health and wellness workshop

Sleep—When You Don’t Snooze, You Lose!

thumb_sleep.jpgPopular culture teaches us that "if you snooze you lose," but research shows just the opposite—sleep is important! Learn why getting quality sleep is essential to health. Find out what happens when we get the right kind of sleep and what negative consequences, like loss of productivity, result from not getting enough rest. Review tips and tricks to improve sleep patterns.

Sleep: The Facts

How much sleep do you need?*star-161973_640.png

  • Infants: as much as 16 hours per day
  • 1-5 years: 10-14 hours per day
  • 6-12 years: 9-12 hours per day
  • 13-18 years: 8-10 hours per day
  • Adults: 7-9 hours per day

*Learn more at:

  • According to the CDC, "More than one-quarter of the U.S. population report occasionally not getting enough sleep, while nearly 10% experience chronic insomnia."
  • A MedlinePlus article reports "recent national surveys show that 30 % of U.S. adults sleep fewer than 7 hours a night. As many as 30 % of adults report daytime sleepiness....[and] 70 % of adolescents sleep less than the recommended 8-9 hours each night."
  • It is estimated that driver sleepiness is a factor in about 100,000 car accidents each year, resulting in about 1,500 deaths.
  • Lack of sleep plays a role in "on the job accidents" such as the Chernobyl Nuclear Reactor Meltdown and numerous plane and ship incidents.
  • "Little Sleep, BIG COST" Infographic ~American Academy of Sleep Medicine

Explore more sleep disorder myths/facts

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute's "Your Guide to Healthy Sleep" (PDF available online) is designed for patients and provides a comprehensive review of important sleep-related information.

Benefits of Sleep

Sleeping the right amount of hours:sleep_benefits.jpg

  • Improves our ability to:
    • Learn
    • Focus
    • Remember
    • Problem solve
    • And be creative
  • Lowers blood pressure and allows our heart and blood vessels to rest
  • Helps certain hormones regulate:
    • Growth
    • The repair of cells and tissues
    • The immune system (to fight infection)
    • Blood sugar levels (which affect energy)
    • Appetite
  • Boosts our mood
  • Helps us better manage our emotions and behaviors (impulse control)

Why is Sleep Important? from NIH

Consequences of Sleep Deprivation

Symptoms of not getting enough sleep may include:

  • Sleepiness
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Moodiness and/or emotional instability
  • Poor impulse control
  • Forgetfulness
  • Increased appetite
  • Accident prone
  • Reduced accuracy
  • Decreased productivity
Did you know...

  • After several nights of losing sleep—even a loss of just 1–2 hours per night—your ability to function suffers as if you haven't slept at all for a day or two.
  • Lack of sleep also may lead to microsleep. Microsleep refers to brief moments of sleep that occur when you're normally awake. ~NIH

Think about what vital information might be missed during a microsleep that occurs at work, while driving, in a classroom, on the telephone, in a healthcare setting, while operating machinery....

Learn more: Sleep, Performance, and Public Safety from Harvard Medical School's Sleep Medicine Department

In the U.S., sleep deprivation contributes to $50 billion dollars in lost productivity each year
See even more startling statistics at: Sleep Disorders & Insufficient Sleep: Improving Health through Research from the NIH

Insufficient sleep has been linked to these chronic diseases/conditions:

My Body, My Frenemy

Our relationship with our bodies directly impacts our overall health and wellbeing.

How do YOU view your body?

Is it your friend?
A means to an end?
A “vehicle?”
An enemy or a rival?

This workshop illustrates how we can improve our health by reframing how we relate to our bodies.
Learn how to mindfully turn your body into your ally!


noun: frenemy; plural noun: frenemies
definition: a person with whom one is friendly despite a fundamental dislike or rivalry.

What is Health?

The World Health Organization (WHO) defines health as "a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity."

[Preamble to the Constitution of WHO as adopted by the International Health Conference, New York, 19 June - 22 July 1946; signed on 22 July 1946 by the representatives of 61 States (Official Records of WHO, no. 2, p. 100) and entered into force on 7 April 1948. The definition has not been amended since 1948. See this link]

Our Thoughts Shape Reality

What is your perception of life and the state of your body (your health)? Do you focus on fighting disease OR on creating health? Which point of view is "better" and why might that be?

