According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 12 percent of men age 18 and older are in fair or poor health leading to obesity, hypertension and even mortality. Medical professionals from the University of Alabama at Birmingham have provided a few tips to help men get healthy.
Take the right vitamins
Americans spend more than $20 billion per year on multivitamins, but not every vitamin is appropriate for every person. Identify the health problems you have to better evaluate your daily vitamin needs.
“For the average person, there is no evidence that multivitamins improve health or help one avoid disease,” said William Curry, M.D., professor in the UAB School of Medicine. “There is no proven value of multivitamins unless a man has a known deficiency or specific condition. However, the doses of various vitamins — vitamins A, B complex, C, D and E — in the standard multivitamin products are typically in a safe range.”
Curry recommends a multivitamin for those with malabsorption of the gut, alcoholism, previous gastric bypass surgery, severe kidney disease, on dialysis, or rare metabolic defects. Those who follow a strict vegetarian diet should also consider a general multivitamin.
Antioxidants including Vitamin A, beta-carotene, and vitamins C and E are heavily promoted and advocated; but studies have not found benefit for preventing cardiovascular disease or cancer, according to Curry. Men with higher risk for cardiovascular disease, especially heart attack and stroke, may consider a vitamin with anti-oxidants. However, high doses of Vitamin A can result in fractures and visual problems. Curry warns that high doses of Vitamin E, 400 units per day or more, may cause higher mortality.
“Vitamin E can interact with blood thinners to increase their effects,” Curry said.
Get moving for heart and brain health
Regular physical exercise is recommended to keep your cardiovascular system and brain healthy. Exercise helps lower blood pressure, improve lipid profile, and better control and possibly prevent Type 2 diabetes, as well as provide a longer life. Multiple studies have shown men who exercise regularly have better erections than men who do not exercise.
“A healthy exercise program keeps the heart, lungs and blood vessels working at their best,” said David Geldmacher, M.D., director of the UAB Division of Memory Disorders. “We recommend two and a half hours of moderate exercise per week, like brisk walking, or lesser totals of more intense exercise.”
Although it represents only about 2 percent of the total body weight, the brain gets about 15 percent of the total blood output from the heart, and consumes 20 percent of the body’s oxygen. Geldmacher recommends keeping the delivery systems working at their best with exercise.
Research studies indicate that persistent exercise triggers hormonal pathways that actually help brain cells increase the number of connections with other cells, as well as strengthen the chemical mechanisms of memory. A combination of resistance or strengthening exercise with endurance exercise is ideal for heart and brain health.
“The time to act is now, while the brain is healthy,” Geldmacher said. “Nowhere in the neurosciences are we able to get the brain to grow new, functioning neurons. However, brain-protective mechanisms, like exercise, get their best shot to work a little bit at a time over long periods.”
Those with medical issues should maintain regular checkups for blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes using medications as prescribed to keep those numbers in the healthy range, recommends Geldmacher.
Say goodbye to tobacco
Quitting smoking or chewing tobacco can be very challenging. Kicking the habit can be beneficial for sexual performance, and heart and lung health. It is a preventable driver of mortality through cancer and cardiovascular disease.
“Tobacco is a major cause of damage to the blood vessels that flow to the penis,” said J. Patrick Selph, M.D., assistant professor in the UAB Department of Urology. “If the blood vessels to the penis are damaged, erectile dysfunction may result. Tobacco is also a major cause of cardiovascular disease, and in some cases where the heart or its blood vessels are damaged, a man may be too unhealthy to engage in intercourse.”
Studies have shown that smokers are at a higher risk of having a reduced sperm count and lower sperm motility, affecting male fertility. Side effects are worse in moderate or heavy smokers.
“I always tell my male patients that anything that is heart-healthy is penis-healthy,” Selph said. “One of the major causes of both erectile dysfunction and cardiovascular disease is smoking. In fact, studies have shown that men who have erectile dysfunction are at risk for having a major cardiac event within five years. Quitting smoking is a key tool in the prevention of these problems.”
In addition to the overall issues with tobacco, chewing tobacco poses a risk for throat and next cancer, as well as many dental problems.
“Those who stop smoking will see an immediate impact on their blood pressure with a decrease within minutes, and the toxic levels of carbon monoxide decrease within a day,” said J. Michael Wells, M.D., assistant professor in UAB’s Division of Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine. “Within three months, lung function begins to improve, and the risk of stroke and other cardiovascular diseases will decrease by at least four times.”
