• How to help your child when they’re getting bullied

    It is heartbreaking for parents to hear that their child is getting bullied. However, if you hear this from your child, it is important to take action. Getting involved with bullying prevention while helping your child cope with the pain that comes from being the victim of bullying are important ways to protect your child and set a standard of care in your community. If your child shares with you that he or is being bullied, take these steps.

Resist the urge to contact the other child’s parents
If a bully is targeting your child, your first instinct may be to call that child’s parents. In most cases, this strategy is ineffective and can even exacerbate the situation. Don’t assume that the other parents will share your concerns or view the incidents that have happened in the same way.

It may be necessary for the other child’s parents to be involved in addressing the issue. However, your child’s school or the local authorities should be the one to make contact with them. Allowing a third party to do so also helps to convey to the other parents the seriousness of the issue.

Gather complete information
In order to advocate for your child, you will need complete information about all of the occasions in which the bullying took place. This information will help you when you address the bullying issue with the appropriate person and will set up a scenario in which your child feels comfortable coming to you about future bullying episodes.

Write down the information your child provides, so that you have the story correct moving forward. You may need to repeat the information to several different people, so having this written account will help.

Address the issue at your child’s school
Don’t let bullying occur at your child’s school without approaching the administration about your concerns. Bring your written record and calmly describe your concern to the school principal.

Follow up after your meeting with the principal that recaps your discussion and your expectations. Knowing that you’re committed to getting bullying out of the school will encourage the administration to join your fight.

If your child has been bullied, he or she may also benefit from discussing the issue with his or her physician at Regional Medical Center of San Jose. Get a referral to a helpful specialist at our hospital in San Jose by calling (888) 762-8881.

  • Why you should participate in Check Your Meds Day

    If you’re like many people, over the years, the number of medications you take increases. You may eventually find yourself taking multiple pills every day without really considering the pros and cons of the doses and how you’re taking them. Check Your Meds Day is a chance to pause and review your medications and make sure they are still the most appropriate treatments for your needs. If a pharmacy is participating in Check Your Meds Day on October 21, 2018, here is what you need to know about the event and the benefits from taking part.

  • What happens during Check Your Meds Day?
    On Check Your Meds Day, participating pharmacies perform brown bag checks of your medications. Simply bring in all of your medications, and you’ll have the chance to speak to a pharmacist about your treatment regime, side effects, and more.

    As your pharmacist checks your medicines, he or she may ask your questions to assess how the medications are meeting your needs. Keep in mind that your pharmacist can’t change your prescriptions, but he or she can make recommendations that you can discuss with your physician.

    Who should consider going to Check Your Meds Day?
    Anyone who takes prescription medications on a regular basis can benefit from Check Your Meds Day. However, if any of these statements apply to you, the event can be especially beneficial:

    • Your medications are prescribed by different doctors.
    • You have more than one medication for the same health issue.
    • You struggle to pay for medication.
    • You experience medication side effects.
    • You have been taking the same medicines for longer than three months.

    What are the benefits of attending?
    When your pharmacist reviews your medications, he or she may be able to make important suggestions, such as:

    • Changing medications to a more affordable ones
    • Lifestyle strategies that can help to minimize side effects
    • Ways to change how you take medications to make them more effective

    Your physician at Regional Medical Center of San Jose can review your Check Your Meds Day recommendations with you to see if any changes to your current healthcare regime would be beneficial. For more information about our hospital or a physician referral, please call (888) 762-8881.

  • Know your risk for cardiac arrest

    Cardiac arrest often happens without warning, catching both the sufferer and their loved ones off-guard. However, although symptoms may not appear before the cardiac arrest incident occurs, by knowing your risk factors for experiencing it, you can be aware and let your loved ones know to be vigilant as well. Cardiac arrest can result in death in minutes if a sufferer doesn’t receive emergency care right away, so it’s important to know and manage these risk factors.

    Previous heart attack
    Many people who experience cardiac arrest have had a heart attack in the past. During a heart attack, the heart can become so damaged that the malfunction that causes cardiac arrest is more likely to happen.

    Having a family history of massive heart attacks can also increase the risk of experiencing cardiac arrest, even if you have not experienced a heart attack personally.

    Rapid heart rate
    Before experiencing cardiac arrest, many sufferers have periodic episodes of rapid heart rate. The sensation of a racing heart may come and go without any warning or without any clear reason. For example, you may notice that your heart seems to be racing while you are at rest.

    You don’t have to be officially diagnosed with an abnormal heart rhythm to experience this symptom. However, being diagnosed with any kind of arrhythmia does increase the risk of cardiac arrest.

