Tag Archives: Ways

Seven ways … to prevent and manage RSI

Repetitive strain injury often starts gradually but can soon become severely debilitating. Bu there are ways to nip it in the bud – and alleviate the worst symptoms

Proper typing is key to preventing RSI.


Proper typing is key to preventing RSI. Photograph: Peter Dazeley/Getty Images

Don’t ignore it

Repetitive strain injury (RSI) causes pain, weakness, tingling and stiffness of the muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves or other soft tissues and joints in the upper limbs from neck to fingers. It is also called upper limb disorder, cumulative trauma disorder or occupational overuse syndrome. It often starts gradually and is worse when you’re at work, but it can take on a life of its own and become constant and debilitating. Nip it in the bud by taking short, frequent breaks from repetitive tasks such as typing. Check the ergonomics of your work station and try not to slouch at your desk.

Use both hands

Proper typing is key to preventing RSI. Contorting the fingers of one hand to reach more than one key at once, especially if you’re typing one-handed while holding your phone against the other ear, is a recipe for muscle strain. It’s like playing the piano; correct fingering is essential. Basic typing skills aren’t often taught in schools; they should be.

Get up

Try to get up from your desk every 30 minutes and move your neck and shoulders to release tension. A 10-minute break every hour (a stroll to the loo or to make a drink) is advised. One good tip is to time how long you can type before getting symptoms (eg pins and needles or muscle ache) and then set an alarm to stop typing 10 minutes before that time.

Pray

Stretching can help to prevent and manage RSI. The prayer stretch involves putting the palms of your hands together, pointing up; push to one side then the other for 15-30 seconds at a time. If stretches make RSI worse, see a physiotherapist for expert advice.

It’s in the wrist action

To prevent RSI, keep wrists straight and flat when typing. Sit with thighs level, feet flat on floor (or on footrest), sit up straight, shoulders relaxed, upper arms at sides, not splayed out, forearms horizontal or tilted slightly downwards, so knees and elbows are at a right angle. Keep the top of your screen at eye level and adjust the position of your keyboard, so it’s easy to reach without stretching or hunching.

Assess your risk

Your employer should carry out a risk assessment when you join to check that your work area suits you. You can request an assessment if you haven’t had one or if you’re developing symptoms of RSI.

Treat yourself

There’s nothing better than prevention. But if you have symptoms of mild RSI, you can try short courses of anti-inflammatory painkillers (ibuprofen gel or tablets), hot and cold packs, elastic supports and splints. Some people are helped by yoga, massage and meditation. An expert opinion from an osteopath, physiotherapist, GP or occupational health doctor or nurse is important if symptoms persist and are severe. Referral to a joint specialist (rheumatologist) or pain clinic is a good idea in severe cases.

4 Unexpected Ways Summer Heat Is Throwing Your Body Out of Whack  

Summer is finally in full swing—which means cute sandals and sunglasses, beach vacations, and ridiculously scorching weather. If you’re feeling the heat, literally (does it really need to be 85 degrees before nine in the morning, seriously?) you’re not alone.

Hot temperatures can mess with your body in all sorts of sneaky ways, and we don’t just mean the threat of a sunburn or sweating through your outfit on the way to work. Here are four common ways hot, humid weather takes a toll on your health, plus how you can beat heat’s effect on your system.

RELATED: 20 Ways to Stop Allergies

You’re sniffling and sneezing

Flowers bloom in the summer—and so do plants and grasses that produce pollen, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. In response to the warm weather, pollen production goes up, and the presence of pollen in the air can leave even people with mild allergies sneezing, sniffling, and rubbing their itchy eyes through Labor Day.

To reduce these allergy symptoms, pay attention to the daily pollen count and try to stay indoors as much as possible on high-count days. If you can’t give up your outdoor run or yoga class, try to time it (as well as other outside activities) toward the end of the day, when pollen counts go down. And keep windows shut in your house to keep allergens from turning you into a sneezy mess in your own home.

You toss and turn all night

Too hot to sleep—but the air conditioning in your room is making you shiver? Summer makes it tough to find that happy medium. Most people sleep best when the temperature is at 65 to 66 degrees; as the temperature goes up, sleep quality tends to go down, says Chris Winter, MD, neurologist and sleep medicine specialist at Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine in Virginia. 

The right temperature could also help you stay asleep through the night and score better sleep quality. So if you find yourself waking up fatigued and fuzzy-brained, try adjusting the thermostat. Dr. Winter says many of his patients have reported resting much better when they lower their bedroom temperature, even if they hadn’t noticed sleep problems. Don’t feel guilty for using so much electricity—cranking up the AC to a healthy level is good for you.

Your heart pounds way more than normal 

You do a hard-charging cardio workout three times a week, but your heart rate is suddenly spiking on your walk to work in the morning. What gives? Jonathan Newman MD, MPH, cardiologist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, says higher temps have both direct and indirect effects on your heart.

For starters, if you live in an urban area, you may notice smog or haze fogging up summer skies. Air quality tends to get worse at higher temperatures, and that air pollution itself can take a toll on the heart and vascular system, Dr. Newman says.

Plus, at the most basic physical level, “your heart is working overtime” in the summer, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. “Your heart beats faster in order to pump overly warm blood from your body’s core out to the skin’s surface,” says Dr. Knowlton, which helps cool you down.

Since your faster heartbeat is all part of your body’s way of keeping you cool, there’s not much you can do to prevent it. Taking normal precautions in the heat—drinking lots of water, not exerting yourself too much—are always good ideas. And of course, ”eating a heart-healthy diet, controlling your blood pressure, controlling your cholesterol, and increasing physical activity,” Dr. Newman says, will keep your ticker in good shape so it can handle 90-degree days.

