How to Quit Smoking and How to Not Start Again

By Arielle Horowitz

From PHN Issue 38, Fall 2018

Most smokers know that smoking is bad for their health, but they also know that quitting smoking is not easy. According to the American Lung Association, quitting smoking can be easier if you know your reasons for quitting, talk to a doctor, understand what to expect, and get help. Federal prisons and almost half of state prison systems prohibit smoking cigarettes indoors and outdoors, but more than half of states still allow smoking in prison yards. For those who quit smoking while in prison and are soon to be released, it is important to think about how to not start smoking again outside prison. Continue reading “How to Quit Smoking and How to Not Start Again”

Hepatitis A and B

By Arielle Horowitz

From PHN Issue 37, Summer 2018

Hepatitis A

Hepatitis A is a virus that can make it harder for your liver to work. You can get hepatitis A from food or water contaminated with fecal matter (poop), being near someone who has hepatitis A, or having sex with someone who has hepatitis A. It is not spread by sneezing or coughing. Washing your hands often, especially after using the toilet, may help you avoid getting hepatitis A. You can also prevent it by getting a hepatitis A vaccination. It is important to speak to your doctor to be sure that you are properly vaccinated, as everyone’s vaccination needs and effectiveness can be different. Continue reading “Hepatitis A and B”

Words to Live By

Advice from a formerly incarcerated person living with HIV

From PHN Issue 37, Summer 2018

1. Take care of yourself. Make your health your top priority. Ask for what you think you need. Don’t wait for someone to take care of you. Advocating for your health is a constant job, especially in prison or jail. Continue reading “Words to Live By”

How to Avoid Food Poisoning

By Sarah Frankl

From PHN Issue 36, Spring 2018

Foodborne illnesses can be painful and serious. Symptoms can include vomiting, diarrhea, fever and aches. Even if you eat bad food and end up vomiting (or having diarrhea) later in the day, some of the microbes that made the food bad can stay in the gut and continue to cause health problems. Although food poisoning symptoms usually last a few days, some foodborne illnesses can cause more serious health issues that can last for longer. Continue reading “How to Avoid Food Poisoning”

Nutrition Tips from Our Readers

From PHN Issue 35, Winter 2018

Preparing your own meals from items you purchase from commissary allows you to control what you’re putting into your meals and pay attention to the contents. Just as our body must consume a particular number of calories, it must also consume vitamins. Unfortunately, in most cases, kitchens overcook the vegetables and its extracting the vitamins we need. To make up for this, you can eat fruit…Regardless of what you eat, it’s good to drink water throughout the day in order for the body to function properly. Drinking water will help you digest food properly. Continue reading “Nutrition Tips from Our Readers”

HIV and Hepatitis C Co-Infection

By Lucy Gleysteen

From PHN Issue 35, Winter 2018

Finding out that you have both HIV and hepatitis C can be difficult. Some people can be living with HIV and/or hepatitis C and not know their status because it sometimes takes a long time for symptoms to appear. If you think you might have contracted HIV or hepatitis C, you can ask your doctor to provide testing. According to the US Department of Health and Human Services guidelines, prisons should provide testing. Continue reading “HIV and Hepatitis C Co-Infection”

Anger Management While in Prison

By James A. Rucks, Jr.

From PHN Issue 35, Winter 2018

First, what is anger? Anger is an emotion, a strong feeling that Webster’s Dictionary defines as “a strong feeling of displeasure and usually of antagonism.”

Second, why worry about anger? Because if it is not dealt with, anger can turn into rage, like a teapot or a volcano effect. It can also lead to severe health problems such as (but not limited to) heart problems, high blood pressure, and stroke. Continue reading “Anger Management While in Prison”

Beat the Winter Blues

By Leo Cardez

From PHN Issue 34, Fall 2017

As the winter approaches, I find myself getting tired and moody. It starts as early as September and gets really bad in January. Although I’ve never been officially diagnosed, I’m sure I suffer from some degree of SAD (seasonal affective disorder). As I look around my cell block, I don’t think I’m the only one. The good news is I’ve found that some small tweaks to my daily routine (tips and tricks) can help keep my spirits high. Continue reading “Beat the Winter Blues”