Economics & Investing For Preppers

Here are the latest items and commentary on current economics news, market trends, stocks, investing opportunities, and the precious metals markets. We also cover hedges, derivatives, and obscura. And it bears mention that most of these items are from the “tangibles heavy” contrarian perspective of JWR. (SurvivalBlog’s Founder and Senior Editor.) Today’s focus is on becoming rare wristwatch pickers.

Precious Metals:

Hedge Funds Sell Gold, Silver As Turmoil Hits Equity Markets

o  o  o

Gary Tanashian: Silver In Position To Lead Gold

Stocks:

Record $23 Billion Flees World’s Largest ETF

 

Cryptos:

Bitcoin Daily Chart Alert – Price Recovery Continues (Feb. 12th)

 

Taxes:

The IRS Takes Its Tax Evasion Hunt to the Blockchain

Economy and Finance:

After racking up more than $950 million in debt, gun-making … Continue reading

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Diseases Caused By Food And Water Contamination

The primary necessity for survival is the availability of air. Once you have air to breathe, water, food, and shelter become the next requirements for your continued existence on the planet; that is, clean water and properly prepared food.

Even in normal times, there are many instances where an outbreak of infectious disease occurs due to water of poor quality. Ingesting food that was incompletely cooked caused the deaths of medieval kings in medieval times and may even have sparked the Ebola epidemic in 2014.

Epidemics caused by organisms that cause severe diarrhea and dehydration have been a part of the human experience since before recorded history. If severe enough, dehydration can cause hypovolemic shock, organ failure, and death. Indeed, during the Civil War, more deaths were attributed to dehydration from infectious diseases than from bullets or shrapnel.

Off the grid, water used for drinking or cooking can be contaminated by anything from floods to a dead opossum upstream from your camp. This can have dire implications for those living where there is no access to large amounts of IV hydration.

Therefore, it stands to reason that the preparation of food and the disinfection of drinking water should be under supervision. In survival, this responsibility should fall to the community medic; it is the medic that will (after the patient, of course) be most impacted by failure to maintain good sanitation.

Many diseases have disastrous intestinal consequences leading to dehydration. They include:

Cholera: Caused by the marine and freshwater bacterium Vibrio choleraCholera has been the cause of many deaths in both the distant and recent past. It may, once again, be an issue in the uncertain future.

Cholera toxins produce a rapid onset of diarrhea and vomiting within a few hours to 2 days of infection. Victims often complain of leg cramps. The body water loss with untreated cholera is associated with a 60% death rate. Aggressive efforts to rehydrate the patient, however, drops the death rate to only one per cent. Antibiotic therapy with doxycycline or tetracycline seems to shorten the duration of illness.

Typhus: A complex of diseases caused by bacteria in the Rickettsia family, Typhus is transmitted by fleas and ticks to humans in unsanitary surroundings, and is mentioned here due to its frequent confusion with “Typh-oid” fever, a disease caused by contaminated, undercooked food.

Although it rarely causes severe diarrhea, Typhus can cause significant dehydration due to high fevers and other flu-like symptoms. Five to nine days after infection, a rash begins on the torso and spreads to the extremities, sparing the face, palm, and soles. Doxycycline is the drug of choice for this disease.

Typhoid: Infection with the bacteria Salmonella typhi is called “Typh-oid fever”, because it is often confused with Typhus. Contamination with Salmonella in food occurs more often than with any other bacteria in the United States.

In Typhoid fever, there is a gradual onset of high fevers over the course of several days. Abdominal pain, intestinal hemorrhage, weakness, headaches, constipation, and bloody diarrhea may occur. A number of people develop a spotty, rose-colored rash. Ciprofloxacin is the antibiotic of choice but most victims improve with rehydration therapy.

Dysentery: An intestinal inflammation in the large intestine that presents with fever, abdominal pain, and severe bloody or watery mucus diarrhea. Symptoms usually begin one to three days after exposure. Dysentery, a major cause of death among Civil War soldiers, is a classic example of a disease that can be prevented with strict hand hygiene after bowel movements.

