Polar Express Experience at Nana Teresa’s

Nana Teresa’s is offering a hot cocoa bar, weather permitting, beginning at 6:00 p.m., on December 2, 2017, in the lawn of their historic district shop. Purchase a cup of hot cocoa and have fun creating your own special drink with items from their buffet: Marshmallows, Peppermint Sticks, Chocolate Sauce, Candy Toppings, Whipped Cream and so much more!

Local store, BUYGO, will be on hand with some special treats and there will be plenty of giveaways and super fun door prizes. The Rendezvous Film Festival will begin screening “The Polar Express” at 7:00 PM on the bakery’s lawn.

The showing is FREE, but due to limited space you’ll want to get here early to grab your treats and seats. Kids are encouraged to wear their PJs, bring a lawn chair, and a include a blanket.

This is going to be an amazing outdoor event!

How to Flush Out Kidney Stones

Have you ever heard that passing a kidney stone is more painful than giving birth? Each year, more than 1 million people in the U.S. rush to the emergency room with pain caused by a kidney stone. Kidney stones are hard, pebble-like pieces of material that form in one or both kidneys. They’re caused by high levels of certain minerals in your urine. Stones vary in size from tiny crystals that can only be seen with a microscope to stones over an inch wide. Tiny stones may pass out of your body without your even noticing. With larger stones, you won’t be so lucky. Stones that are larger than a pencil eraser can get stuck in the urinary tract—and that can really hurt.

Everyone is at some risk for developing kidney stones. “It is a very common condition,” says Dr. Ziya Kirkali, a urologist at NIH. “One out of 11 individuals in the U.S. is affected by this disease.” Kidney stones can form at any age, but they usually appear during middle age (40s to 60s). Of those who develop one stone, half will develop at least one more in the future.

“Probably one of the most important reasons why people form stones is dehydration,” Kirkali says. When urine is too concentrated, minerals can build up and form stones. “I can’t over-emphasize the importance of drinking plenty of water, because that’s the most effective way of preventing kidney stone disease.”

During the warmest months of the year, you’re at greatest risk of becoming dehydrated. “So it is really important to drink more than you usually drink during the cooler days or months,” Kirkali says.

To detect kidney stones, your doctor may order lab or imaging tests. Lab tests look in urine for blood, signs of infection, minerals (like calcium), and stones. Blood tests can also detect high levels of certain minerals. “About 80% of all stones are made of calcium oxalate,” Kirkali says. Knowing what the stones are made of can help guide treatment.

Treatment also depends on the stone’s size and location. CT scans or plain X-ray imaging can help your doctor pinpoint the location and estimate the size of a kidney stone. Depending on what your doctor finds, you may be prescribed medicine and advised to drink a lot of fluids. Or, you might need a procedure to break up or remove the kidney stone.

There are different procedures for breaking up or removing kidney stones. One method delivers shock waves to the stone from outside of the body. Other strategies involve inserting a tool into the body, either through the urinary tract or directly into the kidney through surgery. After the stone is located, it can be broken up into smaller pieces.

Once you’ve had a kidney stone, you have an increased chance for having another. NIH-supported scientists are studying ways to prevent kidney stones from returning. “We always tell our patients to drink more, but it’s not so easy to really increase your fluid intake,” Kirkali says. A new study is testing a method to encourage people to drink more fluids each day. Other NIH-funded studies are trying to unravel why some people seem more at risk of developing kidney stones. Still others are looking into how to better detect stones and treat them.

Don’t let the pain of kidney stones send you to the emergency room. Keep hydrated! But if you develop any of the symptoms shown in the “Wise Choices” box, see your doctor right away.

Written by: NIH Office of Communications and Public Liaison
Editor: Harrison Wein, Ph.D.
Managing Editor: Tianna Hicklin, Ph.D.

Form Your Future for College Bound Students

Press release: Florida State College at Jacksonville (FSCJ), in partnership with the University of North Florida, Edward Waters College, Duval County Public Schools, the Nassau County School District, Year Up Jacksonville, Earn Up and the JAX Chamber, is hosting Form Your Future, a free event that helps college-bound students complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form.

Form Your Future takes place Saturday, November 18, 2017, from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. at both the FSCJ Advanced Technology Center, located on FSCJ Downtown Campus, and the FSCJ Betty P. Cook Nassau Center.

This annual event provides free, in-person, financial aid guidance to help all incoming students and/or their parents/guardians prepare for a smooth transition to begin college. Students who attend Form Your Future also have the opportunity to enter for a chance to receive scholarship money. Participating colleges and universities are giving away more than $35,000 in scholarships.

