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Back-to-School Tips for Kids on the Autism Spectrum

FRIDAY, Sept. 6, 2019 (Healthday News) — Heading back to school can be especially stressful for children with autism and their parents, but preparation and establishing a routine can make it easier.

The Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles has tips to help parents get a new school year off to a good start.

If time permits, ask to tour the school before classes resume. With permission, take pictures of the school, playground, classroom and teacher to create a picture book for your child.

Discuss your child’s needs with the principal. Ask about the school’s experience with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and how the staff works with children who have ASD.

If possible, meet teachers before school starts to talk about your child’s strengths and needs, seating and potential distractions.

Try to keep at least one thing consistent from the previous school year, especially if your child is changing classrooms, teachers or schools. For example, if you were happy with your child’s aide, try to keep the same one.

Look at pictures of friends and activities from the previous year with your child to encourage conversations about school.

Play “school” at home to help your child get used to expected activities and to ease fears.

If your child is starting at a new school and has a friend who’s doing the same, let your child know they will be together in their new adventure.

More information

The U.S. National Institute of Mental Health has more on autism.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: September 2019

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5 Health Tips to Promote Back-to-School Success

SATURDAY, Aug. 17, 2019 — Healthy kids do better in school — something parents need to think about as they prepare for a new academic year.

“As a parent and grandparent, I know that back-to-school time is a busy time. Yet, I encourage parents and students to be mindful of some health essentials to add to your to-do lists,” said Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Getting a flu shot this fall, frequent hand-washing, and staying active all contribute to a healthier and more productive academic year,” he said in a CDC news release.

Hand-washing with soap and water is one of the best ways to remove germs, avoid illness and prevent the spread of colds, flu and other diseases to others. At school, students should wash before eating; after using the toilet; and after blowing their nose, coughing or sneezing.

Healthy eating and physical activity are also important. Most children consume nearly half their calories at school, making it an important place to learn and practice healthy eating habits.

Physical activity can ease anxiety and help kids focus in school. Experts say children should get at least 60 minutes of physical activity a day. They point out that nearly 20% of U.S. kids are obese, making them more likely to have health problems such as asthma and high blood pressure, and to be shunned, depressed and have lower self-esteem.

Vaccinations are one of the most important ways to protect your child’s health. Getting immunized also protects classmates, friends, relatives and others in the community.

Electronic cigarettes are a growing problem among American youth. In 2018, more than 3.6 million young people — including 1 in 5 high school students and 1 in 20 middle school students — had vaped in the past month.

The nicotine in e-cigarettes can harm a youngster’s developing brain, especially areas responsible for learning, memory and attention.

Parents and teachers should explain why e-cigarettes are harmful for kids and set an example by being tobacco-free. Schools should adopt tobacco-free-school policies that include e-cigarettes.

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more on school health.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: August 2019

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Tips for Preventing Diverticulitis

FRIDAY, Aug. 9, 2019 — Although colonoscopy screens for cancer, it can also uncover a common condition called diverticulosis.

This is when one or more pockets develop in the colon wall, often in the large bowel. These pockets occur over time, possibly from not getting enough fiber in your diet or eating too much red meat. They’re so common that about 50% of people have them by age 50, according to the American Gastroenterological Association.

Problems can occur if a pocket gets infected, swollen and inflamed, which happens to about 5% of people with diverticulosis. This condition is called diverticulitis. “Attacks” of it can come with pain in the lower left abdomen, fever, chills and changes in stool. You may also experience nausea and vomiting.

Treatment for diverticulitis often centers on a short-term low-fiber diet to quiet the digestive tract, and possibly antibiotics to get rid of the infection.

Some people get repeated attacks. There’s also the possibility of developing a serious abscess in a pocket and needing surgery to remove the affected section of intestine if the damage is severe.

But you can take steps to lower the risk for repeated attacks and complications.

After — and only after — the infection clears, slowly reintroduce fiber to your diet by eating more whole grains; legumes including beans and lentils; vegetables; berries; fruits with edible skins; nuts and even popcorn. The goal is 25 grams of fiber a day for women, 38 for men. Replace at least some red meat with poultry and fish. Vigorous cardiovascular exercise also offers some protection.

Also, ask your doctor about any medications that might raise your risk of a flare. These could include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like aspirin or ibuprofen. Acetaminophen may be safer for you.

These same steps may help prevent diverticulosis or stop it from progressing to diverticulitis.

