FOCUS ON HEALTH A SUPPLEMENT TO TIMES BEACON RECORD NEWS MEDIA • MAY 3, 2018
INSIDE: • Cancer Screening Methods • Balancing Work & Family Life • Alternatives to Traditional Medicine
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Table of Contents Reasons to embrace cycling.............................................................................................. 2 Screening methods for detecting cancer early ..................................................... 3 Finding ways to balance work life and family time............................................ 4 Staving off cognitive decline for all ages ................................................................... 5 Simple ways to get kids eating healthier................................................................... 6 The important role of vision in the classroom ....................................................... 7 Incorporating alternatives to traditional medicine ............................................. 8 Heart-healthy lifestyles begin in the kitchen ....................................................... 10 Understanding and dealing with teen stress....................................................... 10 Distinguishing the various types of arthritis......................................................... 11
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Reasons to embrace cycling now As warm temperatures return, many people renew their interest in spending time outdoors. Spring and summer are peak times of year to enjoy the great outdoors. A popular activity in spring, summer and fall, cycling benefits the mind and body in various ways. One of the more common mental health benefits of exercise is that working up a sweat can help alleviate physical and mental stress. Reducing stress is important for overall health and can reduce a person’s risk of developing certain illnesses. Cycling is a great way to get outdoors, meet people and see the scenery. Exercising outside can also reduce anxiety and depression. A study conducted in 2007 by researcher Charles Hillman of Northeastern University College of Science indicated that exercise boosts brain power and may be able to stave off Alzheimer’s disease in the elderly. Dr. Phillip Tomporowski of University of Georgia College of Education studied how children with Attention-deficit/ hyperactivity disorder may be positively affected by bike riding, and how control issues were improved without medication. Researchers around the world, including the Victorian Government’s Department of Health and Human Services’ Better Health Channel, in Australia, say cycling for both health and fitness is a good idea. Riding a bicycle is a low-impact form of exercise for people of all ages. Cycling can be fun and doesn’t require expensive equipment. Cycling generally causes less strain on joints and other areas of the body because it is low-impact. However, cycling provides enough resistance to be an effective muscle workout. People who want to improve their cardiovascular health and manage their weight can turn to cycling to achieve their goals. Cycling raises one’s metabolic rate to help the body burn fat when combined with a healthy diet. Cycling Weekly magazine says cycling burns
between 400 and 1,000 calories an hour, depending on the intensity of a ride and the rider’s weight. Individuals can modify the distance and intensity of a cycling workout to suit their fitness goals. Disease risk and adverse health outcomes can be reduced by hopping on a bike. A study conducted by researchers at the University of Glasgow in Scotland examined more than 260,000 people over the course of five years. The study found that cycling to work can cut a rider’s risk of developing heart disease or cancer in half. Those eager to get started on cycling are encouraged to begin slowly, especially if it has been a while since they last exercised. It’s also important to find the right-sized bicycle to reduce strain and injury. A full-service bike shop can help shoppers find the bike that is the right height and frame size for a rider’s body. The height of the handlebars and the seat also can be adjusted for comfort. Always consult with a physician prior to exercise to ensure that the regimen is safe. Those with prior injuries or health problems should be doubly careful, though cycling is generally safe for beginners.
