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Cataract What You Should Know

What causes cataracts?

The lens lies behind the iris and the pupil. It works much like a camera lens. It focuses light onto the retina at the back of the eye, where an image is recorded. The lens also adjusts the eye’s focus, letting us see things clearly both up close and far away. The lens is made of mostly water and protein. The protein is arranged in a precise way that keeps the lens clear and lets light pass through it.

But as we age, some of the protein may clump together and start to cloud a small area of the lens. This is a cataract. Over time, the cataract may grow larger and cloud more of the lens, making it harder to see.

Smoking and diabetes contribute to the development of cataract. Or, it may be that the protein in the lens just changes from the wear and tear it takes over the years.

 

How do cataracts affect vision?

Age-related cataracts can affect vision in two ways:

  1. Clumps of protein reduce the sharpness of the image reaching the retina.
  2. The lens consists mostly of water and protein. When the protein clumps up, it clouds the lens and reduces the light that reaches the retina. The clouding may become severe enough to cause blurred vision. Most age-related cataracts develop from protein clumpings. When a cataract is small, the cloudiness affects only a small part of the lens. You may not notice any changes in your vision. Cataracts tend to “grow” slowly, so vision gets worse gradually. Over time, the cloudy area in the lens may get larger, and the cataract may increase in size. Seeing may become more difficult. Your vision may get duller or blurrier.
  3. The clear lens slowly changes to a yellowish/brownish color, adding a brownish tint to vision. As the clear lens slowly colors with age, your vision gradually may acquire a brownish shade. At first, the amount of tinting may be small and may not cause a vision problem. Over time, the cataract usually increases in size. This gradual change in the amount of tinting does not affect the sharpness of the image transmitted to the retina. If you have advanced lens discoloration, you may not be able to identify blues and purples. You may be wearing what you believe to be a pair of black socks, only to find out from friends that you are wearing purple socks.

 

When are you most likely to have a cataract?

The term “age-related” is a little misleading. You don’t have to be a senior citizen to get this type of cataract. In fact, people can have an age-related cataract in their 40s and 50s. But during middle age, most cataracts are small and do not affect vision. It is after age 60 that most cataracts cause problems with a person’s vision.

 

Who is at risk for cataract?

The risk of cataract increases as you get older. Other risk factors for cataract include:

  • Certain diseases (for example, diabetes).
  • Personal behavior (smoking, alcohol use).
  • The environment (prolonged exposure to ultraviolet sunlight).

 

What are the symptoms of a cataract?

The most common symptoms of a cataract are:

  • Cloudy or blurry vision.
  • Colors seem faded.
  • Headlights, lamps, or sunlight may appear too bright. A halo may appear around lights.
  • Poor night vision.
  • Double vision or multiple images in one eye. (This symptom may clear as the cataract gets larger.)
  • Frequent prescription changes in your eyeglasses or contact lenses.

These symptoms also can be a sign of other eye problems. If you have any of these symptoms, check with your eye care professional.

 

Are there different types of cataract?

Yes. Although most cataracts are related to aging, there are other types of cataract:

  • Secondary cataract. Cataracts can form after surgery for other eye problems, such as glaucoma. Cataracts also can develop in people who have other health problems, such as diabetes. Cataracts are sometimes linked to steroid use.
  • Traumatic cataract. Cataracts can develop after an eye injury, sometimes years later. • Congenital cataract. Some babies are born with cataracts or develop them in childhood, often in both eyes. These cataracts may be so small that they do not affect vision. If they do, the lenses may need to be removed.
  • Radiation cataract. Cataracts can develop after exposure to some types of radiation.

 

Source https://www.nei.nih.gov/sites/default/files/health-pdfs/WYSK_Cataract_English_Sept2015_PRINT.pdf


National Men’s Health Week

National Men’s Health Week is observed each year leading up to Father’s Day. This week is a reminder for men to take steps to be healthier, but they don’t have to do it alone! Whether it’s your husband, partner, dad, brother, son, or friend you can help support the health and safety of the men in your life.

Set an Example with Healthy Habits

You can support the men in your life by having healthy habits yourself and by making healthy choices.