More information

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines list top fiber sources.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: August 2019

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Heat Bakes the Nation, Here Are Some Safety Tips

By Robert Preidt
HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, July 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) — The heat is on.

Across two-thirds of the United States, over 115 million Americans live where some level of heat alert is already in effect, and 290 million will see temperatures soar past 90 degrees at some point in the next week, USA Today reported Wednesday.

As a dome of high pressure settles over much of the eastern and mid-Atlantic states, the heat indexes (the real-feel temperatures) in many places will top 100 and approach 110 degrees or higher, according to the U.S. National Weather Service.

What to do when the temperatures soar so high that heat-related illnesses start to take their toll? One expert offers some sage advice.

“Weekend athletes exercising in the heat need to remember to keep ahead of their fluids. It’s vital to stay ahead of your thirst during these heat extremes, not just to drink when you are thirsty,” said Dr. Robert Glatter, an emergency physician at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City.

“Taking breaks is essential when intensely exercising in the heat for more than one hour. This includes rest, finding shade from the sun, and drinking water mixed with sugar and electrolytes. Salty pretzels, fruit and nuts are always a good option if you don’t have access to a drink with sugar and electrolytes,” Glatter noted.

If you exercise in the heat, try to do so early in the morning when humidity and heat from direct sunlight is low.

During heat waves, seniors are at greatly increased risk for heat stroke due to their reduced ability to sweat and therefore cool their bodies. They also may be taking medications to treat blood pressure, which can reduce their ability to sweat, Glatter said.

Heat stroke is a medical emergency that requires immediate treatment. Call 911 in such cases.

Medications such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) and ibuprofen (Motrin) do not reduce high core body temperatures, and could even be harmful. Patients need rapid cooling to reduce high core temperatures.

Along with blood pressure medications, antihistamines and medications to treat anxiety and depression may also increase the risk for heat stroke by reducing a person’s ability to sweat, Glatter noted.

Continued

“Hypertension, coronary artery disease and kidney disease — common in the senior population — all elevate the risk for developing heat stroke, due to reduced cardiac reserve and plasticity of blood vessels. These are major risk factors for heat stroke,” he explained.

During heat waves, check on seniors to see how they’re feeling. Make sure they have access to air conditioning, plenty of cool fluids, and create a heat response plan to help reduce the risk of heat stroke, Glatter advised.

Children are also at increased risk for heat stroke because they can’t regulate their body temperature as well as adults, and they may not drink enough in hot weather.

Everyone should drink plenty of cool fluids in the heat. Water is the best choice, but low-sugar sports drinks are recommended if you’re working in the heat or exercising for more than one hour. Don’t drink alcohol or sugary drinks, such as soda, in the heat because they can cause dehydration due to excessive water loss, Glatter said.

“Never leave a child or a senior in a parked car in the hot sun. In temperatures as low as 70 degrees Fahrenheit outside, the interior of the car can reach 90 to 100 degrees in as little as 20 to 30 minutes. When it’s 90 degrees outside, the interior can heat up to 110 to 120 degrees in 30 minutes and be lethal in that short time frame,” Glatter said.

WebMD News from HealthDay

Sources

SOURCES: Lenox Hill Hospital, news release, July 17, 2019;USA Today

Copyright © 2013-2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

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WebMD Health

10 Anti-Aging Hair Care Tips

photo of mature woman outside

Your hair, like your taste in music and comfort level with social media, can give away your age. Hair changes with age just like the rest of your body. “Hair follicles get smaller, sebum production declines, and some people lose pigment cells and go gray,” says Francesca Fusco, MD, assistant clinical professor of dermatology at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City.

As hormones change, the hair sheds more and grows back more slowly, causing it to thin, says David Kingsley, PhD, president of the World Trichology Society. In addition, hormones trigger a reduction in sebum production that can leave the hair feeling dryer. At the same time, pigment cells in the hair bulb wane over time, Fusco says, so hair turns gray.

But while your hair changes with age, you can update it. We asked the experts to share their best anti-aging hair care tips and tricks to keep your strands looking healthy and youthful to represent your individual style.

See Your Doctor

“Address any thinning early,” Fusco says. “We have treatments like minoxidil and Propecia that work to regrow hair,” she says. “But it’s best to rule out other causes like anemia, iron deficiency, autoimmune disorder, or the side effects of medication.”

