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Play it Safe

Play it Safe

National Safety Month is celebrated in June. Play it safe, and beware of Summer Hazards such as:

 

  • Outdoor Grilling – A grill placed too close to anything that can burn is a fire hazard. Grills can be very hot, causing burn injuries. Check gas tank hose for leaks by applying a light soap and water solution to the hose. A propane leak will release bubbles. Have the grill serviced by a professional before using again.
  • Water-Related Injuries – It’s important to know how to be safe while you’re in the water, when at the lake, pool, or beach.
  • Lightening – No place outside is safe when a thunderstorm is in the area. If you can hear thunder, lightning is close enough to pose an immediate threat.
  • Ticks and ChiggersTicks live in tall grasses and weeds, wooded areas, and leaf litter. Ticks can’t jump or fly, so they just wait for an animal to brush up against whatever they’re perched on. Also known as red bugs and harvest mites, chiggers are so small that they’re hard to see with the naked eye. Chiggers are found in moist, grassy areas like lawns, fields, and forests. Chigger bites produce itchy, red bumps on the skin.
  • Poison Ivy, Oak & Sumac – When your skin touches poison ivy, oak, or sumac, you develop an itchy rash. The rash is an allergic reaction to urushiol, a plant oil. To avoid an itchy rash, scrub exposed skin with Dawn Dishwashing Soap.
  • Flip-Flop Injuries – Flip-flops should only be worn for short-term use, like at the beach, around swimming pools, or in showers and locker rooms at the fitness center.
  • Lawn Mower InjuriesTo avoid lawn mower injuries be sure to maintain your lawn mower, operate your lawn mower properly, use caution when operating your lawn mower, and consider the terrain.
  • Food-Borne Illnesses – Food poisoning is common, costly, and preventable. You can get food poisoning after swallowing food that has been contaminated with a variety of germs or toxic substances. To avoid food poisoning clean, separate, cook, and chill foods as recommended.

 

Visit Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for more information on health & safety.

Take Charge. Live Well

Eye on Healthy Vision

Eye on Healthy Vision

Healthy Vision Month is celebrated every year in May to stress the
importance of the health of our eyes. This month was established by the
National Eye Institute in 2003 and aims to spread awareness and educate
people on the risks of ignoring the health of their eyes. To protect your eyes,
do the following:

  1. Wear sunglasses. Protect you eyes from the sun by wearing sunglasses – even on cloudy days! Be sure to look for sunglasses that block 99 to 100 percent of both UVA and UVB radiation.
  2. Wear protective eyewear. Safety glasses and goggles are designed to protect your eyes during certain activities, like playing sports, doing construction work, or doing home repairs. You can buy them from most eye care providers and some sporting goods stores.
  3. Give your eyes a rest. Looking at a computer for a long time can tire out your eyes. Rest your eyes by taking a break every 20  minutes to look at something about 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
  4. If you wear contacts, take steps to prevent eye infections. Always wash your hands before you put your contact lenses and replace them regularly.

Visit the National Eye Institute for more information on how to keep your eyes
healthy, or VSP for information about your vision benefit and additional
resources.

Take Charge. Live Well

 

Coping With Stress

Coping with Stress

 

April is Stress Awareness Month, brought to us by the American Counseling Association (ACA). To celebrate, try these creative ways to reduce stress.

 

  1. Paint, craft, and be artistic. Being creative can produce Serotonin which can help to reduce stress.
  2. Chew gum. Chewing gum may reduce cortisol levels and alleviate stress.
  3. Get your hug on. Hugs may help to reduce blood pressure, and stress in adults.
  4. Breathe deeply. The act of focusing on a simple process like breathing may help to reduce stress and anxiety.
  5. Get your heart rate up – in a good way! Exercise can cause an endorphin release that can dramatically reduce stress.
  6. Laughter help you reduce stress and increase your energy levels.
  7. Get a massage. Massage can help you to reduce stress.
  8. Play some tunes. Music can help you to relax and reduce stress.
  9. Write, keep a journal. Journaling has meditative qualities.
  10. Join your pet in some good animal-bonding time.

 

Visit National Wellness Institute to learn more ways to reduce stress or visit  Behavioral Health Systems and enter the Employer ID: crown for a full list of stress resources.

 

Take Charge. Live Well

Healthy Eating on the Run

You may eat out a lot – many Americans do. People are looking for fast, easy, and good tasting foods to fit a busy lifestyle. Here are tips to help you eat healthy when ordering out.

  1. Review and compare nutrition information if it’s available. Menu terms that may indicate an item that is healthier include: baked, braised, broiled, grilled, poached, roasted and steamed.
  2. Think about your food choices for the entire day. If you’re planning a special restaurant meal in the evening, have a light breakfast and lunch.
  3. Hold the bread or chips until our meal is served. Hunger may drive you to fill up on these foods before your meal arrives.
  4. Begin with soup or salad as a way to include more vegetables at mealtime. Follow up with a light main course.
  5. Ask for sauces, dressings and toppings to be served “on the side”. Then you control how much you eat.
  6. Split our order. Share an extra-large sandwich or main course with a friend or take home for another meal.
  7. Boost the nutrition in all types of sandwiches by adding tomato, lettuce, peppers or other vegetables.

March is National Nutrition Month. Visit eatright.org for more helpful tips on Healthy Eating on the Run from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

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Be Heart Healthy

February is American Heart Month, a federally designated event first proclaimed by President Lyndon B. Johnson in February 1964 to encourage Americans to focus on their heart health and get their families, friends, and communities involved.

Cardiovascular disease, including heart disease and stroke, remains the leading cause of death globally, taking more than 17.9 million lives annually.

