9 items tagged "awareness"

  • 10 Ways to Start Loving Your Brain

    Growing evidence indicates that people can reduce their risk of cognitive decline by adopting key lifestyle habits. When possible, combine these habits to achieve maximum benefit for the brain and body.

    10 Ways to Love Your Brain

    Learn more about Alzheimer's and Brain Awareness month

    10 Early Signs and Symptoms of Alzheimer's

    Visit the Alzheimer's Association website here.


  • Are You at Risk?

    Stomach Cancer - Basic Information and Facts

    Gastric (stomach) cancer occurs when cancer cells form in the lining of the stomach. Stomach cancer is less common in the United States than in many parts of Asia, Europe, and Central and South America. Stomach cancer is a major cause of death in these parts of the world. In the United States, the number of new cases of stomach cancer has greatly decreased since 1930. The reasons for this are not clear, but may have to do with better food storage and changes in the diet, such as lower salt intake.

    • Stomach cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the world.
    • Men are twice as likely as women to be diagnosed with stomach cancer.
    • Black men are more than twice as likely as white men to die from stomach cancer.


    The following are risk factors for stomach cancer:

    Older age and having the following medical conditions may increase the risk of stomach cancer:
    • Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection of the stomach.
    • Intestinal metaplasia (a condition in which the cells that line the stomach are replaced by cells that normally line the intestines).
    • Chronic atrophic gastritis (thinning of the stomach lining caused by long-term inflammation of the stomach).
    • Pernicious anemia (a type of anemia caused by vitamin B12 deficiency).
    • Stomach (gastric) polyps.
    Certain genetic conditions

    Genetic conditions may increase the risk of stomach cancer in people with any of the following:

    • A mother, father, sister, or brother who has had stomach cancer.
    • Type A blood.
    • Li-Fraumeni syndrome.
    • Familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP).
    • Hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancer (HNPCC; Lynch syndrome).

    The risk of stomach cancer may be increased in people who:

    • Eat a diet low in fruits and vegetables.
    • Eat a diet high in salted or smoked foods.
    • Eat foods that have not been prepared or stored the way they should be.
    Environmental causes

    Environmental factors that may increase the risk of stomach cancer include:

    • Being exposed to radiation.
    • Working in the rubber or coal industry.

    The risk of stomach cancer is increased in people who come from countries where stomach cancer is common.

    Stomach (Gastric) Cancer Screening

    Tests are used to screen for different types of cancer when a person does not have symptoms. There is no standard or routine screening test for stomach cancer. Screening tests for stomach cancer are being studied in clinical trials.

    Several types of screening tests have been studied to find stomach cancer at an early stage. These screening tests include the following:
    • Barium-meal gastric photofluorography
    • Upper endoscopy
    • Serum pepsinogen levels
    Scientists believe that people with certain risk factors may benefit from stomach cancer screening. These include:
    • Older people with chronic gastric atrophy or pernicious anemia.
    • Patients who have had any of the following:
      • Partial gastrectomy.
      • Polyps in the stomach.
      • Familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP).
      • Hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancer (HNPCC).
    • People who come from countries where stomach cancer is more common.

    For additional information, please refer to these links





  • Colorectal Cancer Screening Saves Lives

    Get a Screening

    Regular screening, beginning at age 50, is the key to preventing colorectal cancer. If you’re 50 to 75 years old, get screened for colorectal cancer regularly. If you’re younger than 50 and think you may be at high risk of getting colorectal cancer, or if you’re older than 75, ask your doctor if you should be screened.

    Robert’s Story

    “I never would have found it early if I hadn’t been screened,” said Robert, a survivor of colorectal cancer (cancer of the colon or rectum).

    Since Robert’s dad got colorectal cancer at age 45, when Robert went for his annual checkup, he asked his own doctor about getting screened. He got a screening test called a colonoscopy, a test that can show the whole colon and the best kind of test for Robert because of his family cancer history. The colonoscopy showed he had cancer.

    “People tell me that they are scared to get screened, but I think it’s scarier if you have a tumor that the doctor can’t remove,” Robert said. “If I hadn’t been screened, I wouldn’t have been able to see my son go off to college, or enjoy this next chapter of my life with my wife and family.”