Get the Right Cut

“As your hair thins, it’s not a bad idea to cut your hair a bit shorter, but it’s a myth that you have to cut your hair short once you reach a certain age,” says Nunzio Saviano, owner of Nunzio Saviano Salon in New York City. “You can have beautiful hair that’s below your shoulders as long as it’s cut in longer layers that move together and give the illusion of fullness.” He explains that having too many layers only emphasizes thinning texture, but longer layers hold shape and look full.

Delve Into Your Diet

Protein and iron are the two most important things to have in your diet for healthy hair,” Fusco says. “If your diet is restricted, it can affect hair loss.” She advises asking your doctor about a blood test and a medical history to check for a deficiency in iron, vitamin D, or other minerals. Once that’s ruled out, Fusco likes the supplement Nutrafol because it contains zinc and other antioxidants that promote hair growth. “There is good research, and my patients have been happy with the results,” she says.

Continued

When in Doubt, Moisturize

Saviano tells his clients to avoid drying mousses and gels because they can cause hair to look dull and strip away shine. His trick: “I like to use mousse designed for curly hair because it tends to be moisturizing and less drying for the hair,” he says. Fusco recommends rich conditioning treatments to hydrate aging strands. She likes macadamia nut oil masks once a week.

Brush With Greatness

There’s an old wives’ tale that you should brush 100 strokes a day. That isn’t necessary, Saviano says. But gentle brushing can encourage healthy blood flow to the scalp, which is good for the hair. In fact, some research shows that scalp massage may help increase hair thickness. He suggests using a Mason Pearson soft boar bristle brush because the natural bristles are gentle on delicate strands and will distribute the hair’s natural conditioning oils.

Check the Label of Your Lather

“Look for a zinc pyrithione shampoo — it’s usually in dandruff formulas,” Fusco says. She says the ingredient is hydrating and soothing, whether you have dandruff or not, and can help anyone feeling tightness or itchiness due to decreased sebum production on the scalp.

Keep Your Cool

Heat styling can be especially damaging to thinning hair fibers. The stress can cause breakage, and since the hair is producing less sebum, you have less natural protection against the heat. Fusco warns against using too many heat tools and recommends keeping any time you expose hair to flat irons or blow dryers to a minimum.

Stay Away From Spray

Jet Rhys, owner of Jet Rhys Salon in Solana Beach, CA, tells her clients not to use too much hair spray. The drying alcohols in these stylers can cause hair to become dry and brittle.

Build Body

“There is a wonderful product called Toppik that uses vegetable fibers to camouflage areas of thinning hair,” says Mona Gohara, MD, an associate clinical professor of dermatology at Yale University. She says it’s very helpful in creating the appearance of hair thickness.

Gloss Over Gray

Gray hair naturally has a wiry, dull texture that reflects less light, Rhys says.

“Semi-permanent or permanent color can improve the texture and add body, but you don’t have to completely cover your gray,” she says. “You can just add a few ribbons to add some shine.” She also says that color has the perk of increasing volume, so it helps thinning hair feel fuller as well. “A few highlights around the temple can make a big difference in creating the look of volume and shine,” Saviano says.

Find more articles, browse back issues, and read the current issue of WebMD Magazine.

WebMD Magazine – Feature Reviewed by Mohiba Tareen, MD on March 26, 2019

Sources

SOURCES:

Francesca Fusco, MD, assistant clinical professor of dermatology, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York City.

David Kingsley, PhD, president, World Trichology Society.

Nunzio Saviano, owner, Nunzio Saviano Salon, New York City.

Mona Gohara, MD, associate clinical professor of dermatology, Yale University.

Jet Rhys, owner, Jet Rhys Salon, Solana Beach, CA.

Harvard Health Letter: “Treating female pattern hair loss.”

Journal of Drugs in Dermatology: “A Six-Month, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study Evaluating the Safety and Efficacy of a Nutraceutical Supplement for Promoting Hair Growth in Women with Self-Perceived Thinning Hair.”

Eplasty: “Standardized Scalp Massage Results in Increased Hair Thickness by Inducing Stretching Forces to Dermal Papilla Cells in the Subcutaneous Tissue.”

© 2019 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

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WebMD Health

‘Fall Back’: Tips for Navigating the Time Change

By E.J. Mundell

HealthDay Reporter

FRIDAY, Nov. 2, 2018 (HealthDay News) — The hour you “lost” with daylight savings time in the spring you “gain back” on Sunday, when clocks are set an hour back.

