Tag Archives: Summer

Just Girls – Odors, Bumps and Everything Inbetween

Hello ladies. We’ve all been there when something changes “down there” and the great unknown can leave you feeling worried as well as uncomfortable. I know how to take care of you at Express Healthcare, whether you think you may be pregnant or you’re concerned about Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs). Here are a few things you should know about your body and how you can be better at listening to it.

Appearance

First and foremost, everyone looks different. You are a stunning, gorgeous woman, exactly the way you were made. Love your body and it will love you back.

Here is a diagram of your basic anatomy. Keep in mind, there are many variations to a woman’s appearance.

women basic anatomy

Shaving

It’s bikini season! The last thing you want are those painful red bumps that you get after shaving. This is a common result of shaving coarse hair found in your groin and armpits. This is most likely due to folliculitis, an infection of the hair follicle. There are some over-the-counter products that may provide relief or prevent these bumps. Here are some handy tips:

  • wash before and after with antibacterial soap, such as Hibiclens
  • use a fresh, sharp shaving razor
  • just trim! no need to shave all the way down to the skin
  • after, use a product that has “rubbing alcohol” in the ingredients
  • or try a little over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream, do not use more than twice a day

If these simple tricks do not help, you may have developed an infection that can be treated at our urgent care.

Douching and Discharge

Douching is a practice I discourage to all of my patients. Douching can disrupt the pH of your vagina and can leave you susceptible to an infection such as bacterial vaginosis or a yeast infection. Over-the-counter tests for these problems are not reliable nor are they accurate. Having a discharge is very normal, for all women. If you are having a change in your normal discharge or odor, there may be something else going on that needs medical attention.

Sexually Transmitted Diseases

These types of infections can wreak havoc on our bodies by causing Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID), infertility, cervical cancer and other complications. If you have had multiple partners or have a new partner, don’t hesitate – you should be tested.

Annual Well-Woman Exam

Just like your yearly check-up, you should have a yearly female check-up in addition. This exam generally includes a Pap Smear and a breast exam. A Pap Smear is recommended beginning at the age of 21, if you are sexually active. It is so important to have your annual well-woman check-up every year. You can utilize this visit with your primary care doctor or gynecologist to discuss contraceptives or any questions you have about your sexual health or well-being

I hope I’ve answered some of your questions. Feel welcome to walk-in or make an appointment to address any concerns you might have. You know where to find us at Express Healthcare in College Park and Greenbelt, MD!

The 8 Must-Know Tips to Stay Hydrated During Summer

Did you know that the human body is mostly water roughly 12 gallons? That’s approximately 50 to 75% of the body’s weight. 

According to the American Diabetic Association’s Complete Food and Nutrition Guide, the average adult loses about 10 cups of water daily. 

That volume needs to be replenished by drinking 8 to 10 glasses of water each day. Water is essential for general health and survival.  No one needs a study to accept that conclusion. But what does demand closer scrutiny is the effect that water has on performance, as some theorize that minor dehydration is a natural part of exertion.

You’ve romped outdoors with the kids all day, and your water bottle ran dry long ago. Suddenly you feel dizzy and lightheaded, and your mouth tastes like cotton. You’re dehydrated — meaning you haven’t taken in enough fluids to replace those you’ve been sweating out. People can get dehydrated any time of year, but it’s much more common in the summer months, when they are active outdoors in the warm sun. Heatstroke is the most severe form of dehydration. That’s when your internal temperature rises to dangerously high levels. Your skin gets hot, but you stop sweating. Someone with heatstroke may pass out, have hallucinations, or suffer seizures.

One dilemma with dehydration, particularly in the summer, is separating dehydration from heat stress.  Athletes and general population exercisers have been implored to consume copious amounts of water, lest they reach a dehydrated state.  However, it is also possible that heat causes the brain to enter somewhat of a “safe mode” to prevent overheating and this may be mistakenly attributed to a loss of water.

