Air Quality Awareness Week

Air pollution is categorized as indoor or outdoor pollution.  Factors that contribute to outdoor pollution include tobacco smoke, noxious gases (carbon monoxide, chemical vapors, etc.) and ground-level ozone. Indoor air pollution contributors include tobacco smoke, mold, pollen, gases (radon and carbon monoxide) as well as household products and chemicals.

You can reduce your risk of exposure to indoor pollution by regularly cleaning dust and preventing the buildup of mold. Other steps you can take include: avoid smoking in your home, making sure that your home is properly ventilated and using air purifiers equipped with HEPA filters.

Checking the daily Air Quality Index (AQI) before participating in outdoor activities, avoiding secondhand tobacco smoke and avoiding heavy traffic when possible can reduce exposure to poor air quality.

 

There are several things you can do help minimize your contribution to poor air quality.  Conserving energy, purchasing energy efficient appliances, limiting driving and using environmentally friendly household cleaners are some of the ways you can help to improve our environment and air quality.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Is Your Child Addicted to Video Games?

It’s often difficult for parents to know how much time their children spend online. Often children play video games, view videos and browse social networking sites. Spending too much time online can lead to the deterioration of your child’s school work and can cause problems with their relationships with family and friends.

Studies have shown that children ages 8 to 18 spend an average of 7 hours and 38 minutes a day consuming media for fun, including TV, music, video games and other content.  About two-thirds of 8 to 18 year olds had no rules on the amount of time spent watching TB, playing video games or using a computer.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents limit their child’s screen time for entertainment to less than two hours per day and children under 2 have no TV or internet exposure.

Research shows that academic failure correlates with addictive video game play, and to a higher incidence of attention problems. Conversely, academic achievers spend less time online.  Research has also revealed that child and adolescent video game addiction correlates with functional impairment, emotional problems, poor conduct, hyperactivity and peer problems, as well as with depression and social phobia. In addition, several studies have proven a relationship between excessive video game play and obesity and poor diet among children in grades 4 through 6.

Parents should discuss with their children their expectations for responsible online usage and set limits on how much time can be spent online.  Dr. Gonzalez suggests the following rules for internet use:

  • Regularly determine how much time your kids are online every day.
  • Don’t put a computer or game console in your child’s bedroom—rather put them in the living room.
  • Avoid online activity before bedtime.
  • Charge children’s cell or smart phone or other handheld devices overnight in your bedroom.
  • Be a role model. Set an example with your own internet usage.
  • Use an alarm clock or timer to limit your child’s time online.
  • Provide alternatives to online activity and video games: sports, reading, play dates, time with pets, etc.
  • Set a rule: no handheld devices at the table during meals.

For more information or to schedule an appointment for your child with a Flushing Hospital Medical Center Child Psychiatrist, please call 718-670-5562

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

What is a Hysterectomy?

A hysterectomy is a surgical procedure that involves removing a woman’s uterus.   It is a common operation, in fact, the CDC reports that an estimated 11.7 percent of women between the ages of 40-44 have had a hysterectomy and approximately 600,000 procedures are performed annually.

Hysterectomies are used to treat several health conditions, some of which include:

  • Uterine fibroids
  • Gynecologic cancer
  • Endometriosis
  • Uterine prolapse
  • Chronic pelvic pain
  • Adenomyosis

Hysterectomies can be performed utilizing several techniques.  Based on the course of treatment that is best for you, your surgeon may recommend one of the following options:

  • Abdominal hysterectomy
  • Laparoscopic-assisted abdominal hysterectomy
  • Vaginal hysterectomy
  • Laparoscopic-assisted vaginal hysterectomy
  • Robotic- assisted hysterectomy

Procedures may require the complete or partial removal of the uterus.  If a complete removal is required, a total hysterectomy may be performed. In the case where the uterus and surrounding structures such as the fallopian tubes and ovaries need to be removed, a radical hysterectomy is often recommended. Treatment involving the partial removal of the uterus may include a supracervical hysterectomy.

As with all surgical procedures there are risks to consider.  However some techniques can offer patients a reduced risk of complications such as pain and bleeding. Laparoscopic and robotic assisted hysterectomies may result in less pain, minimal bleeding, a lower risk in infection and shorter hospital stays.

Flushing Hospital Medical Center’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology has a full program to provide total health care to women. Our highly trained specialists utilize the latest techniques and equipment, such as ultrasonography, color Doppler, laser, laparoscopic and robotic surgery, in the diagnoses and treatment of female disorders. Robotic surgeons at Flushing Hospital are board certified or board approved and has performed countless procedures resulting in high rates of success.

Gynecological procedures performed robotically by Flushing Hospital’s team of surgeons include hysterectomy, ovarian cystectomy, salpingo-oophorectomy, sacrocolpopexy, tubal reanastomosis, dermoid cystectomy and more.

