How Much Post-Holiday Drinking IsToo Much?

The holidays are behind us, but some habits may linger.  After the merriment of the season, you may want to ask yourself, “How many drinks are too many?”

images

Answer: According to the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism: men should not exceed four drinks per day or a total of 14 per week and women should not to exceed three drinks a day or a total of seven per week.

When following these guidelines here are some factors to consider:

.Portion size: Standard portions in the United States include 12-ounces of beer, 8-ounces of malt liquor, 5-ounces of wine and 1.5-ounces or a “shot” of 80-proof distilled spirits or liquor.

  • Alcohol content: There are differences in alcohol percentages between red and white wines, as well as between light beers and lagers.
  • Gender: Women have less body water than men and hence retain a higher blood-alcohol concentration than men from a single drink.
  • Food:  An empty stomach speeds up alcohol absorption. Food slows absorption rates in men and women.

Remember, everyone metabolizes alcohol differently and moderation is key. Make smart choices when enjoying dinner or a night out with friends and NEVER drink and drive.

If you think you have a problem with alcohol, please contact Flushing Hospital Medical Center’s Addiction Treatment Division at 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.

New Year’s Eve – Do You Prefer to Stay Home or Go Out ?

Everyone knows that New Year’s Eve is the most popular night of the year to party.  It is a night to go out with family and friends to celebrate the end of one year and the beginning of a new one. Some people prefer to spend a quiet night at home though. The reasons are varied but commonly people don’t want to spend the money, don’t like the crowds, and think that the night is much a-do about nothing.

Which do you prefer?

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 Can You Save Someone From Choking? Learn How to Perform the Heimlich Maneuver

The holidays offer us with many opportunities to surround ourselves with friends and family.  While these gatherings with loved ones are meant to be happy times, there are opportunities for a tragedy to occur. Whether it is a loved one choking on food at a Christmas party or a young child having a small toy stuck in their throat, there is always the potential for a bad outcome. By learning how to administer the Heimlich maneuver, you can avoid a catastrophe by saving a choking victim.

Choking occurs when a foreign object gets lodged in the throat or windpipe, blocking the flow of air. In adults, a piece of food is often the culprit. Young children often swallow small objects. Because choking cuts off oxygen to the brain, give first aid as quickly as possible.

You can act fast if you know what signs to look for. The universal sign for choking is hands clutched to the throat. If the person doesn’t give the signal, look for these indications:

  • Inability to talk
  • Difficulty breathing or noisy breathing
  • Squeaky sounds when trying to breathe
  • Cough, which may either be weak or forceful
  • Skin, lips and nails turning blue or dusky
  • Skin that is flushed, then turns pale or bluish in color
  • Loss of consciousness

If the person is able to cough forcefully, the person should keep coughing. If the person is choking and can’t talk, cry or laugh forcefully, The American Heart Association advises administering the Heimlich maneuver immediately.

How to perform the Heimlich Maneuver on someone else:

  • Stand behind the person.Place one foot slightly in front of the other for balance. Wrap your arms around the waist. Tip the person forward slightly. If a child is choking, kneel down behind the child.
  • Make a fist with one hand.Position it slightly above the person’s navel.
  • Grasp the fist with the other hand.Press hard into the abdomen with a quick, upward thrust — as if trying to lift the person up.
  • Perform between six and 10 abdominal thrustsuntil the blockage is dislodged.

If you’re the only rescuer, continue to perform these measures before calling 911. If another person is available, have that person call for help while you perform first aid.

Measures to save a choking child differ from those administered on an adult. Follow these tips if the victim is under age 1:

  • Assume a seated position and hold the infant face down on your forearm, which is resting on your thigh. Support the infant’s head and neck with your hand, and place the head lower than the trunk.
  • Thump the infant gently but firmlyfive times on the middle of the back using the heel of your hand. The combination of gravity and the back blows should release the blocking object. Keep your fingers pointed up to avoid hitting the infant in the back of the head.
  • Turn the infant face up on your forearm,resting on your thigh with the head lower than the trunk if the infant still isn’t breathing. Using two fingers placed at the center of the infant’s breastbone, give five quick chest compressions. Press down about 1 1/2 inches, and let the chest rise again in between each compression.
  • Repeat the back blows and chest thrustsif breathing doesn’t resume. Call for emergency medical help.
  • Begin infant CPRif one of these techniques opens the airway but the infant doesn’t resume breathing.

If the child is older than age 1 and conscious, give abdominal thrusts only. Be careful not to use too much force to avoid damaging ribs or internal organs.

To prepare yourself for these situations, learn the Heimlich maneuver and CPR in a certified first-aid training course.

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.

Holiday Heart Syndrome

Holiday Heart Syndrome, coined in 1978, is a real syndrome in which the heart’s vulnerability to certain arrhythmias is increased by excessive alcohol ingestion (binge drinking) and the onset of a heart rhythm disturbance in people who are otherwise healthy.

The most frequently seen arrhythmia during the holiday season is atrial fibrillation, in which the top chambers of the heart quiver or fibrillate causing the heart to beat irregular and often quite fast.

