NHM Health Focus: Archives
We have archived these regular Health Focus features so you can access these valuable resources after the health observance day, week or month has passed. Please contact us with comments or suggestions that will help us increase the value of Health Focus to you, as we highlight resources detailing the science behind the health of these important issues.
- Influenza (December 2009) It's the winter holiday season! It's the flu season! Flu spreads most easily in the winter.(CDC)
Recent research has shown that flu activity intensifies during winter months because cold air and dry air "support the transmission of influenza virus (PLoS: Pathogens)." (more).
- Hand Washing (December 2009) Handwashing is a simple habit that can help keep you healthy. While handwashing is not the whole story, we can reduce our chances of contracting and spreading colds, the
flu and other infectious diseases if we wash our hands more frequently
and keep them away from mouth, nose and eyes between washings. (more).
- Safe Toys (December 2009) As the Holiday gift giving season approaches, so does the challenge
of selecting the right gift for each recipient. While we want each gift to be appropriate, appreciated, and above all, safe,
this is often not as easy as we would like. (more).
- National Drunk & Drugged Driving (3D) Prevention Month (December 2009) "Despite the tireless efforts of thousands of advocates, impaired drivers continue to kill someone every 30 minutes, nearly 50 people a day, and almost 18,000 citizens a year. NHTSA and its partners are working together to put a stop to these deadly statistics. " (NHTSA) (more).
- Great American Smokeout® (November 2009) The American Cancer Society (ACS) holds the Great American Smokeout® to help smokers quit cigarettes for at least one day, in the hope that they will quit forever. This year's event will be held Thursday, November 19, 2009. (more).
- Diabetes (November 2009) Diabetes is the fifth deadliest disease in the U.S. and it has no cure. Diabetes is associated with serious complications and premature death, but people with diabetes can take steps to control the disease and lower their risk of complications; those who don't yet have diabetes can take step to prevent it. (more).
- Healthy Skin (November 2009) Your skin is the first line of defense against invaders from the world of pathogens and disease. While your skin protects you, it is also a good idea for you to protect your skin. It can be damaged by the sun's rays (UVA and UVB rays), insects, poor diet, chemicals, and lack of exercise. (more).
- Allied Health Professions (November 2009)
Emergency Medical Technicians, Physical and Occupational Therapists are among the more familiar of the many allied health professionals involved in our recovery from injury and disease... (more)
- Alzheimer's Awareness Month (November 2009) November is Alzheimer's Awareness Month, a time to remember those who are living with the disease, thank those who care for them, and recognize those who are seeking solutions to its cure and prevention. (more).
- Children's Health- (October 2009) Children's health, while recognized in October, is important all year long! Many excellent resources aimed directly at kids, tweens and teens
are available from federal agencies, especially the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS),
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). (more)
- Hearing Loss - (October 2009) The onset of hearing loss and deafness may be gradual or sudden. It
may occur before birth or at any time during one's life. Helpful materials,
including free publications, information for teachers and students,
and classroom activities, are available from the National Institute
on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) (more)
- Healthy Lungs - (October 2009) Healthy lung month is a good time to remind yourself that not everyone
has healthy lungs. "Lung disease is the number three killer in America, responsible
for one in seven deaths. Lung disease and other breathing problems are
the number one killer of babies younger than one year old. Today, more
than 35 million Americans are living with chronic lung disease such
as asthma, emphysema and chronic bronchitis." American
- Dental Hygiene - (October 2009) The American Dental Hygienists' Association (ADHA) sponsors National Dental Hygiene Month to increase public awareness of specific dental hygiene-related issues and to recognize the contributions dental hygienists make as they reach out to their communities. This year the focus of National Dental Hygiene Month is "Adolescent and Teenage Oral Health." (more)
- Liver Awareness Month (October 2009) More than 25 million American men, women and children of every race and age group, are affected by some form of liver or biliary disease. National Liver Awareness Month, sponsored by the American Liver Foundation, is designed to call attention to liver health and to raise awareness of the diseases that affect the liver and how many of these might be prevented. (more).
