Wellness News

Parkinson's Awareness 5K Walk
April 29th, 2017

Recreation Center in Keshena

Registration starts at 8:30AM
Walk starts at 9:00AM

First 50 to register receive a t-shirt! Lunch and refreshments will be served afterwards. A short presentation will follow.

Questions? Contact Lynnette Miller 715-584-2043 or Kristin Waukau 715-799-5270
How to Calm Your Anxiety in 10 Seconds
Check out myStrength.com for further tips on dealing with Anxiety

Whether you suffer from a clinically diagnosed anxiety disorder or just get really, really stressed from time to time, we’ve all had those moments during which our worries take hold of us.

And when an anxiety tidal wave hits us in public — while we’re stuck in a meeting or even in an elevator — it can be all the more nerve-wracking to experience such overwhelming emotion in front of other people

Thankfully, you don’t have to suffer in silence or excuse yourself in an effort to make a quick escape. Here’s how you can keep calm and curb those anxious feelings ASAP.

1. Breathe

Sometimes, stopping anxiety is as easy as taking a deep breath. Certified meditation and mindfulness teacher Kathy Vandenburg says that our breath is an effective way to calm the nervous system when we’re stressed. “Becoming aware of the breath and taking some long, slow, deep breaths [allows us to] shift from the sympathetic (fight/flight/freeze) response and activate the parasympathetic response (rest and digest),” she says.

Certified hypnotherapist and meditation guide Jasmine Smith agrees, suggesting the four-six-eight breathing technique — inhale for four seconds, hold for six seconds, exhale for eight seconds — to combat the shallow breathing an anxiety attack typically brings.

“The inhale and hold saturates your body, bloodstream, organs and tissues with cleansing fresh oxygen, energizing you and your cells,” she explains. “The long exhale expels as much carbon dioxide as possible, releasing toxins from the body. Use this breath anytime anxiety hits. The chemical reaction in your body will immediately lower your stress hormones, leaving you feeling at ease.”

To give yourself an extra de-stressing boost, carry lavender oil with you and breathe in the calming scent: It has actually been shown to be as effective as medication for those with generalized anxiety disorder.

2. Change Your Position

According to professional coach and hypnotist Scott Schmaren, changing how you’re sitting or standing can change your mood. “Neuroscience has taught us that the physiology of our bodies effects our emotions and that, when the two are in conflict, physiology will override your emotions and change to match your physiology,” he explains. “So by changing your physiology to that of someone who is confident, strong and powerful you will effect a change in your emotions and behavior.”

He suggests striking what he calls a “power pose” as an effective technique for combatting anxiety. “Stand in a posture of strength. For example, hands on hips, elbows out, legs shoulder-width apart — like Wonder Woman. Or just sit tall and straight in a chair,” he says. “Many of my clients suffer with anxiety, and this simple and quick fix can be used any place and at any time.”

Another physiological tactic, according to Joy Rains, author of “Meditation Illuminated: Simple Ways to Manage Your Busy Mind,” is to concentrate on your feet. “Focus on where you connect with the ground, as if you are ‘rooting’ into the earth and drawing strength into your body,” she advises

3. Ground Yourself

“Grounding” is a technique that helps you redirect your focus from what’s going on inside your head to the physical space you’re in. It can be a very helpful way to release anxiety’s grip.

"Start by deliberately focusing on something around you — the grass, the countertop, a candle, the fabric of your jacket — and then switch your attention from your worries to this physical object,” says professional counselor Stephanie Adams, M.A., LPC, who specializes in anxiety in teens and young adults. “Contemplate its shape, weight, substance, form. Think about whether it is smooth or rough, what uses there are for the object. If you put your whole energy into this, you won’t have any energy left for your anxiety.”

If it makes sense for the situation, Adams also suggests engaging someone else in helping you calm your anxiety — without the person even knowing it. “Just choose an object that might potentially be of interest to him or her and ask some questions about it,” she says. “Focus on the answers and on the object, not on your anxiety.”

4. Carry a Special Object

Rather than find an object in a given room, you may opt to carry one with you. Choose something like a piece of jewelry, a keychain or a rock, suggests therapist Krista Verrastro, M.A., RDT, so that when you feel anxiety rise you can hold the object while you use positive self-talk, saying things like “I will be OK” or “I can get through this.”

“Since I am a creative arts therapist, I often help people make their own grounding objects to carry with them,” Verrastro adds. “Sometimes my clients make jewelry or decorate a pen, and other times we make credit card-size cardboard collages of images and words that bring them strength and comfort that are small enough to carry with them.”

