Living with – and safely treating – chronic pain

ChronicPainSometimes we blame it on age, a friendly basketball game that got a little too competitive or simply just not being in great physical condition, but just about everyone feels a little pain now and then. But what about when the pain doesn’t go away even after the injury heals? September is Pain Awareness Month, so it’s a good time to understand what chronic pain is, how it can interfere with daily life, and the safest ways to treat and manage chronic pain. Continue reading

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Safely canning foods at home: When in doubt, throw it out!

CannedGreenBeansIt’s harvest time, and if you’re lucky, you have plenty of produce from your garden to go around. Canning it is a great way to preserve it and share it with family and friends, but it can be risky if it’s not done correctly. Before you get started, it’s important to be knowledgeable about proper canning techniques so you can make sure your home-canned vegetables aren’t contaminated by the germ that causes botulism.

What is botulism?

Botulism is a rare but serious illness caused by a bacteria that produces powerful toxins that can lead to serious illness, including paralysis, and even death. The bacteria produce hardy spores that can survive in soil. Fruits, meats, fish, and vegetables could be contaminated with the bacterial spores before they are canned. The spores can survive, grow as bacteria, and produce toxins in improperly canned jars of food. It can be deadly to take even a small taste of food that has this toxin in it.  Continue reading

Public health officials advise Idahoans to limit time outside as air quality worsens

SmokeBoise1BOISE  — Smoke from several wildfires in Idaho and surrounding states is affecting the air quality for residents in nearly every Idaho community and is expected to continue to do so for the next several days. Public health officials are advising people in the affected areas to limit their time outside as much as possible to reduce their exposure to smoke. Continue reading

Preventing suicide in Idaho: Rock your role and know the warning signs

RYR Tear PadCompleted suicides are statistically rare, but Idaho has some of the highest rates of suicide in the United States, ranking 5th in the nation in 2015. Though rates are high, it’s important to know that recovery from suicidality is the norm. More than 90 percent of people who make attempts never go on to die by suicide. This week is Suicide Prevention Week, so now is a good time to review how you can Rock Your Role, and help someone who may be struggling with thoughts of killing themselves. Continue reading

It’s National Immunization Awareness Month: Protect yourself, your family & your community

Immunization Poster2500pThis month is National Immunization Awareness Month, so with summer winding down and many kids already going back to school, be sure to check immunization requirements, especially for kindergartners and seventh graders. It’s also a good time to check records for everyone in your family, including adults. Getting immunized is a safe and important step to protecting our families and ourselves against serious and even deadly diseases throughout our lives. Continue reading

Bart Buckendorf recognized as Idaho EMS Pediatric Provider of the Year

EMS bureau

By Xenya Poole, NRP
EMS Field Coordinator, CHEMS & EMS-C
Idaho Bureau of EMS and Preparedness

We’re proud to announce that Bart Buckendorf of Ada County Paramedics is the recipient of the first annual “Pediatric Provider of the Year” award given by the Idaho Bureau of Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and Preparedness’ Emergency Medical Services for Children Program.  Continue reading

Limiting your exposure to smoky air is the healthy thing to do

PowerlineFirePocatello

Wildfire season has arrived, and with it, the smoky air that can make it difficult to breathe. Air quality is a big deal this time of year, and it changes depending on where the wildfires are and which way the wind is blowing. It often feels like there’s no escape from the smoke, which can cause irritating symptoms for healthy people and more serious health issues for people with heart and lung disease. So, it’s important to protect yourself and your family from smoky air whenever possible. Continue reading