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Health News Results - 36

Assistance Dogs Bring Big Boost to Deaf People

Hearing dogs make a huge difference in deaf people's lives, a new British study shows.

The dogs are trained to alert deaf people to everyday sounds such as doorbells, human voices, baby monitors and alarm clocks, as well as safety-related sounds such as smoke and intruder alarms. The animals also provide companionship and emotional support.

The trial included 165 people in the Unite...

It's Time to Replace Your Smoke Alarm Batteries

Setting your clocks back an hour this Sunday also means it's time to replace the batteries in your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) says.

Working alarms are especially important because people are spending more time at home due to the pandemic, which means furnaces, fireplaces and other fuel-burning appliances are being used mo...

Western Wildfires Are Making Easterners Sick: U.S. Study

You might think that wildfires in the western United States would only affect folks in places like Colorado, California or Oregon.

But a new study estimates that three-quarters of smoke-related deaths and visits to the emergency room for asthma in the United States happen east of the Rocky Mount...

Wildfires Cause More Than 33,000 Deaths Globally Each Year

Wildfires are killing people around the world -- even those with limited exposure to wildfire-related pollution, an international team of researchers reports.

The new research revealed that short-term exposure to wildfire-related fine particulate matter (PM2.5) in the air is i...

Double Trouble: Wildfires Can Raise COVID Risks

The wildfire smoke now smothering wide portions of the United States isn't just stinging eyes and tightening chests -- it also might be contributing to the current surge of severe COVID-19 cases.

Data from three Western states subject to frequent wildfires shows that COVID-19 cases and deaths increase with the amount of smoke pollution in the air, according to a new study.

As wildfi...

Wildfires Ravage Firefighters' Long-Term Physical, Mental Health

Roaring, fast-moving blazes. Choking smoke. Fiery tornados. Thunderstorms and lightning.

The Dixie Fire -- now the single largest wildfire in California history -- continues to spread, having burned through more than 750 square miles of forest land north of Sacramento.

The astonishing spread of smoke from the fire, causing discomfort and illness to people hundreds or thousands of mi...

Climate Change Worsens Wildfires, Bringing Poorer Health to All

Smoke from wildfires burning along the West Coast is choking the entire United States, reminding everyone of the hazards of climate change.

But that haze isn't just stinging your eyes and choking your breath -- it poses a direct threat to your health, experts say.

Wildfire smoke has been shown to increase risk of heart attacks and strokes, as well as lung ailments like asthma, Ameri...

Double Trouble: Wildfire Smoke Could Boost Odds for COVID's Spread

Breathing in smoke from wildfires may significantly increase the spread of COVID-19, researchers say.

The warning, from a new study of links between smoke-caused air pollution and SARS-CoV-2 infections, comes as firefighters battle 80 large wildfires in the western United States. The largest -- 300 miles south of Portland, Ore. -- covers over 500 square miles.

For this study, resear...

It's BBQ Season, Prime Time for Grill Fires

If you're not careful, your grilling season could go up in flames, an expert warns.

Each year, U.S. fire departments respond to about 5,700 residential barbecue fires, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency's U.S. Fire Administration. Those fires result in thousands of emergency department visits and $37 million in damages a year.

"The best way to prevent damages and i...

Fireworks Deaths Spiked in Pandemic; Stay Safe This 4th

The COVID-19 pandemic likely played a role in the 50% increase in deaths from fireworks in the United States last year, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) says.

Many public fireworks displays were canceled last summer due to the COVID-19 pandemic. That led many people to light rockets, sparklers and firecrackers in their own backyards, the agency said.

The result: A...

Is Your Family 'CO Safe' When Big Storms Hit?

If you live in the path of hurricanes , the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is urging you to be prepared.

Deaths from carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning, fires and electric shock are common during severe weather events, according to the CPSC.

Hurricane season in North America runs from June 1 through Nov. 30. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has ...

Wildfires Are Changing the Seasonal Air Quality of the U.S. West

Increasing numbers of wildfires are making poor air quality more common throughout the Western United States, according to a new study.

The findings suggest that many cities may soon have trouble meeting air quality standards, said lead author Kai Wilmot, a doctoral student in atmospheric sciences at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City.

Wilmot's team examined Western air qualit...

