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  • 6 Unexpected Things You Can Purchase with a Flexible Spending Account

    Posted on August 2, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    medicalbillFlexible spending accounts (FSAs) are employer-sponsored savings accounts that let you save part of your income to use for medical expenses tax-free. You can use FSAs as a supplement to medical insurance and pay for common costs like copays and prescription drugs.

    But FSAs can be used for a lot more than hospital stays, doctor visits, and prescriptions. Depending on your plan, you may be able to use your FSA for a much wider range of products and services.

    Here are six unexpected things you can purchase with an FSA.

    1. Massage Therapy

    Aching for a good massage? You may be able to use your FSA dollars to pay for your next massage appointment. Just be sure to check with your FSA administrator. The plan may require you to get a referral or letter of medical necessity (LOMN) from your physician first. While general tension and stress relief aren’t considered legitimate reasons, you could get a LOMN for back pain, arthritis, anxiety, pain management, and more.

    1. Eye Care Products

    You can use your FSA to pay for glasses, contact lenses, and optometrist visits, all of which can be quite expensive. You may even be able to use your FSA for laser vision correction surgery! Common eye products, such as contact lens solution, reading glasses, eye drops, and eye compress heat packs may also be FSA eligible.

    1. First Aid Kits and General Health Supplies

    Are you looking to put together a general first aid kit or stock your medicine cabinet? FSAs cover prepared first aid kits, as well as supplies including bandages, Band-Aids, disinfectant, thermometers, rubbing alcohol, over-the-counter medications and more. Some of these items may require a prescription, so check your FSA plan before you head to the pharmacy.

    1. Cervical Pillows

    If used to serve a legitimate medical purpose - such as providing lumbar support, relieving sleep apnea, or alleviating back pain - cervical pillows are FSA eligible. You will probably need a LMON from a physician, but you can use that letter to get a pillow for your specific needs.

    1. Support Belts and Wraps

    Does a specific area of your body need a support product, such as a back support belt, an ankle brace, or a cervical collar? Support belts, braces, wraps, and more can be purchased with your FSA, often without a prescription.

    1. Foot Care Products

    Some foot care products, including shoe inserts and foot massagers, are FSA eligible. Treat your feet!

    In Closing

    Every FSA plan has specific rules and guidelines, and they don’t all cover the same products and services. Some eligible expenses require a doctor’s referral, prescription, or LMON from a physician. Before you make any new purchases with your FSA, check the list of eligible products. Even if you don’t plan on making any purchases in the immediate future, starting your research now can’t hurt; if you need to load up on supplies before your funds expire at the end of the year, you’ll be ready!


    This post was posted in Education

  • How to Set Up Your Office for Better Posture

    Posted on July 25, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    deskThe modern office job can be bad for your posture. When you’re sitting at your desk for hours at a time, you may start to hunch toward your computer screen, slouch in your chair, or exhibit other bad habits. Over time, poor posture can lead to neck and back problems, an increased risk of herniated discs, and decreased hip mobility.

    With some changes, you can optimize your office to promote good habits. Here are five ways to set up your office for better posture.

    1. Get a Standing Desk

    Depending on your employer, you might be able to request a standing desk for your workspace. These elevated desks allow you to comfortably stand up straight while you work. Some standing desks are stationary, while others can transition from sitting to standing.

    When you’re standing with your monitor at eye level, you’re less likely to hunch forward or lean back. And, you’ll be avoiding some of the other health problems that can result from sitting all day.

    1. Adjust your Chair

    Ergonomic office chairs can be adjusted to your specifications. You should invest in an adjustable ergonomic chair that provides proper lower back support. When you’re setting up your chair, make sure you can sit comfortably with your head facing forward, your elbows at a 90° angle, and your feet flat on the floor.

    1. Adjust Your Screen

    Once your chair is properly adjusted, where is your screen? If it’s too low, you may unconsciously hunch toward it. If it’s too high, you might be craning your neck or leaning back to get a better view. Adjust your screen so that you can comfortably view it at eye level without slouching, leaning, or hunching over.

