AN ALZHEIMER’S DIAGNOSIS CAN BE DEVASTATING FOR BOTH PATIENTS AND FAMILIES ALIKE.

When Cathy Gustafson returns home after painting or coloring at Memory Matters’ day program, she is eager to show off her creations to husband, Ron. Ron, who’s been with Cathy since they were 14, always admires the artwork, happy to see her smile and enjoy herself.

Chloe Bredeson has come a long way since she was first diagnosed with tuberous sclerosis complex in 2010.

When she was 3, the Bluffton girl began experiencing seizures. Doctors traced them to the genetic disease, which causes tumors to grow in the vital organs and is the leading genetic cause of epilepsy and autism. Experts say it affects about 1 million people worldwide.

West NileThey’re tiny and they’re everywhere. Early autumn and summer are prime months for mosquito breeding, a time when female mosquitoes seek blood meals to nourish their eggs — and when the risk of catching a mosquito-borne illness rises.

Mosquitoes carrying diseases like West Nile and Zika used to be found only around the equator, but as temperatures rise around the world, the insects are able to survive farther north than they could before.

Two experts in the field of stem cell research will give a presentation titled “Adult Stem Cells: Medicine of the Future”on Oct. 5 at Sonesta Resort Hilton Head Island in Shipyard Plantation.

Dr Keith MarchPresenters Keith March and Anthony Atala will discuss stem cell research and recent advances that promise to bring a better quality of life to many patients. March is the director of the Indiana Center for Vascular Biology and Medicine and the VA Center for Regenerative Medicine, both at Indiana University Medical Center. He is a nationally and internationally recognized doctor who presents at scientific meetings worldwide. His research focuses on discovery and development of adult stem cell-derived therapies to treat acute and chronic diseases including COPD, heart failure, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease and ALS.

While working on the thesis for my master’s degree, I followed a group of 13- to 16-year-olds for two years. I was astonished by the amount of stress affecting their young lives. Talking to them, as well as to specialists, teachers and parents, and taking from my own experience as a mother, I identified five stress management tips that parents of teens should know.

TAKE A PROBIOTIC

According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, “probiotics may provide novel approaches for both disease prevention and treatment.” Probiotics in the GI tract help to reinforce the barrier function of the intestinal lining, thus lowering the chance of bacteria in the intestines entering the blood stream. When shopping for a probiotic supplement, look for lactobacillus, bifidobacterium and saccharomyces — the three most extensively studied and used probiotics, according to NCBI. The amount of probiotic a child should take is dependent on factors like age and weight. Your pediatrician can help guide you with dosage. 

YOUR KIDS WILL ACTUALLY EAT

Do you find yourself standing in the kitchen singing “Packin’ the Lunchbox Blues” — and the school year hasn’t even started yet? Lunchboxes might do things these days they never did before — like light up and emit sounds, — but they still don’t pack themselves. The predictable meal of a peanut butter-and-jelly sandwich, mozzarella stick, juice box and yogurt becomes quite unappealing to young children after a while, like going to a restaurant where the menu never changes. For most of us, the most exciting part about opening our lunchboxes every day was discovering what Mom or Dad had packed for dessert — not the processed cheese sandwich. Trading away lunch was a common pastime in the cafeteria.

Here in the Lowcountry, there can be a false sense of “we know what we’re doing” when it comes to the sun. Most of us know the acronyms UVA, UVB, SPF and the times we’re supposed to avoid the sun’s harshest rays. We live here after all, on this picturesque island situated at 32 degrees north of the equator. Some of us even realize we’re at the same latitude as beautiful Bermuda and toasty Tucson, Arizona.

So why, despite daily UV Index warnings and countless sunscreen options available to us, do we have such a high rate of skin cancer? In statistics released by the federal Environmental Protection Agency several years ago, Beaufort County had the highest rate of new melanoma diagnoses in the state and ranked among the highest 4 percent of counties nationwide.

Whether you’re hitting one of our Island’s award winning beaches, cruising our waterways or sitting pretty poolside, stock up on summer essentials made with all natural ingredients like peppermint oil with these simple DIY recipes.

Confidence boosters

CONFIDENCE — that feeling of self-assurance that comes from within—helps us weather all that life brings. Confidence tells us we can cope with what's going on in our lives, and that we have a right to be happy.

A person’s level of self-confidence is revealed in behavior, body language, tone of voice and more. Feeling good about how we look is only one component of self-confidence, but studies shows that people who are satisfied with their personal appearance are more willing to take personal and professional risks.