- Head Lice - (September 2009) As parents and children prepare for the 2009-2010 academic school year, the National Pediculosis Association advocates the early screening of head lice and nits (head lice eggs) with safe and healthy tools demonstrated to keep children nit and anxiety free. (more)
- America on the Move - (September 2009) With Americans of all ages gaining about two pounds a year, individuals, health organizations, and government agencies are working together to encourage Americans to lose unwanted pounds and increase overall fitness. (more)
- Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery - (September 2009) Each September, National
Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month celebrates the successes
of those in recovery, commends their treatment providers, and disseminates
the message that recovery from alcohol and drug use disorders in all
its forms is possible. (more)
- Food Safety - (September 2009) Clean, separate, cook and chill are important guidelines for safe food preparation, but what about safe food storage? Between
the time food is first harvested or prepared and the time it arrives
at our tables, it must be stored in a way that assures its safety and maintains its
quality. That is, it must be preserved. Food preservation requires that the organisms competing with us for our food (bacteria, fungi, beetles, and more) be killed or inhibited. (more)
- National Suicide Prevention Week - (September 6-12, 2009) and World Suicide Prevention Day, (September 10, 2009), are designed to increase awareness of suicide and how it might be prevented. Suicide is a global problem, a leading cause of death in the world, claiming about 30,000 lives in the United States each year almost 1 million annually world-wide. (Institute of Medicine) (more)
- National Minority Donor Awareness Day - (August 2009) National Minority Donor Awareness Day occurs every year on August 1, but the importance of the subject is such that it is promoted throughout the month and the year.(more)
- Children's Eye Health and Safety - (August 2009) Vision problems, whatever their origin, have the potential for affecting the way children learn. "Each year thousands of children suffer from undetected vision problems that can make school and life difficult. In addition, children with crossed eyes and lazy eyes face especially demanding challenges. Children with poor visual skills may struggle to read, have short attentions, perform poorly in sports, develop low self-esteem, and have doors closed to many careers because of poor visual skills." Children's Vision Information Network (more)
- National Immunization Awareness Month - (August 2009) This month highlights the value of immunizations to individuals and to their communities. Each year vaccines protect millions of adults and children from diseases that often cause discomfort, pain, and, depending on the disease, disability or death.. (more)
- Reliable Health Info - (July 2009) Let's say you've just heard about an interesting health matter from a friend, or on television or radio, or from your doctor. You want to use the Internet to learn more but
don't have much experience finding reliable information ... (more)
- UV Safety Month - (July 2009) While small amounts of UV are essential for the production of Vitamin D, excessive UV may result in acute and chronic health effects on the skin, eye and immune system. Hats, sunglasses, sunscreen and protective clothing are all recommended as protection against excessive ultraviolet
radiation (UV). (more)
- Transplantation (July 2009) Type "transplant anniversary" into any search engine and you will find many personal and technical anniversaries recognized and celebrated. Each transplant recipient, family member, donor family member, living donor, and involved professional has reason to be honored. (more)
- Fireworks Safety (June 2009) The National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC) reports that "All fireworks are dangerous, especially to children. In 2005, an estimated 10,800 people were treated in U.S. emergency departments for fireworks-related injuries..." (more)
- Headaches (June 2009) The goals of National Headache Awareness Week, June 1-7, 2008, are to gain recognition of headache pain as a real and legitimate condition, to encourage sufferers to see a physician for proper diagnosis and treatment, and to let sufferers know that there are new treatments available. (more)
- Men's Health (June 2009) Each year, the week up to and including Father's Day is celebrated as National Men's Health Week, the goal of which is to raise awareness of the importance of early detection and treatment on a broad range of health issues impacting men at work, home, and leisure. (more)
- Cancer Survivors (June 2009) National Cancer Survivors Day®, held annually on the first Sunday in June, honors cancer survivors and calls attention to the many readily available resources to help Cancer Survivors meet the many challenges they face. (more)
- HIV Testing - (June 2009) According to Health Politics, "A large percentage of U.S. citizens with HIV are
unaware of their condition. In fact, out of about 950,000 individuals who are positive, 280,000 or 30 percent dont know it. (more)
- Asthma and Allergy Awareness (May 2009) May is Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month. Related May observances include World Asthma Day on Tuesday, May 6, and Food Allergy Awareness Week, May 11-17, 2008.(more)
- National Physical Fitness and Sports Month (May 2009) Kids. Teens. Adults. Seniors. The President's Physical Fitness Challenge encourages all Americans to make being active a part of their everyday lives...(more)
- School Nurses(May 2009) Please join us as we salute the dedication of nurses who work in schools as well as those who work in hospitals, homes, care centers, doctors' offices, prisons and elsewhere. The 2008 theme is "School Nurses in Action: Transforming School Communities." (more)
- National Public Health Week (April 2009) Each year the American Public Health Association (APHA) joins with local and national public health groups to celebrate the first week in April as National Public Health Week. This year's National Public Health Week theme is Climate Change: Our Health in the Balance.(more)
- Organ Donation Awareness (April 2009) Decision: Donation -- A School Program that Gives the Gift of Life from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. includes print, video, CD-Rom, and Web-based materials that teachers can integrate into existing curriculum and training programs.