RELATED: Everything You Must Know About Mosquitoes This Summer

You’re racking up lots of mosquito bites

When the weather is warm, you want to spend as much time in the great outdoors as possible. But while you’re embracing nature, dining al fresco, or just enjoying a backyard barbecue, mosquitoes are making you their buffet.

Unfortunately, summer is prime time for mosquitoes. Their prey (in other words, us) are outside more, and the little vampires also mature faster when the sun is out strong. That means skeeters live fast and die young, so the time between the day one hatches and the day it becomes a disease-transmitting adult is shorter. With mosquitoes taking less time to reach this stage, diseases (such as Zika and the West Nile Virus) can spread more quickly, says Aileen Marty, MD, an infectious disease specialist in Washington, D.C. 

What can you do to protect yourself? When you’re hanging outside, skip your signature scent in favor of bug spray, says Debra Jaliman, MD, New York City-based dermatologist and author of Skin Rules. She recommends Ultrathon Insect Repellent. ”It’s creamy and it says on your skin longer,” says Dr. Jaliman. It also has DEET, one of the few ingredients that have been shown to be truly effective in warding off mosquitoes.

To get our best wellness tips delivered to you inbox, sign up for the Healthy Living newsletter

And what you heard as a kid is right—don’t scratch! As itchy as these bites are, scratching them can create an open wound, making you susceptible to infections, especially since there’s plenty of bacteria hiding under your nails, says Dr. Jaliman. 

If you just can’t keep your hands off your bites, Dr. Jaliman has a few suggestions. ”Use ice cubes to stop the itching; over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream or aloe vera gel will also diminish the itch and reduce swelling,” she adds.

 

4 Unexpected Ways Summer Heat Is Throwing Your Body Out of Whack  

Summer is finally in full swing—which means cute sandals and sunglasses, beach vacations, and ridiculously scorching weather. If you’re feeling the heat, literally (does it really need to be 85 degrees before nine in the morning, seriously?) you’re not alone.

Hot temperatures can mess with your body in all sorts of sneaky ways, and we don’t just mean the threat of a sunburn or sweating through your outfit on the way to work. Here are four common ways hot, humid weather takes a toll on your health, plus how you can beat heat’s effect on your system.

RELATED: 20 Ways to Stop Allergies

You’re sniffling and sneezing

Flowers bloom in the summer—and so do plants and grasses that produce pollen, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. In response to the warm weather, pollen production goes up, and the presence of pollen in the air can leave even people with mild allergies sneezing, sniffling, and rubbing their itchy eyes through Labor Day.

To reduce these allergy symptoms, pay attention to the daily pollen count and try to stay indoors as much as possible on high-count days. If you can’t give up your outdoor run or yoga class, try to time it (as well as other outside activities) toward the end of the day, when pollen counts go down. And keep windows shut in your house to keep allergens from turning you into a sneezy mess in your own home.

You toss and turn all night

Too hot to sleep—but the air conditioning in your room is making you shiver? Summer makes it tough to find that happy medium. Most people sleep best when the temperature is at 65 to 66 degrees; as the temperature goes up, sleep quality tends to go down, says Chris Winter, MD, neurologist and sleep medicine specialist at Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine in Virginia. 

The right temperature could also help you stay asleep through the night and score better sleep quality. So if you find yourself waking up fatigued and fuzzy-brained, try adjusting the thermostat. Dr. Winter says many of his patients have reported resting much better when they lower their bedroom temperature, even if they hadn’t noticed sleep problems. Don’t feel guilty for using so much electricity—cranking up the AC to a healthy level is good for you.

Your heart pounds way more than normal 

You do a hard-charging cardio workout three times a week, but your heart rate is suddenly spiking on your walk to work in the morning. What gives? Jonathan Newman MD, MPH, cardiologist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, says higher temps have both direct and indirect effects on your heart.

For starters, if you live in an urban area, you may notice smog or haze fogging up summer skies. Air quality tends to get worse at higher temperatures, and that air pollution itself can take a toll on the heart and vascular system, Dr. Newman says.

Plus, at the most basic physical level, “your heart is working overtime” in the summer, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. “Your heart beats faster in order to pump overly warm blood from your body’s core out to the skin’s surface,” says Dr. Knowlton, which helps cool you down.

Since your faster heartbeat is all part of your body’s way of keeping you cool, there’s not much you can do to prevent it. Taking normal precautions in the heat—drinking lots of water, not exerting yourself too much—are always good ideas. And of course, ”eating a heart-healthy diet, controlling your blood pressure, controlling your cholesterol, and increasing physical activity,” Dr. Newman says, will keep your ticker in good shape so it can handle 90-degree days.

RELATED: Everything You Must Know About Mosquitoes This Summer

You’re racking up lots of mosquito bites

When the weather is warm, you want to spend as much time in the great outdoors as possible. But while you’re embracing nature, dining al fresco, or just enjoying a backyard barbecue, mosquitoes are making you their buffet.

Unfortunately, summer is prime time for mosquitoes. Their prey (in other words, us) are outside more, and the little vampires also mature faster when the sun is out strong. That means skeeters live fast and die young, so the time between the day one hatches and the day it becomes a disease-transmitting adult is shorter. With mosquitoes taking less time to reach this stage, diseases (such as Zika and the West Nile Virus) can spread more quickly, says Aileen Marty, MD, an infectious disease specialist in Washington, D.C. 

