red green and white holiday cookies in the shape of presents mittens and trees

Tips for Healthy Holiday Eating

If you’re working hard to manage your weight, the holidays can be frustrating. The months of October through December can seem filled with one opportunity to overeat after another. The holidays are meant to be enjoyed and let us have some of our favorite treats we normally avoid. You can relax your normal diet without going overboard. Here are 10 tips for healthy holiday eating.

 

Think it Through.

 

Before you go to that holiday office party or sit down to indulge with family and friends, visualize the gathering. What foods do you think might be there? Are there some good choices you can fill your plate with? What healthier dish can you bring to share?

 

Look up the average amount of calories in dishes you plan to eat. Also, know which foods are better choices over others. For example, if you love pecan pie but can settle for pumpkin, it usually has many less calories.

 

Are you hungry?

 

Also, analyze your feelings and if you are really hungry. We tend to overeat the most when our feelings are getting the best of us. Holiday stress, sadness or loneliness if we are missing someone who is no longer there to celebrate with us, and other difficult emotions can make us want to indulge when we may not even be hungry.

 

Focus on why you’re really there.

 

When we break away from focusing on eating, we appreciate even more why we are at the celebration. Good conversation, laughter, games and enjoying family and friends can help take your mind off the temptations.

 

Position yourself away from temptation.

 

Is it possible to stay away from those cookies just sitting there waiting for you to grab them? Are others mingling in the living room? Sometimes “out of sight, out of mind” is a great strategy to implement.

 

Slow down.

 

During the holidays, all the errands, cooking, shopping and traveling can tempt us to eat “on the go” often. However, we tend to overeat when we don’t really focus on our meal and what we are taking in. Sit down, turn off all the distractions like TVs or smartphones and enjoy slowly eating your meal.

 

Taking time to chew your food and put your utensil down between bites can also help you savor your favorite holiday dishes.

 

Beware of your portions.

 

Sometimes it isn’t so much what we eat that is a problem, but how much of it that we eat.  Instead of grazing in a buffet style fashion, portion out your meal and commit to not going back for seconds.

 

Choosing a smaller plate can also help if that is an option. The bigger the plate, the more empty it seems with small portions.

 

Fill up on fiber and high-protein dishes.

 

Fill your plate with high protein and fiber items such as lean meats, vegetables, legumes and nuts. Not only will these dishes be lower calorie than those savory desserts, but they will help you feel fuller longer. Also, eat these foods first to leave less room in your stomach for dishes that tend to make you want to overindulge.

 

You don’t have to clean your plate.

 

Many of us grew up with parents that made us feel guilty if we didn’t clean our plates. Although they meant well, this strategy can leave us with some unhealthy eating habits as adults. You not finishing your plate has nothing to do with gratitude or how much someone else gets to eat. In fact, some practice leaving a bite or two on their plate as a strategy to not overeat.

 

Avoid meal skipping.

 

Skipping meals is rarely a good strategy. We tend to overeat even more when we do this as our blood sugar is then not well regulated.

 

Keep moving.

 

It can be easy to get off a daily exercise routine during the holidays, but it is important to keep moving and burning calories. Break up your exercise into smaller segments. Even ten minutes is very beneficial.

 

Also, incorporate some activity during your gatherings. Taking a walk after dinner, dancing or throwing around a football with the kids are great ways to get some exercise and not miss out on the festivities.

 

 

We hope you find these tips for healthy holiday eating helpful. We also wish you a happy and healthy holiday season. If you need further assistance in your weight management journey,  we want to help you achieve a healthier lifestyle. You can find out more information at mmgbariatrics.com. You may also call Dr. Sawyer’s office at (580) 510-7042 to learn if you are a candidate for weight loss surgery.

 

Disclaimer

The Comanche County Memorial Hospital website does not provide specific medical advice for individual cases. Comanche County Memorial Hospital does not endorse any medical or professional services obtained through information provided on this site, articles on the site or any links on this site.

Use of the information obtained by the Comanche County Memorial Hospital website does not replace medical advice given by a qualified medical provider to meet the medical needs of our readers or others.