People with diabetes can face further challenges in maintaining an adequate level of hydration in hot weather, since diabetes can lead to an increase in the body’s excretion of urine when blood glucose levels are elevated. Prevention of dehydration is essential for everyone during the hot summer months, especially when spending time outdoors. Staying well-hydrated can help prevent fluctuations in blood glucose levels as well as heat-related complications such as heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Drinking plenty of water may be all that is needed to offset the mild dehydration that occurs when you’re outside in the summer heat.

Tips for Staying Hydrated

  • Keeping track of how much water and water-based beverages you consume: count any frozen juice bars or icy treats.
  • Fruit juices may be diluted with water for the calorie conscious.
  • One of the first signs of dehydration is dry mouth. Carry a bottle of water around with you to take a sip whenever needed.
  • Caffeine acts as a diuretic; so caffeinated beverages can cause fluid loss.
  • Watch your urine: It should be almost clear and without smell. If it is changing then you are dehydrating.
  • Sports drinks can be a good source of electrolytes, such as sodium, potassium, chloride, bicarbonate, which help keep the body electrically balanced.
  • Stop if you get the dizzies. Feeling lightheaded during a workout is a sign of dehydration and a signal to tone it down a notch, feeling dizzy is an indicator that it’s time to hydrate.
  • Avoid alcohol the day before or the day of a long exercise bout, and avoid exercising with a hangover.

Staying off of direct sun could also help to avoid heat stroke and sunburn. It might be important for some to be in large shopping mall areas where conditioning is available and access to water is easy.

Children and adults who are severely dehydrated should be treated urgently. At Express Urgent Care Clinics, we provide treatment for dehydration cases. Where patients can receive salts and fluids through a vein (intravenously) rather than by mouth. Intravenous hydration provides the body with water and essential nutrients much more quickly than oral solutions do — something that’s essential in life-threatening situations.

Walk-in today to our clinics, we are open 7 days a week.

dehydration summer pets urgent care

Water is our most important nutrient. 

What Do You Need to Know About Vaccination for Travel?

Travelers to other countries often face health issues they wouldn’t ordinarily experience at home. To minimize your risks of becoming seriously ill when traveling abroad, you should find out in advance whether any specific immunizations may be recommended for travel to the region of the world you’ll be visiting. It’s also a good time to review your own immunization history.

vaccinations international trip selfie

Your next trip could end with a Turtle selfie!

It’s best to schedule a visit to your doctor four to six weeks before an international trip. Since your body needs time to build up immunity after receiving a vaccine and many vaccines are given in a series over time, getting an early start on your immunizations is the best way to protect yourself. Even if you are making a last-minute trip or plan to leave in less than four weeks, you should still check with your doctor to see if any vaccines or preventive medications might be recommended.

The CDC (U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) divides travel vaccinations into three categories: routine, recommended, and required. The only vaccine classified as “required” by International Health Regulations is the yellow fever vaccination for travel to certain countries in sub-Saharan Africa and tropical South America.

Routine vaccinations 

Routine vaccinations are those that are normally administered, usually during childhood, in the United States. These include immunizations against

  • diphtheria,
  • tetanus,
  • pertussis,
  • measles,
  • mumps,
  • rubella,
  • pneumococcus.
  • poliomyelitis,
  • hepatitis B,
  • hepatitis A,
  • Haemophilus influenzae type b,
  • rotavirus,
  • meningococcus,
  • human papillomavirus, and
  • Varicella,

International travelers should make sure that these vaccinations are up to date and that no boosters are required, since many conditions which are rare in the U.S. due to immunity in the general population may be more common in other countries.

Recommended Vaccinations

Recommended vaccinations are given to protect travelers from illnesses that occur routinely in other parts of the world. Express Healthcare Doctors determine which vaccines are recommended for international travel on an individual basis, taking into consideration your destination, whether you will be spending time in rural areas, the season of the year you are traveling, your age, your overall health status, and your immunization history.

Required Vaccinations

The only vaccine required by International Health Regulations is yellow fever vaccination for travel to certain countries in sub-Saharan Africa and tropical South America. Meningococcal vaccination is required by the government of Saudi Arabia for annual travel during the Hajj.