    Fast Facts

    • Among cancers that affect both men and women, colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States.
    • Every year, about 140,000 people in the United States get colorectal cancer, and more than 50,000 people die of it.
    • Risk increases with age. More than 90% of colorectal cancers occur in people who are 50 years old or older.
    • Precancerous polyps and colorectal cancer don’t always cause symptoms, especially at first. If you have symptoms, they may include blood in or on the stool, stomach pain that doesn’t go away, or losing weight and you don’t know why. If you have any of these symptoms, see your doctor.
    • There are several screening test options. Talk with your doctor about which is right for you.
    • Only about two-thirds of adults in the United States are up-to-date with colorectal cancer screening.

    Additional Information

    To read the full article on the Center's for Disease Control's website, click here.

  • COPD Awareness Month

    Chronic lower respiratory disease, mainly chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), is the fourth leading cause of death in the US. While tobacco smoke is the primary cause, 1 in 4 people with COPD have never smoked. Air pollutants at home (secondhand smoke), at work (fumes), and genetics can also cause COPD. Symptoms include chronic or smoker’s cough, chronic phlegm production, shortness of breath, and wheezing. Early detection and treatment may change its course. A breathing test can measure lung function and detect COPD in those at risk. Treatment requires a careful and thorough doctor’s evaluation, avoiding tobacco smoke, and removing air pollutants from the home and at work. Symptoms may be treated with medication. A doctor may also consider pulmonary rehabilitation, a personalized treatment program that teaches you how to manage your COPD symptoms to improve quality of life.

    COPD Awareness Graphics h


    Take the Quiz

    What do you know about COPD? Take the quiz to find out.

    Additional Information

    For additional information about COPD, visit the Center's for Disease Control's (CDC) website.


  • Diabetes Awareness Month

    Diabetes is one of the leading causes of disability and death in the United States. Diabetes can cause blindness, nerve damage, kidney disease, and other health problems if it’s not controlled.

    People who are at high risk for type 2 diabetes can lower their risk by more than half if they make healthy changes like getting more physical activity, losing weight, and eating healthy.

    See additional diabetes resources below the infographic:

    diabetes infographic 

    Personal Health Tools

    Heart-Healthy Foods: Shopping list

    Adult BMI Calculator

    Type 2 Diabetes Risk Test

    Preventing Type 2 Diabetes: Questions for the doctor

    MyPlate Plan 


    American Diabetes Association

    National Diabetes Month 2019

    Prediabetes: Your Chance to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

    Living Well With Diabetes
    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

    Managing Diabetes
    National Institutes of Health, National Diabetes Education Program

  • Lung Cancer Awareness

    Lung Cancer is the Biggest Cancer Killer in Both Men and Women

    Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death and the second most common cancer among both men and women in the United States. Each year, about 218,000 people in the United States are told they have lung cancer and about 149,000 people die from this disease.

    Different people have different symptoms for lung cancer. (Click here to learn about syptoms.) Most people with lung cancer don’t have symptoms until the cancer is advanced.

    lung infographic 600px

    Lower Your Lung Cancer Risk

    Don't Smoke

    The most important thing you can do to prevent lung cancer is to not start smoking, or to quit if you smoke. Smoking can cause cancer and then block your body from fighting it. Nearly 9 out of 10 lung cancers are caused by smoking cigarettes. Treatments are getting better for lung cancer, but it still kills more men and women than any other type of cancer.

    For help quitting, visit smokefree.gov,external icon call 1 (800) QUIT-NOW (784-8669), or text “QUIT” to 47848. It’s never too late to quit!

    Avoid Second Hand Smoke

    Smoke from other people’s cigarettes, pipes, or cigars is called secondhand smoke. Secondhand smoke causes lung cancer in adults who have never smoked. Nonsmokers who are exposed to secondhand smoke at home or at work increase their risk of getting lung cancer by 20% to 30%. 

    Test Your Home for Radon

    Radon is a gas that you cannot smell, taste, or see. It comes naturally from rocks and soil, and can dissolve in groundwater. Radon is thought to be the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States, responsible for more than 20,000 lung cancer deaths each year.

    People can be exposed to radon mainly from breathing radon in air that comes through cracks and gaps in the foundation of buildings and homes. One out of 15 homes has a high level of radon. Testing your home is the only way to find out if you have a radon problem. If you do, then you can fix it.

    Lung Cancer Screening Quiz

    Test your knowledge about lung cancer screening by taking this quiz.

    Additional Information

    For additional information about this topic or to read the full article from the Center's for Disease Control's (CDC) website, click here.


  • Mental Health Awareness

    You are not alone. It’s essential to prioritize our mental health and stay connected with friends, family and peers. No one should feel alone in their mental health journey or without the resources and support they need.

    Mohawk employees and their family members have access to Cigna Employee Assistance. It is a free and completely confidential service so that you and your family members can talk with an expert and receive counseling. They're ready to listen to your concerns, get you the information you need and guide you toward the right solution. Licensed professional employee assistance consultants are available for telephonic consultation for routine or urgent concerns. They can also direct you to a variety of helpful resources in your community. Click here for more information about Cigna Employee Assistance.


    Life with Depression Fact Sheet edited

  • November is Diabetes Awareness Month

    Are You at Risk for Prediabetes or Diabetes?

    Over 88 million American adults have prediabetes – that’s 1 in 3 adults! Of those 88 million, more than 8 in 10 of them don’t even know they have it. Without taking action, many people with prediabetes could develop type 2 diabetes within 5 years.

    With numbers like that, it’s important to learn about prediabetes and take action.

    Take the 60 Second Online Risk Test

    Take an online test to find out if you are at risk for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. A print version of the Prediabetes Risk Test is also available.

    What are Prediabetes and Diabetes?

    Having prediabetes means your blood glucose (sugar) levels are higher than normal—but not high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes. Prediabetes can lead to heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes, the most common form of diabetes. Prediabetes can often be reversed.

    With type 2 diabetes, your body cannot properly use insulin (a hormone that helps glucose get into the cells of the body). You can get type 2 diabetes at any age, but you are at higher risk if you are older, overweight, have a family history of diabetes, are not physically active, or are a woman who had gestational diabetes.

    Gestational diabetes is a kind of diabetes that some women get when they are pregnant. Even if a woman’s blood sugar levels go down after her baby is born, she is at higher risk of getting type 2 diabetes later in life.

    With type 1 diabetes, your body cannot make insulin, so you need to take insulin every day. Type 1 diabetes is less common than type 2; approximately 5-10% of the people who have diabetes have type 1. Currently, no one knows how to prevent type 1 diabetes.

    If you want to learn more about the basics of diabetes and prediabetes, you can visit CDC’s Diabetes website.

    Who is at Risk for Prediabetes and Type 2 Diabetes?

    If you have these risk factors, you may be at higher risk than others for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes.

    • You are overweight.
    • You are 45 years of age or older.
    • Your parent or sibling has type 2 diabetes.
    • You are physically active fewer than 3 times per week.
    • You ever gave birth to a baby that weighed more than 9 pounds.
    • You ever had diabetes while pregnant (gestational diabetes).

    Race and ethnicity also affect your risk. African Americans, Hispanic/Latino Americans, American Indians, Pacific Islanders, and some Asian Americans are at particularly high risk for type 2 diabetes.

    Following are the percentage of people in the United States with diagnosed diabetes from 2010 to 2012 among people aged 20 or older, by race and ethnicity:

    • American Indian/Alaska Natives – 15.9%
    • Non-Hispanic blacks – 13.2%
    • Hispanics – 12.8%
    • Asian Americans – 9.0%
    • Non-Hispanic whites – 7.6%

    If you are at risk, talk to a health care professional about getting a blood sugar test.

