Contact Lens Commandments

Do you know how to protect your eyes while wearing contact lenses?  Here are some habits you should consider.  Pass them along to people who just started wearing contacts or anyone else you know who wears them. 

  1. Wash your handsAlways wash your hands before touching contact lenses or your eyes. While it is rare, you can transfer harmful germs to your eyes that could severely affect your vision or lead to hospitalization.

  2. Don’t wear contacts overnight – Many people are guilty of falling asleep with their contact lenses in. Even if your contacts have been rated for occasional overnight use, you may not want to fall asleep wearing them. Every type of lens restricts airflow to the eye, and over a prolonged period of time, this restriction may cause irritation, promote bacteria growth, and keep unwanted germs within the eye that would otherwise have naturally flushed out.

  3. Change storage solution daily and container every 3 months – Don’t reuse the solution in your contact lens storage container. Empty it daily and refill before you insert your lenses. Remember to change the container every 3 months or sooner.

  4. Don’t use saliva to clean them – Even in an emergency, don’t do it. Using saliva to clean your contacts may introduce harmful bacteria into the eye area. 

  5. Carry Solution  – It’s always a good idea to carry a small bottle of solution for urgent situations. Also, if you get an eyelash or a speck of dirt under your contact, this will make it easy to wash it out.  

  6. Avoid swimming in themIt may not be fun to swim without your contacts, but getting chemical-filled or unsanitary water in your eyes may cause trouble. 

  7. Makeup and contactsYou should put your contacts in before you start to apply eye makeup, and use hypoallergenic makeup around the eyes to prevent irritation. Eye makeup should be replaced every 3 months, and should not be shared with others. Clean brushes used for eye makeup  regularly. 

  8. Wear sunglassesSome contact lenses provide UV protection, but they aren’t intended to replace sunglasses since they only cover a small portion of your eyes. 

  9. Don’t share lenses Even if a friend has the same prescription, everyone’s eyes are shaped differently and it is unsafe to put something in your eye that has not been approved by an optometrist. 

  10. Don’t rub eyes – If you wear contacts, try to avoid rubbing your eyes. You may loosen a contact, and it may get stuck in the eye and be extremely uncomfortable.

If you wear contacts, it is required that you get a vision exam at least once a year. Your physician may need to change your prescription or switch your contact lens brand based on your usage habits and your overall eye health.

WH_GPS_logo_web_LORESWhether you’re trying to save money on prescription eye drops or antibiotics, use the Watertree Health Greatest Prescription Savings (“GPS”) tool to look up the discounted price with our card in your area. Simply provide the drug name and zip code to find the best price at a pharmacy near you at wtree.us/SavingsTool

By WHBlogger 
8/31/2015 

Instructions and Disclaimer: The content on this website is designed for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses. Always consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your health. 

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Children’s Eye Health and Safety

August is Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month, and a time to remember routine eye exams at a young age are imperative, to identify conditions that can be corrected early. Here’s what you should know regarding eye health and safety for children…

Start Annual Eye Exams EarlyOptometrist in exam room with young girl in chair smiling
Babies should have their first exam when they’re 6-months-old to ensure their eyes are developing normally. These early visits may be instrumental in discovering serious problems that can start to affect your child more as he or she ages. Eye health problems are easier to correct if treatment begins early.

At the age of 2 or 3, children can be tested for specific conditions and overall vision strength. Identifying nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism early on may help overcome any sight-related obstacles to learning and development. 

Make sure your doctor has as much information as possible about your family’s eye-health history because genetics can play a major role. If a child starts to exhibit worrisome symptoms like an inability to focus, excessive watery eyes or drooping eyelids, schedule an appointment with a pediatric eye doctor right away.

Encourage Healthy Eye Habits Throughout Life
For children with generally healthy eyes, the following good habits may reduce the risk of developing serious eye conditions like glaucoma or cataracts later in life:

Healthy Diet: One rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants is essential. Specifically, omega-3 fatty acids, carotenoids found in brightly colored fruits and vegetables like carrots, and vitamin C all support good eye health.Little kid with pinwheel on beach, teeth smile

No Direct Sun Exposure: Protect small children from direct sun exposure and encourage older children to wear sunglasses whenever they go outside.