And every time shift takes a subtle toll on the human mind and body, experts say.

Still, “for most people, it is easier to stay up an hour later than to go to bed an hour earlier,” said Dr. Steven Feinsilver, who directs sleep medicine at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. “This is thought to be because for most of us our ‘internal clock’ is closer to a 25-hour cycle than a 24-hour cycle.”

He said the furthest you can comfortably shift your internal clock is about an hour a day, and “what sets [your] clock is the wake time more than the bedtime.”

Feinsilver said that to get back to a normal sleep rhythm, “set the alarm for your target time and get out of bed when it goes off, even if your night sleep was not perfect.

“For the time change, set the alarm for Monday — for most of us the Sunday morning wake-up is less critical — and enjoy the extra hour,” Feinsilver said.

A single night of imperfect sleep is easily gotten over — “it is when bad sleep becomes a habit we get into trouble,” he said. Feinsilver’s advice is to try to sleep a regular seven to eight hours — and “stick to a constant wake time.”

Triggers such as light, food and exercise are the cues that tell your body what time it is.

“Getting exposed to light early in the day wakes us up,” Feinsilver said. “This is harder in the winter when there is less and later light, but the autumn time shift helps a bit.”

Dr. Daniel Barone is a neurologist and sleep medicine expert at the Center for Sleep Medicine at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center in New York City. He said that people shouldn’t expect that the extra hour of sleep they’ll get on Sunday will erase any accumulated “sleep debt.”

Continued

“We as a society sleep one hour less than we did 100 years ago, so we are still ‘behind the clock’ so to speak when it comes to being sleep-deprived,” Barone said.

He said the body’s sleep clock can be directly affected as autumn days grow shorter and people spend more time indoors. The body manufactures vitamin D via sunlight’s action on the skin, and too little vitamin D can affect sleep and emotions.

“When you’re not getting as much sunlight, it has an effect on your mood,” Barone said. For some people, this can even mean the onset of a kind of depression known as seasonal affective disorder (SAD).

Barone offered these tips for better sleep:

  • Switch to LED lightbulbs. They’re made to simulate sunlight and can help you maintain a healthy circadian rhythm as seasons change.
  • Cut out the evening nap. Dozing off after dinner sends confusing signals to your brain that can make bedtime later more challenging.
  • Try mindful meditation. It can cut stress and encourage healthy sleep.
  • Ban TVs, smartphones and laptops from the bedroom. The backlight display can disrupt sleep if used before lights-out.
  • Keep bedrooms dark. Light creeping in can send a wake-up signal to the brain.

If you’re still having trouble sleeping, consult a sleep specialist for testing, Barone said.

“If you’re continually waking up in the night or you’re constantly waking up tired, a sleep test is definitely warranted,” he said.

“We should view sleep as something that’s sacred,” Barone said. “Our bodies are designed to get seven to nine hours. In this 24-hour society, a lot of times the amount of sleep we get suffers. We should focus on getting good-quality sleep and dealing with any problems that exist.”

WebMD News from HealthDay

Sources

SOURCES: Steven Feinsilver, M.D., director, sleep medicine, Lenox Hill Hospital, New York City; Daniel Barone, M.D., neurologist and sleep medicine expert, Center for Sleep Medicine, New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center, New York City

Copyright © 2013-2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved.


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Diet Tips That Go Beyond Calorie Cutting

FRIDAY, Sept. 28, 2018 — Calories in must be less than calories out — that’s the basic rule of dieting.

But there’s more to losing weight because more than hunger often motivates people to eat. So how can you find effective motivation to change your eating habits and lose weight?

Try these five keys to weight-loss success.

  • Monitoring your diet and exercise efforts is job number one to stay the course. Choose the method you’re most comfortable with, from pen and paper to an online journal or app. Be sure to include daily food intake, exercise output and your weight changes.
  • Accountability is crucial. That’s why regularly checking in with a weight-loss coach can keep you on track, especially if he or she provides personalized feedback. Yes, this is an expense, but one that could be offset by smaller grocery bills.
  • Be part of an in-person or even an online weight-loss group for the social benefits along with the opportunity to share tips.
  • A weight-loss group may also provide you with another essential — a structured plan to follow. This should include diet and exercise specifics, plus behavior modifications to help you break any specific habits that led to your weight gain.
  • Above all, when you’re choosing a diet to follow or a program to join, make sure it’s tailored to your needs, tastes and goals. If it doesn’t feel right or fit into your schedule, you’ll have a hard time sticking with it.