The most common form of dysentery in North America and Europe is caused by the bacteria Shigella and is called “bacillary dysentery”.  It is spread through contaminated food and water, and crowded unsanitary conditions. Ciprofloxacin and Sulfa drugs, in conjunction with oral rehydration, are effective therapies.

Another type is caused by an organism you may have read about in science class: the amoeba, a protozoan known as Entamoeba histolytica. Amoebic dysentery is more commonly seen in warmer climates. Metronidazole is the antibiotic of choice.

Traveler’s Diarrhea: An inflammation of the small intestine most commonly caused by the Bacterium Escherichia coli (E. coli). Most strains of this bacteria are normal inhabitants of the human intestinal tract, but one (E. coli O157:H7) produces a toxin (the “Shiga” toxin) that can cause severe “food poisoning”. The Shiga toxin has even been classified as a bioterror agent.

In this illness, sudden onset of watery diarrhea, often with blood, develops within one to three days of exposure accompanied by fever, gas, and abdominal cramping. Rapid rehydration and treatment with antibiotics such as Azithromycin and Ciprofloxacin is helpful. The CDC no longer recommends taking antibiotics in advance of a journey, but does suggest that Pepto-Bismol or Kaopectate (Bismuth Subsalicylate), two tablets four times a day, may decrease the likelihood of Traveler’s Diarrhea.

Campylobacter: The second most common cause of foodborne illness in the U.S. after Salmonella, this bacteria resides in the intestinal tract of chickens and causes sickness when meat is undercooked or improperly processed. It’s thought that a significant percentage of retail poultry products contain colonies of one variety, Campylobacter Jejuni. It is characterized as bloody diarrhea, fever, nausea, and cramping which begins two to five days after exposure. Although controversial, Erythromycin may decrease the duration of illness if taken early.

Trichinosis: Trichinosis is caused by the parasitic roundworm Trichinella in undercooked meat, mostly from domesticated pigs. Trichinosis causes diarrhea and other intestinal symptoms, usually starting one to two days after exposure. Fever, headache, itchiness, muscle pains, and swelling around the eyes occur up to 2 weeks later. Recovery is usually slow, even with treatment with the anti-helminthic (anti-worm) drugs Mebendazole and Albendazole (Albenza).

Giardiasis: The most common disease-causing parasite in the world is the protozoa Giardia lamblia. It has even been found in backcountry waters in many national parks in the U.S. Symptoms may present as early as one day after exposure, although it more commonly presents in one to two weeks. Patients complain of watery diarrhea, abdominal cramping, violent (often called “projectile”) vomiting, and gas. Metronidazole is the drug of choice in conjunction with oral rehydration.

There are many other pathogens that can cause life-threatening dehydration if untreated. Although we have mentioned common antibiotic treatments where applicable, most of the above will resolve on their own over time with strict attention to oral (or intravenous) rehydration. Many antibiotics (Cipro is an example) are associated with adverse effects that can be worse than the illness they’re designed to treat, so use judiciously.

It should be noted that some of these illnesses may be mimicked by viruses that are completely unaffected by antibiotics, such as Norovirus. Norovirus has been implicated in many of the outbreaks you read about on cruise ships.

Air, food, water, and shelter is necessary for survival. Bad air, food, water, and shelter leads to the next requirement, and that is medical supplies. Have a good medical kit and know how to use all its components. If you can accomplish this goal, you’ll be an effective medic if things go South.

Original on the https://www.doomandbloom.net site.

Avalanche Survival

An avalanche, also called a “snowslide”, is a mass of snow, ice, and debris sliding rapidly down a mountainside, and is a risk to any winter hiker. Just as a snowball rolling down a hill picks up more snow as it goes, an avalanche can achieve significantly more volume and mass as it travels.

Although they rarely make the news, avalanches cause an average of 28 deaths a year. This event may seem like a rare occurrence, but it happens a lot more often than you’d think; certainly more than, say, shark attacks (which get a lot more press).

