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Snorting and Sneezing… Does My Child Need an Antibiotic?

By Mary Jo Ytzen, ARNP

Most illnesses are caused by two kinds of germs: bacteria or viruses.  Antibiotics can cure a bacterial infection but not a viral infection.  Bacteria cause strep throat, some pneumonia and sinus infections; viruses cause the common cold, most coughs and the flu.  Yellow or green mucus from the nose may not mean your child has a bacterial infection. During a viral cold it is normal for mucus to get thick and change color.

Antibiotics should not be used to treat the common cold, runny noses and most coughs.  Children fight off these viral illnesses on their own.  Taking antibiotics when they are not needed can cause some bacteria to become resistant to the antibiotic. Resistant bacteria are stronger and harder to kill and can stay in your child’s body and can cause severe illnesses which may require stronger treatment and a possible stay in the hospital.

If your [ ... ]

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November is Diabetes Education Month

By: Marvel Blazek, ARNP

When a person has diabetes, the food he or she eats cannot be used for energy because
the body is not making enough of the hormone, insulin, OR the insulin the person has is
not working the way it should. Insulin is made in the pancreas, an organ that lies behind
the stomach.

Most food is broken down into a form of sugar called glucose. Sugar is the body’s main
source of energy. As sugar enters the bloodstream, the amount of sugar in the blood
rises. Normally the body reacts to the rise in blood sugar by signaling the pancreas to
send insulin into the bloodstream. Insulin helps sugar leave the bloodstream and enter
the cells. To understand how insulin works, think of a cell as a house with many locked
doors. Insulin is the key that unlocks the doors and lets sugar leave the bloodstream and
enter the cells.

When a person has diabetes, the pancreas makes [ ... ]

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Breast Cancer Awareness Month

By: Tara Erickson – ACHS Radiology Department

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, with this being said I would like to remind all women that it is important to have a yearly screening mammogram. 

What is a Mammogram?  A mammogram is an x-ray of the breast.  Screening mammograms are used to look for breast disease in women who are asymptomatic: that is, those who appear to have no breast problems.  The goal of screening mammograms is to detection breast cancer early, before the start of symptoms.  Breast cancers that are found because they are causing symptoms tend to be larger and are more likely to have already spread beyond the breast.  In contrast, breast cancers found during screening exams are more likely to be smaller and still confined to the breast.  The size of a breast cancer and how far it has spread are some of the most important factors prediction [ ... ]

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Iowa’s Start Somewhere Walk

October 7th at 12PM
Adair County Health System and Adair County Health and Fitness Center are both participating in the state wide Start Somewhere Walk.   We would love to have everyone join us in this healthy event.  You can join either one of us by getting details from the website http://www.iowahealthieststate.com/start-somewhere-walk.  On this website go to “find a walk” from there do a search for 50849 and you will see both organizations listed.  Click on either one for details.
If you are unable to join us at that location or time consider getting up and going for a short walk on your own.  Any type of exercise is healthy for all of us!

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Seek Trusted Resources for Flood-Related Health Information

The Internet can be fun and informative; however, it’s important to remember that not all information presented on the Web is accurate. Especially when it comes to health information, it’s wise to consult reputable and trusted websites, such as those maintained by the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). A recent example of inaccurate health advice is in regards to flood preparation and the use of bleach.
Bleach can be effective in cleaning and sanitizing basements and items after flooding occurs, but there is no research to show that leaving open containers or tablets of bleach in basements is effective in preventing mold growth. “Leaving bleach out in the open, especially in large quantities, is a concern because undiluted bleach is corrosive,” said IDPH Medical Director, Dr. Patricia Quinlisk. “If it comes into contact with skin, it can cause skin irritation. Bleach [ ... ]

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