Optimizing Your Home Office Workstation

Image Source: Pexels

COVID-19 has resulted in many of us working remotely. Unfortunately, working from home can lead to a lack of motivation and productivity. Spending a lot of time at a desk can result in eye strain, body aches, and fatigue. Taking the time to optimize your desk setup can reduce stress and aid in eliminating these issues. You can improve your physical health while working from home by following these simple steps.

  1. Check your chair height. In whatever chair you own, your knees should be at a 90-degree angle with your thighs parallel to the ground. If you are not sure how exactly to adjust your seat to get the right height, there is a trick. You should stand in front of your chair and have the edge of the seat touch the bottom of your kneecaps. This will ensure an accurate height.
  2. Adjust your desk height. After adjusting your chair height, it is important to make sure your desk matches it. Tall desks can result in neck and shoulder issues. Your elbows need to be resting by your ribs at a 90-degree angle. To make sure you are in the correct position it is recommended to install a keyboard tray or an adjustable footrest.
  3. Watch your distance from the computer monitor. The distance between your eyes and monitor has an indirect effect on your vision. Depending on the distance, you may crane your head or squint your eyes. This is going to cause strain. Everyone has different monitor sizes, space limitations, and eyesight. However, keeping your monitor an arm’s length away is suggested.
  4. Make sure to utilize proper lighting. Artificial lighting is not great long-term. It is good to try and sit your desk by a window in your office. Natural light plays a large role in mental health. If your computer is surrounded by lots of light, make sure that your screen brightness matches it. This will prevent eye strain.
  5. Get rid of clutter. There are cognitive benefits to a clear workspace.  If your workspace is messy, it takes more mental energy to process the mess. This is only going to distract you from other important tasks. Easy things like keeping a trash can or a paper shredder near your desk will make a huge difference and increase productivity.
  6. Get a standing desk. A standing desk is a perfect for getting ergonomic benefits. Having said that, it can be hard on your feet, back, and neck if not used correctly. Standing all day is just as bad as sitting all day. Instead of standing all day, switch positions in intervals. This will slowly get your body comfortable with a standing desk.

Tria is Here to Help

Working from home is challenging and a huge adjustment. It can also be difficult on your mental health. If you are dealing with mental health related issues, Tria can help. Many patients decide to take medications to effectively manage their mental health. If Tria Health is offered through your benefits plan, you have the option of receiving a one-on-one, private consultation with one of Tria Health’s pharmacists over the phone. During your consultation, your pharmacist will review all your current medications, including vitamins and supplements. If you are interested in exploring medication treatments for mental health, Tria’s pharmacist will be able to provide you with recommendations.

Questions?

Call the Tria Health Help Desk: 1.888.799.8742

Source:

  1. https://www.makeuseof.com/tag/work-desk-productivity/

The Importance of Vaccinating Your Child

Image Source: CDC/Unsplash

5 Reasons to Vaccinate Your Child

For parents, it is important to see your child happy and healthy. One of the ways you can ensure your child’s health is through vaccinations. Below are five reasons why you should vaccinate your child:

  1. Immunizations save lives.  In the past, children were killed from numerous diseases due to the lack of technology and preventative medications. Today, medical advancements can protect your child against these diseases. Take polio for example, it was considered one of the deadliest diseases in the United States. Ultimately, a vaccine is what stopped it from reoccurring. Immunizations offer protection and are effective.
  2. Immunizations are safe. Healthcare professionals have carefully reviewed immunizations to guarantee that they are safe. Vaccines are thoroughly tested before being released to the public. While vaccines can cause some redness and discomfort at the injection site, they do not compare to the pain felt after contracting a disease. Some side effects such as an allergic reaction can occur, but they are very rare. The benefits of a vaccine outweigh any potential side effects.
  3. Vaccines protect others. Without vaccines, people with weakened immune systems are more at risk. When your child is vaccinated not only are you keeping them safe, but your family and loved ones as well.
  4. Vaccines save money.  Vaccine-preventable diseases can cause your child to be denied from school or daycare. They can also create disabilities for your child long-term. This causes financial stress from lost time at work, medical bills or long-term disability care.
  5. Immunizations have a long-term effect on future generations. Vaccines reduce and even eliminate diseases that harmed people only a few generations ago. Smallpox is a disease that no longer exists due to immunizations. Through continual vaccinations, parents may be able to trust that some of these diseases will no longer be around to harm their children in the future.

Vaccine-Preventable Diseases

Below are ten routine childhood vaccines that protect children from these 14 diseases.

