Medication Safety with Pets

Just because a medication is safe for you doesn’t mean it is safe for your furry friends! Many medications that we take without a prescription are in fact toxic to animals like cats and dogs. Some of these include ibuprofen, naproxen, and acetaminophen. Before you give any medication to your pet, always ask your veterinarian if it is safe. It is also important to keep your medications out of your pet’s reach! Some medications that are used for blood pressure, depression, anxiety, and ADHD are very toxic to pets. If your pet accidentally consumes any of these medications, take your pet to the vet or call the Pet Poison Hotline (855-764-7661) immediately.

Managing Low Blood Sugar

Most people associate diabetes with having high blood sugar. However, low blood sugar is often a side effect of many diabetes medications and can be dangerous. Symptoms of low blood sugar, also known as hypoglycemia, include feeling shaky, sleepy, dizzy, confused or nervous, sweating a lot, or feeling clammy. To avoid hypoglycemia, it is important to take your medication as directed, avoid skipping meals, and check your blood sugar regularly, as directed by your doctor or pharmacist. If you start experiencing symptoms, it is recommended that you consume about 15 g of simple carbohydrates (3-4 glucose tablets, ½ can of regular soda, ~4 oz of fruit juice, or 3-4 pieces of hard candy).

Summer Swimming

Swimmers ear is an infection in your outer ear canal. It is often caused by water remaining in the ear after swimming. This creates a moist environment that helps bacteria grow and cause infection. The main symptoms you will see is redness to the outer ear, warmth, and pain. Swimmers ear can usually be self-diagnosed and treated with over the counter products. You can find ear drops that will keep your ears dry as well as products that will help treat the pain if needed. Talk with one of our pharmacists if you need help finding a product.

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)

COPD is a progressive lung disease that over time makes it hard to breathe. To prevent the disease from getting worse, wash your hands often to prevent respiratory infections. Proper use of your inhalers and deep breathing exercises are important to keep your lungs functioning well. When the disease progresses further, you may need to use oxygen at home. It is important to keep oxygen away form any heat, flames, or sparks. Do not let anyone smoke in the room with your oxygen supply. Do not use oil or lubricants on your equipment, and try to keep the tubing off the floor and out of your way. If you have any questions on proper inhaler use or other equipment, please don’t hesitate to ask!

Transitioning from Hospital to Home

Have you or a loved one had a stay in the hospital? Here are some tips to make the transition home a little easier. Invest in some nightlights to help you see during the night and make sure all throw rugs are secured to the floor. Consider sleeping close to your main bathroom. Arrange for help with errands and caring for pets if needed. If you might have problems with mobility, look into purchasing a cane or renting a knee walker. Benches for the shower and raised toilet seats can help make the bathroom a little safer. Also, make sure you have some good pairs of no-slip socks. We hope these tips help you or your loved one’s recovery more comfortable and successful!

Will Coffee Help Your Workout?

A new study on cyclists found that a morning cup of coffee boosts performance in both sexes. One cup of coffee contains approximately 95mg of caffeine. Caffeine is a known stimulant and is used by many to jump-start their day. It has a stimulating effect on muscles, can increase the body’s ability to burn fat, and also can increase feeling of wellness by releasing endorphins (the happy chemical in our brains). While it does have benefits, it also carries risk of upset stomach, insomnia, irritability, and cardiac effects in high enough levels and should be used with caution.

Eye Spy

The eyes are a window to the soul…and cardiovascular risk. Earlier research has shown a link between high blood pressure and changes in the eye, but a newer study has shown that small blood vessels at the back of the eye can predict cardiovascular risk from changes associated with artery stiffness and increased blood pressure. It is also important to visit your eye doctor to screen for things like glaucoma, diabetic eye disease, changes in your vision, and even some kinds of cancer.

Fun in the Sun

Summertime is here and that means we will be spending more time in the sun. With this, comes the risk for sun burn. We all know the symptoms—pain to the touch, bright red, itchy skin that feels hot all the time. It can make for a miserable couple of days, lasting up to even a week. When spending time outdoors, always be sure to wear clothing that covers your skin, a hat that will provide shade to your neck and ears, sunglasses that provide UV protection and sunscreen of at least 30 SPF. If you do stay out too long, we have products to help relive the burn. We recommend using a product that will cool the skin and provide you with pain relief at the same time. Stop in today and see us; we are happy to answer any questions you may have.

Emergency Preparation

In case of emergency, it is important to have some things in order. The first and most important thing is an emergency contact and their information. This can be kept in your smartphone, wallet, or purse. Another thing to keep in your phone, wallet or purse is a list of your current medications. This can be extremely important, especially if you take an unexpected trip to the emergency room. A first aid kit is always good to have on hand as well. It should contain bandages, antiseptic wipes, scissors, gloves, medical tape, gauze, instant ice packs and antibiotic ointment.

Mental Health

“Mental health” is something that includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It is a very important part of our everyday lives and overall health. Our mental health effects how we process information, make choices, relate to others, and deal with stress. Some things we can do to promote good mental health are to maintain a healthy lifestyle and surround ourselves with supportive environments.