What can you do to protect yourself? When you’re hanging outside, skip your signature scent in favor of bug spray, says Debra Jaliman, MD, New York City-based dermatologist and author of Skin Rules. She recommends Ultrathon Insect Repellent. ”It’s creamy and it says on your skin longer,” says Dr. Jaliman. It also has DEET, one of the few ingredients that have been shown to be truly effective in warding off mosquitoes.

To get our best wellness tips delivered to you inbox, sign up for the Healthy Living newsletter

And what you heard as a kid is right—don’t scratch! As itchy as these bites are, scratching them can create an open wound, making you susceptible to infections, especially since there’s plenty of bacteria hiding under your nails, says Dr. Jaliman. 

If you just can’t keep your hands off your bites, Dr. Jaliman has a few suggestions. ”Use ice cubes to stop the itching; over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream or aloe vera gel will also diminish the itch and reduce swelling,” she adds.

 

4 Unexpected Ways Summer Heat Is Throwing Your Body Out of Whack  

Summer is finally in full swing—which means cute sandals and sunglasses, beach vacations, and ridiculously scorching weather. If you’re feeling the heat, literally (does it really need to be 85 degrees before nine in the morning, seriously?) you’re not alone.

Hot temperatures can mess with your body in all sorts of sneaky ways, and we don’t just mean the threat of a sunburn or sweating through your outfit on the way to work. Here are four common ways hot, humid weather takes a toll on your health, plus how you can beat heat’s effect on your system.

RELATED: 20 Ways to Stop Allergies

You’re sniffling and sneezing

Flowers bloom in the summer—and so do plants and grasses that produce pollen, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. In response to the warm weather, pollen production goes up, and the presence of pollen in the air can leave even people with mild allergies sneezing, sniffling, and rubbing their itchy eyes through Labor Day.

To reduce these allergy symptoms, pay attention to the daily pollen count and try to stay indoors as much as possible on high-count days. If you can’t give up your outdoor run or yoga class, try to time it (as well as other outside activities) toward the end of the day, when pollen counts go down. And keep windows shut in your house to keep allergens from turning you into a sneezy mess in your own home.

You toss and turn all night

Too hot to sleep—but the air conditioning in your room is making you shiver? Summer makes it tough to find that happy medium. Most people sleep best when the temperature is at 65 to 66 degrees; as the temperature goes up, sleep quality tends to go down, says Chris Winter, MD, neurologist and sleep medicine specialist at Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine in Virginia. 

The right temperature could also help you stay asleep through the night and score better sleep quality. So if you find yourself waking up fatigued and fuzzy-brained, try adjusting the thermostat. Dr. Winter says many of his patients have reported resting much better when they lower their bedroom temperature, even if they hadn’t noticed sleep problems. Don’t feel guilty for using so much electricity—cranking up the AC to a healthy level is good for you.

Your heart pounds way more than normal 

You do a hard-charging cardio workout three times a week, but your heart rate is suddenly spiking on your walk to work in the morning. What gives? Jonathan Newman MD, MPH, cardiologist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, says higher temps have both direct and indirect effects on your heart.

For starters, if you live in an urban area, you may notice smog or haze fogging up summer skies. Air quality tends to get worse at higher temperatures, and that air pollution itself can take a toll on the heart and vascular system, Dr. Newman says.

Plus, at the most basic physical level, “your heart is working overtime” in the summer, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. “Your heart beats faster in order to pump overly warm blood from your body’s core out to the skin’s surface,” says Dr. Knowlton, which helps cool you down.

Since your faster heartbeat is all part of your body’s way of keeping you cool, there’s not much you can do to prevent it. Taking normal precautions in the heat—drinking lots of water, not exerting yourself too much—are always good ideas. And of course, ”eating a heart-healthy diet, controlling your blood pressure, controlling your cholesterol, and increasing physical activity,” Dr. Newman says, will keep your ticker in good shape so it can handle 90-degree days.

RELATED: Everything You Must Know About Mosquitoes This Summer

You’re racking up lots of mosquito bites

When the weather is warm, you want to spend as much time in the great outdoors as possible. But while you’re embracing nature, dining al fresco, or just enjoying a backyard barbecue, mosquitoes are making you their buffet.

Unfortunately, summer is prime time for mosquitoes. Their prey (in other words, us) are outside more, and the little vampires also mature faster when the sun is out strong. That means skeeters live fast and die young, so the time between the day one hatches and the day it becomes a disease-transmitting adult is shorter. With mosquitoes taking less time to reach this stage, diseases (such as Zika and the West Nile Virus) can spread more quickly, says Aileen Marty, MD, an infectious disease specialist in Washington, D.C. 

What can you do to protect yourself? When you’re hanging outside, skip your signature scent in favor of bug spray, says Debra Jaliman, MD, New York City-based dermatologist and author of Skin Rules. She recommends Ultrathon Insect Repellent. ”It’s creamy and it says on your skin longer,” says Dr. Jaliman. It also has DEET, one of the few ingredients that have been shown to be truly effective in warding off mosquitoes.

To get our best wellness tips delivered to you inbox, sign up for the Healthy Living newsletter

And what you heard as a kid is right—don’t scratch! As itchy as these bites are, scratching them can create an open wound, making you susceptible to infections, especially since there’s plenty of bacteria hiding under your nails, says Dr. Jaliman. 

If you just can’t keep your hands off your bites, Dr. Jaliman has a few suggestions. ”Use ice cubes to stop the itching; over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream or aloe vera gel will also diminish the itch and reduce swelling,” she adds.

