Winter Solstice

Guest Author

Guest Author has created 2 entries
  • How to Advocate for Your Health

    By Dylan Foster

    Advocating for one’s health can be a complex task even for those in the best of health. Data show that well over half of American adults have at least one chronic medical condition, which can make health management even more difficult. The following are several ways that you can become a stronger champion for your health.

    Live a Healthy Lifestyle
    A healthy lifestyle is the foundation for good physical and mental health. Make sure to practice healthy eating basics. Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables and make sure to get enough protein, either from plant or animal sources. Minimize processed sugar and drink plenty of water.

    Fitness basics are just as important to your overall well-being. Incorporate cardio, strength and flexibility exercises into your weekly routine. If you have not been working out regularly, start out slowly to avoid injury. Even busy individuals can increase their physical activity by taking the stairs, going for short walks during breaks, or performing a quick exercise routine. Incorporate other forms of self-care into your daily routine, including sleep,
    recreation and relaxation.

    Choose the Right Professionals
    Even the healthiest individuals need at least one medical professional to help them stay well. A primary care physician is an invaluable asset no matter your health status. A primary care doctor performs a variety of tasks, including:
    • Routine physicals
    • Treatment for minor illnesses
    • Coordination of specialist care

    It is important to receive regular dental and eye exams as well. If you have other health concerns, you will likely need to add other specialists to your care team. No matter what type of doctor you are looking for, it is important that you feel comfortable addressing your concerns. Ask friends and family for recommendations and read online reviews.

    If you are an older individual in need of round-the-clock care, a senior living facility may be beneficial. Read reviews and reports online. Ask a loved one to join you when you visit the facility. Research costs and speak with your insurer to determine affordability.

    Speak Up
    Unfortunately, talking to doctors can be difficult. Sometimes, these professionals don’t speak in understandable language or rush to get to the next patient. However, asking questions and voicing concerns is the only way to get the care you deserve. Make a detailed list of questions and concerns before your visit so that you have something to reference while in the office. Consider asking a loved one to join you. They can ask questions you may not have thought of and provide moral support. If your provider has a patient portal, get the registration information from the front desk staff. You can use the portal to send messages to the doctor after the visit if necessary.

    Maintain Your Own Medical Records
    Your personal health record is an important tool when advocating for your health. Write out your medical history, including surgeries and allergies. Ask for medical records from past providers. Medical record requests can often be made electronically, but don’t get discouraged if you have to call or visit in person. If you have medical images in your health record, use an online tool to quickly combine videos and images. Select the images you’d like to share and then download them to your device.

    The human body is complex, and so is the medical system. As a result, managing one’s health can be a daunting task. Advocating for your health, in medical settings and through your daily decisions, is key to overall well-being.

    If you’re facing mental health challenges, the therapists at Winter Solstice Group can help you overcome obstacles. Schedule an appointment.

  • Tips and Resources for Growing Through Grief

    By Lucille Rosetti

    Grief is something most adults have struggled with at some point in their life. Sadly, it’s often misunderstood or swept under the rug. If you’ve lost someone and aren’t sure how to cope, it can feel difficult to know how to manage your feelings. Some days, it might even feel like there’s no hope. The truth is that grief is hard and comes in waves, but there are ways you can use your grief to grow.

    Learning From Grief

    Life is short. No matter where you are in the grieving process, you likely already know this. When you’re grieving, it’s natural to take a look at your own life and goals and consider ways you’ll make the most of your life going forward. For some people, it’s helpful to come up with a new focus or passion. Whether this means picking up a new skill, going back to school, earning a therapy degree to help others who are grieving, or signing up for an online class to stay distracted, it’s okay to work toward your own goals as you grieve.

    Maybe you’re like many people struggling with the way your family is responding to the loss of a loved one. Going back to school to earn a therapy degree or a degree in something you’re passionate about might be a way to help you begin to move forward. For instance, if you’ve always wanted to get into accounting, there are many programs available that can help you get started. And because online schedules are flexible, you’ll be able to start when the time is right for you. The reality is that having an education behind you when it comes to grief can help you navigate emotions you might not have expected.

    Taking Care of Yourself While You Grieve

    If you’re in the early stages of grief, it can be a challenge to maintain routines like exercise. Some people have trouble even getting out of bed and dealing with daily hygiene as they grieve a serious loss. If this is you, it’s important to go easy on yourself and take one day at a time. Start by finding ways to get exercise if you hope to improve your energy levels and begin feeling more like yourself. Something as simple as a daily walk can make a big difference. If you’re working, small adjustments like taking the stairs instead of the elevator can help get you back on track.

    Reaching Out for Help

    Most people benefit from professional mental health support during times of grief. If you’re hesitant about reaching out to a therapist, one way to do it is to schedule an online therapy appointment where you can meet with a professional from the privacy of your home. Not only will you pay less for mental health care, but you’ll also save money on travel and have more therapists to choose from.

    You Don’t Need to Grieve Alone

    At the end of the day, you don’t have to struggle with grief alone, and the healthiest thing you can do for yourself is to surround yourself with support. If you’re not sure where to start, consider reaching out to a fantastic therapist or therapy group in Upland, such as Winter Solstice Therapy, to help guide you through the stages of grief and give you hope.