Jamaica Health Tips Online - Protecting the Environment, Protecting your Health

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Jamaica Health Tips Blog

September 2010

Do you know how to stay healthy during a flood?

Jamaica Health tips online flooding
Almost every year Jamaican's go through heavy rains and tropical storms sometime even hurricanes. Jamaicans should not take the flooding associated with these conditions lightly, staying healthy and safe should be your number 1 Priority.

Here are some things to keep in mind during and after a flood in your area

DRINKING WATER: Drinking water that comes from the pipe is usually safe to drink, but during and after a flood one should boil all drinking water from the pipe. You can also use bottled water for drinking and cooking until you get confirmation from the health officials that it is safe to use the tap water. FLOOD WATER CONTACT Flood water can contain disease-carrying germs from sewage.  Wear rubber gloves and boots while working in contaminated areas: wash hands thoroughly when finished and before eating or preparing food.  Assume anything touched by floodwater is contaminated.  If you can't wash or disinfect it (carpet, insulation, Sheetrock, furniture) throw it away.

FOOD SAFETY Discard boxes, glass jars, or other non-waterproof food packages that may have been in contact with floodwater.  You can wash and disinfect cans.SEPTIC SYSTEMS Stop using your sewage system if your septic tank or drain field becomes flooded, if waste water begins to enter your home through plumbing or fixtures or drains, or if raw sewage or “grey water” is visible on the surface of the ground, as a result of waste water leaking from your system. After the flood waters recede, check tanks and other distribution system components for flood waters.
Some information sourced from wasecacounty.com

Have you been affected by the current flooding?

Do you have a personal doctor?

Jamaica health Tips Online Doctor
Its 2010, it seems like all Jamaicans have a personal cellular phone, computer and other fun items that are priority. Personal health does not seem to have a high priority to many Jamaicans unless they are very sick. Most persons do not have a personal doctor and do not do regular visits to the doctor to ensure they are in the best of health. There are persons who are over age 25 and have not seen a doctor in over 10 years.
Ask your friends and family for the name of a good doctor. Of course, check to see if they take your insurance. Make an appointment for a physical or general doctor checkup. That's the best place to start; they may take a general history and do some basic tests. Be sure to mention any problems/issues you are having, it’s never too late to start taking care of your health, so try to make it important to have a good personal doctor. It can make a big difference in your life. Doctors know that people are nervous so don't worry. They will walk you through the process and let you know exactly what they are doing.
Some info sourced from www.healthboards.com
Jamaica health Tips Online Family Doctor
Do you have a personal or family doctor?  Do you plan on getting one soon?

No one wants to catch your flu!!

Jamaica health Tips Online Sick Baby
It is sad to know that there are innocent little babies suffering from the flu because adults around them are not practicing healthy habits. All of us need to be very careful at this time of year.  
As Jamaicans we all need to remember that the flu can be spread from one person to another when, someone who has the flu sneezes,coughs or even talks. The flu virus can be placed into the air and may be inhaled by someone close by. Sometimes people may become infected by touching something with the virus on it, and then touching their mouth or even their nose.
To protect yourself and your family from the flu:
  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water.
  • Use tissue when you cough, sneeze or spit, and dispose of the tissue in a covered trash bin.
  • Keep hands away from your face.
  • Clean shared space more often such as phone receivers, keyboards, steering wheels and office equipment.
  • Do not share personal items such as forks, spoons, toothbrushes and towels.
  • Avoid crowds or people who are ill.
Have you contracted the flu virus anytime this year?
Did you pass the flu to somone you know? 
leave a comment and let us know your experiences.

Should you be at work when your sick

Jamaica health Tips Online Sick WomanIt’s soon that time of year again when everywhere you go in Jamaica, you see people coughing and getting sick.  At work, school and church, it seems like everyone is catching it.   If you’re careful with your hand washing and general hygiene, you may be able to avoid getting sick. But if you do get sick, find out how serious it is, you may be able to keep working and tuff your way through it?  Some people say that if you’re feeling sick and it is above your chest it’s okay to keep going on, but you should be careful and always consult medical professional help.
Some time ago when my family members were staying with me, they would bring home their share of colds and other sicknesses.  They’d be sick for a few days, then bounce right back.  I was not that lucky, though.  I would get a small head cold and it would then turn into something more serious. When I went to the doctor she told me that at the first sign of a cold, I should slow down, take it easy, and drink lots of fluids for a day or two until I started to feel better.  Once the heightened part of the illness was over, she recommended light workouts for a week or so until the sickness was completely gone.  I started following her advice, and I haven’t been so sickly since.
Here are a few guidelines to follow when you’re at work and you come down with a slight sickness:
If you have a fever, go lots of rest and keep your fluid intake up and sleep as much as your body tells you it needs to.
If you have a ordinary cold, rest for a while until the worst symptoms are declining.  As you heal, go back to your regular daily routine, but pay attention to your body.  If you feel a relapse coming on, go back to the rest and fluids until it passes.
The same advice goes for a sore throat, which can be a small virus or may be a sign of a more severe strep infection.  If the symptoms lessen in a couple of days, then you’re good to go. But if they get worse or you develop a fever or vomiting, you know it’s time for a trip to the doctor and some serious rest and recovery time. One more thing if you’re sick, do your friends a favor and stay away from them, other people don’t want to join you in the sick section.
It all boils down to common sense, being out of commission for six months with a serious illness will mean that you will miss work.  Pay attention to your body and give it rest when it needs it.  Turn off that voice either yours or someone else’s – that’s accusing you of being a wimp. Consult your doctor when you’re not sure. Be smart!!
Some info sourced from www.lifeislife.com

Safe Sex In Jamaica

jamaica health tips online safe sexIn Jamaica today, one can not be too careful. Don't be so proud and modest and feel you do not need to protect your body from Std's, as their are communicable deseases out there, that you can catch.

