Tag Archive: Valley Healthcare

A late spring and high pollen count could have many people suffering from both allergies and asthma like never before.  Allergic reactions could develop at any age and, in the most severe cases, turn into asthma.  Let’s talk about the differences.


Tree pollen allergies are the most common trigger of breathing difficulties.  Pollen triggered asthma can be treated using an inhaler. Other long-term asthma-control medications, such as steroids go a long way in helping to keep symptoms under control.


  • There are no cures for allergies. Allergies can be managed with proper prevention and treatment.
  • Allergies have a genetic component. If only one parent has allergies of any type, chances are 1 in 3 that each child will have an allergy. If both parents have allergies, it is much more likely (7 in 10) that their children will have allergies.
  • More Americans than ever before say they are suffering from allergies. It is among the country’s most common, yet often overlooked, diseases. [1]


What is it exactly?

Asthma (AZ-ma) is a chronic (long-term) lung disease that inflames and narrows the airways. Asthma causes recurring periods of wheezing (a whistling sound when you breathe), chest tightness, shortness of breath, and coughing. The coughing often occurs at night or early in the morning.

Asthma affects people of all ages, but it most often starts during childhood. In the United States, more than 25 million people are known to have asthma. About 7 million of these people are children. [2]


Asthma symptoms can differ for each person, but here are some of the most common:

  • Wheezing. You may notice a wheezing sound when you breathe.
  • Frequent Cough. This may be more common at night. You may or may not cough up mucus.
  • Shortness of Breath. This is the feeling you can’t get enough air into your lungs. It may occur only once in a while, or often.
  • Chest Tightness. Your chest may feel tight, especially during cold weather or exercise. This can also be the first sign of a flare-up.


How is Asthma Diagnosed?

If you experience any of the symptoms above, it is important to see your healthcare provider to determine if you have asthma. There are several breathing tests your physician may perform. The most common test is called spirometry. (Spirometry uses a device called, a spirometer, to measure the amount and speed of the air you blow out.) This will help your healthcare provider to see how well your lungs are working. [3]


What you need to tell your healthcare provider:

  • What symptoms you are having or your peak flow reading.
  • How long your symptoms have lasted.
  • What you think triggered your symptoms.
  • What medicines you have taken.
  • Whether or not you think your asthma medicines are working.
  • Whether or not your medicines are causing side effects.


Make it a habit to start writing down the things you want to talk about with your healthcare provider. You can write down problems you are having or note any questions you want to ask about your medicines.  [3]


Talk to your Valley Healthcare provider if you are experiencing any of these symptoms. The sooner you begin treating your asthma and maintaining control, the less damage you will cause to your lungs in the long run. There are many resources available for people living with asthma and their loved ones.

[1] http://www.aafa.org

[2] http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/

[3] http://www.Lung.org

Jennifer Bell

Jennifer Bell has managed many specialty areas of healthcare including, kidney transplant, physical therapy and surgery.  She combines her expertise in patient relations with her love of writing to bring awareness of health related issues.   In her blog, Dreamlife Moments, she writes about mindfulness of time and recognizing more of the positive moments happening around us every day that creates a more positive life experience. Jennifer and her husband Byron are recent empty-nesters who enjoy traveling with their bichon Aissa, geocaching and volunteering wherever they go. Who is this chickie anyway? Connect with Jennifer on her Facebook Page, Blog and Twitter to find out more.

January 25th 9am – 2pm

Registration starts at 8:45am

Valley Healthcare will be offering free screenings at the Columbus Health Expo. For more information Click Here.

Valley Healthcare

Donate Blood This January!

January is National Blood Donor Month. You can find the closest blood drive through the American Red Cross website. Becoming eligible to donate blood for first time donors is a simple process – just bring your driver’s license and two forms of ID. The biggest thing preventing people from donating blood is a fear of needles. But imagine the impact you’ll have on people’s lives you’ve never met (one donation can save up to three lives)! And you can also think of it as a free physical, as doctor’s will check your temperature and blood pressure to make sure it’s safe to give blood.

Donating blood becomes more important when looking at the facts – there’s a blood transfusion needed every two seconds, and over 41,000 per day. One unit of blood gets separated three ways – red blood cells are used in surgery, the plasma is used for clotting, and platelets are used for cancer and transplant patients. O-negative is the rarest blood type and is compatible with all blood types. And if you’re new, you won’t be alone, as 31% of blood donors are first timers. All it really takes is about an hour out of your day, and you might save a life (or two, or three). And don’t forget your free cookie!

Valley Healthcare

Take A Loved One to the Doctor Day-2013

Come and join us for our ‘Take A Loved One to the Doctor’ Event!

Friday October 25, 2012 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
1600 Fort Benning Rd.

Phone: 706.322.9599


Glucose Screenings
Blood Pressure Screenings
Cholesterol Screenings
Hemoglobin Screenings
HIV Testing
Prostate Cancer Screenings:

February is here, and though that might initially have you thinking of heart-shaped boxes and red roses, think again. It’s also Heart Disease Awareness Month, and the American Heart Association wants you to get involved.

From high cholesterol and high blood pressure, to congestive heart failure and certain arrhythmia conditions, heart health touches all of our lives. The American Heart Association sponsors countless causes and events to raise awareness and fund research for heart conditions, but you can get involved in so many ways.

