Avoid the Flu – Get Vaccinated!

Flu vaccination, flu vaccine, influenza shot

Getting a flu vaccine is a great way to protect yourself - and your family - from the flu this fall.

Now is the time to plan for your family’s flu immunizations. The annual flu season usually peaks between December and March, but it can begin as early as October and last through May. The earlier in the season you get your flu vaccine, the better your chances of protecting yourself, your family and your coworkers from the flu.

Common symptoms of the flu include:

  • fever and chills
  • sore throat
  • muscle aches
  • fatigue
  • cough
  • headaches
  • runny or stuffy nose.

The flu can also lead to dehydration, pneumonia and other severe ailments.

Some people avoid getting immunized for fear that they will get the flu from the vaccine. Fortunately, you cannot catch the flu from most formulations of the flu vaccine. The most common side effects of the flu vaccine are minor and only last a few days. These include pain and redness around the injection site and a low fever.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that everyone 6 months of age and older be immunized against the flu. Children, senior citizens, pregnant women, people with chronic conditions (such as asthma and diabetes) and people with heart, lung or kidney disorders are more likely to experience serious side effects if they catch the flu. It is important for people in these high risk groups, and for those who live and work with them, to be vaccinated against the flu every year.

Everyone should take these basic precautions to help keep each other stay healthy through the flu season:

  • Cover your mouth and nose with your sleeve or a tissue when you sneeze or cough.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand cleaner.
  • If you get the flu, stay home from work or school for at least 24 hours after your fever ends to avoid infecting others.

If you have any questions or concerns about the influenza vaccine, talk to your pharmacist or physician. You can read more information about flu shots from the CDC or the Iowa Department of Public Health websites. Vaccinations are quick, easy and can help you stay healthy. Flu shots, as well as other vaccines, are available at your local CarePro pharmacy. Our pharmacists are happy to answer your vaccination questions- connect with us today!

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Treating a Sprained Ankle

Ankle Brace for Adults

Be sure to choose a brace that fits well and is designed specifically for ankles.

Fall sports are underway! That means lots of practices and meets, after what may have been a sedentary summer. If you or your child sprain an ankle, it’s important to take action quickly to keep the injury from becoming worse.

A common treatment for acute injuries like sprains is the RICE method: Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation. Rest will allow your ankle to heal properly without additional strain. Stay off your foot as much as possible for a few days.

Ice can help ease your pain and prevent swelling. Wrap the ice in a towel to avoid blistering your skin, and apply it for only 15 minutes per hour.

Compression (wrapping your injury) can help control swelling. Wrap your ankle tight enough that it feels firm, but loose enough that you can still move your foot. If you use a brace, make sure you select one that is designed for ankles, and is the proper size to avoid rubbing, blistering and increased swelling. The staff at CarePro Pharmacies or CarePro Home Medical can help you choose an ankle wrap or brace to fit you.

Elevation is another way to keep swelling under control. Lay on the couch with your foot propped up on a few pillows, just above heart level. If you don’t experience pain relief after two days of using the RICE method, see your physician- your injury may be more serious than a sprain.

How can you prevent sprains this fall? Start by using proper shoes for your activity (don’t go running in shoes designed for volleyball). Replace your shoes if they’re worn or have become uncomfortable. Warming up before exercise is important, too. Think of your ligaments and tendons as if they were rubber bands. If you try to stretch a cold rubber band, it will snap (unpleasant, right?). If you stretch a warm rubber band, it will likely be more flexible.

Most importantly, listen to your body. If you feel intense pain, it is best to stop and pinpoint the reason for your pain. You can decrease your chances of suffering a chronic injury by paying attention when your body signals that it needs a break. Remember, trophies can be won and lost, but severe injuries can sideline you for good!

Resources:

http://www.ucsfhealth.org/education/tips_for_preventing_foot_and_ankle_injuries/
http://sportsmedicine.about.com/cs/rehab/a/rice.htm
http://www.runnersworld.co.uk/beating-injury/injury-first-aid—the-rice-method/150.html

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Attention new and expectant moms!

benefits of breastfeeding

Breastfeeding is a great way to bond with your newborn. CarePro has the supplies you need to get started!

Both moms and babies can benefit from breastfeeding.

Benefits for babies:

Breast milk contains antibodies and hormones that keep them healthy. Breastfed babies often have lower instances of:

  • Ear infection
  • Diarrhea
  • Respiratory infection
  • Asthma
  • Obesity
  • Type 2 diabetes

Breast milk is often easier for babies to digest than formula. Many formulas are derived from cow’s milk, which can take a while for your baby’s stomachs to get used to.

Benefits for moms:

Moms can enjoy these perks while feeding their babies:

  • Convenience- fewer bottles to warm up, no formula to mix and carry
  • Accountability for a healthier lifestyle- what you eat and drink is essentially what you are feeding your baby
  • Saving money- you don’t have to buy formula (or only a little, if you choose to). This is a substantial savings- depending on the brand and type, formula can cost anywhere from $10 – $40 per can or more.

