Tips to cope when it’s time to downsize

Downsizing for a move to a smaller home may lead to feelings of sadness, grief, stress, or anxiety. To cope with those feelings, it helps to reach out to others and stay socially connected, hire a professional to assist with the downsizing process, and engage in a new community and find interesting activities or groups to join. If emotions interfere with the ability to get through each day, one should speak with a primary care doctor or a therapist. (Locked) More »

What causes acute bronchitis?

Acute bronchitis is usually caused by a viral infection. It’s an inflammation of the breathing tubes in the lungs that causes a cough and sometimes pain in the chest. The cough can be dry or wet. A wet cough expels material from the lungs: mucus and sometimes white blood cells from the inflammation. Treatment typically involves medicine to suppress a cough. Antibiotics or antiviral drugs usually are not prescribed, since acute bronchitis resolves on its own. (Locked) More »

Cracking the cough code

Coughs can indicate different types of underlying conditions. Wet coughs that produce sputum are associated with postnasal drip, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, bronchiectasis, and nontuberculous mycobacteria infection. A dry cough (no sputum) is typically a reaction to something irritating the throat, such as a pollutant in the air, or certain conditions such as gastroesophageal reflux disease. A cough that sounds like a seal’s bark may be caused by infection or a disease. A cough marked by a whooping sound signals pertussis. (Locked) More »

3 surprising risks of poor posture

Poor posture is associated with many problems, such as back pain, poor balance, headaches, and breathing difficulties. Poor posture can also promote incontinence, constipation, and heartburn. Physical therapists can help improve poor posture by customizing a program of exercises and stretches to improve a person’s core muscle strength and flexibility. The goal is a neutral, upright spine position—not flexed too far forward or backward. To attain the neutral spine position, one should put the shoulders down and back, pull the head back, and engage the core muscles. More »

The hidden dangers of protein powders

Protein powder supplements can harbor health risks. They may have hidden unhealthy ingredients, such as added sugars and too many calories. Some research has found that many protein powders contain heavy metals (lead, arsenic, cadmium, and mercury), bisphenol-A (BPA, which is used to make plastic), pesticides, and other contaminants with links to cancer and other health conditions. However, chemical-free protein powders may be helpful—with medical supervision—for certain conditions, such as impaired appetite or wounds that are resistant to healing. (Locked) More »

More antidotes for newer blood thinners

Blood thinners (also called anticoagulants) are prescribed to people at risk for developing dangerous blood clots. Sometimes the medications cause internal bleeding. However, there are now antidotes for all of the newer blood thinners. The antidotes reverse the blood-thinning effect of the drugs within minutes. These antidotes have no other side effects. Doctors suggest that having antidotes gives people who take blood thinners some reassurance. New blood thinners are now considered safer than the older blood thinner warfarin (Coumadin). (Locked) More »

Virtual visits and high blood pressure

It appears that people who have “virtual” office visits over the Internet are able to control their blood pressure just as well as people who have in-person follow-up office visits. More »

Americans aren’t meeting exercise goals

A report published online June 28, 2018, by the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics suggested that most Americans are not meeting the guidelines for both aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities. More »