Our board certified physicians will provide comprehensive health care that includes consultation and immunization services; after checking your current health and ask about your medical history and knowing your destination the physician will offer appropriate vaccines (according to CDC Guidelines) and optimum and up to date health information for your travel needs (such as insect precautions and insect repellents, Anti-Malarial, water and food precautions, current outbreaks and health safety measures).

You can walk-in to our urgent care clinics any day during the year. Our office personnel and medical staff speak English, Spanish, Somali, Chinese and Arabic. Appointments are recommended at Med-Ped Health Care (301-345-4400), however the physicians can see patients on a walk-in basis at Express Healthcare (301-345-6600).

Tips for a Safe, Healthy Memorial Day

Healthy Tips Memorial Day

Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday of May. It was formerly known as Decoration Day and commemorates all men and women, who have died in military service for the United States.

This holiday is one of our favorites, and not just because it is the unofficial start of the summer season. It’s the time to shed our winter attire for our favorite shorts and tanks and spend some time with family, friends and to honor those who have served our country. Whether you’ll be swimming or grilling, here is some information to keep you happy and healthy:

Fun in the Sun: Protect yourself and your family from harmful UV rays with a quality sunscreen. I would recommend using a product that contains at least SPF 50 for the face and SPF 30 for the body. Remember to apply frequently or hourly if you will be swimming and sweating. The repercussions of having two or more blistering sunburns in your lifetime will significantly raise your risk of skin cancer and skin aging. Your skin is the largest organ in your body. It keeps you hydrated as well as protects you from the environment, love it wisely!

What is a quality sunscreen? UV radiation from the sun comes in the form of UVA and UVB. Selecting a “full-spectrum” product will guarantee protection from these harmful rays. These products will contain ingredients such as zinc oxide, avobenzone or ecamsule. For children, only products with zinc oxide are recommended.

If you do get sunburned, at what point would you need to visit us at Express Healthcare? Some sunburns can be as severe as a second degree burn. If you find your sunburn to be especially painful, this may be the case for you and you may be at risk for dehydration and infection. If your sunburn is mild and not very bothersome, you may be able to treat yourself at home. Here are some things you can do:

– Apply an emollient three times a day. Choose a moisturizer that is bland (no fragrance or dyes) and without alcohol, such as CeraVe.

– Aloe Vera! Apply to the affected areas as much as you want.

– Cool Compresses or baths with or without colloidal oatmeal. Use a clean, cold, damp washcloth and apply to the affected area for 20 minutes at a time. Also, you can take a cool oatmeal bath using products such as Aveeno that are available at any drugstore.

All of these techniques will promote skin healing. It is important to avoid the sun until your sunburn has completely resolved. Do not use petroleum jelly, such as Vasoline, unless directed by your healthcare provider.

Stay Hydrated: The combination of dehydration, heat, and consuming alcohol can be detrimental to your health. Young children and the elderly may be especially susceptible to the summer heat. Make sure to stay cool and keep your ice chest full of water and sports drinks and skip the sugary beverages.

Symptoms such as dizziness, headache, nausea, fatigue, loss of consciousness are all signs that you need to seek treatment with health professionals such as at our urgent care, Express Healthcare which will open on Memorial day at College Park location.

Swimming and Water Sports: Never leave children unattended in or near water, no matter how experienced you believe they are at swimming. Make sure you are prepared with the proper equipment such as life jackets, first aid kits, and a cell phone to call 9-1-1. One tool you may find to be a useful resource is the First Aid Kit app by the American Red Cross.

Grilling Light: Time to break out the grill! Not only is grilled food absolutely delicious, it can be quite healthy too. Pick out lots of fresh vegetables to skewer or to wrap in foil for that great grilled flavor. Season your food with low-sodium seasonings such as Mrs. Dash’s tasty seasoning items. We all love burgers and hotdogs, but choosing proteins such as salmon or chicken breast instead of red or processed meat is a great alternative that still taste great on a whole wheat bun! Always remember to keep your grill at a safe distance from flammables and children.

Everyone at Express Healthcare and Med-Ped Health Care wishes you a fun, safe holiday as you celebrate this day in remembrance of those who have served and sacrificed.