8 Tips to Beat Ticks

 

adult tick walking to warm source - nature shotSummer is here and it’s time to enjoy the great outdoors. Unfortunately, the great outdoors also has ticks, those pesky, blood-sucking arthropods that love to feed on us and which can carry the tick-borne infectious disease, Lyme. Symptoms of Lyme disease include fever, headache, fatigue, and rash. If left untreated, Lyme disease can spread throughout the body, infecting joints, heart, and the nervous system.

With more than 1,750 cases of Lyme disease reported in Maine last year it’s important to know how to protect yourself from ticks this season.

Before you go outside:

  • Know where to expect ticks. Ticks live in or near wooded or grassy areas. If you’re hiking, try and stay in the center of the trail and keep away from tall grassy areas.
  • There are many products out there that contain Permethrin to kill ticks. You can use this product to treat boots, clothing, and camping gear. Also, try using a repellent that contains 20% or more DEET.
  • If you know you’ll be in wooded grassy areas, wear long clothing and tuck in your clothes to avoid openings.

When you come inside:

  • Check your clothing for ticks. Ticks can be carried into the house on clothing. Placing clothes into a dryer on high heat for at least an hour effectively kills ticks.
  • Shower within two hours of coming indoors. This will help wash off any unattached ticks and is a good opportunity to do a tick check.
  • Check your body. These parts are great hiding spots for ticks:
    • Under the arms
    • In and around the ears
    • Inside the belly button
    • Back of the knees
    • In and around the hair
    • Between the legs
    • Around the waist

What to do if you find an attached tick:

  • Remove the tick as soon as you notice it by grasping it out with tweezers, as close to the skin as possible, and pulling it straight out.
  • Watch for a rash or fever in the next few weeks following the bite. Patients who get Lyme from a tick bite will develop a lesion/rash at the site of the bite that resembles a target. If you become ill after a tick bite, call your health care provider.

Now, go enjoy the outdoors!

Now Accepting Patients

DFD is now accepting patients at all locations.

At DFD Russell Medical Center, our commitment to patient-centered care means our experienced providers and innovative services focus on you, the patient.

We are committed to providing each patient with a medical team of physicians, providers and staff dedicated to getting each patient healthy and keeping each patient healthy.

With medical centers in Monmouth, Turner and Leeds you can access personalized care, close to home. Providers at all three  DFD Russell Medical Centers are accepting new patients. To see a full list of those providers, click here.

DFD Recognizes Stroke Awareness

Stroke is a disease that can happen to anyone at anytime, it occurs when blood flow to an area of the brain is cut off. Stroke affects nearly 800,000 Americans each year. The good news, nearly 80% of strokes are preventable. Let’s bring stroke awareness to your friends, family and community.

Be aware of the symptoms:

  • Sudden numbness or weakness of face, arm or leg, especially on just one side of the body.
  • Sudden confusion, trouble speaking, or understanding.
  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes.
  • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination.
  • Sudden severe headache with no known cause.

DFD providers will work with you to decrease your risks for disease like stroke. Some ways to decrease your risk for stroke include:

  • Lower high blood pressure and stress
  • Lower high cholesterol
  • Get regular exercise
  • Quit smoking
  • Eat a well balanced diet

If you suspect someone is having a stroke think FAST:

 

Stroke awareness

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Drug Take Back

Join us Saturday, April 30th from 10 am to 2  pm for the Drug Take Back event.

Prescription medications play an important role in the health of many patients. However, expired medications or unused drugs often end up staying in the back of cabinets for months, or even years. Expired drugs can be a significant health risk to toddlers, teens and even family pets who may accidentally consume expired medications. Some expired medications are so potent that a single does could be fatal if ingested.

The misuse of prescription narcotic drugs is becoming a major health problem. In fact, over 46,00 Americans die each year from drug-related deaths, with more than half being from heroin and prescription opioids. 70% of people who first misuse prescription drugs get them from friends, family, or simply take them without asking.

In order to crack down on drug addiction and accidental overdose the DEA has initiated the “Drug Take-Back”. Proper disposal of prescription medication is the safest and most effective way ensure your expired or extra prescription medicine is not accidentally ingested or used illegally.

The Androscoggin County Sherriff’s office will have “Take-Back” locations from 10:00 to 2:00 pm at the following locations:

  • Auburn: Bedard Pharmacy 359 Minot Avenue
  • Lewiston: Farwell Elementary School, 100 Farwell Street
  • Livermore Falls: Livermore Falls Police Department, 108 Lewiston Street
  • Poland: Poland Town Office complex lot, 1241 Main Street
  • Sabattus: Sabattus Police Department, 190 Middle Road
  • Turner: Turner Fire/ Rescue station, 19 General Turner Hill Road

For a complete listing of all sites in Maine please visit the following link:

National Drug Take Back listings

Keep Your Sports Superstars Safe

Warm weather is here and spring sports are upon us. Each year an estimated 3.8 million sports and recreation – related concussions occur in the United States. These head injuries can have long lasting affects on kids. Be aware of risks and symptoms, and keep the game fun and safe for your sports superstars this season.

What is a concussion?

A concussion is a type of brain injury that is caused by a bump or blow to the head. What may seem to be a mild injury can, in fact, be quite serious.

What are the sings and symptoms of a concussion?

