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What’s Really Going On When We Say You Have High Cholesterol May 31st, 2024

High cholesterol is a risk factor for many other medical problems and a concerning condition in itself. Whether you have high cholesterol as a result of another disease or on its own, you should take the condition seriously and try to manage it.  If you’re one of the 71 million...

7 Reasons Why Your Toddler Has Lost Their Appetite Apr 2nd, 2024

Sometimes a toddler who won’t eat is just being picky, but an appetite that isn’t there at all is another story. Your concern is justified if you’re worried about your toddler’s loss of appetite. Often, a toddler’s loss of appetite is a sign of an underlying medical condition that needs...

Want to Get Off Diabetes Medication? Here Are Your First Steps Mar 1st, 2024

Having diabetes means you must take steps to balance your blood sugar (glucose) within a safe range. Consistently high glucose compromises the tissues throughout your body and can lead to a wide range of complications including neuropathy, kidney problems, and gum disease.  A hormone called insulin naturally keeps your blood...

Help! My Baby Has a Rash Feb 1st, 2024

When you’re a new parent, nothing is more worrying than a possible issue with your baby’s health. While rashes are common in babies, you want to know what causes them and what you need to do to treat them.  The good news is most rashes in infants and small children...

What an EKG Can Tell You About Your Health Jan 1st, 2024

An electrocardiogram (EKG) is a simple medical test that generates a graph showing the activity of your heart. Painless and quick, an EKG gives you valuable information about the electrical phases of each heartbeat.  Physicians Clifton Etienne, MD, Michael Cavanagh, MD, and Flora Brewington, MD, at Westmed Family Healthcare frequently...

Can You Really Eat Your Way to Healthier Blood Pressure? Nov 30th, 2023

High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is a common health issue among adults. With almost half of adults experiencing hypertension in the United States alone, the condition is quite prevalent.  Whether you’ve been diagnosed with high blood pressure or have discovered it yourself through self-testing, learning ways to control your...

5 Different Birth Control Options to Consider Nov 2nd, 2023

Plenty of birth control options are available today, allowing people of childbearing age the freedom to choose if or when they’re ready to get pregnant. With a trusted family medicine physician, you can choose your preferred method of birth control based on its effectiveness, ease of use, and any future...

How to Prevent Infant Injuries During Playtime Oct 1st, 2023

Playtime may seem trivial, but it’s critical in a child’s maturation. From infancy to the preteen years, you should encourage your child to engage in playtime for the sake of their cognitive, physical, emotional, and social development.  You may be surprised to hear the many benefits your baby can derive...

5 Health Complications of Untreated Strep Throat Sep 1st, 2023

You might think of strep throat as a mild health issue that affects you for a week or so from time to time. What many people don’t realize is that you can develop complications from strep if you ignore your symptoms and avoid treatment.  Although the illness itself can be...

My Child Has Developed an Itchy Rash: What Could It Be? Aug 2nd, 2023

Whether your kids are in school or out for the summer, they’re probably pretty active outside. When you first see a rash, you might assume they’ve encountered some plant or other irritant that causes their skin to flare up. There are numerous skin conditions, infections, and outside causes of rashes,...

Top 5 Lifestyle Changes to Improve Your Cholesterol Levels Jul 1st, 2023

Most people have probably heard their primary care providers mention cholesterol at least once or twice. High cholesterol is a condition that grows more common with age and can wreak havoc on your overall health. It’s important to know what cholesterol is, what it does, and why it’s bad for...

Here’s Why Even a Mild Ankle Sprain Should Be Evaluated by an Expert Jun 1st, 2023

Young or old, athletic or sedentary, anyone can sprain their ankle. If you have kids who play sports, or if you’re an athlete yourself, you’ve probably encountered a sprain or two. Ankle sprains are the leading reason for missed athletic participation.  Though many ankle sprains seem comparably mild, you should never forgo...

Do You Have These Telltale Symptoms of Diabetes? May 1st, 2023

You can thank a hormone called insulin for driving your metabolism. Straight from your pancreas, this hormone converts the sugar (glucose) in your blood into energy that your cells use for any and all functions. Without insulin, or with ineffective insulin, glucose accumulates in your blood and can damage your...

Why Do Some People Get UTIs Frequently? Apr 3rd, 2023

Burning urination, frequent trips to the bathroom, and an odd odor from your urine are just a few of the symptoms that make urinary tract infections (UTIs) so bothersome. Every year, 8.1 million people reach out to their healthcare providers about a UTI, and many of them receive low-dose antibiotics...