  • Eat healthy and include a variety of fruits and vegetables every day. Fruits and vegetables have many vitamins and minerals that may help protect you from chronic diseases. Limit foods and drinks high in calories, sugar, salt, fat, and alcohol.
  • Regular physical activity has many benefits. It can help control your weight, reduce your risk of heart disease and some cancers, and can improve your mental health and mood. Find fun ways to be active together. Adults need 2½ hours of physical activity each week.
  • Set an example by choosing not to smoke and encourage the men in your life to quit smoking. Quitting smoking has immediate and long-term benefits. You lower your risk for different types of cancer, and don’t expose others to secondhand smoke—which causes health problems. Call your state’s tobacco quitline (for English speakers, call 1-800-QUIT-NOW [1-800-784-8669]; for Spanish speakers, call 1-855-DÉJELO-YA [1-855-335-3569])
  • Help the men in your life recognize and reduce stress. Physical or emotional tension are often signs of stress. They can be reactions to a situation that causes you to feel threatened or anxious. Learn ways to manage stress including finding support, eating healthy, exercising regularly, and avoiding drugs and alcohol.

Remind Men to Get Regular Checkups

Encourage men to see a doctor or health professional for regular checkups and to learn about their family health history.

  • Men can prepare for doctor’s visits. Certain diseases and conditions may not have symptoms, so checkups help identify issues early or before they can become a problem.
  • It’s important for men (and women) to understand their family health history, which is a written or graphic record of the diseases and health conditions present in your family. It is helpful to talk with family members about health history, write this information down, and update it from time to time.

Know the Signs and Symptoms of a Heart Attack

Every 40 seconds someone in the U.S. has a heart attack. Know the signs of a heart attack and if you think you or someone you know is having a heart attack call 911 immediately. Major signs of a heart attack include:

  • Pain or discomfort in the jaw, neck, or back
  • Feeling weak, light-headed, or faint
  • Chest pain or discomfort
  • Pain or discomfort in arms or shoulder
  • Shortness of breath

Encourage Men to Seek Help for Depression

Depression is one of the leading causes of disease or injury worldwide for both men and women. Learn to recognize the signs and how to help the men in your life.

  • Signs of depression include persistent sadness, grumpiness, feelings of hopelessness, tiredness and decreased energy, and thoughts of suicide.
  • Those that suffer from depression or anxiety should seek help as early as possible. If you or someone you care about is in crisis, please seek help immediately.
    • Call 911
    • Visit a nearby emergency department or your health care provider’s office
    • Call the toll-free, 24-hour hotline of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255); TTY: 1-800-799-4TTY (4889) to talk to a trained counselor

Source https://www.cdc.gov/features/healthymen/index.html


Health And Wellness In The Workplace

Health And Wellness In The Workplace

office workout2People are spending less time on physical labor and more time on mental pursuits, which can decrease fitness dramatically. At the same time, no matter how active they are at work, unhealthy eating habits are rampant, causing many illnesses and conditions, including obesity. One of the primary functions of a health and wellness in the workplace is to aid workers with both information, as well as concrete methods to live a healthier lifestyle.

Health and wellness programs provide not only benefits for employees, but employers, too.

Job satisfaction is important to productivity. If you have employees that are discontent, absenteeism and turnover will be greater. Training new employees becomes a high cost to the company. Illness also affects expenses, with higher insurance rates and less productivity. Health and wellness programs can be a way for you to aid improving your employees life, while improving the overall functioning of the business.

Health and wellness programs should be tailor-made.

No two companies or their workforce are exactly alike. That’s why every workforce program should be custom designed for your employees. People with an older population of workers will have different needs from those who have a younger group. Companies with sedentary types of jobs, need more emphasis on somethings, such as more exercise, than companies whose workers are physically active. When you’re adopting a program, talk to your employees and find out what they want. It makes the program more valuable. Design the program to address your most pressing problems.

Take a leadership role in the program.

Change the vending machines to provide healthier options, such as fresh fruit. What employees drink makes a difference in their health, too. Soft drinks are sugary and contribute to bad health. Provide bottled water for employees instead. Serve healthy food at meetings and provide nutritional information, which include menus. Some companies even offer a discount for a visit with a nutritionist or personal trainer.

