Has the Bird Flu Virus Outbreak Begun?

The bird flu virus has been scaring the wits out of health officials for the past couple of years. The first H5N1 strain developed way back during 1997 at Hong Kong. The first development wasn’t given much of a concern.

Eventually the virus popped back out during 2003. It has first greatly affected a whole number of birds. The birds that became infected died really fast after showing signs of symptoms. The virus also spread quickly towards other flocks as well, causing them to die to.

The people who have had lots of exposure with this infected domesticated birds, naturally became the first human casualties. In fact, the infected have reached 140 in five years time in the Far eats. Eventually killing more than 50 people infected.

What is scaring the scientists now are the recent developments of the bird flu in Turkey. They fear that the virus may have already mutated and the transmission from one human to the other has now been possible. This is because in the span of a week, 15 people were reported to be infected already.

That development definitely scared the officials in Europe. It should also be causing major concern to other countries as well. Neighboring countries are becoming stricter on trucks that are coming from Turkey. The vehicles that pass by are being sprayed with disinfectant.

France has already released a budget to buy vaccines, antiviral and face masks.

However all these preparation being done may still not be that be helpful. The best way to prevent the pandemic from happening is to learn how to isolate the infected area. This is important because the virus may still escape via a human transport or a bird that may cause more contamination.

To calm people down, the number of 15 within a week is not much for concern. If the number reaches more than a 100, it shall be a cause for concern.

There are also many critics about the current medication available to help against bird flu. They say that the medication may not really be helpful and stockpiling it is just a waste of money.

The vaccine as of now may still be imperfect, but it does help a person a better chance to get through with the flu.

As of the moment, since we have no idea if this virus could become the next pandemic or just a big bust. What’s important is that we try to live a healthier lifestyle. Maybe that’s what this virus is all about anyway. It’s just telling us that maybe we should change our lifestyle into a healthier one.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Ear Mite Home Remedies

Ear mites are external parasites infecting cats and dogs. Once cursed, pets seem to have the problem for life. The mites Otodectes cynotis are large enough and easily visible with the naked eye. Ear mites as the names says, lives in the ears as well as on the head and skin of the pets. In just 3 weeks, a mite egg can develop into an adult mite. The adult mite can live its entire life on the pet, enabling it to be highly contagious and can also cause severe inflammation.

Ear mites are highly contagious and readily transmit from host to host by physical contact. You pet can get easily infected if it socializes with other infected animals. Treatment for ear mites is a must for all the household pets.

Shaking of the head and ears is the most common sign of ear mite infection. Dogs scratch at their ears, rub their face and in severe cases, they may even bleed behind their ears to relieve themselves from the pesky little critters. Though some pets can still be infected and not show any signs of itching or head shaking.

Ears that seem very itchy and have dark debris, down in the ear, are the telltale signs that your pet’s ears have visitors. Dark brown to black debris accumulates in the ears of infected pets and the mites may be visible as small moving white specks on the debris. Secondary infection with bacteria or yeast is common in ear mite infections and may complicate the diagnosis.

Any natural oil-based ear medication will ultimately drown the mites as the oil covers the mite’s breathing pores eventually suffocating them.

Keep your pet and its environment treated for fleas. This also kills any ear mites that might be around to re-infect your pet.

To remove ear mites, mix Ѕ ounce of almond and vitamin E. Put a dropper or two in each ear and massage it well. Let your pet shake its head and clean out the opening with cotton swabs. The oily mixture smothers the mites and helps healing. Refrigerate the mixture between uses, warming it before use.

Soak a cotton ball in mineral oil and swab the ear canal. The oil soothes skin, smothers the mites, and accelerates healing.

Give your pet mild flea baths during the treatment period to squelch any wayward mites.

Consider using an anti-yeast medication, since secondary yeast infections are commonly found with ear mite infestations.

The reader of this article should exercise all precautions while following instructions mentioned in the article. Avoid using if you are allergic to something. The responsibility lies with the reader, not the site, and the writer.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Stage-Wise Symptoms Of Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease has been classified into five stages by Hoehn and Yahr. Their classification is based on the severity of symptoms and the degree of disability the patient experiences.

When prescribing treatment, the neurologist will take into account the stage at which the patient is perceived to be, among other things.

Stage 1 is called unilateral disease. The term means that only one side of the body shows symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.

This is considered an early stage of the illness and may last for several years. Neuroprotective treatment is common at this stage. This treatment aims to prevent further damage to the nervous system.

Vitamin E was used at this stage, but many researchers are of the opinion that this is not very effective. A selective MAO-B inhibitor called Rasigiline has shown promise.

Stage 2 of Parkinson’s disease is labeled bilateral disease. Meaning, symptoms of Parkinson’s now show up on both sides of the body. The illness is considered to be at Stage 2 even if there is an insignificant symptom (an occasional tremor, for example) on the side of the body that was symptom-free earlier.

Recent therapies at this stage include use of dopamine agonists. Till some years ago, dopamine agonists were used only at later stages of the disease. Currently, researchers are of the view that if such treatment is started earlier, complications from using drugs like Levodopa may not arise at later stages.

The disease is said to be at stage 3 when symptoms show progression and especially when the patient has difficulty in maintaining their posture. Symptoms at this stage include postural instability and falling down.

Traditionally, this is the stage at which dopamine agonists or Levodopa was prescribed, but as mentioned above, some of these drugs are now used at earlier stages itself.

Stage 4 occurs when there is an increase in the severity of symptoms including postural instability and falling. Surgery is one option for treatment at this stage. Surgery can alleviate some of the symptoms. However, this is generally recommended only for relatively young patients who are in good health otherwise.

Stage 5 is the most advanced stage of Parkinson’s disease. The patient is usually wheelchair bound. Walking is possible only with assistance.

Levodopa continues to be a prescribed drug at this stage, along with a COMT inhibitor, which ensures that the effects last longer. Surgery may also be an option, including pallidotomy, which destroys a small group of brain cells. This helps avoid the rigidity often experienced with Parkinson’s disease and may stop tremors as well.

Another possible treatment is deep brain stimulation, where electrodes are implanted into the brain tissue and stimulated with low level electric currents.

The symptoms of Parkinson’s disease progress as the patient moves from one stage to the next. Ongoing research is producing new treatments including stem cell implants and new drugs.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Treatment And Causes Of Gynecomastia

What is Gynecomastia?

The word Gynecomastia comes from two Greek words, Gyne meaning Woman and Mastos which means breast. A loose translation would be “woman like breasts”. They are also know as steroid breasts or bitch tits as some people unkindly call them.

Gynecomastia actually describes a condition whereby breast tissue builds up in a males chest creating what appear to be female breasts. These breasts can be quite tender and sensitive.

The condition Gynecomastia is very common in adolescent boys, however, in about 90% of these cases, the condition disappears naturally as their adolescence follows it’s course.

For the remaining 10% though, it remains and can be quite a social handicap causing significant psychological damage to the patient. The feelings that this condition can generate can be shame, embarrassment and humiliation commonly. A lot of this can be brought about from teasing and jokes made about their breasts by their peers.

Other than the tenderness in the chest which is associated with Gynecomastia, there are no other medical problems with this condition other than the psychological problems that it causes.

For some men and boys who appear to have Gynecomastia, may actually have a condition called pseudogynecomastia. This describes the fatty build up on their chests. This is not the same thing as Gynecomastia.

Interestingly, it is possible that this condition may affect only one breast or both.

What causes Gynecomastia?

For most cases of Gynecomastia, there are no identifiable causes for this problem. However, this list contains a lot of what is commonly accepted to cause Gynecomastia.

- puberty

- steroid abuse

- obesity

- tumors

- genetic disorders

- chronic liver disease

- side effects of medication

- castration

- Klinefelter Syndrome

- Gilberts Syndrome

- ageing

Gynecomastia can also be caused by changes in the balance of the hormones estrogen and testosterone. This commonly occurs during puberty although can probably happen during other stages of a mans life.

From that list, it is believed that the main causes are obesity, steroid abuse and an imbalance in hormones.

How is Gynecomastia Diagnosed?

The doctor will probably make a physical examination of the breasts and then ask a number of questions regarding your breasts in order to ascertain how long you’ve had them and also what degree of tenderness do you experience.

In order to work out what is causing your Gynecomastia, the doctor will enquire about your medical history as well as any medication that you are taking.

The examination itself should be relatively minor with just a bit of prodding and poking.

It should be noted as well that while male breast cancer is more common than a lot of people think, these lumps in a mans breast are not cancerous, however, as usual, if in doubt, contact your doctor as soon as possible in order to eliminate the possibility.

How is Gynecomastia Treated?

In many cases Gynecomastia requires no treatment whatsoever and will disappear quietly on it’s own.

In other cases, the treatment may depend upon the cause. For example, if the cause is the medicine that you’re taking, then hopefully there is a suitable alternative which will be just as effective but without the side of effect of Gynecomastia. As Gynecomastia is usually less of a problem than the condition that the medicine is treating, this other condition will take priority in your care.

In a lot of cases, the reason for Gynecomastia is obesity. In this case, if the patient loses a degree of their weight through diet and exercise, then this will usually cure the Gynecomastia without the need for any kind of surgery.

In a small number of cases, surgery is deemed to be the best option. Usually in these cases, the Gynecomastia is causing the patient a significant degree of psychological problems.

This surgery removes the glandular tissue and/or fat behind the breast in order to create a more masculine looking chest.

The surgery for Gynecomastia can often be conducted under a local anesthetic with some sedation and the patient be treated as an out-patient. However, as with all surgery, whether it is low risk like this or high risk, there is always an element of risk of excessive bleeding, fluid loss and problems associated with the anesthesia. As such, the patient should be healthy and emotionally stable otherwise the risk of surgery is increased. There can also be a degree of scarring with the surgery which should be known before the operation takes place.

As this surgery is usually considered cosmetic, it is often quite difficult to get financing or for the public health bodies to accept you as a patient. However, patients do sometimes get the funding required often after proving the psychological problems that this condition causes.

Summary

Gynecomastia affects many people in varying degrees. The main problem from it, is the psychological problems associated with the humiliation of having woman like breasts. For most, the solution is to lose weight or to wait for the body to develop further, however for some, the only way to cure this problem is by having breast reduction surgery.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Recognizing Bird Flu Symptoms – What To Look For

We live in a marvelous time when technology has become man’s servant. For the average person, everyday living has become more a matter of pressing buttons than a matter of hard physical labor. Meanwhile, advancements in technology have crossed the digital divide. There are far fewer barriers to communication now. Also, it is now possible to diagnose most serious diseases. In many cases we can even cure these diseases.

Some of these diseases can be fatal and spread quickly. One of the short-term outbreaks of recent history was SARS. One of the diseases not yet cured is HIV/AIDS. Bird flu, or avian influenza, is one of the diseases that medical science has targeted as likely to spread from human to human soon, unless a more effective immunization or other cure is discovered first.

A plain description of the bird flu threat

In very general terms, bird flu is an infection of a flu virus that originally spread among birds. Avian influenza viruses can spread around the globe because birds migrate great distances. These viruses are typically found in the bird’s intestines. Many of these viruses do not cause severe symptoms in the birds. When birds are packed closely together, such as in poultry farms with chickens and turkeys, the avian influenza viruses spread very rapidly among them.

Bird flu crossing the species barrier into humans was first confirmed in Hong Kong in 1997. Since that time the World Health Organization (WHO) has worked with government and private health agencies around the world to try to monitor the disease. Many of these agencies are seeking remedies for human cases of the bird flu, while monitoring for any mutations in the disease that might lead to a spread among humans or change how the disease can be remedied.

