FAITH COMMUNITY NURSE KATHY’S CORNER

Taking care of your health is important! Get health information here from our Faith Community Nurse, Kathy Trapp-Jackson. Contact Nurse Kathy with any health concerns.

Facts about Valley Fever

Coccidioidomycosis, pronounced as “käk-si-dē-ȯi-dō-mī-kō-səs” is a mouthful, try saying that three times! Did you know that Valley Fever (VF) affects people living in or traveling to southwestern states like Arizona, California, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, or Utah or areas of Mexico or Central/South America. Although, VF affects folks of all ages, it seems to be more common in persons over the age of 60. (https://www.cdc.gov/fungal/diseases/coccidioidomycosis/risk-prevention.html)

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Emotional Health & Healthy Nutrition

Have you ever wondered whether there’s a connection between the types of foods you eat and your emotional health and moods? When you are really hunger yet angry at the same time, you are experiencing what some folks have identified as being, “hangry”. What happens when you were expecting this awesome promotion at work and despite your best efforts and commitment, you were passed over? Are you expressing your anger by screaming at every one you meet or are you internalizing your feelings of anger by self-blaming? For some folks, setbacks and missed opportunities can be soothed by eating comfort foods. By the way, most dictionaries define comfort food as any “food that provides consolation or a feeling of well-being, typically having a high sugar or carbohydrate content and associated with childhood or home cooking.” (https://www.dictionary.com/browse/comfort-food). Comfort foods could be a pint of your favorite double fudge ice cream or perhaps a decadent slice of cheesecake or a mile-high stack of warm blueberry pancakes? Other people find solace by using alcohol, tobacco and drugs or take part in risky behaviors during emotionally difficult times. Examples of risky behaviors might include gambling, driving recklessly or participating in extreme recreational activities. “Maybe it’s no coincidence that food and mood are just a letter apart; the two are peas in a pod. Think about it: you stick to a giant dinner salad on a “winning it” kind of day, and reach for a tub of ice cream after a bad date or a frustrating day at work. It’s a delicate relationship, and it can spin out of control if you’re not careful.” (https://tinyurl.com/y6a9vax6)


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Getting the Facts about Face Shields

Every day, news agencies are broadcasting the latest scientific discoveries and updates about COVID-19. For most folks hearing terms like physical distancing, disinfection and virus-laden aerosol droplets might sound overwhelming or scary; but take a deep breath and keep reading. Interestingly, the virus responsible for causing COVID-19 is a respiratory disease that infects your lungs and respiratory components like the mucous membranes of your eyes, nose and mouth (https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/21205-respiratory-system)


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Sleep is Essential – Getting Quality Sleep Part III

Have you ever wanted to just sleep like a baby again? Well, I cannot guarantee that you will sleep like a little babe but you might certainly identify how to improve your chances of getting better sleep. Did you know that sleep cycles occur normally in five stages lasting about 90 minutes per cycle? What can we do to improve our chances of sleeping better?  (https://www.sleepaidguide.com/sleep-cycles.html).


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Sleep is Essential – Getting Quality Sleep Part II

All around the world, people are feeling stressed, anxious and becoming frazzled from the ongoing uncertainty, chaos and unpredictability that COVID-19 has had upon our lives, lifestyles and routines. How has this pandemic affected your ability to sleep well? What can we do to improve the quality and duration of our sleep? Well, it might be helpful to find out informally what your current sleep habits and bedtime routines are. Are you using time-tested methods shown to promote quality sleep? Trust me here; it’s really pretty easy to figure out if you are sleeping well. No measurements, tools or calculators needed for this quick survey. Grab a writing instrument and some paper or cut and paste the questions into a computerized document program…this is a really low stress activity. Honestly answer these questions with a “YES” or “NO” response!

  •  Look around the room you normally sleep in at night; does it have items that make the room “feel like a cave”, that is, is the room dark, well-ventilated and cool?
  • Are you dressed in sleepwear at least thirty minutes before bedtime to help signal “time to sleep” to your brain?
  • Does your window shades or coverings block out visible light?
  • Sleep accessories like light-blocking eyewear and sound sleep machines are used nightly?
  • Are your digital devices turned off and not readily reachable?

These are really simple questions yielding potentially high-value information unique to you. Sleep research has shown that establishing a consistently regular sleep schedule allows your “body clock” to have a more regulated wakefulness-sleep cycle. Quality sleep allows our bodies to restore, renew, repair & refresh processes like wound healing, bone repair and growth, metabolism, cognitive functions, etc. Quality sleep also helps us to wake up the next morning without mental cloudiness or lack of alertness.


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Part I: Liver Disease-Viral Hepatitis

When you hear the term, hepatitis, what word or phrase comes to mind? Did your thoughts conjure up a person with a long history of drinking alcohol or using drugs? Perhaps, the word, liver cirrhosis or cancer were your choices? Whatever your choice, my desire is to provide insight on the condition known as hepatitis.

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