5. Feel It

For some people, riding out their anxiety is a useful way to get through it. “The more you resist panic and anxiety, the more it keeps coming back,” says energetic health expert and success coach Heather Strang. “Why? What’s happened is that there is a buildup of emotions that have not been able to be felt — often emotions that you’ve absorbed from others, from previous traumas and so on.”

She suggests excusing yourself to go to the bathroom or your car and just feeling what you feel. (Or, if you can, go sit outside while you take a moment — vitamin D has been linked to easing depression, and a little sunshine may help lift your mood.)

“It will never last longer than 60 to 90 seconds, even though we fear that once we start feeling it, it won’t stop. Fear is irrational like that,” she says. “On the other side of allowing the panic or anxiety wave to flow through your body is tremendous peace, because what was all clogged in your system has been released.”

6. Analyze It

Another tactic that Rains suggests is to investigate your feelings in a nonbiased way. “Rate your anxiety on a scale of one to five, with five being the highest,” she says. “The act of rating helps bring the mind from an anxious state to more of an analytical state.”

Wellness expert Jamie Price, co-founder of Stop, Breathe & Think, even suggests going a step further to really examine where your anxious thoughts are coming from. She says that when you are in the grip of a particular fear, worry or anxiety, ask yourself two questions: “Is it really true?” and “Am I OK right now?”

“Remember that our thoughts aren’t facts. They are like the weather, passing through and changing all the time, so you don’t have to attach to them,” she says. “And often our anxiety has to do with concern about the past and worry about the future, so it can be helpful to focus on what’s happening right now in the present.”

7. Count

"Counting is a classic tactic for curbing anxiety because it helps distract your mind from whatever is causing you to panic and focus it on a specific task. Count the straps on a shoe, the objects on the desk, the stairs and so on,” says otolaryngologist Murray Grossan, M.D.

“Counting is nonstimulatory — like counting sheep for sleep — and the act of counting puts your brain into a nonstimulatory mode. Your amygdala is informed that there’s no need for adrenalin.”

Therapist Jenny Giblin agrees, noting that most of the things that we are anxious about are not actually happening. We experience anxiety solely based on our thoughts about what might happen.

“Counting the objects in the room that we are in literally can take our mind off of the anxiety by focusing on a task that works the logical side of our brain and brings us back into the present moment by making us even more aware of our surroundings,” she says. “Once we are feeling more centered into the present moment the anxiety can often begin to subside.”

8. Drink Water

Sometimes, getting hydrated is all you need to stave off an anxiety attack. “Dehydration is one physical factor that contributes to anxiety, as well as to a number of symptoms like fatigue. So drinking water — as opposed to something with a lot of sugar or caffeine, which can worsen anxiety — will address that fairly quickly,” says mindfulness coach and psychotherapist Allison Abrams, LCSW. Drinking water throughout the day can also prevent an attack from happening in the first place, she adds.

Another reason that drinking water can be helpful? It refocuses your mind on the task at hand: getting the water, feeling the coolness of the glass and noticing the sensations you feel as you drink it. “This centers you and brings you back to the present, rather than being engulfed by negative thoughts,” Abrams says.
7 Money Secrets about Dying that no one wants to Talk About.
No one wants to talk about death, but as we all know it is inevitable and it is better to be prepared than not. This article gives information on a website where you can compare funeral costs and provides other pertinent financial information.

Also as part of preparation, it is important to have a Health Care Power of Attorney and a Living Will. MITW Insurance Department has these forms available free and they are also available on the MITW Intranet under Insurance Forms.

One thing is certain in life: You will die. Yet, many people don't want to talk about death because it's considered taboo.

Even more taboo is the topic of money. So, if you want a real conversation stopper, bring up the financial side of death. And yes, there are costs associated with dying. But if you don't talk or plan for them, your death could cost your loved ones a lot of money.

Click ahead for money secrets about death no one talks about, why it's so important to do so and how to be prepared when death happens.

Funerals can be SHOCKINGLY Expensive
Funerals can be expensive, and that might come as a surprise to most people, said Albert Chang, co-founder of Parting.com, a funeral cost comparison website. "Prices are also usually not advertised in commercials, so the funeral pricing wouldn't even cross the mind of a typical consumer until they actually need it."

To give you an idea, funeral homes charge $6,000, on average, for funeral services, according to Parting. You'll pay an additional $2,000 at the cemetery for burial, and another $1,000 for a grave marker or $2,000 for a headstone. Altogether, a funeral could cost $10,000 or more.