 

4 Unexpected Ways Summer Heat Is Throwing Your Body Out of Whack  

Summer is finally in full swing—which means cute sandals and sunglasses, beach vacations, and ridiculously scorching weather. If you’re feeling the heat, literally (does it really need to be 85 degrees before nine in the morning, seriously?) you’re not alone.

Hot temperatures can mess with your body in all sorts of sneaky ways, and we don’t just mean the threat of a sunburn or sweating through your outfit on the way to work. Here are four common ways hot, humid weather takes a toll on your health, plus how you can beat heat’s effect on your system.

RELATED: 20 Ways to Stop Allergies

You’re sniffling and sneezing

Flowers bloom in the summer—and so do plants and grasses that produce pollen, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. In response to the warm weather, pollen production goes up, and the presence of pollen in the air can leave even people with mild allergies sneezing, sniffling, and rubbing their itchy eyes through Labor Day.

To reduce these allergy symptoms, pay attention to the daily pollen count and try to stay indoors as much as possible on high-count days. If you can’t give up your outdoor run or yoga class, try to time it (as well as other outside activities) toward the end of the day, when pollen counts go down. And keep windows shut in your house to keep allergens from turning you into a sneezy mess in your own home.

You toss and turn all night

Too hot to sleep—but the air conditioning in your room is making you shiver? Summer makes it tough to find that happy medium. Most people sleep best when the temperature is at 65 to 66 degrees; as the temperature goes up, sleep quality tends to go down, says Chris Winter, MD, neurologist and sleep medicine specialist at Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine in Virginia. 

The right temperature could also help you stay asleep through the night and score better sleep quality. So if you find yourself waking up fatigued and fuzzy-brained, try adjusting the thermostat. Dr. Winter says many of his patients have reported resting much better when they lower their bedroom temperature, even if they hadn’t noticed sleep problems. Don’t feel guilty for using so much electricity—cranking up the AC to a healthy level is good for you.

Your heart pounds way more than normal 

You do a hard-charging cardio workout three times a week, but your heart rate is suddenly spiking on your walk to work in the morning. What gives? Jonathan Newman MD, MPH, cardiologist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, says higher temps have both direct and indirect effects on your heart.

For starters, if you live in an urban area, you may notice smog or haze fogging up summer skies. Air quality tends to get worse at higher temperatures, and that air pollution itself can take a toll on the heart and vascular system, Dr. Newman says.

Plus, at the most basic physical level, “your heart is working overtime” in the summer, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. “Your heart beats faster in order to pump overly warm blood from your body’s core out to the skin’s surface,” says Dr. Knowlton, which helps cool you down.

Since your faster heartbeat is all part of your body’s way of keeping you cool, there’s not much you can do to prevent it. Taking normal precautions in the heat—drinking lots of water, not exerting yourself too much—are always good ideas. And of course, ”eating a heart-healthy diet, controlling your blood pressure, controlling your cholesterol, and increasing physical activity,” Dr. Newman says, will keep your ticker in good shape so it can handle 90-degree days.

RELATED: Everything You Must Know About Mosquitoes This Summer

You’re racking up lots of mosquito bites

When the weather is warm, you want to spend as much time in the great outdoors as possible. But while you’re embracing nature, dining al fresco, or just enjoying a backyard barbecue, mosquitoes are making you their buffet.

Unfortunately, summer is prime time for mosquitoes. Their prey (in other words, us) are outside more, and the little vampires also mature faster when the sun is out strong. That means skeeters live fast and die young, so the time between the day one hatches and the day it becomes a disease-transmitting adult is shorter. With mosquitoes taking less time to reach this stage, diseases (such as Zika and the West Nile Virus) can spread more quickly, says Aileen Marty, MD, an infectious disease specialist in Washington, D.C. 

What can you do to protect yourself? When you’re hanging outside, skip your signature scent in favor of bug spray, says Debra Jaliman, MD, New York City-based dermatologist and author of Skin Rules. She recommends Ultrathon Insect Repellent. ”It’s creamy and it says on your skin longer,” says Dr. Jaliman. It also has DEET, one of the few ingredients that have been shown to be truly effective in warding off mosquitoes.

To get our best wellness tips delivered to you inbox, sign up for the Healthy Living newsletter

And what you heard as a kid is right—don’t scratch! As itchy as these bites are, scratching them can create an open wound, making you susceptible to infections, especially since there’s plenty of bacteria hiding under your nails, says Dr. Jaliman. 

If you just can’t keep your hands off your bites, Dr. Jaliman has a few suggestions. ”Use ice cubes to stop the itching; over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream or aloe vera gel will also diminish the itch and reduce swelling,” she adds.

 

4 Unexpected Ways Summer Heat Is Throwing Your Body Out of Whack  

Summer is finally in full swing—which means cute sandals and sunglasses, beach vacations, and ridiculously scorching weather. If you’re feeling the heat, literally (does it really need to be 85 degrees before nine in the morning, seriously?) you’re not alone.

Hot temperatures can mess with your body in all sorts of sneaky ways, and we don’t just mean the threat of a sunburn or sweating through your outfit on the way to work. Here are four common ways hot, humid weather takes a toll on your health, plus how you can beat heat’s effect on your system.

RELATED: 20 Ways to Stop Allergies

You’re sniffling and sneezing

Flowers bloom in the summer—and so do plants and grasses that produce pollen, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. In response to the warm weather, pollen production goes up, and the presence of pollen in the air can leave even people with mild allergies sneezing, sniffling, and rubbing their itchy eyes through Labor Day.

