Monday, October 10, 2016

Out of alignment? Then celebrate National Chiropractic Health Month

Chiropractic care is increasingly being viewed as the first line of defense against musculoskeletal pain, a condition that afflicts millions of Americans every year. Chronic back and neck pain, along with other locations of the body, can be serious hindrances to life, work, enjoyment of free time, as well as overall state of mind. Nurses and other healthcare workers in particular can suffer from neck, back and joint pain and injuries, and that’s why National Chiropractic Health Month is an important date on the public-health calendar.

Chiropractic care is particularly important in our current climate because of its emphasis on treatment and pain management through holistic methods rather than pills. The opioid crisis has well shown the pitfalls of that approach, and people suffering from chronic pain are seeking alternate sources for treatment.

For that reason alone, chiropractic care services are coming into their own. They are recommended now by The Journal of the American Medical Association, as well as the Joint Commission, as a viable option in place of many surgical procedures and an effective tool in pain management.

Many sufferers of musculoskeletal pain are already well aware of the benefits of chiropractic care. The relief afforded while embracing a non-surgical, non-pharmaceutical approach has made them believers. National Chiropractic Health Month looks to spread this good news to the scores of others who have yet to avail themselves of this tried-and-true method.

Perhaps you yourself are an untreated sufferer? Take this opportunity to educate yourself on chiropractic services, the nature of the treatment methods. Seek a consultation with an approved and respected chiropractor near you. Or if there is someone in your life who is dealing with chronic musculoskeletal pain, you could point her or him to chiropractic services as an option.

The American Chiropractic Association recommends seeking conservative solutions such as chiropractic care for pain management, both for their efficacy and affordability.  The positive results are there, just waiting to be discovered. October is the ideal time to learn about chiropractic care, and finally stamp out the pain through safe, drug-free alternative treatments!

Saturday, October 1, 2016

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month — Are You Ready?

No event on the Scrubin calendar is bigger than Breast Cancer Awareness Month. It’s October, so that means we’re focusing once again on how and what we — and can do to fight breast cancer.

And talk about a cause that has come to life! It is hard to imagine that not so many years ago, breast cancer — and women’s health issues in general — were basically an afterthought in the public consciousness. Now most people know what the pink ribbon signifies; most are well aware that there is a national campaign to cure breast cancer; and most consider a true priority in the sphere of public health.

Still, there remains so much more to do. We haven’t cured breast cancer. This year almost 250,000 women will be diagnosed with the disease, and 40,000 women will die from it this year, in the United States alone. Breast cancer is the second leading cause of death annually amongst women. This is an issue with as much urgency as ever.

So the fight continues on all fronts. Make sure this October you stand up and are counted. Early detection remains a must: the survival rates for this cancer are encouraging, but that is only if the disease is detected in time.

• Be sure to perform monthly self-exams.
• Educate yourself about the signs and symptoms of breast cancer.
• Schedule and keep appointments with your physician.
• And encourage other women in your life to do the same.

Research for the cure, as well as treatment for victims, is always an expensive proposition. Always know that financial contributions to the cause are not only welcome, they are needed. Every dollar donated is another step closer to the cure!

Or perhaps you’d like to donate more than your money: Perhaps you’d like to donate the resources of time and personal care. There are numerous avenues to do so: women’s health clinics and community centers need your help year round, and fundraising events and special programs abound every October. Check out just a few of the many possibilities here.

And be sure to visit our website to get your pink ribbon scrub tops to wear this October, as well as taking to your favorite social-media platforms to spread the word, so that breast cancer never again becomes a secondary issue. There is only one destination in mind — curing the disease forever — and we won’t stop until we get there!

Monday, September 12, 2016

Fruit and Veggies – More Matters

May I have the rest of your pomegranate? Do you know of an organic orchard nearby? Do you think the grocer will give cut me a deal on the price if I offer to buy the leaf spinach by the bushel?

Chances are, you haven’t asked any of these questions in the recent past. But let your thoughts ramble a bit in this direction, for September is Fruit and Veggies – More Matters Month. It’s time to push the fruit and vegetable initiative, proclaiming the healthy, sustaining benefits of these healthiest of the food groups. And also following up the talk by incorporating them into our diets.

We all have hopefully heard by now that eating vegetables and fruit is good for us. An apple a day, and all that. But then, why do all too many of us refuse to follow through on this sound wisdom? The explanations are myriad: time, budget, lack of comprehensive knowledge and the fact that many of us very much wish kale tasted like chocolate brownies. Increasing consumption isn’t necessarily easy, at least at first, but it is most definitely rewarding.

Let’s get specific here: did you know fruit and vegetables are tremendous preventative agents against disease, including cancer and heart disease? Did you know many of them are high in fiber, hence a lovely way to keep your digestive system at ease? From the vanity angle, did you know a diet high in fruit and vegetables improves skin pallor, the sparkle of the teeth in your smile and the luster of your hair as well as your muscle tone? The case for kale is beginning to become a stronger one!

