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National Stress Awareness Month

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Every April since 1992, National Stress Awareness Month has been observed. This national month is held to raise public awareness about both the causes and cures for stress.

Life is full of stress, and I’m sure every one of us has no doubt experienced some type of stressful situation within our lifetime. Whether it be a bad day at work or worry over debt, stress affects us all, and in different ways at that. In fact, if you suffer from long term stress it can lead to many illnesses, ranging from depression to heart disease. Fortunately, by understanding the connection between the mind, stress and health, one can better manage stress and improve their overall health and well-being.

Fight or Flight Response

The sympathetic stress response, commonly known as the fight or flight response, is a physiological reaction that’s essentially “hard wired” into our nervous systems. This reaction is necessary mobilizing quick reflexes when there is immediate danger, such as having to swerve to avoid a car accident.

When your body perceives a threat, stress hormones are rushed into your bloodstream, thus increasing your heart rate, blood pressure, and glucose levels. Other hormones can also suppress functions like digestion and immune system, being one of the many reasons why chronic stress can leave you susceptible to illness.

While danger triggers the stress response, unfortunately, so can things such as conflict at work, money problems, bad memories and anxiety. Although, one bad day won’t compromise your health, weeks and months of stress can weaken your immune system and raise your risk for disease.

Take Action against Stress

If you’re suffering from chronic stress and can’t change the situation causing it, then you may need to change your approach. Keep in mind, you do have the ability to choose your response to stressors, and you may have to try many options.

  • Realize when you don’t have control over something, and let it go.
  • Try not to get anxious about situations you can’t change.
  • Take control of your reactions, and try to focus on what makes you feel calm and in control.
  • Develop goals for healthy living, wellness, personal/professional growth. Be sure to set realistic goals.

Take Time for Yourself

Make time to relax and recharge so you’ll be able to handle the stressors life throws your way. Take some time from your day to take care of yourself, even if it’s only for 10 to 15 minutes. Everyone has their own ideas of what helps them unwind. The following are a few ideas that may help you relax:

  • Take a walk
  • Go for a run or jog
  • Have a hot cup of tea
  • Play a sport of your choosing
  • Spend time with family or friends
  • Meditate
  • Do some yoga

Stress can occur at any moment, and while you can’t completely avoid it, you can learn to minimize and better cope with it by changing the way you choose to respond to it.

To celebrate National Stress Awareness Month, start implementing these healthy habits into your life today. Don’t let stress stand in the way of having a wonderful day, every day.

If you would like more information on how stress can affect your heart health, contact Dr. Gordon Gunn in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211 or visit www.gordongunnmd.com.

Dr. Gordon Gunn proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding areas.

What is Patent Ductus Arteriosus? | Heart Health

Heart Health

A Patent Ductus Arteriosus, more commonly referred to as PDA, is a condition where the heart’s ductus arteriosus doesn’t close, leaving an unclosed hole in the aorta. The ductus arteriosus is a vessel that’s an essential part of fetal blood circulation and is connected to the major arteries – the aorta and pulmonary artery. Before a baby is born, the fetus doesn’t need to use their lungs to get oxygenated and the ductus arteriosus allows the blood to skip the circulation to the lungs.

However when a baby is born, their blood must get oxygen from their lungs and the patent arteriosus is supposed to close within the first few hours or days after birth. If the patent arteriosus remains open, the blood can skip a necessary step of circulation and allow oxygen-rich blood from aorta to mix with the oxygen-poor blood from the pulmonary artery. A Patent Ductus Arteriosus can cause strain to your heart and increase blood pressure in the lung arteries, affecting your heart health.

Although, PDA is a congenital heart defect seen at birth, but it can be missed and identified later on in life at any age. If your baby has a PDA but otherwise is still heart healthy, the PDA may shrink and go away. However, some children and adults require treatments to close their PDA.

How does the PDA affect me?

If the PDA is small, it won’t cause many symptoms or problems with your heart because the blood flow and pressure in the heart and lungs aren’t changed much from normal. The only abnormality that a doctor may find would be a distinctive type of heart murmur.

If the PDA is large or moderate, you may become breathless more easily due to reduced heart function and high pressures in your lungs. High pressure can occur in your lung vessels because more blood is being pumped there than normal. Over time PDA can cause permanent damage to your lung blood vessels.

