Put Vaccines on Your Back to School To-Do List!

dreamstime_xl_99335106.jpgYou’ve taken care of the backpack, lunchbox, folders, binders, glue sticks and pencil case. But what about any vaccines your child might need?

General pediatrician Kim Giuliano, MD, says vaccines are important for preventing disease in people of all ages ― but especially for school-age children.

Wait, what do they need when?

Kids typically receive two shots that protect them against eight diseases between the ages of 4 and 6. But big kids need vaccines too.

“The next time children receive routine vaccinations is around age 11 or 12, and then again between the ages of 16 and 18,” Dr. Giuliano says.

The why behind those shots

The complete vaccination schedule is designed to protect children from 16 potentially harmful diseases. From birth to age 6, it’s recommended children receive vaccines to prevent 14 diseases.

And everyone 6 months and up should receive a yearly flu shot. Plus, it’s recommended preteens receive vaccines for HPV, meningitis and T-dap (which protects from tetanus, diphtheria and whooping cough).

And don’t forget about those college kids

If you’ve got older kids who are heading off to college, make sure they’re protected too.

“There are some vaccines we encourage for college students as well, specifically the meningitis vaccine,” Dr. Giuliano says. “Meningitis can spread very easily when people live in close quarters ― like college dormitories.”

If you’re not sure whether your child is up-to-date on his or her vaccines ― or if your child has missed shots, Dr. Giuliano recommends talking to your pediatrician about getting back on track.

Source: Health Essentials, Cleveland Clinic

Thai Grilled Steak Salad with Rice Noodles

Asian beef noodle saladThai restaurants have introduced our palates to new flavors and sauces. This recipe offers you the best of Thai cooking with little fat, and less of the sodium you’ll find in restaurants. Not a fan of red meat? Replace the flank steak with chicken breast or tofu. (For the sugar substitute, try stevia.)


3 garlic cloves, minced
1-1/2 tablespoons Thai fish sauce (nam pla)
1 packet of sugar substitute

3/4 pound flank steak
3 ounces rice stick noodles
1/2 cucumber (about 4 ounces), halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
4 cups mixed greens
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon chopped dry-roasted peanuts

3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon Thai fish sauce
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon sugar substitute
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or to taste


  1. Combine ingredients for marinade in a shallow bowl. Add flank steak, cover, and marinate in the refrigerator for 4 hours or up to 24 hours, turning once.
  2. Light the grill, or preheat the broiler. Lightly coat the grill rack with cooking spray.
  3. To make the sauce: Place 1/4 cup water, garlic, fish sauce, lime juice, sugar substitute and red pepper flakes in a food processor or blender. Pulse until well-combined; set aside.
  4. Place noodles in a deep bowl. Cover with warm water, and soak for 10 minutes. While noodles soak, bring a pot of water to boil. Drain noodles, then place in boiling water for 2 to 4 minutes, until cooked through. Drain, rinse under cold running water, and drain again. Set aside.
  5. Remove steak from marinade. Score the meat in a cross-hatched pattern, and grill until done, about 8 minutes per side for medium. Transfer steak to a carving board, and let rest for 10 minutes before cutting diagonally into very thin slices.
  6. To assemble salads: Divide cucumber, greens, mint and basil among 4 dinner plates. Mound noodles in the center of each plate, and top with equal portions of the steak slices. Toss with sauce. Garnish with peanuts.

Source: Cleveland Clinic’s Health Essentials

Stuffed Peppers with Veggies and Quinoa

Eating of quinoa stuffed pepper on wooden boardJust as some rules are made to be broken, some recipes are made to be reinvented. Traditional stuffed-pepper recipes are heavy on meat and cheese, but we prefer a lighter approach that packs in veggies and flavor for a true vegan feast.

Our Stuffed Peppers with Veggies and Quinoa is simple, substantial and delicious! With tomatoes, collards and corn, this dish is the perfect destination for local summer produce from your garden, farmer’s market or grocery store. Quinoa, the protein-rich darling of the grain family, offers its nutty, fiber-rich goodness, too.

With onion, garlic and red pepper, the flavor quotient is just right. This dish is sure to be a summertime favorite for the whole family.


