It is finally summertime! After a long winter of being cooped up indoors, it’s great to finally be able to go to the park, the beach, or even just a nice little walk around your neighborhood. As temperatures around the country are rising though, it’s important to be mindful of the risk of heat-related illness, especially if you have kidney disease or another health condition. Hyperthermia is a illness that happens when your body becomes overheated. Mild cases can cause muscle cramps or swelling in the feet, whereas a more serve form, heat exhaustion, means that your body can no longer [...]
It is no secret that doctors advise all their patients to live a healthy lifestyle; eating well, including making sure to get the recommended daily nutrients for your diet, regular exercise, getting enough sleep, managing stress, and not smoking are beneficial for everyone. However, this is particularly important for patients living with CKD, as they are 10 times more at risk for cardiovascular disease compared with the general public. A new study, published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, has shown that adhering to generally recommended healthy lifestyle choices may lower the risk of death and major adverse [...]
Your kidneys work hard for you all year long, but this month we give them a little extra recognition and raise awareness about kidney disease for National Kidney Month. This year’s theme is all about taking charge of your health and what goes into managing your kidney disease. Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a serious condition that affects 37 million people; however, it is often overlooked until symptoms appear. This can put you at risk for serious health complications, including kidney failure, so it is important to know the ways to help manage and slow the progression of CKD. Take charge [...]
While February is usually associated with hearts for Valentine’s Day, it is also American Heart Month, where Americans are encouraged to adopt healthy lifestyle choices in order to prevent heart disease. The heart and the kidneys work closely together, so when one isn’t healthy, it can have an impact on the other. If you have kidney disease, you also are more likely to have heart disease. So, what are some ways you can help your heart thrive as a kidney patient? Eat a heart-healthy diet (think fruits and vegetables, high quality proteins, and avoiding foods that contain high levels of sodium, [...]
As many people know, February is Black History Month, and it is important that we take the time to reflect upon, commemorate, and celebrate all the incredible achievements made by African Americans and the impact they have had on the history of the United States. What many do not know though, is the disparity with which kidney disease and illness affects the black community. African Americans comprise approximately 13% of the United States’ population; however, they make up more than 35% of all patients on dialysis due to kidney failure. Additionally, about 4.9 million African Americans over the age of 20 [...]
Habitat for Humanity has a program called Housing Plus/Aging in Place to help older Americans improve their home living conditions and quality of life. Rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach, Habitat assesses and addresses the unique living needs of each person, which may include home repairs, installations of ramps and grab bars, and more. In addition, Habitat connects recipients with other services they need that may address health, isolation, hunger and transportation. Lookup your local Habitat for Humanity to ask about aging in place program availability in your community. Read the full article.
“A Mindful Heart”: Stress Management Tools for Patients Living with Heart Disease and Chronic Kidney Disease
By Stacy Ogbeide, PsyD, ABPP, CSOWM DPC Education Center Advisory Council Member Stress Management—a topic those living with heart disease and chronic kidney disease have heard before but now in 2020, takes a whole new meaning. We are in the COVID-19 pandemic—unprecedented times—that are impacting people physically, financially, socially, spiritually, and emotionally. Maybe your healthcare has been disrupted; treatment disrupted; work, social, and family life disrupted. Your current stress management options are no longer working, or you don’t have access to your typical stress management options, which is beginning to take a toll on you. Don’t lose heart—I’d like to [...]
By Elizabeth Steinberg Christofferson, PhD and Leah Grande, MA Preparing for and receiving a kidney transplant, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, can be an uncertain and overwhelming process. This article discusses tips to promote positive mental and physical health for yourself or your loved ones. Preparing for a Transplant There are many different emotions associated with deciding to go on the transplant list, and all of these feelings are normal and valid! You may feel excited about the potential for improved health and energy, fewer restrictions on what you can eat and drink (although you still want to eat a [...]
By Alan S. Kliger, MD The COVID-19 pandemic has changed life for virtually everyone on the planet. For most of this year, we have all gone through many troubling emotions: fear, disbelief, anxiety, anger, mistrust, cynicism. We also have learned so much, and have looked to the future for trust, hope, anticipation, and most of all the ability to get on with life beyond face masks, social distancing, closed schools and closed businesses, and to a time we don’t have to worry every time someone walks toward us: might they be the one who infects me. In the midst of such [...]
During this webinar, Dr. Christofferson will offer advice on how to deal with feelings of fear, isolation, anxiety and stress during the coronavirus outbreak.