The Seven Stages of Alzheimer’s Disease

It’s quite normal – though perhaps a bit jarring – to see your grandma or grandpa begin to have memory problems. They might forget your phone number, or have to think twice while recalling a childhood memory. But when should you worry? When do the memory troubles signify something more disturbing, like Alzheimer’s disease?

It’s important to understand and educate yourself about so many things in life, but particularly something as devastating as watching a loved one succumb to Alzheimer’s. Knowing what to expect at each stage of the disease can go a long way toward making it easier for you and other family members to contend with.

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, there are seven stages of Alzheimer’s, but not every person with Alzheimer’s will exhibit all the signs and some of the signs might be missed by friends and family who chalk them up to simple aging, senile dementia, or “grandpa being grandpa”.

Here are the seven stages and what to look for in each stage.

The first stage is really not a stage at all. This is when grandma or grandpa has no signs of memory loss or any other signs of Alzheimer’s.

The second stage of Alzheimer’s might look to family members like normal signs of aging. Since we all lose a little of our memory as we get older, this stage really looks like nothing more than normal aging.

The third stage of Alzheimer’s is characterized by what the Alzheimer’s Association calls mild cognitive decline. It’s at this stage that a doctor might see some signs of Alzheimer’s and, depending on the patient, might even be able to diagnose early-stage Alzheimer’s. In this stage, your grandma or grandpa might have trouble remembering the name of someone they just met, or read something and retain very little of what they’ve read. They might struggle for words or names in a way that’s obvious to others. But generally in this stage, it might still seem that your loved one is just suffering normal effects of aging.

It’s really in the fourth stage of Alzheimer’s that family and friends – and doctors – might begin calling what looked like basic aging memory complaints something more, and it’s when the “classic” signs of Alzheimer’s become apparent. These symptoms or signs include forgetting current events or recent experiences; an impaired memory of childhood, personal experiences and the like; and having trouble with basic daily tasks like paying bills, planning menus or completing an errand list.

It can be hard to distinguish between the fifth and sixth stages of Alzheimer’s. In these later stages of the disease, simple daily tasks become extremely difficult to perform. In the former stage (the fifth stage), a patient might have a hard time recalling for a doctor their address, schools they attended, or even their phone number. They might choose the wrong clothing for the season or occasion they are dressing for, or they will be confused about the date, season, or day of the week. It’s easy at this stage to consider these problems normal relative to aging, but experts say it’s important to consider they might be signs of Alzheimer’s.

In the sixth stage of Alzheimer’s much more cognitive ability is lost. It’s hard for grandma or grandpa to recall their personal history (though they will usually know their name at this point); they might have difficulty recalling their spouse’s name (but they will generally still recognize faces); they need help with toileting and other bathroom and personal care duties and will experience disruption in sleep and wake cycles. It’s also in this stage that there’s a risk of your loved one wandering off and becoming lost and there’s the potential of them becoming delusional or having hallucinations.

Finally, the seventh stage of Alzheimer’s is arguably the most difficult for everyone involved. In this stage, your loved one might lose the ability to speak, or respond to their environment. You might think to bring grandma’s favorite ice cream to her, but she could likely forget she even likes ice cream.

Alzheimer’s disease can be a frightening thing for you and your loved one.  But knowing and being able to identify the stages of Alzheimer’s is important.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Stress, immune system and age

As ageing is associated with immunological changes, the effects of stress and age are interlinked where a deregulation of the immune function can have a significant impact on physical health. On the other hand stess can both enhance and increase the effects of aging, with older adults often showing greater immunological impairment to stress than younger adults. Therefore a good immune response is essential to our good health. In the same way immunological alterations and disturbances can influence the progression and severity of a variety of disorders and diseases, including stress related disorders.

Also stressful experiences very early in life can alter the responsiveness of the nervous system and immune system. It is possible that prenatal or early life stress may increase the likelihood of altered immune responses to stress in late life. One such alteration to the immune system includes a decrease in the ability of white blood cells (immune cells) to carry out their key functions. One great example is temporary stress as seen in students during “examination stress”. This has been seen to slow down wound healing. Children of mothers who are routinely stressed during their pregnancy show decrease in immune function compared to children of undisturbed pregnancies. Similarly young children who experience abuse or neglect show abnormal cortisol levels indicative of a dysregulated stress response. Cortisol is a hormone secreted by the adrenal glands and involved in glucose metabolism, blood pressure regulation, maintenance of insulin release, suppression of inflammatory responses. Cortisol is elevated following several stress disorders. Several stressful experiences can cause in areas of the brain involved in memory an “imprinting” during fetal development and early life can alter the responsiveness of the endocrine, immune, and central nervous systems for many years. An understanding of such interlinked effects of stress and age is important to understand and to determine the mechanisms involved, so that we can develop effective interventions in early and late life.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Congestive Heart Failure and the Heart Healthy Diet

Congestive Heart Failure, or CHF, is a medical condition concerning the heart. When diagnosed with CHF, a patient has a weakened heart that cannot properly pump blood to the necessary parts of the body. This condition requires extensive treatment and lifestyle changes in order to live as healthy and as normal a life as possible. Such lifestyle changes include a medicine regimen, an exercise program, and a heart healthy diet. While all of these factors are important, following a strict diet is a key element to controlling Congestive Heart Failure, and ensuring the best quality of life that can happen while living with this condition. A heart healthy diet includes low sodium intake, low fat and calorie intake, and reduced fluid intake.

When a patient is first diagnosed with Congestive Heart Failure, his or her doctor will begin a treatment plan matched specifically to that patient. Part of this treatment plan is usually a heart healthy diet. Part of what makes Congestive Heart Failure so uncomfortable for the patient diagnosed with the condition is the fact that as a result of  how the heart fails to work efficiently, the lungs and the body in general begin to retain large amounts of fluid. Though there is an abundance of fluid in the body, the fluid that builds up in the lungs of the heart failure patient makes it exceedingly difficult to breathe, which is already a difficult venture for the patient.

Where the heart healthy diet comes in is that ridding the body and lungs of excess liquid is important to be able to breathe comfortably. An abundance of sodium in a person’s diet causes excessive amounts of liquid to be retained. This is something a heart patient does not need, considering the large amounts of liquid that already makes itself a problem. Along with medication to help release retained liquid, a diet of low sodium limitations is often given to the patient. The standard amount of sodium allotted in a diet like this is 2g or 2000mg. If the heart patient is a unusually bad case, a sodium limit as low as 1g or 1000mg may be given. When a heart failure patient exceeds this level of sodium in his or her diet, he or she runs the risk of retaining relatively large amounts of liquid that the body, in its less-than-efficient state, cannot effectively get rid of.

Another aspect of the heart healthy diet is for the heart patient to eat many low-calorie, low-fat foods. Sometimes Congestive Heart Failure is caused, in part, by obesity in the patient. Two things are accomplished by eating these low-calorie, low-fat foods. One, eating low-calorie, low-fat foods helps to keep the heart arteries clear of clots. Heart patients already have a weakened heart and, therefore, should not weaken it further by introducing clots to the passageways of the heart. The other thing that is accomplished by this part of the diet is that weight is a contributing factor to being healthy or unhealthy. Obesity, in some cases, can cause the Congestive Heart Failure condition. Not gaining weight if you are already thin, and losing weight if you are obese is important to being healthy with CHF. A low-fat, low-calorie diet can help with keeping or getting to a healthy weight.

The last part of a heart healthy diet for CHF patients is a diet with reduced fluid intake. In much the same way that sodium increasing fluid retention is negative for the heart failure patient, drinking lots of fluids is sometimes negative as well. If a heart patient is drinking many liquids, it just makes it harder for the body to get rid of the fluids that are building up naturally. Keeping a diet low in fluids helps keep fluids in the body at a minimum as well.

There are many positive aspects to the heart healthy diet. Low sodium limitations, low-fat and low-calorie foods, and reduced liquid intake can be helpful in keeping a heart healthy lifestyle. Congestive Heart Failure patients are recommended to change their current eating habits to a heart healthy diet in order to become as healthy as possible and to live as full life as is possible with this condition.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Mold Allergies – Learn About The Symptoms

Mold allergies are one of the main health problems that affect people of all ages. There are thousands of molds, although some of them do not cause any allergies at all. In fact there are only about 12 different kinds of molds that can cause a serious allergy. It is possible that mold might be the major reason that people have seasonal allergies. Mold spores are very tiny and they are airborne, which makes it possible for you to have mold anywhere in your home. However, the most common reason for mold allergies is mold growing in areas where there is a lot of moisture.

The most common symptoms of mold allergies are watery eyes, wheezing, stuffed up nose, shortness of breath and asthma. A mild mold allergy may not even require you to seek medical attention, whereas other symptoms may be so severe that they require hospitalization. A Stachybotrys allergy has been known to cause bleeding in the lungs of infants, especially when it is combined with exposure to second hand smoke. The Stachybotrys atra mold can cause disorders of the nervous system, such as the inability to concentrate, changes in personality and sleep disorders.

Where is the mold that usually causes the mold allergies?

The Stachybortrys mold grows on areas that get soaked in water and are not completely dried out. This is the common cause of mold allergies in homes that have experienced flooding. Other areas in the home where mold is commonly found when you go looking for the source of your mold allergy includes basements, closets, shower stalls in bathrooms, fresh food stored in cupboards and the refrigerator, foam pillows, garbage containers and house plants.

You can control your mold allergies by containing or reducing the amount of mold in your home. Some ways you can do this include keeping the level of humidity below 40%. You can use an air conditioner or a dehumidifier in times when the humidity is really high and in so doing help to keep down the severity of your mold allergy. You do need to ensure that your kitchen and bathroom are ventilated. If you have a HEPA filter, change the filters on a regular basis. If the filters are clogged they are not going to do much to take the mold spores out of the air in your home.

There are some people whose mold allergies flare up when they eat certain foods. These include such foods as cheese, mushrooms, dried fruits, and foods containing yeast. These foods actually contain mold, which will certainly aggravate a mold allergy. There are many different types of products on the market to help you with your mold allergies, but the best thing is to try to eliminate mold from your home.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Acid Reflux – Treating It With Medication

Antacids and Alignates

Antacids are generally available without a doctor’s prescription and relieve the symptoms of acid indigestion and heartburn (dyspepsia).

The usual ingredients of antacids are magnesium or aluminium and they work by neutralising the acid produced in the stomach which is the cause of indigestion and acid reflux. This group often contain sodium alginate which forms a protective coating over the lining of the gullet and the stomach.

Proton Pump Inhibitors

Proton pump Inhibitors are drugs which shut down the system in the stomach called the proton pump. It is this system which produces acid in the stomach, the leaking of which into the oesophagus causes acid reflux.

These drugs are taken in the form of tablets or capsules, as a powder to be diluted in water or as injections and are used to treat stomach ulcers and a rather rare condition called Zollinger-Ellison syndrome as well as acid reflux.

Omeprazole and Lansoprazole are well known varieties of this particular type of drug although there are several others.

Side effects are rare although they can include diarrhoea or constipation, stomach pains, wind, drowsiness, dizziness and headaches. In unusual cases, a severe allergic reaction can result. My personal experience with Omeprazole was seriously raised blood pressure and severe head pain. However, replacing Omeprazole with Ranitidine and taking blood pressure reduction medication for a couple of weeks sorted out that problem.

H2-Receptor Antagonists

This group of drugs works by attaching to and blocking the H2 receptor area on stomach cells which, when stimulated by the naturally produced chemical, histamine, generates acid.

Ranitidine is the best known of this drug group, others being Nizatidine, Famotidine and Cimetidine.

Side effects are few but can display as diarrhoea, headaches, dizziness and tiredness. Loss of hair has been reported by takers of Cimetidine and with nizatidine, sweating.

Both proton pump inhibitors and H2 receptor antagonists are used together with antibiotics to get rid of Helicobacter pylori infection which can cause stomach ulcers and duodenitis.

Warning: If symptoms of heartburn persist, consult your doctor. They could be indicative of something much more serious than indigestion. Never embark on a course of medication without consulting a doctor. Never take medicines prescribed for somebody else.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Psoriasis More Than A Skin Problem

It is a skin problem which is not contagious. Many people have suffered from this condition. There are five types of psoriasis, affecting different parts of your body. All these types of psoriasis have different symptoms. The area which gets affected becomes scaly with small red spots causing itchiness. It is a lifelong battle with this disease, as currently there are no cures for this skin problem. These are known to occur on any part of your body such as elbows, knees, lower back and scalp. As it is a common disease anyone can be infected by it.

Our skin goes through series of changes. The dead skin cells die and flakes off in the form of scales. During psoriasis this cycle of the skin is quickened. Instead of weeks the scales are formed within days. Even though it is not a grave problem, psoriasis can be very painful and with constant itching affecting your day-to-day life. The normal functioning of your life is turned upside down due to this condition.

