Attention!

fentanylAs a whole, the nation has seen a major rise in the recreational use of the synthetic drug, Fentanyl. In many cases, Fentanyl is used as a heroin substitute. Its euphoric effects are much like heroin and morphine, which has been a major motivation for its use. Fentanyl is 30-50 times more potent than heroin and 100 times more powerful than morphine. In high and unregulated doses, this pain reliever can be very dangerous; in fact, Fentanyl is the strongest pain reliever (Opioid) used in the medical field. For this reason, it should not be used recreationally, even in doses as small as .25 mg it can cause major health effects.

Fentanyl use is occurring in several way, all of which are very dangerous. Fentanyl can be used in the same way as heroin- through injection with a needle, inhalation, or a pain reliever patch. The full effect of the patch occurs within 12-24 hours after being in contact with the skin. It is very dangerous to even be in the area of Fentanyl use, especially if it is being ingested in powdered form. Individuals that accidentally inhale Fentanyl can still experience its negative effects. Even if you are not directly participating in using Fentanyl, be sure to stay out of settings in which Fentanyl use is occurring.

Fentanyl is extremely dangerous on its own, but is even more potent when mixed with the use of other illicit drugs or alcohol.  If you see someone experiencing the following symptoms after using Fentanyl, call for help immediately.

• Hypoventilation (slow or below normal breathing)
• Abdominal pain
• Anxiety
• Depression
• Hallucinations

Check out the video below for a PSA from your very own Grand Forks healthcare providers:

Girls Just Want to Have Fun

Alcohol affects women in different ways than it affects men; for this reason, women should be aware of how to track their drinking.

Girls Just Want to Have FunWhy does alcohol affect women differently? Well, the biggest reason is that alcohol is held in body water and women tend to have less overall body water than men. Therefore, alcohol can reach their blood stream at a faster rate and in higher concentrations. The effects of drinking too much alcohol may last longer with women because they have less alcohol metabolizing enzymes in their body than men. This also puts women at a higher risk for developing alcohol related health problems such as high blood pressure, depression, stroke, and various types of cancer.

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, low risk drinking for women is defined as having no more than 7 drinks per week and no more than 3 drinks per day. Stress seems to be a common theme in the lives of the female population, and it may be super easy to wind down at the end of a day with a glass of wine, which seems to be a pretty popular drink choice for women. However, a tall glass of wine can easily turn into three or more drinks if filled to the brim or even the middle of the glass, then refilled. It is important to know the line for ONE drink in the glasses you are using. Make sure to check next time!

Below are a few effects of long term drinking on women’s body and health:

  • Diminishes the skin of necessary nutrients
  • Makes any pre-existing skin conditions worse
  • Lowers fertility
  • Dehydrates the skin
  • Causes hair and nails to become brittle

A few ways to track your drinking while out with friends or drinking with men is to use the new app, ‘What’s Your Buzz?,’ make tallies on a note page in your phone, or bring bracelets in your purse and put a new one on with each new drink. The best way would be to start your night out with a set number of drinks you are going to drink that night and tell a friend so that you can hold one another accountable.

One interesting fact about women and drinking is that slightly before and during a woman’s period, they will feel the effects of alcohol more quickly; however, birth control lengthens the time it takes to feel the effects. So if you are on birth control, be sure to really track your drinks because your body may be telling you something different. Alcohol also stimulates ones appetite while decreasing one’s control at the same time; which causes women to drink more than they set out to drink.

A lot of times the calories in the drinks are even more than the calories in some food. For example the calories in a glass of wine are similar to eating a whole cheeseburger! A serving of vodka contains 160 calories which is equivalent to a doughnut! One bottle of beer is like having one piece of pizza! If the calorie equivalents scare you, it is smart to eat more throughout the day and drink less rather than eliminating eating altogether in order to make room for the calories from the drinks. If you participate in refraining from eating in order to drink more, it may cause a reduction of nutrient intake, weaken your energy levels and could even serve as a catalyst to eating disorders or alcohol dependency. If you feel that this is already a part of your lifestyle, seek support from those closest to you or check out the campus resources like the University Counseling Center, Student Health Services, or the Health & Wellness Hub in McCannel Hall.

Just remember, it’s okay to drink less than men! These protective behaviors will ensure you have a good night when you go out with friends:

  • Stay with the same group of friends
  • Eat prior to and during drinks
  • Track your number of drinks
  • Avoid drinking games
  • Decide not to exceed your set number of drinks
  • Ask friends to help alert you when you’ve had enough

*Sources: National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism; Hazelden Foundation; and drinksmarter.org

“You’re the least drunk, you can drive us home!”

