5 Tips for Staying Healthy During Flu Season

Flu season is upon us and that means lots of tissues, medicine, and Netflix binge-watching on the couch.

But when it’s cold outside the last thing you want is to be feeling sick on the inside.

It can seem discouraging and hard to keep the bug away, but there are some things that can be done to help prevent the flu.

Here are five tips for staying healthy during flu season and making sure the only thing that’s green and red are the lights on the Christmas tree.

Get some zzz’s

Getting enough sleep is a great way to keep the flu away and make sure that your body is strong enough to fight off anything that comes your way.

When you don’t get enough sleep your body’s defense system is weakened and you are more susceptible to catch whatever is going around. Keep your body well rested to ensure that nasty flu stays away.

Drink lots of water

Staying hydrated can help with so many things having to do with your body, including preventing the flu.

In the winter time especially, drinking plenty of liquids, especially warm ones, can keep your throat from becoming too dry and also flush out mucus that you may have built up.

If you do have a cold, drinking warm liquids could help to keep it at bay. You should consider this if you want help with your fever.

Keep your sugar intake down

It’s tempting during the holiday season to binge on all the yummy, sugary treats. If you want to avoid getting sick with the flu, stay away from sugar as much as you can.

Sugar has been shown to impair the immune system, especially things that contain highly processed sugar. Try to make healthier choices in your diet, but don’t be afraid to have a sweet treat here and there.

Get plenty of vitamin C & E

Eating your fruits and veggies, high in vitamin E and C will help to keep your body strong and protected.

Foods like broccoli, carrots, oranges, and nuts like almonds or peanuts are all foods with these vitamins. They are a yummy way to keep your body fueled with the good stuff it needs to protect itself.

Get help is needed

Sometimes you can take care of yourself, drink water, eat healthy food, and still get caught by the flu bug. Be sure that if you aren’t recovering to seek medical attention.

If your flu symptoms are really bad or you want to know more you can do to prevent or help the flu, visit your family doctor and they can make sure to give you the help you need to get better or to make sure your family and you stay healthy and strong even in the thick of flu season.

5 Things Diabetics Need to Remember About Their Feet

feet health for diabetics

Feet are a very important part of our body, especially considering we use them every day for pretty much everything we do.

This is why it’s so important to take care of them, and for those with diabetes, this is especially true.

You may be asking yourself, “What does foot care have to do with diabetes?” and it’s a very good question.

Sometimes those with diabetes can suffer from nerve damage in their legs and feet due to high blood sugar levels that occur often over time.

This can also mean that they can suffer from bad circulation in their legs and feet which means if something should happen, like a cut or other injury, it can also take longer to heal.

Here are five things that diabetics should remember:

Keep them well moisturized

Dry, cracked feet can get small little cuts that can pretty much go unnoticeable for those with diabetes and nerve damage, and the bad things about these little cuts is that they become infected, which can cause some pretty severe issues.

Those with diabetes should remember to always keep them well-moisturized to prevent this from happening.  According to the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons, it’s best not to put lotion in-between the toes because that can lead to a fungal infection.

Wear good socks

Socks are a really good idea if you want to keep them well-protected; especially if you make sure that they are clean and dry every time you wear them.

There are also socks that are made especially for a diabetic’s foot., These are ideal because they good for circulation and moisture.

Don’t walk barefoot

This probably seems like a given, but it’s very crucial that those who have diabetes avoid walking around barefoot.

There are many reasons for this, but one of the primary reasons is that because of nerve damage there is a big chance that if you walk on something or something gets stuck in your foot you may not notice and that could lead to infection. And if that infection isn’t caught in time it could lead to something as drastic as losing your foot.

Get them checked out regularly

If something is happening with your feet, it’s best to get them checked out by a medical professional regularly.

You can go to your regular doctor or visit specialists such as those at the Eastern Idaho Foot Clinic. They can give you insight to make your feet healthy.

Treat them nicely

Treat your feet to warm baths, massages, etc. Happy feet will mean a happier you.

Make sure to avoid things like pedicures.  People with diabetes can be more susceptible to getting infections from the water.

 

5 Ways to Help Joint and Bone Pain in Winter

joint and bone pain

Growing up, you probably heard your grandfather or grandmother or other older relative say, “I think it’s going to rain or snow!” And when you would ask how they know that they would probably say something like, “I can feel it in my knees, or bones, or because my arthritis is flaring up.”

And the truth is they were probably right, colder weather can irritate or cause arthritic bones and joints to hurt and ache, which can cause a lot of discomfort and pain.

