Why Colleges Students Are Always Sick
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Student Life

7 Reasons Why College Students Are Constantly Ill

College campuses are flu factories.

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Sick college student lying on couch

College campuses are flu factories. I cannot sit in class or the library for more than five minutes without hearing someone cough, sneeze or sniffle. As I have a cough attack in my bed, I wonder why are college students always so sick. Why does it feel like the college "plague" is knocking out students left and right? Below are a few reasons why I think college students are especially prone to flu season:

1. Sleep Deprivation

college student having trouble sleeping

The average sleep requirement for adolescents is between nine to nine and a half hours. However, college students are notorious for not getting enough sleep. College is characterized by late nights studying, partying, and hanging with friends. Eventually, all the lost sleep accumulates progressively as a larger and larger sleep indebtedness, which increases one's chances of catching the latest virus circulating campus.

2. Stress

college student stressed out

Besides the obvious (school work), college can be characterized by stress that stems from many different factors. Whether it be sharing a room, navigating campus, managing time, or trying to make new friends, college is filled with new experiences that could overwhelm the average student. There is a link between stress and illness, which therefore leads to more widespread illnesses on college campuses.

3. Diet

Unhealthy junk food

For the first time in 18 years, college students have to feed themselves. They can no longer be reliant on their parent's home-cooked meals that encourage a balanced diet, rather they have to maintain their own healthy diet. Finding healthy food options on campus can definitely be a struggle, and many students pig out on junk food that will ultimately make them sick.

4. Hygiene Issues

Germ as seen on a hand

There are a lot of germs that can spread through door handles, stair railings, elevator buttons, and even red Solo cups. Furthermore, people that live in dorms are even more susceptible to illnesses, as they come in contact with more common surfaces. Due to the sustained patterns of social interactions among college students, widespread illnesses have become a part of the nature of college campuses.

5. Night Life

College students out enjoying night life

College students are exposed to new experiences that high school did not offer. They now have easier access to parties and going out at night. It is vital for college students to not push their bodies to the limits by going out too much and by abusing alcohol and drugs. Substance abuse puts students at risk illnesses, as it lowers their resistance, and thus leads to more students in the flu factory.

6. Lack of Exercise

College student lying on couchwww.flickr.com

Physical activity can improve your health and reduce your risk of developing illnesses. Due to poor time management skills, many college students do not find the time to stay fit and exercise. The lack of exercising and physical activity can increase one's chances of catching a virus.

7. No Parental Supervision

college students enjoying beersPhoto by Elevate on Unsplash

Students have the freedom to do make whatever decisions they want, as there are no parents around. As a result, many do not take care of themselves, they push themselves to the limit, and sometimes make bad decisions. Often times, college students do not prioritize their health, and this is problematic, as they do not have someone looking out for them anymore. As a result, college students are constantly in a never ending cycle of catching illnesses.

So college students, please take care of yourselves. Let's end this flu factory culture on college campuses!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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