Make Your Health Game Plan

00Prevention

gameplanAs an old Spanish Proverb goes, “A man too busy to take care of his health is like a mechanic too busy to take care of his tools.” If your health fails, it is difficult to do much of anything else. Poor health can impact happiness, stress levels and overall life performance. Making a commitment to take on healthier habits is the key to feeling good and enjoying life!

People who are more involved in their health care are less likely to end up on medications, have surgeries or need other treatments. Create a healthy lifestyle, navigate the healthcare system, and explore healing practices.

Make a game plan to own your health:

  1. Keep track of important health information. Write down all health problems you have now and have had in the past, along with the things you do to keep them under control.
  2. Know your family health history. This will help you understand what to look for and manage with yourself.
  3. Attend a 9Health Fair. Every spring and fall, take advantage of low and no-cost health screenings to help you know your numbers. Check out our website for information on dates and locations of our fairs.
  4. Seeing a doctor regularly for check-ups. Take your 9Health Fair results to your doctor to review the findings. He/she will help you put together a health plan based upon your results.

Also, check out this assessment to measure how you’re doing when it comes to your wellbeing. These are important pieces to living a healthy life.

Take charge; your ability to make healthy decisions is limitless, and it starts with making a few healthy changes in order to see a difference. Tell us what your game plan is when it comes to owning your health.

The Elements of a Basic First-Aid Kit

00Prevention

Oh no! You’re out hiking with a coworker when she slips and twists her ankle. What item do you need to help her?

Quick! Your picnic in the park is going great until your friend is stung by a bee. What would help to alleviate the pain?

Help! You burn your finger on the hot frying pan that’s cooking up your freshly-caught trout. What can soothe your burned skin?

It’s likely you knew what items you would need to help in the above scenarios (compression wrap, acetaminophen, and antibiotic cream), but here’s the tricky part: are you carrying any of those items with you on a regular basis?

Summer adventures take us outside and away from of our trusty medicine cabinets full of band-aids, ointments and Advil. That is why it’s so important to have a basic first aid kit that can go where you go – and help when you need help.

Before your next outdoor excursion, put together a basic first aid kit that includes the following items:

Compression wrap – stabilize twisted limbs
Antibiotic ointment – prevents infection in minor burns, cuts and scrapes
Tweezers – remove ticks, splinters, glass or stingers
Antihistamine tablets – calm allergies
Hand sanitizer – use clean hands when helping in any first aid situation!
Antiseptic wipes – cleans cuts and scrapes easily
Bandaids (various sizes) –protect fresh wounds
Eye wash – flush out sand and dust

Being prepared minimizes the impact that small emergencies can have on your outdoor escapades. With the right tools, you can keep your family safe – and keep exploring!

What’s in your family’s first aid kit?

What Your Local 9Health Fair Can Do For You

00Prevention

You probably know that 9Health Fair offers many convenient and affordable health screenings and there are many sites to attend around Colorado and beyond.  However, there are many lesser known reasons to go to a 9Health Fair.

For instance, did you know that you might run into a medical professional from your doctor’s office at one of the screenings?  Each medical volunteer helping at a fair has been professionally trained in their field and has chosen to donate their skills to benefit the community they live in.

You also might not know that anyone age 18 or older can participate in a blood screening, even if they have insurance.  Fairs do not have an attendance cap so insured community members need not worry they are taking a space away from someone who does not have insurance.  Uninsured and insured alike are welcome to attend.

Even when you feel fine, checking on your health is still important because you could discover silent symptoms you might not be able to see or feel.  The skin is your largest organ and unfortunately you cannot easily see all of it.  Due to our elevation, Colorado has a rate of new skin cancer diagnoses 15% higher than the national average.  Melanoma can be tricky to spot in places such as your back, head, and the back of your neck and legs.  Many fair sites offer free skin screenings, so get checked out and know for sure.

The most popular screening at each 9Health Fair is still the Blood Chemistry panel for only $35.  This panel gives you 28 different values to manage the health of your liver, kidneys, bones, thyroid, and more.  Results from this same set of screenings will also give insight into the top silent killers in the United States.  Blood Chemistry will provide HDL (“good”) and LDL (“bad”) cholesterol, triglycerides, and glucose values.  Combined with a free blood pressure check that you can get at any 9Health Fair, these numbers will let you know how your heart, blood vessels, and pancreas are working to circulate blood and metabolize sugars.  High values of LDL cholesterol, blood pressure, or glucose, if left unchecked, may contribute to heart disease or diabetes; sometimes without any symptoms.  We recommend that you take your 9Health Fair results to your health care professional for individualized evaluation.

Lastly, you may not realize that each 9Health Fair is the result of a lot of hard work by volunteers from your own community.  Each site’s volunteers are excited to see their friends and neighbors take part in owning their health by taking advantage of the health screenings that were specifically selected specifically based on the needs of your community.  Show the volunteers you appreciate their hard work by supporting your local 9Health Fair.  Bond together by proudly wearing your “I Own It” sticker. Your annual 9Health Fair experience will help you and each of your neighbors learn more about individual health and how to remain active members of your community.

Each fair is quite different, depending on the community it serves, but there is always more than meets the eye.  Find a fair in your neighborhood today to discover what your local 9Health Fair can do for your health and wellness journey!

Have You Had Your Blood Pressure Checked Lately?

00Prevention

blood pressureAccording to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 1 in 3 U.S. adults have high blood pressure. Because there are no symptoms in the early stages, it is commonly called “The Silent Killer.” This makes it extremely important to have your blood pressure checked regularly.

What you need to know about blood pressure

Blood pressure is determined by the amount of blood your heart pumps and the amount of resistance to the blood flow in your arteries. If your heart is pumping more blood, your arteries narrow, therefore, making your blood pressure higher. It can fluctuate with injury, illness and emotional reaction; however, normal blood pressure should stay under 120/80. 1 out 3 U.S. adults have high blood pressure.

High blood pressure can cause damage to blood vessels which can increase the risk of stroke, kidney failure, heart disease and heart attack. Lifestyle choices such as low stress, not smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, regular exercise, and eating foods high in fiber, low in fat and low in salt will help to maintain healthy blood pressure levels. If you have high blood pressure or are concerned, see what this Guide to Lowering High Blood Pressure has to say from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.

So tell us…have you had your blood pressure checked lately? If the answer is “no”, visit a 9Health Fair near you to have it checked at no cost!