While content is frequently updated, medical information changes quickly. Information may be out of date, and/or contain inaccuracies or typographical errors. For questions or concerns, please contact us at contact@ccmhhealth.com.

Hands in sink with running water

Teaching Kids to Wash Their Hands

This week is National Hand Washing Awareness Week. Teaching kids to wash their hands can be difficult. Young children are always on the move, and don’t want to slow down to practice boring hygiene habits. Still, it is important to instill important hand washing practices in your children.

 

Teach children when to wash their hands

 

Good hand washing is the first line of defense to combat various illnesses — from colds to the flu, meningitis, bronchiolitis and hepatitis A. The first step is letting children know we wash our hands to help keep everyone safe! Then, make it a habit by always washing their hands when the following activities take place:

  • before eating and cooking
  • after using the bathroom
  • before and after visiting sick friends or relatives
  • when coming in from outside
  • when finished cleaning around the house
  • after touching animals
  • after blowing one’s nose, sneezing or coughing

 

Discuss germs

 

Helping children to understand the concept of germs can be challenging. Explain to children that germs are most everywhere on surfaces and our hands. Consider finding a book with lots of pictures or simple songs or videos online to show them.

 

Make hand washing convenient and safe

 

Getting up to the sink can be hard for small children. Making it a fun, safe and convenient practice is important. Place a stool in front of the sink if the child cannot reach the sink by his or herself. Let children pick out a fun stool with characters, colors or designs he or she enjoys. Many stools for children have rubber grips on the steps to help secure their footing as well. Also, consider putting a rug under the stool to help catch water and prevent slipping. Kids can make a mess when the sink is involved.

 

Make sure hand towels are easily accessible also. Towel racks that are too high and cause children to reach too much could result in a fall.

 

Teach children how to use the soap

 

It may take awhile before a young child is capable of getting his or her own soap. Practice using the soap pump with them. Also, choosing a themed soap dispenser may be fun for some children.

 

Make sure the water is a safe temperature

 

Turning on the tap and getting the temperature just right may be difficult for many children. Teach your child how to turn on the cold water first and to slowly increase the temperature. Demonstrate putting just the tip of a finger in the water to test the temperature.

 

Help children learn how long to wash

 

You should wash your hands for 20-30 seconds. This is about the amount of time it takes to sing the “Happy Birthday” song twice or the alphabet song once. You may also teach children how to set a timer and watch it count down while they wash.

 

Rinse well


Teach children to look thoroughly for any soap residue. It is not dangerous to leave soap bubbles behind. However, children often put their hands in their mouths. The taste of soap may be a deterrent from wanting to wash their hands in the future.

 

Carry hand sanitizer when on the go  

 

Soap and water is always best, but sometimes it may not be available when you are on the go. Use an alcohol-based sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol.

 

As with everything else they learn, good hand washing practices come to small children with lots of practice. Remember to praise their good behavior as you are teaching them this important tip in their daily hygiene routine.

For other healthcare concerns regarding your children, visit ccmhhealth.com/directory/specialties/pediatrics to find a list of CCMH Pediatricians.

 

Disclaimer

 

The Comanche County Memorial Hospital website does not provide specific medical advice for individual cases. Comanche County Memorial Hospital does not endorse any medical or professional services obtained through information provided on this site, articles on the site or any links on this site.

Use of the information obtained by the Comanche County Memorial Hospital website does not replace medical advice given by a qualified medical provider to meet the medical needs of our readers or others.

While content is frequently updated, medical information changes quickly. Information may be out of date, and/or contain inaccuracies or typographical errors. For questions or concerns, please contact us at contact@ccmhhealth.com.

Arvest Foundation makes $20,000 Donation to CCMH Foundation

Recently, The Arvest Foundation donated $20,000 to the Comanche County Memorial Hospital Foundation. The generous funds will benefit the hospital’s Starlight Unit which is dedicated to providing quality healthcare to children. The donation will help replace old cribs with newer, more comfortable ones, purchase a pediatric vein finder and a TC Bilirubin meter, a tool that scans babies’ foreheads to check for jaundice.