There’s no single strategy for weight loss. Though cutting portions is a must, these other steps are what enable you to shift your focus away from habits that led to weight gain.

More information

To choose a safe and successful weight-loss program, visit the U.S. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

© 2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: September 2018

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5 Tips to Manage Your Child’s Asthma

SATURDAY, Sept. 22, 2018 — For many children with asthma, coughing is an early warning sign of a flare-up, an expert says.

Understanding asthma and knowing what to expect can help parents prevent or lessen the severity of asthma attacks, said Dr. Ronald Ferdman, a pediatric allergist-immunologist at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles.

He provided the following tips to help parents protect their children’s health:

  • Know the triggers. It’s important to minimize children’s exposure to asthma triggers you can control, such as tobacco smoke, dust and pet dander. Colds and weather changes are out of your control, but knowing they can exacerbate asthma can keep you ahead of flare-ups.
  • Don’t limit physical activity. In general, it’s better to give children a dose of their quick-relief medication (albuterol or levalbuterol) before they exercise and sometimes afterwards.
  • Be prepared. Store quick-relief medicine at every location where your child spends time, including school, home or day care. Refill these prescriptions before they run out.
  • Don’t wait to medicate. Any respiratory symptoms, such as coughing, may be an early sign of an asthma flare-up. Don’t wait until a child is wheezing to give asthma medication. It is safer to give children a dose of their rescue medicine early — even if it’s not entirely clear if their asthma is flaring up — than to wait until symptoms become severe. Lung infections are the most common trigger of asthma attacks in children. Kids with asthma should get a dose of their quick-relief medication as soon as they develop symptoms of a cold.
  • Stick to the treatment plan. Taking controller (preventative) medication each day is the most effective way to control chronic asthma. Children should take this medication even if they don’t have symptoms. This simply means their treatment is working. Stopping this medication without talking to a child’s doctor is risky.

With proper management, children with asthma can exercise normally, sleep well at night, attend school and avoid the emergency room. Parents shouldn’t settle for less, Ferdman said.

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine provides more on asthma in children.

© 2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: September 2018

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Tips and Tricks For Tick Prevention

June 21, 2018 — With tick populations and tick-borne diseases on the rise, some people are turning to unconventional methods of prevention.

In one Pennsylvania town, they’re trying opossums.

The Pocono Wildlife Rehabilitation and Education Center in Stroudsburg says that many people have requested opossums to release into their yards. The popular program got started in 2016.

“Opossums not only eat a lot of dead things, but they really love to eat ticks,” says Kathy Uhler, director of the center. “One of these opossums can eat up to 5,000 ticks a year. In the 38 years I’ve been working with them, I have never seen one tick, louse, or flea on an opossum. They are meticulously clean.”

Pennsylvania leads the nation in confirmed cases of Lyme disease.

“Lots of people pick the opossums up on the side of the road and call us. A lot of times they’ll go ahead and put them into their yards. It makes them feel good that they’re releasing tick control into their yard, and since there aren’t any diseases that people can get from opossums, there really is no downside,” Uhler says.

Experts, however, warn that opossums can still be dangerous to humans.

“Although generally gentle and placid, opossums have 50 teeth and will use them to protect themselves, or their young. So avoid close encounters,” the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife advises.

Uhler says the center takes in around 75 to 100 opossums per year. The only requirements for having one released at a home are an acre of land, no cats, and minimal car traffic.

“People tend to kill all the predators around their houses, and then they wonder why they have diseases. Our bigger point is to get people to allow that balance,” Uhler says.

Tick tubes are another method gaining traction in the Northeast as a method of tick prevention.

Available pre-made or to make on your own, these small tubes are filled with insecticide-soaked cotton and placed in areas where mice run around. White-footed mice, which are major carriers of deer ticks, remove the cotton from the tube and build nests with it. The laced cotton kills any ticks on the mice.

But how well they work isn’t known, and there is no real way to measure results.

David Brooks, a blogger and reporter for the Concord Monitor newspaper in New Hampshire, is testing the tubes for himself using recycled household materials.

He received criticism for using permethrin, a known killer of bees and other wildlife, and admitted he wasn’t sure it would do any good.

