Tips for Staying Hydrated

Portrait of a female athlete drinking form a water bottle

With winter behind us and warmer weather on the horizon, more and more people will begin to participate in outdoor activities. Before you begin, make sure you drink plenty of water in order to avoid dehydration. Here are some tips to help you stay hydrated:

 

  • The rule that you need to drink eight glasses of water per day is a myth. The Institute of Medicine recommends women should receive 2.2 liters of fluid intake per day and men should get three liters. Keep in mind that fluid intake can come from beverages other than water.
  • While thirst is your body’s way of preventing dehydration, being thirsty doesn’t mean that you are dehydrated. Thirst is our brain’s way of telling us to drink more to avoid dehydration.
  • The color of your urine is a good, real-time indicator of dehydration, but the misconception is that urine should be clear. In truth, urine should be a pale-yellow color.
  • Caffeinated beverages, such as coffee or tea will not dehydrate you if consumed in moderate amounts. Caffeine is considered a mild diuretic, the amount of water in it offsets the amount of fluid it will cause you to lose through increased urination.
  • Drinking isn’t the only way of increasing your water intake. It is estimated that we get up to 20% of our daily water intake from the foods we eat. Fruits and vegetables contain the most, with cucumbers, celery, and watermelon having the highest concentration of water.
  • There is also such a thing as drinking too much water and becoming overhydrated. This can be very dangerous and can lead to a condition called hyponatremia. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, headache, and fatigue. To avoid this problem, do not drink to the point that you are full from water alone.

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.

Smoking Cessation and Weight Gain

Obesity Culturally InfluencedOne of the reasons that people don’t want to stop smoking is because they are worried about gaining weight. Smoking increases the rate of metabolism so when a person quits, their metabolism slows and they tend to eat a little bit more than they did when they were still smoking. As a result, people will typically gain four to 10 pounds when they quit. When you snack between meals, over the course of time, you can slowly be adding on the pounds. Nicotine is an appetite suppressant, so it reduces these cravings. Smoking also makes people feel good, so that is another reason that people will eat sweet  foods such as cookies and cake to replace cigarettes.

If you find yourself craving something sweet to eat, there are healthy alternatives:

  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Fat free or low fat snacks
  • Sugar free candies

Drinking plenty of water and brushing your teeth frequently throughout the day will keep your breath fresh and will take away the urge to smoke.

Try finding alternate activities that will keep you busy so that you won’t have the desire to reach for a cigarette. It might be helpful to go to a movie theater, take a long walk, use the stairs instead of an elevator when possible, read a book and spend time with people who are supportive and who don’t smoke.

Smoking is a leading factor in heart disease, cancer, stroke, and many other illnesses. Speak to your physician to learn about ways to quit and how to manage the changes your body will experience. If you would like to speak with a physician at Flushing Hospital Medical Center, please 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.

Infertility – Causes and Treatments

Tablet with the diagnosis Infertility on the displayInfertility is more common than many realize. It is estimated that about 12 percent of women in the United States between the ages of 15-44 encounter difficulties in getting pregnant or carrying a pregnancy to full term and one in six couples is infertile.  Infertility affects both men and women equally.

There are several factors that can contribute to infertility. In men some of these are:

  • Problems with the delivery of sperm
  • Exposure to toxic chemicals
  • Damage resulting from chemotherapy or radiation
  • Abnormalities in the production of sperm
  • Use of tobacco or alcohol

Some causes of infertility in women may be the result of:

  • Hormonal abnormalities
  • Ovulation disorders
  • Damage to reproductive organs
  • Uterine or cervical abnormalities
  • Use of tobacco or alcohol

Although these conditions can impair a person’s ability to conceive, seeking medical assistance as soon as possible can greatly increase their chances of conception.  A physician who specializes in infertility will conduct several tests to determine probable causes and explore several treatment options. Treatment can be surgical or medicinal and may include:

  • Intrauterine insemination
  • In vitro fertilization
  • Clomiphene citrate (Clomid)
  • Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (Gn-RH)
  • Human menopausal gonadotropin or hMG
  • Follicle-stimulating hormone or FSH
  • Metformin
  • Bromocriptine
  • Sperm extraction

While coping with infertility can be challenging, it is important for individuals to remember not to blame themselves, lean on their partner or loved ones for support, acknowledge stress and practice stress-reducing techniques, gain knowledge by utilizing resources such as the National Infertility Association’s website-www.resolve.org.

