April 29, 2017
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‘Ringxiety’: Your dinging, buzzing, vibrating phone is stressing you out — and so is its silence


Doug Ross, 31, wakes every morning to a screen full of notifications.

He receives updates from news apps, chats from coworkers and emails from East Coast clients, all beckoning to be answered before the workday even starts. Working during the day as a consultant for the software company Adobe, the alerts pour in on a near-constant basis. He usually answers within seconds.

“I never have it away from my person,” said Ross, a Sacramento, Calif., resident, about his phone. “That gives me anxiety. It bothers me, because I know what is going to be on the phone when I get back to it, or what I’m going to miss.”

Make it a good day: Could quest for happiness boost mental health?


LA CROSSE, Wis. — You don’t have to be giddy to be up, but Sandy Brekke, Heather Quackenboss and Jen Rombalski combine the two as they plan to put lessons from the World Happiness Summit to good use in the Coulee Region.

The trio also are taking a serious approach in setting goals to enhance mental health as part of the La Crosse Medical Health Science Consortium’s Behavioral Health Project, under a state Changemaker grant and in collaboration with the Great Rivers United Way.

Wiser prescribers: Dentists work to ease patients’ pain with fewer opioids


Firsts can be life-changing — think about your first kiss, your first time behind the wheel of a car. But what about the first time you got a prescription for a narcotic?

James Hatzell, from Collingswood, N.J., is now a technology officer for a college addiction treatment program. He didn’t realize it at the time, but that spring day of his junior year of high school — seven years ago — was a pivotal moment in his life.

Getting at the heart of health care


With heart disease-related deaths the leading cause of death in Kenosha County, primary care physicians now have a direct connection to industry leaders in how to treat and prevent heart disease right in their backyard.

Two cardiologists from the Kenosha Medical Group-Zenith Health Care — Dr. Raaid Museitif and Dr. Indrajit Choudhuri — started the Great Lakes Cardiology Symposium in 2016 with the intention of focusing on innovation and technology for cardiovascular care and wellness. Held at the Radisson Hotel and Conference Center in Pleasant Prairie on Saturday, 270 primary care physicians, cardiologists, surgeons, lab technicians and nurse practice attended the conference.

Parenthood can boost your longevity, if you don’t die from the stress first


Want to live longer? Have children. If you don’t die early from child-rearing stress, parenthood will boost your longevity chances, according to a new study out of Sweden.

Researchers at the Karolinska Institute used national registry data to track 1.5 million Swedes born between 1911 and 1925 as they lived through their last years. While the risk of death naturally increased with age for all adults, the team found that those with children had greater longevity.

A long road to a diagnosis: Lyme disease symptoms can be mistaken for other ailments


If it wasn’t for a bull’s-eye rash 10 years prior, the achy joints, fatigue, brain fog and eventual locked jaw Victoria “Tori” Salerno has experienced as a teenager could have gone misdiagnosed for decades.

The symptoms of Lyme disease are often attributed to other ailments and chronic illnesses such as fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, chronic fatigue syndrome and thyroid disease. Some older adults have even been misdiagnosed with dementia, according to medical journal reports.

Sugar-free empathy: Central students support classmate


Students in Karen Ditthardt’s class at Central High School were not obligated to take part in a 28-day sugar challenge. Giving up confections would not sweeten their grade.

They also didn’t eliminate sugar from their diet as a religious obligation — though some will carry the fast through the Lenten season.

‘Take charge’ against cancer: Area African-American women urged to get regular checkups, eat right, exercise


Much of Racine’s central city area and a smaller portion of Kenosha have some of the highest incidences of late-stage breast cancer diagnoses, according to cancer prevention specialists and educators who presented early studies at a program for African-American women held at Gateway Technical College last month.

Melinda Stolley, a clinical psychologist and associate director for cancer prevention and control for the Medical College of Wisconsin, and her colleagues have been studying disparities among income, racial, ethnic and gender groups in the southeast corner of the state.

Love story: Former governor shares his experiences in caring for wife with Alzheimer’s


Marty Schreiber learned to love his high school sweetheart and wife of 56 years all over again.

