#Wellness Wednesday

Physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body, it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity. -John F. Kennedy

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.

November is Diabetes Awareness Month

Every year the month of November is recognized nationally as Diabetes Awareness Month. According to the American Diabetes Association, 25.8 million people have this disease, however, only 18.8 million have been diagnosed. An additional 79 million people in the United States are believed to have pre-diabetes.

Diabetes affects different race and ethnic groups more frequently than others. The prevalence of diabetes has been calculated to affect 7.1 % of Caucasians, 8.4% of Asian Americans, 12.6% of African Americans and 11.8 % of Hispanics. Diabetes is considered a chronic illness that leads to it being a cause of death, either directly or through a complication due to the disease. Some of the complications associated with diabetes are hypertension, blindness, heart disease and stroke, kidney disease, neuropathy, and amputations.

Diabetes is a chronic illness for which there is no known cure. It can, however, be treated successfully in many people, and very often these people lead long and healthy lives. Having a family history of diabetes can be a risk factor for developing the disease but not a guarantee that a person will definitely develop it. Other risk factors include obesity, poor diet, having diabetes during pregnancy, race and ethnicity, being over the age of 45, lack of exercise, and having high blood pressure.

Some of the symptoms of diabetes are frequent urination, frequently feeling thirsty, blurry vision, fatigue, feeling hungry even after having just eaten a meal or a snack, wounds that are slow to heal, numbness or tingling in the extremities, and in some cases, weight loss.

The three most common forms of diabetes are Type 1 which indicates a lack of insulin production by the pancreas, Type 1 is most commonly associated with children and young adults. Type 2 diabetes is when the body produces insulin but it is not utilized adequately by the body, also known as adult-onset diabetes and the most commonly diagnosed form of the disease. Gestational Diabetes occurs occasionally during pregnancy and then frequently resolves itself once the pregnancy is completed.

Diabetes is diagnosed through blood tests. Once the diagnosis is confirmed, a physician will discuss treatment options that will work for that individual. Often this will include either an oral medication in cases that are less severe or insulin injections for more serious cases, combined with diet modification and possibly an exercise regime. It is extremely important to keep diabetes well controlled. Uncontrolled diabetes can lead to serious complications that may be irreversible and can lead to blindness, heart disease, stroke and premature death.

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 Goiter ?

A goiter is an enlargement of the thyroid gland which is a butterfly shaped gland that is found at the base of the neck. It is responsible for producing hormones that control metabolism that regulate the amount of calcium in the blood.

There are a few reasons a goiter may develop. The main cause of a goiter is a lack of iodine in the diet. That is why certain foods are supplemented with iodine, such as iodized salt which is commonly used. Other causes are Grave’s disease which occurs when the thyroid produces too much of its T3 and T4 hormone or an underproduction of the same hormones, known as Hashimoto’s disease.

An enlarged thyroid gland can also be caused by thyroid cancer, pregnancy, menopause, exposure to radiation, aging, and being female. Eating large amounts  of certain foods such as soybeans, rutabagas, cabbage, peaches, peanuts and spinach can also cause a goiter to form.

A goiter may or may not cause symptoms, but when it does present as:

  • Swelling at the base of the neck
  • Coughing
  • Hoarseness
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Problems breathing
  • Tightness in the throat

Diagnosing a problem with the thyroid gland can be done with an ultrasound, a blood test to check hormone levels, an antibody test, a biopsy and a thyroid scan using radioactive isotopes are injected into the blood to see if they are taken up by the gland.

Depending on its cause, a goiter may be treated with iodine supplements, medication, or may require a surgical procedure.

If you suspect that you may be having an issue with your thyroid, you should see your physician as soon as possible. To schedule an appointment with a physician at Flushing Hospital Medical Center 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.

BENEFITS OF COLLAGEN FOR MAINTAINING A HEALTHY GUT

When talking about collagen, most people would equate it with skin care, but younger looking skin is only where the benefits of collagen begin.  Collagen can also play an important role in building and maintaining healthy connective tissue throughout your digestive tract.

Maintaining a strong digestive tract and stomach lining is extremely important for the prevention of a condition known as “leaky gut.”  Leaky gut happens when there are damages in the barrier lining of your intestine.  This condition may allow food and waste particles to pass into the bloodstream, causing an inflammation.  Leaky gut can cause bloating, gas, stomach cramps, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), as well as sensitivity to foods that are wheat-based, high in sugar and contain gluten.

Foods that are known to trigger leaky gut are:

  • Wheat-based products
  • Gluten-containing grains
  • Processed meats
  • Baked goods
  • Snack foods
  • Junk food
  • Dairy products
  • Refined oils
  • Artificial sweeteners
  • Sauces
  • Beverages

Some simple ways to add more collagen to your diet are:Collagen is beneficial to gut health because it contains large amounts of the amino acids glycine, glutamine and proline which can be beneficial to the intestinal tract as well as the stomach.