  • Make getting healthy more fun. Have a healthy brown bag day. Form teams, encouraging everyone brings in a healthy meal. The team that has the most participants or healthiest meals wins a predetermined prize.
  • Don’t forget about taking breaks more frequently. Sitting for longer than 50 minutes without standing and moving, can wipe out many of the benefits of exercise. Encourage shorter, but more frequent breaks.
  • Arrange for onsite group workouts and if possible, have them led by a personal trainer. You’ll be amazed at how inexpensive per employee this type of benefit can be.
  • Don’t forget about providing for good mental health. Mental health affects every area of the employees life and affects productivity and enjoyment at work. Letting people know you care should be top priority.

For more information, contact us today at Travel Trim


Best Workplace Wellness Programs

Best Workplace Wellness Programs

happy employees2Helping your employees stay healthy, is not only important for them, it is also important for you. The healthier your employees are, the less they’ll be susceptible to everything from a virus outbreak to chronic conditions. That improves attendance, lowers insurance cost and improves the overall workplace satisfaction of each employee. That’s why offering workplace wellness programs not only benefit you, but also your staff.

The best workplace wellness programs provide guidance for a healthy diet.

The leading cause of preventable deaths in America today is obesity. Obesity can lead to chronic disease, such as heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, certain cancers, gallbladder disease and gallstones, osteoarthritis, gout and certain breathing problems, including sleep apnea and asthma. It contributes to the severity of diseases from viruses and bacteria, too. An unhealthy diet causes poor nutrition and also leads to a host of conditions and diseases. Finding and presenting ways to implement healthier eating habits, such as replacing sugary foods in vending machines, having healthy lunches at meetings and offering employee education in that area are important for a healthy workforce.

Encourage movement and exercise.

You can’t force anyone to exercise. It’s hard enough for some people to do it consistently, even when they initiate the program. You can improve your workplace program by encouraging an active break more often, finding ways to make work more active—like a waling meeting, starting a program to reward exercise and encouraging things like biking to work or bike sharing. Providing fitness training or video programs for fitness for all employees add to good health, but also create a less stressful workplace.

Good workplace health programs also focus on mental and smoking cessation.

Mental health and smoking cessation play a vital role in the health and happiness of each employee. Even mild depression can reduce productivity, while adding to employee stress and ultimately his or her physical health. Smoking is no longer the leading cause of preventable deaths, but it still takes its toll, not only in deaths, but on overall good health. Encouraging and even rewarding those who quit can help lower insurance costs, too.

  • Providing a financial well-being program helps employees avoid the pitfalls of poor planning and money management, reducing overall stress.
  • Good health programs develop when employees have input in what they want. Talk to your employees and find out what is the most important to them when considering a plan. Customize the program, including rewards for healthy behavior.
  • Find ways to include as many employees as possible. While a company soft ball team may get some people to exercise, a fitness challenge with teams and prizes can include all employees.
  • Employee wellness programs can even include more socialization. Instituting programs to use workers to help charities, team building events and even a company Random Act of Kindness Day.

For more information, contact us today at Travel Trim


Mental Health Myths and Facts

Mental Health Myths and Facts

Can you tell the difference between a mental health myth and fact? Learn the truth about the most common mental health myths.

 

Mental Health Problems Affect Everyone

 

Myth: Mental health problems don’t affect me.

Fact: Mental health problems are actually very common. In 2014, about:

  • One in five American adults experienced a mental health issue
  • One in 10 young people experienced a period of major depression
  • One in 25 Americans lived with a serious mental illness, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or major depression

Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States. It accounts for the loss of more than 41,000 American lives each year, more than double the number of lives lost to homicide. Learn more about mental health problems.

Myth: Children don’t experience mental health problems.

Fact: Even very young children may show early warning signs of mental health concerns. These mental health problems are often clinically diagnosable, and can be a product of the interaction of biological, psychological, and social factors.

Half of all mental health disorders show first signs before a person turns 14 years old, and three quarters of mental health disorders begin before age 24.

Unfortunately, less than 20% of children and adolescents with diagnosable mental health problems receive the treatment they need. Early mental health support can help a child before problems interfere with other developmental needs.

Myth: People with mental health problems are violent and unpredictable.

Fact: The vast majority of people with mental health problems are no more likely to be violent than anyone else. Most people with mental illness are not violent and only 3%–5% of violent acts can be attributed to individuals living with a serious mental illness. In fact, people with severe mental illnesses are over 10 times more likely to be victims of violent crime than the general population. You probably know someone with a mental health problem and don’t even realize it, because many people with mental health problems are highly active and productive members of our communities.

