• Where Is Salt Sneaking Into Your Diet?

    If you choose to eat potato chips and French fries, chances are you already know you’re eating a hefty dose of salt. But there are plenty of surprising ways that salt can sneak into your diet. In fact, most of the sodium Americans consume comes from processed foods and restaurant meals, rather than from the salt shaker. For example, just one four-ounce slice of cheese pizza can cost you up to 760 milligrams of salt! Other surprising sources of sodium include bread, deli meats, cheese, and pasta sauce.

    Watch this video for a lighthearted approach to depicting the ways salt can surprise you. Although this video uses a whimsical approach, there is nothing funny about a diet high in sodium. Too much sodium can increase your risk of landing in urgent care because of serious health concerns.

    Families throughout the greater Las Vegas area can learn effective strategies of safeguarding their health with help from the friendly physicians at Southern Hills Hospital. For general healthcare questions, call the Consult-A-Nurse referral line for our hospital at (702) 880-2100.

  • What Can You Expect Following Successful Cancer Treatment?

    It’s common knowledge that cancer treatment is associated with an array of side effects. But did you know that even after surviving cancer and ending your course of treatment, you could still experience physical effects? One of the most common side effects is lingering fatigue, in addition to changes of the skin, osteoporosis, cognitive dysfunction, and lymphedema.

    As you’ll learn by watching this video, there are treatments available to help you manage post-cancer side effects. For example, if you experience pain, you might visit a physical therapist and an occupational therapist at your local hospital.

    At Southern Hills Hospital, our physicians and hospital support staff are here to help you at every stage of life. For more information about the services available at our hospital in Las Vegas, call (702) 880-2100.

  • What to Do When You Have Food Poisoning

    Young beautiful woman is having stomach ache.

    In most cases, food poisoning won’t send you to urgent care at your local hospital. If you experience symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal cramps, you can care for yourself by drinking plenty of water to stay hydrated. Avoid consuming dairy products or caffeine, and consider taking a probiotic to reintroduce good bacteria to your digestive tract. When you’re no longer vomiting, increase your caloric intake with sports drinks and bland foods, such as applesauce, dry toast, and crackers.

    Some people do need to go to urgent care because of food poisoning. If you suspect your symptoms could have been caused by shellfish or mushrooms, it’s best to seek a doctor’s help. You should also consider visiting urgent care if you experience symptoms such as bloody vomit, bloody stool, or a high fever.

    The emergency room at Southern Hills Hospital provides 24/7 urgent care to residents throughout the Las Vegas area. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911; otherwise, you can reach our hospital at (702) 880-2100.

  • Knowing How to Interpret the Results of Your Cholesterol Test

    cholesterol level conceptual meter

    If you’re 20 years old or older and you don’t yet know your cholesterol levels, it’s time to visit your local hospital for a cholesterol test. There are different types of cholesterol – and one type is actually beneficial for your body. The doctor at your community hospital can help you understand the results of your cholesterol test and which treatment options are available to you in the event that you need to improve your cardiovascular health. Here is a basic overview on interpreting your cholesterol test results:

    Total Cholesterol

    Your total cholesterol level reflects the combination of your high-density lipoprotein (HDL) and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, plus 20 percent of your triglycerides. Hospital representatives recommend that patients strive for a total cholesterol level of less than 180 mg/dL.

    LDL Cholesterol

    LDL cholesterol is the type of cholesterol that is harmful for your body . Having high LDL cholesterol levels increases your risk of heart attack and stroke. Individuals who adhere to a diet that is typically high in saturated and trans fats generally have higher LDL cholesterol levels. If you are considered to have a very high risk of heart disease, it’s a good idea to keep your LDL cholesterol levels below 70 mg/dL.

    HDL Cholesterol

    HDL cholesterol is beneficial for your body because it helps clear away LDL cholesterol from the arteries. You can raise your HDL cholesterol levels by avoiding smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, and staying physically active. An ideal HDL cholesterol level is 60 mg/dL or higher.

    Triglycerides

    If you have high triglycerides, low HDL, and high LDL cholesterol, you’re at a particularly high risk of atherosclerosis and other cardiovascular problems. Doctors recommend lowering your triglyceride level to less than 150 mg/dL.

    Las Vegas residents can schedule a cholesterol test at Southern Hills Hospital . Our physicians are always happy to help patients learn about lifestyle modifications that can improve cardiovascular wellness. If you have any general questions about our hospital services, such as urgent care, geriatric psychology services, or stroke are, you can call (702) 880-2100 to speak with a registered nurse.

  • How to Manage Anxiety Disorders in Everyday Life

    Funny portraits

    Everyone experiences a little anxiety from time to time, but if you’re a constant worrier, you know how anxiety can quickly take over your life. It may prevent you from interviewing for a new job or meeting new people, and it may even cause physical health concerns. It’s always advisable for individuals struggling with anxiety disorders to explore the resources available at their local hospitals. Your hospital might offer a specialized geriatric psychology program if you’re an older adult, for instance. There are also a few simple steps you can take to manage anxiety in your everyday life.

    Try Laughter Yoga

    You may have heard of laughter therapy, but have you heard of laughter yoga? This wellness workout can help those with anxiety disorders because laughter has been clinically proven to lower levels of cortisol and other stress hormones. The body benefits regardless of whether the laughter is genuine or forced. Laughter yoga is a group exercise. As the instructor guides participants through yoga breathing exercises, the forced laughter often turns to real laughter.

    Exaggerate Your Worries

    Between laughter yoga classes, you can cope with your anxiety by exaggerating your worries to the point at which they become silly. For example, if you’re worried about public speaking, imagine yourself doing so poorly with a presentation that your audience begins to pelt you with tomatoes. Since this ridiculous scenario is highly unlikely to ever occur, viewing this concern with humor may trick your brain into letting go of your worries.

