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In This Issue
From the Director's Desk
Waste Not, Freeze More!
New Tobacco Products
Walk and Bike to School!
Peer to Peer Relationships
Ch-Ch-Ch Changes!
Sync With Your Teen
Upcoming Events
September - December
Various Locations

September 20, 9:00 AM
Fire Station, 57 Post Road
September 25, 9:00 AM
Bowdoin College

September 27 & 28
Free with online registration!

September 28, 9:00 AM
$10/Person, call 373-6928 to register

September 30, 8:00 AM
Free with registration!
FMI: 373-6927 

October 1, 10:00 AM
Curtis Memorial Library

October 22
Local Police Departments
Page of the Month!
Recipe of the Month
   Asian Rice

A great way to use up items in your fridge!

  • eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1 package (16 ounces) frozen asian style vegetables, or 1 pound fresh vegetables
  • 3 cups cooked rice
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder or 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 cup cooked chicken, diced
  • green onions, sliced
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce or hot sauce(optional) 
  1. Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat (350 degrees in an electric skillet). Add eggs and scramble. Remove cooked eggs and set aside.
  2. Add small amount of water to pan and cook vegetables until tender crisp.
  3. Add cooked rice, garlic powder and ground ginger and stir to heat through, breaking up lumps by pressing against pan.
  4. Add cooked chicken and cook until heated.
  5. Add green onions and cooked egg, and heat through.
  6. Serve with soy sauce or hot sauce.
  7. Refrigerate leftovers within 2 hours.  
Nutrition Information
Serves: 8
Calories: 170
Total Fat: 5g  
Sodium: 320mg
Protein: 10g
Healthy Resources

Access Health

Access Health
works with communities to encourage and support healthy and happy lives, with a focus on: 
  • Physical Activity
  • Healthy Eating
  • Tobacco Prevention & Cessation
  • Reduction of Second Hand Smoke
  • Substance Abuse Prevention
  • Mental Health Awareness
Find out more!  

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Mid Coast Hospital is the lead agency for Access Health.

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Access Health 
Board Members 

Anthony Anderson,  BIW 
Andree Appe l,  Oasis Clinic
Mary Booth, MSAD 75 
Marla Davis,  Sagadahoc County Board  of Health 
Mattie Daughtry,   Legislator
Jaki Ellis, Brunswick Champion
Deb King, 
Downtown Association 
Don Kniseley,  Thornton Oaks
Pam LeDuc, 
Topsham Parks & 
Joel Merry, 
Sagadahoc County  
Karen O'Rourke, UNE 
Jim Peavey, United Way 
Craig Phillips,  Tedford Shelter
Kelly Howard,   YMCA 
Emily Rines, Parent
Steve Trockman, 
Mid Coast-Parkview Health 
Karen Tucker,  
Mid Coast Hunger Prevention 
Samantha Ricker, Bath Champion
Stacy Frizzle, People Plus
Kristi Hatrick, First Parish Church
Katherine Swan, Martin's Point

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September 2016
From the Director's Desk
For all parents and guardians out there - I hope the back to school transition is going smoothly! A new school year is an important time to review family routines and expectations. We've included some tips and information that can help - from ways to support walking and biking to school, to the latest data on local substance use. Transitions can be challenging for youth and families, we hope you can find healthy ways to adjust to the changes and make 2017-18 a healthy and safe school year.

In good health,
Melissa Fochesato, Director 
Healthy Eating
Waste Not, Freeze More!
Tasha Gerken, MS, RDN
How can you make the most of this bountiful summer harvest and waste less food?  Freeze it!  Freezing to 32 degrees fahrenheit halts bacterial growth so that food is preserved until you're ready to eat it.  To vegetables_basket.jpg successfully freeze, make sure to wrap the food tightly in plastic to protect it from the dry air and other smells in the freezer. Ugly freezer burn spots are not dangerous to eat, but may be less appealing to picky tasters in your family.  Freezing won't keep food forever,  so don't keep shoving those frozen chicken thighs to the back of the freezer!