    1. Set a Reminder to Sit Properly

    Proper desk posture involves sitting with your arms and shoulders back, your neck straight, and your feet flat on the floor. If you often catch yourself slouching, you should set a reminder to sit correctly. This could be a phone or desktop notification that will remind you to check your positioning on a regular basis.

    1. Set a Reminder to Get Up and Move

    Sitting for long periods of time is bad for your posture and many other areas of your health. If you can, you should get up to move on a regular basis - take a stroll at lunch, walk around your office, or just get up and stretch for a few minutes every hour or so. A periodic calendar reminder will help you remember to get some exercise.

    Sources:

    https://www.coreproducts.com/blog/2017/06/13/sedentary-office-jobs-are-impacting-our-health-in-a-big-way/
    https://www.huffingtonpost.com/thomas-b-trafecanty/the-benefits-and-consider_b_9996782.html
    https://www.spine-health.com/wellness/ergonomics/office-chair-choosing-right-ergonomic-office-chair


    This post was posted in Education

  • How to Reduce Your Risk of Developing Arthritis

    Posted on July 16, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    arthPreventing arthritis isn’t as straightforward as you may think. There are many factors that contribute to your risk of developing arthritis; some of them, such as genetics, aren’t modifiable, and your risk increases as you get older. Plus, there are over 100 types of arthritis, each with unique risk factors.

    While no one has discovered a foolproof way to prevent arthritis, there are some lifestyle modifications you can make to reduce your risk of developing the more common types, such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

    Here’s how you can reduce your risk of developing arthritis.

    1. Maintain a Healthy Weight

    Obesity is directly linked to many forms of arthritis, including osteoarthritis. One reason is that excess weight puts extra stress on your joints, leading to damage or wear and tear. For example, every extra pound of weight on your body puts an additional four pounds of pressure on your knees. This is why you’re more likely to develop osteoarthritis when you’re overweight.

    To reduce the amount of stress you’re putting on your joints (and minimize contributing factors for other forms of arthritis), you should try to maintain a healthy weight. Even if you’re extremely overweight, every pound you lose can help.

    1. Eat a Healthy Diet

    A healthy, balanced diet will help you maintain or lose weight. It will also help you regulate your blood sugar and avoid developing diabetes, which is heavily linked to arthritis; people with diabetes are almost twice as likely to have arthritis. And some omega-3 fatty foods, such as fish, are thought to reduce the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis.

    1. Get Some Exercise

    Just like a healthy diet, regular exercise can help you maintain or lose weight to reduce your risk of arthritis. But exercise can also help strengthen muscles that surround and support your joints, which will stabilize them and reduce the amount of stress they endure. Plus, exercise can help your joints stay limber and increase their range of motion.

    The stronger your muscles, the better the protection for your joints. A consistent exercise routine that incorporates stretching, aerobic, and strengthening exercises will help you avoid arthritis in the long run.

    1. Give Up Smoking

    Smoking increases your risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis (not to mention cancer, heart disease, and other serious health conditions). If you quit smoking now, your likelihood of developing rheumatoid arthritis will decrease over time.

    1. Avoid Injuries

    Injuries can raise your risk of developing arthritis when you’re older, even decades later. Torn ligaments and cartilage - injuries that are frequently sustained during sports - can cause arthritis in the injured joints. According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, damaging a joint makes you seven times more likely to develop arthritis.

    While exercise is an important aspect of a healthy lifestyle, you should take care to avoid sustaining any injuries during sports or everyday activities.

    In Closing

    While there’s no guarantee you won’t develop arthritis, these lifestyle modifications can help reduce your risk. But even if you already have arthritis, you should consider following these recommendations - many behaviors that reduce the risk of developing arthritis also alleviate symptoms for those that already have it. Talk to your doctor about specific steps you can take to reduce your risk of arthritis or manage your specific case. 

    Sources:

    https://arthritis-research.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/ar2751
    https://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/comorbidities/diabetes-and-arthritis/
    https://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/comorbidities/obesity-arthritis/fat-and-arthritis.php
    https://www.everydayhealth.com/news/when-old-injuries-come-back-to-haunt-you/


    This post was posted in Education

  • 8 Tips to Make Your Home Feel Relaxing

    Posted on July 10, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    relaxHome should be a place you feel safe, comfortable, and at ease. But when your job, family, or other responsibilities are stressing you out, your home may not feel very relaxing.