“We are just so thankful for community partners like Arvest and Classic Lawton Chevrolet and the incredible support they give to our community hospital,” CCMH Foundation Director Lee Ann Chandler said. “It will be used to fund equipment in our Starlight Unit, which would otherwise probably go unfunded.

“Comanche County Memorial Hospital and the foundation which supports it, are of vital importance to our community,” David Madigan, President and CEO of Arvest Bank Southwest Oklahoma said. “Making sure our children have the best care possible is key when they are at their most vulnerable. It is an honor to be part of such a significant endeavor.”

Last month, Classic Lawton Chevrolet and owners Ervin and Bridget Randle presented a check in the amount of $10,000 to the CCMH Foundation to benefit the Children’s Starlight Fund. This gift came from the proceeds of the Annual Classic Golf Tournament held in September of this year. Thank you to the Randle’s and their committee for being champions for CCMH and the community!

Honey: Better Than Cough Syrup?

Home remedies for cold or flu symptoms are often scrutinized. Sometimes it is hard to know if they actually work. Sometimes the memory of grandma or mom administering them creates a placebo effect. However, evidence exists that some of the common cold and flu remedies may actually have health benefits. In fact, many parents are ditching the cough syrup in favor of a home remedy most of us have tried a time or two to knock out a cough: honey.

Why is cough syrup becoming less popular among medical providers?

A sick child causes much stress for parents and caregivers. Child illnesses may mean less sleep for everyone. This results in dangerous mistakes. There are many incidents reported of children accidentally being given a double dosage of cough medications.1 Few studies exist for over the counter medications  usage in small children. The proper dosage for children is not even known. Although bothersome, a cough in itself is not necessarily bad either. Coughing can help clear mucus from your airway. In otherwise healthy children, there is no reason to suppress a cough.

What are the health benefits of honey?

Honey has as many antioxidants as many vegetables and fruits. It can also kill funguses and bad bacteria. Some hospitals have seen success in using Manuka or Ulmo honey to combat methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).2 Honey is also said to help with diarrhea, although there is no proof found of this in research. Promising research shows that taking 1-2 teaspoons of honey on an empty stomach will lessen pain and treat Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori), a cause of peptic ulcers.3

Unfortunately, the effectiveness of honey from your local grocery store in many of these treatments is very low due to the manufacturing process. Manufactures heat honey during pasteurization to remove unwanted crystallization and improve texture and color. They also destroy good bacteria and remove antioxidants during this process. To experience the full benefits of honey, buy raw honey from a local farmer.

Is honey medically proven to effectively treat a cough?

Since the early years of this century, many researchers have concluded that honey is an effective alternative to cough syrup. Of course, other studies may disagree or provide inconclusive results. Given the other proven benefits of honey though, the low-cost and availability, it is certainly worth the effort to try to reduce coughing and improve sleep.

Researchers conducted on study of children age 2 and older. The children suffered from upper respiratory tract infections. the researchers gave each child buckwheat honey at bedtime. Parents reported improved sleep and reduced coughing. Researchers concluded that buckwheat honey may be as effective as dextromethorphan, a common, over-the-counter cough suppressant.4

So if you or your child are experiencing a cough, it may be worth it to ditch the cough syrup and give grandma’s old remedy a try. If you have a cough that last more than 8 weeks or your child has a cough that lasts more than four weeks, make an appointment to see your general practitioner. A chronic cough may be a sign of a more serious condition.  If you do not have a regular doctor, visit ccmhhealth.com/providers to find one of our doctors today.

 

Sources

1 Childs, Dan. ABCNews. 16 August 2017.Docs Support FDA Cough Medicine Warning.

2 Sherlock, Orla, et al. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 2 September. 2010. Comparison of the antimicrobial activity of Ulmo honey from Chile and Manuka honey against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

3 Nzeako, Basil C. and Al-Namaani,Faiza. Sultan Qaboos University Medical Journal. 2006.The Antibacterial Activity of Honey on Helicobacter Pylori.

4 IM, Paul, et al. Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, Pennsylvania State University. 2007. Effect of honey, dextromethorphan, and no treatment on nocturnal cough and sleep quality for coughing children and their parents.