Selph recommends a multifaceted approach, including counseling and sometimes medication. The most important thing to kicking the habit is being ready to do so. A few additional tips from Selph and Wells to quit:
“Don’t be afraid of failure,” Wells said. “If you have a relapse, pick yourself up and try again. Cessation for any amount of time is a success. If it were easy, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.”
Be cautious of what you are drinking
Around 11 percent of men will be affected by kidney stones sometime in their lives, and a higher number in the Southeastern United States, also known as the kidney “stone belt.” It is a multifactorial disease influenced by events in the kidney, gastrointestinal system and bone health, certain endocrine disorders, genetics, diet, and environmental factors.
“Warmer climates may cause individuals to perspire excessively, causing them to become dehydrated. This results in urine’s becoming concentrated and the chemicals’ forming kidney stones. Crystals of these chemicals can arise, which is a prerequisite for kidney stone formation,” said Dean Assimos, M.D., chair of the UAB Department of Urology. “The more fluid you consume, the less likely you are to have kidney stones, but it is important to consume the right fluids.”
Assimos recommends drinking 10 to 12 ounces of water every couple of hours while you are awake. If you are exercising or perspiring, drink more due to losing these fluids more rapidly.
Sugary drinks that include high levels of fructose corn syrup, like sodas, should be avoided. Studies have shown a correlation between drinks with high fructose and kidney stones, as well as links between obesity and kidney stones.
“The consumption of coffee, tea, beer and wine in moderate amounts has been associated with reduced risk of developing kidney stones in epidemiology studies,” Assimos said.
UAB nurse practitioner Jody Gilchrist recommends not drinking anything other than water or black coffee. Soft drinks contain sodium and sugar or artificial sweeteners, which may contribute to obesity and diabetes. Carbonation causes calcium to be pulled from bones into the blood stream, which causes osteoporosis and kidney stones. Sports drinks often contain more sodium than you should eat in a day.
“Alcohol is another ‘simple’ sugar and is burned before other calorie sources, more likely to lead to diabetes and obesity,” Gilchrist said. “Alcohol should be limited to one to two servings a day. High amounts of alcohol lead to poor judgment and eating more unhealthy foods.”
Excessive alcohol use can be a cause of sexual dysfunction, because it can lead to decreased testosterone, decreased libido and difficulty getting an erection. It is also important that a man with erectile dysfunction not drink too much alcohol while using certain medications for erectile dysfunction, as the combination can cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure and impair the ability of the medication to work.
Eat more fruits and veggies
The most important thing a man can do for his overall health is eat a healthy diet. Heart health, diabetes and hormones levels are tied to maintaining a proper diet, including eating the daily recommended fruits and vegetables.
Many of the books and courses for complicated diets have sustained benefit for the average man. Extremely low-fat diets may be dangerous, because the fats are replaced by more carbohydrates, usually simple sugars, which have a variety of bad effects, including Type 2 diabetes.
“Moderate restriction of sodium is a good idea,” Curry said. “Processed foods and snacks are usually loaded with it, as are canned vegetables and soups unless labeled low in sodium. A wise dietitian once said that there are no good or bad foods — just too much or too little.”
He recommends the DASH diet as a reliable model that is affordable and tasty due to its reduction in sodium and variety of foods rich in nutrients. The Mediterranean Diet and its variations also can be worked into a healthy approach to dieting, according to a recent UAB study. Both diets have been associated with maintaining brain health, as well.
The production of testosterone, getting and maintaining an erection, and proper urinary function can also be tied to a healthy diet.
“The best time to start eating a healthy diet is when one is young,” Selph said. “It helps set the stage for eating healthy throughout life, and can prevent problems that come with poor eating choices.”
Protect your skin
Human skin is the body’s largest organ, providing protection to muscles, bones, ligaments and organs. Ultraviolet radiation from the sun directly damages the skin DNA in susceptible people. Over time, this damage can build up, leading to the formation of cancerous cells, which grow into tumors.
Know the types of skin cancer and what they look like to help better identify markings that may have you concerned. Three common types of skin cancer are basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma.
