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Your Compass MONTHLY
FROM THE DESK OF Ty Wilson
It’s a great time of year —we are officially in the fall season! The weather should start cooling off. Baseball season is coming to an end, and if you are a political person, there is an election coming up next month. We are rapidly finishing out this year. I feel like this year has really buzzed by. Having children makes you notice suddenly that your children are growing up and becoming more and more mature. You realize that little baby that you thought you would never stop changing diapers for now is a grown child that you feel like you spend more time driving around for their schedules more than your own. I often think, there will be a day when I miss the craziness. When that thought appears, I smile and enjoy the madness as it is happening. The one constant is change. Just when you get use to something, mark my words, something will change. Speaking of change, my firm is open to suggestions on topics for the newsletter, please let me know if have suggestions.
People do all sorts of things to wake themselves up. Some go through countless cups of coffee, some go on quick morning jaunts through the neighborhood, and some even spray themselves with energizing face mist. Whatever your preferred wake-up method is, chances are that you struggle to drag yourself out of your warm bed every once in a while. However, teenagers struggle more than most with both waking up and sleeping. Teenagers often have the reputation of sleeping too much, but the actual data detailing teens’ sleep habits might surprise you. While The Sleep Foundation recommends that teens get nine or more hours of sleep each night, they concluded that over 75 percent of teens are nowhere close to reaching that amount. Sleep researchers refer to adolescents and their sleep patterns as “the perfect storm.”Many factors can reduce sleep among young people, but in general, there are two main types of causes: behavioral (the psychological, societal, and cultural features of a teen’s life) and biological (the brain processes that regulate the amount and timing of sleep). Biological factors, in particular, appear to undergo significant changes during adolescence. Teens’ daily physical clocks seem to slow down and lag behind as they progress through their middle school and high school years. IS YOUR TEEN SLEEPING ENOUGH? The 8-Hour Block Might Not Be the Best Option
While modern sleep experts tout the consecutive eight-hour sleep regimen (or nine hours for teens), historically, people approached their nightly routines quite differently. Before the
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Industrial Revolution, people would sleep in two four-hour sessions with a “waking period” of two hours in between. During this waking period, people were surprisingly active. They often got up, used the restroom, smoked tobacco, and even visited neighbors. Others stayed in bed, where they would read or write by candlelight. By the 1920s, the idea of having two sleep sessions each night had receded entirely from social consciousness. Historians attribute this shift to improvements in street lighting and domestic lighting, along with a surge in coffee houses. As night became a time for greater activity, the length of time people could dedicate to rest dwindled. In an attempt to find a cure for teens’ sleep problems, modern psychiatrists conducted sleep studies to understand how the human body regulates itself when outside stimuli, like televisions, phones, and even unnatural light, are removed. Their discoveries were two-fold. First, they found that after the fourth week of the
study, their subjects unknowingly reverted to a sleep routine consisting of two four- hour segments. Second, they learned that the sleepers of today are far more anxious about their sleep schedules than their ancestors. The psychologists determined that a consolidated block of sleep could be damaging if it makes people who wake up at night anxious, as this anxiety can prohibit sleep and is likely to seep into waking life too. Furthermore, they suggest that the waking period between sleeps, when people were forced into periods of rest and relaxation, could have played an important part in the human capacity to regulate stress naturally. It’s easy for parents to feel concerned about their teens’ sleep schedules. Between telling them to go to bed at a decent hour, waking them up early to catch the bus, watching them physically exert themselves on the soccer field, and helping them understand complex chemistry equations, parents get a firsthand view of their kids’ energy-draining daily routines. Often, just having a little more
information about sleep in general can help assuage any fears or concerns parents feel about the number of hours their teens spend in bed.
Have a Fun and SAFE Halloween! Even the Most Frightening Ghouls Need to Be Careful
Happy Halloween, you goblins, ghouls, witches, and spooks! It’s that time of year again when kids and adults alike can dress up and roam the streets as their favorite heroes, frights, or princesses. While kids are eager to show off their outfits and fill their pillowcases with sugary treasures, it’s crucial to be aware of the potential dangers on Halloween night. Practice Street Safety Make sure your kids understand basic road safety. According to Safe Kids Worldwide, “Children are more likely to be struck by a vehicle and killed during Halloween than any other day of the year.”
over basic safety tips. Teach kids to look both ways before crossing, use crosswalks and traffic signals, cross streets on the corners, and never run across the street. Making eye contact with drivers before walking in front of their cars is also a good way to make sure the driver knows the child is there. Choose Smart Costumes Halloween wouldn’t be Halloween without costumes! They should be fun, but you can also make them safer by following a few simple guidelines. Add reflective tape to candy bags and costumes and wear light colors to stand out in the dark. Buying or making the right- sized costumes is also important. If they’re too large, they create a tripping hazard, and if they’re too tight, they can restrict movement.