 

Disclaimer

The Comanche County Memorial Hospital website does not provide specific medical advice for individual cases. Comanche County Memorial Hospital does not endorse any medical or professional services obtained through information provided on this site, articles on the site or any links on this site.

Use of the information obtained by the Comanche County Memorial Hospital website does not replace medical advice given by a qualified medical provider to meet the medical needs of our readers or others.

While content is frequently updated, medical information changes quickly. Information may be out of date, and/or contain inaccuracies or typographical errors.  For questions or concerns, please contact us at contact@ccmhhealth.com.

In Remembrance of Analyssa Orjuela, MD

CCMH is saddened by the loss of one of our physicians. Dr. Analyssa Orjuela unexpectedly passed away last Wednesday morning as a result of a multiple-vehicle accident.

About her life

Born on June 13, 1987, Analyssa grew up in McAllen, Texas. She also graduated from McAllen High School. She loved and excelled in many activities including music, dance, gymnastics, cheerleading and academics. However, despite her many activities, she cherished time with her family above all.

Upon graduating from high school, Analyssa attended The University of Texas – Pan American where she received her bachelor’s degree. She then attended The University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, Texas where she received her Doctor of Medicine. She completed her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology.

Dr. Orjuela had a selfless spirit and passion for helping others. She was always there for her patients, siblings and friends in a time of need. Others considered her an inspiration to work hard and live a life of grace and dignity.

Her career at CCMH

After completing her residency, Dr. Orjuela relocated to Lawton to pursue her lifelong dream of practicing medicine. She was a valued member of our team for the past two years with our MMG Obstetrics and Gynecology clinic.

Dr. Orjuela meant a great deal to many of her patients. Many fondly referred to her as “Dr. O.” She always showed kindness and compassion in her practice, and it was obvious that she truly loved her profession.

Dr. Orjuela’s current patients will still be cared for by her colleagues at the OB/GYN clinic. She made a wonderful and positive impact on our staff, patients and the community. On behalf of CCMH Administration, our thoughts and prayers go out to her family, friends and colleagues.

Seven Ways to Support a Survivor of Suicide Loss

On November 17th, International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day is observed. No one wants to have a connection to this day. Grief and loss are difficult enough to experience without the shock of someone we love taking their own life.

Those that are left behind after suicide have a difficult journey ahead of them. They may also feel a wide variety of emotions. These emotions may include sadness to anger to even unnecessary guilt if suicide loss survivors feel they should have done something to prevent the loss from taking place. They need much support from friends and family. Here are seven tips to show suicide loss survivors you care as they walk their grief journey.

 

Be very careful with your words.

 

Sometimes some of the cliche statements made when someone experiences a loss have the opposite effect of what we intended. Telling someone that their loved one “is in a better place” for example, may be painful even if they believe that statement deep down. Such statements seem dismissive as if suicide loss survivors should just “get over it”.

Also, don’t try to tell a loss survivor that he or she should feel differently. Guilt is a very common feeling with loss, and it will pass although it may take awhile. Statements such as “No one blames you” are better than “You shouldn’t feel guilty.”

You may be tempted to avoid the situation to avoid saying the wrong thing. This can hurt and seem dismissive too. A heartfelt look, hug and an “I’m sorry” can go much further than you realize.

 

Let loss survivors lead the conversations.

 

Allow suicide loss survivors to talk about the deceased person as much as they want. Don’t try to “distract” them when they want to talk about the deceased. It may not be comfortable conversations for you, but remember that the grief they carry is constantly with them. Eventually the conversations will become less frequent, but know they need a listening ear from time to time.


Likewise, don’t force them to talk about it. Grief is a very personal thing. No two people handle it the same. When the loss survivor wants a distraction, allow them that as well. Grief is not over and done. It comes and goes for a long time.


Don’t try to make loss survivors  “feel better.”

 

You can’t make someone feel better when they are grieving as much as you wish you could. Suggesting they should be in a better place when it comes to dealing with their grief suggests that what happened was not a “big deal.”

