It’s not too late to learn about September’s national health months

(Dr. Clayton Lawrence, CEO, shares his thoughts in a weekly column focused on overall wellness in an otherwise toxic world. Always consult with your own physician before beginning any new diet/exercise routine).

Each new month brings with it an opportunity to raise awareness for important health-related topics facing Americans today. It may be the end of September, but it’s not too late to learn about the month’s national health-related topics, such as Baby Safety Month, National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, National Childhood Obesity Month and National Self-Care Awareness Month.

Better health begins with maintaining a healthy relationship with your physician. Be sure to keep your annual appointments, take time to schedule preventive screenings and encourage young people to develop positive relationships with doctors, dentists and counselors.

Here’s what you need to know:

Baby Safety Month

Sponsored annually by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA), Baby Safety Month draws attention to product safety. The Association aims to educate parents and caregivers about choosing products that are best for a child’s age and development as outlined by the manufacturer. JPMA points out that most accidents can be prevented and reminds parents to only use products in accordance with included instructions, to actively supervise children, to frequently inspect products and to monitor a child’s growth to be sure use is discontinued when necessary.

National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Recognized by childhood cancer organizations around the world, Childhood Cancer Awareness Month (CCAM) aims to provide education about this devastating disease. The American Childhood Cancer Organization (ACCO) invites everyone to Go Gold® during September in honor and in memory of kids with cancer. According to ACCO, 15,780 children between the ages of 0-19 are diagnosed with cancer each year. Let’s fight back by advocating, volunteering and donating whenever possible.

National Childhood Obesity Month

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 1 in 5 children in the United States has obesity. The month – and every month – we have opportunities to raise awareness about this serious health condition. The CDC shares that children with obesity can develop chronic health conditions like asthma, high blood pressure and diabetes and not to mention are likely to be bullied and suffer from depression. We can make a difference by encouraging healthier foods over junk foods, plenty of water, daily physical exercise and a regular sleep pattern. See how we’re involved here: https://leapfoundationdc.org/supporting/

National Self-Care Awareness Month

We’re all busy. We’ve got deadlines to meet, places to be and others to take care of. But our physical and mental health suffers when we don’t also take care of ourselves. Living a stress-filled lifestyle without taking some time out can lead to health complications like high blood pressure and diabetes, as well as mental health concerns like anxiety and depression. As September comes to a close, make a pledge to make yourself a priority. Pay attention to your feelings, communicate clearly and learn the art of a guilt-free “no.”