What shapes and influences our perceptions of "health?" Answers to that vary but may include personal experience(s), family, friends, society, Institutions, national policies/rules, culture, media...

Our mindset can create either an adversarial or a cooperative/collaborative relationship with our bodies and minds.

Countless studies show that a positive attitude leads to a longer, healthier life.

Internal and External Factors that Support Health & Wellbeing

Internal Traits include being:

  • Enthusiastic
  • Hopeful
  • Engaged
  • Emotionally balanced
  • Resilient

External Factors include:

  • Education
  • Basic Needs Met (food, shelter, security)
  • Economic Stability
  • Strong Social Network (including emotional support)
  • Traditions (familial, cultural, religious)
  • What other internal or external factors do you think contribute to overall health & well being?


    "Self-efficacy is defined as people's beliefs in their capabilities to produce desired effects by their own actions," according to J. E. Maddux.

    Given this definition, why do you think self-efficacy is thought to play a large role in physical and psychological health?

    Recommended Reading

    How your attitudes affect your health. (2016). Harvard Women's Health Watch, 23(9), 1-7. Retrieved from Health Source: Consumer Edition database.

    Maddux, J. E. (2007). Self-Efficacy. In R. F. Baumeister & K. D. Vohs (Eds.), Encyclopedia of Social Psychology (Vol. 2, pp. 814-817). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications. Retrieved from Gale Virtual Reference Library (GVRL) database.

    The mystery of health: Salutogenesis. (2014). Mayo Clinic Health Letter, 32(1), 7. Retrieved from Health Source: Consumer Edition database.

Stress, Humor & the Workplace

laughter.jpgCountless health research studies and documented medical cases show the negative effects of stress on health and wellbeing. Stressful situations in our workplaces are unavoidable. If we cannot control or stop the causes of stress, we can find positive, constructive methods to maintain our health and wellbeing. Humor relieves stress and helps us be positive, productive and effective.

Join this workshop to learn how humor can reduce stress and create a more positive work environment!

Negative Health Effects of Stress

Stress is caused by any event or occurrence (ongoing or isolated) that threatens an individual's coping strategies or resources.

Common physical manifestations of stress: zebra_stress.jpg

  • disrupted sleep
  • indigestion, stomach ache
  • chest pains, high blood pressure
  • fatigue
  • back or neck pain, headaches

Common psychological manifestations of stress:

  • anxiety
  • frustration
  • thumb_work_stress.jpg

  • irritability
  • depression
  • burnout

Positive Benefits of Laughter and Humor

A good "sense" of humor and laughter can trigger both short and long-term health benefits, increasing overall wellbeing. thumb_ban_stress.jpg

“With the fearful strain that is on me night and day,
if I did not laugh, I should die.” ~ Abraham Lincoln, 1865

Immediate Benefits of Humor and Laughter:

  • Increases respiration, heart rate, muscular activity
  • giggle_hoot.jpg

  • Triggers increased oxygenation & circulation
  • Releases endorphins in the brain
  • Eases tension, makes one feel more "relaxed"

Long-Term Benefits of Humor and Laughter

  • Boosts immune system--positive thoughts release neuropeptides (fight stress)
  • Relieves pain--reduces tension, prevents muscle spasms, releases body's natural pain killers
  • Improves mood--hard to "dwell in darkness" when you're smiling and laughing!
  • Strengthens your relationships with others--people are attracted to happy, fun, positive people

"Laugh, and the world laughs with you; weep, and you weep alone." ~Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Remember to "Lighten Up"


  • Mixing humor into the workplace is a social skill.
  • Consider timing, audience, and intent. Be prepared to follow-up whether you "fly" or "fail"
  • Never use humor to gain power, bully, or tear-down
  • People appreciate positive, "bonding" humor over aggressive humor
  • Humor should bring people together or smooth the way during disagreement
  • Constructive criticism is delivered better with a smile than a frown
  • Don't take yourself too seriously....humor can keep you afloat!
  • Collaboration and cooperation are strengthened by shared humor and laughter

Recommended Reading

The best medicine?. (2015). Mayo Clinic Health Letter, 33(7), 7. Retrieved from Academic Search Complete database.