The addresses for each location are listed below:

FSCJ Advanced Technology Center (next to Downtown Campus, between Pearl and Broad streets)
401 W. State Street, Jacksonville, FL 32202

FSCJ Betty P. Cook Nassau Center (just east of I-95 off of SR A1A)
76346 William Burgess Blvd., Yulee, FL 32097

Professional financial aid staff and counselors will be on hand at both locations to offer free help in all aspects of the application process. In order to complete the FAFSA, parents and students should bring the following:

* Social Security number, driver’s license or alien registration card
* 2016 IRS 1040 or latest tax return and W-2 statements
* Federal Student Aid ID (Don’t have one? Create one at fsaid.ed.gov.)

For more information, visit formyourfuture.org/.

What’s the Difference Between Bronchitis and Pneumonia?

Coughs help your body clear your airways of irritants and prevent infection. But a deep cough from your chest may signal bronchitis or pneumonia. Although they may have different underlying causes, their symptoms can be similar—and both can be serious enough to send you to the doctor.

Bronchitis and pneumonia both involve Inflammation in the chest. Both can cause coughs that bring up a slimy substance called phlegm to help clear out germs and pus. And both can cause shortness of breath and wheezing.
Bronchitis is a condition in which the bronchial tubes that lead to the lungs become inflamed. Viruses, bacteria, and even toxins like tobacco smoke can inflame the bronchial tubes. Most of the time, though, bronchitis is caused by an infection with one of several types of viruses. If you develop bronchitis during flu season, a likely culprit may be the flu virus. Cold viruses are also common causes at this and other times of year.

Pneumonia is caused by an infection of the lungs. “About 1/3 of cases are caused by viruses, but most of them are bacterial related,” says Dr. Kenneth Olivier, a lung infection expert at NIH. “They’re from bacteria that are quite common, like Streptococcus pneumoniae, which is the leading cause of bacterial pneumonias in all ages in the U.S.”
If you get a fever with bronchitis, it is usually mild (below 101 degrees Fahrenheit). In more serious cases, you may have chest pain, feel short of breath, or wheeze when you breathe in.

“Pneumonia, on the other hand, typically is associated with fever, sometimes very high, spiking fever,” Olivier says. Breathing problems, chest pain, and other symptoms also tend to be more severe with pneumonia. If you have a fever and chills, trouble breathing, or a cough that is bringing up thick phlegm, especially if it’s yellow or green, go see your doctor.

Your doctor can listen to your lungs by placing a stethoscope on your chest. “Frequently, the physician can hear areas where the breath sounds are altered,” Olivier says. If you have pneumonia, your doctor may hear bubbling, crackling, or rumbling sounds from the lungs.

You may be sent for a chest X-ray, which can show whether the lungs contain fluid or pus from an infection. An X-ray is the best way to diagnose pneumonia and rule out bronchitis. Whichever illness you have, resting and drinking plenty of fluids are important ways to care for yourself.

If you’re diagnosed with bronchitis, your doctor probably won’t give you antibiotics. Because viruses are the usual cause of bronchitis, antibiotics are seldom helpful. If you’re wheezing, however, you may be given medicine to open your airways. Your cough may last 10 to 20 days.

Because bacteria are often the cause of pneumonia, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics. It can take 1 to 4 weeks to recover from pneumonia. Some people require treatment in the hospital.

Germs that cause colds, the flu, and lower airway infections are contagious. The best way to prevent getting bronchitis or pneumonia is to avoid getting these infections. And when you’re sick, take care not to spread your germs to others (see “Wise Choices” box for tips).

Guard Against Airway Infections
-Wash your hands often with soap and water.
-Use alcohol-based hand gel if you’re unable to wash them.
-Cough into a tissue, your elbow, or your sleeve.
-Ask your doctor about vaccines for you and your children. Certain vaccines can prevent airway infections caused by harmful viruses and bacteria.
-Avoid people who are coughing or showing signs of infection.
-Avoid tobacco smoke.

Written by NIH Office of Communications and Public Liaison
Editor: Harrison Wein, Ph.D.
Managing Editor: Tianna Hicklin, Ph.D.

Preventing and Treating Drug Abuse

Drug abuse can be a painful experience—for the person who has the problem, and for family and friends who may feel helpless in the face of the disease. But there are things you can do if you know or suspect that someone close to you has a drug problem.

Certain drugs can change the structure and inner workings of the brain. With repeated use, they affect a person’s self-control and interfere with the ability to resist the urge to take the drug. Not being able to stop taking a drug even though you know it’s harmful is the hallmark of addiction.

