Tylenol Recalls Children’s and Infants’ Tylenol!

I hardly ever give Dan Tylenol, but I always have it on hand.  I  replaced some long-expired product not too long ago, just in case.

Today I wake up to news that the makers of Children’s Tylenol have announced a voluntary recall of more than 20 children’s and infants’ liquid products.

Apparently,  “select lots” of the products  are being recalled due to a bacteria that was found in medicine manufactured between April and June 2008.

The recall was done on a warehouse and retail level. Products already packaged and on store shelves have been deemed safe.  They say that no bacteria has not been found in any of the finished products – which really makes no sense to me.  Does that mean that it takes nearly a year and a half after production for it to reach us?

The full list of affected products can be found at Tylenol.com. Consumers can find the lot numbers on the bottom of the box containing the product and also on the sticker that surrounds the product bottle.

Please check your stash, and call your pediatrician if you have any questions.

Homemade, Natural Hand Sanitizer Recipe

There must be lots of people who want a hand sanitizer that doesn’t  include alcohol.  I’d never really thought about it before  my local news did a story about an alternative.  Apparently essential oils have the same antibacterial qualities as alcohol, and they smell better, too!

This is not an endorsement for the safety, efficacy or frugality of the recipe or it’s contents.  Always check with your doctor and lawyer before doing anything, especially anything I talk about.  Use at your own risk.  Don’t  sue me.

According to my local news, this is how you make “natural” hand sanitizer:

Fill a small spray bottle halfway with sterile (I’m assuming distilled) water.

Add to it:

1 tsp Aloe Vera gel

1-2 drops of cinnamon oil

1 drop of eucalyptus oil

1 drop of clove bud oil

1 drop of rosemary oil

5 drops of lemon oil (for scent_

Top it off with more sterile water.

Shake well and… voila!

Not frugal, certainly.  You can get a ten gallon tub of off-brand sanitizer for thirty-seven cents (okay, not really).   The essential oils aren’t cheap.  Still, it’s kind of a neat idea.  Put it in pretty spray bottles and it might make a nice stocking stuffer idea, too.  Especially for all you crunchy people!

Whatever type you decide on, please wash often.  I don’t want to catch H1N1, Swine, or any other Flu or virus, thankyouverymuch.

Captain Obvious Reports: Don’t Cough Into Your HAND, Silly!

Okay, this one I’m embarrassed  about.

“If  you cough, cough into your hand or fist.”  That’s what I was told as a child, what I’ve always done, and what I’ve taught Son.

Never in all those years did it ever occur  to me that coughing into my hand actually endangers more people than coughing into a crowded elevator.

Why does it endanger more?  Because I then use that hand to shake yours, or to turn the doorknob, or to move hangers on a clothes rack.  So the viral or bacterial germs go from my wretchedly sick insides to my hand, where I pass them onto whomever or whatever I come in contact with, leaving whomever or whatever they come in contact with free to share  some more.

Aha!

It makes much more sense to cough into a tissue (and immediate dispose of it).  If a tissue is unavailable then the best thing to do is cough into your elbow.  At least then the germs aren’t  as easily spread, though I recommend steering clear of any mosh pits or orgies.

But then, I’d recommend that anyway.  At least until you’re well.

So my new mantra to Son will be, “Cough into your elbow”.

I’m sure many of you figured this out ages ago and didn’t need a Captain Obvious Report.

But for those of you out there who regularly or temporarily reside in Oblivia, Captain Obvious bulletins are helpful, aren’t they?

Patient, Diagnose Thyself

You may have noticed that apart from a few Deals I’ve been conspicuously absent for most of the past week.

That’s because I’ve been dealing with my second illness in as many weeks, and this time I very nearly did cough up a lung.

I wound up going back to the doctor whose office I’d like to quit because in my weakened state I just did not have it in me to keep trying to find a doctor whose office staff wasn’t hostile, that took my insurance and was willing to see me that day.  In all fairness I only called two, but I think I could have called twenty and had the same result.

So, after a monsyllabic (on their part) conversation with her staff to get the appointment, Son and I made the forty-five minute trek to my current doctor’s office.  At least this time the diagnosis did not come from Son’s doctor (he frequently tells me what’s wrong with me and I then enlighten my own doctor), but the trend did continue in a way since I diagnosed  myself.

Me:  I think I have asthma.  Remember how I’ve told you before that sometimes I feel like I’m breathing through gauze (and you looked at me like I had three heads)?  Well, I think that’s an attack of some sort and could benefit from an inhaler.

Doctor:  Hmmm.  Oh yes.  That sounds like Reactive Airway Disease.  Yes.

So, it turns out I have Reactive Airway Disease, just like Son.   I am the proud owner of my own inhaler, some steroids, a strong antibiotic, a kickass cough medicine – and I get to share Son’s nebulizer.

After two days of medication and almost-complete bedrest I feel a thousand percent better.  I still have not used my inhaler yet, but am comforted that I have it so that in future I can breathe more easily and hopefully avoid hours of body-wracking coughs that leave me exhausted and sore.

And come the new year I am in search of a new doctor.  One that is nearby, has a pleasant office staff and takes my insurance.  It may be a bloody battle, but I’ll find one.

Hopefully before I get sick again.

Share a Hug with Your Pets on Thanksgiving, Not the Food

If you’re tempted to share your Thanksgiving meal with your dog or cat, think again.

Turkey and stuffing and all the rich foods that go along with Thanksgiving can lead to abdominal pain, diarrhea and vomiting for pets.  At least according to an article I read today, and my friend who’s a vet.