“Skin cancer, like all types of cancer, is capable of destroying healthy tissue and spreading to distant body sites,” said C. Blake Phillips, M.D., a fellow in the UAB Department of Dermatology. “If undetected or untreated, skin cancers lead to loss of vital functions or death. It is important to keep an eye on your skin and watch for changes that could be a sign of skin cancer.”
The most important aspect of protecting your skin is to avoid UV radiation exposure from the sun. Phillips recommends:
Know your family health history
Next to skin cancers, prostate cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed in American men. Men age 50 and older should be screened during their annual physical exam with a discussion regarding prostate cancer risk. A routine blood test can measure a biomarker called prostate-specific antigen or PSA, which can identify a man’s risk of prostate cancer along with a digital rectal exam. Concern based on the PSA blood test level or digital rectal exam can prompt a biopsy of the prostate gland, which can be further evaluated to determine the presence of prostate cancer and, if found, the aggressiveness of the cancer.
“Many men do not know their family history of prostate cancer because men tend not to talk about their health concerns, even with their children and other family members,” said Soroush Rais-Bahrami, M.D., assistant professor in the UAB Department of Urology. “It is important to discuss family history due to the significantly higher risk for men with a first-degree relative who has been diagnosed with prostate cancer.”
Certain men may have a higher risk of prostate cancer based on family history or ethnicity, race, and ancestry and should receive their first screening discussions at the age of 40.
Teens consistently say that parents most influence their decisions about relationships and sex, but according to new data released today by The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, there is a broader role for 20-somethings and other trusted adults to positively influence young people’s decisions about sex, love, and relationships.
According to a new, nationally representative survey of more than 2,000 adults age 18-65 released during Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month in May, more than 90% of those surveyed agree that young people should have a trusted adult or network—such as a peer or community group, a club or team, or a mentor—to provide them with information and guidance on sensitive topics. Nearly 7 in 10 (68%) adults consider themselves someone that a younger person would come to as a trusted source of information.
“Today’s survey results show how important a trusted adult, such as a parent, aunt, or older sibling, can play a positive and influential role in the lives of young people,” said Ginny Ehrlich, CEO, The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. “Teens are listening, and in today’s world which is full of many complexities, young people, now more than ever, want and need a trusted network that provides positive guidance about sex, love, and relationships.”
Confidence in being a trusted adult—and experience with providing counsel to young people on issues like sex, love, and relationships—tends to increase with age. The youngest respondents, those 18-34, considered themselves the least likely to be a trusted source of information on sensitive topics. Similarly, that age group was the least likely to report having ever given a young person information or advice on sex, love, relationships, or birth control. Among the results of the survey:
- More than 8 in 10 (83%) non-Hispanic Black respondents consider themselves a trusted source of information on sensitive topics.
- More than 7 in 10 (75%) of 35-54 year-old respondents consider themselves a trusted source of information on sensitive topics.
- The likelihood that an adult had ever given a young person information or advice on sex, love, relationships, or birth control increases with age, beginning at age 45.
In 2016, as The National Campaign celebrated our 20th anniversary, we set a new target for our next 20 years of work. Included is our vision that all young people have a trusted adult or social network with which they can discuss sex, relationships, and their futures.
May is National Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month, a time for teens and adults alike to focus their attention on topics like birth control, healthy relationships, and sex. Throughout the month of May, teens and their parents are encouraged to visit www.StayTeen.org to play a brand new interactive game and take the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Quiz, both released this month. For additional Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month resources and ways to get involved, visit our TPP Month web portal.
About the survey: Data presented here are drawn from a national web survey, written by The National Campaign and conducted using Google Surveys, May 2017. Interviews were conducted among 2,007 respondents who volunteered to participate in Google online surveys and polls, and data are subsequently weighted to reflect the demographic composition of men and women ages 18 and older who are internet users. Google’s reports state a margin of error of +/- 2.1% at the 95% confidence level, which provides a helpful indication of the variability in these results; however, we note that because the sample is based on those who initially self-selected for participation, this estimate rests on a specific set of statistical assumptions about the selected sample, rather than the standard methodology for random probability sampling. Numbers may not sum to 100 due to rounding.
The plan opens a new era in understanding, care and treatment – but governments must act now. The planacknowledges that dementia is not a normal part of ageing and that those affected should be helped to live as well as possible.
