How to Survive a Rip Current

How to Survive a Rip Current

If you live anywhere near the California coastline, odds are that you’re planning on heading down to the beach at some point this summer. If you plan on going for a swim in the Pacific, then it’s crucial that you keep certain safety tips in mind. For example, you need to understand what rip currents are and what to do if you’re caught in one. 

What Is A Rip Current?

A rip current is a type of current that tends to form near beaches with breaking waves. They tend to be very strong currents that move away from shore, cutting directly through the breaking waves. Think of it as a sort of river that runs underneath the ocean in the opposite direction of the waves. 

They move at an average speed of around one to two feet a second, but they’ve been known to travel as fast as eight feet a second. If you get caught in such a current while swimming, it could pull you far away from shore. It’s estimated that around 100 people die in the U.S. every year as a result of being caught in a rip current.

What To Do If You’re Caught In A Rip Current

The following are a few safety tips to keep in mind if you’re caught in one of these currents:

  • Don’t struggle: They won’t pull you underneath the water, so don’t struggle if you feel the force of one starting to pull you away. Struggling will only tire you out, increasing the risk of drowning.
  • Don’t swim against it: Swimming against such a current is like running on a treadmill. You won’t get any closer to shore and you’ll only get more tired.
  • Swim to the side: Instead of swimming against the current, swim alongside it, parallel to the shore. You’re more likely to escape the current this way. It will be easier to swim alongside, which means you won’t waste energy, and once the pressure lets up, you can swim back to shore with greater ease.

If you plan to go swimming this summer, keep these rip current safety tips in mind. For more summer safety tips, visit us at The Benefits Store today.

Living With Migraine Headaches

Migraine headaches

Migraine headaches are one of the worst types of headaches that you can have. Migraines create an intense throbbing pain within the head (usually on one side) and can last for hours and even days. They can even cause nausea and vomiting. As such, they can be extremely debilitating. Unfortunately, a lot of people don’t realize just how debilitating they can be, which is why June has been designated as Migraine & Headache Awareness Month.

What Causes Migraine Headaches?

Scientists have yet to determine what exactly causes migraines. Many believe that they are the result of abnormal brain activity that affects the brain’s nerve signals, chemicals, and blood vessels for a temporary amount of time. However, there are certain situations that have been known to trigger migraines. These migraine triggers include the following:

  • Hormonal triggers: Women who experience migraines often do so around the time of their period. Such migraines are referred to as pure menstrual migraines.
  • Environmental triggers: Loud noises, bright lights, strong smells, and sudden changes in the climate can all cause migraines.
  • Emotional triggers: Feelings of stress, anxiety, tension, excitement, as well as depression can all cause the onset of a migraine.
  • Dietary triggers: A poor diet has been linked to migraines as well. Things like missed or irregular meals, overconsumption of alcohol or caffeine products, and foods with tyramine have all been known to trigger migraines.

Living With Migraines

The following are a few tips on how to live in California if you suffer from chronic migraines:

  • Exercise regularly: By exercising on a regular basis, you can reduce the frequency and intensity of your migraine attacks.
  • Recognize the onset of a migraine: Many people experience an “aura” prior to a migraine that can include flashing lights, blind spots, shimmering lights, and more. If you experience an aura, find a quiet, dark environment where you can lay down.
  • Avoid triggers: Different people have different triggers when experiencing migraines. Learn to recognize and avoid your specific triggers.

Living with migraine headaches can be challenging but if you know your triggers and maintain a healthy lifestyle, you can reduce their frequency and intensity. For more health awareness advice, visit us at The Benefits Store today.

3 Things to Know About National Cancer Survivors Day

National Cancer Survivors Day

Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States, which is why it’s such a big deal to recognize those who have survived cancer, and it’s why the second Sunday in June has been designated as National Cancer Survivors Day. Over 1.6 million people are diagnosed with cancer every year in the U.S., and around 600,000 die each year as a result of cancer. Fortunately, there are 16 million survivors that should be celebrated.

What You Should Know About National Cancer Survivors Day 

There is no cure for cancer as of yet, which is why surviving cancer is such a cause of celebration. With that in mind, the following are a few things you should know about:

  1. The day isn’t just for survivors. While the day is all about celebrating those who have survived cancer, it’s also about offering support to those still fighting the disease. It’s also a day for friends and family members of survivors.
  2. The day is meant to be celebratory. The day is all about celebrating life. Cancer can be a very difficult thing to go through, but it’s important to remember that there are people who have survived it. As such, the day is also meant to give hope to those who are currently fighting cancer and anyone who has family or friends fighting cancer.
  3. The day is meant to spread awareness. In addition to celebrating life, the day is also meant to spread awareness about cancer. For example, survivors should be made aware of Springboard Beyond Cancer, a resource website established by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) in partnership with the American Cancer Society. The site is meant to help cancer survivors make informed decisions about their health after treatment.