You chances of getting infected by psoriasis increases, if it runs in the family. An injury done to your skin due to continuous scratching, skin inflammation and skin infection can cause psoriasis. Too much of sunlight tend to create further problems for psoriasis. Psoriasis infection worsens if the patient is HIV positive. In an advanced stage of HIV, psoriasis becomes less active. Having drugs like lithium, beta-blockers, anti-malarial, and NSAID often worsens psoriasis. It is also caused when you go through stress mainly emotional. Cigarettes and alcohol are another cause of psoriasis problem.

Home Remedies For Psoriasis

Apply good amount of moisturizers on your body after having your bath. This would help to keep your body soft and tender.

Buy a UVB sunlamp and treat the areas which have been affected by psoriasis.

Soaking yourself in Dead Sea salts is one of the better solutions.

Coal tar can be used directly on the skin. This is very good to soothe your skin even though it may sometimes be too strong for your liking.

It is always recommended that the patient suffering from psoriasis should have a well-balanced diet.

Having good amount of juices from grapes and other fruits can help you to have better immune system to fight this disease.

Have herbs in daily diet such as basil, ginger, cardamom, saffron, garlic, parsley, tomato, fruit vinegars, and homemade mayonnaise. This kind of diet may not cure this disease but can prove to be very important part of your health.

Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautionary measures while following instructions on the home remedies from this article. Avoid using any of these products if you are allergic to it. The responsibility lies with the reader and not with the site or the writer.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Know More About Arthritis, and How it Can Affect You

If you’ve heard about arthritis, you would most likely have associated it with older patients, and with a lot of body pain. There are many things about arthritis, however, that make it a unique, and yes, painful disease. Sadly, arthritis is not only confined to the old, and it can actually come in a variety of forms.

The term arthritis itself is derived from the Greek words for joint and inflammation, and covers a group of health conditions that affect the body’s joints. Arthritis has been known and recorded for centuries. The first case was reported to date as far back as 4500 BC. Very simply, arthritis involves swelling of the joints, such that mere movement can cause body pains.

Such joints are sensitive to changes in the weather, and elder patients suffering from arthritis claim that their pains are greatest in the morning, when they first rise. Younger patients can also suffer from arthritis – the arthritic joint pain is not usually the general feature of juvenile arthritis, but the tendency to move, or the refusal to move at all, as in the case of especially young children.

To diagnose arthritis and distinguish it from routine or simple joint pain, physicians conduct a battery of blood tests and x-rays. Some blood tests can check for the presence of certain antibodies, since some forms of arthritis arise out of the body’s immune system launching an attack on itself, making these forms of arthritis autoimmune disorders. X-rays, on the other hands, can show eroding bone or cartilage.

Once arthritis is diagnosed, treatment can proceed. Treatment can come in the form of surgery or drug treatment. Those dealing with arthritis must also undergo occupational and physical therapy sessions, so that they can recover the use of their limbs and keep their blood flow constant. In all types of therapy, doctors ensure that stress on the affected joints is reduced, and pain is successfully managed.

The types of therapy to be used depend on the type of arthritis with which the patient is afflicted. A few common types include the following.

•     Rheumatoid arthritis is a systemic autoimmune disease, where the body’s immune system launches an attack on the joints, then moves on to affect other bodily organs such as the skin, heart, and lungs.

•     Psoriatic arthritis is also an autoimmune disorder with symptoms similar to rheumatoid arthritis. It is common in patients affected by psoriasis, a skin disease.

•     Septic arthritis is the wearing away of cartilage due to bacterial accumulation in and attack on the joints. This is usually caused by cuts or gashes that penetrate to the level of the bone, and are left untreated or unwashed.

•     Osteoarthritis is caused by the wearing away of cartilage that protects the bone. Because of the great pain they experience, patients with osteoarthritis may refuse to move, causing their muscles to atrophy.

•     Gout is a form of arthritis caused by the accumulation of crystals of uric acid in joints. Those affected with gout have to take a low purine diet, or to stay away from high-protein foods such as sardines and certain types of fish, some mussels, sweatbreads such as kidneys and brains of animals, and alcohol.

If you think you have arthritis, consult a doctor about your condition and have the necessary tests performed. If all signs point to a positive diagnosis, be sure to follow all instructions to the hilt: take all the medications prescribed, avoid all the foods that have to be avoided, and attend all therapy sessions if you are required to do so.

If you know someone with arthritis, or are living with someone afflicted with the disease, take a role in monitoring the patient’s progress by making sure that the patient follows the therapy regimen, or by watching the patient well following surgery. Arthritis is a disease that requires patience, both on the part of the afflicted and the caregiver, so obey all instructions and ask questions if necessary.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Walking the Walk for AIDS

UNAIDS estimates that more than 37 million adults and 2 million children are infected with HIV worldwide. The AIDS epidemic has hit the hardest in sub-Saharan Africa, where 75 percent of the women ages 15 to 24 are infected.

Closer to home, 40,000 people per year in the U.S. are infected, more than half of whom are African-American women. The latter group by itself accounts for 72 percent of all new HIV diagnoses in women.

In the face of these overwhelming statistics, what can be done? Some corporations are making a difference with contributions to charities supporting the cause and helping in other ways.

For example, Roche, a pharmaceutical company that developed the HIV protease inhibitors Invirase and Viracept, has not filed any patents for its medicines – including those for HIV/AIDS – in the least-developed nations and sub-Saharan Africa. This means that these countries, which are devastated by the epidemic, can manufacture and sell cheap, generic versions of the drugs without waiting for the patents to expire.

The company also is dedicated to increasing awareness of the illnesses.

“Roche is committed to driving social responsibility programs that increase awareness and combat the HIV/AIDS epidemic at the local and international level,” said George Abercrombie, president and CEO, Hoffmann-La Roche Inc., the U.S. pharmaceuticals headquarters of Roche.

Beyond this, Roche and its employees are working more directly to address the problem through the company’s annual Global Employee AIDS Walk in observance of World AIDS Day.

Roche employees have been participating in the walk for more than two years. In December 2005, more than 11,000 employees from 85 affiliates in 42 countries walked to raise funds for AIDS organizations. The money raised through their pledges was matched by the company.

Some of the funds are distributed to local HIV/AIDS organizations. In New Jersey, for example, funds will go to the NJ AIDS Partnership. The rest goes to children in Malawi, Africa, who have been orphaned by AIDS. The money goes to buy everything from food and clean water to shelter, books and sewing machines.

HIV is spread by sexual contact with an infected person, by sharing needles or syringes with someone who is infected or – less commonly – through transfusions of infected blood. Babies of HIV-infected women may become infected before or during birth or through breast feeding.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

What Happens in the Brain of an Alzheimer’s Patient

What is happening in the brain of an Alzheimer’s patient to cause all of the unpleasant cognitive and behavioral symptoms of the sickness? Alois Alzheimer was the first to find the strange plaques and tangles characteristic of the sickness in the brain of one of his patients during an autopsy.

He gave his name to the sickness despite the contribution his associate Emil Kraepelin made by isolating and identifying the symptoms of the disease. For years, Alzheimer’s disease could only be diagnosed with a high degree of accuracy post-mortem. Now researchers are learning more about what exactly is happening in the brain to cause the sickness and why those strange plaques and tangles develop in the first place.

Neurofibrillary tangles are one characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease. Brain damage occurs as a result of neurons being clogged with microscopic filaments, which are made up of an abnormal type of Tau protein. Normally functioning Tau protein sends chemical messages from neuron to neuron by bonding to microtubules, while the type of Tau protein found in an Alzheimer’s disease brain bonds with itself and goes nowhere.

Clogged neurons are no longer able to do their job and pass along the impulses they receive from the environment; therefore, disabled neurons are one cause of the cognitive impairment associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Brain damage due to neurofibrillary tangles is also found in associated diseases, such as Parkinson’s disease. Scientists aren’t sure why the Tau protein malfunctions and causes the tangles.

Some researchers believe that Tau malfunctions as a result of beta amyloid protein, which is what causes the second form of damage in an Alzheimer’s disease brain-plaques between neurons.

Senile plaque, which is considered to be the more detrimental of the two abnormalities in an Alzheimer’s disease brain, consists of large, abnormal, sticky patches containing beta amyloid protein. These patches block communication between neurons, causing the learning and memory problems consistent with the cognitive impairment associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

The more plaque there is in the brain, the worse the impairment becomes because plaque is thought to interfere with the functioning of acetylcholine, which transmits nerve impulses in the brain and body. The only FDA-approved medications used to treat Alzheimer’s are acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, which block the enzymes that eat away at acetylcholine. These medications work best, however, in the earliest stages of the disease before the amount of plaque in an Alzheimer’s disease brain has caused considerable damage.

Recent research has begun to clarify the possible cause-and-effect connection between plaques and tangles. A study that used proteins from the immune system of mice to get rid of the beta amyloid that causes plaque discovered that the proteins ate away at the tangles as well. Other medications used to lower levels of beta amyloid also worked on the tangles. Some researchers believe that plaques and tangles may themselves be the result of some other disease process in the brain, such as swollen axons.

In research done on mice that were genetically engineered to have a disease similar to Alzheimer’s, the swollen axons, which are important in communicating between neurons, caused a “traffic” jam of sorts that may, over time, lead to the neuronal degeneration, plaques and tangles apparent in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients. Researchers hope that, by focusing on the disease process in the brain of Alzheimer’s patients, they can one day find a cause and, ultimately, a cure for the sickness.

This article is Copyright © 2006, Heather Colman. Permission is granted to reprint this article as long as no changes are made, and this entire resource box is included.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Green lipped mussel extract treatment for arthritis

If your pet has been diagnosed with arthritis you might find Green-lipped mussel (Perna canaliculus) is included in some glucosamine based treatments. Green lipped mussel has been found to inhibit inflammation in the joints and is useful in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis

How does it work ?

Any animal or human will experience a certain amount of inflammation in the joints and increasingly so with age. Your pet makes several types of chemical mediators for inflammation levels of these are higher in an animal experiencing symptoms of arthritis. The green lipped mussel extract helps control the inflammatory mediators in your pets body, it improves conditions which involve inflammation such as arthritis, psoriasis and asthma among others.

Where is it found ?

Green-lipped mussels are found in the oceans off New Zealand. In supplement form, green-lipped mussel is available as a lipid extract or a freeze-dried powder. Green lipped mussel extract is also combined with other arthritis treatments. When you buy a product containing green lipped mussel, it comes in two forms one which is stabilized with a preservative and the other is not. Recent animal studies have compared the two forms and found a stabilized lipid extract to be significantly more effective than a non-stabilized extract at decreasing inflammation. Because both forms are currently available on the market, we would recommend you read the label carefully to choose the stabilized form.

Other products you might have been recommended for your pets arthritis inflammation are the non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs which include ibruprofen. The downside of using these drugs are the side effects which can cause stomach problems including ulcers if administered too frequently. Using a green lipped mussel extract also reduces the need for anti inflammatory drugs.

How much does your pet need?

These will depend on the individual pets weight and also the potency of the extract. Feed this to your pet in the doses recommended by the manufacturer.

Will my pet experience any side effects ?

Studies in humans have produced varying data, with some mussel extracts producing nausea as a side effect while other studies show no side effects. In this case be observant of your pets eating habits and report it to your vet if you have been giving your pet green mussel extract.

Allergy Information

It is possible for your pet to have an allergic reaction to shellfish. Again be observant of any changes in your pet, itching , sneezing etc. and report it to your vet if you suspect an allergic reaction. However compared to lipid preparations, freeze-dried preparations contain substantially more of the protein fraction responsible for allergic reactions.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Which Came First: The Disease Or The Deficiency?

You may be surprised to learn that conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, cardiovascular disease, dementia, diabetes and depression often have one thing in common-a deficiency in omega-3 fatty acids and essential B vitamins including folic acid.

So which came first, the disease or the deficiency? It is not clear whether these diseases contribute to deficiencies or whether insufficient dietary intakes of these essential nutrients lead to the onset and deterioration associated with these diseases.

Statistics confirm that Americans have the lowest intake of essential omega-3 fatty acids of any developed country. DHA, the omega-3 that is present in every cell membrane of the human body and highly concentrated in the brain, retina of the eye and the heart, is vital to good health.

According to Dr. Barbara Levine of Weill Cornell Medical College, “Increasing the intake of omega-3 fatty acids, including DHA and EPA, has been clinically shown to reduce severity of these diseases, so that patients are often able to reduce or eliminate medications that have serious adverse reactions.”

Patients diagnosed with these diseases require medical attention. For example, rheumatoid arthritis patients and diabetics are often at greater risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

The increased risk of heart disease in these patients is linked to an increase in homocysteine levels, which is a risk factor for heart disease and other disease states. Homocysteine is a substance in the body that can be measured by a physician and may help predict potential disease.

The good news is that many people are using an increased dietary intake of folic acid, vitamins B6 and B12 to lower elevated homocysteine levels.

A combination product is being prescribed by many physicians to address the deficiencies associated with these diseases.