CarePro carries equipment to make breastfeeding your baby as easy as possible. You can find breast pumps and accessories for purchase at CarePro Home Medical and CarePro Pharmacy – Pavilion.

If you prefer to rent a breast pump, visit CarePro Pharmacy – North Liberty. Our North Liberty location also carries comfortable, stylish nursing bras (Ameda, Medela and Bravado brands).

Questions about breastfeeding equipment? Connect with us at info@careprohs.com. We’re happy to help you!

For breastfeeding tips and nutrition information, visit Mayo Clinic or Medela online.

Resources:

http://www.womenshealth.gov/breastfeeding/why-breastfeeding-is-important/

http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/infant-and-toddler-health/in-depth/breast-feeding/art-20047138

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Four Easy Tips for a Healthy School Year

Vampire sleeve

Teach your kids to sneeze into the crook of their elbows as opposed to on their hands. This technique keeps germs off of their hands and out of the air.

Back-to-school time means dealing with an abundance of germs. Every high-five, drink at the water fountain and shared box of crayons could lead to a cold for your child. Stay ahead of the game this school year with four simple tips to help your kids stay healthy.

  • Show your child the “vampire sleeve” (bend your arm across your face, like a vampire would hide his face with his cape, to cover your nose and mouth with your sleeve). This move keeps sneeze germs out of the air and off of your child’s hands.
  • Have your child wash her hands before and after school, eating and using the restroom. Basically, teach her to wash her hands whenever she can! It’s one of the best ways to keep your child healthy and happy this fall.
  • Teach your child to use hand sanitizer when soap isn’t available.
  • Make sure your child brushes his teeth regularly. The mouth is a portal for germs to move in and out of the body. Brushing twice a day will help keep that activity to a minimum, along with providing minty fresh breath!

Kids will be kids- they won’t remember to wash up, cover their sneezes or brush their teeth without constant reminders from you. Just remember- it’s better to remind them and keep them healthy than to have them down and out with a cold!

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Corridor Seniors Give Back!

Senior citizens are a valuable part of communities in the Corridor.

Senior citizens are a vital part of Corridor communities.

In 1988, President Ronald Reagan deemed August 14 National Senior Citizens Day to honor the contributions of senior citizens to society.

Senior citizens are a valuable part of communities in the Corridor. Their contributions provide much needed assistance and opportunities for their families, friends and neighbors that may be otherwise unavailable.

Corridor seniors have ample opportunities to contribute to society after retirement. Three areas in which senior citizens make a big impact are volunteering, mentoring and providing care.

  • Volunteering:  Leaving the workforce does not mean bowing out of society! Volunteering is an opportunity for seniors to use their natural talents and professional skills to continue doing what they love after retirement. Many seniors keep their skills sharp by reading to children at local schools, assisting patients and visitors at hospitals and taking active roles in community organizations, including neighborhood watch groups, delivering Meals on Wheels and helping with beautification projects.
  • Mentoring:  Seniors have a distinct advantage over younger generations- they have many years of passion and experience to share! Their life experience and wisdom are invaluable to young professionals seeking to build their careers. When seniors transfer their knowledge, they equip the next generation with the confidence and resources to be successful.
  • Providing care:  Many older Americans are active in the daily lives of their grandchildren. They often help their own children by providing deeply discounted or free childcare during working hours. Many seniors also spend a lot of time caring for their ailing spouses, friends or family members. Whether a senior is a full-time caregiver, providing respite or offering companionship, their time and compassion is priceless.

Here’s to all the senior citizens in the Corridor! Thank you for all you do to make our communities great places to live, work and play!

Here are a few local resources if you are interested in volunteering:  United Way of East Central Iowa; Horizons, A Family Service Alliance; Mercy Medical Center; Unity Point Health – St. Luke’s.

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Looking for a quality multivitamin?

Advance MN 2-A-Day is a professional grade multivitamin that offers antioxidants as well as total body vitamin and mineral support.

How does your multivitamin compare to Advance MN 2-A-Day? Ask us at info@careprohs.com, or stop by one of our pharmacy locations.

Getting the vitamins and minerals you need is easy with Advance MN 2-A-Day.

This new product:

  • Has a fruit and vegetable blend for extra antioxidants
  • Supports total body health with vitamins and minerals
  • Is coated for easier swallowing

Our unique, nutritional blend contains vitamin B6, vitamin B12 and folic acid in their active forms. Some multivitamins contain these nutrients in an inactive form- in other words, your body has to activate them on its own, which is problematic for some people. Our product removes that step by providing these nutrients in a “ready-to-use” form. Ask a CarePro pharmacist for more information about this process!

Advance MN 2-A-Day also contains high quality antioxidants to support eye, heart and total body health. Lutein, lycopene and resveratrol are just a few of the antioxidants packed into Advance MN 2-A-Day. Our multivitamin is also formulated with a proprietary fruit and vegetable blend for added antioxidant benefit.

Our product is an EZ Swallow product, which means it has a vanilla coating that makes it easier to swallow. The coating locks in the vitamin scent, too, making it more pleasant to take compared to other multivitamins.

How does Advance MN 2-A-Day compare to your current multivitamin? Ask us- we’re happy to help you understand why a high quality multivitamin is your best option.

