We usually tend to forget what is really pressing at the moment and we turn our thoughts to things that reflect what is really important to us, such as our family and friends.
At WGTS 91.9, we always want to hear your story, feel free to share your thoughts on the hurricane, or whatever may be in your heart here
Here are a few tips to prepare yourself and your family for Hurricane Irene:
-Have cash because with no power, there will be no access to ATM machines.
-Fill up your tank with gas before the electricity shuts down at gas stations.
-Have fully charged phones, in case of power failure. Keep in mind that you may not have any service at all.
-Carry extra batteries and have a radio by your side to keep you updated on the storm.
-Make sure you have enough supplies for your pets, because most emergency shelters will not allow pets.
-Be prepared with non-perishable food for several days and a manual can opener for canned foods. Also, grocery shopping should be done by today, just in case the stores close because of power failure or if their are long lines.
-Have enough bottle water and water for bathing and flushing of the toilet.
-As for cleaning, be sure to trim any tree branches that may be harmful during the storm. If you have any patio furniture or loose plants outside, it would be safe to bring them inside or secure them. Clean out your rain gutters and make sure storm drains are not blocked.
To create a safety kit click here
Family Safety Tip: Cell Phone Radiation
On Tuesday, scientists at the World Health Organization announced that the agency will now list mobile phone use in the same “carcinogenic hazard” category as lead, engine exhaust and chloroform.
There haven’t been enough long-term studies to make a clear conclusion if radiation from cell phones is safe, but there was enough data to persuade the WHO of a possible connection.
Cell phones use non-ionizing radiation, which doesn’t damage DNA the way ionizing radiation does. The cell phone radiation operates more like very low power microwaves, but nobody really likes to think of leaning their face on a low-powered microwave.
If the WHO’s labeling of cell phone use as “possibly carcinogenic to humans” has gotten you alarmed, here are some quick basic tips to limit your exposure.
- Get wired
It’s no coincidence that most cell phones come with a wired ear piece.
A wired headset will automatically decrease your radiation exposure because the phone is away from the body. Every inch you can get away from the body reduces the amount of radiation you are absorbing.
A wired headset may still transmit radiation through the wire – but it is a very low level. If that is a concern, you can buy a ferrite bead for just a few bucks at most electronic stores. It attaches to the wire and it absorbs any radiation traveling through the wire, reducing how much enters your body.
And it’s not too inconvenient. CNN’s chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta said he uses an earpiece because his neck doesn’t hurt as much after being on a long phone call. Gupta: Cell phones, brain tumors and a wired earpiece
– Use the speakerphone
This could get quite annoying, if you’re in a public place. But experts say that using the speakerphone function is helpful because you’re keeping the phone away from your brain. Every inch you can get the phone away from your body reduces the radiation. For example, holding out the cell phone by two inches drops the radiation by a factor of four, Magda Havas, an associate professor with the Institute for Health Studies at Trent University in Ontario, Canada, had told CNN.
But try not to share your conversation with the whole world. Thanks.
– Don’t wear Bluetooth all the time
Bluetooth wireless earpieces will expose you to some radiation. However, it would be much less radiation than a cell phone.
The problem is that most people wear their Bluetooth all the time. And this isn’t a good look on anyone.
If you use a Bluetooth device, switch it from ear to ear so you don’t have too much exposure on one side. Just take it out of your ear when you aren’t on the phone.
– Radiation hot spots
Cell phones don’t always emit the same level of radiation. For example, your phone will emit the most radiation when connecting to cellular towers.
But a moving phone (like if you are talking while driving) will continually connect to towers that come in and out of range – and this automatically increases power to a maximum as the phone repeatedly attempts to connect to a new antenna. A weak signal will also cause your phone to work harder, giving off more radiation. So avoid using your phone in elevators, buildings and rural areas. Research shows your device emits more radiation when transmitting than when receiving.
– Read the fine print
Most of us ignore those manuals that come with our gadgetry. But most cell phone safety manuals tell consumers to not keep the phone next to their head, or even in your pocket. Apple iPhone 4 says 5/8 inch away from the body when transmitting. And the BlackBerry Bold says to keep it least 0.98 inch from your body when the BlackBerry device is in use.
If you keep it next to your body, the manufacturers can’t guarantee that the amount of radiation you’re absorbing will be a safe level.
