5103 Long View Road, Rapid City, SD 57703

Health Notes

Tips For A Good Nights Rest

August 2017

    To help you sleep during the night, you may want to do the following:
  • During the day-exercise regularly. Even a 20 minute walk during the day can help you relax.
  • Don’t exercise in the evening.
  • Limit naps if you can. If you must sleep, limit your nap to 30 minutes.
  • Before bedtime-avoid alcohol, caffeine, chocolate and nicotine in the late afternoon and evening.
  • Limit liquids in the evening.
  • Turn off the TV one hour before bedtime
  • Listen to quiet music or take a warm bath.
  • If you worry or “can’t turn your brain off” when you try to sleep, make a list of things you need to do the next day. That will allow you not to worry about forgetting anything and you will be able to relax.
  • At bedtime-Go to bed and get up at the same time every day, even on weekends.
  • A bedtime snack of warm milk, turkey, or a banana may make you sleepy.
  • Use your bedroom for sleep and intimacy only; don’t read, watch TV, or work in the bedroom.
  • If you are a “clock watcher” turn the clock around.
  • To fall asleep, lie in the position that you normally find yourself in when you wake up.
  • Spouses should go to bed at the same time.

    If You Can’t Fall Asleep Or Wake Up During The Night;
  • If you haven’t fallen asleep in 15 minutes, go to another room. Listen to quiet music. Avoid things that provide mental stimulation (TV, exciting books, or electronics).
  • Go back to bed when you feel sleepy.
  • If you still can’t fall asleep, get up again and repeat these steps as necessary.
  • If absolutely needed eat some foods high in carbohydrates. Peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

Peg Doud,RN

Adrenal Crises

August 2016

The adrenal glands are small glands located on top of the kidney. The adrenal gland is very important for you body. There are two of them. They produce cortisol which helps regulate metabolism, helps your body respond to stress (the fight or flight concept), controls your blood pressure, controls your blood sugar (i.e. diabetes), burns protein and fat and heightens your sexual responses. This hormone in the adrenal gland helps your body to function.

Do you find yourself constantly fatigued and struggle to get out of bed in the mornings? Do you have difficulty coping with stressful situations? This describes “adrenal fatigue, Adrenal crises and vitamin B deficiency”. This condition can lead to food cravings for sweet or salty foods. Weakens the immune system, feelings of overwhelm, depression, irritable, insomnia, weight gain, or bursts of energy late in the evening. Energy drinks and caffeine are not the answer to increase these overall feelings of fatigue. They are temporary and short-lived.

Vitamin B-12, B-5, B-6, or vitamin B complex can be used effectively to reinvigorate adrenal function. The best food sources of B vitamins are whole grains, brewer’s yeast, pollen, miso(Japanese soup stock), marmite (a vegetable concentrate paste), liver, certain raw nuts, sprouts and rice bran syrup. These all contain the natural form of B complex.

Peg Doud, RN


February 2016

Frostbite is frozen water in your body tissues. This is like burns-1st degree is the mildest and 4th degree the most severe. 4th degree can result in the loss of the affected body part. The most common areas to become frostbitten include: fingers, toes, ears, nose, hands, feet, lips, shins, cheeks, and corneas.

Frostbite happens when skin is exposed to freezing temperatures. Blood cannot adequately flow through the frozen tissue. The combination of freezing and deprivation of oxygen causes tissue damage or death of the skin.

Risk Factors: exposure to freezing temps without adequate covering, low body temperature, very young or very old, homelessness, fatigue, wearing wet clothing, malnutrition, diabetes, infection, arthritis, mental illness, and working in freezing conditions.

Symptoms: swelling, waxy appearance of the skin, color changing from red to white to blue, numbness, blisters, stinging, burning, tingling, joint pain.

Treatment: rapid rewarming in a warm (100 degree to 110 degree) water bath is the treatment of choice. slow rewarming may cause more tissue damage. Rewarming can be very painful. To relieve the pain take tylenol, ibuprofen, or aspirin. Drink warm liquids. Avoid taking alcohol and sedatives. In cases of very severe frostbite more in depth treatment may need to take place.

Prevention: dress properly when going outside in cold weather. Wear layers of clothes. Keep moisture away from the skin. Wear materials that provide good insulation. Keep head, face, hands and feet covered.

Peg Doud, RN

What is a stye?

February 2015

A stye is an inflamed swelling on the edge of your eyelid caused by a bacterial infection of the gland at the base of an eyelash. It's a small painful lump on the inside or the outside of the eyelid. Resembles a pimple. Very tender to touch. Don't try to "pop" it. Yes, it has pus in it and needs to come out. These can be caused by clogged hair follicle from makeup. This will get better and disappear in 1-3 weeks. It is not contagious. Treatment is to keep the area around your eye clean and free from crusting. Use a warm Not Hot compress or wash cloth to your eye 3-4 times a day for 5-10 minutes each time or until the cloth cools off. you can use Ibuprofen for pain. Don’t give aspirin to children under age 16.