- Every 3 seconds someone in the world develops dementia but most people with dementia do not receive a diagnosis or support
- Governments must develop their own national plans
- Next year dementia will become a trillion dollar disease
- Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI) recommends spending at least 1% of the global cost of dementia onpublic funding for research to find solutions
After ten years of continuous advocacy by ADI for a global response to the growing dementia crisis, The World Health Organization (WHO) has adopted a global plan on dementia. It calls on governments to meet targets for the advancement of dementia awareness, risk reduction, diagnosis, care and treatment, support for care partners and research. The plan was approved at the 70th World Health Assembly this week.
Only 29 governments out of the 194 WHO member states have developed a plan on dementia. The global plan supportsthe urgent message that governments must implement their own plan or policies and that these must be funded, implemented and monitored.
Paola Barbarino, CEO of ADI, said: “Governments need to act now. We have a once-in-a lifetime opportunity to dramatically change the attitude to dementia from fear and inaction, to fighting back, understanding, inclusion and support.”
Dementia affects 50 million people worldwide – a number that will almost triple by 2050. More than half of all people with dementia live in low and middle income countries, where as few as 10% of individuals receive a diagnosis. In 2018, dementia will become a trillion-dollar disease.
Glenn Rees, Chair of ADI, said that dementia is the only major chronic disease area without a cure. “At least 1 per cent of the cost of dementia needs to be invested and invested now in dementia research.”
ADI and DAI were consulted on the development of the plan which includes, as an example, targets for all member states to implement public awareness campaigns and dementia friendly initiatives, and 75% of all countries to develop training for care partners and families.
Kate Swaffer, Co-founder, Chair and CEO of Dementia Alliance says she “greatly values WHO’s global leadership with this Global Action Plan for a Public Health Approach to Dementia, and asks for the support of all Health Ministers and governments to implement it so that people with dementia have access to their rights in international law on the same basis as those with other disabilities.”
Dr Tarun Dua, WHO Department for Neurological Disorders and Public Health, said: “The Action Plan is a very welcome commitment by the member states of WHO to initiate a strong public health response to dementia with time bound targets. We look forward to providing the necessary technical assistance for countries to achieve the objectives of the action plan. We will need all the support from civil society organizations like the Alzheimer’s Disease International to undertake this task.”
Bounce, The YMCA and Black Kids Swim Team For New Water Safety Public Service Initiative
To help educate parents and children on the importance of water, pool and swimming safety, Bounce, the first and only over-the-air broadcast television network for African Americans, is joining forces with YMCA of the USA (Y-USA), the national resource office for 2,700 Ys across the country, and Black Kids Swim, the web’s #1 family resource for African-American swimmers, to launch a new multi-faceted Public Service campaign.
Bounce has produced a series of Public Service Announcements featuring Olympic medalist Maritza Correia McClendon, who made history as the first black woman to earn a place on the United States Olympic Swim Team and went on to become the first to earn an Olympic medal (2004 Athens). The PSAs encourage water and pool safety and include direction to information on the YMCA’s “Safety Around Water” program. Bounce will air the spots nationally starting Memorial Day Weekend and is sharing them with affiliates to run them locally on their primary channels. Click here to watch the PSA.
The effort will also be spread via social media with Bounce and Black Kids Swim providing the spots and editorial content promoting the initiative that include links to the YMCA’s “Safety Around Water” program.
“Lack of proper water training and preparation is quietly killing African Americans of all ages. We think it is important to help educate people on water safety, especially as we head into another summer season,” commented Bounce Vice President of Community Outreach Jeff “J.J.” Johnson.
People can stay connected with the initiative by following Bounce’s official Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts (@bouncetv) and by visiting BounceTV.com. Black Kids Swim will also share information on their Facebook page and on Twitter (@BlackKidsSwim).
Bounce is the fastest-growing African-American network on television and airs on the broadcast signals of local television stations and corresponding cable carriage. The network is available in more than 94 million homes across the United States and 93% of all African-American television homes, including all the top AA television markets.
Black AIDS Institute (BAI), the U.S.’s only national think tank focused on HIV impact in Black communities, has announced “30 Days Of HIV” a national, digital, community campaign to raise awareness, educate and mobilize Black communities around the ongoing HIV/AIDS crisis in Black communities across America. Launching on May 27 through National HIV Testing Day (June 27), this campaign has three core elements: An Online Community Calendar to promote HIV and health related events serving Black communities, an Instagram storytelling series titled In The Life, featuring community-sourced life experiences of Black, gay/bi/trans men, and lastly, Daily Actions – once a day call to action to mobilize Black communities and those who serve them.
