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Keyword: health

Free Flu Shots Saturday, October 13

by Gregory Wm. Branch, M.D., MBA, CPE, FACP, Director, Baltimore County Department of Health and Human Services

The quote most often attributed to Ben Franklin, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” continues to ring true – especially as it relates to flu vaccinations. The Baltimore County Department of Health is working to lessen the impact of the 2018-2019 flu season by providing free flu shots Saturday, October 13, 2018.

This very important vaccination can help safeguard you and your loved ones against the flu. We recommend that persons six months and older get it as early as possible. The free vaccination will be given at seven locations throughout the county from 9:00 a.m. until noon on Saturday. No appointment is necessary.

Preventing the flu should be everyone’s goal, and the best way to do that is know the flu FACTS.

Frequently wash your hands.

Washing hands with soap and water for 20-30 seconds is the best form of protection to reduce the spread of germs. If soap and water is not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

Always get an annual flu shot.

Flu viruses are constantly changing. Last season’s flu vaccine may not protect against newer viruses, and an annual vaccination is the only way to maintain protection each season.

Cover your coughs and sneezes.     

Use a tissue to cover your coughs and sneezes; then throw it away.  If you do not have a tissue, cough and sneeze into the crease of your arm (elbow area) to prevent your droplets from spreading. Never cough or sneeze into your hands.

Take time off from school, work, and social activities if you have symptoms.

Some common symptoms include:

  • Fever or feeling feverish/chills
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue (tiredness)

Seek medical care if your symptoms get worse.

If your condition does not improve after taking over-the-counter medication to alleviate symptoms, call you doctor.

Spread the word (and not the flu). Ask your friends and family to join you at one of seven locations on Saturday, October 13 from 9:00 a.m. to noon. When you and your family are “flu free” this season, you’ll be glad you did.

For more information, go to http://resources.baltimorecountymd.gov/Documents/Health/flyers/flushots.pdf

Keywords: flu, flu shots, health

October 3-4 Event Highlights Health and Well-Being

by Ethel Rasmussen, Baltimore County Department of Aging

Everyone is searching for the secrets to living longer and living well. Research has proven that one key tool to a better quality of life is empowering yourself with resources to enhance your living: mind-stimulating activities, fitness opportunities, community supports, engagement, and good nutrition. But where do you find these tools?

Baltimore County Department of Aging has simplified your search with a two-day event, the Power of Age Expo, October 3 and 4, 2018, at the Timonium Fairgrounds. In its 31st year, the Expo offers resources and enjoyment for older adults, caregivers, veterans, persons with disabilities and professionals.

Upon entry, the world of possibilities is opened to guests. Whether you are an active 80 year old looking for travel or health screenings, a caregiver caring in need of community resources to make your mother safer, a World War II veteran with questions about service benefits, or a professional looking to find tools to serve your clients better, Expo is the place to be.

The main stage will move and groove both days with amazing entertainment including Nashville recording star Josh Christina, Wednesday from 4-6 p.m., and the locally acclaimed band Appaloosa, Thursday from 1-4 p.m.  (Dancing is great exercise!)

You can visit feature areas including:

  • GBMC will offer games to discover their health services.
  • Giant will educate on nutrition and medication management.
  • Advanced Hearing will test your hearing and provide advice.
  • Baltimore County Department of Aging Senior Centers will spotlight classes and programs.
  • The Baltimore County Public Library will outline technology for library patrons.
  • A Veterans Muster will display programs helping veterans.
  • The Department of Health and Human Services will screen, educate and inform about their programs.
  • AARP will host a pledge to vote exhibit.

There are so many things to do that it could take two days to appreciate the many activities and features at the show. Plan to visit the following areas:

  • The Pamper Yourself Area, where Baltimore County Public School students will paint your nails at no cost.
  • The Power of Age Art Show, showcasing 70 artworks from around the County, competing to be named “Best in Category.”
  • The Flu and Pneumonia Shot Clinic to get a vaccine for prevention.
  • The Health and Wellness Corner, where local university and college students will provide free education and health screenings.
  • The Cuddle Shuttle, a pet-adoption van where you can adopt a fur-ever friend from Baltimore County Animal Services.

Expo guests will leave better prepared to live longer and live well, empowered by resources, entertainment and fun!

The Baltimore County Department of Aging’s Power of Age Expo is Wednesday, October 3, 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. and Thursday, October 4, 2018, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. at the Timonium Fairgrounds. Admission is a donation or two non-perishable food items.  


By Gregory Wm. Branch, M.D., MBA, CPE, FACP, Director, Department of Health and Human Services

With prom season upon us, it is particularly important that adults do their part to reduce youth access to alcohol and tobacco. The responsibility falls on our entire community to help ensure that our children have long, healthy lives.

The vast majority of current smokers started in their teens, and studies have shown that tobacco is a gateway to using other substances and engaging in high-risk behavior. Nicotine is highly addictive and the carcinogens cause cancer and a host of other health conditions.

Underage drinking also poses many risks, both social and health-related. The greater risks to health include higher incidence of traffic accidents, impaired judgment that can lead to illegal drug use and even death. Youth are at risk for restricted development of their brains, bones and organs when they drink alcohol. Youth who drink alcohol also are at increased risk for academic underachievement.

The best way to prevent youth from using alcohol and tobacco is to ensure that they do not have access to them.

I urge retailers to CARD everyone.

Check their ID.

Act Responsibly by actually reading the ID and verifying the birthdate. When you realize the youth is not of age, Don’t sell.

For information on quit smoking classes or substance use prevention services and resources, call 410-88-REACH (410-887-3224).

Keywords: alcohol, health, show id, tobacco

 
 
Revised September 11, 2017