World Alzheimer’s Day: How to Reduce Your Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s disease is an irreversible, progressive brain disorder that slowly destroys memory, thinking, and other important mental functions. As the disease progresses, it affects a person’s ability to carry out simple tasks like getting dressed or making a cup of coffee. There are an estimated 5.8 million people living with this disease in the United States alone. While Alzheimer’s is most common in people aged 65 years or older, nearly 200,000 people in the United States suffer from younger-onset Alzheimer’s disease. How can I reduce my risk for Alzheimer’s disease? Alzheimer’s disease is often associated with old age, but it’s not a normal part of aging. Though there is no proven way to prevent Alzheimer’s disease, there’s a lot you can do to lower your chance of getting it. In fact, the same things that are good for your heart and body may also reduce your risk for Alzheimer’s disease, including: • Regular Check-ups Research shows a strong connection between Alzheimer’s and conditions like high blood pressure, high blood sugar, Type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Visiting the doctor for regular preventive care screenings will help lower your risk for Alzheimer’s disease. Preventive care focuses on illness and disease prevention and includes wellness visits, immunizations, and screenings for blood pressure, cancer, cholesterol, depression, obesity, and Type 2 diabetes. • Regular Exercise Excess weight increases your risk for conditions like high blood pressure, high blood sugar, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and obesity. Research has also found that obesity can change the brain in a way that increases your risk for Alzheimer’s disease. Regular exercise helps increase blood flow to the brain, which makes your brain healthier. The Department of Health and Human Services recommends 30 minutes of activity at least five times a week. • Regular Stimulation People who keep learning and stay social might have a lower risk for the cognitive decline typically associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Though the exact reason is not clear, this type of mental stimulation may strengthen connections between nerve cells in the brain. When you see your doctor regularly, they can detect and treat conditions or diseases early, before they become serious or life threatening. Get the corWorld Alzheimer’s Day: How to Reduce Your Risk For Alzheimer’s Disease Family Medicine.

Alzheimer’s disease is an irreversible, progressive brain disorder that slowly destroys memory, thinking, and other important mental functions. As the disease progresses, it affects a person’s ability to carry out simple tasks like getting dressed or making a cup of coffee.

There are an estimated 5.8 million people living with this disease in the United States alone. While Alzheimer’s is most common in people aged 65 years or older, nearly 200,000 people in the United States suffer from younger-onset Alzheimer’s disease.

How can I reduce my risk for Alzheimer’s disease?

Alzheimer’s disease is often associated with old age, but it’s not a normal part of aging. Though there is no proven way to prevent Alzheimer’s disease, there’s a lot you can do to lower your chance of getting it. In fact, the same things that are good for your heart and body may also reduce your risk for Alzheimer’s disease, including:

  • Regular Check-ups
    Research shows a strong connection between Alzheimer’s and conditions like high blood pressure, high blood sugar, Type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Visiting the doctor for regular preventive care screenings will help lower your risk for Alzheimer’s disease. Preventive carefocuses on illness and disease prevention and includes wellness visits, immunizations, and screenings for blood pressure, cancer, cholesterol, depression, obesity, and Type 2 diabetes.
  • Regular Exercise
    Excess weight increases your risk for conditions like high blood pressure, high blood sugar, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and obesity. Research has also found that obesity can change the brain in a way that increases your risk for Alzheimer’s disease.Regular exercise helps increase blood flow to the brain, which makes your brain healthier. The Department of Health and Human Services recommends 30 minutes of activity at least five times a week.
  • Regular Stimulation
    People who keep learning and stay social might have a lower risk for the cognitive decline typically associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Though the exact reason is not clear, this type of mental stimulation may strengthen connections between nerve cells in the brain.

When you see your doctor regularly, they can detect and treat conditions or diseases early, before they become serious or life threatening. Get the correct health services, screenings, and treatment you need live a longer and healthier life from the board-certified physicians at PVHC Family Medicine.

Your Pregnancy Step by Step

Your Pregnancy Step by Step

Pregnancy is a unique time in a woman’s life. There are a lot of physiological changes that take place to support a growing embryo or fetus. Pregnant women (and their placentas) produce different hormones that cause a broad range of changes like persistent nausea, breast pain, temporary darkening of your skin and many other common symptoms.

What happens to my body during pregnancy?

