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Cougar Health Services October 2019

Want to quit vaping? We can help!

person using e-cigarette
person using e-cigarette

Quitting is tough, but we are here to help! Cougar Health Services provides a variety of free resources to help students quit vaping or using tobacco products.

As of October 15, 2019, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported 1,479 lung injuries related to e-cigarette and vaping products in 49 states. Because of this, the CDC and Cougar Health Services are encouraging those who use these products to quit.

We provide brief cessation counseling to currently enrolled students who have paid their student health fee. During your appointments, we can help you:

  • Explore your options for quitting
  • Improve your motivation to quit
  • Learn ways to manage cravings
  • Reduce the stress of quitting
  • Reduce your e-cigarette and vaping product use if you have had previous attempts to quit, or are not able to entirely quit

Nicotine replacements (gum, patches, or lozenges) are also available at no charge to students who participate in nicotine cessation counseling. If you’d like to find out how we can help you quit, call 509-335-3575.

In the meantime, here are five quick tips to help you get started:

Set a quit date.

Choosing a specific quit date can help you get serious about your plan to stop using e-cigarettes and vaping products. Try to find a day when you won’t be too busy or stressed.

Celebrate the small milestones.

On top of the health benefits, quitting can save a lot of money. Reward your achievements and spend the cash you’ve saved on something you enjoy.

Don’t do it alone.

Tell the people in your life that you’re planning to quit, join a support group, talk to a counselor, or download an app to receive reminders and support. Counseling and nicotine replacements can significantly improve your chance of success and help ease the symptoms of withdrawal.

Take care of yourself.

Caring for your body and mind can help alleviate the stress of quitting. Exercise will improve your mood and energy. Strive for 7-8 hours of sleep every night, eat a balanced diet, and drink plenty of water.

Try and try again.

Most people try to quit smoking an average of 8 times before they succeed. Don’t give up! Each time you attempt to quit, you can learn something new about what does and doesn’t work for you, and what you need for success in the future.

Not sure where to start? Give us a call at 509-335-3575, and we can help you find the best option for you.

Consent and sex: What you need to know

Close up to two peoples' shoes

College students around the country have lots of questions about consent and sex. So let’s talk about it. WSU has a specific definition of consent when it comes to sexual activity: it must be clear, knowing, and voluntary. Consent is important because it involves giving and getting permission. This ensures both people feel comfortable and makes the experience that much better.

Don’t worry, you don’t need to have an awkward conversation that completely ruins the moment or sign a contract to get consent. Getting clear, knowing, voluntary consent is easy. Getting and giving consent is ongoing and involves checking in with your partner both verbally and non-verbally. For example, ask yourself:

  • Do they look happy to be there?
  • Do they say “yes” when you ask if they like what is happening?
  • Do they know what they are consenting to?

Alcohol or drug use can impact the ability to give consent.  When someone is incapacitated by alcohol or drugs, they lose the ability to be fully aware of what’s going on around them. If someone doesn’t know what’s going on, then they’re unable to give consent. Ask yourself, “Do I feel comfortable letting this person drive right now?”  If your answer is not a definitive and instant ”yes”, then it’s a good time to step back and assess whether or not that person is able to give consent.

In a nutshell, consent means giving and getting permission to engage in sexual activity.  It means you and your partner both really want to be doing what you’re doing, and you’re both excited about it and enjoy it. Getting and giving consent is about being a good partner and making sure everyone is in agreement.

Want to learn more? Check out this video by sex educator Laci Green entitled, Wanna Have Sex? (Consent 101). (Please note this video includes strong language and sexual content.)

 

October Peer Health Educator Spotlight – Nathan Salyer

Nathan Salyer
Peer Health Educator, Nathan Salyer

Nathan Salyer is a third-year junior at WSU completing a B.S. in neuroscience and a B.A. in Chinese. He joined the peer health education program in the spring of 2019. His peers in the program nominated him for the October Peer Health Educator of the Month award. This award is given to peer health educators in recognition of their hard work and dedication to the program. We sat down with Nathan to hear more about his time in the program and why he thinks other students would benefit from joining.

How has being a peer health educator been meaningful to you?

Nathan Salyer: I’ve always been passionate about health education throughout high school. It has been good to be in a program where I can go out into the public and reach people who are interested in learning. It is a great way to help people become more comfortable with healthcare and learn to do things on their own.

How do you think being a peer health educator has built career skills?

NS: One skill has been the customer service aspect of health education. I want to become a doctor and learning how to teach is definitely vital. If someone doesn’t understand what you’re saying, you have to be patient with them. You try to find another way to explain to them so they can understand what you are trying to say.

What is the most important thing you’ve learned as a peer health educator?

NS: One of the most important things I’ve learned is it’s okay to not have the answer. There is a large amount of information I need to know to be able to present a workshop, but it doesn’t cover everything actually known about a topic.

If someone asks a question in a workshop I’m facilitating with someone else and I don’t have the answer, I can step aside and look it up really quick. If I’m by myself, I can say that’s a great question, but I don’t know and ask them to talk to me afterward. Then we can figure it out and look it up together or I can give them contact information for people who are much more knowledgeable than I am.

What would you say to someone who is considering becoming a peer health educator?

NS: I’d say go for it. The time and effort you put in to learn all the information is very beneficial if you want to have an impact on people. If you have any sort of passion for it, then go for it.

 

Vision Clinic Frame Show

three students wearing glasses
Three students wearing Vision Clinic sunglasses

 

Stop by the vision clinic for a special sale event for WSU students! Over 200 styles of frames and sunglasses will be available to try on and purchase. Students will receive a 25% discount on frames and sunglasses in stock.

Vision Clinic Frame Show
October 23, 2019 10 AM – 3 PM
Washington Building.

Drop by for giveaways and enter to win a free frame or sunglasses!  

For questions about the sale or our vision care services, contact our vision clinic.

Become a peer health educator

Photo of Cougar Health Services Peer Health Educators

Peer health educators are a diverse group of undergraduate leaders who work with us to educate and empower their fellow students. Students who participate in this program facilitate workshops, represent CHS at campus events, table, and collaborate with campus partners.

We consistently hear from students who are interested in peer health education programs, and studies show that students view peer health educators as credible and trustworthy sources of information. The program is supported by the Service & Activity Fee and will help increase our collaboration with students.

Students who participate in the program will receive a range of professional development opportunities, including training and hands-on experience. Peer educators will develop leadership and public speaking skills, foster positive working relationships, and gain foundational knowledge in a variety of health topics, including violence prevention, mental health, substance use, and sexual health.

The application for becoming a peer health educator will open March 27. Due to COVID-19, applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis rather than having a strict close date.

Students who are accepted into the program will receive BACCHUS training on Sunday, August 30 from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. Students will then take an exam for their peer educator certification. The program has a one-year commitment with 25 hours of involvement per semester and bi-weekly meetings which occur on Wednesdays from 4:00 –6:00 pm.

If you have questions about the program, please contact Peyton Prothero.