Snowslides are part and parcel of the winter wilderness experience, and it pays to know what to do if you’re caught in one.  If you’re not prepared to deal with issues associated with your environment, then you have made it your enemy.  This is not just good advice for skiers or backcountry hikers; anyone driving on mountain roads in winter could get in caught in an avalanche if not prepared.

Avalanches may be caused by simple gravity, a major snowfall, seismic tremors, or human activity. The speed and force of an avalanche may depend on whether the snow is “wet” or “dry powder”. Powder snow avalanches may reach speeds of 190 miles per hour. Wet slides travel slower, but with a great deal of force due to the density of the snowpack.

What Kills An Avalanche Victim?

You might assume that the main cause of death in this circumstance is freezing to death. There are other ways, however, that are more likely to end the life of an avalanche victim:

Trauma:  serious injury is not uncommon in an avalanche, and not just due to the weight of the snow. Debris, such as rocks, branches, and even entire trees, can be carried along in the cascade and cause life-ending traumatic wounds.

Suffocation:  When buried in the snow, asphyxiation is a major risk.  Densely packed snow is like concrete; many victims may find themselves immobilized and unable to dig themselves out of trouble.

Hypothermia: Hypothermia is, surprisingly, the cause of death of only a small percentage of avalanche victims. It’s much more likely that they will perish due to traumatic injury or suffocation before they freeze to death.

Factors involved in deciding your fate include:

  • The density of the snowpack
  • The presence of air pockets for breathing (or the lack of them)
  • The position of the body in the snow (if not upright, you’ll be disoriented)
  • Traumatic injuries sustained
  • The availability of rescue equipment at the scene

Important Avalanche Survival Basics and Equipment

On any wilderness outing, it makes sense to go prepared. Appropriately warm clothing for the weather is, of course, a basic concern in winter. Food, water, heat packs, spare dry clothing, and a cell phone are just some of the items you should take with you if you’re attempting a mountain hike in January.

Most backcountry expeditions are best attempted in a group. That goes for avalanche country, as well, except for one thing: Space yourselves out far enough so that there’s not too much weight on any one area of snow. If a member of your party is buried in the snow, know that you have to act quickly to find them and dig them out. It’s unlikely that going for help will end in a successful rescue. Therefore, it’s especially important to have some specialized items in avalanche country.

Recommended gear (besides warm clothing) would include:

An avalanche beacon:  A device that emits a pulsed radio signal.  Everyone in the group carries one. If a member gets buried in an avalanche, the rest of the party picks up the signal from under the snow. The receivers interpret the signal into a display that aids the search.

An avalanche shovel:  Lightweight short aluminum shovels that fit inside your backpack and help chop and remove snow and debris on top of a buried hiker. These shovels usually have telescoping shafts. Shovels with D-shaped grips can be used with mittens.

An avalanche probe: Essentially, a stick that helps you pinpoint the exact location of an avalanche victim and see how far down he/she is. 2 meters or more in length, you can use the probe to tell a victim under the snow from the ground; the victim will feel “softer”.

A helmet: Many fatalities occur due to head trauma from rocks and debris flung around by the snow.

Skier’s Air Bags:  Relatively new, these brightly colored air bags auto-inflate with a trigger; they work like a lifejacket to keep you buoyant and, therefore, closer to the surface and easier to find.

What To Do As The Avalanche Starts

83% of avalanches in recreational settings are triggered by the victim. To survive, quick thinking and rapid action will be needed:

Yell: Let everyone in your group know that you’re in trouble. At the very start of the slide, wave your arms and shout as loud as you can to alert as many people as possible to your location.

Move. If you started the avalanche, you may notice a crevice forming in the snow.  Jump uphill of it quickly and you might not get carried off.  If this isn’t an option, run sideways as fast as you can away from the center of the event, which is where the snow will be moving fastest and with the most force.

