Aplastic anemia is a rare blood disorder. The bone marrow fails to produce red and white blood cells and blood platelets. Anemia, infection and bleeding are the result. Symptoms include weakness, exhaustion, excessive sleeping, headaches, bruising for no apparent reason, nosebleeds, fevers, infections and mouth ulcers.
Experts are not sure what causes the bone marrow to fail, but many believe there are genetic factors that make certain people more likely to develop the condition.
People who are relatively healthy, under 40 and have a matching donor can often be cured by having a bone marrow transplant. For others, drug therapy is usually recommended.
If you’re looking for more information about aplastic anemia, how to network with other people who have it and other services, visit the
Aplastic Anemia & MDS International Foundation, Inc.
Source: Aplastic Anemia & MDS International Foundation, Inc.
Safe Toys and Gifts
Most toy makers create products that are safe for your child, but it doesn’t hurt to check toys out yourself too. During gift-giving season, well-intentioned friends may give presents that are not age-appropriate.
- Make sure there’s nothing on a toy that children can easily snap off and put in their mouths.
- Young children shouldn’t have toys they can easily throw, which can cause injuries to themselves and others.
- Toys should be age-appropriate too, because if they’re too advanced, a child may become frustrated.
Source: National Safe Kids Foundation
You hear it all the time—wash your hands to avoid spreading germs. It’s true: washing your hands is the best way to avoid passing on cold and flu germs. But let’s get a little more specific:
- Wash your hands when they’re dirty, but also be sure to wash them before you eat
- Don’t sneeze or cough directly into your hands. Instead, have a tissue or handkerchief in your hands to catch the germs.
- Your eyes, nose and mouth are points of entry for germs. Keep your hands away from these parts of your body.
- And don’t forget, hand-washing is also one of the best ways to prevent the spread of hepatitis A.
Source: Henry the Hand Foundation
Resolutions you can Keep
If you’re like most people, your New Year’s resolutions are vague memories by March. If you decide to make a resolution or two this year, maybe it’s time to do it differently. How about making resolutions with a group of friends?
If your goal is to reach and maintain a healthy weight, see if you can get a group of people together who have the same goal. Meet twice a month or so to chart your progress and make plans to keep yourselves on track throughout the year. Do the same if quitting smoking is your goal, or regular exercise, etc.
The support and camaraderie of others increase your chances of success. And in the cold winter months, we all need reasons to get out of the house and get together with people.
A Puppy under the Tree?
It’s a great image—a sweet little puppy under the tree on Christmas morning.
But for the puppy, it’s a nightmare. Puppies coming into a new home are often a little sad and bewildered. They miss their mothers and litter mates. Nothing is familiar to them.
New puppies need their first days with a new family to be calm and quiet, not loud and chaotic, the way Christmas is in a lot of homes. If you want to give a puppy for Christmas, put a cute picture of it under the tree. Get the puppy after the festivities are over.
And remember—puppies and grown dogs need to be around the people they live with. Being isolated makes them feel lonely and even depressed. Don’t leave them outside alone all day or night in any season.