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Columns

Applause, Applause!

Each Saturday, The Express community newspaper highlights people, groups and activities our readers deem worthy of applause. APPLAUSE goes to Shirley Probst for donating a large number of books to the Little Libraries in Lock Haven. Also deserving a round of APPLAUSE are Susan and Mike Foust, ...

Dear Annie: Brother is a burden

Dear Annie: I’ve hit a dead end and am not sure what to do. My family has become dysfunctional to the point of my wanting to take my husband and kids and move far away from them all. I am grown, married and have two sons. I have an adult brother, “Joey,” who has become a complete ...

There is help for people who have difficulty swallowing tablets

BY KEITH ROACH, M.D. DEAR DR. ROACH: I am 78 and have some difficulty swallowing. I must take calcium and magnesium tablets, and they are very large. I have to chew them to get them down properly. I have actually choked on pills in the past. But chewing some tablets gives a terrible taste. ...

Be Thankful

Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire. If you did, what would there be to look forward to? Be thankful when you don’t know something, for it gives you the opportunity to learn. Be thankful for the difficult times. During those times you grow. Be thankful ...

Why for-profit college enrollment has increased during COVID-19

When COVID-19 hit the U.S., many experts warned that America’s colleges and universities could be devastated. Some of them predicted enrollment declines of up to 20%. So far, those initial forecasts were worse than what has actually taken place. One month into the fall semester of the ...

Dear Annie: Husband doesn’t want me talking to family

Dear Annie: My husband tells me that I’m cheating on him by talking to my friends and family. He talks to people on the phone who I don’t even know, but I don’t ever worry about it or get on his case about it. What can I do? — Needing Help in Virginia Dear Needing Help: Your ...

Better safe than sorry when it comes to potential COVID exposure

BY KEITH ROACH, M.D. DEAR DR. ROACH: I am scheduled to play tennis with my friend tonight. His son tested positive for COVID-19 and is symptomatic as of yesterday. He has not seen his son for at least one week before the diagnosis. Is my friend safe, and would it therefore be safe for me to ...

COVID holidays inspire united behaviors, expectations for life in 2021

For many Pennsylvanians, the late fall and early winter holiday seasons hold memories of coming together with friends and loved ones; a time of happiness and unity. Unity can be defined as many things: the state of being brought together, the quality of not being divided, a condition of ...

For this Thanksgiving holiday, I say choose love

Thanksgiving is my favorite day of the year. It's a holiday with none of the pressures of Christmas. I cook a lot of food and give a lot of hugs. Nothing makes me happier than our house full of the people I love. This preamble is brought to you by a columnist who wants you and those you ...

Dear Annie: Want to keep working from home

Dear Annie: I am in my mid-20s and fortunate enough to have a job that I’ve been able to do remotely since the outbreak of the pandemic back in March. Working from home has its drawbacks, but on the whole, I’ve come to really enjoy it. For one, I used to drive an hour and 15 minutes each ...

Would significant weight loss change need for HBP meds?

BY KEITH ROACH, M.D. DEAR DR. ROACH: A friend was diagnosed with high blood pressure several years ago and has been on a hypertensive drug since then. However, over the past years, he has lost over 50 pounds and is no longer overweight. He works out every day. He never exercised prior to his ...

Simple pleasures

Did you ever wonder why newspapers usually print the comic strips near the end of the paper? This is my theory: No matter what the news may print and whether it’s good or bad, you will hopefully finish your reading experience with a smile on your face. Think of the comic strips as ...

Responsible tech

Dear Annie: My husband and I have two teenage children, and both of us work out of the home. We try hard to be engaged in our children’s lives and be aware of everything they’re doing. As working parents, it’s not easy, but we try hard. As our children have become teenagers, we’ve ...

Arterial-brachial index measures artery blockage

BY KEITH ROACH, M.D. DEAR DR. ROACH: I’m an 88-year-old woman in good health except that I have had a lot of leg and back pain in the past two or so years. I had spinal stenosis, and I have arthritis as well. A vascular surgeon performed a lower extremity duplex Doppler test last month. It ...

Is Democracy sacred?

The elongated counting of ballots and resulting delay and controversy over the present election could have some of us grasping for religious imagery and language. Indeed, one protester at a post-election rally in Missouri was quoted putting the fight over votes in explicitly sacred terms: ...

No plastic planet, please

Dear Annie: We all know plastics are polluting our oceans. I don’t have numbers, but the proportion of balloons amidst us is frightening. In my family, we released balloons to send love to a child lost too young. Although we did it before plastic statistics were the norm, it still makes me ...

Postnasal drip is a symptom of allergies

BY KEITH ROACH, M.D. DEAR DR. ROACH: Would you explain what postnasal drip is? How damaging is it, and can it be cured? My wife has it and coughs a lot. Her eyes water, and she always feels poorly. — M.G. ANSWER: Postnasal drip isn’t a diagnosis, it’s a symptom. The nasal passages ...

Hang up on scammers. Here’s how

Utility scammers never take a day off. That’s why we want to help you stop them at every turn. One of the best ways to help do that is to arm you with information on their tactics. Forewarned is forearmed. A common thread among scammers is pressure. It’s a red flag. Scammers ...

Feeling anxiety? It’s the invisible virus symptom

As I lay myself down to sleep on Thursday night, I began my usual review of the universe, the meaning of life, the interminable election and, of course, covid-19. My eyes would not close. I reminded myself to breathe. Then I did something my pre-pandemic self would have considered a waste ...