The National Infertility Association also founded National Infertility Week, which is observed each year to increase public understanding and awareness of the reproductive disease. People who are trying to conceive are encouraged to learn the guidelines for seeing an infertility specialist. For more information about this observance, please visit http://www.resolve.org/national-infertility-awareness-week/home-page.html

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.

Pleasing Your Picky Eater

Feeding a picky eater

Inventing ways to please a picky eater is part of what it means to be a parent. Mealtime can be a constant battle and many parents worry about what their children eat — and don’t eat. However, you can avoid the mealtime battles and win the war for your child’s proper nutrition by considering these tips:

  1. Stick to the routine. Serve meals and snacks at about the same times every day. Keeping your child on an eating schedule will allow their bodies to tell them when they’re hungry.
  2. Make it fun. Include dipping sauces with fruits and veggies for a light snack or use shaped cookie cutters to make foods look more appealing to your child.
  3. Let them cook. Children are more likely to eat their own creations, so, when appropriate, let your picky eater help prepare the food. Give your little chef jobs such as tearing and washing lettuce, scrubbing potatoes, or stirring batter.
  4. Go shopping together. When grocery shopping let your child choose some fruits and vegetables. Doing this will help familiarize them to good foods and they will be more excited to try these foods at home.
  5. Be patient. This is the most important tip. When introducing new foods to your child there will be some hits and some misses but you shouldn’t give up.

Luckily for most parents, raising a picky eater is a short-lived phase for their child. Using these tips can improve your child’s willingness to try new things. For more information on tracking your child’s development and nutrition, schedule regular check-ups with their pediatrician. The Department of Pediatrics at Flushing Hospital Medical Center provides care to infants, children and young adults. To make an appointment, please call 718-670-5486.

For more hospital events, highlights, health and fitness tips, visit us on 

Facebook.com/JamaicaHospital  or Facebook.com/Flushing Hospital 

and follow us on Twitter @JamaicaHospital or @FHMC_NYC

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.

Mental Health Awareness Month

MentalHealthAwarenessMonth

May is National Mental Health Month.  During this month many mental health organizations across the country raise awareness to mental health by reaching millions of people through the media, local events and screenings.

Good mental health is critical for a person’s well-being at every stage of their life.  Mental illness is a real and disabling health condition that can have immense impact on individuals and families.  Mental disorders vary in type and severity and according to Mental Health America, one in four adults in the United States have a diagnosable mental illness.

Depression is the leading diagnosable mental illness.  Unfortunately, two-thirds of people do not seek medical treatment.

Mental disorders do not discriminate by race, ethnic and socioeconomic groups.  Risk factors include brain trauma, stressful events and financial concerns; families with a history of mental and addictive disorders are at an increased risk.

Treatment is individualized and may include counseling, psychotherapy, medication therapy, rehabilitation, and attention to other mental and psychosocial problems. If you or someone you know is showing signs of mental illness, you can call Flushing Hospital Medical Center’s Mental Health Center at, 718-670-5486, for 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.

Preeclampsia Awareness Month

pregpic

Preeclampsia Awareness Month is a nationally recognized health observance that presents an opportunity to offer education to help increase awareness of this life-threatening disorder.

Preeclampsia occurs in eight percent of all pregnancies.  Formerly called toxemia, preeclampsia is a condition that is marked by high blood pressure in pregnant women that have previously not experienced high blood pressure.  Symptoms of preeclampsia include high levels of protein found in their urine and they may have swelling in the feet, legs and hands.  Preeclampsia appears late in the pregnancy, generally after the 20 week mark, although, in some cases, it can appear earlier.

If left undiagnosed and untreated, preeclampsia can become a more serious condition called eclampsia, which can put the expectant mother and baby at risk.

There is no cure for preeclampsia, but when it is caught in its early stages, it is easier to manage.

If you are pregnant and would like to make an appointment at Flushing Hospital Medical Center’s Women’s Health Center, call 718-670-5486, for 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.

Poll Question: Do You Need Another Break During The Work Day?

Should more employers start mandating recreational, out-of-office breaks for employees?

  1. Yes
  2. No

It is no secret that some major companies have their employee’s best interests in mind when it comes to setting up comfortable work environments. The work day can be very strenuous if you’re in a high-volume office setting so it is important to know your limits. Even if you decide to eat lunch away from your desk or take a brief walk for fresh air it is necessary to get away for a few minutes each day.

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 Shares Facts About Meningitis

This Sunday, April 24 in World Meningitis Awareness Day and Flushing Hospital Medical Center wants to share the following facts about meningitis.

Word Meningitis on a book and pills.