Excessive alcohol intake in women is defined as consuming seven or more drinks per week or over three doses at one time.  For men, heavy consumption is defined as over 14 drinks per week or over four drinks at one time by the U.S. Department of health and Human Service.

Alcohol alone does not fully explain Holiday Heart Syndrome.  There are other risk factors for atrial fibrillation that are higher around the holidays such as:

  • Overeating
  • Stress
  • High levels of sodium consumption
  • Dehydration

Everyone has some degree of stress in their lives.  Health concerns, family and relationship issues, financial problems can all cause stress which can ultimately affect your health; the idea of “letting go” at a holiday event and consuming more alcohol than usual as a way to forget the present may have a negative effect on your future.

If you have any heart symptoms, it is best to seek medical attention immediately; even if your symptoms appear ON a holiday.

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.

Kitchen Safety Tips

The kitchen is one of the busiest rooms in a home, and even more so during the holiday season. Whether a person is a skilled chef or just someone preparing a basic meal, taking precautions in the kitchen is vital to making everything go safely.

Here are some basic safety tips to remember while working in the kitchen:

  • Always wear shoes in the kitchen
  • Avoid wearing loose clothing
  • Take your time, especially when using sharp objects
  • Never leave a stove unattended
  • Make sure everything is cleaned properly
  • Have a fire extinguisher handy
  • Keep children away from anything that is sharp, hot or electrical
  • While cooking on a stove, turn pot and pan handles inward
  • Wash your hands before and after touching raw meat.
  • Keep the floor dry
  • Put food that can spoil in the refrigerator until you are ready to use it
  • Make sure that everything is off when you are done cooking
  • Be careful of greasy foods that can splatter, especially near an open flame
  • Never leave the home while food is cooking

Following these precautions can mean the difference between a memorable meal and a meal that you might want to forget. If an accident does occur and it requires immediate medical attention, please remember to call 911 and ask for help.

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.

SafetyTips for the Holiday Season

We tend to cook and decorate more during the holiday season.  These activities if not exercised with caution and safety can lead to burn injuries, which is one of the most common problems emergency rooms face at this time of year.  Doctors are requesting that people pay close attention to potential hazards that can result in burn injuries and avoid them by following these safety guidelines:

  • Do not leave food unattended on the stove or oven for extended periods of time.
  • Avoid wearing loose garments around flames by the stove or fireside.
  • Keep flammable objects such as pot holders, paper towels or utensils made of wood away from the stove.
  • When buying a real tree make sure that it is green. Also remember to water your tree if it is real – a dry tree is a fire hazard.  If purchasing a synthetic tree be sure to check for a label that reads “fire resistant.”
  • Keep trees away from fire places or radiators.
  • Never leave candles or oil burners unattended.
  • Keep gifts and wrapping paper away from fireplaces.
  • Have chimneys cleaned and inspected each year.
  • Make certain that smoke detectors are working.
  • Always have a fire extinguisher within reach.
  • Do not overload extension cords.
  • Inspect holiday lights to make certain that wires are not cracked or frayed.

Please keep your holiday season safe and accident free by following recommended fire safety guidelines.  For a list of further safety tips please visit the National Fire Protection Association’s website www.NFPA.org .

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.

Tips to Navigate the Holiday Season And Keeping Your Waistline Intact

Getting through the holidays without putting on extra pounds can be a real challenge. There are many opportunities to go overboard. However, just because the temptations are greater, doesn’t mean you have to fall victim to the traps of holiday weight gain

Here are some tips to help you navigate the holiday season while keeping your waistline intact:

  • Control portions.Research has shown that the more food we’re served, the more we will eat even if we don’t particularly like what we’re eating. Try to minimize the size of your portions, especially with calorie-heavy foods like gravy, eggnog, and desserts.
  • Keep moving. Exercise has proven to be important for weight loss.  Exercise is also essential in helping you cope with stress and increases your level of energy, giving you a boost when trying to tackle that long holiday “to-do” list. Even if you don’t have time to get to the gym, try to squeeze in 10-minute intervals of activity throughout the day.
  • Weigh in regularly.Checking the scale at least once a week is a true test for maintenance. Remember to do this first thing in the morning, in your nightclothes, and after emptying your bladder.
  • Have a healthy breakfast.Numerous studies confirm that those who have breakfast eat fewer calories throughout the day. Eating breakfast also powers up the brain and boosts metabolism.
  • Put it on a plate.It’s hard to keep track of how much food you’re eating when you nibble without using a plate. Serving meals and snacks on a plate will help you avoid munching and consuming extra calories.
  • If you don’t love it, don’t eat it. Trying new foods is always exciting but why waste calories if you don’t love what you are eating? One bite is usually enough to tell whether you love it or not. If something is not for you, just leave it on your plate and use the extra calories for something you love.
  • Take a few bites. A piece of pecan pie or glass of eggnog can set you back by more than 400 calories. To avoid gaining weight, enjoy just a few bites or sips of these rich treats.
  • Savor every bite.Sit down, relax, and take your time to experience the flavors, textures, and aroma of each food. Eating slowly will help you enjoy the meal and will give your brain time to signal to your stomach that you’re

By following these tips you can enjoy all the delicious joys that are associated with the holiday seasons and not suffer the usual consequences.