There is currently little risk of bird flu for most people, as it requires close interaction with infected birds or bird feces. However, for those who have constant contact with birds, the risk becomes very high during outbreaks in local poultry. This is particularly true for the current strain of bird flu known as H5N1, or avian influenza A. The alarm was sounded around the end of 2003 when H5N1 infected poultry in several Asian countries led to several human infections. About half of those infected died.

Know the symptoms

Bird flu spreads by contact with an infected bird’s saliva, nasal secretions, or feces. Other birds appear to have little resistance to the disease when they come in contact with the virus and are quickly infected. Hence the more closely birds interact the more quickly it spreads. Humans who interact with these birds without proper protective gear are also susceptible to the disease.

It is important to know the symptoms of bird flu so that you can respond quickly and appropriately if you see these symptoms. In birds the H5N1 strain can cause diarrhea, difficulty breathing, excessive shedding, and a swollen head. Of course if you’re not a bird expert you’re unlikely to be able to differentiate these symptoms from normal bird behavior, save the difficulty breathing. And you certainly won’t note these symptoms unless you’re up close to see the bird.

Some of the more general symptoms of bird flu are the same symptoms you’d likely see in any flu strain. These symptoms are cough, headache, fever, sore throat, chest pains, muscle aches, and lethargy. Some severe symptoms that may be an alarm for bird flu are pneumonia, eye infections, acute respiratory problems such as breathing difficulties, inflammation of the heart, and inflammation of the brain.

As noted, many of the symptoms of bird flu can be confused with a normal flu. Many of the other symptoms are hard for anyone but a trained health care worker to identify. However, if you have any reason to suspect these symptoms are present, you should seek immediate medical attention for the sake of the infected individual and everyone else who might become infected if H5N1 should make the human to human leap.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, ADHD, has a simple cause: poor nutrition and food additive

New research is appearing now that’s showing the link between the consumption of food additives by children — especially food colorings — and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD. Well-informed parents have long realized that the consumption of food additives causes hyperactivity in their children, but most conventional doctors have dismissed the idea as pure bunk. Of course, far too many doctors dismiss the idea that food choice has any relationship to health in the first place, so the view from conventional medicine doesn’t carry much weight.

The real story here, however, is not that food additives and artificial colorings cause ADHD, but that there are several other dietary substances that heavily influence a child’s mental state and day-to-day behavior.

Let’s face it: the human brain is a flesh and blood organ, and it is strongly influenced by blood chemistry, which is, in turn, dictated almost entirely by diet. What you eat, in other words, determines what your blood composition looks like, and what your blood composition looks like determines the way your brain functions. Of course there are other factors, such as physical exercise and environmental influences, but the largest factor of all is dietary.

So when you eat processed foods containing additives and artificial colors, you are introducing toxic chemicals into your bloodstream. Those chemicals find their way into the brain and alter brain function, and in the case of children who have been diagnosed with ADHD, it alters their behavior to make them restless or to have a shortened attention span. It can also cause children and adults alike to display other problems derived from their mental state. (We’ll discuss the impact of nutritional deficiency on adult society next time.)

But it isn’t just food additives causing detrimental effects — it’s also refined carbohydrates. People who eat large quantities of white bread (or food containing refined white flour) also suffer from mental disorders. These can include depression, aggression and violent behavior, and learning disabilities. Consuming refined carbohydrates also causes people to have brain fog — that is, they can’t concentrate for very long, and they don’t feel like they have clarity of mind.

Drinking soft drinks also causes the same effect, because it is essentially the same macronutrient that’s poisoning your body: refined sugars. As it turns out, these refined sugars also cause behavioral disorders by depleting the body of nutrients that are critical for neurological health. These nutrients include the B vitamins and several notable minerals, including magnesium and zinc. When the human body is deficient in these vitamins and minerals, it will, of course, exhibit both mental and physical disorders. The problem in all of this is that rather than recognizing the true cause of these mental and physical disorders in our children and in our adult population, conventional medicine labels it a disease. Therefore, the treatment becomes a drug rather than changing your diet, and that’s where things get crazy, because now we’re dosing up tens of millions of our children on Ritalin when the true answer to their behavioral problems or lack of focus is to immediately remove soft drinks, cookies, and sugary breakfast cereals from their diets. If you feed your children foods that enhance their health — that is, unprocessed foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains and superfoods — then they won’t exhibit these behavioral problems.

In fact, the solution to all this is surprisingly simple: we need to change the diets of our children. We need to take vending machines out of our public school systems. We need to reformulate school lunch programs so that they are feeding our children foods that promote learning and mental health. We also need to educate parents about how to feed their children right, so that they aren’t so easily influenced by foods that their children want to eat.

And finally, we need to ban all advertising and marketing of unhealthy products to children. It should be illegal, in a civilized society, for companies that manufacture products that cause obesity and ADHD to promote those products to children, because it only creates a cycle of disease and chronic illness that brings society down, and the long-term effect of all of this is, of course, skyrocketing health care costs.

Once again, the answer to all of this is simply to change the foods and drinks that we feed our nation’s children. The answer is certainly not to be dosing our children with powerful narcotics such as Ritalin, because right now in this country we are raising a generation of brain-numbed children through our public school system and through the reckless, widespread pharmaceutical prescribing habits of many doctors and psychiatrists.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Psoriasis Treatment & How To Deal With The Illness

Psoriasis is a non-contagious skin condition that produces red scaley patches, which are most commonly found on the knees and elbows. In order to combat this illness, an aggressive psoriasis treatment is often prescribed by a dermatologist. Rarely resulting from a rare genetic gene, psoriasis is more commonly associated with a weakened immune system. In addition, emotional stress, physical injury or recent sickness are all believed to play a large role in the appearance of psoriasis. As a result, the condition is often worsened by either physical or emotional stress and may cause depression and loss of self-esteem.

There are several types of psoriasis, but all appear as red skin lesions that may cause great discomfort to the sufferer. Depending on the severity, extreme itching and pain may accompany the breakout. In order to prevent further suffering, a dermatologist may recommend a psoriasis treatment in accordance with the location, severity and size of the problem area(s). Often prescribed in steps used to gradually treat the illness, a psoriasis treatment may include medication directly applied to the skin, light therapy and/or the use of oral or injected medications to help treat the entire immune system.

Because everyone is unique, each psoriasis treatment will vary from one person to another. In addition, psoriasis may become resistant to recurring treatment forcing a dermatologist to periodically switch to another approach. When applied directly to the skin, physicians find that a psoriasis treatment consisting of an ointment or creme is likely to improve the skin’s condition.

Individuals who are searching for a psoriasis treatment that will soothe their skin may find that adding oil to their bath water and later applying moisturizer to their skin, may help to temporarily ease the discomfort. When applied on a regular basis and for an extended period of time, moisturizers may prove to be an effective, but temporary, psoriasis treatment. Sunlight may also serve as a natural psoriasis treatment as brief exposure to the sun may help to eliminate some of the itchy, red patches.

Psoriasis is a chronic illness that leaves the sufferer open to recurring symptoms throughout their life, which is why an effective psoriasis treatment is important to maintaining comfort. There is currently no cure for psoriasis but, with a good dermatologist and a lifestyle that calls for less stress and improved nutrition, psoriasis doesn’t have to control every day.

This article is intended to be used for informational purposes only. It is not to be used in place of, or in conjunction with, professional medical advice or a dermatologist’s recommendation. Prior to beginning any Psoriasis treatment program, individuals should consult a physician for proper diagnosis and/or an appropriate treatment regimen.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Do You Suffer From Acid Reflux and Heartburn ?

Does that cup of morning coffee cause you pain and suffering? Are you frustrated when an evening dinner out with friends ends in discomfort instead of relaxed conversation? Do you carry and take antacids every day?

Heartburn is a lot more than a mere nuisance. It can detract from enjoying a good meal and force you to change your routine. It dictates your every decision – what you can eat, what you can drink, when you need to lay down.

What is this vexing problem and how can you find relief?

WHAT CAUSES HEARTBURN?

Heartburn occurs when stomach acid makes its way back into the esophagus. A burning sensation and bitter taste are commonly experienced by heartburn sufferers.

If you are suffering more than a couple of times each week you may have the more serious problem of acid reflux disease – also known as GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease).

Not all heartburn is caused by GERD. Occasional heartburn can be caused by many different factors. However, if you have regular episodes there are a number of things you can do to help.

WHAT SHOULD YOU DO?

If you have regular heartburn, the first thing you should do is stop regularly using antacids. Antacids can alleviate the pain of occasional heartburn, but because they are designed to neutralize the acids in your stomach they can cause the stomach to create even MORE acid – a vicious cycle called ‘acid rebound’. Also, some antacids cause diarrhea or constipation.

Avoid heartburn-triggering foods such as caffeine, chocolate, alcohol, citrus, spicy or tomato-based foods as well as fatty or fried foods, onions or garlic.

Smoking or being overweight also increases the risk of GERD. Lifestyle changes may help to control the symptoms.

Activities such as lying down after a meal, bending forward, lifting heavy items or eating large meals can cause the onset of acid reflux. Avoiding these activities after a meal and eating smaller portions may help.

A few natural products such as extract of orange peel are being researched for their abilities to curb heartburn.

WHO IS AT RISK FOR GERD?

Anyone. But it should be noted that pregnant women, the overweight and smokers are all good candidates.

Additionally, young babies have immature digestive systems, so they may be prone to GERD. Precautions like frequent burping and keeping the infant upright for 30 minutes after eating can minimize the occurrence.

Older children may have to take precautions in diet and activity just as adults do. You should always consult your physician when you suspect GERD, just to avoid future complications.

If you suspect GERD, contact your doctor right away. There can be harmful side effects of persistent heartburn including scarring of the esophagus, erosion of the teeth and even an increased risk of esophageal cancer. Frequent, persistent heartburn can also be a symptom of other serious conditions and should be checked on by a physician.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

What is Binge Eating Disorder?

Binge Eating Disorder is a disorder in which people use food to satisfy a variety of emotions in order to cope with them.  People may binge when they experience any negative emotion, such as anger, sadness, or depression.  Another reason a person may binge is shear boredom.  People have used food as a coping mechanism for so long that now that it is a habit to turn and use food to make them feel better.  People do not know how to deal with their “life” anymore without food.  Binge Eating Disorder is the most common of all eating disorders.  It affects about 25 million people.

When a person binges, they usually experience some, if not all, of the following: eating an usually large amount of food, feeling a loss of control while eating, consuming food more quickly than the average person, eating large amounts of food even when they do not feel hungry, feeling better eating alone because the amount of food is typically large, and feelings of guilt, disgust, and even becoming ashamed of themselves after a binge occurs.

The cause of Binge Eating Disorder is unknown.  Depression and other emotional problems are prevalent in binge eaters.  Many researchers think that there is a connection between people who diet and binge eat.  When people diet, they deprive themselves of certain foods which causes them to want it more.  When they do give in, they usually eat too much of this food and it most likely turns into a binge.  Then the negative feelings set in and they make a promise that they aren’t going to eat bad anymore.  This usually results in starting the cycle all over again and this is known as yo-yo dieting.

There are many consequences to bingeing.  High blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, and obesity are just a few complications that can arise when people binge.  Many people can become sick from a binge because the foods that they chose to binge on as not full of vitamins and nutrients.  The foods are fuller of sugar and fat and this, obviously, is very unhealthy.

Treatment for Binge Eating Disorder has the highest recovery rate of any disorder.  People usually meet with a psychotherapist or psychiatrist.  The health professional will ask questions about the person’s past to figure out when they started comforting themselves with food.  They will get to the root of the problem and why is started and will give advice as to how the person should deal with those feelings when they happen.  If this does not work, some medications may be added to treat the binge eating.