Meningitis is an inflammation of the fluid that covers the brain and spinal cord. It is an extremely serious condition that can result in death. Although anyone can develop meningitis, those most at risk are children under five and adolescents between 15-19 years old.
There are two main kinds of meningitis:

Bacterial meningitis is the more severe form of the disease and requires treatment in a hospital setting. Viral meningitis is more common, and most people with this form of the illness get better in a couple of weeks. With mild cases, you may only need home treatment, including taking medicine for fever and pain and drinking enough fluids to stay hydrated.

Meningitis isn’t as contagious as viruses, such as those that cause the common cold, but it can spread from person to person via coughing, sneezing, kissing, sexual contact, or contact with infected blood or stool. A mother can also pass the germs that cause meningitis to her baby during birth.

Meningitis can be hard to diagnose because many of the early symptoms match those of the flu. The most common symptoms are fever, vomiting, headaches, stiff neck, sensitivity to light, drowsiness, and muscle pain. Babies may also develop a rash, have a lack of appetite and seem more irritable.

The best way to protect your child from meningitis is to make sure he or she gets all the standard immunizations for children, including shots for measles, chickenpox, and pneumococcal infection. When children reach adolescence, it is recommended that they receive two doses of a meningococcal vaccine to prevent bacterial meningitis.

Flushing Hospital encourages everyone to know the symptoms of meningitis and speak to their doctor about the meningitis vaccine.

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.

April is Irritable Bowel Awareness Month

IBS MonthApril is Irritable Bowel Awareness Month. For many people who suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), finding out which foods agree with them and which foods cause them discomfort is essential to living successfully with the disease.
IBS is a condition whereby certain foods will cause intestinal discomfort after being consumed. These symptoms can include:
• Bloating
• Gas
• Nausea
• Abdominal cramps
• Diarrhea or constipation
There is no general rule of what to eat and what to avoid in treating IBS. A physician will go through a patient’s daily diet and see if there are certain foods that are more likely to act as irritants. Foods that typically cause a problem for people with IBS  have a high concentration of insoluble fiber which are found primarily in whole grains and vegetables and that do not dissolve in water.  Insoluble fiber rich foods pass through the intestine almost intact and can act as a natural laxative.  The foods that physicians who treat this disease recommend avoiding include:
• Nuts
• Caffeine
• Chocolate
• Beans
• Cabbage
• Raisins
• Broccoli
The act of eating and chewing  stimulates the digestive tract.  It has been suggested that instead of eating one or two full meals every day, eating five or six smaller portion  meals may prevent   the digestive tract from becoming over stimulated.
To make an appointment with a physician specializing in IBS 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.

Pressure Ulcers

Pressure sores areaPressure ulcers or bed sores are damaged areas of skin that result from staying in one position for too long or prolonged pressure on the skin.   They tend to develop in areas where the skin is closest to the bones such as the heels, back, elbows and tailbone.

People who are limited in movement due to an illness or disability and are confined to a bed or wheelchair for an extended period of time are more at risk of developing pressure ulcers than others.  Others who are also at risk of developing pressure ulcers. Those who wear prosthesis, diabetics, smokers and sufferers of peripheral arterial disease are also at risk of developing pressure ulcers.

Pressure ulcers develop quickly; here are the warning signs and symptoms to look out for:

  • Tenderness, pain, softness or firmness, warmness or coldness of an area of skin.
  • The skin is not broken but red.
  • Redness or discoloration- If pressure is removed from an area that is discolored for more than 30 minutes and the skin has not returned to its natural hue, it is likely that an ulcer is developing.
  • The outer layer of the skin is damaged. The area may blister or appear as an open wound.
  • Loss of skin.

The following symptoms are likely to occur in the advanced stages of a pressure ulcer:

  • The ulcer appears as a deep wound or crater-like.
  • Loss of skin exposes a layer of fat, muscle, tendons or bones.
  • There is tissue at the bottom of the wound that is dead, brown, black or yellow in color.

Pressure ulcers can be easier to prevent than treat. They can be prevented by:

  • Changing positions
  • Frequently shifting weight
  • Using a specialty wheelchair
  • Using a specialized mattress
  • Using cushions to relieve pressure
  • Monitoring skin
  • Protecting skin

If you are at risk for developing pressure ulcers it is recommended that you and your healthcare team develop a strategy to help in prevention or treatment.

The Wound Care Center at Flushing Hospital Medical Center is a state-of-the-art unit that provides specialized, interdisciplinary wound care to patients who suffer from non-healing or chronic wounds.
For more information on the Wound Care Center or to schedule an appointment, call 718-670-4542.

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.