How does the PDA affect my heart?

Normally the heart’s right side only pumps blood into the lungs and the left side pumps blood to the body. If you have PDA, extra blood is circulated and extra blood get pumped from the body (aorta) artery into the lung (pulmonary) arteries. If your PDA is large, the extra blood being pumped into the pulmonary arteries makes the lungs and heart work harder, and your lungs can become congested.

It’s crucial to pay attention to your heart health to live a healthy and fulfilling life. To get heart healthy today, contact Dr. Gordon Gunn in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211. Visit www.gordongunnmd.com if you would like to learn more about heart health.

Dr. Gordon Gunn proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding areas.

American Heart Month | Live Heart Healthy

Heart Healthy

The month of February marks American Heart Month, the perfect time to get heart healthy. According to the American Heart Association, a devastating 951,000 Americans will be told that they have heart failure this year. Heart disease causes 1 in 4 deaths a year and is the leading death for men and women in the United States.

Fortunately, heart disease can often be prevented when people make healthy choices and manage their health conditions. Striving to live a heart healthy life can be simple if you’re dedicated. Simple changes in your lifestyle can make a big difference in your heart health. Here are some ideas for getting you started toward a heart healthy life:

  • Schedule an appointment with doctor to talk about your heart health. It’s important to schedule regular check-ups, even when you’re not sick. You can partner up with your doctor to set goals to improve your heart health.
  • Add exercise into your daily routine. You could start the day off by talking a 15 minute walk, 3 times a week. Then come mid-month you could increase your time to 30 minute walks, 3 times a week.
  • Increase healthy eating. Start cooking heart healthy meals at least 3 times a week. Also make your favorite recipe lower in sodium by swapping out salt for fresh or dried herbs and spices.
  • Take the first step to quit smoking. If you smoke, quitting the terrible habit can lower your risk for heart disease and stroke.
  • Take your medication as prescribed. If you have high blood pressure or cholesterol, talk with your doctor about the importance of high blood pressure or cholesterol medication. If you’re having any issues taking your medication or have any side effects, contact your doctor.

Take charge and start living a heart healthy life today. For more information regarding your heart health, contact Dr. Gordon Gunn in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211. Visit www.gordongunnmd.com for to learn more about how you can live a heart healthy life.

Dr. Gordon Gunn proudly servers Buena Park, La Miranda, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding areas.

7 Ways to Start the New Year off Heart Healthy

466715409Today marks a New Year which means if you’re looking to get heart healthy, today is the day to start down that path! Being diagnosed with problems such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol should be a wakeup call to start to strive toward a healthier lifestyle. Good news is, there are many ways to prevent and even go about lowering both your high cholesterol and high blood pressure. Some of those way include the following:

  • Lowering Weight/ Maintaining Healthy Weight
  • Eat Heart Healthy Meals
  • Be or get more active
  • Reduce Blood Sugar
  • Manage Blood Pressure
  • Don’t/Stop Smoking
  • Control Cholesterol

Making heart healthy changes before you develop conditions such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol is extremely crucial. Many of us aren’t aware that heart disease is the No. 1 killer in the US, so taking action to keep your heart healthy is very important.

If you’re ready to get heart healthy today, contact Dr. Gordon Gunn in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211 or to visit our website at www.gordondunnmd.com to learn about the Lifestyle Longevity Program that Dr. Gunn offers.

Dr. Gordon C. Gunn proudly serves Buena Park. La Miranda, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding places.

 

5 Tips to Stay Heart Healthy This Holiday Season | Fullerton, CA

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The Holiday season is a time of excitement and anticipation for most, but the change in routine and the increased stress levels can also increase your chance for heart attack or stroke. With that being said, it’s extremely important to keep your heart health in mind during the holidays. The following includes five tips to reduce stress and to keep heart healthy during the Holidays this year:

  • Stay Active- Even during the madness of the holidays, it’s important to stay active, keep your heart health in check and avoid excess weight gain. Try to do active chores around the house, taking your children to the park or even exercising for 15 minutes to reduce stress and keep yourself heart healthy.
  • Eat Healthy- Before you dig into all of the delicious holiday’s meals and sweets, keep your heart health in mind. These heavy meals and sweet treats may have extra calories and sodium, so try eating a healthy snack before indulging these meals to fill you up first and give you the nutrients you need.
  • Don’t Over Do It- It can be quite stressful working holiday parties, events and family get-together’s into your normal routine. During these times you may find yourself having to wake earlier or work later, but make sure not to overexert yourself. Try planning your days ahead of time and assessing what you need to get done and what things you can drop from the list to reduce stress.
  • Drink Wisely- Most holiday parties and festivities typically involve alcoholic beverages, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still make healthy choice. Rather than choosing to drink a sugary cocktail, try choosing a red wine or club soda with your choice of liquor instead.
  • Take Time for Yourself- The holidays are meant to be a joyful and reflective time. Make sure you make time to focus on yourself. Do something that makes you happy like meditating, reading a good book, taking a long bath or cooking something you love. Taking time to treat yourself helps minimize stressors and increases positivity.

If you would like to learn more about living a heart healthy lifestyle, contact Dr. Gordon Gunn in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211 or visit our website at www.gordongunnmd.com for more information.

Dr. Gordon C. Gunn proudly serves Beuna Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding areas.

National Stress Awareness Day | Fullerton, CA

overactive bladder, fullerton

National Stress Awareness is celebrated each year on November 4. This is a day to identify and reduce the stress factors in your life. Whether you’re are dealing with work, relationship or financial related stress, it affects us all differently, and it’s crucial that you deal with stress in a healthy way. National Stress Awareness aims to promote awareness to aid individuals in changing certain behaviors or lifestyles to live more stress free, healthy lives. Negative stress takes a toll on your daily life and your health. It can lead to high blood pressure, obesity, heart disease, anxiety and depression, among other health problems. Fortunately, there are many ways you can go about relieving your stress naturally. Some of those ways include the following:

  • Meditation- When you meditate, you’re focused on the present. Paying attention to your breathing pattern is one way you can focus. Mindfulness stress reduction is a form of meditation that is helpful with managing stress and learning how to better cope with it.
  • Exercise- Whether it’s running or yoga, exercise is one of the best ways to manage and relieve stress. Exercise also releases endorphins into the brain, which improves your mood. Exercise can also prevent obesity and other health problems.
  • Sleep- Sleep is a very important natural stress reliever. Make sure to find the right balance of sleep that allows you to feel well-rested and alert. To promote better sleep, establish a bedtime routine that signals the brain that it’s time to rest.
  • Organization- When your life is more organized, it offers a sense of control and peace of mind. If you’re feeling edgy in your cluttered house, clean up. Or if you the type of person who is always doing running around, make lists so you don’t forget anything.
  • Enjoy Every Day- Make time for the activities that bring you joy, whether it be reading, playing guitar, or working on your car.

To learn about how stress can affect your health, contact Dr. Gordon C. Gunn, MD in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211 or visit www.gordongunnmd.com for more information.

Dr. Gordon C. Gunn proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding areas.

National Breast Cancer Awareness Month | Fullerton, CA

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October is National Breast Cancer awareness month. Breast Cancer is one of the most common cancers among American women, affecting around 230,000 women each year. Raising breast cancer awareness is extremely important as it doesn’t only affect women; but it also affects around 2,300 each year as well. Breast cancer does not discriminate; it affects people of all ages and races. One of the first steps we can take towards effectively identifying and treating breast cancer is by taking preventive action and being aware of the symptoms that come along with this terrible disease. The following list includes breast cancer symptoms that we should all be aware of:

Change in the way breast or nipple feels

  • Nipple tenderness, lump or thickening in or near your breast or underarm area
  • Change in the texture of your skin or enlargement of the pores of your breasts
  • A lump in your breast (even if it’s small make sure to see professional for a screening)

Change in Breast or Nipple Appearance

  • Any unexplained change in size or shape of your breast
  • Dimpling anywhere on your breast
  • Unexplained swelling of your breast
  • Unexplained Shrinkage of your breast
  • Recent unexplained asymmetry of your breast (its common for women to have one breast larger than the other)
  • Your nipple is slightly inward or inverted
  • Skin of your breast, areola, or nipple that becomes red, scaly or swollen or resemble the skin of an orange

Any Nipple Discharge

  • Particularly if you have clear discharge or bloody discharge

 

Most times these symptoms are not due to cancer, but if you have any breast cancer symptoms you should be seen by your doctor immediately to be sure you’re healthy and cancer free. Even if you haven’t experienced any symptoms, it’s still incredibly important to be seen for regular screenings. Your doctor is always able to check for breast cancer before you have any noticeable symptoms.

