Give health higher priority, fair organizers urge women

September 27, 1992|By Phyllis Brill | Phyllis Brill,Staff Writer

Organizers of Harford County's first Women's Health Fair say that the increasing number of women working outside the home and the stresses of modern-day living are forcing women to make their mental and physical health a higher priority in their lives.

"Women often leave themselves until last," says Carolyn W. Evans of the Harford County Commission for Women, which is sponsoring the fair. "They take care of their families and their work but not themselves."

The health fair, to be held Oct. 10 at the Bel Air United Methodist Church, will include 17 workshops, ongoing exhibits by health-related community groups and free health screenings.

Physicians, social workers, nurses and other health professionals from the area will lead the discussion groups in topics ranging from breast care to stress reduction.

"We want women to see that their lifestyle really has an impact on their later health problems," says Ann Hughes, co-chairwoman of the fair with Ms. Evans. In addition, Ms. Hughes says, as the baby boomer generation reaches middle age, health is becoming an increasingly talked-about issue.

"Things like menopause and cancer are looming greater in their lives," she says. "They have a lot of questions on the role of mammograms and estrogen-replacement therapy in their overall health picture."

Organizers also want to touch on the emotional health of women and on issues that reflect the changing social roles of women in the 1990s, says Ms. Evans. Consequently, guest lecturers will be introducing topics such as "Pregnancy after 35," "Women as Caregivers to Aging Parents and Spouses," "Life After Divorce" and "The Step-Family as a Pressure Cooker."

Dr. Winnie King, a physician and medical reporter for WMAR-TV, will give the opening address at the event, which runs from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Each participant may attend four one-hour workshops.

The $12 registration fee includes continental breakfast and a buffet lunch. For more information on the health fair, call the Commission for Women at 638-3373.

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