Phill Wilson, President and CEO, Black AIDS Institute and a Black, gay, HIV-positive man, who conceptualized this initiative says: “Even though it is not in the news as much as it was a few years ago, HIV/AIDS is an ongoing, and in among some sectors of the Black community, a tragically growing crisis. Black gay and bisexual men in the United States have a 50% lifetime HIV infection rate. Black women still represent 61% of the new HIV infections among women. Our house is still on fire and we don’t seem to notice. 30 Days Of HIV is designed to spotlight the problem, but more importantly, what we are and what we can do, if we focus on this problem.
The Online Community Calendar will feature HIV and health-related activities for Black communities during the May 27-June 27 time period. Organizations planning health fairs, HIV-testing or other outreach activities during this timeframe are invited to submit the events for inclusion on the calendar to geraldG@blackaids.org. The Instagram campaign, In The Life, invites Black GBTQ/SGL men to submit their photo stories about a select life experience, by May 23, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Finally, the Institute will be publishing Daily Actions to mobilize Black communities to take care of their health and fight HIV/AIDS.
For questions and more information please contact: Pavni Guharoy, Black AIDS Institute, email@example.com
Statement by Laura Hanen, MPP, Interim Executive Director and Chief of Government Affairs of the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO)
“New hepatitis C infections have nearly tripled over five years, according to new preliminary surveillance data recently released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. More than 3.5 million Americans are living with hepatitis C virus, making it the most common chronic blood-borne infection in the United States. Baby boomers are six times more likely to be infected with hepatitis C than those in other age groups and are at much greater risk for death from the virus, but the greatest increases were among young people aged 20-29. This is primarily a result of increasing injection drug use associated with America’s growing opioid epidemic. Approximately half of people living with hepatitis C virus have no symptoms and don’t know they are infected, and the vast majority of new infections go undiagnosed. The surveillance report also shows a continued rise in new hepatitis B infections, which increased by 20.7 percent in 2015.
“Hepatitis B and C present significant challenges to public health and healthcare systems. NACCHO calls on the federal government to provide the funding and commitment necessary to address these challenges. As the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s new consensus report, A National Strategy for the Elimination of Hepatitis B and C, states, we can eliminate hepatitis B and C as public health threats by 2030 if the appropriate leadership, investment, and strategies are fulfilled. Hepatitis B and C are completely preventable, but only when we commit the resources necessary for testing, treatment, and in the case of hepatitis C, a cure.
“Resources must reach the local level, where local health departments are providing critical services and leadership to these efforts. The funding to address viral hepatitis is severely limited, and the failure to act on this data will have significant consequences for our communities. The lack of resources is particularly concerning, in the facing of a growing opioid epidemic that is fueling increases in injection drug use, a critical risk factor in the spread of hepatitis B and C, as well as HIV. Without appropriate federal and state funding, as well as public policies, local health departments will struggle to implement effective public health interventions to prevent and treat viral hepatitis.
“In addition to the surveillance report, two MMWR articles were released: State HCV Incidence and Policies Related to HCV Preventive and Treatment Services for Persons Who Inject Drugs, which demonstrate the need for comprehensive approaches to combat the duel epidemics of opioid addiction and injection-related infections diseases, including syringe services programs; and Hepatitis C Virus Infection Among Women Giving Birth, which shows that estimated rates of hepatitis C infection among pregnant women in the United States have nearly doubled during 2009–2014. In Tennessee, the rate in 2014 was approximately three times the national rate.
“NACCHO is committed to supporting local health department efforts to address viral hepatitis. We created an online educational series to increase local health department knowledge and capacity to address hepatitis C, which includes examples of how local health departments can leverage existing resources to support their efforts and promote sensible policies to the age of curative treatment for hepatitis C. And, of course, we will continue to use advocacy to call attention to the unique needs of local health departments, who are the first line of defense in protecting community health.”
Click here to learn more about NACCHO’s hepatitis C resources and view the latest NACCHO Exchange, which includes information on the connections between the opioid epidemic and the spread of infectious diseases, such as HCV.
