Ways to learn more about health and wellness at LMH Health

photo by: Earl Richardson/LMH Health Photo

Krista and Seth Sanchez attend an infant care class at LMH Health.

It’s important to be an active participant in your health, but what does that mean? For some, it means becoming more engaged with your doctor by asking questions, discussing treatment plans and making decisions together. It can also mean learning more about specific conditions and finding support from your health care team and the community.

“We know that if you’re an active participant in your health care journey, you have improved outcomes and an increased quality of life,” said Allison Koonce, LMH Health community outreach and engagement supervisor. “It’s not just about making sure you have access to routine or specialized care. It includes giving you the tools to succeed on your own.”

LMH Health offers a variety of classes and support groups, focusing on all ages and stages of life. These programs aim to increase health knowledge in the community, break down barriers to health education and improve community health and outcomes.

Birth and parenthood

Whether you’re new to parenthood or an experienced parent, LMH Health has a class for you. They look at what you can expect before, during and after childbirth, caring for your newborn and keeping them safe. Our classes include:

• Childbirth three-week series: Join us for three sessions covering the physiology of late pregnancy and childbirth; comfort measures, relaxation, breathing and medical interventions (including caesarean section); and the first days after birth.

• Baby care workshop: This class is designed for expectant or adoptive parents who want to prepare to care for a newborn.

• New parent and breastfeeding support: Focusing on providing a safe environment in which to learn about breastfeeding and parenting, this group meets most Mondays from 10 to 11:30 a.m. on the lower level of the LMH Health Main Campus.

• Newborn safety and CPR: Designed specifically for new parents or other caregivers, this class covers infant CPR, what to do if an infant is choking, and child passenger and home safety.

“Becoming a parent is such an exciting time,” Koonce said. “Our classes focus on providing information and knowledge so you’re ready to care for the newest member of your family.”

Navigating the aging process

As you continue to age, your health may be a more central focus. Navigating the changes your body undergoes isn’t something you have to do alone.

“We can all benefit from additional knowledge as we transition through different stages of life,” Koonce said.

LMH Health partners with the Lawrence Public Library to offer Gray Anatomy, a monthly series covering issues of aging. An area medical expert focuses on a new subject each month and discusses how the aging process affects you. Past topics include knowing when to visit the emergency department, the aging brain and discussions about over-the-counter medications.

“Partnering with the Lawrence Public Library allows LMH Health to share resources, build positive relationship and share valuable information with our community,” Koonce said. “If you’d like to attend, register online at the Lawrence Public Library website at lplks.org.”

If you’re concerned about managing falls, you may be interested in A Matter of Balance. Through a collaboration with the Senior Resource Center, this program emphasizes practical strategies to manage falls. You’ll learn to:

• View falls as controllable

• Set goals for increasing activity

• Make changes to reduce your fall risk at home

• Exercise to increase strength and balance

“If you’ve fallen in the past or you’re interested in improving your balance, flexibility and strength to prevent future falls, A Matter of Balance might be right for you,” Koonce said.

Support groups

Sometimes the best education comes from surrounding yourself with others who have, or are currently navigating, similar lifestyle changes or conditions. LMH Health offers support groups and classes led by experienced professionals and tailored to support your needs.

“Our support groups can act as a bridge to others who are going through many of the same things you are,” Koonce said. “LMH Health has support groups for a variety of conditions, ranging from living with a diabetes diagnosis to navigating life with an ostomy. Talk to your healthcare provider about available groups and class options.”

Health and wellness screenings and challenges

Maintaining your health is an ongoing commitment. LMH Health offers a variety of health screenings and wellness challenges throughout the year.

“We provide a community wellness challenge each quarter to encourage people to be engaged and active in improving their health,” Koonce said. “These are programs that you can do on your own or with a group that you choose.”

Wellness challenge participants complete a minimum of six weekly challenges that may include health screenings, fitness, nutrition and personal wellness activities. Complete the challenge and you’ll be entered to win a gift basket from the LMH Health Gift Shop.

If competition isn’t your thing, look towards the Lawrence Farmers’ Market or the LMH Health Annual Health Fair. Starting in April, LMH Health clinics and departments will have a booth at the farmers market to provide health screenings and education and share upcoming activities at the hospital. The Annual Health Fair will be on Sept. 14. At the fair, you’ll be able to visit with local health care providers and participate in bone density screenings, blood pressure checks and stroke risk assessments. Additional details about additional screenings and services will be released in August.

“LMH Health is an independent community hospital that’s invested in you,” Koonce said. “We’re here to help you navigate your health and improve your quality of life.”

First aid & CPR classes

The American Heart Association and LMH Health provide adult CPR and pediatric first aid and CPR classes. Participants complete an online portion through the AHA and an in-person check-off at LMH. Visit lmh.org/events for more information.

Scholarships available

Select classes may have an associated cost with them. The LMH Health Foundation provides scholarships for all classes except CPR and First Aid due to American Heart Association requirements.

“The scholarship helps remove the barriers some individuals may face to accessing this information,” said Koonce. “There is not a limit to how many times you can apply for a scholarship.”

To learn more about scholarships or to apply, contact Koonce at allison.koonce@lmh.org or 785-505-3081. 

— Kade Han is the social media and digital communications specialist at LMH Health.


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