We’ve previously talked about the causes of the flu and how to prevent it. Now let’s talk about a particular type of the flu, swine flu.

What is Swine Flu?

Swine flu is a type of influenza virus. Normally, swine flu is found in pigs (hence the name). In 2009, “swine flu” became a household name because of the unexpected number of cases during the flu season. Although the strain of swine flu found in humans is not the same type transmitted amongst pigs, it is called nevertheless referred to as swine flu because of the similarities between the swine flu in pigs and the swine flu in humans. In humans, swine flu is also known as the “H1N1” virus.

During the 2009 pandemic, the Centers for Disease and Control estimated that there were between 43 and 89 million cases of swine flu that occurred during a one-year span.

How is Swine Flu Spread?

Swine flu spreads from pig to pig. Influenza viruses are highly contagious. Occasionally, an outbreak can occur in humans. In 2009, the swine flu or “H1N1” virus was the most common variant of the flu.  Swine Flu is spread like any other variation of the flu. It spreads if you touch an infected surface and then subsequently touch or rub your eyes, nose, or mouth, or inhale droplets released from an infected individual. Despite the name, an individual cannot get swine flu from eating pig products (pork, bacon, ham, etc.).

What are the Symptoms?

Symptoms of swine flu are the same as the seasonal flu. These symptoms are:

  • cough
  • sore throat
  • body aches
  • runny nose
  • headache
  • chills
  • diarrhea
  • vomiting
  • fatigue

What is the Treatment?

The best prevention method for swine flu is getting the flu vaccine!

Swine flu is similar to any other strain of the flu virus. If you’re curious for more information about how you can be prepared, check out our other articles on the flu!