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Archive for August, 2018

Head Lice 101. By Our August Student Pharmacist, Mackenzie Gill.

lice pic 1Parents of school-aged children are all too familiar with head lice. Whether you’ve received notice that someone in your child’s class has lice or your own child has lice, it is easy to feel overwhelmed and a little helpless. But never fear! We will walk you through everything you need to know to conquer those pesky mites.

First and foremost: having head lice does not mean you are dirty! Head lice actually thrive in clean hair. Head lice are also extremely common. Between 6-12 million cases of head lice occur each year in children between the ages of 3-11. Head lice are spread primarily by head-to-head contact. This means children who play or go to school together are at the greatest risk.

So how do you get rid of head lice?

There are multiple options!

The two major over-the-counter products are:

  • Nix which contains permethrin
  • RID which contains pyrethrins

They are both considered equally effective. The major difference is permethrin (Nix) does not require a repeat application. Both products also include a lice comb to tease out the mites. Directions for specific use of these products will be included in their packaging. The pharmacy is always happy to help explain, as well.

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Manual removal is also becoming a popular choice for families. There are Lice Salons in the central Ohio area that will remove the lice manually using a Nit comb and other non-medicated products. The major downfall for this option is it is more expensive. Services range in price from about $100-$150.

No matter which method you choose for removal of lice from the head, it is important to also wash clothing, bedding, brushes, and hair accessories that were used during the head lice infestation. You do NOT need to wash your entire wardrobe or replace furniture, including your mattress! Lice don’t live on pets and cannot survive long at all once they leave the warmth of your hair.

It’s important to remember that getting lice happens. Just breathe and don’t panic. And if you have any further questions you can always call or stop into Plain City Druggist. We are always happy to help!

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Improve Your Sleep. By Our August Student Pharmacist, Moe Hamad, Who is Feeling Very Sleepy After Writing This Blog.

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With school just around the corner, it is important for us to improve our sleep habits in order to maximize our everyday potential. We all need our sleep and a good night’s rest can help get us through the day.

Here are some helpful tips you can use to improve your sleep hygiene provided by the National Sleep Foundation:

  • Avoid Caffeine and Nicotine close to bedtime.
    • Caffeine and nicotine are stimulants that keep the body awake. Consuming them close to bedtime will keep you awake and mess with your body’s normal sleep cycles!
  • Stay away from foods that can cause indigestion.
    • Eating a heavy meal close to bedtime can cause indigestion which will be irritating and affect the quality of sleep.
  • Exercise during the day.
    • Any form of aerobic exercise (jogging outside/on treadmill) during the day can help dramatically improve nighttime sleep quality.
  • Turn off lights, television, phones, iPads, and other electronic devices before going to sleep.
    • Lights can be a distraction. Turning off light can minimize any disturbance and help improve the quality of sleep.
  • Don’t take long naps during the day.
    • There is nothing wrong with taking a short day-time nap, but limit those naps to less than thirty minutes. A light sleep can help improve cognition, memory, and mood, but anything more than a half hour will disrupt normal sleep patterns.

There are a lot of benefits to getting a good night’s sleep. A good night’s sleep has been proven to boost immune system as well as improve mood and overall well being.

On average, we should try to aim to get at least eight hours of sleep in order to get in the proper amount of sleep cycles. It is important to try to stay consistent.

Here are the recommended hours of sleep by the National Sleep Foundation based on age. Keep in mind that some people may require more sleep.

  1. Toddlers (1-2 years old): 11-14 hours
  2. Preschoolers (3-5 years old): 10-13 hours
  3. School-aged Children (6-13 years old): 9-11 hours
  4. Teenagers (14-17 years old): 8-10 hours
  5. Adults (18-64 years old): 7-9 hours
  6. Older Adults (≥65 years old): 7-8 hours

Adjusting to the proper sleep routine can take some time. However, taking Melatonin one hour before sleep can help you ‘fix’ your sleep routine. As always, if you have any questions or need more helpful tips for adjusting your sleep, stop by Plain City Druggist and ask to speak to our helpful staff pharmacists! Good luck in school this year and Go Buckeyes!


Vaccine Requirements for the Upcoming School Year. By Our August Student Pharmacist, Mackenzie Gill.

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School is just around the corner! While you are busy making sure your child has everything they need in order to be prepared for their first day, don’t forget to make sure they also have their required vaccinations.

The following vaccines are required by ALL Ohio schools. Failure to provide proof of vaccination could result in exclusion from school.

**All students entering 7th and 12th grade MUST get the meningococcal (meningitis) vaccine.**

This vaccine prevents and protects against meningococcal disease (meningitis).

What is meningitis?

Meningitis is the inflammation of brain and spinal cord membranes, typically caused by a bacterial infection. Meningitis can cause blindness, loss of limbs, and even death.

How does someone get meningitis?

Meningitis can be spread by coming in contact with the germs of an infected individual. Individuals who carry the bacteria do not always appear sick. The most common way these germs can be spread are by coughing, sneezing, and kissing. Children in school are especially susceptible because they are in close contact with many other students throughout the day.

What are the common signs and symptoms of meningitis?

Common symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Stiff neck
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Confusion

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**All students entering 7th grade MUST get a booster dose of the Tdap or Td vaccine.**

This vaccine prevents and protects against tetanus and diphtheria. Pertussis (whooping cough) is also protected against if receiving Tdap.

What is tetanus? How does someone get tetanus? What are the common signs and symptoms of tetanus?

