What awareness is this month for?
Updated: Dec 25, 2021
This blog post will be updated every month as we continue this year.
January is National Blood Donor month. Due to severe weather conditions, and increased illnesses, blood donations decrease, while platelet demands increase. The American Red Cross and Blood Banks of America encourage everyone to donate blood for the cause. One person’s blood can help millions of people, including, but not limited to, cancer patients, organ recipients, and victims of accidents. Donating blood is also very safe. All you have to do is register, take a small medical history test, and then donate. Don’t you think it would feel good to know that you’re blood is going to save someone’s life? So, go donate today!***
Fun fact: Richard Nixon proclaimed January as National Blood Donor Month for the first time on December 31, 1969.
***There are age limits to who can donate. For more information, please go here.
February is AMD awareness month. AMD, means Age-related Macular Degeneration, and its a disease which affects the retina, a part in the eye that provides you with the ability to see. As it’s obviously stated in the name, AMD usually affects people above the age of 70. Studies show that it is also more common among females. The specific cause of AMD is unknown, except for ethnicity and gender. There is also no known medicine for AMD, but those that are at greater risk can slow it by eating a high dose of Vitamins C and E, because they are said to have antioxidants.
For more information and to help raise awareness, please visit www.preventblindess.org.
March is American Red Cross awareness month. The ARC (American Red Cross) was founded in 1881 by Clara Barton. It’s the United States premiere emergency response tram, but it’s also part of a worldwide organization that provides care for victims of war. Although the ARC is the largest supplier of blood and products in the country, it does not get help from the government; it actually relies on donations of money, as well as people who volunteer their time. This foundation has expanded their many services. Here are some of them: Disaster services, blood services, facilitating communications between military members and their families, and jobs for unemployed nurses. As you can see the ARC is very important to our country.
For more information, to help raise awareness, or to donate, please visit http://www.redcross.org/
April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month. Parkinson’s disease is a neurodegenerative disease, which means it affects the neurons in the body, often resulting in cell loss/malfunction. Sometimes, it can even result in the death of cells. Parkinson’s disease usually affects the muscles in the legs, but it can also cause limb stiffness, balance issues, and tremors. (Tremors are the rhythmic contractions, which results in involuntary movement of the muscles.) Even though each person reacts to this disease differently, the symptoms are usually serious. The genes created during Parkinson’s disease is also passed down to your children. Unfortunately, there is no cure and more research is needed. Please donate today!
For more information, to donate, and to raise awareness for the cause, please visit parkinson.org
May is National Cancer Research Month. So, what exactly is cancer? Despite what people may think, cancer is not a disease. The term "cancer" is a whole group of diseases that are characterized with the uncontrolled growth of cells. When the DNA of a cell is damage, mutations can arise, and these mutated cells will spread fast. Cancer is a result of the accumulated cells.
The AACR (American Association for Cancer Research) is a legit group that advocates and helps people with cancer recover. 100% of your donations goes straight to scientists and doctors to find cures for cancer.
For more information or to donate, please go to www.aacr.org
June is National Scleroderma awareness month. Scleroderma [scler - o - derma] is a disease that mainly affects women at a ratio of 4:1. Even though scleroderma can affect anybody from infants to the elderly, it most frequent among the ages 25-55. Scleroderma is a chronic connective tissue disease and one of its most visible symptoms is hardening of the skin. This disease is not contagious, nor is it genetic, and there is still no cure. The Scleroderma Foundation is a not for profit organization that was founded in 1981. It supports patients and their families, conducts research to learn more about the disease, and it educates the public.
Please visit scleroderma.org for more information and/or to donate.
July is Hemochromatosis Awareness Month. Hemochromatosis [hemo - chro - ma - tosis] is a disease that is also known as "genetic iron poisoning." It is the most common genetic disease in the United States, and every 1 in 8 people are carriers of the single gene mutation, whereas 1 in 150 have the double gene mutation which places them at a higher risk. Hemochromatosis affects all genders and ages, but it can be diagnosed easily and quickly. The American Hemochromatosis Society (AHS) strives to conduct educational campaigns and provide support for hemochromatosis patients, families, and friends.
