The sun is shining, the birds are chirping but unfortunately a lot of homes are still covered with the dust and clutter from winter. Spring cleaning is a tradition that allows us to freshen up our homes and get prepped for spring and summer fun! While you’re spring cleaning this year, be sure to take the time to go through your medicine cabinet and remove any unnecessary or expired medications.
You Look For?
Check Expiration Dates: Taking a
medication that is slightly expired is unlikely to cause harm, but it is
possible that it may not work as well. In general, it is best to acquire a new
prescription if your medication is expired. In addition, if the appearance of
the medication has changed this may be an indication of an expired product. If
you have an injectable solution or oral suspension that has changed colors or
consistency this might indicate a new prescription is needed.
Find Leftover Prescriptions: Leftover
antibiotics and other prescription medications from a previous condition should
be discarded. You should never attempt to treat yourself or anyone else with a
prescription medicine. Although your symptoms might seem similar to an illness
you had before, the cause could be different, or the medicine may not be the
right one to use this time around.1
Dispose of Medications
Many people will try to flush their medications
down the toilet or crush their medicines before throwing them in the trash to
try and be safe. However, this can be dangerous. Flushing can end up polluting
our waters and crushing medicines can put trash handlers at risk of exposure if
the drug were to encounter their skin or if they were to breathe in the dust.
Medicine take back programs are the best way to dispose of unwanted medicine. Click
here to locate a year-round authorized collector in your area.
How can Tria Health Help?
As a member of Tria Health, if you have questions
about whether or not you should dispose of your existing medications, call us
and one of our pharmacists can give you the professional guidance you need. in
addition, if you take multiple medications or have a chronic condition, Tria
provides one-on-one consultations with a clinical pharmacist who can assist you
with your medication management.
It’s official, spring is here! While many of us are
excited about the rise in temperature, if you’re one of the millions of people
who have seasonal allergies, you may be dreading what’s to come. Seasonal
allergies can mean sneezing, congestion, a runny nose and other unpleasant
symptoms. Luckily, there are many steps you can take to minimize the effects
and keep allergies under control.
Limiting your exposure to allergens can help reduce
your overall symptoms. A few ways you can do so are:
Stay indoors on dry, windy days. The best time
to go outside is after a good rain, which helps clear pollen from the air.
Delegate lawn mowing, weed pulling and other
gardening chores that stir up allergens.
Remove clothes you’ve worn outside and shower to
rinse pollen from your skin and hair.
While some allergens may still get into your home,
there are many ways you can lessen their impact.
Limit the number of rugs in your home and wash
any that are washable
Use air conditioning and utilize high-efficiency
Keep your indoor air dry with a dehumidifier
Oral antihistamines: Can help relieve sneezing, itching, a runny nose and watery eyes.
Examples include: Claritin, Alavert, Zyrtec Allergy and Allegra Allergy
Decongestants: Provide temporary relief from nasal stuffiness. Only use nasal decongestants for a few days in a row. Longer-term use of decongestant nasal sprays can actually worsen symptoms (rebound congestion).
Examples Include: Sudafed, Neo-Synephrine and Afrinol
Nasal Spray: Most effective when used before symptoms start and can ease most allergy symptoms.
Combination Medications: A combination of an antihistamine with a decongestant.
Examples Include: Claritin-D and Allegra-D
Can Answer Your Medication Questions
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’re interested in exploring medication treatments for allergies,
Tria’s pharmacist will be able to provide you with recommendations.
National Nutrition Month® is a nutrition education
and information campaign created annually in March by the Academy of Nutrition
and Dietetics. The campaign focuses on the importance of making informed food
choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits.
How can you
Choose foods and drinks that are good for your
Include a variety of healthful foods from all of
the food groups on a regular basis.
Select healthier options when eating away from
Be mindful of portion sizes. Eat and drink the
amount that’s right for you.
Keep it simple. Eating right doesn’t have to be
Make food safety part of your everyday routine.
Help to reduce food waste by considering the
foods you have on hand before buying more at the store.
Find activities that you enjoy and be physically
active most days of the week.
In honor of National Nutrition Month, Tria Health has
assembled some of our favorite nutritional recipes:
If you have a chronic condition, a carefully
planned diet can make a difference. With certain diseases, what you eat may
reduce symptoms. In other cases, diet can improve health. Although your diet
might differ depending on your condition and lifestyle, there are three keys to
a healthy eating plan that will work for diabetes, heart health, cancer
prevention and weight management:
Eat meals and snacks regularly (at planned times).
Eat about the same amount of food at each meal or snack.
Choose healthful foods to support a healthy weight and heart.