    If your home isn’t providing any stress relief, some light touches can help transform it into a more serene environment. Here are eight tips to make your home feel more relaxing.

    1. Make a Good Entrance

    The first thing you see when arriving at home should be pleasant and soothing. It could be a painting, pictures of your family, or another decoration. Whatever it is, a pleasant focal point near the entrance will create a good impression and help you ease into a relaxed mind state.

    1. Ditch the Clutter

    If your home is covered in clutter that needs to be tossed out, donated, or put away, you may feel overwhelmed as soon as you walk in the door. Try to keep up with clutter and put it in its place on a consistent basis. While it may take a little time, it’s better than letting it pile up and create an overwhelming mess.

    1. Add Some Plants

    Houseplants are good for the air quality in your home because they reduce carbon dioxide levels and remove pollutants from the air. They can also elevate your mood, as being around nature has been shown to reduce stress. Adding some houseplants to your home will lend some visual flair and help you relax.

    1. Focus on Memories

    Photos from positive memories - such as family get-togethers or vacations - can easily give you a pleasure boost and help you forget your stress.  Frame some photos to hang on the wall or display on bookshelves or tables. Just make sure that once you do, you actually look at them once in a while!

    1. Create a Tech-Free Space 

    Many studies have linked too much screen time to stress, poor sleep, and depression. While you don’t need to eliminate your screen time entirely, you should take a break from technology once in a while. Creating a tech-free area of your home can help. It doesn't need to be an entire room - it can be a corner with a beanbag chair and some books - but a space to get away from screens can help you unwind.

    1. Use Natural Lighting

    A lack of exposure to natural light has been linked to higher levels of cortisol (the “stress hormone”) and lower levels of melatonin at bedtime. This can result in higher stress, poor sleep quality, and depression. Open your curtains and shades to let in some natural sunlight.

    1. Paint Your Walls Tranquil Colors

    The color of your walls can affect your mood. If you’re trying to reduce stress you probably don’t want a lot of bold, striking colors in your home. Painting your home lighter shades of soothing colors, such as blue, violet, and pink, can create a calming effect. 

    1. Make a Comfortable Bedroom

    Your bedroom should be a sanctuary devoted to rest. The wrong bedroom setup can drastically affect your ability to get a good night’s sleep, which in turn can raise your stress and leave you feeling exhausted. You may want to invest in some quality bedding, adjust the temperature of your bedroom, eliminate outside light, and take other steps to ensure your bedroom is optimized for sleep. 

    Sources:

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25424517
    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/urban-mindfulness/200903/plants-make-you-feel-better
    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/mental-wealth/201211/screens-and-the-stress-response


    This post was posted in Education

  • How to Support a Child Who Has Juvenile Arthritis

    Posted on July 2, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    JAJuvenile arthritis (JA) is not a specific condition that affects young people - rather, it’s a general term that refers to many autoimmune and inflammatory diseases that occur in children under the age of 18. Although JA isn’t a single disease, it does come with a number of challenges specific to children.

    Nearly 300,000 children in the United States have some form of JA, although in many cases the disease may go undiagnosed for some time (it is often difficult for doctors to identify). July is Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month, a time to spread awareness about JA and support the JA community.

    With that in mind, here’s how you can help support a child who has JA.

    1. Educate Yourself About JA 

    You may think you know a lot about arthritis, as it frequently causes painful, stiff joints. But JA refers to many different types of autoimmune and inflammatory conditions, and symptoms vary between them. Symptoms may even manifest themselves differently from child to child.

    Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month is the perfect time to educate yourself about JA in general, and then learn about how it affects the child in your life. You can start at the Arthritis Foundation, which has a number of fantastic resources, and then talk to the child or family members to learn more about their experiences with JA.

    1. Find Ways to Stay Active

    Sports and other physical activities may be difficult for kids with JA; one of the primary symptoms is joint pain and stiffness, and JA can hinder physical development. But it’s important for kids with JA to stay active, as exercise can help strengthen muscles, reduce symptoms, and maintain joint mobility.