A full-term pregnancy typically lasts 40 weeks. During that time a woman’s body undergoes many temporary and sometimes unexpected transformations. The weeks are grouped into three trimesters:

  • First Trimester (Weeks 1-12)
    Hormonal changes during the first trimester affect every organ system in your body. During these first 12 weeks, your period will stop and you may experience extreme tiredness, tender breasts, nausea, constipation, frequent urination, headaches, heartburn, or mood swings. Your baby is also growing rapidly. His brain and spinal cord begin to develop as well as his major organs. This is a very crucial phase in your pregnancy and your baby’s development, and it is vital to meet your doctor as soon as possible.
  • Second Trimester (Weeks 13-28)
    The second trimester is often referred to as the ‘honeymoon period’ because nausea commonly subsides, emotions level out, and libido returns. During this time your abdomen begins to noticeably expand, making room for your growing baby. You will also start to gain weight, which is good for your growing baby but can mean aches, pains, and swelling for you. You will feel movement between 18-20 weeks as your baby’s arms and legs grow larger and stronger.
  • Third Trimester (Weeks 29-40)
    The third and final trimester often comes with insomnia and increased discomfort as your baby continues to grow and gain weight. Other common symptoms may include shortness of breath, heartburn, hemorrhoids, and swelling of the ankles, fingers, and face. Toward the end of this trimester you may notice your baby drop lower into your abdomen. Braxton Hicks or irregular contractions are very common during this trimester, but your doctor will educate you more on what is normal and what is not normal and should prompt you to go to the hospital.

As you move closer to your due date, your cervix will become thinner and softer and contractions will become stronger. This is a normal process that prepares your body for labor and delivery.

With all of these big, exciting changes happening in your body, it’s important to have a family doctor you feel comfortable with. Choosing a doctor that really knows you and your medical needs from puberty to pregnancy and beyond can provide you with uniquely individualized pregnancy care and services. Your doctor will likely care for your baby too, making this a unique experience for you and the family.

Pomona Valley Health Centers is proud to offer experienced, compassionate women’s health care at all four of our office locations. We provide pregnancy care, including for high-risk pregnancies, and have a multidisciplinary team approach to help you through this very important event in your life. If you’re in need of expert obstetric services for your pregnancy, trust your care to a board-certified Pomona Valley FM/OB doctor.

World Breastfeeding Week: Four Common Breastfeeding Problems You Can Overcome

Four Common Breastfeeding Problems You Can Overcome

Are you struggling with engorged breasts, painful latching, low milk supply, or cracked or sore nipples? While breastfeeding can be a wonderful way to bond with your new baby, it can also be extremely difficult. Take heart, mama, we have solutions to four of the most common breastfeeding problems.

Four common breastfeeding problems and how to solve them

If you’re struggling with breastfeeding, the board-certified OB/GYNs at Pomona Valley Health Centers want to help. Let’s take a look at four common breastfeeding problems and how to solve them. They are as follows:

  1. Engorged Breasts
    If your breasts are swollen, throbbing or uncomfortably full, you may have a high milk supply. Engorgement can extend all the way to your armpits and cause a low fever. This is especially common in the first few weeks after delivery while your body adjusts to the needs of your baby or babies. Though pumping and storing the excess milk may seem like the best solution to alleviate pain, you are actually prolonging the problem. Instead, try feeding your baby before he is hungry, when he’s likely to suck more gently. This stimulates your breasts less and lightens your flow. You can also apply ice packs between feedings to reduce engorgement and alleviate pain and discomfort.
  2. Painful Latching
    If you’re like most mothers, there will be an adjustment period for breastfeeding, especially if this is your first baby. Your nipples will need to toughen up a bit before you can experience pain-free feeding. It’s important make sure your baby has a good latch. Their mouth should cover more of the areola below your nipple than above. If you need additional support, consult a professional lactation consultant.
  3. Low Milk Supply
    Once your body adjusts to your baby’s needs, your breasts may feel less full and your nipples may stop leaking. This does not necessarily mean your milk supply is in jeopardy. If your pediatrician becomes concerned about your baby’s weight gain, there are some things you can do to help boost your supply, like more frequent nursing and pumping throughout the day.
  4. Cracked or Sore Nipples
    If you just skipped to this section of the page, you’re not alone. This is a very common complaint among new mothers. You can easily treat and soothe your dry, cracked, or sore nipples with a lanolin-based nipple cream between feedings. Also, avoid soaps, alcohol-based products, and regular body lotions because these products can aggravate dryness. You can also try breastfeeding more often at shorter intervals, to encourage your baby to suck more gently.

We hope these solutions help you overcome your breastfeeding problems and guide you toward more comfort and better bonding with your newborn. If you need additional breastfeeding or lactation support, contact a Pomona Valley Health Centers OB/GYN in Chino Hills, Pomona, Claremont, and La Verne.

Six Things to Consider When Choosing an OB for Your Pregnancy

Six Things to Consider When Choosing an OB/GYN

No matter your age or stage in life, it’s important to have a caring, compassionate doctor who understands your unique needs by your side. A woman’s needs are very specific, and change dramatically throughout her lifetime. And when you’re a newly expecting mother, there’s a lot to consider when choosing an obstetrician to care for you during your pregnancy.

The caring physicians at Pomona Valley Health Centers are highly specialized in family medicine as well as obstetrics, which means they provide excellent whole-person care for every situation.

