Patient Resource Center

20066 N Rand Rd - STE C Palatine, IL 60074-2014 Phone: 847-359-4607 Fax: 847-359-4650

Sticking to New Year’s Resolutions

Posted on: December 14th, 2017 by Medserv Blogger No Comments

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the back of your mind, you may find yourself worrying about one thing: those New Year’s Resolutions.

It’s not quite time to start making them yet, but it’s coming up fast. Only 8 percent of people who make them end up meeting their goals. Maybe you’ve been one of the lucky ones in the past, but more than likely, you’re one of the 92 percent who aren’t able to follow all the way through.

Many people make the resolution to lose weight, eat healthier and exercise more. We applaud all that, and want to help you stick to those goals as much as possible. If you are planning attempting those things in the New Year, here are three ways you can trick yourself into doing so:

  • Tell someone…. Or don’t!

 

Statistics say different things when it comes to telling others about your goals. Some studies show you are more likely to stick to goals when you have someone keeping you accountable. Others say you are more likely to break your goal if you tell everyone about it. Find out which category you fit in and go with it. If you’ve told people in the past, stay quiet this time! If you usually don’t tell people about your goals, find someone who will hold you accountable this time around.

 

  • Don’t use up your willpower tank

 

They say that willpower works like a gas tank: the more of it you use, the harder it is for you to resist temptation the next time it comes around. Keep your willpower tank full by planning for triggers that can cause you to lapse back into bad habits. Or, allow yourself to have very small cheats—in fact, build them into your daily diet plan. This will keep your willpower tank full, while not breaking your (diet) bank.

 

  • Put your money where your mouth is

 

You’ve heard of a swear jar… now start using the diet and exercise jar! Every time you fail to go to the gym or eat something you shouldn’t, put some money in a jar. Designate a charity or religious organization that you want to donate to, and then give them the contents of the jar once a week.

We love helping people succeed in their health goals! That’s why we carry the items that we do in our online catalog. Why don’t you check it out now?

Holiday Travel and Your CPAP

Posted on: December 7th, 2017 by Medserv Blogger No Comments

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Whether you’re flying or driving, CPAP users will find a unique set of obstacles during their travels. But with the right preparation and knowledge, you and your CPAP can travel with ease.

 

  • Bring a travel CPAP machine.

 

Just like other forms of technology, CPAP machines have been getting smaller over time. However, the most compact ones are those made for travel. Because of their smaller size, travel CPAP machines are also easier to use in the compact space of a plane, car or hotel room. Some of them even have a DC mobile adapter added to them, so you can plug in while your partner drives.

 

 

  • You cannot be prevented from using your CPAP machine on the plane.

 

Make sure you alert your flight staff that you will require the use of a CPAP machine if you’re on an overnight flight. Since it is a medical device, you legally cannot be denied the use of your CPAP machine. However, many airlines only offer outlets in business or first class sections of the plane, so plan accordingly.

 

  • The TSA will likely examine your CPAP machine for explosives.

 

This is what’s known as an ETD, or Explosive Trace Detection. TSA officials will run a white cotton swab over the surface of your machine and test it for traces of explosives. Most TSA officials have seen a CPAP machine come through their line before, so it’s doubtful they will give you much trouble. Just like a laptop, you can leave all your supplies in the bag while they examine the machine itself.

 

 

While you may be tempted to skip out on your sleep apnea therapy during the holidays, Medserv encourages you to stay compliant. Without your CPAP machine, you may find yourself falling asleep during family gatherings or being short with those around you. If you need a travel CPAP machine for your next trip, check out our online catalog to see what we have in stock!

It’s Exam Time! Getting Tested for Sleep Apnea

Posted on: November 19th, 2017 by Medserv Blogger No Comments

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More than likely, you haven’t attended school in years. But that doesn’t mean you’re done with tests. In fact, some of the most important exams you’ll take in your life are yet to occur. So, get out your pencils and put on your study music—we’re going to get you ready for a sleep test!

Sleep apnea is a common condition in America, but many people aren’t aware they have it. If you wake up each morning feeling as if you haven’t slept a wink, you might have sleep apnea. If a partner has noticed you gasping in the night or has complained of excessive snoring, you might have sleep apnea. And if you find yourself falling asleep during inappropriate times during the day you might—you guessed it—have sleep apnea.