If your child wears a mask, make sure they can see out of it properly.
Make a Plan Before heading out to trick or treat, create a plan and discuss it with every member of your family. This ensures that if someone in your group wanders off, they’ll know where to look for you or where to go. In case you’re separated, label your child’s costume with your name, address, and phone number. If your children are old enough to trick or treat without adults, make sure that their cellphones are charged and on them at all times, and schedule regular check-ins.
Before heading out for some good old- fashioned trick-or-treating, take the time to go
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Options Beyond Pain Medication
When to Talk to a Physical Therapist Pain that lasts less than 90 days is considered acute; anything over that is chronic. When a condition becomes chronic, it’s recommended that you speak to a physical therapist about the pain you’re experiencing instead of continuing painmedication. The CDC guidelines note that non-opioid therapies are “preferred” for chronic pain and state, “Clinicians should consider opioid therapy only if expected benefits for both pain and function are anticipated to outweigh risks to the patient.”
If you go to your doctor with pain, chances are they’ll prescribe you pain medication. While painmedication can help in certain situations, such as acute pain, cancer treatment, and end-of-life care, in others, it’s not always the only solution. Relying too heavily onmedication for chronic pain can lead to bigger problems. Tomanage long-lasting pain, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC, highly recommends seeing a physical therapist. The Benefits of Physical Therapy When you suffer from chronic pain and take painmedications to cope, you’re not solving the problem. The pills only mask the pain, but the issue remains. A physical therapist works to resolve the problems causing the pain andmanage pain by strengthening the affected part of the body. Instead of relying on prescription drugs, a physical therapist helps relieve pain through education, hands-on care, andmovement. Myths About Physical Therapy Youmay have heard that physical therapy is painful or that a center will only accept someone who has been injured, but that’s not true. Physical therapy works with a patient’s range of motion and limitations to heal and restore their body’s proper function. The PT’s goal is to relieve your pain, not create it. Patients include older people experiencing age-related wear and tear, athletes, and individuals hurt in accidents. Physical therapists specialize in restoringmobility and relieving pain as well as detecting and diagnosing problems before they become worse.
Suffering frompain doesn’t have to be part of your life, and there are other solutions than relying onmedication.
Take a Break!
Spiced Pumpkin Seed Crunch
1 large egg white
1/4 cup shelled sunflower seeds
1 teaspoon light agave syrup
1/4 cup raw cashews, coarsely chopped
1/2 teaspoon garammasala or curry powder
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Nonstick vegetable oil spray
1/4 cup shelled pumpkin seeds
DIRECTIONS 1. Heat oven to 300 F. 2. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray. 3. In a mixing bowl, whisk together egg white, agave, salt, and spices. Add nuts and seeds and toss until evenly coated. 4. Using a slotted spoon, strain spoonfuls of mixture over bowl
and transfer to baking sheet. Discard excess egg white mixture.
5. Bake 20–25 minutes, tossing once. 6. Let cool and serve.
Solution on page 4
Recipe Inspired by epicurious.com
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Inside This Issue From the Desk of Ty PAGE 1 Teenagers and Sleep PAGE 1 Trick-or-Treating Safety PAGE 2 Physical Therapy vs. Pain Medication PAGE 3 Spiced Pumpkin Seed Crunch PAGE 3 Take a Break! PAGE 3 Ways to Support a Recovering Loved One PAGE 4
GOING BEYOND ‘GET WELL SOON’ 3 Meaningful Ways to Support Recovery
If you’ve ever had a friend or loved one suffer a debilitating injury, you know how powerless you can feel to help. You want to make a difference, but in the face of severe medical challenges, it can be hard to know how. It’s important to remember that, while you may not be able to have a direct impact on your loved one’s physical recovery, there are concrete actions you can take to support them in ways doctors can’t.
Support their everyday life. Traumatic injuries can make many aspects of day-to-day life difficult or impossible. Simply making dinner or taking their kids to school may now be herculean tasks for your loved one. Offering to be a volunteer driver or preparing a home-cooked meal can give that person a much-needed breather. Taking the time to help your friend with everyday tasks is more than just a practical gesture — it lets them know they don’t have to bear the burden of their injury alone. Support their emotional recovery. People faced with injuries, disabilities, and illnesses can feel emotionally isolated from
their friends and loved ones. They may feel that others won’t understand their pain or that they should put on a brave face and not complain. You can’t force your friend to talk about their issues, but simply being there to listen to what your friend is going through makes a world of difference. Having someone who is willing to listen without judgment can provide a salve for emotional hardship. Support their rights. Sometimes an injury can leave your loved one tangled up in disputes with opportunistic insurance companies or individuals they feel are responsible for their injuries. While you may not be able
to represent your friend’s legal interests in these situations, you can introduce them to someone who can. Referring your friend to a personal injury firm you trust can help them chart a path toward just compensation for their injuries.
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