To reduce these allergy symptoms, pay attention to the daily pollen count and try to stay indoors as much as possible on high-count days. If you can’t give up your outdoor run or yoga class, try to time it (as well as other outside activities) toward the end of the day, when pollen counts go down. And keep windows shut in your house to keep allergens from turning you into a sneezy mess in your own home.

You toss and turn all night

Too hot to sleep—but the air conditioning in your room is making you shiver? Summer makes it tough to find that happy medium. Most people sleep best when the temperature is at 65 to 66 degrees; as the temperature goes up, sleep quality tends to go down, says Chris Winter, MD, neurologist and sleep medicine specialist at Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine in Virginia. 

The right temperature could also help you stay asleep through the night and score better sleep quality. So if you find yourself waking up fatigued and fuzzy-brained, try adjusting the thermostat. Dr. Winter says many of his patients have reported resting much better when they lower their bedroom temperature, even if they hadn’t noticed sleep problems. Don’t feel guilty for using so much electricity—cranking up the AC to a healthy level is good for you.

Your heart pounds way more than normal 

You do a hard-charging cardio workout three times a week, but your heart rate is suddenly spiking on your walk to work in the morning. What gives? Jonathan Newman MD, MPH, cardiologist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, says higher temps have both direct and indirect effects on your heart.

For starters, if you live in an urban area, you may notice smog or haze fogging up summer skies. Air quality tends to get worse at higher temperatures, and that air pollution itself can take a toll on the heart and vascular system, Dr. Newman says.

Plus, at the most basic physical level, “your heart is working overtime” in the summer, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. “Your heart beats faster in order to pump overly warm blood from your body’s core out to the skin’s surface,” says Dr. Knowlton, which helps cool you down.

Since your faster heartbeat is all part of your body’s way of keeping you cool, there’s not much you can do to prevent it. Taking normal precautions in the heat—drinking lots of water, not exerting yourself too much—are always good ideas. And of course, ”eating a heart-healthy diet, controlling your blood pressure, controlling your cholesterol, and increasing physical activity,” Dr. Newman says, will keep your ticker in good shape so it can handle 90-degree days.

RELATED: Everything You Must Know About Mosquitoes This Summer

You’re racking up lots of mosquito bites

When the weather is warm, you want to spend as much time in the great outdoors as possible. But while you’re embracing nature, dining al fresco, or just enjoying a backyard barbecue, mosquitoes are making you their buffet.

Unfortunately, summer is prime time for mosquitoes. Their prey (in other words, us) are outside more, and the little vampires also mature faster when the sun is out strong. That means skeeters live fast and die young, so the time between the day one hatches and the day it becomes a disease-transmitting adult is shorter. With mosquitoes taking less time to reach this stage, diseases (such as Zika and the West Nile Virus) can spread more quickly, says Aileen Marty, MD, an infectious disease specialist in Washington, D.C. 

What can you do to protect yourself? When you’re hanging outside, skip your signature scent in favor of bug spray, says Debra Jaliman, MD, New York City-based dermatologist and author of Skin Rules. She recommends Ultrathon Insect Repellent. ”It’s creamy and it says on your skin longer,” says Dr. Jaliman. It also has DEET, one of the few ingredients that have been shown to be truly effective in warding off mosquitoes.

To get our best wellness tips delivered to you inbox, sign up for the Healthy Living newsletter

And what you heard as a kid is right—don’t scratch! As itchy as these bites are, scratching them can create an open wound, making you susceptible to infections, especially since there’s plenty of bacteria hiding under your nails, says Dr. Jaliman. 

If you just can’t keep your hands off your bites, Dr. Jaliman has a few suggestions. ”Use ice cubes to stop the itching; over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream or aloe vera gel will also diminish the itch and reduce swelling,” she adds.

 

4 Unexpected Ways Summer Heat Is Throwing Your Body Out of Whack  

Summer is finally in full swing—which means cute sandals and sunglasses, beach vacations, and ridiculously scorching weather. If you’re feeling the heat, literally (does it really need to be 85 degrees before nine in the morning, seriously?) you’re not alone.

Hot temperatures can mess with your body in all sorts of sneaky ways, and we don’t just mean the threat of a sunburn or sweating through your outfit on the way to work. Here are four common ways hot, humid weather takes a toll on your health, plus how you can beat heat’s effect on your system.

RELATED: 20 Ways to Stop Allergies

You’re sniffling and sneezing

Flowers bloom in the summer—and so do plants and grasses that produce pollen, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. In response to the warm weather, pollen production goes up, and the presence of pollen in the air can leave even people with mild allergies sneezing, sniffling, and rubbing their itchy eyes through Labor Day.

To reduce these allergy symptoms, pay attention to the daily pollen count and try to stay indoors as much as possible on high-count days. If you can’t give up your outdoor run or yoga class, try to time it (as well as other outside activities) toward the end of the day, when pollen counts go down. And keep windows shut in your house to keep allergens from turning you into a sneezy mess in your own home.

You toss and turn all night

Too hot to sleep—but the air conditioning in your room is making you shiver? Summer makes it tough to find that happy medium. Most people sleep best when the temperature is at 65 to 66 degrees; as the temperature goes up, sleep quality tends to go down, says Chris Winter, MD, neurologist and sleep medicine specialist at Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine in Virginia. 

The right temperature could also help you stay asleep through the night and score better sleep quality. So if you find yourself waking up fatigued and fuzzy-brained, try adjusting the thermostat. Dr. Winter says many of his patients have reported resting much better when they lower their bedroom temperature, even if they hadn’t noticed sleep problems. Don’t feel guilty for using so much electricity—cranking up the AC to a healthy level is good for you.