Animi-3 is considered to be a valuable addition to the treatment regimen of these diseases. Doctors have referred to it as the ideal combination of ingredients. The prescription-only product contains specially formulated and highly refined DHA-dominant omega-3, folic acid, B6 and B12.

If you’ve been diagnosed with one of these diseases, you may want to talk with your doctor about your possible deficiencies, risk factors and Animi-3.

Statistics show Americans have the lowest intake of DHA in their diets.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

After Cancer Treatment:Health Tips Everyone Needs To Know

If you or someone you know has a history of cancer, it is important to be aware of the potential health consequences from cancer and its treatment. Frequently, patients and families are not informed or do not recall discussions that occurred during the stress-filled days after diagnosis about such potential problems as pain, depression, infertility and other physical and emotional changes. Regardless of whether problems are temporary or permanent, most can be managed.

To begin to address the many and varied health-related needs of long-term cancer survivors, the American Journal of Nursing (AJN) recently released a report, based on a July 2005 symposium, that offers action strategies and recommendations.

“The late effects of cancer and treatment for survivors diagnosed as adults remain poorly documented,” said Pamela J. Haylock, MA, RN, symposium co-director, cancer care consultant and doctoral student at the University of Texas Medical Branch School of Nursing in Galveston, TX. “Yet up to 75 percent of survivors have some health deficits related to their cancers and therapies. Knowing about potential risks and learning and using risk reduction strategies are important steps in survivors’ recovery.”

Nurses recommend that cancer survivors heed the following advice:

- Incorporate regular exercise, stress management, a healthful diet and weight control as part of a healthy lifestyle.

- Schedule regular health checkups.

- Ask your oncology team for a written summary of your cancer diagnosis, treatments, tests and recommended follow-up once treatment is complete. Create a folder to organize diagnostic and laboratory reports, and give it to your current health care provider to make a copy for his or her records.

- Ask your nurse or physician to help you and your caregivers learn about possible long-term effects of your cancer therapy and ways to prevent or minimize them. Effects differ from person to person; therefore, educating yourself is important.

- Inform physicians and nurses about your previous cancer history, treatment, current medications and long-term effects you may experience, including infertility, early menopause, indigestion, dry mouth or taste changes, constipation, diarrhea, sleep issues, fatigue, dry skin, memory loss, changes in thinking, vision or hearing problems, depression, relationship/sexuality issues, anxiety, confidence issues, pain, tingling, or numbness or swelling in the fingers and toes.

- Look for resources to assist with any physical, emotional or financial issues that you may experience.

Helpful Internet sites are www.acor.org, www.cancer.org, and www.canceradvocacy.org.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Simple Steps You Can Take To Eliminate the Threat of Periodontal Disease!

First for those perhaps not familiar with what periodontal disease is, Periodontal disease is a chronic bacterial infection that affects the gums and bone supporting the teeth.

At this stage medical intervention is neccesary in order to restore you oral health to an acceptable condition.

However the good news is that before your oral health gets to this point, there are many things you can specifically do to halt this painful advanced condion of the mouth.

What You Can Do To Prevent Gum Disease.

1. Brush your teeth regularly.

This removes the plaque and food debris that consume on a daily basis.

Brushing regularly also has the benefit of preventing the formation of plaque buildup, which left untreated will cause periodontal disease.

Its also important to acknowledge that regularly means daily, several times daily with floride toothpaste.

2. Flossing

Many people may brush their teeth but neglect to floss. Flossing is important because it gets into those hard to reach places, and removes sticky food particles that a tooth brush just can’t reach.

So don’t forget to floss regularly.  Its also important to use the proper technique when flossing so that you get the maximum benefit.

3. Regular dental visits

are also very important to head off any developing conditions that your untrained perhaps will not detect.

In addition to that, any tartar build up from the (hardening of plaque) can be removed and treated so that it does not advanced to a more serious condion. Thats always nice.

4. Don’t use tobacco products if at all possible.

Smoking is one of the leading factors in the formation of periodontis, so if you were thinking of quitting this could serve as quite a motivator.

In addition to all that we have discussed about how to intercept the formation of gum disease, one more thought is that it causes bad breath due to all the bacteria that are present in the mouth.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Herpes Heroes

The is only a one letter difference between the words herpes and heroes, and the letters p and o are only one letter apart, which means that no two words can be closer than herpes and heroes.

The world needs more herpes heroes both for those of us with “the gift” and for those lucky 40% of the population who don’t have herpes.

A herpes hero is someone who willingly forgoes their privacy to publicly be identified as a person with herpes and speaks out in order to educate, encourage and enlighten others. A herpes hero helps put human faces on this often-faceless worldwide pandemic.

Not all herpes heroes will choose to take their message to the media, most herpes heroes are making a difference on a much more personal level. They have come out of the closet and have discussed herpes with friends and loved ones and have been like ripples in the water of their own communities.

Why do we need herpes heroes?

Those of us with herpes need herpes heroes because too many of us are living ashamed and stigmatized by the disease. Having herpes heroes lets us know we are not alone, not in the minority. We are 6 out of every 10 people. We are our own nation. But we are a nation without visibility, respect or power.

In this society you are only respected when you stand up for who you are and what you believe in. Herpes heroes believe that it is wrong for people with herpes to be made to feel stigmatized, ashamed and disrespected.

Both the infected and uninfected need herpes heroes to speak out and dispel the misinformation about herpes and speak the truth about this misunderstood disease, especially to the youth. We need herpes heroes to also help promote safer sex. We need herpes heroes to encourage anyone who thinks they don’t have herpes and who has had six sex partners or more to get a blood test for herpes since 70% or more of people with herpes don’t know they have it. We cannot rely on governments, the medical profession, drug companies, or the media to get the message out.

I am not suggesting that everyone who has herpes needs to become an activist and make their herpes status public. Every community needs it leaders. We need a small number of brave people who care to step up and make a difference.

There are no major charities raising money for herpes awareness. There are no celebrities famous or not so famous, willing to admit they have herpes and put a human face on the disease. So it’s up to few of us to do more. Each one teach one, each one reach one.

Christopher Scipio

Homeopath/Herbalist

Holistic Viral Specialist

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Toe Nail Fungus

Toe nail fungus and finger nail fungus is a condition in which fungi get under the nail of the toe or finger and cause an infection in the area. The infection can be of the nail itself or for the underlying skin in the area known as the nail bed. The condition is one in which you will want to have treated, especially if you find that it is painful or embarrassing to have. If you suffer for other conditions, such as diabetes, your doctor may want to take care of the problem as soon as possible so that it does not cause further damage to your skin. While you can have finger nail fungus, it is most commonly a toe nail fungus that will be present. In fact, at any given time, up to 18% of the population will have nail fungus infections.

Nail fungus does not necessary have to be treated. If it is not causing you any pain and you do not have a problem with the way it looks, then you may choose to not treat it at all. But, if you do this, you are increasing the chances for it to spread and worsen which may result in pain. It is also likely that it will take longer to treat at that point. The good news is, though, that you do not need to live with this condition. Nail fungus cures are available to help you.

There are several over the counter medications that can help in this condition. There is not a 100% nail fungus cure, but many people do find relief from these topical treatments. If you do not see any relief from them, you can and should contact your family doctor. He can prescribe medications that are stronger to help. Some of these medications do have side effects though. Toe nail fungus and finger nail fungus is something that many people have, yet you do not need to suffer from it when you seek out the help of fungal treatments such as these.

Please visit some of my web sites at  (http://nail–fungus.blogspot.com” title=”Nail Fungus-Nail Fungus) and (http://nail–fungus–cures.blogspot.com” title=”Nail Fungus Cures-Nail Fungus Cures)

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Is There Going To Be An Asian Flu Pandemic?

The last Asian flu pandemic occurred in 1957. It is estimated that between 1 million people and 4 million people were killed by the virus.

Fast forward to October 2004 when an American lab sent out stored samples of the deadly strain of Asian flu to different labs all over the world. By some kind of administrative error some 3,700 samples of the 1957 Asian flu virus were sent out to labs around the world. The US scrambled to fix this terrible error but because the labs had expected to receive a much more normal sample of flu virus for testing they did not treat the sample with the care that the strain they received deserved. It is unlikely that all the samples were retrieved.

How could this have happened?

The College of American Pathologists, from time to time, sends out different viruses to labs worldwide. They do this so that these labs can test to see how well their vaccines are coping with the expected influenza strains. In order to make the testing accurate, the labs are not told what strain of virus they are going to receive. Only the CAP knows what they are sending out to the testing labs. The College of American Pathologists thought that they were sending out a regular old Influenza A virus but instead they sent out one of the most deadly viruses in human history: the Asian flu.

If this Asian flu had escaped into the population the consequences would have been very serious. Nobody born since 1968 would have any mmunity to the virus, the effects would likely be at least as bad as they were in 1957 when people had had the chance to buld up some immunity from the virus’ ancestors.

The incident was caused by an administrative error although the details have yet to be made public. How could 3,700 samples of Asian flu be put out into the world by accident? Samples were sent to Asia, the Middle East, North and South America as well as Europe. It only took one lab worker to have an accident, or for a lab to dispose of the samples incorrectly and the genie would have been out of the bottle.

The most chilling aspect of the issue was that because of the lack of knowledge at the receiving labs, they did not take the care that they should have. Asian flu should be kept in extreme containment. Because the kits normally contain a relatively harmless strain of flu, they do not receive great security.

This incident tends to put the curent avian (bird) flu scare into perspective. H5N1 (avian) flu does not spread from human to human, only from birds to humans or other animals. As such, whilst it is sensible to be concerned about the bird flu issue, the real threat comes from the kind of man-made mistake of October 2004 when a deadly infectious disease was carelessly handled. This kind of error can happen at any time and would have devatating consequences. Bird flu is unlikely to ever make the jump across species and even now, vaccines are almost ready to protect humans against the H5N1 flu virus.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

What You Should Know About Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis, also known as “RA” is a chronic, inflammatory autoimmune disorder that causes the immune system to attack the joints. It is a disabling and painful inflammatory condition, which can lead to substantial loss of mobility due to pain and joint destruction. The disease is also systemic in that it often also affects many extra-articular tissues throughout the body including the skin, blood vessels, heart, lungs, and muscles.

The symptoms that distinguish Rheumatoid Arthritis from other forms of arthritis are inflammation and soft-tissue swelling of many joints at the same time, also known as polyarthritis. The joints are usually affected initially asymmetrically and then in a symmetrical fashion as the disease progresses. The pain generally improves with use of the affected joints, and there is usually stiffness of all joints in the morning that lasts over 1 hour. Thus, the pain of rheumatoid arthritis is usually worse in the morning compared to the classic pain of osteoarthritis where the pain worsens over the day as the joints are used.

As Rheumatoid Arthritis progresses the inflammatory activity leads to erosion and destruction of the joint surface, which impairs their range of movement and leads to deformity. The fingers are typically deviated towards the little finger and can assume unnatural shapes. Classical deformities in Rheumatoid Arthritis are the Boutonniere deformity and swan neck deformity. The thumb may develop a “Z-Thumb” deformity with fixed flexion and subluxation at the metacarpophalangeal joint, leading to a “squared” appearance in the hand.

Rheumatoid Arthritis occurs most frequently in the 20-40 age group, although can start at any age. It is strongly associated with the HLA marker DR4. Hence family history is an important risk factor. The disease is 3 times more common in women than men and up to 4 times more common in smokers than non-smokers.

The cause of Rheumatoid Arthritis is still unknown to this day, but has long been suspected to be infectious. It could be due to food allergies or external organisms. Mycoplasma, Erysipelothrix, Epstein-Barr virus, parvovirus B19 and rubella have been suspected but never supported in epidemiological studies.

Pharmacological treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis is divided into disease – modifying antirheumatic drugs, anti-inflammatory agents and analgesics. Disease – modifying antirheumatic drugs have been found to produce durable remissions and delay or halt disease progression. This is not true of anti-inflammatories and analgesics.

Common disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs used to treat RA include Humira, Remicade and Enbrel.

Typical anti-inflammatory agents include Glucocorticoids and non-steroidal anti – inflammatory drugs.

Analgesics include Acetaminophen, Opiates and Lidocaine.

Other therapies include weight loss, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, joint injections, and special tools to improve hard movements.

Severely affected joints may require joint replacement surgery, such as knee replacement. However, when drugs and surgery compound problems of rheumatoid arthritis rather than solve them, many people find relief by making consistent, lifelong changes to diet and lifestyle.

Many natural healing practitioners attribute rheumatoid arthritis to toxemia, which can be caused by several things, including but not limited to the many poisons that enter our systems through food, air, and skin.

The course of the disease varies greatly from patient to patient. Some patients have mild short-term symptoms, but in most the disease is progressive for life.

Disclaimer

The information presented here should not be interpreted as medical advice. Please talk to your doctor for more information about Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Permission is granted to reprint this article as long as no changes are made, and the entire resource box is included.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Take It From Alonzo Mourning: Check Up On Your Kidneys

It’s National Kidney Month and basketball star Alonzo Mourning is taking the opportunity to spread the word about a condition he has a personal connection to–chronic kidney disease.