If you are finding that you are now the one thinking that, this can ring even more true for you now that the colder months are upon us.

So, how do you find relief for your joint and bone pain during this time of the year?

Here are a couple ways to help with your bones and joints to help relieve some of that pain and let you enjoy all that winter has to offer.

Drink lots of water

From the heater to the cold winds outside, there are many parts of winter and colder weather that can leave you dehydrated.

Make sure to drink plenty of water because that can really help to keep you active and moving, which can really help achy joints, and also studies show that water can make your body more tolerant to pain.

Drinking water is important for many reasons, but especially if you are in higher altitudes because it keeps you hydrated as well as helps give you the oxygen you need.

Bundle up well

Warm joints are happy joints, so keep them warm and cozy by dressing accordingly.

If you know you are going to be spending a lot of time out in rain or snow make sure you have plenty of layers to keep your body warm and safe from the outside temperatures.

Wear things like gloves, socks, hats and tights or leggings to add those extra layers of heat.

Find some warm water

Whether it’s a bath, hot tub, or heated pool, taking a dip in some warm water will not only be soothing to your joints but a great way to stay warm in the winter.

Swimming in a heated pool is a great way to get exercise and help your achy bones take a break from the cold.

Keep on moving

Exercising and just making sure to stay active is a great way to help joints and muscles to stay healthy and strong and to help lessen the pain.

Find an indoor gym or track and keep up your exercise routine during the cold months, even if you are tempted to just stay inside and hibernate.

Talk to an expert

If it seems that your joint pain or pain is getting to be unbearable, it might be time to talk to your doctor and see if it’s something more than just the cold weather.

Your doctor may refer you to an orthopedic surgeon to have them check out the areas that are causing you the most pain and take a closer look to see what the solution may be.

Cavities and How to Treat Them

cavity model

Most people remember getting their first cavity and what followed after.

It usually meant a trip to the dentist as well as a semi-painful filling in your mouth.

For most of the people, other than a couple cavities from their childhood and adolescent years, they haven’t really had to deal with one since, but sadly even in adult years there will likely be a time when you will have to deal with one. You may be already be dealing with one now.

Even so, you may be asking yourself what a cavity really is and what is there to be done to prevent it or do about it?

Here are four important things to know about cavities and why it’s important to go to your dentist to get it treated.

Bacteria are to blame

If you are wondering what exactly causes cavities, the answer is the bacteria that is found in plaque.

What then happens when plaque forms is that bacterium in the plaque turns to acid that then breaks down the protective coating of your teeth and causes small holes, or cavities.

If you have too many of these cavities it can cause pain and discomfort.

Sugar is to blame

Another root cause of cavities is the things that we consume, specifically foods high in sugar and highly acidic foods.

Bacteria can more easily grow from these types of foods because the conversion from sugar to acid happens more quickly.

If you consume a lot of sugar, be sure to brush, floss, and rinse your teeth well. This will prevent bacteria spreading through plaque in your mouth, causing cavities.

If you think you have one you probably do

Cavities in the early stages are pretty painless. By the time you actually start feeling some pain you probably already have one.

If you do have pain or sensitivity make sure to make an appointment with your local dentist, like Durango Dental, to get it checked out and treated.

Leave it to the professionals

Although there are a couple of at-home remedies, you need to seek the professional help of a dentist.

This is because the holes that cavities cause need to be filled, so the bacteria and tooth decay can’t spread.

Daily habits are essential for healthy teeth. Also, be sure to visit the dentist every six months has proven to be healthy as well.

 

5 Reasons Why It’s Important to Have Healthy Gums

oral health to make you happy

When it comes to oral health, the first thing we tend to think about is having healthy teeth. In reality, we should put more focus on our gums.

Our teeth are what we see and usually what we can feel in regard to something being wrong, so we are told to brush and floss our teeth every day to keep things like cavities away.

And although our teeth do play a significant role in our oral health, the star player and the ones we should be paying very close attention too, health-wise, are our gums.

There are many reasons why it’s really important to have healthy gums, but here are five reasons to help you understand how and why healthy gums are essential for a healthy mouth.

Healthy gums, healthy body

You may not have realized this, but your gum health can actually affect the health of your entire body.

Plaque, which is a filmy substance filled with bacteria, can build up in your mouth and then the bacteria can be spread into your blood stream. This has been linked to problems such as heart disease, arthritis, and other types of health problems and infections.

Keeps your teeth in the right place

Your teeth are only as strong as their support, so if you want teeth that are going to stay in place, having healthy gums is essential.