Many Jamaicans do take precaution, when it comes to safe sex, but there are many adults as well as teen's that feel they do not need to protect against sexually transmitted deseases.

Why would you wish to catch something that you can not get rid off and spread it onto a partner or partners? There are people that will say they never had a desease and may be lying about it, and then one catches a virus or Std and then what have you now?
If you are being pressured into having unprotected sex, from a boyfriend, grirlfriend or anyone, then this tells you that they do not care about you. You do not have to feel forced into doing something that you don't want to do. You can tell him or her that you only practice safe sex, and if they mock you or belittle you, then simply leave, and if your strong enough do not see this person again. We as Jamaicans should be strong and just say no, to people that try and force you into doing something you don't want to do. Always remember that people somtimes step out of the relationship and find another partner to be with, so you should care about your body enough to protect it from Std's.
There are many Jamaicans that feel they will never contract a deadly desease or Std and this is simply not true. Just because you have never had an Std does not make one invincible and can not contract something you will be sorry for in the long run.
Jamaica health Tips Online STDSRemember there are many STDS one should be concerned with. Here are just a few
* Chlamydia
* Genital herpes
* Genital Warts
* Gonorrhea
* Syphilis
* Hepatitis A, B and C.
No one is invincible and anyone can catch any desease(s) that is out there.
Always think over what you are doing if you are having unprotected sex, and sometimes people may need counceling if they do not care about your body enough to protect it from Std's.
Do you think you practice enough safe sex?

Preventing rat infestation in Jamaica

Health Tips Ja Rat i
It is very important to understand the ways in which you can prevent rat infestation.
Food should be stored in sealed containers, to minimise smells that will attract the rats. Be careful about your solid waste, rubbish bins that contain leftover meat and cooked food will attract rats.This happens more when the food starts to rot, bag everything up carefully and put it in strong bins, such as a plastic wheel bins.Don't put meat, fish or cooked food on a compost heap. Not only is it no good for your compost, it will also turn the heap into an inviting home for the rats. The combination of warmth from the composting process, plus an easy food supply, will be irresistible to them. Rats are also interested in finding bedding materials and places to build a nest.
They will look for hidden corners and dark places away from too much noise and movement. Like us, they enjoy being outside during the summer but when winter approaches they'll want to find a warm spot to curl up in. One of the main reasons one should take rat infestation seriously is due to a dangerous desease called Leptospirosis.
This is a notifiable disease, and with more and more rats carrying this killer disease, it is little wonder that it ranks as one of the top diseases which rats carry. This is spread from rats to humans via the rat’s urine this disease proves fatal to people young and old throughout the world every year, so it should not be underestimated. It is a virulent organism, surviving in homes and outdoor spaces - remaining infectious for months. A single adult rat will produce litres of urine and Kilos of faeces, deposited inside and out every year, and with your average colony size between 5 and 12 strong, it is easy to see why rats in residential or other infested, occupied premises, can succumb to what become, significant contamination levels. The disease starts innocently enough, presenting as a mild case of flue 3 – 30 days after infection, but quickly develops causing internal haemorrhage and multi organ failure. some information was gathered from www.thebristolratcompany.co.uk
Health Tips Ja Mouse Pic
Do you have a rat problem at home or in your community?

Jamaicans beware of mosquito diseases

healthtipsja mosquitoWe all hate mosquitoes, If you live in certain parts of Jamaica, mosquito-borne diseases is a serious risk in your day to day life. Over the last few years, even diseases that used to be limited to foreign countries are now gaining ground in Jamaica. It's not an epidemic and there are medicines available in most cases, so there is no need for anyone to panic, like so many people do these days. Simply use common sense and use the correct techniques to stop mosquito infestation. Try to ensure you or your family is not at risk so you do not get any unnecessary diseases.
Here are just 2 of the more common diseases that Jamaicans should be aware of that can be caught from mosquitoes.
Dengue fever: An acute mosquito- borne viral illness of sudden onset that usually follows a benign course with headache, fever, prostration, severe joint and muscle pain, swollen glands (lymphadenopathy) and rash The presence (the "dengue triad") of fever, rash, and headache (and other pains) is particularly characteristic of dengue. Dengue fever is endemic throughout the tropics and subtropics. It goes by other names including breakbone or dandy fever. Victims of dengue often have contortions due to the intense joint and muscle pain.
Info gathered from medterms.com
Malaria is a disease caused by a single-celled parasite called Plasmodium. The parasite reproduces and matures in stages inside humans, using different tissues to support its development. When an infected mosquito bites a human host, the parasite moves from the insect's saliva into the host's blood. Parasitic sporozoites head immediately to the liver, where they hide inside liver cells. There they reproduce and mature into merozoites, the form of the parasite that infects red blood cells or erythrocytes. The clinical symptoms of malaria—typically, chills and fever—occur as the merozoites burst from infected erythrocytes to reinfect other red blood cells and repeat the cycle. Attacks can last as long as 36 hours and may kill the patient. They can also cause cerebral malaria, particularly in children, resulting in convulsions, coma, and death.
info gathered from hhmi.org
Do Jamaicans take mosquitoes and the diseases they carry seriously?