Nursing Program

Parish Health Team at St. Margaret’s

A health ministry of the congregation

Asthma Advice

Asthma is a Greek word that means “panting” and anyone who has had problems with asthma can certainly relate to that. Below are common symptoms for asthma. If your asthma isn’t controlled, you may experience these symptoms on a daily basis with strenuous or mild exercise or even when you are sitting still.
• Shortness of breath
• Chest tightness or heaviness
• Cough
• Wheeze
The above symptoms are caused by exposure to a trigger which is something you are sensitive to. When your body senses the trigger the muscles start to twitch on the outside of the breathing tubes and the muscles start to swell on the inside of the breathing tubes. Some triggers are shown below.
Cold Viruses Animal Dander
Cold Air Pollen
Humidity Dust
Exercise Mould
There are two different types of medication for asthma. The first type is called a reliever and the second type is called a preventer. The reliever makes you feel better very quickly, but the effect only lasts for a few hours. They actually relax the muscles on the outside of the breathing tubes. The preventer takes a while to build in your system, but if it is taken everyday your symptoms will decrease and eventually disappear.
It’s very important to take your medication properly, but many people aren’t shown the proper technique. If you take your medication by an inhaler, you should always use a spacing device. If you have questions, there are many resources in the community including your doctor, pharmacist and the Asthma Clinic.
A quick way to check to see how your asthma is doing is called “The 30 Second Asthma Test”. If you answer “Yes” to any of these questions, you should mention it to your doctor. Give it a try!
• Do you need to use your reliever medication more than 3X a week?
• Do you have symptoms more than 3X a week?
• Do you have night time symptoms?
• Do you have symptoms when you exercise?
• Do you miss school, work or social activities because of your symptoms?

Keeping Well
from your Parish Nursing Team

The Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says “clean hands save lives”.
- Hand washing with soap and warm running water and friction is the key. Soap and water are still the “gold standard”.
- Proper and frequent hand washing (for 20 seconds) removes dirt and germs.
- See directions at our sinks. Make a habit of proper hand washing.
- Ordinary hand soap is best. Foam soap dispensers are becoming popular. They use less soap, reach into cracks and crevices in the hands, and are less costly.
When no running water is available, use hand sanitizers. They kill 99.9% of germs on your dry hands.
- Sanitizers require over 60 % alcohol content to be effective. Chlorine and peroxide are also used in some products.
- Sanitizers are safe, convenient and no/low fragrance.
- Please use ours or carry your own with you. Some places encourage the use of hand sanitizers after hand washing as an added precaution. This is because of handling of taps or soap dispensers in the hand washing process.
A caution: Antibacterial soaps kill normal healthy bacteria on the skin as well as unhealthy bacteria. They act more slowly and leave a residue which may lead to the growth of resistant bacteria. You have heard of “super bugs”. Antibacterial soaps don’t kill viruses which cause colds, for instance. They are not usually required in home and church settings. Hospitals use antibacterials because of the increased risk to ill persons and the need for sterile surfaces, e.g. for surgeries .

Community Health Clinic (a ministry of the UNB Faculty of Nursing)
In order to support the operations of the clinic, they rely on the generosity of community-minded groups. They accept donations of used casual clothing (jeans, T-shirts, winter coats, socks and footwear) to supply their clothing bank. They take donations of movies (VHS & DVD), books, toys, and small household goods to stock their modest store. They also need toiletries and facecloths – items in constant demand. After 9 years in operation, the client base now exceeds 3,000, so the need for the clinic is clear, and the needs of the clinic ongoing.


Parish health team members recognize the privilege of being trusted with the church family. The team includes members with various gifts associated with health and healing. The practice of team members within the program will be consistent with their experience and expertise and developing spiritual maturity. The ministry will take place at the church, in people’s homes, and in health care facilities.

Members of your parish health team include Faith Cormier, Allison Burns, Mary-Louise Luck, Nancy Wiggins, and other volunteers. For further information or consultation, please contact the church at 450-0110 and ask for the Parish Health Team Coordinator.

This ministry is a free service of St. Margaret’s Church. Donations may be given in support of this ministry. Gifts to the Memorial Fund may be directed to support the Parish Health Team.

Revised December 2015.

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