Gum disease can lead to things like tooth decay and even tooth loss, so by taking care of your gums through flossing in between your teeth and using a disinfectant mouthwash, you can keep your gums and teeth in the right place.

You don’t know that something’s wrong

One of the scariest things about gum disease is that you can have it without even realizing it. Oftentimes, in the beginning stages, it’s completely painless. According to the American Dental Hygienist Association, about 75% of Americans have gum disease and don’t even know it.

This is why it’s important that you take care of your mouth. This is also why it’s important to get your mouth checked out by your dentist at least once a year, more if you need it.

They are your teeth’s protection

Gums are the barriers that protect your teeth and jaw.

But in order for the barrier to be effective, it needs to be strong. The only way that gums stay strong is if they are properly cared for.

It’s easy to do

Your routine doesn’t have to be anything extravagant; all it takes is proper brushing, flossing, and using a mouth rinse.

Make sure when you brush your gums you don’t do it too rigorously because they can wear over time. Use a toothbrush with soft but firm bristles and apply gentle pressure as your brush over them.

These small daily habits can lead to a big difference in the health of your mouth.

2 Huge Tips for Creating a Healthier Home

vacuum in clean home

With the holidays fast approaching, and guests soon to be arriving from all over, how healthy would you say your home is right now?

Since the kids have started school and sports, they are likely trailing in germs from all over the place. Pests from outside are trying to make their way indoors as the weather gets cooler. And it’s been a while since you were able to deep clean anything.

But don’t stress! You still have time!

Now is the perfect time to schedule a day when you can go to town on sanitizing your home. You can plan on making it a healthier place for your family and guests.

Dusting

Dust can cause a lot of problems with the respiratory system, especially if anyone in your household has asthma. Before you have people trailing in and stirring up all the dust, and especially before you consider decorating, it would be wise to clean it all up.

Some helpful tips for cleaning up dust include:

  • Start from the top and move to the bottom. Start with the ceiling fan, high shelves, and blinds in your dusting endeavors. That way, anything that falls will be cleaned up when you make it to the floors.
  • Wipe down the walls. You might not visibly see dust accumulating, but it’s there. And how often do any of us clean our walls anyway? This will help in eliminating harmful bacteria that spread through the air and cling to your walls as well.
  • Wipe down counters, shelves, tables.
  • Vacuum. You should vacuum regularly – ideally once a day, but at least a couple times a week, especially in high traffic areas of your home. Make sure to clean out the vacuum so that it actually picks up the dust rather than just spreading it around.
  • Change out air filters. Air filters don’t need to be changed often, but be sure to inspect the filters in your HVAC system to keep the air in your home clean.

Dealing with Pests

It’s no secret the insects and rodents carry diseases. So keeping them out of your home will help to keep it a healthier place. As the weather gets colder, they are only going to move toward the warmth as they search for a place to nest and hibernate.

In order to keep larger pests, like rodents and birds, out of your home, walls, attic, etc., do a thorough inspection of the walls, windows, and doors outside your home. Make sure any large holes or crevices are sealed to keep these pests out.

Here are a few tips to help keep the smaller pests like insects and spiders out of your home this winter:

  • Seal up your doors. Put a weather seal on your door and make sure there are no cracks. You’d be surprised the tiny places insects can squeeze their way into.
  • Make sure your screens are in good condition. In the winter, despite the cold outside, in can get warm inside, causing people to open doors and windows. So make sure you have good screens in place to keep bugs out when this happens.
  • Keep wood piles away from your home. If you keep wood logs at home for burning in the winter, make sure to keep them away from your home. Definitely not against the walls outside your home. This is a place where bugs tend to congregate, so keeping it far will help eliminate some of the nests around your home.
  • Don’t leave food and drinks out. Clean up after meals and snacks to make sure bugs aren’t attracted to anything that does get left out.

If you are renting and live under a property management company like Rooftop Rentals, they might even have a maintenance team who can take care of many of these fixes for you.

If you take care of the dust and the pests, your home will already be so much better off. It will fare much healthier this winter.

5 Surprising Things You May Not Know About Cancer

cancer screening

Cancer is a word and disease that we have learned to fear from a young age.

Usually, it is associated with a grandma or grandpa passing away, or a GoFundMe page you may see as you scroll through Facebook associated with a tragic case that is affecting the child of a friend.

But what do you really know about cancer?

Other than it is a disease that can lead to death, most people do not know much about what cancer really is.

Here are five surprising but important things you may not know about this disease, and hopefully by learning them, you can be prepared to deal with it if it comes up in your life or the life of someone close to you.