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Screening methods for detecting cancer early
Screenings don’t require symptoms
Early detection is key for treatment
Consult with doctors about options
Cancer does not discriminate based on race, gender or age, and many people have been or know someone who has been diagnosed with this potentially deadly disease. Cancer is often unpredictable, but many cancers can be found in the early stages before they have had the chance to metastasize. In many instances, the earlier cancer is detected, the more treatable it is, according to the American Cancer Society. People often wonder what they can do to protect themselves against cancer. Routine screenings are one of the most effective ways to combat cancer. The National Cancer Institute says cancer screenings check for cancer in people who have no symptoms. Common cancer screenings include colonoscopies, sigmoidoscopies, mammograms, Pap tests,
visual skin examinations and preventative visual or tactile examinations of parts of the body for lumps and abnormalities. Other screening tests can include specific blood tests, such as prostate-specific antigen for prostate cancer, CA 125 for ovarian cancer and the alpha-fetoprotein blood test used in conjunction with an ultrasound to detect liver cancer. Cancer screenings are not always part of annual physicals. However, doctors may suggest screenings based on patients’ family histories or other risk factors. In addition, some doctors may recommend cancer screenings as their patients age, as age is one of the biggest risk factors for many cancers. There are more than 200 types of cancer that can cause many different symptoms, advises Cancer Research UK, a charity corporation. It is not possible to know them all, but generally people are good at recognizing when they’re feeling normal and when they’re exhibiting symptoms that suggest something is awry. Knowing oneself and knowing when something seems strange can help men and women advocate for their own health. Individuals should feel comfortable addressing concerns with a physician and asking if screening methods or other tests may be applicable in certain situations. Because screening and testing comes
Routine cancer screenings, even in the absence of symptoms, are a key prevention strategy. with certain risks and the possibility for false positives or negatives, not to mention sometimes exorbitant costs, patients and doctors often discuss the pros and cons of cancer screenings before going forward with the tests. Imaging procedures may be used in conjunction with lab tests to rule out certain cancers. Such procedures include: • CT scan: an x-ray image of internal organs • Nuclear scan (radionuclide scan): a specialized radioactive scan to create pictures of bones and organs • Ultrasound: use of radio waves to map
out internal images • PET scan: use of a tracer injection to map how tissues are working, among other tests Doctors may also recommend biopsies, which remove a small portion of tissue to test for cancer. Men and women curious about cancer screenings should consult with their doctors and ask pertinent questions about potential side effects, preparing for screenings and interpreting the results. Taking charge of one’s health can help catch cancer in its earliest stages.
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Striking a balance between work and family is a common struggle, but not impossible.
Finding ways to balance work life and family time Many working parents struggle to maintain a healthy balance between responsibilities at work and obligations at home. An inability to maintain that healthy balance can have adverse effects on men’s and women’s careers, as well as the relationships they have with their families. A 2015 survey of more than 2,000 adults commissioned by the workplace solution provider and software company Workfront found 38 percent of survey participants have missed life events because of a bad work-life balance. Access to technology means that work is never too far away, which might contribute to poor work-life balance. Fifty-seven percent of respondents also acknowledged feeling that technology has ruined the definition of a family dinner. Finding a healthy balance between work and life at home may require a concerted effort on the part of working parents, but there are ways to successfully juggle a career and family. •Set reasonable goals. Much of the difficulty men and women experience in regard to finding a healthy work-life balance may be a byproduct of working parents spreading themselves too thin. Setting reasonable goals can help avoid that, but doing so requires taking commitments to one’s employer and family into consideration before agreeing to take on new projects or setting deadlines for projects. This should be applied to both work and home. If a work deadline is unreasonable, professionals should discuss that with their employers, who might change the deadline or arrange for extra hands to work on the project. At home, parents should avoid taking on too many projects, such as chaperoning a child’s dance or coaching a sports team, if doing so will adversely affect the amount of time they get to spend with their families. •Look for ways to be more efficient. Interactions with coworkers can make work more enjoyable, but working parents should not spend too much time shooting the breeze with their fellow employees. Doing so wastes time and only contributes to work-related stress. Those who don’t
drive themselves to work can be more efficient by using their commutes to read emails, arrange meetings or catch up on projects. Doing so allows for more time to get work done while in the office, which can make it easier to get home on time. •Request changes to work schedules. While technology may have largely eliminated the separation between the office and home, working parents can use that to their advantage by asking employees to alter their work schedules. Telecommuting one or two days a week can help parents feel more connected to their families, while flex schedules can ensure working parents don’t miss any of their children’s dance recitals or weekday afternoon ballgames. •Unplug when you get home. Perhaps the simplest and most effective way for parents to regain a healthy work-life balance is to unplug their devices. Employing “do not disturb” settings on smartphones and turning off tablets can ensure parents don’t spend their time at home working but connecting with their families. Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is no small task for today’s working parents, but such a goal is possible.