Cleanliness: Discourage children and teenagers from using each others’ eye drops, makeup, and prescription glasses. Remind children to wash their hands before touching their eyes. Hand-to-eye contact is one of the main ways conjunctivitis or “pink eye” spreads.

Children of all ages learn by the examples their parents set. If you place a great deal of importance on annual eye exams and healthy eye routines, then your children will likely adopt the same habits. 

WH_GPS_logo_web_LORESWhether you’re trying to save money on prescription eye drops or antibiotics, use the Watertree Health Greatest Prescription Savings (“GPS”) tool to look up the discounted price with our card in your area. Simply provide the drug name and zip code to find the best price at a pharmacy near you at wtree.us/SavingsTool

By WHBlogger 
8/25/2015 
Updated: 8/6/18

Instructions and Disclaimer: The content on this website is designed for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses. Always consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your health. 

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Seniors in the Donut Hole

By Shane Power, President of Watertree Health

If you are 65 years or older, you are most likely familiar with the Medicare Part D coverage gap, known as the “donut hole.” The Affordable Care Act (ACA) includes important improvements to Medicare prescription coverage, providing discounted prices until the gap further closes by 2020. Until then, you may be stuck struggling to afford the vital medications you need to stay healthy while you’re in the donut hole.

As you know, when you are in this coverage gap, you are required to pay out-of-pocket for medications, even while you continue to pay premiums.  In 2015, this coverage-gap generally begins once prescription expenses reach $2,960, and ends when costs total $4,550.

There are many seniors who need help paying for their medications. A recent Kaiser Family Foundation study found that 19 percent of Medicare enrollees fell into the gap, particularly those taking expensive drugs for breast cancer and Alzheimer’s. And, almost all of those people remained in the donut hole for the rest of year.

If you’re in the gap, you can use our prescription discount card to save money and help relieve some of the financial burden your medicines may bring. Be sure to check with your health care provider to see if prescriptions filled with our card will count towards getting out of the donut hole.

You may have noticed that your Medicare Part D plan, like most plans, does not cover every drug on the market. Popular medications for weight loss or weight gain, hair loss, sexual or erectile dysfunction and other common medical issues are most likely not covered by your plan. All medications are eligible for savings with our prescription discount card.

Don’t let the cost of your medicine be the reason you can’t create a better cycle of health for yourself. Next time you’re at the pharmacy, give our card to the technician to put in your file. This way it will always be there for future use and you’ll always pay the lowest price available.

Can I Get a Discount on Vaccines With My Rx Discount Card?

Continuing Series: Questions from Consumers…A smiling woman wearing gloves and a doctor's coat is administering a vaccine shot to a young girl.

In short—yes; our Prescription Discount Card can be used to save money on vaccines, in addition to thousands of brand name and generic prescriptions. 

For families with children heading back to school, vaccinations may be a requirement. According to the WebMD, elementary school children are sick an average of 6 to 12 times each school year. For older kids, it’s about half that. Getting a flu shot may help reduce the number of these cases each year. 

Some states may offer free vaccinations at local clinics. For those who do not have this option—especially families without insurance—our card can make a big difference in savings. Below are some testimonials from pharmacies that have helped consumers.


“The Watertree card is awesome! Covers a typhoid vaccine that no other card covers. Brought the price down from $60 to $52 and our customers that needed it were very happy.” 
-Zena, Pharmacy Employee


“A student needed a meningitis vaccine, currently priced at $179.99; after using the card, she saved $51.00. That’s Fantastic!” 
– T. Thompson, Pharmacy Employee, Kingsville, TX

In addition to schools, some institutions and visa applications for international travel require vaccinations; however, the out-of-pocket cost can be as high as $100 per shot. For example, Hepatitis A (often required for travel to Southeast Asia, India, and other places) is a 2-series shot, at almost $120 each. 

How important are vaccinations?
While taking a vaccine is never mandatory, it can save lives without risk. Not only may recommended immunizations keep you and your family safe, they may also protect those around you by creating community or herd immunity. Community immunity decreases the number of potential carriers of an illness meaning the germs cannot travel as far and the members of the community are not as likely to get sick. This is especially important because some people with certain diseases (such as people who have cancer, HIV/AIDS, type 1 diabetes, and more) cannot be vaccinated and must rely on community immunity to ensure they don’t get sick. Vaccines for measles, polio, flu, or a more rare immunization may prevent the need for more costly medications and treatments in the future.

