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How to Properly Wash Your Hands

Lathered hands clasped together over dark wash basin with a trickle of water coming from aboveThere are few good things to be said for the COVID-19 pandemic, but the effort to slow the spread of this serious and highly contagious illness has put the spotlight on simple disease prevention measures like handwashing. Frequent handwashing—especially if you know how to properly wash your hands—is a great way to prevent the spread of many respiratory and digestive tract infections. In fact, many health experts have theorized that the flu has been far less widespread during the COVID-19 pandemic because of viral infection prevention methods that included social distancing, mask wearing, and – yes – handwashing.

Even before the pandemic, most of us were probably taught to wash our hands before meals and after going to the bathroom. This is because touching a contaminated surface and then putting our hands to our mouth, nose, or eyes is one of the most common ways to spread germs. However, if … Continue Reading

What to Keep in a First Aid Kit

Young man pulling first aid kit out of a backpack while young woman holds knee and has pained expression on her face - both appear to be hiking in the woodsHave you ever been at work and experienced a paper cut that refused to stop bleeding or fallen down some stairs and scraped your knee? If your employer had a first aid kit that contained bandages, antibiotic ointment, and maybe even some over-the-counter pain reliever, you were probably grateful. Or perhaps you went hiking and picked up a splinter when you grabbed a handrail on a rustic log bridge that carried you over a picturesque stream. If you had a well-stocked first aid kit in your backpack, you were probably able to use tweezers to dislodge the splinter, then apply an antiseptic solution to chase any germs away. Voilà! You could continue communing with nature, worry free.

Many of life’s minor bumps and bruises can be remedied with little fuss by keeping an amply supplied first aid kit on hand. Moreover, having a first aid kit at the ready can … Continue Reading

How to Handle an Asthma Attack

Mom with worried facial expression holds inhaler out to grade-school-age girl clutching her chest, both sitting on a sofaBreathing is essential to survival, and it’s pretty much automatic—most of us rarely ever think about the air that we inhale and exhale thousands of times a day. So when you suddenly start wheezing, coughing, sweating, feeling tightness in your chest, and struggling to breathe, the signs of distress can be frightening, both to you and others around you. These are classic symptoms of an asthma attack, which is caused by a tightening of the muscles around your airways, known to medical professionals as a bronchospasm. People who have been diagnosed with asthma often carry a rescue inhaler, also called a bronchodilator, which is a device that allows them to breathe in medication that will expand their airways during an asthma attack.

But how do you handle an asthma attack if you’re caught without a rescue inhaler or the medication isn’t working?

Step One: Stay Calm

An asthma attack often … Continue Reading