Happy New Year and welcome to the 6th issue of the University Wellness Center Newsletter!

Who Are We? The University Wellness Center at the University of the South is a campus resource which offers integrated and holistic health care, comprehensive wellness outreach, and peer health education for students. The University Wellness Center is composed of Counseling and Psychological Services, Student Accessibility Services, University Health Service, and Wellness Outreach.

What to Expect? New issues will be published on the first Tuesday of every month, all of which we hope will keep you updated on our latest news and provide you with information about upcoming trainings, events and programming!

Each month's issue will focus on a new topic and include a description, spotlight post, and monthly challenge based on that theme. The topic for March Cold vs. Flu! 

March Topic:

Is it a cold, flu, or something else? We know you are all sick of it!
Tonia Christian, NP-C; Mindy Holloway, ACNP-BC, FNP-BC, University Wellness Center, Nurse Practitioners

This time of year often brings sniffles, coughs, and other respiratory symptoms. The symptoms are usually a sign that the body is fighting off an infection. These infections are most commonly due to a virus or a bacteria. Most infections, like the common cold, flu, and mono, are due to a virus. Both cold and flu can have similar symptoms. However, there are a few differences.

Colds typically can last from 2-7 days. The symptoms usually occur gradually and consist of sore throat, sneezing, runny/stuffy nose, slight body aches, and a mild cough. The cough may linger for several days, even when other symptoms have resolved.

Influenza, more commonly known as “flu”, is a highly contagious virus. Flu can last for over 1 week, but severe symptoms typically resolve within 3 days. The symptoms begin suddenly and consist of fever, body aches, fatigue, cough, and headache. There can also be some mild sore throat and nasal congestion associated with the flu.

Upper respiratory symptoms can also be caused by bacteria. These infections are typically more localized.  For example, strep throat usually causes a sore throat and fever but may not cause any other symptoms.  Upper respiratory infections that are caused by bacteria may not resolve on their own and require additional treatment.

March Spotlight: Why is it important to know the difference between types of infections?

Tonia Christian, NP-C; Mindy Holloway, ACNP-BC, FNP-BC, University Wellness Center, Nurse Practitioners

Most viral infections tend to resolve on their own without treatment. Treatment generally is aimed at providing relief from symptoms such as pain, congestion, fever, and cough.

Antibiotics are only used to treat bacterial infections. They are not effective against viruses. National health organizations recommend against using antibiotics unless there is clear evidence of a bacterial infection. Using antibiotics to treat infections other than ones caused by bacteria has led to an increase in antibiotic resistance. This causes bacteria to be able to resist the effects of the antibiotic medication. The bacteria can survive and continue to multiply causing more harm.

  • Don’t take antibiotics to treat viral infections.
  • Only take antibiotics when prescribed to you by a medical professional.
  • Finish your full course of treatment even if symptoms have resolved and you are feeling better.
  • Never share antibiotics with others or use leftover prescriptions.
  • Different types of antibiotics are used to treat different types of bacterial infections.
  • Each time you take an antibiotic unnecessarily the effectiveness decreases and it may not work when you really need it.
  • Do not skip doses of antibiotics.

March Challenge:

What can you do to prevent/treat an upper respiratory infection?

This month, we challenge you to take measures to prevent the spread of infections and to take an active role in self care of symptoms if you DO get sick.

Prevention is key to avoiding infections. Here are several tips:
  • Do not eat or drink after anyone!
  • Make sure you wash your hands frequently, especially after coughing, sneezing, blowing your nose, using the restroom, shaking hands, etc.
  • Those who are contagious may not have apparent symptoms.
  • Stay away from others who are sick or are showing signs and/or symptoms of illness.
  • If vaccines are available, like the flu shot, get it as soon as possible.
  • Get a minimum of 7-8 hours of sleep each night.
  • Exercise and eat a healthy diet to build a strong immune system.
  • Avoid heavy intake of alcohol.
  • Drinking alcohol can decrease your immune system’s ability to fight illness and can cause dehydration.
Self-care tips for when you have symptoms of an infection:
  • Drink plenty of fluids.
  • Get plenty of rest.
  • Avoid smoking, second hand smoke and vaping.
  • Pain relievers can be used to treat sore throat, ear pain, headache, and fever.
    • Ex. Tylenol, Advil, Aleve
    • Nasal decongestants help to relieve nasal congestion.
  • Ex. Sudafed, phenylephrine
  • Antihistamines are an effective treatment for runny nose, sneezing, and itchy, watery eyes.
    • Ex. Benadryl, Zyrtec, Claritin, Allegra, Xyzal
  • Cough suppressants can alleviate dry and productive coughs.
    • Ex. Dextromethorphan (Delsym)
  • Expectorants help to loosen and thin mucus secretions.
    • Ex. Guaifenesin (Mucinex, Robitussin)   
  • Alternative therapies, such as vitamin C, zinc, and echinacea, may help to prevent and treat symptoms.