Changing the habit of turning to food is the key point in getting started.  Changing all of the old habits will put you one foot closer to stop binge eating and to start getting on with your life.

By: Kristin Gerstley

http://www.endbingeeating.com

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

What is Attention Deficit Disorder – ADD?

A colleague of mine at work has a grandson diagnosed with child attention deficit disorder.  When I talked to her about it, I wondered how you could tell whether it was ADD or ‘just difficult or slow’. It is particularly difficult to tell with boys up to the age of about 16.  Where do you draw the line?  My own grandmother was a primary school Head teacher for many years and she used to say that boys did not develop intellectually as quickly as girls.

My interest raised, I decided to investigate further.  It appears that there are three stages in normal development.  The first stage can be seen in babies when they become focused on one thing for a period of time and ignore everything else.  A child whose development stops at this stage might have a tendency towards autism.

The second stage is when a toddler is constantly finding different things of interest but never able to concentrate on one thing for very long.  A child who is stuck at this stage of development might be diagnosed as having attention deficit disorder.

It seems that at the third stage, a child develops the ability to focus their interest for longer periods and to shift their attention at will.  This is considered to be a mature pattern of attention and concentration and is the level required to be successful in the classroom.

However, according to my colleague, Anne, ADD is not just about being incapable of concentrating on anything for very long.  The point is that people with Attention Deficit Disorder can’t choose when to pay attention, what to pay attention to or when to stop.  Anne told me that this became very clear when undertaking a normal task like crossing the road.  Her grandson has been taught many times how to cross the road safely.  Nevertheless, without warning, if he has to wait for any time or watch the traffic for a space, all the training will go out the window.  He knows he has to cross the road and will just go!

The funny thing is that, along side this inability to choose when to pay attention and when not, is an ability to intensely focus on a particular activity and forget to take a break.  This could be repeatedly completing the same jigsaw or watching the same video to the exclusion of anything else.  If this is not recognised and worked on, some people say it can lead to substance abuse, overeating, and compulsive behaviour later on.

A variation on ADD is ADHD, or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.  People with this are often described as unable to relax or are constantly ‘on the go’, to the extent that even when sitting down, they might constantly be ‘fiddling’ or squirming in the chair. For parents this can be a nightmare as the child requires very little sleep and there is no break from all the restless activity.

So what help is there?  Is there a cure?  Is it something that a child can grow out of?  The answer to the last question is ‘no’, ADD and ADHD is a physical dysfunction of the brain. It does tend to run in families but it is not due to bad parenting or poor discipline.

Attention Deficit Disorder and Treatment:

Children can receive medication and therapy that helps to overcome the disorder, if it is diagnosed early enough.  The problem is diagnosing the extent to which someone requires help, as the spectrum is very wide.  Most experts seem to recommend a treatment combining medication and psychotherapy.  Psychostimulants such as ‘Ritalin’ and ‘Dexedrine’ help to improve the sluggish part of the brain causing the problems.  Psychotherapy helps to train ADD sufferers to pay attention, control impulses and behave appropriately in all sorts of situations.

Alongside this medical treatment, it is recognised that diet can be important.  There is evidence to suggest that some children with ADHD can react badly to certain combinations of foods. These can include dairy products, chocolate, wheat, fruit and particularly additives.  A possible link between attention difficulties and hyperactivity and the use of preservatives and colourings in food has been found.

There has also been some research into fatty acids as it has been found that people with ADD appear to be lacking in Omega 3 and Omega 6. It is thought that these fatty acids are crucial for proper growth in mental function and brain development.  The Omega 3 family of fatty acids are found in fish such as salmon and mackerel, as well as flax oil.  Omega 6 is found in corn, sunflower, canola and safflower oil, margarine and vegetable oil. Even though none of the evidence is conclusive, parents may wish to try a change in diet to see if it helps.

To finish, it was interesting to note that on several web sites some famously successful people exhibited behaviours that now lead experts to believe that they had ADD.  These include people like Beethoven, Mozart, Einstein and Pasteur.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Raising Bilingual Children: The Most Successful Methods

As the saying goes, there are many ways to skin a cat, and so there are a multitude of strategies for raising bilingual children. Among all these choices, one thing remains constant — a children’s love for predictability.

Have you ever noticed how poorly many children handle change and how they thrive when on familiar turf? When you’ve read that same story every night for two months, you’ll know what I mean. Certainly, kids learn languages under the most chaotic conditions — just look at the average dinner table scene — but some predictability within the chaos spells safety and security, which in turn promotes learning.

Most multilingual families have discovered that a fixed language system in the home greatly reduces the tendency for children to mix the languages — or worse, the flat-out refusal to speak the second language. One parent expressed it perfectly; “I’ve noticed that when Anna gets overwhelmed by something, she just tunes out. I guess that it is the toddler safety mechanism against information overload.” Kees van der Laan continued, “But I really don’t want her to tune out my Dutch, so my wife and I agreed on a language combination that we can both live by, while keeping it simple for Anna. I feel that the consistency is ultimately more important than which kind of system we use.” In choosing your system, you’ll absolutely need to consider what will work best for your family, but here are the two most popular methods:

1) One Person, One Language (OPOL) is the most common family language system in use. For instance, Kees speaks his native Dutch, while his wife speaks English. Each parent or caregiver consistently speaks only one language to the child. Sometimes OPOL requires extra “language supplements,” such as playgroups, visits from family, a trip to the country, or a native speaking nanny or au-pair. It helps tremendously for your child to hear that his parent isn’t the only one who speaks this language. Kids are savvy little creatures who are quite capable of reasoning that they don’t really need to know a language if it is only spoken by one other person.

2) A second option, slightly less common but tremendously successful is Minority Language at Home (ML@H). It simply means that everyone speaks the minority language at home, even if this language is not the native language of both parents. It is probably the most reliable method for raising truly native speaking children since it ensures consistent interaction from birth until the child leaves home.

However, the ML@H parent has to be able to quell doubts and stay the course unwaveringly. When your child isn’t speaking the community language on the same level as his or her monolingual peers (generally the ML@H child doesn’t reach parity with them until around 5 years of age), it’s difficult not to worry. The McColloughs in Germany remember “We were watching other children jabbering away in complete German sentences, while Patrick seemed incapable of getting out two or three connected words.” Within months after starting preschool, however, he had transformed completely. “Now he can’t stop talking in either language.” Even when you know that your child is going to catch up, it can be daunting to watch him struggle. Some parents fear that he will never learn the primary language, even though this really only occurs when children are isolated from the primary language within a minority speaking community.

3) Frankly, any pattern that works for your family and provides enough interaction in the second language is fine. Examples of such variations are: (1) one language is spoken every day, the other on extended vacations to another country; (2) one language is spoken in a certain location (e.g. if the children attend an immersion program), the other at home.

As you can see, the raising of multilingual children is a flexible and highly personal process, so just adapt the basic language systems to something that fits your lifestyle. Even the most highly-trained athlete couldn’t finish a marathon in ill-fitting shoes, and all your training won’t help if you aren’t settled comfortably for the long haul. Remember, it isn’t all on you; you can find an immersion program, call upon grandparents, organize playgroups and schedule frequent visits to your country — good for junior’s language, but just as helpful and fun for you.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Gingivitis Symptoms and Treatment

Periodontitis (gum disease) is a common human affliction, affecting one third of all adults, and over half of the population over the age of 50.

Symptoms

Gingivitis symptoms can include: swollen gums, redness of the gums, tenderness when the gums are touched, tenderness when chewing, pus around the teeth, or a bad taste in the mouth. A common gingivitis symptom is noticeable accumulations of tartar or plaque on the teeth. Another common gingivitis symptom is blood on the toothbrush while brushing teeth. When gingivitis symptoms are advanced, the disease often spreads to the bony tissues, which are located under the gums and support the teeth. In later stages of periodontal disease, the teeth can become loose and severely infected with pus that oozes out from around the sockets.

Gingivitis treatment is very effective if the disease is caught in time. The most effective gingivitis treatment or gum disease treatment is to prevent gingivitis and gum disease from getting started. Gingivitis treatment begins with regular daily brushing of the teeth to remove plague and tartar. Scraping of the tongue is also important to remove bacteria. Many people overlook these important parts of oral hygiene, but they are essential for gingivitis treatment.

Gingivitis treatment, including treatment for receding gums, bleeding gums, canker sores, and other problems of the teeth and gums, does not have to be an arduous task

Treatment

Non-antibiotic approach for treating the underlying infection responsible for periodontal disease. After routine scaling, the dentist will apply the compound directly into the periodontal pockets and around the gum line of affected teeth. The compound quickly penetrates the plaque preferentially binding to multiple structural components in bacteria, including their toxic secretions. Laser light is then applied directly to the affected sites using a fiber optic probe. A powerful free-radical reaction destroys the targeted bacteria and the associated toxins such as collagenase.

Periowave is a revolutionary new adjunctive treatment bringing the power and ease of photodynamic disinfection№ to the treatment of periodontal diseases. The patented process was developed by Professor Michael Wilson and colleagues at the Eastman Dental Institute, London, England and is licensed to Ondine Biopharma Corporation by UCL Biomedica PLC, University College London.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Candida Yeast Infection Symptoms Explained

A Candida yeast infection can display the following symptoms:

• arthritis

• autism

• chronic hives

• fatigue

• digestive disorders

• muscle pain

• short attention span

• headaches

• memory loss

• vaginitis

• skin problems

• impotence

• hyperactivity

• depression

• hypoglycemia

• menstrual problems

• urinary disorders

• respiratory problems

• food and environmental allergies

• learning difficulties

Candida infections have signs and symptoms that vary depending on the location of the infection. This infection is very common to women. Its signs and symptoms consist of a white discharge that is itchy and irritating to the vagina. It can affect the surrounding outer tissues of the anus where a moist patch appears on the contiguous skin of the anus. Candida yeast infections also cause pain during sexual intercourse and a burning sensation during urination.

Candida infections in infants and adults may become visible in different ways; oral Candidiasis (or thrush) is exhibited by thick, white patches on top of a red base and may appear on any area inside the mouth. Bleeding on the underlying tissue occurs if these white patches are wiped away. Without the white coating this infection makes the tongue appear to be red in color. Oral thrush is painful and can contribute to eating disorders.

Prevention of dehydration is a must for anyone who has oral thrush. This infection frequently causes elderly people to have sores and cracks at the sides of their mouth.

Candidiasis can also develop within hours of birth on the palms of a newborn baby. Candida organisms live on the skin and yeast overgrowth occurs if there is a breakdown of the skin’s outer layer. It is visible on the warm parts of the body such as diaper areas and skin folds. Superficial Candida skin infection may look like a red flat rash that has sharp scalloped edges.

Satellite lesions are smaller patches that look the same and may cause itching or pain. This kind of infection causes redness, swelling and softness of the fingernail. In male genitalia, Candida infection usually presents with dry, red scaly patches on the tip or head of the penis.

Candida infections can have an effect on various internal organs and cause pain or dysfunction to a person, especially if they have a destabilized immune system. Likewise, individuals with Candida infection may develop sensitivity to some foods. Other times there is food intolerance for dairy products and glutens. Food intolerance can be positively identified through The Detection Diet.

A person with AIDS typically contracts the yeast infection known as esophagitis in the upper gastrointestinal system. This condition may seem like oral thrush, but this type of infection extends down from the mouth, into the esophagus until it reaches the stomach, it causes painful ulcers around the gastrointestinal system, so that even swallowing liquid is difficult. Food is not fully absorbed when the infection spreads out into the intestines, and the danger of dehydration is present to people with such condition. If Candida yeast infections reach the bloodstream, people gets sick with or without fever. And the spreading of this infection throughout the brain causes acute changes in behavior or mental function.

