This month is the perfect time to learn more about your risks for heart disease and the steps you can take now to help your heart. Heart disease can happen to younger adults, as well as older adults. On average, U.S. adults have hearts that are 7 years older than they should be. Nearly half of all Americans have at least one of the top three risk factors for heart disease: high blood pressure, high cholesterol and smoking. About half of all people with high blood pressure don’t have it under control. High cholesterol increases the risk for heart disease. Diabetes and/or obesity, smoking, eating unhealthy foods, and not getting enough physical activity can all contribute to unhealthy cholesterol levels. More than 35 million U.S. adults smoke. Smoking damages the blood vessels and can cause heart disease.

What can you do to take control of your heart health?
  • Don’t smoke
  • Manage your underlying health conditions
  • Make heart-healthy eating changes
  • Stay active

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

According to the Center for Disease Control, teen dating violence is on the rise. Teen dating violence includes physical, psychological or sexual abuse; harassment; or stalking of any person ages 12 to 18 in the context of past or present romantic or consensual relationship.

  • Nearly 1 in 11 female and approximately 1 in 15 male high school students report having experienced physical dating violence in the last year.
  • About 1 in 9 female and 1 in 36 male high school students report having experienced sexual dating violence in the last year.
  • 26% of women and 15% of men experienced intimate partner violence for the first time before age 18.

Youth who are victims of teen dating violence are more likely to:
  • Experience symptoms of depression and anxiety
  • Engage in unhealthy behaviors, like using tobacco, alcohol and drugs
  • Exhibit antisocial behaviors, like lying, theft, bullying or hitting
  • Think about suicide

What can parents do to help prevent teen dating violence?
  • Teach safe and healthy relationship skills
  • Assist youth in learning assertiveness and communication skills
  • Serve as strong models for what a healthy relationship looks like
  • Teach children about respect
  • Learn the signs of teen dating violence
  • Create a “No Secrets” policy
  • Encourage open dialogue
  • Monitor social media accounts
  • Pay attention to any signs of abuse

You can learn more about how to prevent teen domestic violence by visiting:

Reference: CDC

Although medical marijuana is legal in Ohio, if you work in a safety sensitive position and use medical marijuana you are at risk of losing your job. Nothing in the law requires an employer to accommodate an employee’s use of medical marijuana.

The law does not prohibit an employer from refusing to hire, discharging or taking an adverse employment action because of a person’s use of medical marijuana. An employee who suffers a work related injury and whose injury was the result of being under the influence of marijuana is not eligible for worker’s compensation, even if the employee has a prescriptionfor marijuana from a doctor.

In addition, Federal Law does not allow for medical marijuana. Specifically, the Department of Transportation guidelines do not make exceptions for medical marijuana.

What kind of risks does a user of medical marijuana pose if they are a school bus driver, an over-the-road truck driver, a heavy equipment operator, a crane operator, a machine operator or a forklift driver?

Consider these side effects of marijuana:
Depression, increased heartbeat, hallucinations, altered sense of time, changed sensory perception, reduced ability to perform tasks requiring concentration, attention and coordination, blood shot eyes, and lowered immune response.

Marijuana can also affect job safety. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, employees who tested positive for marijuana had 55 percent more industrial accidents and 85 percent more injuries than employees who tested negative.

Help is available through EAP Plus+.

We all face problems from time to time! Usually, we can handle them ourselves but sometimes it makes more sense to reach out for help.

That’s why your employer provides you and your family with a confidential Employee Assistance Program, known as EAP Plus+, a benefit offering resources and solutions for the problems you encounter. Just as health insurance addresses your physical health, your EAP Plus+ benefits help with your emotional and mental well-being. Best of all, because your employer has covered the cost of services, there is no cost to you.

Getting help is simple. Just call 937-293-4525 for confidential assistance.
Meet your new EAP Manager!

Mary Jane Kocian-Figueroa, Psy.D., MPH
Feel free to reach out to Mary Jane directly with any questions or needs at 937-528-3176. We care about your company's well-being and that of your employees.
Information in this newsletter is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to
replace the counsel or advice of a qualified health or legal professional.