  • DTaP: Protects against Diphtheria, Tetanus & Pertussis
  • MMR: Protects against Measles, Mumps & Rubella
  • HepA: Protects against Hepatitis A
  • HepB: Protects against Hepatitis B
  • Hib: Protects against Haemophilus influenzae type b
  • Flu: Protects against Influenza
  • PCV13: Protects against Pneumococcal disease
  • Polio: Protects against Polio
  • RV: Protects against Rotavirus
  • Varicella: Protects against Chickenpox

With school just around the corner, immunization is important when it comes to protecting your child’s health. Make sure to check with your doctor to confirm that your child is up-to-date on their vaccinations.

How Pharmacists can Help

Pharmacists are also in a unique position to identify those patients who are in target groups for certain vaccinations. They may also be able to ease the fears of many patients by providing them with facts such as clinical data and by dispelling common misconceptions and myths about vaccinations; they can also stress the significant risks associated with not being vaccinated.2

Tria Health was founded on the belief that pharmacists play a vital role in the management of high-risk patients. With Tria, you have the option of receiving a one-on-one private consultation with one of Tria Health’s pharmacists over the phone. During your consultation, your pharmacist will review all your current medications, including vitamins, supplements and lifestyle habits. Your pharmacist will be able to answer any questions you may have regarding vaccinations.

Sources:

1. https://apic.org/monthly_alerts/five-important-reasons-to-vaccinate-your-child/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIutez1cGY6wIVEfDACh124woNEAAYAiAAEgLspfD_BwE

2.https://www.pharmacytimes.com/publications/issue/2019/january2019/adult-vaccination-rates-are-rising-but-fall-short

Caution for COVID-19

Image via Unsplash by Nelly Antoniado

5 Rules of the Pandemic

As restrictions ease up across the country it’s important to still take precautions and safety measures to stay healthy while trying to live a full life. Below are five suggestions to reduce the risk of spreading and infection.

  1. Track your area’s health status. You want to know the percentage of positive tests in your community or state. When the rate stays at 5 percent or lower for two weeks, there’s most likely enough testing taking place to control the spread of the virus.
  2. Limit close contacts. The safest interactions are with members of your household, but if you want to widen your circle, the key is consistency. Consider forming a “quarantine pod,” in which two or three households agree on safety precautions and socialize only with one another.
  3. Manage your exposure. Think of your activities like items on a budget: You’ll have to make trade-offs, balancing higher-risk events and interactions, like a dinner party or a haircut, with lower-risk ones, like grocery shopping.
  4. Keep riskier activities short. When making plans, think about how much open space there will be, the number of other people and the amount of time you’re likely to spend. Try to keep indoor events to under an hour, and always wear a mask during close conversations.
  5. Don’t let your guard down. The advice we’ve heard time and again still applies: Practice social distancing, wash your hands often, and be extra cautious if you or someone in your circle is at higher risk.1

World Health Organization: How to protect yourself

Below is a short video clip that explains how COVID-19 is spread and how to protect yourself.

How can Tria help?

Tria Health provides chronic condition management, many of our patients are at a higher risk for serious illness with COVID-19, our pharmacists have been actively educating engaged patients on risk factors and the importance of prevention techniques. For members that have not engaged with Tria Health, but are at high risk, Tria Health is providing additional communication and outreach to stress the importance of good health management and how our pharmacists can be a valuable resource. And, as always, our help desk is available to all members. We are committed to assisting members with any questions they may have about their medications, risk factors or ways they can mitigate their risk. 888.799.8742

Sources:

  1. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/06/09/well/live/coronavirus-rules-pandemic-infection-prevention.html?campaign_id=154&emc=edit_cb_20200609&instance_id=19244&nl=coronavirus-briefing&regi_id=129219462&segment_id=30492&te=1&user_id=d5a32b1824a16f209129a13d97e6f353
  2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1APwq1df6Mw&feature=emb_logo

Beat the Heat: Stay Hydrated & Safe

Photo by chuttershap on Unsplash

With summer just around the corner it’s important to stay hydrated and safe from the sunlight. Staying hydrated in the summer heat is essential as dehydration can lead to heat stroke, which is a life-threatening condition that requires immediate medical attention.1 Individuals also need to be aware of their current medication regimen and how it might impact their reaction to the increased sunlight. Most don’t realize some medications can react negatively with sunlight causing an increase risk of sunburn or even a photosensitivity reaction.

Staying Hydrated

Drinking water tops the list of how to stay healthy in the heat. Although water intake varies2 depending on several factors (including age, size, gender, health, activity level, and weather), as a general rule of thumb, aim to drink 8-10 cups of water every day.1 Staying hydrated in the heat will decrease your chances of needing medical attention. Click here more information on heat related illnesses.