Get Lighter. Heavier objects sink in snow, so jettison unnecessary heavy equipment so that you’ll be closer to the surface. Throwing off something light isn’t a bad idea either: A loose glove or hat on top of the snow could signal rescuers to your general location and save precious time.  Deploy your avalanche air bag if you have one.

Hug a tree (or rock). If the avalanche is relatively small, you could grab the nearest immobile object and hold on for dear life.  In a very large avalanche, trees and rocks may not be safe anchors; trees can be uprooted by the force of the snowslide.

Swim!  To survive an avalanche, the key is to stay as close to the top of the snow as possible. Increase your surface area by spreading your legs (feet downhill) and raising your hands. While in this position, swing your arms while trying to stay on your back (it’s easier to breathe if face up), similar to swimming backstroke.  With any luck, this strategy will keep you towards the surface of the snow.

What To Do If You’re Buried In The Snow

You did your best, but still got completely buried in the snow.  You’ve got maybe 15-30 minutes, on average, before you suffocate.  Snow may be porous, but warm breath melts the snow which then refreezes as solid ice.  This makes breathing difficult.

As the snow slows: The larger the air pocket you have, the longer you’ll survive.  As the snowslide slows to a stop, put one arm in front of your face in such a way as to form a space that will give you the most air. If possible, raise the other arm straight up toward the avalanche surface.  Your glove might signal your location to rescuers.  Expand your chest by inhaling deeply so that you have more room to breathe once the snow has settled.

Once buried: Once you are completely buried, the snowpack may be so dense as to prevent you from moving. Stay calm, in order to use up less oxygen.  If you’re not sure which way is up, spit.  The spit will go towards the ground due to gravity.  If you can move, work to make a bigger air pocket in the direction of the surface.

You’ll only have a second or two to act to avoid most avalanches.  Rapid action, and some basic rescue equipment, may prevent you from being the harsh winter’s latest victim.

Original post seen on https://www.doomandbloom.net.

 

The Survivalist’s Odds ‘n Sods:

SurvivalBlog presents another edition of The Survivalist’s Odds ‘n Sods— a collection of news bits and pieces that are relevant to the modern survivalist and prepper from “HJL”. The water shortage in South Africa continues to get worse.

Lost Domesticated Plants

Archaeologists have discovered several seed caches throughout the Americas that indicate certain plants had been domesticated that are now just growing wild and considered wild edibles. This is an interesting development and brings up several concepts for food production that you have to wonder about. In today’s world of GMO crops, can they be domesticated again? How hardy are they compared to modern seed? This might be something to think about. Thanks to F.M. for the link.

Parasites

Reader J.C. sent in this article on an increase in parasites that children have picked up on the playground. … Continue reading

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Preparing for the Inevitable American Gun Ban- Part 3, by Rector

I believe a full gun ban in the United States is inevitable. In the first two parts of this article series, I’ve explained why I expect this, through cultural, legal, and demographic trends. Part two discloses the first step for protecting your guns. Let’s move on to the second step in the plan.

Protecting Your Guns (continued)

Step 2: Prepare the Registered Gun Collection

Your Amazon browsing history (now up to 15 years old), your credit card records, your membership in the NRA, your concealed handgun permit, your GPS tracked trips to the gun range, et cetera will provide investigators with clear evidence that you (at one time) were a gun enthusiast. There is no way that you are going to successfully claim that you have “zero” guns to register. Claiming they were all stolen, shipwrecked, or other such nonsense is fun to laugh about, but it isn’t a real … Continue reading

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Preparing for the Inevitable American Gun Ban- Part 2, by Rector

A full gun ban in the United States is inevitable. In part one of this three-part series, I begin to outline the cultural, legal, and demographic reasons I believe this is the case. Let’s continue looking into the changing demographics of the United States and its subsequent affect on the political landscape.

The Enemy Has A Vote

In my former life as an Infantry officer in the U.S. Army, we were fond of saying that “the enemy has a vote”, meaning that our best laid plans were likely to be undone by enemy action. Rest assured, the statists and gun control activists are planning and influencing government, just like we are. The American left is openly discussing how gun registration and confiscation “solved” the gun violence “problem” identified after the mass shooting in Port Arthur Australia in 1996.