    You can help by identifying physical activities that are fun and manageable for the child. A good example is swimming, which is zero-impact but works all muscle groups and builds cardiovascular endurance.

    1. Understand The Symptoms

    One of the most common symptoms of JA is pain, but children won’t always outwardly display their pain. Even if you don’t see outside evidence of JA, understand that the child’s pain is genuine and their limitations are real. Look for clues such as a stiff walk or fatigue. On a bad day, the child might be slower, uncoordinated, or tired.

    1. Encourage Socialization

    Children with JA may feel lonely and isolated from other kids and shut off from group activities. Try to encourage the child to participate in activities and spend time with friends. It will help them build confidence and realize that they aren’t so different from other kids.

    Remember, morning stiffness and joint pain may make it difficult for the child to get to school. However, the socialization provided in a classroom setting can convey many benefits.

    1. Participate in the JA Community

    One of the best things you can do with a child who has JA is to participate in the JA community. The Arthritis Foundation and other groups organize annual events (such as the Juvenile Arthritis National Conference) that helps children and their families learn about medical research, educate themselves about JA, and connect with other affected kids and families. You can also participate in local awareness events or even start your own fundraising drive!

    Sources:

    https://www.arthritis.org/about-arthritis/types/juvenile-arthritis/
    https://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/exercise/arthritis-friendly/lap-swimming.php
    http://blog.arthritis.org/juvenile-arthritis/july-is-juvenile-arthritis-awareness-month/


    This post was posted in Education

  • The Negative Health Consequences of Commuting by Car

    Posted on June 20, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    drivingIf you spend a long time driving to and from work, you know that a daily commute by car can be irritating and stressful. But the negative impacts of commuting by car go beyond minute-to-minute frustrations. Spending too much time in the car every day can actually lead to negative health outcomes.

    Here are some of the potential negative health consequences of commuting by car.

    1. Increased Sedentary Time

    Too much time spent sitting - more than six hours per day - can lead to higher blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Because of this, a sedentary lifestyle has been linked to a number of health problems, including cardiovascular issues, heart disease, diabetes, heart attacks, and strokes.

    If you spend an hour or more commuting in your car, you’re adding large periods of inactivity to your day and increasing your risk of developing these conditions.

    1. Rising Blood Pressure

    The stress of sitting in traffic can cause your blood pressure to temporarily spike, which is a normal reaction. But a stressful commute day in and day out can cause your blood pressure to rise for the long term. You could end up with chronic hypertension, a state of ongoing high blood pressure.

    1. Excess Weight or Obesity

    A 2012 study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine links long automobile commutes to increased weight. This is probably due to a combination of factors: more time spent sitting, less time spent exercising, and stress eating. The study found that people who commute more than 15 miles had a higher likelihood of obesity.

    1. Bad Posture and Neck/Back Pain

    People tend to practice bad posture in cars; they hunch toward the steering wheel or lean back into their seat. Over time, the hours you spend in these positions can lead to long-term bad posture and chronic neck or back pain.

    1. Elevated Stress Levels

    When compared to other modes of transportation such as trains, walking, or bicycling, driving has been found to be more stressful. It makes sense, as you’re in a constant mode of alertness and dealing with frustrations such as traffic congestion. Over time, a stressful driving commute can contribute to greater levels of overall stress. Too much stress can lead to physical problems like high blood pressure and mental problems like depression.

    1. Exposure to Pollution

    The time spent in your car may expose you to harmful air pollution, such as emissions from other cars. A 2007 study of Los Angeles drivers found that as much as 45% of their exposure to air pollution occurred while they were in their vehicles.

    Fighting the Negative Health Outcomes of Commuting by Car

    Ideally, you could substitute your driving commute with a healthier mode of transportation, like bicycling or taking the subway. Alternatively, you could make a major life change and get a job closer to home or move closer to work.

    Obviously, these aren’t realistic options for everyone. If you must drive to work, you can find other ways to counteract the mental and physical tolls of your daily commute. That may include engaging your mind with podcasts or audiobooks, finding time to sneak exercise into your daily routine, practicing good posture in your car, and reducing your time spent sitting elsewhere.