Should you demonstrate some of the major symptoms of sleep apnea, it’s highly likely that your doctor will order a sleep test for you. There are a couple of different options, including:

 

Lab Sleep Test

 

Formally referred to as nocturnal polysomnography, this sleep test takes place in a lab. You will be hooked up to equipment that will monitor a variety of things, including activity from your heart, lungs and even your brain waves. Your breathing will also be measured, as will any movement by your arms and legs.

 

Home Sleep Test

 

Some doctors may choose to have you evaluate your own sleeping patterns via a home sleep test. This will allow your results to come from your normal sleeping environment. Your sleep center will give a machine that gathers different data on you as you sleep. Don’t worry about knowing how to use it—they will show you before you go home.

 

Prepping for the Sleep Test

 

No matter where you do your sleep test, it’s important to follow your normal daily routine as close as possible. You should avoid napping during the day and limit your caffeine intake in the afternoon.
If your tests do come back positive for sleep apnea, we’re here to help! We carry everything you need to get this condition under control, including CPAP and BiPAP machines. You can even set up an appointment with one of our respiratory therapists to learn how to use your new equipment.

How to Keep from Getting Caregiver Burnout This Holiday Season

Posted on: November 12th, 2017 by Medserv Blogger No Comments

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As a caregiver, you’ve probably given more of yourself than you ever thought possible. During the holidays, you may find yourself giving even more. This time of year is so taxing that many people in your position find themselves going through a burnout. Today, we have three tips that can help you get through the holiday season:

  1. Keep Your Routine

Gatherings, shopping trips, and reunions can make it difficult to maintain a steady routine. Avoid over-scheduling and try to stick as close as possible to your regular schedule. If you cannot make it to every holiday event, don’t be afraid to say so.

  1. Start New Traditions

 

When you first found yourself taking on the role of caretaker, you no doubt found your life changing dramatically, taking on a “new normal.” Likewise, your holidays may need to take on a new normal, as there are some traditions that may just be out of reach. Work with your loved one to create rituals that will accommodate both of you and that still encompass your sense of the season.

 

  1. Focus on what you can control

 

Perhaps one of the most frustrating things to face as a caretaker is the loss of control. You can’t control the how the health condition is affecting your loved one, and you can’t control how much of your time is taken away from you. During the holidays, this can be especially apparent as you have to say “no” to invitations that you would like to say “yes” to.

 

While you can’t control the circumstances, you can control your attitude. A positive outlook can help increase your energy, mood and productivity, which can translate into being able to do more during the holidays.

Remember to take a step back and allow some self-care during this hectic time of year. If you need any other tips on how to make this time of year better for you and your loved one, stop by and talk to our experts! We have the tools you need to ensure they can remain safe and comfortable in their own home.

Don’t Let Your Mobility Aid Cause You to Have a Fall!

Posted on: October 8th, 2017 by Medserv Blogger No Comments

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Falls are the number-one reason why senior citizens are hospitalized each year, with 29 million falls occurring in 2014 alone. Of those, the CDC found that 47,000 involved the use of a walker, rollator or cane. That’s why it’s so important to be sure you’re using your walking aid properly. Today, Medserv Equipment Corp. is going to give you some tips on how to avoid a fall when using mobility aid:

  • Make sure that it’s the proper height. No matter which device you’re using, your arms shouldn’t be bent or raised in an uncomfortable way.
  • Place the device in front of you and step into it. This is true of both a cane and a walker, and it shouldn’t be placed so far in front that you have trouble stepping into it.
  • Use proper posture. If you are hunched or slouched over, this will make it easier for you to sustain a fall while using your mobility aid.
  • When getting up and down from a chair, put your mobility aid in front of you and push up. Trying to grasp it after you’ve stood up could cause you to fall.
  • Make sure your path is cleared of anything that could trip you up, such as rugs, cords and other clutter.

In addition to using your cane or walker properly, there are some other things you can do to prevent experiencing a fall, such as:

  • Exercising regularly.
  • Finding out from your doctor if your medications will have side-effects such as making you dizzy, tired or weak.
  • Get your eyes checked regularly to make sure your prescriptions are still working as they should.
  • Revamp your home environment to make sure it’s safe. This includes installing bathroom safety equipment such as grab bars, raised toilet seats and shower chairs.