For more information or to make an appointment please call, 718-670-8994

 

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Flushing Hospital’s New Tool Helps Calm Hospitalized Children

Medical procedures such as blood draws, IV placements, drain removals, and dressing changes can be frightening and unsettling, especially for children. They often need distractions to help them to cope with the fear and anxiety of undergoing these processes.

In an effort to provide children with tools that promote positive coping, Flushing Hospital Medical Center has purchased a Vecta Deluxe  Mobile Sensory  Station with the help of a generous grant from the enCourage Kids Foundation’s Pediatric Hospital Program.

The new multisensory device is designed to keep children distracted by keeping them engaged with its many interactive and calming features such as a projector that displays images such as tropical fish, an aromatic dispenser, a bubble column and fiber optics cables that change colors. Through play and interaction, the Vecta will help patients to alleviate some of the discomforts they may encounter in a medical environment. The machine is mobile and enables the staff to transform any room into a fun or relaxing space.

The sensory station is utilized by Flushing Hospital’s Child Life program where Child Life Specialists such as Rashmi Momaya provide emotional support to children by engaging them in fun and educational activities.

“Hospitalization can be frightening. The Vecta Sensory Station has proven to be effective in helping children to remain engaged and relaxed during procedures. The feedback we have received from patients and parents has been tremendously positive,” shared Rashmi.

Rashmi continued, Flushing Hospital’s Child Life Program is thrilled to have acquired another tool that will help us to provide the best service and care for our patients.”

Flushing Hospital’s Child Life Program aims to meet the special needs of children in our care. Our Child Life Specialists are trained to help patients to overcome fear and anxiety through play, support and education in a safe environment.  We strive to offer patients and families a positive hospital experience.

 

 

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Low-Sodium Baked Salmon Recipe

A low-sodium diet can reduce the risks of hypertension, cardiovascular disease and kidney damage.

The American Heart Association recommends no more than 1,500 milligrams of sodium should be consumed per day

Here are the approximate amounts of sodium in a given amount of table salt:

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt = 575 mg sodium
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt = 1,150 mg sodium
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt = 1,725 mg sodium
  • 1 teaspoon salt = 2,300 mg sodium

If you are interested in lowering your sodium, this recipe for baked salmon is a good place to start.  For this and other low sodium recipes you can go to –

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/salmon-baked-in-foil-recipe.html#lightbox-recipe-video

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

How Often Should You Have Your Vision Checked ?

March is Save Your Vision Month
How often should you have your vison checked?
A) Every year
B) Every two years
C) Every three years
D) Only when something is wrong
According to the American Optometric Association a healthy person should have a regular eye exam once a year. People who have any conditions that may affect their eyesight, for example diabetes, glaucoma, macula-degeneration, should be examined more frequently.
If you would like to schedule an appointment with an eye doctor at Flushing Hospital, please call 718-670-5486.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Bladder Stones

Bladder stones are tiny accumulations of mineral crystals that can form stones over time when the bladder isn’t completely emptied. Sometimes these stones go unnoticed and are eventually passed out of the body, but at other times they may be too large or blocked from leaving the bladder and can cause symptoms.
Symptoms of bladder stones include:
• Painful urination
• Blood in the urine
• Lower abdominal pain
• Incomplete urination
• Dark or cloudy urine
Bladder stones are diagnosed by taking a thorough history from the patient and performing a urine exam to check for blood and the presence of minerals. Additionally it may be necessary to perform a cystoscope which is the insertion of a tiny camera through the urethra to examine the bladder, and a CT scan or ultrasound exam which determine if  stones if they are present in the bladder.
While some bladder stones may pass on their own, they usually require some sort of intervention to aid the process. One procedure is called a cystolitholapaxy which involves the use of a cystoscope inserted through the urethra into the bladder and then breaking the stones apart with ultrasound, laser, or by mechanical means. If the stones are very large, surgical intervention may be necessary.
If you would like to schedule an appointment with a urologist at Flushing Hospital, please call 718-670-5486.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Cold or Spring Allergies?

The transition from winter to spring can be challenging to your health. The change in seasons often results in an overlap of symptoms that could be either the remnants of a winter cold or the first signs of spring allergies.

While many of the symptoms of colds and allergies are similar, the causes of each are very different.

Colds are contagious and they are contracted when a person is exposed to an individual infected with a cold virus.  Our body’s immune system will launch a counter attack against the virus. This response usually brings on the classic symptoms, such as a runny nose or cough.

An allergic reaction is caused by an overactive immune system that mistakes harmless things, such as pollen, and attacks them. To combat what it thinks are germs, your body releases chemicals called histamines as a defense. The release of these histamines can cause a swelling of the nasal passages and result in coughing and sneezing. Allergies are not contagious.

