Behavioral Health

Screens and Your Sleep: The Impact of Nighttime Use

Woman on her phone in bedThere’s a lot of talk about our “addiction” to technology. Aside from the impact of technology on our social lives, what if our cherished devices are bad for our health? When it comes to getting enough restful sleep, it turns out they may be.

According to Joanna Cooper, M.D., a neurologist with Sutter East Bay Medical Foundation, the timing of sleep and wakefulness is controlled by two areas in the brain. One is highly sensitive to light and drives wakefulness, while the other (the pineal gland) secretes melatonin when the light dims in the evening. Thus we humans are programmed to fall asleep after dark. Read More

Be a Rock Star at Keeping Your New Year’s Resolutions!

You, Justin Beiber and Kim Kardashian may have more in common than you think, if you’ve failed to keep New Year’s resolutions.a teenage girl in jeans and a red shirt jumps up with a guitar in a desert

Justin vowed to win a Grammy and Kim resolved to stay single—and they’re just two celebrities whose New Year’s resolutions didn’t work out.

“Every year, about 46 percent of Americans make New Year’s resolutions, but only around 8 percent are successful at achieving them,” says Joline Heo, M.D., a board-certified internist who practices with Sutter East Bay Medical Foundation and is affiliated with Sutter Delta Medical Center. “Some of the biggest barriers to success are time, motivation and lack of commitment.”

You don’t need star-power, money or fame to achieve your goals. Dr. Heo shares her secrets for achieving your New Year’s resolutions in a few simple steps: Read More

Substance Abuse Awareness Workshop

small yellow flower growing out of dried up mud bankAlta Bates Summit Medical Center’s MPI Chemical Dependency Treatment Services is offering free substance abuse workshops  for anyone with an interest in alcohol or drug abuse, whether it’s for themselves, their patients, family members or friends.

Everyone is welcome to attend our free chemical dependency workshops held each Saturday!

You will leave with a better understanding of the illness of chemical dependency and be prepared to help yourself or someone you care about move toward recovery. Workshop topics rotate each week: The Disease of Chemical Dependency; The Family Illness; Family Intervention; and Treatment and Recovery Issues.

Where: Alta Bates Summit Medical Center’s MPI Treatment Services, 3012 Summit St., 5th Floor, D Wing, Oakland

When: Every Saturday except on holiday weekends from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Cost: Free.

Contact: For more information or for more information about MPI Treatment Services call 510-652-7000.

Kick the Smoking Habit

Close up of two hands breaking a cigarrtte in half: quit smoking with the help of  Alta Bates Summit in OaklandWhen you inhale cigarette smoke, your body not only takes in nicotine but also more than 4,000 other chemicals.

If that’s not reason enough to quit, did you know that within the first hour of smoking your very last cigarette, your body will begin to experience a series of significant healthy changes that will continue for years?

How to quit smoking in Oakland

Alta Bates Summit Medical Center’s Markstein Cancer Education and Prevention Services can help you quit smoking right now.

You choose how you’d like to quit. We are here to help, whether you want:

  • Educational materials to use on your own
  • A referral to a smoking cessation support group
  • An online cessation program
  • Scheduling one-to-one counseling with a smoking cessation health professional

One-to-one counseling

If you choose one-to-one counseling, our specialist will create a program to meet your needs. Your cessation counselor can work with you step-by-step from setting a quit date, developing support strategies, planning for managing nicotine withdrawal, coping with cravings and celebrating the new smoke free person you are becoming.

For more information, call us at 510 869-8833.

Alta Bates Summit Offers Mental Health Screenings

woman holding her head to show depression

One out of 10 people in the U.S. suffers from depression and never seeks treatment. Screening for depression and other mood disorders is important because it allows individuals to identify warning signs early, and connect with the appropriate treatment resources.

Early recognition and treatment offers the best opportunity for recovery. Alta Bates Summit Medical Center is here to help you or someone you know by offering free, anonymous screenings online. Read More

Eating Disorders in Children: What You Need to Know

Young woman on bathroom scale worrying about her weightThe average American model is 5 feet, 11 inches tall and weighs 117 pounds. The average American woman is 5 feet, 4 inches tall and weighs 140 pounds.

With such a gap between how women look in magazines vs. real life, it isn’t surprising that around 10 million people in the U.S. have an eating disorder—and many are children. Read More