The Health News – 08 January 2016

Overview:
• Rowing 200 kilometres of ocean over the span of seven days is gruelling enough, but when Harriet Walker participated in the George Bass Surf Boat Marathon two years ago, the challenge was particularly tough.

• Birds contaminated the drinking water supply for Wynyard prompting a boil-before-drinking alert which was issued for the north-west town on New Year’s Eve, TasWater has confirmed.

• For many of us, the holiday months are a chance to indulge in a precious and increasingly rare commodity: non-time-limited, good quality, satisfying sleep. But sometimes, despite sleeping more than usual every night, a holiday can bring a surprising level of tiredness.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the 8th January 2016. Read by Rebecca Foster. Health News

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-06/canberra-rower-returns-to-george-bass-marathon-for-father/7072318

Rowing 200 kilometres of ocean over the span of seven days is gruelling enough, but when Harriet Walker participated in the George Bass Surf Boat Marathon two years ago, the challenge was particularly tough.

A few short months before the race, Ms Walker lost her father and “number one fan” Greg Walker to gastro-intestinal (GI) cancer.

Ms Walker said the race, which sees teams of rowers travel along the New South Wales South Coast from Batemans Bay to Eden, took an especially hard toll on her.

For this year’s marathon Ms Walker has returned to the waves to raise money for research into GI cancer, with the help of her team the Broulee Capitals.

Ahead of the race, she said the team had been preparing well.

The race started on Saturday and has seen teams battle through harsh winds and colder than predicted temperatures.

The Broulee Capitals were in second place at the end of Wednesday’s leg, and the race is due to finish this Saturday.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-07/nesting-birds-to-blame-for-tap-water-contamination-in-tasmania/7074130

Birds contaminated the drinking water supply for Wynyard prompting a boil-before-drinking alert which was issued for the north-west town on New Year’s Eve, TasWater has confirmed.

In a statement, TasWater said small birds had entered the Grants Reservoir through tiny gaps in the roof and set up nests inside the water storage facility.

Divers have now started cleaning out the reservoir and removing any evidence of the birds.

The floor of the reservoir will be vacuumed to remove any residual matter.

Cleaning will continue …[today / Friday] and TasWater warned water supplied to Wynyard could be discoloured.

The Department of Health and Human services will consider lifting the ban once the clean-up has finished and water testing indicates the supply is safe to drink.

It is expected the drinking water will not be safe until next week and the boil alert for Wynyard remains in place.

Earlier this week TasWater acknowledged it could improve how it issues boiled water alerts, after wide-spread criticism for its handling of the contamination.

Some residents complained that mailed notifications regarding the alert were delayed by up to five days.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-07/why-holidays-can-make-you-more-sleepy/7066752

For many of us, the holiday months are a chance to indulge in a precious and increasingly rare commodity: non-time-limited, good quality, satisfying sleep.

But sometimes, despite sleeping more than usual every night, a holiday can bring a surprising level of tiredness.

You might be just lying around at home, or if you’re lucky, perhaps on a towel by a beach or pool. Still you find that all you want to do is, well, more of the same.

You may find it hard to keep your eyes open. Just getting up for a cup of tea or to look for that novel you planned to read can feel just too …exhausting.

If you had planned on being a bit more energised, it can be a mysterious (not to mention frustrating) phenomenon.

How can being on holidays without the normal limits on your sleep possibly leave you feeling more tired?

If your fatigue hits you just in the first few days of your holidays, it might simply be that you’re still in a catch-up sleep phase, sleep psychologist Professor Dorothy Bruck suggests.

The demands of the festive season can leave people “over-revved”.

When you finally slow down, you may be registering for the first time a level of sleep deprivation that has been entrenched, but previously masked by the stimulation of having adrenaline constantly surging through your body.

In fact, for many of us, holidays are a wake-up call as to just how little sleep we’re getting.

So with a lot of us potentially an hour short of shut-eye every day in our normal routines, the end of the year might be a time to pay homage to sleep’s remarkable restorative powers.

It’s a time when our brains “make new connections, file things away, chuck things out, and put things in their right place so you can find them later”.

“Sleep is as important as healthy food and exercise. I think people need to prioritise sleep a little more,” Dr Bruck says.

…[She also] points out that if your fatigue is persistent and unrelenting then it may be more of a psychological issue — a reaction perhaps to burnout from work — than a problem with the quality of your sleep.

…Tiredness after sleeping well is different from tiredness from not sleeping well. Aspects of seasonal festivities can upset your slumber in a number of ways including:

Alcohol

Tummy troubles

[and] Daytime naps