Please visit www.americanhs.org for more information and/or to donate.
August is Psoriasis Awareness Month. Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin disorder which increases the number of skin cells and their life span. No one knows for sure how psoriasis starts, but we know that genetics and the immune system both play an important role. Some more triggers include infections, stress, heavy alcohol consumption, smoking, emotional trauma, and vitamin deficiencies. Psoriasis can be a challenging thing to cope with, so make sure to talk to your doctor/dermatologist about what can be done to help ease the load.
For more information, visit https://www.slma.cc/psoriasis-awareness-month/
September is Leukemia Awareness Month. Leukemia is a broad term for the cancers of the blood cells, but the type of cancer depends on which blood cell becomes cancer, and whether it grows rapidly or slowly. Its seen the most in adults over the age of 55, but it is the most common type of cancer seen in children under the age of 15. When you donate to a cancer institute, this directly helps scientists and doctors find new ways to help cancer patients. Some treatments for leukemia include stem cell transplantation, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy. These are all effective, but scientists are still looking for a permanent solution
To learn more or to make a donation, please visit www.cancer.gov
October is Dyslexia Awareness Month, and it is meant to bring awareness to a reading disability that affects people around the world. During this month, there are events and seminars that will provide opportunities to educators and families to help find new resources and and approaches to reading. Learning to read is one of the most important tools in any student's lifetime. Some signs of dyslexia include difficulty learning simple rhymes, speech delays, trouble identifying left and right, leaving out or repeating short words, writing letters backward or reversing them while reading, and difficulty with spelling. A note to educators: please keep these signs in mind and help all your students learn how to read, don't lecture them.
To learn more or attend one of these events, please visit https://dyslexiaida.org/october-is-dyslexia-awareness-month-2/
November is Diabetes Awareness Month. Diabetes is a chronic health condition that affects how your body turns food into usable energy. When you eat food, it's broken down into sugar and released into the bloodstream. When the blood sugar goes up, then the body signals to the pancreas to create insulin which lets the sugar go into the cell to be used as energy. If you have diabetes, your body either doesn’t make enough insulin or can’t use the insulin it makes as well as it should. When this happens, too much blood sugar can stay in your blood stream, which leads to other health problems such as heart disease and vision loss.
There are two main types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2 (also gestational diabetes and prediabetes which I will cover in another post.) Type 1 diabetes is thought to be caused by an autoimmune reaction (the body attacks itself by mistake) and it stops your body from making insulin. Type 2 diabetes is when your body doesn't use insulin well and can't maintain blood sugar levels. Although there is no known medicine for type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes can be prevented by losing weight, eating healthy food, and staying active.
To take a diabetes risk test for yourself or for a loved one, please visit https://www.diabetes.org/risk-test
For more information, or to donate, please visit diabetes.org.
December is Worldwide Food Service Safety Month. The goal of this month is to make sure that we remember to make safe food and to remember to make sure that the food we buy from restaurants and stores is safe to eat. This has been recognized since 1994, as food is a very crucial part of our lives and it is important to make safe food for ourselves and others.
Did you know more than 200 diseases are spread through food alone? One in ten people get sick every year, and around 420, 000 people die from contaminated food. These illnesses can cause serious long term health problems, as well as death. Children under the age of 5 are most susceptible, so it is important that everyone takes part in this shared responsibility to keep the world's food safe.
Here are some tips to preparing food safely. One tip is to wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water before and after touching food, as well as covering open wounds and injuries with band aids. Another tip is to remember to wash your dishtowels and your produce (fruits and veggies) with hot water to make sure everything is kept clean. The final tip is to make sure you cook your meat properly. You can do this by measuring the heat with a thermometer.
To learn more/donate, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/foodsafety/index.html.