Your family could end up spending more than necessary if you don't put your final wishes in writing and discuss them with your family, according to the Funeral Consumers Alliance. For example, you might want an inexpensive casket, a simple service and a basic grave marker. But if you don't tell your family, they might spend thousands more than you would have wanted them to because they didn't want to appear disrespectful by opting for inexpensive options. The high cost of a funeral could even put your family in debt.

A Funeral might be cheaper elsewhere
When you're dealing with the emotional toll of a loved one's death, you might not think to check prices at more than one funeral home. After all, if you assume there's not much variation in price, you'd be wrong.

"Many people don't realize how many options they have in their area," Chang said. "Depending on how far you're willing to travel, prices can vary quite a bit, and funeral homes are generally very accommodating to your needs."

In the past, getting pricing information required calling or visiting funeral homes individually. However, Parting spent a year gathering prices from funeral home across America and publishing them online.

"Our website turned a three- to four-day process into something that can now be done in 15 minutes from the comfort of your own home," Chang said. You can search by city on Parting to find prices at funeral homes near where you live.

To make it easier for your loved ones, do the comparison shopping for them and let them know which funeral home you prefer.

A Funeral Package Deal isnt necessarily a Deal
A funeral home might try to sell you a package deal, but you might not want or need everything that's included in it.

"People should first understand what their options are because funeral home pricing is really dependent on the services provided," Chang said.

For example, you might not need embalming and body preparation if you're not planning on having a viewing. That's a $600 expense you could avoid. Holding a service at the funeral home could cost up to $1,000, Chang said. But you might want to have it someplace else that's less expensive.

Also, you don't always need to buy the grave marker, headstone or even casket from the cemetery or funeral home, Chang said. "Nowadays it is very easy to buy these types of things online directly from wholesalers or distributors," he said. "This can easily help cut prices since the products can be exactly the same."

A Traditional Funeral isnt the Only Option
You shouldn't feel pressured into having a traditional funeral for yourself or your loved one because you think that is what is expected — especially if you can't afford it.

"Choosing between a full traditional burial and a cremation can easily swing the cost by $7,000," Chang said. "This is due to the additional services and merchandise required, such as transportation, pall bearers, caskets and much more."

The most affordable option is a direct cremation — which can cost from $500 to $2,500, Chang said. The body is cremated without a service or viewing, and you don't have to buy a cemetery plot, casket or headstone. "Direct cremation prices are also more straightforward, as funeral homes should advertise the final price," Chang said.

Another option is body donation if the donor qualifies medically. "Medical research companies will cover the entire cost of cremation, including transportation and returning the remains to the family if they are a viable donor for medical research," Chang said.

You won't save money by prepaying your funeral
Funeral homes and insurance companies offer prepaid funeral policies, which might seem like a good way to save your loved ones money on your funeral costs. But the Funeral Consumers Alliance cautions against buying these plans.

Often, you will spend more on premiums than the policy will pay at your time of death. And if you die within a few years after getting a policy, the insurance company might not pay the full benefit.

If you get a plan through a funeral home, you might not get a refund if you cancel your plan. Plus, there's always the risk that the funeral home could go out of business by the time you die.

Your Debt doesnt Disappear when you die
If you have debt in your name when you die, creditors will try to collect it. They won't come after your family members, said Danielle Mayoras, an attorney and author of "Trial & Heirs: Famous Fortune Fights." "Normally, the debt comes out of the estate," she said.

When you die, there's a court process called probate that determines what assets and debts you had and what assets can be used to pay your debt. So only what's left after paying off your debts can be distributed to your family. If you're married and all assets are in your name, this can create financial problems for a surviving spouse if you die with debt.

"Even if you've been married 50 years, if your spouse dies with assets only in his name, creditors can go after those assets," Mayoras said. "And you might not get everything you think you're going to get."

To avoid leaving your spouse in debt after your die, there are a few things you need to do. Make sure that you have a joint bank account that is designated as payable on death to your spouse so he doesn't have any trouble accessing the account. Having a life insurance policy and naming your spouse or family members as beneficiaries also can help cover costs after you die because life insurance benefits typically bypass the probate process.

There is a chance your spouse, significant other or family member could be on the hook for some of your debt if you had a joint account, such as a credit card. Also, your spouse might be responsible for your debts — even if they're only in your name — if you live in a community property state such as Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin.

Not having an Estate Plan can cause Big Headaches
The probate process to divvy up your assets and settle your debts when you die can be expensive, Mayoras said. It can cost even more if you don't do the proper planning. However, people often don't want to spend the money to hire an attorney to create an estate plan for them.

"When they don't do any planning or do the planning improperly, the family ends up paying the price," Mayoras said. "It can be a very large price."

If you die without a will, the court will decide who gets your assets. This could lead to legal battles among your heirs if they don't think they got what you wanted them to receive — and that could cost tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees, Mayoras said.