For more tips on how to avoid a fall, talk to the experts at Medserv Equipment Corp. We can demonstrate in person how to best use a walker, rollator or cane and help you avoid a costly trip to the emergency room!

Do You Have Sleep Apnea? Take Our Quiz!

Posted on: October 1st, 2017 by Medserv Blogger No Comments

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Approximately 5-20 percent of Americans live with obstructive sleep apnea, but it’s not obvious to everyone they could be living with this condition. It’s estimated that up to 80 percent of those who have sleep apnea are undiagnosed, mainly because they don’t realize they’re exhibiting one of the major symptoms.

Often, the first sign is excessive or loud snoring. However, not everyone who snores has sleep apnea, and sleep apnea can have many other symptoms. The risk of having this condition varies with someone’s age, height, weight and current health conditions.

Here at MedServ Equipment Corp. , we have come up with a quiz to help you determine if you or a loved one may be struggling with untreated sleep apnea:

Have you or your bed partner witnessed any gasping or choking during sleep?

  • Yes
  • No

 

Have you or your bed partner witnessed a stop or pause in breathing?

  • Yes
  • No

 

Do you have to sit upright to get better sleep?

  • Yes
  • No

 

Do you visit the bathroom frequently when you wake up at night?

  • Yes
  • No

 

Do you snore in any sleep position?

  • Yes
  • No

 

Have you or your bed partner seen an increase in weight?

  • Yes
  • No

 

Do you find yourself struggling to stay awake, even after a full night’s rest?

  • Yes
  • No

 

Do you struggle with depression?

  • Yes
  • No

 

 

If you have answered yes for four or more questions, you might want to think about setting up an appointment with your doctor. They will be able to refer you to a local sleep test center to see if you live with sleep apnea.

 

For further questions about sleep apnea or CPAP equipment, contact MedServ Equipment Corp. today! Our experts can help you pick out the equipment that’s right for you.

3 Things You Should Know About Compression Therapy

Posted on: September 20th, 2017 by Medserv Blogger No Comments

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Compression therapy helps increase circulation in your legs via the special socks that support your veins. By helping to prevent blood pooling in leg veins, compression therapy diminishes leg swelling and helps to prevent any other complications. To avoid future problems, it’s important to know these three things about these super socks!

  1. How It Works

Compression therapy stockings help to treat vein diseases by supplying pressure to legs to help control swelling and discomfort. The strongest support starts at the ankles and gets gradually lighter. The pumping action of the calf muscles combines with the gradient compression of the socks to help assist blood circulation. The compression of your tissues helps move excess fluid back into the capillaries to prevent fluid buildup. This helps benefit you if you have achy legs, varicose veins, swelling, venous ulcers, deep vein thrombosis, post-thrombotic syndrome, and other issues.

  1. Benefits

There are numerous benefits from compression stockings. Compression therapy increases blood circulation, decreases blood pooling, minimizes spider and varicose veins, and decreases venous pressure. Along with blood flow positives, compression therapy also affects the tissue. It decreases swelling, drains toxins like lactic acid, decreases inflammation, and improves the movement of tendons and joints.

  1. Where to Get Stockings

It is best to measure earlier in the day before swelling builds up, so schedule an appointment for the morning. You will speak with your doctor to see if graduated compression stockings are a good fit for you. They will then help you figure out what pressure grade is right for you. From there, you can come into a home medical equipment provider such as us and pick out the right compression therapy stocking for you.

Compression therapy is extremely important in helping overall circulation and leg swelling. By being educated on the importance and design of the stockings, you will be able to utilize them to their fullest in order to live more comfortably.

5 Ways to Avoid the Flu This Season

Posted on: September 6th, 2017 by Medserv Blogger No Comments

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While the CDC recommends that receiving the flu vaccine is the best way to prevent coming down with influenza, not all people are able or comfortable having it done. Today, MedServ Equipment Corp. is here with five ways that you can protect yourself from the virus this year:

  1. Wash Your Hands

This is perhaps the most crucial, if not most overlooked preventative measure you can take to protect yourself from germs. A good rule of thumb is to rub the soap in your hands for about the same amount of time it takes to sing the “Happy Birthday” song under warm water.

