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Viewing posts from: June 2022

Tips on Handling Extreme Heat

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5 If you're among the millions of Americans sweltering in extreme heat this week, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers some solid advice on keeping safe. More than 60 million people from Southern California to West Virginia and as far south as Florida are now under an excessive heat warning or heat advisory, the New York Times reported. Residents in several states on Wednesday saw temperatures rise well into the 90s, and even the 100s, and hot temperatures were likely to persist across large sections of the country for several days. The soaring temperatures are part of a hot weather pattern moving over the lower 48 states before the July Fourth weekend, according to the National Weather Service. Heat waves are becoming more frequent, hotter and longer lasting, scientists say. The federal National Climate Assessment noted that the frequency of heat waves had jumped from an average of two per year in the 1960s to six per year by the 2010s. The heat wave season in the United States has also stretched to 45 days longer than it was in the 1960s, according to the report. What to do in the face of unrelenting high temperatures? The CDC has some suggestions:

  • Stay in an air-conditioned place as much as possible. If your home does not have air conditioning, go to an air-conditioned shopping mall or public library, or call your local health department about any heat-relief shelters in your area.
  • Electric fans may provide some relief, but they won't prevent heat-related illness when the temperature is in the high 90s. Taking a cool shower or bath or going to an air-conditioned place is a much better way to cool off. Try to limit use of your stove and oven.
  • Limit outdoor activity to when it is coolest, like the morning and evening. Rest often in shady areas. Cut down on outdoor exercise.
  • Apply a sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher that says "broad spectrum" or "UVA/UVB protection" on the label and reapply regularly while outdoors. Wear a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses.
  • Drink more fluids, regardless of how active you are. Don't wait until you're thirsty to drink. Heavy sweating removes salt and minerals from the body. A sports drink can replace the salt and minerals you lose in sweat.
  • If you are on a low-salt diet, have diabetes, high blood pressure or other chronic conditions, talk with your doctor before drinking a sports beverage or taking salt tablets.
  • Never leave infants, children or pets in a parked car, even if the windows are cracked open.
  • Monitor your local news for extreme heat alerts, safety tips and to learn about any cooling shelters in your area.
  • Learn the signs and symptoms of heat-related illnesses and how to treat them. Monitor others, especially those at high risk, such as infants and young children; people 65 and older; people who are overweight; people who are physically ill or taking certain medications, such as for depression, insomnia or poor circulation, and people who overexert during work or exercise.
  • Visit at-risk adults at least twice a day and closely watch them for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Infants and young children require much more frequent checks.
If you are 65 or older, have a friend or relative call to check on you twice a day during a heat wave.  

Why It’s Important for Men to Get Annual Exams

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4 A new survey has found that many men believe they are naturally healthy and don’t need checkups. They also tend to put others first and seek out medical advice on social media. However, doctors say these attitudes may be a mistake. Annual exams are an important way to identify problems before they get out of control. They also note that it’s important to push through your fears for the sake of yourself and your loved ones. Most men recognize the need to eat a healthy diet and get plenty of exercise. However, a new survey conducted by The Harris Poll for Orlando Health has found that they may be missing out on another vital piece of the wellness puzzle: seeing their personal physician for regular checkups. According to the survey, 33 percent of men believe that annual checkups are unnecessary. In addition, around 65 percent of them hold the belief that they are naturally healthier than their peers. The survey also found that, while men might not be talking with their doctor, they are seeking out health information on the internet. About two-thirds of them reported getting advice via social media. Another important finding was that men tended to put the needs of others first, even when it comes to their pets. Around 40 percent of them said they prioritize their dog or cat’s health before their own. Why annual exams are so important A professor of urology and director of men’s health at Desai Sethi Urology Institute, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, said even if you think you are healthy and feel fine, it’s important to have an annual physical. Between the ages of 20 to 55, there is a decline in the number of men visiting their doctor. However, he believes that these are the years when they should be seeking out preventative and wellness care. Cardiovascular disease and cancer are often the underlying diseases, which can be cured or avoided if we detect them earlier. There are several conditions — like high blood pressure, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and abnormal blood lipids — that can contribute to a major cardiovascular event that is fatal in up to 30 percent of cases in men. Also, endocrine disorders, sleep apnea, peripheral vascular disease, cancer, drug and alcohol dependency, depression, and many others can be missed.