Your heart pounds way more than normal 

You do a hard-charging cardio workout three times a week, but your heart rate is suddenly spiking on your walk to work in the morning. What gives? Jonathan Newman MD, MPH, cardiologist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, says higher temps have both direct and indirect effects on your heart.

For starters, if you live in an urban area, you may notice smog or haze fogging up summer skies. Air quality tends to get worse at higher temperatures, and that air pollution itself can take a toll on the heart and vascular system, Dr. Newman says.

Plus, at the most basic physical level, “your heart is working overtime” in the summer, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. “Your heart beats faster in order to pump overly warm blood from your body’s core out to the skin’s surface,” says Dr. Knowlton, which helps cool you down.

Since your faster heartbeat is all part of your body’s way of keeping you cool, there’s not much you can do to prevent it. Taking normal precautions in the heat—drinking lots of water, not exerting yourself too much—are always good ideas. And of course, ”eating a heart-healthy diet, controlling your blood pressure, controlling your cholesterol, and increasing physical activity,” Dr. Newman says, will keep your ticker in good shape so it can handle 90-degree days.

RELATED: Everything You Must Know About Mosquitoes This Summer

You’re racking up lots of mosquito bites

When the weather is warm, you want to spend as much time in the great outdoors as possible. But while you’re embracing nature, dining al fresco, or just enjoying a backyard barbecue, mosquitoes are making you their buffet.

Unfortunately, summer is prime time for mosquitoes. Their prey (in other words, us) are outside more, and the little vampires also mature faster when the sun is out strong. That means skeeters live fast and die young, so the time between the day one hatches and the day it becomes a disease-transmitting adult is shorter. With mosquitoes taking less time to reach this stage, diseases (such as Zika and the West Nile Virus) can spread more quickly, says Aileen Marty, MD, an infectious disease specialist in Washington, D.C. 

What can you do to protect yourself? When you’re hanging outside, skip your signature scent in favor of bug spray, says Debra Jaliman, MD, New York City-based dermatologist and author of Skin Rules. She recommends Ultrathon Insect Repellent. ”It’s creamy and it says on your skin longer,” says Dr. Jaliman. It also has DEET, one of the few ingredients that have been shown to be truly effective in warding off mosquitoes.

To get our best wellness tips delivered to you inbox, sign up for the Healthy Living newsletter

And what you heard as a kid is right—don’t scratch! As itchy as these bites are, scratching them can create an open wound, making you susceptible to infections, especially since there’s plenty of bacteria hiding under your nails, says Dr. Jaliman. 

If you just can’t keep your hands off your bites, Dr. Jaliman has a few suggestions. ”Use ice cubes to stop the itching; over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream or aloe vera gel will also diminish the itch and reduce swelling,” she adds.

 

4 Unexpected Ways Summer Heat Is Throwing Your Body Out of Whack  

Summer is finally in full swing—which means cute sandals and sunglasses, beach vacations, and ridiculously scorching weather. If you’re feeling the heat, literally (does it really need to be 85 degrees before nine in the morning, seriously?) you’re not alone.

Hot temperatures can mess with your body in all sorts of sneaky ways, and we don’t just mean the threat of a sunburn or sweating through your outfit on the way to work. Here are four common ways hot, humid weather takes a toll on your health, plus how you can beat heat’s effect on your system.

RELATED: 20 Ways to Stop Allergies

You’re sniffling and sneezing

Flowers bloom in the summer—and so do plants and grasses that produce pollen, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. In response to the warm weather, pollen production goes up, and the presence of pollen in the air can leave even people with mild allergies sneezing, sniffling, and rubbing their itchy eyes through Labor Day.

To reduce these allergy symptoms, pay attention to the daily pollen count and try to stay indoors as much as possible on high-count days. If you can’t give up your outdoor run or yoga class, try to time it (as well as other outside activities) toward the end of the day, when pollen counts go down. And keep windows shut in your house to keep allergens from turning you into a sneezy mess in your own home.

You toss and turn all night

Too hot to sleep—but the air conditioning in your room is making you shiver? Summer makes it tough to find that happy medium. Most people sleep best when the temperature is at 65 to 66 degrees; as the temperature goes up, sleep quality tends to go down, says Chris Winter, MD, neurologist and sleep medicine specialist at Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine in Virginia. 

The right temperature could also help you stay asleep through the night and score better sleep quality. So if you find yourself waking up fatigued and fuzzy-brained, try adjusting the thermostat. Dr. Winter says many of his patients have reported resting much better when they lower their bedroom temperature, even if they hadn’t noticed sleep problems. Don’t feel guilty for using so much electricity—cranking up the AC to a healthy level is good for you.

Your heart pounds way more than normal 

You do a hard-charging cardio workout three times a week, but your heart rate is suddenly spiking on your walk to work in the morning. What gives? Jonathan Newman MD, MPH, cardiologist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, says higher temps have both direct and indirect effects on your heart.

For starters, if you live in an urban area, you may notice smog or haze fogging up summer skies. Air quality tends to get worse at higher temperatures, and that air pollution itself can take a toll on the heart and vascular system, Dr. Newman says.

Plus, at the most basic physical level, “your heart is working overtime” in the summer, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. “Your heart beats faster in order to pump overly warm blood from your body’s core out to the skin’s surface,” says Dr. Knowlton, which helps cool you down.

Since your faster heartbeat is all part of your body’s way of keeping you cool, there’s not much you can do to prevent it. Taking normal precautions in the heat—drinking lots of water, not exerting yourself too much—are always good ideas. And of course, ”eating a heart-healthy diet, controlling your blood pressure, controlling your cholesterol, and increasing physical activity,” Dr. Newman says, will keep your ticker in good shape so it can handle 90-degree days.

