Help keep community healthy with these tips

Yavapai County Community Health Services hopes everyone can be a good neighbor in 2017. Here are seven ways that will help.

• Consider making 2017 the year you quit smoking. Smoking is addictive, deadly, expensive, gross, not cool, beatable, and harms others with secondhand smoke. Quit for your family members, the ones who will need to care for you as you die from lung cancer. The next free Tobacco Cessation classes begin April 1 and April 2.

• Help a neighbor by shopping and eating locally. By eating locally, you are not only helping local business owners but also local farmers. You get the freshest produce, and help two local businesses with one meal.

• Tell a new parent about the Women Infant and Children program, which helps mothers with nutrition education and funds to purchase healthy foods like whole wheat bread, fruits, vegetables, and milk. Call 928-771-3138 for more information.

• Have your coats shrunk for some reason over the holidays? Maybe Santa provided you with something new? Donate those coats that don’t quite fit anymore. YCCHS works closely with many organizations that find new owners for donated coats.

• In October, YCCHS encourages children to get out of their routine and walk to school. Now it’s your turn. If you can’t walk to school or work, grab a friend and go for a walk at lunchtime or after dinner. The County offers a weekly Trekabout program with guided walks led by professionals who make sure you don’t overdo it or get lost along the way. Call 928-777-1121 for more information.

• Other programs include the free Chronic Disease Self-Management Program class helps those in pain or who suffer from diabetes, asthma or vertigo. Does your neighbor need this information? Help him or her get to the classes – you both will benefit from the free six-week course that covers 1) Techniques to deal with problems such as frustration, fatigue, pain and isolation. 2) Appropriate exercise for maintaining and improving strength, flexibility, and endurance. 3) Appropriate use of medications. 4) Communicating effectively with family, friends, and health professionals. 5) Nutrition. 6) How to evaluate new treatments.

• You also can be a good neighbor and get your flu shot, pertussis vaccination, and keep your children’s inoculations up to date.