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Do you like a good mystery? Well, an epidemiologist's job is all about solving mysteries—medical mysteries—but instead of figuring out "who done it" like a police detective would, they figure out "what caused it." They find relationships between a medical condition and things like human behavior, environmental toxins, genes, medical treatments, other diseases, and geographical location. For example, they ask questions like what causes multiple sclerosis? How can we prevent brain… Read more
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Good oral hygiene protects not only teeth and gums, but the whole body, reducing the risk of infections, heart disease, clogged arteries, and stroke. Dental hygienists help prevent and correct dental problems by taking X-rays, examining teeth and gums, removing plaque, polishing teeth, injecting local anesthetics, and assisting with dental procedures. They also play a key role in educating patients about how and when to brush and floss. Read more
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Ever wondered who plans the school lunch, food for patients at a hospital, or the meals for athletes at the Olympics? The answer is dietitians and nutritionists! A dietitian or nutritionist's job is to supervise the planning and preparation of meals to ensure that people—like students, patients, and athletes—are getting the right foods to make them as healthy and as strong as possible. Some dietitians and nutritionists also work to educate people about good food choices so they can… Read more
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Emergency medical technicians and paramedics belong to a group of healthcare workers known as first responders. They are among the first people to respond to an accident or emergency, providing prehospital care for conditions such as heart attacks, strokes, gunshot wounds, childbirth, or falls. Although this work is physically and emotionally demanding, many emergency medical technicians and paramedics enjoy the challenges and the satisfaction of knowing their work is critical in saving lives. Read more
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Optometrists are the primary caretakers of our most important sense—vision. They diagnose and detect problems not only with vision, but with the health of the eye and the whole body. Based on their diagnoses, they prescribe glasses, contact lenses, and medications; refer patients to ophthalmologists for surgery; or develop treatment plans, like vision therapy, to help correct for deficits in depth perception. Their work helps people live better at every stage of life. Read more
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Pharmacists are the medication experts. They advise doctors, nurses, and patients on the correct drug dosage for a patient's weight, age, health, and gender; on interactions between drugs; on side effects; on drug alternatives; on costs; and on ways to give drugs. They also dispense drugs at pharmacies, according to prescriptions, checking for dangerous drug interactions, and educating patients on how to take drugs, what reactions to watch out for, and how long it should take for drugs to work. Read more
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The first leading cause of death in the United States is heart disease, and the third leading cause is stroke. Cardiovascular technologists or technicians are key members of the healthcare teams that are on the front lines of treating heart and blood vessel diseases and conditions. They set up monitors and tests to help physicians diagnose heart or blood vessel problems. Then they work with physicians to treat an identified problem. For example, they might help break up a blockage in an artery… Read more
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Registered nurses have been called the backbone of our health-care system. Working on the front lines of medical care, they treat patients, monitor and record their condition, help establish a plan of care, educate patients or the public about a medical condition, and provide advice and emotional support to patients' family members. Registered nurses are highly observant and detail-oriented, and are often the first to catch important and changing signs and symptoms. Many nurses specialize in… Read more
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In any medical emergency, health care workers first check a patient's airway and breathing, since oxygen is the first thing needed to survive. Respiratory therapists specialize in treating airway and breathing problems. They help, for example, premature infants whose lungs are poorly developed, or children and adults with asthma or pneumonia. They also treat people who have had heart attacks or who have been in swimming or other accidents. Their critical work helps to provide the breath of life. Read more
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On each side of your head is the auditory system, one of the most beautifully designed organs in the human body. The auditory system not only detects sound, but is closely tied to the vestibular system, which helps a person with balance, and knowing how his or her body is moving through space. Audiologists detect, diagnose, and develop treatment plans for people of all ages who have problems with hearing, balance, or spatial positioning. This important work impacts how well a person is able to… Read more
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