Archive | December 2022


“New Years Day is also the most hazardous day of the year for pedestrians. Not only are drivers potentially impaired, but those on foot can also ignore traffic lights or crosswalks. If you are walking, make sure to stay on pedestrian paths and observe traffic laws; only cross at crosswalks and try to remain in well-lit areas. If you are driving, take extra care to consider those on foot.  First of all, make sure to check your local regulations regarding personal use of fireworks. If it is illegal or if you are unfamiliar with how they work, leave them to professionals! If you still decide to use legal fireworks, make sure to keep children and pets away from the area – even sparklers, which are often used by kids, burn at temperatures of about 2000 degrees and can be incredibly dangerous. Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose at the ready.  Between fireworks, noisemakers and general revelry, pets can experience high anxiety on New Years Eve. Scared pets can bit or run and potentially get hurt, cause accidents or become lost. The best way to keep pets safe is to keep them indoors and comfortable; consider playing relaxing music to drown out any startling outside noises. ”

American Safety Council (


“Through August 2018, BSE surveillance has identified 26 cases in North America: 6 BSE cases in the United States and 20 in Canada. Of the 6 cases identified in the United States, one was born in Canada; of the 20 cases identified in Canada, one was imported from the United Kingdom.”

Centers for Disease Prevention and Control-CDC (


“Translated as “sickness of disembarkment,” mal de debarquement syndrome (MdDS) is the illusion of movement after movement has stopped. It is caused by exposure and then removal of movement. Many people deal with MdDS after air or sea travel. Typically, MdDS resolves itself within 24 hours. However, for some patients, it can last for months or years.”

Bon Secours (


“This Christmas do 3 ways to actually rest over the holiday.  One don’t indulge! Most people go into all sorts of excess over the holidays. Too much turkey, TV all the time, Netflix binges, football binges, activity after activity, movies every day, etc. Take your pick! It’s certainly available during the holidays!

The reality is that while these things might feel like relief, they don’t really give you rest. The change of scenery might feel nice, and put your brain in a coma for a few days, but it won’t actually relax or reenergize you.

Instead of indulging, purposefully choose a few activities that actually refresh and restore you, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

It’s ok to say “no”.   It is okay to tell yourself, “I don’t have to be at every neighborhood party or holiday gathering.”

As a good friend used to tell me: “Every once and a while, you need to relax enough to get bored.” We often find our most creative moments come when we are bored!

Doesn’t it sound nice to have evenings and weekends that aren’t just go, go, go, all the time? Decide what you’re going to say no to this year. This will allow you to find some space to just “do nothing” for an evening or two.

Lastly, find agreement. 

Make sure you don’t just decide how to rest all by yourself and leave your family members to fend for themselves! True rest isn’t individualistic but takes place in and with community.

So decide as a family what true rest looks like this season. Talk about it, be proactive, honor personality differences, and get on the same page about what’s happening over the holidays. It’s OK if everyone doesn’t do the same thing, just make sure you’re communicating well with those who matter most.”

Five Capitals (

Rest and relief after Christmas so important!

Many people will find themselves burnt out after the festive season instead of refreshed and ready for another working year. It is very important to use the time you have off work to revitalise yourself, relax and spend quality time with your loved ones. This will have fantastic affects on your mindset going into the New Year. An essential aspect of winding down at this time of the year is through sleep and rest.

Sleep is an essential daily body function. Sleep boosts the immune system, repairs muscle and tissue damage, archives memories and helps sort through all the information processed throughout the day. Without enough sleep, we experience fatigue, attention and memory problems, and stress. It’s easy to skip the required amount of sleep during the festive period due to the stress and anxiety associated preparing food, buying presents and entertaining guests. But without enough sleep, alertness and attentiveness is affected, which will take away from your experience and enjoyment.

That is why it is just as important during the festive season, if not more, to make sure you get the recommended 7–8 hours of sleep per night. While you may not be at work, your body may be more physically exerted than it would be in non-holiday weeks, with the additional impact of alcohol and overeating. During this time you may also be more emotionally stressed, which is only intensified with lack of sleep.

Stress and Fatigue

Physical and mental exhaustion are both components of fatigue. Sustaining concentration, attention and alertness is profoundly affected by lack of sleep, symptoms that are unwanted all the time but especially when you want to enjoy yourself over the festive season. Feeling fatigued causes people to feel stressed; around this time of the year when people are already starting to feel overwhelmed, lack of sleep and fatigue will heighten it further and make for an unpleasant holiday.

