wellness

CarbonNYC [in SF!] / Creative Commons

If your cabinets are filled with leftover prescription drugs, you'll have an opportunity to clean them out on Saturday. 

Casey Fleser / Creative Commons

Physicians, patients, and drug manufacturers are often at the center of discussions about pain and opioid abuse. But what about insurance providers? One Connecticut company said it's found a way to better manage pain, while reducing the number of prescribed opioids. 

A new initiative is working to create a data dashboard that almost any city could use to get a handle on the health of its citizens. City-level health data can be critical when it comes to measures like reducing smoking or deciding where to build new parks and health clinics. Yet most health data is collected at the county, not the city level. That means city leaders looking to improve residents’ health lack a baseline of information to work from.

If you're like most people in North America, you probably spend most of your time indoors. Leave home in the morning, drive to work, stay in your cube all day, head home again. Ninety percent of our lives are spent inside a built environment of some kind – ones that we share with millions of invisible microbes.

Scientists increasingly recognize that rooms and buildings have their own microbiomes, and that those microbial roommates may affect the health of human inhabitants. Those microbes vary depending on what city you're in, according to a study published Tuesday.

Poor people who reside in expensive, well-educated cities such as San Francisco tend to live longer than low-income people in less affluent places, according to a study of more than a billion Social Security and tax records.

Lori Mack

According to the Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness, there were nearly 11,000 people who experienced homelessness in Connecticut last year. Multiple organizations spend countless hours trying to make a difference -- and now, in New Haven, there’s a new program with a slightly different approach. 

When Architect Matthias Hollwich was approaching 40, he wondered what the next 40 years of his life might look like. He looked into the architecture that serves older adults, places like retirement communities and assisted living facilities, and didn't like what he saw. But what if we changed our habits earlier in life so we could stay in the communities we already live in?

It's one of the most basic things in education: seeing the board. Research has shown, over and over again, that if you can't see, you're going to have an awfully hard time in school. And yet too often this simple issue gets overlooked.

On the sixth anniversary of the enactment of the Affordable Care Act, the federal health law was back before a seemingly divided Supreme Court Wednesday.

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

Hartford HealthCare has opened a new addiction treatment center in Cheshire as part of an effort to battle opioid addiction in as many communities as possible. 

Alex Ostasiewicz/AmeriCares

Staying healthy can involve more than just visiting the doctor. Sometimes it means lifestyle changes, and those can be difficult to implement. 

Vermont has become the fifth state in the nation to enact legislation that requires businesses to provide their workers with paid sick leave.

Malglam via Flickr.com / Creative Commons

The first milk bank in the state has opened in Guilford. It's a place where mothers in Connecticut can donate their breast milk.

Kat Northern Lights Man / Creative Commons

If you’re at a crosswalk, do you wait for the walk signal to cross to the other side? Or do you just cross when there's no oncoming traffic? What if you’re with other people, or children? 

That’s what researchers at the University of Connecticut and Manchester Community College are asking in a survey they hope to circulate online. 

U.S. Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut said he’ll propose a bill that would pay to remove lead from homes and businesses.

Murphy says a tax credit would lower the chances of lead poisoning in Connecticut. In the northeast, lead was commonly used in for paint and pipes in houses built before 1950. The Connecticut Department of Public Health says about 15 percent of buildings in the state might still have lead in their paint or pipes.

Thor / Creative Commons

The CDC this week recommended women between the ages of 15 and 44 not drink alcohol unless they're on birth control. Why run the risk to the baby if there's a chance you could be pregnant and not yet know it?

Some question whether the caution against any alcohol instills a fear that outweighs the risk, while others chafe at the condescension that targets only women, and not the men who get them pregnant. 

New advice from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention aimed at preventing fetal alcohol syndrome has created quite a stir.

The CDC estimates that about 3 million women "are at risk of exposing their developing baby to alcohol because they are drinking, sexually active and not using birth control to prevent pregnancy."

Bayer HealthCare

When Alyson Hannan, 44, decided she was done having children, she chose Essure, a non-surgical permanent birth control option approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

The day the tiny metal coils were inserted into her fallopian tubes in her doctor’s office is one that she can’t forget, said Hannan, regional sales director for Met Life who underwent the procedure on September 11, 2014. “I will never forget that date. None of us will.”

Here's a stark fact: Most American children spend more time consuming electronic media than they do in school.

According to Common Sense Media, tweens log 4 1/2 hours of screen time a day, seven days a week, 52 weeks a year. For teens, it's even higher: nearly seven hours a day. And that doesn't include time spent using devices for school or in school.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

DataHaven, a New Haven-based nonprofit organization, recently completed the nation’s largest survey on community well-being. This hour, we take a look at the results and consider what they reveal about health, happiness, and quality of life in Connecticut. 

How safe is it in the United States to be born someplace other than a hospital? The question has long been the focus of emotional debate and conflicting information. Now, Oregon scientists and health workers who deliver babies have some research evidence that sheds a bit more light.

Courtesy of Flickr CC by themohers

Nationwide, eight percent of children under 18 have asthma. In Hartford, that rate is more like 29 percent. There's now an effort in the city to diagnose and treat asthma better. 

In 2008, Army Reserve Capt. LeRoy Torres returned home to Robstown, Texas, after a tour in Iraq. He went back to work as a state trooper with the Texas Highway Patrol.

Torres was a longtime runner. So when a suspect took off on foot one morning, Torres sprinted after him. But something was wrong. A burning sensation in his chest hurt so bad, it almost knocked him down.

Maureen O'Grady on Why She Went Forward with Treatment

Dec 8, 2015
Visual Appeal Studios / CPBN

As stage four lung cancer survivor Maureen O’Grady went through treatment, she faced a choice familiar to others with her diagnosis. 

Visual Appeal Studios / CPBN

Lung cancer survivor Phyllis Medvedow has continued to remain positive throughout her diagnosis and treatment, a mindset she believes has made all the difference.

Artie Aiken used to have stomach problems. During World War II, he served on bases in Connecticut and Texas instead of going overseas. When he got back to Vermont, a doctor prescribed goat milk – and things were never the same.

Visual Appeal Studios / CPBN

Mike Boyle was diagnosed with a rare form of Hodgkin’s Lymphoma at 19.

Neva Caldwell On Facing Cancer Without Fear

Nov 19, 2015
Visual Appeal Studios / CPBN

Neva Caldwell is a 15-year lymphoma survivor who found that positive thinking  decreased her stress and lessened her fears.

Mark Tardie On the Importance of Showing Up for Treatment

Nov 12, 2015
Visual Appeal Studios / CPBN

On average, around seven percent of pancreatic cancer patients survive five years. Mark Tardie has been cancer-free for 12.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Standing in Hartford’s downtown library, Salvatore Pinna was over the moon. He met a woman. Life could not be sweeter.

The last time we checked on Pinna, he’d just moved into a Hartford apartment after some 20 years on the street – some of that time, literally on the street. 

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