A drug doesn’t have to be illegal to cause this effect. People can become addicted to alcohol, nicotine, or even prescription drugs when they use them in ways other than prescribed or use someone else’s prescription.
People are particularly vulnerable to using drugs when going through major life transitions. For adults, this might mean during a divorce or after losing a job. For children and teens, this can mean changing schools or other major upheavals in their lives.

But kids may experiment with drug use for many different reasons. “It could be a greater availability of drugs in a school with older students, or it could be that social activities are changing, or that they are trying to deal with stress,” says Dr. Bethany Deeds, an NIH expert on drug abuse prevention. Parents may need to pay more attention to their children during these periods.

The teenage years are a critical time to prevent drug use. Trying drugs as a teenager increases your chance of developing substance use disorders. The earlier the age of first use, the higher the risk of later addiction. But addiction also happens to adults. Adults are at increased risk of addiction when they encounter prescription pain-relieving drugs after a surgery or because of a chronic pain problem. People with a history of addiction should be particularly careful with opioid pain relievers and make sure to tell their doctors about past drug use.

There are many signs that may indicate a loved one is having a problem with drugs. They might lose interest in things that they used to enjoy or start to isolate themselves. Teens’ grades may drop. They may start skipping classes.

“They may violate curfew or appear irritable, sedated, or disheveled,” says child psychiatrist Dr. Geetha Subramaniam, an NIH expert on substance use. Parents may also come across drug paraphernalia, such as water pipes or needles, or notice a strange smell.

“Once drug use progresses, it becomes less of a social thing and more of a compulsive thing—which means the person spends a lot of time using drugs,” Subramaniam says.

If a loved one is using drugs, encourage them to talk to their primary care doctor. It can be easier to have this conversation with a doctor than a family member. Not all drug treatment requires long stays in residential treatment centers. For someone in the early stages of a substance use problem, a conversation with a doctor or another professional may be enough to get them the help they need. Doctors can help the person think about their drug use, understand the risk for addiction, and come up with a plan for change.

Substance use disorder can often be treated on an outpatient basis. But that doesn’t mean it’s easy to treat. Substance use disorder is a complicated disease. Drugs can cause changes in the brain that make it extremely difficult to quit without medical help.

For certain substances, it can be dangerous to stop the drug without medical intervention. Some people may need to be in a hospital for a short time for detoxification, when the drug leaves their body. This can help keep them as safe and comfortable as possible. Patients should talk with their doctors about medications that treat addiction to alcohol or opioids, such as heroin and prescription pain relievers.

Recovering from a substance use disorder requires retraining the brain. A person who’s been addicted to drugs will have to relearn all sorts of things, from what to do when they’re bored to who to hang out with. NIH has developed a customizable wallet card to help people identify and learn to avoid their triggers, the things that make them feel like using drugs. You can order the card for free at drugpubs.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugs-brain-wallet-card.

“You have to learn ways to deal with triggers, learn about negative peers, learn about relapse, [and] learn coping skills,” Subramaniam says.

NIH-funded scientists are studying ways to stop addiction long before it starts—in childhood. Dr. Daniel Shaw at the University of Pittsburgh is looking at whether teaching healthy caregiving strategies to parents can help promote self-regulation skills in children and prevent substance abuse later on.

Starting when children are two years old, Shaw’s study enrolls families at risk of substance use problems in a program called the Family Check-Up. It’s one of several parenting programs that have been studied by NIH-funded researchers.

During the program, a parenting consultant visits the home to observe the parents’ relationship with their child. Parents complete several questionnaires about their own and their family’s well-being. This includes any behavior problems they are experiencing with their child. Parents learn which of their children’s problem behaviors might lead to more serious issues, such as substance abuse, down the road. The consultant also talks with the parents about possible ways to change how they interact with their child. Many parents then meet with the consultants for follow-up sessions about how to improve their parenting skills.

Children whose parents are in the program have fewer behavioral problems and do better when they get to school. Shaw and his colleagues are now following these children through their teenage years to see how the program affects their chances of developing a substance abuse problem. You can find video clips explaining different ways parents can respond to their teens on the NIH Family Checkup website at www.drugabuse.gov/family-checkup.

Even if their teen has already started using drugs, parents can still step in. They can keep closer tabs on who their children’s friends are and what they’re doing. Parents can also help by finding new activities that will introduce their children to new friends and fill up the after-school hours—prime time for getting into trouble. “They don’t like it at first,” Shaw says. But finding other teens with similar interests can help teens form new habits and put them on a healthier path.

A substance use problem is a chronic disease that requires lifestyle adjustments and long-term treatment, like diabetes or high blood pressure. Even relapse can be a normal part of the process—not a sign of failure, but a sign that the treatment needs to be adjusted. With good care, people who have substance use disorders can live healthy, productive lives. 