See your doctor if you have an external stye (on the outside of your eyelid) that's very painful. Your doctor may remove the eyelash that's closest to the stye, if the stye is caused by an infected eyelash follicle (a small hole in your skin that an individual eyelash grows out of). He also may use a very fine needle to piece the stye and drain the pus from it. This is very dangerous and do not do this yourself.

Antibiotics are usually not recommended for treating stye's. They usually get better on their own.

Peg Doud, RN

Crystals in your head!!!

November 2014

Did you know that you can have dizziness from loose crystals in your head? These loose crystals are called "octoconia" that are in your inner ear. This occurs when the tiny calcium crystals are displaced from the inner ear and fall down into the ear canals disrupting the flow of fluid in that canal. This disruption of fluid gives you a false sense of motion. You can feel this motion of vertigo or dizziness with a change in your head or body position, such as turning over in bed or getting up and out of bed, tilting your head back in the shower to wash your hair, or turning your head from side-to-side while driving.

Other symptoms you may notice is blurred vision, nausea, vomiting, migraines, unsteadiness,loss of balance or lightheadedness. This can come on very sudden and is very frightening.

How do these crystals come loose? Basically the cause is unknown. It has been known to happen to those who have sustained a head injury, taken a misstep off the end of a curb, high intensity aerobics, mountain biking on rough trails, an inner ear infection, aging , ear surgery or migraines.

How is this treated? A professional healthcare worker uses repositioning maneuvers to the head and body which are designed to move the displaced crystals out of the involved canal. Medications such as meclizine or scopolamine may be used to help with the dizziness. As a last resort surgery is performed on the ear.

Peg Doud, RN

What is my adrenal gland? Is it important to me?

June 2014

Your adrenal glands are located on the top of each kidney. They are triangular organs approximately 1.5 inches in height and 3 inches in length. They produce hormones that are vital to your life. In other words, you cannot live without them-they include sex hormones and cortisol. The cortisol helps you to respond to the stress in your life. The fight -or-flight response that we have and I'm sure you have heard about over the years. They also regulate your metabolism. How your body converts fats, protein, and carbohydrates into energy. The adrenal glands regulate blood pressure and cardiovascular function (heart function).

Malfunction of your adrenal glands can produce fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, Addison's Disease, weight gain, poor sleep, elevated blood sugars, menstrual irregularities, increased thirst, higher blood pressure, frequent infections, depression and anxiety.

Peg Doud, RN


January 2014

Since many people are alone when they suffer a heart attack, without help, the person whose heart is beating improperly and begins to feel faint , has only about 10 seconds left before losing consciousness. These victims can help themselves by coughing repeatedly and very vigorously. A deep breath should be taken before each cough, and the cough must be deep and prolonged, as when producing sputum from deep inside the chest. A breath and a cough must be repeated about every 2 seconds without letting up until help arrives, or until it is felt the heart is beating normal again. Deep breaths gets oxygen into the lungs and the coughing movements squeeze the heart and keeps the blood circulating. The squeezing pressure on the heart also helps it to regain normal rhythm. Thus allowing the heart attack victim time to get to the hospital. Similar to doing CPR on ones self.

Peg Doud, RN

Excercise Your Memory Muscle

June 2013

Forgetting is a part of life. You forget 99% of everything that enters your head, and you can be thankful this is true. If every sense, impression and thought stayed with you, your mind would soon become hopelessly cluttered. Important facts would be buried under ever-mounting piles of trivia.

You'll be glad to know that memory, like any other intellectual power, can be strengthened. Chances are small that you will fade into a forgetable older person if you keep your mind challenged and treat it to good nutrition and plenty of rest. If we realize that memory can be developed like a muscle, we must also accept the truth that its efficiency will diminish like a muscle if not properly used.

All too often, older people assume they are becoming forgetful simply because they are getting older. Thus, they fear the gradual slide into senility as being inevitable. A few years ago the research on aging brought about a new appreciation for the memory's resilience throughout life. Most of us can expect to enjoy our good memories well into old age. These memory declines occur later in life than previously believed. Few older people become truly senile. Many apparent cases of senility can be traced to poor diet, drug reactions, confusion after hospitalization, low self-esteem, and society's indifference to the elderly. All of these causes are reversible.

Memory is a tool that becomes sharper with use. You can't wear it out or use it up. As we grow older, we can consciously take on new challenges for the purpose of keeping our memories fit.

Peg Doud, RN.