AIDS: Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome is the final stage of HIV infection. People at this stage of HIV disease have badly damaged immune systems, which put them at risk for opportunistic infections. HIV is transmitted through body fluids in very specific ways. As early as 2-4 weeks after exposure to HIV, people can experience an acute illness, often described as “the worst flu ever.” When HIV infection progresses to AIDS, many people begin to suffer from fatigue, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, fever, chills, night sweats, and even wasting syndrome at late stages.
Alzheimer's: Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive, degenerative disorder that attacks the brain’s nerve cells, or neurons, resulting in loss of memory, thinking and language skills, and behavioral changes. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia, or loss of intellectual function, among people aged 65 and older. Symptoms usually develop slowly and get worse over time, becoming severe enough to interfere with daily tasks.
Asthma: Asthma is a chronic, or long-term, disease that inflames and narrows the airways of your lungs. Ashtma causes a variety of symptoms that can worsen at times, making it difficult to breathe. Symptoms include wheezing, coughing, chest tightness, and shortness of breath. Asthma affects people of all ages, but it most often starts during childhood.
Birth Control: Birth control pills are a kind of medication that women can take daily to prevent pregnancy. Birth control pills are made of hormones, which control how different parts of our bodies work. The hormones in the pill work by keeping eggs from leaving the ovaries. Also, the hormones from the pill make the cervical mucus thinker, which keeps sperm from getting to the eggs.
Blood Pressure: Blood Pressure is the force of blood pushing against the walls of the arteries as the heart pumps blood. If this pressure rises and stays high over time, it can damage the body in many ways. Blood pressure is measured as systolic and diastolic pressures. “Systolic” refers to blood pressure when the heart beats while pumping blood. “Diastolic” refers to blood pressure when the heart is at rest between beats. High blood pressure (hypertension) increases your chance of heart disease, and is dangerous because it often has no symptoms. People who have high blood pressure can take steps to control it by reducing sodium intake, being active, and keeping a healthy weight.
Breast Cancer: Breast cancer is a malignant tumor that starts in the cells of the breast. A malignant tumor is a group of cancer cells that can grow into (invade) surrounding tissues or spread to distant areas of the body. The disease occurs almost entirely in women, but men can get it also.
Chlamydia: Chlamydia is a common sexually transmitted disease (STD) caused by a bacterium. Chlamydia is the most frequently reported bacterial sexually transmitted infection in the United States. Chlamydia can infect both men and women and can cause serious, permanent damage to a women’s reproductive organs. People get chlamydia by having sex with someone who has the infection. Chlamydia is known as a ‘silent’ infection because most infected people have no symptoms. However, symptoms may include vaginal/penis discharge or a burning sensation when urinating.
Cholesterol: Cholesterol is one of the many substances created and used by our bodies to keep us healthy. Some of the cholesterol we need is produced naturally, while some of it comes from the food we eat. The liver and other cells in the body make about 75 percent of blood cholesterol. The other 25 percent comes from the foods we eat. There are two types of cholesterol: “good” and “bad”. Low-density lipoprotein, or HDL, is known as “bad” cholesterol. High-density lipoprotein, or HDL, is known as “good” cholesterol. When too much LDL cholesterol circulates in the blood, it can slowly build up in the inner walls of the arteries that feed the heart and brain.
Cold: The common cold is a minor infection of the nose and throat caused by several different viruses. A cold may last for about one week, but some colds last longer. Adults get an average of two to four colds per year, mostly between September and May. Colds are most often spread when droplets of fluid that contain a cold virus are transferred by touch. These droplets may also be inhaled. Cold symptoms include runny nose, congestion, sneezing, weakened senses of taste and smell, scratchy throat, and cough.
Diabetes Type I: Type 1 diabetes is usually diagnosed in children and young adults, and was previously known as juvenile diabetes. In type 1 diabetes, the body does not produce insulin. Insulin is a hormone that is needed to convert sugar, starches and other food into energy needed for daily life. However, only 5% of people with diabetes have this form of the disease. With the help of insulin therapy and other treatments, even young children with type 1 diabetes can learn to manage their conditions and live long, healthy, happy lives.
Diabetes Type II: In type 2 diabetes, either the body does not produce enough insulin or the cells ignore the insulin. Insulin is necessary for the body to be able to use glucose for energy. When glucose builds up in the blood instead of going into the cells, it can cause your cells to starve for energy. Also, high blood pressure glucose levels may hurt your eyes, kidneys, nerves or heart, over time.
Exercise: Exercise, or physical activity, is one of the most important things you can do for your health. It can help control your weight, lower your risk of heart disease, lower your risk for type 2 diabetes, lower your risk of some cancers, strengthen your bones and muscles, improve your mental health and mood, and improve your ability to do daily activities.
Eye and Vision Health: Your eyes are an important part of your health. There are many things you can do to keep them healthy and make sure you are seeing your best. First, have a comprehensive dilated eye exam. Also, know your family’s eye health history, eat right to protect your sight, and wear protective eyewear.