Tampa Bay Newspapers
9911 Seminole Blvd.,
Seminole, FL 33772
Phone: (727) 397-5563
Fax: (727) 397-5900
Submit News
  
 Search
  9911 Seminole Blvd. Seminole, FL 33772       Ph. 727-397-5563   View TBN's FREE e-Edition today!  
Click here to learn more
Health News
Being responsible for your own health
Article published on Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013
  Print E-Mail
 
When I was in physical therapy about a year ago, there was a lady on the table next to me who was grunting and groaning and huffing and puffing her way through her exercises. At one point, when it seemed to be particularly hard for her, she looked over at me and said do you know why I do this? I have to stay in shape so that my son doesn’t have to take care of me. I don’t want him to spend his young life that way. Then, she started huffing and puffing again. Last week, I overheard a conversation between two ladies who were smoking. One told the other that she knew she should quit, but that she had to “die of something,” and “hey, I took care of my kids so they have to take care of me,” and laughed. I instantly felt bad for people I didn’t know. I had images of middle-aged children with jobs, houses and families of their own. And while they were dealing with their day-to-day responsibilities and pressures of life, having to take their mother from doctor appointment to doctor appointment, from treatment to the hospital and home, planning meals and caring for her throughout the week. I felt bad for her too and wondered if she understood the gravity of her statement. I imagine she loves her children and she would not want to take time away from their lives, saddling them with years of taking care of her when it could be avoided. My guess is that she just hasn’t thought this through.

It is a beautiful thing when family steps up and supports us in our old age and I believe in that. Accidents happen and we’re also not responsible for things we don’t know. Many families have the means and would prefer to take care of their loved ones in their golden years. That’s not what I’m talking about here. I’m talking about becoming educated while you have time and before you get to that place. I’m also talking about people who know better but do it anyway. It’s a new way of thinking. If you are 60 years old or younger, you are probably aware of the drawbacks of inactivity, eating bad food and indulging in alcohol, tobacco and drugs. There was a time when very little education was available but those times are behind us now. If you’ve chosen a sedentary life or you have a problem with food or anything in excess including smoking, drinking and/or drugging, information is available that will give you insight into your potential future. More importantly, help is available.

If you’re a smoker, imagine how mentally empowering it would be to say, “I quit smoking so I don’t get COPD. I won’t have to carry oxygen around and my kids won’t have to take care of me.” How good do you think you would feel about yourself if you were pre-diabetic, and before it was too late, you could say, “I stopped eating ice cream to avoid diabetes so my husband doesn’t have to spend his golden years wheeling me around from doctor to doctor?”

What’s the worst thing that could happen if you decide to make today the day to start getting healthy? What if you set an appointment with your doctor to find out what you can do to lose that weight, stop drinking, detoxify and the like? There are physical health programs, mental health professionals, support groups, community centers, books to read and lots of people to help you. You’re never too old to learn how to take care of yourself.

When you decide to take responsibility for your own health, you’ll be on this planet a whole lot longer, you’ll feel better physically and mentally and you won’t be a burden to your family. You will be a more valuable member of your family and the community and it feels great to be in control. The more you care for yourself, the more energy and desire you will have to be active physically which will enhance your mental health. Being responsible for your own health is a win-win; you love yourself and your family. It’s double happiness.

A staff member at the Bay Pines VA Hospital from 2006-2013, Dina Meitner, LCSW, is currently in private practice at 2081 Indian Rocks Road.
Article published on Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013
Copyright © Tampa Bay Newspapers: All rights reserved.
Printable Version E-mail article
NuSmile
Featured Print Advertisers
Florida Center for Back & Neck Pain
Dr. Greg Hollstrom
11444 Seminole Blvd.
Largo
(727) 393-6100

Web site        View Ad
:)
Abbey Carpet & Floor of Largo
13120 66th St. N.
Largo
(727) 524-1445

Web site        View Ad
:)
Custom Couture of Clearwater
(727) 735-8407
By appointment please.

Web site        View Ad
:)
Flooring America of Seminole
9012 Seminole Blvd.
Seminole
(727) 397-5509

Web site        View Ad
:)
Oakhurst & East Bay Medical
13020 Park Blvd., Seminole
(727) 393-3404
3800 East Bay Dr., Largo
(727) 539-0505

Web site        View Ad
:)
NuSmile Dental
13611 Park Blvd., Suite G
Seminole
(727) 475-7866

Web site        View Ad
:)
Tampa Bay Newspapers
Online Advertising
For information, e-mail
webmaster@tbnweekly.com
:)
Online Services Directory
MEDICAL DIRECTORY   ONLINE DINING GUIDE
MEDICAL DIRECTORY ONLINE DINING GUIDE
AUTOMOTIVE GUIDE REAL ESTATE GUIDE
AUTOMOTIVE GUIDE REAL ESTATE GUIDE
TBN 27/7
Tampa Bay Newspapers
9911 Seminole Blvd.,
Seminole, FL 33772
Phone: (727) 397-5563
Fax: (727) 397-5900
Submit News