Ideas to keep you thinking, living and being well.
Between jobs, classes, families, friends and activities, you’ve got a lot on your plate (and on your mind). So we want to make sure you have some quick, actionable tips that will help you on your personal path to wellness.
Check back regularly as we update on a range of topics.
January is Cervical Cancer Awareness Month
The United States Congress designated January as Cervical Health Awareness Month. Nearly 13,000 women in the United States are diagnosed with cervical cancer each year, but the disease is preventable with vaccination and appropriate screening (Pap and HPV tests).
During January, NCCC and its many local chapters across the country highlight issues related to cervical cancer, HPV disease and the importance of early detection.
Learn more about HPV and cervical cancer.
8 Simple Ways for College Students to Stay Healthy During Winter
In college, the winter months are dominated by three things: finals, winter break and illness. Having finals and eventually returning home for winter break are typically set in stone, but preventing an illness can also fall under your control. Take the time to stay healthy during the winter months by following these eight tips for college students. Not only will they benefit your health, but they will help you to feel your best while you attempt to finish off the semester on a strong note.
1. Wash your hands - The simplest way to stay healthy is to wash your hands frequently, especially before eating and after using the bathroom. Don't forget to use soap and warm water
2. Sleep - Although students might be busy studying for finals, it is important to get at least six to eight hours of sleep per night in order to function properly during the day. Lack of sleep can result in impaired memory, confusion and exhaustion during the day, so don't skimp on sleep
3. Drink water - Water is vital in order to keep your body and mind functioning properly. Because of this, the average person should be drinking eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day in order to stay hydrated. If you're drinking less than that, try bringing a water bottle along with you to squeeze in a little more each day,
4. Cover your cough - Are you coughing like crazy in class? Don't forget to cover it with your sleeve (not your hand) to avoid spreading your illness to your classmates.
5. Clean your living quarters - Wiping down your belongings once in a while can save you from germs and viruses that linger on your everyday household items. Simply use antibacterial wipes on door handles, desks, toilets and sinks and you should be good to go.
6. Don’t force yourself to go out - Are your friends pressuring you to go out on a night when you don't feel well? If that is the case, don't forget to always put your health first. Going to a bar with a cold will not only make you feel worse, but you also run the risk of infecting others. Do yourself and your friends a favor and stay home to rest and recuperate.
7. Get a flu shot - Most college campuses offer flu shots to students and staff members free of charge. Check out your campus health services for flu shot availability.
8. De-stress - Have your stress levels been out of control recently? Stress can make the body more susceptible to bacteria and viruses because it suppresses the immune system's reaction to pathogens it could normally tolerate and fight off. Stay active or try forms of meditation and relaxation to help de-stress your mind and body, alike.
By following these 8 tips, you will be sure to stay healthy during the cold winter months at college.
Dress Code for Winter Workouts
1. Base layer: Choose a snug but breathable shirt that wicks sweat from skin; look for a synthetic fabric, like polypropylene or capilene, or go for silk. But avoid cotton; it holds on to moisture and can quickly lose its insulating powers when wet. Try a turtleneck for walking or a long-sleeve tee for running.
2. Middle layer: Add a fleece or wool top to provide insulation; how thick depends on the temperature and the intensity of your exercise. Don't forget your hat and mittens if it's near freezing.
3. Outer layer: When it dips below freezing, top off with a jacket that resists wind and water but still breathes; Gore-Tex and nylon are good options. (As it nears zero, also add a fourth, insulating layer between the middle and outer layers and a ski mask to shield your face.)
Originally published in FITNESS magazine, February 2011
HPV IS COMMON
Most sexually active individuals have HPV at some point. At
any time there are approximately 79 million people in the U.S.
Some types of HPV can cause genital warts while some
other, different types are linked to cervical cell changes
that, if not detected early, can increase a woman’s risk
for cervical cancer. HPV also causes some cancers of the
penis, anus, vagina, vulva, and throat. HPV infections are
usually harmless, though, and most are cleared naturally
by the body in a year or two.
HPV vaccines can help prevent infection from both high risk HPV
types that can lead to cervical cancer and low risk types that
cause genital warts. The CDC recommends all boys and girls
get the HPV vaccine at age 11 or 12, but vaccination is avail
able through age 26. The vaccine produces a stronger immune
response when taken during the preteen years. For this reason,
up until age 14, only two doses are the vaccine are required.
Young women and men can get the vaccine up to age 26, but
for those 15 and older, a full three-dose series is needed.
HPV is usually passed by genital-to-genital and genital-to-anal
contact (even without penetration). The virus can also be
transmitted by oral to genital contact, although this probably
occurs less often. Studies show that male condoms can reduce
HPV transmission to females, although condoms only protect
the skin they cover.
A Pap test can find cell changes to the cervix caused by HPV.
HPV tests find the virus and help healthcare providers know
which women are at highest risk for cervical cancer. A Pap/
HPV co-test is recommended for women 30 and over. One
HPV test has been approved for use as primary cervical
cancer screening for women age 25 and older, followed by a
Pap test for women with certain results.
© 2017 American Sexual Health Association.
All rights reserved.
JANUARY IS CERVICAL HEALTH AWARENESS MONTH
TEN THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT HPV AND CERVICAL CANCER
There’s no treatment for the virus itself, but healthcare provid
ers have plenty of options to treat diseases caused by HPV