Ways to Prevent Acid Reflux

How many times have you eaten something you wish you had not because you ended up with a burning sensation in your chest? This is a classic symptom of acid reflux, a condition also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD. Acid reflux is a common condition where the symptoms typically last for a few hours. Symptoms of acid reflux are a burning sensation in the abdomen and lower esophagus.                                   There are several things you can do to reduce the occurrence of acid reflux:
• Don’t eat a big meal before going to bed.
• Stop smoking.
• Elevate the head of your bed so that your head is higher than your abdomen.
• Avoid tight clothing that press on your abdomen.
• Reduce your consumption of alcohol.
If you are experiencing symptoms of acid reflux on a regular basis you should consult with a physician who may want to perform tests to find out how serious the condition is. If you would like to schedule an appointment with a physician 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.

How to Prevent the Flu

It is nearing the middle of October and it is also the beginning of flu season. None of us want to catch the flu so it is a good idea to take some preventative measures that can help us to stay healthy.
Here are a few of the ways we can prevent getting the flu:
• Everyone who is six months of age and older should get the vaccine every year
• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
• Wash your hands frequently with soap and water.
• Keep a hand sanitizer handy for the times soap and water are not available.
• Avoid touching your hands to your eyes, nose and mouth.
• Whenever possible, disinfect surfaces that are frequently used by others such as tables and chairs.
• Clean your drinking glasses and dishes in hot water and with soap
• Keep your immune system healthy by eating a balanced diet, exercising  regularly and getting enough sleep every night
• Tobacco can suppress the immune system, so it is highly recommended to quit smoking.
If you would like to schedule an appointment with a physician at Flushing Hospital to discuss the flu vaccine and other ways to stay healthy, 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.

How Smoking Can Affect Digestion

Smoking can affect the body’s ability to operate properly. One of the body’s functions that smoking greatly affects is digestion.

Many organs are associated with the digestive system and they produce chemicals that aid in the breakdown of the food into nutrients and other substances that the body needs to survive. All of these organs are susceptible to changes due to the effects of smoking.

Not only can smoking elevate the risk for cancer in any of these organs but because of the body’s response to the irritants it contains, smoking can also lead to:

  • Heartburn
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
  • Liver disease
  • Peptic ulcers
  • Polyps
  • Gallstones
  • Pancreatitis

Smoking can increase the production of pepsin which can harm the lining of the stomach, and it can have an effect on blood flow to the lining of the digestive tract which will inhibit healing. There is also a decrease in the amount of mucous that is produced and this will cause irritation of the lining of these organs because the protective layer is diminished.

One of the ways to prevent the effects of smoking on the digestive system is to stop smoking. If you would like to schedule an appointment with a physician at Flushing Hospital to find out which way may be best for you, 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.

Can Anxiety Cause Hypertension ?

While we all experience anxious feelings from time to time, there are some people who are clinically diagnosed with anxiety disease. One would think that prolonged anxiety could lead to an elevated blood pressure, but is there a link between the two?  Anxiety causes the body to release stress hormones, adrenaline and cortisol and these hormones cause the heart to beat faster and also constrict the blood vessels. This will lead to a temporary increase in blood pressure. When blood pressure is elevated on a regular basis, and for prolonged periods of time, it can lead to damage of the blood vessels, kidneys and heart.
Anxiety can also lead a person to have unhealthy habits as a way of coping.  Smoking, drinking alcohol and a poor diet are examples of some of these bad habits and these can all contribute to elevated blood pressure. Certain medications that are used to control anxiety, such as serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, can also cause the elevation of pressure levels.

A few of the ways to treat anxiety is by learning what causes a person to be anxious and avoid those situations. This may require a change in lifestyle, eating habits, and learning how to relax.

If you find that you feel anxious frequently and would like to speak to a physician 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.

