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The state of Maine ranks 15 our of 52 for the overall health and wellness of its residents. While there are many reasons to be optimistic about the overall health of Maine’s residents, its population still faces a number of health related challenges. This state is proud to excel in the areas of immunization rates for young children, low levels of violent crime, and HPV immunization for teen males. However, it still has some catching up to do in regards to its high infant mortality rates, high levels of alcohol abuse, and the high incidence of pertussis.
Maine also faces a number of challenges to public health which are linked to the many popular outdoor activities the state’s residents enjoy. There is a high incidence of Leptospirosis, a rare disease that can be found in bodies of stagnant water. Ehrlichiosis, Lyme Disease, and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever- these are tick-borne diseases that threaten hikers and cause several hundred of infections each year. Bites and stings from bees and hornets can be dangerous in great numbers, and are always life-threatening to those who are allergic to these stings. Sun exposure and dehydration are hazards for those who do not protect themselves.
Another developing hazard is the increasing toxicity of seafood. Maine has a particularly sea loving culture where seafood is a part of most people’s regular diet. But beginning in 2008, and with stunning regularity since then, the FDA has issued several warnings about the risks of consuming shellfish, and particularly Maine lobster.
While the state of Maine has a good record of caring for the needs of its elderly citizens, and end of life care in general, the population is aging more rapidly than it is growing at present. Today, one out of five Maine residents is over the age of 65. This presents a number of unique challenges to families and to the elderly who will need special care into their golden years.
Maine also has a relatively high rate of smoking, just above the national average at 22.8 percent. The national median is 21.2 percent. This is unusual for a predominantly affluent region, and the rates have not responded as well as they have in other parts of the country to the many public health campaigns of the last few years to discourage smoking.
With all these concerns in mind, it’s easy to see why as a resident of Maine resident, becoming CPR certified is a good decision for the health of your family and loved ones. With rates of smoking still on the rise and deaths associated with other health hazards, both those that are common across the country and those unique to Maine- being skilled in life-saving CPR techniques could easily prove invaluable at any time of place. This is especially apparent in light of the state’s high incidence of premature infant death. For this reason, alone infant CPR is recommended in Maine for all parents and anyone who cares for small children. Even if you are fortunate enough to never have to use it, being proficient in CPR can be a source of security and pride for those skilled in its use.
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