What is Hypertension?

Hypertension, otherwise known as high blood pressure, is calculated by the amount of blood a heart pumps and the resistance that that blood receives as it attempts to flow through a person’s arteries. A combination of thin arteries and a steady flow of blood are what cause high blood pressure. This is because the blood cannot freely flow through the thin arteries and begin to swell within the veins.
So why should you care about Hypertension?

Hypertension is known in the medical community as the silent killer. According to the Mayo Clinic, “You can have high blood pressure (hypertension) for years without any symptoms. Even without symptoms, damage to blood vessels and your heart continues and can be detected. Uncontrolled high blood pressure increases your risk of serious health problems, including heart attack and stroke.” The Mayo Clinic goes on to mention that hypertension (or high blood pressure as it is commonly known as) affects nearly everyone at some point in time in their life because it develops throughout the course of many years. While high blood pressure can be easily detected it’s something that has to be occasionally monitored. Whether or not you visit your doctor frequently, or use the free machines located at any pharmacy or grocery store, it’s really up to the individual to monitor their blood pressure. Again, it’s called the silent killer because there are no notable symptoms during the early stages of development, but occasionally you might notice a few things.

What kind of Symptoms are noticeable?

Even when a person’s blood pressure reaches critical levels there are hardly any symptoms. It really depends on the person, but most people report no tell-tale signs that their blood pressure has spiked into dangerous levels. Occasionally some people will report symptoms like:

  • Headaches – feeling tension or aching from the forehead to your temples.
  • Shortness of breath – feeling like you are out of breath and stamina.
  • Nosebleeds – blood dripping out from the nasal cavity.

This symptoms are very common for illnesses unrelated to hypertension, so it’s very easy to dismiss them as something else. As stated before, it’s up the individuals to monitor their blood pressure and make sure that its kept in check.

Why Medical Assistants Shouldn’t Smoke

As a medical assistant you will deal with stressful situations that will raise your stress levels beyond imagination. Whether it is tight deadlines on task that you know will take a long time to complete, or patients who are upset and discharge their stress onto you – it is not easy being a medical assistant. So how do you manage stress as a medical assistant? Yoga? Breathing exercises? While this may be the case for you, and thank yourself for having healthy stress related coping exercises, it isn’t the case for most medical assistants. Most medical assistants turn to tobacco to relieve stress and they shouldn’t. Here’s why.

If a patient sees you, they won’t take your advice seriously

The worst thing you can do as a health industry worker is do unhealthy things, and then instruct the patients that they should not do unhealthy things because it is bad for them. I know that’s a roundabout way of putting it, but let’s be honest here would you take someone’s, you should stop smoking, bargain while they smell like cigarette smoke? The answer will be a resounding no.

It doesn’t only apply to smoking either. If the young teenage patients in your medical office find out you do unhealthy things outside of work, they really won’t listen to any advice you give. They will say, well hey if they do it and they know the risks why shouldn’t it? It’s a bad situation to be in especially since you are a medical professional who is there to help people.

Luckily, most medical facilities have banned smoking from the premises since second hand smoke affects all patients. Don’t think of this as an anti-smoking campaign, though. I’m not saying you shouldn’t smoke outside of work on your own time. What I’m saying is don’t let the patients know.


How to Protect Yourself from Allergies

Pollen season has come around again and allergies are running high. Whether it is a raspy cough, snot dribbling noses, or a scratchy and itchy throat, the effects brought on by a high tide of pollen can be very counterproductive and lead to eventually feeling sick. So here are a few tips and tricks in order to help you keep your allergies at bay, so that they can cause as little harm as possible. Remember, the complete avoidance of pollen is impossible. This article serves as more of a guide as to how to be aware of pollenation times and other helpful tips.

Plan Your Time Wisely

According to Miguel P. Wolbert, an MD and allergist in Evansville, Ind, “most plants pollinate from 5 a.m to 9 a.m.” You can do a lot with this little bit of information in order to prevent your allergies from spiraling out of control. Remember, those of us who are allergic to pollen simply have a sensitivity to them. Once we breathe it, it causes an irritation through our nostrils and throats that leads us to feeling feverish, downtrodden, and lacking in energy.

While you can’t avoid pollen, and it is difficult to stay indoors when you might have to commute to work around these times, you can at least take preventative medicines like Claritin, and bring nasal sprays or salt rinses to flush your system free of the pollen once you get indoors again.

Try Not to Visit a Doctor

Visiting your regular physician should be a last resort. Most of the time they will prescribe you the same over the counter medication you can just buy yourself. Which means you just wasted a trip to the doctor. You should only visit your regular physician if the over the counter medication is ineffective so that they might prescribe you something stronger.


Two Classes Every Good Medical Assisting Program Teaches

While most medical assistant diploma programs have classes that make them unique, believe it or not there is a core group of classes that all programs should have in order for graduates to become successful Medical Assistants. Medical Assistants preform a hybrid amount of duties: from office work to clinical, so it is important for a student to get a good mixture of both during their classes. However, most associate degree in medical assistant programs do offer internships that cover both these fields successfully. Here are a few courses that every medical assistant needs to take.

    1. Patient Care – A really good Medical Assisting program will have a class that will accurately help you learn and understand how to handle patients. About ninety percent of a Medical Assistants job is handling the patients that come to their work place. Whether it be a clinic, physician’s hospital, or urgent care center. Patient care classes are important because they teach you how to accomplish some of your daily tasks like: reviewing charts, front office skills, and sometimes common medical terminology is talked about. But most importantly they teach you how to manage the different kinds of patients you’ll be handling. It also teaches you to stay calm and keep collected when handling frustrated patients.

  1. Bookkeeping – Learning how to keep accurate records is very important as this is the last ten percent of a medical assistants job. These courses are usually designed to give students some hands-on experience on a basic level of medical billing and coding. It also teaches them and grants them some experience in handling checks, and how to process patient and insurance payments.

Always remember that the most important part of any medical assisting program is the internship/externship.



How to Succeed as a Medical Assistant

As we all know, there are huge differences between an average medical assistant and a really awesome medical assistant. While every medical assistant that preforms their job well is a valuable employee – it is really those who go above and beyond that are the most memorable. These MA’s do more than just keep the office organized and clean of clutter, they optimize their medical institution. Here are a few tips on how to become an awesome Medical Assistant.

If you want to be a really amazing Medical Assistant, you should always anticipate what patients/doctors will need before it’s needed. In other words, keep office and medical supplies stocked, and make sure patient rooms have all the supplies available and on hand.

When a patient is brought into the room notice what kind of symptoms they have, and try to meet the doctor’s demands by providing the tools you think they will need beforehand.

Reference Sheet
If your office has may different supplies, do yourself a favor and make a cheat sheet so that you may recall what LPN prefers certain supplies over others. Part of your job is to not only manage office supplies, but to make sure that your co-workers demands are being met.

Be Clear and Concise with your Documentation
When you write notes and references make sure that your handwriting is legible. If it’s not then make sure to type things out and print it out. The last thing an MA wants to do is give other co-workers more work by having them decipher bad hand writing. It takes up way too much time and effort, and there is a great deal of things to be done in a medical office that are more pressing. So don’t write like a doctor!