Myth: People with mental health needs, even those who are managing their mental illness, cannot tolerate the stress of holding down a job.

Fact: People with mental health problems are just as productive as other employees. Employers who hire people with mental health problems report good attendance and punctuality as well as motivation, good work, and job tenure on par with or greater than other employees.

When employees with mental health problems receive effective treatment, it can result in:

  • Lower total medical costs
  • Increased productivity
  • Lower absenteeism
  • Decreased disability costs

Myth: Personality weakness or character flaws cause mental health problems. People with mental health problems can snap out of it if they try hard enough.

Fact: Mental health problems have nothing to do with being lazy or weak and many people need help to get better. Many factors contribute to mental health problems, including:

  • Biological factors, such as genes, physical illness, injury, or brain chemistry
  • Life experiences, such as trauma or a history of abuse
  • Family history of mental health problems

People with mental health problems can get better and many recover completely.

 

Helping Individuals with Mental Health Problems

 

Myth: There is no hope for people with mental health problems. Once a friend or family member develops mental health problems, he or she will never recover.

Fact: Studies show that people with mental health problems get better and many recover completely. Recovery refers to the process in which people are able to live, work, learn, and participate fully in their communities. There are more treatments, services, and community support systems than ever before, and they work.

Myth: Therapy and self-help are a waste of time. Why bother when you can just take a pill?

Fact: Treatment for mental health problems varies depending on the individual and could include medication, therapy, or both. Many individuals work with a support system during the healing and recovery process.

Myth: I can’t do anything for a person with a mental health problem.

Fact: Friends and loved ones can make a big difference. Only 44% of adults with diagnosable mental health problems and less than 20% of children and adolescents receive needed treatment. Friends and family can be important influences to help someone get the treatment and services they need by:

  • Reaching out and letting them know you are available to help
  • Helping them access mental health services
  • Learning and sharing the facts about mental health, especially if you hear something that isn’t true
  • Treating them with respect, just as you would anyone else
  • Refusing to define them by their diagnosis or using labels such as “crazy”

Myth: Prevention doesn’t work. It is impossible to prevent mental illnesses.

Fact: Prevention of mental, emotional, and behavioral disorders focuses on addressing known risk factors such as exposure to trauma that can affect the chances that children, youth, and young adults will develop mental health problems. Promoting the social-emotional well-being of children and youth leads to:

  • Higher overall productivity
  • Better educational outcomes
  • Lower crime rates
  • Stronger economies
  • Lower health care costs
  • Improved quality of life
  • Increased lifespan
  • Improved family life

Source https://www.mentalhealth.gov/basics/mental-health-myths-facts


4 Ways to Make Temporary Income During the Coronavirus

Hey, fam. I know this is a super weird, hard time for many, and you might be feeling scared right now—especially if you’ve been laid off or you’re on unpaid leave because of the coronavirus (COVID-19). First of all, if that’s your situation, I just want to say I’m so sorry. Take a deep breath and know that you’re not alone.

If you were still working on paying off debt at the time of your unpaid leave, here’s what I want you to do: Press pause on your debt snowball and just make sure you can cover the Four Walls—food, utilities, shelter and transportation—until you can get back on your feet.

In overwhelming situations like this, focus on what you can control (your own actions) and start applying for some jobs. Don’t let the news fill you with fear—even though it might look like the world is ending, there are actually a lot of companies that are hiring right now. I’ve made a list of some of the best jobs and side hustles you can look for to get you through these crazy economic times. I promise, we will get through this.

4 Temporary Jobs in High Demand During the Coronavirus Pandemic

While tons of companies have closed their doors, the need for other businesses like grocery stores and restaurants that deliver has skyrocketed. Here are four of the most in-demand career fields where companies are currently hiring.

And y’all probably know this already, but check local places too. All of the companies listed here are national chains, but there might be local grocery stores, hospitals or restaurants in your area that are hiring too. Since these are the places that are considered “essential,” pretty much any workers in the food, delivery, tech or medical field are going to be super needed right now!

1. Grocery/Retail

Someone has to restock all of that hand sanitizer, right? Grocery stores and retail/food combination stores are some of the only places people are actually allowed to go to right now, so it makes sense that these businesses would be overwhelmed and looking for some extra hands.