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Staving off cognitive decline for all ages the chances of injury to the brain from cholesterol buildup in blood vessels. The Alzheimer’s Association indicates evidence shows smoking increases the risk of cognitive decline. Smoking can impair blood flow to the brain and cause small strokes that may damage blood vessels. Foods that are good for the heart and blood vessels are also good for the brain. These include fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, fish-based proteins, unsaturated fats and foods containing omega-3 fatty acids. Neurologists said while research on diet and cognitive function is limited, Mediterranean and Mediterranean-DASH, or dietary approaches to stop hypertension, may contribute to a lower risk of cognitive issues. Caffeine may help boost memory performance and brain health. Journal of Nutrition, a peer-reviewed scientific journal published by the American Society for Nutrition, conducted a study that found people ages 70 and older who consumed more caffeine scored better on mental function tests than those who consumed less caffeine. Caffeine may help improve attention span, cognitive function and feelings of well-being. Information from the magazine Psychology Today also indicates caffeine may help in the storage of dopamine, which can reduce feelings of depression and anxiety. Compounds in cocoa and coffee beans may improve vascular health and help repair
Cognitive decline is a condition that is often associated with aging, but even middle-aged people can experience memory loss or cognition issues. The Alzheimer’s Association says that more than 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia. By 2050 that number could rise to as high as 16 million. More than 747,000 Canadians are living with Alzheimer’s or another dementia, says the Canadian Alzheimer’s Association. Although there is no definitive way to prevent dementia, living a long, vibrant life is possible by encouraging some healthy habits for the brain. It is never too late or too early to begin health and lifestyle changes. Becoming more active can improve brain volume, reduce risk for dementia and improve thinking and memory skills. The journal Neurology, a peer-reviewed medical journal published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins on behalf of the American Academy of Neurology, found that older people who vigorously exercise performed better on cognitive tests than others of the same age, placing them at the equivalent of 10 years younger. Increased blood flow that occurs with physical activity may help generate new neurons in the hippocampus, an area of the brain involved with learning and memory. The Harvard Medical School says aerobic exercise may help improve brain tissue by improving blood flow and reducing
Engaging in mentally stimulating activities can create new brain connections. cellular damage due to high antioxidant levels. Engaging in mentally stimulating activities can create new brain connections and more backup circuits, said Dr. Joel Salinas, a professor and neurologist at Harvard Medical School-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital. Working the brain through puzzles, reading and just being social can stimulate the release of brain-derived neurotrophic fac-
tor, a molecule essential for repairing brain cells and creating connections between them. A good way to combine these lifestyle factors is to take an exercise class with friends, mixing the social, stimulation and exercise recommendations together. Cognitive decline can come with aging, but through healthy habits, people can reduce the risk of memory loss and dementia.
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Simple ways to get kids eating healthier Childhood obesity is a problem in many parts of the world, including the United States and Canada. The 2015-16 National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found national childhood obesity rate among 2- to 19-year-olds was 18.5 percent. Just north of the United States, the Public Health Agency of Canada reports that, in 2017, 30 percent of Canadian children between the ages of 5 and 17 were overweight or obese. Healthy lifestyles can help children achieve and maintain healthy weights into adulthood. Nutritious diets are an essential component of healthy lifestyles, and the American Academy of Pediatrics offers the following tips to parents who want to help their kids eat healthier. • Serve low-fat or no-fat milk, yogurt and cheese. Low-fat dairy products are low in calories, saturated fat and cholesterol but still provide high amounts of protein, calcium and various vitamins and minerals. • Serve starches in small batches. The AAP notes that starchy foods, such as potatoes, pasta and rice, help the body use fat and cholesterol. Small amounts of such foods can be beneficial additions to a child’s diet. When serving such foods, avoid toppings like butter, sour cream and gravy, which tend to be high in calories. Foods like cottage cheese, low-fat yogurt and Parmesan cheese are low-calorie alternatives to traditional toppings. • Choose lean meats as entrées. When choosing entrées, parents should opt for lean meats, such as white meat chicken or turkey. Lean cuts of beef, pork or fish can also be included in healthy diets. When preparing chicken, remove the skin and cut away fat, which can also be removed from pork.