  • Bone broth – Bone broth is made by simmering bones to help extract the flavor and beneficial nutrients of the bones marrow.  It is not only an excellent source of collagen, but it is tastes good and is easy to add to your diet through soups and stews.
  • Powdered gelatin – Gelatin is the cooked form or collagen.  By utilizing powdered gelatin as a tea or by adding it to your soups, stews and broths, you can quickly bump up your collagen consumption.
  • Supplements with collagen peptides – Collagen peptides are an easy way to get this important amino acid.  Most brands are broken down so that they are easy to digest and absorb.

Although leaky gut is more prevalent in persons with chronic diseases such as, celiac’s disease and type 1 diabetes, main source of leaky gut remains a mystery. Therefore, its treatment may vary.  Most doctors recommend adding a healthier menu to your lifestyle. They suggest adding more vegetables, fruit, gluten-free grains, healthy fats, fish, lean meats, eggs and yogurt to your diet.

If you are showing signs and symptoms of leaky gut and they persist, please see your doctor for further discussion.  If you’d like to make an appointment at Flushing Hospital Medical Centers, Ambulatory Care Center, call 718-670-5486 to schedule an appointment.

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.

Rotator Cuff Injuries

The rotator cuff is located in the shoulder and is made up of a group of muscles and tendons that serve to keep the upper arm bone firmly attached into the shoulder socket.

Injuries to the rotator cuff are typically associated with repetitive movement that requires overhead motion of the shoulder. People who are susceptible to rotator cuff injuries are baseball pitchers, painters, tennis players, construction workers and seniors. There also may be a family history factor that can make a person susceptible to this type of injury.

Rotator cuff injuries can be divided into three categories. Tendonitis is an inflammation of the tendons in the shoulder caused by overuse. Bursitis is an inflammation of the fluid filled sacs that are located between the bone and the tendons. Strains and tears of the rotator cuff are caused by an overstretching of the tendons that attach the muscles to the bone.

Signs and symptoms of a rotator cuff injury include:

  • A dull ache in the shoulder
  • Difficulty sleeping on the affected side
  • Arm weakness
  • Difficulty reaching behind the back
  • A popping sound when moving the shoulder
  • Limited range of shoulder motion

One way to prevent a rotator cuff injury is to do stretching exercises every day to keep the muscles and tendons in good condition.

Diagnosing a rotator cuff injury involves a thorough history and physical exam ,an x-ray to see if there is a bone problem or either an ultrasound or MRI.

Failure to treat a rotator cuff injury could eventually lead to loss of mobility in the shoulder and degeneration of the shoulder joint. Treatment of a rotator cuff injury depends on the severity and nature of the problem. Short term use of an over the counter anti-inflammatory may help the symptoms.  If the problem  is caused by repetitive movement over a period of time, physical therapy which includes either applying heat or ice to the area and strengthening exercises may be one way to help the symptoms. A cortisone injection to the area will help to reduce the inflammation and usually that will help reduce the discomfort too.  However, if  there is a  tear of a tendon, surgery may be required.

If you would like to schedule an appointment with an orthopedist at Flushing Hospital Medical Center, 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.

CONSTIPATION

According to the Mayo Clinic, chronic constipation is defined as, “Infrequent bowel movements or difficult passage of stools that persists for several weeks or longer.”

To most, occasional constipation is quite common. However, chronic constipation is a condition that may interfere with a person’s capacity to go about their day to day routine.  Many chronic constipation sufferers have less than three bowel movements per week, hard, lumpy stools and difficulty passing their stool.

There are many health conditions that can lead to chronic constipation such as:

  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Pregnancy
  • Colon cancer
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Underactive thyroid
  • Eating disorders

Additional causes for chronic constipation are:

  • Changes to your diet
  • Lack of water or fiber in your diet
  • Consuming an overload of dairy products
  • Not exercising enough
  • Ignoring an urge to move your bowels
  • Stress
  • Overuse of laxatives
  • Medication (i.e. iron supplements)

There are several measures you can take to help with constipation such as, increasing the fiber and fluids in your diet. If you have prolonged constipation or experience unexplained and persistent changes in your bowel movements please make an appointment with a doctor.  If you’d like to schedule an appointment at Flushing Hospital Medical Center’s Ambulatory Care Center 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.

Compulsive Disorders

Compulsive disorders are characterized by behaviors that are performed repeatedly and of which there is a lack in the ability to control them.

A person who exhibits signs of compulsive behaviors has often undergone some kind of stressful event, abuse or trauma. Some experts believe there may be a genetic component associated with why people are compulsive.

