Oh, December. The time to balance joy with stress, vegetables with cookies, and calendar overload with wellness routines. This year, COVID-19 has thrown an extra curve ball in the mix. How do we keep the spirit of the season alive when things feel extra dark? We made a list.

WITH THE HOLIDAYS APPROACHING, TAKE A FEW MOMENTS FOR ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT PEOPLE ON YOUR SHOPPING LIST. YOU. 

The holidays can be a little bit hectic. Every year, there’s the shopping, the cooking, and the entertaining to contend with, but in 2020 you can add the pressures of, well, 2020. After a year like this, the extra baggage of making this holiday special as a tonic against the rest of the year adds just that much stress to an already stressful season.  

WHY MAKING TIME TO GET THE FLU VACCINE IS MORE PRESSING THAN EVER

Many people may have thought they were battling an aggressive flu when the COVID-19 pandemic began, but the viruses have often proven to show similar early symptoms.

As the true flu season rapidly approaches, and with the coronavirus pandemic still a worldwide crisis, doctors are reminding patients that getting that dreaded flu shot is easier and more important than ever.

BREAST CANCER RISKS, SYMPTOMS, AND NEW REVELATIONS ON EARLY DETECTION

“There can be life after breast cancer. The prerequisite is early detection.” — Ann Jillian

Twelve percent of women today will develop invasive breast cancer, and more than 40,000 will die from it this year alone, reports BreastCancer.org. That's why a refresher course on early detection and staying up-to-date on the latest studies is essential and the reason for October's Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

skin

Wearing a mask or facial covering during the coronavirus pandemic is essential to keeping you and others safe, but it might irritate your skin. There are steps you can take to keep your skin healthy while adhering to the safest guidelines.

First, always wash your hands before applying any products to your skin. Wash your hands before you wash your face. You don't want bacteria from your hands rubbing all over your face and causing more problems. Next, wash your hands before and after touching, removing, or putting on your mask.

KEEP YOUR BODY STRONG

A healthy immune system helps your body defend against illnesses. But it needs your help to fight off viruses that cause colds and the flu. Here are some tips to help your body stay strong.

TIPS FOR COMMON AILMENTS

Enjoying the great outdoors sometimes results in injuries. It’s important to know how to treat minor problems with a first-aid kit and to recognize what merits a visit to an urgent care center or an emergency room.

SCREEN TIME ADVICE FROM LOCAL PROFESSIONALS

It’s a minor miracle that we overlook almost every single day, one that would have been the stuff of science fiction a couple decades ago: A small device that fits in your pocket and puts all the collected knowledge of mankind at your fingertips. A device that connects you to every single person on the planet.

In principle, anyway, that’s how it’s supposed to work. In reality, smartphones give us knowledge without wisdom. They give us connection that, ironically, isolates. And, as growing research is showing, smartphones ultimately might do more harm than good.

MORE AND MORE ADULTS ARE OPTING FOR ORTHODONTIA

By now, it’s hardly radical to point out that braces aren’t just for preteens anymore. Adult orthodontia was already on the rise in the early 2000s when celebrities like Tom Cruise and Faith Hill showed up on the red carpet rocking a set of straighteners, and interest in it increased from there.

According to the American Association of Orthodontists, one in four orthodontic patients is an adult, with ages ranging anywhere from early 20s into the 80s.

FINDING THE RIGHT ASSISTED LIVING FACILITIES FOR YOUR LOVED ONES 

When the time comes, finding the most comfortable assisted living facility for a loved one is of utmost importance. In addition to high-quality care, the facility should provide opportunities for daily activities and meaningful social interactions.

Assisted living facilities, which help the elderly manage daily tasks such as getting dressed, doing laundry and taking the proper medicines, can help benefit overall health and mental well-being, according to AARP.