But many of us believe all that, know we should up our fruit and veggie intake and maybe even have tried to make a point of that in the past. And it didn’t work. So what now? As with so many things, education makes all the difference. All forms of fruit and veggies are good in some ways, so if you’re an on-the-go type, and don’t have time to be haunting produce stands twice or more weekly, remember that there are many nutritious brands of frozen vegetables. Boil some water, drop in the broccoli and in 10 minutes, voila! — nutrition on a plate.

Eat Healthy Hack: Learn what fruits and vegetables are in season. The taste of a sweet potato changes markedly in October from those withered specimens you might find in May. If you’re one to claim you don’t like veggies, maybe you’ve all too rarely been having them at the optimal time of year.

Another Pro Tip: Find what you like. You don’t have to choke down carrots if that’s a no-go for you. One of the best things about vegetables and fruit is the amazing variety of options. Try some different stuff and you are sure to find plenty that appeals to you!

Whatever the case, take advantage of an official month to kick-start your fruit and vegetable consumption. Like any other new behavior, it only takes a couple of weeks to settle into a habit. Your body, not to mention your primary care physician, will thank you.
P.S. There’s a LOT going on in September, with awareness campaigns for a single day, a week or even the entire month. Here are some links to areas you may find of interest!

    World Heart Day

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Childhood Cancer Awareness Month requires attention and action

September is back-to-school season, and also Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Needless to say, it is a serious and somber issue, as sad and daunting a health challenge as there is today. Fortunately, this September, many groups — research facilities, charities, churches and concerned families and citizens everywhere are joining forces to fight childhood cancers.
Their efforts will extend from outreach to those families who have a child stricken with the disease, and include everything from survivorship issues to the special care needed for the child undergoing treatment. And, most important of all, funding for research to find the cure will be front and center.

The efforts to fight this battle are numerous. Early detection is a must, so regular checkups and physicals for a child should always be on the calendar. With the advent of any questionable symptom — nosebleeds, unexplained fatigue, pain — consult a doctor at once. The survivor rates for cancer victims who have their condition caught early is many times greater than anyone who is found in the late stages of the disease.
Cancer, of course, attacks on an emotional level too. And it is especially hard on children. They are often confused, bewildered and scared. Their busy and active lives are curtailed, often without them understanding why. It is important for any child stricken with cancer to get the emotional support and counseling she or he will need. The American Childhood Cancer Organization offers books, play kits and stuffed animal kits on their website, as well as online guidance on how to best support a child coping with a cancer diagnosis and treatment. This September many other groups will be sponsoring events, support groups, distributing literature. See if you know of anyone who could use the help, and point them to the right resources.
Something we can all do during this month is Go Gold and show our support for victims of childhood cancer. The gold (or yellow) ribbon should be sported by anyone and everyone; and if someone asks why you’re wearing it, you’ve created a great opportunity to enlighten another person about the issue at hand!
And for those whose lives have been touched intimately by the disease, there are Founding Hope Funds. Essentially these are personalized non-profit fundraising platforms, often in name commemoration of a fallen child. They are tremendous grass-root opportunities to raise both awareness and always needed research and treatment dollars.

Anything to do with our children’s health needs, and deserves, all our attention. So make sure this September you play your part in the fight against childhood cancer.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Seeing is believing: It’s Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month

August brings us Children's Eye Health and Safety Month, an important date to mark on your family's health calendar. Best estimates tell us that more than 12 million children in this country suffer from some sort of vision impairment. Not that this is always an easy figure to determine -- let's face it, kids can go quite a while, even into their school years, before vision problems are determined. That's why regular eye exams and screenings are so important.

Eye exams should be as normal a part of your child's checkup regimen as vaccinations or knee-knocking with the little mallet to check reflexes. It isn't just near-sighted/far-sighted that is to be determined. There are numerous conditions that can affect children's eyes: lazy eye, astigmatism, even color-blindness. And our own naked eye test isn't enough to diagnose these for a child; like most health matters, we need to seek the professionals.

Then, there is the matter of injury. Kids are prone to scrapes and bruises, in case that's news to anyone. Generally, one can rub on a little Bactine, slap on a Band-Aid and get the kid back in the game. But eyes are fragile, not so easily healed, and your child only has the one pair. So, safety first! Protective eye wear is a must, particularly in any sport involving flying projectiles, ricocheting balls, etc. Also, be sure your kid is playing with age-appropriate toys. A toddler, for instance, often lacks the necessary control and coordination to play safely with a toy that has sharp edges or pointy tips.

Along those same lines, Scrubin wants to bring up Contact Lens Health Week, Aug. 22-26. This one has a dear place in our hearts, as many of us have worn corrective lenses since pre-adolescence. In fact, some of us remember when there was an actual choice between soft lenses and hard (read: putting glass in your eye, voluntarily!).

Fortunately, there have been considerable advancements in contact-lens technology over the years, but it is still up to the wearer to diligently maintain good and sanitary practices. Clean your lenses regularly with the proper solution. Take them out every night at bedtime, even if they are disposable. And remember, the term disposable means disposable: Such lenses are not to be worn indefinitely. After the allotted time, be that daily, weekly or monthly, ditch that pair and replace with new ones. 