Cann, A., & Kuiper, N. A. (2014). Research on the role of humor in well-being and health. Europe's Journal Of Psychology, 10(3), 412-428. doi:10.5964/ejop.v10i3.818

Frey, R. J., & Davidson, T. (2015). Stress. In J. L. Longe (Ed.), Gale encyclopedia of medicine (5th ed., Vol. 7, pp. 4822-4825). Retrieved from GVRL Database.

Hartwell-Walker, M. (2016). Laughter Is Serious Business!. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 6, 2018, from

Romero, E.J., & Cruthirds, K.W. (2006). The use of humor in the workplace. The Academy of Management Perspectives 20(2), 58-69. retrieved from

Shellenbarger, S. (2013, August 14). Comedic gold or clunker? Secrets of effective office humor. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved from Proquest database.

Stress relief from laughter? It's no joke. (2013, July 13). Mayo Clinic. Retrieved September 13, 2015, from

Thompson, K. (2013). Funny Business at Work. Phi Kappa Phi Forum, 93(3), 25. Retrieved from Academic Search Complete database.

"Smart Medicine" Workshop

smart medicine.pngWho can best answer your medication-related questions? Your doctor? A pharmacist? The Internet?
What are the best times/conditions to take specific medications?
How are pills, capsules and tablets identified without the benefit of original packaging or bottles?
What information should be included in an accurate medication/supplement list in case of emergency or in preparation for a health appointment?

Attend this workshop and learn how to be “smart” about all things medication-related!

Who can best answer your medication-related questions?

  • Your doctor (nurse, healthcare provider)
  • A pharmacist
  • The Internet

Credible information can be received from all three places, but remember that everyone is unique and only healthcare specialists (pharmacists, doctors, nurses) are trained to apply information to specific people and their unique medical histories

Medication Errors: Cut Your Risk With These Tips (Mayo Clinic)

What are the best times/conditions to take specific medications?

Remember, medication is all about chemistry! READ the directions before taking any medication. Common directions include:

  • take on an empty stomach (2 hours before or after eating)
  • take with a meal (or "when stomach is full")
  • take with a full glass of water (8 oz)
  • avoid grapefruit juice or citrus when taking this product
  • take with milk (or take without milk or dairy)
  • avoid certain activities while taking medicine (don't operate heavy machinery)
  • take at a specific time (bedtime, morning or afternoon)
    • timing when you take medications is called chronotherapy

For more information:
Using Medications Safely (American Society of Health-System Pharmacists--ASHP)
Timing When to Take Your Daily Medications (AARP)
Medicines: Common Questions Answered(NIH)

Reading medication labels

Prescription Medicine Label image and short video (Wisconsin Literacy, Inc.)
How to Read an Over-the-Counter Medication Label (ASHP)
Over the Counter (OTC) Drug Labels: Tips for Preventing Unintentional Poisonings(NCPC)

How to identify pills, capsules and tablets

drug_image_Unit6.jpgDrugs (pills, capsules and tablets) can be identified by imprint codes (the letters and numbers on a drug), shape, and color

Pill Identification Tool (RxList)

Pill Identifier (

Pillbox (National Library of Medicine)

Sample medication/supplement Lists

When creating a medication/supplement list, it is important to not only include the medication name, dosage and how/when you take it, but to also include WHY you take the medicine (for what condition/disease). You should provide an updated MASTER list (including all medications and supplements) to all of your healthcare providers and to every pharmacy that you utilize. Clear communication and sharing will help prevent drug interactions or overdoses.

My Medicine List (American Society of Health-System Pharmacists--ASHP) PDF available for download in English and Spanish

Universal Medication Form (ISMP--Institute for Safe Medication Practices) PDF attached for download

For more tips on medication safety including running drug interactions, attend the Drug Interactions Workshop

Drug Interaction Workshop

drug_interactions.jpgDo I take this medication with food or without?
Can I drink (alcohol, citrus juice, milk) with these meds? Does this medicine react with other supplements or medications that I’m already taking?

Learn to run drug interactions quickly and accurately. Find the answers to these and other medication-related questions by attending this workshop!

