March is National Kidney Month, a time when communities across the country raise awareness about kidney disease. In partnership with the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), this year’s focus is the link between high blood pressure and kidney disease. If you have high blood pressure, you’re at risk for chronic kidney disease, a serious condition that can lead to stroke, heart attack, kidney failure, and death. The good news is that you can help protect your kidneys by managing high blood pressure with these 6 healthy lifestyle habits. Take medications as prescribed. Your doctor may prescribe blood pressure-lowering medications that are effective in slowing the development of kidney disease. Aim for a healthy weight. If you are overweight or obese, losing even a small amount of weight can improve blood pressure readings. Select healthier food and beverage options. Focus on fruits and vegetables, lean meat, whole grains, and other heart-healthy foods. Try to quit smoking. If you smoke, take steps to quit. Get enough sleep. Aim for 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night. Manage stress and make physical activity part of your routine. Consider healthy stress-reducing activities and get at least 30 minutes or more of physical activity each day. If you have any questions or concerns, please call the Urology Group of Princeton, at 609.924.6487, to schedule an appointment.
Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. While it is customary for men to get women gifts for this special day, many women will be trying to figure out a way to show their man how much they love them as well. While chocolates, cards, and intimacy is nice, what’s a better way to show him how much you truly care than protecting his health? With prostate cancer being the second most common cancer among men in the United States, encouraging the man in your life to get screened for prostate cancer is the perfect way to show that you want him around for a while. Prostate cancer is also known as the ‘silent killer,’ as many men often do not have any symptoms until the later stages of the disease. Therefore, early detection is key. With early detection, prostate cancer can be beat. Key prostate cancer statistics: 1 in 7 men in the US will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime 2nd most common cancer among US men after skin cancer 2nd leading cause of death in US men after lung cancer 1 in 38 men will die of prostate cancer African-American men have highest risk; more likely to develop aggressive disease, be diagnosed at younger age, and 2.5 times as likely to die from it. Prostate cancer screening involves two main tests: a prostate specific antigen (PSA) blood test and a digital rectal exam (DRE). As of right now, these are the only two widely used tests available that are used in combination to screen for prostate cancer. The PSA test measures the amount of prostate-specific antigen in the blood. Prostate-specific antigen is a biomarker for prostate cancer. The only problem with the PSA test is that it is not specific for prostate cancer. If you have an elevated PSA, it may indicate other conditions besides prostate cancer such as a prostate infection or an enlarged prostate. Two other blood tests have been developed called the PHI test and the 4KScore test, which are becoming more widely used. Compared to the PSA test, the PHI test and 4KScore test are specific for prostate […]
Millions who suffer with urinary incontinence (leakage) feel like their bladder controls their lives. Control depends on muscles working together. When the bladder fills, the bladder muscles should be relaxed and the muscles around the urethra (the tube that urine passes through), called the pelvic floor muscles, should be tight. Exercises that strengthen these muscles can help prevent leakage and calm the urge to go. These are commonly called “Kegel” exercises, named after the doctor who developed them. They can help keep your pelvic floor muscles toned and may reduce your problems with incontinence or frequent urges to urinate. Kegel Exercises to Strengthen your Pelvic Floor Muscles Once you locate your pelvic floor muscles you are ready to begin. The exercise involves squeezing then relaxing your pelvic floor muscles. Squeeze the muscles for five seconds and then relax the muscles for five seconds. Be sure to take the time to relax between squeezes so that your muscles can rest before squeezing again. Each squeeze and relax counts as one repetition. Each set of kegel exercises should include three different positions: 10 repetitions lying down, 10 sitting, and 10 standing. Do one set in the morning and one set at night (or at least twice a day). Control Your Pelvic Floor Muscles. It may take some practice to learn to control your pelvic floor muscles. When doing the kegel exercises, relax your body as much as possible and concentrate on your pelvic floor muscles. To avoid using your stomach muscles, rest your hand lightly on your belly as you squeeze your pelvic floor muscles. Be sure that you do not feel any movement of your stomach. Do not hold your breath. To test whether you are tightening the wrong muscles, squeeze your pelvic floor muscles while sitting in front of a mirror. If you see that your body is moving up and down slightly, you are also using your buttocks or thigh muscles. When done properly, no one should be able to tell that you are squeezing your pelvic floor muscles – except for you. How Often Should I Exercise? Do […]