What is Well & Wise? Well & Wise is a health education partnership led by Howard County General Hospital: A Member of Johns Hopkins Medicine and the Howard County Library System, both in Columbia, Maryland. What is the vision of the partnership? The vision is to enhance, advance, and elevate health education in Howard County, improving the health of our entire community. What is the... read more
Howard County General Hospital
Howard County General Hospital: A Member of Johns Hopkins Medicine is a private, not-for-profit, community health care provider, governed by a community-based board of trustees. Opened in 1973, the original 59-bed, short-stay hospital has grown into a 249-bed comprehensive, acute-care medical center specializing in women’s and children’s services, surgery, cardiology, oncology,... read more
Howard County Library
A major component of Howard County’s strong education system, Howard County Library System is a nationally recognized leader among the great public library systems that delivers high-quality public education for all... read more
What is Well & Wise? Well & Wise is a health education partnership led...
Howard County General Hospital
Howard County General Hospital: A Member of Johns Hopkins Medicine is a...
Howard County Library
A major component of Howard County’s strong education system, Howard...
With another flu season approaching, now is the perfect time to get a flu shot! Flu vaccines are now being offered at doctor’s offices, pharmacies and health fairs in Howard County, and are often offered free of charge or covered by insurance. This Friday, they are available at the 50+ Expo at Wilde Lake High School in Columbia, courtesy of the Howard County Health Department.
The flu can be a serious illness. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), during recent flu seasons, between 80 and 90 percent of flu-related deaths have occurred in people age 65 years and older. Children and those with other health conditions may also become more seriously ill with the flu.
Tuesday, October 13, 1:00 p.m. -3:00 p.m. Blood Pressure Screening at Elkridge Branch. Free, walk-in blood pressure screening and monitoring offered by Howard County General Hospital: A Member of Johns Hopkins Medicine. Well & Wise event. No registration required.
Wednesday, October 14, 10:30 a.m. EatPlayGrow™ at Elkridge Branch. Explore health and safety concepts inspired by children’s literature. Ages 3-5 with adult; 45 min. Multi-week series. Ticket required. Limited space; tickets available at Children’s Desk 15 minutes before class.
Wednesday, October 14, 7:00 p.m. CPR Class at Central Branch. Sudden Cardiac Arrest can happen to anyone, anytime, anywhere and kills someone every two minutes in the United States. Learn to save someone’s life in this class that teaches the simple steps of Hands-Only CPR for victims over the age of eight years old. Discover how to recognize sudden cardiac arrest, how to perform Hands-Only CPR, and how to operate an Automated External Defibrillator (AED). This is a non-certification class. In partnership with Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services. Well & Wise event.Register online or by calling 410-313-7800.
As technology increasingly shapes and informs how we interact with each other online, how can we foster positive communication through social media, and how can we encourage people to make good choices about the information they share? What does it mean to be a good digital citizen, and what impact does our online presence have on our off-line reputation? How and why do our online and offline personas differ? Could our online personas benefit from more deliberate thought about how we portray ourselves and interact with others? What role, if any, should civility play in our online personas? Learn how social media users of all ages can cultivate and demonstrate digital civility, appropriate communication, and personal responsibility when using social media platforms.
Wellness permeates all facets of our lives from physical and mental to behavioral and beyond.
Howard County Library System invites you to join the discussion and register for this event here.
Saturday, October 03, 2:00 p.m. I’m Going to Be a Big Brother or Sister at Central Branch. Prepare for the arrival of a baby in this class for new siblings. Enjoy stories, activities, and bring a favorite doll or stuffed animal to practice holding your baby. Resources for parents, too. Families; 30 – 45 min. Ticket required. Well & Wise event. In partnership with Howard County General Hospital: A Member of Johns Hopkins Medicine. Limited space; tickets available at Children’s Desk 15 minutes before class.
Monday, October 05, 3:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. Blood Pressure Screening at Glenwood Branch. Free, walk-in blood pressure screening and monitoring offered by Howard County General Hospital: A Member of Johns Hopkins Medicine. Well & Wise event. No registration required.
Thursday, October 08, 7:00 p.m. CPR Class at East Columbia Branch. Sudden Cardiac Arrest can happen to anyone, anytime, anywhere and kills someone every two minutes in the United States. Learn to save someone’s life in this class that teaches the simple steps of Hands-Only CPR for victims over the age of eight years old. Discover how to recognize sudden cardiac arrest, how to perform Hands-Only CPR, and how to operate an Automated External Defibrillator (AED). This is a non-certification class. In partnership with Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services. Well & Wise event.Register online or by calling 410-313-7700.
