May Wellness Corner

May is Mental Health Awareness Month

Amid all the chaos that can happen when trying to balance work and family time, it can be tough to take care of yourself – both physically and mentally. When you don’t keep up with your physical health, you’ll likely notice changes such as weight gain or a lower energy level, but when your mental health is suffering, it can be trickier to notice the symptoms.

Approximately 1 out of every 5 adults in the U.S. experiences a mental illness each year. To help spread awareness about recognizing symptoms, Mental Health America started Mental Health Awareness Month back in 1949. Along with helping people recognize when there might be an issue, the month of May is also all about encouraging open discussions about mental health and sharing resources to help with coping.

Make your mental health a priority.

Whether or not you have been diagnosed with a mental illness, don’t hesitate to reach out whenever you’re experiencing symptoms or simply need someone to talk to. More information about PPV’s Employee Assistance Program is at the end of this newsletter.

Learn how to help others.

Take some time to study resources that can help you talk to a loved one who is suffering from mental health issues. Resources can be found online, as well as through books or therapy groups. Try keeping resources in your home or someplace where you’ll have easy access in case a time of crisis unexpectedly presents itself. A great program to check out is QPR, which stands for Question, Persuade, and Refer. QPR is a mental health emergency intervention just like CPR. You can learn more about QPR as well as training opportunities online!

Spread the word.

If you’re someone who has found successful ways to cope with a mental illness, you can help encourage others who may be going through a similar situation by telling your story. Using outlets like social media platforms, blogs, and support groups can help inspire others.

While taking care of your mental health should be a priority all year long, Mental Health Awareness Month is the perfect time to make a positive lifestyle change.

Physical Health Corner People, Pets & Vets

Spring is here and that means sunshine, beautiful blooms, and allergy season. So instead of spending this beautiful season indoors with a stuffy head and watery eyes, here are a few ways to avoid an uncomfortable, itchy season:
Always check with your healthcare provider but try an over-the-counter medication. Start taking it early. If allergies make you feel itchy, a non-sedating oral antihistamine might be your best bet. Can’t sleep at night? Try a 100% sedation antihistamine like Benedryl.Ask your healthcare provider about switching from synthetics and opting for natural treatment. Natural supplements such as nettles and plant pigment quercetin can relieve allergy-induced runny nose, watery eyes, hives and swelling. And if you suffer from mild allergies, Vitamin C in 500 -1000mg doses three times daily can serve as a natural antihistamine, so ask your doctor to learn more.
Rinse your nasal passage daily. Keeping your passage clear can help with headaches and inflammation. Try a gentle saline nasal rinse with an irrigation pot to dilute and rinse away pollens and molds.Spring clean your home. Spring cleaning is more than just clearing away the holiday clutter – a thorough clean can also help keep those allergies under control. Pay special attention to areas of your home that collect dust and other areas where pollen and other allergens may be getting inside.
Social Health Corner People, Pets & Vets
What bin does this go in?
Many individuals have access to recycling programs and options, and we’re pretty familiar with what we can drop in those bins.
Plastic bottles, aluminum cans, and cardboard boxes are staples of the recycling life. However, there are a lot of other household items you may not necessarily think of as being recyclable. Let’s look at a few of these items and see how we can most responsibly dispose of them.
Cooking oil is something many folks just pour down the drain. However, cooking oil can stop up drains, pipes, and even citywide sanitation systems. Simply designate a sturdy container to store your used oil in (metal coffee cans are great for this) and pour your used oil into it every time you cook. Click HERE to find a location near you to recycle your cooking oil.
Other recyclable items commonly thrown out are batteries. These contain mixes of chemical elements and metals that can be harmful to human health and to the environment if disposed of improperly. It’s important to note that there are many different kinds of batteries; check HERE for a helpful rundown of where and how to safely recycle each type.
You may have never considered shoes as recyclable, but they are! Notably, Nike will accept any type of athletic sneaker – you can drop your old shoes at any Nike store. If you have other kinds of shoes you don’t want to just throw out, check HERE for several convenient options.
These may all seem like small things in the grand scheme, but taking a little time to recycle these uncommon objects helps reduce waste and harm to the earth.

If you would like additional information on emotional and mental health, you can confidentially contact me at the information below.