These are easy enough routines, but particularly with children can be easy things to let slip. So work with your kids on good eye health the way you do on brushing of teeth: a part of the daily/nightly ritual one shouldn't forsake.
So, schedule regular eye exams for your kids. Insure they wear protective eyewear in sports and play. And, if they wear contacts, teach them the proper methods of care and cleaning. Their sparkling eyes will thank you!

Monday, August 8, 2016

Working the night shift? We salute you, brave nurse!

Coffee, usually subpar. Grumpy doctors. Grumpier patients. Circadian rhythms all out of whack. And, most frightening of all, cafeteria food after hours.

These are just a few of the gauntlets run by night-shift nurses. The fabled red-eye shift is no place for the faint of heart. A hospital anytime of day is seldom anyone's version of Shangri-La, but come the wee hours it can transform into a spooky obstacle course of trials and challenges. But rounds still have to be made, vitals taken, medicines administered and patients cared for.

Many, many intrepid bands of night-shift nurses are up to the task. It may be thankless and not always the most pleasant stretch of hours, but they wouldn't have it any other way. When duty calls, the night shift nurse always answers the bell. And boy howdy, do those bells ring and ring .... (Actually nurses' stations are now equipped with call lights, but you get the drift.)

It is common knowledge among nurses working these hours that patients in the middle of the night/early morning tend to be a little needier than in the light of day. Depending on the nature of the infirmity, patients are apt to become more disorientated in these hours. They are prone to being surlier, or needing to use the toilet more frequently. And they themselves are tired, and the nature of the care might mean it is necessary to wake them up periodically for examinations.

Very often night-shift nurses are doing much of their work with skeleton crews, a few making do and doing more. Then, when the shift is over, they walk out into the blinding sun, brave morning traffic at the end of a long day rather than the beginning, and head home to get some shut-eye as most of the world has just opened theirs.

And many of them will tell you it's wise to bring your "lunch." For instance, the cafeteria might be serving tuna casserole. Haven't you always wanted to have tuna casserole at 4 a.m.? No? 

But there are perks. For one, it is socially acceptable for a night shift nurse to have a glass of wine while Good Morning America is on.

In seriousness though, there are some truly meaningful rewards. The reward of doing a tough job and doing it well. The reward of caring for patients during hard, scary moments in their lives. And the reward of camaraderie with coworkers, everyone pulling together under challenging circumstances to achieve a common goal. It is worth pausing to mention that nurses working the night shift are at risk for certain problems deriving from the nature of their work. They are on their feet a lot obviously. Like most night workers they need to be cautious about their diet as they are trying to operate at peak efficiency at a time in the daily cycle when metabolisms generally slow down (veteran night shift nurses often advocate packing nutritious meals from home). 

And sleep deprivation is no joke; day sleeping has the potential to be broken sleep -- more noise, more light, more distractions -- and over time that can lead to fatigue, a weakened immune system and cardiovascular problems. Then there are the personal issues of maintaining a home on an unconventional schedule, making time for family and juggling errands. Here are some good tips to help nurses survive the night shift grind: 

So night-shift nurses, we salute you! Thank you for your expertise, your stamina and your smiles. And get some rest -- you've earned it!

Be sure to check out our new line made with YOU in mind! Night Shift® Scrubs are soft, luxurious stretch scrubs that are sure to keep you comfy on that long shift! Shop now! 

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month Raises Awareness & Promotes Treatment

Some diseases and conditions are identified by who they affect. For instance, most people believe, incorrectly, that arthritis is solely the concern of those who are growing older. Sadly, that’s not the case.

July brings the return of Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month. Juvenile Arthritis is a particularly troublesome condition, and unfortunately one that is all too common in children and teens. Nearly 300,000 children in this country have been diagnosed with the disease.

Arthritis is always a hardship, a painful condition that can be extremely debilitating to its sufferers. It is an especially sad case for children, who are in the stage of life when they should be most physically active and carefree. Juvenile arthritis robs many of the chance to fully enjoy the childhood years of play and fun.

Juvenile Arthritis is oftentimes more serious than adult arthritic conditions. It is often the result of disorders of the autoimmune system that directly attacks the joints. Some forms of Juvenile Arthritis can lead to paralysis, blindness, or even death.

We at Scrubin have joined the fight against Juvenile Arthritis and want to spread the message about both the condition and how to combat it. July will be a time of public education, fundraising, as well as outreach to the little troopers currently struggling.

The Arthritis National Research Foundation is issuing blue Cure Arthritis bracelets and other wearables to commemorate the month. They are also distributing Cure Arthritis action packs with bracelets, posters and more.
Furthermore, you can help spread the word by tweeting out news about Juvenile Arthritis, and spreading the word through your other social media channels.
Let’s don’t forget that while public outreach is valuable and worthwhile, there is no substitute for a cure. And a cure requires research, which requires funding. Click here to discover portals to make a donation or become involved in fundraising.

There are numerous ways to support the cause, from pledge drives to volunteering at hospitals and clinics, so find where you can best be of service. Post on social media, check in your community about ways to get contribute at the local level. Wear your blue bracelet and get your friends and family to do the same.

This is a horrible condition, one that afflicts far too many, but together we can all of us turn the tide and make Juvenile Arthritis a thing of the past!