If you suspect you are suffering with Candida, you should first consult your primary care physician before taking other steps.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

ReNu MoistureLoc Contact Lens Solution Linked To Fungal Keratitis Symptoms

Bausch & Lomb’s Renu with MoistureLoc contact lens cleaning solution has been linked to a rare type of fungal eye infection called Fusarium Keratitis.Although investigations have not revealed a single, definitive causal agent at this time, the obvious correlation between product use and the Fusarium Keratitis infection has led Bausch & Lomb, the FDA and the CDC to take immediate action.

On May 15, 2006 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a statement to the public alerting them to the fact that Bausch & Lomb had announced a global recall of its Renu with MoistureLoc contact lens cleaning solution.Just two days prior to this, on May 13, 2006, Bausch & Lomb suspended all United States sales of its MoistureLoc product. This was a direct response to the CDC’s announcement that it was investigating a “spike in infections in Americans using this solution.”

However, it is the Far East that first experienced fungal outbreaks in correlation with the Bausch & Lomb product. In February of 2006, sales of Renu with MoistureLoc were stopped in these countries. Infections have also occurred recently in Europe.

Ongoing federal inspections of Bausch & Lomb’s South Carolina factory in Greenville have not resulted in any evidence of sub-standard practices or contamination to date. Bausch & Lomb’s Chief Executive, Ron Zarrella, stated that “…some aspect of the MoistureLoc formula may be increasing the relative risk of Fusarium infection in unusual circumstances…”He also advised customers to stop using the product and emphasized that “Bausch & Lomb’s top priority is the safety of our customers, and we want them to have complete confidence in our products.”

What is Fusarium Keratitis?

Fusarium Keratitis is a severe, rare, painful fungal infection of the eye that can lead to blindness. Fusarium, a fungus that is found in the environment and on our skin, is generally found in plant materials in tropical and subtropical areas. Usually, Fusarium enters the eye when there is a trauma or injury to the cornea. It may also occur in individuals with compromised immune systems. It is not transmitted from person to person. It is a new phenomenon to see many otherwise healthy individuals, who have not experienced trauma to the eye, suffering from this infection.Keratitis translates to ‘inflammation of the cornea’.Diagnosis can be challenging, because the early clinical features generally present like other infections caused by viruses, bacteria and even protozoa. However, the recent surge in Fusarium Keratitis has created a heightened awareness and concern among eye doctors. The prompt recognition of an existing fungal infection is critical, as corneal scarring and permanent loss of vision can occur without immediate and appropriate treatment. Treatment consists of eye drops for a period of two to three months and sometimes an oral antifungal medication.Surgery is necessary in some cases.

Signs and Symptoms

The following is a brief list of symptoms which may be present with Fusarium Keratitis:

- Unusual redness in the eye

- Eye pain

- Blurred or hazy vision

- Excessive tearing

- Sensitivity to light

- Ocular pain

- Ocular discharge

There is a theory among some eye specialists that Renu with MoistureLoc’s properties, namely the combination of a new disinfectant called Alexidine along with newer moisturizing agents, may be contributing to the outbreak of infections.It is important to note, that although Alexidine has been determined to be safe and effective, specific conditions may change this. They are:

- Failure to routinely replace solution in lens case

- Failure to close bottle (of solution)

- Failure to effectively clean case.

Additionally, Daniel Schultz, Director of the FDA’s Center For Devices and Radiological Health said, “There does appear to be an association between the formulation itself as well as certain use patterns in creating this higher than normal incidence of these particular infections.”

On May 12, 2006, the CDC confirmed 122 cases of Fusarium Keratitis in the United States, and the majority of these cases reported using Bausch & Lomb Renu with MoistureLoc. At that time there were another 15 cases under the heading of “possible” and at least 60 more under investigation!

This troubling scenario, and the tragic damage suffered by its victims, has led many to question the efficiency and effectiveness of Bausch & Lomb’s response to the evidence as it was presented to them.Dr. Chu of NJ, a specialist in corneal diseases, phoned Bausch & Lomb back in March to alert them to the fact that three of his patients were suffering from a dangerous microbe and that all three were Bausch & Lomb customers. It has been reported that this was the first official U.S. involvement that Bausch & Lomb was aware of. Although Bausch & Lomb responded by confirmingthat there had been cases of Fusarium Keratitis in the Far East, it was Dr. Chu who first contacted the Federal Health Authorities.

There are victims in at least 32 states who are currently affected by the Fusarium Keratitis infection.Subsequently there are a growing number of lawsuits. Zoe Wade, a 69 year old woman in Florida, filed a lawsuit in Palm Beach County.She claims that she started using the Bausch & Lomb Renu with MoistureLoc solution last July. By October her infection was severe and she was in great pain.Just seven months after using the product, her doctor recommended that her left eye be removed in order to stop the infection from spreading to her brain.

Zoe Wade’s attorney also represents a 46-year old man, another Bausch & Lomb cleaning solution customer, afflicted with the fungal infection. He now has impaired vision and is suing the company.Records reveal that seven other individuals filed suits in April and seek class action status.

Barbara Cavallaro of Cranston, Rhode Island has filed a $5 million class action suit in addition to an individual suit. Her sight is permanently damaged and her eyes are now two different colors.  She too, was a Renu with MoistrueLoc customer.

It is strongly urged that clinicians seeing patients with eye infections immediately refer these patients to doctors for definitive diagnoses.Clinical specimens are obtained through corneal cultures, corneal tissue biopsies or confocal microscopy.The infection may present as a gray or white lesion with a feathery border.All cases of Fusarium Keratitis should be reported to local health departments and / or the CDC.

It is extremely frightening to think that a contact lens product can lead to severe eye infection or blindness. Naturally, the rising occurrence of Fusarium Keratitis, and its association with the Bausch & Lomb cleaning solution, has many contact lens users concerned about their own safety. If you are using Bausch & Lomb Renu with MoistureLoc cleaning solution, you should discontinue immediately and throw it away. However, contact lens use is still considered a healthy choice when it is prescribed by your doctor. The American Optometric Association states that “contact lenses remain a safe and effective form of vision correction.” They do stress, however, that excellent hygiene is the key to safe contact lens use. They recommend the following guidelines to ensure safe and healthy contact lens use:

- Wash your hands with soap and water each time you handle your contact lenses.

- Clean lenses regularly.

- Lenses should be stored in a clean lens case.

- Replace your lens case every three months.

- Use the specific cleaning products recommended by your eye doctor.

- Discard old solution.

- Do not re-use old solution.

- Contact lenses need to be replaced as directed by your physician.

- If you experience symptoms such as redness, pain, tearing, or sensitivity to light, remove lenses immediately and call your doctor.

This article was originally published by www.LawsuitSearch.com on 5/21/2006 4:00 PM at http://www.lawsuitsearch.com/news/product-liability/renu_moistureloc_eye_infections_sy.aspx

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

General Arthritis Information

Introduction

Arthritis is a general term which is applied to a number of painful conditions affecting the joints and bones. There are about 100 different types of arthritis.

Arthritis is normally associated with older people, but it can affect people at any age, even children. This is called Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis.

There are some forms of arthritis which are inherited, but most are not. Some forms of arthritis show very strong tendencies to be inherited, others show a weak tendency and some based on the available evidence are not inherited.

Symptoms

The main symptoms of arthritis are stiffness and pain of particular joints. There may also be some restrictive movement of the affected joints along with some swelling and redness over the joints in a number of cases.   The specific symptoms again will depend upon what type of arthritis you’re suffering from although the vast majority of types of arthritis all include problems created by the inflammation and swelling of joints.

Causes

The cause of arthritis is not fully known, however, some factors which may contribute to arthritis are obesity and jobs which put repetitive movements of a particular joint. This includes sports people, for example footballers tend to develop arthritis in their knees and ankles as a consequence of injuries sustained to these parts. There is no evidence however, that suggests that physically active people who are not injured through sport have a higher risk of arthritis.   Some studies have suggested that gout may sometimes be a contributing factor to causing arthritis.

However, as mentioned earlier, nobody really knows what the exact cause of arthritis is.  There are many people around the world though attempting to discover what the cause of arthritis may be.

Treatment

Each different form of arthritis may require a different form of treatment and management of the conditions and symptoms of the particular type of arthritis you’re interested in.  First of all, you should decide what your type of arthritis is.  Once you’ve done that, then you can search for the various treatments.

One thing which is common though across most forms of arthritis, is that early treatment is essential as this will mean that further damage to your joints is reduced and your quality of life is improved.

There will probably be a wide range of medical professionals involved in your treatment.  They will probably include your doctor, an arthritis specialist, a physiotherapist amongst many others.

A common theme though all the different kinds of treatment for arthritis though, is to reduce the inflammation and swelling of the joint affected.  This can be done via various drugs and/or some kind of physiotherapy.

A number of sufferers of arthritis find the condition so debilitating and painful, that they resort to a joint replacement.  A while ago, it was only hips, knees and shoulders that were replaced, however, now, most joints it is possible to replace.

Summary

Arthritis is a very painful and debilitating condition which affects many people, and can affect young and old alike.  We have some idea as to what causes arthritis but as of yet, we don’t fully understand the causes.  As such, it is quite difficult to figure out how to stop people from suffering from this condition.   There are a number of treatments available for sufferers which may include various drugs or physiotherapy and even replacement of the joint.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Things You Should Know About Psoriasis

Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease affecting the skin and joints. When it affects the skin it commonly appears as red scaly elevated patches called plaques. Psoriasis plaques frequently occur on the elbows and knees, but can affect any area of skin including the scalp and genital area. Psoriasis can vary in severity, from minor localised patches to extensive or even complete skin coverage. Fingernails and toenails are often affected. This is called psoriatic nail dystrophy.

Psoriasis can also cause inflammation of the joints. This is known as psoriatic arthritis. Psoriatic arthritis can affect any joint but is most common in the joints of the fingers and toes. This can result in a sausage-shaped swelling of the fingers and toes known as dactylitis. Psoriatic arthritis can also affect the hips, knees and spine. This is known as spondylitis.

Psoriasis affects both sexes equally, occurs at all ages and is prevalent in 2-3% of the Western populations.

Several factors are thought to aggravate psoriasis. These include stress and excessive alcohol consumption. Individuals with psoriasis may also suffer from depression and loss of self-esteem. As such, quality of life is an important factor in evaluating the severity of the disease. There are many treatments available but because of its chronic recurrent nature psoriasis is a challenge to treat.

Psoriasis is driven by the immune system, especially involving a type of white blood cell called a T cell. Normally, T cells help protect the body against infection and disease. T cells help create scabs over wounds. In the case of psoriasis, T cells are put into action by mistake and become so active that they trigger other immune responses, which lead to inflammation and to rapid turnover of skin cells. Epidermal cells then build up on the surface of the skin, forming itchy patches or plaques.

Specialist dermatologists generally treat psoriasis in steps based on the severity of the disease, size of the areas involved, type of psoriasis, and the patient’s response to initial treatments. This is sometimes called the “1-2-3″ approach. In step 1, medicines are applied to the skin (topical treatment). Step 2 uses ultraviolet light treatments (phototherapy). Step 3 involves taking medicines by mouth or injection that treat the whole immune system (called systemic therapy).

Over time, affected skin can become resistant to treatment, especially when topical corticosteroids are used. Also, a treatment that works very well in one person may have little effect in another. Thus, doctors often use a trial-and-error approach to find a treatment that works, and they may switch treatments periodically (for example, every 12 to 24 months) if a treatment does not work or if adverse reactions occur.