It's best to spend a few hundred dollars to have an attorney draft a will — rather than buy an inexpensive online version — to ensure it conforms to your state's laws, she said. If you do use an online form, take it to an attorney to review it.

Even with a will, your estate still has to go through probate, which requires filing fees and inventory fees based on a percentage of the estate. You can help your heirs avoid the cost of probate by creating a trust. And, no, you don't have to have millions or even hundreds of thousands of dollars to create a trust, Mayoras said.

Hiring an attorney to create a financially sound estate plan with a living trust could cost up to $5,000 to $10,000, depending on how complicated your estate and tax planning needs are, Mayoras said. This can be a drop in the bucket, though, when you consider the cost of not planning, she said. "When people do a trust, they can hopefully save a lot of time and money down the road for their loved ones," Mayoras said.
9 Signs of Kidney Problems
Have you been feeling unusually tired? Does your food just not taste the same anymore? Is a muscular cramp keeping you up at night? Kidney trouble shows up in the form of a host of symptoms, some of which you may not pin down to a problem with your kidneys. But taken together, you will be able to tell that your kidneys may need some treatment. If you’re diabetic, have a history of heart disease or high blood pressure, or have a family history of kidney problems, you’ll need to be doubly careful to watch out for these signs.

Fatigue And Weakness
When kidneys don’t work at their optimal levels, impurities and toxins that it would normally have expelled from your system remain in your blood. Over time this builds up, causing you to feel perpetually exhausted and weak. It might even be hard to concentrate on regular work. If you’ve also developed anemia as a result of kidney trouble, that’s bound to make you feel even weaker.

Swelling Of Your Hands And Feet
Water retention can cause your feet, ankles, and even hands to swell up. This swelling, also called edema, is a result of the higher levels of sodium circulating in your body because your kidneys aren’t filtering as they should. An injured kidney is unable to purge the waste and causes an excess of sodium and fluid in your system. You can ease symptoms by keeping tabs on your blood pressure, cutting down on salt and potassium, and taking a diuretic to ease the swelling.

Itchiness That Doesn’t Let Up
Unlike normal skin irritation which is soothed with some moisturizing, renal trouble-related itchiness comes from within. This itching, called uremic pruritus, is a condition that occurs when there is too much urea in your blood – an outcome of malfunctioning kidneys. People with this problem complain of having skin that’s both dry and itchy.

Losing Your Appetite
Having kidney problems can even impact your taste buds. If you find your appetite waning, or if your favorite food suddenly doesn’t taste as good (in fact, nothing tastes quite like before when you have a kidney that’s in trouble), you may not eat as much as before. You might even experience nausea, vomiting, or a bad taste in your mouth as a result of kidney trouble. What’s important, however, is to get treated for your kidney problem and to ensure adequate nutrient intake to stay strong and healthy. It may help to rejig your diet with the help of a specialist, keeping in mind a kidney-friendly nutrient mix that cuts out salt and potassium and focuses on giving you the calories you need.

Muscular Cramps And Restless Leg Syndrome
Cramping up is typical of kidney diseases. If you find your legs in particular tend to develop cramps quite often, it could be due to the imbalance of electrolytes and fluid in your body. Problems with blood flow to the kidney may also worsen the condition. You may also develop restless leg syndrome or muscular twitches.

Insomnia Or Difficulty Sleeping
It’s not hard to see why getting a good night’s rest would be difficult if you had kidney trouble. Whether it is constant trips to the bathroom to take a tinkle or the twitching from a restless leg, people with kidney problems often have issues with sleeping as well. Restless leg syndrome even on its own impairs the quality of sleep and increases the chances of someone developing insomnia

Sexual Dysfunction And Decreased Sexual Desire
Your kidneys also regulate the blood pressure in your body and play a key role in maintaining that perfect balance of electrolytes. When kidneys start to malfunction, this has an impact on blood flow and can cause erectile dysfunction among men and menstrual irregularities among women. Fertility and libido take a hit in men and women with kidney disease

Urge To Urinate Often
A symptom that can be easily confused for a sign of something else, say a urinary infection, is the urge to urinate frequently. This is because your body is producing copious quantities of fluid (but without the usual amounts of waste products in them) because your kidneys are not functioning normally

Blood In Your Urine
Seeing blood in your urine should set alarms bells ringing. When it comes to kidney problems, blood in your urine is a sign that you may have a kidney infection – especially if this symptom is accompanied by fever and pain on one side of your abdomen. Kidney stones stuck in the tubes emerging from your kidneys can sometimes cause blood in the urine too. There are, however, other causes for blood in the urine, including a urinary tract infection, vigorous exercise, a menstrual period if you’re female, or a virus. So don’t assume the worst, but take action swiftly just in case.
401K Invest Individual Meetings
A representative from Nicolet Bank will be available to discuss your individual retirement plan.