RELATED: Everything You Must Know About Mosquitoes This Summer

You’re racking up lots of mosquito bites

When the weather is warm, you want to spend as much time in the great outdoors as possible. But while you’re embracing nature, dining al fresco, or just enjoying a backyard barbecue, mosquitoes are making you their buffet.

Unfortunately, summer is prime time for mosquitoes. Their prey (in other words, us) are outside more, and the little vampires also mature faster when the sun is out strong. That means skeeters live fast and die young, so the time between the day one hatches and the day it becomes a disease-transmitting adult is shorter. With mosquitoes taking less time to reach this stage, diseases (such as Zika and the West Nile Virus) can spread more quickly, says Aileen Marty, MD, an infectious disease specialist in Washington, D.C. 

What can you do to protect yourself? When you’re hanging outside, skip your signature scent in favor of bug spray, says Debra Jaliman, MD, New York City-based dermatologist and author of Skin Rules. She recommends Ultrathon Insect Repellent. ”It’s creamy and it says on your skin longer,” says Dr. Jaliman. It also has DEET, one of the few ingredients that have been shown to be truly effective in warding off mosquitoes.

To get our best wellness tips delivered to you inbox, sign up for the Healthy Living newsletter

And what you heard as a kid is right—don’t scratch! As itchy as these bites are, scratching them can create an open wound, making you susceptible to infections, especially since there’s plenty of bacteria hiding under your nails, says Dr. Jaliman. 

If you just can’t keep your hands off your bites, Dr. Jaliman has a few suggestions. ”Use ice cubes to stop the itching; over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream or aloe vera gel will also diminish the itch and reduce swelling,” she adds.

 

4 Unexpected Ways Summer Heat Is Throwing Your Body Out of Whack  

Summer is finally in full swing—which means cute sandals and sunglasses, beach vacations, and ridiculously scorching weather. If you’re feeling the heat, literally (does it really need to be 85 degrees before nine in the morning, seriously?) you’re not alone.

Hot temperatures can mess with your body in all sorts of sneaky ways, and we don’t just mean the threat of a sunburn or sweating through your outfit on the way to work. Here are four common ways hot, humid weather takes a toll on your health, plus how you can beat heat’s effect on your system.

RELATED: 20 Ways to Stop Allergies

You’re sniffling and sneezing

Flowers bloom in the summer—and so do plants and grasses that produce pollen, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. In response to the warm weather, pollen production goes up, and the presence of pollen in the air can leave even people with mild allergies sneezing, sniffling, and rubbing their itchy eyes through Labor Day.

To reduce these allergy symptoms, pay attention to the daily pollen count and try to stay indoors as much as possible on high-count days. If you can’t give up your outdoor run or yoga class, try to time it (as well as other outside activities) toward the end of the day, when pollen counts go down. And keep windows shut in your house to keep allergens from turning you into a sneezy mess in your own home.

You toss and turn all night

Too hot to sleep—but the air conditioning in your room is making you shiver? Summer makes it tough to find that happy medium. Most people sleep best when the temperature is at 65 to 66 degrees; as the temperature goes up, sleep quality tends to go down, says Chris Winter, MD, neurologist and sleep medicine specialist at Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine in Virginia. 

The right temperature could also help you stay asleep through the night and score better sleep quality. So if you find yourself waking up fatigued and fuzzy-brained, try adjusting the thermostat. Dr. Winter says many of his patients have reported resting much better when they lower their bedroom temperature, even if they hadn’t noticed sleep problems. Don’t feel guilty for using so much electricity—cranking up the AC to a healthy level is good for you.

Your heart pounds way more than normal 

You do a hard-charging cardio workout three times a week, but your heart rate is suddenly spiking on your walk to work in the morning. What gives? Jonathan Newman MD, MPH, cardiologist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, says higher temps have both direct and indirect effects on your heart.

For starters, if you live in an urban area, you may notice smog or haze fogging up summer skies. Air quality tends to get worse at higher temperatures, and that air pollution itself can take a toll on the heart and vascular system, Dr. Newman says.

Plus, at the most basic physical level, “your heart is working overtime” in the summer, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. “Your heart beats faster in order to pump overly warm blood from your body’s core out to the skin’s surface,” says Dr. Knowlton, which helps cool you down.

Since your faster heartbeat is all part of your body’s way of keeping you cool, there’s not much you can do to prevent it. Taking normal precautions in the heat—drinking lots of water, not exerting yourself too much—are always good ideas. And of course, ”eating a heart-healthy diet, controlling your blood pressure, controlling your cholesterol, and increasing physical activity,” Dr. Newman says, will keep your ticker in good shape so it can handle 90-degree days.

RELATED: Everything You Must Know About Mosquitoes This Summer

You’re racking up lots of mosquito bites

When the weather is warm, you want to spend as much time in the great outdoors as possible. But while you’re embracing nature, dining al fresco, or just enjoying a backyard barbecue, mosquitoes are making you their buffet.

Unfortunately, summer is prime time for mosquitoes. Their prey (in other words, us) are outside more, and the little vampires also mature faster when the sun is out strong. That means skeeters live fast and die young, so the time between the day one hatches and the day it becomes a disease-transmitting adult is shorter. With mosquitoes taking less time to reach this stage, diseases (such as Zika and the West Nile Virus) can spread more quickly, says Aileen Marty, MD, an infectious disease specialist in Washington, D.C. 