    Make a Peace Treaty with Yourself

    If you’re still having trouble with your worries, make a peace treaty with your brain. Tell yourself that you’ll allow yourself to worry about something for exactly five minutes, after which time you’ll move on to something more positive.

    As part of our ongoing commitment to improve quality of life for our neighbors in Las Vegas, Southern Hills Hospital is pleased to announce the opening of the RISE Behavioral Health Unit. Our inpatient and outpatient treatment programs serve adults who are 50+ and who are struggling with anxiety, depression, and similar mental health issues. Call (702) 880-2100 or visit us online to explore our hospital’s other services, including urgent care, maternity care, orthopedic surgery, and stroke care.

  • What All Women Should Know About Ovarian Cancer

    Doctor and patient

    Did you know that ovarian cancer is the leading cause of death among women diagnosed with any type of female reproductive cancer? Although the cancer begins in the ovaries, it can spread throughout the pelvis and abdomen. The next time you visit your doctor at your local hospital , consider discussing your risk factors for cancer. You can also undergo screening tests at the hospital, which are intended to diagnose cancer in its early stages.

    Types of Tumors

    Oncologists categorize cancer according to the type of cell from which it originated. The ovaries have three primary types of cells. Epithelial tumors arise from the epithelial cells and are the most common type of ovarian cancer. Often, these tumors are benign, or non-cancerous. When they are malignant, or cancerous, these types of tumors tend to grow slowly and pose only a slight risk of fatality. Germ cell tumors originate from the cells that produce the eggs within the ovaries. Like epithelial tumors, germ cell tumors are often benign. When they are cancerous, treatment is often effective. Stromal tumors form from the stromal cells, which produce the hormones estrogen and progesterone. According to the American Cancer Society , over 75 percent of patients with stromal tumors can expect to survive the cancer.

    Challenges of Early Detection

    The prognosis for ovarian cancer is much more favorable when the tumor is detected in its early stages, or before it has spread to nearby structures. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to detect ovarian cancer in its early stages. Women may avoid going to the hospital because they either experience no symptoms or their symptoms are mild. When symptoms do arise, they typically include abnormal bleeding from the vagina, lower abdominal pain, abnormal periods, and a heavy sensation in the area. Women may also report changes in weight, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, and flatulence.

    Southern Hills Hospital provides numerous preventive screenings for patients throughout the greater Las Vegas area. At our hospital, you’ll also find high-quality stroke care, urgent care, geriatric psychological services, and orthopedic surgery. If you have any questions about our hospital or wish to request a referral to a physician, call our Consult-A-Nurse referral line at (702) 880-2100.

  • Are the Numbers Improving in Childhood Obesity?

    break for fruits

    For years, childhood obesity rates were on a steady climb. Now, it appears that the statistics have been levelling off. According to Boston.com, a recent study that evaluated data from 2003 to 2012 found that childhood abdominal obesity rates have begun to hold steady at 18 percent , with about 32 percent of that group considered to be obese. Abdominal obesity is calculated based on waist circumference.

    Although the results of the study are promising, researchers have pointed out that the numbers are still far too high. Given that about one-third of American children are overweight and about one-fifth are obese, researchers estimate that about one-third of children who were born in 2000 will later develop diabetes. Individuals who struggle with obesity in childhood are more likely to continue to struggle with weight issues throughout their lifetime. In addition to diabetes, individuals who are obese have a higher risk of requiring stroke care and ending up in the hospital because of heart attacks.

    If you’re concerned about your child’s weight, schedule an appointment with his or her pediatrician at Southern Hills Hospital. Las Vegas-area families can connect with our community hospital by calling our Consult-A-Nurse referral line at (702) 880-2100.

  • Planning Your Pregnancy When You Have Sickle Cell Disease

    expectant mother

    Although women with sickle cell disease do have a higher risk of complications, it is indeed possible to enjoy a healthy pregnancy with careful planning and comprehensive prenatal care. Visit your community hospital and explore the resources available in the maternity department . It’s also a good idea to consult your ob/gyn about planning a healthy pregnancy. In the event that complications do occur, know where the nearest urgent care facility is, just in case.

    Consult a Genetic Counselor

    Consider scheduling a visit with a genetic counselor at your local hospital. If you and your partner both have sickle cell disease, your baby will inherit it. If you and your partner are both carriers of the gene change , yet do not have sickle cell disease, there is a 25 percent chance that the baby will have the disease and a 50 percent chance that the baby will have the gene change.

    Understand the Risks

    Your genetic counselor can help you understand the potential complications involved. Some women experience worsening symptoms during pregnancy and are at a higher risk of complications such as kidney, lung, and urinary tract infections. Gallstones and other gallbladder problems, heart enlargement, and heart failure are other possibilities. Some of the possible pregnancy complications may include poor fetal growth, miscarriage, preterm birth, low birth weight, and stillbirth.

    Receive Early Prenatal Care

    Comprehensive prenatal care can reduce the risk of complications to your baby and to yourself. If you are determined to have a high-risk pregnancy, your physician will recommend closer monitoring in addition to general prenatal care. Your physician may also recommend amniocentesis to determine if the baby has sickle cell disease or the trait. Additionally, some women may receive several blood transfusions over the course of the pregnancy.

    At Southern Hills Hospital, we offer highly trained specialists in our maternity department to assist women during pregnancy and childbirth. If you have a high-risk pregnancy due to sickle cell disease or another condition, you may find comfort in knowing that our hospital features a level II neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). You can reach our maternity hospital in Las Vegas by calling (702) 880-2100 or visit us on the Web for more information .