Thursday, November 19, 2009

Great American Smokeout

The American Cancer Society is encouraging smokers to stop using cigarettes on November 19, 2009, in hopes they will quit forever as part of the annual Great American Smokeout.

University of Illinois Springfield Recreational Sports is hoping students, faculty, and staff members who smoke will join the pledge to stop. The UIS Human Resources Department, Health Services, and the Counseling Center all offer cessation programs that can help.

UIS Assistant Director of Recreational Sports Amanda Jillson says even if you’ve been smoking for years, stopping now can save your life.

“As soon as you quite smoking, it reduces your blood pressure. Within 12 hours you have additional physiological responses in your body and the process just keeps going,” said Jillson.

Jillson says cigarettes are so addictive because of the drug nicotine, which is naturally found in tobacco. She says it’s as addictive as heroin or cocaine.

The keys to kicking the habit are making the decision to quit, setting a quit date and choosing a quit plan, dealing with withdrawal, and doing maintenance to make sure you “stay quit”.

For more information on smoking cessation programs contact Amanda Jillson at 217/206-8400 or

Monday, November 9, 2009

Working on Wellness – Stress

University of Illinois Springfield Recreational Sports is spotlighting Stress – The “silent killer” as part of a Working on Wellness (WOW) series workshop.

The session will take place on Friday, November 13, 2009 from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. in the TRAC Multi-Purpose Room.

Instructors will teach you how stress is the “silent killer” and how it relates to heart attacks, you’ll learn how to recognize the signs and symptoms of stress and the importance of positive thinking and self talk.

“Everyone views stress differently, everyone has different stressors in their lives and everyone is different, so this will help you pinpoint which stressors effect you in your daily life,” said Amanda Jillson, assistant director of recreational sports.

The session will also teach relaxation techniques, assertiveness techniques and communication skills to deal with stress. Participants will also develop an individualized stress management plan.

The event is free and open to any member of the UIS Community. Participants do not have to be registered TRAC members to take part.

Contact Amanda Jillson at 206-8400 or to reserve your seat in this informative workshop.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Healthy Skin Month - Benefits of Moisturizing

Winter is almost upon us and cold weather is lurking outside. That’s why it’s important to pay attention to our skin during Healthy Skin Month in November.

We use heaters, hot showers and electric blankets in an attempt to stay warm during the winter months, but these attempts can be harmful to our skin. The get warm quick options can lead to redness, itchy, cracked dry skin.

UIS Assistant Director of Recreational Sports Amanda Jillson has four ways to keep your skin beautiful. She recommends getting enough sleep, moisturizing, exfoliating and hydrating.

“Who would have thought that sleep contributes to the way our skin looks. Sleep generally allows the body to rejuvenate and repair,” said Jillson.

She also suggests drinking 8 to 10 – eight ounce glasses of water a day or juice to bring out the radiance from your skin.

A rough cold and flu season is leading to more hand washing, which can be tough on the skin. Jillson says that’s why it’s so important to use lotion to moisturize.

“Apply moisturizer to your body and face. This can be a lotion, body cream or oil. It’s best to apply moisturizer after a shower when your skin is still fresh,” said Jillson.

Jillson hopes people will use these tips to keep themselves healthy during the winter months. If you have questions e-mail her at