New EPA Restrictions on Methylene Chloride: What Is It and Why Is It Dangerous?

From bathtub refinishing to furniture stripping, methylene chloride takes center stage in a variety of household projects. Increasingly, however, health authorities are alerting the public to the substance’s dangers — and claiming that it’s to blame for a myriad of tragic deaths. What Is Methylene Chloride? Why Should Consumers Avoid It? Sometimes referred to as dichloromethane or DCM, methylene chloride is a solvent used in a wide array of products. It is most commonly seen in paint strippers, but can also be used in adhesives such as acrylic cement. The substance is also sometimes seen in automotive and general cleaning…

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Seven Common Medication Errors in Nursing Homes

Nursing homes take care of our society’s most vulnerable members. The elderly and permanently disabled may reside in these facilities. Like other health care facilities, nursing homes can be hotspots for medical mistakes. In nursing homes, medication errors are one of the most common types of mistakes made by staff members. Seven common medication errors in nursing homes include: Providing patients with the wrong medications. This type of mistake may occur for several reasons. For instance, a nurse may confuse medications with similar names. Prescribing the wrong dosage. Nurses may give patients too little or too much of a medication….

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Why Your Doctor Is Distracted — And What You Can Do About It

Distraction has become a way of life. In some contexts, however, distraction isn’t merely a source of annoyance — it can also prove life-threatening. This is particularly true in the health care industry, where an increasing number of doctors and other professionals are demonstrating signs of distraction. Below, we examine this phenomenon and offer up potential remedies. How Distracted Are Today’s Doctors? Data presented by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine’s John Makary indicates that medical errors are more common than previously assumed, with estimates reaching an alarming 250,000 per year. According to the FDA, these errors lead to injury…

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5 Ways to Stay Safe on D.C. Roads

Car accidents are common, and they can occur at any time of the year. Several factors are responsible for causing an increase in car accidents. Accidents may be caused by drunk driving, drowsy driving, poor weather and an influx of visitors who are unfamiliar with D.C. roads. How Can I Avoid an Accident During the Holidays? Plan ahead. Plan ahead to limit any surprises on the road. Ensure your vehicle is up-to-date with maintenance, check the weather before you leave on your trip, and know your route beforehand (or have your GPS ready). You should also keep emergency kits in…

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How to Keep Track of Your Prescription Medications

If you’re like many Americans, your day begins with a hot cup of coffee…and a handful of pills. A report from the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings indicates that seven out of ten Americans rely on at least one prescription medication. Many others take several pills every day. Some maintain a complex regimen involving different drugs at different times, sometimes totaling five or more pills before the sun sets. Keeping track of all these medications can prove difficult, even for the most conscientious among us. Poor medication management, however, could have devastating consequences. If you struggle with keeping track of your…

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Complications in Hospital Childbirth: Are Mothers to Blame?

Ample data suggests that America is the most dangerous place to give birth in the developed world. But while concerned parents blame our health care system and, more specifically, the medical professionals directly involved in childbirth, the medical community has repeatedly claimed that unhealthy parents are, in fact, to blame. This chicken-or-egg argument may be even more complicated than once assumed, as we explain below: Childbirth Injuries and Fatalities: By the Numbers It’s no secret that the United States leads the developed world in infant mortality, but the issue may be far more severe than most people suspect. Statistics from…

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Avoiding Injury While Lugging Suitcases During Your Vacation

Whether your dream vacation involves a skiing adventure or drinks on the beach, you’re eager to get away from the usual stresses of everyday life. If you’re not careful, however, your vacation could prompt pain and suffering far beyond what you currently face. Luggage, in particular, can prove hazardous; in 2015, over 84,000 U.S. patients were treated in emergency rooms or clinics after suffering luggage-related injuries. Thankfully, these injuries can often be avoided. Read on to learn how: Reassess Your Packing Style How much do you really need to pack? In all likelihood, you can pack more efficiently — especially…

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St. Patrick’s Day Safety Tips

After a long and difficult winter, St. Patrick’s Day is about to usher in spring — and you’re ready to party! In this time of celebration, however, many party-goers find themselves vulnerable to a variety of risks, most of which involve alcohol. Follow these tips to stay safe this St. Patrick’s Day: Plan to Use Public Transit or Ridesharing Apps According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), 60 people were killed in crashes involving drunk drivers on St. Patrick’s Day in 2016. The fatality rate that year averaged 29 people per day; clearly, people drove drunk on St….

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Here’s What You Should Know Before Celebrating on St. Patrick’s Day

St. Patrick’s Day is one of the biggest party nights of the year. Drunk driving accidents are also very common on this holiday. For victims of drunk driving accidents, there are local laws that can help them recover compensation for their injuries or losses. Under D.C. Code Annotated Section 25-781, it is illegal to sell or deliver alcoholic drinks to: A person who is already intoxicated. A person who appears to be intoxicated. “A person of notoriously intemperate habits,” which is also known as a “habitual drunkard” in other states. Other provisions of this law bar vendors from selling alcohol…

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Do’s And Don’ts For Getting a Second Opinion From Another Doctor

You respect your doctor’s opinion but aren’t so sure that you agree. While it’s tempting to play along, your gut may be more accurate than you suspect; a notable Mayo Clinic study reveals that 88 percent of those who seek additional opinions for complex conditions obtain either a new or refined diagnosis. Unfortunately, seeking a second opinion can be challenging even if you’re ordinarily assertive. If you’re reluctant to speak up, these do’s and don’ts might help: Don’t: Avoid Speaking Up For Fear of Being Too Demanding If you’re dealing with a serious illness or condition, don’t keep quiet when…

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