Mind Body & Spirit

Pet therapy programs bring relief, calm to Norton Healthcare facilities

Kosair Children’s Hospital Gynecology Specialists latest facility to introduce pet therapy program

Many Norton Healthcare facilities offer pet therapy programs to aid patients in their healing. Also known as animal-assisted therapy, pet therapy contributes to patients’ mental and physical well-being. Some of these benefits include:

PTSD not isolated to military veterans

Typically when post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) makes the news, it is in connection with a current or former member of the military. What you may not know is that anyone can be affected by this mental health condition.

Millions of people worldwide experience PTSD. Any individual who has gone through a natural disaster, serious accident, violent crime or other traumatic event is susceptible to it.

Bike Safety in Louisville

Louisville, Kentucky was recently included in a USA Today list of the most bike-friendly cities in the country. And, with Mayor Greg Fischer calling for the addition of 40 miles of new bike lanes throughout the city in 2015, it seems the Derby City is set on growing this reputation.

Everyone can benefit from Louisville’s focus on improving the city’s rideability, from experienced riders to biking beginners. Whether you are hitting the streets for the first time or are a seasoned cycler, practicing bike safety at all times is key. Here are the safety essentials to keep you riding happy and healthy:

Recognizing the signs of depression

It was with great sadness that I heard about the death of Robin Williams by apparent suicide. He was one of those actors who was good at everything, from TV sitcoms to stand-up to drama. I was never disappointed as a fan. His death is tragic in many ways — it reminds us that even when it appears someone “has it all together,” the very real fact may be that they don’t.

I lost a friend earlier this year, also to apparent suicide. While not a public profile comedian and actor as Robin Williams, his suicide came as a similar shock to his family and friends. If you had known him or talked to him, you would never have known he was suffering from depression or any other illness that made him decide that taking his life was the only answer.

Summertime is the perfect time to give your heart a break

Retired or not. Regardless of age. It doesn’t matter — we all have stress. But summer is here, and it’s the season for de-stressing. Why? Because it’s good for your heart.

“People don’t realize how detrimental stress is to the heart,” said Theresa Byrd, R.N. “Stress sets off a chain of events in the body that begins with the release of adrenaline, which causes your breathing and heart rate to speed up and your blood pressure to rise.”

Give yourself 30

A half-hour workout you can do at home

:30 Start with 25 to 30 jumping jacks to warm up your muscles and get your blood pumping.

:27 Push-ups to strengthen the upper body. Start on knees if traditional position is too hard; keep abs pulled in and don’t let your back drop. Repeat 10-20 times.

:24 Leg lifts for core strength. Lying on your back with your feet in the air or legs bent to make it easier on your back – lower legs toward the floor and then raise back up. Repeat 15-30 times.

Everyday stress management

Turns out, there’s some scientific truth to the old saying “If Momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.”

And it doesn’t just go for Momma.

Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, measured stress indicators such as heart rates in mothers who were asked to give an impromptu speech. What the moms didn’t know was that their audience was told to scowl and make other critical gestures as they listened.

Health and wellness in my 30s

I recently celebrated my 30th birthday. As I enter this new decade of life, I’m looking forward to the new adventures and experiences that await, but one thing I wondered about was how to stay healthy as my body changes with this milestone birthday. As a woman, moving from my 20s to my 30s is a rather substantial shift — not only mentally, but also physically.

So, I went in search of some tips to help keep me healthy as I move through my 30s. Here is what I found to be most helpful: