Ask Your Primary Health Care Provider
Welcome to Health Corner!
Please forward health related questions to:|
Health Corner, Box 548, Pine Falls Health Complex; Phone: 204-367-1337;
or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority along with Manitoba Health
are focusing on Primary Health Care as a means to improve the health status
of the residents of the Interlake-Eastern Region.
Halloween is that time of year where children can use their imagination. They can be anybody, or anything other then who they were born to be. It is a day that they can play dress-up, with wonderful and outrageous costumes. Halloween is really for children and your children should ideally participate in all aspects of the day, from helping to decorate the house to deciding on their costume.
Coming up with a creative disguise doesn’t mean that safety needs to be forgotten. Here are some safety tips to keep in mind:
You might want to offer an alternative to sugar-based treats. Gum should be sugarless. Stickers, multicolored pencils, or beads can be a nice surprise in place or in addition to traditional treats. Ask your children what they think a good treat would be. Submitted By: Laura Gmiterek Source: Health Canada
- The end of October can be quite chilly in the evening so make sure that costumes are loose enough to be worn over warm clothing, but not so baggy, or long, that trick-or-treaters can trip over their costumes. They should also wear brightly colored costumes that will be clearly visible to motorists. For greater visibility add reflective tape to the costume. Trick-or-treaters should also wear sturdy walking shoes.
- When purchasing costumes, beards, or wigs, make sure that they are labeled flame-resistant. However, remember that flame-resistant does not mean fire proof. You should also avoid costumes with baggy sleeves or flowing skirts to minimize the risk of contact with candles and other fire sources. Costumes made of flimsy materials have been known to burn more quickly when exposed to fire sources. Props such as swords, knives, and similar accessories should be made of soft, flexible material.
- Cosmetic contact lenses should be used only under the supervision of an eye-care professional. In addition, wear time should be limited to the shortest time possible. Cosmetic lenses must never be worn while asleep and never shared by others. If you should choose to wear these lenses, be certain that they are cleaned properly.
- By decorating your home, you signal to the trick-or-treaters that you are participating in Halloween.
- With a parent nearby, children that are too young for trick-or-treating can dress in costume and help answer the door.
- Small children should never carve pumpkins. Instead, let your child draw a face on the pumpkin.
- Remove all objects on the walkway and by the door to your home that may cause trick-or-treaters to have a fall. Turn your outside light on as an indicator for children that you are home.
- Keep jack-o-lanterns, candles, matches, and lighters in a place that children cannot reach.
- Do not use Halloween candles with multiple wicks close to one another as these are hazardous. When lit they can produce a single high flame or several large flames close together resulting in intense heat and the danger of igniting nearby materials such as curtains or window sills.
- Keep pets inside and away from trick-or-treaters and lit candles, especially if they are easily frightened or become over excited in the presence of strangers.
- When using decorative lights indoors or outdoors, use lights certified by a recognized organization such as the CSA or the ULC. Check lights for broken or cracked sockets, frayed or bare wires, or loose connections. Discard damaged sets and do not overload extension cords.
- On Halloween, most trick-or-treaters set out around dusk and the youngest wave around late afternoon. Patients should accompany their children each year until they are old enough to go on their own. As an extra safety precaution parents may also want to follow along at a distance to keep an eye on their children. Also, be sure to tell your children not to eat any goodies until you have looked them over. By eating dinner before children set out, they will be less tempted to eat their goodies along the way. It may also be a good idea to take along a backpack to empty the goodies into if the trick-or-treat bags become to heavy. Be sure that your children are told to stay in well lit areas and never go inside homes or cars. They should walk, not run, from house to house and stay on the sidewalk, or at the side of the road facing traffic. They should also only cross the road at corners and be sure to look both ways first.
- The best part about Halloween is eating the loot. Before they indulge make sure that you examined it first and throw away any treats that are not wrapped, have a torn or loose package, or any that have a small hole in the wrapper. Check toys or novelty items for small parts and do not allow children less than 3 years to play with them.
Dieting… Contributing to Eating Disorders
Eating Disorders, such as Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa and Binge Eating Disorder, include extreme emotions, attitudes, and behaviours surrounding weight and food. Eating Disorders are serious emotional and physical problems, that can have life-threatening consequences for females and males.
Experts agree that there are many contributing factors that combine to cause the onset of Eating Disorders or Disordered Eating. DIETING is one of those factors. Dieting is any attempt in the name of weight loss, “healthy eating” or body sculpting to deny your body of the essential, well-balanced nutrients and calories it needs to function to its fullest capacity. Not everyone who diets develops an Eating Disorder; however, almost every Eating Disorder begins with a diet.
What you need to know about dieting:
Tired of Dieting? Try Living!
- Dieting rarely works. 95% of all dieters regain their lost weight and more within 1 to 5 years.
- Dieting can be dangerous. Yo-yo dieting (repetitive cycles of gaining, losing and regaining weight) has shown to have negative health effects, including increased risk of heart disease, long-lasting negative impacts on metabolism.
- Dieting forces your body into starvation mode. Your body responds to dieting by slowing down many of its normal functions to conserve energy. This means your metabolism actually slows down.
- Dieters often miss important nutrients. For example, dieters often don’t get enough calcium, leaving them at risk for osteoporosis, stress fractures, and broken bones. Dieters often experience physical consequences such as: loss of muscular strength and endurance, loss of coordination, dehydration and electrolyte imbalances, and slowed heart rates.
- Dieting impacts your mind. When you restrict calories you restrict your energy, which can restrict your brainpower. Medical studies indicate that people on diets have slower reaction times and decreased concentration. The stress and anxiety about food and weight can actually consume a portion of the dieters working memory capacity. Numerous studies link chronic dieting with feelings of depression, low self-esteem and increased stress.
- Dieting can lead to an Eating Disorder. Studies have shown that clients with Eating Disorders were dieting at the time of developing the Eating Disorder. Dieting may not cause an Eating Disorder, but the constant concern about body weight and shape, fat grams and calories can start a vicious cycle of body dissatisfaction and obsession that can all lead quickly to an Eating Disorder.
Imagine the time, energy and money you could save for other activities and interests if you decided to stop dieting. We all need to take care of our bodies and make sure we are fueling them with a nutritional balance of foods. We don’t need to let the way our body curves or doesn’t curve determine how we feel about ourselves or how we live our lives. Next time the dieting desire crosses your mind, take a time-out. Think about the reasons why you want to lose weight. Are they really worth it? Think about the potential dangers of dieting. And most of all, take the time to remember you are worth so much more than what you weigh!!!
Submitted by: Connie Holmlund, Community Mental Health Worker, Child and Adolescent Services, NEHA 204-345-1231 email@example.com
Adapted from National Eating Disorders Association - February 6 to 12, 2011 is Eating Disorder Awareness Week For more information on Eating Disorders: National Eating Disorder Information Centre, National Eating Disorders Association, Eating Disorders On-line, and Manitoba Health reference
Are You At Risk?
Although February is heart month, every month is a good time to talk about what we can do to improve our health and the health of our heart. We all know about the risk factors we cannot change including our family history and age, but what about all the risk factors we can change. When we know what our risks are, it allows us to make better choices in our everyday lives and decrease our chances for heart disease in the future. So, instead of learning about the consequences of heart disease including heart attacks and strokes afterwards, let’s focus on an ounce of prevention.
Risk Factors you cannot change include age, gender, family history and race.
Age: As we age, the risk of heart disease increases. For men after the age of 45 and women after the age of 55 the number of individuals affected with heart disease is greater.
Gender: Men in general are more likely to develop heart disease, until after menopause when women are just as likely to develop heart disease.