Other tips:
  • Try to use foods within 3-4 months of freezing for best quality - though some food keeps longer.
  • You can freeze just about any food - including milk, meat, fruits, and veggies, but check out this list of foods that don't freeze well.
  • Most veggies maintain better quality if you blanch them first to stop enzymatic action - check out how to blanch your favorite veggies here.
  • Left something in the freezer too long?  Compost what you can and throw away the rest. Consider keeping a list on the freezer door of foods you've stored and when.  That will help you use up frozen items in a timely fashion.
Looking for other ways to waste less food?  Join the Food Waste Challenge here in Maine during the month of September.
Problem Gambling
Terry Sherman
It is estimated that 3% of the population has a gambling problem. Gambling becomes a problem when it gets in the way of work, school or other activities, harms your health, hurts you financially, damages your reputation, or causes problems with your family or friends. People with gambling problems are found in all age groups, income groups and jobs.

Fortunately there is something you can do to help yourself if you have a gambling problem. You can self-exclude. Self-exclusion is an action that a person can take to ban themselves from entering all casinos in Maine for a specific period of time. It also ends any privileges they have with the casino such as check-cashing services. A person can choose to self-exclude for 1 year, 3 years, 5 years, or for lifetime.  The Gambling Control Board holds the official self-exclusion list and releases the names only to casino or slot establishments. No one except the Gambling Control Board may release the names of anyone on the self-exclusion list. If you feel that you have a problem gambling, you can come to our office to discuss the self-exclusion process in a confidential, non-judgmental setting with our staff, get your paperwork processed and get a list of resources.

For more information contact Terry Sherman at 373-6995 or log on to the Maine Problem Gambling website.
New Tobacco Products
Linda Christie

A new school year is a good time to talk about the dangers of tobacco use. Research shows that the peak years for first trying cigarettes appears to be between the ages of 11 and 13.

It is important to talk to teens about the many new tobacco products that have emerged in recent years that they may feel are safer than cigarettes, including Electronic Devices and dissolvable tobacco.

Electronic Nicotine Devices (ENDS)
  • There are 400 products available, including electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes), e-hookah, e-cigars, vape pens and personal vaporizers.
  • Use of these products is called vaping.  
  • These products usually contain nicotine which is a highly addictive drug. Studies have found toxic chemicals, including an ingredient used in antifreeze and formaldehyde in e-cigarettes.
  • Many products contain sweet flavorings, such as bubblegum and fruity flavors that appeal to youth.
  • Many health experts believe that use is a gateway to traditional cigarettes.
  • According to Centers for Disease Control, current e-cigarette use among middle and high school students tripled from 2013 to 2014. 
  • Locally, 30% of our teens report having tried an electronic cigarette.
Dissolvable Tobacco
  • This includes orbs (an aspirin-sized tablet), strips that look like breath strips and sticks that look like toothpicks.
  • All are dissolved in the mouth.
  • All contain nicotine.
  • Many look like candy and often taste sweet
For information about ENDS, The Truth Campaign.For information about dissolvable tobacco check out this tip sheet from Tobacco Free Florida..
 Physical Activity
Walking and Biking to School
Colleen Fuller, MPH
It's Back to School Time! Why not start the new school year off by encouraging your kiddos to walk and bike to school?

According to a study about walking and biking to school by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, children who walk or bike to school have higher amounts of daily physical activity than children who ride in a car or bus to school, helping these walking and biking kiddos meet their recommended 1 hour of physical activity per day. kids-bikes-rollerblades.jpg

Walking and biking to school offers more than physical health benefits. Children are allowed to develop a sense of independence, confidence, and decision making skills.

Regular physical activity helps kids build and maintain healthy bones and muscles, reduce the risk of developing obesity and chronic conditions such as diabetes or cardiovascular disease, and may improve classroom behavior and academic performance. For more information about the health benefits of physical activity, visit the US CDC's Physical Activity Facts page.

