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kill you todayYou try to live a simple life. You watch what you eat, wear your seatbelt and try to see your doctor regularly. But there are several things that you may be doing that sabotage your health...

1. Wearing Fitness Clothes

EXERCISE CLOTHESWash your exercise clothes before you wear them. According to Medscape, an increasing number of cases of allergic contact dermatitis occur due to formaldehyde resins used for textile finishes in clothing. The formaldehyde helps reduce moisture and prevent mildew growth.

2. Keeping Your Cell Phone Handy

CELL PHONE IN BEDKeep your cell phone in your purse and away from your bed. It’s true that cell phones have a weak signal of radiation, but research shows electromagnetic fields emitted by cell phones can increase risk of certain cancers. Plus these waves interfere with sound sleep.

3. Taking Pain Meds

TAKING PAIN PILLSMinimize use of O-T-C painkillers. The FDA recently cited the increased risk of heart attacks and strokes with continued use of NSAID pain relievers. However, taking the normal dosage on occasion should not pose any risk.

4. Working Long Hours

SITTINH DESKSitting at your desk for longer than six hours = not good! Physical inactivity has been identified as the fourth-leading risk factor for death for people all around the world, according to the World Health Organization. With this in mind, by simply standing up each hour or taking short walks every so often, you can minimize this health risk.

5. Drying Your Clothes

CLEANIGN LINT TRAPAlthough washing your clothes is important, many people casually dry everything leaving lint to build up in the dryer. Dryer fires account for more than 17,000 fires per year. If you dry your clothes, clean the lint trap!

New moms conflicting adviceEven strangers in the elevator may start spewing out advice unsolicited when they see a new mom with a infant or toddler. And although friends and family may sound convincing, the advice from our pediatricians is something most followed. But maybe your pediatrician isn't on the mark!  

Could your doctor be giving you bad advice?

A recent study from the Pediatrics Publications surveyed over 1,000 new moms to find out that advice from doctors, friends and families can be conflicting from the American Academy of Pediatrics. The Maternal Report of Advice Received for Infant Care showed that "although doctors were the most prevalent source of reported advice, 20% of mothers reported no doctor advice for breastfeeding or sleep position, and more than 50% reported no advice regarding sleep location or pacifier use. Reported advice from nurses was generally similar to doctors. The prevalence of any advice from family or media was 20% to 56% for nearly all care practices, and advice given was often inconsistent with recommendations."

Clearly, we hold dear what our mothers and friends are telling us in care for our children. Maybe it is that other information is more accessible.

It seems that the average doctor visit of less than 10 minutes may not be enough to get the information a new mom needs. From breast feeding to sleeping positions, it's difficult to get all the information.

Best place to check is the American Academy of Pediatrics website.


FDA WARNINGWhether you’ve overdone it in your workout or the night before at a party, many people will pop a few pills for the pain. Common over-the-counter pain relievers, called non-aspirin non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs known as NSAIDS are now under fire by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The FDA issued, what it calls a drug safety communication, saying the labels must include, "the risk of heart attack or stroke can occur as early as the first weeks of using an NSAID. The risk may increase with longer use of the NSAID. The risk appears greater at higher doses."

These types of pain relievers are typically used for muscle pain, headaches, flu, and even menstrual cramps. But higher doses require a prescription. Bayer (manufacturer of Aleve) released a statement to CNN saying: "When taken as directed on the label, Aleve (naproxen sodium 220 mg) is a safe and effective pain reliever, used by millions of consumers since its introduction as an OTC product 20 years ago. Importantly, data collected for nearly 20 years indicates no signal (i.e. trend) for OTC naproxen sodium with regard to the occurrence of (cardiovascular) thrombotic and overall (cardiovascular) events."

Dr. Steven Nissen, chief of cardiovascular medicine at the Cleveland Clinic, says "What patients need to know is, if you take the drugs, 'What is my risk of heart attack?' and that's not known yet," His advice, "take these at the lowest dosages for the least amount of time that relieves symptoms."

The FDA advises patients who experience shortness of breath, chest pain, sudden numbness or weakness, or sudden slurred speech to seek immediate medical attention. Other side effects should be reported to the agency.



Is your teen starting high school in the fall or leaving home behind for the first time for a cramped college dorm? Summertime is the perfect season to stock up on supplies for the school year and slowly accumulate all those posters and cool pieces of furniture for the dorm room. But don't forget about the other important items on your list like ensuring your teen has a healthy year at school. 


Teens should be getting another round of vaccinations before the school year as the thousands of people they interact with on a daily basis can leave them more vulnerable to diseases, according to the Center For Disease Control And Prevention.

The U.S. government doesn't mandate any particular vaccines for schools; rather states individually come up with their own requirements, usually based off of recommendations from the CDC.

One vaccine that will save you and your teens a lot of grief is the Influenza vaccine for the common flu. Trust us, your teens will somehow get it every year when one of their classmates inevitably gets sick and they will end up having to miss classes and make up the work. Not fun.

The Meningococcal conjugate vaccine for life-threatening bacterial meningitis is also extremely important for unvaccinated freshmen living in close quarters in college dorms, as is the PPV vaccine which protects against Pneumococcal disease - the leading cause of sickness and death that could have been prevented by vaccines. 

In addition, any men and women who did not receive the three-part HPV vaccine dosage when they were younger need to get them now to protect against preventable cancers like cervical cancer. The vaccine is most effective when the recipient has time to develop an immunity to the virus before becoming sexually active. Even if you don't think your teens will be sexually active for some time, it is extremely important for them to get the vaccine now.

Check out our other vaccine guides for elementary school students and middle school students

Copy of 643 x 362 7If you are experiencing blurred vision, you may be at the start of a cataract condition in your eyes. Dr. Paul C. Kang - Cornea, Cataract, and Refractive Surgery, Eye Doctors of Washington - shares insights on common questions about cataracts.

WF: How would you know if you are getting a cataract?… are there symptoms one should know in order to obtain an eye exam?

Dr. Kang: Usually people complain of needing more light. Dim light reading may be an issue. People also commonly complain of problems with night driving and reading fine print. Cataracts happen very slowly and gradually over time.  As a result, patients do not often recognize that they have cataracts.  For this reason the recommendation is that all people over the age of 50 see their ophthalmologist once a year for cataract screening and screening of other eye diseases.

WF: Does a cataract always get worse with time?

Dr. Kang: Yes. Cataracts are a result of a protein change that happens in the natural lens. Everyone will eventually get cataracts (it is like getting gray hair.) However, because cataracts are not life threatening like cancer, we do not need to remove them until the patient is bothered by the symptoms.

WF: What are preventive measures one can take to avoid cataracts or are they hereditary?

Dr. Kang: The most common form of cataracts comes with growing older. I tell patients if we are fortunate to live long enough we will all develop cataracts. However, cataracts can be hastened by diabetes and the use of some medications (for example corticosteroids). Normal healthy living, use of sunglasses while outside, and routine annual eye exams is what is recommended for maintenance of ocular health.

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 Dr. Kang has served in many leadership capacities. He is a past president of the Washington DC Metropolitan Ophthalmological Society. He is also the President of the Vanguard Ophthalmology Society, which recognizes future leaders in ophthalmology.

To learn more about cataracts, visit edow.com.