“Frederick Benjamin Grooming” releases an avant-garde shaving line to promote healthy skin and eliminate skin irritation
According to the Journal of Investigative Reporting, multicultural men are 50 times more likely to experience ingrown hairs and irritating, often painful razor bumps.
Black and Latino men frequently experience this unsightly skin damage, which can be largely attributed to standardized ingredients in typical shaving products as well as conventional shaving processes that are not designed for their tightly coiled curls.
“As I’m working behind-the-scenes for these multinational brands, I noticed everything hitting the shelves is mass-marketed,” James said. “Nothing was addressing the specific concerns of multicultural males. That’s what Frederick Benjamin does. We give them the needed products and processes to eliminate their battle with skin irritation and skin damage.”
Frederick Benjamin Grooming fuses all natural oils and other ingredients such as aloe vera and witch hazel into their products to help protect, prevent and reduce the painful, unattractive skin irritation commonly found within the multicultural community.
“We want men to feel confident in every room they enter and that starts with their morning grooming routine,” said James. “Men are not only investing more time into their daily grooming but also their money in search of the best shave. The best shave is the one that consistently removes hair while reducing irritation, and that’s what our products and processes like our three-step shaving regimen do.”
The three-step shaving regimen was created to enhance the overall shaving experience by providing men with three products to prevent skin irritation altogether.
The Easy Primer Pre-Shave Oil, made with avocado and grape seed oil extracts, adds a protective coating to the skin, which encourages razor glide. The Hydro-Glaze Cooling Aloe Shave Gel goes on clear allowing men to see what they are shaving and achieve a more precise shave meaning less strokes, cuts, and irritation.
Men then complete their shave with the clinically-proven Bump Clear Post-Shave lotion, which has been shown to reduce the appearance of razor bumps in as little as 14 days when applied daily resulting in a smoother, bump-free moisturized jawline and neck.
Frederick Benjamin shaving products are available online. They can also be found in select retailers and barbershops in major cities such as New York City, the DC-metro area, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Austin.
After noticing multicultural men often battle razor bumps and ingrown hairs, and the products most available to them did not meet their specific needs, founder and former L’Oreal brand manager, Michael James, conducted extensive research to develop Frederick Benjamin Grooming, a natural shaving line designed specifically for multicultural men that has been clinically proven to eliminate skin damage.
Self-instructional CPR kits are a proven method to provide parents with the knowledge and skills needed to resuscitate an infant in case of an emergency.
The University of Alabama at Birmingham Women and Infants Center hands out more than 1,500 infant CPR kits each year to help save the lives of infants who are born prematurely or with congenital heart disease or are admitted for respiratory distress and/or neonatal abstinence syndrome. These infants are at higher risk of respiratory and cardiac arrest in their first year of life, with bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation serving as a major predictor of resuscitation outcome.
“In order for UAB to continue to hand out these infant CPR kits at no charge to patients, we need support from donors,” said Elicia Jacob, DNP, director of Nursing for UAB Women and Infants Services. “Through our educational classes and these CPR kits, we hope to give parents and caretakers confidence to perform CPR on their infant in case of an emergency.”
The UAB Women and Infants Center is launching a fundraising campaign to raise money to help educate families on how to perform infant CPR in case of an emergency at home and provide the infant CPR kits, which retail for $39.99, complimentary when leaving the hospital.
“In order to continue to save infant lives and hand out these kits free, we need your help,” Jacob said. “The kit allows parents to practice CPR on an infant, as well as teach family and friends who will be caring for the infant how to perform CPR.”
Once an infant is stable, the care team at UAB’s Regional Neonatal Intensive Care Unit shifts their focus to parent education and patient care class. Educating the parents of infants on how to perform CPR gives them confidence, a “can do” attitude, and the willingness to step forward and save an infant’s life.
As part of this program, the nursing staff teaches parents how to perform CPR in a comfortable, informal setting. Parent care classes at UAB also help prepare new parents for the unthinkable, such as their infant going into cardiac arrest.
UAB nurses then send families whose infant has a high risk of respiratory or cardiac arrest home with an educational infant CPR kit that consists of a mini baby mannequin with lungs for practice, a 22-minute how-to DVD and written instructions on performing CPR on an infant. The kits can be used as practice or to teach others who will be caring for the infant how to perform CPR in case of an emergency.