- Alcohol Awareness Month (March 2009) Often, people who are not alcoholic do not understand why an alcoholic can’t just “use a little willpower” to stop drinking. However, alcoholism has little to do with willpower. (more)
- Nutrition Month (March 2009) sponsored by the American Dietetic Association (ADA), is a time to think about what and how much we eat. Fad diets, fast food, tight schedules, and sedentary life styles abound. As a nation, our weight is increasing and our general health decreasing. (more)
- Brain Health (March 2009) March is Brain Injury Awareness Month. Today, one out of five Americans suffers from a brain-related disease or disorder, ranging from cocaine addiction to learning disabilities, from Alzheimer's disease to spinal cord injuries. Recently, significant advances have been made in brain-related research ..." (more)
- National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month (March 2009) underscores the reality that while colorectal is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the U.S., it is one of the most preventable cancers. ( more)
- Children's Dental Health (February 2009) celebrated each year in February. For the best possible dental health, children (as well as teens and adults) need a combination of personal and professional tooth care. (more)
- National Donor Day (February 14, 2009) honors those who have donated organs, tissues, marrow and blood to save the lives of others. It also honors the families of donors who have made the decision to allow organs of loved ones to give new life to recipients. (more)
- Heart Health (February 2009) Heart attacks are the leading cause of death for women and men over the age of 40. Events in February focus our attention on how heart disease affects women of all ages... (more)
- National Volunteer Blood Donor (January 2009) Are you in good health, at least 17 years of age and at least 110
pounds? If so you may be able to help save a life. Rules determining who can donate blood help protect the health and safety of both the blood donor and the patient who will receive the tranfusion. Some donor eligibility rules are specified by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for all blood banks in the United States. Other rules vary depending upon the blood bank. To be certain that you are eligible to donate blood, check with your local blood bank for donor requirements. (more).
- Thyroid Awareness (January 2009) One in ten Americans--more than the number of Americans with cancer
and diabetes combined--suffer from thyroid disease. Yet half remain
undiagnosed (AACE). Thyroid malfunction is
linked to a number of other diseases. Most recently, it has been shown
that thyroid malfunction can cause dangerously high levels of cholesterol (ATA). (more).
- Birth Defects Prevention Month (January 2009) "Birth defects affect about one in every 33 babies born in the
United States each year. They are the leading cause of infant deaths,
accounting for more than 20% of all infant deaths. Babies born with
birth defects have a greater chance of illness and long term disability
than babies without birth defects." Centers
for Disease Control and Prevention (more).
- Healthy Weight (January 2008) Heres a frightening (and confusing) thought: As the average weight
of people in the United States increases (two
pounds per year according to some accounts), increasing numbers
of anorexia and bulimia cases are being seen in both men and women. (more).
- Aids Day (December 2008) December 1 is World AIDS Day. "Established by the World Health Organization in 1988, World AIDS Day serves
to focus global attention on the devastating impact of the HIV/AIDS
- Take a Loved One for a Checkup! (September 2006) Each year the third Tuesday in September is celebrated as "Take a Loved One for a Checkup Day." On this day individuals are encouraged to see a health professional or make an appointment to see one in the near future. (more)
- High Blood Pressure Education - (May 2006) This year's theme for High Blood Pressure Education Month, "Mission Possible: Prevent and Control High Blood Pressure", calls attention to this very serious, but often undiagnosed condition. High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is a condition that increasingly affects young as well as older people. (more)
- DNA Day(April 2006) DNA Day was created to commemorates the completion of the Human Genome Project in April 2003, and the discovery of DNA's double helix. Many teaching resources are available to help students understand the science and genomic science can be applied to the understanding, treatment and cure of human health problems. (more)
- Healthy Vision Month (May 2005)
This year, the focus of Healthy Vision Month is visual rehabilitation. "Visual rehabilitation" involves training and counseling people with low vision so they can make the most of the eyesight they have. (more)
- Functional Foods. March 24, 2005 the Institute of Food Technologists has announced the release of a new report saying that researchers have identified food components that
may improve memory, reduce arthritis, and provide other benefits heretofore limited to drugs. more
- Health Disparity Resources (April 2004) Health disparities are differences that occur by gender, race and ethnicity, education level, income level, disability, geographic location and/or sexual orientation. Some health disparities are unavoidable, such as health problems that are related to a person’s genetic ... (more)