Whether you’re trying to save money on your annual flu vaccine or an expensive vaccination required for international travel, use the Watertree Health Greatest Prescription Savings (“GPS”) tool to look up the discounted price with our card in your area. Simply provide the vaccine name and zip code to find the best price at a pharmacy near you at wtree.us/SavingsTool

By WHBlogger 
8/18/2015 
Updated: 7/26/18

Instructions and Disclaimer: The content on this website is designed for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses. Always consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your health. 

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Watertree Health MVP Spotlight: Rich Rosen

Continuing Series…

Rich Rosen, who lives in Buffalo, NY, is a man whose personal values have led him on several career paths with one thing in common—a deep connection to serving the community and helping people.

Inspired by his father and brother, who were pharmacists, Rich always knew that he wanted to be one too. Pharmacists have always been highly respected for their wealth of health care knowledge and important role in the community. As a pharmacist, Rich innately received his customers with friendly professionalism, always offering the utmost customer service.

Rich spent most of his career working at a range of pharmacies, from small independents to chains, such as CVS and Rite-Aid. He held a variety of roles, and worked his way up the ladder from pharmacist to Regional Manager. His wealth of experience brings to Watertree Health first-hand knowledge of how hard the pharmacists work and the challenges they face.

After years of business success, Rich retired. Being the social, active person he is, it wasn’t long before he wanted to return to work. Lucky for us, that’s when he discovered Watertree Health.

Drawing from a life-long career as a pharmacist, Rich has always felt a deep responsibility for people’s health. Now that he’s on the other side of the counter, he can help people get healthier in a different way—by helping them afford their prescriptions and raising funds for Make-A-Wish®.

“I just love it. If I had to pick something that I could do… Meet people, talk to people, help people–some I even know from working in the pharmacy 15 years ago—this is what I’d be doing. Steve Martin once made a joke… he started singing, and said, ‘I get paid for doing this.’ ”

His director Steve Ruhlman notes, “After talking to Rich for one minute you feel like you have known him forever. He has a very engaging personality and always makes you feel comfortable around him. From the first day that I met him he has been a great help, not only to me, but also to everyone that he has come in contact with.WH_MVP_LOGO_web_small

His personality, warmth, knowledge, compassion, willingness to help, and expertise are an excellent fit with the qualities that we stand for at Watertree Health. Rich is an excellent choice for Watertree Health’s MVP.” 

By WHBlogger 

8/11/2015 

Instructions and Disclaimer: The content on this website is designed for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses. Always consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your health. 

Tell us if this was helpful and let us know what other topics you might like to see us cover in our blog.

Foods to Avoid When Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding has numerous benefits for babies. It strengthens their immune systems, helps them fight off respiratory illness, and promotes bonding that is important to childhood development. Even though you may have just spent a long 9 months doing without a laundry list of foods, you may want to consider cutting back or eliminating the following because they may affect your baby while breastfeeding. Please consult your doctor before making any changes to your diet or health care regimen. 

  • coffeeCaffeine – Some is alright, but the stimulant does get into breast milk. Since babies aren’t prepared to handle caffeine as quickly or efficiently as an adult body, it may keep them awake. Try to save your caffeine boost until after your baby has been fed.
  • Alcohol – An occasional cocktail or glass of wine is fine, but more than one drink could affect your breast milk. If you plan on drinking, the best rule of thumb is to wait two hours after each drink before nursing. 
  • chocolateChocolate – Falls under the caffeine category and may similarly cause babies to miss naptime or become more fussy than normal. Keep your chocolate intake to a minimum and avoid it altogether if you suspect it is affecting your baby’s routine.
  • “Gassy” Vegetables – Broccoli, cabbage, onion, and garlic may cause gassiness. While there aren’t any conclusive studies that link these vegetables to irritable and upset tummies in babies, if you start to notice that your baby is more gassy or fussy than normal after eating these foods, then it might be a good idea to cut back on them.
  • 39734996_lSpices – Some including hot peppers, cinnamon, and curry may be an issue. Although you may be able to eat spices with no problem, listen to your baby to determine if they are causing them discomfort.
  • Common Allergens – If your family has a history of peanut, wheat, shellfish, dairy or other food allergies, proceed with caution. For severe allergies, it may be best to avoid these foods altogether and have testing done. Otherwise, keep an eye on your baby and consult a doctor if you notice symptoms like colic, vomiting, pain, or bloody stools.