Family History: You are at a greater risk of developing heart disease if a person in your immediate family has a history of heart disease.
Race: For example individuals from the First Nations population have a higher incidence of diabetes, and people with diabetes have at increased risk for heart disease.
Risk Factors you can change include smoking, lack of exercise, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, being overweight, diabetes, excessive alcohol intake, and stress.
Smoking: If you don’t smoke, congratulations on a great choice! If you do smoke quitting is the #1 best change you can make to prevent heart disease.
Lack of exercise: Maintenance of daily physical activity will decrease your risk for heart disease. Physical activity can help you handle stress, lower blood pressure and cholesterol and maintain a healthy weight. Canada’s Physical Activity Guide suggests adults accumulate 30 to 60 minutes of moderate physical activity most days.
High Blood Pressure: High blood pressure damages blood vessel walls, puts strain on your heart and eventually weakens your heart muscle. Some helpful tips to remember are: choose foods lower in fat and salt (sodium), take your medication as prescribed by your doctor, be smoke-free, limit alcohol intake, maintain a healthy weight and be physically active.
High Cholesterol: Cholesterol is a fatty wax-like substance that deposits in your arteries increasing your risk for heart disease. You can help improve your cholesterol levels by being physically active and maintaining a healthy weight, being smoke-free and eating a healthy diet lower in saturated and trans fats.
Overweight: Being overweight can lead to high blood pressure and diabetes which increases your risk of heart disease. In general, excess body weight can be reduced with healthy eating and regular physical activity.
Diabetes: Diabetes is a condition where your body is unable to regulate its own glucose (blood sugar). Having diabetes increases your risk for heart disease. Careful management of diet, exercise and medication can lower your risk for heart disease.
Excessive Alcohol Intake: More than two alcoholic drinks a day raises blood pressure levels which increases your risk of heart disease.
Stress: Stress is often a productive part of everyday life. But, when stress becomes “dis-stress” that’s when it becomes a factor for heart disease. Although you may not be able to eliminate stress completely there are helpful ways to deal with it. Some of these helpful hints include: share your feelings, be physically active, take care of yourself, do relaxation exercises and lead a heart healthy lifestyle.
Small changes lead to healthy lifestyles and healthy lifestyles lead to healthy hearts!
Submitted by Jamie Kotowich, Primary Health Care Nurse Source: Heart and Stroke Foundation
Healthy Eating – Parent & Child ‘Feeding Relationship’
Fundamental to parents’ jobs is trusting children to decide how much and whether they want to eat. If parents do their jobs with feeding, children will do their jobs with eating and grow into the bodies that are right for them.
Have you ever said or heard phrases such as:
“If you eat just one more bite…”
“What a good boy, you ate all your dinner…”
“You are going to sit here until your plate is empty…”
“If you eat all your dinner, you can have ....”
At a time of increased focus on health, nutrition, and weight, many questions are being raised about what people can do to achieve overall health and well being. The answer is not the newest celebrity endorsed diet or an unachievable exercise regime in attempts to mimic what the media presents as the ‘norm’. Healthy eating behaviors strongly influence our relationship with food and nutrition throughout our lifecycle. Therefore, developing a healthy relationship with food early in life is key.
Parents want the best for their children and want to ensure they are feeding their children well. The feeding relationship is based on Ellyn Satter’s “Division of Responsibility”. Ellyn Satter, a Registered Dietitian and guru in feeding children, says it is important to know that parents and children have different jobs when it comes to feeding.
Parents provide structure, support and opportunities. Children choose how much and whether to eat from what the parents provide. It is important to respect children’s ability to dictate when they are hungry and when they are satisfied. We are born with the ability to decide when we are satisfied, but over time we seem to defy this intuition and learn to under or over eat. It is also important to provide your children with a healthy variety of food at set meal and snack times. Canada’s Food Guide to Healthy Eating is a great resource. The parent is responsible for what, when, where. This includes choosing and preparing the healthy food, providing structured meal and snack times and making meal time pleasant and family oriented. It is important to show children what they have to learn about food and mealtime behaviour. Try not to let children graze for food or beverages between meal and snack times to ensure they are ready to eat when the time comes.
The child is responsible for how much they will eat and whether they will eat. They will eat the amount they need and they will learn to eat the food their parents eat. Establishing a healthy relationship with food with plenty of variety will allow your child to grow predictably into bodies that nature intended.
Young children should eat 3 meals and 2-3 snacks per day as their stomachs are small and their nutrient needs are high. If a child does not want to eat at the meal or snack time, either save the food for when they are hungry or wait until the next meal/snack time. Children’s growth dictates their needs, and remember, their bodies know best when they are hungry or not. Children tend to go through phases of growth and food preferences; research suggests that children can be offered a particular food 15 times before they accept it. Trying a new food with a favorite food may help ease the integration of a variety of foods into the diet. Food is not meant to be a reward or a bargaining tool! Submitted by Kari MacLellan, Registered Dietitian For further information on this topic, please contact the Registered Dietitian at your local health centre.
Liver disease affects 1 in 10 Canadians. Although some liver problems are temporary, some can last a lifetime with serious complications. Problems with your liver can arise from unhealthy living, genetics and exposures to viruses or chemicals.
The liver is a football-sized organ located under your rib cage on the right side of your belly. This important organ works 24 hours a day to process everything we eat, drink, breathe in or rub on our skin. The liver fights off infection, neutralizes toxins, manufactures proteins and hormones, controls blood sugar and helps with blood clotting.
Signs of liver trouble may include: discolored skin and eyes that appear yellowish, abdominal pain, itchy skin, dark urine, pale or tar colored stool, fatigue, nausea and loss of appetite; although, many individuals will experience no signs or symptoms. Liver problems can be diagnosed with blood tests, imaging tests and tests of liver tissue. See your family practitioner if you have any persistent signs or symptoms that worry you.
There is no known cure for liver disease, but most liver problems can be prevented by protecting your liver with healthy lifestyle choices.
Eat a healthy diet and exercise daily. A well-balanced diet with a variety of fruits and vegetables helps the liver function at its best. Exercise helps strengthen your body and your liver so it can ward off viruses and pollutants.
Maintain a healthy weight. The leading cause of liver disease in Canada is fatty liver, which is linked to obesity. If you are overweight, consult your healthcare provider and strive for a gradual sustainable weight loss.
Get vaccinated. Vaccines are available for hepatitis A and B. Hepatitis A can be contracted through contaminated food and water. Hepatitis B is spread through direct contact with blood or body fluids. You can be at risk of contracting these serious liver diseases both in Canada and abroad.
If you use any alcohol use it in moderation. Limit the amount of alcohol you drink to no more than one drink a day for women and no more than two drinks a day for men.
Avoid risky activities such as sharing needles used to inject drugs and unprotected sex. If you use illicit drugs, do not share needles and get help quitting. If you choose to have sex, use condoms. Getting tattoos or body piercings can also put you at risk for liver disease. If you choose to have these procedures done, be cautious and inquire about the cleanliness and safety of the shop.
Use medications wisely and only as directed. Discuss any herbal supplements and non-prescription drugs with your family practitioner. Never take medications with alcohol since the combination puts extra strain on your liver and can cause serious complications.
Avoid contact with blood and body fluids. Hepatitis viruses can be spread by accidental needle sticks or improper cleanup of blood or body fluids. Do not share toothbrushes or razor blades as this can also lead to an exposure to the hepatitis virus.
Protect yourself from chemicals. Be sure to cover your skin with gloves, long sleeves, a hat and a mask. Ensure good ventilation or wear a mask when using an aerosol cleaner. Take similar precautions when spraying insecticides, fungicides, paint and other toxic chemicals. Ensure manufacturer's instructions are always followed.