Wildfire Smoke Can Trigger Eczema, Study Finds

When wildfires choked the air and turned the skies orange throughout the American West in recent years, they caused a variety of health problems from coughs and runny noses to life-threatening heart attacks and strokes.

But eczema and other skin issues were a result of the wildfires, too, according to researchers from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), and the University ...

Wildfire Smoke Can Send Kids With Asthma to the ER

The smoke from forest fires is sending children to emergency rooms with respiratory problems at higher rates than ever before, a new study finds.

"Kids are particularly vulnerable to pollution from wildfires, so they can have asthma exacerbation and other respiratory problems," said senior researcher Tarik Benmarhnia, an associate professor of family medicine and public health at the Univ...

Storm Alert: How to Keep Your Home Safe

Winter weather can bring hidden dangers, the most deadly of which can include carbon monoxide poisoning and fires.

As blizzards, tornadoes and severe storms batter the nation and many lose power and heat, the danger of carbon monoxide poisoning and fires from portable generators and other devices increase exponentially, the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) warns.

Carb...

'Spring Forward' This Weekend By Checking Your Home Smoke Alarms

When you turn your clocks forward to Daylight Saving Time this weekend, take a few minutes to make your home safer.

Change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) alarms, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) suggests. Unless these devices have sealed 10-year batteries, they require fresh batteries every year. It's also important to test them every month to make ...

Wildfire Smoke Is Especially Toxic to Lungs, Study Shows

Fine particles in wildfire smoke pose a far greater threat to the lungs than similar particles in vehicle exhaust and other types of air pollution, researchers report.

These fine particles -- called PM2.5 -- have a diameter about 1/20th the size of a human hair and can get into the respiratory tract, enter the bloodstream and damage key organs.

PM2.5 is the main component of wildfir...

Mental Health Trauma Plagues Wildfire Survivors

The 2018 wildfire that destroyed 239 square miles in Northern California, including the town of Paradise, left a lasting mental health crisis in its wake.

Many residents who survived the so-called Camp Fire are now grappling with chronic post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression, according to a new study in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Heal...

How to Guard Against Home Heating Hazards

Many Americans are working at home or attending school virtually during the COVID-19 pandemic, leading to increased use of home heating and its potential risks, an expert says.

Heating sources can pose electrical hazards and fire dangers, noted Purnima Unni, manager of the pediatric trauma injury prevention program at Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt University in Nashv...

Guard Yourself Against the Health Dangers of Wildfire Smoke

As the smoke left by wildfires in California and Oregon continues to linger, people exposed to it need to take steps to protect themselves, an expert says.

In healthy people, wildfire smoke can cause symptoms such as runny nose, burning and watery eyes, sore throat, chest pain and shortness of breath, said Dr. Reza Ronaghi, a pulmonologist at University of California, Los Angeles' Dav...

Wildfire Smoke Poses Special Threat to People With Asthma

People with asthma and other respiratory illnesses need to be aware of the threat that wildfire smoke poses to their breathing and take steps to protect themselves, an allergy expert warns.

Wildfires are raging across western U.S. states, and the smoke is spreading across much of the country.

It's important for everyone -- especially children and people with asthma and other...

Harmful Flame Retardants Detected in College-Classroom Dust

Indoor spaces often contains harmful chemicals, say researchers who found high levels of toxic flame retardants in the dust of some U.S. college classrooms.

The chemicals have been linked to thyroid disease, infertility, decreased IQ, cancer and other health problems. They were released by furniture in the facilities.

When they get into dust, the chemicals can enter your bod...

Pandemic Means More Backyard Fireworks This Year -- And More Danger

With communities across the United States canceling Fourth of July celebrations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, backyard fireworks are likely to be more popular than ever.

And that has many health experts worried. They fear injuries will soar among amateurs who don't know how to use fireworks safely. Even before the holiday, explosives are being set off in America's backyards and on c...

Wildfire Smoke Causes Rapid Damage to Your Health: Study

Wildfire smoke has an almost immediate harmful effect on the heart and lungs, researchers say.

Using data from wildfire seasons between 2010 and 2015 in British Columbia, Canada, the researchers linked exposure to elevated levels of fine particles in smoke with ambulance dispatches for heart and lung conditions. Dispatches rose within an hour of exposure to wildfire smoke, the investi...