If your child experienced a bump or blow to the head during a game or practice be aware of the following:

  • Appears dazed or stunned
  • Is confused about assignment or position
  • Forgets an instruction
  • Is unsure of game, score, or opponent
  • Moves clumsily
  • Answers questions slowly
  • Loses consciousness (even briefly)
  • Shows mood, behavior, or personality changes

How you and your child can prevent a concussion:

  • Follow coach’s rules for safety
  • Practice good sportsmanship at all times
  • Wear the right protective equipment for the activity (equipment should fit properly and be well maintained)
  • Wear a mouth guard to reduce risk of brain injury

What should I do if I think my child has sustained a concussion?

If you think that your child has experienced a concussion, get him/her evaluated by a medical professional. This will ensure the best path to recovery.

2016 Poison Control Week

Every eight seconds someone needs a poison control center and there are over 2 million poison exposures each year in the United States. Poisons are all around us and can affect anyone, anywhere and at any time. However, poisonings are preventable and treatable.

Know the risks and facts about poison to protect you and your family.

  • Drug-related poisonings cause nearly 70,000 visits to hospital emergency rooms.
  • Poisonings cause more than 35,000 deaths each year.
  • Children under age six account for half of all poison exposures.
  • 9 out of 10  poisoning deaths occur among people over the age of 20.
  • The top five causes of poisoning are:
    • Cosmetics or personal products
    • Household cleaning products
    • Sedatives, hypnotics and antipsychotics medicine
    • Foreign bodies, toys and other objects
    • Painkillers
  • Never mix household or chemical products together. Doing so can create a dangerous gas.
  • Never share prescription medicines. If you are taking more than one drug at a time, check with your health care provider to find out more about possible drug interactions.
  • Keep all chemicals, household cleaners, medicines and potentially poisonous substances in locked cabinets or out of reach of children.

If you suspect someone has been poisoned call Poison Help at 1-800-222-1222

Credit: poisonhelp.hrsa.gov

Oral Health Care at DFD

b12288c8-1567-4d03-86c9-6c71d9c1ba2cHeart disease, stroke, respiratory disease, diabetes and preterm births. What do all of these conditions have in common? They are all linked to bacterial infections in the mouth.

You know the rule: brush and floss at least twice a day, every day. But too often we simply forget or skip it because, well, we’re busy. Life gets hectic. What’s the harm in skipping a day or two?

In your mouth there are 20 billion bacteria that reproduce every five hours. Going just 24 hours without brushing your teeth will result in those 20 billion becoming 100 billion bacteria. The longer the Plaque Bacteria sits undisturbed, the more destructive those germs become.

Bacteria buildup leads to gingivitis, and if left untreated, the infection will grow into the bone that holds your teeth in place. This more serious infection, known as periodontal or gum disease, is what is linked to life-threatening conditions such as heart disease.

The good news? Gingivitis is treatable. A regular, thorough dental cleaning by a hygienist and a commitment to brushing and flossing twice a day will help you reverse the gingivitis infection and improve your overall health.

One in five children have an untreated, decayed tooth, and tooth decay is the single-most chronic childhood disease – five times more common than asthma and seven times more common than hay fever. Despite the risks of going without, dental healthcare is often inaccessible for families. That is why DFD is now assessing our six to nine-year-old patients and applying sealants to their young teeth.

But oral health doesn’t just affect young children; nearly 75% of adults suffer from periodontal disease and don’t even know it. DFD has teamed up with CCS Dental Services and Tooth Fairies, Inc. to provide accessible oral health care for all DFD patients and their families.

A registered dental hygienist from Tooth Fairies Inc. will be providing dental cleanings, sealant placement, fluoride and brushing instructions periodically at DFD Russell Medical Centers in Leeds, Monmouth, and Turner.

 

Maine Care will cover this service for patients 21 years of age and under. The fee for uninsured children 12 and under is $42, and the fee for patients 13 years of age and up is $52. DFD’s model of care focuses on treating the whole person, which includes taking great care of your teeth!

By offering patients an affordable and accessible dental care option, we can help eliminate the need for costly emergency and specialist visits.

For more information and a list of upcoming dental cleanings view our Oral Health Care page.

John Meserve, MD

Meet John Meserve, M.D., our newest doctor to join the DFD team.

John Meserve, MD joined DFD after 30+ years of experience in primary care medicine. The move to DFD Monmouth is prompted by a desire to be closer to his two grandsons and many family and friends. He has extensive knowledge in Family medicine from over 19 years of providing obstetric care along with a full service practice providing care for newborns/pediatrics, adolescent medicine, and adult and geriatric medicine. He graduated from the University of Vermont Medical School and went on to complete his internship and residency in Pittsburgh where he was chosen as a Mead Johnson Scholar for Excellence in Family Practice. Dr. Meserve is currently accepting new patients at DFD Medical Center in Monmouth.

DFD Earns MGMA ‘Better Performer’ Status

The MGMA Performance and Practices of Successful Medical Groups: 2015 Report Based on 2015 Data recently identified DFD Russell Medical Center with their highest form of recognition as a “better performer” for excellence in four performance-management categories including: profitability and cost management; productivity, capacity and staffing; accounts receivable and collections; and patient satisfaction. Continue reading

Elizabeth Steward, FNP-C

Elizabeth Steward, FNP-C Joined the DFD Team in April 2015.

Elizabeth Steward2 She is a graduate of Norwich University where she received a bachelor’s degree in biology and went on to receive her post undergraduate degree in cytology from the Fletcher Allen Healthcare School of Cytology. In 2013 Elizabeth earned her masters as a family nurse practitioner from Regis College in Weston, Mass. She is devoted to the health care field and is currently a member of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. Elizabeth enjoys providing care to patients of all ages and is currently practicing at the Monmouth office.