Healthy Active Living with St. Joseph Healthcare

Leave a comment

Tools to Help Take Care of Your Mental Health

We asked Dr. Scott Deron to discuss the importance of emotional and mental health, and offer some tools for us to take care of our mental health. 

Our emotional and mental health is just as important as our physical health. We lead busy and complicated lives that stress our emotional health reserves, and it can be difficult to treat issues that arise. I see issues related to emotional health every day in my cardiology practice. Some symptoms can look like palpitations and elevated blood pressure.

Mindfulness: Teaching You to Be Present in the Moment
While medications can be important and necessary, at times, there also is an important place for Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR). I often recommend this approach to my patients, even those who are not dealing with active emotional health issues.

We cannot entirely eliminate stress in our lives, but we can try to insulate ourselves against stress. This is where MBSR comes in, a tactic used by major medical centers to help those who live with conditions such as chronic pain, cancer, infertility, anxiety and depression. The concept of MBSR asks us to separate ourselves from the past and the future and immerse ourselves in the one thing we truly have and that is the present moment.

The 7 Basics Tenants of Mindfulness
Achieving mindfulness and finding ourselves in the present can be done when we appreciate the seven basic tenants of mindfulness. These are:

  1. Non-judgment
  2. Patience
  3. The beginner’s mind
  4. Trust
  5. Non-striving
  6. Acceptance
  7. Letting go

A daily practice of time for one’s self in comfortable meditation can often reduce the anxiety caused by stress, decrease palpitations, improve blood pressure, improve sleep patterns and improve life quality.

Mental Health Resources
Two good resources for learning more about MBSR are Full Catastrophe Living by Jon Kabat-Zinn, Ph.D., and The Relaxation Response by Herbert Benson, MD.  These serve as an excellent introduction to MBSR and how you can learn simple relaxation techniques.  I used to struggle to get to sleep until I read these two books, and now, I’m asleep within minutes.

scott_deron_MD_for_blogScott Deron, DO, is a cardiologist with St. Joseph’s Cardiology. To contact Dr. Deron and our cardiac team, call (207) 907-1770 or find them online.


Leave a comment

53 Million Adults Have Arthritis

Nearly 53 million adults and 300,000 babies, children or teens have been diagnosed by a doctor with joint paint or joint disease, also known as arthritis. And, that number is expected to grow to 67 million by 2030.

There are hundreds of different types of arthritis and related rheumatic conditions, according to the Arthritis Foundation. It’s the No. 1 cause of disability among Americans.

Arthritis Symptoms

Common arthritis symptoms include swelling, joint pain and stiffness. Some people also experience a decreased range of motion. Arthritis symptoms can vary in intensity and, in some people, can make it difficult to complete daily activities like walking or climbing stairs.

Contact St. Joe’s to Help with Your Arthritis

Do you have painful or swollen joints? If so, contact. St. Joe’s Rheumatology today. Connect with one of our board-certified rheumatologists. Call us at 207.907.3370 or click here for more information.


Leave a comment

More Tips on Taking Care of Those Two Feet

You can never do too much to take care of yourself. Therefore, we’re delivering more tips for you to care for those two feet in celebration of Foot Health Month. Try these tips:

  • Trim your toenails straight across. Smooth the edges with an emery board. If you develop calluses, use an emery board or pumice stone regularly to help keep your feet soft.
  • Always wear shoes and socks, even in your home. Never walk barefoot. Protect your feet from hot and cold extremes. Wear shoes at the beach or on hot pavement.
  • Make sure your footwear fits your feet well and are not too tight or too loose.
  • Have your feet measured by a qualified shoe salesperson every year or two. Feet grow as you age.
  • Check inside your shoes before sliding them on. Ensure their lining is smooth and they’re free from rocks, etc.
  • Keep the blood flowing to your feet. Elevate them when you’re at rest. Wiggle your toes and pump your ankles throughout the day.
  • If you require special shoes, check with your healthcare provider about insurance coverage.

If you’re having an issue with your feet, please call the St. Joseph Skin and Wound Healing Clinic at 207.907.1550 or visit:

Leave a comment

St. Joe’s Recognizes Its Volunteers During National Healthcare Volunteer Week

We’d like to extend a heartfelt thank you to our 85 hospital volunteers for their 10,360 hours of service in 2017!

“People volunteer at St. Joe’s to give back to their community, help others, remain active and enjoy social interaction. It’s simply a fact that volunteering grows your circle of friends. Time and time again I’ve seen volunteers became great friends,” said Renee Bouchard, Volunteer Coordinator at St. Joe’s. “In addition, many folks volunteer because they’ve received care here and want to give back in a very personal way. They connect with our mission and genuinely want to be a part of it.”

For more information about volunteering at St. Joe’s, please call Renee at 207.907.1794 or visit

Leave a comment

Planning for an Unforeseen Health Crisis: Resources & Tips

Andrew Files, Director of Spiritual Care at St. Joe’s, is celebrating National Healthcare Decisions Day by sharing resources and tips that may assist you in planning ahead for an unforeseen health crisis.


Tips – Consider the following: 

  • Talk openly with your loved ones about your wishes
  • Ensure your wishes are in writing, specifically in an Advance Directive
  • Be sure your PCP and local hospitals have copies of your Advance Directive
  • Travel with notarized copy of your Advance Directive
  • Be sure your loved ones know where you keep your Advance Directive

Download & Print:

To connect with Andrew call 207.907.1798 or visit

Leave a comment

Tips for Taking Care of Your Feet


Jen Curley, BSN, RN, CFCN

During Foot Health Month, Jen Curley, BSN, RN, CFCN (Certified Foot Care Nurse) encourages you to care for your feet by:

  • Looking for red spots, cuts, swelling and blisters on your feet and between your toes every day. If you can’t see or reach them, ask for help or use a mirror. Wearing white socks can help you detect any drainage that may not be seen on dark socks.
  • Carefully washing and drying your feet daily. Soaking is not recommended.
  • Keeping your feet moisturized. Dry skin can lead to cracks, which can lead to infection. Moisturizing between your toes is not recommended.
  • Working with your healthcare provider, if you’re diabetic, to manage your blood sugar.

If you need an appointment, please call the St. Joseph Skin and Wound Healing Clinic at 207.907.1550 or visit:

Leave a comment

5 Ways You Can Celebrate April’s Donate Life Month

Vicki Kolenik RN, BSN, Employee Health and Wellness Manager and Organ Bank Liaison, St. Joseph Healthcare, has 5 pieces of great advice for those considering donating an organ or tissue to save another life. The two best resources for information are:

Vicki also highly recommends that potential donors consider these 5 tips:

  1. Research the facts around organ and tissue donation and decide if you truly want to be a donor
  2. If you decide to donate, register at:
  3. Inform your family of your decision. Families are more comfortable with the process if they are aware of your wishes.
  4. If any member of your family is interested in making a living donation (e.g. – donating a kidney or part of a liver), point them toward the appropriate resources.
  5. If you have any questions at all, the team at New England Donor Services is available to you – call 1.800.446.6362.

If you’d like to speak with Vicki, feel free to contact her at 207.907.1460.

If we all sign up, we can save each other -