I personally cannot stand reading leftist ramblings, but you should maintain awareness … Continue reading

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Preparing for the Inevitable American Gun Ban- Part 1, by Rector

A full gun ban in the United States is inevitable. Any honest reading of the cultural, legal, and demographic trends in the United States will confirm this thesis– the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall be infringed, and we will lose our firearms.

Many of you are rightfully rejecting my premise and doing so on solid intellectual ground: the 2nd Amendment, the Heller decision, the rise of concealed carry, the election of Trump, and the power of the NRA. These are formidable weapons in the fight to retain our rights. Yet, ultimately, we will lose the fight because this isn’t your grandfather’s America anymore.

The ban will be gradually implemented, popularly supported, and “legal”. You will have a choice to make– obey the law or become a felon. That decision will change your relationship with the government permanently. If you comply, you risk exposure to crime … Continue reading

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Reindustrialization After The Fall- Part 2, By Redneck Granddaddy

Yesterday, we took inventory of the situation two years after the balloon went up after the fall, and we realized that things could be pretty challenging. However, with charcoal and a forge, the problems we mentioned wouldn’t be such a dilemma. Yesterday, I shared several options for how to make charcoal. Today, I will share how to make a forge and more tips for smithing. So, let’s get started.

Masonry Forge

Boy you are ambitious to look at a masonry forge! That’s okay. Depending on your particular situation, this might be easier and or better for you. A masonry forge cannot be moved, so it needs to be built in a barn or a purpose built smithy. Whatever kind of charcoal forge you build, the thing will have the same four parts– the stand, the pan, the blower, and the pipes.

First, you need a blower pipe. I use black … Continue reading

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Reindustrialization After The Fall- Part 1, By Redneck Granddaddy

Okay, the balloon went up, but you were prepared enough that two years later, you and your family are still alive at your retreat. Great! Right? Well, maybe. Let’s take inventory.

Post-Balloon Evaluation

Food Storage

Your food in storage is about gone. You have been gardening for the last ten years and thought you were golden, but the first year wasn’t near big enough. The second year you went way big and plowed more land while the tractor still ran, but you didn’t have the seed or fertilizer. Still, you carried on with composting and seed saving, but most of your heirloom varieties were really hybrids mislabeled and sold as heirlooms. That was a teachable moment.

It’s good to be frugal, but Gullible is the name of a large, vicious dog that sooner or later bites everyone in the butt, and if you had read the fine print you would … Continue reading

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The Left’s Vindictive Databases: For Blaming, Shaming, Defaming, and SWATting

A key tactic of The Left is to demonize their political opponents. They have become increasingly sophisticated at this since the turn of the 21st Century. Most recently they have assembled voluminous databases on “Right Wing”, “Alt-Right” , and “Hate Groups.” But by lumping together legitimate conservative political activists (such as Tea Party groups) and right to life groups in the same lists as racists, bigots, the KKK, and assorted anti-Semites, they have besmirched the reputations of nearly everyone who opposes the socialist agenda. Some of the latest generations of databases can safely be called Vindictive Databases.

A new article in Wired magazine describes the level of database automation that The Left are now employing: Meet Antifa’s Secret Weapon Against Far-Right Extremists. This article reveals a large database called Whack-a-mole. This tool automatically mines data from Facebook, based on keywords like “patriot” and “anti-Obama” without applying human analysis. … Continue reading

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New Date for Jim Cobb Basic Food Storage Class

Hello everyone

Sorry for any inconvenience but we had to move Jim Cobb class to March 3rd, 2018. Here is the link to the event. Hope to see a lot of people there. We have a few surprises and giveaways, so come and learn about food storage.