“In this, using tick tubes is an act of faith, like lighting a candle in church or casting a vote for president. It may not make a difference, but at least it makes me feel better,” Brooks wrote in his blog post.

“The Tick App” is part of a research study by Columbia University and the University of Wisconsin — Madison. Both universities are members of the CDC Regional Centers of Excellence in Vector-Borne Diseases. It helps to track tick concentration and educate its users on tick prevention and removal.

The app is currently based in New York, Michigan, and Wisconsin — all areas with high rates of Lyme disease. “The Tick App” informs individuals of tick activity by having its users report ticks in different areas.

When users download the app, they make a profile, consent to being part of the study, and answer a questionnaire. After the profile is complete, users start a daily diary to track their encounters with ticks.

A tick diary entry is short. It asks if the user found any ticks on family members or pets, what activities they completed, and if they used any tick prevention methods. There is an additional option to upload a photo of the tick for the researchers to view.

Once you start the diary, the app sends daily reminders to update. Researchers ask users to complete at least 15 reports, and the program automatically records users’ locations and the weather information in the area.

The app also provides a tick identification guide, information on how to remove a tick, and other helpful links.

As ticks have expanded to live all around the U.S., experts say there are tried-and-true ways to keep them away.

Simple landscape changes can create an unfriendly environment for a variety of ticks and hosts, and using insect repellents will help fight the pests.

  1. Mind the grass. Ticks are often found in the underbrush of tall grass, where they latch onto a host and crawl up the body. Keep lawns trimmed at home, and walk in the center of any trails. Clear leaf litter regularly, especially around the edge of your yard and around your home.
  2. Build a barrier. Placing a barrier between lawns and wooded areas can help keep ticks from moving into residential areas. If your house is near a wooded area, place a 3-foot wide barrier made of wood chips or gravel at the edge of your lawn.
  3. Use a pesticide. Spraying for ticks can help minimize exposure to these pests. Always research before using a pesticide to ensure that you are using the best type of pesticide and spraying at the right time of year.
  4. Repellents are key. There are many repellents available to keep ticks away. When choosing a spray repellent, select one with at least a 20% concentration of DEET, picaridin, or IR3535. There are natural alternatives available, including ones made from garlic oil, mixed essential oils, and fungus. Treat all clothing with permethrin, a chemical that paralyzes and kills ticks. A University of Rhode Island study found that people wearing permethrin-treated socks and shoes were 74 times more protected from ticks latching onto their shoes and legs.
  5. Check it out. If you have been in a grassy or wooded area, do a body check in the shower. Bathing within 2 hours of being outside can wash off any unattached ticks and has been shown to reduce the risk of Lyme disease. Be sure to check in these places:
  • Hairline
  • Inside and behind ears
  • Back of neck
  • Armpits
  • Inside belly button
  • Around waistline
  • Groin
  • Legs
  • Behind knees
  • Between toes

Additionally, remember to check all pets for ticks regularly. Ticks can come into a home on a pet and attach to a family member later.

Sources

David Brooks, reporter, Concord (New Hampshire) Monitor.

Kathy Uhler, director, Pocono Wildlife Rehabilitation and Education Center.

CDC: “Preventing tick bites.”

CDC: “Preventing ticks in the yard.”

CDC: “Natural Tick Repellents and Pesticides.”

WFMZ-TV: “Opossums help deal with ticks.”

Granite Geek: “Dryer lint vs. Lyme disease – let the battle begin!”

URI TickEncounter Resource Center: “Tick Bite Protection with Permethrin-Treated Summer Clothing.”

National Pesticide Information Center: “Permethrin.”

The Tick App.

Stafford, K. Tick Management Handbook, The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, 2004.

© 2018 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

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Tips to Keep From Overeating at Party Time

THURSDAY, June 21, 2018 — Dieting can be hard on your social life.

You might think it’s easier to avoid social events like cocktail parties and even family gatherings because of the temptation to overeat. But there’s no reason to deny yourself the joy of being with friends and loved ones when simple tricks will help you stay on course with your diet and still have a great time.

The first rule is don’t arrive ravenous. That will just make it harder to eat smart when facing tempting food. Take the edge off hunger before you go out with a healthy snack that’s high in fiber, such as whole grain crackers with avocado slices or an ounce of nuts.