What can you do to protect yourself? When you’re hanging outside, skip your signature scent in favor of bug spray, says Debra Jaliman, MD, New York City-based dermatologist and author of Skin Rules. She recommends Ultrathon Insect Repellent. ”It’s creamy and it says on your skin longer,” says Dr. Jaliman. It also has DEET, one of the few ingredients that have been shown to be truly effective in warding off mosquitoes.

To get our best wellness tips delivered to you inbox, sign up for the Healthy Living newsletter

And what you heard as a kid is right—don’t scratch! As itchy as these bites are, scratching them can create an open wound, making you susceptible to infections, especially since there’s plenty of bacteria hiding under your nails, says Dr. Jaliman. 

If you just can’t keep your hands off your bites, Dr. Jaliman has a few suggestions. ”Use ice cubes to stop the itching; over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream or aloe vera gel will also diminish the itch and reduce swelling,” she adds.

 

4 Unexpected Ways Summer Heat Is Throwing Your Body Out of Whack  

Summer is finally in full swing—which means cute sandals and sunglasses, beach vacations, and ridiculously scorching weather. If you’re feeling the heat, literally (does it really need to be 85 degrees before nine in the morning, seriously?) you’re not alone.

Hot temperatures can mess with your body in all sorts of sneaky ways, and we don’t just mean the threat of a sunburn or sweating through your outfit on the way to work. Here are four common ways hot, humid weather takes a toll on your health, plus how you can beat heat’s effect on your system.

RELATED: 20 Ways to Stop Allergies

You’re sniffling and sneezing

Flowers bloom in the summer—and so do plants and grasses that produce pollen, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. In response to the warm weather, pollen production goes up, and the presence of pollen in the air can leave even people with mild allergies sneezing, sniffling, and rubbing their itchy eyes through Labor Day.

To reduce these allergy symptoms, pay attention to the daily pollen count and try to stay indoors as much as possible on high-count days. If you can’t give up your outdoor run or yoga class, try to time it (as well as other outside activities) toward the end of the day, when pollen counts go down. And keep windows shut in your house to keep allergens from turning you into a sneezy mess in your own home.

You toss and turn all night

Too hot to sleep—but the air conditioning in your room is making you shiver? Summer makes it tough to find that happy medium. Most people sleep best when the temperature is at 65 to 66 degrees; as the temperature goes up, sleep quality tends to go down, says Chris Winter, MD, neurologist and sleep medicine specialist at Charlottesville Neurology and Sleep Medicine in Virginia. 

The right temperature could also help you stay asleep through the night and score better sleep quality. So if you find yourself waking up fatigued and fuzzy-brained, try adjusting the thermostat. Dr. Winter says many of his patients have reported resting much better when they lower their bedroom temperature, even if they hadn’t noticed sleep problems. Don’t feel guilty for using so much electricity—cranking up the AC to a healthy level is good for you.

Your heart pounds way more than normal 

You do a hard-charging cardio workout three times a week, but your heart rate is suddenly spiking on your walk to work in the morning. What gives? Jonathan Newman MD, MPH, cardiologist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, says higher temps have both direct and indirect effects on your heart.

For starters, if you live in an urban area, you may notice smog or haze fogging up summer skies. Air quality tends to get worse at higher temperatures, and that air pollution itself can take a toll on the heart and vascular system, Dr. Newman says.

Plus, at the most basic physical level, “your heart is working overtime” in the summer, says Kim Knowlton, MD, an assistant clinical professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. “Your heart beats faster in order to pump overly warm blood from your body’s core out to the skin’s surface,” says Dr. Knowlton, which helps cool you down.

Since your faster heartbeat is all part of your body’s way of keeping you cool, there’s not much you can do to prevent it. Taking normal precautions in the heat—drinking lots of water, not exerting yourself too much—are always good ideas. And of course, ”eating a heart-healthy diet, controlling your blood pressure, controlling your cholesterol, and increasing physical activity,” Dr. Newman says, will keep your ticker in good shape so it can handle 90-degree days.

RELATED: Everything You Must Know About Mosquitoes This Summer

You’re racking up lots of mosquito bites

When the weather is warm, you want to spend as much time in the great outdoors as possible. But while you’re embracing nature, dining al fresco, or just enjoying a backyard barbecue, mosquitoes are making you their buffet.

Unfortunately, summer is prime time for mosquitoes. Their prey (in other words, us) are outside more, and the little vampires also mature faster when the sun is out strong. That means skeeters live fast and die young, so the time between the day one hatches and the day it becomes a disease-transmitting adult is shorter. With mosquitoes taking less time to reach this stage, diseases (such as Zika and the West Nile Virus) can spread more quickly, says Aileen Marty, MD, an infectious disease specialist in Washington, D.C. 

What can you do to protect yourself? When you’re hanging outside, skip your signature scent in favor of bug spray, says Debra Jaliman, MD, New York City-based dermatologist and author of Skin Rules. She recommends Ultrathon Insect Repellent. ”It’s creamy and it says on your skin longer,” says Dr. Jaliman. It also has DEET, one of the few ingredients that have been shown to be truly effective in warding off mosquitoes.

To get our best wellness tips delivered to you inbox, sign up for the Healthy Living newsletter

And what you heard as a kid is right—don’t scratch! As itchy as these bites are, scratching them can create an open wound, making you susceptible to infections, especially since there’s plenty of bacteria hiding under your nails, says Dr. Jaliman. 

If you just can’t keep your hands off your bites, Dr. Jaliman has a few suggestions. ”Use ice cubes to stop the itching; over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream or aloe vera gel will also diminish the itch and reduce swelling,” she adds.