Take a moment to think, have you ever said this to one of your friends? Has one of your friends uttered these same words to you?
“Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” Well these words could kill.

kids
As the amount of alcohol consumed in one’s body increases, their ability to be attentive and make decisions greatly decreases. Therefore, getting in the car with someone who has been drinking throughout the night or driving after a night of drinking could have detrimental consequences. Even the slightest drink can cause changes to your body and its’ functions. For example, at .02% Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) an individual has trouble performing two tasks at one time and their visual functions decline. At .05% BAC an individual can experience difficulty steering and have less of an ability to track moving objects. At .08% BAC the individual loses ability to control speed, or detect signals from traffic lights, other cars, and pedestrians. More importantly, they show signs of short term memory loss and an inability to concentrate at the task at hand.

designated driver
The facts are pretty numbing. More than 17,000 Americans are killed each year to drinking and driving. Did you know that most fatal car accidents happen between 12 a.m. and 3 a.m?
Shockingly, on average a drunken driver kills someone every 40 minutes in the U.S. And equally important to note is that the rate of drunk driving is highest amongst the age group of individuals 21-25 years old. [NCAAD] Don’t become a statistic; think before you let yourself or someone you know drive drunk. Take steps to ensure you are participating in risk free drinking and check out the protective behaviors to understand what that looks like.

Check out some of the laws North Dakota has in place for drinking under the influence here: http://dui.drivinglaws.org/ndakota.php
Check out a personal story from a man whose life changed after a night of drinking: https://vimeo.com/35282858

Sources:
National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence. Drinking and Driving Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

It’s Okay to Say No

Today, our society is greatly geared towards drinking, but there are many people that choose to not drink. Being a non-drinker in college can be hard due to constant pressure and hassle from friends and others. In turn, this is just a short clip of how those non-drinkers can get out of that sticky situation of pressure that they may encounter at a party.

Its Okay to Say No

1) Gracefully declining.

-It might just be as easy as saying “No thank you” to a friend. Remember saying no to drinking doesn’t make you lame.

Not Lame

2) Sometimes you might need a polite excuse that follows your graceful decline:

  • I’m driving tonight- I’m DDing (Designated Driving).
  • I have a huge test tomorrow.
  • I have to work tomorrow.
  • I have to get up early in the morning.
  • No thank you, I’m good tonight. I don’t feel well.
  • I drank too much last night.
  • I’m just going to lay low tonight, thank you though.
  • Hold that thought I have to go to the bathroom.

Excuses

3) Even just focusing the conversation on the other person and responding by saying, “no thank you” but followed by an open ended question spins the conversation and the person won’t even question you why you’re not drinking.

Wine

4) In order to avoid anxiety, this is what you might need to understand and what might help:

  • Realize that not everyone is into drinking all the time either.
  • Try and avoid situations where drinking will occur if you don’t want to.
  • Make other plans.
  • Test your assertiveness.
  • Be able to still have fun, don’t be the “party pooper.”
  • Carry a decoy. You can always carry a soda in a different glass disguising it, and your friends won’t be tempted to ask you if you need a drink.
  • Keep busy by taking pictures, socializing with more people, eating, have fun dancing, or even being the dj.

Running with Lynn Show

Good morning UND we are looking at a chilly day with a high of 6 above right now at 9:30 in the a.m. we are sitting at -2.

TOO chilly? Get warm and catch a movie.~~~~~~~~~~~~~ we interrupt this blog to bring you a shocking announcement early this morning. In the year 1959, three rock stars died. The bodies were identified as Buddy Holly, 22, Richie Valens, 17, and the Big Bopper Richardson, 28. The Plane took off from Clear Lake, Iowa headed for Forgo, ND airport. The show was in MN. These three Rock singers died in an airplane crash on February 3, 1959. We now bring you back to your regular scheduled blog.

The movie of the week is The Seventh Son (PG-13). In a time of enchantments, when legends and magic collide, the sole remaining warrior of a mystical order travels to find a prophesized hero born with incredible powers, the last Seventh Son. Fasten your seat belts, everyone, this movie is a wild ride and will keep you on the edge if your seats all 2 hr. 00 min.

Have a great day everybody!

What is a Standard Drink?