How Sleep Apnea May Contribute to Hypertension Mar 7th, 2023

Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a chronic condition that doesn’t usually cause any symptoms, making it hard to detect without a blood pressure test at your local pharmacy or from your doctor.  Physicians Clifton Etienne, MD, Michael Cavanagh, MD, and Flora Brewington, MD, read your blood pressure at the beginning of every...

4 Medical Conditions That Improve When Treated with Birth Control Feb 10th, 2023

Oral contraceptives, or hormonal birth control, use estrogen and progestin to stop the ovulation process so sperm can’t join with an egg, which results in pregnancy.  Whether you don’t want kids at all or just aren’t ready yet, you trust your birth control to live your life the way you...

Is Diabetes Reversible? Jan 12th, 2023

Diabetes is a chronic condition that can uproot your entire routine. You may need to monitor your glucose every day, take insulin, and be more mindful of what you eat. Experts also encourage you to include exercise in your routine.  At Westmed Family Healthcare in Westminster, Colorado, we provide personalized care plans...

7 Things That Happen at an Annual Wellness Exam Dec 1st, 2022

Wellness exams aren’t just for infants and the elderly. At any age, you can benefit from getting an annual wellness exam to check in on your health status and identify concerning health trends or signs of a symptomless illness. Plus, most annual wellness exams include helpful personal advice on what...

When Should I Go to the ER Instead of Urgent Care? Nov 4th, 2022

Emergency rooms across the United States see around 130 million people per year, and they’re busier than ever due to the Covid-19 pandemic. With so many people in and out of the emergency room, long wait times are to be expected. This is especially true for injuries and illnesses that...

Is Your Pain Due to Endometriosis? Oct 1st, 2022

Many women experience pain in their core area or pelvis that feels intense enough to warrant a visit to urgent care. Pain from endometriosis presents differently among the individuals who experience it, and it’s hard to pinpoint the cause without a professional examination.  At Westmed Family Healthcare, we encourage you to come...

Does Stress Really Affect Your Blood Pressure? Sep 1st, 2022

Running late to work, having an approaching deadline, or getting a flat tire: These are just a few examples of the endless possible stressors in life that get your blood pumping. Stress is strongly linked to anxiety, and these emotions elevate your heart rate and blood pressure in the moment. ...

5 Signs of a Urinary Tract Infection Aug 1st, 2022

A urinary tract infection (UTI) is something many women and some men have had to deal with at some point in their lives. It happens when bacteria from outside your urinary tract enter it, usually through your urethra.  The infection itself can manifest anywhere in your urinary system, including your...

How to Plan a Diabetes-Friendly Dinner Jul 1st, 2022

Metabolic diseases like diabetes affect how you turn the foods you eat into energy. Your body relies on a hormone called insulin, which comes from your pancreas, to help transfer glucose (sugar) from the foods you eat into your cells. Your cells use the hormone as energy to function.  People with diabetes...

The Pill vs. an IUD: Which Is Right for Me? Jun 1st, 2022

Family planning lets you decide when you’re ready to have kids, or avoid it altogether if that’s more your speed. With plenty of birth control options to choose from, making the choice can be an overwhelming endeavor. You might have to try a few different forms before you find one...

What Most People Don’t Realize About Prediabetes May 1st, 2022

Higher-than-normal levels of blood sugar are a sign of prediabetes, a condition that comes before type 2 diabetes for many individuals. While the diagnosis might come as an unwelcome surprise during one of your annual wellness visits, it’s far from a death sentence.  Here at Westmed Family Healthcare in Westminster,...

The Link Between Inactivity and High Cholesterol Apr 1st, 2022

High cholesterol is a health condition that can affect almost anyone. Cholesterol itself is a waxy substance found in the fats within your bloodstream, and it can build up along the sides of your veins and arteries to cause atherosclerosis, or heart disease.  While there’s such a thing as “good”...

Your Birth Control Options Explained Mar 1st, 2022

Whether you’re not yet prepared to get pregnant, are finished having kids, or never wanted children in the first place, family planning services allow you to decide which birth control option is best for you.  Some forms of birth control physically block sperm from reaching your egg, while others adjust...

What You Can Go to Urgent Care For Feb 1st, 2022

The names “urgent care” and “emergency care” can cause confusion for some people about when to seek one and when to seek the other. Urgent care generally covers milder health problems than emergency care, but those problems still require care soon after they arise and often can’t wait a few...

