Valley doctors encouraging health-related resolutions in 2018

PHOENIX - It's time to get cracking on those New Year's resolutions, but instead of rehashing last year's leftovers Valley doctors are encouraging you to set different kinds of health goals.

Doctors want you to focus on your emotional well-being with these steps. 

  • Resolve to volunteer more in 2018. It's been shown to ease stress, anger, anxiety.

  • Help with medical research. 80-percent of studies are delayed right now because too few people sign up.

  • Take control of your future health by gathering an advance directive.

Banner Health doctors say the most important document is the durable medical power of attorney which determines who gets to make medical decisions for you if you can't.

Also, have a living will, it states what types of medical care you would want and for how long.

"Sometimes it's a crisis and families will do anything to keep their loved one alive and they'll ask for any type of medical treatment, even if they know you might not want that treatment," said palliative care doctor Helen Kilzer.

Other healthy resolutions include:

  • Commit to seeing your doctor this year for a wellness visit, don't wait until you are sick.

  • Resolve to wear sunscreen every day, SPF 15 or higher.

  • Resolve to go phone free during meals. Doctors say you'll become more aware of what your eating and that will help your waistline.

  • Commit to sleep. If you're not getting eight hours, it will be harder to lose weight. It also will improve your memory.

Doctors also suggest adding to your health care arsenal by packing an over-the-counter saline nasal spray. Dr. Steve Sunderman with Banner Health's Internal Medicine says it'll thin the mucus and keep you free of bacteria so you'll be less likely to get sick.

"Get three or four bottles of it, put one in your car, one in your pocket, one at your bedside every time you think about just a quick squirt. If you do that ten times a day that's going to be much more effective," said Dr. Sunderman.

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