Following these healthy living tips can help provide protection for our livers and keep us feeling our best. Submitted by: Christy Arnott, Primary Healthcare Nurse Sources: Canadian Liver Foundation Website “Liver Health” Mayo Clinic Website “Liver Problems”
Healthy Teeth for a Healthy Life
It is a common misconception that, “Cavities in baby teeth don't matter. Those teeth are just going to fall out anyway!” The truth is baby teeth are important. They help children learn how to eat and speak. Baby teeth help shape the face and guide adult teeth into the right place.
Childhood Tooth Decay, also know as Early Childhood Caries, or ECC, happens when food and cavity-causing bacteria are left on your child’s teeth. The germs feed on sugar in the food and then create an acid. This acid then weakens the teeth. After repeated exposure to the acid, a cavity is created in the tooth. If left untreated, the cavities can spread and the child may need to have dental surgery requiring general anesthesia. The good news is, tooth decay is preventable.
Early Childhood Caries does not only affect the teeth but also a child’s overall health. Some side effects include: pain; affected growth; difficulty sleeping and eating; speech problems; trouble learning or concentrating; poor self-esteem; as well as increased infections, including pneumonia. There is also a link between Early Childhood Caries and increased risk a developing other chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes later in life.
The first steps to preventing cavities start in pregnancy! During and after pregnancy a growing baby needs calcium and vitamin D from healthy foods in order to build strong teeth and bones. Health care professionals should also be consulted about the need for prenatal vitamins for moms and vitamin D drops for infants.
A healthy diet is important for healthy teeth. Every time you consume food or drinks containing starch or sugar, a twenty minute acid attack occurs on teeth. To reduce cavity risks stay away from sticky foods and save sweet foods for mealtime. Snacks are important for growing children, but try limiting them to 2 or 3 a day and make healthy choices such as cheese, vegetables, fruit and nuts. Give water to drink between meals and snacks. Milk or water are the only things that should ever go into a baby bottle and babies should never be put to bed with a bottle. Wean babies from bottle and sippy cup by 12 to 14 months of age.
Caregivers should also keep a healthy mouth to prevent passing on germs to their child. Babies are not born with cavity-causing bacteria. It is usually passed on by family members and caregivers through saliva exchange when testing temperature of bottles or food; tasting or sharing foods, cups or utensils; sharing toothbrushes; or by cleaning off soothers and bottle nipples in your mouth. By following good oral care for yourself, you are also role-modeling for your child.
Brush teeth for two minutes twice a day (morning and bedtime) using a soft-bristled brush. Clean all surfaces of teeth, along the gumline and the tongue. A slight smear of fluoridated toothpaste can be used starting at age one. Ages six and up can use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste, while children three to six can use half that amount. Children need help brushing their teeth until the age of eight. Flossing once a day should begin by age three or when teeth are touching. Flossing cleans between the teeth, where the toothbrush cannot reach. Starting by age one everyone should visit a dental professional at least once a year. To support this, most Manitoba dentists are participating in “The First Visit Free” program for children three and under.
Information provided by Healthy Smile Happy Child. For more information please visit Early Childhood Tooth Decay Submitted by Michelle Berthelette, Wellness Facilitator
Is Your Tetanus Shot Up-to-date?
Vaccination has saved more lives in Canada in the last 50 years than any other medical intervention. Vaccines help your immune system to recognize and fight bacteria and viruses that cause diseases. It’s a great time to ask - Is your Tetanus Shot up to date?
Tetanus is an acute and often fatal disease. Tetanus is caused by bacteria, or germs, which get into a cut, puncture wound, or burn. Tetanus germs are common in the environment as the germ is found in dirt, dust and manure.
Tetanus germs in a wound form a poison, or toxin, that causes your muscles to tighten and go into spasms. A spasm is a painful tightening of the muscle that cannot be controlled. Tetanus can be very serious if the breathing muscles are affected by these spasms. About 3 out of every 10 people who get tetanus will die from the disease.
If it has been 10 Years or longer since you have had your last tetanus shot, please contact your local public health nurse to book a vaccination appointment; this immunization is provided free of charge to all residents of Manitoba. Your public health nurse can also check your immunization records to see when you had your last tetanus shot.
Public Health offices are located in each of NEHA’s health centres.
To reach your Public Health Nurse for:
Beausejour call 268-7468
Lac du Bonnet call 345-1219
Pinawa call 753- 3147
Oakbank call 444-6130/6131
Pine Falls call 367-5406
Whitemouth call 348-4613.
Submitted by Kari Lange Immunization Coordinator, NEHA Source: Manitoba Health
May 31 is World No Tobacco Day.
Take this day to consider all of the reasons you smoke and all of the reasons you would like to quit. Consider every cigarette and why you are smoking it. Is it out of habit? Boredom? Craving? Comfort? Try to eliminate even one or two cigarettes that are unnecessary that day and you will be on your way to quitting.
We are all aware of the health risks associated with smoking; heart disease, lung disease, cancer, it affects every cell of our bodies. Quitting is hard. Our bodies grow accustomed to high nicotine levels and we don’t feel “normal” when the nicotine isn’t there.
Nicotine withdrawal feels terrible. No doubt about it. Decreasing caffeine intake while cutting down on nicotine can help. Nicotine makes caffeine less useful in the body. While you smoke you need more coffee/colas/teas to feel their effect. Once you have less nicotine in your system, you will feel the effect of caffeine more. Too much caffeine can feel like nicotine withdrawal. Start by reducing the amount of caffeine you consume by half.
Also, speak to your health care provider about nicotine replacement products. These can be very helpful in the withdrawal process. Typically people use too little of these products for too short a period of time while they are quitting. Nicotine replacement products, along with other products on the market, can significantly increase your chances of quitting.
Finally, seek the support of your family and friends and choose a day that is meaningful to you as a quit date. It can take several tries to quit smoking. Each attempt can bring you closer to understanding the best way for you to quit. The Smokers' Helpline is also available for support: call 1-877-513-5333 or check the website: Smokers' Helpline Quitting Smoking can be difficult, but the benefits are immediate and so worthwhile. Submitted by Lori Dziewit, Nurse Practitioner
My World…Your World… Our World…Free of Elder Abuse…
What is Elder Abuse?
Elder abuse is any action or lack of action by someone in a position of trust that harms the health or well-being of an older person. Elder abuse can happen at home, in the community, and in acute and long term care facilities. Abuse exists in many different forms. Abuse can be physical, psychological, or sexual. It can also exist in the form of neglect and financial exploitation.
Many abused seniors are reluctant to identify themselves. They often do not take any action against their abusers. They may be embarrassed and ashamed, unsure that any good will result, afraid of being rejected by loved ones, or afraid of having to leave their home. Nobody deserves to be abused or neglected. Abuse is a complex matter and there are many factors involved.
If you or someone you know is being abused, you're not alone. Quite often you can't stop an abusive situation alone. If you or anyone you know is experiencing abuse, in an emergency, contact 911 or your local police service.
For non-emergent situations contact the Seniors Abuse Support Line at 1-888-896-7183. These calls are completely confidential and can be anonymous; you do not have to give your name. If you suspect abuse in a personal care home, hospital or any other designated health facility contact the office of The Protection for Persons in Care at 1-866-440-6366.
World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) takes place on June 15th and was created to raise awareness about an issue that is often hidden due to fear and shame. Awareness empowers older adults with information on their rights; how to protect themselves; and where to get help when needed. It is also an opportunity for professionals, family members and friends to learn ways to support older adults who are experiencing abuse.