Sometimes, counting the amount of drinks you are having in one night can be hard. There are so many different sizes and mixes that make it difficult to realize how much alcohol you might actually be consuming. Take a look at the chart below to help you better understand how large the standard drink size actually is.

Picture1
http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/Practitioner/PocketGuide/pocket_guide2.htm
Here are some examples of drinks that can be misinterpreted for one drink but actually contain the alcohol content of many standard size drinks.

1. Long Island Iced Tea: The average Long Island Iced Tea has 2.5 ounces of hard alcohol in them! This means that after just one of these, a person could be considered over the legal BAC level to drive.

2. Pounders and Tall Boys: Pounders and Tall Boys can be considered as an amount of beer that is more than 12 oz. Many tend to be 16 or 22 oz.! Drinking three 22 oz. beers is the same as drinking six standard drinks!

Check out this great video which explains all of these concepts in a fun and engaging way: http://www.powtoon.com/show/fL5UMZ4AwwW/standard-drink-sizes/#/

 

Running with Lynn Show

Good morning UND, we are looking at a cloudy chilly day with a high of 35 right now at 9:30 in the a.m. we are sitting at 33.

Today is National Kazoo Day. People young and old love Kazoos. Kazoo Day celebrates the joy of this musical instrument.

Alabama Vest of Macon, Georgia made the first Kazoo in the 1840’s. Actually, he conceived the Kazoo, and had Thaddeus Von Clegg, a German clockmaster, make it to his specifications

Commercial production of the Kazoo didn’t occur until many years later in 1912. Manufacturing was first started by Emil Sorg in Western New York. Sorg joined up with Michael McIntyre, a Buffalo tool and die maker. Production moved to Eden, NY where the factory museum remains today.

Kazoos are easy to play. Simply hum a tune into the kazoo, and you’re an expert. Kazoos can be played solo, or in groups. It plays a great tune both ways

When you get tired of playing your kazoos catch a movie! The movie of the week, Foxcatcher (R), Olympic Gold Medal-winning wrestler Mark Schultz is struggling in obscurity and poverty in Wisconsin when he is invited by wealthy heir John du Pont to move on to his lavish estate to form a team and to train for the 1988 Seoul Olympics. Schultz seizes the opportunity, eager to step out of the shadow of his revered older brother Dave, a prominent wrestling coach and Gold Medal winner himself. “I saw this movie last week, its a great true story with a shocking ending.”

I’ve started this a thousand times.

I’ve started writing this blog post roughly a thousand times in my head. I’ve edited it, I’ve redrafted it, I’ve added, I’ve deleted… but I’ve never actually stopped to write a sentence down.

Our little one came in-

(sorry about that- she was crying and needed to be held… now, where was I?)

Our little one came in November and turned our family of 3 (husband, myself, and our dog) into a family of 4. To say she’s given us a run for our money is an understatement.

I’ve always been pretty protective of my schedule and my routine. I don’t like to deviate too much from what I know and am familiar with. Let’s just say that babies throw that ALL out the window. It’s been a total and complete adjustment, but in a good way. And to be honest, it’s taken me a few weeks to be able to say that- to say that it’s a good thing.

Change is hard. And harder for some (my hand is WAY up).

She cried a lot those first 5 weeks, and didn’t sleep a lot. I felt like a human milk machine. Showers were few and far between, while the tears rarely ceased (for both of us). I felt empty and defeated at the end of most days, just thinking “This is it? This is life now?!” There were times I mourned* the loss of my freedom and ability to shower each morning and eat a hot meal while it’s still hot and just get in my car and go to the store in under an hour. (*mourned=sobbed uncontrollably)

Luckily, it’s getting easier. She’s crying less and sleeping (a very little bit) more. Or maybe I’m just getting used to the sleep depravation- it’s anybody’s guess. I’ve learned a lot about myself and the kindness of others. It takes a village to raise a child, and even telling a mother that she’s doing a great job sparks a fire that I cannot describe in words. Feeling that love and support helps to refill my tank.

It’s a slow process. And I’m a constant work in progress.

As I became a bit more comfortable with my role as Mom, I longed to do the things that helped me feel like myself again- working out and eating things that aren’t necessarily  Spaghettios or Oreos. (Don’t get me wrong- I LOVE those and still enjoy them from time to time, but I also know they don’t make me feel as good as my leafy greens do.) I’m ready to start feeling better about the new person that I’ve become- inside and out.

It’s Love Your Body Week at UND- one of my favorite times of the year. I love the idea of celebrating yourself no matter WHAT. Love your body or not, it’s a great reminder that there is always something to be thankful for.

