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Dementia Claim Proves Former Teen Idol Not Teen Anymore (RAW)

CLEVELAND -- This will make Baby Boomers feel old -- former teen idol David Cassidy says he's battling dementia. The 66-year-old singer and actor will step back from touring to battle the disease.

"The lifestyle factors are the most imporant ways of managing dementia," says Brian Appleby, MD, geriatric psychiatrist at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, "things like depression, diabetes, high blood pressure, those conditions can speed the illness up. And also making sure you're staying socially active and mentally stimulated when you're starting to have memory problems."

Cassidy starred as Keith Partridge on the ABC sitcom "The Partridge Family" from 1970 to 1974 and toured the world singing hits like "I Think I Love You." He has continued to perform for nearly a half century. Cassidy has battled alcohol addiction in the past with three arrests for driving under the influence between 2010 and 2014.

"Certainly, you can get dementia from either the vitamin deficiencies or heavy alcohol use," says Dr. Appleby about  the link between drinking and the memory disease.

Dr. Appleby says the number one risk factor of dementia is age and Cassidy has said both his grandfather and mother suffered from disease.

Love Your Pet Day: 5 ways pets help keep us healthy and happy (VIDEO/AUDIO)

CLEVELAND –The benefits of owning a pet cannot be overstated. The relationships with our animals goes well beyond companionship. Research shows pets can actually provide health benefits and may even help us live longer, happier lives. Monday, February 20, is National Love Your Pet Day. On a day where pet owners will flood their social pages with pictures and videos of their furry friends and animals, Sheryl Kingsberg, PhD, Behavioral Medicine Specialist at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center provides five health benefits to having a pet at home:
1. Healthy heart– There’s more than one way your heart loves your pet. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have both conducted heart-related studies on people who have pets. The findings showed pet owners tend to have decreased blood pressure, cholesterol and triglyceride levels --all of which can ultimately minimize the risk for having a heart attack.
2. Getting more steps in – Dogs can act as the perfect automatic motivator to get up and get out walking or running. NIH research revealed more than 2,000 adults who owned and walked their dogs regularly were in better shape and were less likely to be become obese, than those who did not walk a dog.
3. Stress management and improved moods – Owning a pet, particularly a cat or dog, provides unconditional positive regard, bonding and a sense of family. Those benefits help improve mood, increase self-esteem and decrease the risk of depression.
4. Protection against allergies – If you introduce a pet early on in a child’s life it may help protect them against respiratory illnesses, like asthma, because it helps strengthen their immune systems.
5. Social connections -  If you’re a dog owner, you’re automatically out in the world. Research indicates walking with a dog leads to more conversations with neighbors, other dog owners, etc. and helps you stay socially connected.

Flu Latest (VIDEO)

CLEVELAND -- Dr. Aaron Lareau (la-ROO), Emergency Medicine at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, talks about the flu in light of four children's deaths in Ohio.

Drowsy driving can pose bigger risk than drunk driving, study says (VIDEO/AUDIO)

CLEVELAND – In a go-go world where sleep is often last on the list of priorities, if you haven’t had at least seven hours of sleep in the past 24 hours, you probably shouldn’t be behind the wheel. According to a report from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, drivers who sleep only five or six hours in a 24-hour period are twice as likely to crash as drivers who get the recommended seven hours of sleep or more.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says 35 percent of U.S. drivers sleep less than seven hours daily. And with drowsy driving involved in more than one in five fatal crashes on U.S. roadways each year, not getting adequate sleep could have deadly consequences.
“I think you need to look at your amount of sleep in a way that you try to get sufficient sleep just as much as you might be concerned about how much alcohol you drink or what drugs you take,” says Kingman Strohl, MD, Sleep Medicine Specialist at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center.
Additionally, researchers found drivers who slept only four to five hours more than quadrupled their risk of a crash. This is the same crash risk the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration associates with driving over the legal limit for alcohol.
Dr. Strohl says the best countermeasure to feeling sleepy while driving is to park the car and either take a nap or drink a cup of coffee and take a nap.
Poor sleep habits also have health consequences. Individuals who fail to get adequate sleep are at higher risk for diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease.
Dr. Strohl recommends adults get somewhere between six-and-a-half and seven-and-a-half hours of sleep on a consistent basis to best minimize their risk of drowsy driving related car crashes or accidents. 

"Super bugs" tough on children, new study shows (VIDEO/AUDIO) EMBARGOED UNTIL 12:05 AM ET FEBRUARY 23RD

CLEVELAND -- "We know that the more we use antibiotics, the more of the bacteria become antibiotic-resistant," says Sharon Meropol, MD, PhD, Department of Pediatrics at University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital. "This makes these bacteria really hard to treat, especially in children because there's fewer antibiotics available proven safe in children."

Hospitals have seen a seven-fold increase in antibiotic-resistant bacteria, or so-called "super bugs," from 2007 to 2015, resulting in 20 percent longer hospital stays for children.

Dr. Meropol has studied  bacteria data from 48 children's hospitals through the Pediatric Health Information System and has published her findings in the Feb 23 edition of Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Disease Society, the first study to look at admissions to children's hospitals due to the antibiotic-resistant bug Enterobacteriaceae.

The pipeline of new antibiotics is drying up, according to Dr. Meropol, and she warns we need to watch the overuse of our current antibiotics. She says 80 percent of antibiotics are used to keep farm animals healthy, which contributes to antibiotic-resistant bugs. Also she says doctors are over-prescribing antibiotics for viruses, with at least quarter of children's antibiotic prescriptions given for infections that are viral and won't respond to antibiotics.

"We should be more and more increasingly careful about how we use antibiotics and only use them when we really feel confident we're treating a bacterial infection that needs antibiotics," says Dr. Meropol.

Dr. Meropol says in addition to longer hospital stays, these super bugs are associated with an increased risk of death.

Researchers analyzed data throughout the U.S. in this retrospective study, focusing on approximately 94,000 patients under the age of 18 who were diagnosed with Enterobacteriaceae-associated infections between 2007 and 2015.

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