order workplace lunches) and I ventured to say generally, "You know some people have a problem with milk, it causes mucus build-up," and she said immediately, "I LOVE MILK! My husband and I go through a gallon of milk every other day!" Then she glared at me! Fiercely!

Oooh-kay, talk about something else now... Only a calf should be drinking that much milk.

Please, people, don't keep hurting yourself with food. Just because other people can enjoy a food, doesn't always mean you can, or at least not in the quantities you desire to consume it. End of tiny little rant.

sequoia

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #23 on: December 31, 2017, 10:14:36 PM »
Seriously, where does this mentality come from? When someone is actively coughing and sneezing, how in the world can they possibly conclude that whatever they have is not contagious, and therefore it's okay for them to be at work, at a party, out in public, etc.? HOW???????  If it's not contagious, how the f**k did you get it?????

Flu vs allergies are two different things. I have allergies in spring right when the weather turns warmer, especially when I have to mow the lawn. I can be sneezing and coughing badly but I am not contagious.

I get it, you are not a doctor, and they all have similar symptoms. It is called life, s**t happens sometime. I agree sick people should not go to work or party, but sometime that is unavoidable for them, but certainly they have the right to be in public area like grocery stores. Have a little compassion for people who has the flu/allergies or you can be safe and just stay at home all the time :)

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #24 on: December 31, 2017, 11:28:00 PM »
I've used these phrases to explain the hacking cough that goes with PND ŗ la previous posters, but if I'm honest, in the past there was another reason:

There's an arrogant belief out there that sickness is proof of personal weakness. My dad "never" missed a day of work in blah blah blah years, was "never" sick--the denial was strong in our family. Other exhibits: Cal Ripken, Jr., perfect attendance awards, etc.

I wouldn't discount this belief as a factor for some folks.
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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #25 on: January 01, 2018, 12:10:49 AM »
I had a horrible cold earlier this year. Doctor said they couldn't write a note to keep me out of work...my ("are you sure you're not dying") cough lasted 3 weeks. That's a lot of work to miss.

I did stay home 24 hours on antibiotics when I got pink eye, as that's our daycare's standard, so it seemed prudent

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #26 on: January 01, 2018, 10:57:42 AM »
Ditto to posters above.

Dust allergies so runny nose at work all year round.

I do try to stay home when sick but even with reasonably generous sick time policies I just don't have enough sick time for multiple weeks of a lingering cough. And it would not go well for me if I tried to take 3 days off in a row for a cold during one of our crunch times. Do you guys have employers who are that understanding? (That being said, I don't go anywhere optional - like symphonies - when ill)

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #27 on: January 01, 2018, 02:21:24 PM »
Just posting to say that year round allergies SUCK. I have pretty severe seasonal allergies and then a dust allergy to deal with the rest of the year. I hate it. That is all.

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #28 on: January 01, 2018, 04:20:36 PM »
Quote
Post nasal drip year round makes me cough. I also have problems with dust, perfumes (really anything smelly), dry or cold air . . . .

Another year round allergy sufferer here. My allergies are the second worst in December, which is the middle of winter where I live. It was 10 degrees below freezing here today! I have no clue what it is that triggers my allergies so badly this time of year. In December, while blowing my nose for the 10th time at work every day, I tell people I'm allergic to Christmas. The rest of the winter, I tell people not to worry, that I am allergic to work. It sucks. But I am rarely actually sick (it does happen . . . and then I stay home, if possible.)

The sickest I've been in the past decade was in the middle of the summer while traveling for a conference . . . I stayed in my very uncomfortable "dorm room" most of the week, barely attending the conference after the first day, but at some point I had to venture out for food and medicine, and then I did fly home as scheduled. At least at that point I had had a few days of antibiotics.