It’s crucial that people who have been diagnosed with cancer understand that they can beat it even though there’s no cure. It’s also important that survivors have access to the resources they need, which is why National Cancer Survivors Day was established. For more information about cancer or for more information on general health awareness in California, visit us at The Benefits Store today.

The Importance of Oral Health

While most people dread going to the dentist, it is important to get checked once every six months. It’s not just about teeth cleanings and x-rays, as dentists are able to tell a lot about your over-all health, including if you are at risk of a chronic disease. However, if you already have some dental issues, it is recommended to see your dentist every 3 to 4 weeks.

Poor oral health can lead to health problems

If you don’t take care of your teeth and gums, your poor oral hygiene can actually lead to other health problems, including:

  • Oral and facial pain. According to the Office of the Surgeon General, this pain may be largely due to infection of the gums that support the teeth and can lead to tooth loss. Gingivitis, an early stage of gum disease, and advanced gum disease affect more than 75% of the U.S. population.
  • Problems with the heart and other major organs. Mouth infections can affect major organs. For example, the heart and heart valves can become inflamed by bacterial endocarditis, a condition that affects people with heart disease or anyone with damaged heart tissue.
  • Digestion problems. Digestion begins with physical and chemical processes in the mouth, and problems here can lead to intestinal failure, irritable bowel syndrome and other digestive disorders.

What can you do to prevent any major issues?

Seeing your dentist regularly can help in keeping your teeth and gums in tip top shape, and also allows your dentist to keep an eye out for anything that may point to other health issues. With dental exams, they are able to check for poor hygiene and nutrition, and even improper jaw alignment.

There are also ways you can practice good at home oral care:

  • Brush twice a day for at least two minutes, using fluoridated toothpaste.
  • Floss daily to remove plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach.
  • Eat a healthy diet to provide the nutrients necessary (vitamins A and C, in particular) to prevent gum disease.
  • Avoid cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, which are known to contribute to gum disease and oral cancer.

Behaviors that Contribute to Poor Oral Health

Teaching children from a young age why oral health is important is critical to helping them maintain their well-being throughout their lives. Parents should help children understand the importance of oral hygiene in daily life and develop good oral hygiene habits, including brushing, flossing, and regular dental visits, beginning when their first teeth appear.

But while poor oral hygiene is a leading factor in oral health issues, other behaviors can contribute to tooth decay, gum disease, and eventually, tooth loss. An unhealthy diet, excessive alcohol use, and tobacco use are all associated with dental health problems. A lack of access to quality dental care is also blamed for poor oral health. According to the ADA, only 30% of Millennials see a dentist regularly, with many citing financial challenges and a lack of insurance as barriers to dental care.

Your Health and Safety Matters!

Contact The Benefits Store for you and your families dental needs!

Men’s Health for Every Age

In the month of June, we focus on men’s health and well-being, and to heighten the awareness of preventable health problems.

Help encourage the boy’s or men in your life, be it your child, nephew, brother or spouse, to take charge of their overall health.

Here are some tips on what can be done to help prevent an illness, or to just stay ahead of the game.

Get your Vaccines:

  • Flu shot, every year.
  • Tetanus booster, every 10 years.
  • Whooping cough vaccine (Tdap booster) unless you’re certain you had one as a preteen or teenager.
  • Human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, if you’re younger than 26 and haven’t received it yet.
  • Shingrix (shingles) vaccine at age 50.
  • Pneumococcal vaccine, at 65. The CDC recommends all older adults  get a dose of PPSV23 (Pneumovax).

Don’t forget about Screening Tests:

  • Sexually transmitted disease. All men should get tested for HIV at least once. According to the CDC, everyone between ages 13 and 64 should be tested during their lifetime. (If you have certain risk factors, you’ll need additional screenings.)
  • Blood pressure: Have it checked at least once every three to five years, or more often if you are at risk for hypertension.
  • Cholesterol: Have your cholesterol tested every four to six years. If you have heart disease or diabetes, a family history of heart disease, or other cardiac risk factors, you may need to do this more often.
  • Cancer
  • Type 2 diabetes: If you’re overweight or obese, have a blood test every three years. 
  • Prostate cancer: Regular prostate specific antigen (PSA) tests, which may detect prostate cancer, might not be necessary. Be sure to talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of the test. If you’re concerned about prostate cancer, talk with your doctor at 55 or earlier about whether you’re at increased risk.

Your Health and Safety Matters! Contact The Benefits Store today for you and your families health insurance needs!