Living with Lupus Lupus is a chronic, autoimmune disease that can affect any part of the body, most often the joints, skin and/or organs. It is a disease of flares and remissions and the most common symptoms are joint pain, facial rash and fatigue.
How do I know if I have Lupus?
Lupus can often be difficult to diagnose because the symptoms mimic a variety of other diseases. Generally, a blood test is used to diagnose lupus when a patient has joint pain or a facial rash. The severity and types of symptoms you have determine if you need to see a specialist. Most often, a rheumatologist will treat lupus, but in some cases, it can impact other areas such as the kidneys and nerves, and you will see a different specialist.
Who Gets Lupus?
Anyone can get lupus, but it is much more likely in women than men, especially women ages 15 to 44. Additionally, though all races and ethnic groups can develop lupus, women who are not Caucasian are more prone to be diagnosed. The likelihood of getting lupus also increases with family history. If you have lupus, your children have a higher chance of having it.
Often mistaken for being contagious through sexual contact, this is not a disease that you can “catch” or “give” to someone.
Lupus is a disease of flares (when symptoms appear and the disease worsens) that come and go, lasting anywhere from a couple of weeks to many years. Flares can be caused or worsened by:
Being out in the sun
Treatment Lupus is a disease that varies in severity. While some people may have very severe cases, others’ cases are so mild it barely affects them. Although there is not a cure for lupus, a variety of medications can treat the disease and control symptoms.
One very common misconception that people have is that if you have lupus you will die from it. The reality is that more people have milder cases of the disease and, while they need to be treated, they can live a pretty normal life.
As with any medical condition, patients should work to stay healthy with these tips:
Join a support group
Exercise and stay active
Maintain a healthy diet (high in omega-3 fatty acids) and weight – this is additionally important because those with lupus have a slightly increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease
Get involved in your health care and see your doctor regularly
Avoid significant sun exposure and use high SPF sunscreen
Get sufficient rest and avoid stress
Drug-induced lupus presents with lupus-like symptoms that have been caused by certain drugs. Some prescription drugs associated with this phenomenon are used to treat infection, hypertension, irregular heart rhythms and tuberculosis. Patients typically experience a milder form of lupus with a rash or joint aches. Not everyone who takes these drugs will develop drug-induced lupus and, typically, when you stop taking the medication, the lupus-like symptoms disappear.
Steven Geller, M.D., is an internal medicine physician with Centennial Medical Group in Elkridge. Appointments: 410-730-3399. (Chaim Mond, M.D., is a rheumatologist in Columbia. Appointments: 410-580-1330.)
Tuesday, September 29, 10:30 a.m. Brain Aerobics at Miller Branch. Give your brain a workout. Enhance your memory and have fun! Challenge your brain with puzzles, word games, and other smart tasks. Well & Wise event. Register online or by calling 410-313-1950.
How many hours does your child spend in front of a screen? Factoring in smart phone, video game, computer, and television time, the average child today spends 7 hours with electronic media. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) advises parents to wait until a child is at least 2 before allowing any screen time. Older children and teens should be limited to 1-2 hours per day. The AAP recommends that every home have a “screen-free zone” where there are no electronic devices. Ideally, bedrooms and dining areas should have no computers, televisions or video game consoles.
The Johns Hopkins Medicine online library includes information on school-aged children’s developmental milestones as well as television guidelines. Children learn and enjoy so many new skills and activities as they grow. Watching television to the exclusion of playing, reading, doing crafts and spending time with friends narrows a child’s world. When they do watch television, children benefit from watching with their parents so they can discuss what they see. Selecting kid-appropriate shows allows parents to guide their children toward the highest quality programming. Most children spend 3 hours per day watching television. This is time that could instead be spent participating in sports, exploring nature, writing a poem, playing a new board game or discovering an amazing author.
Excess screen time has been associated with poor school performance, attention deficit disorder, and obesity in children. Increased exposure to social media platforms places children at higher risk of bullying, anxiety disorders, depression, suicidal ideation, and dangerous behavior. We are all so busy that it is already challenging to get enough sleep. Using electronic devices before bedtime, however, can make it more difficult for children to fall asleep and contributes to sleep disorders.
Cherise Tasker is an Instructor & Research Specialist at the Central Branch and has a background in health information. Most evenings, Cherise can be found reading a book, attending a book club meeting, or coordinating a book group.