    Low ejection fraction
    Ejection fraction, or EF, refers to how much blood your ventricles pump every time your heart beats. If your EF is low, your risk of experiencing cardiac arrest is increased.

    Generally, an EF of less than 35% is considered to be low. However, your physician can determine if your EF is low and if your chances are having cardiac arrest are higher than normal.

    Cardiac arrest is a serious, life-threatening condition, but the ER at Regional Medical Center of San Jose are here to provide life-saving heart care around the clock. Our cardiovascular department also includes a specialized cardiac electrophysiology lab for treating problems with heart rhythm. For a referral to a cardiac specialist in San Jose, call (888) 762-8881.

  • Should you have genetic testing to assess your breast cancer risk?

    For some women, breast cancer is the result of a specific genetic mutation. Most of the cases of breast cancer that are linked to a genetic mutation are caused by the BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene mutations. Because of this, many women wonder if they should have genetic testing performed to determine if they have the mutations. Knowing that the mutations are present can help women take a more informed approach to preventive care. However, genetic testing is not right for all women—and in some cases, it can cause more problems than it solves. Here are some of the things to consider when you’re making your decision about genetic testing.

    Do you have a family history of breast cancer?
    Generally, genetic testing is not recommended for people who do not have a family history of breast cancer. It should be considered only if you have a family history of breast cancer, including family members who developed the disease at a young age and cases of breast cancer in men in the family.

    These cases should have occurred in close family members—parents, siblings, children, grandparents, uncles, aunts, nieces, nephews, and first cousins. Breast cancer in more distant relatives is not usually considered to be a good indicator of the need for genetic testing.

    Do you have a family history of other kinds of cancer?
    As discussed in the video, there are some other forms of cancer that are also linked to gene mutations. These include:

    • Ovarian cancer
    • Pancreatic cancer
    • Metastatic or aggressive prostate cancer

    If close family members have experienced these diseases, talk to your physician about whether genetic testing could be right for you.

    Are you prepared for all of the potential outcomes?
    Having a gene mutation associated with breast cancer does not guarantee that you will get the disease, but it does put you in a position of having to make a decision about what steps to take next. Some people find the knowledge that they have a gene mutation more stressful than helpful.

    Talk to your women’s services specialist at Regional Medical Center of San Jose to find out if genetic testing could be helpful for you. We offer comprehensive women’s health services and cancer care, using a variety of advanced screening and diagnostic tools. To learn more, call us at (888) 762-8881.

  • Making the decision to have joint replacement surgery

    Joint replacement surgeries aren’t performed on an emergency basis. This means you should have all the time you need to carefully consider whether to have the surgery or not. Know that joint replacement surgery is a routine surgery these days, but there are still risks you should know about. The orthopedic specialists at Regional Medical Center of San Jose can guide you in making your decision.

    Trying conservative treatments
    Before you make the decision to have joint replacement surgery, you can try a range of nonsurgical treatment options. These include:

    • Medications
    • Pain-relieving injections
    • Physical therapy

    If nonsurgical interventions aren’t enough to manage your symptoms, it may be time to consider joint replacement surgery .

    Assessing your overall health
    It’s primarily your decision whether to have joint replacement surgery. However, your doctor will need to make sure you’re a good candidate for it first. To determine if you’re a good candidate, the doctor will consider whether you have any of the following health concerns:

    • Weight over 300 pounds
    • Unhealthy skin over the joint
    • History of infections in the joint
    • History of previous injuries or surgeries near the joint
    • Weak quadriceps muscles
    • Heart or lung conditions

    In some cases, patients can become good candidates by working with their doctors and physical therapists to improve overall health.

    Evaluating your symptoms
    When you watch the accompanying video, you’ll hear an orthopedic surgeon at Regional Medical Center of San Jose explain how he works with patients to help them decide whether it’s time for surgery. If you have a great deal of joint pain and stiffness, this surgery may be a good option for you, even if your imaging studies show minimal joint damage.

    Additionally, consider the extent to which your pain and other symptoms are interfering with your daily activities. If you find it difficult to meet obligations and enjoy the things you love, then joint replacement surgery may be right for you.

    When you become a patient of the orthopedic and joint replacement team at Regional Medical Center of San Jose , you’ll receive all the information you need to make a thoughtful decision for your health. Our orthopedic surgeons and nurses are always here to help if you have any questions about surgery or would like further guidance with the decision-making process. Call a registered nurse in San Jose any time, day or night, at (888) 762-8881.

  • What to know about July Cord Blood Awareness Month

    It’s natural for parents to want to give their kids the best possible start in life. But since so many diseases and conditions only develop later in life, how can parents protect their grownup kids? One way is to bank your child’s cord blood for later medical use. During National Cord Blood Awareness Month this July, expecting parents are encouraged to explore the possibilities with cord blood banking or donation. The compassionate obstetrics providers at Regional Medical Center of San Jose are always here to help if you have questions or concerns.