Most forms of cancer are actually preventable

According to research, more than half of the cases and deaths are actually preventable.

This is why it is important to eat your fruits and veggies, exercise, and go to the doctor regularly.

There’s no way to have a universal cure

Technically, though people may have the same types of this disease, the way it manifests in each person is unique. Each is a different form of the disease, which is why it would be nearly impossible to find a cure for it that would work for every person who has it.

In the last ten years, there have been over 200 types of cancers identified, with more likely to be found.

Even though this may seem like bad news to find out there are different forms of the disease, it has also led to the creation of more individualized and tailor-made ways to combat for each individual person.

Eating hot dogs and lunch meat could be cancer-causing

Hot dogs and cold cut meats contain a preservative and flavor additive called nitrites which, when consumed, cause a chemical reaction within the body and turn into carcinogens. These can then turn into cancer.

This hasn’t prevented most of the population from still eating a ton of hot dogs; in fact, Americans ate over 20 billion hot dogs in 2017.

Sleep is a big contributing factor

Studies have found that those who get lower amounts of sleep, about less than six hours a night, are more susceptible to getting the disease.

Oncologist or hematologist

If you were to receive a diagnosis, you’re likely to be referred to an oncologist. This is someone who studies and treats cancer. You’re also likely to see a hematologist. A hematologist is someone who studies hematology, or blood and blood diseases, especially based on the type of cancer that you are diagnosed with.

You might have to visit a hematologist early in the cancer-testing process. They can study your blood and identify any issues.

 

5 Habits to Ensure a Healthier Life

woman with healthy habits

Daily habits are the things that can make or break us and, in the end, add up to either help us or harm us.

That is why it’s a good idea to pick up great habits as soon as possible and make sure they stay with us all of our lives.

In fact, there are habits that when added into our daily routines can actually ensure that we have a longer and healthier life.

Here are five habits that will ensure that and will only benefit you and those around you when doing them.

Washing your hands

This may seem like an obvious one and one that everyone should do, but it might surprise and gross you out to find out how many actually don’t do it enough.

Getting in the habit of washing your hands will guard you against many unwanted illnesses and germs, and also help you from stopping from spreading them to other people.

Also washing your hands sets a good example for those around you and hopefully encourage family and friends to wash their hands more.

Getting yearly check-ups

Most people think that the only time they need to go to the doctor is when they are sick or that they only need to go to the dentist when they have a toothache.

But usually, when those things actually happen, it’s a little too late.

By going to your yearly check-ups with your doctor and getting the proper dental care from your dentist, you will find that you actually have to visit both less.

Being physically active

Getting sufficient physical activity is not as difficult when you are younger and have a lot more free time and a lot less on your plate, but as you get older and have more stress and things to do, it can become more difficult.

It’s important to get in the habit of daily physical activity that way even when life gets hectic, you will make time for it.

The more you do now the more your older self will thank you because that is a daily habit that will have many benefits in the long run.

Eat all the veggies and fruits

Remember when your mom told you to eat all your vegetables, so you can be healthy and strong? Well, as you realized, she was definitely right.

Making sure to incorporate as many veggies and fruits into your daily diet will give you and your body so many nutrients and help prevent things like cancer, osteoporosis, and many other ailments.

Get outside

Everyone could benefit from a little more sunshine, and not only because it feels good but also because more and more people are becoming vitamin D deficient, so getting more sun is one of the best ways to ensure you are getting enough of that important vitamin.

Getting outside is also good for the soul and will always help to lift your spirits and clear your mind.

5 Ways to Help Aging Teeth

individuals with aging teeth

Most people have experienced that nightmare at least once in their lives, the nightmare of looking into a mirror and seeing yourself with little to no teeth or that all your teeth have fallen out.

When you wake up you quickly rush to the mirror to make sure it’s not true, and luckily, it never is.

The thing is, even as you get older, losing your teeth doesn’t need to be an inevitability, if you take care of your teeth throughout your life you can keep them for the rest of your life.

As you age your teeth change, so there is definitely something to keep in mind to ensure your teeth stay healthy and strong for as long as possible.

Here are five ways to help your aging teeth, and to make sure that nightmare about your teeth never becomes a reality.

 

Eat foods that include good bacteria

 

There are some important bacteria in your mouth that play an essential role in keeping it healthy and keeping the bad things out.

As you get older, or really at any age, it’s a good idea to eat foods that help create and keeps these bacteria in your mouth.

Some foods that help in the production of these are fermented foods such as kefir, butter, cheese, and fermented yogurt. Some other foods and vegetables that are fermented and good for your mouth are foods like kimchee, sauerkraut, and drinks like kombucha.