You cannot force someone through grief faster either. It is a path that in some ways must be walked alone. Survivors of suicide loss as with all survivors of loss, don’t want to feel better when they begin grieving. It may take weeks, months or years before they feel like “themselves” again. A great tragedy has taken place in their lives and in many ways they can never be the same again.


Treat loss survivors as you always have.

 

Even though grief must be walked alone, that does not mean you should leave someone alone completely. Even if the loss survivor says “no” one hundred times, still invite him or her to join you on outings like you always did before. Don’t take a refusal to get out of the house personally. Even though it may seem at the time that your friendship is not important anymore, loss survivors need your friendship more than ever before. Eventually, he or she will accept your invitation again.

 

Check on loss survivors in the evening.

 

Daily routines are filled with needed distractions for loss survivors. Evenings can seem long and difficult because he or she may be alone with nothing to do but think. This is a good time to call or stop by. Small daily tasks and self care can seem overwhelming when you’re struggling with loss.  Stopping by with his or her favorite meal will be very appreciated.

 

Remember that grief doesn’t stop with the funeral.

 

Everyone else seems to “move on” after the funeral. This can make loss more difficult for those who are close to the deceased. Check on loss survivors frequently months down the road. Chances are they are still struggling, but will try to hide their feelings since everyone else is back to their routines.

 

Remember significant dates.   

 

Nothing shows someone you care more than simple acknowledgment. Know the dates that are important to him or her- birthdays, anniversaries and death dates. A simple note or card can mean a lot to him or her. Offer to accompany them to a favorite spot to share memories of their loved one or to the cemetery to place fresh flowers at the gravesite.

If you are struggling with grief, you have our sincerest sympathies. We invite you to take place in our grief education and support services. Learn more by visiting  ccmhhealth.com/pastoral-care/.

 

Disclaimer

The Comanche County Memorial Hospital website does not provide specific medical advice for individual cases. Comanche County Memorial Hospital does not endorse any medical or professional services obtained through information provided on this site, articles on the site or any links on this site.

Use of the information obtained by the Comanche County Memorial Hospital website does not replace medical advice given by a qualified medical provider to meet the medical needs of our readers or others.

While content is frequently updated, medical information changes quickly. Information may be out of date, and/or contain inaccuracies or typographical errors. For questions or concerns, please contact us at contact@ccmhhealth.com.

family silhouette image

The Difference between Palliative Care and Hospice

November is Hospice and Palliative Care Month. Help end the confusion by understanding what palliative care is and how it differs from hospice care.

Palliative care is a philosophy of caring for people with serious illness at any time in the disease trajectory. As a sub-specialty of palliative care, hospice focuses on caring for someone during their final months of life, but palliative care can begin much earlier, even while a patient is receiving treatment meant to cure the illness.

Living with a serious illness can be burdensome and distressing for patients and their loved ones.

Navigating healthcare decisions, not to mention the healthcare system itself, can be overwhelming.

Palliative care recognizes all of the needs a patient or family may have and provides personalized, supportive care that eases suffering and improves quality of life.

How does palliative care do this? Time, expertise, support, teamwork and coordination are some of the pillars of the palliative care approach. Time to devote to patient/family meetings. Expertise for managing complex physical and emotional symptoms. Support for resolving spiritual and ethical questions concerning goals of care. Teamwork from various disciplines such as physicians, nurses, social work, chaplaincy and more. And coordination of care transitions across healthcare settings.

Palliative care is a philosophy of care focused on providing relief from the symptoms, pain and stress of serious illness. Palliative care is also a medical specialty here at CCMH. It includes supportive care at any age and at any stage of the illness, even alongside curative treatments, and hospice care for a patient’s final months.

November is National Healthy Skin Month

November is National Healthy Skin Month! It is important that we take good care of our skin as it is our body’s largest organ. Here  are some skincare tips that can help which are easy to add to your daily routine.

Wash your face daily.

Be sure you wash your face everyday as well as after exercising. Use lukewarm water to open and cleanse pores. Water that is too hot can cause excess drying. How many times you wash your face daily depends on your skin type since there are varying degrees of dryness or oiliness. Consult with your dermatologist.

Use an antiperspirant.