    Diabetes Has Serious Consequences

    Diabetes is Serious and Common

    Without intervention, many people with prediabetes could develop type 2 diabetes within 5 years. 88 million U.S. adults – 1 in 3 – have prediabetes, which means their blood sugar is higher than normal, but not high enough to be considered type 2 diabetes. Without intervention, many people with prediabetes could develop type 2 diabetes within 5 years, which puts them at risk of serious health problems, including:

    • Heart attack
    • Stroke
    • Blindness
    • Kidney failure
    • Loss of toes, feet, or legs
    Diabetes is Costly

    People diagnosed with diabetes incur on average $16,750 annually in medical expenses. Type 2 diabetes affects millions of individuals and their families, workplaces, and the U.S. health care system.  About 1 in 4 health care dollars is spent on people with diagnosed diabetes. The majority of expenses are related to hospitalizations and medications used to treat complications of diabetes.

    People diagnosed with diabetes incur on average $16,750 annually in medical expenses. That’s about 2.3 times the medical expenses of a person without diabetes. The need to prevent type 2 diabetes has never been greater.

    You Can Prevent Type 2 Diabetes—Get Started Today!

    If you have prediabetes, a CDC-recognized lifestyle change program is one of the most effective ways to prevent getting type 2 diabetes. It can help you lose weight, become more active, and prevent or delay type 2 diabetes. To learn more, visit Why Participate?

    If you’re not sure if you’re at risk, take this online testor ask your health care professional about getting a blood sugar test. A print version of the Prediabetes Risk Test is also available.

    Additional Resources

    To read the full article and access additional CDC resources, click here.

    Care Teams are provided to give you complete support for your health and well-being. Did you know you have a team of qualified medical professionals dedicate to you and your family members? They will guide you through your health journey with the tools you need to be an active participant in your care. Care Teams consists of medical providers, a Healthy Life Navigator, a case manager, referral coordinator, YourChoice Advocate, registered dieticians, behavioral health support and so much more!

    To schedule an appointment, text or call the HLC scheduling line (877-365-0051).

  • Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month

    2017Awareness header

    Pancreatic cancer has the lowest survival rate of all major caners. It is the 3rd leading cause of cancer-related death in the United States surpassing breast cancer. It is expected to become the 2nd leading cause of cancer-related death in the US by the year 2020, surpassing colorectal cancer.

    Pancreatic Cancer Facts

    • In 2019 an estimated 56,770 Americans will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in the
      U.S., and more than 45,750 will die from the disease.
    • Pancreatic cancer is one of the few cancers for which survival has not improved
      substantially for more than 40 years.
    • Pancreatic cancer has the highest mortality rate of all major cancers. For all stages
      combined, 91% of pancreatic cancer patients will die within five years of diagnosis – only
      9% will survive more than five years.
    • Few risk factors for developing pancreatic cancer are defined. The risk for cigarette
      smokers is twice that for those who have never smoked. Family history of pancreatic
      cancer, chronic pancreatitis, alcohol use, obesity and diabetes are risk factors. Individuals
      with Lynch syndrome and certain other genetic syndromes, as well as BRCA1 and BRCA2
      mutation carriers, are also at increased risk.
    • Pancreatic cancer may cause only vague symptoms that could indicate many different
      conditions within the abdomen or gastrointestinal tract. Symptoms include pain (usually
      abdominal or back pain), weight loss, jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes), loss of
      appetite, nausea, changes in stool, and diabetes.
    • Treatment options for pancreatic cancer: Surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy
      are treatment options that extend survival or relieve symptoms, but seldom produce a
      cure. Surgical removal of the tumor is possible in less than 20% of patients diagnosed with
      pancreatic cancer because detection is often in late stages and has spread beyond the
      pancreas. Adjuvant treatment with chemotherapy (and sometimes radiation) may lower
      the risk of recurrence. For advanced disease, chemotherapy (sometimes along with a
      targeted drug therapy) may lengthen survival. Clinical trials are testing several new agents
      for their ability to improve survival.
    • Pancreatic cancer is a leading cause of cancer death largely because there are no
      detection tools to diagnose the disease in its early stages when surgical removal of the
      tumor is still possible.

    *Source for statistics: American Cancer Society: Cancer Facts & Figures 2019.


    Take the Risk Assessment Test

    Start the Test Here


    Additional Information

    For additional information about pancreatic cancer, visit these links:




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