There are people out there who actually think about feeding their pets a traditional Thanksgiving meal, complete with turkey and stuffing.  A meal like that can be lethal to pets, so please don’t do it.
Here are some safety tips to keep in mind:

  • Keep your pet on its regular food and routine feeding schedule.
  • Do not feed your pet any turkey. The seasoning, skin and gravy can cause inflammation of the pancreas.
  • Do not give your pet bones. Turkey bones are particularly dangerous because the bones can splinter and cause intestinal damage.
  • Secure the garbage can. Don’t make it easy for your pet to help itself to tossed table scraps.
  • Spiked eggnog is a no-no. Alcohol can cause coma and death. Eggnog can cause diarrhea.
  • If necessary, keep your dog in another room during dinnertime so it can’t beg at the table.

If you must, buy some canned food and mold it into a turkey shape. But beforefeeding any people food to your pets always, always check with your veterinarian first!

Is the Flu Shot Necessary? An Alternative by a Genius or a Yahoo – You Decide

Son is asthmatic, so a flu shot has been very strongly recommended by his pediatrician every year since birth. Even though I knew there were some few risks, Son is so susceptible to bronchitis and bronchiolitis we have definitrly been more afraid of what the flu would do. So we’ve had him vaccinated and have been lucky that he had no side effects.  And no flu.

This year Son’s asthma is markedly better. We’re hoping that asthma will soon be in his past, or at the very worst he’ll be left with a very mild case. And now it’s flu shot time again.

For the first time we’re considering not immunizing him, though we probably still will. Husband and I were having a conversation about it yesterday and today he sent me a link with video of a doctor calling into question the effectiveness of the vaccine for children in Son’s age group.

Sigh.

This guy has some interesting things to say.  Why, then, do I think he’s a yahoo?  Husband hears this and gets all nervous about the vaccine.  I hear this guy say that most deaths attributed to the flu are actually caused by pneumonia, therefore the government is lying to us and I roll my eyes.  I’m not a doctor, but pneumonia is a lung infection.  Why is it not possible for the flu to precede, cause or at least create an environment ripe for lung infections, making the flu the proximate cause of death? And therefore acceptable to be included in statistics as a flu death?

Still, I’m open to hearing about other things we can do to stave off the flu.  Aren’t you?

He recommends we take megadoses of Vitamin D to prevent the flu instead.  And he thinks that the best way to get that is through sunlight, though that may be hard to come by in the winter.  So he recommends a tanning bed (aren’t those UNsafe???) for those who won’t be able to bake themselves in sunlight.  If neither of those are an option only then does he recommend taking vitamins, at 2000 international units (iu) per day for a child and 5000 iu per day for an adult.

He asserts that such megadoses of Vitamin D can also help lessen the severity of the flu if you’ve got it.  He recommends 2000 iu per kilogram of body weight taken as one dose every day for three days.

I know that last year’s flu shot was a big bust.  But I think I have to trust the doctor we’ve known for nearly five years when he tells us that this year’s shot is much better, that they learned a great deal from last year’s debacle, and that all of the metals that Dr. Yahoo warns us about are ever-present in our bodies.  Still, I’m going to call Son’s Doctor on Monday to ask about the Mercury.  Mercury scares me ever since Mr. Ski, my 7th grade science teacher,  told us that Mercury ingested now can kill us 10, 20 or even thirty years later.  As we made our own thermometers with real Mercury.  Nightmares, I tell you.

This is the double-edged sword that is the internet.  There is so much information out there that we have no way of knowing if the source is credible.  How do I even know this guy is truly an MD?  And believe me,  if there’s a conspiracy theory to be found, Husband will find it.

As I keep telling him, even a broken clock is right twice a day.

How to Not End the Year Fatter than You Are Now

Did you know that the average American consumes 4500 calories on Thanksgiving Day? And if you’re like me you gave two different Thanksgiving dinners to attend.  That reminds me – put Pepto-Bismol on the shopping list!

For many of us, the six weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day become one long excuse to eat and drink to our heart’s content  I’ve taken that to the Nth degree and have been on the 12 month plan.  Not my  best idea.  Time to make some changes.

Holiday parties and gatherings with family and friends can take a toll on our willpower and our waistlines which is why millions of us pledge to go on a diet come January 1st. Here are some tips to make the holidays less weighty, and perhaps start the new year with a few less pounds to lose.

  1. Exercise. Not only is exercise a great way to burn off a lot of those extra calories you’ll be consuming, but it’s also a great stress reliever. Have a houseload of guests? Too many obligations and not enough time to get it all done? Take a break and take a walk, each and every day.
  2. Eat before you go out. Lots of us think that by not eating before we go out, we’re saving calories that we can use up while we’re out. Makes sense but often, we eat more than we normally would because we’re starving. Have a healthy meal, or even an apple and a glass of water before you go out and you’ll likely eat less later.
  3. Adapt old traditions. Make the traditions you’ve always enjoyed healthier.  Here’s an idea: use those cookie cutters to make fun holiday shapes out of cheese instead of cookie dough.
  4. Start new traditions. How about a healthy recipe exchange amongst your friends and family?  Everyone can bring their favorite healthy dish and written copies of the recipe to taste and share.
  5. Listen to you. If you feel stressed out and want to leave a party or get away from your family and friends for a bit, do it. Don’t force yourself to be uncomfortable, neither you nor any-one around you will have any fun.
  6. Remember what’s important. We all wish we were thinner and that our houses were cleaner, but that’s not why we get together with family and friends and it shouldn’t diminish our enjoyment of these social events. If you’re going out, don’t obsess over how you look; no one else will notice that you’re less than perfect. If you’re having people over, don’t frantically clean if you don’t have the time (except the toilet – that must be done, especially of you have a four-year-old with less-than-perfect aim). The point is to spend time with the people you care about, celebrate life and have fun.

Adapted from an article in Husband’s company newsletter.   Some are theirs as I found them, some of theirs I changed, and  some are all mine.  Please don’t sue me.

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