Masthead for PlaneTalk Newsletter
PlaneTree's website
August 2011
Blow-out Book Sale! 
Tall stack of books Gently used

Reference & text books: $4/volume

Books & DVDs (2006-2011): $2

Other books & videos: 50 or

$5/paper grocery bag

Magazines & journals: Free


New books (limited quantity): 40% off


Saturday, Aug. 6 - Saturday, Aug. 13


During open hours only:

Tues., Thurs. 2 p.m.-8 p.m.

Wed., Fri., Sat. 11 a.m.-5 p.m.


Prices slashed by 50%, final 2 days of sale!

PlaneTree Vacation
Yellow and white sunbrella against a blue sky
    As is our tradition, PlaneTree staff and volunteers will take a few weeks off at the end of summer. Please come in by August 13 if you want to do research beforehand.
    If you need personalized health or medical information while we're on vacation, please let us know what you need by phone (408/358-5667) or email. Staff will be checking messages frequently; we'll make sure you soon have the information you need.
News You Can Use 
Chronic Pain
     A new report from the National Academy of Sciences' Institute of Medicine, Relieving Pain in America: A Blueprint for Transforming Prevention, Care, Education, and Research, places the number of chronic pain sufferers in the U.S. at 116 million. The New York Times has an overview of the report.
     The importance of prevention and early, effective treatment are emphasized in the book-length document. Individuals coping with chronic pain and health care professionals can learn about current best practices for pain treatment in Chapter 3, "Care of Giving a back massagePeople with Pain." Readers with chronic pain will also find self-care pointers here.
     One of the most common sources of chronic pain is the spine. A recent study examined the effectiveness of various treatments for back pain, as described in this news article. A commentary on the article places the study in the context of prior research on chronic and acute low back pain.

Catching Z-z-z's 

     The short- and long-term effects of too little sleep are many, varied, and listed here. Recent sleep deprivation studies, for example, have shown negative effects on attractiveness and diet and relationships with spouses and classmates. However, research reveals we aren't very good at assessing our own sleep needs.
Hand reaching for an alarm clock     Quick tips for better sleep are listed here, and visit for in-depth information on insomnia, as well as on narcolepsy, sleep apnea, and restless leg syndrome.
     In 2007 the New York Times ran an article on sleep research by companies hoping to tap into the $20 billion Americans spend annually in search of a good night's sleep. Especially fascinating is its description of how beliefs about sleep vary across time and space.

Pancreatic Cancer ...

... is the fourth most common cause of cancer death in the U.S., largely because its vague early symptoms are often unnoticed or ignored by patients, and are difficult for doctors to diagnose. 
     Research shows that having had a relative with pancreatic cancer, the affected relative's age when diagnosed, Graphic showing pancreasand whether the relative had Familial Pancreatic Cancer are significant when gauging your own risk of having pancreatic cancer.
     If one of your family members has had pancreatic cancer, you may want to lower your lifestyle risk factors, learn the disease's symptoms, and stay abreast of efforts to develop an effective screening test.

Menstrual Cramps: How do you spell relief?
Hot water bottle

     A recent study reviewed the effectiveness of over-the-counter drugs in relieving the pain of menstrual cramps. More information on period pain, including many self-care tips, is available here.

In This Issue
PlaneTree Vacation
News You Can Use
Bone Health Seminar
Brainy Bags
Get Healthy @
YouTube logo
    Would you like to learn how to use the best website for health information?
    Do you like to learn new skills by having someone "show you the ropes"?
    If so, you'll really like the new tutorials on Santa Clara County Library's YouTube channel. Created as part of PlaneTree's Get Healthy @ the Library collaboration with SCCL, each screencast demonstrates using to learn about a specific health topic.
    Current tutorials focus on high blood pressure in English and Spanish, heart failure, and hearing loss. Type 2 diabetes in English and Spanish and coping with stress are coming soon. The videos load very quickly and last about 5 minutes.
    We hope you'll watch one that interests you. If you do, we would really appreciate your feedback so we can improve future editions. You'll find the survey link just below the video screen. 
Forward using this link, 
NOT your email program.

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Bone Health Seminar
Sat. morning, Aug. 13

Xray of the pelvic girdle

    "What Your Children and Grandchildren Should Know About Bone Health," a multi-generational seminar on bone development and osteoporosis prevention, will be held in the Good Samaritan Hospital Auditorium. Click for more information about this free event.
Click this button to donate
Brainy Bags
Image of the brain
    Folks who have picked up our bags of selected "brain fitness" activities and guides, as described in the June PlaneTalk, have enjoyed their useful and fun goodies. We'd love to give away all the bags. Saturday, August 13 will be the last day to pick one up.