Start by having a screening for yourself or a loved one (or both!), since prevention is key to so many heart conditions like high blood pressure or cholesterol. Learning about nutrition, starting a healthy exercise program, reducing your stress levels, and getting more rest are small steps you can take to help ensure heart health in your life and in the lives of your loved ones. Look for upcoming walks/runs and other community events to raise funds for heart disease awareness (you can search for events and local AHA offices by zipcode here). Encourage others to have screenings, or get together a “team” in honor of a loved one who is living with a heart condition, or in memory of someone who lost their life to a heart condition. Educate yourself and those around you on the warning signs of events like heart attack and stroke.

So celebrate your life and the lives of those around you – and get involved in reaching your community to help boost the heart health and wellness of those around you. To donate or volunteer, or to get more ideas for involvement and learn more about all the ways you can show your heart a little love, visit www.heart.org. And as always, you can schedule check-ups and heart health screenings through Valley Healthcare System by calling our main line at 706-322-9599. Here’s to your heart!

Come and join us for our ‘Take A Loved One to the Doctor’ Event!

October 19, 2012 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
1600 Fort Benning Rd.


Glucose Screenings
Blood Pressure Screenings
Height, Weight and Body Mass Index (BMI)
Clinical Breast Exam (CBE)
Depression Screenings
Dental Screenings
Vision Screenings
HIV Testing (Rapid test provided by New Horizon)
Prostate Cancer Screenings: PSA for men 40 to 75 y/o (Some
men as young as 35 y/o may be considered).

Eating a healthy diet is an activity that’s often not at the top of our minds until our mid to late thirties. While we’re young, we can typically “get away” with eating anything we want at anytime. Some of us don’t value the opportunity to form healthy eating habits while young. As we age and as our metabolism slows down, we no longer have the luxury of going about our dieting activities without a plan. Some believe that they are a point of no return once they reach a certain weight or have certain health issues (i.e. high blood pressure and diabetes). Many people also fall victim to gimmicky diets that produce temporary results. You can’t give up and you can’t let failed diets discourage you from reaching your goals. We propose that keeping it simple is the best way to get started when seeking to form healthy eating habits. Below are ten simple ways to kickstart a healthy diet. And remember, everyone (including myself) has weaknesses. If you have a bad day filled with the eating of too many tasty desserts, don’t get discouraged. Take note of what caused the setback so you can learn from it. In fact, that’s related to our first point…

1. Don’t lean on will power. That’s too difficult. Try to avoid people, places and activities that encourage your eating of things that aren’t good for your diet.

2. Drink more water. We are often thirsty when we feel hungry. Try drinking water instead of going for a candy bar. Also substitute water for sugary beverages whenever possible.

3. Decrease your options. Avoid eating out of curiosity by limiting your diet to certain foods.

4. Make sure there’s something green and leafy on your plate.

5. Avoid overusing fatty dressings, sauces and other add-ons. A salad can turn into a fatty/high calorie meal after you pile on the ranch dressing, croutons, cheese and bacon bits. Go heavy on the vegetables instead (add carrots, bell peppers, tomatoes, etc.)

6. Eat more home-cooked meals. Not only is this a healthy tip, but it’s also good for your budget.

7. If you’re dining out, place your order first. Doing this will help you avoid being influenced by other people’s unhealthy food choices.

8. Get more sleep. Some researchers have found that lack of sleep can increase your desire to eat. For some this is not a simple task (because of family and/or work obligations), so be sure to rest and relax when you have an opportunity. This might involve giving up television or Internet usage.

9. Regularly consult your physician about your eating habits and concerns during your visits. There are no bad questions when it comes to your health. The doctors at Valley Healthcare can answer your questions and will provide you sound advice that’s compatible with your situation.

10. Get started now. Don’t wait until January 1st for New Year’s Resolutions. There’s power in immediate action.

Christopher Craft is the Founder/CVO of Nao Media and Consulting, a hybrid firm (media/branding/marketing/design) working in the fields of sports and entertainment. He blogs regularly at the Nao blog. You can follow Chris on Twitter, connect with him on LinkedIn and circle him on Google+.

Valley Healthcare New Site Ribbon Cutting Ceremony


Valley Healthcare

Valley Healthcare System, Inc. is inviting the community to share in its grand opening and  Ribbon Cutting on Friday, June 22, 2012.  The ceremony will begin at 10:00 A.M. at 1600 Fort Benning Road [Columbus, Ga].

Valley Healthcare is celebrating the completion of construction of its new 30,000 sq. ft. building. Mr. Tony Whitehurst, Board Treasurer stated, “It is with great excitement that we have completed our new facility. Prior Board members had the vision that we needed a new facility.  The current Board was able to catch their vision and bring it to completion. I am humbled by being a part of this undertaking. Many thanks to all former Board Members, our CEO, Mrs. Sarah Lang, our Board Chairman, Mr. Phillip Aldridge, current Governing Board members and all of our employees. “If We Build It, They Will Come.””

For more information, email us.

Valley Healthcare System, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) Non-profit, Charitable Organization.

The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), in accordance with the Federally Supported Health Centers Assistance Act, as amended, sections 224(g)-(n) of the Public Health Service (PHS) Act, 42 U.S.C. 233(g)-(n), deems Valley Healthcare System, Inc. to be an employee of the PHS which provides liability protection under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA)

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