Safecare for our community!

We had a great time during our health conversation at the Hallandale Beach library as we discussed proper nutrition as an important aspect of a healthy lifestyle.

Stay tuned for our next health conversation with Stacey McFadden, MMS, PA-C


Bingo Winners

Congratulations to the winners of Safecare Medical Center Bingo Partyat our Hallandale Beach office, Maria Gamboa and Ruth Steinberg.

Stay tuned for information on our upcoming events!

Save the date!

Join us at the Broward Library’s Hallandale Beach branch for an informative discussion on healthy nutrition. Friday, July 14 at 3:30 PM.  We hope to see you there!

4th of July is here!

Safecare will open on Monday, July 3rd but will be closed on Tuesday, July 4th in observance of our Independence Day.  We will open our doors again on Wednesday, July 5th at our regular office hours. Call 954-454-6300 to make your appointment, walk-ins are also welcome.

We wish you and yours a safe and fun holiday weekend!

Let’s Play Bingo!

Mark your calendars and join us next Friday, July 7th at our Hallandale Beach location for fun games and prizes. We hope to see your there!


By Richard J. Wilbur M.D. 

Today, more than ever, people come to me severely distressed because of an inability to sleep. Bankruptcy, job loss, marital problems, drug use, all of these factors and more are contributing to a rise in insomnia. Insomnia is defined as a condition in which you have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep. It is a common health problem. Some people may fall asleep easily but wake up too soon. Others may have trouble getting to sleep. The end result is poor quality sleep that doesnʼt leave you feeling refreshed when you wake up. Most adults have experienced insomnia or sleeplessness at one time or another in their lives. It is estimated that 30%-50% of the general population are affected by insomnia, and 10% have chronic insomnia. More than 80% of insomnia is a symptom or side effect of some other emotional, neurological, or other medical disorder, or of another sleep disorder.

Who is at Risk?

Older people suffer more frequently. Women experience it more than men. People who are at highest risk are… 1) People under a lot of stress. 2) Depressed people or those with other emotional disturbances. 3) People who work at night or have frequent major shifts in work schedule, and 4) People who travel long distances with time changes (jet lag).


Diagnosis is based on a medical history, sleep history, physical examination, and rarely if the cause is unclear, a sleep study. The medical history may indicate a new or ongoing health problem (painful arthritis, asthma, heartburn, depression, anxiety or heart failure), personal or work problems, or other stresses. Your sleep history will establish your patterns of sleep and how refreshed you feel during the day. The physical exam will look for signs of other disease and may include blood testing. A sleep study is not routine, but may be obtained if concerns about other sleep disorders such as sleep apnea are present.


The main focus of treatment should be directed toward finding the cause. Once the cause is identified it is important to manage and control the underlying problem, as this alone may eliminate the insomnia. Treating the symptoms of insomnia without addressing the main cause is rarely successful. In addition to treating the underlying cause, both pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic approaches to the insomnia may be helpful. Studies have proven that combining these two approaches is more successful than either one alone.

Non-pharmacologic treatments… called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, include 1) Sleep hygiene, 2) Relaxation therapy, 3) Stimulus control, and 4) Sleep restriction.

Sleep Hygiene:

  • Do not oversleep
  • Exercise regularly at least 20 minutes daily, ideally 4-5 hours before bedtime
  • Avoid forcing yourself to sleep
  • Keep a regular sleep, awakening schedule
  • Do not drink caffeinated beverages later than the afternoon (tea, coffee, soft drinks)
  • Avoid “night caps” alcoholic drinks before going to bed
  • Do not smoke, especially in the evening
  • Do not go to bed hungry
  • Adjust the room environment (lights, temp, noise, etc.)
  • Do not go to bed with your worries; try and resolve them before going to bed

Relaxation therapy:

  • Meditation and muscle relaxation
  • Dimming lights
  • Play soothing music prior to going to bed

Stimulus control:

  • Go to bed when you feel sleepy
  • Donʼt watch TV, eat, or worry in bed
  • If you donʼt fall asleep in 30 minutes, get up and go to another room and resume relaxation techniques
  • Set alarm to get up at a certain time, even on weekends.
  • Donʼt oversleep.
  • Avoid long naps in the daytime

Sleep restriction:

  • Restrict your time in bed only to sleep. This may improve quality of sleep.
  • Rigid rise time and bedtime are set, and you are forced to get up even if sleepy. This may help you sleep better the next night because of the sleep deprivation the first night.

Pharmacologic treatment:

Often, over the counter remedies which contain antihistamines (Nytol, Sleep-Eez, Sominex, Unison) have been tried before a patient seeks my advice. These may be helpful.

Natural remedies may also be suggested. These include…

  • Melatonin: Produced by your body during the dark hours of the day-night cycle. The amount produced decreases with age.
  • L-tryptophan and 5HTP: Used in the formation of serotonin. Promotes a sense of well-being and healthy sleep.
  • Kava: Used to relieve anxiety and promote sleep.
  • Valerian root: An herb with sedative properties. Listed as safe by the FDA.
  • Chamomile tea: Sedative properties. Safe.

Most people who see me for treatment of their insomnia request sleeping pills. These medications are available and may certainly be helpful, but should be used carefully. They include benzodiazepine sedatives, which help relieve anxiety and provide subjective improvement in the quality and quantity of sleep, as well as medications that work differently such as Ambien, Lunesta, and Rozerem. Insomnia is a condition that may cause significant distress. If you or a loved one are suffering discuss it with your personal physician. He may be able to help.

For more information on how to visit us at one of our locations, call our scheduling line at 954-454-6300.

Living With Diabetes

Join us at the Broward Library’s Hallandale Beach branch for an informative discussion on living with diabetes. Friday, June 16 at 3:30 PM.  We hope to see you there!

Prevent Skin Cancer

The summer heat is back and strong in our beautiful South Florida, but did you know that too much unprotected exposure to the Sun can cause skin damage and in some cases, skin cancer? Sun exposure accelerates the skin’s aging process by breaking down elastin, the fibers that keep the skin from sagging and losing elasticity. Extreme sun exposure can also cause unwanted skin marks and tears that take longer to heal.

So How Can You Prevent Skin Cancer and Other Skin Related Problems?

  • Take good care of your skin by keeping well hydrated and eating a healthy diet.
  • Apply sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or greater (for UVB protection) and zinc oxide (for UVA protection) 20 minutes before sun exposure and every 2 hours thereafter, more if you are sweating or swimming.
  • Select clothing, cosmetic products, and contact lenses that offer UV protection.
  • Wear sunglasses with total UV protection and a wide-brimmed hat to shade your face and neck.
  • Avoid direct sun exposure as much as possible during peak UV radiation hours (between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.).
  • Perform skin self-exams regularly (at least monthly) to become familiar with existing growths and to notice any changes or new growths.
  • Eighty percent of a person’s lifetime sun exposure is acquired before age 18. As a parent, be a good role model and foster skin cancer prevention habits in your child.
  • Lastly, discuss promptly any changes in your skin or concerns with your doctor.

To learn more, visit Prevent Skin Cancer Now

Save The Date! 6/16/17

Save the date and join our very own Physician Assistant, Stacey McFadden at the Broward Library’s Hallandale Beach branch for an informative discussion on living with diabetes. Friday, June 16 at 3:30 PM.  We hope to see you there!

Save the Date!

Friday, May 19th at 3:00 PM! Join us for a fun workshop and stay tuned for more information about our other exciting activities. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram.

Bring your devices and let’s have fun!

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