Written by: NIH Office of Communications and Public Liaison
Editor: Harrison Wein, Ph.D.
Managing Editor: Tianna Hicklin, Ph.D.

Holiday Mailbox Decorating Class

Landscape Matters will present a holiday mailbox decorating class on Wednesday, November 15, 10 am until 11:30 a.m. at the Yulee County Building (86026 Pages Dairy Road).
(Take US 17 North, pass over the railroad tracks, turn left on Pages Dairy Road. The building is attached to the fire station.)
 
Nassau Master Gardener Carol Ann Atwood and avid holiday decorator Sylvie Baxter will conduct a Landscape Matters class on how to make your mailbox “holiday ready” using cuttings from your own yard, e.g., magnolia, spruce, pine, palmetto, pittosporum, palms, holly with berries, etc. and ornamental décor.

Admittance is free. To “make and take” your own mailbox cover with materials provided by the instructor, the fee is $20. Checks should be made out to University of Florida. Registration deadline is Friday, November 10 by 5 pm. (It is a holiday for Extension but checks may be dropped in the mail slot at the offices either in Callahan or Yulee.) Late registration fee is $30. Only ONE mailbox cover per person.

To download registration form:
http://blogs.ifas.ufl.edu/nassauco/2017/07/25/holiday-mailbox-decorating/

For more information contact the Extension office at 530-6351. Master Gardeners are on phone duty Fridays, from 10 am until 2 pm at 530-6351, press “1” for the Yulee Extension office.
 

American Indians, Trees for Troops, and Petanque Only Some of the Agenda

The regular meeting of the Fernandina Beach City Commission will be held on NOVEMBER 8, 2017, at 6:00 p.m. at City Hall Chambers on Ash Street. Here is the agenda:

1. CALL TO ORDER    
2. ROLL CALL    
3. Pledge of Allegiance and Invocation by Reverend James Tippins, Baptist Medical Center Nassau Senior Chaplain.     

4. PROCLAMATIONS      
4.1 PROCLAMATION ­ NATIONAL AMERICAN INDIAN HERITAGE MONTH ­ 
Proclaims the month of November, 2017, as “National American Indian Heritage Month”. Ms. Nadine D’Ardenne,  American Indian Representative, will be present to accept the Proclamation.      
 
4.2 PROCLAMATION ­TREES FOR AMERICA’S TROOPS, INC.  ­ 
Recognizes Trees for America’s Troops, Inc. for providing United States military servicemen and servicewomen on  deployment with decorated Christmas trees and essential items to help them overcome the drudgery  and hardships of faraway duty. Trees for America’s Troops, Inc. President Ms. Judi Mixon­Brown will  be present to accept the Proclamation.      
 
4.3 PROCLAMATION PÉTANQUE AMELIA ISLAND OPEN  ­ 
Recognizes the 8th Annual Petanque Amelia Open and names the tournament’s founder, Mr. Philippe Boets, the Official Ambassador of the Pétanque Amelia Island Open.      

5. PUBLIC COMMENT REGARDING ITEMS NOT ON THE AGENDA OR ITEMS ON THE  CONSENT AGENDA    

6. CONSENT AGENDA    
 
6.1 Synopsis: Declares certain property as surplus, and authorizes the disposal of such.
6.2 Synopsis: Approves three additional applications for exemption of payment for  City Sewer, Refuse, and Stormwater costs for the months of October 1, 2017, through September 30,  2018.
6.3 Synopsis: Awards  RFP #17­03 for the City’s disaster public assistance services to Witt O’Brien’s, LLC.       
6.4 Synopsis: Approves the Utility Work by Highway Contractor Agreement between the City of Fernandina Beach and the  Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT). Also authorizes the City Manager to bind the City for deeds,  easements, agreements, licenses, permits and other agreements related to any services,  facilities or usage of properties and rights­of­way owned by the FDOT costing no more than $20,000.      
 
6.5 FINAL PLAT APPROVAL ­ DUNES OF AMELIA, PHASE TWO ­ RESOLUTION 2017­171  APPROVING FINAL PLAT, PAB CASE 2017­10 TITLED “DUNES OF AMELIA, PHASE TWO”;  AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE. Synopsis: Accepts and approves the plat titled  “Dunes of Amelia, Phase Two” as a final plat.       
 
6.6 Synopsis: Accepts and approves the plat titled  “Lakeside Reserve” as a preliminary plat.       
 
6.7 Synopsis: Approves transfers within respective Departments/Funds for  FY 2016/2017.
       
7. RESOLUTIONS    
7.1 Synopsis: Approves  the  Comcast  Enterprise  Services  Master  Services  Agreement,  The  First  Amendment to the agreement, and the Renewal Service Order.      
 