Anyway, recently I got a long lecture from a doctor about keeping my nasal passages moist in the winter to avoid the post-nasal drip cough and that I should be using Flonase religiously every day in addition to taking my 24 hour allergy pill. So I started doing that. And then I started to lose my senses of smell and taste . . . at some point I realized I really could only taste salty things well, I wasn't enjoying my Christmas chocolates at all, and that there had been a sudden change in the last month, so I did a search. Guess what it was? That's right, the fucking Flonase. At that point I had noticed the loss for about a week, so I immediately ceased using it. The senses came back slowly, which I am quite thankful about because several people on the internet said their senses never returned after prolonged use of flonase.

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #29 on: January 01, 2018, 04:39:14 PM »
I really hate all of those inhalable steroids (for asthma and nasal congestion - like flonase). I lose my voice when I take them and constantly feel like I'm coming down with a cold/sore throat/etc. because everything is irritated from the steroids. And they never seemed to help much.

In other news, I am currently nursing a cold that I caught from someone who told me they weren't contagious before giving me a hug :-P
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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #30 on: January 01, 2018, 05:14:51 PM »
"Anyway, recently I got a long lecture from a doctor about keeping my nasal passages moist in the winter to avoid the post-nasal drip cough and that I should be using Flonase religiously every day in addition to taking my 24 hour allergy pill. So I started doing that. And then I started to lose my senses of smell and taste . . . at some point I realized I really could only taste salty things well, I wasn't enjoying my Christmas chocolates at all, and that there had been a sudden change in the last month, so I did a search. Guess what it was? That's right, the fucking Flonase."


Same suggestion for Flonase when I went to my local allergist. Daily Flonase and my normal Allegra.  One month later and I was 14lbs heavier. Googled Flonase side effects and, you guessed it - weight gain. I quit that garbage real quick.

wenchsenior

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #31 on: January 01, 2018, 05:27:26 PM »
"Anyway, recently I got a long lecture from a doctor about keeping my nasal passages moist in the winter to avoid the post-nasal drip cough and that I should be using Flonase religiously every day in addition to taking my 24 hour allergy pill. So I started doing that. And then I started to lose my senses of smell and taste . . . at some point I realized I really could only taste salty things well, I wasn't enjoying my Christmas chocolates at all, and that there had been a sudden change in the last month, so I did a search. Guess what it was? That's right, the fucking Flonase."


Same suggestion for Flonase when I went to my local allergist. Daily Flonase and my normal Allegra.  One month later and I was 14lbs heavier. Googled Flonase side effects and, you guessed it - weight gain. I quit that garbage real quick.

I find Flonase super useful to help stop migraines and sinus headaches, but I try not to use it too often.  On the other hand, DH used it for a few weeks because of allergies, and he STARTED getting occular migraines, which we had never heard of until then.  He initially thought he was having a stroke, or had a brain tumor, until he consulted his doctor.  Stopped the Flonase, and no more visual weirdness.

Fireball

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #32 on: January 01, 2018, 08:32:30 PM »
"Anyway, recently I got a long lecture from a doctor about keeping my nasal passages moist in the winter to avoid the post-nasal drip cough and that I should be using Flonase religiously every day in addition to taking my 24 hour allergy pill. So I started doing that. And then I started to lose my senses of smell and taste . . . at some point I realized I really could only taste salty things well, I wasn't enjoying my Christmas chocolates at all, and that there had been a sudden change in the last month, so I did a search. Guess what it was? That's right, the fucking Flonase."


Same suggestion for Flonase when I went to my local allergist. Daily Flonase and my normal Allegra.  One month later and I was 14lbs heavier. Googled Flonase side effects and, you guessed it - weight gain. I quit that garbage real quick.

I find Flonase super useful to help stop migraines and sinus headaches, but I try not to use it too often.  On the other hand, DH used it for a few weeks because of allergies, and he STARTED getting occular migraines, which we had never heard of until then.  He initially thought he was having a stroke, or had a brain tumor, until he consulted his doctor.  Stopped the Flonase, and no more visual weirdness.

Weird how it all works. I use Afrin when I need some instant relief from sinus pressure headaches or extreme stuffiness. 