Why not look for ways to bring this issue forward and collaborate with others on how you can create a safe, supportive community for all! Last year 40 communities and organizations across Manitoba participated in Elder Abuse Awareness Day. Here are some ways you can get involved:
Please wear a purple ribbon on June 15th recognizing that… ABUSE HURTS AT ANY AGE. Also Watch for Purple Ribbon displays throughout your Community! Together we can create a community that is free of abuse and safe for people of all ages! Source: Manitoba Seniors & Healthy Aging Secretariat and the Manitoba Elder Abuse Awareness Day Planning Committee
Submitted by Pat Porth, Community Resource Coordinator Two Rivers Seniors Resource Council Inc. 204-345-1227 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Attend the free Provincial Elder Abuse Awareness Day event to be held at the RCMP Headquarters, 1091 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg on June 15th from 10:30am-2:30pm
- Wear a purple ribbon for the day
- Discuss elder abuse issues during your coffee break
- Proclaim Elder Abuse Awareness Day in your community
- Plan with youth to set up an intergenerational display.
What is Rabies?
Rabies is a virus that attacks the central nervous system. The virus is carried in the saliva (spit) of an infected (rabid) animal. Rabies is endemic (prevalent) in Manitoba, particularly throughout the southern half of the province. There is no cure for this disease and it is 100% fatal.
Who gets Rabies?
Humans and warm-blooded animals including pets (ex: cats, dogs, ferrets), farm animals (ex. cows, horses), wild animals (ex. skunks, bears, foxes) and bats can be infected. Common wildlife carriers of Rabies in Manitoba are skunks, bats, and foxes.
How is Rabies Spread?
Humans get Rabies after being bitten or scratched by an infected animal. Rabies can also be spread when rabid animal saliva gets into a cut, wound, or the moist tissue lining of the mouth, nose, or eyes.
How can you tell if an Animal has Rabies?
An infected animal may or may not show symptoms of rabies. However, animals with rabies often act in strange ways. They may attack without a reason; night-roaming animals may wander about in the day; pets may seem aggressive, depressed, or lethargic. Rabid bats often appear normal. If you find a bat, dead or alive, do not touch it with your bare hands.
How do I avoid Rabies?
Vaccinate your pets against rabies and keep their rabies vaccinations up-to-date.
Do not let your pets roam free outdoors, especially at night.
Do not handle wild animals; appreciate them from a distance.
Teach children not to approach unfamiliar animals, even if they seem friendly or appear to be sick and in need of help.
For more information, call:
Health Links-Info Santé at 1-888-315-92
Your local Public Health Office
Your local veterinary clinic
The CFIA – federal veterinary Office (weekdays) at 983-2200.
Submitted By: Vicky Pizzey, RN. BScN. Communicable Disease Control Manager, NEHA
Since January 2011, over 350 people in Quebec have caught measles. Normally, the province of Quebec sees between 0 to 4 cases every year.
Measles used to be very common in Canada, but thanks to the success of vaccination campaigns, has become rare. There was one case of measles in Manitoba in 2010, and before that, the most recent case was in 2004. There have not been any cases in Manitoba in 2011.
This current outbreak in Quebec has been brought into Canada by travelers to Europe, where there have been outbreaks for the last several years, due to declining use of the vaccine. How could a disease considered by many to be an illness of yesteryear and a rite of passage in childhood be cause for concern? Measles is an extremely contagious disease. Most people who become sick with measles recover fully. But, a potentially dangerous virus, measles kills 1 out of every 3000 people who are infected, and it can also cause serious lifelong problems, like brain damage.
Most people in North Eastman Region choose to vaccinate their children. But there are a few who are choosing not to vaccinate their children for a variety of reasons. Information from fraudulent sources convinces parents their child will develop Autism from the Measles vaccine. Some parents choose no vaccines for their child, thinking the disease itself will give “natural” and better immunity. None of these reasons are based in science, rather it is hearsay and junk science. Most of the children infected in Quebec are not fully immunized.
The good news is: Measles is a vaccine preventable disease. However, it is only preventable if people are vaccinated. The Measles vaccine has been around for almost 50 years and is very safe and highly effective in preventing the disease. The vaccine recommended for all children over one year of age, is a two dose vaccine offered free of charge by Manitoba Health through your local Public Health Office. The first dose is given at 12 months of age, and the second dose at 4-6 years of age.
Give your child the gift of preventing a potentially life threatening disease. We all want the best for our children and that includes the Measles vaccine. If your child is due for the Measles vaccine or you would like more information about the vaccine, call your Public Health Nurse today.
Référence: Sante et Services Sociaux Québec. Measles. Submitted by Myrna Suski, Director of Public Health, NEHA
Our bodies are complex systems made up of many parts working together to get us from place to place, keeping us healthy and allowing us to do the things we love. But some body parts take a harder toll than others, particularly our feet.
Healthy feet are strong and flexible. Each foot contains 26 bones, which are held in position by hundreds of ligaments, tendons and muscles. They allow us to walk and run as they support the weight of the whole body. Every time we take a step, this complex mechanism goes into action automatically. It is really quite amazing.
For an average adult, our poor feet act as shock absorbers to about a million pounds of force a day. Our feet protect our bodies from feeling the impact of all of that force.
Our feet are our main means of transportation. We often take them for granted until we have a problem and then it may be too late. Our ability to walk is important to our well being and that is a very good reason to take care of your tootsies on a daily basis!
Foot Care Recommendations for Healthy Feet:
Healthy feet are an important part of overall good health, so practicing proper foot care can benefit your whole life and keep you walking longer. Happy trails! Submitted by Sharlene Thompson, Primary Health Care Nurse
Adapted from the Canadian Podiatric Medical Association
- Inspect your feet: Pay attention to changes in color and temperature. Look for thick or discolored nails (a sign of developing fungus), and check for cracks or cuts in the skin. Any white, moist tissue, between the toes could be a sign of foot fungus. Check the bottom of the feet for calluses, cracking or areas of redness or irritation. Peeling or scaling on the soles of feet may indicate Athlete's Foot. Any growth on the foot is not considered normal. Seek medical attention for any foot problems.
- Wash your feet regularly: Wash your feet each time you shower or take a bath, washing the bottom of your feet and in between your toes. It is also important to dry in between your toes after showering, especially if you have a tendency to develop foot fungus.
- Trim your toenails: Trim toenails straight across, but not too short. Be careful not to cut nails in corners or on the sides; this can lead to ingrown toenails. If you do end up with sharp edges on the sides, it's ok to round a little at the edges to remove the sharp point.
- Shoes: Make sure that your shoes fit properly. Purchase new shoes later in the day when feet tend to be at their largest, and replace worn out shoes as soon as possible. Those strappy sandals that women love so much can have a downside. They create friction that, combined with the usual dryness of the skin on the bottom of your feet, can cause cracked heels. In extreme cases, your feet can bleed or become infected. Protect your feet by alternating between wearing sandals and closed shoes.
- Alternate shoes: It's important to not wear the same shoes day after day. Changing your shoes gives your feet a break from rubbing the same pressure spots on your feet. It also gives your shoes a chance to air out and decrease the risk of fungal infection.
- Wear the right shoe for the right activity: A running shoe should be worn for running, a walking shoe for walking and a hiking boot for hiking. Although it may be fine to take short hikes in sports sandals, long walks in flimsy sandals that do not provide good support, can cause foot problems. Hiking in running shoes can increase your chance for ankle sprains and running in old gardening shoes puts you at risk for foot or leg injuries.
- Avoid wearing old shoes: Once shoes have worn out, replace them as soon as possible. Wearing worn out shoes can result in a range of foot problems including skin and nail conditions. Shoes that no longer provide you with good support may also cause ankle and knee discomfort.