Female Firefighters Face Higher Exposure to Carcinogens

Female firefighters are exposed to chemicals that may be linked with breast and other types of cancer, researchers say.

Compared to women working in offices, female firefighters in San Francisco are exposed to higher levels of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). These chemicals are used in firefighting foam and uniforms, grease- and water-resistant coatings and in fabrics, fur...

Another Cost of Climate Change: More Wildfires

Wildfires like the ones that have ravaged Australia in recent months are likely to become more common as climate change continues to wreak havoc on the planet, a new study suggests.

The Australian wildfires prompted British researchers to review 57 studies published since 2013.

All of the studies show an association between human-driven climate change and increased frequency...

Wildfires Send Kids to ERs for Breathing Problems

Wildfires are becoming increasingly common, and along with the rising environmental damage, a new study finds more breathing problems for kids.

In December 2017, a small wildfire in San Diego County, Calif., resulted in 16 more kids a day than usual showing up in emergency departments with trouble breathing, respiratory distress, wheezing or asthma.

Before it was over, the...

Don't Let Those Christmas Lights Land You in the ER

A white Christmas is everyone's wish, but navigating the snow and cold can land some folks in the ER during the holidays.

Luckily, the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) has some helpful hints on having a safe and happy holiday.

"Cold weather months put many people at greater risk of avoidable injuries," said Dr. William Jaquis, president of ACEP.

"Ho...

Wildfire Smoke Threatens Health for Miles Around

Smoke from the wildfires raging in California poses a serious health risk -- even to those far away from the blazes, an expert warns.

"Smoke can present special health hazards to humans and pets, especially children, older adults and those with chronic respiratory problems such as emphysema, asthma, congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and others," sa...

Prepare for a Disaster With a Family Safety Plan

From Florida hurricanes to California wildfires, these events are reminders of the need to have a family natural disaster plan in place, no matter where you live.

The following steps will help you be prepared for an evacuation due to fire or flooding, whether the source is environmental or starts in your own home.

Start by putting together an evacuation supply carton with e...

4 Tips for a Healthier Home

Simple steps can help you protect your home from health dangers big and small.

Here are four tips to get you started:

It can't be said often enough: Proactively change the batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide alarms. Don't wait until you hear the chirping signal. Set a yearly reminder, such as on your birthday. Also, test the devices monthly as they can wear out over time....

AHA News: Where There's Wildfire Smoke, There May Be Heart Problems

When the Tubbs Fire swept through their neighborhood in Santa Rosa, California, in October 2017, there was little time for Richard Grundy and Jamei Haswell to think about how all the smoke they were inhaling was impacting their health.

Trees already were burning when they pulled out of their driveway. Flames were consuming neighboring houses, ultimately destroying theirs as well. The...

Another Vaping Danger: E-Cigarette Explodes in Teen's Face

A vape pen exploded in the face of 17-year-old Nevada boy, breaking his jaw and requiring multiple surgeries to repair the damage, according to a case report in the latest New England Journal of Medicine.

The 2018 incident highlights a little-known danger of e-cigarettes -- the devices can unexpectedly blow up, causing burns and severe facial damage.

"He was [using] t...

'Controlled Burns' Better for Kids' Health Than Wildfires: Study

Recent forest fires in the western United States have put a spotlight on a fire-management approach called controlled burning. Health researchers are weighing in, too, saying controlled burns pose less of an air pollution risk to children than wildfires.

Controlled, or prescribed, burns are done to reduce levels of material that can feed wildfires.

"We know that there's som...

7 Tips to Prevent Accidents at Your Home

When it comes to your home, safety first is a good rule to follow. And there are many steps you can take to limit home accidents.

Making sure you have proper smoke and carbon monoxide detectors is at the top of the list.

On a daily basis, your hands can face many hazards around the house. In the kitchen, keep knives sharp -- the extra effort needed to use a dull knife can ...

Glass-Fronted Fireplaces Pose Burn Dangers for Kids

Glass-fronted gas fireplaces can pose a serious risk to young children, an emergency room physician warns.

Dr. Michael Gittelman, from Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, cited the case of a 3-year-old boy whose hand was badly burned when he touched the glass door of the family's gas fireplace.

"Young children, like the boy in my emergency room, are at particular ...