Running Addiction: How Exercise Can Become an Unhealthy Obsession

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3 A running addiction can occur when a person develops an almost compulsive obsession with the sport. Running can be particularly addictive because of what is known as “runner’s high,” the elated feeling that results from hormones in the body getting released from physical activity and endorphins. A new study looked at the increase in physical injuries that can result from an addiction to running. Top of the list are stress fractures, or tiny cracks in a bone that are caused by overuse and repetitive force. Running is one of the most popular recreational athletic activities around. In fact, about 49.5 million people are active runners or joggers in the United States, according to a 2019 report from the Sports & Fitness Industry Association. While running can present numerous overall benefits for your body — from cardiovascular to mental health — an obsessive, unrelenting approach to running can pose severe risks. A new study out of Australia looks at the increase in physical injury that can result from an addiction to running. As with any other addiction, a running addiction is when a person develops an almost compulsive obsession with the sport. What new research found For the study, published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, a research team surveyed 246 recreational runners in the Netherlands who were between 19 and 77 years old. They wanted to examine how a person’s mental outlook when it came to the sport affected their risk for injuries tied to running. The results? Those who reported to be “obsessively passionate” runners, in which running consumed their lives to the extent that it harmed their relationships and day-to-day lives, were found to be more likely to develop a running injury than those who were “harmoniously passionate” about the sport. Those who were “harmoniously passionate” incorporated the activity more seamlessly into their lives. It didn’t dominate over all else. They showed the ability to compartmentalize more, showing signs of mentally recovering from a run as well as paying attention to early indications that they could be developing an injury. The research showed that older runners were able to separate themselves mentally from running much easier than people in the 20 to 34 age range. Female runners were also more likely to develop an injury than male runners. A new survey of 246 recreational runners found that more people who practiced an obsessive, addictive approach to the sport were more likely to develop injuries than their peers who showed a healthier integration of running into their lives. As with other addictions, running addiction is when participating in the sport becomes an almost compulsory activity, overpowering other aspects of a person’s life. Doctors suggest that runners limit the amount of running they do. It isn’t necessary to run 5 miles every day. Add other activities to your fitness regimen, like yoga or other interval workouts. Also, be sure to fuel with a healthy diet to prevent malnourishment and hormonal imbalances.

These Are the Symptoms of Heat Stroke That You Should Never Ignore

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2 With heat waves hitting Europe and the United States, health experts are warning people to be careful when exercising or working in the sun. Too much exposure to the heat can cause serious health problems, including heat stroke. Symptoms of heat-related illnesses are excessive sweating, light-headedness, and rapid breathing. If you exercise in the heat be sure to hydrate properly and try to work out before 10 a.m. or after 6 p.m. If you work in the sun, wear loose-fitting, light-colored clothes in addition to drinking plenty of water. It’s official. The Earth is hotter than ever. Last month, the planet experienced its warmest June in recorded history. Europe was one of the focal points of the hot weather. France recorded its highest temperature ever last Friday with the mercury rising to 114°F (46°C) in some parts of the country. Among those dealing with this hot weather are the players of the Women’s World Cup in France, who have been training and playing in temperatures hovering around 90°F (32°C) this week. Temperatures were also heating up across the United States with heat waves as far north as Alaska setting records. Scientists say climate change is likely the reason behind the heat waves, and health experts are urging people to be mindful of the risks of heat-related illness. More than 600 people in the United States die due to extreme heat every year. Heat-related illnesses such as heat stroke occur when the body struggles to cool itself. The human body uses sweat as a means of cooling off, but in extreme heat, sweating can’t always cool the body down. This can be particularly problematic in times of increased humidity. Experts advise that people outside in hot weather need to be aware of any symptoms of heat-related illness. Early symptoms of heat-related illness, if ignored, can develop into more serious heat stroke. When a person is suffering from heat stroke, their body temperature can rise to 104°F (40°C) or more. Symptoms include confusion, slurred speech, profuse sweating or hot, dry skin, loss of consciousness, seizures, and a high body temperature. These symptoms are considered emergencies and could lead to brain damage or death. You should call 911 immediately.

5 Items on Men’s Health Check List

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Screenshot 2022-06-18 080657 You don’t need statistics to tell you that men are more likely to avoid the doctor than women. Women are, in fact, 100 percent more likely to see a doctor for examinations, screenings, and preventive health consults, even though they’re far less likely to die from one of the top 10 causes of death. Here are the checkups you should be making time for now, so that you can have more time, period. Every Year:

  1. Blood Sugar Check
Diabetes, a chronic disease characterized by high blood sugars, greatly increases your risk of heart disease and other complications such as kidney damage and erectile dysfunction due to nerve damage. Annual glucose testing serves as the best method of diagnosing diabetes before it gets too advanced.
  1. Skin Check
Men with a family history of skin cancer, or who had significant sunburns when they were younger, are at high risk for skin cancer. Skin cancer can affect men of any age.
  1. PSA Test
One in seven men will develop prostate cancer. Other than skin cancer, it is the most common form of cancer in American men. The prostate-specific antigen, or PSA blood level test, along with digital rectal exams (DREs), are the best way to detect prostate cancer. Every 3 Years:
  1. Colonoscopy
A colonoscopy is a rite of passage for men (and women) over the age of 50, as that’s when colon cancer risk increases. Other risk factors include a medical history of inflammatory bowel disease or a diet high in animal fat. Every 4 Years:
  1. Blood Pressure and Cholesterol Check
High blood pressure is the number one cause of stroke in men, and it is very serious if left unmanaged. High cholesterol can also lead to serious cardiovascular problems, like heart attack or stroke. Men 20 and over should have their cholesterol checked every three to five years, and then yearly after the age of 50.