View this email in your browser
Just for the Health of It
Warren County Public Health Newsletter
April 2023
Every year the American Public Health Association recognizes one week in April as National Public Health Week. This year it is April 3rd-9th. Each day during the week features a new public health theme. The themes provide a starting point for conversation and a call to action. This year the APHA has chosen the following topics.
  • Community (Monday)—Recognizing that where we live has huge impacts on our health and well-being is important. How does your community support you and your health and how can you support your community?
  • Violence Prevention (Tuesday) - Feeling safe from violence in your home, at work, in public settings and outdoors can greatly improve your physical, social and mental well-being. How can you support violence prevention in your life?
  • Reproductive and sexual health (Wednesday) - This topic has become very difficult to discuss in certain situations due to its politicization. How do you support the open discussion of age appropriate reproductive and sexual health topics at home, in educational settings, in community settings and with elected leaders?
  • Mental Health (Thursday) - This is one of the most challenging topics. With the effects of the pandemic, social media, fractured social and political ideologies and 24/7 news cycles more and more people are experiencing mental health issues. How do you support your own communities needs for mental health resources?
Just for the Health of It Podcast
Watch out for our new episodes on the Just for the Health of It Podcast! We will be interviewing all sorts of different people this month!

From colorectal cancer screenings to poison prevention! Make sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel so you never miss another video again!
Alcohol Awareness Month
Alcohol Awareness
Alcohol Awareness Month is a public health program organized by the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence as a way of increasing outreach and education regarding the dangers of alcoholism and issues related to alcohol.
Did you know?
  • Excessive alcohol use is one of the leading causes of preventable and premature death in the United States.
  • In New York State (NYS), excessive alcohol use causes nearly 6,700 deaths annually.
  • 2020, one in 6 adults in NYS (16.7%) reported excessive alcohol use in the form of either binge or heavy drinking.(Binge drinking is defined as consuming 4 or more drinks for women and 5 or more drinks for men on a single occasion. Heavy drinking is defined as consuming 8 or more drinks per week for women and 15 or more drinks per week for men).
  • Excessive alcohol use has been linked to an increased risk for various types of cancer including those of the oral cavity and pharynx, larynx, esophagus, liver, colon, rectum, and female breast.
  • Excessive alcohol use over time also increases the risk for hypertension, cardiovascular disease, stroke, liver disease, and other digestive diseases.
Unfortunately many people do not recognize how much they drink or deny there is a problem. Often family and friends may deny or not recognize a person’s drinking as a problem because they are uncomfortable or not sure of how to address the person and problem.

It is important to remember that alcohol abuse and alcoholism affect more than just the person who is using. Family, friends, workplaces and communities are also impacted. So if you know or suspect someone has a problem with alcohol use  or if you have been affected by someone else’s use there are resources available to help you.
  • NYS Office of Addiction Services and Supports In New York, addiction treatmentcompletely individualized. OASAS-certified programs practice person-centered care—treating the whole person, rather than the disease of addiction or its symptoms.
  • For help and hope 24/7, call1-877-8-HOPENY(467369)textHOPENY(467369) - Individuals may call or text the HOPElinereceive free and confidential information about Addiction and problem gambling assessments, interventions, treatment and support in New York State
  • - Al-Anon members are people, just like you, who are worried about someone with a drinking problem. Family members have the opportunity to learn from the experiences of others who have faced similar problems.
  • Office of Community Services for Warren and Washington Counties— Works in partnership with the NYS Office of Mental Health, the NYS Office of Addiction Services and Supports, and the NYS Office for People with Developmental Disabilities to ensure services are developed according to identified local needs.
It is no secret that ticks have become a common pest in Northern New York including Warren County. As spring arrives ticks and the animals they feed on will become more active. As the weather consistently rises above freezing the risk for tick encounters with humans and pets goes up.

Recent data seems to indicate that more and more ticks in our area are infected with more than just Lyme disease. Anaplasmosis and Ehrlichiosis (similar bacterial diseases) and Babesiosis (caused by a parasite) have been found in the gut of ticks that have been caught during tick drags.

A tick drag uses a large piece of fabric dragged through potential tick habitats where ticks will latch on and then any ticks found on the fabric are sent to a lab for identification and analysis.
It is important even in early spring to follow some basic tick prevention strategies to keep you safe.
  • Whenever possible try to avoid tick habitats like tall grass and brush, leaf piles, rock walls etc. Ticks like to be low to the ground to find their food sourcesince they can’t jump or fly and usually move on the backs of their hosts.
When entering tick habitats
  • Wear light-colored clothing with a tight weave to spot ticks easily.
  • Wear enclosed shoes, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt. Tuck pant legs into socks or boots and shirt into pants.
  • Check clothes and any exposed skin frequently for ticks while outdoors.
  • Consider using insect repellent.
  • Stay on cleared, well-traveled trails. Walk in the center of trails. Avoid dense woods and bushy areas.
  • Avoid sitting directly on the ground or on stone walls.
  • Keep long hair tied back, especially when gardening.
  • Bathe or shower as soon as possible after going indoors (preferably within two hours) to wash off and more easily find ticks that may be on you.
  • Do a final, full-body tick check at the end of the day (also check children and pets), and remove ticks promptly.
Prompt and Proper Tick Removal Reduces Disease Risk
  • Using pointed tweezers, grasp tick near the mouth parts, as close to skin as possible.
  • Pull tick in a steady, upward motion away from skin. Don’t twist or jerk the tick.
  • DO NOT use kerosene, matches, or petroleum jelly to remove tick.
  • Disinfect site with soap and water, rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide.
  • Record date and location of tick bite. If rash or flu-like symptoms appear between 3-30 days after being bitten contact your health care provider immediately.
Mental Health & Emotional Well-being
Things You Can Do To Take Care of Yourself & When to Seek Help.