Special Offer: Save 25% on Advance MN 2-A-Day* 60 count at all CarePro Pharmacies and CarePro Advance Health!

The discount applies to one bottle per customer of Advance MN 2-A-Day 60 count. The offer is not valid in conjunction with Wellness Wednesdays, and it expires August 30, 2014.

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Tired of Dealing with Muscle Pain?

LaserTouchOne, Rebound TENS Unit, WiTouch

Simple-to-use, affordable devices like LaserTouchOne, Rebound TENS Unit, WiTouch make pain relief at home a snap!

Connect with CarePro Home Medical to relieve your pain at home.

Save 20% on these pain relief products during the month of August:

  • WiTouch
  • LaserTouchOne
  • Rebound TENS Device
  • Omni Ball
  • Biofreeze
  • Ice Packs

Our knowledgeable staff is ready to help you relieve your pain and feel better. Call 319.298.0953, email us at info@careprohs.com, or stop by today!

Offer valid only on products listed. Offer valid August 1 – August 30, 2014 only.

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Take the Guesswork Out of Supplements

CarePro Advance Health Cedar Rapids

There are many vitamins and supplements to choose from. CarePro pharmacists can help you choose!

Are you interested in vitamins and supplements, but not sure where to begin? After all, there are hundreds of brands and formulations to choose from. How do you know which supplements are the best for you and your family?

Simple! Start by taking our FREE assessment online at carepro-vitamins-cedarrapids.com/assessment. Just answer a few short questions about your health, preferences and allergies, and a CarePro pharmacist will email you a personalized recommendation of supplements that can help you feel better.

You can take the assessment for yourself or for a family member- use the link as many times as you want! CarePro pharmacists are committed to helping you and your loved ones feel healthy and energized.

Questions? Connect with CarePro Advance Health pharmacist Lucinda Harms at 319-247-7200 or info@careprohs.com. Lucinda is happy to answer your questions about vitamins and supplements- just ask!

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CPAP/BiPAP Clinics in Cedar Rapids and Coralville

CarePro Health Services CPAP BiPAP Respiratory Therapist

Did you know that you can get your machine checked for FREE at a CarePro CPAP/BiPAP clinic?

Diagnosed with sleep apnea? You’re invited to our free CPAP/BiPAP Clinic this month! Whether you are closer to Cedar Rapids or Coralville, we have you covered.

Join us at one of these clinics:

  • July 10th from 3:30pm – 5:30pm at CarePro at the Pavilion (inside the PCI Medical Pavilion)
  • July 10th from 3:30pm – 5:30pm at our Cedar Rapids CarePro Home Medical location.
  • July 17th from 3:30pm – 5:30pm at our Coralville CarePro Home Medical location.

Bring your machine with you to the clinic. Our respiratory therapists will check your pressure settings, tubing and filter to make sure you are still getting the best night’s sleep possible. We’ll even replace your disposable filter for free!

As an added bonus, you can buy specialty CPAP mask wipes on sale at 20% off through the end of July.

Questions? Want more information? Call CarePro Home Medical at 319-298-0953 (Cedar Rapids) or 319-351-3930 (Coralville). We’re happy to help you connect with people and answers you need.

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Four Ways to Keep Kids, Seniors and Pets Safe this Summer

tips for summer heat safety for kids, seniors and pets

Kids, seniors and pets are susceptible to heat-related conditions. Follow our tips to help prevent a tragedy this summer.

After the hard winter, we all appreciate the beautiful summer weather- even the heat! However, it’s important to remember that the kids, senior citizens and pets in our care are highly susceptible to dehydration, heat exhaustion and heatstroke. These uncomfortable- even fatal- conditions can be avoided with a little planning and common sense.

Here are 4 ways to avoid a heat-related tragedy this summer:

  • NEVER leave a child, senior or pet unattended in a vehicle, even with the windows cracked or down. According to the National Weather Service, on an 80 degree day, it can heat up to 99 degrees inside your car in just 10 minutes, and 123 degrees in one hour. Keep everyone in the family safe by checking the back seat before you leave your car to be sure no one is left behind.
  • Dress for the weather. Make sure the kids and seniors in your care wear light-colored, lightweight, loosely fitting clothing to help keep them cool. Skip pet clothing during the summer (yes, that superhero cape is cute, but it can easily cause Fido to become overheated!).
  • Choose comfort over your pocketbook. Take advantage of air conditioning if you have it at home. A slightly higher electric bill is well worth avoiding heatstroke. If you don’t have air conditioning, head to a place that does- you can support local businesses while staying cool!
  • Know the warning signs. Dizziness, headache, breathing problems, rapid heartbeat, fainting and muscle cramps can indicate heat exhaustion or heatstroke.

If you have loved ones who live alone and may be at risk of heat-related conditions, check in on them regularly. For more summer heat safety tips for kids, seniors and pets, visit the National Weather Service website.

Resources:

http://nws.noaa.gov/os/heat/index.shtml

http://www.aplaceformom.com/senior-care-resources/articles/elderly-heat-stroke

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