- By Laurel Kelly
Consumer Health: Why you need a flu shot if you have heart disease
Flu shots and heart disease
If you have heart disease, flu season can be a dangerous time. Complications from the flu, including pneumonia, respiratory failure, heart attack and death, are more likely in people with heart disease. The flu also can worsen preexisting conditions, such as heart failure, diabetes or asthma. Fortunately, getting a flu shot can reduce your risk of catching the flu or developing complications from it. Learn more about why it's especially important to get a flu shot if you have heart disease.
Also in today's tips ...
Migraines: Are they triggered by weather changes?
Some people who have migraines appear to be more sensitive to changes in the weather. For some people, weather changes may cause imbalances in brain chemicals, including serotonin, which can prompt a migraine. Weather-related triggers also may worsen a headache caused by other triggers. Learn more from Dr. Jerry Swanson, a Mayo Clinic neurologist.
Baby sign language
Baby sign language — when babies use modified gestures from American Sign Language — can be an effective communication tool. Limited research suggests that it might give a typically developing child a way to communicate several months earlier than those who use only vocal communication. Teaching and practicing baby sign language also can be fun, and give you and your child an opportunity to bond. Learn more from Dr. Jay Hoecker, an emeritus Mayo Clinic pediatrician.
Simple tips to prevent falls
Did you know that falls are a leading cause of injury among older adults? As you get older, physical changes and health conditions — and sometimes the medications used to treat those conditions — make falls more likely. A fear of falling need not rule your life, though. Instead, consider these six simple fall prevention strategies.
MUFAs: Why your diet should include these fats
Monounsaturated fatty acids, or MUFAs, are a healthy type of fat. Replacing less healthy fats, such as saturated fats and transfats, with unsaturated fats, such as monounsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fats, may offer health benefits. Learn more from Katherine Zeratsky, a Mayo Clinic registered dietitian nutritionist.