“Our greatest hope is that parents will never need to use this skill but, in an emergency, will know what to do to save their baby’s life,” Jacob said.
In case of an emergency, it is important to phone 911 first, then proceed with the following steps when administering CPR to an infant:
- Check for response by tapping the infant’s foot
- Open airway, check breathing
- Give two breaths, then push on chest 30 times
- Repeat sets of breaths and pushing the chest
- If alone after five sets, phone 911; then resume CPR
If an infant is choking, remember to support the head and neck, rest your arm on your lap or thigh, then:
- Hold the infant facedown
- Give up to five back slaps
- Turn the infant face-up; push on the chest five times
- Repeat sets of back slaps then pushing the chest (steps 2 and 3) until object comes out and the infant can breathe, cough or cry
- If the infant stops responding, send someone to call 911 and begin the steps of CPR, looking in the mouth each time you open the airway and remove the object, if seen
To make a gift to the UAB Infant CPR Kit fund, visit http://c-fund.us/bnx.
The vote today by Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives to repeal the Affordable Care Act would make insurance more expensive for anyone with pre-existing conditions, increase out of pocket costs for low-income individuals, revoke coverage for mental health and substance-use disorder treatment, and erode King County’s ability to respond to disease outbreaks.
“House Republicans passed a health care bill without fully explaining it to the American people, or even understanding its cost and consequences,” said Executive Constantine. “Health care is too vital to be playing political games. King County has made health reform work, and improved the lives of hundreds of thousands of residents. The Trump/Ryan plan takes us backwards, putting at risk basic health insurance and treatment for people struggling with behavioral health and substance use. We will continue to fight to preserve what works in health reform, and beat back attempts to turn back the clock.”
After 17 years of daydreaming, a Tacoma entrepreneur decided to take the plunge and open a small-scale wedding chapel that offers couples a stress-free, intimate experience. Owner and wedding officiant Rochelle Bergstrom hopes that Elope 253, with the support of the community, gives couples the courage to marry who and how they wish.
The elopement chapel is adjacent to Fireman’s Park in downtown, surrounded by iconic and historic Tacoma buildings. The location merges urban and natural environments with a view of Commencement Bay. Visit Elope 253 for an open house during their grand opening, Saturday, April 29th, 1-4pm.
Although her idea was churning for almost two decades it wasn’t until summer of 2016 that Bergstrom found a way to shape and execute it. The business idea grew out of a need Bergstrom experienced when she was getting married in 2000. “We didn’t belong to a specific church, and didn’t exactly feel like we belonged anywhere,” remembers Bergstrom. “And we wanted to feel taken care of and simply show up with everything ready so we could just focus on us.” Without a convenient elopement chapel nearby, the couple traveled to Las Vegas for an affordable, small, and memorable experience.
Since then, she wanted to open a small elopement chapel to provide a modern, charming space for people to tie the knot. While listening to an episode of the local podcast Move to Tacoma featuring Heather Joy, manager of Spaceworks Tacoma, she learned about the Creative Enterprise program and decided to make the next move and apply.
After accepting her application into the Creative Enterprise Tier I program, Spaceworks provided 14-weeks of training that taught Bergstrom about how to start a business and what local resources were available. By the end of the course, she developed a fully fleshed out business plan and pitched it to a panel of experts for feedback at Spaceworks’ small business pitch event, Fish Tank in November 2016. Bergstrom was grateful for the support her idea received from other entrepreneurs and community members. “Spaceworks gave me the courage to express my dream out loud,” said Bergstrom.
Bergstrom believes that community support is very important for couples who may want to elope or have a small wedding but, because of past societal pressures, may not always feel supported in their decision on how to marry.
Elope 253 offers three packages to meet the needs of different couples. There is the true, elopement-style wedding called “Elope & Go” with a quick but legal ceremony in their beautiful “chapel”. Afterward, the couples receive a complimentary gift and go enjoy the city and their wedding day however they wish. Then there is the “Let’s Elope” package that offers everything you need for a tiny, stress-free wedding including the venue, customized ceremony by an ordained officiant, flowers, champagne & donuts, and professional photography. Couples need only show up wearing something that makes them feel amazing. And, finally, they have the “Elope & Celebrate” package that includes everything from the “Let’s Elope” package plus a small reception in the venue’s downstairs lounge.