    Sources:
    https://abcnews.go.com/Health/Wellness/commuting-drives-weight-blood-pressure/story?id=16294712
    https://www.coreproducts.com/blog/2017/06/13/sedentary-office-jobs-are-impacting-our-health-in-a-big-way/
    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120508103921.htm
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1369847815001370
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S135223100700859X


    This post was posted in Education

  • Six Potential Benefits of a Daily Stretch Routine

    Posted on June 12, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    stretchIf you don’t stretch on a daily basis, it might be time to start. Sure, stretching can relieve tight muscles, but it also conveys several other physical and mental benefits. Whether you’re an athlete or a couch potato, stretching can help you lead a healthier life.

    Here are six benefits of a daily stretching routine.

    1. Better Flexibility and Range of Motion

    Stretching promotes flexibility and a full range of motion in your joints. The better range of motion you have, the easier your body can achieve motions attainable by a joint or series of joints. In simple terms, you will more easily be able to achieve daily tasks, like lifting heavy boxes, bending over, or climbing stairs.

    This holds true whether you’re a yoga master or you’re living with arthritis; either way, you can benefit from better flexibility and healthier joints. And while flexibility tends to lessen as you age, you can help maintain it with a daily stretching routine.

    1. Better Coordination

    Poor balance can lead to injury; you can slip and fall during everyday activities or during exercise. But many stretches emphasize balance as well as activity; any yoga class will likely involve some poses you need to hold for a while. The more coordinated you are, the less likely you are to suffer a fall.

    1. Improved Circulation

    Stretching can help blood flow and circulation, which in turn will carry oxygen and nutrients to your organs and muscles and help them function properly. As you stretch, a focus on steady breathing will help convey circulatory benefits.

    1. Better Posture

    Tight muscles can cause you to round your shoulders, slouch, and exhibit other forms of bad posture. Regular stretching can help prevent that muscle tightness; the looser you are, the more easily you can practice good posture. Stretching will help you stand and sit up straight!

    1. Better Athletic Form

    Science hasn’t demonstrated that stretching reduces the likelihood of athletic injuries. But better flexibility and range of motion can help you achieve athletic movements that otherwise might be beyond your reach. For example, full range of motion in your knees and hips can help you get into a deeper squat.

    1. Stress Relief

    Any yoga enthusiast can tell you that stretching is deeply relaxing. But you don’t need to spend hours stretching to reduce stress. A brief stretch routine each day can relax your muscles and your mind, and make the stress melt away. Make sure to concentrate on deep breathing as you stretch.

    Sources:
    http://www.acsm.org/public-information/articles/2016/10/07/improving-your-flexibility-and-balance
    https://www.livestrong.com/article/338122-does-stretching-increase-blood-circulation/
    https://www.prevention.com/health/a20454559/3-stretches-that-reduce-stress-naturally/
    http://web.mit.edu/tkd/stretch/stretching_3.html


    This post was posted in Education

  • What Causes Leg Cramps (and What to Do About Them)

    Posted on June 7, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    crampLeg cramps, popularly referred to as “charley horses”, are painful cramps caused by muscle spasms in your legs. These involuntary contractions of your leg muscles frequently occur in the calf muscles, and often strike mid-exercise or while you’re lying in bed.

    While they usually only last a few minutes, they can be very painful. They’re also quite common, as up to 60% of adults report experiencing nocturnal leg cramps.

    Leg cramps have many potential causes, most of which aren’t linked to serious medical conditions. But while you can usually wait them out, there are a few ways to reduce the likelihood of getting them in the future.

    What Causes Leg Cramps?

    It’s hard to identify one specific cause of leg cramps, especially when they occur out of the blue. Most of the time, they don’t represent a serious medical issue. Some of the most commonly identified causes include:

    • Muscle Overuse: overusing your muscles can lead to muscle fatigue or spams. If you are exercising at a higher-than-normal intensity, or if you don’t stretch enough before or after exercise sessions, you may be putting yourself at risk for leg cramps.
    • Dehydration: dehydration, especially among athletes, can lead to painful leg cramps.
    • Medications: certain medications, including intravenous iron sucrose, naproxen, raloxifene, and intravenous iron sucrose have been linked to leg cramps.
    • Medical conditions: certain conditions, including nerve damage from cancer treatment, osteoarthritis, and cirrhosis have been linked to leg cramps.
    • Pregnancy: pregnant women often report leg cramps as a symptom of pregnancy.