• Serve vegetable- or broth-based soups. Vegetable- or broth-based soups tend to be lower in calories and saturated fat than cream-based alternatives. When serving soups, particularly store-bought canned soups, parents should read labels and be mindful of the sodium content. Some canned soups include as much as two-thirds the daily recommended sodium intake in a single can. Large amounts of sodium can lead to high blood pressure and heart disease, and the CDC notes that roughly 90 percent of children in the United States eat too much sodium each day. • Bake, broil or grill foods. When preparing meals, parents can bake, broil or grill foods instead of frying them. Fried foods have been linked to a host of ailments, including type 2 diabetes and heart disease. When foods are fried in oil, they also lose water and absorb fat, increasing their overall calorie count.
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Parents often go to great lengths to help their children succeed in the classroom. Offering homework help and/or hiring tutors can help kids achieve their academic potential, but parents should not overlook the effects their child’s vision can have on their performance in the classroom. The American Optometric Association, which was founded in 1898 and represents approximately 37,000 doctors of optometry, optometry students and para-optometric assistants and technicians in the United States, notes that students perform visual tasks in the classroom throughout a typical school day. Kids rely on their vision when reading, writing or using computers. When that vision is not functioning properly, students’ performance may suffer. What are some warning signs that kids may be struggling with their vision? The AOA notes that undeveloped or poorly developed visual skills can make it difficult or stressful for youngsters to learn. But children may not always inform their parents if they’re struggling with their vision. Rather, the AOA says children with poor visual skills will typically avoid reading or other visual work as much as possible. Students also may attempt to do their work, but do so with a lowered level of comprehension or efficiency. Discomfort, fatigue and shortened attention spans are other potential indicators of undeveloped or poorly developed visual skills. Children experiencing eye and vision
problems may also suffer from frequent headaches, cover one eye, tilt their head to one side, lose their place when reading, see double and/or hold reading materials close to their face. Are poor visual skills always diagnosed? Because undeveloped or poorly-developed visual skills elicit many of the same symptoms as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, some kids struggling with their vision may be misdiagnosed with ADHD. To ensure kids are accurately diagnosed, the AOA recommends children receive routine eye examinations. This is important for school-aged children, because vision changes frequently during this time. Visual problems like myopia — more commonly known as nearsightedness — or refractive errors such as farsightedness or astigmatisms can adversely affect a student’s academic performance. When should kids receive eye exams? The AOA recommends annual eye exams. More frequent testing is recommended for children experiencing specific vision problems. School screenings are not sufficient, as the AOA notes that such screenings only test for distance visual acuity. Comprehensive optometric visits are more thorough than school screenings and can reveal issues that can adversely affect students in the classroom. Poor visual skills can adversely affect kids’ academic performance, but annual eye exams can detect vision problems that may otherwise go undiagnosed.
Discomfort, fatigue and shortened attention spans are potential indactors of undeveloped or poorly developed visual skills.
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Incorporating alternatives to traditional medicine METRO
We’ve seen the words “complementary, “alternative” and “integrative,” but what do they really mean? The National Center for Complimentary and Integrative Health, part of the U.S. National Institutes of Health, looked into the terms to help others understand them better, and give a brief picture of NCCIH’s mission and role in this area of research.
Complementary versus alternative
Many Americans — more than 30 percent of adults and 12 percent of children — use health care approaches developed outside of mainstream Western, or conventional, medicine. When describing these approaches, people often use the words alternative and complementary interchangeably, but the two terms refer to different concepts. If a non-mainstream practice is used together with conventional medicine, it’s considered complementary. If a non-mainstream practice is used in place of conventional medicine, it’s considered alternative. True alternative medicine is always uncommon. Most people who use non-mainstream approaches use them along with conventional treatments.
There are many definitions, but all involve bringing conventional and complementary approaches together in a coordinated way. The use of integrative approaches to health and wellness has grown within care settings across the United States. Researchers are currently exploring the potential benefits of integrative health in a variety of situations, including pain management for military personnel and veterans, relief of symptoms in cancer patients and survivors and programs to promote healthy behaviors. So, what terms does NCCIH use? The agency generally uses the term complementary health approaches when discussing practices and products of non-mainstream origin. NCCIH uses integrative health when talking about incorporating complementary approaches into mainstream health care.
