I just learned that it’s National Handwashing Awareness Week!
That works in nicely with it also being National Flu Vaccination Week, as handwashing is your first line of defense against not only the flu virus, but all sorts of germs.
Related post: Handwashing 101
The Henry the Hand Prevention Program, in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), offers these 4 Principles of Hand Awareness:
1. Wash your hands when they are dirty and BEFORE eating
2. DO NOT cough into your hands
3. DO NOT sneeze into your hands
4. Above all, DO NOT
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Anyone who suffers from chronic pain knows that physicians recommend keeping a journal or diary of pain symptoms: How bad is it over a day or week? What triggers it or makes it worse? Is it affected by weather, exercise, foods, stress? What makes it better? What medications have you tried, when and for how long?
That can add up to a lot of information to keep track of.
But LiveScience recently published a list of what they consider the best pain management apps.
There is a huge potential market for these apps: Some 100 million American adults are
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Now that the days are dark, wet and cold, I find myself drinking a couple extra cups of coffee or tea every day.
Luckily for me most evidence supports the health benefits of both coffee and tea (black or green). Dr. Aaron Carroll over at Healthcare Triage recently made two videos to reassure us coffee lovers that moderate consumption of both coffee and tea is a good thing!
Coffee! It’s Not Bad for You, and It might Even be Good!
Is Drinking Tea Good for You?
As always, Dr. Carroll … Continue reading
Every fall I post my recommendation that everyone get a flu shot.
In support of this week being National Influenza Vaccination Week (what, you haven’t heard?), here is a pretty cool animated video from NPR: Flu Attack! How A Virus Invades Your Body
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), which sponsors Vaccination Week, offers these key points on their seasonal flu webpage:
- CDC recommends a yearly flu vaccine for everyone 6 months of age and older as the first and most important step in protecting against influenza disease.
- CDC and its partners want
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I’m not a gadget person, and I don’t embrace the “quantified self” movement, which seeks to keep track of everything measurable about the human body—weight, body mass index, blood pressure, heart rate, calories consumed, miles walked, jogged, biked, etc.
But ever since I wrote the post Why sitting is bad for your health I’ve been more committed to racking up 10,000 steps every day.
Now, the 10,000 steps a day recommendation is not an exact science, but it’s a reasonable goal for a healthy adult. Also, to reach that goal, I have to move a lot throughout the … Continue reading
Did you ever stop to wonder how the skin of your lips differs from the skin on the rest of your face?
The skin over your lips is very thin and highly vascular, hence their typical “vermilion” or red color. Your lips also have more nerve endings, making them very tactile and sensitive.
These anatomical differences make our lips attractive and nice for kissing, but they also make our lips vulnerable to dryness, sunburn and chemical sensitivities.
Painful and unattractive, chapped lips are especially common in the fall and winter because of the dry, cold air outside, the dry, warm … Continue reading
Do you suffer from dry, red, or itchy eyes?
Dry eyes are really common, especially in the late fall and winter when we spend more time in the dry indoor air.
But did you know the eye drops you use might actually be making your eyes look and feel worse?
Like so many over-the-counter (OTC) products, there are dozens of eye drops from which to choose. How do you know which is best? You can save money and get a more helpful product by understanding what you really need from an eye drop.
As always, ignore the marketing claims on … Continue reading
A few weeks ago I posted about some simple ways to deal with stress and panic attacks, and I mentioned that I had received an adult coloring book from a friend and thought it was a great way to focus and relax my mind.
Apparently other people think so, too!
I just read this article in The Atlantic: The Zen of Adult Coloring Books
Several trend pieces about adult coloring books lump them in with other “childish” activities that grown-ups are apparently engaging in to regress back to their simpler youth, like adult preschool and adult summer camp. But
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Ted-Ed Talks just posted an excellent video on YouTube explaining How stress can make you sick. Occasional stress is normal and even helpful, but chronic stress can lead to an increased risk of heart attack and stroke.
Because of the “brain-gut” connection, chronic stress can also affect digestion and lead to conditions like irritable bowel syndrome and obesity.
Even worse, chronic stress can cause chromosomal damage and shorten our lives!
I’m sure this isn’t news to most people, but it’s a reminder that we need to regularly “check-in” on our emotional health and make … Continue reading
I’ve said it many times in this blog: Don’t go to the hospital alone! And don’t let your friends or family members go alone, either.
Having or being a patient advocate during a hospitalization can really improve communication among the patient, the patient’s family and the myriad of health care providers in modern hospitals.
Related story from KevinMD: There are too many cooks in the health care kitchen
Better communication is especially important at discharge time, when the doctor and nurses give you lots of instructions about your follow-up plan: Do you have new medications? Did you stop old medications? … Continue reading