    The older you get, the more susceptible you are to leg cramps.

    What to Do About Them

    While there is no cure for leg cramps, there are steps you can take to limit your risk of getting them. There are also ways to treat them as they occur.

    During a cramp, you can try stretching by putting your weight on the affected leg and bending your knee slightly. You can also massage the muscles, ice them, or take a bath with Epsom salts. At the very least, you’ll simply have to wait them out.

    If you frequently get leg cramps during common exercises like running or bicycling, you should try lowering the intensity of your exercise. This will help reduce the risk of muscle fatigue. Over time, you can build up to a higher intensity. You should also stretch before or after exercise and make sure to stay hydrated.

    If you persistently get leg cramps for no apparent reason, you should see your general practitioner. While you shouldn’t jump to any conclusions, leg cramps have been linked to certain medical conditions, and there’s no harm in getting checked out by your doctor.  

    Sources:
    https://www.aafp.org/afp/2012/0815/p350.html
    https://www.webmd.com/pain-management/muscle-spasms-cramps-charley-horse


    This post was posted in Education

  • Tips for Maintaining Your Vision and Eye Health

    Posted on May 30, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    eyesToo often, we take our eyes for granted. Even though vision is one of the most important senses, many people do very little to keep their eyes healthy and their vision sharp.

    Luckily, there are many ways to protect your eyes. Here are seven tips for maintaining your vision and eye health.

    1. Get an Eye Exam

    If you already wear contacts or glasses, you should go to the eye doctor annually to update your prescription and check for other eye conditions.

    But even if your vision is fine, you can benefit from regular eye exams. Eye doctors can diagnose conditions like glaucoma that have few obvious symptoms. And even if you believe your vision is fine, your eye doctor may recommend corrective lenses that could change your perspective.

    1. Eat a Nutritious Diet

    A healthy diet can protect your eyes and delay or prevent certain conditions, including macular degeneration (the leading cause of vision loss) and cataracts. Healthy diets full of greens, fruits, and lean sources of protein can help you protect your eyes. Avoid too much saturated fat, sugar, and sodium.

    1. Maintain a Healthy Weight

    If you are overweight or obese, you are at greater risk for diabetes, cardiovascular problems, and other conditions that can lead to vision loss. Losing weight may involve a greater lifestyle change, including a modified diet and regular exercise. If you have trouble maintaining a healthy weight, you should talk to your doctor about a weight loss plan.

    1. Wear Sunglasses

    The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays are bad for your eyes. Too much exposure to UV rays can cause cataracts, vision loss, and astigmatism. Wear sunglasses whenever you go out on a sunny day - not only will you look cool, you’ll be protecting your eyes from UV damage. Choose sunglasses that block out 99% to 100% of UVA and UVB radiation.

    1. Stop Smoking

    Smoking increases your risk of macular degeneration, cataracts, glaucoma and many other eye conditions. Quit smoking now to protect your eyes and improve your overall health.

    1. Reduce Your Screen Time

    Computer, phone, and tablet screens can all cause problems such as eye strain, blurry vision, and trouble focusing. While there’s no concrete evidence that too much screen time causes long-term damage, it can cause plenty of discomfort, so it can pay to reduce your screen time.

    Cutting screen time can be difficult when you have an office job, but you can adjust the brightness of your screen, get up to walk around the office, and avoid glare to give your eyes a break.

    1. Keep Your Eyes Moisturized

    Dry eyes is a common condition that occurs when you don’t have enough quality tears to lubricate your eyes. Tears are necessary to maintain the surface of your eyes and provide clear vision. Dry eyes can be temporarily caused by external factors such as allergies or screens, but they can also be chronic due to inadequate tear production. Your eye doctor can recommend the best treatment for your dry eyes, but eyedrops and the MicroBeads Dry Eye Compress Moist Heat Pack can help relieve discomfort.