In conclusion, Psoriasis is a chronic condition. There is currently no cure. People often experience flares and remissions throughout their life. Controlling the signs and symptoms typically requires lifelong therapy.

Disclaimer – The information presented here should not be interpreted as medical advice. If you or someone you know suffers from Psoriasis, 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

Avian Bird Flu Information

To combat a possible avian bird flu epidemic, the following should be considered and done:

1. The single most important thing than can be done for an epidemic, such as avian bird flu, is to have well-prepared local health care systems. People should be prepared in ways that are sustainable and will remain useful even if the epidemic does not occur.

2. Preparation of social norms and emergency procedures that would limit or delay the spread of the avian flu epidemic. Regular hand washing, and other beneficial cleanliness custom may save more lives than all other medicines combined.

3. The proper recognition and prizes should be given to those who have come up with effective vaccines for the avian bird flu disease. On the same note, vaccine makers should be given the freedom to make use of state materials needed for the vaccines. It can be noted that some parts of the government are discouraging these activities rather than encouraging them.

4. Relevant drugs and vaccines for the avian bird flu disease should be bought and sold at fair prices. This is in respect to the intellectual property rights of the people. To confiscate these things is to reduce the incentive for innovation and protection that may help many people in the future.

5. Make preparations to ensure the continuity of food and power supplies. The most relevant supplies should include the check clearing system and the use of mass transit to deliver food supply and get workers to their job destination.

6. The federal government, despite being powerful, will be deemed powerless in the worst times of avian bird flu epidemic. It is therefore appropriate to have local plans ready to be used when the situation calls for it.

7. Encourage the formation of prediction markets about the avian bird flu epidemic. This will give the people a better idea and perspective of the probability of a possible widespread including human-to-human transmission.

8. There should be enough foreign aid to the receipt of useful information about the progress of avian flu. This will be especially useful in some Asian countries where the avian bird flu epidemic is rampant.

9. The World Health Organization should be reformed to be able to cater to these epidemics. Greater autonomy to its government funders.

If there are some things to be done before or in times of the avian bird flu epidemic, there are also things that should not be done:

1. Tamiflu and vaccine stockpiling have their useful roles. But they should be the centerpieces of a plan. In addition to the medical limitations of these investments, other institutional factors, such as transportation, will restrict the ability to allocate these supplies promptly to the persons needing them.

2. Do not rely solely on quarantines and mass isolations. Both can be counterproductive. Rather than limit the spread of avian bird flu, they have the tendency to spread the disease more.

3. In times of any type of epidemic, people should not expect the Army or Armed Forces to be part of a useful response plan. An avian bird flu epidemic is no exception. As powerful as they might seem, they are also liable to have the disease themselves.

4. Do not expect to block off or isolate the pandemic in its country of origin. One should never assume that it has not spread abroad already. Once a pandemic has started abroad, public places such as schools and marketplaces should be shut off immediately to be on the safe side.

5. People should not obsess over avian bird flu at the expense of other medical issues. The epidemic or other public health crisis could come from any number of sources. By focusing on local preparedness and decentralized responses, this is a robust plan enough that will prove useful before and during the spread of this kind.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Toenail Fungus Remedy

Fungal infections are common on both fingernails and toenails. Toenails are more prone to be affected by fungus, as these living organisms thrive in dark damp environments available on the foot than on hand.

When inflicted with toenail fungus, the nails can turn yellowish or have brownish discoloration. They may become thick or brittle over time and break or shed on own. Such kind of nails is unsightly, disfiguring, embarrassing and painful most of the times. Toenail fungus can happen to any one. It is a contagious disease that spreads on contact too…

Abnormal pH level of the skin, trauma to the nail, unhygienic feet and decreased immunity of the body permit this disease.

Avoiding toenail fungus -

- The fungus thrives in warm moist areas like spas, swimming pools, showers or locker rooms. If you step on a warm puddle or wet floor, you can pick up the infection. After using such public places, it is ideal to wash your feet thoroughly and dry them well.

- Wear cotton socks to absorb moisture from the feet that happens from sweating.

- If your socks are damp, take them off and dry your feet before wearing a fresh pair of dry socks.

- Wear shoes that have a comfortable fit and allow plenty of air and moisture to pass through.

- Avoid sharing towels, washcloths, shoes or any other personal items of those people who have already contracted this disease.

- Wash and dry your feet thoroughly every time. Use a towel vigorously to remove any dead skin and improve circulation.

- Keep your nails cut short, and don’t use nail polish.

- Trim your toenails regularly. Trim them into a straight line and then smooth the edges with a nail file.

Toenail fungus remedy –

- Tea tree oil is a potent natural antiseptic and fungicide that will help fight your fungus. Apply undiluted tea tree oil with olive oil to the affected toe nail. Alternatively you can put few drops of tea tree oil on toenails and rub it thoroughly every day.

- Soak your toes in Listerine mouthwash. The powerful antiseptic leaves your toe nails looking healthy.

- Soak your toenails for 15 – 20 minutes in basin full of warm water and natural apple cider vinegar mixed in equal proportion. When done, dry your toenails thoroughly. Use a hair dryer on warm setting to absorb all the moisture in and around the toes.

- Put equal amount of tea tree oil and lavender oil on a cotton ball or swab. Dab it under the top edge of the toe nail and surrounding area 2 or 3 times a day. Tea tree oil is natural antibiotic and lavender will help fight the infection and prevent skin irritation.

- Blend 2 drops of Oregano essential oil with a tsp of olive oil. Apply this mixture on the affected area daily for NOT more than three weeks. Oregano essential oil has antiseptic, antibacterial, antiparasitical, antiviral, analgesic and antifungal properties.

- Until the growth of the new nail is complete, apply apple cider vinegar 2 or 3 times a day.

- Lather AHA creams onto your feet before going to bed. This will flush the rough scaly skin from your feet that is more prone to growing fungus.

The reader of this article should exercise all precautions while following instructions on the recipes from this article. Avoid using if you are allergic to something. The responsibility lies with the reader, not the site, and the writer.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Causes and Prevention of Toenail Fungus

Toenail fungus can be a very painful occurrence and, if left untreated, can become a dangerous one as well.  A number of risk factors are known to increase the likelihood of developing toenail fungus, including age, a family history of the infection, smoking, heavy perspiration, etc.  In addition, a humid or moist environment may also cause bacteria to form and may be a leading cause for toenail fungus, as is uncomfortable socks or shoes, walking barefoot, etc.  Anyone with diabetes, circulatory problems and a weak immune system may be at greater risk for developing toenail fungus.

In order to prevent toenail fungus, it is important to understand what causes it.  Anyone who wants to avoid having to watch for a toenail fungus symptom can best accomplish this by taking preventative steps toward making sure the bacteria never appears in the first place.  In order to prevent toenail fungus, individuals should keep their toenails and fingernails short and clean.  This will eliminate the ability for bacteria to grow and worsen.  Keeping nails dry will also help to hinder the occurrence of toenail fungus.  Anyone who visits a salon should also be aware that bacteria are easily transmitted on nail treatment products.  In order to avoid having this happen, the salon must take extra care to clean all of their equipment before using it on another customer.

If toenail fungus is suspected, there are several symptoms that can help to diagnose the condition early so that an effective treatment program may begin.  Among the symptoms, a white or yellow discoloration underneath the tip of the nail, a thickening or crumbling of the nail, etc.  The discoloration is due to the bacteria that is forming and cannot be overlooked.  If left untreated, toenail fungus can lead to a more serious infection and may spread to other nails.  This ailment is especially dangerous to anyone who suffers from diabetes, but can pose a serious danger to anyone who does not seek proper treatment.  In addition, toenail fungus may cause permanent nail damage.

Nail fungus is responsible for approximately half of all nail disorders and, because it can be difficult to treat, the best way to treat the ailment effectively is to detect it early.  Another common toenail fungus symptom is a nail that has become distorted in its shape.  If it seems to be dull or lacking luster, this is also a toenail fungus symptom.  An unpleasant odor and pain in the nail area are discomforts that are often a very definitive toenail fungus symptom.  If any of these signs are present, or the condition worsens, a physician should be contacted in order to gain a proper assessment of the infection and how to treat it most effectively.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Six Things You Can Do To Prepare For The Coming Pandemic

A recent survey showed that 60% of American businesses were not ready for the coming Avian Influenza pandemic. However, 73% said they wanted to get ready, but weren’t sure what to do. Here then, is a starter list of six things you should include in your business preparedness plan.

1. Absenteeism will be high due to illness or refusal to come to the workplace out of fear. Gather your key employees in accounting, sales, marketing, manufacturing, and management and develop a work-from-home strategy.

2. Offer your employees who must come into the plant a safe environment. Hire a sterilization team to scrub the plant’s exposed surfaces every day. A bleach/water solution will kill all pathogens in the workplace. Be sure to have plenty of NanoMasks and Nanofilters on hand for each employee. Clean all HVAC vents thoroughly. Bring in portable, commercial grade UV air filters and place them around work areas.

3. Establish an in-house clinic with a full-time RN or LPN. When this pandemic hits, hospitals will be overwhelmed and understaffed. Victims of H5N1 must be started on antivirals immediately. A mobile clinic parked outside your office building, or a designated emergency treatment area within your plant will promote confidence.

4. There isn’t going to be a vaccine for H5N1 available for probably 12 months or more. Your best shot at survival will be antivirals and good hygiene. Purchase ViraGard spray and hand it out freely to employees. Encourage them to spray surfaces, knobs, handles, keyboards, and their own hands.

5. Do not allow immune-compromised employees, or employees with any type of immune disorder to come into the workplace once the pandemic starts. A special care plan for these employees should be developed that includes self-quarantine.

6. Develop a secure, confidential website that allows all employees to read the latest company news and action items, and allow employees to contribute news to the website to keep everyone informed.

The first pandemic wave will probably last about 90 days. You’ll need medical supplies, plenty of soap, potable water, disinfectant, emergency power for those days when electricity will fail, and someone to monitor, gather, and disseminate local pandemic news to your employees. This pandemic will have a huge negative impact on the economy. Those businesses that prepare now will suffer the least.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Incontinence: A Treatable Disease

Incontinence does not only affect the elderly. This is an annoying and irritating problem that can embarrass a person whether at home or out and about. Unwanted leaks can lead people to be isolated in their homes in fear of embarrassment. People with incontinence can lose their self-confidence and it can result in emotional disorders in children.

Women who have had multiple pregnancies may experience incontinence easily. Athletes who are running may also develop signs of incontinence because they are prone to having a sensitive bladder. Though these signs may seem difficult to treat, there are things you can do in order to manage this problem.

First thing you must do is to get a medical diagnosis. The doctor will give you a test in order to find out what is wrong with your bladder and what causing the lack of control. The doctor will be the one to decide whether you need medication or surgery. It is important to find out how serious the problem is and discuss your options in respect to surgery. You can ask your doctor for further details and he will explain it to you.

There are some exercises that you can do at home to improve your bladder’s strength and ability to retain urine. By practicing Kegel exercises you will strengthen the pelvic floor and bladder walls in your body. Most women who have incontinence reported that they have regained bladder control just by doing these exercises. If you do not have signs of incontinence, you can practice Kegel exercises to prevent onset. Also, do the exercises if you feel that the signs of incontinence are coming back.

Some people might be eligible for medication in order to improve their bladder control. This works well with younger patients and those who have little or no other health problems. You can find out if you are qualified if you to ask your doctor. Never hesitate to consult a doctor out of embarrassment as they see this kind of thing on a regular basis.