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #33 on: January 01, 2018, 09:52:09 PM »
In all seriousness, I'm with you. I was headed to Germany a few weeks ago, and some jerk lady on the airplane next to me was coughing without covering (between screaming at the guy infront of her for leaning his seat back and passing me religous pamphlets.) I couldn't beleive it. I loaded up with Emergen-C and seem to have escaped without illness.
Who the hell argues over reclining a seat? If it can be reclined, it will be reclined (aside from takeoff and landing), and there's not a damn thing anyone can do about it.

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #34 on: January 02, 2018, 05:16:02 AM »
In all seriousness, I'm with you. I was headed to Germany a few weeks ago, and some jerk lady on the airplane next to me was coughing without covering (between screaming at the guy infront of her for leaning his seat back and passing me religous pamphlets.) I couldn't beleive it. I loaded up with Emergen-C and seem to have escaped without illness.
Who the hell argues over reclining a seat? If it can be reclined, it will be reclined (aside from takeoff and landing), and there's not a damn thing anyone can do about it.

I never argue about it, but I also look behind me before doing it to make sure I'm not about to clip into the poor passenger behind me. Some people are not so courteous. I've been biffed in the head before while bending over to get something out of my carryon on the floor when the person in front of me sudden decided he needed to recline at light speed. Rudeness!

Also, for some people in my family, their knees are literally pressed up against the seat in front of them due to thigh bone length. You can try to recline, but you will not succeed. I've seen some people really try to slam it backward . . . which hurts when you are basically wedged in there. Again, wtf?

Look behind before you recline, people!

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #35 on: January 02, 2018, 09:01:57 AM »
"Anyway, recently I got a long lecture from a doctor about keeping my nasal passages moist in the winter to avoid the post-nasal drip cough and that I should be using Flonase religiously every day in addition to taking my 24 hour allergy pill. So I started doing that. And then I started to lose my senses of smell and taste . . . at some point I realized I really could only taste salty things well, I wasn't enjoying my Christmas chocolates at all, and that there had been a sudden change in the last month, so I did a search. Guess what it was? That's right, the fucking Flonase."


Same suggestion for Flonase when I went to my local allergist. Daily Flonase and my normal Allegra.  One month later and I was 14lbs heavier. Googled Flonase side effects and, you guessed it - weight gain. I quit that garbage real quick.

I find Flonase super useful to help stop migraines and sinus headaches, but I try not to use it too often.  On the other hand, DH used it for a few weeks because of allergies, and he STARTED getting occular migraines, which we had never heard of until then.  He initially thought he was having a stroke, or had a brain tumor, until he consulted his doctor.  Stopped the Flonase, and no more visual weirdness.

Crazy. I've heard all kinds of bad stuff about Flonase. I've actually been using it for years and years Ė since long before it was OTC. No problems. I'm skinny. Food still tastes good. No visions or tremors or migraines. I can smell things.

At one point, I'd stopped taking it through the fall and winter. I got by ok until springtime. Then everything got... horrible. Started on it again and was as good as new a few days later. Gotta love them 'roids!

What I do hate: Being dependent of a damn nasal spray (and antihistamines, while we're at it) to avoid daily misery for 50% of the year.

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #36 on: January 02, 2018, 09:18:08 AM »
Quote
Post nasal drip year round makes me cough. I also have problems with dust, perfumes (really anything smelly), dry or cold air . . . .

....Anyway, recently I got a long lecture from a doctor about keeping my nasal passages moist in the winter to avoid the post-nasal drip cough ....

I've been helped tremendously by just running a humidifier in my bedroom every night.  No more waking up with scratchy throat, or dry cough or runny nose all day.  Night and day difference, seriously.

