Top 10 Things To Do For A Safe Halloween

This week millions of kids in towns, cities, and neighborhoods everywhere will hit the streets as ghosts, goblins, witches, and many other characters to gather as much candy as possible.  While we all love seeing the little ones get excited about dressing up and eating all that candy, there are some dangers that lurk during this very popular holiday.

Here are the top 10 things you should do in order to have a safe Halloween for you and your family.
1. Don’t let your children eat collected candy until you have had a chance to inspect it.

2. Whatever costume your child chooses, be sure it has a “flame resistant” label on it.  Many people are confused by this label.  It doesn’t mean it will prevent the costume from catching on fire, but it will resist burning and will be easier to extinguish the flame.

3. Costumes should either be light-colored of have reflective tape to reflect lights in the dark.  Put reflective tape on candy bags as well.  Have children carry their own flashlights and wear comfortable shoes for walking.

4. Go along with your children to watch after them.  If you aren’t able to go, assign another responsible adult or older child to walk with them.

5. Teach your children to only go to well-lit homes and to never enter a home no matter what the situation.

6. Warn your children to stay away jack-o-laterns that are lit with candles or other open area candles.  Long flowing costumes could easily catch on fire if you aren’t aware of nearby open flames.

7. Be careful with face paints.  While painting faces can be fun many paints can cause an allergic reaction or irritation to the skin.  Test a small area of skin a day or so before you plan to paint your child’s face.

8. Black licorice believe it or not can pose a health risk.  Last year the FDA warned against eating too much of this sweet treat.  Eating too much of it can cause potassium levels to fall which can cause an abnormal heart rhythm in some people (mainly adults over 40).

9. Bobbing for apples is a fun game played by many at Halloween parties, but what most people don’t realize is that this game is full of germs.  Just think about how many people are putting their mouth into this water over and over.   Stay away from this game.

10. Last but not least, MODERATION.  The temptation is to go back home and eat all the candy at once.  Not only is this processed sugar not good for you to start with, but over consumption can lead to an upset stomach.  Try having your children save a handful of candy for themselves and then suggest donating the rest to a food drive.

If you or your children need a doctor in Madion, TN  don’t hesitate to call or visit us online to book an appointment!
Here’s to your health!

Dr. K Bennett

www.sunshinemedicalmd.com

615-942-9271

The Big B We Don’t Talk About

Bulimia is not something new but I wanted to bring it up and talk about it since I see the devastating effects of this horrible disease from time to time.

Bulimia or Bulimia Nervosa, as it’s referred to in the medical community, is a psychological eating disorder that affects mostly women.  Basically people with Bulimia will eat large amounts of food then make themselves throw up soon afterwards in order to not digest the food.  The disease usually starts in late childhood or early adulthood.  Sufferers are usually dissatisfied with their bodies or weight and take these extreme measures to control their weight or to make themselves feel better.

Researchers are not exactly sure what triggers or causes Bulimia but believe it’s closely associated with emotions, thought patterns, and sometimes heredity.

Let’s take a closer look at symptoms of Bulimia and the effects it has on the human body.

  • As I mentioned earlier Bulimia at it’s core is eating uncontrollably then purged from the body.
  • It doesn’t always have to be vomiting to purge the food, it can also be excessive exercise, enemas, or use of laxatives.
  • Depression is usually associated with this disease
  • Sore throat and dental problems from the stomach acid that resides in the throat and mouth after purging.
  • Heartburn, indigestion, and bloating
  • Weakness and irregular periods

Here are some of the damaging effects it can have.

  • Cavities
  • Stomach ulcers
  • Dehydration
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Heartbeat
  • Suicidal tendencies
  • Rupturing of the stomach

How do you deal with it or help someone that has it?

I believe that someone who suffers from Bulimia should be treated at the psychological level.  If the person has been practicing Bulimia for a long period of time then there could be some physical treatment involved in order to get the patient on a road to recovery.  From what I’ve seen it’s not an easy disease to cure.  Women feel a lot of pressure to look like a magazine model at all times, which drives some of this behavior.  Once we are able to find the root cause at a psychological level then we can develop a plan for moving forward.

The key to all of this is identifying if you have this problem and being honest with yourself, a friend, or loved one and then seek help.  Because this type of behavior is often performed in private it’s not always noticeable until severe damage has already been done.

If you need help with Bulimia or know someone that does.  Don’t hesitate to give our office a call.  I am a doctor in Madison, TN that helps patients everyday with their overall wellness.

Here’s to your health!

Dr. K Bennett

www.sunshinemedicalmd.com

615-942-9271

What is Meningitis and Should I Be Concerned?

If you’ve seen the news recently you may have heard about a Meningitis outbreak here in Nashville, Tennessee.  Reports indicate that 14 people contracted the virus, 13 of which had recently received steroid shots.  The patients ranged in age from late 40s to early 80s.  A few days after this report surfaced it was determined that Meningitis had struck in a Williamson County school just outside of Nashville.

What is Meningitis?

For those of you not familiar with Meningitis, it is a very serious disease that affects the lining of the brain and the central nervous system.   It causes inflammation in the areas surrounding the spinal cord and brain.  Meningitis can be life threatening and should be considered a medical emergency.  Don’t mess around with this disease.  If you think you might have it or have come in contact with someone that has, go see a doctor immediately!

How Do I Know If I have It?

To be certain you would need to have tests performed which include extracting spinal fluid from your spinal cord.  Some symptoms associated with Meningitis are headache,  stiffness in the neck, fever, confusion, vomiting, sensitivity to light and loud noises.   If you don’t have all three of the following symptoms then you probably don’t have Meningitis (severely stiff neck, high fever, and altered state of mind).

Are There Different Types of Meningitis?

Yes.  There are 4 main types of Meningitis.

Viral Meningitis is probably the most common type.  It is caused by a viral infection.  Much like contracting a stomach virus the same process occurs for contracting Viral Meningitis.  You can also get it from the mumps, chicken pox, or herpes.

Bacterial Meningitis is a serious type.  This version can cause death or permanent damage.  It is spread by bacteria from person to person.  Some healthy people could carry the disease and not suffer the effects but transmit it to others.  The good news is that this contagious version of Meningitis isn’t as contagious as other viruses such as the flu.

Fungal Meningitis is transmitted by an infection from yeast.  It’s often found in soil and is usually not harmful to healthy adults.

Amoebic Meningitis is caused by a microorganism found in lakes, ponds, dirty pools, and rivers.  This form is usually not contagious but is the most deadly.  It usually enters the body through the nose.  It’s a very form of Meningitis but as I stated usually ends in death.

 

If you think you may have a form of Meningitis don’t wait to see a doctor.  If you need a doctor in Nashvlle, TN to check out your symptoms feel free to contact our office for an appointment.

Here’s to Your Health!

Dr. K Bennett