Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Napping—Not Just for Toddlers

      Our society doesn’t value napping. Instead, we maintain aggressive schedules and 24/7 access to smart phones and the intranet. It’s no wonder the average American gets 6.7 hours of sleep or less each weekday night. Most adults need seven-and-a-half to eight hours of sleep to function at our best, but to squeeze in a nap, well, that’s seen as a sign of laziness.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Walking for Health and Beauty

“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower,” said philosopher Albert Camus.

If you need an excuse to experience fall’s splendor, get out and walk. Walking is a readily accessible and budget-friendly form of exercise. Orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine physician, Wayne Leadbetter, MD once told me that a walking program benefits every part of the body.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Farmer’s Market in the Fall

     When you think of a farmer’s market the picture that usually comes to mind is summer time with its yummy and popular fruits like strawberries and blueberries. However, many are fortunate enough to have a farmer’s market that provides fresh produce into the fall season! Pumpkins, potatoes, kale, green peppers and apples are just a few of fall’s delicious offerings.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Halloween Costumes- partnering safety and warmth with fun

Halloween is usually pretty spooky, but what many don’t realize is how frightfully dangerous the wrong costume can be. To help prevent your Halloween adventures from taking a turn down Elm Street, I spoke with Butch Rhoderick, Meritus Health’s head of security. He recommends following these simple guidelines:

Monday, October 15, 2012

Keeping Patients Healthy After Hospital Discharge

Most of us don’t want a return trip to the hospital—we want a one-way ticket out.

But sometimes patients leave the hospital without a clear understanding of their diagnosis, changes to their medications and diet, follow-up appointments with providers, and how to care for themselves post-hospitalization. Studies show that if patients do not see their primary care physicians within seven days of hospital discharge, there is a strong chance they will be back in the emergency department or readmitted.

Traditional hospital philosophy is to rehabilitate patients during their stay, but with Care Managers, Meritus Medical Center is helping patients maintain their health once they leave the hospital.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Think Pink and Take Action

Information about the
2012 Designer Cup Challenge

    It’s breast cancer awareness month and pink ribbons are as common as pumpkins on doorsteps. Pink ribbons were first handed out in New York City in the early ’90s to build awareness of breast cancer and early detection. Today, the movement includes organized walks, foundations and NFL games played in pink.

     So why the hype each October? For starters, one in eight women will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime, and it’s predicted that more than 200,000 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in 2012. In short, most of us have been touched by someone who has (or had) breast cancer.

Monday, October 8, 2012

When to Part Ways with Your Doc

     Usually I know after several encounters whether I mesh with a person or not. For four years, I have tried to get a good feeling about my primary care physician, but when I leave her office, I feel worse going out than I did coming in. You see, I’m a worrier, and my doctor is closed-lipped—so we don’t make a good combination. At my last appointment, it finally hit me—I need to fire my physician.

     Several months ago, John Reed, MD, of Smithsburg Family Medical Center, told me that trust, chemistry, and communication should be present during all doctor-patient encounters. Physicians should be your confidant, educator, and evaluator—guiding you to optimal health. “It’s that kind of a relationship,” he said.

Is your doctor making the grade? Ask yourself the following questions:

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Don't Fall for the Flu!

     Fall is in the air! The leaves are beginning to change and the cool weather is a much-needed break from the heat of summer. However, everything isn’t pumpkin pie and wool sweaters. Along with the changing seasons comes an increased risk of the flu.

     The flu, or influenza, is a serious infectious disease that can be life threatening. Hundreds of thousands of people will experience a high fever, sore throat, muscle pains, headache, coughing, fatigue, chills, and feelings of overall discomfort—all common symptoms of the flu. Many children, and some adults, will also experience nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Monday, October 1, 2012

A Bug You Don’t Want to Get

     Bug season is here again—and not just stink bugs. Colds and flu are common, and with rest and care, they tend to resolve on their own. But there’s a potentially dangerous diarrhea bug found in healthcare settings increasingly making its way into the community. I sat down with infectious disease expert, Mohammed Bilgrami, MD to learn about C. difficile, or, C. diff.

What is C. difficile and why should we be concerned?