Tetanus is a serious bacterial infection. Most commonly, tetanus occurs when a puncture wound occurs, like stepping on a nail or needle. There are other events that can cause tetanus like burns or pre-existing wounds that get contaminated with dirt, poop, or spit.

Common symptoms include:

  • Jaw cramping
  • Muscle spasms and stiffness

What is diphtheria? How does someone get diphtheria? What are the common signs and symptoms of diphtheria?

Diphtheria is a serious infection of the nose and throat. It is spread from person to person, commonly by coughing or sneezing.

Common symptoms include:

  • Swollen glands in the neck
  • Weakness
  • Sore throat

What is pertussis? How does someone get pertussis? What are the common signs and symptoms of pertussis?

Pertussis is a highly contagious respiratory tract infection. It is spread from person to person, typically by coughing, sneezing, or sharing breathing space. Early symptoms resemble a typical cold. The symptoms progress into much more serious symptoms with the most common one being coughing fits followed by high-pitched “whoop” sounds. These fits can cause vomiting and exhaustion and shortness of breath.

These very serious illnesses can all be prevented by getting your children vaccinated! Most insurance plans cover these vaccines at no cost or at a reduced price.

Plain City Druggist can administer these vaccines to your children if they are over thirteen-years-old WITHOUT a prescription from their doctor. If your child is between the ages of 7-12, Plain City Druggist can administer these vaccines only WITH a prescription from their doctor.

We look forward to seeing you!

More information on these vaccines and Ohio School requirements can be found at www.cdc.gov and www.odh.ohio.gov

There are other vaccines that are required for entry into school, but are not discussed here since they are routinely given as part of your child’s pediatric visits as babies and/or young children.


Meet Our Student Pharmacist, Jeff Pitts, for August at Happy Druggist on Karl Road.

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Besides Mackenzie and Moe, who are student pharmacists helping at Plain City Druggist this month, we also have a student pharmacist for the month of August at Happy Druggist on Karl Road. Jeff Pitts is from The Ohio State University’s College of Pharmacy and will be graduating in May 2019. Please make sure you stop in and meet Jeff this month.

Here is a bit more about Jeff in his own words:

My name is Jeff and I am a fourth-year pharmacy student at The Ohio State University, expecting to graduate in the spring of 2019 with my PharmD. In 2015, I graduated with my Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry from Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts. During my undergraduate studies, I had jobs at three pharmaceutical companies as an organic chemistry intern where I primarily worked in a lab synthesizing novel organic molecules.

I grew up in a blue-collar family in Taunton, Massachusetts where my dad worked as a truck driver and my mother raised my younger brother and me. Growing up, my parents always stressed going to college so we would not have to work long hours at a physically demanding job. They always stressed finding a career.

After completing my third internship during my junior year at Northeastern, I decided that I wanted to pursue a career that would give me the opportunity to work with patients and have a more direct impact on their care.

For the past two years, I have been working as an inpatient pharmacy intern at Nationwide Children’s Hospital where I work in the emergency department performing medication reconciliation along with assisting pharmacists during code and trauma situations. My career goal in pharmacy has always been to complete a two-year pharmacy residency program. Over the last year, I have grown to develop a passion for critical care and emergency pharmacy.

In my spare time I like to be active, whether that is going to the gym to work out, playing or watching hockey, or exploring Columbus.

I am excited to be here at Happy Druggist Pharmacy during the month of August where I will gain crucial experience working in a community pharmacy along with interacting with the many amazing patients that visit the pharmacy every day. I look forward to meeting you!


Please Welcome Our Second Student Pharmacist for August, Moe Hamad.


We introduced you to Mackenzie Gill in a previous post. Mackenzie and Moe are both rotating with us for the month of August in the pharmacy. Moe is also a fourth year student at The Ohio State University’s College of Pharmacy and will graduate in May 2019 with his PharmD degree.

Here is what Moe tells us about himself:

My name is Mohammad Hamad, but everyone calls me Moe. I was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan and went to Oakland University (Rochester, MI) for my undergraduate studies. I am a P4 student on my second rotation.

Currently, I work at CVS pharmacy in Dublin, OH and my ultimate goal after graduating will be to open an independent pharmacy in Michigan. My passion for pharmacy started at a young age and is directly tied to independent pharmacy. The local independent pharmacist is a family friend, and the way he treated my mother and me when we would pick up our medication had a personal touch. That connection he made on those visits is something I still remember to this day and was one of the top reasons why I entered healthcare. I was drawn in by the role of the independent pharmacist; an active member of the community who built relationships with his patients. Interest was sparked and the rest has been history!

Before pharmacy, I was a physical therapy major. I was drawn to physical therapy for the same reason I was drawn to pharmacy–the relationship between healthcare professional and patient. The patient trusts us to know what is best for them. It is our duty to reach out and make sure the patient gets the best quality of care. It is also our responsibility as a healthcare professional to ensure the highest quality of care. It is easier to meet the standard of care when you develop a personal relationship with the patient. A month into physical therapy school, I realized, for a variety of reasons, that this profession was not for me. After deep contemplation, I ultimately decided that pharmacy was the path for me.

In October of 2017, my older brother, who is also a pharmacist, opened his first pharmacy in Battle Creek, Michigan. Even though I have been busy with school, I have been a part of his journey and it’s been an interesting few months. There have been so many lessons that we have both learned that took us by surprise. One of the more pleasant experiences has been becoming part of the community through active leadership and seminars. It has gotten me more excited for my future in pharmacy!