Do You Think Your Doctors Are Caring?

A checklist that you could use to rate your doctors.

A few months ago, we featured a YouTube video on doctors and compassion. In that video, it was reported that a doctor could show compassion in less than a minute.

Today, we ask: Do you think your doctors are caring?

As part of a research project, Mark E. Quirk, et al., devised the following checklist. How would EACH of your doctors score on the checklist? If a doctor’s score is low, why don’t you switch to another physician?

Do You Think Your Doctor Is Caring?
 

Regularly Get Your Heart Tested

Treat your heart well.

According to the CDC:

    • “About 610,000 people die of heart disease in the United States every year –that’s 1 in every 4 deaths.
    • Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. More than half of the deaths due to heart disease in 2009 were in men.
    • Coronary heart disease (CHD) is the most common type of heart disease, killing over 370,000 people annually.
    • Every year about 735,000 Americans have a heart attack. Of these, 525,000 are a first heart attack and 210,000 happen in people who have already had a heart attack.”

Here is an excellent video that encourages you to do proper testing. 🙂


 

Be Careful with OTC Drugs

OTC drugs are not risk-free!

For many people, there is a misconception that over-the-counter (OTC) drugs are always safer than prescription drugs. And that simply is not true.

Consider these observations from AARP:

“If the good news is that over-the-counter pain killers such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and naproxen won’t put you at risk for addiction issues like prescription opioids or narcotics can, the less good news is that no pain pill comes without the potential for problems, says Nitin Sekhri, medical director of pain management at Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla, N.Y.”

“Acetaminophen, the active ingredient in Tylenol, is considered the safest option by many, and yet, Sekhri notes, it’s still to blame for about 50 percent of acute liver failures in the U.S. Acetaminophen also is the leading reason behind calls to poison control and to blame for more than 50,000 emergency room visits a year.”

“Often problems arise from people not realizing they’ve taken as much acetaminophen as they have. The over-the-counter painkiller isn’t just in Tylenol: It shows up in remedies meant to fight allergies, colds, flu, coughs, and sleeplessness. It’s also an ingredient in prescription painkillers such as Vicodin and Percocet.”

Click the image to read a lot more.

Be Careful with OTC Drugs

 

Insights on Health Literacy

It’s essential to become more health literate.

In the United States, how much do people know and understand about various health issues? For many, the answer is unfortunately not much.

Consider a few of the highlights from the report “America’s Health Literacy: Why We Need Accessible Health Information.” Click the image to access the full report.

Insights on Health Literacy

In general:

“Health literacy — the ability to obtain, process, and understand basic health information and services to make appropriate health decisions — is essential to promote healthy people and communities. Health care institutions and public health systems play a critical role in health literacy, because they can make it easier or more difficult for people to find and use health information and services. For the first time, there are national data that demonstrate currently available health information is too difficult for average Americans to use to make health decisions.”

“Limited health literacy isn’t a disease that makes itself easily visible. In fact, you can’t tell by looking. Health literacy depends on the context. Even people with strong literacy skills can face health literacy challenges, such as when: They are not familiar with medical terms or how their bodies work. People have to interpret numbers or risks to make a health care decision. They are diagnosed with a serious illness and are scared or confused. They have complex conditions that require complicated self-care.”

Key findings and policy implications of the first-ever National Assessment of Adult Literacy (NAAL) findings include:

Only 12 percent of U.S. adults had proficient health literacy“Over a third of U.S. adults — 77 million people — have difficulty with common health tasks, such as following directions on a prescription drug label or adhering to a childhood immunization schedule using a standard chart.”

“Limited health literacy affects adults in all racial and ethnic groups. The proportion of adults with basic or below basic health literacy ranges from 28 percent of white adults to 65 percent of Hispanic adults.”

“Although half of adults without a high school education had below basic health literacy skills, even high school and college graduates can have limited health literacy.

Compared to privately insured adults, both publicly insured and uninsured adults had lower health literacy skills.”

All adults, regardless of their health literacy skills, were more likely to get health information from radio/television, friends/family, and health professionals than from print media.”

Please Be Careful in the Cold

Here are two weather-related infographics.

The current cold wave can have a dramatic effect on our health. PLEASE be smart. And best wishes to those dealing with sub-zero temperatures today.

In this post, we present two infographics: one for handling the current cold wave and the other for being prepared for a future cold weather event.

From BabaMail: “As the cold weather begins to set in, our bodies must prepare themselves for the harsh winter ahead. Here are a few of the reasons that we are more prone to illness during the colder months, and tips on how to protect our bodies in lieu of these changes. Read on to find out how to keep your immune system strong against the winter chill.”

Please Be Careful in the Cold

From VNA Health Group: “Every year, winter weather takes its toll on our homes, puts people’s lives at risk, and causes delays in travel. Getting ready for winter will ensure that you’re one step ahead of Old Man Winter’s fury. Prepare yourself and your loved ones by sharing these winter safety tips with your friends and family.”

Please Be Careful in the Cold

 

Do Not Make These Thanksgiving Mistakes

Getting ready for the biggest family gathering of the year next Thursday? To have a very Happy Thanksgiving, there are some things we should keep in mind.

Keep up your good spirits. And be healthful while celebrating.

As Hristina Byrnes reports for 24/7 Wall St.:

“A typical Thanksgiving dinner can amount to 3,000 calories. Appetizers and drinks before, during, and after the meal can add another 1,500. That brings the total to a whopping 4,500 calories in just a few hours. This is about twice the amount a person should consume in a day.”

“Yes, Thanksgiving is about family and food. But some people drink a lot, too. The combination of too many liquid and food calories can lead to drowsiness, upset stomachs, and headaches the next morning from both the alcohol and the high sugar foods, according to Alyson Pidich, medical director of the Ash Center, a longevity and anti-aging clinic in New York City.”

“To determine the biggest and most common health mistakes people make on Thanksgiving, 24/7 Wall St. asked several doctors, nutritionists, and dietitians to share their observations and tips.”

These are a few of the tips:

  • Sitting on the couch after dinner— Your posture affects how your body digests all the food you consume. Research shows that the best position to avoid discomfort is standing. Lying down significantly slows gastric emptying compared to other positions such as sitting, standing, or a combination of sitting and standing. A separate study found that food takes about 20 minutes longer to leave the stomach if you’re sitting.”
  • Being in a hurry to prepare the meal — Being in a hurry to prepare the meal and visit with family is a common mistake. It’s a mistake because it leaves no time for exercising. Working out should be part of your holiday ‘recovery.’ You have to keep the body in motion to keep the metabolism going.”
  • Skipping the vegetables — Consuming vegetables is crucial because they are low in calories and have a lot vitamins and minerals. The fiber and water in them fill you up more efficiently than processed carbs in bread and mashed potatoes. A spoonful of mashed potatoes may be between 50 and 100 calories, while a spoonful of Brussel sprouts is just five. If you want to eat but not gain weight, you need to consume low-energy-dense foods — a big volume of food with a low amount of calories. This way you feel fuller on just a few calories.”

Click the image for further tips.

Do Not Make These Thanksgiving Mistakes
Source: itakdalee / Getty Images