  1. Avoid Touching Your Face

By touching your eyes, nose, and mouth, bacteria has a chance to make its way into your body much faster. Germs are most commonly spread by touching something that has been contaminated and then bringing those germs up to your face.

  1. Disinfect Surfaces

Clean surfaces and objects with disinfectants in order to keep away from the germs. By keeping a clean environment, you will be less likely to touch something contaminated and become sick.

  1. Cover Coughs & Sneezes

To avoid spreading the flu, be sure to cover your cough or sneeze with your arm. By coughing into your arm, you are taking the preventative measure to not spread the flu by having germs on your hands.

  1. Avoid Contact

If someone is sick or looking sluggish, try to stay away from them and objects they touch. By keeping out of coughing range, you will minimize your exposure to germs and have a better chance of staying healthy.

These tips are simple but crucial in aiding your health, so you can be at your best this flu season. By taking precaution and spreading these simple tips around, you can help others stay healthy and away from the flu bug!

4 Tips for the New Oxygen User

Posted on: August 12th, 2017 by Medserv Blogger No Comments

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If your doctor recently prescribed you oxygen therapy, you probably have dozens of questions about the ins and outs of using it. That’s why MedServ Medical Corp. is here to offer a few basic facts and tips on how to get the most out of your oxygen concentrator:

  • They get hot.

 

Make sure you don’t locate them near the thermostat, as this can interfere with the temperature read-out and lead to your home not being properly heated or cooled. Oxygen concentrators also tend to make your air conditioning work harder in the summer. Luckily, though, there is a tax deduction that you can take that offsets the cost of running your oxygen equipment.

 

  • You don’t have to use an unpleasant cannula and tubing.

 

The cannula and tubing vary in thickness, stiffness, length and color. Which ones you use are up to your own comfort level. Some people don’t like how certain brands or types smell. Since it will be in your nose all day, make sure you use one that is objectionable to your olfactory sensors.

 

  • Lubricate your nostrils.

 

It’s easy for your nostrils to become dry and cracked, which can lead to bleeding. Make sure you use a water-based lubricant to prevent dryness and irritation.

 

  • Humidity is important.

 

For you to be totally comfortable in your oxygen therapy, it is important that your air is humidified. Often, the tubes coming out of the tank are then connected to a humidifier bottle, which is then connected to your nose. Be sure that the bottle is connected properly and not cross-threaded, as this can cause the oxygen to leak before it travels up the connecting tube to you.

Remember, your oxygen concentrator is a lifeline, not a leash. It supplies you with the air your body needs to survive. For more tips and tricks on how to best use your oxygen therapy, see one of the experts at MedServ Medical Corp today!

4 Tips to Use Your Walker Properly

Posted on: August 5th, 2017 by Medserv Blogger No Comments

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Mobility aids such as walkers and rollators are meant to aid those whose range of motion has been limited due to health conditions such as arthritis. While they’re meant to offer stability and balance, it’s not uncommon for people to use them improperly, which can lead to great discomfort.

Today, MedServ Equipment Corp. is here to help. Here are the four tips on how to properly use your walker:

 

  • Height should be ideal.

 

Your walker shouldn’t be so low that you have to stoop over it, nor should it be so high that you have to reach up in order to grasp it. The ideal height should allow your elbows to be bent in a position that is natural and comfortable.

 

  • Walking patterns.

 

When using a walker, you should push it slightly in front of you, and then step into it. Often, people tend to push it too far ahead of them, which causes them to take uncomfortably long steps. Another mistake walker users make is looking down at their feet as they walk. Your eyes should always be in front of you.

 

  • Sitting down.

 

The proper way to sit down with a walker is to position yourself in front of the chair. Let the back of your legs touch the chair so you know you’re close enough to sit. Shift your weight to your stronger leg, and slide your weaker leg forward. Then change your grasp from the walker to the arms of the chair.

 

  • Standing up.

 

Place the walker in front of you and scoot forward in the chair. Use the arms of the chair to push yourself up. Then switch your grasp to the walker’s handles.

 

Getting the right walker for you and making sure it’s adjusted properly are two key components to ensuring that you use your walker correctly. The experts at MedServ Equipment Corp. can help make sure that your equipment suits your needs. Stop in or call us today for assistance!