The Columbia press. (Astoria, Or.) 1949-current, August 13, 2021, Page 7, Image 7

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    The Columbia Press
August 13, 2021
Senior Moments
Here’s to Your Health
with Emma Edwards
by Dr. Keri Brown
Alert: An uptick can be good For health and mate, don’t ignore a snore
Sometimes I get tired of
hearing noise – such as that
from my television -- in the
background of my life and so
I mute the TV.
I am quietly sitting in my
recliner reading a book when,
suddenly, something makes
me glance up to see a line
streaming across my muted
television. Of course. I as-
sume it’s important and con-
tinue reading it.
The other day the line said
something about an “uptick”
in activity in the marketplace.
Right away, my mind drifted
to the farmer’s market held
once or twice a week in our
extended area.
I quickly unmuted my tele-
vision. Guess what was being
talked about? Yes, of course,
it was the stock market.
For some reason, I had nev-
er heard the word “uptick”
before. So, I looked it up in
my handy Merriam-Webster
dictionary. We have many
upticks in our lives and still
more are around the corner.
Where have I been? The
word has been around since
about 1952 and means a small
increase or rise. My weight
could even have an uptick!
We had quite an uptick
weatherwise the past few
days, as the temperatures
rose to record levels once
again this year.
While I pondered that, it oc-
curred to me that if we could
have an uptick, we also could
have a downtick. But that
word is not in my dictionary.
I did find it online, howev-
er, and learned that it could
refer to a price or offer on
a stock that is lower than
the previous price at which
the stock was sold. Sample
sentence: Our correspon-
dents somberly reported each
downtick in stock prices.
So, I guess both uptick and
downtick are in my vocabu-
lary now. The trick for those
with memory loss is -- when
one learns a new word -- to
repeat it or use it three times
over the next week. I will try.
People may laugh.
While on the subject of
learning new words, I re-
cently heard a “blonde” joke.
Dare I share it? I’m not sure
whether it would be consid-
ered sexist or maybe just not
very nice, especially since
some of my offspring are
beautiful blondes.
Oh well, here goes, without
showing undue prejudice!
A blonde woman was having
financial trouble and decided
to kidnap a child so she could
demand a ransom. She went
to a local park, grabbed a lit-
tle boy and tucked a note into
his pocket that read, “I have
kidnapped your child. Leave
$10,000 in a plain brown bag
behind the big oak tree in the
park tomorrow at 7 a.m.” She
signed it, “The Blonde.”
She told the little boy to go
straight home and give the
note to his mother. The next
morning, she returned to the
park to find the $10,000 in
a bag behind the oak tree,
just as she had instructed.
Inside the bag was the fol-
lowing note, “Here is your
money. I cannot believe that
one blonde would do this to
Maybe, in closing, I could
wish you good upticks and
few downticks (except for the
scale if needed) and minimal
undue prejudice in the days
Snoring is a common com-
plaint among couples. But of-
ten, it’s more than just noise.
Snoring and daytime sleep-
iness are common signs of a
potentially dangerous condi-
tion called sleep apnea.
The most common type
of sleep apnea is called ob-
structive sleep apnea (OSA).
It causes someone to stop
breathing as much as 30
times or more during sleep.
These pauses momentarily
wake a person up, although
they may not remember be-
ing awake.
OSA is caused by the col-
lapse of the airway in the
back of the nose, mouth and
throat during sleep. The vi-
bration of the relaxed airway
triggers the snoring. When
the airway closes complete-
ly, it cuts off oxygen to the
That’s what wakes some-
one up, gasping for air: Oxy-
gen can’t get to the lungs and
brain, and the body becomes
oxygen-deprived. This puts a
big strain on the heart. OSA
increases the risk of heart
failure, high blood pressure,
atrial fibrillation (an irregu-
lar heartbeat), type 2 diabe-
tes and stroke.
Could I have OSA?
Loud snoring is the most
obvious hallmark of OSA. But
if you live alone, you may not
have had anyone tell you that
you snore.
Other signs and symptoms
you might have OSA include:
You stop breathing while
you’re sleeping.
You wake up from sleep
gasping or choking.
You wake up frequently.
You have headaches in the
You feel sleepy or tired
during the day or have prob-
lems concentrating.
How is OSA treated?
If you suspect that you may
have OSA, talk with your doc-
The condition can be di-
agnosed by a sleep study or
with an at-home sleep ap-
nea test. CMH’s new Home
Sleep Testing Service offers
an easy, cost-effective way to
test for OSA from the comfort
of your own bed.
OSA can be treated with
a continuous positive air-
way pressure (CPAP) de-
vice, which involves wearing
a mask while sleeping that
keeps air pressure flowing
in your airways so they don’t
close down.
Research has shown that
people who are treated for
OSA have a lower risk of ear-
ly death.
It’s important to not shrug
off OSA as just a snoring
problem. Treatment is vital
to your heart—and your over-
all good health.
Call 503-338-7513 to ask
about home sleep testing.
Dr. Keri Brown specializ-
es in pulmonary and sleep
medicine at Columbia Me-
morial Hospital. Here’s to
Your Health is brought to
you by CMH.