If you can stop drinking fluids after 6 p.m you may experience less leakage overnight. If you plan to go out somewhere for a long period of time, you should not drink a lot of water before leaving the house. If you are staying at home, you should not hesitate to drink water because you will need it. It is important to keep your fluid intake up to the recommended amount of 2 litres a day. Reducing fluid intake can actually worsen incontinence symptoms and will encourage bladder infections.

You can wear special padding if you are going to need it. Incontinence products and pads can be bought in pharmacies, supermarkets, and drugstores. You can wear pads at any time of the day especially when you feel that you are prone to leakage whether you are in the public place or at home.

By following these steps, you may be able to control incontinence when the signs and symptoms are present. Remember that it is important to take these control measures seriously in order for you to prevent incontinence from happening.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Arthritis Q&A: Understanding Different Types Of Arthritis

What exactly is arthritis?

Arthritis is a group of conditions that affect the health of the bone joints in the body. A painful inflammation of a joint or joints usually produces heat and redness.

The condition can be brought about by nerve impairment, increased or decreased function of the endocrine glands or degeneration due to age.

What are the symptoms of arthritis?

The symptoms of arthritis include pain and limited function of joints. The inflammation in the joints is characterized by stiffness of the joint, swelling, redness and warm. Tenderness of the inflamed joints can be present.

The many forms of arthritis can involve symptoms affecting various organs of the body that do not directly involve the joints. Symptoms in some patients can also include non-specific fever, weight loss, fatigue and feeling unwell.

Are there different kinds of arthritis?

Yes, there are different types of arthritis. These include the following:

• fibromyalgia

• infectious arthritis

• osteoarthritis

• polymyalgia rheumatica

• lupus, Lyme disease

• carpal tunnel syndrome

• childhood arthritis

Other common types of arthritis include cervical arthritis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, lumbosacral arthritis, osteonecrosis, osteoporosis, psoriatic arthritis, and others.

What is osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis caused by the breakdown of cartilage. Bits of cartilage may break off and cause pain and swelling in the joints between bones.

Osteoarthritis is a disease that affects joints in the body. It can involve any joint, but usually concerns hands and weight-bearing joints such as hips, knees, feet and spine.

What is rheumatoid arthritis?

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease. Normally, the cells called antibodies being produced by the body’s immune system, attack the foreign substances such as bacteria and viruses. With autoimmune diseases, the immune system mistakes the person’s own tissue as foreign and attacks it.

With rheumatoid arthritis, the antibodies attack the membranes around the joints that cause swelling, pain and stiffness. In some cases, rheumatoid arthritis can cause deformity.

Rheumatoid arthritis also causes inflammation of the sheaths around the tendons, the one that join muscles to bones.

What is juvenile rheumatoid arthritis?

Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis is the type of arthritis that causes joint inflammation and stiffness for more than six weeks in a child of sixteen years of age or less.

There are three types of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, the polyarticular, pauciarticular and systematic. Polyarticular involves more than five joints and may be associated with a low-grade fever. The pauciarticular involves fewer joints and the systematic juvenile rheumatoid arthritis can affect the entire body.

Is arthritis hereditary?

There have been studies that are concentrated on finding the causes of arthritis. These studies show that a genetic component can affect in the arthritis symptoms. Some types of arthritis have a strong link with genetics. These are arthritis in the spine and gouty arthritis. The others have a weak link in genetics.

On the other hand, the study explains that arthritis attacks more in older people. However, patients commonly get arthritis in several ways. Doctors have implied that a hereditary issue has a lesser percentage of risk when it comes to triggering arthritis.

Most causes of arthritis include things like sports injuries, old age, joint overuse, and other personal risks.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Stress and Congestive Heart Failure: A Deadly Combination

Stress is a formidable force in the lives of many people in this world today. While stress may not seem to permanently affect people, it is a very serious cause and/or aggravation to medical conditions a person has. First, it is important to discuss what the true definition of stress is. If asked, the average person on the street might say that stress is anything that causes worry to one’s life. They might give examples like arguing with a spouse, financial problems, or children’s bad behavior. While these are examples of one kind of stress, stress is also much more. By definition, stress is the body’s reaction to change that requires any kind of change or response. Besides emotional and mental reactions to these changes, the body experiences physical responses as well. Stress is a very normal part of life and depending on how one reacts to it, can be positive or negative. While this is true, many people let stress affect them negatively.

The human body is capable of experiencing stress and reacting to it. A way that stress can be positive is to keep people on their toes and ready for anything. However, if stress is taken the wrong way, it becomes negative. One way that stress can become a negative influence on a life is if a person begins to go through continuous challenges that prove stressful and has no respite from these challenges. While a human being is emotionally capable of handling stress, seemingly endless tests of our strength may discourage a person and start affecting their health in a negative manner such as the person becoming over-worked or extremely tense.

This type of unrelenting and continuous stress can be very destructive. This can lead to a condition called distress, a negative reaction to stress. Such physical symptoms that can ensue with distress are headaches, upset stomach, insomnia, high blood pressure, and chest pain, just to name a few. Medical studies show that it is possible that stress can cause or worsen symptoms of diseases. If stress is not reacted to in a calm and rational manner, it can definitely be a force to be reckoned with. The statistics of how many people are vulnerable to the negative effects of stress are surprising.

Forty-three percent of adults suffer from adverse health effects in connection with stress. Surprisingly, people do take their sufferings to the doctor, because 75-90% of doctors’ visits are related to symptoms and ailments of stress. Not only is stress a danger on a personal level, but the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has declared stress a true hazard of the workplace. Not only does it cost the employee money, but American industry loses $300 billion annually due to stress. The existence and or lifetime continuation of emotional issues is greater than 50% due to unresolved stress issues. Stress can also make diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure, asthma, and heart disease worse.

Congestive Heart Failure (CHF), in short, is a condition of the heart when the heart does not have the capability to pump blood properly. This condition is caused in large part by unhealthy diet, unhealthy lifestyle, and heredity, among other things. This serious and life-threatening disease is exacerbated by the existence of stress in the life of someone diagnosed with it. If stress has such an effect on otherwise healthy adults, imagine the incredible emotional, mental, and worst of all, physical consequences of stress on someone lacking complete functionality of his or her heart. Stress can make a huge difference in the longevity of the life of a person with CHF. It is so very important to minimize situations that are inductive to stress so that the quality of life is tolerable for the patient. Being diagnosed with Congestive Heart Failure, an incurable disease, is difficult enough without adding the pressures of excessive stress into his or her life.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Common S.T.D. Symptoms and Treatment for Chlamydia, Herpes and Hepatitis

Disease like Chlamydia, Herpes and Hepatitis are a growing problem in the United States.  High risk behaviors and lack of disease information and resources have had a profound effect on the spread of such diseases.  Some of these diseases have little to no symptoms yet can be extremely harmful if not treated and can spread without knowing so.  Getting proper education in dealing with such diseases can help you as an individual protect yourself from infection.

Chlamydia – Chlamydia is one of the most common STD’s today.  Chlamydia is easily spread through sexual activities hence they are a sexually transmitted disease.  Clamidia treatment is usually pretty easy and uncomplicated.  Chlamydia can cause sterility in both men and women.  At least three million individuals are infected with Chlamydia each year.  Common symptoms of clamidia include: discharge from lower regions, painful urination, painful intercourse, abdominal pain, nausea, fever, swelling and bleeding from lower regions (specific symptoms for men or women).  Symptoms usually occur with in 21 days of infection.  Treatment of Chlamydia is usually taken care of with an antibiotic, usually doxycycline, taken for a week.

Herpes – Herpes is also an extremely common sexually transmitted disease.  Most adults have some version of the disease.  Many do not know they even have the herpies virus.  Herpes is often associated with sores on the mouth (cold sores) and genitals (genital herpes).    There is no cure for herpes however herpies symptoms and breakouts can be treated with medication prescribed by your doctor.  Someone using these medications can lead break-out free lives.  Generally, herpes is usually the most problematic during the first breakout and lessons with age.

Hepatitis – There are many versions of hepatitis.  Hepatitus B for example can be prevented with a vaccination, other versions of hepatitis cannot.  Hepatitis can be spread via sexual activity or by eating food handled improperly as a Food-Bourne illness.  Hepatitis is a serious illness that affects the Liver and may cause jaundice.  All symptoms associated with hepatitis should be directed to a medical professional for immediate treatment.  Hepatitus can be very serious and it is important to get the facts and resources immediately for treatment.  Other symptoms of hepatitis can include : extreme fatigue, headache, fever and hives.  Hepatitus may be invisible during its most contagious stages.

Proper knowledge and safe practices can help you extremely reduce the risks of getting infected with a sexually transmitted disease.  For more information on sexually transmitted diseases visit your local health department, your primary physician or a pregnancy resource center near you.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Avoiding and Preventing Cancer: Simple Steps to Take

With its fairly unique characteristics, cancer strikes intense fear in many people and all would like to find ways to preventing and avoiding cancer.Obviously, any disease that is a) fatal, b) incurable and c) derived from unknown causes will earn a position of esteemed concern among the general public.

The faulty basis regarding the incurability of cancer is something you will find in my most recent book, but for now let us acknowledge that most people believe this to be true.

Cancer is a unique illness, in that it is created within our cells, by our cells. Damaged DNA causes a cell to divide without limits, producing more cells with damaged DNA that divide without limits. Soon, the cells create a massive tumor which is often fatal. Is it really possible to avoid and prevent cancer?

The most reliable medical treatments for cancer are essentially poisonous. We poison our body, depending on the fact that the cancerous portion will perish first. This theory has proven itself workable, though it often generates effects which are as lethal as the cancer.

Luckily for us, our bodies were created with an inherent set of tools, our immune system, designed to keep illness from settling in and destroying us. Not so luckily for us, we live in an age where the maintenance of those tools is incredibly poor.

To increase the abilities of our immune system and ensure that it can do its job, we must strive to be as healthy as possible. Our immune system will help us prevent and defeat disease, but it won’t do it all by itself: we must be willing to help. There are indeed some simple steps you can take to avoid and prevent cancer.

After all, if we don’t care enough about our health to fight for it, why should our immune system? If you do care enough to fight for it, how do you go about it?

Start exercising. This is actually one of the cheapest, easiest and potentially most effective tactics we have in promoting a healthy, active and forceful immune system. We make it hard, even though it doesn’t need to be.There is no need to join a health club or purchase fancy equipment.

If you have stairs in your home, spend 15 minutes a day walking up and down them. Do sit-ups and push-ups. The key is to do something, which will always be better than doing nothing regarding exercise.

Eat better. While there may not be a scientifically backed study indicating that a regular diet of deep fried fast food causes cancer, it has certainly been linked to a variety of health problems. Remember that any health problem drains your immune system which, in turn, makes you more susceptible to other health problems.

I’m not suggesting that you become a vegetarian and start shopping exclusively at organic health stores, although you may want to look into those options. But you may stop giving into the so-called “easy” way of eating .

Look at it from a new perspective. Certainly, every time you pick up a quick dinner at the local grease market you are saving yourself the time and trouble of preparing a healthy meal.

What’s really happening with those “savings,” however, is that you’re stashing them into a “time bank.” Like most savings, that time earns interest. In this case, the interest you are earning is pain, problems and suffering. When you finally withdraw all of that saved time, later in your life,you have to withdraw the earned interest as well.

Reduce stress. Stress is a massive immune system inhibitor. It comes at you from all angles, in every direction and with varying intensity. Recognize the sources of stress in your life and then work on healing them. A great number of options exist to reduce stress, you simply need to find the one that works best for you.