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #37 on: January 02, 2018, 10:14:24 AM »
Flonase is a steroid, and while it can do wonders, they also have a variety of side effects. It's also possible to be supersensitive to steroids in general, so you'll get the benefit with a fraction of the normal dose, but also get the side effects more easily/worse. My mom is one, I may be one. Combined with my general inability to do nasal sprays right, I can't use it (or any nose spray). I'm VERY careful taking any steroid medication, which is not helpful when my asthma decides to blow up and require high (for me) doses of steroid control inhalers.

I don't think I had a cold. If I did, I was home anyway, but I'm not sneezing anywhere as much as I was. Which is nice. Now, if only the temperature would go above 0 and stay there.

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #38 on: January 02, 2018, 12:56:53 PM »
If I were expected to stay at home every time I was sneezing or coughing during the winter, I'd basically be at home half the time from November to February. If I'm seriously sick with headaches, fever, and/or stomach issues, I definitely stay home, but it's not reasonable for me to do that for every little cold that comes along for a third of the year. If you're so worried about the flu that you're afraid to be around sneezing or coughing people, then you should probably be the one to plan on staying rather than expecting that from everyone else.
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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #39 on: January 02, 2018, 01:46:26 PM »
If I were expected to stay at home every time I was sneezing or coughing during the winter, I'd basically be at home half the time from November to February. If I'm seriously sick with headaches, fever, and/or stomach issues, I definitely stay home, but it's not reasonable for me to do that for every little cold that comes along for a third of the year. If you're so worried about the flu that you're afraid to be around sneezing or coughing people, then you should probably be the one to plan on staying rather than expecting that from everyone else.

That's a crazy amount of colds/days of minor illness, though.  I don't think I've ever had more than 2 colds per year (and that's rare) as an adult.  Usually I get one per year, around Feb/March.  What kind of germ pools are you swimming in LOL?

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #40 on: January 02, 2018, 01:49:30 PM »
Quote
Post nasal drip year round makes me cough. I also have problems with dust, perfumes (really anything smelly), dry or cold air . . . .

....Anyway, recently I got a long lecture from a doctor about keeping my nasal passages moist in the winter to avoid the post-nasal drip cough ....

I've been helped tremendously by just running a humidifier in my bedroom every night.  No more waking up with scratchy throat, or dry cough or runny nose all day.  Night and day difference, seriously.

Yes, my Mom suggested this (she also lives somewhere dry.) It is quite humid where I live  . . . I might try it anyway, but creating mold is always a concern here. There is always some mold, but conditions are ripe here for it to thrive in every nook and cranny. Thank you for backing up Mom!

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #41 on: January 02, 2018, 02:48:44 PM »
If I were expected to stay at home every time I was sneezing or coughing during the winter, I'd basically be at home half the time from November to February. If I'm seriously sick with headaches, fever, and/or stomach issues, I definitely stay home, but it's not reasonable for me to do that for every little cold that comes along for a third of the year. If you're so worried about the flu that you're afraid to be around sneezing or coughing people, then you should probably be the one to plan on staying rather than expecting that from everyone else.

That's a crazy amount of colds/days of minor illness, though.  I don't think I've ever had more than 2 colds per year (and that's rare) as an adult.  Usually I get one per year, around Feb/March.  What kind of germ pools are you swimming in LOL?

I have three kids six and under and my wife is a Pre-K teacher. Kids are disgusting. I went about 5 years without getting a cold in college. Not possible anymore.
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wenchsenior

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #42 on: January 02, 2018, 03:00:39 PM »
If I were expected to stay at home every time I was sneezing or coughing during the winter, I'd basically be at home half the time from November to February. If I'm seriously sick with headaches, fever, and/or stomach issues, I definitely stay home, but it's not reasonable for me to do that for every little cold that comes along for a third of the year. If you're so worried about the flu that you're afraid to be around sneezing or coughing people, then you should probably be the one to plan on staying rather than expecting that from everyone else.

That's a crazy amount of colds/days of minor illness, though.  I don't think I've ever had more than 2 colds per year (and that's rare) as an adult.  Usually I get one per year, around Feb/March.  What kind of germ pools are you swimming in LOL?