September is World Alzheimer’s Awareness Month

Alzheimer’s Awareness month was started in 2012 in order to raise awareness about the disease and to link families affected by it with resources to help. There is great emphasis placed on early detection and early intervention when dementia is detected.
Alzheimer’s is the most common cause of dementia. It mainly affects the part of the brain that is responsible for memory, and is responsible for almost 75 percent of the cases diagnosed of dementia. While most commonly seen in people who are over 65, it can be found in people who are younger.
Commonly seen symptoms include:
• Forgetting of names, places, and recent events
• Confusion
• Personality changes
• Mood swings
• Loss of inhibition
• Wandering from home
There is no cure for Alzheimer’s at the present time though some medications are available that may slow down its progression. If you would like to schedule an appointment with a physician at Flushing Hospital who may be able to assist you or someone you know, 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.

How Often Do You Floss Your Teeth ?

Using Dental Floss

How frequently do you floss your teeth ?
• Once a day
• Once a week
• Once a month
• Never

The American Dental Association recommends that we floss our teeth once a day. It doesn’t make a difference at what time of day, the important thing is to do it whenever it is convenient for your schedule.
Flossing helps to remove a build up between the teeth called plaque which can lead to gum disease and cavities if not properly removed.
Speak to your dentist about what type of flossing material is best for you.

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 to prevent head lice

It is back to school season for millions of children across the United States. Undoubtedly at this time of year, there will be several who come home with more than new books. They may also come home with symptoms of a head lice infestation.

Head lice are very tiny, wingless insects that live on the heads, eyelashes and eyebrows of people. They feed on their host’s blood.

The symptoms of a head lice infestation include itching of the scalp, sores that come from scratching the scalp, and sometimes difficulty sleeping caused by the irritation of the scalp.

Since lice do not have the ability to fly, they are transferred from person to person who is in close contact with someone who is already infected. Although uncommon, they can also be transferred by coming in contact with a comb or a brush, a hat, or a shared pillow.

Ways to prevent the transfer of head lice include avoiding:

  • Head-to-head contact with other children
  • Sharing personal items that people typically place on their heads
  • Sharing towels or pillows
  • Storing items that go on the head in close proximity to the items of a person with lice
  • Keeping long hair braided or in a ponytail

Anyone can get head lice. It is not a reflection of cleanliness or socio-economic status. If a school alerts parents that someone has been reported to have them, a good first step would be to check your child and everyone else in the home. Checking for head lice involves very careful inspection of the hair and the scalp. Usually this is done while the hair is wet and a very fine comb is used. Proper lighting is also important. If you are uncertain about how to check for head lice there are professionals in most towns who can provide this service. Some schools will also have staff members who will examine each student at the beginning of the school year as a precaution.

Once it has been confirmed that head lice are present, there are several medications that are available over-the-counter to treat it. Some of these products will contain natural products such as rosemary, lemongrass, tea tree, citronella, and eucalyptus. It is important to follow the directions carefully so that the treatment will be successful. It is important to be vigilant after being treated so as to avoid being infested again.

 

 

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.

Obesity

One of the most prevalent health conditions in the United States today is obesity. Both children and adults are often classified as being obese and this can have very serious health consequences. There are numerous reasons that a person may be obese. While lack of exercise and poor eating habits are more commonly given as reasons for being obese, genetics and socio-economic factors may also be involved. Typically obesity is related to consuming more calories every day than are being expended.
Obesity is defined as a condition where a person has excess body fat. One of the ways that obesity is measured is by taking a person’s body mass index (BMI), which is calculated by their body weight in kilograms and dividing it by their height in meters squared. If the result is 30 or greater, that person is considered to be obese.
Being obese can have very serious effects on a person’s overall health. Some of the health conditions associated with obesity are:
• Diabetes
• Hypertension
• High Cholesterol
• Stroke
• Osteoarthritis
• Respiratory difficulty
• Sleep apnea
• Heart disease
There are a few ways that a person can prevent themselves from becoming obese.  Since poor eating habits and behavior may be the cause of the problem, modifying these factors will be helpful. A conservative approach to treating obesity involves:
• Change eating habits
• Improve and increase physical activity
• consult with your physician for recommendations
• consult with a certified dietician
There are also different types of weight loss surgeries, known as bariatric surgery that can be performed.  They are Gastric Bypass, that shrinks the stomach capacity into a small pouch so it won’t hold a lot of food and the Adjustable Gastric Band surgery which limits the amount of food that enters the stomach. If you would like to discuss surgical options for treating obesity with a physician at Flushing Hospital, please call 718-206-5486.