Of the options, one that is particularly viable to the prevention and avoidance of cancer is meditation. Drop the images you may be having of monks in robes. Meditation can be done in a very secular way, with no dogma attached.

Simply sit undisturbed in a comfortable position while visualizing your self at the peak of health. When your mind strays, as it will, from the visualization of yourself at peak health, all you need to do is simply bring it back.

After practicing this for awhile, you’ll find that your mind hardly drifts at all. You’ll also find yourself feel much better than you’ve felt in a long time, and it won’t even cost you a penny. This simple step could indeed be the start of avoiding and preventing cancer.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Teens Likely Target For New Vaccines

Vaccines have come a long way since 1022 A.D., when a Buddhist nun fashioned what many consider the precursor to vaccines in an effort to fight smallpox.

Since then, vaccines have stopped smallpox virus, are close to eradicating the polio virus and have slowed numerous other disease-causing microbes. Where are they headed?

Today, scientists and vaccine manufacturers are aiming the next wave of vaccines at a group considered the least likely to receive preventive care and most likely to exhibit risk-taking behavior-adolescents.

Experts in adolescent health see vaccines as effective tools for disease prevention.

“Despite strong recommendations from organizations such as the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics, 35 million adolescents fail to receive at least one recommended vaccine,” said AMA President J. Edward Hill, M.D. “When adolescents do not receive recommended immunizations, they become vulnerable to diseases that can cause serious illness and even death.”

Currently, the CDC immunization schedule for adolescents includes:

- Standard tetanus-diphtheria-acellular pertussis booster

(Pertussis booster recommendation added June 2005);

- Hepatitis B series and the varicella (chickenpox) vaccine for those who missed out as younger children;

- Second MMR shot if not already given;

- Meningococcal conjugate or polysaccharide vaccine, depending on age and circumstance;

- Influenza, hepatitis A and pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccines for some adolescents.

Vaccines making their way from the research bench, through clinical trials and, finally, the approval process, will in the next few years protect against such diseases as:

- Human papillomaviruses: cancer-causing viruses that infect nearly 3 out of 4 Americans between the ages of 15 and 49;

- Chlamydia: one of the most widespread bacterial STIs in America, with three million infections annually;

- HIV: the virus that causes AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome), characterized by a weakened immune system causing susceptibility to infections and cancers;

- Herpes simplex virus 2: a virus infecting 40 to 60 million Americans, with half a million new infections every year;

- Staphylococcus aureus: common bacteria found in the nose or on the skin of healthy people, which can sometimes cause serious infections.

Today’s scientists envision a time when vaccines may defeat cancers, prevent the common cold and perhaps even drug abuse.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

What Are Candida Albicans?

Candida Albicans is a yeast infection that usually starts in the digestive system and gradually spreads to other parts of the body. It is also a type of parasite that is strong, invasive and usually attaches itself to the intestinal wall and becomes a permanent resident of the internal organs.

Candida Albicans causes countless health problems for a great number of men and women. These health problems may be caused by moderate or severe Candida infection affecting the various parts of their bodies. Candida Albicans has the ability to produce 75 toxic substances that can poison the human body. The toxins that are produced by the Candida parasites and contaminate the tissues and weaken the immune system, the glands, the kidneys, the bladder, the lungs, the liver, the brain and then the nervous system.

Candida Albicans is so invasive that it enters the gastrointestinal wall in the form of fungus where it develops very long, root like structures that penetrates the wall — breaking down the protective barrier between the intestinal tract and the bloodstream. This breakdown allows the entrance of foreign as well as toxic substances to the bloodstream where they can harm various body systems.

The breaking down of the barrier results in some major problems especially when proteins and other food wastes are not completely digested or removed. There can also be an attack on the immune system that causes severe allergic reactions, fatigue and other health problems.

Candida Albicans together with some bacteria swimming in the bloodstream is dangerous since it will be able to find its way to other tissues. This can bring you more severe health problems like swelling of joints, chest pain, sinus problems, skin problems, etc.

Candida infection may also cause of some heart attacks. There are reported cases of people who have never been diagnosed with heart problems, but then die from a heart attack for no apparent reason. Further, investigation has lead to surprising findings of Candida yeast causing undiagnosed heart attacks. Candida yeast can cover the heart, which is what causes the heart attack. The Candida yeast reaches the heart by means of the bloodstream.

Vaginal yeast infections are more widespread today than ever before and they will never be fully healed unless the yeast is completely eliminated from the intestinal area. Candida may also be transmitted through sexual intercourse.

Candidiasis or Candida infection usually interferes with digestion and assimilation of vitamins and minerals. A great number of senior citizens, cancer patients as well as those individuals with HIV are suffering nutritional deficiencies because their body is unable to absorb nutrients from the food that they eat.

A great number of people are able to digest only 50% of their food because the Candida parasite is robbing the body of the other 50%. The Candida parasite creates a digestive conflict that creates chaos in the intestine that results in diseases that have left a great number of doctors clueless as to what treatments to recommend.

Immunological weaknesses and infectious conditions are usually worsened by the presence of Candida parasites throughout the body. Yeast cell activity gives off two dangerous by-products —acetaidehyde and ethanol.

A great number of people are experiencing iron deficiency due to the presence of Candida. The Candida parasites also prohibits oxygen from entering the tissues. The ethanol that is given off by Candida parasites is the major cause excessive fatigue and reduction of strength and stamina in people infected with Candida. The ethanol likewise destroys enzymes that are needed for providing cells with energy and releases free radicals that hasten the aging process.

Please consult your primary care physician for more advice on Candida and potential treatments.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Arthritis Treatments – The Natural Way

There are actually three common types of arthritis. The treatments which you will need will depend on the type, so please read carefully. The main type is  Osteoarthritis which is the most common, affecting around 16 million Americans with an average age of 45. It usually will attack weight bearing joints like knees, hips, and ankles but has been found in the fingers, neck and spine. Each of our joints is cushioned by cartilage, a very dense, sponge-like substance. Osteoarthritis attacks that cartilage and gradually wears it down.

Another type of arthritis is Rheumatoid Arthritis. Extremely painful and inflammatory, it strikes the lining of the joints and actually attacks two million Americans in their twenties.

Psoriatic Arthritis is not as well known as the previous two, but actually eats away at the joints and can also manifest as psoriasis on the skin.

The term Arthritis literally translates to “joint inflammation.” If you suffer from any of the different types of Arthritis listed above, chances are you have taken drugs to combat the effects or tried other “home remedies.” If you haven’t yet tried “Urtication,” it might be helpful. The term “Urtication” comes from the botanical name, Urtica dioica and dates back some 2,000 years to biblical times. Urtica dioica is “Stinging Nettle. The treatment is to grasp the nettles in a gloved hand and swat the sore joints with the nettles. This may seem bizarre, but the practice has proven to be so effective for some sufferers of arthritis that they now maintain a nettle plant on their window sill.

Many arthritis sufferers have tried unusual and rather nasty ‘cures’ for their disease like enduring bee-stings or covering themselves in cow-manure. The benefits must have been rather less spectacular than the cures or else everyone else would have done the same.

One arthritis cure suggests that half a glass of raw potato juice followed by chewing two or three juniper berries will do the trick! While this may be so, many doctors and scientists researching arthritis have studied the benefits of taking nutritional substances like vitamins. In fact, studies have shown that people with arthritis are mostly deficient in the B group of vitamins, though whether this is due to the disease or to the fact that taking aspirin depletes the body’s stores of this vitamin is not clear.

Vitamin C, E and beta-carotenes are powerful antioxidants that help to neutralize free radicals. These oxygen-reactive free radical molecules are thought to contribute significantly to disease and tissue damage. It has been found that cells from damaged knee cartilage can release great amounts of free radicals. In fact, studies have shown that those who have a high Vitamin C intake have a two-thirds reduction in the risk of further damage to their knees. Well-known scientist Dr. Linus Pauling recommends 18 grams of V-C per day as an arthritis preventative measure.

Osteoarthritis can cause thinning of the bones, and so can prednisone, often given to treat it. It makes sense then to increase the amount of Vitamin D and calcium, both of which are bone-builders. As far back as 1974, British scientists found that lack of vitamin D contributed to bone fractures in the elderly with arthritis. Lack of sunlight and an unhealthy diet both contributed to the lack. The recommended daily dose of Vitamin D is 400 IU or 600 IU if for those over the age of 60. A daily dose of 1200 IU is the limit as this vitamin is toxic if too much is taken.

Vitamin E is also an antioxidant; working in a similar way to vitamin C. Studies in Germany have proven that it can help to reduce pain. Good sources of this vitamin can be found in wheat germ, sunflower seed, corn oil, legumes and whole grains.

While some people swear by the arthritis cure that their copper bracelet brought, there is no scientific link to copper as being an aid to arthritis. In fact the opposite is true. Those with RA often have higher levels of copper in their blood. Too much copper can make you sick.

Selenium deficiency can cause a particular type of arthritis called Kashin-Bek disease, but it is more common where the soil is deficient in selenium, though sufferers of RA have less in their blood than others. Fish, organ meats, whole grains, nuts and beans will provide selenium.

Zinc may help reduce pain, stiffness and swelling. Some trials showed this was true, though others gave conflicting results. Oysters, cheese and tofu are all good sources of zinc.

The pain of arthritis can also be relieved by hot-packs, deliberately focusing on something else like pleasant music, humor, gentle exercise and losing weight.

Here are a few more herbs that are used effectively for the treatment of arthritis:

Black Cohosh

Also known as Black Snakeroot, Bugbane, Rattleroot, Rattleweed, Squawroot. The dried root is the part used. This is a powerful relaxant as well as being extremely effective with easing painful menstrual cramps. Ovarian cramps will be relieved as well as bringing on a delayed menstrual cycle. It is also effective in the treatment of arthritis, osteo-arthritis, rheumatic pain and neurological pan. In small doses, appetite and digestion are greatly improved and is very beneficial for the nervous system in general.

Bogbean

Useful for treatment of rheumatism, osteo-arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Also has a stimulating effect on the walls of the colon and digestive juices.

Celery Seeds

Use dried ripe fruits to use as an anti-inflammatory, anti-rheumatic, diuretic or anti-spasmodic. Great for treating rheumatism, arthritis and gout.

Chapparal

Very useful in cases of acne, arthritis, chronic backache, skin conditions of warts and blotches. Also one of the best cancer herbs.

Feverfew

Use the leaves to treat migraine headaches, arthritis, dizziness and tinnitus.

Nettle

The is the herb we referred to earlier and is another one of those “universal” plants. They are found all over the world and they strengthen the entire body. Rheumatism, arthritis, eczema, nosebleeds, arteries, lessen blood pressure are just a few applications. Nettles contain calcium, chlorine, iron, potassium, silicon, sodium and sulphur.

Saffron

A natural hydrochloric acid (utilizes sugar of fruits and oils), thus helping arthritics get rid of the uric acid which holds the calcium deposited in the joints. Also reduces lactic acid build up. Good for measles, skin, scarlet fever and perspiration.

Yucca

Hope for arthritics. The extract from the plant has been used with surprising success on arthritis and rheumatism sufferers.

All of the herbs mentioned here should be available at your local health food store along with suggestions on how to prepare them for use. Some applications will be to ingest in teas while others may facilitate creating a topical treatment.

No matter what natural remedies you choose please consult your physician to make certain that your course of treatment does not interfere with medications that your doctor subscribes for your treatment.

More Articles and Information can be found at:

http://www.arthritis.inforatreat.com

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Leading Scientists Discuss: What Does The Future Hold For Alzheimer’s?