Monday March 27th
9:00am to 4:00pm at Gordon Dickie Building
4:15pm to 5:00pm Tribal Clinic Conference Room

Tuesday March 28th
Eagle Room Casino Convention Center
7:00am to 4:00pm

Deadline for enrollment and contribution changes is Friday March 31, 2017.


24/7 Nurse Hotline

Good health starts with asking questions and understanding the answers. Nurse Hotline can give you the information, support and guidance you need. Nurse Hotline nurses can help you make informed healthcare decisions.
Nurse Hotline Brochure


HealthSmart: Providing Comprehensive and Innovative Healthcare Solutions

ZEBIT, the online financial wellness program was introduced at the Employees Benefits Fair. All employees are eligible for the Financial Wellness sections of ZEBIT where you can learn about budgeting, watch short videos about various financial issues and learn how to create financial goals.

Log onto: Zebit. You will need to know your employee ID and date of hire. Your employee ID is your employee number preceded by your place of employment (MITW0001/CMN0001/MCR0001). If you are not sure of your date of hire, contact the Insurance Department.

ZEBIT Marketplace (OPTIONAL SIGN UP) is available to employees that 1) are at least 18 years of age 2) have been employed with MITW/CMN/MCR for at least one year 3) have an annual salary of at least $16,000 and 4) have direct deposit of paycheck.

ZEBIT Marketplace offers an interest free line of credit to employees meeting the criteria above to purchase items on ZEBIT Marketplace. Employees are billed for purchases, interest free. over the course of six months. Payments for purchase on ZEBIT Marketplace ARE NOT deducted from your paycheck. Payments must be made directly to ZEBIT Marketplace.

myStrength was introduced at the Employee Benefits Fair. It is a wellness website that can help with issues such as stress and anxiety. It's easy to sign up!!!! Go to www.mystrength.com and click on the sign up button. When asked for an access code, enter one of the following codes (CMNEMP/MCREMP/MITWEMP/Menominee) depending upon where you are employed. Complete the sign up process with a brief Wellness Assessment and personal profile.

Upcoming Events

Employee Insurance Benefits Fair
All Employees are encouraged to attend the Employee Insurance Benefits FAIR at the Menominee Casino Convention Center. No specific time to attend, show up at your convenience anytime between 7:00am and 6:00pm. Plan to attend for any necessary changes to teh benefit plan. This fair provides an opportunity for you to meet with representatives from the benefit provider companies, ask questions about benefits and services for 2017. All Full-time, Part-time, On-call and Emergency hire employees are welcome.


Vision & Mission Statement

Promoting healthy choices among our employees, families, and community by providing activities, education, support, and resources to encourage healthy lifestyles.

To embark on the journey towards your goals and dreams requires bravery...
To remain on that path requires courage...
The bridge that merges the two is commitment.
~ Dr. Steve Marboli

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Join the Wellness Facebook page to stay in the loop on all news, events, photos and other updates!

HRA (Health Risk Assessment) FAQs

Click here to learn more about Health Risk Assessments  

MITW Employee Wellness Program

Journey....   is a voluntary wellness program available to employees of MITW, CMN and MCR. Employees and spouses currently covered by MITW Employee Health Plan may participate in a Health Risk Assessment and Health Screening and earn $100.00
All employees can earn additional incentives up to $150 a year earning points by participating in various activites  
(list of activities will be provided prior to January 1, 2017).     In addition, anyone earning points in a month will be entered in monthly drawing for gas gift cards.
Employee meetings will be held before January 1, 2017 to provide additional information on

Examples of Activities to Earn Points on Your Journey
  • Participate in CPR/Safety/OSHA Trainings
  • Complete courses with Star 12 (Online)
  • Eliminate Tobacco Products
  • Rec Center Membership & Regular Visits
  • Cultural Related Events (Beadwork/Dance/Language Classes)
  • Zebit Financial Wellness (Online)
  • MyStrength-Health Club for the Mind (Online)
  • Physical Fitness Group Activities (Yoga/Exercise classes)
  • Get a "Wellness Buddy"
  • Nutrition/Diet Support Group (ex. Weight Watchers)
  • Participate in Health Challenges
  • Participate in Wellness Workshops/Educational Seminars
This is NOT an all-inclusive list. Additional information will be presented at Wellness meetings prior to January 1, 2017.