Basic Food Storage with Jim Cobb

Clarity of Mind and Survival- Part 2, by The Recovering Feminist

This is the second part of an article that focuses on the reality of forgiveness in a person’s survival mindset. It is not approached from a psychological perspective but recognizes that having a clear and sharp mind is critical not only for making good survival decisions but for making good decisions in general. In part one, we covered how forgiveness is essential to survival, vengeance v. mercy, and the sexual assault epidemic, including the harm of the “me too” trend. Let’s continue on.

Confront Evil

Some of the worst acts of betrayal happen to those in positions of vulnerability who feel helpless under the influence and power of evil men. We must be willing to listen carefully to the hurts of others and not be afraid to speak truth to both the victim and the offender. I am aware of a particular woman who was sexually assaulted by two medical … Continue reading

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Clarity of Mind and Survival- Part 1, by The Recovering Feminist

Survival and a Clear Mind

Survival necessitates recognition of both outer and inner realities, both material and immaterial truth. We tend to think externally about survival. For instance, we think of addressing food storage, first-aid, efficiency, self defense, physical preparations, et cetera, but we fail to realize that all of these decisions are influenced first by a clear and sharp mind. We all have an inner life. Whether we acknowledge it or not, the inner life affects every decision we make. Harboring bitterness over past scorn or wallowing in the life experience of betrayal influences a person’s clarity of mind. Likewise, the mind of an offender consumed with guilt and refusing to yield to the mercy of forgiveness is equally affected.

A clear conscience and a sharp mind produce the best decisions. When pressures mount and survival is at stake, these two (clear conscience and sharp thinking) are crucial. A … Continue reading

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Economics and Investing For Preppers

Here are the latest items and commentary on current economics news, market trends, stocks, investing opportunities, and the precious metals markets. We also cover hedges, derivatives, and obscura. And it bears mention that most of these items are from the “tangibles heavy” contrarian perspective of JWR. (SurvivalBlog’s Founder and Senior Editor.) Today’s focus is on Hyperinflation in Venezuela. (See the Economy and Finance section.)

Precious Metals:

First off, over at Zero Hedge: Gold ETF Holdings Surge To 4-Year Highs Ahead Of Lunar New Year

Forex:

Just as I have been warning you for several years in this column: It’ll be another weak year for the US dollar, Goldman Sachs predicts. It is wise to hedge into foreign currencies. For stability over the next several years, the Swiss Franc is still my favorite.

Commodities:

Alcoa Headwinds Vs. Constellium Tailwinds

 

Continue reading

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The Long View- Part 2, by J.M.

I try to have a long view, one that is both near and far in perspective. Whenever significant events occur, I do a quick review of my potential events risk analysis to see if anything’s changed that might impact how I’m prepared. In this article, I am taking a look at the preparations required for a long-term scenario, in the event of a major societal break down. We have covered the need for repairs and tools to make repairs, when items or parts and supplies won’t be easily replaced or shipped to us.

Food (continued)

Yesterday, we also covered a significant portion on the subject of food, particularly on gardening and practicing now to supply your family’s food needs, but we haven’t completed this discussion just yet.

Hunting and Fishing

Are hunting and fishing part of your long-term survival food plans? Bear in mind that after a major TEOTWAKI disaster … Continue reading

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The Long View- Part 1, by J.M.

I try to have a long view, one that is both near and far in perspective. Whenever significant events occur, I do a quick review of my potential events risk analysis to see if anything’s changed that might impact how I’m prepared. For example, when North Korea started acting up, I realized that I needed to do some additional preparations to handle potential nuclear and EMP events. At the start of every year I also do a deep-dive review to see if there’s anything I might need to re-consider or adjust.

A Question During This Year’s Review

During this year’s review I thought of a question that I really didn’t have good answer to: How long am I really prepared to survive for? I have about a year’s worth of food stored. Every year I have a decent-sized garden that I harvest and can for the winter, and I also … Continue reading

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Special report: Wisconsin’s nuclear plan

Hawaii’s false missile alert is drawing attention to how states and the federal government warn the public about emergencies. Officials blame the alarm on an employee at the state’s emergency management agency who pressed the wrong button.

There is no “button” in Wisconsin.