Types of complementary health approaches
Most complementary health approaches fall into one of two subgroups — natural products or mind and body practices. Natural products This group includes a variety of products, such as herbs — also known as botanicals — vitamins and minerals, and probiotics. They are widely marketed, readily available to consumers and often sold as dietary supplements. According to the 2012 National Health
Alternatives to Western medicine, like cupping, above, and acupuncture, below, can be complementary to traditional health care options. Interview Survey, which included a comprehensive one on the use of complementary American health approaches, 17.7 percent of American adults had used a dietary supplement other than vitamins and minerals in the past year. These products were the most popular complementary health approach in the survey. The most commonly used natural product was fish oil. Researchers have done large, rigorous studies on a few natural products, but the results often showed that the products didn’t work. Research on others is in progress. While there are indications that some may be helpful, more needs to be learned about the effects of these products in the human body, and about their safety and potential interactions with medicines and other natural products. Mind and body practices These include a large, diverse group of procedures or techniques administered or taught by a trained practitioner or teacher. The 2012 survey showed that yoga, chiropractic and osteopathic manipulation, meditation and massage therapy are among the most popular mind and body practices used by adults. The popularity of yoga has dramatically grown in recent years, with almost twice as many U.S. adults practicing yoga in 2012 compared to 2002. Other mind and body practices include acupuncture, relaxation techniques — like
breathing exercises, guided imagery and progressive muscle relaxation — tai chi, qi gong, healing touch, hypnotherapy and movement therapies — such as Feldenkrais method, Alexander Technique, pilates, Rolfing Structural Integration and Trager psychophysical integration. The amount of research on mind and body approaches varies widely depending on the practice. For example, researchers have done studies on acupuncture, yoga, spinal manipulation and meditation, but
there have been fewer studies on others. Other complementary health approaches The two broad areas — natural products and mind and body practices — capture most complementary health approaches. However, some approaches may not neatly fit into either of these groups — for example, practices of traditional healers, Ayurvedic medicine, traditional Chinese medicine, homeopathy, and naturopathy. Written by the National Center for Complimentary and Integrative Health
The National Center for Complimentary and Integrative Health is the federal government’s lead
agency for scientific research on complementary and integrative health approaches. The mission of NCCIH is to define, through rigorous scientific investigation, the usefulness and safety of complementary and integrative health interventions and their roles in improving health and health care.
MAY 03, 2018 • FOCUS ON HEALTH • PAGE S9
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Heart-healthy lifestyles begin in the kitchen Making good dietary decisions can lead to not only weight loss, but a healthier heart, especially for women sizes so that you are not overloading on extra calories. Eat larger portions of nutrientrich foods and go sparingly on high-calorie, high-sodium and/or refined foods. Being overweight can contribute to heart problems. Increase produce consumption. A variety of low-calorie fruits and vegetables can provide ample nutrition and plenty of healthy antioxidants. Choose a variety of fruits and vegetables so that you get as many vitamins and minerals as possible. Make fruits and vegetables your largest portions when eating. Reduce sodium intake. Harvard University Health Services points out that too much sodium consumption can increase blood pressure and cause the body to hold onto fluid. Hypertension is a major risk factor for heart attack, stroke and other cardiovascular problems. Add more whole grains to your diet. Dietary fiber from whole grains may improve blood cholesterol levels, thereby lowering your risk for heart disease. Dietary fiber also can lower risk of stroke, obesity and type 2 diabetes. Choose healthy fats. Studies have shown that omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon, olive oil and flax seed reduce a person’s risk of developing arrhythmia and atherosclerosis.
The AHA recommends eating fatty fish at least twice a week as a way to boost omega-3 fatty acid levels. Load up on berries. When choosing fruits, go heavy on berries. Health magazine reports that according to a 2013 study by the United States’s Harvard School of Public Health and the United Kingdom’s University of East Anglia, women between the ages of 25 and 42 who ate more than three servings of blueberries and strawberries a week had a 32 percent lower risk of heart attack compared with those who ate less. The authors of the study attributed the benefit to compounds known as anthocyanins and flavonoids, which are antioxidants, that may decrease blood pressure and dilate blood vessels. Indulge in smart ways. When eating sweets, choose dark chocolate. Dark chocolate contains flavonoids called polyphenols, which may help lower blood pressure and reduce clotting and inflammation. Select varieties that contain at least 60 to 70 percent cocoa. In addition to a cardiac-friendly diet, women concerned about heart health should aim for 150 minutes of moderate physical activity each week. Also, pay attention to food labels to make smarter choices.