Many of these places have come out with press releases saying that they’re planning on hiring thousands of temporary workers during this crisis to help those who are missing paychecks. Even if it’s temporary, it’s better than nothing—and some may turn into full-time opportunities later. Here are some places that are actively hiring:

  • Aldi
  • Costco
  • CVS
  • Dollar General
  • Dollar Tree
  • Kroger
  • Publix
  • Sprouts
  • Target
  • Walmart
  • Whole Foods

2. Delivery

Bless all of the delivery drivers who are making sure people get what they need—even during a global pandemic. The good thing about these jobs is that most of your time will be spent in your car, so you can listen to music or podcasts and make minimal human contact. Here are the delivery services that are hiring right now:

  • Chipotle
  • PepsiCo
  • Domino’s
  • FedEx
  • Instacart
  • Jet’s Pizza
  • Papa John’s
  • Pizza Hut
  • Postmates
  • Shipt
  • UPS
  • Uber Eats

3. Medicine/Health Care

Sure, not everyone has the training or education for a job in the medical field, but if you do, now’s the time to use it! And don’t write off these places because you don’t think you qualify—some health care companies and hospitals will need receptionists, admins or other workers who might not fit the roles you’d typically think of. Here are some of the places in the medical field that are hiring:

  • Ascension
  • CVS
  • GE Healthcare
  • Mercy Health
  • Rite Aid
  • Walgreens

4. Technology

With so many people working and chilling at home these days, companies like the ones on this list need people with tech skills (and other skills) who can help them meet the demand for all those video meetings and binge-watching sessions. Jobs in this category range from customer support to IT to design. Here are just a few of those companies that are hiring currently:

  • Apple
  • Google
  • Hulu
  • Microsoft
  • Netflix
  • Slack
  • Zoom

Side Hustles You Can Start While Social Distancing

There are plenty of things you can do to make extra cash during this crazy situation that don’t necessarily involve a specific company and will allow you to build your own schedule—which is dope if you have kids and need something more flexible. Grab your entrepreneurial spirit and see if you can get something going with one of these side hustles.

  • Tutoring online: With so many kids missing school right now, you could offer virtual tutoring services in math, science, English, ACT/SAT prep, music, art or whatever your area of expertise is. You could also go through an online tutoring platform like Tutor.com or VIPKid to teach kids all across the country—and the world! (Dude, technology is the best.)
  • Freelance writing/editing: People are reading online content more than ever right now, so look for online platforms that need writers and copy editors. (If you have the skills and know how to use the right your, then trust me—people need you.)
  • Cleaning services: Businesses (or moms) may need some extra help cleaning their space up to CDC standards. You can reach out to people or business individually, or you can look into joining a franchise like Molly Maid that sends people out on an as-needed basis. Be choosy about which jobs you take, though—your health and safety come first.
  • Babysitting/nannying: Now this is a tricky one, because you definitely don’t want to put your health (or anyone else’s) on the line. But there are plenty of parents working in those “essential” jobs who still need someone to watch their kids. Use your best judgment here, and obviously, if you or someone in your family is sick, turn the job down. And if the family has elderly or other at-risk people living with them, don’t put them in harm’s way by coming into their home.
  • Web or graphic design: Anything you can do from home on your computer is obviously a great option right now. People still need websites built and products designed, so offer your services via Craigslist or social media, or go through a site like Fivver.
  • Security: If you have the right training and qualifications, check with local businesses or even hospitals to see if they’re looking to hire extra security people during this crazy season.
  • Taking surveys: Sites like Survey Junkie or Vindale Research will pay you to take surveys online (how easy is that?). They don’t pay super great, so you might have to take a bunch of them before they add up, but every little bit helps.
  • Transcribing audio files: Y’all, check out Rev— with some basic training and certification, you can get paid to transcribe recorded or live audio files for the medical industry, legal industry, etc.

You guys, I hope these lists will at least get you started with some ideas for making extra money during your unpaid leave or job layoff. I know things are tough right now, but don’t panic. There’s a light at the end of the tunnel, and I got your back if you need some help and encouragement along the way.