Chronic kidney disease is a condition where the kidneys do not function effectively and are unable to stimulate the bone marrow to produce enough red blood cells, help control blood pressure or rid the body of waste. More than 20 million Americans-or one in nine adults-are estimated to have chronic kidney disease and another 20 million are at increased risk.

In 2000, Mourning was named National Basketball Association (NBA) Defensive Player of the Year and an Olympic gold medalist. That same year, Mourning began feeling unusually tired. His physician diagnosed this as a symptom of anemia caused by chronic kidney disease. By 2003, Mourning needed a kidney transplant.

Today, Mourning has returned to the NBA and is leading Rebound from Anemia, a program sponsored by Ortho Biotech Products, L.P. to help those at risk for chronic kidney disease recognize early symptoms.

“Before my diagnosis, I didn’t know I was at risk for kidney disease or that anemia is a warning sign,” said Mourning. “If I had known more about symptoms, I could have worked with my doctor and received treatment earlier, which may have slowed my disease progression.”

People at risk for chronic kidney disease include those with diabetes, high blood pressure or family history of kidney disease. It is more common among African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Asians, Pacific Islanders, American Indians and those over the age of 65.

Results from 37,000 individuals participating in the National Kidney Foundation’s (NKF) Kidney Early Evaluation Program (KEEP) screenings showed that half of the participants-most of whom had risk factors-had chronic kidney disease, but only 2 percent were aware of it.

According to Dr. Allan Collins, president-elect of the NKF, “Ninety percent of the KEEP participants reported visiting their doctors in the last year, yet most were unaware they were at risk for chronic kidney disease.”

If you have risk factors for chronic kidney disease, it’s particularly important to recognize signs and symptoms of the condition, such as anemia. Symptoms of anemia may include tiredness and reduced ability to carry out routine tasks.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Understanding ADHD In Adults

When thinking about Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), most people picture a hyperactive child in the grocery store, a disruptive kid in the classroom or a child who takes longer than necessary to finish a homework assignment. But what you may not realize is that while ADHD affects millions of children, it is also a disorder that affects approximately 8 million adults.

What Is Adult ADHD?

Although many people tend to think of ADHD as a childhood disorder, up to 80 percent of children with ADHD will exhibit symptoms into adolescence and up to 65 percent of children will continue to exhibit symptoms into adulthood.

Adults with untreated ADHD may be perceived as “scatterbrained,” “disorganized” or “lazy,” but what many people are unaware of is that ADHD is an impairing neurological disorder, not merely an organizational or behavioral problem.

In his new book entitled “Scattered Minds,” Dr. Lenard Adler, director of the Adult ADHD Program at New York University, presents the latest information for the growing number of adults who suspect or know that they have ADHD. The book reviews previously unrecognized signals of ADHD, misconceptions about this disorder and information on getting an accurate diagnosis and treatment options.

How Is ADHD Diagnosed?

While there is no single objective test to determine if someone has ADHD, “Scattered Minds” includes a simple self-screener, adopted by the World Health Organization, that helps the reader assess whether they have symptoms of ADHD. Dr. Adler urges readers to fill out the screener and bring it to their physician for a formal evaluation.

How Is ADHD Treated?

Although there is no “cure” for ADHD, there are accepted treatments that specifically help patients control its symptoms. In his book “Scattered Minds,” Dr. Adler explains that the most common treatments include educational approaches, psychological or behavioral modification, and prescription medication. Adults with untreated ADHD may experience greater risk for lower educational and occupational achievement, problems in relationships with family and friends, and greater risk for driving accidents and traffic tickets. Adults who have not been treated for ADHD are 50 percent more likely to be unemployed as well as twice as likely to smoke cigarettes.

“Scattered Minds” reveals the previously unrecognized signals for adults who suspect they may have ADHD and underscores that ADHD is a very real and accepted medical condition. Adults with ADHD may have greater difficulty dealing with everyday problems when compared to their peers and may even face challenges in their personal lives and careers that their peers do not encounter. If you suspect you or somebody you know may have adult ADHD, pick up a copy of “Scattered Minds” and take the simple screening test.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Disease Defined, It’s Types And What The Internet Has To Say About It

Most of us have known someone at one time or another with a disease, some considered curable and some not. Cancer is considered the most fatal among all diseases. Let’s begin this article with the definition of the word and than explore more about the various types and close off with information about how the internet may actually be helping the situation.

Disease defined:

1. A pathological condition of a part, organ, or system of an organism resulting from various causes, such as infection, genetic defect, or environmental stress, and characterized by an identifiable group of signs or symptoms. 2. A condition or tendency, as of society, regarded as abnormal and harmful.

There are different types of diseases, some affect the brain, others are heart disease, alzheimers disease, lung disease, kidneys disease, eye disease, skin types like acne and other parts of the body have been known to develop diseases.

Communicable Disease: As the name suggests the germs of a communicable disease easily spreads in any environment. The most familiar communicable disease is the cold that contaminates easily. Curable Disease:

Brain Disease: Excessive consuming of Alcohol and Drugs leads to a brain disease or brain disorder. Scientists have proved that over decade’s drug addiction has been the most contributing factor for brain diseases like alzeimers disease, brain cancer, etc.

Lung Disease: Lung disease is mainly caused by different types of bacterial infections. A large number of people suffer from pulmonary diseases that cause breathing and asthmatic problems. The inhaling of tobacco has been proved in most cases for developing lung diseases.

Eye Disease: Eye disorders are found mostly in aged persons. But far sightedness or short sightedness is also found in young children. There are different types of eye infections: cataract, dry eye, conjunctivitis and glaucoma which mostly affect adults.

Germs are responsible for Diseases

Germs are microscopic organisms responsible for different diseases. Being so tiny they’re known to creep into our body without giving us any notice. Until there is any symptom of disease we can’t realize that the germs have invaded our body. The Bacteria, Viruses, Fungi and Protozoa are the four major types of germs. The bacteria can cause a healthy person to become sick and even possibly can kill them. Once the viruses get inside our body they spread and make us sick. The fungus is a plant like micro organism that is responsible for allergic and skin diseases. The protozoa are similar to bacteria and usually cause intestinal infections.

Information and Treatment of Diseases over the Internet

Now a day’s people are using the internet to study information on health, diseases and medical treatments. With the help of the internet and other media the World Health Organization (WHO) can send out immediate warnings about the newly discovered killer diseases which are being spread by deadly viruses. Health officials are urging the governments of different countries around the world to create an alert for new killer diseases and their threats. In the conclusion to the topic it can be said that “Prevention from these deadly diseases is always better than curing them”.

Probably considered to be the main advantage the internet has brought about is the accumulative sharing of disease prevention information across geographical barriers. Scientists can now share their studies and findings with the rest of the world through the internet. This allows people who are researching disease prevention to also look into the medical recommendations and the natural remedies too.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

National Free Screening For Vascular Disease

A national screening program could help save thousands of lives by diagnosing-and bringing attention to-one of the most undertreated health care concerns for older Americans.

Millions of Americans may have vascular disease without even knowing it, according to the American Vascular Association (AVA). Vascular disease outside the heart kills and cripples tens of thousands of Americans every year despite widely available noninvasive procedures to detect its most common forms: abdominal aortic aneurysm, peripheral arterial disease and carotid artery disease.

- Strokes due to carotid artery disease are the number one cause of disability in this country and the third leading cause of death.

- Abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAA), which affect 15,000 Americans each year, can be permanently cured when diagnosed early, but rupture is fatal in most cases. Congress recently passed legislation for select Medicare patients to undergo an AAA screening. The covered patient population includes men age 65 and over who have smoked more than 100 cigarettes in their lives, plus women with a family history of AAA.

- Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) may cause crippling leg problems and indicate an increased risk for stroke.

Certain conditions are associated with a higher risk of vascular disease, including hypertension, high blood cholesterol, smoking, diabetes, family history of vascular disease, previous heart or leg problem treatments and prior stroke.

AVA’s 2006 National Screening Program will be held May 13 to 20 in more than 250 cities across the country. The free tests for vascular disease are noninvasive, painless and simple. It is recommended that anyone over 55 with risk factors undergo a screening.

AVA created the National Screening Program in an effort to educate the public about major vascular problems, risk factors, prevention and treatment options. Each patient leaves the screening with a copy of his or her Vascular Report Card, completed on-site by a vascular specialist.

“Our national screening program will enable participants to know definitively their level of vascular health,” said Dr. William R. Flinn, Vice Chairman of AVA. “Early detection of vascular disease has great value and can significantly reduce the risk of disability and death.”

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Natural Medicine For ADHD

As ADHD becomes more widely diagnosed, the necessity to find a safe natural medicine for this condition has become a top priority for natural health advocates. Natural cures for ADHD offer a safe and reliable treatment alternative to such common prescription drugs as Ritalin, Concerta and Adderall while still providing the necessary calming capabilities of these conventional medications.

Some of the most promising natural alternatives include: gingko biloba, skullcap, chamomile, gotu kola, and avena sativa. With such a selection of different alternatives, the information provided in this article will hopefully help you choose the natural supplement for ADHD that works for you.

Gingko biloba stands as one of the most popular natural supplements on the market today, mostly due to its ability to benefit the circulatory and nervous systems. Recent studies have shown that the same properties of gingko biloba that benefit the nervous system can also enhance brain activity to act as a natural medicine for ADHD. It has been shown that while the herb can slow mental degeneration, it is also able to increase and optimize brain function. By controlling the nerves in such a manner, gingko biloba becomes a natural supplement for ADHD by allowing the brain to better focus, thereby eliminating the lack of attention associated with ADHD. This effective treatment comes with very few minor side effects (such as headaches), and is considered safe for long term treatment.

Skullcap is another natural remedy for ADHD, which focuses on soothing the nervous system. By slowing down and calming nerves in the brain, a person afflicted with ADHD is better able to control their thought process and focus on tasks requiring full attention. You can use skullcap as a sedative for pain and anxiety relief. There is also a possibility that certain doses of skullcap can help treat heart disease and cancer, but data pertaining to that study is still unproven. Skullcap is widely considered a safe natural supplement for ADHD, with few if any side effects.

Another of the top choices is chamomile. This natural supplement’s primary role is to promote relaxation, and give the mind an overall sense of calmness. This proves effective for ADHD treatment, as calming the brain allows someone who suffers with ADHD to be in more total control of their attention. Chamomile is one of the safest natural supplements available on the market today, and contains no side effects other than a possible allergic reaction.

Gotu kola has recently been proven to be effective in treating childhood forms of ADHD. While this remedy has long been known to prevent and cure Alzheimer’s and other nervous system diseases, new studies have emerged testing concentration and knowledge retention among children with learning disorders who were administered the herb. Many of the participants were noted as having a significant increase in concentration and attention spans after receiving the supplement for twelve weeks. There are no known side effects associated with gotu kola, although an allergic reaction is possible.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Colon – Diseases Of The Colon

The colon or the large intestine extends from the cecum to the rectum. Colon’s main function is to extract water from feces. Colon, also called large bowel, measures 1.5 meters in length. There are various diseases of the colons like colitis, colon cancer, constipation, polyposis, pseudomembranous colitis, ulcerative colitis, diverticulosis, diarrhea, and chronic functional abdominal pain.

The colon consists of various parts. The cecum is found in mammals, birds, and certain reptiles. The appendix is a part of the cecum. The ascending colon is from the cecum to the hepatic flexure and is present on the right side of the abdomen. The transverse mobile colon is attached to the stomach with the help of a wide band of tissue called mesocolon. A descending colon is the part between the splenic flexure to the beginning of the sigmoid colon. The sigmoid colon is between the descending colon and the rectum. The rectum is the last part of the colon.

The colon cancer is the third most common form of cancer and the second most deadly one in the western world. Change in bowel movements like constipation or diarrhea, lower abdominal chronic pain, and blood mixed in feces are some of the early symptoms. Sometimes, without giving any symptoms, the tumor can enlarge and perforate the intestine or block it. Sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy is carried out to detect the presence of colon cancer. A camera or a flexible fiber-optic camera is inserted into the body through the anus to inspect the colon.

Colon cancer can occur due to hereditary reason. Improper diet, consuming loads of meat, fatty food, and lack of fiber, fruit and vegetables in the diet can all cause colon cancer. It is usually the people of the western world who are prone to colon cancer due to their nutrition-less diet. Even chain smokers and drinkers are prone to colon cancer.

There are various ways of reducing the risk against colon cancer. Some of them include eating fresh fruits and vegetables, consuming calcium rich products, and daily exercise. Aspirin is said to reduce the growth of colon polyps and cancers of the colon, stomach, and esophagus. But it may also cause bleeding of the intestine, and ulcer. The symptoms are usually avoided by the people, but it is important to consult the doctor immediately when such symptoms occur, since the survival rates for early detection of colon cancer is five times more than that of late stage cancer.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

The Diagnosis and Treatment of Sleep Apnea

How can I tell if I have sleep apnea and how can I treat it?