Source

Colds vs. Flus

When you wake up sneezing, coughing, and have that achy, feverish, can’t move a muscle feeling, how do you know whether you have cold symptoms or the flu?

It’s important to know the difference between flu and cold symptoms. A cold is a milder respiratory illness than the flu. While cold symptoms can make you feel bad for a few days, flu symptoms can make you feel quite ill for a few days to weeks. The flu can also result in serious health problems such as pneumonia and hospitalizations.

What are common cold symptoms?

Cold symptoms usually begin with a sore throat, which usually goes away after a day or two. Nasal symptoms, runny nose, and congestion follow, along with a cough by the fourth and fifth days. Fever is uncommon in adults, but a slight fever is possible. Children are more likely to have a fever with a cold.

With cold symptoms, the nose teems with watery nasal secretions for the first few days. Later, these become thicker and darker. Dark mucus is natural and does not usually mean you have developed a bacterial infection, such as a sinus infection.

Several hundred different viruses may cause your cold symptoms.

How long do cold symptoms last?

Cold symptoms usually last for about a week. During the first three days that you have cold symptoms, you are contagious. This means you can pass the cold to others, so stay home and get some much-needed rest.

If cold symptoms do not seem to be improving after a week, you may have a bacterial infection, which means you may need antibiotics.

Sometimes you may mistake cold symptoms for allergic rhinitis (hay fever) or a sinus infection. If cold symptoms begin quickly and are improving after a week, then it is usually a cold, not allergy. If your cold symptoms do not seem to be getting better after a week, check with your doctor to see if you have developed an allergy or sinusitis.

What are common flu symptoms?

Flu symptoms are usually more severe than cold symptoms and come on quickly. Symptoms of flu include sore throat, fever, headache, muscle aches and soreness, congestion, and cough. Swine flu in particular is also associated with vomiting and diarrhea.

Most flu symptoms gradually improve over two to five days, but it’s not uncommon to feel run down for a week or more. A common complication of the flu is pneumonia, particularly in the young, elderly, or people with lung or heart problems. If you notice shortness of breath, let your doctor know. Another common sign of pneumonia is fever that comes back after having been gone for a day or two.

Just like cold viruses, flu viruses enter your body through the mucous membranes of the nose, eyes, or mouth. Every time you touch your hand to one of these areas, you could be infecting yourself with a virus, which makes it very important to keep hands germ-free with frequent washing to prevent both flu and cold symptoms.

Is it flu or cold symptoms?

How do you know if you have flu or cold symptoms? Take your temperature, say many experts. Flu symptoms often mimic cold symptoms with nasal congestion, cough, aches, and malaise. But a common cold rarely has symptoms of fever above 101 degrees. With flu symptoms, you will probably have a fever initially with the flu virus and you will feel miserable. Body and muscle aches are also more common with the flu. This table can help determine if you have cold or flu symptoms.

Symptoms Cold Flu
Fever Sometimes, usually mild Usual; higher (100-102 F; occasionally higher, especially in young children); lasts 3 to 4 days
Headache Occasionally Common
General Aches, Pains Slight Usual; often severe
Fatigue,  Weakness Sometimes Usual; can last 2 to 3 weeks
Extreme Exhaustion Never Usual; at the beginning of the illness
Stuffy Nose Common Sometimes
Sneezing Usual Sometimes
Sore Throat Common Sometimes
Chest Discomfort, Cough Mild to moderate; hacking cough Common; can become severe
Complication Sinus congestion; middle ear infection Sinusitis, bronchitis, ear infection, pneumonia; can be life-threatening
Prevention Wash hands often; avoid close contact with anyone with a cold Wash hands often; avoid close contact with anyone who has flu symptoms; get the annual flu vaccine
Treatment Decongestants; pain reliever/fever reducer medicines Decongestants, pain relievers, or fever reducers are available over the counter; over-the-counter cough and cold medicines should not be given to young children; prescription antiviral drugs for flu may be given in some cases; call your doctor for more information about treatment.