These treatments can be purchased at any pharmacy (CVS, Wal-Mart, Fred’s etc).

Over-the-counter medications to treat symptoms are often formulated to treat multiple symptoms at one time. Make sure to know the ingredients when taking any over-the-counter medication and avoid taking duplicate medications.

If you are experiencing upper respiratory symptoms that are not improving with over-the-counter medications and that are not resolving in a timely manner, you can web book an appointment at the University Wellness Center.

Calendar & Upcoming

Screen Free Lunches

Every Monday 


McClurg Balcony

Weekly Yoga

Wednesdays 3:30pm-4:30pm

Fridays 10:00am-11:00am

Social Lodge (Except 4/12 at the UWC Annex)

Family Dinner

Thursday, March 28, 2019 6:00pm

Community Engagement House

Contact Sabeth Jackson to sign-up

Food Forum

Friday, March 29, 2019 12:00-1:00pm

McClurg ABC Rooms

Invite, Welcome, Connect (School of Theology) is sponsoring a Lenten series focused on hunger awareness. Sabeth Jackson, UWC Wellness Coordinator will participate in a panel discussion about food issues on our campus, and share ways that the Wellness Center is working to educate and build a strong foundation of life skills (nutrition being a big one) for students.

Kombucha Workshop Series

Tuesday, March 12 and Friday, March 29 (Time TBD) 

Experts will teach students how to brew, bottle, and flavor their own Kombucha 

Details TBD. Direct questions to Sabeth Jackson

Group Therapy Schedule:

Tuesday 3:00pm: Interpersonal Therapy Group

Email caps@sewanee.edu if interested . All group therapy sessions are held in the University Wellness Center Annex and facilitated by John Jackson, Ben Craft and/or Katie Van Cleave. 

Let's Talk

State of Sewanee: University Mental Health & the Let's Talk Campaign

Mac Bouldin (SGA), Garrett Lucey (IFC), Mary Margaret Murdock (ISC).

It’s time to talk about mental health. For too long we have allowed ourselves and those around us to struggle with anxiety, depression, and other issues of mental health in the confines of isolation and silence. The reality is that anyone struggling with these issues is not alone. Many members of our community face these very challenges every day. Furthermore, these issues do not begin or end at the gates of the Domain. They exist on every campus and in every community everywhere, regardless of how visible they may be. However, Sewanee is a community unlike any other, and we have a unique opportunity to be a part of the solution.

Let’s Talk aims to normalize discussion on mental health, communicate that no one struggles alone, and draw attention to the resources available to students. After the successful launch of the Let’s Talk video and panel discussion, we hope to involve more voices and ideas in the campaign moving forward. If you have ideas, please do not hesitate to reach out to any of us.

We cannot face these problems alone. Too often we feel that the only solution is to keep quiet, grit our teeth, and keep moving forward no matter the cost. Sometimes the result is an attempt to conceal these feelings by drinking or quarantining ourselves in a dorm room. When we do this we deprive ourselves of the real remedies available to us, and inadvertently encourage others to do the same.

Since its inception, our community has been guided by the principles set forth by our motto, Ecce Quam Bonum, or “Behold how good and pleasant it is when kindred live together in unity.” We have a duty to uphold these principles by no longer allowing any member of our community to struggle alone. So let's bring issues of mental health out of the dark so that we can have a real conversation about how we can leave this place with not only minds capable of dealing with the complex intellectual and scholarly problems that we will face in the greater world, but the emotional and personal ones as well.