Medications with Sunlight Side-Effects

Knowing the side effects of medication is important year-round, but especially when there is a potential for increased sun exposure. Medications can increase your sensitivity to the sun from a minor sunburn to a phototoxic or photoallergic reaction set off by the sun’s ultraviolet rays.

  • Phototoxic Reaction: Occurs when UV radiation reacts with a drug to form compounds that damage the skin.
    • Results: Sunburn-like symptoms
  • Photoallergic Reaction: This is less common, but usually happens when UV light changes a substance applied to the skin, causing an immune response.
    • Results: Bumps, hives, blisters, or red blotches

Common Drugs that Can Increase Your Risk of Sunburn

  • Antibiotics
  • Antiarrhythmics (cardiac drugs)
  • Diuretics (used to treat hypertension, heart failure or edema)
  • NSAID (Ibuprofen or naproxen)
  • Acne Mediations

For a detailed list of medications click here.

Staying Hydrated & Safe

  • Check all medications: Check medications to see if sun sensitivity is listed as a side effect for current and future prescriptions.
  • Hydrate: Drink plenty of water, especially when in the heat!
  • Cover Up: Use sunscreen and reapply, wear protective clothing or try to stay in the shade as much as possible!
  • Stay cool: Use cooling towels when outside for long periods of time and try to do outdoor activities in the morning or evening.
  • Know the signs: If you start experiencing any symptoms shown here move to a cool place and follow the “What to do” steps.

Sources:

  1. https://www.neefusa.org/health/outdoor-activity/staying-hydrated-summer-heat#:~:text=Drinking%20water%20tops%20the%20list,cups%20of%20water%20every%20day.
  2. https://www.cdc.gov/nutrition/data-statistics/plain-water-the-healthier-choice.html
  3. https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/extremeheat/warning.html

Recall of Metformin Hydrochloride ER Tablets

Metformin Hydrochloride Extended Release Tablets are being recalled for having more carcinogen NDMA than the FDA’s acceptable allowance. NDMA is classified as a probable human carcinogen (a substance that could cause cancer) based on results from laboratory tests.  NDMA is a known environmental contaminant found in water and foods, including meats, dairy products, and vegetables.1 With levels above admissible according to the FDA it is being recalled ensuring no adverse reactions arise during consumption. If any adverse reactions are experienced you can submit them online here or find more information on how to mail or fax here. Many different retailers might be involved so it is important to check your label and bottle.

What products are being recalled?

Metformin HCl Extended Release Tablets, USP, 500 mg and 750 mg, manufactured by Amneal, are being recalled. They are the prescription, solid oral products that are indicated as an adjunct to diet and exercise to improve blood sugar control in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus.1

The Metformin Hydrochloride Extended Release Tablets, USP, 500 mg and 750 mg, subject to the recall, are identified by the NDC numbers stated on the product label.

Metformin HCl Extended Release Tablets, USP, 500 mg

Metformin HCl Extended Release Tablets, USP, 750 mg

*Amneal’s Metformin Hydrochloride Immediate Release Tablets, USP are not affected by this recall.1

Metformin HCI Extended Release Tablets manufactured by Bayshore Pharmaceuticals, LLC are also being recalled.

Metformin Hydrochloride Extended-Release Tablets USP, 500 mg and 750 mg lots subject to the recall are identified in the table below.

What’s next?

  • Because Metformin is used to treat serious medical conditions, patients taking the recalled Metformin should continue taking their medicine until they have a replacement product.
  • To determine whether a specific product has been recalled, patients should look at the drug name and company name on the label of their prescription bottle. If the information is not on the bottle, patients should contact the pharmacy that dispensed the medicine.
  • Patients should also contact their health care professional (the pharmacist who dispensed the medication or doctor who prescribed the medication) if their medicine is included in this recall to discuss their treatment, which may include another product not affected by this recall or an alternative treatment option.

Sources:

  1. https://www.fda.gov/safety/recalls-market-withdrawals-safety-alerts/amneal-pharmaceuticals-llc-issues-voluntary-nationwide-recall-metformin-hydrochloride-extended#recall-announcement
  2. https://www.fda.gov/news-events/press-announcements/fda-alerts-patients-and-health-care-professionals-nitrosamine-impurity-findings-certain-metformin
  3. https://www.fda.gov/safety/recalls-market-withdrawals-safety-alerts/bayshore-pharmaceuticals-llc-issues-voluntary-nationwide-recall-metformin-hydrochloride-extended
  4. https://www.miamiherald.com/news/health-care/article245133825.html