Avoid the Top Five Summer Illnesses

Swimmer’s Ear

  Swimmer's Ear

See what swimmer's ear looks like inside the ear canal. WATCH...

Swimmer's ear, also called otitis externa, is a painful infection of the ear canal. Annie is concerned about her 6-year-old daughter, Abigail’s, chronic swimmer’s ear.

How to Avoid Swimmer’s Ear:
• Auro-Dri water-drying aid drops
• Use an ear dryer after swimming
• Don’t put anything inside the ear
• Don’t use ear plugs

Pool Folliculitis
Pool folliculitis is a skin infection transmitted in swimming pools and hot tubs that are not properly cleaned and disinfected. To keep potentially harmful bacteria and chemicals in the water from permeating your skin, always rinse off after every dip in a pool or hot tub.

Tick Tales
Ticks carry a host of diseases, from lyme disease to Rocky Mountain spotted fever.

Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (RMSF)
Ticks such as the dog tick, lone star tick and the wood tick, can all transmit Rocky Mountain spotted fever. The infection is caused by the bacterium Rickettsia rickettsii, carried by the ticks.

The disease typically starts as a rash on the extremities, gradually spreading to the body’s core. Signs that you may have Rocky Mountain spotted fever are vague: headaches, fever, nausea, muscle pain, but if you have the tell-tale rash, see your doctor immediately.

West Nile Virus
West Nile virus is transmitted by mosquitoes and can turn deadly if misdiagnosed or left untreated. Emergency physician Dr. Travis Stork says that antibiotics do not work against the virus, so the only defense is prevention and supportive care. However, Dr. Travis assures, only one percent of people have the severe and deadly reactions reported on the nightly news. Twenty percent of people have flu-like symptoms, and the majority of people don’t have any symptoms at all. Most people recover from the disease without incident.

Symptoms of West Nile Virus:
• Fever
• Headache
• Body aches
• Muscle weakness
• Loss of vision
• Tremors
• Coma
• Nausea
• Vomiting
• Numbness

Prevent West Nile Virus:
• Apply insect repellent
• Wear pants and long-sleeved shirts
• Drain any standing or stagnant water on your property, as it can be a breeding ground for mosquitoes

  Ask The Pharmacist

Do you have a question for the CVS Pharmacist? Ask it HERE.

Ask the CVS Pharmacist
When you start a new prescription, how can you be sure it won’t interfere with other medications you may be taking? CVS Pharmacist Jeff McClusky says doctors work with pharmacists to ensure their patients avoid lethal drug combinations and allergic reactions.

How Pharmacists Monitor Your Medications
When your local pharmacist substitutes one medication for another, rest assured that your doctor has authorized that substitution, the pharmacist says.

“There are checks and balances between us as pharmacists and them as physicians,” Jeff adds.

What about Drug Interactions and Allergies?
You won’t know whether you are allergic to any substance until or unless you’re exposed to it. However, pharmacists have software systems that screen medications and check for possible contraindications and dangerous side effects.

“The unknown element though,” Jeff cautions, “is over-the-counter medications. If you’re taking them, you’ll want to talk to your pharmacist about them.”

The best thing to do is to fill all of your prescriptions at one pharmacy. This will ensure that your medications are kept in one file, on one system, and lessen the risk of potential problems.

Food Poisoning
Founding director of NutriFit and celebrity nutrition expert Jackie Keller shares her favorite barbeque recipes that won’t spoil in the sun.

Food Safety Tips:

 Jackie Keller's Recipes

Download recipes for Jackie Keller's grilled jalapeno chicken and couscous salad.

1. "Always lower the pH of whatever it is you’re making by adding something that acidifies the dish,” Jackie advises.

To make a marinade more acidic, add:

• Lemon juice
• Lime juice
• Orange juice
• Alcohol

2. Don’t reuse marinades.

3. Keep ingredients separated.

Lower Your Cholesterol … Fast!
Summer snacks can sometimes be high in fat and calories. Keep your cholesterol in check by nibbling on healthy food and eating guilty-pleasure food in moderation.
• Exercise
• Lose weight
• Eat a healthy diet
• Increase your intake of fruits and vegetables
• Eat fatty fish like tuna and salmon
• Snack on nuts like walnuts and almonds
• Introduce oatmeal and oat bran into your diet


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OAD 5/20/09