What to look for when choosing an obstetrician

When you’re looking for an obstetrician, it’s important to find one that is right for your medical and emotional needs. Before you make your first appointment, here are six important things to consider:

  1. Skill & Experience
    The PVHC family medicine physicians are highly skilled in obstetrics. They have extensive experience providing prenatal care, delivering babies, and supporting both mom and baby postpartum.
  2. Malpractice Claims
    Confirm the physician does not have a history of or ongoing malpractice claims or disciplinary actions. You can usually request this information from the medical office or your state website.
  3. Hospital Affiliations
    OBs are often affiliated with a hospital for surgeries, procedures, and labor and delivery. Find out which hospital they’re affiliated with and check their ratings. Highly rated hospitals and medical facilities often have fewer complications and higher survival rates should you need their medical services.
  4. Gender
    Don’t forget to consider your doctor’s gender while selecting a family physician for maternity care. It is essential you feel comfortable during each and every appointment because you’ll be sharing intimate information about yourself and your relationships with this person.
  5. Insurance
    This is often top of mind when selecting a family medicine provider. Choose a physician that will help optimize your insurance benefits, so you can avoid high (and often unexpected) out-of-pocket expenses.
  6. Patient Satisfaction Surveys
    Read as much as you can about your potential physician so you can feel confident when you make your choice.

For specialized OB services in Chino Hills, Pomona, Claremont, and La Verne call the skilled physicians at Pomona Valley Health Centers (PVHC) at 909-536-1493. PVHC Women’s Health focuses on delivering highly individualized care in a professional and compassionate setting.

Measles Continues to Spread: Who Is at Risk?

Measles Continues to Spread: Who Is at Risk?

Did you know the bacteria in your coughs and sneezes can stay alive in the air for up to 45 minutes? Measles is a highly contagious disease that spreads easily through airborne respiratory droplets expelled by a cough or sneeze. That puts a lot of people at risk (often unknowingly).

In 2000, measles was declared an eliminated disease in the United States. In recent years, however, there has been a surge of people reluctant to vaccinate. As a result, we are seeing an uptick in measles cases. This is particularly true in communities with low vaccination rates. To create an adequate blanket of protection for everyone, between 93 and 95 percent of the population must be vaccinated.

Who is at risk for measles?

Besides those who have decided not to get vaccinated, certain people are at a heightened risk of contracting this disease. Reasons include age, health conditions, or other factors like pregnancy. Here is a list of people who can not, or should not, get a measles vaccination:

  • Babies and small children who are too young to be fully vaccinated.
  • Elderly individuals who are sick or have a weakened immune system.
  • Anyone with a history of severe or life-threatening allergic reactions to any MMR (Measles, Mumps, and Rubella) vaccine.
  • Women who are pregnant.
  • Anyone with a weakened immune system due to HIV, AIDS, radiation, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, or steroids.
  • Anyone with a family history of immune system problems.
  • Anyone with a condition that causes them to bruise or bleed easily.
  • Anyone who has recently had a blood transfusion or received other blood products.
  • Anyone who has tuberculosis.

Vaccinations are a vital part of preventative care, not just for yourself, but also for those around you who are unable to get vaccinated.

Protect your community today and get vaccinated against measles and other preventable diseases. Pomona Valley urgent care services in Chino Hills, Pomona, Claremont, and La Verneoffer onsite immunizations on top of their robust medical care services.

What Are the Top Issues for Women’s Health?

Women's Health

From family planning considerations to specific conditions and diseases, women face a different set of health challenges than men. For some, there are options to reduce your risk. For others, you may be able to lessen its symptoms.

The top issues for women’s health

  • Heart disease – The leading cause of death for women can also be preventable! Work with your doctor to recognize your potential risks, then make the necessary chances to diet and exercise. And of course, don’t smoke or vape, and limit alcohol.
  • Cancer – Although many people associate breast cancer with women, skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States, and it occurs more often in young women. Also, lung, colon and uterine cancers (together), account for almost as many cancers as breast cancer. So, what can you do? Perform monthly breast self-exams, wear sunscreen, avoid smoking, get that colonoscopy, and if your periods become abnormal or you notice abdominal problems, see your doctor.
  • Stroke – Did you know? 60% of stroke deaths occur in women. Learn the stroke warning signs and remember … FAST: Face drooping, Arm weakness or numbness, Speech problems, Time to call 911.
  • Menopause – Hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, and sleep problems. At the very least, menopause (which begins 12 months after your last period) can be an uncomfortable and frustrating time. To get through it, try to keep a healthy weight, eat a balanced diet, get plenty of exercise and explore stress management techniques like yoga and meditation.

Experienced, dedicated women’s healthcare throughout the Inland Empire

From well-woman checkups to menopause and osteoporosis care, we’re committed to keeping women healthy throughout life. At Pomona Valley Health Centers, we provide a complete range of women’s health services in La Verne, as well as in Claremont, Chino Hills Crossroads and Pomona. Count on us for personalized women’s healthcare, along with comprehensive family medicine, radiology, urgent care, physical therapy and more.

To schedule an appointment at a PVHC location near you, call 909-536-1493 or click here to use our online form.