Some local schools such as Fisher-Mitchell Elementary and Harriet Beecher Stowe Elementary hold monthly walk-to-school events. If your child wants to walk or bike more regularly, but stranger danger or traffic safety is a concern, work with other parents in your neighborhood to create a walking school bus of your own. To accommodate busy schedules, each parent could take turns escorting the group the school.

Before strapping on that helmet, take a minute to learn more about how to be safe walker and bike driver.

If you are interested in learning more or becoming involved in Safe Routes to School in your community, please visit the Maine Department of Transportation Safe Routes to School site.
Mental Health Awareness
Peer to Peer Relationships in Mental Health
Elizabeth Munsey, LCPC-c
Is it safe to say that a fair number of adults underestimate the value of adolescent peer relationships?  Some may worry peer groups are the cause of problems between teens, such as delinquency, substance abuse, defiance of adults and other concerning habits.  But many studies have shown that adolescent peer to peer relationships can be very beneficial to teens, for both social and emotional support.  A study published in Youth & Society (2005) found that "...adolescents found in their friends the support necessary to withstand emotionally challenging circumstances (e.g., school-related problems) and to cope in appropriate and effective ways.  Often, the only people who knew of an adolescent's emotional burdens and stressful circumstances were friends and close peers, and when compelled to react to these circumstances, many adolescents sought help, safety, and relief from their peers."

Peer relationships allow adolescents to practice and develop behaviors vital to adult relationships.  They assist adolescents in improving pro-social behaviors, and developing mutual relationships that will be beneficial to them in the future - "failure to be fair, to be accepting, to listen, or to treat each other with consideration [is] seen as being harmful to the relationship and as requiring some sort of actions to repair the harm so that the relationship can continue" (Youniss & Smollar, 1985, p. 130).

Adolescent peer relationships also provide a setting for adolescents to better develop emotional intelligence.  Emotional intelligence is "the capacities to discern and respond appropriately to the moods, temperaments, motivations, and desires of other people... It also acts as the gateway to self-knowledge, specifically in terms of access to one's own feelings and the ability to discriminate among them and draw upon them to guide behavior".  Researchers have argued that having emotional intelligence will lead to greater success in life than having intellectual knowledge.

Along with the many other benefits of adolescent peer relationships, these relationships provide support and refuge to adolescents that may be struggling.  Supporting and enabling healthy adolescent peer relationships has been proven to cushion teens from environmental stressors and help build a more resilient teen. For the full article, visit  Youth and Society.

Contact Elizabeth tp schedule a Youth Mental Health First Aid Training for teens (age 16 and up) to give teens skills to help their peers.
Healthy Schools
Ch- Ch-Ch - Changes! 
Jennah Godo, MS

Are you a parent of a child transitioning from middle to high school or know a child who is experiencing this change?  Many kids making the jump to high school say, "I am excited, but nervous too."  With good reason - although some things will be the same, much is going to be different too. 

One difference is the increase in substance use.  Our 2015 Maine Integrated Youth Health Survey data shows us that in Sagadahoc County, Brunswick and Harpswell, past month use for all substances in middle school students is significantly less than that of the high school students.
The chart below shows lifetime and use in the month prior to taking the survey for students in our community. Lifetime use indicates teens who may be experimenting, and past 30 day use indicates how many youth may be using substances more regularly. 

This data tells us that while we have made some great strides reducing youth use in the past ten years, we need to continue to talk to our kids about substances and the associated risks to support their overall wellness and support healthy decisions.  What can you do?
  • Check in often- listening is the most important part of the check-in. 
  • Have clear and consistent rules about substance use (teens are less likely to use if their parents disapprove).
  • Encourage daily physical activity (improves mood, motivation, lower levels of depression)
  • Help them get enough sleep on a regular basis (sleep quality and duration are linked to improved academic performance)
  • Visit for more tips and talking points!
Keep up the good work!
Communities Against Substance Abuse (CASA)
Sync With Your Teen!
Andrea Saniuk-Gove

Access Health
66 Baribeau Drive, Suite 7
Brunswick, ME  04011
Phone: 207-373-6957