    Sources:
    http://www.allaboutvision.com/over60/nutrition.htm
    https://www.aoa.org/patients-and-public/eye-and-vision-problems/glossary-of-eye-and-vision-conditions/dry-eye
    https://www.health.ny.gov/prevention/tobacco_control/smoking_can_lead_to_vision_loss_or_blindness.htm
    https://nei.nih.gov/hvm/healthy_eyes_glasses


    This post was posted in Education

  • What You Need to Know About Sunscreen this Summer

    Posted on May 24, 2018 by Core Products

    By Brian Acton

    sunscreenSunscreen is crucial for protecting your skin, especially if you spend a lot of time outside in the summer months. That’s because the ultraviolet (UV) rays produced by the sun damage your skin’s cells, causing mutations that can lead to skin cancer. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, 90% of non-melanoma skin cancer cases are associated with exposure to UV radiation. And even if exposure to UV rays doesn’t lead to cancer, it can cause painful sunburns.

    Sunscreen is one of the best weapons in the fight against UV rays, but it isn’t foolproof. You need to know its limitations and the correct way to use it. Here’s what you need to know about sunscreen this summer.

    1. You Might Not Be Using Enough

    The amount of sunscreen you need to apply depends on how much skin you have exposed and your body type. But according to the Skin Cancer Foundation, most people only apply 25 – 50% of the appropriate amount. They recommend using at least one ounce, or approximately enough to fill a shot glass, of sunscreen to cover your body. Ideally, you should be applying sunscreen to every area of your skin that could be exposed to UV rays - not just your face, neck, and shoulders.

    1. You Might Be Putting it On Too Late

    If you’re applying sunscreen outside, you’re not getting the full benefit. It can take about 15 minutes for your skin to effectively absorb sunscreen and provide full protection. If you wait until you’re in the sun, your skin will be unprotected during that time and you could burn. Make sure to apply sunscreen before you go out.

    1. You Need SPF 30 at Minimum

    Dermatologists agree that everyone should use a sunscreen between SPF 30 and SPF 50. At SPF 30, nearly 97% of UVB rays are blocked, but anything over 50 is likely not that much more effective. They also recommend your sunscreen be broad spectrum, which protects against both UVA and UVB rays, and water-resistant.

    1. Spray Sunscreen Isn’t as Effective

    Spray sunscreens are easier to apply, but they might not give you adequate protection. You’re less likely to apply an even coating on all areas of your body with a spray bottle. Plus, spray sunscreens are flammable and the FDA recommends not spraying your face because of the risk of inhalation.

    1. Check the Expiration Date

    Did you know sunscreen can expire? Check the expiration date on the bottle, and throw out anything that is past its prime. If you buy sunscreen without an expiration date, you can write the date of purchase on the bottle and throw it away once three years have passed. If you use sunscreen liberally, most bottles shouldn’t make it past their expiration date.

    1. Yes, You Need to Reapply

    Many sunscreens claim to be water resistant, but that doesn’t mean they are waterproof. Any time you go swimming, you should reapply your sunscreen when you get out of the water. Even if you’re staying dry, you should reapply every two hours.

    1. They’re Not Just for The Beach and Pool

    Sunscreens may be heavily associated with beaches and pools, but those aren’t the only places you should be using them. Anytime you get prolonged exposure to the sun, you should be applying sunscreen. You could be gardening, playing sports, or just going for a walk. If the sun’s rays are hitting your exposed skin for more than a few minutes, sunscreen is a good idea.

    Sources:
    https://www.aad.org/media/stats/prevention-and-care/sunscreen-faqs
    https://www.fda.gov/Drugs/ResourcesForYou/Consumers/BuyingUsingMedicineSafely/UnderstandingOver-the-CounterMedicines/ucm239463.htm#types
    https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/expert-answers/sunscreen-expire/faq-20057957
    https://www.skincancer.org/prevention/sun-protection/sunscreen/sunscreens-explained
    https://www.skincancer.org/prevention/uva-and-uvb


    This post was posted in Education

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