Everyone has a bad day. It is important to allow yourself to have a bad day. Allowing those emotions out and validating them can be helpful and therapeutic. However, it also important to not allow those emotions to consume you and your thoughts for extended periods of time.
Below are some tips from the National Library of Medicine to help improve your mental health…
Staying positive.
It's important to try to have a positive outlook; some ways to do that include
  • Finding balance between positive and negative emotions. Staying positive doesn't mean that you never feel negative emotions, such as sadness or anger. You need to feel them so that you can move through difficult situations. They can help you to respond to a problem. But you don't want those emotions to take over. For example, it's not helpful to keep thinking about bad things that happened in the past or worry too much about the future.
  • Trying to hold on to the positive emotions when you have them.
  • Taking a break from negative information. Know when to stop watching or reading the news. Use social media to reach out for support and feel connected to others but be careful. Don't fall for rumors, get into arguments, or negatively compare your life to others.
Practicing gratitude, which means being thankful for the good things in your life. It's helpful to do this every day, either by thinking about what you are grateful for or writing it down in a journal. These can be big things, such as the support you have from loved ones, or little things, such as enjoying a nice meal. It's important to allow yourself a moment to enjoy that you had the positive experience. Practicing gratitude can help you to see your life differently. For example, when you are stressed, you may not notice that there are also moments when you have some positive emotions. Gratitude can help you to recognize them.
Take care of your physical health, since your physical and mental health are connected. Some ways to take care of your physical health include
  • Being physically active. Exercise can reduce feelings of stress anddepressionimprove your mood.
  • Getting enough sleep. Sleep affects your mood. If you don't get a good sleep, you may become more easily annoyed and angry. Over the long term, a lack of quality sleep can make you more likely to become depressed. So it's important to make sure that you have a regular sleep schedule and get enough quality sleep every night.
  • Healthy eating. Good nutrition will help you feel better physically but could also improve your mood and decreaseanxietystress. Also, not having enough of certain nutrients may contribute to some mental illnesses. For example, there may be a link between low levels ofvitamin B12depression. Eating a well-balanced diet can help you to get enough of the nutrients you need.
Connect with others.are social creatures, and it's important to have strong, healthy relationships with others. Having good social support may help protect you against the harms of stress. It is also good to have different types of connections. Besides connecting with family and friends, you could find ways to get involved with your community or neighborhood. For example, you could volunteer for a local organization or join a group that is focused on a hobby you enjoy.
Develop a sense of meaning and purpose in life.This could be through your job, volunteering, learning new skills, or exploring your spirituality.
Develop coping skills, which are methods you use to deal with stressful situations. They may help you face a problem, take action, be flexible, and not easily give up in solving it.
Meditation, which is a mind and body practice where you learn to focus your attention and awareness. There are many types, including mindfulness meditation and transcendental meditation. Meditation usually involves
  • A quiet location with as few distractions as possible
  • A specific, comfortable posture. This could be sitting, lying down, walking, or another position
  • A focus of attention, such as a specially chosen word or set of words, an object, or your breathing
  • An open attitude, where you try to let distractions come and go naturally without judging them
Relaxation techniques teaches you to produce your body's natural relaxation response. This slows down your breathing, lowers your blood pressure, and reduces muscle tension and stress. Types of relaxation techniques include
  • Progressive relaxation, where you tighten and relax different muscle groups, sometimes while using mental imagery or breathing exercises
  • Guided imagery, where you learn to focus on positive images in your mind, to help you feel more relaxed and focused
  • Biofeedback, where you use electronic devices to learn to control certain body functions, such as breathing, heart rate, and muscle tension
  • Self-hypnosis, where the goal is to get yourself into a relaxed, trance-like state when you hear a certain suggestion or see a specific cue
  • Deep breathing exercises, which involve focusing on taking slow, deep, even breaths
It's also important to recognize when you need to get help. Talk therapy and/or medicines can treatmental disorders. If you don't know where to get treatment, start by contacting your primary care provider.
Warren County Public Health. Our mailing address is: 1340 Route 9, Lake George, N.Y., 12845

Want to change how you receive these emails? You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.