Have any questions? Contact the Tria Health
Help Desk at 1.888.799.8742.
National Sleep Awareness Week is from March 10 to
16, 2019. The goal of this week-long campaign is to promote the benefits of
optimal sleep and how sleep affects health, well-being and safety. Sleep can be
especially important when it comes to the development and management of several
chronic diseases and conditions.
Sleep Impact Chronic Disease?1
Insufficient sleep has been linked to multiple
Research has found that insufficient sleep is linked to an increased risk for
the development of type 2 diabetes. Specifically, sleep duration and quality
have emerged as predictors of levels of Hemoglobin A1c, an important marker of
blood sugar control.
Disease: Persons with sleep apnea have been found to be at increased risk
for a number of cardiovascular diseases. Notably, hypertension, stroke,
coronary heart disease and irregular heartbeats (cardiac arrhythmias) have been
found to be more common among those with disordered sleep than their peers
without sleep abnormalities.
Laboratory research has found that short sleep duration results in metabolic
changes that may be linked to obesity. Epidemiologic studies conducted in the
community have also revealed an association between short sleep duration and excess
Getting More Sleep2
Mood: Every night while you’re asleep, your brain is working to process
your emotions. Your mind needs this time in order to recognize and react the
right way. When you cut that short, you tend to have more negative emotional
reactions and fewer positive ones.
Heart: Sleep helps to lower your blood pressure and help in preventing
Energy: A good nights sleep can make a world of difference for your energy
levels. It can also help improve your motivation and allow time for your
muscles to repair.
Brain Function: Sleep plays a big part in both learning and memory. Without
enough sleep, it’s tough to focus and take in new information.
Immune System: Ongoing lack of sleep changes the way your immune cells
work. They may not attack as quickly, and you could get sick more often.
if you’re interested in seeing the steps you can take to improve your sleep.
Health’s Pharmacy Advocate Program
Tria Health offers Chronic Condition Management
through our Pharmacy Advocate Program. Clinical Pharmacists provide one-on-one
telephonic counseling for members and are their personal advocate to help them
navigate through the health care system. Through reviewing a member’s
medications and lifestyle, including their sleep habits, Tria Pharmacists can
make recommendations that will help control their chronic conditions and help
them feel better!
The CDC considers vaccinations to be one of the top
10 public health achievements of the 20th century.1-3
Thanks to vaccines, the incidence, morbidity, mortality, and prevalence of
vaccine-preventable diseases have considerably diminished since vaccinations
became available. Unfortunately, while vaccines are considered safe and
effective in preventing illness, an estimated 40,000 to 50,000 US adults die
from vaccine-preventable diseases every year.4-5 In order to improve
the overall vaccination rate, it’s important we utilize all our resources.
Pharmacists are easily accessible and can be instrumental in providing patients
with pertinent information to help them make informed choices regarding
Vaccines are Important
There are two main benefits for vaccination:
You can help lower your chance of getting certain disease
Hepatitis B vaccine lowers your risk of liver cancer.
HPV vaccine lowers your risk of cervical cancer.
Flu vaccine lowers your risk of flu-related heart attacks or other flu-related complications from existing health conditions like diabetes and chronic lung disease.
You can lower your chance of spreading disease.
Some people in your family or community may not be able to get certain vaccines due to their age or health condition. They rely on you to help prevent the spread of disease.
Infants, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems (like those undergoing cancer treatment) are especially vulnerable to infectious disease.
Vaccines are both effective and safe. They go
through years of testing before the FDA licenses them for use. Both the CDC and
FDA continue to track the safety of all licensed vaccines.6
The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices
recommends the following vaccination schedules:
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.7
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.
Oldfield BJ, Stewart RW. Common misconceptions,
advancements, and updates in pediatric vaccine administration. South Med J.
2016;109(1):38-41. doi: 10.14423/SMJ.0000000000000399.
Ventola CL. Immunization in the United States:
recommendations, barriers, and measures to improve compliance: part 2: adult
vaccinations. P T. 2016;41(8):492-506.
Temoka E. Becoming a vaccine champion:
evidence-based interventions to address the challenges of vaccination. S D Med.
2013;(theme issue): 68-72.
Bach AT, Goad JA. The role of community
pharmacy-based vaccination in the USA: current practice and future directions.
Integr Pharm Res Pract. 2015;4:67-77. doi: 10.2147/IPRP.S63822.
Poland GA, Schaffner W, Hopkins RH Jr, US
Department of Health & Human Services. Immunization guidelines in the
United States: new vaccines and new recommendations for children, adolescents,
and adults. Vaccine. 2013;31(42):4689-4693. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2013.03.031.