Source https://www.daveramsey.com/blog/ways-to-make-temporary-income


Health Threats From High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure threatens your health and quality of life

In most cases, the damage done by high blood pressure (HBP, or hypertension) takes place over time. Left undetected (or uncontrolled), high blood pressure can lead to:

  • Heart attack — High blood pressure damages arteries that can become blocked and prevent blood flow to the heart muscle.
  • Stroke — High blood pressure can cause blood vessels in the brain to clog more easily or even burst.
  • Heart failure — The increased workload from high blood pressure can cause the heart to enlarge and fail to supply blood to the body.
  • Kidney disease or failure — High blood pressure can damage the arteries around the kidneys and interfere with their ability to filter blood effectively.
  • Vision loss — High blood pressure can strain or damage blood vessels in the eyes.
  • Sexual dysfunction — High blood pressure can lead to erectile dysfunction in men or lower libido in women.
  • Angina — Over time, high blood pressure can lead to heart disease or microvascular disease (MVD). Angina, or chest pain, is a common symptom.
  • Peripheral artery disease (PAD) — Atherosclerosis caused by high blood pressure can cause a narrowing of arteries in the legs, arms, stomach and head, causing pain or fatigue.

Source https://www.heart.org/en/health-topics/high-blood-pressure/health-threats-from-high-blood-pressure


5 Surprising Facts About High Blood Pressure

What you don’t know about high blood pressure could hurt you. High blood pressure affects one in three Americans,1 yet many people with the condition don’t know they have it.

 

Uncontrolled high blood pressure raises the risk for heart disease and stroke, which are leading causes of death in the United States. Fortunately, high blood pressure is treatable and preventable. To lower your risk, get your blood pressure checked regularly and take action to control your blood pressure if it is too high.

  1. High blood pressure may be linked to dementia.

Recent studies show that high blood pressure is linked to a higher risk for dementia, a loss of cognitive function.2 Timing seems to matter: Some evidence suggests having uncontrolled high blood pressure during midlife (age 45 to 65) creates a higher risk for dementia later in life.3 The takeaway? It’s never too early to start thinking about your blood pressure and taking steps to manage it.

2. Young people can have high blood pressure, too.

High blood pressure doesn’t just happen to older adults. About one in four men and nearly one in five women age 35 to 44 has high blood pressure.4

High blood pressure is a leading cause of stroke, a condition that is on the rise among younger people. Experts think the increased risk for stroke among young adults is a direct result of the rising rates of obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes—conditions that are preventable and treatable.

Younger people should get their blood pressure checked at least once each year. You can get your blood pressure checked at a doctor’s office, a pharmacy, or at many grocery stores.

3. High blood pressure usually doesn’t have any symptoms.

High blood pressure is sometimes called the “silent killer.” Most people with high blood pressure don’t have any symptoms, such as sweating or headaches. Because many people feel fine, they don’t think they need to get their blood pressure checked. Even if you feel normal, your health may be at risk. Talk to your doctor about your risk for high blood pressure.

4. Many people who have high blood pressure don’t know it.

About 11 million U.S. adults with high blood pressure aren’t even aware they have it and are not receiving treatment to control their blood pressure.1Most people with uncontrolled blood pressure have health insurance and visit a health care provider at least twice a year, but the condition remains undiagnosed, hidden from the doctor and patient.5 CDC is working with providers to find patients with high blood pressure who are ” hiding in plain sight.” Ask your provider what your blood pressure numbers mean and whether they are too high. Stick to your treatment plan and follow your provider’s advice if you are diagnosed with high blood pressure.

What You Can Do By living a healthy lifestyle, you can help keep your blood pressure in a healthy range and lower your risk for heart disease and stroke. A healthy lifestyle includes

  • Eating a healthy diet
  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Getting enough physical activity
  • Not smoking
  • Limiting alcohol use Learn more about steps you can take to prevent high blood pressure.

5. Women and minorities face unique risks when it comes to high blood pressure.

Women with high blood pressure who become pregnant are more likely to have complications during pregnancy than those with normal blood pressure. High blood pressure can harm a mother’s kidneys and other organs, and it can cause low birth weight and early delivery. Certain types of birth control can also raise a woman’s risk for high blood pressure. Women with high blood pressure who want to become pregnant should work with their health care team to lower their blood pressure before becoming pregnant.

