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Fentanyl has taken root in Montana and in communities across the Mountain West during the pandemic, after formerly being prevalent mostly east of the Mississippi River, said Keith Humphreys of the Stanford-Lancet Commission on the North American Opioid Crisis. Montana law enforcement officials have intercepted record numbers of pale-blue pills made to look like prescription opioids such as OxyContin. Nationwide, at least 103,000 people died from drug overdoses in 2021, a 45% increase from 2019, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. About 7 of every 10 of those deaths were from synthetic opioids, primarily fentanyl.
Life can get stressful if you're constantly annoyed by your coworkers, roommate or partner because they think and do things differently than you do. Some people are super disciplined and others are more flexible. But those differences can be a good thing. In this "Health Fusion" column, Viv Williams talks to a local business person about how his company helps individuals and organizations be more balanced and successful by identifying and elevating personal strengths.
In warm weather, fleas like to set up shop in your pet's fur. Dogs and cats can bring them home after romping around outside with infested friends or in areas where squirrels or other wild animals frequent. In this episode of NewsMD's "Health Fusion," Viv Williams has tips on how to get rid of fleas on your pet and in your home.
Over time, Dr. Leslie Keeley’s injection became known as the “Gold Cure,” named for its supposed content. Later analysis cast doubt on the idea that gold was used at all, but a foundational principal of Keeley's treatment centers continues today, in programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous.

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Do you love fresh, homegrown produce but don't have a yard? In this episode of NewsMD's "Health Fusion," Viv Williams checks out her friend's DIY pallet vegetable garden for small spaces.
Research about the health benefits of nature and greenery keeps coming. In this episode of NewsMD's "Health Fusion," Viv Williams checks out a new study that shows increasing the amount of urban greenspace could have prevented thousands of deaths.
A small county in Tennessee for much of the past year has reported the highest COVID-19 vaccination rate in Tennessee and one of the highest in the South. If only it were true. The rate in Meigs County was artificially inflated by a data error that distorted most of Tennessee’s county-level vaccination rates by attributing tens of thousands of doses to the wrong counties, according to a KHN review of Tennessee’s vaccination data. When the Tennessee Department of Health quietly corrected the error last month, county rates shifted overnight, and Meigs County’s rate of fully vaccinated people dropped from 65% to 43%, which is below the state average and middling in the rural South.
The key is to continually remind children and teens that they are cared for, and to help them get back into the structure and familiar activities that give them a feeling of accomplishment. That's the advice of two experts from Mayo Clinic.
"Minding Our Elders" columnist Carol Bradley Bursack says there are times when a decision has to be made on behalf of a family member.
In today's world, stress is everywhere. Sometimes your to-do list becomes overwhelming. Meditation — even just 30 seconds a day— can help. In this episode of NewsMD's "Health Fusion," Viv Williams talks with a meditation expert who explains how it works, gives a shout out to a study that about how meditation helps US Marines recover from stress and gives tips on how to fit meditation into your day. Give the practice a try on World Meditation Day, which happens yearly on Saturday, May 21.

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State leaders said the situation was expected to improve within four to six weeks as additional varieties come to market.
Two former Mayo Clinic employees — Shelly Kiel of Owatonna and Sherry Ihde of Zumbro Falls — filed lawsuits this week claiming they were unfairly fired for refusing COVD-19 vaccines. Their attorney said he will be filing more than 100 similar ones against Mayo Clinic as well as Olmsted Medical Center.
Ticks are out and waiting to hitch a ride and grab a bite. Out of you. In this episode of NewsMD's "Health Fusion," Viv Williams has tips on what you should do if a tick bites you.

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