Diagnosis

The typical patient with sleep apnea is an overweight middle-aged male with a neck size of more than 17 inches. However, the condition is also common in women and not all sufferers are overweight. Almost everybody who has sleep apnea is a snorer, often a very heavy snorer. Pauses in breathing during sleep are commonly noticed by a bed partner but this history is often lacking and up to five “events” per hour are considered normal.

One of the more consistent symptoms is “nonrestorative sleep” meaning that the patient wakes in the morning feeling unrefreshed no matter how much he slept during the night. Excessive daytime sleepiness is common in sleep apnea of any severity but some patients complain of fatigue rather than sleepiness. However, many patients with severe sleep apnea have no complaint of sleepiness or fatigue.

The most accurate diagnostic tool, polysomnography, can confirm the diagnosis and assist the doctor in identifying the type of sleep apnea present. In the past, this test was only done in hospitals and in specialized sleep laboratories. There are now portable sleep recording systems that can perform unattended polysomnography in the patient’s home, but in-laboratory testing with a technician present remains the standard and is required by many insurers including Medicare before they will pay for treatment of sleep apnea.

With advances in portable electronics, patients can now use a small device called a pulse oximeter, which is attached to a fingertip to measure the oxygen saturation of the blood (percent of the total hemoglobin that is combined with oxygen). This non-intrusive monitor measures the difference in the color of the oxygenated and of the deoxygenated hemoglobins. Recordings of blood oxygen saturation during sleep may give an estimate of the severity of the problem although it’s not been the most reliable screening tool.

Treatment

There are a variety of treatments for sleep apnea, depending on an individual’s medical history and the severity of the disorder. Most treatment regimens begin with lifestyle changes, such as avoiding alcohol and medications that relax the central nervous system (for example, sedatives and muscle relaxants), losing weight, and quitting smoking.

Some people are helped by special pillows or devices that keep them from sleeping on their backs. Some cases are treated with oral appliances to keep the airway open during sleep.

If these conservative methods are inadequate, doctors often recommend continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP). A face mask is attached to a tube and a machine that blows pressurized air into the mask and through the airway to keep it open. There are also surgical procedures that can be used to remove tissue and widen the airway. Some individuals may need a combination of therapies to successfully treat their sleep apnea.

In conclusion, sleep apnea left untreated can be life threatening. Excessive daytime sleepiness can cause people to fall asleep at inappropriate times, such as while driving. Sleep apnea also appears to put individuals at risk for stroke and transient ischemic attacks (TIAs, also known as “mini – strokes”), and is associated with coronary heart disease, heart failure, irregular heartbeat, heart attack, gout and high blood pressure.

Although there is no cure for sleep apnea, recent studies show that successful treatment can reduce the risk of heart and blood pressure problems.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Herpes Is Not A Death Sentence

Everyday the number of people around the world that find that they have herpes is staggering. Over 50% of the white population, over 70% of the African American population and over 60% of the Japanese population have herpes. What most people don’t know is that it is not a death sentence. OF course people know that they won’t die from herpes but you would think that they were going to die the way that they act.

Most average citizens know that there is a genital herpes and many understand that there is also a herpes that affects the lip and eyes of either one or both sides of the face. That’s right cold sore or fever blisters are actually herpes. So how do people get these? The answer to that question varies. Sometimes it is picked up through sexual contact from genital to genital or it can be oral to genital and it can also be mouth to mouth. By the time that children are 4 years old they are exposed to the herpes virus in some shape or form through day care, school groups and other kids activities.

So what should you really be thinking if you just found out that you have herpes? The answer is that many times the mental anguish of herpes far outweighs the physical aspect of it. Genital herpes is a cold sore on the genitals that usually lasts about 7 days and often reoccurs every six months and can be attributed to a weakened state of the immune system that is often found with stress. Many people often claim that too much sugar or lack of sleep can bring on an outbreak.

If you just had your first outbreak then there could be many different roads that you will travel. For many they have one outbreak – the initial one and then they never have another herpes outbreak. For some it can be more persistent and troublesome. There are products on the market today that can really help with outbreaks. However in our opinion the natural based or herbal based treatments are more effective at eliminating the outbreaks. Does this mean that they cure herpes? Cure is strong word but for many that use natural based herpes treatments they never have an outbreak again. Whether that is controlling the outbreaks or killing the viruses we don’t know but for many they never have another outbreak and that is vital.

Point being that there are many things that a person that now has herpes can do to prevent further outbreaks and as time goes on they do not feel the mental aspects of finding out that they have herpes as well.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Autism – Is There A Link With Immunizations?

Autism is a neurological, developmental disorder, which can inhibit the normal developmental growth of individuals. Symptoms of autism include impairments in social skills, as well as communication skills, repetitive behaviors, and poor speech patterns. Because the severity of the symptoms will vary, some individuals diagnosed with autism may be able to live on their own, while others become totally reliant on someone to care for them. While there have been theories that autism may be caused by immunizations, there has been no scientific data found to link the two together.

Research has been conducted to find a connection between autism and immunizations and research will be continued to discover what causes this damaging disorder. However, none of the data collected, from the research conducted so far, has been able to prove this theory. The National Childhood Encephalopathy Study was investigated in 1997. The study was to find a connection between neurological function and the measles vaccine. Researchers did not find any connection between the two and if anything, only confirmed that the measles vaccine did not contribute to any neurological disorders or dysfunction.

Several other studies done over the course of the next nine years were also conducted to find the link between immunizations and autism. Again, none of these have shown as strong link between the two. One of these studies, conducted in 1998 by Wakefield and colleagues, suggested that the MMR vaccine caused intestinal abnormalities and developmental regression in children within a few weeks of receiving the MMR.

However, this study had its problems, including the fact that only 12 children were used in the study, they did not use any healthy children for control subjects, and at least 4 out of the 12 children involved had behavioral problems before they experienced any symptoms of bowel abnormalities. Due to the fact that so much was wrong with the research, many of the researches retracted their opinions of the results and none of the results gained can be used as supporting evidence.

What does all of this mean? Generally, for any theory to be proved, scientific data must point one toward the answer. None of the research conducted in trying to find a link has been proven. Many studies are going on that are following the theory that autism is linked to a genetic abnormality.

Recently, a study was conducted on over 30,000 Japanese children, born in Yokohama between 1988 and 1996, that has really taken hold as proof that there is no connection between the MMR and autism. Basically, what this study shows is that even after the MMR was replaced with single vaccines, the number of children diagnosed with autism has continued to rise. What this means is that parents should no longer be worried they are putting their children in danger when they get the MMR.

The fact is that throughout the years of research, not one study can prove that there is a link between the triple immunization, MMR, and autism. The research will continue, however, for the cause of autism in the hope that we will not just find a cause, but a cure, as well.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)

PCOS is a disease that effects up to 10% of pre-menopausal woman.  It is a female hormonal disorder and is the forming of multiple abnormal ovarian cysts on the ovaries.  Most of the cysts are harmless as they are merely fluid-filled sacs containing immature eggs that have attached to the ovary instead of releasing the egg.  However, some cysts can continue to grow without dissolving or disintegrating on its own and start to haemorrhage which is extremely painful and dangerous.

PCOS can be identified and confirmed by means of an ultra sound or scan of the abdomen of a woman.  Symptoms which can indicate that you could be suffering from PCOS is the following:

·        irregular/heavy or absent periods,

·        ovarian cysts,

·        excessive weight gain, obesity,

·        acne,

·        growths from the skin,

·        brown skin patches,

·        high cholesterol levels,

·        exhaustion or lack of mental alertness,

·        decreased sex drive,

·        excessive facial or body hair,

·        male pattern hair loss and excess male hormones.

PCOS is a disease caused by hormonal defects or imbalances.  Symptoms may vary from woman to woman, therefore it does not mean you have to suffer from all of the above to have the disease.  Some woman only have some of the symptoms in a light form, where some experience more severe symptoms.

It has been established that the cause of PCOS is in insulin resistance.  It has also since been published in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology in 2000, that up to 40% of woman with PCOS have either impaired glucose tolerance or Type 2 Diabetes by age 40.  This makes this disease rather serious and should be monitored thoroughly.  Furthermore, high levels of insulin causes the ovaries to produce large amounts of testosterone which prevents the release of the eggs each month when ovulation should be taking place, thus forming the cysts on the ovaries, and thus resulting in infertility.

There is no known cure for PCOS at present.  According to medical studies, the only solution at present is to correctly identify the disease and to treat the symptoms.  There are various treatment options for the various degrees of the disease.  A healthy balanced diet and good exercise plan is a good start.  It is important that you regularly visit your doctor for blood tests to monitor your insulin levels in your blood and seek alternative treatment options suitable to your condition…

Read more about PCOS and infertility at :  (www.myinfertilitystory.com-Resources of Male and Female Infertility TreatmentInfo)

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Genital Herpes – How Prevalent Is It And What Should You Do?

Genital herpes is a topic not readily discussed in the course of normal conversation however, if you’re aged 25 and over, and are sexually active with multiple partners then it would be wise to be tested for genital herpes.

A recent study in Australia ( May 2006 ) revealed at least one in eight people people in that country have genital herpes. If that sounds alarming then it should be. A first nation-wide study also found herpes was most prevalent in people aged 35 to 44 and city folk were more likely to be carrying the virus than their “country cousins.”

So what to do? Being a little less promiscuous could be the answer but this would only be a superficial fix. The problem lies in the fact that at least 80 per cent of people who have genital herpes don’t know they have it. And it’s fair to say those who contract the virus do so innocently. Affected people who pass it on and are unaware they have it, don’t experience the symptons. The obvious answer once again is to get tested especially if you’ve had multiple partners.

Why are people reluctant to be tested? Is there are kind of aura of shame with knowing you have genital herpes? Medical experts will tell ou don’t be embarrassed; the sooner you have the condition treated the better. Makes sense. So why don’t people get tested or why do they delay the process? Maybe more educational programs should be put in place but from where I sit, I think the proper authorities have performed a good job in making the community aware of their responsibilities in this area.

The news is not so good for women. Twice as many women are likely to contract genital herpes than men simply because of their physiological make up. This doesn’t suggest men have less responsibility in getting tested than women. It’s a two-way street.

The study found the prevalence of herpes varies from country to country with genital herpes more prevalent in some while oral herpes was confirmed at a higher rate in others.

Get over any short time embarrassment you may experience initially and do the sensible thing; not just if you have multiple partners: if it doesn’t feel right, consult your doctor. Sound advice for mine.

Dean Caporella is a professional Journalist and Sportscaster who takes an interest in a wide range of subjects. “Infection and disease can be a morbid subject to touch on,” Dean says “but the truth is it’s part of human society and we need to stay informed.” Get the news, views and reviews at www.yourinfectionsite.com

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

DuPont, Teflon and the potential impact of a class action lawsuit

In the 1930’s DuPont, a U.S. firm, invented and began to market a substance called Teflon.  Teflon is used today primarily as a non-stick coating for pots, pans and other cookware, though Teflon also has applications as a coating for textile based products such as clothes, apparel, carpeting and furniture.  When manufacturing Teflon a chemical called perfluorooctanioc acid, or PFOA is used, though Teflon and PFOA are not the same – PFOA is a chemical, Teflon is a name brand.  This chemical, which some scientist have said is a likely human carcinogen, is the reason lawsuits have been filed.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency addresses PFOA, or “C8” as it is sometimes called, giving specific attention to its potential harmful effects.  The EPA points out that they are unaware of any information that the general public is being exposed to PFOA through the routine use of non-stick cookware.  The website also says that the EPA knows of no reason for consumers to stop using non-stick cookware.  The EPA points out that Teflon is not PFOA, but that PFOA is used in the manufacture of Teflon.

DuPont also denies the claims that Teflon or the PFOA contained in the Teflon causes cancer, saying that their product is safe.  However, in 2004, DuPont did agree to an out of court settlement in a class action suit brought on behalf of approximately 50,000 residents living near a DuPont plant in West Virginia.  The basis of this class action was that DuPont had polluted the water in the Ohio River south of their plant with PFOA and that this had resulted in birth defects and other hazards, though DuPont admitted no liability in settling this suit.  Given the resolution of this class action, it is not surprising that attention has now been focused on Teflon and the PFOA contained within it.

The main result has been that a number of lawsuits have been filed across the US alleging that DuPont failed to properly warn of the potential hazards of the exposure to PFOA in cookware.  On May 12, 2006, a class action lawsuit was filed in the United States District Court located in Des Moines, Iowa.

The basis of the suit is the allegation that DuPont knew of the harm exposure to PFOA could cause and that the PFOA in Teflon could become toxic when the cookware reached certain temperatures that are easily attainable on a household stovetop.  The lawsuit also alleges that in addition to having this knowledge, DuPont repeatedly lied to the public and government in saying that Teflon was safe.   The plaintiffs in the class action lawsuit are asking the Court to:

1. establish a fund to provide for the independent study of the harmful effects of Teflon

2. immediately cease the manufacture and distribution of Teflon

3. to replace or compensate the owner of any Teflon coated product, and

4. to provide warning labels indicating the potential harmful effects of Teflon.