The former Wisconsin governor offered his experience as a caregiver and shared his many struggles in dealing with Alzheimer’s disease in a presentation, both informative and touching, on Thursday at the Northside Library, 1500 27th Ave.

Heart care a priority at UHS


For several years, patients of United Hospital Systems have received diagnostic and interventional cardiac care at its two Kenosha medical centers.

In 1992, a cardiac catheterization lab and cardiac surgery unit was installed at Kenosha Medical Center, named the Michael DeBakey Heart Institute of Wisconsin.

Heart care close to home


When Kenosha resident Debra Hill experienced chest pains 10 years ago, she found herself traveling to Aurora St. Luke’s in Milwaukee for a heart catheterization to diagnose her condition.

In January of this year, Hill again had a bout of severe chest pain. This time the 58-year-old woman was able to get her heart examined locally, at the new Interventional Cardiology Suite at Aurora Medical Center.

Brain pollution? Researchers look at link between dirty air, dementia


The air you breathe does more than affect your lungs.

A new study published this week found that older women exposed to air polluted by vehicle exhaust and other damaging particles are almost twice as likely to develop dementia. Others who carried a specific gene were almost four times likelier to develop loss of memory and reasoning skills.

Who needs stress? We all do


If you could do something to decrease your risk of memory failure, to increase your self-confidence, to be a better public speaker, to improve your brain, to help you deal with back pain, to bust out of your comfort zone, to make your children more resilient … would you do it?

What if it involved embracing what we all to our utmost to steer clear of — namely, stress?

Seeking her independence: Young woman with epilepsy hopes service dog will bring her freedom, peace of mind


Christina George hopes to one day help kids with special needs live their lives to the fullest potential.

The 19-year-old woman from Pleasant Prairie knows that can be a very delicate balance.

Winter biking spikes in popularity


CHICAGO — It may be 5 degrees below zero with the wind chill, but Matt Barrington, 31, of North Lawndale, still bikes to work every day.

“It’s nice to get some fresh air every morning,” Barrington said. “Once you get going, you get warm pretty quick.”

The process of change: How to be one of the cool kids who make New Year’s resolutions stick


When the new year dawns, thoughts often turn to resolutions. Will this be the year you (fill in the blank) stop smoking? Start swimming? Limit sodas? Increase vegetable intake? Stop being snarky? Start being grateful? All of the above?

Whatever your plan and however bold your intentions, there’s always the danger of a slip-up, alas. With that in mind, two University of North Texas faculty members in the Department of Disability and Addiction Rehabilitation have tips to keep those resolutions strong. Paula Heller Garland is a senior lecturer; Justin Watts, an assistant professor.

Jim Kruse finds hope despite medical challenges


Twenty-six years ago, Jim Kruse spent his time raising miniature horses, announcing horse shows, working with 4-H and the county fair, attending Green Bay Packer games and bowling.

These days, most of his waking hours are spent just feeding himself.

‘I can taste food again’: Miracle fruit comes to the rescue for thousands of cancer patients


MIAMI — Her water tasted like rusty pennies; the pepperoni pizza like metallic cardboard.

The more chemotherapy sessions Monica Faison-Finch got, the faster her taste buds gave out. Over time she became thinner and thinner as her appetite diminished. Everything that touched her tongue was tasteless.

What to do when someone is choking


Choking occurs when a foreign object becomes lodged in the throat or windpipe, blocking the flow of air. In adults, a piece of food often is the culprit. Young children often swallow small objects. Because choking cuts off oxygen to the brain, administer first aid as quickly as possible.

The universal sign for choking is hands clutched to the throat. If the person doesn’t give the signal, look for these indications:

Making a ‘fast appeal’: Slowing down senior’s hospital discharge requires swift action


The old man slept quietly as his daughter sat by his hospital bed. Suddenly, an aide walked in and announced that a move was imminent.

“Your time here is up,” Bonnie Miller Rubin remembers the aide explaining. “He’s going to a nursing home.”

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