Some of the more common compulsions that people exhibit are eating, hoarding, symmetry, shopping, gambling, exercising and talking. Compulsions very often have themes that include: • Counting • Orderliness • Demanding reassurances • Following a strict routine • Checking and rechecking • Washing and cleaning

The repetitive behaviors are thought to be performed as a way of relieving stress or anxiety. When these behaviors become extreme, they can rule a person’s life. Trying to ignore the obsessions can increase distress and anxiety.

The treatment for compulsive disorders is based on severity and can include cognitive behavioral therapy, the administration of selective serotonin reuptake therapy, or a combination of both. There are rating scales that will help determine the severity of the disorder, one being the “Brief Obsessive-Compulsive Scale” and the other being “Evidence-Based Brief Obsessive Scale”.

If you would like to discuss your condition with a mental health professional 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.

Employee Spotlight – Nancy DeLano-Tomczyk

This month the Flushing Hospital Medical Center’s (FHMC) Employee Spotlight shines on Nancy DeLano-Tomczyk.

Nancy has been a Flushing Hospital Medical Center employee since 1988, and has held many titles including Out Patient Billing Clerk, Payroll Clerk, Payroll Supervisor and currently, Payroll Manager.

Nancy is tasked with keeping updated payroll records by reviewing and approving changes in exemptions, insurance coverage, savings deductions, as well as job titles and department transfers. She is directly responsible for overseeing the hospitals payroll, in other words, she’s the person who makes sure FHMC employees are paid!

Outside of her regular job duties, Nancy, is active in a number of hospital events.  She is a Fit Bit Challenge team member and Co-Chair of the FHMC Celebration committee.  On any given day, you will see Nancy collecting donations for Making Strides Pacesetter and fundraising  for Breast Cancer Awareness, as well as volunteering at the MediSys Annual Golf Outing and participating in the FHMC Halloween Costume Contest; a contest that she has won several times.

Nancy’s greatest loves are her two sons Joseph, 27 and Kevin 24, as well as her beautiful granddaughter, Julianna who she refers to as her “Partner in Crime.”  She spends her free time listening to music, journaling and traveling.  She loves to try new restaurants, go to the movies, Broadway plays, and sifting through garage sales.

Although her job is rewarding, there are challenges.  One challenge is coordinating all the departments to make the deadline when submitting their payroll.

In closing, Nancy shared, “I can honestly say that I never wake up thinking I don’t want to go to work.  I truly enjoy my job and the amazing people I work with.  I consider everyone at Flushing Hospital Medical Center my family.”

 

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.

Benefits of Grandparents Who Help Raise Grandchildren

Studies have shown that raising grandchildren can be mutually beneficial.  Grandparents provide a stable, safe, loving and fun environment for their grandchildren and the closeness between grandchildren and grandparents may keep older adults sharp, ward off depression, boost social connections, and solidify an important family relationship.

Some positive results of grandparents caring for their grandchildren are:

  • Peace of mind – Parents know that their children are with those who love them and are giving them the time an attention their parents can’t while at work.
  • Financial – Childcare is expensive. Parents may be able to save in lieu of paying the high cost of childcare.
  • Flexibility – If the parents are called in to work on an off day, grandparents are generally ready, willing and able to take on whatever was planned for that day.
  • Health – Many grandparents feel that their grandchildren keep them fit and to a grandchild no one can fix a cut or scrape better than a grandparent.
  • Wisdom – Grandparents can impart great wisdom to your child in a way that is much more absorbable than if a parent tries to impart that same wisdom.

Having grandparents help raise your children is a mostly “pro” scenario, but no situation is a perfect one.  Always have a childcare plan “B” in place in case Grandma and Grandpa need a day off.

 

 

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.

National Depression Screening Day

 

Thursday October 11th has been designated as National Depression Screening Day, an annual event held during Mental Illness Awareness Week. This event was started 28 years ago as an effort to provide people with mental health education materials and resources for support services. National Depression Screening Day was also created with the hope of removing the stigma from mental illness.

This year the focus of the observation is to have people reach out to their friends, family, co-workers and neighbors who might benefit from information on this condition and to avail themselves to the many opportunities to receive a free screening, either in person or online. It is estimated that worldwide there are 350 million people that suffer from depression.

The World Health Organization states that early recognition and treatment of the disease offers the best opportunity for successful outcomes. If depression is left untreated it can lead to suicide.

Depression screenings help to distinguish between short term feelings of sadness and stress due to transient life episodes, and more severe symptoms that can go on for months and years. The tests usually last between two to five minutes and the scores will indicate whether a further evaluation by a mental health professional is needed. It is important for people to know that help is available.

To schedule an appointment with the Mental Health Department of Flushing Hospital Medical Center, 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.