1 yellow onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 pint grape tomatoes
2 cups coarsely chopped collard greens
1 cup quinoa
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 cup fresh corn kernels
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 bell peppers (any color)


  1. Heat the oven to 375°.
  2. In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, and ¼ teaspoon of the salt. Cover tightly and cook, stirring often, until tender, 5 to 6 minutes. Cut the tomatoes in half and stir into the onion mixture. Cover tightly and cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes have softened, about 8 minutes.
  3. Stir in the collard greens and cook, covered, for 2 minutes to soften.
  4. Stir the quinoa into the tomato mixture. Add 2 cups of water, the red pepper flakes, and the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt and let come to a boil. Cover tightly, reduce the heat to low, and cook until the quinoa is tender and the water is absorbed, 12 to 15 minutes. Let stand, covered, for 5 minutes. Stir in the corn and black pepper.
  5. Cut off the tops from the bell peppers just below the “shoulders” to make lids. Cut out the white membranes from the insides of the peppers and shake out the seeds. Trim the white membranes from the lids, too.
  6. Dividing evenly, fill the peppers with the quinoa mixture. Place the peppers in a baking dish and top with the lids. Drizzle the peppers with the remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Pour 1 ½ cups of water into the dish. Bake the peppers until they are tender, about 1 hour. Serve hot or room temperature.

Source: Cleveland Clinic Health Essentials

Cameron Rehab to Offer New Therapy For Moms and Moms-To-Be

dreamstime_xxl_87396619.jpgBeginning in July, Cameron Hospital’s occupational therapy team will begin offering a pre-and post-natal pelvic floor strengthening program for urinary incontinence.  This therapy is an adjunct to the pelvic floor strengthening program currently offered for urinary incontinence.

Often covered by insurance, this program helps reduce symptoms of incontinence and enhance the body’s natural performance before, during and after childbirth.  The therapist will teach patients how to identify and strengthen muscles that work together to help maintain core strength and pelvis.  Patients may sign up for the program by obtaining an Occupational Therapy order from their physician.

For more information on this new therapy, please call 260-667-5144

What Happens When a Mosquito Bite Gets Infected (And What to Do)

Sucking Anopheles mosquito.“Stop scratching!” That’s good advice, of course. But sometimes it’s easier said than done.

Seemingly blissful summer evenings happen. Sitting outside, without a care. No mosquito spray, citronella candles, long sleeves or pants — big oops! So what do you do the next day (or even day after) when the welt(s) from the unintended mosquito fest seem out of control?

Cleveland Clinic family nurse practitioner Allison Folger, CNP, says mosquito bites are simply a nuisance for many but explains they can get infected if you don’t leave them be.

“Scratching the bite to the point of bleeding can open the door for a bacterial skin infection to develop,” Folger explains. “This commonly occurs in children whose nails are understandably dirty from playing outside, though it also happens in adults.”

The infection’s not the mosquito’s fault!

The infection, called cellulitis, is from bacteria that enter the punctured skin from your hands. Warning signs include:

  • Swelling of the lymph nodes
  • A wide-spreading redness around the mosquito bite
  • Red streaking that extends beyond the initial bite
  • Pus or drainage
  • The area feels warm to the touch
  • Chills
  • Fever (above 100 F)

“If you or a child has these signs of infection, it is important to see your doctor,” Folger says. One easy way to tell if the bite is spreading? Take a pen and draw an outline around the mosquito bite. That’s a fool-proof, objective way to keep an eye on it.

If your doctor confirms it’s cellulitis, you’ll need a round of antibiotics to kill the bacteria (typically strep (streptococcus) or staph (Staphylococcus).

How to treat it in the meantime?

If you’ve got a mandarin orange-sized welt that you’re worried about, here’s the best way to treat it: Folger recommends cleaning the bite with soap and water, and then applying an over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream. This will help reduce the swelling and itching.

If desired, this can be followed with calamine lotion, which contains a mild topical anesthetic that may ease the discomfort.

“Use ice packs on the area to help bring the inflammation down, and reapply the topical medication every four hours,” she recommends.

Your healthcare provider may also recommend using an oral antihistamine (such as Benadryl®), as they’re more effective at providing relief than topical creams.

Infected or just an itchy aggravation? You’ll probably be fine soon with proper care, either way, Folger says. And getting bitten so badly may just remind you to take an ounce of prevention next time.

Source: The Cleveland, Health Essentials

Do you worry about falling? Try these exercises for better balance.

July-August 2018Do you feel more unsteady on your feet as you get older? It’s not something you need to simply accept. There are some easy exercises that you can do that take only a few minutes each day — and they can help you move with confidence and better balance. Do you feel more unsteady on your feet as you get older? It’s not something you need to simply accept. There are some easy exercises that you can do that take only a few minutes each day — and they can help you move with confidence and better balance.

Why is balance an issue as we get older? As you age, you begin to lose muscle mass and strength, and your reaction time begins to slow as well. These are all things that affect your balance. As a result, you’re more susceptible to trips and falls.

And one fall can cause a serious injury to an arm, leg or hip, which sometimes can put your independence in jeopardy. In fact, falls are the leading cause of injury-related emergency department visits, and the main cause of accidental deaths, among Americans 65 and older.

Of course, trips, slips, and falls can happen to anyone of any age. While winter conditions can lead to falls, so can year-round tripping hazards: wet floors, household clutter, uneven sidewalks, and rugs. Many falls are preventable, so it’s important to watch out for these hazards as much as possible.