- Avoid walking barefoot: Walking barefoot puts your feet at risk for puncture wounds, warts, fungus, ankle sprains, tendonitis, and infections. Always protect your feet with the appropriate pair of shoes. Always use sunblock on your feet at the beach or when wearing sandals
- Be cautious with self-treatment: Be careful with drug store medications and cautious with home remedies. Self-treatment may turn a minor problem into a major one. This is especially true for people with diabetes. People with diabetes should not self treat problems with their feet.
- Exercise daily: Walking is a good exercise for your feet. It helps with blood flow and muscle tone. With your shoes off, twist your feet in circular motions, then move toes in an up and down motion. To build strength and gain flexibility in your feet, the best approach is to use them.
- Don't ignore foot pain: Foot pain is not normal. It does not matter how old you are, if you are experiencing persistent foot pain, seek medical attention.
Savour the Flavour – And Add Some Spice!
We’ve heard the Healthy Eating messages – lower the amount of saturated fat, trans fat, and sodium in your diet. Eat more vegetables. Eat fibre rich foods. How about one more….. add some spice to your life!
Often when fat and sodium is reduced in foods, so is flavour. One way to make healthy food taste great is to add a little spice. Not only will it help with the overall flavour of the food, but those spices give us something more – a healthy dash of antioxidants and other compounds that are showing more and more potential in reducing blood vessel inflammation (a major risk for heart disease and other chronic diseases).
Here’s a list of some power-packed spices and how to get started making them a part of your meals:
Sweet, Sweet Cinnamon
Cinnamon, the seasoning that’s as comforting as grandma’s apple pie! But the spice is more than comforting, its full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties – in fact one teaspoon of cinnamon has the same amount of antioxidants as ½ cup of blueberries. Add 1 – 2 teaspoons to: low fat yogurt with berries or bananas; a bowl of oatmeal; or to French toast batter. Or sprinkle half a teaspoon of cinnamon over ground coffee before brewing. Cinnamon and apple is a natural flavour combination. A sliced apple tossed with 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon in a re-sealable plastic bag makes a great snack. Plus the cinnamon coating helps keep the apple slices from turning brown.
Fields of Garlic
The perceived health benefits of garlic, a species in the onion family, have long been passed down through the generations in many cultures. Research focuses on how garlic may protect against heart disease, cancer and the common cold. Add freshly chopped or minced garlic to pasta dishes, stir-fry dishes, pizza, fresh tomato sauce, and meat and poultry. Add pizzazz to steamed vegetables, baked potatoes, pasta or rice with a pinch of garlic powder. For Easy Garlic Mashed Potatoes, stir 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder and 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper into 4 cups hot cooked mashed potatoes.
For centuries, ginger was used as a natural remedy for a variety of conditions, especially soothing distressed stomachs. Now modern medicine is attempting to validate the use of ginger to ease indigestion and reduce pain. The potential benefits appear to be due to the anti-inflammatory properties of gingerol – one of the active ingredients in ginger. Add ¼ tsp ground ginger to carrots, sweet potatoes and fresh fruit. Mix an easy, delicious marinade for chicken, fish, meat, or even vegetables, made with chopped fresh ginger, garlic, low sodium soy sauce, and sesame oil. Add flavour to soft margarine or butter by mixing in some ground ginger and chopped lime zest - use the spread to top grilled fish.
Healthy food doesn’t need to taste “blah”. Experiment with spice – oregano, basil, paprika, curry, parsley…..and see where your taste buds take you! Submitted by Kristen Ticknor, Registered Dietitian, NEHA References: www.canadianspiceassociation.com/csa.asp www.mccormickscienceinstitute.com Top 10 Culinary Herbs and Spices: Flavorful and Functional, by Sharon Palmer, RD, Today’s Dietitian, Vol. 9 No. 7 P. 36.
Child Passenger Safety
Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of preventable injury and death in children aged 0-14. You can help protect your child by buying the right car or booster seat to fit your child and using it properly.
There are many car and booster seats to choose from. New seats will have a Canadian Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (CMVSS) label, which tells you that it is safe for use in Canada. This label is a sticker with a circle and a maple leaf.
Car and booster seats are tested for safety based on heights and weights, so it is important to match your child’s height and weight to those listed on the seat and the box. You will need to upgrade your car or booster seat as they grow. Infants under one year of age are safest with a rear facing infant seat.
For the next stage, there is a wide assortment of ‘2 in 1’ and ‘3 in 1’ seats to choose from. These are quite practical in that they can be used for a longer period of time, by either converting from rear facing seat to a forward facing seat as the child grows, and/or from a forward facing seat to a booster seat. ALWAYS follow the manufacturers’ recommendations which are listed on the instructions, to know how your seat is designed to be used, and if and how it can be used for different heights and weights as your child grows.
Forward facing car seats are designed for children who have had at least 1 year to let their spines, bones and muscles grow strong. The best choice for a forward facing car seat is one with a 5 point harness. Using a tether strap will provide extra protection. A tether strap is a strap that is attached to the car seat and connected to your car. Check your owner’s manual to find out where the tether anchor is located. If your vehicle does not have a tether location, contact the car dealership to have one professionally installed.
Booster seats can be used from about the age of 4-5 years to about 9 years. Using only a seat belt before the child is big enough can put him or her at risk for “seat belt syndrome” during a crash (injuries to the spine and internal organs). All new booster seats must be used with the lap and shoulder belt in the vehicle. Booster seats without a back should only be used in a vehicle that has headrests in the back seat.
And finally, seat belts! Seat belts are designed for people who are at least 4 feet, 9 inches tall. Both the lap and shoulder belt should be used. The lap belt should fit low over the hip bones, the shoulder belt should go over shoulder and across the chest (not touching the neck), and the child’s knees should bend comfortably over the edge of the vehicle’s seat. Children 12 years and under should always sit in the back seat.
Final tips: All car and booster seats should be installed in the rear seat of the vehicle. When car seats are installed securely and correctly, they should not move more than one inch in any direction. Always refer to your booster seat instruction booklet and your car owner’s manual for correct installation procedure.
Installation of child seats is offered in the North Eastman Region from time to time. For information contact your local Wellness Facilitator.
For more information on current recommendations, please visit the Safe Kids website at www.safekidscanada.ca or call 1-888-SAFE-TIP. Submitted by Marilyn Sitar, Wellness Facilitator (Sources: Safe Kids Canada, Health Canada).
Breakfast for Learning
With the new school year upon us, parents and kids are gathering all the needed books, supplies, and gear. New shoes, check. Backpack, check. Breakfast…. It’s often not seen as a true “school supply”, but breakfast is as valuable to a child’s school day as pencils and paper.
The breakfast meal serves many important functions in a child’s day. Eating breakfast on a regular basis may help improve academic performance, particularly a child’s math skills, concentration, and his or her ability to problem solve. This is because a balanced breakfast provides the body’s first “fuel” for the day, allowing the brain and muscles to wake up after sleep and perform to their best ability. Missing breakfast can cause distractions like hunger pangs, irritability, and bad moods; these distractions can affect everyone in the classroom. A child starting his or her day with a full stomach can benefit all students and enhance the learning environment.
Breakfast also fuels a child to participate in gym class, sports, and group activities. This in turn can help children learn to interact with peers positively in many situations in school and life.
Breakfast is a key time for children to get the essential nutrients they need for proper growth and development. If a meal is missed, it becomes very important that the child make up for the missed nutrients throughout the rest of the day. This can be very difficult for children with small appetites, very active kids, and teens with high nutrient needs. Encouraging kids to have a healthy breakfast every day helps them learn healthy lifestyle habits they will continue for the rest of their lives. As well, it can teach them about proper nutrition, and can help kids avoid many chronic diseases in later life.