However, despite the numerous allegations raised in the suit and the relief that has been requested, the lawsuit does not allege that anyone has become ill or that the PFOA in the Teflon has ever made anyone sick, the crux of the lawsuit is that the potential for injury may exist.

The lawsuit also alleges that DuPont has concealed documentation that addresses the harmful effects of the PFOA in Teflon.  While the suit does not specify a specific dollar amount, it has been estimated that the suit, if successful, could cost DuPont in excess of $5 billion.

DuPont has long contended and continues to maintain the position that Teflon has a proven 40 year track record and that it is safe and non-harmful.  DuPont will be filing an answer responding to the allegations contained in the complaint.  As the suit has been filed as a class action, the Plaintiff’s will be arguing that it should be certified as a class [a class action cannot be maintained without judicial certification] thereby giving the attorneys in the case the ability to argue on behalf of potentially millions of consumers and to also argue and present evidence that they may have been harmed through their use of Teflon and Teflon coated products.  DuPont has made it clear that they will fight certification as a class action for these lawsuits.

On DuPont’s website there is a long overview of Teflon and PFOA.   On the website, DuPont has provided a basis for what will likely be the basis of any defense in the case in that they say that independent studies have repeatedly shown that no detectable levels of PFOA could be found in two independent studies.  The website goes on to point out that when the United States Food and Drug Administration conducted testing that, under non-standard and abusive conditions, only minute levels of PFOA could be found.  On their web page, DuPont even points out that the American Heart Association recommends cooking with non-stick cookware.

A quick search on Google for near any variation of “DuPont,” “lawsuit,” and “Teflon” provides more than 60,000 results.  Many of the results are current news articles focused on not only the current lawsuit that has been filed seeking federal class action status for numerous plaintiffs, but also the prior DuPont lawsuit where the class settled over PFOA allegedly found in the Ohio River.  As well, you will find a number of web sites put up by attorneys seeking to recruit members of the class and also a number of websites focused on DuPont’s alleged suppression of documentation showing that PFOA is harmful to the general public and that toxic exposure could happen as a result of exposure to the non-stick Teflon coated cookware.  This case continues to gain interest as a result of its potential long reaching impact.

This case is quite interesting for a number of reasons.  Clearly, DuPont, having paid many of millions of dollars to settle a suit related to PFOA exposure takes this matter quite seriously and recognizes the potential exposure by way of this lawsuit.  The scope and potential impact of this case is perhaps one of the most far reaching of any class action ever filed in the United States.  There have been class actions in the past that have had a far reaching impact based upon the members of the class; however, this Teflon case has the potential to reach even further – clearly into the majority of the homes in the United States.

Teflon, in its 40 year history has become a mainstay of cooking so much to the point that societies’ heart friendly approach to cooking and dieting frequently starts with an item of non-stick cookware.  As a result of this homes in which there are an absence of non-stick cookware will be at a minimum.  It is a result of this that legal experts speculate that if the lawsuit is successful and DuPont is required to replace or compensate the owners of Teflon coated non-stick cookware that the financial exposure could be upwards of $5 billion dollars.  This suit will likely be ongoing for some time; however, there will be numerous opportunities for the case end.  The first of these events will soon be occurring as the initial hearings in the matter will be focused on determine whether the plaintiffs will be granted class action status for their claims.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Medication And Therapeutic Activities Can Make An Important Difference In The Lives Of People With Alzheimer’s Disease

Many people understand that getting a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease and treatment with an FDA-approved prescription medication may help slow the progression of the disease’s symptoms. But did you know that caregivers can complement treatment with activities that may help reconnect their loved ones to daily life?

“In addition to obtaining a diagnosis and beginning medication, it’s important that caregivers plan activities to share with their loved one, like playing games and going on outings,” explained Eric Pfeiffer, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry and Founding Director of the Suncoast Gerontology Center at the University of South Florida Medical Center. “Even doing simple tasks like baking cookies or feeding pets can help to give a patient with Alzheimer’s a sense of self-esteem or self-worth.”

Engaging a person with Alzheimer’s in activities that they enjoy may reduce many of the symptoms of the disease, such as agitation, frustration and wandering, according to the Fischer Center for Alzheimer’s Research Foundation. These therapeutic activities can include:

- Playing music of the person’s choosing

- One-on-one interaction

- Playing videotapes of family members

- Walking and light exercise

- Pet therapy

“When I noticed that my wife, Dorothee, was showing symptoms of Alzheimer’s, I took her to the doctor,” said caregiver, Dick Lundgren. Dorothee was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and began treatment with Namenda (memantine HCl). Namenda is the only medication approved for the moderate and severe stages of the disease. In addition to the benefits they’ve seen from Namenda, Dick finds that taking Dorothee for daily walks in their neighborhood makes an important difference in her quality of life. “Not only do the walks get her outside in the fresh air, they allow her to get moving, to get some exercise,” said Dick.

Dick also knows firsthand that activities shared by both the patient and caregiver can benefit the caregiver as well. “The walks have given us a chance to spend quality time together, and make me feel like I’m really making a difference in her life.”

“Above and beyond the benefit to the patient,” added Dr. Pfeiffer, “sharing in activities can help caregivers feel more connected to their loved ones.”

Namenda is the only medication approved for the moderate to severe stages of Alzheimer’s disease and is available by prescription in the U.S. For more information, ask your doctor about Namenda or go to www.Namenda.com. Individual results may vary by patient.

Patients who are hypersensitive to memantine HCl or any ingredients used in its formulation should not take Namenda. The most common adverse events reported with Namenda vs. placebo were dizziness, confusion, headache, and constipation. Patients with severe kidney disease should take a reduced dosage of Namenda.

Caregiver Dick Lundgren and his wife, Dorothee, enjoy spending quality time together.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Nail Fungus Infection, Treatment and Prevention

Nail fungus is very common and usually appears with the toes; although it can also spread to the finger nails. It can sometimes be difficult to spot although a symptom which is pretty early to appear is a yellow discoloration of the nail.

Speaking from experience, this is not a definite sign that you have nail fungus, which is why it is important to seek medical advice. In my case it turned out to be damage of the nail root (as a result of sporting activities) which highlights this fact.

If you do have a nail fungus infection, the symptoms will progress into the nail breaking apart and the nail becoming thick. The color of the nail may also darken and become more discolored.

With the internet being such a wealthy source of information, you will more than likely find numerous remedies and treatment solutions for nail fungus. However, it is recommended that a doctor is consulted to properly diagnose the infection first and then to recommend the correct treatment required.

But how do you go about preventing nail fungus from occurring in the first place?

- Try and maintain a strong immune system and healthy body. This provides the best opportunity to fight off many infections.

- Keep your nails well maintained; clean and trimmed.

- If you have an injury to the nail make sure that you treat that injury so that nail fungus does not have an opportunity to get in.

- Keep your feet dry and cool, and make sure that they are cleaned regularly. Fungus likes to grow in warm, damp areas so make sure that any footwear and socks are also kept clean. There are powders that can be purchased that can help prevent fungal infection when applied to footwear.

If you think that you may have fungal nail infection, make sure you book an appointment to see your doctor as soon as you can. Don’t put it off until next week or next month. The sooner you start treatment the sooner the infection can be removed. It is also important to maintain the treatment provided to you by a doctor if it is determined that you have fungal nail infection. The infection may require treatment for some time (months), so it is important that you are committed to staying with the treatment routine.

There is nothing to be ashamed about if you have a fungal nail infection. It is a common occurence that millions of people suffer from. Many people will put off seeking professional help as a consequence of this but it is important not to do so.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

The Symptoms of Dementia

Dementia is the progressive decline in cognitive function due to damage or disease in the brain beyond what might be expected from normal aging. Particularly affected areas may be memory, attention, language and problem solving, although particularly in the later stages of the condition, affected persons may be disoriented in time, not knowing what day, week, month or year it is, not knowing where they are not knowing who they are. Symptoms of dementia can be classified as either reversible or irreversible depending upon the etiology of the disease. Less than 10% of all dementias are reversible. Dementia is a non-specific term that encompasses many disease processes, just as fever is attributable to many etiologies.

Early symptoms of dementia often consist in changes in personality, or in behavior. Often dementia can be first evident during an episode of delirium. There is a higher prevalence of eventually developing dementia in individuals who experience an acute episode of confusion while hospitalized.

Dementia can affect language, comprehension, motor skills, short-term memory, ability to identify commonly used items, reaction time, personality traits, and executive functioning. Even without signs of general intellectual decline, delusions are common in dementia (15-56% incidence rate in Alzheimer’s type, and 27-60% incidence rate in multi-infarct dementia). Often these delusions take the form of monothematic delusions, like mirrored self-misidentification.

Elderly people can also react with dementia-like symptoms to surgery, infections, sleep deprivation, irregular food intake, dehydration, loneliness, change in domicile or personal crises. This is called delirium, and many if not most dementia patients also have a delirium on top of the physiologial dementia, adding to the symptoms. The delirium can go away or greatly improve when treated with tender care, improved food and sleeping habits, but this does not affect the alterations in the brain. Affected persons may also show signs of psychosis or depression. It is important to be able to differentiate between delirium and dementia.

Proper differential diagnosis between the types of dementia will require, at the least, referral to a specialist, e.g. a geriatric internist, geriatric psychiatrist or neurologist. However, there are some brief 5-15 minute tests that have good reliability and can be used in the office or other setting to evaluate cognitive status.

Except for the treatable types listed above, there is no cure to this illness, although scientists are progressing in making a type of medication that will slow down the process.

Disclaimer – The information presented here should not be interpreted as medical advice. If you or someone you know suffers from Dementia, please consult your physician for the latest treatment options.

Permission is granted to reprint this article as long as no changes are made, and the entire resource box is included.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Bird Flu Vaccines: What is Taking So Long?

With the current development of a vaccine for the H5N1 strain of the Bird Flu Virus still 2 to 3 years away. We don’t have much of a choice but to really be very cautious that the H5N1 strain does not mutate with a human flu virus.

If the outbreak we fear does happen without the vaccines ready yet, all we can possibly do is just quarantine the geographical area where the virus is rampant. Give them the vaccines that have been developed and prevent them from spreading it further. This will only work if the outbreak is limited geographically. When the outbreak does happen to 10,000 places, we’re in Big S%T.

The development of a vaccine is so slow because we still use methods dating back 50 years ago. Ironically this is because they still use chicken eggs to develop the vaccines. New methods are on the horizon, instead of using chicken eggs, they may be able to use mammal cells.

Scientist would be storing the mammal cells in large numbers. So that when a flu strain or threat develops, they can just inject it to the cells. The injected cells will then burst and die. The scientist will then harvest the proteins of the influenza and distribute them as vaccines already.

Vaccines made from DNA are really appealing because they could be made and administered quickly. However this kind of vaccine is still being tested on humans. DNA vaccine works by attaching itself to a segment of our DNA. It contains the coded information of the flu virus’ protein.

Now you would want to ask why we would vaccinate everyone instead of just treating them.  This is because giving vaccines is cheaper compared to treating everyone. With a vaccine the person only needs one or two doses in total. Compared to giving two doses a day for a period of time to treat the viral problem. It is also pretty stupid to wait for someone to suffer before treating the person. The person might not even live to see the day just to receive the medication.

The current stand of some people however is that why waste precious money on a threat that may never materialize. The best answer here is it’s better to be prepared than be sorry.

In the last 87 years we have had three pandemics. So it’s better to prepare for something that could be really catastrophic. The longer our world goes without a pandemic; there is more chance that it could occur in the upcoming years.

That’s why we should be very thankful for every company out there trying to create a vaccine for a pandemic that might hit us. Rather than be worried of money that might get wasted.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

New Hope For Psoriasis Sufferers

Warm weather normally means a return to shorts and T-shirts and relaxing trips to the beach, but for the millions of Americans with psoriasis, it can be a more stressful time of the year.

Psoriasis is a noncontagious disease of the immune system that causes red, scaly patches to develop on some or all areas of the skin. According to the National Psoriasis Foundation, close to five million adults in the U.S. have psoriasis, and up to 260,000 are diagnosed every year. The disease can be painful and disabling, both physically and emotionally.

There is no cure for psoriasis, but there is a variety of therapies available to improve and reduce its symptoms. Treatment approaches include creams or ointments for the skin, exposing the skin to light therapy, and oral and injectable treatments. Research indicates that more than 70 percent of patients are not completely satisfied with their current treatment.

A new therapy called Taclonex (calcipotriene 0.005% and betamethasone dipropionate 0.064%) may offer new hope to psoriasis patients. Most people are candidates for topical therapies that are applied to the skin. These are usually the first line of defense in managing the disease. Taclonex is an ointment that combines two widely used ingredients for slowing down excessive skin-cell growth, and for reducing the inflammation and redness associated with psoriasis. The treatment only needs to be applied once a day, and was found in clinical studies to be more effective and tolerable than its individual ingredients alone.