While many of the symptoms are similar, the easiest way to determine if you have a cold or are suffering from allergies is the duration of your condition. While most colds last from three to 14 days, allergies can last for months as long as the person is in contact with the allergen. Other differences are:

  • An allergic reaction will begin immediately after exposure to an allergen while cold symptoms usually take approximately three days to appear after exposure
  • Colds can sometimes cause fever and body aches while allergies never do
  • An allergic reaction can often result in itchy, watery eyes, which a cold rarely produces this type of reaction

Once a determination between cold or allergy is made, the appropriate treatment can be applied.

There is no cure for a cold, but there are medications that can help alleviate the symptoms. Cough syrups, pain relievers, decongestant sprays, or multi-symptom cold relief medicines can all be used to help, but should only be taken after consulting your doctor, especially if you are taking other medications or if you have other underlying health conditions. Drinking plenty of liquids also speeds up the recovery process.

To treat allergies, your doctor may recommend an over-the-counter antihistamine to block the reaction to the allergens. There are many forms of antihistamines and some may cause drowsiness so be sure to look for the non-drowsy formula or only take them at night. Decongestants may also be suggested to relieve nasal congestion and avoid an infection.

If you are not sure if you have a cold or allergies, please speak with your doctor. If you do not have a doctor, Flushing Hospital’s Ambulatory Care Center can help. To make an appointment, please call 718-670-8939.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Spring Cleaning…Naturally

Spring is finally here, and springtime means spring cleaning! If you’re looking for an alternative to store bought cleaners, check out these low-cost, non-toxic, environmentally friendly cleaning solutions for a fresh smelling home:

ThinkstockPhotos-467249269Baking Soda – cleans, softens water, and scours. You can also use baking soda to deodorize food storage containers and sprinkle on your carpet to absorb smells before vacuuming.

.White Vinegar – cuts grease, removes mildew, odors, some stains and wax build-up. Use equal parts white vinegar and water to wash both the interior and exterior of your fridge.

.Lemons  – effective against most household bacteria. Use lemon peels in your garbage disposal to help deodorize it.

You can also try these combinations:

.All-Purpose Cleaner: Mix 1/2 cup vinegar and 1/4 cup baking soda into 1/2 gallon (2 liters) water. Store and keep. Use for removal of water deposit stains on shower stall panels, bathroom chrome fixtures, windows, and bathroom mirrors.

.Mold and Mildew cleaner: Use white vinegar or lemon juice full strength. Apply with a sponge or scrubby.

.Window Cleaner: Mix 2 teaspoons of white vinegar with 1 liter warm water. Use crumpled newspaper or cotton cloth to clean. Only use the black and white newspapers, not the colored ones. Don’t clean windows if the sun is on them, or if they are warm, or streaks will show on drying.

.Furniture Polish: For varnished wood, add a few drops of lemon oil into a 1/2 cup warm water. Mix well and spray onto a soft, slightly damp, cotton cloth.  Wipe furniture with the cloth, and finish by wiping once more using a dry soft cotton cloth.

One more tip: Whenever you clean your home, save the floor or carpet for last. Clean window blinds and shelves first and then work downwards.  This allows time for the dust to settle before vacuuming.

 

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Why Am I So Tired?

Daylight Saving Time began at 2:00 a.m. on Sunday, March 11th.  Lots of notifications were disseminated to remind you to set your clocks forward and try to get to bed a little earlier to compensate for that lost hour.

What they didn’t tell you is that your circadian rhythm or internal clock may have been interrupted by this change in time. In order to reset your internal clock, the food you eat might be the key to providing you a smoother transition.

Studies show that certain foods tend to produce a more restful night’s sleep. Foods that are likely to give you a deeper sleep are:

  • Milk
  •  Turkey
  • Honey
  • Nuts (such as almonds, walnuts, etc.)
  • Kale
  • Rice (or other forms of carbohydrates)

The secret to these foods are the vitamins they contain, as well as the hormones they help the brain to produce. Calcium is a natural sleep inducer, especially when consumed with magnesium. Calcium and magnesium both naturally produce melatonin, so consuming dairy products, wheat, and beans can all lead to a more restful sleep.

Melatonin is a hormone the brain produces naturally that also greatly contributes to a good night’s sleep.

Additionally, some proteins, such as lean meats, produce tryptophan, an amino acid that causes sleepiness. Carbohydrates, such as starches and fibers, can also cause fatigue, this occurs when the body breaks them down and they become sugar. Some healthy carbohydrates can be found in whole grain, cereal, and vegetables.

While some foods can help you get a better night’s sleep, other foods and eating habits can reduce your amount of sleep. Some of these include:

  • Eating too much or too little
  • Caffeine (after lunchtime)
  • Fatty foods (fast food, junk food, etc.)
  • Eating late at night • Alcohol (in large doses)

Try to avoid these bad eating habits and replace them with healthy foods that are high in calcium, magnesium, healthy carbohydrates, and protein.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.