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.

Psoriasis

Psoriasis is a condition that is characterized by raised, red scaly patches. It is  often found on the scalp, knees and elbows, but can show up on other parts of the body as well of people who have the disease. The exact cause is not known but there is a correlation between genetics and also the body’s immune system. Psoriasis is a condition where the skin cells multiply at a faster rate than normal cells. This causes a buildup up skin lesions and the area of the body also feels warmer because it contains more blood vessels.
Psoriasis is not contagious so it does not get passed by coming in to contact with a person who has it. It is a condition that affects men and women equally and  it can develop at any age, most commonly between the ages of 15 and 35.
Common signs of psoriasis include:
• red patches of skin with thick silvery scales
• cracked and dry skin that may bleed
• stiff joints that may be swollen
• itching, burning and soreness
• nails that are pitted, thick and ridged
There are certain risk factors for developing psoriasis.  This includes stress, smoking, obesity, alcoholism, skin infections, a vitamin D deficiency, and a family history. Psoriasis is diagnosed by examining the skin and making a diagnosis. A dermatologist will be able to determine if it is psoriasis by the amount of thickness and redness it has. There are different types of psoriasis and they are classified by how they show up on the skin.
There are three ways that treatment for psoriasis can be approached. They can be used by themselves or together, depending on the severity. Topical creams and ointments that contain corticosteroids are usually the most commonly prescribed medications for mild to moderate conditions. Light therapy that is either natural or artificial ultraviolet light  can be used and it is directed at the area of the body that is affected. In severe cases, medications that are either injected or taken orally may be required. There are also alternative treatments that are being used and this includes Aloe vera which comes from a plant and   omega-3 fatty acids that comes from fish oils.
Depending on the severity of the disease, it may have an impact on a person’s quality of life. If you would like to schedule an appointment with a dermatologist at Flushing Hospital Hospital for any type of skin condition, 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.

History of the EKG

An EKG machine measures the electrical activity of the heart. It displays this activity by drawing waves on a piece of paper that is either displayed on a screen or drawn on a piece of paper that runs through a machine.
• Late 1700’s – The first step in the development of the modern electrocardiograph machine was the creation of a machine that could sense, but not measure, electric current. This machine was called a galvanometer.
• 1786 an Italian physician, Dr. Luigi Galvan, discovered that skeletal muscles worked by producing electric current. In
• 1842 Dr. Carlo Matteucci working at the University of Pisa discovered that there is an electrical current that comes with each heart beat in a frog.
• Mid 1800’s a machine called the “Rheotome” was invented that could now measure this electrical current.
• 1872 – further refinements to this Rheotome led to a machine devised by Gabrrile Lippman  of the “capillary electrometer”.
During this time, a British physiologist, Augustus Waller, was able to record the first human electrocardiogram that using this technology with electrodes placed on the chest and back of a patient. This demonstrated electric activity taking place before ventricular contraction. In
• 1893 – Dr. Wilhelm Einthoven, a Dutch physiologist,  refined the capillary electrometer to show five deflections in the electrical current passing through the heart. The five waves were initially called ABCDE, but were changed to PQRST after a mathematical correction was made to compensate for the inertia in the capillary tube. He used the phrase “electrocardiogram” for the first time at a meeting of Dutch physicians.  In
• 1901 – Dr. Eintoven he developed a string galvanometer, a more sensitive machine. He  was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology for his invention of the electrocardiograph.
As time passed, the electrocardiograph machine became much smaller and much more accurate. In 1903 it weighed 600 pounds and by 1930 it weighed about 30 pounds. Tthe importance of an electrocardiograph was recognized as being essential in diagnosing cardiac from non cardiac pain and able to help diagnose a myocardial infarction or a heart attack. Today we use a 12 lead electrocardiogram as a major tool in diagnosing heart disease. The machine today weighs just a few pounds and is an essential tool in diagnosing diseases of the heart.

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.