“Taclonex is a very promising new treatment option for people with psoriasis,” said Mark Lebwohl, MD, Chairman of the Department of Dermatology at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. “It is rapidly effective, with most patients experiencing improvement within the first week of use,” said Dr. Lebwohl.

The most common side effect experienced with Taclonex involved irritation of the skin.

If you have psoriasis or are experiencing symptoms of psoriasis, seek the advice of a dermatologist who can recommend appropriate therapy.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Pain Relief – Fibromyalgia Pain Treatments For Pain

If you hurt all over your body, and frequently feel exhausted, gone through numerous tests to find out what is wrong with you and even then, your doctor can’t find anything specifically wrong with you; your pain may very well be a result of Fibromyalgia.

If you experience tender points on places on places like your neck, shoulders, back, hips, arms or legs that hurt when touched you may have Fibromyalgia. If you have other symptoms, such as trouble sleeping, morning stiffness, headaches, and problems with thinking and memory, sometimes called “fibro fog,” you may have Fibromyalgia.

Well, not that this is a comforting thought but you are not alone. Over ten million Americans suffer from the symptoms of Fibromyalgia pain.

This condition overall is characterized by chronic pain felt throughout your entire body, mainly in the muscles and ligaments. Pain is typically felt in your neck, back, shoulders, hands, and pelvic area; but anywhere in the body can be affected with pain.

Fibromyalgia sufferers also endure general fatigue and sleep disturbances. So, it is easy to understand why most sufferers seek Fibromyalgia pain treatments that work for them. Thankfully, various Fibromyalgia pain treatments for pain relief exist.

If you are one of five to seven percent of the population who suffer from Fibromyalgia, the following Fibromyalgia pain treatment information may help you find and get pain relief.

Medications Used for Fibromyalgia Pain Treatments for Pain Relief.

Pain treatment is generally in the form of a pill. Many people agree that the best Fibromyalgia pain treatments for pain relief come in pill form. There are many medications that are used as Fibromyalgia pain treatments for pain relief, but it is necessary for you to visit your doctor to determine the extent of and devise a treatment plan for your specific condition with your doctor and receive a prescription, as over-the-counter drugs are not usually strong enough to alleviate the pain associated with Fibromyalgia.

Antidepressant’s (Paxil, Prozac), sleep medications (Lunesta, Ambien), anti-epileptics (Neurontin), and muscle relaxants (Flexeril) can all be used as Fibromyalgia pain treatments for pain relief. Many of these medications relieve sufferer pain so you can sleep at night, therefore allowing for the deep-level sleep needed for tissue repair and other body functions specific to your condition and level of pain.

Additional Methods of Fibromyalgia Pain Treatments for Pain Relief.

There are also other methods of Fibromyalgia pain treatments for pain relief. Sufferers may use these alternative methods along with medication, or by themselves. Alternative methods of Fibromyalgia pain treatments for pain relief include:

Physical therapy

Acupressure and acupuncture

Massage   Exercise

Chiropractic care

Osteopathic manipulation

Occupational therapy

Biofeedback

It is completely up to you the patient as to type of Fibromyalgia pain treatment your want to pursue. However, talking to your doctor is highly recommended so your doctor can steer you in the right direction.

Although, the symptoms of Fibromyalgia may never completely disappear, it is comforting to know that Fibromyalgia pain treatments for pain relief exist and are only a doctor’s visit away.

For more information about Fibromyalgia pain treatments for pain relief, visit the website for The National Fibromyalgia Association. There is no need to live in pain a minute longer.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Seizure Disorder Epilepsy

A chronic neurological condition, Epilepsy is characterized by recurrent and unprovoked seizures. Epilepsy is most commonly controlled through the use of various medications, but can sometimes patients will even undergo surgical procedures to try and further control the condition.

As mentioned above the main characteristic of epilepsy is the presence of recurrent and unprovoked seizures, this is the main diagnosis requirement. A seizure is a temporary alteration in brain functions that expresses itself into a changed mental state, tonic or clonic movement among other symptoms. Seizures are due to temporary abnormal electrical activity of a group of brain cells.

Typically tests such as: EEG, brain MRI, SPECT, PET, and magnetoencephalography to help constrict the affect area of the brain as well as classify the epileptic syndrome. All of these different tests however, are not actually usefull in the orginal diagnosis. The ‘Platinum’ standard for diagnosis is through the long-term video-EEG monitoring for epilepsy. High costs and inconvenience however make this method not as wide spread as one might think.

Although all of the symptoms of epilepsy are not known, many predisposing factors have been identified. These factors include brain damage that result from malformations during:

- brain development

- brain tumor

- high fever

- head trauma

- penetrating wounds of the brain

- intoxication

- acute or inborn disturbances of metabolism

- neurosurgical operations

- bacterial or viral encephalitis

- stroke

It is also known that hereditary or genetic factors also play a large role in the prevalence of seizures. Typically, Epilepsy is treated with medication that is prescribed by a physician. Generally primary caregivers, neurologists, and neurosurgeons care for people with epilepsy. In many cases a special diet or the implantation of a stimulator of the vagus nerve can help to reduce the likelyhood of concurrent seizures. Good emergency response is extremely important to help the individual from self-injuring him/herself; injuries such as falling off edges, or injury from sharp objects are common.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Major Discovery: How Carcinogens Cause Cancer

The current belief in medical research holds that most cancers are caused by exposure to carcinogens, and that carcinogens cause cancer by damaging DNA.  However, the huge effort and billions of dollars invested by the NIH, private foundations, and pharmaceutical companies in searching for damaged DNA in cancer has produced few discoveries and little benefits to the public. The reason for this limited success is very simple. The cause of most cancers is not damaged DNA.

Hunting for Genetic Mutations and Cancer

A little background:

1. What is a gene?  A gene is an assembly line that produces a protein.  A gene is made out of DNA.

2. What are proteins? Proteins are the major building blocks of cells.

3. What is a mutated gene? A mutated gene is a modified assembly line.  A modification can take many forms, such as removing an essential part of the assembly line, replacing an important part with junk, etc.  Very rarely a mutation is beneficial to the organism (X-Men, Evolution, Lance Armstrong?).  In all other cases, a mutated gene is considered damaged DNA.

Current belief:

What is the cause of cancer?  The word cause has two meanings.  The first refers to the elements in the environment which impact our body, for instance, tobacco, x-ray radiation, asbestos, other chemicals, etc.  These elements are called carcinogens.  Today, hundreds of substances are classified as carcinogens.  The other meaning of the word cause refers to the internal element of the body, which is the first to collapse under the attack of the carcinogens. Let’s call this element our “Achilles heel.”

The current belief in medical research holds that most cancers are caused by exposure to carcinogens, and that carcinogens cause cancer by mutating genes.  In other words, according to the current belief, the structural integrity of our genes is our Achilles heel, and therefore, the first internal element to collapse under the attack of the carcinogens.  This belief is so ingrained that the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), an institute at the NIH, recently stated that “all cancers are based on genetic mutations in body cells.”  Moreover, a search on PubMed, the search engine for scientific papers in life science, with the keywords “Mutation” AND “cancer” produced 86,490 papers and 12,238 reviews. Mutation hunting is also a big business. Look at the NIH budget allocated to discoveries of genetic mutations, the number of biotech companies chasing genetic mutations, the magnitude of the licensing agreements between biotech and pharmaceutical companies aimed to utilize newly discovered genetic mutations, and the number of stories in the media on genetic mutations and their so-called “link” to disease. However, this huge effort and billions of dollars has produced few discoveries and little benefits to the public. The reason for this limited success is simple. The cause of most cancers is not a genetic mutation.  Our Achilles heel is not the structural integrity of our genes.

The story of the BRCA1 gene is a typical example of mutation hunting.

The Mystery of BRCA1

Genes, in general, produce proteins, which are the building blocks of cells. The concentration of proteins is tightly regulated. A mutated or physically altered gene produces an abnormal concentration of its protein, which may lead to disease. In 1994, Mark Skolnick, PhD, discovered the BRCA1 gene (BRCA1 is short for BReast CAncer 1). Following the discovery, scientists observed an abnormally low level of the BRCA1 protein in breast cancer tissues. The BRCA1 protein is a cell cycle suppressor, which means that the protein prevents cell replication. This observation created a lot of excitement. At the time, scientists believed that they were on the verge of finding the cause of breast cancer. The reasoning was that breast cancer patients must have a mutated BRCA1 gene, that is, a defected BRCA1 assembly line, which would explain the decreased production of the protein, and the excessive replication of breast cancer cells in tumors.

In the United States, 180,000 cases of breast cancer are diagnosed each year. However, the BRCA1 gene is mutated in less than 5% of these cases. In more than 95% of breast cancer patients the gene is not mutated, the assembly line is not defected.

So here is the mystery. If the gene is not mutated in the great majority of the breast cancer patients, why are the tumors showing low levels of the BRCA1 protein? Today, this is one of the biggest mysteries in cancer research.

The BRCA1 gene is not unique. Many normal (perfect shape, non-mutated) genes exhibit a mysterious abnormal (increased or decreased) production of proteins in cancer. Moreover, studies also report abnormal gene expression of normal genes in other diseases, such as atherosclerosis, obesity, osteoarthritis, type II diabetes, alopecia, type I diabetes, multiple sclerosis, asthma, lupus, thyroiditis, inflammatory bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, and graft versus host disease.

According to Dr. Raxit J. Jariwalla in his European Journal of Cancer paper: (Jariwalla RJ. Microcompetition and the origin of cancer. Eur J Cancer. 2005 Jan;41(1):15-9): “The prevalent view of the nature of cancer holds that it is a complex genetic process resulting from the progressive accumulation of mutations in specific cellular genes, such as proto-oncogenes or tumor-suppressor genes, leading to perturbations in processes involving signal transduction, cell cycle regulation, and/or apoptosis.  Genetic instability in tumors has been known for decades, however, the role of genomic instability in causing and promoting tumor growth remains controversial.  Furthermore, although many studies report abnormal gene expression in cancer cells, often, no mutations or chemical modifications are observed around the locus of the dysregulated gene(s), suggesting that a genetic alteration is not the initiating event of cancer.”

So, if a genetic alteration (also called genetic mutation or damaged DNA) is not the initiating event of most cancers, what is this event? And how do carcinogens produce this initiating event?  You can find the answers to these questions at http://www.causeofcancer.org/

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Alcoholism Treatment Options

Medications

The classical use of medications for alcoholism is to encourage abstinence. Antabuse (also known as disulfiram), for instance, prevents the elimination of chemicals which cause severe discomfort when alcohol is ingested, effectively preventing the alcoholic from drinking in significant amounts while they take the medicine. Heavy drinking while on antabuse can result in severe illness and death.

Naltrexone has also been used because it helps curb cravings for alcohol while the person is on it. Both of these, however, have been demonstrated to cause a rebound effect when the user stops taking them. These do allow a person to overcome psychological addictions to alcohol, but they do not treat the neurochemical addiction.

In more recent studies it has been demonstrated that the use of naltrexone while the alcoholic continues to drink can result in extinction of the neurochemical addiction. Referred to as the “Sinclair Method”, this technique is used with good results some US states and in Finland but has failed to penetrate much of the world because of the long-standing bias against any treatment that doesn’t involve detoxification and abstinence.

Rationing

Rationing or other attempts to control use are increasingly ineffective as pathological attachment to the drug develops. Use often continues despite serious adverse health, personal, legal, work-related, and financial consequences.

Detoxification

Detoxification  programs run by medical institutions often involve stays for a number of weeks in specialized hospital wards, where drugs may be used to avoid withdrawal symptoms. In severe cases, detoxification may lead to death. To that point, even a simple “de-tox” can involve seizures, if not properly monitored.

Post Detox Therapy

After detoxification, various forms of group therapy or psychotherapy are recommended to deal with underlying psychological issues leading to alcohol dependence. It is also used to provide the recovering addict with relapse prevention skills.

Aversion therapies may be supported by drugs like Disulfiram, which causes a strong and prompt sensitivity reaction whenever alcohol is consumed. Naltrexone or Acamprosate may improve compliance with abstinence planning by treating the physical aspects of cravings to drink. The standard pharmocopoeia of antidepressants, anxiolytics, and other psychotropic drugs treat underlying mood disorders, neuroses, and psychoses associated with alcoholic symptoms.

Group Counseling

In the mid-1930s, the mutual-help group-counseling approach to treatment began and has become very popular. Alcoholics Anonymous is the best-known example of this movement. Various branches are available for family members of the alcoholic or commonly referred to as the co-dependents. Other groups include LifeRing Secular Recovery and SMART Recovery.

Prevention

Some programs attempt to help problem drinkers before they become dependents. These programs focus on harm-reduction and reducing alcohol intake as opposed to cold-turkey approaches. One such program is called Moderation Management.

