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    Exploring New Treatment Strategies in Mental Healthcare

    Last updated 1 month ago

    Treating mental health disorder is a tricky area, because many people with mental illnesses will never seek the professional care they need. Even when individuals do seek help for their mental health, they may not get the comprehensive treatment they need to manage complex disorders like bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, or ADHD. Reform in mental healthcare is changing the way that patients receive care and become empowered to manage their health, and technology is making a big impact on the ongoing treatment of mental illnesses and behavioral disorders. Here is a look at some of the more modern treatment modalities that are making a difference for the level of care patients receive.

    Web-based Therapy

    With the ready availability of web-based chats, there are now more avenues for group therapy and support groups from the comfort of home. Open forums and online discussion groups may allow individuals to gain more information, open up, and participate in more meaningful conversations with a valuable social component.

    Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Apps

    Some of the therapies that were previously confined to a clinical setting are also becoming more accessible thanks to modern smartphone technology. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is one example that is now available in app form, which can be helpful for logging and evaluating thoughts. Interactive breathing apps are also helpful for fighting anxiety or managing panic attacks.

    Nutritional Management

    There is a strong connection between mental and physical health, and this is changing the way that mental illnesses may be evaluated. For example, in some individuals with behavioral disorders, food allergies or sensitivity may worsen mental symptoms. Therefore, a nutritional plan may be incorporated into treatment. Physical therapies like therapeutic yoga and meditation are becoming more conventional in mental healthcare as well.

    The hospitals of the HCA Far West Division strive to remain on the cutting edge of care in a wide range of medical specialties—including mental and behavioral health. To discover our clinical and community services in Southern Nevada and California, visit us online or call (855) 422-9378.  

    Establishing the Right Habits Now for Better Health in the Future

    Last updated 1 month ago

    Young people often do not worry about their health, because issues such as hypertension, diabetes, and high cholesterol may not develop until later on in life. Without urgent health problems to consider, it is easy to fall into a sedentary lifestyle and overindulge in fatty foods, alcohol, and other components of a not-so-healthy diet. Yet, if you take the time to invest in your health now, you can enjoy a longer life without the significant health concerns of heart disease, dementia, and stroke.

    Get Fit and Stay Active

    Research has shown that those who are fit at 40 tend to have slower rates of brain aging at 60 than individuals who had lower fitness levels at the same age. Even just a small amount of cardiovascular activity each day such as an afternoon walk can be critical in delaying or halting the onset of conditions like Alzheimer’s and other causes of dementia. Ongoing research continues to indicate a strong connection between physical activity and brain health—particularly physical activity that begins early on in life.

    Eat Plenty of “Brain Foods”

    You can nourish your body and your mind by establishing a diet primarily consisting of whole, plant-based foods. You may need to shift more to cooking at home so that you can enjoy fewer processed foods while providing yourself with the nutrients you need. Focusing on “brain foods” may be beneficial too, and these are foods that are rich in antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids such as nuts, berries, fatty fish, and dark chocolate.

    Consider a Holistic Approach

    Instead of managing your health from a symptom-based approach, you might begin to take a holistic outlook of treating your whole body and mind rather than a single symptom. This means that you should see your doctor for checkups even when you have no apparent symptoms and remember that all of your habits will ultimately affect your health.

    With the California and Nevada hospitals in the HCA Far West Division, you can become empowered to manage your health more effectively with abundant resources such as our H2U program and Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line. To begin exploring the services offered at the HCA hospital in your neighborhood, visit our website or call us at (855) 422-9378. 

    Healthy Food Myths that Could Put Your Wellness in Danger

    Last updated 1 month ago

    Eating right is critical to your health, but it can be difficult to know what is really healthy and what’s not. With a number of health trends circulating and ongoing nutritional research taking place, you might hear that a certain type of food is healthy one day and not the next, making it hard to stay on track with healthy eating. Below, you can get a look at some of the most prominent health myths that might be throwing off your nutrition and preventing you from feeling your best.

    Myth: Gluten-free is healthy

    Eating gluten-free is only necessary if you have a sensitivity or allergy to gluten. Many people who are following gluten-free diets don’t need to. Eating a gluten-free diet when unnecessary can actually cause a vitamin deficiency. Plus, the gluten-free products that have been appearing in great numbers on grocery store shelves are no healthier than their wheat-containing counterparts. In most cases, these products are actually higher in sugars and saturated fats.