Along with eating these types of foods, it’s important to eat foods that can help your immune system, which can help to prevent infections in your mouth.

Some of these foods are leafy green vegetables, garlic, spirulina, and coconut oil.

 

Maintain your dental work as well as your visits to the dentist

 

Most of us have had to have some form of dental work done throughout our lives, and the important thing for lasting and healthy teeth is to ensure that the dental work is well maintained and updated when needs are.

The best way to ensure that this happens is visiting the dentist regularly and listening to what they have to say about your teeth and mouth.

If it’s been a while since you’ve been to the dentist visit websites such as www.grovecitydentalofblackfoot.com to make an appointment, or search google for a dentist local to you that can help you to keep your teeth well maintained as you age.

 

Keep your mouth full of moisture

 

Having a mouth that is moist seems kind of obvious, but as you get older your mouth can actually get drier and it may be not as easy as it used to be to have a mouth full of saliva.

Saliva is very important for healthy teeth because it cleans off the teeth which in turn helps to prevent tooth decay.

Some things that might be contributing to drying out your mouth could be medications you are taking, which most of the time are completely necessary, so good news is there are ways to counteract that.

One of the biggest ways to do this is just making sure you are drinking enough water, and when you do just having it rest in your mouth for a minute or two before swallowing can help. Drinking tap water also has the added benefit of having fluoride, which is also good for your teeth.

Also chewing or sucking sugarless gum or can help to increase the saliva in your mouth.

 

Be aware of any bad habits

 

If you notice or if your significant other points out that you tend to clench or grind your teeth at night, make sure to ask your dentist about getting a mouth guard.

Grinding your teeth slowly wears away your teeth, so the only way to prevent that is protecting your teeth with a mouth guard.

 

Have a good toothbrush

 

This is true at any age, but really a good toothbrush is so important especially as your teeth and gums age.

A toothbrush with gentle bristles is best, but also investing an in an electric toothbrush is a good idea.

Make sure to floss in between your teeth each day as well, and you are on your way to keeping your smile going as long as you are.

4 Ways to Support Loved Ones After a Cancer Diagnosis

people crying after cancer diagnosis

You just received a call from someone very close to you. A family member or good friend shared the devastating news that they have been diagnosed with cancer.

You are probably feeling pretty shocked and saddened that your loved one must deal with the condition. But you also know that you want to be there for them in any way possible.

At the same time, this is a first for you. You have never navigated the territory of someone you love going through this kind of hardship, and you have no clue how to act around them or how to ask what they need.

A cancer diagnosis is obviously most difficult for the one who has received it, but it can also be hard for those that surround them and just want to help.

Here are four ways to help someone you love after a cancer diagnosis that can also serve as a launching point for the support that they will need in the next couple of months or years.

Reach out

The very first thing you can do for your friend and family member is to actually just be there for whatever they need.

In difficult situations, people can feel like they don’t know how to act. Therefore, they won’t reach out to the person who is sick because they don’t want to seem weird around them.

In reality, the last thing that this person wants is to feel more alone than they probably already do. So even though it may seem weird or strange, just be there for them. Be honest with them when you don’t know what to do or say. They probably won’t know either, but they will be appreciative of your support and company.

Take care of the miscellaneous

When someone receives a cancer diagnosis, the last thing they want to worry about is the dishes they left in the sink or soccer pick-up next week.

As their new support system through this crisis, you can take care of those everyday, mundane things without them asking. When they come home from a treatment or from a doctor’s visit and find them done, they will be so grateful. Now, they don’t have to worry about any tasks at hand.

Research with them

Once they receive a cancer diagnosis, some people want to find out all they can about their diagnosis. This includes all the possible research and studies being done on it.

Offer to help your loved one with that research. Look up places like tetoncancer.com or other institutes that treat different types of cancers and see what methods they have for different types of treatments. You can also look at the major cancer research sites such as the American Cancer Society or the National Cancer Institute.

Be their research buddy and they will be happy to have another set of eyes to help them process and battle through.

Be there

Your loved one will likely have to sit through a lot of doctors’ appointments. They will be meetings with oncologists, radiation treatments, and chemotherapy.

Since everyone else’s lives don’t seem to be halted in the same way as theirs, they might feel guilty asking someone to accompany them to all of these.

When you can, be that support person for them through all the crazy appointments. Offer to bring games, books, food, or their favorite movies to pass the time. They will be grateful to have support through it all. Plus, you will get to spend time with someone you love at a difficult time in their life.