#OwnYourHealth: Health is everywhere, even underground

Jane Sarasohn-Kahn

jane 5 1The following first ran yesterday on Health Populi, to see the original post click here.

Living my mantra of Health is Everywhere, where we live, work, play, pray, and shop, I am always on the lookout for signs of health in my daily life. Today I’m in Washington, DC,  speaking on a webinar led by the National Council on Patient Information and Education (NCPIE), discussing the findings in a survey of U.S. adults on self-care health care – my shorthand for healthcareDIY. And the hashtag for the webinar also speaks volumes: #OwnYourHealth.

Here’s the link to the survey resources.

On my walk from Farragut North Metro station to a nearby office where the meeting will take place, I came upon this poster in the underground, sponsored by UnitedHealth Group, the health insurance company: “Our reasons to be optimistic about the future of health care.” (more…)

TBT: Birth Control and the Obama Adminstration

Sally Greenberg

The ACA requires insurance companies cover quite a few women’s health services at no additional cost beyond premiums. But two new studies found that insurance plans around the country are not providing many of these services including birth control. Today’s TBT post (which originally ran in February 2012) is a reminder of why birth control should be covered. For more information on the recent studies read this Kaiser Health News article.

This has been a tumultuous week for the politics surrounding women and their reproductive choices. We support women’s right to reproductive health care as an overall good practice for women’s health. Providing women access to birth control should not be a political issue, though it seems to be. Contraception has proven health benefits both for women and their children. Controlling the frequency of pregnancies can prevent a range of complications that can endanger a woman’s health, including gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, and placental problems, among others. Also, women who wait for a period of time after delivery to conceive again lower the risk of adverse perinatal outcomes, including low birth weight, pre-term birth, and small-for-size gestational age. Contraception means healthier mothers and families. (more…)

Service and heART

© darlene matthews

© darlene matthews

© Zyra Neal

© Zyra Neal

© BrriGette McCoy

© BrriGette McCoy


Weighing the Risks of Hormone Therapy

Phyllis Greenberger

The post below originally ran on Huffington Post’s Healthy Living blog on February 19. To see the original post click here.

For over a decade, hormone therapy (HT) has been a hot topic in medicine. Unfortunately, women are still confused and concerned about using HT after two federally-funded studies linked HT to potentially serious health risks. Even decades after these studies, information on HT is seriously muddied, and not much is still fully known or understood about the treatment. It’s time to clear up the confusion and debunk the false reports surrounding its risks.

HT is used to primarily treat menopausal symptoms — hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, osteoporosis, among others. During menopause, a woman’s body stops producing estrogen and progesterone, HT replaces these two hormones. Often, these two hormones are used jointly, but women without a uterus are prescribed estrogen alone. (more…)

The Single Senior STD Epidemic

Terri Prof Headshot 0412If you think your retired parents who have settled into a low-key retirement home or senior living community are spending their time playing checkers and watching soaps, think again! They may be running around having sex just like college kids let loose in a dorm for the first time. Senior citizens, contrary to popular belief, are often still sexually active. And they are spreading sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).

According to the Center for Disease Control, since 2007, the incidence of syphilis among seniors, those 65 and over, is up by 52 percent, and the number of chlamydia cases has risen 32 percent. The rapid increase in STDs among older people is similar to STD trends in the 20- to 24-year-old age group. The rate of STDs among seniors has been growing steadily for the last several years, doubling from 2000 to 2010. The UK is seeing similar increases. The largest increases in STDs were in Arizona’s retirement heavy counties where cases of syphilis and chlamydia in those 55 and older rose 87% from 2005 to 2009 and in Florida. Unfortunately, a larger number of those over 55 are also contracting and living with HIV. (more…)

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