I have three kids six and under and my wife is a Pre-K teacher. Kids are disgusting. I went about 5 years without getting a cold in college. Not possible anymore.

Ah, yes.  Gotcha.

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #43 on: January 02, 2018, 03:18:58 PM »
If I were expected to stay at home every time I was sneezing or coughing during the winter, I'd basically be at home half the time from November to February. If I'm seriously sick with headaches, fever, and/or stomach issues, I definitely stay home, but it's not reasonable for me to do that for every little cold that comes along for a third of the year. If you're so worried about the flu that you're afraid to be around sneezing or coughing people, then you should probably be the one to plan on staying rather than expecting that from everyone else.

That's a crazy amount of colds/days of minor illness, though.  I don't think I've ever had more than 2 colds per year (and that's rare) as an adult.  Usually I get one per year, around Feb/March.  What kind of germ pools are you swimming in LOL?

I have three kids six and under and my wife is a Pre-K teacher. Kids are disgusting. I went about 5 years without getting a cold in college. Not possible anymore.

Good news: they grow up and start to learn personal hygiene. Bad news: growing up takes a long time. But you may get the benefit at some point of having been exposed to all the viruses, so you've developed immunity leading to a drop off in the number of colds you get.

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #44 on: January 02, 2018, 06:38:14 PM »
I worked at a company for seven years.  I took three sick days during the first five years of employment there.  Over year six I was sick for 14 days (we had just put our son in daycare and everyone in our family got sick all year that year).  At the end of year six I was taken aside and told that although my manager believed that I was sick for the time I took off, if I took another sick day I would be officially reprimanded.

So, uh . . . yeah.  My inclination is to take a sick day when I'm feeling sick, but in some work environments management has decided that it's better for everyone to be exposed to illness than for a sick employee to stay home.

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #45 on: January 02, 2018, 09:25:57 PM »
^sound like you found a different job . . . if so, then good for you!

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #46 on: January 02, 2018, 10:19:34 PM »
I have applied both excuses as I legit have seasonal allergies and have infectious disease specialists in the family that I believe when told Iím no longer infectious.


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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #47 on: January 03, 2018, 07:27:05 AM »
I'm conflicted about this. There are a lot of family events this time of year, and it's tough to ask other people to stay home. Like, my brother-in-law was sick this past week, but it's Christmas. So....unless he's deathly ill, I'd rather him be there, and take some basic precautions to not get everyone else sick.

Unfortunately, it does look like he got my wife sick, and my sister-in-law's boyfriend sick...so...mission fail there.

I've never really cared about other people getting me sick. It's extremely rare. There are many times my wife has been sick and I haven't picked it up.

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #48 on: January 03, 2018, 10:56:16 AM »
I have a constant runny nose and I sneeze a lot.  I have horrible dry eye, which causes tears to flow down my cheeks at random.  It happens all year round, but is a little worse in certain seasons.  It is a result of having had chemo more than ten years ago.  The gift that keeps on giving. 

I'm sure some of my coworkers assume I have a cold or whatever.  Not my problem, really.

I also think that if you expect that everyone in the universe can stay home every time they have a cold, you live a very, very privileged existence.

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Re: "I'm not contagious" or "It's just allergies" - Seriously, WTF?
« Reply #49 on: January 03, 2018, 10:58:54 AM »
I'm conflicted about this. There are a lot of family events this time of year, and it's tough to ask other people to stay home. Like, my brother-in-law was sick this past week, but it's Christmas. So....unless he's deathly ill, I'd rather him be there, and take some basic precautions to not get everyone else sick.

Unfortunately, it does look like he got my wife sick, and my sister-in-law's boyfriend sick...so...mission fail there.

I've never really cared about other people getting me sick. It's extremely rare. There are many times my wife has been sick and I haven't picked it up.

And some people didn't get sick! Those that didn't get sick after exposure to your brother-in-law should thank him for helping to up their immunity levels.