Once at the party, make it harder to grab food by holding a glass of seltzer in one hand. Take a sip every time a tray of hors d’oeuvres goes by. You don’t have to deny yourself all treats, but it’s easy to lose count if you take a tidbit from every platter that’s offered.

Decide on two or three nibbles of more indulgent food. In general, your calories will go farther if you stay away from hot canapes, which are often pastry-based. Instead choose protein choices, like shrimp and chicken. If a cocktail hour will be followed by a full meal, focus on low-calorie fill-ups like raw vegetables, but skip the dip.

If the food is set up as a buffet, the rule here is to fill one plate with small portions of the items you really want to try and then move to another part of the room. Circulate and focus on the people rather than going back for a refill. It’s a difficult behavior shift to make, but one that’s essential in relearning priorities that minimize the emphasis you put on food.

Bonus tip: Offer to help your host with clean-up — keeping busy will keep you from overeating and give you “favored guest” status.

More information

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has more tips to help you navigate a buffet the healthy way.

© 2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: June 2018

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Sensible Sensimilla: Life Pro Tips for the Sensible Stoner

Hello! Welcome to Sensible Sensimillia. We want to take back the word “stoner.” Today’s cannabis consumers are everything from blue-collar workers to the entertainment elite.This weekly feature will provide tips and tools for the sensible stoner — people who are not defined by what they consume, but the lifestyle they live. Sensible Sensimillia, practical life […]
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Summer Camp Tips for Kids With Asthma, Allergies

SATURDAY, Feb. 24, 2018 — Your children may already be looking forward to summer camp. But when it comes to kids with asthma or allergies, parents need to take extra steps in planning their outdoor experience.

“Kids with allergies and asthma need an extra layer of preparation to ensure they stay healthy and enjoy their adventure,” said Dr. Bradley Chipps, president of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology.

“Parents have to make sure they have packed the right medications and that there’s been communication with the camp in advance to keep their child’s symptoms under control,” he explained in a college news release.

Before the child goes to camp, consult with the youngster’s allergist to assess whether the medications are effective and symptoms are under control. It’s a good idea to make any necessary adjustments in advance, Chipps said. You also should ask the allergist to prepare a personalized plan for your child that can be shared with camp staff.

If food allergies are an issue, be sure your child knows how to watch out for allergens. The child should also always carry an epinephrine auto injector, and a spare. Chipps recommends talking to kitchen staff and informing camp counselors and medical staff about the foods that can trigger an allergic reaction in your child.

Be sure your child has all the necessary medical supplies and that prescriptions are the correct dose and up to date, he added.

If you think your child’s allergies and asthma are too severe for a regular summer camp, check into specialty camps, Chipps said. For example, some camps are just for children with asthma or just for those with food allergies, and they have specialized staff and medical providers.

More information

The American Academy of Family Physicians has more on food allergies.

© 2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: February 2018

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Struggling to Quit Smoking? Try These Tips

SUNDAY, Jan. 28, 2018 — If your New Year’s resolution was to quit smoking, it’s probably time to consider ways to improve your chances of success.

For starters, list your reasons for wanting to quit, suggest experts from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Want to improve your health? Save money? Smell and taste food better?

Those are common reasons smokers cite for wanting to kick the habit — something that nearly 70 percent of adult smokers say they want to do, according to the FDA.

Reviewing your reasons for wanting to quit can help you when you get the urge to smoke.

Also, don’t be too hard on yourself. Quitting smoking can be difficult so you might have to try a few times before you’re successful. Research has shown that trying but failing to quit can lead to more attempts in the future, and that it often takes multiple attempts to finally quit smoking.

The agency also notes that there are a number of FDA-approved products that can help you quit smoking.

These include nicotine replacement therapy products. They provide controlled amounts of nicotine, to reduce smoking withdrawal symptoms and cravings. Two types are available by prescription — a nicotine nasal spray and a nicotine inhaler. Three types can be bought over-the-counter — nicotine gum, skin patches and lozenges.

Their effectiveness can vary, but these products can double your chances of successfully quitting smoking, according to the FDA.

There are also FDA-approved prescription drug products without nicotine that can help you quit smoking. Just be sure to read and carefully follow the directions for prescribed smoking-cessation products and talk to your doctor if you have questions.

Anyone younger than 18 who wants to quit smoking should talk to a health care professional about whether they should use smoking-cessation products, according to the FDA.

More information

The American Cancer Society offers a guide to quitting smoking.

© 2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: January 2018

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