Weight-loss initiatives and dieting often go hand-in-hand, but healthy diets can do more than help women shed pounds. Heart disease is the primary killer of females, but embracing heart-healthy diets can help women reduce their risk of developing cardiovascular disease. The American Heart Association, a nonprofit organization in the United States that fosters appropriate cardiac care in an effort to reduce disability and deaths caused by cardiovascular disease and stroke, reports that heart disease causes one in three female deaths each year in the United States. The AHA also notes that 90 percent of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease. Heart valve problems, congestive heart failure, abnormal rhythm of the heart and plaque buildup in the walls of the arteries can contribute to heart disease. Fortunately healthy choices, including the right diet, can help reduce women’s heart disease risk. There are a few easy ways to modify eating habits to be more heart-healthy. Avoid consuming too many calories. The Mayo Clinic, nonprofit medical practice and medical research group based in Rochester, Minnesota, says to control portion
Focusing on diet can be key in fighting off heart disease.
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Understanding and dealing with teen stress METRO
No one is immune to stress. When chronic, stress can have long-lasting negative effects on a person’s overall health, potentially contributing to high blood pressure and weakening sufferers’ immune systems, thereby making them more vulnerable to a host of ailments. Stress may be most often associated with adults, but teenagers are no strangers to stress. In the 2014 Stress in America survey from the American Psychological Association, he largest scientific and professional organization of psychologists in the United States, teens reported their stress levels during the school year far exceeded what they believed to be healthy. In fact, teens’ reported stress levels during the school year — 5.8 on a 10-point scale — actually exceeded adults’ average reported stress levels. In addition to the pressures of school, teens must contend with social pressures. Balancing the two can be difficult, but the APA offers tips to teens looking to keep their stress levels in check. Embrace physical activity. The APA notes that being physically active is one of the most effective ways to combat stress. Teens are urged to find activities they enjoy. For example, non-athletes don’t need to try out for the baseball team or any other organized sport simply because
Teens are subjected to stress from a variety of different causes, like social pressures. physical activity is an effective way to reduce stress. Teens are more likely to have fun and relieve stress when participating in a physical activity they enjoy, especially when activities include their friends.
Don’t overlook the importance of sleep. The National Sleep Foundation, a U.S. nonprofit organization that promotes public understanding of sleep and sleep disorders, notes that teens need
between eight and 10 hours of sleep per night to function best. But the Stress in America survey found that teens sleep an average of just 7.4 hours on school nights. Operating on insufficient sleep can compound existing stress, so teens who are not getting enough rest should make a concerted effort to get more sleep each night. Schedule time for fun. The APA recommends teens don’t overbook their schedules, which could leave little time forr them to enjoy themselves. While it’s important to focus on school, teens should also schedule time to have fun, during which they should attempt to avoid worrying about school. Discuss stress. The APA notes that stress is more easily handled when those coping with it welcome the assistance of others. Teens can speak about their stress with their parents, teachers or other trusted adults, many of whom likely dealt with similar stress when they were teens. Adults may even share how they manage their own stress, which can be useful to teens. Teens deal with stress every day. In an effort to manage stress, teens can embrace various strategies. More information about how teens can manage stress is available at www.apa.org.
