|To LifeStyle Patients and Friends,|
We wanted to reach out to our patients and friends with information regarding how we are currently operating in our practice.
* We plan to remain open for essential face-to-face appointments. Our scheduling provides for one patient at at time to be in the office allowing for appropriate social distancing. We are in the process of setting up and determining when Tele-visits can be used for visits that do not require a face-to-face appointment such as lab reviews.
* All non-urgent scheduled lab draws can be rescheduled. Please call our office for assistance. Our office number is 918-488-9874. If we are on other calls, and you cannot reach us immediately, please leave a message and we will return your call. Messages left on voice mail after 3:00 PM will be returned the next business day.
* For many of you, we are your primary care physician. If you need a refill on a medication, you may either contact our office and speak with Judy or contact your pharmacy.
* Any patient that falls within CDC guidelines of potential viral illness should remain home and reschedule an appointment. This includes patients who are experiencing:
– Mild to moderate symptoms including low-grade fever and/or cough, sore throat, and congestion.
– Any known exposure to viral illness in the past week.
* Our goal is to assist you in maintaining continuity in your healthcare while keeping everyone as safe as possible. We will continue to comply with the CDC mandated infection control measures.
SELF CARE MEASURES – A personal message from Dr. Mayer.
I wanted to share a few thoughts that may help as we go through these challenging days. Many are spending more time at home and feeling increasingly stressed.
Most of you are familiar with my passion for helping people make changes in their lifestyle to accomplish goals they have set for their health. These are uncertain times and it can be easy to be overwhelmed with feelings of anxiety and fear. I wanted to share a few practical tips.
When trying to stay healthy especially during stressful times, it is important to remember that we have more than just our “physical body” to look after. We also have an “emotional” and “spiritual” part of us that must be attended to in order to have optimal health. I invite you to thoughtfully consider how you can work on a plan during this stressful time to promote health and wellness in each area of your life.
Our bodies are very susceptible to experiencing negative effects from the continual release of stress hormones. Over time, we can actually note physical symptoms and feel ill. There are measures we can take to counteract the effects of stress on our bodies:
1. Proper Nutrition
During times of stress, it is easy to “stress eat” and binge on comfort foods. Resist that urge by being proactive. With extra time you may have available, consider researching a healthy eating plan and writing out that plan for the week. Planning in advance will help ensure your success.
Nutrients which may be helpful during times of increased stress:
– Vitamin C – Increased doses are often recommended
– Vitamin D3 – Along with Vitamins K2 and A
– Personal consultation is available in our office if you have additional questions.
Even though gyms are closed currently, you can still work on being physically fit. You can read about proper techniques of stretching.
Stretching has many benefits including:
– Increasing energy levels
– Reducing muscle tension
– Increasing range of motion in joints
– Increasing circulation in the blood
– Increasing coordination
Walking has many benefits including:
– Helping with weight loss
– Lowering Blood pressure and cholesterol
– Lowering stress and improving mood
– Lowering fasting blood sugar
– Improving memory and cognition
Those of you who have visited with me about sleep know that I am a strong advocate for “good sleep hygiene” practices. I encourage you to read and learn about this topic. There are good books available as well as information online.
A few good sleep hygiene practices include:
– Establishing a regular bedtime
– Avoiding daytime naps or limiting them to 30 minutes
– Avoiding stimulants such as caffeine close to bedtime.
– Avoid foods that are known to keep you awake or cause digestive concerns at night.
– Ensure plenty of light exposure during the day
– Do not keep 24 hour news programs on while you sleep!
4. Practice Relaxation Breathing
I personally use 4-7-8 breathing or “relaxing breathing”. This involves breathing in through the nose for 4 seconds, holding the breath for 7 seconds, and exhaling through pursed lips for 8 seconds. Repeat for several cycles several times during the day. This helps reduce anxiety and may aid in helping people fall asleep. Remember to drop your shoulders and relax your body as you do this exercise.
Our emotions are particularly impacted during times of stress. The term “emotion” implies a natural instinctive state of mind derived from ones circumstances. There is debate over whether humans experience 5, 8 or 30 emotions. Five main emotions experienced by all are joy, fear, sadness, disgust and anger. In my practice, I see many people who wrestle with anxiety related to fear on a daily basis. Underlying anxiety is worsened as we hear about this invisible entity called Coronavirus. We sit at times mesmerized as we listen to an overload of information being sent our way. Unfortunately, there appears to be more unknown than known at this time and we can become fearful. It is important to take charge of your emotions. There are several things you can do to lessen anxiety during stressful times.
1. Take note of what you have control over in each situation. Recognize what you can not control.
2. Refuse to dwell on and rehearse negative thoughts.
3. Practice gratitude. During times of stress it is important to take the time to reflect on and write down the things for which you are grateful. Keep a journal.
4. Learn to identify what triggers your anxiety. If watching the news makes you fearful and depressed, only allow yourself a minimal number of daily updates to minimize the anxiety you experience.
5. Look for healthy outlets.
6. Search for ways to help others.
Our spiritual beliefs are often very deep and private. If you are my patient, you know I respect your beliefs and I encourage all to ask the important questions of life. Whatever belief system you cling to, I encourage you to nurture that part of your being during this stressful time. For me personally, Christianity and the teachings of Jesus Christ have been the guiding principles upon which I choose to build my life. Just as it is important for a tree to have deep healthy roots to withstand storms, I believe it is important that we develop spiritual roots to help withstand the storms of life.
Things that I know are important for me to develop good spiritual health include:
1. Having a regular time of study. As a Christian, time spent studying the Bible helps me understand the teachings of Jesus and the character of God. While we cannot understand all that goes on in the world, we can place our trust in a loving God who provides many promises which give us comfort and peace during difficult times.
2. Having a time of regular prayer. Prayer can be a time of pouring our hearts out to God and also a time of quietness when we wait for God to work in our hearts. It is often during those times that we get the relief and strength to handle the stresses of life.
3. Practice the teachings we believe. Make an effort to be patient, kind, compassionate, and loving to those around you. Look for those in need to be of service. Our stress and anxiety can be greatly relieved by giving to and serving others.
Those of you who have worked with me on setting goals for your health know that I frequently say “If we aim at nothing, we hit nothing”. I encourage you during this challenging time to reflect upon your physical, emotional and spiritual health. Set realistic goals and write out a plan for each area. Take small steps each day. It takes 21 days to form a new habit! There are things in life over which we will have no control. However, we do have much control over many areas of our lives. We will also be sharing more information, we believe you will find helpful, on our website and social media platforms.
In closing, I have some exciting news I would like to share with you. It has been nearly four years since LifeStyle Medicine, Inc opened. From the beginning, it has been my desire to have a practice where “medicine is done differently”. We have grown so much that we have outgrown our current office! We will be moving to a larger office around the middle of May 2020. More details will be coming soon! We are very much looking forward to being able to offer more services to our patients and the community. It is such a privilege for Judy, Nikki and I to be a part of your health care. I view it as part of my calling and purpose in life. Please let us know how we can help you especially during this time of uncertainly.
With Kind Regards,
Renae Mayer MD