Wellness Wednesday – 6/3/20
WELLNESS TIP OF THE WEEK
COVID-19 and Pediatric Multi-System Inflammatory Syndrome
Dr. Paula Boulanger, Pediatrics, Pentucket Medical
There has been a lot in news lately about a newly identified syndrome that is thought to be related to COVID-19 called Pediatric Multi-System Inflammatory Syndrome, which is a very serious condition for children. This news is alarming for parents to hear during a time when there is already so much anxiety around this pandemic. Because this virus is novel to humans, scientist and medical professionals are still learning about how it affects people and how best to treat the disease. However, the vast majority of children who experience illness from COVID-19 have only had mild symptoms; children rarely have serious illness.
Pediatric Multi-System Inflammatory Syndrome is similar to a condition called Kawasaki disease. The symptoms include prolonged fever, rash, abdominal pain, fatigue and can cause cardiovascular compromise. Children who have this syndrome can get very ill requiring intensive care in the hospital. The good news is that there are medications and supportive care that can help these patients.
Our best defense against COVID-19 is still prevention. Even when the stay at home order is lifted in Mass., it will be important to continue to practice social distancing, wearing a mask in public and frequently washing hands.
If you are concerned your child may be sick, you should call your child’s pediatrician. Our providers at Pentucket Medical Associates have resources available for our patients including same day virtual visits and in person visits for sick children at the Respiratory Illness Clinic located at the PMA Express Care in Lawrence. We are all in this together.
Meat CSAs and Local Farms in Mass. Experience Exploding Demand Due to COVID-19
Mass. farmers are seeing a significant increase in demand for locally sourced food due to the public’s concerns about disruptions to national supply chains, as well as fears of potential exposure to COVID-19 when shopping at grocery stores.
For the most part, Community-supported agriculture (CSAs) and farmers welcome the business, but the surge in demand brings along a host of challenges.
Ramping up labor alone has been a challenge, Boston.com reports. Understandably, many workers still don’t feel comfortable returning to work because of the virus, and restrictions on travel and shipping have inhibited networking between farms.
Still, farmers are working long hours, often 12 hours a day, with workers adjusting to meet rising demands during the pandemic. For many farms, the demand for goods and services have doubled, and even tripled, since the pandemic began.
It’s unknown if the surge will last beyond the days of COVID-19, but farmers across the Commonwealth are preparing themselves for whatever the future holds.
Walking is the Best Thing You Can Do for Your Health
Movement, and especially walking, is not only a great way to exercise, but it has also shown to be a highly effective mood-booster, OutsideOnline.com reports.
An emerging body of science supports the idea that walking, particularly in nature, has positive effects on the brain.
Perhaps you’ve heard the phrase “Sitting is the new cancer.” Science suggest that this is more than just a provocative exaggeration; the human body is built for regular movement. Considering this, sedentary life counterintuitive for physical and mental wellbeing. Sitting for long periods of time is unhealthy, leading to a decline in muscle volume and strength. Moreover, long periods of inactivity can have lasting effects on the brain. Lower levels of physical activity have been associated with declines in openness, extroversion and agreeableness, suggesting a “detrimental” pattern of long-term personality change.
Contrastingly, standing leads to immediate changes in blood pressure, blood flow and metabolic rates. Walking only builds upon these changes, from the production of new molecules all the way to behavior.
You can read more about the benefits of walking, and even meditative walking, here.