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.

Hepatitis C

Hepatitis is a virus that causes an inflammation of the liver. The liver is an organ in the body that processes nutrients, filters the blood and fights infections. The most common forms of hepatitis are A, B, and C.

Hepatitis B and C are spread from person to person through contact with bodily fluids.  Hepatitis A can be transmitted by coming in contact with food or objects that are contaminated, and can also be spread from person to person. There are ways to reduce the rate of transmission for the virus; here a few:

  • Using sterile equipment for injections
  • Practicing safe sex
  • Encouraging people to receive appropriate vaccinations

Many people have the hepatitis virus and are unaware of it. It is possible to remain without symptoms for many years while the disease is slowly destroying the liver. When symptoms do occur, they include:

  • Fever
  • Nausea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Jaundice
  • Abdominal pain
  • Fatigue

Blood tests are available that can detect the virus at an early stage.  Early detection and treatment can lessen the effects of the virus. Medication exists that can cure hepatitis C and can control hepatitis B infections. When given properly, people are less likely to die from liver cancer and cirrhosis and also are less likely to transmit the disease to others. The hepatitis B vaccine is given in three doses over a 6 month period and it is recommended that the first dose is administered right after birth if possible.  Mild cases of Hepatitis typically do not require treatment and most people who are infected recover without developing permanent liver damage.  A vaccine is available for those who are at risk.

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.

Tips for Dealing With Holiday Stress

During the holiday season, many of us struggle to complete an extensive list of tasks in what often feels like very little time.   We run rampant decorating our homes, attending social gatherings, shopping for loved ones, volunteering, traveling or cooking.  These activities are often added to our already busy schedules, which can make us feel overwhelmed.

Contrary to what we may think, these activities which should make us feel happy can actually increase our stress levels.

Although there are various factors such as unrealistic expectations or financial strain that contribute to holiday stress, finding ways to avoid stressors or minimize their effects is very important. If stress is not managed well, it can have a significantly negative impact on our health.

Here are five tips to help you cope with holiday stress and maintain your  mental health:

  1. Set realistic goals– Unrealistic goals often equal added pressure and expectations that cannot be met. If these goals are not met, they can lead to negative feelings such as inadequacy or hopelessness.
  2. Know when to take a moment for yourself (Take a break) – We are often pulled in multiple directions during this time of the year. Know when to take a breather to decompress and clear your mind.
  3. Communicate- The added pressures of the holidays are clearly overwhelming and one of the ways that people sometimes deal with this is to isolate themselves. This is not recommended; instead, reach out to loved ones or a trained mental health professional to communicate how you feel.
  4. Do not neglect healthy habits– Taking good care of your health can help combat holiday stress. Moderating your food intake, fitting in a few minutes of exercise and getting adequate amounts of sleep can be profoundly beneficial for your health.   Additionally, maintaining a healthy daily routine can help take your mind off holiday demands.
  5. Ask for help- We live in a time where multitasking has become the norm but if you begin to feel overwhelmed, ask for help. Soliciting the help of friends or family can alleviate some of the holiday pressure. The holidays can also trigger depression; if you are experiencing symptoms of depression ask for help from loved ones or seek the assistance of a mental health professional.

The holiday season can be overwhelming; however, by applying these helpful tips you can take the steps needed to minimize stress and make this time of year more enjoyable.  If you find that you continue to experience elevated levels of stress or symptoms of depression, it is recommended that you seek the help of mental health professional immediately.

.

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 Pulmonologist, David Wisa Provides Information on COPD

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a common lung disease that is prevalent in our community. COPD can also be described as chronic bronchitis or emphysema.

COPD may cause shortness of breath, coughing, sputum production and wheezing. These symptoms result from damage and narrowing of the airways. COPD may also put patients at risk for pneumonia which is an infection of the lung

According to Dr David M. Wisa, Associate Director of Pulmonary Medicine at Flushing Hospital, “The most common cause of COPD is damage to the lung from smoking cigarettes, although not all smokers develop COPD.  The use of indoor wood burning stoves may cause similar lung damage leading to COPD. People who are found to have COPD at a young age may warrant further evaluation for possible predisposing genetic conditions.”

COPD can be a serious disease and symptoms may worsen over time without proper evaluation and treatment. The most important treatment methods are ones that patients can do on their own. First, quitting smoking will help reduce symptoms and reduce further damage to the lung. Lung function in all patients decline due to normal aging, in smokers with COPD that decline is significantly accelerated.  Second, patients should receive their flu shot annually and the pneumonia vaccine at the proper time as recommended by their doctor.

Further therapies for COPD can be prescribed by your primary care doctor or a lung specialist called a Pulmonologist who can prescribe medications that can help reduce symptoms and improve lung function.  They may include a variety of inhalers that can be taken daily or when symptoms arise. There are also some oral medications that are indicated in specific situations. Other therapies include home oxygen, an exercise program called rehabilitation and rarely surgery.

If you are having symptoms consistent with COPD see your doctor. If you would like to schedule an appointment with Dr Wusa, or any the Pulmonologists at Flushing Hopsital, 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.