7.2 Synopsis:  Approves the purchase of two servers and a storage device from Dell, Inc. and the purchasing  agreement.       
 
7.3 Synopsis: Approves a transfer of $35,600 to the Golf Repairs/Maintenance Grounds account from the Golf Reserve account and a transfer of $202,850 to the Airport Repairs/Maintenance Building and Grounds account from the Airport Reserve account.      
 
7.4 Synopsis: Authorizes the City to enter into Agreement No. LP45011 with FDEP  in the amount of $500,000 for the North Fletcher Drainage Basin Project.      
 
7.5 Synopsis:  Authorizes the City to enter into a cost­share agreement with SJRWMD to accept an award of  $251,283 for the construction improvements to the Area 1 drainage system.      
 
7.6 Synopsis: Authorizes the City to request a maintenance easement along the  existing ditch from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP).      
 
7.7 Synopsis:  Approves reimbursement to the City from a future debt issue for costs related to the General Aviation  Terminal project incurred before the debt is issued.      
 
7.8 Synopsis: Approves Task Order #2017­02 with Olsen  Associates, Inc. for Coastal Engineering Services for Beach Management.      
 
7.9 Synopsis: Approves Task Order  #2017­03 with Olsen Associates, Inc. for coastal engineering services for the Alternate Renourishment Project.      
 
7.10 Synopsis: Awards RFQ #17­03 to Brockington and Associates, Inc. for the Historic Resources Survey Update.      
 
7.11 Synopsis: Approves the Construction and Financial Agreement  between Eight Flags Aviation, LLC and the City of Fernandina Beach. Authorizes the City Manager to negotiate and execute a public ramp apron management agreement with Eight Flags Aviation, LLC and authorizes the City Manager to execute Change Order 1 with F&G Construction, not to exceed the original award amount, for the addition of a nose and tail section to the Airport Terminal.           

8. ORDINANCES ­ FIRST READING    
8.1 Synopsis: Amends the Land Development Code specific to variances.       
 
8.2 Synopsis: Approves a Planned Unit Development (PUD) overlay to approximately 5.10 acres located on S. 13th Street between  Hickory Street and Fir Street.      
9. CITY MANAGER REPORTS    
10. CITY ATTORNEY REPORTS    
11. CITY CLERK REPORTS    
12. MAYOR/COMMISSIONER COMMENTS    
13. ADJOURNMENT

Cummer Amelia: Cocktails and Cavases

Cocktails & Canvases Saturday Night White Canvas Chef’s Dinner
The Cocktails & Canvases White Canvas Chef’s Dinner will be hosted at Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort. It will be an immersive culinary event. The evening’s White Canvas menu, led by Executive Chef Daven Wardynski will tease the senses with his culinary exploration in a vibrant visual art setting featuring Amelia Island artist Casey Matthews. This one-of-a-kind experience can’t be missed!
Satuday, November 11, 2017, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Price is $150 plus vendor fee per person

Cocktails & Canvases Main Event Package
Guests will enjoy an unmatched experience with artists, mixologists, and chefs. Stay with the Cocktails & Canvases Main Event package and enjoy an immersive culinary and visual arts dinner. Sunday morning, enjoy the “Art of Breakfast” buffet in Sunrise Café, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, followed by a Local Art Festival in the Shops of Omni Amelia Island Plantation. Includes one-night hotel accommodation.
November 11th and 12th, Only $619 per package based on double occupancy

For further information or to register, visit cocktailscanvases.com. Cummer Museum Members, enter “Museum” in the discount code box when registering.

Knowing the Symptoms of Brain Tumors

A tumor in the brain isn’t like tumors in other parts of your body. It has limited room for growth because of the skull. This means that a growing tumor can squeeze vital parts of the brain and lead to serious health problems. Learning about the possible symptoms of brain tumors can help you know when to tell a doctor about them.

A tumor is an abnormal mass of cells. When most normal cells grow old or get damaged, they die, and new cells take their place. Sometimes, this process goes wrong. New cells form when the body doesn’t need them, and old or damaged cells don’t die as they should. The extra cells can form a tumor.

A tumor that starts in the brain is called a primary brain tumor. People of all ages can develop this type of tumor, even children. And there are many different ways they can form.

“There are over 130 different types of primary brain tumors,” says Dr. Mark R. Gilbert, an NIH brain tumor expert. About 80,000 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with a primary brain tumor each year.

Cancer that has spread to the brain from another part of the body is called a metastatic brain tumor. Metastatic brain tumors are far more common than primary tumors.