Why is an antiperspirant a better choice over deodorant? The ingredients in antiperspirants reduce the amount of sweat your sweat glands produce. Temporary gel plugs are formed in the pores. Your skin’s natural renewal process later removes them. They are also removed when you bathe.

Know your skin type.

Is your skin oily?  Dry? A combination of both?  Normal or sensitive? Are you unsure? Those with oily skin usually have problems with acne and shininess. Those with dry skin often notice itching and flaking. Combination skin traits include having cheeks that dry easily but oil in the area known as the T-zone. If you imagined drawing a large ‘T’ over your face the T-zone is identified by the forehead, nose and chin.

It is important that you know your skin type and choose skin care products that won’t harm your skin. For example, those with dry skin will benefit from gentle, creamier cleansers. Those with oily skin should choose oil-free foaming cleansers that are also non-comedogenic (does not block pores). Ingredients  such as salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide are good choices to reduce acne.

Moisturize and protect.

It is important that everyone uses a moisturizer. Even if you have skin that is oily and rarely dry, your skin will be better protected and stay healthier and younger looking longer with moisturizer use. Apply moisturizer when your skin is damp from bathing to experience the full benefits. Those with dry skin should choose a heavier moisturizer than those with oily skin of course.

Petroleum jelly also works as an excellent moisturizer for dry skin and nails and treats minor injuries.

We need to protect our skin more than just in the summertime too. Make sure you are using a moisturizer that contains a broad spectrum sunscreen.  

Prevent blistering and corns.

Make sure your shoes fit correctly and you feel no rubbing. Nylon or moisture-wicking socks will protect your skin from sweat. Keep your toenails trimmed too.

Examine your skin.

Take a look regularly for signs of skin cancer. Ask a family member to help with the areas that it is difficult to see such as your back. Make note of any new or unusual spots. Consult with your dermatologist about spots that change, itch or bleed.

Do you need an appointment  with a dermatologist? Visit CCMHHealth.com/directory/specialties/dermatology to find the contact information for Dr. Hensley or Dr. Roundtree.

 

 

 

Disclaimer

The Comanche County Memorial Hospital website does not provide specific medical advice for individual cases. Comanche County Memorial Hospital does not endorse any medical or professional services obtained through information provided on this site, articles on the site or any links on this site.

Use of the information obtained by the Comanche County Memorial Hospital website does not replace medical advice given by a qualified medical provider to meet the medical needs of our readers or others.

While content is frequently updated, medical information changes quickly. Information may be out of date, and/or contain inaccuracies or typographical errors. For questions or concerns, please contact us at contact@ccmhhealth.com.

November is Palliative Care Month

November is National Hospice and Palliative Care Month. The Center to Advance Palliative Care defines palliative care as “specialized medical care for people with serious illnesses.” It focuses on providing patients with relief from the symptoms, pain and stress of a serious illness, regardless of their diagnosis, at any age and any stage, and it helps patients and families manage the gradual transition from cure focused treatment to comfort-focused treatment over the duration of the illness. Palliative care is not synonymous with hospice or end-of-life care but it shares many of the same principles.

One of the main principles of palliative care is teamwork across disciplines. Physicians, nurses, social workers, chaplains, psychologists, and others work as a team to identify and effectively treat the symptoms and stress of a serious illness. Teams meet with patients and surrogate decision-makers to establish the goals of care, support families in crisis and plan for safe transitions from the hospital to other care sites. When this teamwork happens along with other principles of palliative care studies show improved survival and quality of life, reduced avoidable suffering and distress, and reduced hospital re-admissions.

When these and other challenges are addressed by palliative care teamwork, The Center to Advance Palliative Care says patients’ physical and psychosocial symptoms improve, family caregiver well-being improves, and patient, family and physician satisfaction improves.

During National Hospice and Palliative Care Month, remember the value of teamwork. Recognize the contribution of other disciplines. Teamwork is always essential, but especially when it comes to caring for patients with a serious illness. CCMH is proud to offer both Home Health and Hospice Services as well as Chaplaincy Services to support our patients with Palliative Care needs.

CCMH Home Health & Hospice
580.585.5575

CCMH Chaplaincy Services
580.591.2496

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