The Waiting Room

Waist Size and Fitness Data

May 22nd, 2017
It’s easy to get obsessed with personal numbers these days. Put on a wearable like a Fitbit and see what I mean. The devices track your number of steps during the day, gauge your heartbeat, and record the amount of time you’ve slept at night. They can log your walking routes, with maps, and reveal how fast your feet were really moving. You can sync to an app that records the calories you take in, for more fun with numbers.…

Debunking The Myths of PTSD

May 15th, 2017
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) can often be accompanied by a high level of misunderstanding of the condition. In fact, several myths appear to contribute to the stigma that surrounds those with PTSD. PTSD is an anxiety disorder. It develops in response to traumatic or life-threatening experiences such as active duty combat, sexual assault, car accidents, natural disasters and even bullying in school or the workplace. Emotional symptoms include anxiety, anger, depression, irritability and sadness. Physical symptoms of PTSD can…

Allergic to Eats

May 8th, 2017
Are you one of the more than 50 million Americans with allergies? It seems like everyone I know is an allergy sufferer, including me. It’s bad enough to get a runny nose and watery eyes at certain times of the year, but imagine having symptoms every time you put food in your mouth. That doesn’t sound good at all. But that’s the case for four to six percent of children and four percent of adults in this country, or 15…

Get the Most from Medications

May 1st, 2017
When picking up a prescription at a drug store, customers typically are asked, Do you have any questions for the pharmacist? For most people in a hurry, the routine answer is no. But investing a few moments in understanding the medication you’ve just been handed isn’t a bad idea. For instance, should you take the medicine with food or water? If you’re taking another drug – or even something over-the-counter – will there be an interaction? Does it matter what…

Decisions for Prostate Screenings

April 25th, 2017
Listen up, guys! The recommendations for prostate cancer screening have changed – sort of. The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recently announced it’s stepping back from its previous recommendations, issued in 2012. Then, the task force, a government-appointment volunteer panel of experts, opposed men getting routine screenings using the prostate specific antigen (PSA) blood test. In their new draft guidelines, released April 11, they instead suggest men discuss the benefits and risks with their doctors and then decide if…

Donate Life

April 17th, 2017
April is National Donate Life Month. It’s a chance to put the spotlight on the issue of organ, eye and tissue donation in this country. First, let’s take a look at some statistics. According to Donate Life America, more than 118,000 men, women and children are awaiting lifesaving organ transplants. Every ten minutes, another person is added to the national transplant waiting list. Every year in the US, 8,000 deaths occur because organs are not donated in time. The heart,…

Weight and Cancer Risk

April 10th, 2017
There are a slew of health consequences that go along with carrying excess weight. It increases the risk of many problems, including heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, kidney disease and joint disorders. What’s more, research has linked weight and obesity to many types of cancers. As part of one study, researchers analyzed 204 previously published studies to explore a possible link between weight gain, obesity, waist size and 38 different cancers. The results, which were released in March 2017, found…

Seeing the Light about Sleep

April 3rd, 2017
The promise of better sleep makes me want to go camping. Sleeping outdoors for just a few nights – without a smartphone – is enough to reset body clocks in a way that makes it easier to get more sleep, according to studies. The crux is how light affects circadian rhythms, the body’s built-in system for signaling sleep time and when to wake. Camping provides exposure to plenty of natural light and dark, which researchers suggested prompted a shift in…

Dog Daze

March 27th, 2017
It’s not uncommon anymore to be out shopping and see a customer in the aisle accompanied by a dog. For a long time, we expected people led by dogs in public to be blind, but today, dogs provide many more services than just being the “seeing eyes.” Nowadays, dogs hear for those with hearing loss, detect the onset of seizures…

Stalking the Superbugs

March 20th, 2017
It’s funny how things happen sometimes. When Alexander Fleming woke up the morning of September 28, 1928, he had no idea he would discover the first commercially available antibiotic – penicillin. After the antibiotic was isolated and purified, it came into wide use during World War II. When accepting the Nobel Prize for his discovery in 1945, Fleming warned of bacteria becoming resistant to penicillin. More than 70 years later, his warning message has become a reality – in spades.…

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