The ABCs of Health Literacy
How many times have you seen those signs in restaurant or other public restrooms saying “All Employees Must Wash Hands Before Returning to Work”? This is a very important thing to help fight the spread of germs. But, for truly good germ fighting power, it should say that they must “Wash AND Dry” their hands.
Why? Because according to scientists at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, it isn’t just the washing that helps. They looked at how many germs were spread when people touched different stuff – skin, food, utensils – after washing their hands with and without good drying. If hands were dried really well after washing, the number of germs that they spread shrank by 94 to 99%. It is about 1,000 times safer if you dry your hands well after washing them than if you leave them wet or damp! (more…)
“Whoa, there, Mister Clean. Where do ya think you’re going with that germ load?” asked Hal.
Sal, his hand just inches from the bathroom door of Johnny Balboa’s Famous Italian Pizzaria and Popcorn Parlor, Sal’s favorite restaurant. Sal turned with a frown and said, “Back to my chili con carne pizza, of course. Why?”
“Not with those hands, little bro,” answered Hal.
Sal looked at his hands, both palms turned up, flipped them over, and said, “They’re the only hands I got, Hal.” (more…)
If I could read, I probably wouldn’t have mixed up my prescriptions last month and ended up in the emergency room.
If I could read, I might be able to understand what my doctor wrote on my instructions when I last visited with her.
If I could read, all those papers that the pharmacist puts in with my prescriptions would probably mean something.
If I could read, I could use a computer and I could text with my friends and family instead of pretending “I just don’t like that stuff”. (more…)
And, speaking of great asthma education resources…
Oh, sorry, I guess that was just in my head. Well, since we’re on the topic, I came across some really great asthma education resources that I thought would be good to share.
As you know, a lot of web content is pretty weak. Some is downright wrong and may even be harmful. Other sites may not be so much bad as they are a waste of time.
There are a few I’ve found that are rock solid reliable and, if you’re looking for quality asthma education resources, these will bring a good return on your time investment “dollar”, so to speak. (more…)
Kids grow. Geez, that’s not much of a story, huh? It isn’t, but where kids’ bones grow, a special area called the growth plate, is maybe something many people don’t know much about. These growth plates are really important when it comes to broken bones – also known as fractures – in kids. Here’s a little serving on growth plates to help you understand why.
As I mentioned, kids grow, and their bones must grow to help make that happen. But bones – and we’re talking about the long bones here, like leg, arm, and finger bones – grow at a special place near their ends. This place is like a little slice through the bone that is filled with cartilage. (Cartilage is a “connective” tissue in the body, softer than bone, but more firm than muscle. The stiff parts of your ears and the lower part, the wiggly part, of your nose are good examples.) It’s in these cartilage zones where new bone is made that allows long bones to get longer. (more…)
Lying in a bed, careening down hilly Topdown Drive with one broken leg tied up in traction is not exactly what Hal had planned to do today. How he got there is still a bit of a mystery. (Well, it’s a mystery to most of us…you know, normal people who try to avoid doing dumb things that cause pain.)
It all started just like any other day…well, any other day that a kid finds himself lying in bed with his broken leg in a cast tied up to some contraption to help it heal right and not hurt so much. (OK, so it wasn’t like most other days.)
Hal had broken his left tibia. That’s the bigger of the two bones in his lower leg, the one in the front that most people call their shin bone. Turns out that trying to ride a bicycle on top of two skateboards down the very steep Topdown Drive isn’t such a good idea, especially when there are cars around. Who knew? (more…)
AAAAI!!! Sounds more like something you might scream when running away from asthma education, doesn’t it? But, actually, “AAAAI” is the short name for the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology and they have loads of asthma education tools. Plus, they now have a new Just for Kids section. It has games, puzzles, storybooks, video, and more.
Their new spokesperson is Mr. Nose-it-All. (As you can see from his picture, he’s actually more of a “spokes-nose”.) Mr. Nose-it-All has pages and pages of word games, bubble pop games, coloring books, matching games, storybooks, even a BrainPOP video with Tim and Moby. (more…)
So what does the phrase “Say, ah” have to do with health literacy? Well, according to the folks at non-profit Say Ah!, it’s related to “Open your mouth and say ‘Ah’” and “Ah, I understand now.”
I love the phrase, all big and bold on their home page: “Medicine is getting better every day, but dealing with it is getting harder.” How true!
Say Ah! is all about helping people understand health and healthcare issues. In other words, the Say Ah! folks seek to improve health literacy because they know that health literacy is “a stronger predictor of a person’s health than age, income, employment status, education level, and race.” (more…)