Medication Quick Facts

  • Nearly 1/3 of US adults take 5 or MORE medications
  • ADE = adverse drug event
  • Every year, ADEs account for:
      100,000 hospitalizations
      700, 000 ER visits
  • ADEs affect nearly 5% of all hospitalized patients and even higher numbers of ambulatory patients
  • The above data is from the AHRQ Patient Safety Primer: Medication Errors

    Drug & Pharmacy Websites


    small yellow star.jpg"Best Bet" resources are indicated with this yellow star

    CenterWatch Clinical Trials Listing Service
    Includes information on new drug therapies in research and those recently approved by the FDA

    small yellow star.jpgConsumer drug information from the FDA (Food and Drug Administration)
    The Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) maintains a collection of educational materials on topics related to buying and using medicine safely. They include brochures, articles, pamphlets, posters, public services announcements, and more.

    Maintained by the National Library of Medicine, this site provides high quality drug information including FDA approved labels (package inserts). It is designed to supply health information providers and the public with a standard, comprehensive, up-to-date, look-up and download resource of medication content and labeling as found in medication package inserts
    A drug information database for consumers and medical professionals, providing information about prescription and over-the-counter medications, treatment notes for specific diseases and conditions, and topical articles and news related to pharmaceuticals

    Herb Research Foundation (HRF)
    A nonprofit research and educational organization focusing on herbs and medicinal plants

    Johns Hopkins Antibiotic Guide
    The Antibiotic Guide is a "decision support tool" intended to provide clinicians with concise, digested, timely information about the diagnosis and treatment of infectious diseases. The information is arranged so that it is clinically useful at the point of care

    small yellow star.jpgMEDLINEplus National Library of Medicine
    Information on thousands of prescription and over-the-counter medications provided through two drug resources -- MedMaster, a product of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP), and the USP DI Advice for the Patient, a product of the United States Pharmacopeia (USP)

    Medscape Multi-Drug Interaction Checker
    Use the search field to look up prescription or OTC drugs, and herbal supplements then add all of your medications to view interactions

    RxList - The Internet Drug Index
    Contains a database of approximately 5,000 product names that is updated regularly including professional monographs derived from FDA approved labeling and patient-oriented monographs. Has a pill identifier and an interaction checker section

    small yellow
    Easy-to-read information on more than 800 drugs sponsored by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Provides tips on taking medicines safely and has a downloadable "My Medication List" for keeping track of all the necessary information on medications, herbs & supplements that you take

    ✔ Drug Interactions in Micromedex

    Micromedex Health Care Series 
    MICROMEDEX Healthcare Series provides full-text information supporting clinical care decisions including: drug monographs and evaluations, drug dosages and drug interactions, drug product identification, reproductive risks, toxicity management, alternative medicine/herbal preparations information, acute/emergency care guidelines, drug, disease and condition information for patients, laboratory test information, dosage calculators, nomograms, and references

    Many drug-related resources are located within the point-of-care clinical database, Micromedex. **Accessing Micromedex from on campus is automatic. Access from off campus requires last name and library barcode**

    interactions tab.jpg
    To run a drug interaction in Micromedex, click on the Drug Interactions tab located at the top of the main page

    entering drugs.jpg

    • Enter drugs one at a time.
    • The database will suggest medications under the search box.
    • Make certain to select (or type) the correct drug name
    • If you are not certain of the spelling, check your medication bottle or contact your healthcare provider
    • Many drugs have similar spellings
    • Use the arrow buttons to add or delete drugs from your list
    • You can include prescription and over-the-counter drugs, vitamins, & supplements in your search
    • Click on the Add Allergies button and enter allergies (shellfish or penicillin for example)
    • Select the submit button when you have added all medications and any allergies

    interaction results_0.jpg

    • Use the tabs acros the top to select type of interaction such as drug-drug or ethanol (alcohol)
    • For all interaction types, scroll down the results list
    • Severity rated as: contraindicated (should not be used), major, moderate, minor, unknown
    • Documentation (in the medical literature): excellent, good, fair, unknown
    • click on linked titles for more information and references

    DISCLAIMER: Remember to discuss all findings with your pharmacist and healthcare providers. Do NOT "practice without a license"--refer all questions and concerns to medical professionals! They can review results and apply them to your unique medical case.

Subscribe to health and wellness workshop