Nutritional therapy

Another treatment program is based on nutritional therapy. Many alcohol dependents have insulin resistance syndrome, a metabolic disorder where the body’s difficulty in processing sugars causes an unsteady supply to the blood stream. While the disorder can be treated by a hypoglycemic diet, this can affect behavior and emotions, side-effects often seen among alcohol dependents in treatment. The metabolic aspects of such dependence are often overlooked, resulting in poor results.

Return to normal drinking

Although it has long been argued that alcoholic dependents cannot learn to drink in moderation, research by the U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) indicates a small percentage of individuals in the US whose dependence began more than one year earlier are now drinking in moderation. In contrast, a high percentage who undergo naltrexone use-reduction therapy are capable of normal drinking habits. Use of Naltrexone involves taking the medication an hour before any drinking occurs in order to maintain this.

Societal Impact

Today, alcohol abuse and alcohol dependence are major public health problems in North America, costing the region’s inhabitants, by some estimates, as much as US$170 billion annually. Alcohol abuse and alcohol dependence sometimes cause death, particularly through liver, pancreatic, or kidney disease, internal bleeding, brain deterioration, alcohol poisoning, and suicide. Heavy alcohol consumption by a pregnant mother can also lead to fetal alcohol syndrome, an incurable and damaging condition.

Additionally, alcohol abuse and dependence are major contributing factors for head injuries, motor vehicle accidents, violence and assaults, neurological, and other medical problems.

Alcohol addiction is a treatable disease. If you are an alcoholic or are a family member of an alcoholic, contact your physician for the most current treatments available.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Ringworm: A Non-Crawling Fungus That Can Spread Over The Entire Body

It itches, makes you scratch, but it is not a worm. It is contagious but can be controlled naturally and quickly. Kill the the fungus with a proven natural remedy.

Tinea

A rather common ailment has gone by a very unattractive name and one that is somewhat misleading. The scientific name for this ailment is Tinea; however the more common name is simply Ringworm. Tinea is Latin for ‘growing worm’ and may have led to the more common English translation.

Ringworm Defined

Ringworm is a simple fungal infection that zeros in on several key areas of your body including feet, scalp, nails and in the general area of the groin. The hallmark of ringworm is itching, skin redness and a patchy lesion that is clear in the center.

Transference

The fungal agent associated with ringworm is found among humans and animals. There is also a small variety of ringworm fungus that is found in certain soils. The transference of the fungus from carrier to host generally takes place through direct contact with either the infected animal or individual. Transference can also happen, to a lesser degree, from touching surfaces that the infected person has been in contact with.

Incubation

Scalp ringworm is generally noticed 10-14 days after contact with an infected animal or human while skin ringworm can appear 4-10 days following direct contact.

Prevention

One of the most effective ways to reduce conditions conducive to the spread of ringworm fungus is to keep areas that find common use clean. In the home this would be places like the dining room, living room and bathroom. In school this would be lockers, gyms and gymnastic mats.

Avoid sharing personal items like towels, hairbrushes, hats, and clothing items. If you are involved in school sports consider wearing flip flops when taking a shower or using the pool. You might also make a habit of washing sport uniforms on a regular basis.

When petting animals it is always a good idea to wash your hands or use antibacterial hand gel until hands can be washed.

Learning about how ringworm is spread is a perfect preventative measure because the more you know about how it is spread the less likely you will be to put you or your family at risk. Knowledge is a key preventative step in reducing the incidence of ringworm.

Other Common Names

There have been numerous names given to various aspects of ringworm that many may find surprising; athlete’s foot and jock itch are two such examples. These infections are the result of a classification of fungi known as dermatophytes that gravitate toward dead skin tissues, nails and hair.

Nature’s Assistance

While the purpose of this article is not to diagnose the existence of ringworm or how to treat it from a medical standpoint, we can recommend two natural products that act as a natural anti-fungal agent. The mineral colloidal silver has been shown to kill more than 600 diseases and may be effective in treating ringworm. Another natural product that has show promise in reducing the effects of ringworm is tea tree oil.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Allergies – Antihistamines and How They Work

In this article we’re going to discuss probably the most common form of treatment for allergy sufferers; the use of antihistamines, what they are and how they work in the body to rid people of their allergy symptoms.

The first question most people ask about antihistamines is what they are.  The reason is because when they see these little wonder pills advertised they are seeing the brand name and not what the pill actually is.  The most popular brand names of antihistamines are Clarityn, Zyrtec, Allegra and Benadryl.  There are plenty more though.  The antihistamine industry is a multi billion dollar a year industry because of all the allergy sufferers but this still doesn’t tell us what an antihistamine is.

The best way to explain what an antihistamine is and what it does is to actually break the word down.  Antihistamine is composed of two words, anti and histamine.  Anti means to be against something or act against something.  Which leaves us with what a histamine is.  A histamine is something that your body produces in defense to an attack of allergens.  It is these histamines that bring on the terrible symptoms of sneezing, itching, watery eyes, etc. that we suffer from when we are attacked by these allergens.  Thus, an antihistamine is something that works against the histamines that our body produces.

Your common antihistamine comes in a little pill.  How it actually works is quite amazing.  What these pills do is release a chemical in our body that is very similar to and looks like a histamine to our body.  These look-alike histamines make our body think that we basically have enough of these and keep the receptors in our body from working against them.  In other words they stop the histamines in our body from working, thus relieving the symptoms.

What most people don’t know is that this is not the only function of histamines.  They also play a very important role in the brain, keeping us attentive, alert and awake.  So, if we stopped all of the histamines in the body from working we would basically fall asleep.  This can be especially dangerous when driving a car or operating heavy machinery and in fact, this is exactly what happens when we take old antihistamines.  So if you have any of these laying around in your home, please get rid of them and do not take them.  Those expiration dates on antihistamines are there for a reason.

The good news is, newer forms of antihistamines have a much better effect on your allergies with less effect on your brain.  How this is accomplished is actually very simple.  Some medicines barely make it into the brain from the blood.  This is actually not a good thing with antibiotics for brain infections.  But when research workers figured this out they started to make antihistamines that also had the same properties as antibiotics, thus making it so that very little of the drug makes its way to the brain.  If you read most antihistamine labels today it will say right on it, “non drowsy”.

In our next article in this series we’ll discuss the safety concerns of antihistamines.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Bad Breath – Teach Your Kids Good Oral Hygiene And Prevent The Misery Caused By Halitosis

Poor oral hygiene leads to bad breath and the social ostracising of a child. People are not usually aware that they have bad breath and it is not something that one can mention, even to a friend, without causing offence.

Once anyone is conscious that their breath may smell they become very aware of how they speak and how close they are standing to other people. This unhealthy attitude is so easy to avoid by teaching your children good oral hygiene.

Milk teeth are replaced by adult teeth by the time a child is about 8 years old. The final adult teeth, the wisdom teeth, may appear 10 years later, or may only partially erupt from their gums. Good teeth habits need to start early. These basically include brushing teeth, cutting down on sweet foods and visiting the dentist regularly.

Good teeth, or at least well fitting dentures are essential for comfortable speech and eating. Lots of people have come to assume that bright white teeth are the only good teeth – Not so.

Dentist’s visits are no longer the source of fear for children that they were for their parents or grandparents. Dentists are generally pleasant, if over-paid, professionals. They try their hardest to make their surgery pleasant and relaxing, especially for children.

A large percentage of 11 year old children already have fillings in their teeth. These fillings have a life of 5-10 years, so these individuals will be visiting the dentist regularly for life. Some children have no fillings whatsoever, and this is not because their parents are any more successful in teaching dental hygiene. My own daughter is 19, she eats chocolate and sweets like there is no tomorrow, has thin enamel on her back teeth, cleans her teeth somewhat minimally once a day and she still has no fillings! Just lucky.

The orthodontist and dental braces are feared by parents and children alike. The “Jaws” appearance of some braces leads children to fear name-calling and loss of opportunity with the opposite sex. Parents worry about the cost of all that metalwork.

There are many more ortho-dontal options than there ever were just a few years ago. Do your research, find out your options and do your best for your kids’ long-term health.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Mum – I Have STD

STD, sexually transmitted diseases have been called the 21st century plague.

Sexually transmitted disease includes well-known diseases like gonorrhea and syphilis, but also genital warts, genital herpes and chlamydia.

The stigma of what used to be called venereal diseases has largely gone, partly because everyone knows someone who has had to visit the STD clinic. Nice girls catch STDs, too.

STDs are transmitted by sexual contact. The more people you have sexual contact with, the greater your chance of having sex with someone who has STD and the greater the chance that you will be infected too. You can catch STD if the first person you have sexual intercourse with is infected, so it is not necessarily a sign of sexual license. Check out http://www.std-testing.info for more information.

Most sexually transmitted diseases respond to treatment if caught in the early stages. Some, like syphilis and gonorrhea respond to antibiotics. Genital warts may need to be frozen off with liquid nitrogen. Not all hepatitis infections are treatable.

Many of these diseases have no symptoms. Gonorrhea may cause painful urination in males, but no immediate symptoms in females. Chlamydia has no immediate symptoms in males or females, yet if left untreated will cause infertility and pelvic inflammatory disease in females.

Because of the lack of symptoms, it is advisable for any adult who is sexually active to be tested for STDs. The consequences of a night of passion could be life-long and result in insanity or death at an early age if STDs are not detected and treated.

Diagnosis is simple; a swab is taken and sent for analysis. If the laboratory finds a positive result you will be asked back for treatment. If the result is positive you may be asked for a list of sexual contacts, or be asked to contact anyone you have had sexual relations with, so those people can also be treated.

AIDS/HIV is the sexually transmitted disease that everyone is aware of, but many people forget the older and more common diseases that also kill. Condoms help reduce the risk of STD transmission; they do not remove the risk entirely.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

What You Know About DVT Could Save Your Life

Learning more about deep vein thrombosis, or DVT-a condition that affects two million Americans every year-could save your life.

DVT is a blood clot that develops in the deep veins of the legs or pelvic area or, on rare occasions, the arms.

It is not usually life threatening but it can become so if a blood clot breaks loose, becoming a pulmonary embolism (PE). Many people in the U.S. die within the first hour after a PE occurs-and up to 200,000 Americans die each year.

Who Is at Risk?

According to the Vascular Dis-ease Foundation, risk factors include a lengthy surgery, pregnancy, being over age 40 and sedentary, cancer, use of birth control pills, hormone replacement therapy, a family history of DVT, and spinal cord or other major injuries.

Smoking also increases the risk of DVT, as does obesity, long-distance travel and inherited clotting conditions. The more risk factors you have, the greater your risk.

Signs and Symptoms of DVT

Only about half the people with DVT have typical symptoms. When symptoms do occur, the most common are swelling of one leg, pain or tenderness, skin that is warm to the touch, fullness of the veins just beneath the skin and change in the color of the leg (bluish or very pale). Symptoms like these can develop slowly or suddenly. If you have these symptoms, contact your doctor immediately.

Signs and Symptoms of PE

The symptoms of pulmonary embolism occur quickly and need prompt medical attention. They include shortness of breath, sharp chest pain (usually occurring with inhalation), a feeling of apprehension or anxiety, sudden collapse, rapid pulse, coughing, sweating, and bloody phlegm.

If you experience any of these symptoms, consult a health care professional immediately.

Anticoagulants or blood thinners such as Coumadin, heparin or newer heparin derivatives are effective at helping the body clear the DVT and prevent a PE.

“Prevention is the best medicine for DVT or PE,” said Alain Drooz, M.D., president of the Vascular Disease Foundation. “By being active, keeping well hydrated and proactively discussing your risks with your doctor, you may be able to prevent clots from forming and jeopardizing your health.”

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Trying To Understand ADHD

ADHD is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. It is a mental disorder that approximately three to seven percent of children have. Those that are affected by this disorder are characterized by constant behavior, lots of activity and often thought of as being disobedient. Yet, it is not that the individual is being bad but more so that they cannot control their mental range. Instead of being able to concentrate on one element, they are likely to be thinking about several thus making it quite difficult to concentrate.

This disorder is not just found in children. Many adults are diagnosed with it as well. In adults, it is classified as AADD, or Adult Attention Deficit Disorder. About 30 to 70 percent of all children diagnosed with ADHD will carry on with their disorder through adulthood. It is harder to detect in adults because they have learned to adequately handle the disorder. By learning to live with it and work around it, adults have less of a need for help. Yet, in many cases both children and adults will need medications to help focus attention.

Symptoms of this disorder in children will be such things as inattentiveness, impulsive behavior and constant restlessness. These children have a hard time sitting still or concentrating on just one thing for a very long period of time. In adults, it is more difficult to diagnose. It can be seen in the inability to structure their lies and to plan their daily activities. It is often less of a problem for them to stay attentive and to stop restlessness simply because these are secondary problems to daily planning of tasks.

ADHD is a disorder that can be treated but not cured. It can be lived with or medication may be necessary. Seeking the assistance of medical personnel is necessary in any case.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off