– Don’t talk, text
If you don’t want to hold the phone next to your face all the time, send text messages or use your email or messaging services if you have a smartphone. This way you avoid putting the phone to your head altogether.
And our friends at CNN Tech say the general rule of thumb is that the smarter the phone, the more radiation.
CNN’s John Sutter contributed to this blog.
Family Safety Tip: Kids and Energy Drinks
Sports and energy drinks are hugely popular with kids. But the nation’s pediatricians are not such big fans. They’re now telling kids to lay off the energy drinks, and to use sports drinks only when they really need them — like when they’re playing sports.
A new clinical report from the American Academy of Pediatrics warns that energy drinks, or any other drink with caffeine, should be off limits to children and teenagers. That includes colas and coffee drinks.
Caffeine not only interferes with sleep, it can cause anxiety, raise heartbeats, and increase the risk of dehydration. “There’s great concern about what [caffeine] does over time or in high doses to a young, growing body that’s not fully mature,” says Dr. Holly Benjamin. She is a pediatric sports medicine specialist at the University of Chicago, and coauthor of the new report, which was published in Pediatrics. “It’s almost like a stress to your body.”
Sports drinks don’t have that problem, but they do have sugar as the primary ingredient. That causes another problem. “Kids will drink a Gatorade after school,” Benjamin says. “They’ll drink a Gatorade at lunch. They’ll drink a Gatorade with dinner.”
All that sugar can contribute to obesity and tooth decay, the pediatricians say. Instead, children and teenagers should be drinking water, and lots of it. They also should be drinking two glasses of low-fat milk daily (lots of good protein, vitamin D, and calcium), and perhaps one or two glasses of juice. Benjamin says: “Other than that it’s water, water, water.”
Family Safety Tip: Sunscreen
After testing 22 spray-on, cream and lotion sunscreens, Consumer Reports gave top honors to the least-expensive products. The magazine recognized three “Best Buys” that provided excellent water-resistant protection for less than 88 cents per ounce:
Up & Up Sport SPF 30 by Target
No-Ad with Aloe and Vitamin E SPF 45
Equate Baby SPF 50
Family Safety Tip:
Gov’t warns kids’ tabletop chairs not safe
The Associated Press
The Consumer Product Safety Commission says children could be hurt in certain versions of the “metoo” clip-on tabletop chairs imported by Colorado-based phil&teds USA Inc. The CPSC says numerous children – believed to be about a dozen – have been injured.
The chairs have metal clamps that attach to most table tops, such as a restaurant table. The CPSC says those clamps can easily come loose, causing the chair to detach and sending the child plummeting to the floor.
Fingers or hands can also be pinched or crushed when the chairs partially detach from a table, catching a child’s fingers or hands between the clamp and a metal bar on the front of the chair.
The commission says the company refused to agree to a national recall that was acceptable to the agency.
A call to the company in Fort Collins seeking comment was not immediately returned.
The clip-on chairs involved in the commission’s warning do not have plastic spacers between the table clamps and the front metal bar.
The company also has clip-on chairs with plastic spacers between the clamps and bar – and those chairs are under investigation, the CPSC said.
On its website, the company is offering rubberized grips to cover the chair’s clamps. CPSC spokesman Scott Wolfson says the grip replacement kits being offered by phil&teds will not keep children safe in the seat.
“Even with those rubber boots, the chair can still slip off a table,” said Wolfson. “We believe the company needs to come up with a free remedy that will prevent children from falling or having an amputation hazard if one side of the chair detaches.”
The commission said the company had claimed on its website to be offering the replacement kits in cooperation with the CPSC. The commission says there was no such agreement and maintains the kits fail to keep children safe in the chair.
The “metoo” chairs have been sold at nationwide retailers such as Target and Toys R Us as well as online.
Family Safety Tip: How to talk to your kids about Osama bin Laden
It’s all over the news, and your kids are listening and watching. Maybe you’re getting the question: ”Mommy…why are people happy that Osama bin Laden was killed?
The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry has some advice for how to approach a discussion with your child about recent terrorism related events, like the killing of Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden:
1. Wait until your child is ready to talk, don’t force a conversation. Help them express themselves, through art or writing.
2. Answer a child’s questions honestly, using age appropriate concepts for their level of understanding. Don’t overload a child with too much information.
3. Be prepared to repeat explanations or conversations. Asking the same questions over may be your child’s way of asking for reassurance.