    Myth: There is no reason to limit fat consumption

    There has been significant debate about whether or not fat is good for you and how much of it should be in your diet. The truth is that your body does need fat, but the specific type of fat is important to consider. Saturated fats are more potentially harmful to your heart than poly and monounsaturated fats, which should be consumed in larger quantities in foods like fish, avocados, and olive oil.

    Myth: Juice cleanses can help you stay healthy

    Juice cleanses are based on the idea that consuming only juice for several days will detoxify the body. However, the body already disposes of toxins on its own, and consuming juice rather than whole foods causes dangerous peaks and valleys in your blood sugar. Plus, juicing can lead to foodborne illnesses if fruits and vegetables are not handled correctly during home juicing.

    To learn more about how to take charge of your health, explore the community classes and events at your local hospital in the HCA Far West Division. You can reach us online or call (855) 422-9378 to speak with one of our nurses in Nevada or California. 

    How Can Antibiotic Resistance Be Combated?

    Last updated 1 month ago

    The discovery of antibiotics was a turning point for modern medicine, as antibiotic drugs can ­­fight a number of harmful infections that were once considered likely causes of death. However, antibiotics can be dangerous when they are not used correctly. Overusing antibiotics creates antibiotic resistance, which means that drugs prescribed for a certain infection will no longer work to cure it. This gives rise to antibiotic-resistant bacteria, which is a significant medical concern in the United States. While medical research centers and healthcare providers work to fight this problem on a large scale, you can do a few things in your own life to reduce antibiotic resistance in your household.

    Use Antibiotics Wisely

    Antibiotics are only effective in treating bacterial infections, and they should only be taken when prescribed. When you are on antibiotics, your symptoms may clear up before the medication runs out, but you should continue to take the medicine following your doctor’s instructions until it is gone. Many people assume that antibiotics will offer relief of common illnesses like the cold and flu, but this is not the case, as these illnesses are viruses, not bacterial infections.

    Avoid Antibacterial Soaps and Hand Sanitizers

    Another problem that contributes to antibiotic resistance is the overuse of antibacterial soap and hand sanitizer. Antibacterial soaps are in no way more effective than other soaps and water, and they carry the risk of creating antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Plus, antibacterial soaps may harm the environment and disrupt endocrine function, so it is best to avoid them in the home and workplace.

    Get Vaccinated

    When you follow an appropriate vaccination schedule, you are less likely to get sick, which means that you will not be as tempted to take antibiotics when they may not be needed. It is much easier to prevent diseases than treat them, so you will not want to avoid immunizations, boosters, and your annual flu shot.

    If you are exploring ways to keep yourself and your family healthy, connect with one of the HCA Far West Division hospitals in Southern Nevada or California. You can read about our services online or call us at (855) 422-9378 to speak with one of our registered nurses.

    Quick Tips for Better Nutrition

    Last updated 2 months ago

    Improving your food choices is an excellent step toward supporting your overall health and reducing your risk of chronic diseases. One way to learn more about nutrition is to visit your local hospital and consult a dietitian. You could also use some simple tricks to get more vegetables in your diet. For example, choose low-sodium, vegetable-rich soups like butternut squash soup or garden vegetable soup. If your schedule has you on the run frequently, chop up veggies on the weekend and package them in small containers. You could grab a container of carrot sticks, bell pepper slices, or broccoli florets while you’re on your way to watch your kids’ sports games, for example.

    Another way to improve your nutrition is to make smart beverage choices. Many people would be surprised to learn how many empty calories and how much sugar they consume from soft drinks, energy drinks, and fancy coffees. Water is always an excellent beverage choice; however, nonfat or low-fat milk is also healthy and provides needed nutrients. Or, you might choose a low-sodium vegetable juice for a satisfying snack.

    The HCA Far West Division is a network of community hospitals with dedicated professionals who can help you learn to make wise food choices to support your health. If you would like to speak with a registered nurse at our hospital network, call (855) 422-9378.

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Disclaimer: The materials provided are intended for informational purposes only. You should contact your doctor for medical advice. Use of and access to this website or other materials do not create a physician-patient relationship. The opinions expressed through this website are the opinions of the individual author and may not reflect the opinions of the hospital, medical staff, or any individual physician or other healthcare professional.
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