Photo by: bigcityal (Flickr)
Our March Madness goes beyond basketball!
College hoops fans go crazy in the month of March. March Madness is an NCAA tradition gluing tons of sports fans to their television sets. We in the health care industry have a better label than March Madness for the month of March: health awareness month. Throughout the month of March, health topics are the focus worldwide, and the March health tips are designed to give all of us a healthier lifestyle. Let's go crazy over health and review some important March celebrations!
Athletic Training Month
Since most people associate March Madness with basketball, I'm going to begin our March health awareness month list with Athletic Training Month. The focus of this awareness campaign is the approximately 35,000 athletic trainers in the U.S. and the work they do in the prevention and treatment of sports-related injuries. In the month of March, health topics should revolve around athletics!
Brain Injury Awareness Month
Unfortunately, some sports are known to cause brain injury, and in March, health tips also focus on the brain because it is Brain Injury Awareness Month. This annual awareness campaign reminds us all that brain injuries are often traumatic, possibly deadly, and many times avoidable. Brain Injury Awareness Month encourages a call for greater research and measures to prevent brain injuries.
Child Life Month
Child Life Month is a worldwide awareness campaign to remind us of the importance of a child's psychosocial needs when visiting the pediatrician. Children and their parents tend to stress when it's time to go to the doctor, particularly if inoculations are on the agenda. Child Life Month honors the child life specialists who work tirelessly to ensure tender and quality care within medical settings.
Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month
March health awareness month also reminds us that no one is immune to colorectal cancer. Few people knew what colon cancer was until Katie Couric brought colon cancer to the forefront after her husband's death. We now understand that colon and rectal cancer pose a serious health risk to all of us, and in March, health topics include getting regular screenings for colorectal cancer.
Eye Donor Month
Many of us are designated organ donors on our identification cards, but sometimes we forget that our eyes can also be donated at the time of our death. March is the Eye Bank Association of America's Eye Donor Month, and it is an annual awareness campaign reminding us all of the need to donate our eyes alongside other viable organs; after all, you will be saving someone's sight.
Many of us don't think about our kidneys until something goes wrong. This is why the March health tips you'll hear from the National Kidney Foundation strongly suggest you get to know your kidneys better and learn what they do for you. During National Kidney Month, the NKF teaches us all about our kidneys and how we can take better care of them to ensure they stay healthy for as long as we do.
March is also National Nutrition Month, which makes perfect sense since good nutrition plays a vital role in everyone's overall health. This annual campaign is put together by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and it focuses on teaching us how to make informed food choices and develop healthy eating habits. Physical activity goes alongside a nutritional diet, as the ANDA reminds us in March.
Patient Safety Awareness Week
I've been talking primarily about March's monthly awareness campaigns in keeping with my March Madness theme. I'd like to add a weekly campaign, however, because this one's for nurses! Patient Safety Awareness Week is from March 2 to March 8. I'm giving this campaign an honorable mention because in our profession, being reminded of patient safety is always a good thing!