Springtime DC is a beautiful time of year with the Cherry Blossoms blooming, however, it also brings spring allergy season. Approximately 7% of US adults have seasonal allergies. Typical environmental allergens including trees, pollens, grasses, dust mites, mold, and ragweed. Experts predict that this season may be shorter and delayed due to the prolonged winter in the Northeast but it may be more intense. Typical allergy symptoms include sneezing, nasal congestion, postnasal drip, and itchy watery eyes. It can also exacerbate asthma symptoms. Common measures you can take to decrease your allergy symptoms include avoidance such as limiting your time outdoors when the pollen is heavy or using a mask to filter particles. Treatment options include over-the-counter antihistamines and nasal steroids. Immunotherapy is another option to reduce your allergy symptoms long term. You can track the pollen forcast at:
Flu season is in full swing and it is expected to last another 7-8 weeks. There have been several news reports regarding hospitalizations and associated deaths. Most of the latter have been in the pediatric population. Most states have reported widespread activity. Hospitalization rates are highest among individuals over the age of 65. The H3N2 strain has been the most commonly identified but there is also activity from the H1N1 strain. The flu virus is spread through person-to-person contact via droplets when people cough, sneeze, or talk. A person may also pick up the flu by touching something that has the flu virus on it and then touching their mouth or nose. The period of infectivity begins one day prior to developing symptoms and can last for up to 7 days after becoming sick. There are some things you can do to help prevent the spread of infection. The CDC recommends a three-step approach including influenza vaccination, early treatment with antiviral therapy if you become sick and preventative actions to decrease the spread of infection. Measures to prevent the spread of infection include avoiding contact with those who are ill and limiting contact with others if you becomes sick (ie stay home). Cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing. Wash your hands often with soap and water or an alcohol based hand rub. Disinfect surfaces that may become contaminated such as doorknobs, keyboards, and phones.
What’s the best way to save money and improve your health for 2018? The answer a simple, QUIT SMOKING! Someone who smokes one pack of cigarettes per day spends over $2000 per year on cigarettes alone. That multiplied by 30-40 years of smoking is enough to fund a substantial savings or retirement account. There are also added costs related to healthcare utilization due to smoking related diseases. Tobacco use is associated with many diseases including COPD, Cancer (lung, gastrointestinal, urologic) , Heart disease and Stroke. The benefits of quitting smoking include reducing the risk of these diseases as well as improved immune and muscle function, a cleaner mouth and clearer skin and more money in your pocket! January is the ideal time to make your resolution to quit smoking. There are many therapies that can help you achieve this goal. We can help get you started. Make an appointment with us to discuss the options and get you on your way.
The office will be closing early on Friday Dec 29th and will be closed Monday Jan 1st. We will be open for regular business hours on Tues Jan 2nd. Wishing you all a happy, healthy and safe New Year. See you in 2018!
We will be closing early Friday Dec 22 and will be closed Monday Dec 25. Wishing you all a Wonderful Holiday!
It’s not too late to get your influenza vaccine if you haven’t done it already. Protect yourself and others especially as we head into the holiday season. Many of us will be traveling and visiting relatives. Influenza is especially prevalent from December through March. Vaccination reduces severity of symptoms and hospitalizations if you do get ill. Vaccination is recommended for everyone over 6 months of age especially those at high risk of complications. This includes children less than 5 years old, adults over 65 years old, pregnant women, and those with chronic medical conditions such as asthma, COPD, heart disease, diabetes.
Our office will close early on Wed NOV 22 through the weekend and reopen Mon NOV 27 at 9 am
November is lung cancer awareness month. Lung cancer accounts for 27% of all cancer deaths regardless of gender or ethnicity. Currently there are guidelines for lung cancer screening for those at risk. Current and former tobacco use is the greatest risk factor. Early detection can lead to timely treatment and improved outcomes and can reduce lung cancer mortality by 20%. You should have a low dose lung cancer screening CT scan if you are between the ages of 55 and 77 AND you have smoked at least 30 pack years of cigarettes (one pack per day for 30 years or 2 packs per day for 15 years) AND you are a current smoker or have quit within the past 15 years. Schedule an appointment with us to discuss screening and get your CT ordered.
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