  • Junk food – Eating well while breastfeeding means getting the right balance of food. Focus on eating enough protein, calcium, and iron-rich foods such as leafy greens. Whole-foods such as fruits, vegetables, and grains tend to be the healthiest. Try to avoid processed foods as much as possible. 

Remember, the Watertree Health Prescription Discount Card may help provide savings on medication for you or your loved ones. Simply click on the “Get Your Free Card” link or text CARD to 95577. The card is available to everyone at any time. For more information about how the free Prescription Discount Card works, check out this short FAQ video: wtree.us/video 

WH_GPS_logo_web_LORESYou can also look up your prescription savings with our card using the wtree.us/SavingsTool. Simply provide the drug name and zip code to find the best price at a pharmacy near you. 

Related Articles:
Breastfeeding Basics 
Best Foods For Your Heart
What is Group B Strep?

By
 WHBlogger 

8/05/2015 

Instructions and Disclaimer: The content on this website is designed for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses. Always consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your health. 

Tell us if this was helpful and let us know what other topics you might like.

 

 

Breastfeeding Basics

Breastfeeding is a natural part of motherhood, but it can leave new mothers with many questions. While your lactation consultant will help you through the first feeding and provide useful information, you may have concerns before and after your hospital visit. Here are some interesting and helpful answers to common questions:

How long should I breastfeed?
You can breastfeed for long after the recommended time period that, according to The American Academy of Pediatrics, is at least one year. Many mothers have opinions about the “right” time to 40274358_lstop breastfeeding, but this will vary given each experience is different. If you choose to stop breastfeeding before 12 months, you will need to bottle-feed your child.

Does breastfeeding hurt?
Tenderness is typical for the first few weeks but, if you notice significant pain, you may want to consult a lactation specialist or ask your doctor about how to improve the experience. Pain associated with breastfeeding may indicate there is a problem with the baby latching onto the nipple. Dry skin and irritation on your breasts may occur. Some mothers swear by putting frozen cabbage leaves in their bras to ease minor discomfort, and use lanolin ointment or another doctor-approved treatment to keep their skin from chafing or cracking. You may also notice more pain as your child’s teeth grow in.

How often do I need to breastfeed?
A good rule of thumb in the first 6 months is to feed your baby whenever you notice him or her rooting around or exhibiting other signs of hunger. About 8-12 times a day is normal for the first month, because breast milk is very easy to digest and will move through your baby’s system quickly. At 1-2 months, the average number of feedings is around 7-9 times a day. There are some helpful tools, such as apps and watches, available to help you keep track of feedings during the first months.

Do I need to pump breast milk?40380798_l
If you plan on going back to work or school, pumping is very convenient. You can use a manual or electric pump to help keep your mammary glands producing milk while you are away from baby and to have a handy supply of milk around whenever you can’t breastfeed your little one. To store breast milk, you will need to use clean containers that are made of  glass or BPA-free plastic, or bags that have been sterilized. Keep your receipts, because you can deduct the materials for breastfeeding from your taxes.

Remember, the Watertree Health Prescription Discount Card may help you provide savings on medication for you or your loved ones. Simply click on the “Get Your Free Card” link or text CARD to 95577. The card is available to everyone at any time. For more information about how the free Prescription Discount Card works, check out this short FAQ video: wtree.us/video 

WH_GPS_logo_web_LORESYou can also look up your prescription savings with our card using the wtree.us/SavingsTool. Simply provide the drug name and zip code to find the best price at a pharmacy near you. 

By
 WHBlogger 

8/04/2015 

Instructions and Disclaimer: The content on this website is designed for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses. Always consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your health. 

Tell us if this was helpful and let us know what other topics you might like.