Both primary and metastatic brain tumors can cause similar symptoms. Symptoms depend mainly on where the tumor is in the brain.

“The symptoms of brain tumors can be either dramatic or subtle,” Gilbert says. A seizure is an example of a dramatic symptom. About 3 of every 10 patients with a brain tumor are diagnosed after having a seizure, he explains.
Other symptoms are less obvious. For example, you might notice memory problems or weakness on one side of your body. Until symptoms develop, you may not know you have a brain tumor.

If you have symptoms that suggest a brain tumor, tell your doctor. Your doctor will give you a physical exam and ask about your personal and family health history. You may need to have additional tests. Tumors can be detected by imaging methods such as MRI or CT scans.

“Brain imaging technology has really changed the way we are able to visualize abnormalities,” Gilbert explains. It allows brain surgeons to learn as much as possible about the tumor and remove it more safely. NIH researchers are continuing to look for ways to better detect and treat brain tumors. Treatments differ depending on the type and location of the tumor. Treatment can involve surgery, radiation (beams of high energy rays aimed at the tumor), or drugs that kill or block the growth of cancer cells.

Usually, brain tumor treatment requires a team of health care professionals. This may include surgeons, cancer specialists, nutritionists, nurses, and mental health providers. The team does more than treat the tumor. They also try to minimize its impact on a patient’s quality of life.

“There is a definite advantage to being cared for by people who do this on a routine basis,” Gilbert says. A person who has been diagnosed with a brain tumor may want to seek treatment at a nearby cancer center, if possible. To look for a cancer center near you, visit www.cancer.gov/research/nci-role/cancer-centers.
Related Stories

Possible Symptoms of a Brain Tumor
The symptoms of a brain tumor depend on its size, type, and location. The most common ones are listed below. These do not mean you have a brain tumor. But talk with your doctor if you experience any of the following:
-Severe headaches 
-Muscle jerking or twitching (seizures or convulsions)
-Nausea and vomiting
-Changes in speech, vision, or hearing
-Problems balancing or walking
-Changes in your mood, personality, or ability to concentrate
-Problems with memory
-Numbness, tingling, or weakness in the arms or legs

Written by NIH Office of Communications and Public Liaison

Friends of the Library Present: Medicare 101

Press Release: Friends of the Library’s Adult Education Program is sponsoring an informative presentation exploring the many questions that arise in navigating the “ins” and “outs” of Medicare. The program, entitled Medicare 101, will be held on Tuesday afternoon, November 7th at 4:30 p.m. in the Community Room of the Fernandina Beach Library, 25 N. 4th Street, Fernandina Beach.

Learn the basics with an experienced Medicare agent. Some of the many topics that will be addressed include Original Medicare and other options; the meanings of Medicare Parts A, B, C and D; enrollment deadlines; the extent of coverage Medicare provides and other medical insurance options.

This program is free to the public. Participation is limited, so register in advance by calling the library at 904-530-6500, Ext. 1. If you are not able to attend, please call the library to cancel so someone on the waiting list may participate.

For further information regarding this event, on joining Friends of the Library, or to donate, please visit the Friends of the Library website at www.fernandinaFOL.org.

Join TEDxFSCJWomen for a Simulcast Event: TEDWomen2017

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Join TEDxFSCJWomen for a simulcast event direct from the TEDWomen2017 conference in New Orleans. The evening will include a panel of local speakers who will discuss how gender intersects with poverty and what Jacksonville nonprofits are doing to help.

Our local speakers will include:
· Dawn Gilman: CEO, Changing Homelessness
· Teresa Miles: Executive Director, Women’s Center of Jacksonville
· Dr. Gail Patin: CEO, Hubbard House
· Hosted by Courtney Weatherby-Hunter: Women’s Giving Alliance

The evening will also feature “Seven Bridges Out of Poverty,” a portrait gallery and information session from local nonprofits that are helping to lift women out of poverty, including BEAM, Changing Homelessness, Hubbard House, LSF Health Systems, Sulzbacher Center, the Women’s Center of Jacksonville and the Women’s Giving Alliance.

Cost: Free

When: Thursday, November 2, 2017, 6:30-8:30 p.m. *Doors open at 5 p.m. to allow for portrait viewing and networking with representatives from the featured nonprofits.

Where: FSCJ Kent Campus, Room F128; 3939 Roosevelt Blvd., Jacksonville, Florida 32205

For more information, email TEDxFSCJ@gmail.com
Register at https://tedxfscjwomen2017.eventbrite.com/

Keeping Your Gut in Check

Your digestive system is busy. When you eat something, your food takes a twisty trip that starts with being chewed up and ends with you going to the bathroom. A lot happens in between. The health of your gut plays a key role in your overall health and well-being. You can make choices to help your body stay on tract.