African American men and women have higher rates of high blood pressure than any other race or ethnic group.4 These individuals are also more likely to be hospitalized for high blood pressure. Experts think this is related to higher rates of obesity, diabetes, and stroke among this group. Lifestyle changes, such as reducing sodium in your diet, getting more physical activity, and reducing stress, can help lower blood pressure.

Source https://www.cdc.gov/features/highbloodpressure/index.html


Sun Safety

The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can damage your skin in as little as 15 minutes. Check the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s UV Index for your area, and follow these recommendations to help protect yourself and your family.

Shade

You can reduce your risk of skin damage and skin cancer by seeking shade under an umbrella, tree, or other shelter before you need relief from the sun. Your best bet to protect your skin is to use sunscreen or wear protective clothing when you’re outside—even when you’re in the shade.

Clothing

When possible, long-sleeved shirts and long pants and skirts can provide protection from UV rays. Clothes made from tightly woven fabric offer the best protection. A wet T-shirt offers much less UV protection than a dry one, and darker colors may offer more protection than lighter colors. Some clothing certified under international standards comes with information on its ultraviolet protection factor.

If wearing this type of clothing isn’t practical, at least try to wear a T-shirt or a beach cover-up. Keep in mind that a typical T-shirt has an SPF rating lower than 15, so use other types of protection as well.

Hat

For the most protection, wear a hat with a brim all the way around that shades your face, ears, and the back of your neck. A tightly woven fabric, such as canvas, works best to protect your skin from UV rays. Avoid straw hats with holes that let sunlight through. A darker hat may offer more UV protection.

If you wear a baseball cap, you should also protect your ears and the back of your neck by wearing clothing that covers those areas, using a broad spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 15, or by staying in the shade.

Sunglasses

Sunglasses protect your eyes from UV rays and reduce the risk of cataracts. They also protect the tender skin around your eyes from sun exposure.

Sunglasses that block both UVA and UVB rays offer the best protection. Most sunglasses sold in the United States, regardless of cost, meet this standard. Wrap-around sunglasses work best because they block UV rays from sneaking in from the side.

Sunscreen

Put on broad spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 15 before you go outside, even on slightly cloudy or cool days. Don’t forget to put a thick layer on all parts of exposed skin. Get help for hard-to-reach places like your back. And remember, sunscreen works best when combined with other options to prevent UV damage.

How sunscreen works. Most sunscreen products work by absorbing, reflecting, or scattering sunlight. They contain chemicals that interact with the skin to protect it from UV rays. All products do not have the same ingredients; if your skin reacts badly to one product, try another one or call a doctor.

SPF. Sunscreens are assigned a sun protection factor (SPF) number that rates their effectiveness in blocking UV rays. Higher numbers indicate more protection. You should use a broad spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 15.

Reapplication. Sunscreen wears off. Put it on again if you stay out in the sun for more than two hours and after swimming, sweating, or toweling off.

Expiration date. Check the sunscreen’s expiration date. Sunscreen without an expiration date has a shelf life of no more than three years, but its shelf life is shorter if it has been exposed to high temperatures.

Cosmetics. Some makeup and lip balms contain some of the same sun-protective ingredients used in sunscreens. If they do not have at least SPF 15, be sure to use other forms of protection as well, such as sunscreen and a wide-brimmed hat.

Source https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/skin/basic_info/sun-safety.htm


Suicidal Behavior

Suicide causes immeasurable pain, suffering, and loss to individuals, families, and communities nationwide. On average, 112 Americans die by suicide each day. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among 15-24 year olds and more than 9.4 million adults in the United States had serious thoughts of suicide within the past 12 months. But suicide is preventable, so it’s important to know what to do. For more information, go to www.sprc.org

 

Warning Signs of Suicide

If someone you know is showing one or more of the following behaviors, he or she may be thinking about suicide. Don’t ignore these warning signs. Get help immediately.

  • Talking about wanting to die or to kill oneself
  • Looking for a way to kill oneself
  • Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live
  • Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain
  • Talking about being a burden to others
  • Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs
  • Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly
  • Sleeping too little or too much
  • Withdrawing or feeling isolated
  • Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge
  • Displaying extreme mood swings

 

Get Help

If you or someone you know needs help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Trained crisis workers are available to talk 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

If you think someone is in immediate danger, do not leave him or her alone—stay there and call 911.

Source https://www.mentalhealth.gov/what-to-look-for/suicidal-behavior