Tag Archives: gifts

From Other Blogs: Vaccination and cancer, ALS, Winter Olympics & more

A collection of health and environmental posts from other governmental blogs.

Vaccination Nation: A Real Shot at Preventing Cancer

Suppose someone tells you there are quick, easy ways to help keep people from getting some kinds of cancer. Would you believe it?

Luckily, you can. You already know vaccines stop you from getting dangerous diseases from bacteria and viruses. You don’t even realize you have some viruses because they may not cause any symptoms. But a few of them can lead to cancer if left untreated. — From The Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) The Topic Is Cancer blog

National ALS Biorepository – A Component of the National ALS Registry

The National ALS Biorepository is a component of the National ALS Registry that will increase the number of biological samples from persons with ALS available for research.  These samples, along with the extensive epidemiologic data collected by the National ALS Registry, are a valuable resource in the fight to identify the causes of ALS. — From the CDC’s Your Health — Your Environment blog

Traveling to South Korea for the Olympics? Bring Back Great Memories, Not a Pest or Disease

The Winter Olympics begin shortly in South Korea, bringing us two weeks of incredible athletic performances. While many of us will watch the games from our TVs, computers or phones, some lucky individuals will travel to witness the games in person. And when traveling, people often bring back items as souvenirs or as gifts for those of us at home. If you are traveling to the Olympics (or anywhere outside the country), keep in mind there are rules about agricultural products being brought into the U.S. — From the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) blog

USDA Agencies Band Together to Assist Producers Impacted by 2017 Hurricanes

Just as families, friends and communities came together to respond to damages that occurred during the hurricanes of 2017, so did government agencies.

When hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria made landfall, the Farm Service Agency (FSA), Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Risk Management Agency (RMA), Rural Development (RD), and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) worked together, along with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and other intergovernmental groups, to provide information and recovery resources to agricultural producers who experienced losses. — From the USDA blog

DHEC in the News: Toy safety tips, shigella disease, flu shot safe for people with egg allergies

Here’s a look at health and environmental news from around South Carolina.

On Your Side: Top 10 Toy Safety Tips

(WRDW/WAGT) — South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control and News 12 NBC 26 want you to have a safe, great holiday.

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, there were more than 174,100 toy-related ER-treated injuries associated with toys to children under the age of 15 in 2016 alone.

Parents warned about contagious shigella disease at one Midlands school

SWANSEA, SC (WIS) – Lexington School District 4 and the state’s Department of Health and Environment Control have issued a letter to parents of Lexington Early Childhood Center students warning them of a potential contact with the Shigella bacteria.

The letter is posted on the school’s website. The letter, dated Dec. 15, says that some people associated with the school may have the disease that causes gastroenteritis, diarrhea, high fever, stomach cramps, or tenderness. It can impact other body systems and the intestines as well.

General Interest

Flu shot safe for people with egg allergies, government panel says

People with egg allergies don’t have to worry about getting the flu shot, new government guidelines say.

Because the vaccine contains egg protein, doctors used to advise against the shot entirely or to get it only in the presence of an allergist if someone had a known allergy. But a national panel of experts said Tuesday that egg allergies shouldn’t prevent anyone from getting the shot and that reactions to the vaccine are no more likely among those with allergies than anyone else.

Watch Out For Lead Hazards In Children’s Toys And Toy Jewelry

In this season of gift giving, be careful when deciding to give children metal and plastic toys, especially imported toys, antique toys and toy jewelry.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns that some of those toys and toy jewelry might contain lead hazards. Children may be exposed by simply handling toys normally. It is normal for toddlers and infants to put toys, fingers and other objects in their mouths.

Just wearing toy jewelry that contains lead will not cause children to have a high level of lead in their blood. However, chewing or sucking on the jewelry will. Toys imported into the United States and antique toys and collectibles often contain lead.

There is no safe level of lead in blood, the CDC says. Most children with high blood lead levels do not have any symptoms. As blood lead levels increase, a larger effect on children’s learning and behavior will occur. A blood lead test is the only way to know if your child has an elevated lead level.

If you think your child put jewelry containing lead in his or her mouth, remove the jewelry and see your health care provider.

Visit the CDC’s website for more information on lead hazards and toys. More information is also available on the CDC’s Lead web pages.