Know Heart Attack Symptoms: Chest Discomfort, Discomfort in other areas of the Upper Body (both arms, the back, jaw, or stomach), Shortness of Breath, and Other Signs (cold sweat, nausea, or lightheadedness).

Know Stroke Symptoms: Face Drooping, Arm Weakness, and Speech Difficult.

How to Improve Heart Health: Eat Healthy, Get Active, Watch Your Weight, Manage Stress, Avoid Tobacco, Limit Your Alcohol Intake, and Eat Less Sodium.

Visit heart.org to learn more about how to be heart healthy.

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Be A Hero

National Blood Donor Month has been observed in January since 1970 with the goal of increasing blood and platelet donations during winter, one of the most difficult times of year to collect enough blood products to meet patient needs. During the winter months, inclement weather often results in cancelled blood drives, and seasonal illnesses may cause some donors to become temporarily unable to donate.

Blood donors help patients of all ages: accident and burn victims, heart surgery and organ transplant patients, and those battling cancer. In fact, every two seconds, someone in the United States needs blood.

Donating blood is a life-saving act of service, and an impactful way to give back to the community. Blood is the most precious gift that anyone can give to another person. Unfortunately, less than 10% of the U.S. population eligible to donate actually do.

Celebrate National Blood Donor Month by considering donating if you are healthy and eligible. Your donation is desperately needed.

Visit www.redcrossblood.org to find a blood drive near you or to learn more.

Take Charge. Live Well!

Growing Gratitude

Research shows that people who regularly feel and express gratitude tend to be more optimistic and satisfied in life, have stronger social connections, and sleep better. Gratitude helps us grow emotionally which helps us build resiliency to bounce back from difficult times.

Gratitude is a feeling of appreciation or thanks for the good things in life. It isn’t always possible to change the circumstances, but we can change where to focus your mind and heart.

Try these tips to help cultivate gratitude:

  • Make a habit of writing down things you’re grateful for each day.
  • Write to someone. Write a letter to someone who made a difference in your life. Send it when you are ready.
  • Focus on the positive. Give yourself the time to enjoy positive emotions and experiences as they happen.
  • Give to those in need. Offering time, energy, and/or financial help are great ways to increase gratitude in your life.
  • Make a visit. Tell someone you are grateful for them in person.

Gratitude can go a long way. Make gratitude a daily practice each and every day to increase your happiness and well-being.

Take Charge. Live Well!

Healthy Immune System

The immune system is what protects the body from infection and disease. Taking care of yourself will help your immune system take care of you.

Stay up to date on immunizations. Staying up to date on the recommended vaccines for your age, health condition, job, and travel habits is a safe and effective way to strengthen your natural defenses. Visit CDC’s Adult Vaccine Assessment Tool to see what vaccines are recommended for you.

Eat a balanced diet. The immune system requires nourishment to function properly. Be sure to include plenty of vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds, whole grains, and healthy protein sources in your diet.

Be active every day. As the weather gets colder, people tend to stay indoors more and move a bit less than in the warmer months. Stay active throughout the fall and winter to maintain a healthy immune system.

Quit smoking and limit alcohol. Both smoking and too much alcohol can weaken the immune system, making the body less successful at fighting disease.

Don’t let stress go unmanaged. Unmanaged stress can also weaken the immune system. Deep breathing, exercise, listening to music, and unplugging from social media are some examples of constructive stress management techniques.

Catch plenty of zzz’s. The body produces and releases proteins that are involved in the immune system’s response to infection and inflammation when you sleep. The National Sleep Foundation recommends adults sleep seven to nine hours a night.

Take Charge. Live Well!

Take Charge. Live Well!

Get a Flu Vaccination
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone 6 months and older get a seasonal flu vaccine every year. A yearly vaccine is the first and most important step in helping to protect against the flu and its potentially serious complications.

CDC also recommends everyday preventive actions to stop the spread of the flu viruses. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, cover your coughs and sneezes, wash your hand often, and avoid close contact with sick people.

The annual flu vaccination is covered at 100% as a preventive benefit under your medical plan when you use an in-network provider.

Focus on the Future – EAP
With the holiday season fast approaching, let’s review the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) offered through Behavioral Health Systems (BHS). The EAP program provides confidential services for a variety of life situations including emotional stress, family relationships, legal and financial issues, substance abuse, and support during the holiday season.

Crown employees and their eligible Dependents (spouse and dependent children) are each eligible for 5 EAP visits per calendar year with no out-of-pocket expenses billed to the participant.

Access the EAP by calling 800-245-1150 and connect with a BHS trained professional that will provide you with the direction and support you need.

Lean more about your EAP benefits and the resources available by visiting the BHS MemberAccess portal at www.behavioralhealthsystems.com. Use CROWN as the Employer ID.

Take Charge. Live Well!

HealthWise Screening Program

Crown is pleased to announce that the HealthWise Screening Program is returning this fall. This program is voluntary, confidential, and available at no cost to all regular, full-time Crown employees.

The program includes a wellness screening and online health questionnaire. By participating in the program, you will gain an understanding of your current health status and learn your potential risk for heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. Knowing important heart health numbers and understanding how lifestyle choices impact health is vital to maintaining good health.

The wellness screening includes a blood pressure check and a blood draw for a lipid panel (total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides) and Hemoglobin A1C.

The online health questionnaire is administered by Quest Diagnostics Health & Wellness and asks questions about your general health habits.

If you choose to participate in the program, you will be eligible to earn the HealthWise Credit (HWC) of $130 ($5 per pay period) in 2022 by completing both the wellness screening and online health questionnaire by 12/31/2021.

Visit the HealthWise website at healthwise.employee.crown for additional information on the HealthWise Screening Program.

Take Charge. Live Well!