Your digestive, or gastrointestinal (GI), tract is a long, muscular tube that runs from your mouth to your anus. It’s about 30 feet long and works with other parts of your digestive system to break food and drink down into smaller molecules of nutrients. The blood absorbs these and carries them throughout the body for cells to use for energy, growth, and repair.

With such a long GI highway, it’s common to run into bumps in the road. About 60 to 70 million Americans are affected by digestive diseases, like gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) or irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). GERD happens when your stomach acid and/or contents come back up into your esophagus (swallowing tube) or throat. This causes uncomfortable symptoms like heartburn and indigestion. IBS is a group of symptoms that includes pain in the abdomen and changes in bowel habits. People with IBS may have constipation, diarrhea, or both. Many more people have other digestive problems, like bloating and stomach pain.

“There are many factors that can impact gut health,” says Dr. Lin Chang, a GI expert at the University of California, Los Angeles. How your body’s built, your family and genetic history, how you manage stress, and what you eat can all affect your gut.

“I see a lot of lifestyle-related GI issues, and there are often no quick fixes for that,” she says. “In general, people do well when they create a more routine schedule, eat a healthy diet and smaller more frequent meals, add in some exercise, and get a good amount of sleep.”

Chang studies the connection between stress and IBS. Her research group has found that people who have early life stress are more likely to develop IBS. “However, this increased risk for IBS went down when people confided in someone they trust about the stress they experienced,” she explains. “Finding healthy ways to manage stress is important for GI health, and your health overall.”

What you eat can help or hurt your digestive system, and influence how you feel. “Increasing fiber is really important for constipation,” says Chang. “Most Americans do not eat a lot of fiber so you have to gradually increase the fiber in your diet. Otherwise you might get gas and more bloating, and won’t stick with [the changes].”
Chang says you should eat at least 20–30 grams of fiber a day for constipation. You can spread out your fiber in small amounts throughout the day. Start with small servings and gradually increase them to avoid gas, bloating, and discomfort.

Try to eat fruits and vegetables at every meal. A variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and nuts can provide a healthy mix of different fibers and nutrients to your diet. An added benefit is that the more fiber and whole foods you eat, the less room you’ll have for less healthy options.

But some fiber-rich foods, called high FODMAP foods, can be hard to digest. Examples include certain fruits and vegetables, dairy products, and wheat and rye products. If you have IBS, your doctor may recommend a diet low in FODMAPS.

Researchers are coming to understand the complex community of bacteria and other microbes that live in the human GI tract. Called gut flora or microbiota, these microbes help with our digestion. But evidence has been growing that gut microbes may influence our health in other ways too. Studies suggest that they may play roles in obesity, type 2 diabetes, IBS, and colon cancer. They might also affect how the immune system functions. This can affect how your body fights illness and disease. Recent studies have found that microbes’ effects on the immune system may impact the development of conditions such as allergy, asthma, and rheumatoid arthritis.

You might have heard that probiotics—live microbes that are similar to those found in the human gut—can improve your gut health. These are also called “friendly bacteria” or “good bacteria.” Probiotics are available in dietary supplements and in certain foods, such as yogurt.

There is some evidence that probiotics may be helpful in preventing diarrhea associated with antibiotics and improving symptoms of IBS, but more needs to be learned. Researchers still don’t know which probiotics are helpful and which aren’t. They also don’t know how much of the probiotics people would have to take or who would most likely benefit from them.

Certain food additives called emulsifiers are something else that may affect your gut health. Emulsifiers are added to many processed foods to improve texture and extend shelf life. But studies show they can affect our gut flora.
“Our work and other research indicate that emulsifiers and other food additives can negatively impact the microbiota and promote inflammatory diseases,” says Georgia State University’s Dr. Andrew Gewirtz. His group has been studying the relationships between food additives, gut bacteria, and disease in mice. The team also plans to examine how different food additives may affect people.

Based on what his team and others have found, Gewirtz advises, “The take home message: Eat a balanced diet and less processed foods.”

“The GI system is complicated and such an important part of our health,” Chang says. “It takes a real partnership between patient and doctor to get to the root of issues. Everyone has to find a healthy routine that works for them.”

She encourages you to take an active role in finding a doctor who makes you feel comfortable. The right doctor will listen carefully to your health history and symptoms. You can help keep your gut in check by talking with your doctor and—together—making the right choices for you.

