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5 Ways to Beat Seasonal Affective Disorder

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Memorial Behavioral Health, Mental Health, Winter | Posted on 04-01-2017

Have you been binging on Netflix? Sleeping more than usual? Not exercising enough? If so, you may be suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). SAD is a type of depression related to the seasons of the year. Typically, SAD starts in the late fall when the days become shorter and activities taper off. Symptoms increase and plateau through the winter months. Read the rest of this entry »

A Mom’s Best Friend

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Memorial Medical Center, Parents, Winter | Posted on 01-12-2016

Cold and flu season is upon us. And as moms, dads and anyone who wants to avoid seasonal viruses prepare for the germ battle, they often reach for the same weapon of choice: the trusty ole’ hand sanitizer.

hand-sanitizerThe small gel bottles are inexpensive, easy to throw in a purse and convenient in a pinch. But despite its brilliance, it may not always be the best solution. Gina Carnduff, Memorial Medical Center’s Infection Prevention system director weighs in on what you need to know: Read the rest of this entry »

Don’t Let the Snow Push You Around! Tips for Safe Shoveling

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Memorial Medical Center, Winter | Posted on 18-02-2014

Shoveling SnowAt this rate, we may be shoveling into next winter. Don’t let snow knock your back out of whack. Dr. Ferdinand Salvacion, with Memorial’s SpineWorks, which utilizes advanced non-surgical treatment options like nerve blocking techniques, cautions against trying to move heavy deep piles of snow too quickly. Instead, consider these tips for safer shoveling. Read the rest of this entry »

Surprising Winter Health Benefits

Posted by | Posted in Physician Services, Winter | Posted on 12-02-2014

Tdv1430030he bitter temperatures and near-constant precipitation this winter have brought out the grouch in most of us, but believe it or not, there are a few health benefits credited to cold weather. Avinash Viswanathan, MD, an internal medicine physician with Memorial Physician Services— Koke Mill, explains below. Read the rest of this entry »

Sprain, Strain or Break: What’s the Difference?

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, SportsCare, Winter | Posted on 27-01-2014

Older Man with Injured Leg in SnowWhether you are braving the icy, snowy weather or playing an indoor sport for exercise, winter can be a time when injuries to bones and muscles occur. If — or when — that happens, do you know the difference between a strain, a sprain and a break?

John Gee, a physical therapist for Memorial’s SportsCare, explains:

Strains occur in muscles and/tendons (the tissue that connects muscle to bone) and are most commonly caused by overuse (such as sports that require excessive jumping). However, any activity that causes a muscle to be twisted, pulled, overstretched or torn, such as a fall on the ice, can result in a strain. The most common symptoms of a strain include pain, muscle spasms/weakness, swelling, inflammation and cramping. Read the rest of this entry »

How to Relieve Top Winter Skin Ailments

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Physician Services, Winter | Posted on 15-01-2014

man putting lotion on handsHow’s your skin feeling after facing sub-zero temperatures and howling wind chills? If the answer is “not great,” you are not alone. Wintry conditions can make even the most hydrated person prone to irritated skin. Josh Ellison, MD, with Memorial Physician Services—North Dirksen, shares some common tips to combat the symptoms of dry skin, chapped lips and damaged hair.

Dry itchy skin is quite common, especially in severe cold. However, flare-ups of a common skin condition called eczema also occur in the very cold. To decrease the symptoms of eczema and dry, itchy skin, Dr. Ellison suggests the following: Read the rest of this entry »

Proper Hand-washing: It Takes Time

Posted by | Posted in Flu, Winter | Posted on 14-11-2013

Bacteria cultured include Staph and Bacillus. Multiple viruses also detected, but do not visibly grow on culture plates.

Bacteria cultured include Staph and Bacillus. Multiple viruses also detected, but do not visibly grow on culture plates.

That quick wash of a few seconds with soap and water may not help as much as you think – as these three photos reveal. Each photo shows the bacteria growing in a Petri dish after a volunteer pressed his hand into a layer of gel in the dish.

The first dish reveals the germs found on an unwashed hand. The second dish shows the bacteria growing on the same hand after washing for a few seconds with soap and water. These two dishes show remarkably similar amounts of bacteria.

“The second dish demonstrates the need to wash hands thoroughly to remove the bacteria from your hands,” said Karen Trimberger, director of infection prevention at Memorial Medical Center. “Proper hand-washing takes time – at least 15 seconds – and friction.”

The third dish features the same volunteer’s hand after he washed and scrubbed his hands for 15 seconds before rinsing. This plate uncovers vastly fewer germs. Read the rest of this entry »

Arm Your Children – and Yourself – Against the Flu

Posted by | Posted in Flu, News, Pediatrics, Physician Services, Winter | Posted on 08-01-2013

Flu season has struck early, including in Illinois, where the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported high influenza-like illness (ILI) activity in recent days, and this year’s peak is not yet in sight.

Flu activity likely will continue for some time. Your best defense against the flu is to receive your annual flu vaccination, which thus far appears to be well matched to the dominant stains of influenza being seen this year, the CDC reports.

It’s not too late to receive the flu vaccination to protect yourself and your loved ones, especially if you have young children who have not yet been protected. Read the rest of this entry »

12 Tips to Slim Down Your Holiday Cocktails and Beverages

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Heart, News, Nutrition, Winter | Posted on 21-12-2012

Many of us worry what the endless stream of munching does to our waistlines during the holidays, but we often forget that we’re drinking calories, too. And sometimes, a lot of them.

“Every meal – and there are many! – is preceded by drinks, paired with cocktails and wrapped up with aperitifs,” said Christina Rollins, MS, RD, LDN, CNSC, a clinical dietitian at Memorial Medical Center. “It’s no wonder we’re bloating more than Saint Nick himself.”

While holidays are meant to be enjoyed, the key to smart holiday cocktail prep is having some good tricks in your back pocket to help minimize that post-holiday bulge, Rollins said. Read the rest of this entry »

10 Easy Tips for Healthy Eating — During the Holidays and Anytime!

Posted by | Posted in Nutrition, Winter | Posted on 12-12-2012

Healthy holiday eating. Is it possible?

Yes. It’s not only possible, it’s quite simple to do, according to Gayle Jennings, MS, RD, LD, Clinical Dietitian III/Outpatient Dietitian at Memorial Medical Center. Here are Jennings’ top 10 ideas for healthy eating at the holidays or any time:

1. Cook more often.

As a society, we tend to eat about one-third of our meals from restaurants. That equals one meal every day. Take the time to plan, purchase and prepare meals at home. That way, you have more control over what you eat and how the food is prepared. Read the rest of this entry »