Sleep and weight control

Sleep is an integral component of weight control. Studies have confirmed that even with healthy eating and exercise, if people do not achieve enough sleep they will have difficulty losing weight. With all the almost unavoidable overindulgences during the festive period, sleep will be an essential part of keeping the weight off.

The after-Christmas-lunch lullRest over the festive season

It is a natural biological function to feel sleepy at around 2pm every day. This is heightened after a big carbohydrate rich meal – or, in other words, by what you will be eating on Christmas Day! When you feel the post-lunch dip it is perfectly okay to have a 20–30 minute nap. Napping is a good way to improve alertness and performance if kept under an hour. This will give you some energy to get ready for the next celebration at Christmas dinner!



“Colds are minor infections of the nose and throat caused by more than 200 different viruses. Rhinovirus is the most common cause, accounting for 10 to 40 percent of colds. Other common cold viruses include coronavirus and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).  A cold may last for about one week, but some colds last longer, especially in children, the elderly and those in poor health.  In the United States, colds account for more visits to the doctor than any other condition.  We also are all at risk for getting and spreading the flu. If you have asthma or other lung diseases, you are at higher risk of developing complications from the flu.  Influenza is a highly contagious respiratory infection.  It’s caused by one of three different viruses, although most serious illness is caused by flu strains A and B.  The best prevention is getting the yearly flu vaccine.”

American Lung Association (


Santa Cruz County Public Health urges residents to take preventive measures against circulating viruses this holiday season. Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) and the flu are causing illness in our local communities, and there is still the continued risk of COVID-19.  As we navigate through respiratory illness season, it’s important to continue basic prevention methods like vaccination, frequent hand washing, and wearing a mask.”

– Central California Alliance For Health-Dr. Cal Gordon, Deputy Health Officer for the County of Santa Cruz  (

Most common illnesses during the holiday season!

Listed below are some of the most common illnesses to watch out for during the holiday season, including a few tips to assist with prevention.

1.) The Common Cold

There are many viruses that can cause the common cold, all with similar symptoms, including: nasal congestion, sore throat, cough, headache, and sometimes fever. While a cold can occur any time of the year, the common cold rears its stuffy head most often during the winter months. There is no cure for the common cold, but rest, hydration and nutrition will help you feel better as your body works through the healing process. Most colds reach the peak of their severity between three and five days of symptom onset, with resolution in about a week.

2.) The Flu

The flu is often mistaken for the common cold. Flu tends to present quickly and severely. Coughing, sore throat, headaches, body aches and high fever, are common flu symptoms. If you develop flu-like symptoms, take fever reducing medication and see your healthcare provider. To assist with prevention, we recommend that everyone in your family receive an annual flu shot.

3.) RSV and Bronchiolitis

Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) is a common virus that usually causes mild, cold-like symptoms, including nasal congestion, cough, fever, wheezing and dehydration. RSV is a significant cause of respiratory illness in young children and older adults. RSV can last one or two weeks and has the potential of becoming serious. In the United States, RSV is the most common cause of bronchitis and pneumonia in children younger than 12 months. Seek medical attention if you or your child have trouble breathing. To avoid spreading the infection, disinfect surfaces and wash your hands regularly.

4.) Strep Throat

Strep throat is a bacterial infection caused by group A Streptococcus and is most common among school-age children. In addition to a sore throat, symptoms can include pain when swallowing, fever, red and swollen tonsils, tiny red spots on the roof of the mouth, and enlarged lymph nodes in the front of the neck. Your doctor can do a swab test to determine if group A strep bacteria is the cause of your sore throat. If positive, antibiotics will be prescribed to help heal the infection, prevent future serious health problems, and avoid spreading the infection to others. Prevent close contact, disinfect surfaces and wash hands regularly to prevent spreading the infection.

5.) Norovirus

Norovirus is a very contagious and common stomach bug that can lead to severe vomiting and diarrhea. Though it can strike at any time of the year, it’s most commonly passed around during the winter months. Common nicknames for the Norovirus is “winter vomiting bug” and “stomach flu”. If you contract a stomach bug, make sure to drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration and seek medical attention if not able to keep fluids down. Symptoms tend to last two to three days. If someone in your family has the norovirus, keep interactions limited and wash your hands regularly.

Prevention is the Best Medicine

It is always important to practice good hygiene, especially when you or those around you are sick. Make sure to wash your hands thoroughly, cover your cough, stay hydrated, and maintain a healthy immune system through proper nutrition. While most of these common illnesses will run their course without any intervention, you should see a doctor immediately if your symptoms worsen.

From striveforgoodhealth’s family to yours, we wish you a safe and happy holiday season (woof!).