Usually, the time of year will give you some sense of what you’re dealing with. The standard flu season runs from fall to spring of the next year.

When do I call the doctor with flu or cold symptoms?

If you already have flu or cold symptoms, it’s important to call your doctor if you also have any of the following severe symptoms:

  • Persistent fever: A fever lasting more than three days can be a sign of another bacterial infection that should be treated.
  • Painful swallowing: Although a sore throat from a cold or flu can cause mild discomfort, severe pain could mean strep throat, which requires treatment by a doctor.
  • Persistent coughing: When a cough doesn’t go away after two or three weeks, it could be bronchitis, which may need an antibiotic. Postnasal drip or sinusitis can also result in a persistent cough. In addition, asthma is another cause of persistent coughing.
  • Persistent congestion and headaches: When colds and allergies cause congestion and blockage of sinus passages, they can lead to a sinus infection (sinusitis). If you have pain around the eyes and face with thick nasal discharge after a week, you may have a bacterial infection and possibly need an antibiotic. Most sinus infections, however, do not need an antibiotic.

In some cases, you may need to get emergency medical attention right away. In adults, signs of a crisis include:

  • Severe chest pain
  • Severe headache
  • Shortness of breath
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Persistent vomiting

In children, additional signs of an emergency are:

  • Difficulty breathing or rapid breathing
  • Bluish skin color
  • Not drinking enough fluids
  • Lethargy and failure to interact normally
  • Extreme irritability or distress
  • Symptoms that were improving and then suddenly worsen
  • Fever with a rash

Can I prevent flu or cold symptoms?

The most important prevention measure for preventing colds and flu is frequent hand washing. Hand washing by rubbing the hands with warm soapy water for at least 20 seconds helps to slough germs off the skin.

In addition to hand washing to prevent flu or cold symptoms, you can also get a flu vaccine to prevent seasonal influenza. Seasonal flu activity in the United States generally peaks between late December and early March. Within two weeks of getting a flu vaccine, antibodies develop in the body and provide protection against flu. Children receiving the vaccine for the first time need two doses delivered one month apart.

Antiviral medicine may also help prevent flu if you have been exposed to someone with flu symptoms.

Some Good Comes from Hawaii’s False Alarm.

Residence of Hawaii had a wake up call and many in the press and government are calling this delayed warning a horrible event, but I disagree.

Hawaii Emergency Test Photo: NYdailytimes.com

Residence of Hawaii had a wake up call and many in the press and government are calling this delayed warning a horrible event, but I disagree.

Chairman of the FCC Ajit Paisaid

“The false emergency alert sent yesterday in Hawaii was absolutely unacceptable,” the chairman said. “It caused a wave of panic across the state — worsened by the 38-minute delay before a correction alert was issued.”

Pai added the false alerts, believed to have been caused by human error, “undermine public confidence in the alerting system and thus reduce their effectiveness during real emergencies.”

I contend, “Why shouldn’t we keep people on their toes?”  Reports that people were “freaking out” and in a state of “panic”, can lead to some good and people may realise that to live their lives in a “Daily Fog” or “LaLa Land”, can lead to being unprepared for a real emergency.  It is time to think about the possibilities of a real disaster or attack.

Have we grown so complacent in our world, that we get upset at a false alarm, when this in fact is a real world reality check.  Wake up and recognize that we live in a modern world that has forgotten that disaster and strife can affect us.

SHTFandGO – Plan, Prepare, Protect

 

46 Earthquakes Have Shaken California Over The Past 24 Hours

 

It appears that something unusual is happening along the California coastline.  Over the past 24 hours, California has been hit by 46 earthquakes.  That is approximately twice the normal daily number, and much of the shaking has taken place in the southern part of the state.  In recent weeks I have been writing repeatedly about the alarming seismic activity that we have been seeing along the west coast, and many believe that the potential for a megaquake is significantly higher than normal right now.  Unfortunately, most residents of California are not paying any attention to what is going on at all, and so if there is a major event they will be completely blindsided by it.

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