The best way to get kids eating breakfast is by parents being role models and eating breakfast themselves. A balanced breakfast includes foods from at least three of the four food groups, but after that, anything goes. Whole-grain cereals and breads, fruits, eggs, and dairy products are common breakfast foods that are all good choices. For lasting energy and focus, avoid foods that are high in added sugars. If time is an issue, try setting out the non-perishable items and dishes the night before, and have washed and/or cut up fruit in the fridge ready to go. Another tip is to plan breakfasts that can be eaten on the go, like yogurt tubes, smoothies, bagels, and toast “sandwiches”.
A healthy breakfast goes a long way to help them do their best in the classroom and in all aspects of life. Submitted by Laura Creek Newman, RD
Source: IFIC Review: Breakfast and Health, by International Food Information Council Foundation, December 2008, Food Insight
Breastfeeding benefits mom and baby and also benefits families, communities and our environment.
During pregnancy mothers provide all the nutrients that are needed for their unborn baby to grow and develop. Mothers make colostrum (the first milk that is produced) during pregnancy and this milk continues to provide babies with the nutrients they need to grow and develop long after birth. It is recommended that babies have human milk for the first 6 months of life but the benefits for both mom and baby keep increasing the longer a baby breastfeeds.
DID YOU KNOW?
Human milk is tailor made for your baby making it very easy to digest. Human milk changes as your baby’s needs and age change. It also has a natural laxative which gives babies an easier time passing bowel movements.
Human milk is so easily digested that babies do require more frequent feedings.
Human milk helps in the growth and maturation of the baby’s digestive system which is complete around 6 months of age. Human milk has the fatty acids needed to develop both the baby’s nervous system and their vision. This is related to breastfed babies having higher IQ’s and performing better in school.
Human milk protects babies from many diseases, both during breastfeeding and throughout life. Mothers pass along their immunity and then breast milk helps stimulate the baby’s own immune system. Human milk protects against Crohn’s disease, diabetes and obesity. Breast milk also decreases the risk of allergies, asthma, other types of respiratory infections, ear infections and childhood cancers, and many more diseases.
Mothers also benefit with decreased risk of breast and ovarian cancer and osteoporosis. Breastfeeding mothers also regain their pre-pregnancy weight much more quickly. The family benefits by having decreased sick time away from work or other commitments, which means decreased medical costs and fewer visits to an emergency room.
Families who are breastfeeding get more hours of sound sleep. Breastfeeding releases endorphins, which creates a feeling of relaxation and well being in both mother and baby. This allows mothers to fall asleep or return to sleep much quicker. Breastfeeding is even an ideal pain reliever for the baby.
Breastfeeding requires an initial period of learning and adapting for mother and baby, but in time breastfeeding becomes very easy. There is no preparation with human milk, it is always available it never spoils and it is free. This means an annual savings of approximately $3000.00 for a family.
There is much more to breastfeeding than MILK. Breastfeeding is the natural next step to pregnancy and childbirth. After birth, breastfeeding creates attachment between mother and baby that meets every security, affection and physical contact need. These are all essential to the development of a new little human being. Submitted by Michelle Kehler, Public Health Nurse/ Lactation Consultant, NEHA. For breastfeeding questions, phone: 204-444-6130,
HEAD LICE: What You Should Know
HEAD LICE are small insects that live on people’s heads. They are challenging little pests! Here are some quick facts:
What Do LICE Look Like?
- Lice love clean heads.
- They do not fly or jump!
- Lice can spread as easily as the common cold.
- They do not cause or carry disease.
- They can be treated.
What Do NITS Look Like?
- They are the size of a sesame seed.
- They move super fast!
- They lay eggs, called NITS.
ANYONE can get head lice!
- Nits “glue” themselves to strands of hair, close to the scalp.
- They are gray, or cream, or tan in color.
- They are also tiny like sesame seeds.
- Nits cannot be washed or brushed out.
How Do Lice Spread?
What is the RECOMMENDED BEST Way to Get Rid of Head Lice?
- By close head-to-head contact with someone who has lice!
- By sharing things that touch your head/hair.
If you have head lice, it is important to CLEAN items that touch your head or neck in one of the following ways:
- Wash your hair with a special lice shampoo (2 times, 7 days apart).
- Remove nits every day for 2 weeks after beginning treatment with lice shampoo.
If you have any concerns or questions, or have difficulty getting rid of head lice, contact your doctor, local Public Health Nurse, or Health Links-Info Santé (toll-free at 1-888-315-9257), or check out Manitoba Health Source: www.gov.mb.ca/health. Submitted by: Kristal Plaetinck, Public Health Nurse, NEHA
- WASH in a hot water cycle
- DRY in a hot dryer
- SOAK in hot water for 15 minutes
- SEAL in a plastic bag for 10 days
- FREEZE for 24 hours
Cervical Cancer – When Was Your Last Pap Test?
Having a check-up by the doctor and making appointments to have a pap test are not procedures that women usually look forward to. We are often busy with the rest of life and these things tend to get done last. However, the importance of having a regular pap test is crucial. When cervical cancer is detected and treated early, the chances for successful treatment are better.
What is Cervical Cancer?
Cervical cancer starts in the cells of the cervix, and typically progresses very slowly. It begins when the cells of the cervix start to change and become abnormal, also called pre-cancerous cells. Pre-cancerous changes in the cervix are quite common, and usually happen in women ages 20-30. If left undetected and untreated some of these cells have the potential to turn to cervical cancer.
In Canada in 2011, it is estimated that 1300 new cases of cervical cancer will be diagnosed, and there will be about 350 deaths. Since 1977 the number of women with cervical cancer has decreased by 50% because many women have been getting pap tests regularly. A pap test is a laboratory examination of cells taken from the cervix to detect changes.
Your risks of cervical cancer increase if you smoke, have a family history of cervical cancer, are sexually active, have a weakened immune system, have HPV (human papillomavirus), don’t have regular pap tests, and have used birth control pills for a long period of time (usually more than 5 years).
Signs and Symptoms
The following signs and symptoms can be related to cervical cancer or other health concerns. It is important to discuss any symptoms with your doctor to determine the cause:
What can you do?
- abnormal vaginal bleeding, includes:
- spotting or blood-stained discharge from the vagina between periods
- unusually long or heavy periods
- bleeding after sexual intercourse
- bleeding from the vagina after menopause
- pain during sexual intercourse
- watery discharge from the vagina
- increased amount of discharge from the vagina
- pain in the pelvis or lower back
All women who are sexually active, or have ever been, should have a pap test every 1 to 3 years, depending on any previous results. Since there are no symptoms of HPV or early changes to the cervix it is very important to have a pap test done even if you feel fine. You should continue to have a pap test if you are menopausal, abstain from sex, or have had many normal results. You may be able to stop pap tests if you are 70 years or older, and have had three or more normal results within the past 10 years, or have had a total hysterectomy and have had no previous abnormal results.
If you are between the ages of 9 and 26, the HPV vaccine should be considered. It protects against some of the HPV infections that are known to cause more than 70% of cervical cancer cases. However, if you have the vaccine it is still important to have regular pap tests, as it does not protect against all HPV infections. Speak to your doctor or health care provider to see if this is something that is right for you. Sources: Canadian Cancer Society, Cancer care Manitoba, Manitoba Cervical Cancer Screening Program (MCCSP) Submitted By: Crystal Nazarewich, Primary Health Care Nurse
The North Eastman Travel Health Clinic
Thinking of taking that long deserved vacation? Is your trip booked, sun screen and suitcase packed, are your immunizations up to date?