How to keep yourself on an even keel: Doing daily balance exercises also can help you improve your lower body strength and your ability to control and maintain your body’s center of gravity. Here are four balance exercises you can do anytime, anywhere. Best of all, it only takes about five minutes of your time.

Single leg stance: Stand on one leg and maintain your balance. (You can use a sturdy chair for support.) Then repeat with the other leg.

  • Repeat: 1 time
  • Hold: 10 seconds
  • Complete: 1 set
  • Perform: Once a day

Tandem stance and walk: Stand with one foot directly in front of the other so that the toes of one foot touch the heel of the other. Progress forward by taking steps with your heel touching your toes with each step. Maintain your balance.

  • Repeat: 3 times
  • Hold: 1 second
  • Complete: 1 set
  • Perform: Once a day

Single leg stance-forward: Stand on one leg and maintain your balance. Next, hold your free leg out in front of your body. Then return to original position. Maintain a slightly bent knee on the stance side. Repeat with the other leg.

  • Repeat:            1 time
  • Hold:                10 seconds
  • Complete:       1 set
  • Perform:          Once a day

Single leg stance-lateral: Stand on one leg and maintain your balance. Next, hold your free leg out to the side of your body. Then return to original position. Maintain a slightly bent knee on the stance side. Repeat with the other leg.

  • Repeat: 1 time
  • Hold: 10 seconds
  • Complete: 1 set
  • Perform: Once a day

Work with your doctor: No matter how simple these exercises may seem, it’s always a good idea to talk to your doctor before beginning any exercise program. He or she may have other suggestions for ways you can improve your balance and stay active as you age. Then once you have the go-ahead, take the time to do these easy exercises every day. They can help you stay on your feet for the long-term.

Source: Cleveland Clinic Health Essentials

Yoga with Jessica- Longest Day of the Year

dreamstime_xxl_93928666.jpg“Yoga is not a work-out, it is a work-in. And this is the point of spiritual practice; to make us teachable; to open up our hearts and focus our awareness so that we can know what we already know and be who we already are.” — Rolf Gates

I’m sure you are aware June 21 is the longest day of the year in the northern hemisphere, but did you know that June 21 is also the International Day of Yoga? This “holiday” began on June 21, 2015  (also known as World Yoga Day). The United Nations Secretary General is quoted saying, “Yoga is a sport that can contribute to development and peace. Yoga can even help people in emergency situations to find relief from stress.”  World Yoga Day promotes global health, harmony, and peace.

This day strives to raise awareness of the many benefits of practicing yoga around the world. In New Delhi, India, almost 36,000 participants were present for the largest yoga lesson in the first year. This set a new Guinness record!

Some objectives of World Yoga Day:

  • To convey the amazing and natural benefits of yoga
  • To introduce people to meditation through yoga
  • To bring communities together – to spend a day for health, away from a busy schedule
  • To magnify growth, development and spread peace all over the world
  • To relieve stress
  • To promote better physical AND mental health

Some building blocks of yoga:

  • Yoga builds calmness and peace
  • Yoga gives confidence and courage
  • Yoga builds strength
  • Yoga balances the body and soul
  • Yoga improves health and happiness

In a nutshell, yoga creates strength, awareness and harmony in both mind and body.  What have you got to lose?  Why not find a yoga class on June 21, in person or on-line, and give it a try?  You might just like it.  You might just find your new best friend.

“Yoga is not a work-out, it is a work-in. And this is the point of spiritual practice; to make us teachable; to open up our hearts and focus our awareness so that we can know what we already know and be who we already are.” — Rolf Gates

Namaste until next month…


Cameron patients receive help through unique therapy experience

Occ. Therapy-Community Garden
Kimberly and Kris Boots (Cameron occupational therapist) participate in an occupational therapy session at Cameron’s Community Wellness Garden, while sister, Annmarie, observes in the background.

Rehabilitation therapy can be hard, regardless of your age or situation. However, Cameron Memorial Community Hospital’s Rehabilitation department is utilizing Cameron’s Community Wellness Garden as a unique occupational therapy experience to help its pediatric patients in an enjoyable and meaningful way.

“Often times, children with sensory processing issues develop behavioral concerns due to the stress that is created from various sensations,” said Joell Stuckey, director of Cameron’s Rehabilitation department. “Our community garden plot is a perfect place for children with sensory processing issues to interact with a variety of physical sensations in a meaningful way.”