To schedule a breast cancer screening, contact Dr. Gordon C. Gunn MD in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211 or visit our website at www.gordongunnm.com for more information regarding our services. 

Dr. Gordon Gunn proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding areas.

Do you suffer from Urinary Incontinence? | Fullerton, CA

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An estimated 10 Million people -85% which are women- suffer from urinary incontinence. Urinary incontinence, also known as bladder incontinence, is the loss of bladder control. In some cases, individuals suffer from a total loss of bladder contents or it may just cause minor leakage. This issue is more than just medical problem; it can affect emotional, psychological and social life as well.

There are many people who think urinary incontinence comes with age, but it is actually a symptom that can be caused by many conditions. The causes of urinary incontinence differs between men and women. Urinary incontinence is separated into three different types, and some may experience a mix of the types or all three. The following includes the three different types of urinary incontinence:

  • Stress Incontinence- This type of incontinence occurs when you apply pressure on your bladder by exercising, laughing, sneezing, coughing or lifting something heavy. The activity causes the sphincter to weaken and release urine.
  • Urge Incontinence- Urge incontinence occurs when you feel the sudden, intense urge or need to urinate. Often times, after feeling the urge to go you won’t have time between the urge and the loss of urine to make it to the restroom.
  • Overflow Incontinence- This type occurs when you experience frequent dribbling or urine, due to the fact that your bladder doesn’t empty completely.

If you think you may be suffering from urinary incontinence, contact Dr. Gordon Gunn in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211 to schedule an appointment today or visit our website at www.gordongunnmd.com for more information.

Dr. Gordon Gunn also proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut, and all surrounding areas.

10 Foods that Help Unclog Arteries | Heart Healthy Fullerton, CA

AteryHeart disease is among one of the most deadly killers in the world, killing on average 2,200 thousand Americans a day. These numbers are extremely devastating, and one of the key risks for developing heart disease is clogged arteries. Clogging of the arteries doesn’t happen overnight, and can be caused by diet, genetics and lifestyle choices. However, there are foods that can help unclog your arteries of plaque buildup:

  • Garlic- According to studies, garlic can prevent coronary artery calcification and blood clots, while garlic powder can reduce the buildup of nanoplaque.
  • Chia Seeds- When incorporating chia seeds into your daily diet, this superfood can help keep arteries clear by regulating blood pressure, lowering triglycerides and reducing LDL cholesterol.
  • Coconut Oil- Despite popular belief that all saturated fats are bad, a regular consumption of coconut oil can help reduce plaque buildup in the arteries.
  • Broccoli- This vegetable is loaded with vitamin K which can help prevent the hardening and calcification of arteries. Broccoli can also help prevent oxidation of LDL cholesterol which can lead to serious heart problems.
  • Avocado- Studies have shown that avocado can lead to improved blood cholesterol, while lowering LDL and triglycerides and increasing the HDL, the good cholesterol that help keep arteries clear.
  • Asparagus- Full of fiber and minerals, asparagus is one of the best veggies for clearing arteries. Asparagus can also help lower cholesterol prevent blood clots that could potentially cause serious illness.
  • Green Tea- Green tea contains high levels of catechins, which is an antioxidant plant phenol that hinders the absorption of bad cholesterol during digestion. It can also help reduces blocked arteries and improve blood-lipid levels.
  • Cold-water Fish- Fish rich in healthy fats such as tuna, salmon, mackerel, and sardines can help clear arteries. Eating fish twice a week can help reduce inflammation and plaque buildup that can lead to heart disease.
  • Turmeric- Turmeric’s main component is curcumin which a powerful anti-inflammatory. By adding turmeric to your diet it can help reduce inflammation and damage to your arterial walls which are leading cause to plaque buildup and blood clots.
  • Cranberries- Full of antioxidants, cranberries can help improve cardiovascular health by reducing LDL cholesterol and raising HDL cholesterol levels.

If you would like to learn more about what you can do to stay heart healthy, contact Dr. Gordon C. Gunn at 714-912-2211 or visit our website at www.gordongunnmd.com for more information.

Dr. Gordon Gunn also proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding areas.