Your vacation – it’s your time to unwind, relax and recharge. But one problem with vacations is that danger never takes a holiday!
While we see safety messages at work every day, not all of us remember these messages when we go from our workplace to our fun place.
‘Holiday brain’ can obliterate all of our usually careful and thoughtful actions. Common sense falls by the wayside for a ‘let’s get the party started’ mentality.
Stay healthy, active and injury-free on your vacation with a few simple tips:
Wear sturdy, comfortable shoes. Such a cliché but so true. No matter where you go, there’s bound to be some walking involved and you should always be prepared to walk. Sandals and flip flops can lead to painful blisters and cuts to the feet. Take along an extra pair of socks to refresh your feet after a few hours. Also, watch where you walk to avoid tripping.
If you’ve been walking all day, stretch at the end of the day. Gently stretching your muscles from head to toe can reduce stiffness the next day. Check the internet for quick stretching exercises.
Use a light backpack for your adventures. It will balance weight on your back rather than stress your shoulders. Purses, cameras and phones can all be tucked away leaving you comfortable and hands free (which is useful if you trip).
Protect your skin. A sunburn is painful and can ruin your vacation. Wear sunscreen (SPF 40+) even if you think you don’t need it. Pack a hat and remember the bug spray too.
Don’t overexert yourself! Ask for help when lifting, loading or carrying heavy objects. Try to keep your physical activity about the same as at home. Resist the urge to cycle to the top of the volcano if you don’t ride at home.
Much like your ordinary, everyday life, your vacation motto should be ‘everything in moderation’.
Just remember to throw a few more yahoos and yeehaws into the mix.
(One final note from the writer who missed 4 days of work on her return from vacation: Don’t overload your suitcase and yank it down a flight of stairs which can result in
nerve damage to the hip and leg. It’s an extremely unpleasant way to end a holiday!).
When Rosie O’Donnell suffered a near fatal heart attack last summer she started speaking out to help other women recognize the signs and symptoms of a heart attack.
In her HBO documentary, “Rosie O’Donnell: A Heartfelt Stand Up”, Rosie speaks of how she experienced a 99% percent blockage in her left anterior descending (LAD) artery. Rosie delayed seeking medical advice for almost 2 days and then just made an appointment with a cardiologist rather than go to Emergency. Like a lot of women, she dismissed her symptoms as overexertion and stress. When she finally did receive medical treatment, doctors were surprised that she survived such a serious and life threatening blockage. An LAD blockage is known as the “widowmaker”: It kills people instantly.
We’ve known for years that heart attack symptoms for men and woman are different but many women either ignore their symptoms or brush them off. Research shows that men will go much sooner to an ER than women. Heart disease is the #1 killer of women in North America and has more victims than breast cancer and lung cancer combined.
Rosie’s symptoms paint a picture of what a heart attack can look like and when to seek immediate medical help. She describes her symptoms with the acronym HEPPP.
- Heat: Feeling hotter than “any hot flash you’ve ever had”.
- Exhaustion: Extreme fatigue, “feels like you’re walking through syrup”.
- Pain: Pain somewhere; it can be in your arms, neck, chest, stomach or head.
- Pale: Poor skin colour – chalky, pasty or even bluish.
- Puke: Vomiting – vomit can resemble “milk”.
Symptoms will vary but if you experience a combination of these, take it serious and call an ambulance. Do not drive and do not delay. Heart attacks are no laughing matter…just ask Rosie.
Skilven Publications Inc