    What cord blood is
    Unborn and newborn babies are attached to an umbilical cord, which is removed shortly after birth. Cord blood is found inside the umbilical cord and placenta. Cord blood is significant for medical reasons because it contains stem cells.

    What stem cells do
    Stem cells are unique because they have the potential to turn into many different kinds of cells. This allows doctors to put them to work treating diseases that the individual may develop, such as anemia, cancers and certain immune system disorders.

    The stem cells found in cord blood are particularly advantageous because they almost never carry infectious diseases. Plus, they aren’t likely to be rejected by the body.

    How cord blood is extracted
    The process of extracting and preserving cord blood is painless for mothers and babies. If you decide to have your baby’s cord blood preserved, you’ll need to inform the obstetrician ahead of the birth.

    Once your baby is born, the obstetrician will clamp the umbilical cord before cutting it. Then, a needle is used to extract blood from the cord.

    How cord blood is preserved
    Families may choose to donate their baby’s cord blood to a public cord blood bank. There is no cost to donate.

    Alternatively, families may choose to privately bank cord blood. Note that there is typically a high one-time fee, plus a yearly maintenance fee.

    Family Birthing Center at Regional Medical Center of San Jose is a beautiful, peaceful place to welcome your baby into the world. Our highly trained obstetrics providers deliver world-class, family-centered services because we believe our youngest patients deserve the best of care. Call (888) 762-8881 if you have any questions about our women’s and family services in San Jose.

  • Which mental disorders affect teens most?

    Mental disorders are not just a problem for adults. Many disorders start during adolescence, but unfortunately, many teens go undiagnosed because of lack of awareness of their vulnerability to mental illness or because symptoms are written off as typical teenage behavior. Too often, teens don’t get treatment until they need emergency care due to a suicide attempt or other major incident. Getting treatment early for mental disorders can prevent complications in the long term, so for teens who are suffering, care is essential. Here is a look at some of the most common mental disorders to affect teens.

    Depression
    Depression —also sometimes called major depressive disorder or clinical depression—is common in teens. Without treatment, teens can experience poor grades, social isolation, self-harm, and suicidal thoughts.

    Symptoms of depression can affect nearly every part of life. Some common signs of depression in teens include:

    • Weight changes
    • Changes in sleeping patterns
    • Becoming withdrawn
    • Loss of interest in usual activities
    • Changes in peer group

    Eating Disorders
    Teens are vulnerable to anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating disorder. Young women are most likely to develop these disorders, but an increasing number of males are experiencing them as well. If teens don’t get treatment, the impacts on their physical health can be life threatening.

    Eating disorder symptoms vary depending on the disorder. Some signs that the disorders have in common are:

    • Preoccupation with food and weight
    • Food rituals, such as only eating one kind of food or excessive chewing
    • Withdrawal from social groups
    • Mood swings

    Schizophrenia
    Schizophrenia typically presents itself in the late teens and early 20s for men. Women may not develop the disease until their late 20s. However, in many cases, early warning signs for schizophrenia appear during adolescence. If teens can get treatment when these initial symptoms appear, they can often achieve better control of their disease and prevent serious future complications.

    Some signs of schizophrenia in teens are:

    • Sleep changes
    • Complaint about being watched or talked about
    • Disordered thinking
    • Hallucinations

    If you’re a teen or parent concerned about mental health, Regional Medical Center of San Jose is here to help. Getting a diagnosis is a crucial first step, so contact our hospital in San Jose for a physician referral . Call (888) 762-8881 to find a physician who is right for your needs.

  • How does arthritis affect women?

    Arthritis is an umbrella term that encompasses over 100 different diseases that affect the joints and connective tissues. Many forms of arthritis disproportionately affect women, including the most common forms of the disease, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Because most forms of arthritis are chronic, women who are diagnosed need ongoing care .

    Women and arthritis statistics
    Approximately 25.9% of women have arthritis, compared to 18.3% of men. Some forms of arthritis, such as lupus, occur almost exclusively in women. Eight out of 10 adults who are diagnosed with lupus are women. Arthritis can happen to women at any age. Some forms of the disease are most common in seniors, while other can appear during childhood or during the childbearing years.

    The reason that arthritis is more common in women is not understood, but there are some clues. Hormones, bone length, and bone shape in women may all play roles, along with genetic predisposition and environmental factors.

