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How to Use Section I–Common Health Problems

HealthyLife® Students' Self-Care Guide

Table of Contents

 Section I–Common Health Problems


You are at
a time in your life when you need to make a lot of decisions: Decisions on
career choices, future plans and goals, etc. You need to make decisions to
take care of your health, too. Knowing what to do can be confusing. You may
not have had many health problems in the past, and when you did, your
parents probably took care of you. You need to fend for yourself now. This
guide can help. It contains 3 sections. The first one addresses 20 common
health problems. The second section covers issues that deal with keeping you
safe while keeping you healthy. The third section presents information on
lifestyle issues. Like a roommate or a friend, this self-care guide can come
to your aid when you need it. It may even save your life!

Section I –
Common Health Problems

How to
Use This Section

Find the health problem in Section I of
the table of contents and go to that page. The problems are listed in
order from A to Z.
Read about the problem, what causes it (if
known), its symptoms, and treatments.
Scrutinize the “Questions to Ask.” Start
at the top of the flow chart and answer YES or NO to each question.

open and honest when you talk to a health care provider.

Follow the arrows in the
flowchart until you get to one of these answers:

Get Immediate Care

You should get help immediately. If symptoms threaten life, go to a
hospital emergency department, if you can do so quickly and safely. If
not, call 9-1-1 or your local rescue squad. Symptoms that threaten life

No breathing and/or pulse
Difficulty breathing
Severe bleeding
Head or neck injury
Suicidal or homicidal intent

For symptoms that don’t threaten life, immediate care means seeing your
health care provider or going to an urgent care center right away. If your
school has a health service center, find out where it is and when it is
open. Find out where to go for urgent care, both on and off campus. Make
sure you know phone numbers for these places and write them on
Telephone Numbers & Information

Find out, now, how your health insurance covers
medical emergencies when you are in the state you live in, when you
are out of state, and even out of the country. Then you’ll know what
to do if something occurs. You may need to get additional insurance
when you travel or study abroad.

See Provider

Call your health care provider. State the
problem(s) so it can be determined how soon you need to be seen. The term
“provider” can be used for a number of health care providers. They

Your primary doctor, physician’s
assistant (P.A.), nurse practitioner (N.P.), etc.
Doctors, registered nurses, and
counselors at your school’s Health Service or Mental Health
Walk-in clinic health care

Call Provider
Call your health care provider and state the
problem. You will be given advice on what to do.


Use Self-Care
You can probably take care of the
problem yourself if you answered NO to all questions in the flowcharts.
Use the self-care items that are listed, but call your health care
provider if you don’t feel better soon. You may have some other problem.


To learn more about topics covered
in this guide and other health issues
go to:
.  At this site, enter your
topic in the Search box.  You can also visit the Health Library and find
targeted information based upon age, race, and sex.

6th edition. American Institute for Preventive Medicine
All rights reserved.
The content on this website is proprietary.

December 08, 2005