For all the difficulties we had in 2020, awareness was not one of them. With a global pandemic raging, healthcare was at the forefront of most minds. Now that we see a possible end to the COVID-19 pandemic, meaning a return to regular life, we risk losing our awareness of the things we do not interact with daily.
It can be incredibly difficult to keep up with daily life, including school, work, socializing, and additional responsibilities. Because of this, we want to help people stay aware by pulling together the relevant information for supporting awareness campaigns throughout the year! Here are some lesser-known causes that we feel could use the extra attention and support for May.
Monthly holidays are those that run for the entire month. These are great movements to get into with time to spare, so take a few minutes to check these out! If you are interested in other monthly holidays that you do not see listed here, let us know!
- Cystic Fibrosis Awareness Month: Cystic Fibrosis is a “progressive, genetic disease that causes persistent lung infections and limits the ability to breath over time,” according to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. More than 30,000 people in the USA alone are currently living with CF, with about 1,000 people joining this count every year. If you are interested in learning more about this disease and how you can help advance treatment and quality of life for those with CF, click here!
- National High Blood Pressure Education Month: High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, can lead to health complications in the short- and long-term. The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NIH), has been a leading factor in studies of the life cycle of high blood pressure. Their studies not only point out the warning signs and possible complications, but prevention and treatment protocols. This information is incredibly important, as high blood pressure symptoms will usually only show after causing serious health problems. The CDC and the NIH both have fantastic programs for getting involved in the spread of information, so take a look today!
- Mental Health Awareness Month: Mental health is a constantly developing field with new opportunities for research and involvement coming up every day. With the relatively recent push for mental health awareness and acceptance, groups like Mental Health America (MHA) have had the support to make major strides in research and creation of effective treatments. In 2020, the MHA created the ‘Tools 2 Thrive‘ toolkit for Mental Health Awareness Month, so take some time to check it out and pass it on!
Weekly Healthcare Holidays
Weekly holidays are great opportunities to get involved and garner attention to a cause you are involved in. If you are looking to get involved, you can check out some of the movements we’ve highlighted below for May.
- National Physical Education and Sport Week (May 1 – May 7): National PE and Sport Week (also known as May Week) celebrates the importance and benefits of activity and health education. With COVID confining children to their homes for most of 2020 and 2021, it is more important than ever for parents to continue this celebration outside of school. Take this week to send some appreciation to PE and health education instructors and encourage their lessons outside of school hours.
- North American Occupational Safety and Health Week (May 2 – May 8): North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) is a movement focused on creating a healthy and safe place for individuals and organizations across North America. Workplace safety needs workers, employers, and consumer populations to work together to create occupationally safe places, which will include options for paid sick leave, the ability to join unions, and a raised minimum wage, among other factors.
- National Women’s Health Week (May 9 – May 15): National Women’s Health Week is led by the efforts of women across the world. The Office on Women’s Health is a department in the US Health and Human Services sector that has brought together partners, supporters, and ambassadors to create a central message. This concentrated effort for making a safe and healthy space for women. Their website is a great place to check out materials for education and involvement, so be sure to check it out!
- National Stuttering Awareness Week (May 10 – May 15): “The National Stutter Association (NSA) believes that instilling a sense of self-worth can transform the lives of people who stutter, as well as the communities that support them,” says the NSA. They have been sticking to this message and movement since 1977 and have developed with the times to bring the fight for social acceptance to the people and the media on a regular basis. National Stutter Awareness Week is a great time “celebrate, educate, and spread” the word about stuttering!
Daily holidays are great because they are easier to participate in than weekly or monthly holidays. Take a few minutes to check out our shortlist of daily healthcare holidays we are looking at for May.
- World Hand Hygiene Day (May 5): With the coronavirus pandemic still raging, this day is more important than ever. This day-long holiday focuses on teaching and encouraging proper health hygiene standards and practices. The movement looks to protect healthcare workers, patients being treated, and average people who are looking to avoid becoming patients. This year’s slogan is ‘Seconds Save Lives‘ so take a few seconds to see how you can help!
- Don’t Fry Day (May 28): Don’t Fry Day is a catchy reminder of sun safety awareness. With May being Melanoma/Skin Cancer Awareness Month, it makes sense for the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention to put out a notice for sun safety. Check out the skin cancer prevention and education campaign here!
- World No Tobacco Day (May 31): Regular tobacco use has been a point of contention since it’s creation. During the pandemic, the news of the additional COVID-19 health risks that came with regular tobacco use led to an intense effort on behalf of the World Health Organization to create the ‘Commit to Quit’ movement. There are toolkits and social media available for yourself and from members of the Quit Challenge. Give yourself the best chance during the Commit to Quit challenge and check out the tools available!
While these are some of the months, weeks, and days we’ve decided to highlight here, they are certainly not the only ones worth celebrating! Take some time to research movements like Lupus Awareness Month, Food Allergy Week, and World Preeclampsia Day. What other holidays are you interested in hearing about or celebrating this month? Let us know!