The North Eastman Travel Health Clinic offers pre-travel service for all travelers who want to stay healthy and enjoy their journey. We provide information on all health risks according to the country you will be travelling to. You will also receive information pertaining to travel related illnesses, including malaria.
It is best to book an appointment 6-8 weeks before you travel. Although most vaccines can be given on short notice, vaccines need time to become effective and provide you protection from disease. Some vaccines need to be given in a series and scheduled a month apart.
As travel health is a non-insured benefit, just like dental service, a fee is charged for each visit for all individuals or families for consultations, immunizations, and documentation.
If you wish to make an appointment with the Travel Health Clinic please call 268-7467. Look forward to seeing you!. Submitted by Jodene Dudgeon, Public Health Nurse & Travel Health, NEHA
New Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines
Children need at least 60 minutes of physical activity per day and adults need 150 minutes per week. The new physical activity guidelines state:
Children (5-11 years) and Youth (12-17 years)
• For health benefits, children aged 5-11 years and youth aged 12-17 years should accumulate at least 60 minutes of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity daily. This should include:
• Vigorous-intensity activities at least 3 days per week
In January 2011, The Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP) announced the new Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines (explained above). Canadians should try to exceed the minimum activity upper limits, as the greater the variety, intensity and duration of the physical activity, the greater the health benefit. “The new Physical Activity Guidelines provide a minimum target to gain substantial heath benefits. Currently, only 9 per cent of boys and 4 per cent of girls accumulate 60 minutes of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity per day,” says Dr. Mark Tremblay, Chair of the Physical Activity Guidelines Committee of the CSEP. “Canadians must add more physical activity to their daily routines to promote and preserve their health and well-being.” These guidelines are the result of over four years of research analysis funded by several groups including the Public Health Agency of Canada.
• Activities that strengthen muscle and bone at least 3 days per week
• More daily physical activity provides greater health benefits.
Adults (18-64 years)
• To achieve health benefits, adults aged 18-64 years should accumulate at least 150 minutes of moderate- to vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity per week, in bouts of 10 minutes or more.
• It is also beneficial to add muscle and bone strengthening activities using major muscle groups, at least 2 days per week.
• More physical activity provides greater health benefits.
Older Adults (65 years and older)
• To achieve health benefits and improve functional abilities, adults aged 65 years and older should accumulate at least 150 minutes of moderate- to vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity per week, in bouts of 10 minutes or more.
• It is also beneficial to add muscle and bone strengthening activities using major muscle groups, at least 2 days per week.
• Those with poor mobility should perform physical activities to enhance balance and prevent falls.
• More physical activity provides greater health benefits
Audrey Hicks, President of CSEP states that, “Our scientists have undertaken the most rigorous process to date to develop guidelines that reflect the evidence and will truly benefit all Canadians”. The new Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines can be found online and are downloadable on Manitoba CSEP Guidelines
For more information visit Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology. Excerpts from Press Release: Laura Teed - Hill & Knowlton - TORONTO (ONTARIO) January 24, 2011.
Submitted by Bonnie Stefansson, Wellness Facilitator, NEHA
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)
What Is FASD?
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is a term used to describe a spectrum or range of symptoms of a disability associated with children and adults who were prenatally exposed to alcohol. FASD is a life-long physical condition. FASD includes Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS), Partial Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (PFAS), Alcohol Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder (ARND) and Alcohol Related Birth Defects (ARBD) (This is Me Tool - reference link below).
Nine brain domains can be affected by FASD which include academic skills; focus and attention; thinking and reasoning (Cognition); communication; executive functioning, memory, sensory (Neurological signs); living & Social Skills (Social Adaptive) and Brain Structure. Three of the above mentioned nine domains need to be affected to receive an FASD diagnosis.
An FASD assessment takes place within a multi-disciplinary approach in accordance with the Canadian Guidelines for FASD Diagnosis consisting of assessments from Occupational Therapy, Speech and Language Pathology, Developmental Pediatrician, Geneticist, Psychology and Social Work.
There are multiple benefits to diagnosis of which include:
International Awareness Day is recognized on September 9 annually. For more information see International Awareness Day
- Maintain child in appropriate low enrollment classroom designed for alcohol affected children
- Help encourage paradigm shift in attitudes of child by caregivers/educators
- School funding
- New parenting strategies
- Management recommendations
- Parent support group
- Prevention of secondary disabilities by early intervention
- Facilitate mother connecting with mentor program
- Reduce odds of another affected sibling in a subsequent pregnancy
- Opportunity for positive reinforcement to mother for changes in lifestyle (Dr. Albert Chudley, presentation at Winnipeg FASD Centre, January 2010)
Circles of Support is an 8 week informational series that will begin in January of 2012. If you are interested in attending please contact Devon for more information.
For information on an FASD assessment your regional contact person is:
Devon Ungurain, R.S.W.
FASD Regional Diagnostic Coordinator
For further information online in regards to assessment please see The Manitoba FASD Centre
References: This is Me. An interdisciplinary development team in Manitoba, Canada has developed "This is Me" - A Tool For Learning About and Working with People who have Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder. Submitted by Devon Ungurain, R.S.W., FASD Regional Diagnostic Coordinator, NEHA
Postpartum Depression Is the Number One Complication of Childbirth
It is normal for women to experience many different emotions following the birth of a baby. Women expect they will be happy and many new mothers are surprised when they experience sadness, anger, fear or anxiety.
Baby Blues is a common emotional response following childbirth. Up to 75% of women experience Baby Blues. Feelings may include: anxiety; irritability; crying for no apparent reason; fatigue, and difficulty sleeping. Baby Blues usually start a few days after birth and disappear on their own by about two weeks. If these feelings do not go away or become worse, a woman may be experiencing Postpartum Depression.
Approximately 1 in 8 women experience some form of Postpartum Depression. Symptoms last for two weeks or more and may appear soon after delivery or up to a year or more after delivery. Symptoms may be mild or severe and may include: constant fatigue (even after resting); difficulty falling asleep or wanting to sleep all the time; uncontrollable crying; loss of interest in activities one would normally enjoy; trouble concentrating or making decisions; memory loss; changes in appetite or weight; anxiety; feeling overwhelmed or out of control; sadness and emptiness; over concern or constant worry about one’s baby’s health or safety; a lack of interest or pleasure in one’s baby; feeling hopeless, trapped or worthless; scary thoughts or fears about harming the baby or oneself.
Although the terms Baby Blues and Postpartum Depression are associated with the time frame after the birth of a baby, in reality these symptoms may be experienced by a woman who is pregnant, who has given birth to a baby in the past year, miscarried or recently weaned a child from breastfeeding.
Many women suffer in silence for fear of being seen as a bad mother or feel too ashamed to seek help. If you suffer from any of the symptoms mentioned, you are not alone. It is not your fault. Medication, counselling and/or support are all excellent treatments. A health care provider can assist you to find the right support. The sooner you reach out for help, the sooner you’ll be feeling better. Help is a phone call away. Talk to your local Public Health Nurse, Doctor or Nurse Practitioner.
For more information about supports and resources call:
Health Links – Info Santé 1-888-315-9257 (24 Hours)
Women’s Health Clinic Mothers Program 1-866-947-1517
If you are having thoughts of harming yourself or your baby or are feeling in crisis, call:
Interlake-Eastman Mental Health Crisis Services
(24 hours) @ 1-866-427-8628
Interlake-Eastern Mental Health Intake
(Mon-Fri 8:30 am to 5:30 pm) at (204) 444-6147 or 1-866-577-2901
Submitted by Tracy Ward, RN BN, Public Health Nurse
Adapted from the NEHA Postpartum Depression Brochure and The Blues and Beyond Brochure
Supportive Housing provides personal support services and essential homemaking in a permanent; community based congregate residential setting, when the client’s need for service justifies the availability of 24-hour on-site support and supervision. Supportive Housing is designed for the frail elderly and/or mildly cognitively impaired elderly individuals who can no longer manage independently in their own home.