MAY 03, 2018 • FOCUS ON HEALTH • PAGE S11
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Distinguishing the various types of arthritis Arthritis affects hundreds of millions of people across the globe. The Arthritis Foundation, a United States nonprofit organization, notes that more than 50 million adults in the U.S. have some type of arthritis, while the European League Against Rheumatism, a European non-governmental organization, estimates rheumatic diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis affect more than 120 million people in the European Union. In Canada, the Canadian Community Health Survey found that 16 percent of Canadians age 15 and older were affected by arthritis. The Arthritis Foundation notes that arthritis is not a single disease. In fact, the word “arthritis” is something of an umbrella term and an informal way of referring to joint pain or joint disease. While these conditions may produce some common symptoms, such as swelling, pain and stiffness, learning to distinguish between some common types of arthritis can help men and women manage their conditions more effectively. Osteoarthritis, which is sometimes referred to as “degenerative joint disease” or “OA,” is the most common chronic condition of the joints. The symptoms of OA vary depending on the joints that are affected, but pain and stiffness, especially first thing in the morning or after resting, are common. OA can affect the hips, knees, fingers or feet, and those with OA may feel limited range of motion in their affected areas. Some with OA may hear clicking or cracking sounds when the affected joints bend, and pain associated with OA may be more intense after activity or toward the end of the day.
Inflammatory arthritis occurs when the immune system, which can employ inflammation to fight infection and prevent disease, mistakenly attacks the joints with
The various types of arthritis manifest in different ways, like the immune system mistakenly attacking joints. uncontrolled inflammation. Such a mistake can contribute to joint erosion and even organ damage. Psoriatic arthritis, which the Arthritis Foundation notes affects roughly 30 percent of people with psoriasis, and rheumatoid arthritis are two examples of inflammatory arthritis. Genetics and environmental factors, such as smoking, may trigger instances of inflammatory arthritis.
The body produces uric acid to break down purines, a substance found in many foods and in human cells. But some people produce more uric acid than they
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need, which they then struggle to get rid of quickly. As a result, uric acid can build up. The Arthritis Foundation notes that this buildup can lead to the formation of needle-like crystals in the joints that cause sudden spikes of extreme pain.
Bacterium, a virus or a fungus that enters the joint, may trigger inflammation and lead to infection arthritis. The Arthritis Foundation notes staphylococcus aureus, or staph, is the most common bacteria to cause this arthritis. The majority of infectious arthritis cases occur after an infection somewhere else in the body
travels through the bloodstream to the joint, though some infections may enter the joint directly through a puncture wound near the joint or during surgery near the joint. Intense swelling and pain, typically in a single joint, are the most common symptoms of infectious arthritis, which is most likely to affect the knee, though it can affect the hips, ankles and wrists. Some people with infectious arthritis may also experience fever and chills. Any type of arthritis can affect people of any age, race or gender. For more info the various types of arthritis is available at www.arthritis.org.
Did you know?
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, dental caries, or tooth decay, is five times more common than asthma and seven times more common than hay fever in children. The American Academy of Pediatrics, which dedicates its efforts and resources to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults, notes that children with dental caries in their baby teeth are at much greater risk for cavities in their adult teeth. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that can strengthen tooth enamel and
make it more resistant to the acids that can contribute to tooth decay. Parents, even those whose children do not yet have any teeth, can discuss fluoride drops or chewable fluoride tablets with their youngsters’ pediatricians. The CDC notes that more than 40 percent of children have tooth decay before reaching kindergarten, but dental caries is often preventable. Parents who are diligent about their child’s oral care and mindful of potential problems, like stains on teeth, can reduce their child’s risk of tooth decay.
PAGE S12 • FOCUS ON HEALTH • MAY 03, 2018
Where You Go Matters When you go for a mammogram, you want a highly experienced breast radiologist, the latest technology and the most caring staff.
Mather Hospital’s Fortunato Breast Health Center is pleased to announce our New Advanced 3D Mammography System
- Designed to make screening more comfortable for you - Offers sharper, clearer images for improved diagnostic accuracy - Delivers the lowest radiation dose of all FDA approved 3D mammography systems Our board certified breast radiologists, Dr. Michelle Price and Dr. Joseph Carrucciu, review more than 12,000 breast studies each year, comparing your latest scans to multiple prior year scans to identify the smallest changes. Our compassionate nurse navigators assist diagnosed patients through treatment and recovery explaining every step of the journey while providing emotional support. Our center is warm and serene, and we even have heated robes. Make your appointment for your annual mammogram, call the Fortunato Breast Health Center at 631-476-2771.
N AT I O N A L A C C R E D I TAT I O N P R O G R A M F O R B R E A S T C E N T E R S