GERD Symptoms and Head Elevation While Sleeping

Reflux, sometimes known as Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), is a disease involving the stomach and esophagus. Unlike occasional heartburn we all get from time-to-time, GERD is painful burning in the chest and can even reach your throat and mouth.  Often, it will disrupt your daily activities.  Though not life threatening, you may find that some foods triggers an acid reflux attack.  Some people with GERD have trouble sleeping, because lying down can allow the stomach acid to more easily enter the esophagus.  People with GERD often complain of not sleeping well, or frequently waking throughout the night.  Solving this nighttime problem can bring much needed relief.  One customer of Charron Medical purchased an electric hospital bed to improve her sleep.   

Understanding GERD is the first step on a treatment path.  After your doctor has diagnosed your condition, you will develop a treatment plan together.  It is extremely important that you pay attention to your own individual triggers.  Healthline recommends keeping a journal to record your symptoms and the triggers that might worsen or bring on a reflux event.  Some of the triggers people notice are:

  • Eating meals close to bedtime
  • Spicy foods
  • Wearing tight fitting clothes

Relieving the symptoms of GERD can bring peace and joy back to simple pleasures like enjoying a good night’s sleep.  If nighttime reflux is a problem for you, consider some of these activities to help relieve your GERD symptoms:

  • Don’t lie down after meals.  Stay upright or take a walk.
  • Finish your last meal 2-hours before bedtime
  • Elevate your head while sleeping.  Use a bed wedge or consider buying a hospital bed, to adjust the head up.

Elevating your head while sleeping may reduce esophageal acid exposure and regurgitation, which can happen if you are a nocturnal (nighttime) refluxer.

There is a lot of information on the internet about reflux and GERD.  The American Gastroenterological Association is a good resource.  And some hospitals, like Massachusetts General Hospital, are working every day to develop new and more effective treatments for GERD.

Charron Medical Services carries a variety of bed wedge sizes, to help keep your head elevated after eating and during sleep.  Hospital beds can also be purchased or rented monthly; electric controls allow you to select the right head height for you.  Please call 603-889-7220, if you have questions about our products.

 

Electric Hospital Bed

What is a Seat Lift Chair and which is the best one for me?

A lift chair is an adjustable recliner and lifting seat that is electrically powered. Lift chairs are beneficial for individuals who find it difficult to stand up from a chair. They are controlled with a simple hand control and thereby easy to operate. On better quality chairs, there is a battery back up in place that will provide power in the event of a power outage.

Lift chairs come in different shapes and sizes​ with an array of decor. You can also custom make a seat lift chair with several different positions.

  • 2-Postion is probably the most common, it is also known as the TV Recline position. This position is a comfortable position for watching TV, reading, or just to be in a sitting position.
  • 3-Position is a full recline that puts you in a great position that is ideal for napping.
  • Infinite-Position enables the backrest and footrest to move independently from one another so that a variety of positions can be reached.
  • Trendelenburg Position is also a chair that enables the backrest and foot rest to move independently from one another so that a variety of positions can be reached including a lay-flat position.
  • Zero Gravity Position this position allows you to be in an Infinite variety of positions, and also positions one’s thighs and lower legs higher than his or her torso.

There are two companies right here in the United States that have demonstrated great quality and attention to detail in their work. Golden Technologies are hand crafted with 40 points of inspection and made in Pennsylvania. Pride Mobility, also based in Pennsylvania, have extensive factory testing to ensure outstanding reliability. Most of their chairs are made in Mississippi. We have a wide variety in our show room, you can easliy come down and try one out.  Anyone of our staff can assist you in purchasing and ordering the right one for you.    

                                                                                                

 

What are diabetic shoes and why might they benefit me?

According to the Center for Disease Control there are over 29.5 million people in the US with diabetes; that’s almost 10% of the population. One problem that many diabetics face is problems with blood circulation and neuropathy in the feet. Poorly Controlled blood sugar can damage many parts of the body including nerves and blood vessels that go into the feet. For this reason people with diabetes have an increased risk of developing foot problems. Wearing specially designed diabetic shoes help reduce risks and risks and promote healthy circulations in your feet.

Foot ulceration is a common and debilitating complication of diabetes, affecting approximately 15% of people with diabetes. The long term outcome of foot ulceration is devasting, and substantial poropotion of diabetics (11-26%) develop foot uclerations that progress into amputation.

Studies have shown therapeutic foot wear can decrease ulcers and amputations in diabetic patients. Diabetic shoes or inserts are designed to reduce the risk of skin breakdown with from a pre-exsiting foot problems resulting from diabetes.Some foot problems associated with diabetes ​are impaired sensation or foot pain, some risks of amputaion, and foot ulcers. In clinical trials it has been shown that wearing therapeutic footwear can lower amputation rates by up to 18%, and up to 12% for foot uclers.

Diabetic shoes are designed to have extra depth so they can be accompanied by an insert, arch support, or shoe fillers such as lifts, wedges, or heels. They are also free of seams and joints on the inside of the shoe, so there is less friction and the potential for blisters. The diabetic shoes and custom-molded inserts work together as a preventative system to help diabetics avoid foot injuries and improve mobilty. The shoes and inserts are fitted and customized to each individuals needs through a certified fitter.

Diabetic shoes can be covered by your insurance, but they are also available to purchase in the same way you buy any other pair of shoes. In order to be considered for coverage under your insurance plan you will need to consult with your doctor and have a diagnosis of diabetes mellitus. Medicare has some strict guidelines that are outlined here.  If your doctor has recommended diabetic shoes, or if you have any questions, please call us. We have certified fitters on staff and we carry a wide selection of diabetic shoes to meet the needs of just about anyone.

What can you expect after a hip or knee surgery.

Equipping your home with all the proper tools before you leave to go in for your knee or hip surgery will not only give you peace of mind but can also aid in recovery time. The last thing you want to think about is how you’re going to get into your home or how you’ll bathe during the healing process so here are a few tips to you to get you started. Consult your doctor to fully understand all the equipment and tools necessary for an optimal recovery.

If you’ll be using a walker to help you get around try the EZ-ACCESSORIES Walker Carryon to keep all the necessities near as you get around your house. Mount it on the side, or in the front, the deep pockets will allow you to carry your cell phone, TV remotes, and even beverages, keeping everything within arm’s reach.

If you’re healing from knee surgery you’re not going to want be going up and down, especially when using the restroom. Make the transition easier with the TILT Toilet Incline Lift. With quick and easy installation, this heavy duty lift chair can make your bathroom experience one of ease and comfort.

One thing that should not be overlooked is the entry into your home. If you’re using a walker, crutches or a wheelchair, a TRANSITIONS Modular Entry Mat is just what you’re looking for. Don’t worry about taking the step up when using this mat. It lays flush to any entry, can be trimmed down to fit any height and is made of heavy-duty rubber for a nonslip surface.

Don’t let bathing be a hassle! Any of the EZ-BATHING accessories can make even the most challenging task simple. Between the EZ-SHAMPOO Hair Washing Tray or the  EZ-BATHING Universal Bather which can hook on to any bathing chair or shower wall and keeps all your necessities close, you’ll be able to stay squeaky clean!

Other things to think about as you come home to recover is clearing all the walkways from tripping hazards including rugs, power cords and uneven flooring. If your bedroom is upstairs, it would be a good idea to make arrangements to be downstairs during the recovery process. While you’re at it make sure your bed is low enough to get in and out of. Most importantly, ask for help during this recovery period. The more preparation and help you have the better and quicker recovery can be!

What is stroke?

 

 

​​A stroke is a “brain attack”. It can happen to anyone at any time. It occurs when blood flow to an area of the brain is cut off. When this happens, brain cells are deprived of oxygen and begin to die.When brain cells die during a stroke, body and brain functions controlled by that area of the brain– such as memory and muscle control– can be lost, sometimes temporarily, and sometimes permanently.

  • Each year nearly 800,000 people expierence a new or recurrent stroke.
  • A stroke happens every 40 seconds
  • Stroke is the 5th leading cause of death in the U.S.
  • Up to 80 percent strokes are prevented
  • Stroke is the leading cause of adult disability in theU.S.

There are three types of strokes: ishemic stokes, hemorrhagic strokes, and transient strokes.

Ishemic Stroke 

Ishemic stroke is the most common form of stroke, accounting for about 85% of strokes. This type of stroke is caused by blockages and narrowing of the arteries in the brain. These blockages are often caused by blood clots.

Hemmorrhagic Stroke 

Hemmorrhagic stroke are caused by ateries in the brain either leaking blood or bursting open. The leaked blood puts pressure on brain cells and damages them.

Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA) 

TIA’s are different from the aforementioned kinds of stroke because the flow of blood to the brain is only briefly interrupted. TIA are similar to ischemic stroke in that they are often caused by blood clots or other debris.

A stroke can lead to long-term problems, depending how quickly it is diagnosed and treated. The patient can experience temporary or permanent disabilities in the aftermath of a stroke. The effects of a a stroke can be also be life changing both physically and emotionaly. 

After a stroke you may have a period of time where you may have to rehabilitate. There are many devices that could help you live independantly during this time.

  • Bedrails are good for assisting patients to get out of bed and keeping them from falling out of bed.
  • Grab bars if a person has good upper strength can hold onto the grab bar while moving or standing to provide more support to the body.
  • Shower chairs a patients can sit on during a shower to have better balance.
  • Raise toilet seats help reduce the distance from standing to sitting.
  • Leg strap, dressing stick, sock aides, and grip utensils are also a great aide for indepence.

May is Stroke Awareness month you can log into www.strokassociated.org to get more information on how to help prevent a stroke.​​