Healthy & Happy
March, 2020 - Issue #186
courtesy of shutterstock
courtesy of shutterstock

Snoring may be No Laughing Matter
by Pat News

While snoring is not a definite indication of sleep apnea (SA), it is also true that not everyone who has sleep apnea will snore. Sleep apnea is defined as a decrease or cessation of air flow for 10 seconds or longer, resulting in decreased oxygen levels. The repeated awakenings, associated with the body's attempt to compensate for the decrease in oxygen, make normal, restorative sleep impossible. People with sleep apnea often experience severe daytime drowsiness, chronic fatigue, irritability, depression, weight gain and headaches.

Do you have difficulty concentrating? Do you find yourself falling asleep at work? Do you fall asleep while watching TV or even while driving? You may have sleep apnea! People with sleep apnea have an increased risk of motor vehicle and workplace accidents.

Children and adolescents with sleep apnea may do poorly in school or have behavioral problems. Perimenopausal and menopausal women should be particularly aware of symptoms. A woman's risk of having sleep apnea is one in 10 but this risk increases after menopause and those with SA have more severe menopausal symptoms than do younger women.

Sudden drops in blood oxygen levels that occur during SA increase blood pressure and strain the cardiovascular system. SA increases the risk of heart attack and abnormal heartbeats, such as atrial fibrillation, as well as stroke. If there is underlying heart disease, these multiple episodes of low oxygen levels can lead to sudden death. And if the above list isn't enough, people with SA are more likely to develop diabetes, both insulin dependent and type 2.

Our moods and memory are better; our immune system is improved; our adrenal glands are rejuvenated...all from a good night's sleep. Make an appointment if you are concerned about any of these issues by calling Pat News, RNC, NP, MSN of Pat News Health Care.

Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital to Host Cancer Awareness & Resource Exposition on March 7
Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital is hosting its fourth annual CARE SCV, a Cancer Awareness & Resource Expo, at The City of Santa Clarita's The Centre on Centre Point Parkway on Saturday, March 7, from 8am to 12:30pm. This free event will feature oncology experts speaking on a variety of topics, including cancer screening guidelines, nutrition, fitness, Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM), and much more. Attendees will also learn about resources and support services available in Santa Clarita.

The Centre is located at 20880 Centre Pointe Parkway, Santa Clarita, behind the Santa Clarita Aquatic Center. CARE SCV admission and parking are free. Advanced registration is preferred as space is limited.
To register, or for more information, log on.

Introducing Lunula Cold Laser for Fungal Nails
Struggling with fungal nails? You'll want to learn more about the Lunula Cold Laser! This FDA-approved treatment provides superior results when compared to traditional heat lasers, offering a painless procedure with the highest success rate. Lunula is a low-level laser therapy used to treat Onychomycosis and other foot fungus ailments. This laser technology treats the fungus without the risks or side effects of traditional medications, making it perfect for medical providers, health centers - and you.
Valencia Foot & Ankle Center 288-2321
courtesy of shutterstock
courtesy of shutterstock

Medicare Advantage Plans Expanding Services to Provide Telehealth
According to AARP, Medicare Advantage (MA) - Medicare's private plan option that now covers a third of all Medicare beneficiaries - has long offered extra benefits in addition to those covered by traditional Medicare. Known as supplemental benefits, health plans like Aetna, Humana and United Health Care have commonly included dental, vision and hearing coverage. Starting this year, MA plans have new flexibility to offer more supplemental benefits in the coming years - a consequence of new rules and a recent law that takes effect in 2020. These new benefits could potentially include services such as help for family caregivers - respite care, counseling and training courses - adult day care, housekeeping and non-medical transportation... all of which were previously not allowed.

Even more exciting, and perhaps most beneficial, is the expansion to telehealth services such as videoconferencing with a physician, remote patient monitoring or the sharing of digital medical images with a specialist located miles away. It's hoped that wider use of telehealth under Medicare Advantage could result in more timely and efficient care, as well as easier access to certain health care providers. Check with your health plan to see what's now covered and whether you can be a part of this vital expansion.
Home Instead Senior Care at 254-8701

Let's Talk About Respite Care
Are you caring for an older family member? It can be really, really hard! You might want to consider respite care from a professional homecare organization. Even one or two four-hour shifts per week can give family caregivers a break to rest and to attend to the important things in their own lives. A Visiting Angel can provide care and supervision for your senior loved one so you can pay attention to your own life without worry or guilt. An additional benefit: You will already have a relationship with the company in case your care needs increase in the future.
Visiting Angels 263-2273

Q: Why do Spider & Varicose Veins Occur in the Legs?
Answered by Dr. Larisse Lee

We make the leg veins work much harder than in any other part of our body. Leg veins normally carry blood back from the feet to the heart. Vein valves keep blood flowing in one direction. However, in many people, the valves and veins become abnormal and allow blood to flow backwards towards their ankles. This then exerts pressure on the surface skin, creating veins that bulge out. If left untreated, this can result in leg pain, restless legs, itching, cramping, swelling, ankle discoloration and thickened skin. Ultimately, it can cause open wounds or ulcers at the ankles. Left untreated, this may lead to more serious medical issues. Spider veins can be treated with sclerotherapy - a chemical is injected into the fine veins, causing them to seal and disappear. For venous reflux, the abnormal veins can be closed using endovenous catheter ablation which is a minimally-invasive treatment. Phlebectomy can also be performed, where multiple tiny incisions are made to remove the bulging veins. All of these can be done safely and comfortably in the office, with minimal downtime afterwards.
Dr. Lee is a board-certified vascular surgeon and owner of LA Vein Center in Sherman Oaks. 818-325-0400

Is Mold making You or your Family Sick?
We live in a relatively dry environment - but because our new building codes have become more efficient, they not only keep the heat and cold out, but moisture in. Now, even minor leaks in your plumbing or roof, moisture in steamy areas like bathrooms, condensation in heating and air ducts - or spills not adequately cleaned in time - can lead to the development of mold... and you might not even be able to see it. People who've been affected by mold often complain of headaches, brain fog, fatigue, increase or development of asthma symptoms, respiratory illnesses, joint pain and other "unexplainable" symptoms and illnesses. If you think mold might be in play, it's important not to try to eradicate it yourself - releasing the spores (Dead or alive!) into your environment can quickly cross contaminate the rest of the home. Isolation and professional remediation is key. You may need to replace parts of walls or flooring, for example, once building materials are clean and dry. Having a general contractor pull them out without proper engineering controls could make your situation go from bad to a lot worse. Paul Davis Restoration of Santa Clarita has certified mold technicians who can safely clean, sanitize, repair and replace your mold-infected building materials and personal belongings - putting your life back together and reestablishing a safe environment for you and your family.
Paul Davis Restoration of Santa Clarita 310-0884
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