The Most Googled Health Problem in Every State
Paging Dr. Google. According to Medicare Health Plans, these are the most Googled conditions in each state—from Alabama to Wyoming—and that can sometimes predict where outbreaks are going to happen next.
Looking at the health terms most searched on Google in all of 2018 can be a real an eye-opener. Not only has Birmingham been ranked one of the worst cities for respiratory infections, Alabama as a whole is one of the 10 states with the highest rates of death from influenza and pneumonia. While pneumonia can get very serious very fast, there are simple steps you can take to prevent getting it in the first place, from getting enough sleep to washing your hands regularly. Here’s how to know if you may have pneumonia and it’s time to call your doctor.
Alaska: Urinary tract infection (UTI)
While UTIs maybe be common in Alaska, one of the commonest cures for a painful urinary tract infection is cranberry juice—which could be made using Alaska’s very own highbush cranberries. Cranberries of all varieties contain hippuric acid, which fights the E. coli bacteria and prevents it from adhering to the walls of the urinary tract and from spreading from the bladder to the kidneys. Eating fresh-picked cranberries or taking pure cranberry supplements will also do the trick. If you like natural remedies like this, here are 10 more home remedies for curing a UTI.
Arizona: Hashimoto’s disease
Hashimoto’s disease—an autoimmune attack on your thyroid gland—is the primary cause of low thyroid in the United States. The condition can exist in your body for several years before you even experience symptoms. And even then, the average amount of time between the first signs and the actual diagnosis is a decade. Watch for the 12 signs of Hashimoto’s disease everyone should know.
Cramps, bloating, cravings for comfort foods—no one ever said periods would be fun. But how do you know if your menstrual pain and other symptoms are just averagely annoying or something more serious? If you have incredibly painful periods, bleed heavily, if it hurts to have sex, or if you experience any of these other silent signs, you could be suffering from endometriosis, a condition where cells that resemble those in the uterus grow elsewhere in the body, then also bleed and cause pain during your period. Read about the 15 things no one ever tells you about endometriosis.
The number of reported STD cases in California is not only up 45 percent from five years ago, the syphilis count alone is at a three-year high. Doctors blame lack of public health funding for safe-sex education and outreach, and they’re most concerned about the stillbirths caused by congenital syphilis, which are also at their highest since 1995. You can now test yourself for STDs at home—here’s how to do it. It goes without saying if you test positive, see your doctor immediately. Syphilis can be cured with the right dosage of penicillin; if left untreated, it can go dormant for up to 20 years but eventually can cause dementia, paralysis, organ damage, and death.
Google has another superpower—it can predict when and where the next big syphilis outbreak will occur. UCLA researchers found that certain search terms on Google or keywords in tweets on Twitter are highly correlated with the number of syphilis cases in a city or county. In other words, Coloradans (and Californians), you have extra incentive to practice safe sex. Learn about 14 more diseases you thought were gone—but aren’t.
Connecticut: Quarter-life crisis
According to the website The Muse, “a quarter-life crisis is a period of intense soul searching and stress occurring in your mid-20s to early 30s,” and people who struggle with this tend to be very ambitious and intelligent. If anxiety about your career and life direction is keeping you up at night, consider reaching out to a mental health professional. Finding ways to manage these worries now may help you avoid a mid-life crisis down the road. Here’s how to find a therapist, according to a therapist.
You might know it as high blood pressure, and it’s as much an issue for your head as it is for your heart. Scientists are now saying that hypertension could dramatically raise your risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. When your heart rate is elevated, it can cause strain and damage to the blood vessels in your brain cells. If you’re worried you might have hypertension, try one of these 31 ways to lower your blood pressure.
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Miami isn’t all sun-soaked beaches and vibrant cafe culture—it’s also the city with the highest rate of HIV/AIDS cases in the country. One reason for the virus’s spread across Florida is the state’s booming tourism industry, which draws millions each year to its rampant party scene—and the drugs (and infected needles) that accompany it. And it’s not just Florida: Almost half of all people living with HIV in the United States live in the southern states.
Sensing a pattern? Syphilis rates across the country are the highest they’ve been in years—and health experts attribute the rise in part to apps like Tinder and Grindr, which facilitate high-risk hookups. Both Tinder and Grindr are now adding sexual health safety tips to their menus.