Even Very Healthy People Are Prone to Diabetes: Here’s What You Should Know Jan 16th, 2022

Familiar with diabetes or not, the public perception is clear: it’s a disease involving too much blood sugar, and therefore must come from an unhealthy diet or lifestyle. While this might make sense at first glance, diabetes is a much more complex disease than many people credit it to be....

Lifestyle Modifications That Can Help with High Blood Pressure Dec 23rd, 2021

High blood pressure, or hypertension, is known as a “silent” condition because of its notorious lack of symptoms. Still, it affects nearly half of all adults in the United States and only a quarter of them have the condition under control.  Here at Westmed Family Healthcare in Westminster, Colorado, board-certified...

What Makes Family Medicine Different? Nov 18th, 2021

Family medicine covers the basic health care needs of yourself and each member of your family, no matter their ages. From infant care to geriatrics, you can potentially visit the same family medicine practice for your entire life without switching to a new provider who doesn’t know you as well. ...

Why Annual Physical Exams are Important at Every Stage of Life Oct 25th, 2021

Annual physical exams are a routine part of life for millions of Americans, but not everyone is convinced that they are important throughout life. A survey from the Kaiser Family Foundation shows that while 92% of people in the U.S. agree that annual exams are important, only 62% of them...

Here's Why Obesity Is One of the Most Common Health Complications for Infants Jul 23rd, 2020

Infant weight is on the rise. In fact, close to 20% of infants are classified as obese. Mothers who are obese, have diabetes, or are over the age of 35 are more likely to have overweight infants. Physicians can detect obesity in infants as young as 6 months. Our board-certified...

5 Foods to Avoid to Lower Cholesterol Jun 29th, 2020

Heart disease is the primary cause of death worldwide, and high cholesterol is a major risk factor. For years, people avoided cholesterol-rich foods such as eggs in an effort to manage cholesterol. Today, we know that foods high in cholesterol aren’t the main contributors to elevations in blood cholesterol. Of...

Coronavirus: What You Need to Know Apr 1st, 2020

The news about the new coronavirus is sobering, and every state in the nation has been affected, including us here in Colorado.  Despite the seriousness of the situation, our physicians, nurses, and team members at WestMed Family Healthcare want you to know that you should avoid panicking. We’re here to...

Five Ways Life Changes After a Diabetes Diagnosis Mar 12th, 2020

Diabetes is a life-changing diagnosis, and if you make the right changes, it’s one that can lead to a healthier life. Each year an estimated 1.5 million people receive a diabetes diagnosis. While it may feel overwhelming and even scary at first, you should know that with the support of...

What to Expect From an EKG Feb 1st, 2020

Often abbreviated as EKG, an electrocardiogram is a test that measures the electrical activity of your heart through electrodes placed on your skin. An EKG shows how fast the heart is beating, the strength and timing of each beat, and whether the rhythm is steady or irregular.  At WestMed Family...

Start the Year Off Right With an Annual Wellness Exam Jan 1st, 2020

Modern medicine has come a long way. Americans are living longer thanks in part to advances in diagnosing, treating, and managing disease and chronic conditions. Still, the best way to maintain health is to prevent problems before they start.  That’s where annual wellness exams come in. These yearly checkups are...

Is Stress Causing Your Hypertension? Dec 1st, 2019

Hypertension is another name for high blood pressure, and it’s a serious threat to your health. It’s a silent condition that often causes no symptoms until it’s too late. That’s why many people with high blood pressure are completely unaware of it.  Talking with your health care team about blood...

When to Choose Urgent Care Over the Emergency Room Nov 1st, 2019

Emergency rooms and urgent care centers both treat many of the same injuries and illnesses, but when it comes to non-life-threatening health problems, urgent care is often a better option. Knowing when to go to urgent care and when your medical problem requires emergency services can save you time and...

Lowering Your Cholesterol Reduces Your Risk for These Chronic Conditions Oct 1st, 2019

Coronary heart disease is the main risk linked to high cholesterol. The cholesterol in your blood has a lot to do with your chances of developing heart disease. You’re at risk even if you’re young and otherwise healthy. Elevated cholesterol boosts the chances of developing certain other chronic conditions as...

What Every Woman Should Know About Heart Disease Sep 4th, 2019

As the No. 1 cause of death, heart disease is a threat for women of all backgrounds. Commonly thought of as a man’s problem, heart disease affects just as many women. Understanding the impact of heart disease in women can help you make the changes to keep your heart healthy...

