As temperatures are high across the nation, it is important to remember to stay cool and hydrated. Follow the tips below to make the best of your health and your summer!
- Apply sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher on all skin likely to be exposed to the sun to start your day. And, go out in style with attire that will protect you from the sun (hats, sunglasses, long sleeves, and pants).
- Pack a water bottle before you head out and drink, drink, drink (but not caffiene or alcohol)! Hydration is key to staying safe in the sun. Click here to learn more about the importance of hydration and myths about heat stress. If you work outdoors, make sure to download this Heat Safety App from OSHA.
- Learn what you should do if you get sunburns, blisters, and bug bites.
- The water sure is lovely this time of year, but make sure you know how to keep yourself and your children safe when around it! Never swim alone, and never leave a child alone in the water. Learn more water safety tips.
- No air conditioning? Check out these suggestions on how to cool down. But, make sure to head to a place with air-conditioning if your home becomes too hot. And, keep an eye on senior friends and relatives as they are more susceptible to dehydration!
- This one’s for the kids. Check out KidsHealth.org Summer Safety Center for tips on everything from bike safety to riptides in a kid friendly format.
With the 4th of July approaching, it is important to keep safety in mind when handling fireworks. Fireworks are not only dangerous for children, but also for adults. Some quick statistics to keep in mind during your holiday are below.
On Independence Day in a typical year, far more U.S. fires are reported than on any other day, and fireworks account for two out of five of those fires, more than any other cause of fires.
In 2011, U.S. hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 9,600 people for fireworks related injuries; 61% of 2010 emergency room fireworks-related injuries were to the extremities and 34% were to the head.
In 2011, fireworks caused an estimated 17,800 reported fires, including 1,200 total structure fires, 400 vehicle fires, and 16,300 outside and other fires. These fires resulted in an estimated eight reported civilian deaths, 40 civilian injuries and $32 million in direct property damage. Learn more here.
If you still plan to use fireworks, keep these tips in mind and use them safely!
- Never allow young children to play with or ignite fireworks.
- Never consume alcohol before or during the handling of fireworks.
- Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities. Parents don’t realize that young children suffer injuries from sparklers. Sparklers burn at temperatures of about 2,000 degrees – hot enough to melt some metals.
- Never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that have not ignited fully.
- Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
- Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose handy in case of fire or other mishap.
- After fireworks complete their burning, douse the spent device with plenty of water from a bucket or hose before discarding it to prevent a trash fire.
- Make sure fireworks are legal in your area before buying or using them.
Information on fireworks safety came from here and here.
February is American Heart Month and this Thursday is Valentine’s Day, so what better time than now to improve your heart health by quitting smoking?!
Even if you have tried to quit before unsuccessfully, try again! There are many different supports available.
Check out just a few below:
- Looking for free resources? Visit UHS today to pick up a free Quit Kit in Room 2110 or grab some coupons for nicotine replacement products from the UHS pharmacy. The Michigan Department of Community Health also offers free information on quitting online and has a toll-free Tobacco Quit Line (800-480-7848).
- Are you on the U-M Student Health Insurance Plan? Then, you have access to the one-year Quit Tobacco program provided by Healthyroads, a leading provider of tobacco cessation programs. You’ll get free personal counseling from health professionals that can help find what works for you. Check it out here!
- Are you a senior? Call the Turner Senior Resource Center at (734)-998-6622 for information on their proven program with a high success rate!
- Are you a veteran? Join a free 7 week group program with a focus is on smoking reduction and/or cessation using nicotine replacement techniques and Zyban. Call 734-769-7100 or toll-free 800-361-8387
- Are you looking for a 12 Step Program? Visit here for a group meeting near you.
- Or, would you prefer an online program? The American Lung Association offers a free online program for smoking cessation called Freedom from Smoking Online.
- Would you like online encouragement and support? Follow @CDCTobaccoFree, @SmokefreeWomen, @SmokefreeGov, @LungAssociation, and/or @AmericanCancer for tips and prompters on quitting smoking!
For more information on quitting, please visit here.
From Report Brief
A new report sponsored by the National Institutes of Health and written the National Research Council and the Institute of Medicine highlights the fact that the life expectancy and health of Americans is far behind that of other similarly developed nations.
“The report examines the nature and strength of the research evidence on life expectancy and health in the United States, comparing U.S. data with statistics from 16 “peer countries” — other high-income democracies in Western Europe, as well as Canada, Australia, and Japan. The panel relied on the most current data, and it also examined historical trend data beginning in the 1970s; most statistics in the report are from the late 1990s through 2008. The panel was struck by the gravity of its findings. For many years, Americans have been dying at younger ages than people in almost all other high-income countries.
This disadvantage has been getting worse for three decades, especially among women. Not only are their lives shorter, but Americans also have a longstanding pattern of poorer health that is strikingly consistent and pervasive over the life course — at birth, during childhood and adolescence, for young and middle-aged adults, and for older adults”.
One of the key findings of the report is that Americans lag behind other nations in nine key health areas:
• Infant mortality and low birth weight
• Injuries and homicides
• Adolescent pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections
• HIV and AIDS
• Drug-related deaths
• Obesity and diabetes
• Heart disease
• Chronic lung disease
The report places the blame for these health deficits on factors such as the American health system, poor health behaviors (especially those leading to obesity), and income equality.
From Report Brief
To read the full report please visit here.
What: WellCast is an animated YouTube show that focuses on various aspects of physical, emotional and mental health. Each episode presents wellness tips to help improve your daily life. Previous episodes have focused on everything from anger management to dating to exercise to procrastination! The ultimate goal for the show is to have 100 episodes with one journal, and one collective journey to wellness.
When: It airs twice a week on the WellCast YouTube channel.
Why: The videos are meant to help people learn ways to improve their overall health and well being. Anyone who wants to learn ways to lead a more productive, healthier life should check it out!
Where: To learn more and to watch videos go here or here. Or, follow WellCast on Twitter at WatchWellCast
Image by Ni Yan (CC BY)
Where can I find reliable health information available in Chinese?
What steps can I take to control diabetes?
How can I keep healthy?
Do you have these questions and want to find the answers in Chinese? From our work at outreach events, such as the Annual Asian American Health Fair, we know that many people do. The place to go is MedlinePlus, a website created by the National Library of Medicine. It contains reliable, up-to-date health information that’s easy to understand, for patients and health professionals alike. The Taubman Health Sciences Library has created a new video to show you how to find health information that is available in Chinese.