    Arthritis impacts on women
    Arthritis can affect women in many ways. Women with arthritis can experience:

    • Financial insecurity, due to inability to work and the cost of medical care
    • Delayed schooling
    • Withdrawal from social life
    • Poor quality of life
    • Increased risk of heart disease
    • Increased risk of early death

    Many women with arthritis experience long-term absences from work or school, which can significant, long-term impacts on earning potential and access to health insurance.

    Arthritis during pregnancy
    The way pregnancy impacts arthritis depends on the specific type of the disease a woman has. For example, women with rheumatoid arthritis often experience a remission during pregnancy. However, some medications used to treat arthritis can increase the risk of miscarriage or can be harmful to developing babies. Women with arthritis who become pregnant must work closely with their healthcare team to manage their symptoms safely.

    If you’re suffering from joint pain or need help with an arthritis management plan, choose Regional Medical Center of San Jose. Our hospital provides a comprehensive range of medical services and can help you live your healthiest life. To find out more about our services or to get a referral to a physician in San Jose, please call (888) 762-8881.

  • Making the connection between Afib and stroke

    Atrial fibrillation, or Afib, is a significant risk factor for stroke, but not all Afib sufferers recognize that their chances of having a stroke are higher than other people’s. Afib sufferers should be vigilant about symptoms, so they can get stroke care quickly if needed, and get informed about the things they can do to cut their stroke risk.

    What is Afib?
    Afib occurs when the upper chambers of the heart, called the atria, beat erratically or quickly. When this happens, blood begins to pool in the heart, where it can potentially form a clot.

    Afib affects over two million people in the US and is most common in people over 60. It frequently doesn’t cause any symptoms, so many sufferers don’t know that they have it unless their physicians refer them for cardiac testing.

    Why does Afib increase the risk of stroke?
    People with Afib have an increased risk of stroke because of the clots that can form in the heart when the beats of the atria are irregular. These clots can break off and travel through the blood vessels to the brain.

    In the brain, the clot can partially or completely block blood flow, causing an ischemic stroke to occur. Tissue in the part of the brain that is being cut off from the flow of blood will die, causing potentially permanent complications. About 15% of people who have strokes have Afib. People with Afib are five times more likely to have a stroke than other people.

    How can I reduce the risk of stroke with Afib?
    Approximately 80% of strokes associated with Afib could be prevented. To cut the risk of stroke when you suffer from Afib, try these strategies:

    • Take medications as directed by your doctor

    • Maintain a healthy weight

    • Exercise regularly

    • Eat a diet of fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains

    • Limit alcohol

    • Don’t smoke

    • Manage other conditions that increase stroke risk, such as diabetes and high blood pressure

    When stroke symptoms occur, seek emergency care at Regional Medical Center of San Jose . Our Comprehensive Stroke Center provides the prompt treatment necessary for better stroke outcomes. To find out more, contact our hospital in San Jose at (888) 762-8881.

  • How do you know you have a food allergy?

    Food allergies can be mild or serious, with some allergies triggering anaphylactic shock and the need for emergency care . Although many people think that food allergies occur and are diagnosed during childhood, they can develop or worsen at any time in life. It is even possible for people to develop allergies to foods that they have eaten without any issue in the past. Could food allergies be causing your symptoms? Here is a look at some of the signs of food allergies.

    Anaphylaxis
    Anaphylaxis is a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction that requires emergency care. It occurs when the immune system over-responds to exposure to an allergen and floods the body with chemicals. These chemicals cause you to go into shock. For some people, anaphylaxis is the first indication of an allergy.

    Anaphylaxis causes:

    • Breathing difficulties
    • Dizziness
    • Fainting
    • Rapid heart rate
    • Cardiac arrest

    Allergy symptoms
    For many people, mild to moderate symptoms that occur after eating a certain food are indicators of an allergy. These symptoms include:

    • Rash
    • Itchy skin or throat
    • Watery eyes
    • Hives
    • Shortness of breath/wheezing
    • Coughing
    • Nausea/vomiting

    In most cases, these symptoms appear within minutes of eating food, but a delayed reaction is possible hours after being exposed to the trigger food.

    Allergy testing
    If your physician suspects that you could have a food allergy, he or she may recommend testing. Skin prick tests are common. During these tests, your physician will put a small amount of the suspected trigger on your skin and then use a small needle to prick the surface of your skin, allowing the trigger to seep in. If a bump appears at the exposure site, you may be allergic to that substance.

    Oral food challenges are another kind of testing. During these tests, your physician will give you a small amount of a suspected trigger to eat and observe your reactions as you eat larger amounts of it. This allows for definitive diagnoses of food allergies.

    The ER at Regional Medical Center of San Jose is open around the clock to treat anaphylaxis and other conditions that require emergency care in San Jose. To get more information about our services, please call (888) 762-8881.

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