Most Common Health Complications for Infants Aug 8th, 2019

It’s perfectly normal to worry when you wake up in the middle of the night to find your infant coughing and feeling unwell. You want to take the best care of your baby. Yet it’s normal during the first few days and weeks after you bring your baby home for...

The Link Between Diabetes and Obesity Jul 12th, 2019

Obesity and diabetes have reached epidemic levels with over 70% of American adults classified as overweight or obese and more than 100 million adults in the United States living with diabetes. There’s a strong connection between obesity and diabetes.  Carrying excess weight is a major risk factor for developing Type...

This is How Drinking Alcohol Affects Your Cholesterol Jun 20th, 2019

The habits you develop in your daily life contribute to your health in both positive and negative ways. If you’re looking to make some positive lifestyle changes to contribute to your health, start with choosing nutritious foods, getting plenty of exercise, and avoiding smoking. Your alcohol intake matters, too. In...

How Can Birth Control Treat PCOS? May 30th, 2019

Women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) have a hormonal imbalance that causes symptoms affecting their overall health. The elevated levels of male hormones that accompanies PCOS can lead to missed menstrual periods, excess facial and body hair, trouble getting pregnant, and metabolic problems, such as insulin-resistance. While the exact cause...

Hypertension and Your Mental Health Apr 25th, 2019

You may not think of mental health disorders when you think about high blood pressure, but a connection exists. If you have hypertension, you’re more likely to experience mood issues, such as anxiety and depression than those with normal blood pressure. Hypertension is a manageable condition. There are ways to...

5 Great Tips for Lowering Cholesterol Without Medication Mar 21st, 2019

Lowering LDL, also referred to as “bad” cholesterol, is key to lowering your risk of a heart attack. It’s recommended that you aim to get your LDL levels below 100. Dropping your LDL below 80 provides even more protection. Taking charge of your heart health by making changes that lower...

What You Should Know About the Two Types of Hypertension Feb 11th, 2019

Roughly one in three adults in the United States have high blood pressure, but only about half are managing their condition appropriately. High blood pressure puts you at risk for heart disease, the leading cause of death among Americans. Most people who have high blood pressure have no symptoms, but...

Choosing a Birth Control that Works with Your Lifestyle Jan 9th, 2019

Deciding between the various forms of birth control can feel overwhelming. Birth control pills, intrauterine devices, and patches are just a few available options you can choose when you want to prevent pregnancy. And when it comes to birth control, not all methods are right for everyone. By asking yourself...

Understanding what high cholesterol does to your body Dec 18th, 2018

Adults with high cholesterol have double the risk of developing heart disease compared to those with normal cholesterol levels. And the worst part is that you won’t know it’s coming. High cholesterol doesn’t cause symptoms until the problem is severe enough to block blood flow. At WestMed Family Healthcare, we’re...

Lifestyle Changes to Help Manage Your Diabetes Nov 29th, 2018

More than 30 million people in the United States are affected by diabetes, and a whopping 84 million more are on the brink of developing this serious, systemic disease. If you’ve already been diagnosed, now is not the time to resign yourself to a life of compromised health. There are...

Nexplanon vs. IUDs: How These Birth Control Implants Differ Oct 26th, 2018

If you’re looking for long-lasting birth control that will allow you to “get it and forget it,” you may want to consider two options: an intrauterine device (IUD) and the Nexplanon® birth control implant. Both offer long-term protection from unintended pregnancy. In fact, these long-acting reversible forms of birth control...

How Hypertension Can Affect Your Health Sep 13th, 2018

Over 100 million Americans — almost one-third of the adult population — have high blood pressure. Though it’s a very common condition, there’s nothing ordinary about its risks to your health. Medically called hypertension, high blood pressure can be its own condition or a side effect of another condition or...

Foods That Will Help You Keep Your Cholesterol Healthy Aug 23rd, 2018

Scientists are learning ever more about how cholesterol functions within the human body. However, if you’ve been diagnosed with high cholesterol, you’re probably evaluating your diet and attempting to make adjustments. All too often, those adjustments involve avoiding foods you enjoy.There is a different way to approach changing your diet....

5 Things to Consider When Picking a Birth Control Jul 30th, 2018

When it comes to birth control, Westmed Family Healthcare offers numerous ways to help you prevent pregnancy. But, each option comes with its own advantages and disadvantages. So how can you choose the right one for you? These five questions can help you and your health care provider select the...