Wise Choices for Better Gut Health
-Eat slower. Chew your food well before swallowing. It may help you swallow less air and better sense when you’re full.
-Enjoy smaller meals. Eat in moderation to avoid overfilling your stomach and encourage digestion. A packed stomach may also cause reflux, or your food to come back up.
-Set a bedtime for your gut. Try to limit how much you eat after dark. Your GI tract is most active in the morning and daytime.
-Manage stress. Learn healthy ways to reduce stress like relaxation breathing, mindfulness, and exercise. Stress makes it harder to digest your food well.
-Create a routine. Try to eat around the same times each day. Your GI system may do best on a schedule.
-Consider probiotics. Talk with your doctor about taking probiotics (supplemental healthful bacteria). They may ease constipation and IBS symptoms.

Written by NIH Office of Communications and Public Liaison
Editor: Harrison Wein, Ph.D.
Managing Editor: Tianna Hicklin, Ph.D.

FSCJ Offers Free Oral Cancer Screening

Florida State College at Jacksonville (FSCJ) welcomes the public for a free event on the importance of oral cancer screenings as part of its Quarterly Health Series.

Eva Grayzel, a nationally-recognized Master Storyteller and performance artist, was diagnosed with stage IV oral cancer at age 33 and was only given a 15 percent chance of survival. Drawing on her own experience and success story, Ms. Grayzel now applies her stage skills to communicating the importance of regular screenings in a unique and powerful way.

For over a decade, she has captivated dental professionals worldwide using her story as a catalyst for change. The riveting details of her delayed diagnosis stimulate thinking about enhanced patient care and education. A champion for early detection, Eva founded the Six-Step Screening(tm) oral cancer awareness campaign.

Immediately following the presentation, attendees are invited to the FSCJ Dental Hygiene Clinic for complimentary oral cancer screenings with our students under the supervision of clinic dentists.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017, at 5-6 p.m.
Zeke Bryant Auditorium – FSCJ North Campus, 4501 Capper Road, Jacksonville, FL 32218

Dealing with Hurt Feelings and Self Injury

People deal with difficult feelings in all sorts of ways. They may talk with friends, go work out, or listen to music. But some people may feel an urge to hurt themselves when distressed. Harming or thinking about harming yourself doesn’t mean you have a mental disorder. But it is an unhealthy way to cope with strong feelings. Finding new ways to cope can help you get through difficult times.

Some unhealthy ways people may try to relieve emotional pain include cutting, burning, or hitting themselves. These behaviors can be difficult to detect. People usually keep them a secret. Wounds can often be treated at home and covered with clothing or jewelry.

“The largest percentage of people who engage in non-suicidal self-injuring behaviors are teenagers,” says Dr. Jennifer Muehlenkamp, an NIH-funded psychologist at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Around 2 out of 10 teens and college-aged students report trying this behavior at least once.

Those are the key ages because youths are changing environments, Muehlenkamp explains. “Transitioning into college or from junior high into high school creates a lot of potential change. You lose the familiarity of your social group, and your social support might shift. There’s a lot of new stress and pressures.”

People who are anxious, are depressed, or have an eating disorder are also more likely to turn to self-injuring behaviors. So are those in sexual minority groups who experience discrimination and bullying, such as those who identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transsexual.

“Self-injury is a sign that someone is struggling,” says Muehlenkamp. “Many youths transition out of it. But those who engage in it more repetitively and chronically may benefit from a direct clinical intervention.”

If you’re a parent or caregiver who’s concerned, look for frequent unexplained injuries and clues like bandages in trash cans. Watch to see if the person wears appropriate clothing for the weather. Someone who is self-harming may wear long pants or sleeves to cover their injuries, even when it’s hot.

“The way most people find out is the person who is self-injuring will disclose it,” Muehlenkamp says. They often tell a friend or a sibling first.

If someone confides in you, “your first reaction is essential to whether or not they will seek help,” Muehlenkamp explains. “Be as nonreactive and nonjudgmental as possible.”

Not everyone who self-injures is suicidal. But the only way to know is to ask. If they express any suicidal thinking, get them connected with a mental health provider. You can also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) for advice.

Parents can open conversations with their kids by asking them if they’ve heard of self-harming behaviors or if they know friends who do it. If a friend has confided in them, they can offer to go talk to a trusted adult with their friend to get them help.

There are no medications for treating self-injuring behaviors. But some medications can help treat mental disorders that the person may be dealing with, like depression or anxiety. Mental health counseling or therapy can also help you learn new ways to cope with emotion. See the Wise Choices box for tips on handling strong emotion.

Written by NIH Office of Communications and Public Liaison
Editor: Harrison Wein, Ph.D.
Managing Editor: Tianna Hicklin, Ph.D.

1 2 3 174