A friend asked me what I loved about my body the other day. The truth is, since having a baby there isn’t much. Sometimes I like the way my hair falls. And I like my eyes- they seem to be one of the only things that didn’t change with pregnancy and birth. Almost everything else stretched and expanded. It’s incredibly frustrating to have nothing that fits unless it has an elastic waistband or extra fabric gathered around the middle or 3 sizes bigger.

But this friend is one of the more resilient, thoughtful, and positive people I’ve met in my life; she helped me to remember that my body is not just a size. And I suddenly felt as though I had permission to look at my body with love and acceptance as I thought about it’s capabilities.

This beautiful body created and carried and delivered a baby (that’s pretty bada**). My legs carried me for many miles throughout the pregnancy, despite sciatic nerve pain that brought me to tears some days; and now they help me rock.and rock and bounce.and bounce.and bounce.and bounce until our little one finally quiets and drifts off to sleep. My arms are strong enough to carry her from place to place and give her a bath almost every night- a favorite time of the day for both of us alike. My mouth allows me to make funny faces and noises that bring a smile to her sweet face…oh how I love those sweet little smiles.

10633662_10101186069564175_453624167089613248_o

Geez, when I stop and really think about it… my body is pretty dang awesome. Sure, my clothes may never fit the same again… or at least not for quite awhile… but in the meantime it’s doing exactly what I need it to be doing. And I LOVE it for that, and I accept where it’s at- stretchy waistbands and all.

And now I turn to you, Dear Reader, and feel inclined to ask:

What do YOU love about YOUR body?

Running with Lynn Show

Good morning UND, Burr Baby Burr- that wind has been a killer the last couple of days, so bundle up, wear a scarf, and don’t stay out for a long time.

That gives me a great idea- stay inside and catch a movie! The movie of the week is [The Gambler] Yes my friends, it’s time to put on your poker face.
{movie story}Jim Bennett is a risk taker. Both an English professor and a high-stakes gambler, Bennett bets it all when he borrows from a gangster and offers his own life as collateral} This Drama, Suspense/Thriller will give you chills and thrills all 1hr and 41 min. long.

The Running Show brings you
[Stories that will blow your mind]

Four day ago I lost my cell phone… I searched everywhere and can’t find it. I came to the conclusion that the phone was stolen. I thought to myself, maybe I should call my phone and the crook will pick up. I called the number, the phone rang, and then someone picked up. I said “hello,” he said “hi,” and I said, “can I ask you a question? Did you steal my phone?” He replied, “yes I did.” I replied, “that’s my phone, what are you going to do with it?” He replied, “I don’t know, make a few calls.” I answered back, “then can I have my phone back?” He answered, “aw, no.”

Have a great day everybody!

An Artificial Awakening

I saw a meme the other day that made me both chuckle and think about my habits during my first semester as a graduate student. It was from a fellow classmate after we finished with our last final and it said, “Caffeine, you’re on the bench. Alcohol, suit up.” I’m sure it was funny to the majority of my classmates. It made me reflect on my study habits and my cycles of “self-medicating.” Both caffeine and alcohol are indeed drugs, legal ones, but too many people have developed a dependency on them.

I can remember a few tests this semester where I had more caffeine than I should have while studying. I knew skipping coffee on any day would make me feel unproductive. I associated mental arousal with that irresistible hot black beverage. I even went on a caffeine detox for a week and I felt horrible during the first couple of days.
After those tests were done, I often found myself wanting some sort of alcoholic beverage just to relax. I didn’t want to go to parties and binge drink my brain away, but rather enjoy the effects of a drink or two in solitude. See, my mind was so overstimulated from the caffeine that the depressive effects of alcohol seemed to balance it out. I needed one drug to counteract the effects of another. I thought I was being smart, only having one or two drinks on Friday evening. My mindset was “I’m old enough to legally drink; I’m doing so responsibly, there is nothing wrong here.”

Many will argue that caffeine and alcohol are fine in moderate amounts and in appropriate situations; however, I do believe we need to get out of the vicious substance controlled undulation of our state of minds. Instead of relying on caffeine to heighten our senses, we should be altering our lifestyles in a manner that brings more balance. Instead of unwinding with a drink after a week of taxing our minds with caffeine and dull textbooks, we should be seeking out positive and enriching experiences outside school. I’m not going to be giving up on my green tea anytime soon, but I will avoid using it solely as a means to be more attentive.

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