Heat Exhaustion With the lack of water in Colorado this summer, it’s expected to be a hot and dry one. A summer to be careful when dealing with the heat. And with excessive heat comes the increased risk for heat exhaustion. Know the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion, so you don’t fall victim to it. It can be prevented. Heat exhaustion is a condition where your body overheats. Symptoms may include heavy sweating and a rapid pulse. It's one of three heat-related syndromes, with heat cramps being the mildest and heatstroke being the most severe. Causes of heat exhaustion include exposure to high temperatures and often strenuous physical activity. Without prompt treatment, heat exhaustion can lead to heatstroke, a life-threatening condition. What are the Symptoms of Heat Exhaustion? Signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion may develop suddenly or over time, especially with prolonged periods of exercise and can include:
- Heavy sweating
- Cool, moist skin with goosebumps when in the heat
- Muscle cramps
- Weak, rapid pulse
- Low blood pressure upon standing
At What Point Do You Call Your Doctor?If you think you're experiencing heat exhaustion:
- Stop activity
- Move to a cooler place
- Drink cool water or sports drinks
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Did you know, an estimated 7.8 percent of Americans will experience PTSD at some point in their lives? PTSD is a psychiatric disorder that can occur following a traumatic experience or life-threatening events such as military combat, natural disasters, terrorist incidents, serious accidents, or physical or sexual assault. Women are twice as likely as men to develop PTSD, but all sorts of trauma can cause PTSD. About 3.6 percent of U.S. adults aged 18 to 54 (5.2 million people) have PTSD during the course of a given year. Most trauma survivors overcome the condition over time. However, some people will have recurring stress reactions that return on their own, or may even get worse over time. These individuals may develop PTSD. People who suffer from PTSD often relive traumatic experience through nightmares, flashbacks, have difficulty sleeping, and feel detached or estranged. Symptoms vary per person, but these symptoms can be severe enough and last long enough to significantly impair the person’s daily life. Although PTSD symptoms can begin immediately after a traumatic event, PTSD is not diagnosed unless the symptoms last for at least one month, and either cause significant distress or interfere with work or home life. A PTSD diagnosis must have three different types of symptoms:
- Re-experiencing symptoms
- Avoidance and numbing symptoms
- Arousal symptoms
Avoid the End Of Summer Rush - Get your School Physicals Now! Are parents really thinking about back to school physicals and immunizations already? … In June? The answer is YES! Parents that want to avoid making appointments during the back-to-school rush when you’ll need to wait a longer to get an appointment, are making preparations now. Shopping for school supplies can wait, making your school physical and immunization appointments is something you should do now to avoid putting yourself and your child in a bind. Pueblo School Physical Requirements Colorado schools require mandated vaccinations and physicals prior to starting the school year. What you might not know is that you could face long wait times and even shortages of certain vaccines if you wait until the last few weeks before school. Luckily School Districts 60 and 70 have their physical examination forms and immunization requirements posted on their respective websites so you can prepare and get appointments made now. You can find the CHSAA Sports Physical Form at the link. Make sure to print and bring it with you for your child's physical exam. Additionally, you can also find immunization forms for each school at the links below:
- Pueblo City Schools (district 60) - Immunization Requirements
- Pueblo County Schools (district 70) - Immunization Requirements
Ticks and Lyme Disease This year, happens to be another record high tick season. If you’re not familiar with Ticks, ticks are pesky small arachnid insects, similar to mites. They live by feeding on the blood of mammals, birds, and sometimes reptiles and amphibians. And, they also carry Lyme Disease. A recent CDC study found that cases of Lyme increased more than 80% in the last two years and that there are an estimated 300,000+ cases of Lyme infection in the U.S. each year. Lyme Disease is caused by bacteria transmitted to humans through a bite from an infected tick (black-legged or deer ticks). Lyme Disease can occur anywhere from 3 to 30 days after the bite and can have a wide-range of symptoms depending on the stage of the infection. In some cases, symptoms can appear months after the bite and are often undiagnosed due to the wide range of symptoms the disease can cause. With the influx of ticks this year, the following bullets outline how you can prevent tick bites, ultimately leading to lyme disease.
Before You Go Outdoors
- Know where to expect ticks. Ticks live in grassy, brushy, or wooded areas, or even on animals. Spending time outside walking your dog, camping, gardening, or hunting could bring you in close contact with ticks. Many people get ticks in their own yard or neighborhood.
- Treat clothing and gear with products containing 0.5% permethrin. Permethrin can be used to treat boots, clothing and camping gear and remain protective through several washings.
- Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellents containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus (OLE), para-menthane-diol (PMD), or 2-undecanone.
- Do not use insect repellent on babies younger than 2 months old.
- Do not use products containing OLE or PMD on children under 3 years old.
- Avoid Contact with Ticks
- Avoid wooded and brushy areas with high grass and leaf litter.
- Walk in the center of trails.
After You Come Indoors
- Check your clothing for ticks. Ticks may be carried into the house on clothing. Any ticks that are found should be removed. Tumble dry clothes in a dryer on high heat for 10 minutes to kill ticks on dry clothing after you come indoors. If the clothes are damp, additional time may be needed. If the clothes require washing first, hot water is recommended. Cold and medium temperature water will not kill ticks.
- Examine gear and pets. Ticks can ride into the home on clothing and pets, then attach to a person later, so carefully examine pets, coats, and daypacks.
- Shower soon after being outdoors. Showering within two hours of coming indoors has been shown to reduce your risk of getting Lyme disease and may be effective in reducing the risk of other tick-borne diseases. Showering may help wash off unattached ticks and it is a good opportunity to do a tick check.
- Check your body for ticks after being outdoors. Conduct a full body check upon return from potentially tick-infested areas, including your own backyard. Use a hand-held or full-length mirror to view all parts of your body. Check these parts of your body and your child’s body for ticks:
- Under the arms
- In and around the ears
- Inside belly button
- Back of the knees
- In and around the hair
- Between the legs
- Around the waist
Teens and Mental Health: The New American Academy of Pediatrics Report Did you know, as many as one in every five teens experience depression at some point during adolescence? Unfortunately, these teens often go undiagnosed and untreated, sometimes because of a lack of access to mental health specialists. Pediatricians and other primary care providers (doctors, Nurse Practitioners, Physician Assistants, etc.) are often in the best position to identify and help struggling teens. Recently the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) published updated medical guidelines on adolescent depression. This is a two part guideline was published last month. This is the first update to the guidelines in 10 years, serving as a tool for physicians and offering recommendations for the patient and family members’ participation. This important document can be found at the following links:
- Guidelines for Adolescent Depression in Primary Care:(GLAD-PC): Part I. Practice Preparation, Identification, Assessment, andInitial Management
- Guidelines for Adolescent Depression in Primary Care:(GLAD-PC): Part II. Treatment and Ongoing Management
- Providing a treatment team that includes the patient, family and access to mental health expertise
- Offering education and screening tools to identify, assess and diagnose patients
- Counseling on depression and options for management of the disorder
- Developing a treatment plan with specific goals in functioning in the home, peer and school settings.
- Developing a safety plan, as needed, which includes restricting lethal means, such as firearms in the home, and providing emergency communication methods.