Anyone who has ever committed to getting healthy knows there's an essential ingredient when it comes to success: having a plan.
To help you achieve your wellness goals all year long, we're highlighting our favorite health and wellness tips from Johnson & Johnson-affiliated experts for every month of the year—so you're primed for success in 2018!
Kick off 2018 on a calm note by trying out meditation, which has been credited with helping to reduce stress, improve sleep and lower blood pressure, among other health benefits. Intimidated? No need to be: The Inscape app can help you learn to focus and center yourself in the comforts of your own home.
Winter doldrums got you down? Indulge in some aromatherapy, which has been proven to have rejuvenating qualities. Specific scents have also been shown to increase alertness and promote feelings of calmness.
Aromatherapy could be particularly helpful if you suffer from seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a more serious form of winter blues, since people with SAD tend to have a more acute sense of smell than those who don't have the disorder.
Combat daylight saving time-induced sleepiness by getting in some early morning sun. One simple idea: Soak up some rays first thing in the AM by sipping your coffee on the back porch to help regulate your circadian rhythm, aka your body’s internal clock.
Learn more: 9 Simple Ways to Survive Daylight Saving Time
Spring is here! And so are allergies. But taking a few simple precautions can help keep sneezing at bay.
Case in point: Even if it’s not sunny, put on shades when you leave the house. Pollen can enter your body through your eyes, so sunglasses—particularly the wraparound kind—can help decrease your exposure. And while you’re out and about, park your car away from pollen-raining trees.
The best Mother's Day gift you can give yourself? Sleep! A simple way to set yourself up for success: Research published in Early Child Development and Care found that when babies and toddlers with sleep onset problems were given 15-minute massages prior to bedtime for one month they began to fall asleep sooner than children who didn’t receive massages.
Bonus: While better sleep is certainly a boon for you, it’s also a brain-builder for babies.
Your first order of business as the mercury rises: protecting yourself from harmful UV rays.
In order for sunscreen to really do its job, you need to use it properly. This means applying it at least 15 minutes before heading outdoors so it can fully set on the skin’s surface and provide maximum resistance against the elements, including water.
There's also a formula for how much you should apply: The rule of thumb is to use 1 ounce, which is about the size of a golf ball, for your whole body, covering all exposed skin with an even layer of sunscreen.
The longer days of summer are prime time to beef up your workout routine, but if you're struggling with joint pain, it can be tough to embrace what the great outdoors has to offer. Consider checking out Health Partner for Knees and Health Partner for Hips—digital tools that can help you navigate the condition and get back to being active.
Did you know that Contact Lens Health Week falls in August? Make sure yours are in tip-top shape by cleaning them well.
The key to keeping reusable contact lenses germ-free is to rub them between your fingers (wash your hands with soap and water first!) when you clean them with a disinfecting solution recommended by your eye doctor. With this move, you’re literally rubbing away microbes and other deposits. Then give them a good rinse with the solution.
Do you have a child with autism? Help your kid prepare for another year in the classroom and set up a safe space in school by reaching out to your child's teacher before the school season starts to identify a place she can go for a few minutes if she feels overwhelmed or tired.
Flu season is here, and anyone over the age of 6 months can get a flu shot. Even if you swear you never get the flu, getting vaccinated is crucial for the safety of those around you—and it may be more important for your own health than you realize.
Learn more: 5 Things to Know About This Year's Flu Shot
Burning the candle at both ends this busy holiday season?
Commit to better sleep with this easy tip: Create a simple bedtime routine where you put down your smartphone at the same time each night and do something low-tech, like reading a book. It also helps to make sure your bedroom is dark, cool and quiet—an ideal environment for shut-eye.
Get ahead on your New Year’s resolutions. One important habit to get into, especially this time of year: practicing gratitude.
Research has consistently uncovered that feeling grateful can improve both your physical and emotional well-being. One study done at the University of California, Davis, for example, found that people who routinely count their blessings report better moods, healthier coping behaviors, fewer physical symptoms and overall more life happiness than those who don’t.