Stony Plains Terrace is an Elderly Persons Housing unit that is located in the town of Beausejour. It is comprised of 30 self-contained 1 bedroom suites in a two story apartment complex juxtaposed to the East Gate Lodge Personal Care Home. Fifteen of these suites are designed for independent living on the second floor, and fifteen suites are designed for Supportive Housing Program on the first floor.
The Ironwood in the town of Pinawa has been open since May 2010. It is comprised of 12 supportive housing suites that are juxtaposed to 24 independent living suites for individuals that are 55+.
Individuals participating in the Supportive Housing Programs at Stony Plains and The Ironwood receive meals, laundry and light housekeeping services provided by the Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority. Individuals pay for these services as an added cost above the rental cost for their suite. The ongoing support and supervision is provided by the Regional Health Authority through the provision of Supportive Housing Companions who are present in the buildings 24/7.
Many clients residing in Supportive Housing may still require Home care services such as personal care, medication supervision, nursing service. An assessment of the needs of each client is conducted by the Home Care Case Coordinator and services are implemented to those who qualify according to the Home Care guidelines.
Applications for Supportive Housing are processed through the Home Care Program. Manitoba Health application forms are filled out after an assessment of qualifications by the Home Care Case Coordinator.
The Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority is very fortunate to be able to provide options to our elderly population when it comes to choosing the appropriate care environment. These community based options increase the opportunity for an individual to remain in their community and supports Manitoba Health’s commitment to “aging in place”.
If you have further questions about our Supportive Housing, please don’t hesitate to contact Brigette Budgell @ 204-268-7420. Submitted by: Brigette Budgell, Manager of Senior Support Programs Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority.
World Diabetes Day November 14th - Act On Diabetes. Now
World Diabetes Day is an annual event that aims to draw attention to the issues and impact that the growing rate of diabetes has on individuals, communities, and the world. This year’s theme is Diabetes Education and Prevention. This means raising awareness of the risks and warning signs of Diabetes, and encouraging governments to strengthen policies, funding, and support programs for people living with Diabetes.
World Diabetes Day celebrations are held yearly in over 160 countries around the world to let people know that Diabetes can affect anyone. The Blue Circle is the international symbol to show support for all people living with Diabetes around the world. World Diabetes Day events incorporate blue or the Blue Circle to show support for the fight against Diabetes. The slogan this year is, “Protect Our Future.”
Did you know?
Diabetes kills 1 person every 8 seconds or 4 million people per year
Diabetes does not discriminate: it can affect people of all ages, rich and poor, in all countries
Diabetes can no longer be ignored: 4 million lives are lost per year; there are 1 million diabetes-related amputations per year; and there are millions of dollars lost in income and productivity.
Diabetes Warning Signs
Do you know the warning signs of Diabetes? If you notice any of these symptoms, get tested for diabetes, especially if you have Diabetes risk factors. Remember, not everyone who develops Diabetes will get the warning signs, so GET TESTED early.
Know Your Risk
- Unexplained weight loss
- Frequent urination
- Excessive thirst
- Lack of energy
Other Warning Signs:
- Increased hunger
- Lack of interest and concentration
- Blurred vision
- Frequent infections
- Slow-healing wounds
- Vomiting and stomach pain
- Tingling or numbness in the hands or feet
There are many risk factors for type 2 diabetes. Some risk factors like age or ethnic background can’t be changed, but lifestyle changes, such as physical activity and healthy diet, can reduce your risk for diabetes.
Other Risk Factors:
Previously identified glucose intolerance
Over 40 years old
High blood pressure and high cholesterol
What can you do?
At present, type 1 diabetes cannot be prevented. Type 2 diabetes, which accounts for over 90% of all cases worldwide, can be prevented in many cases by maintaining a healthy weight and being physically active. Studies in China, Finland and the United States have confirmed this.
There are three simple things you can do to ACT NOW! Against Diabetes:
Know your risks of developing Diabetes and get tested after the age of forty or sooner if you have multiple risk factors
Follow a healthy lifestyle by being active every day and eating a healthy and balanced diet.
Raise awareness of Diabetes in your community by participating in local events. Learn to manage and prevent Diabetes by attending education classes and support groups and seeing your health care provider regularly.
The Interlake Eastern Regional Health Authority offers free Diabetes and Heart Health Information sessions almost every month in each district. Group support and information on diabetes and heart health topics are provided.
For more information call the Wellness Facilitator at your local health centre:
Whitemouth District Health Centre, on the 4th Friday of the month at 10:00am-11:15am
Lac du Bonnet Health Centre on the last Monday of the month 10:00am-11:15am
Pinawa Hospital on the last Tuesday of the month 10:00-11:15am
Beausejour Primary Health Care Centre on the first Thursday of the month 10:00am-11:30am
Victoria Beach Seniors Scene on the first Monday of the month 10 a.m.-11:00 a.m.
Berens River, Poplar River, Pauingassi, and Bloodvein have sessions available by Telehealth on the First Wednesday of the month at 10:00am.
Here’s how some communities in North Eastman are celebrating World Diabetes Day:
Beausejour Sun Gro Centre - A walk to ‘join hands’ with the international diabetes community in celebrating World Diabetes Day on Wednesday, November 14th 12:15-12:45 p.m.
Submitted by Laura Creek Newman, RD, Community/Clinical Dietitian Source: International Diabetes Federation World Diabetes Day Website
Grief During the Holidays
For many people who are grieving, the holiday season is a difficult time of the year. Because so much focus is on family togetherness, this season can make the absence of a loved one even more noticeable. We all have expectations about what the holidays should be like, and how we should feel. We also know that a death in the family changes many things. These are some suggestions to help you cope with change during the holiday season:
As much as you may want to skip from November to January, this isn’t possible. It will be more helpful for you to take control of the situation and plan for what you do and do not want to do to get through this time.
Be careful of shoulds – it is better to do what feels best for you and your family, not what you or others think you should do. Give yourself permission to not do things. Once you have decided how your family will handle the holidays, let others know. Remember, what you choose to do this time can always be changed next year.
Be gentle with yourself. Tears and sadness are normal and do not have to ruin the entire holiday for you or for others. Let yourself cry and you will be surprised that you can go on again.
Recognize too, that you can be happy and express joy. This does not mean that you are dishonouring the person who has died. You may find yourself reminiscing about other holidays you shared with your deceased loved one. This is normal. Let the memories come, both happy and sad ones. This is part of mourning and doesn’t stop just because it is a holiday.
Do the holiday preparations that you enjoy and look for alternatives for those you don’t. This year you could buy baked goods, let others bake for you, or do without.
Be aware of the pressures, demands and fatigue that come with the holidays. Take time out to care for yourself. Think about including rituals that can symbolize your memory of your loved one. Some people put up a special ornament, light a candle, or set aside a special time to remember their loved one at a mealtime.
Watch for Memory Trees or services offered in your community. Rituals allow you to direct your feelings and thoughts into an activity and can make your feelings more manageable.
Consider doing something for someone else. Although you may feel hurt, reaching out to another can bring you fulfillment.
Adapted from Victoria Hospice Society by NEHA Palliative Care Program (753-5251)Submitted by Susan Barnett, BSW, RSW Bereavement and Support Services -Palliative Care, Interlake-Eastern RHA