4. Avoid stereotyping groups of people by race, nationality, or religion. Use the opportunity to teach tolerance and explain prejudice.
5. Don’t let children watch lots of violent or upsetting images on TV. Repetitive frightening images or scenes can be very disturbing, especially to young children. Children who have experienced trauma or losses may show more intense reactions to tragedies or news of war or terrorist incidents. These children may need extra support and attention.
“Watching, reading, or examining the news together is the best way to gauge a child’s reaction and to help a child or teen deal with the information”, according to Robin F. Goodman, Ph.D. , a clinical psychologist specializing in bereavement issues. “In discussing what is viewed or heard when together, parents and professionals become informed about how the children processed the material and how they feel about it.”
Continue reading on Examiner.com: Osama bin Laden killed: Talking to kids about terrorism and war – Providence Children’s Health | Examiner.com http://www.examiner.com/children-s-health-in-providence/osama-bin-laden-killed-talking-to-kids-about-terrorism-and-war#ixzz1LCC0HGuk
Family Safety Tip: Lock Your Meds
Lock Your Meds™ is a new national campaign from the National Family Partnership to inform families that they are frequently the “unintentional suppliers” of prescription medications being abused by young people.
The CDC lists prescription drug abuse as the fastest-growing drug problem among 12-17 year olds.One in five high school students in the U.S. admits to having taken a prescription drug without a prescription.The number of teens going into treatment for addiction to prescription drugs has increased by more than 300%.
Emergency room visits for prescription drug abuse have more than doubled since 2004, and 48% of all ER hospital visits for prescription drug abuse are by young people ages 12-20.
Prescription drugs are now involved in more overdose deaths than heroin and cocaine, combined.The National Family Partnership is the largest and oldest drug-prevention group in the United States, and in 1988 developed “Red Ribbon Week” into the annual campaign that now reaches more than 80 million people each year, mobilizing parents, schools and communities. As the nation’s oldest and largest drug prevention group, the National Family Partnership is committed to keeping families informed.
It’s a good idea to put away your prescription drug medication and make sure your children’s Grandparents do as well.
For more information go to: http://www.lockyourmeds.org/
Family Safety Tip: How to talk to your kids about Japan
With all the coverage of the devastating Japan earthquake on TV, many children may have questions regarding what is going on. Here are some guidelines on talking to your kids about the disaster, adapted from material provided by the National Child Traumatic Stress Network, headquartered at UCLA in Westwood.
1. Develop an environment that supports communication.
2. Answer children’s questions truthfully.
3. Express your own thoughts and concerns; it can help children talk about their own feelings as well.
4. Monitor children’s exposure to disaster-related media coverage.
5. Monitor adult conversations in front of children about the disaster.
6. Identify ways for your child to help. Children gain self- esteem and a sense of how to respond constructively.
7. Are there families at your school who may have suffered loss or worry about family living in Japan? Providing support to these families and children can also be a helpful step.
8. Use this time to talk with your children about the needs of others who may be in difficult circumstances, both in Japan as well as in your community. Consider ways that your family may want to address these needs.
Family Safety Tip: Teaseproof Your Kids
We say this 2 Step plan called Teaseproof Your Kids inspired by a second grade teacher named Mr. Mendoza. He taught his students two tricks to help make them less desirable targets for bullies.
First, you cultivate a cool look. “This teacher had the kids practice standing with their hands in their pockets, rocking back on their heels, and putting a cool grin on their face.”
Next, you have a one-liner ready to let the other kid know that she has no power over you, that you’re really not hurt or affected at all by her words. The line Mendoza suggests is, “Thanks for sharing that with me.”
Family Safety Tip: Childproofing a Fireplace
When your son starts to use the fireplace poker as a lightsaber you know it’s probably time to childproof the fireplace.
- Store matches, lighters or gas ignition keys in a secure location out of the reach of children. A childproof container that you keep on the mantel would work. You can also keep them in a locked drawer in a separate room
- Lay a foam hearth cushion over the brick or stone fireplace hearth. This protects children from the sharp edges of the hearth stones and from the impact of falling.
- Surround the fireplace area, including the hearth, with a fireplace gate. These gates keep children and pets away from the fireplace and hearth. They come in a variety of colors, so you can match them to your decor.
- Store fireplace tools, such as stoker and ash pans, inside the gated area so that children cannot pull them down on top of themselves.