The 12 Days of Reducing, Reusing and Recycling

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, and as wonderful as the holidays are, it’s also the time of year when people tend to generate tons of waste. While reducing, reusing, and recycling should be practiced year-round, it is even more important during the holidays when our waste is plenteous.

DHEC is challenging you to put these 12 recycling and waste reduction tips to use this holiday season.

  1. Keep a waste-free kitchen by taking a look around to determine what you already have on hand before going shopping. Make a list of things you need before heading to the store. Compost or donate your unwanted food and recycle your cooking oil. Find other helpful tips at dhec.sc.gov/dontwastefoodsc.
  2. Have hard-to-recycle items? Consider only buying materials packaged in what can be recycled in your area. Find where and what you can recycle at www.scdhec.gov/HomeAndEnvironment/Recycling.
  3. Give waste-less gifts like your time to clean someone’s house, piano or guitar lessons, gym memberships or certificates for pampering.newspaperwrap
  4. Most wrapping paper cannot be recycled, BUT you can reuse something to wrap with instead like paper bags, newspaper, maps or use reusable grocery bags, scarves or flower pots. Also reuse greeting cards to make gift tags.
  5. Stop the unwanted mail! Check out ecocycle.org/junkmail for six easy steps. Make sure to recycle mail with your paper as well.
  6. Prevent food waste this holiday by providing reusable containers or asking your guests to bring their own for leftovers.ledlights
  7. Use LED lights, which last 10 times longer and use 80 percent less energy. Recycle your old strings of lights. Find more information on hard-to-recycle items at scdhec.gov/HomeAndEnvironment/Recycling/WhatCanIRecycle/.
  8. Go with an eco-deco theme by decorating with natural materials like greenery, gourds, fresh fruit and pine cones — all which can be composted after the holidays.
  9. Set up a collection corner at your party by providing an area where guests can bring unwanted items to swap or donate.
  10. Always let your guests know what can be recycled and composted. Clearly mark your bins and let guests know where they’re located.
  11. Provide a green dining experience by using dishes and silverware instead of disposables. If you need more dishes for guests, shop thrift stores to find festive ones.christmastree
  12. Grind those greens. If you decorated a real tree and are ready for it to go, remember to find out where your county will be accepting them for grinding.

It is important to keep in mind the importance of conserving your waste before, during, and after the holidays.

For more tips and information on recycling and waste reduction, visit the DHEC website.

From Other Blogs: Healthy holiday eating tips, noise-induced hearing loss, lead hazards in holiday toys/jewelry and more

A collection of health and environmental posts from other governmental blogs.

Five tips for healthy eating during the holidays

Holidays are a time for gathering with family and friends, enjoying each other’s company and food, lots of food! For most people who are trying to eat healthy, the holidays can be a challenge. Kristen Ziesmer, Palmetto Health’s Apex Athletic Performance sports dietitian, shares five tips to help you navigate healthy eating during the holidays. — From Flourish, Palmetto Health’s blog

CDC’s Research on Noise-Induced Hearing Loss

For nearly 50 years, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has researched noise-induced hearing loss in the workplace, providing guidelines to help reduce risk. In 2015, CDC received inquiries from both the public and medical community about noise-induced hearing loss in non-workplace settings.

In 2016, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine released “Hearing Health Care for Adults: Priorities for Improving Access and Affordability.” This report included a request that government agencies strengthen publicly available, evidence-based information on hearing loss and hearing health care. In response, CDC not only started research efforts but also raised awareness about the fact that excessive exposure to loud sounds can cause permanent hearing damage, and that taking simple steps can prevent noise-induced hearing loss. — From the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Your Health — Your Environment blog

Lead Hazards in Some Holiday Toys and Toy Jewelry

Many children get toys and toy jewelry as gifts during the holiday season but some toys may contain lead hazards. Lead is invisible to the naked eye and has no smell.

Children may be exposed to lead by simply handling toys normally. It is normal for toddlers and infants to put toys, fingers and other objects in their mouths. They may also be exposed to lead this way. — From the CDC’s Your Health — Your Environment blog

Time Management: The Key to a Food Safe Holiday

The holiday season is a prized time; it’s that festive season that seems to be here before you know it, and you wonder how you will find the time to do everything you need to do to celebrate properly with family and friends. The holidays are also when we share favorite, treasured foods with our loved ones. — From the US Department of Agriculture blog