We founded the Let’s Talk mental health awareness campaign in hopes that it would help our community to achieve these goals. However, we did so knowing that these issues are in no way limited to our community. Sewanee is genuinely a special place, so let's use it to start a dialogue about mental health that we can carry with us wherever we go. All we have to do is start the conversation. So, Let’s Talk.

"Let's Talk" is a part of the Sewanee Flourish Project and sponsored by a SAMHSA Garrett Lee Smith Award

Wellness & Outreach.

Sabeth Jackson, Wellness Coordinator.

We’re all looking forward to a little more sunshine and a little break from our routines with Spring Break around the corner. With the short time that we have on campus in March, and the break-neck speed we all seem to be operating at, it’s no wonder that so many of us are getting sick and overwhelmed. We have a few programs to help keep you grounded, connected, and nourished this month, including Screen Free Lunch, UWC Yoga, a Kombucha Workshop series, and Family Dinner.

Counseling and Psychological Services.

John Jackson, Ph.D., Director, Counseling and Psychological Services.

March greetings from your friends and colleagues here at Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS). Like you, we too are hoping that March will bring some much-needed sun and warmth to the mountain. I’d like to focus this month’s newsletter on services of CAPS about which students, staff, and faculty may have little awareness, outreach and consultation. Yes, at least on a weekly basis, CAPS staff members head out of the office and provide programming on mental health in a diverse array of venues across campus. Whether facilitating a discussion on diversity and inclusion, participating in a program on healthy romantic relationships, or giving a talk on mindfulness and neuroscience, we are often out in the Sewanee community and are here to meet your needs. So, here’s the piece you may be missing. You too, Sewanee student, staff member, or faculty member, can request a CAPS staff member or staff group to provide or participate in any range of events that relate to mental health and a prosperous experience within the Sewanee community. Students who are part of an organization or on-campus group may want to consider the benefit of having a specialist in mental health speak or lead a discussion on a topic important to you.  Know as well that we are here for consultation services. Ever have question or concern you’d like to run by a psychologist or counselor? Let us know. We have highly effective, well-trained clinicians who are at the ready to serve your outreach and consultation needs.

Training Opportunities

Please see the Calendar and Updates for upcoming training dates.

Bystander Intervention Training

This prevention program emphasizes a bystander intervention approach and assumes that everyone has a role to play in ending violence against women. In addition to the prevention goal, the program has a research component which seeks to measure the effective of the prevention program with different constituencies. Participation in this program and research project represents a unique opportunity to take on a leadership role in educating themselves on how to stop violence on campus. 

RESPOND Training

Respond stands for 1) Recognize signs & symptoms 2) Empathize 3) Share observations 4) Pose open questions 5) Offer hope 6) Navigate resources & policies 7) Do self-care. RESPOND is an eight-hour program designed to train higher education professionals as gatekeepers to identify symptoms of mental illness and to offer effective support to students in distress.

QPR Training

QPR stands for Question, Persuade, Refer. QPR is a two-hour evidence-based practice model for training gatekeepers and the general public on how to prevent suicide. QPR is an approach to confronting someone about their possible thoughts of suicide. It is not intended to be a form of counseling or treatment, instead a means to offer hope through positive action. 

Full Embodiment: An Empowering Dialogue (FEED)

Fully Embodied: An Empowering Dialogue (FEED) is a peer-facilitated experiential workshop designed to help participants explore their relationship to their body with the goals of understanding the effects of (1) gender socialization (2) objectification and self-objectification and (3) cultural forces rooted in patriarchy that influence how one views and experiences one’s body. By gaining knowledge of social and cultural pressures, and the mechanisms by which they retain power, participants are taught new ways of being in relationship with their bodies. Participants complete the program committed to working toward instrumentality and embodiment, experiencing a new engagement with their physical self that recognizes the power of the body to provide meaning and agency in one’s life. Practical skill development includes learning mindfulness, self-compassion, and cognitive reframing skills. 

The program was developed by Dr. Noffsinger-Frazier and is implemented annually with the assistance of two FEED co-leaders. This year's leaders are Ashlin Ondrusek and Loring McDonald.