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Anchoring Lives Aboard Warship: Nimitz

sease, even if it is mild, from spreading to others.

In May, the medical department noticed that a large number of crew were presenting themselves with rashes, bumps, and abscesses that could have been prevented with simple hygiene measures, says Lt Jason Palmer, the family physician on board.

On shore, the soldiers can often overlook symptoms like viral gastroenteritis, but on deployment, preventive measures could save soldiers lot of trouble, he said. hore, but it can save you a lot of trouble here on deployment. Proper hygiene is the most effective way to prevent rashes and skin infections.

The medical department sends circulars to emphasise on the preventive aspect. A Sample: Remember to wash your hands! Any area where people live in close proximity can be colony for bacteria. Crew members' immune systems can be weakened due to change in diet, heat, and stress. If this occurs, a "normal infection" can get out of control and require antibiotics. If you see a red bump on your skin that begins to leak pus and does not go away over several days or weeks, you need to proceed to Medical to get it taken care of.

Stick to basics. Habits like washing your hands before and after using the bathroom, proper skin care, and not shaving areas that don't need it can reduce your exposure to infection. When washing your hands, be sure to use soap and rub vigorously to get a lather before rinsing off. When shaving, go with the grain of your hair, not against it, and don't shave genital areas, large skin surfaces, or other areas that aren't normally shaved. Don't share razors, and replace disposables as often as possible. Crew members need to wash their clothes on a regular basis if possible, avoid sharing clothes, and in the gym: wipe down the equipment!

The latest bug to hit the crew was viral gastroenteritis. Several crew member complained of vomiting for two to three days and noticed bowel movements. The phys
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