Sensory integration therapy aims to help children with a sensory integration disorder by exposing them to sight, sound, touch, smell, and movement through structured and repetitive interaction with the world. Over time, the brain will adapt and allow the kids to process and react to these everyday sensations more efficiently. “The kids using our garden during their therapy sessions are simultaneously experiencing and processing the different textures, temperatures, sights, and sounds which actually then carries over to improving their tolerance to other everyday tasks such as brushing their teeth or getting dressed,” Stuckey said. The garden can also be used with adults during therapy sessions by engaging in a fun activity while learning to focus on body mechanics or movement issues.

For more information regarding occupational therapy at Cameron Hospital, please call 260-665-2141 ext. 5144.

Find Support Through Your Community

Alzheimer's Series web bannerJoin us for an educational series to learn more about Alzheimer’s Disease; how to respond and how to help your family.  This series is being offered in partnership by Cameron Memorial Community Hospital and the Greater Indiana Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association.

June 14, 2018:  Know the 10 Signs – Early Detection Matters

Gather an understanding of the difference between age-related memory loss and Alzheimer’s.  Learn what to do if you think someone you know has the signs of the disease.

July 12, 2018:  The Basics – Memory Loss, Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease

This program is designed to help people understand the difference between normal age-related memory changes and more serious memory problems that should be evaluated by a medical professional. Topics discussed include the common causes of memory loss, risk factors and the importance of an accurate diagnosis.

August 9, 2018:  Dementia Conversations:  Driving, Doctor Visits, Legal & Financial Planning

Conversations with family members who are showing signs of dementia can be challenging and uncomfortable. This workshop will offer helpful tips to assist families in having honest and caring conversations with family members about dementia, which will help to reduce the stress that can accompany a disease like Alzheimer’s and connects you with helpful resources to enhance quality of life for everyone involved.

September 13, 2018:  Effective Communication Strategies

Communication is more than just talking and listening-it’s also about sending and receiving messages through attitude, tone of voice, facial expressions, and body language. As people with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias progress in their journey and the ability to use words is lost, families need new ways to connect. Explore how communication takes place when someone has Alzheimer’s, learn to decode the verbal and behavioral messages delivered by someone with dementia, and identify strategies to help you connect and communicate at each stage of the disease.

October 11, 2018:  Understanding & Responding to Dementia-Related Behaviors

Behavior is a powerful form of communication & is one of the primary ways for people with dementia to communicate their needs and feelings as the ability to use language is lost. However, some behaviors can present real challenges for caregivers to manage. Learn to decide behavioral messages, identify common behavior triggers, and learn strategies to help intervene with some of the most common behavioral challenges of Alzheimer’s disease.

November 15, 2018:  Healthy Living for your Brain & Body – Tips from the Latest Research

For centuries, we’ve known that the health of the brain and the body are connected. But now, science is able to provide insights into how to make lifestyle choices that may help you keep your brain and body healthy as you age. Learn about research in the areas of diet & nutrition, exercise, cognitive activity & social engagement, and use hands-on tools to help you incorporate these recommendations into a plan for healthy aging.

All classes will be held in Conference Room 1 at Cameron Hospital from 6:00-7:30 p.m.  The series is free and open to the public.  Registration is required.  To register, please call 800-272-3900.

Yoga with Jessica: Online Yoga…yay or nay?

dreamstime_xxl_99040733On a whim, I decided to check out a yoga class offered at a local church in my hometown. It was once a week for 8 weeks. It was close to home and the price was just right. I had never done yoga before, I didn’t know the instructor,  and I knew no one attending the class. It was truly on a whim. That was in 2011.

Beginning a yoga practice is just like any other new habit. It takes time, effort, and a willingness to not only learn but to set aside time for yourself. Finding just the right class for you can also take time.

Maybe you’re new to yoga and don’t feel comfortable going to a class just yet. Maybe you want to watch some YouTube videos from the comfort of your own home. Maybe you need to study the world of yoga before venturing into a class. Yoga teachers are not scary. We all have our own unique way of teaching, and I truly believe there is a type of yoga for EVERYONE!

I have found three online yoga teachers who, in my opinion, are amazing! They are all down to Earth, and they all offer modifications. My purpose this month is to introduce them to you, give you their links and let you check them out and make a well-informed decision.

Online yoga has its perks…

  • It’s your time, your place.
  • It’s free.
  • It’s your clothing choice (pj’s anyone?).
  • There is variety.

Yoga online also has some downfalls:

  • There is no personal connection.
  • You could have technical issues (internet connection).
  • You’ll get no extras and won’t have group energy to feed off.
  • You can develop bad habits.

Take some time. Weigh your pros and cons. Things have a way of working themselves out. It requires patience, faith and a willingness to go outside your comfort zone. Maybe now is not the time for you to begin or reincorporate yoga into your life. Maybe this article is just what you needed to jumpstart your yoga practice. Maybe you are already a seasoned yogi and this article peaked your interest to look into these or other online yoga classes. Whatever the case may be, find time for YOU.

Namaste my faithful readers…