Presently, 4.5 million people have Alzheimer’s. This number is expected to increase as millions in the baby-boom generation approach their senior years. The disease strikes an estimated one in 10 people aged 65 and older, and 50 percent of those 85 or older. It is the eighth leading cause of death in the U.S. Without a cure, the Alzheimer’s Association estimates that between 11 million and 16 million Americans will have the disease by 2050.

Despite these staggering numbers, too many Americans are not recognizing Alzheimer’s disease as a growing health threat, according to experts who recently gathered at the 20th Anniversary MetLife Foundation Awards for Medical Research in Alzheimer’s Disease for a panel discussion on the state of Alzheimer’s research. The discussion was moderated by noted gerontologist Dr. Robert Butler, President and CEO, International Longevity Center and founding director of the National Institute on Aging.

“There needs to be greater urgency around getting closer to a significant breakthrough in Alzheimer’s research,” said C. Robert Henrikson, president and CEO of MetLife, who addressed the Awards luncheon. “Alzheimer’s devastates families, emotionally and financially, and we have to do a better job at helping the public understand this impact.”

“We need to commit resources, as we did to conquer polio in the fifties,” said John Trojanowski, M.D., Ph.D., a past recipient of the MetLife Award from the University of Pennsylvania.

At the discussion, the scientists predicted that early detection and diagnosis may play a role in Alzheimer’s treatment. “If we wait for those times when people are clinically symptomatic, it may be too late, even for very effective treatments,” said William Klunk, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Pittsburgh, also a past MetLife Award winner.

There is an increasing sense that lifestyle changes may play a role in brain aging, as well. “Enrichment, exercise and several other things that are independent of drugs may impact the course of brain aging,” said Carl Cotman, Ph.D., University of California.

Despite significant advancements in the past two decades, there still remains work to be done before the mystery of Alzheimer’s is solved. Recruiting young people into the Alzheimer’s field is critically important. In fact, according to the winner of this year’s MetLife Award, Karen Hsiao Ashe, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Minnesota Medical School and Minneapolis VA Center, fewer American high school graduates are entering the biomedical sciences and research fields, a problem that needs to be addressed.

“We all play an important part in making young people aware of the importance of the work being done in this field, and getting them excited about the fact that they can truly make a difference,” said Dr. Ashe. “A lifetime dedicated to medical research is a noble pursuit, and more young people need to know this.”

Created in 1986, the MetLife Foundation Awards recognize scientists who have made significant contributions to the understanding of Alzheimer’s disease. MetLife Foundation also supports a number of other Alzheimer-related initiatives, including numerous programs with the Alzheimer’s Association, and sponsorship of the breakthrough PBS documentary “The Forgetting: A Portrait of Alzheimer’s.”

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

New Program Revitalizes Hospice Care for Alzheimer’s Patients

Yoga practitioners are probably familiar with the phrase Namaste, which is used to greet fellow practitioners at the end of every yoga session. When the phrase is accompanied with hands pressed together, prayer-like, and a small bow, it is an Indian equivalent of a Western handshake, but it is also more than that. It signifies a humble acknowledgement of and reverence for the spirit or spark of divinity in a fellow human being.

The Namaste program, a new program for patients in the final stage of Alzheimer’s Disease, strives to respect the inner spirit of dementia patients facing the end of their life by utilizing the resources of family and staff within nursing homes in a unique way.The program does not call for more people or money. Instead, it requires specialized training, caring and creative staff, and a willingness to implement simple activities into dementia patients’ final days that will honor their life and their death.

In a case study that the Namaste program’s creator provided for an article in the January/March 2005 issue of Alzheimer’s Care Quarterly, a special room in the Vermont Veterans Home in Bennington, Vermont was set aside for day programming for patients in the final stage of Alzheimer’s Disease. Special attention was paid to their comfort, and staff focused on clothing, grooming and hygiene, nutrition, exercise, soft music and comfortable beds and chairs. Patients’ humanity was emphasized with activities that they would personally enjoy. For example, gazing out a window and listening to a tape of birds chirping was planned for a man who was an outdoors enthusiast.

Staff consistently communicated with the patients with praise, conversation, and physical contact, such as hugs and massages, which did not allow isolation to occur. Finally, staff supported family members emotionally and welcomed them to share in both their loved one’s life and death. Finally, when death was imminent, patients were moved into a private room, given pain medication, and surrounded by their loved ones who were fed, accommodated, and supported by staff.

When death occurred, the patient was honored with mementos of their life, such as pictures and a plant. Family members and staff accompanied the patient as far as the hearse. No part of the journey was left unappreciated or unrecognized.

Programs like Namaste are important for patients in the final stage of Alzheimer’s Disease. While nursing homes often have special sections of their facility devoted to Alzheimer’s patients and special activities planned for them, options for programming diminish as dementia increases and patients reach the end of their lives. Facilities are often too understaffed to provide the kind of personal attention that caregivers desire for their loved ones.

Some experts believe that placement in a traditional nursing home may actually speed death in many patients. Alzheimer’s disease is, ultimately, a fatal condition, and patients and their families have as much right to the highest quality of end-of-life care as other terminal patients. Without programs like Namaste, which focus on the whole being—mental, physical, and spiritual—nursing homes may deprive patients and their families of the support and respect they deserve.

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

Allergies – Quality Of Life

Having allergies isn’t simply a matter of sneezing once in a while during the day.  If it was then nobody would make too big a deal about them.  But the truth is, allergies can greatly affect our quality of life depending on what type of allergy we have and how severe the symptoms.

Let’s start with the most common allergy, hay fever.  Millions of people suffer from hay fever but few really understand how terrible this allergy can be.  Going outside and breathing in pollen that starts us sneezing and wheezing is only part of the problem.  In itself, that’s bad enough.  But what about the person who doesn’t have a nice comfortable job inside an air conditioned office?  This is the poor guy who’s maybe a landscaper or gardener.  These people work outdoors for a living.  What are they supposed to do?  If their symptoms are severe enough where medication brings little or no relief they have two options.  Continue to suffer and possibly miss many days of work or find a new line of work.  If this sounds drastic, it isn’t.  Sadly, many people lose their jobs because of medical problems, allergies being among the more common.

For the person who works indoors, they are not always so lucky either.  Many people have allergies to indoor mold which is very common in old buildings, especially old schools.  There was a recent documented case in Irvington, NJ where the mold situation in the high school was so bad that one teacher became ill enough that she had to leave her job until the situation was rectified.

This is even worse for people with allergies to mold who live in old homes.  Many times when the problem gets out of control the person has to sell his home or move out of his apartment.  Mold is not an easy thing to get rid of if it has spread far enough and if it does get out of control many times people are forced from their homes.  This isn’t just a minor quality of life change.

It isn’t just people with indoor and outdoor allergies who have their quality of life affected.  People with food allergies or sensitivities have their lives sometimes drastically altered.  Many people suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome because of allergies to certain foods and because of this either miss time from work or spend a good part of the day at work in the bathroom.  In either case these people are forced to give up their jobs because they can’t do them dependably.

But it isn’t just work that gets the worst of it with allergies.  Many fathers with young sons are unable to go outside and play ball with their kid because of hay fever.  Others can’t go on that vacation with the rest of the family because they have to be close to a bathroom at all times because of food allergies.

The sad fact is, people with allergies suffer greatly.  And it’s not just a little sneezing during the day.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Proper Use of Bedwetting Alarms

Bedwetting or enuresis is one of the more common behavioral problems with small children. Bedwetting occurs when a child, instead of waking up and going to the toilet, or just ‘holding it’; releases urine when the bladder gets full during sleep. There are a lot of reasons for it – deep sleep, a small bladder capacity, an increased production of urine during night and constipation. Sometimes, even sensitivity towards certain foods can contribute towards enuresis. Studies indicate that children who suffer from enuresis fail to register the connection between the urge to urinate and the need to wake up and go the bathroom. It is as if their brain was differently ‘wired’ and this basic behavior pattern is absent from their mental make-up.

A number of treatment options are available – medication, bed pads and bedwetting alarms. While medication always has its inherent risks, a bed pad is plain uncomfortable. Its plastic surface does not tend towards a relaxed sleep and neither does it sound the alarm when the child expels only a small amount of urine.

The safest bet for any parent of a child suffering from enuresis is a bedwetting alarm. This kind of an alarm has a sensory disc, which can be attached to the child’s underwear, which in turn is connected to a device, which sounds an alarm immediately when the disc registers moisture. The theory is that if you are successful in waking up the child as soon as he feels the urge to urinate, you can train him to go to the bathroom immediately. The child’s brain registers the connection between these two acts and learns this behavior. Eventually the child will learn to get up without the need for an alarm and bedwetting would stop.

Because they instigate a behavioral change in the child, the use of bedwetting alarms is highly recommended. In fact, studies show that these devices have success rate of 60% to 80%. While medication is a stopgap arrangement, the alarms teach the child a lifelong habit. These devices usually have a standard mode of operation. The alarm is connected by cable to a small sensor. This sensor is attached to the outside of the child’s underwear. The lightweight alarm unit is anchored usually to the shoulder or lapel of the child’s pajamas. The sensor should be placed where the first drop of urine would be expected. Moisture triggers the alarm (usually auditory), forcing the child to wake.

Initially, some difficulties might be experienced while using the alarm. The child might sleep through the jarring alarm, pull it off during sleep or refuse to use it. In these cases, parents have to proceed with extreme patience. They would have to help the child to wake up during the night and eventually he will learn to respond to the alarm. A restless sleeper might dislodge the sensor. Thus, it is necessary to choose a model that adheres firmly to underwear, while at the same time is not uncomfortable. In the case of a child’s refusal to its usage, you should attempt to demonstrate its operation. Listen to his objections and persuade him by adequately addressing his concerns. However, in no situation should a bedwetting alarm be forced upon the child.

Copyright © Jared Winston, 2006.  All Rights Reserved.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

What Should I Know About Hepatitis B?

Hepatitis B remains one of those scary terms that you occasionally hear health care professionals use. You also hear about this somewhat mysterious disease in the media from time to time. But just what is Hepatitis B and what should we know about it?

Hepatitis B is a DNA virus that can be found in the blood. It attacks the liver. A name you may run across is HBV, which is short for Hepatitis B Virus. The term, hepatitis, means inflammation of the liver.

What is important to know when considering how HBV is spread is that, as far as we know, it is transmitted mainly via blood contact. To be a little more specific, infection can occur when the blood from an infected person enters the body. Other body fluids can also contain HBV, but usually in much lower concentrations. It is possible to receive HBV via a bite from an infected person. It is suspected that the sharing of toothbrushes or razors might allow for an infection to be contracted.

HBV is also a sexually transmitted disease. The usual increased risk factors for other sexually transmitted diseases apply here as well. For example, promiscuous and homosexual behavior may increase the chances for infection.

People who are hemophiliacs are also at higher risk as well as those who live with a person who has a chronic HBV infection. Having a job that involves contact with blood can also put you at increased risk for obvious reasons. Drug use is another risk factor.

It is possible for your body to fight off an HBV infection. If that happens you will be free of the virus and you will eventually not even test positive for the HBV surface antigen in your blood. An antigen is simply defined as a substance that causes the production of antibodies. And antibodies are those proteins that are used by your body to get rid of antigens. You might have guessed that a blood test can show if a person is suffering from a HBV infection.

Some peoples’ bodies do not fight the infection off completely and they suffer from chronic hepatitis. The virus remains in the body for the long term. This type of person can infect others. Currently, it is estimated that 1.25 million people in the United States suffer from a chronic Hepatitis B infection.

There are vaccines to help prevent a HBV infection and there are drugs that can be used to fight an infection. Interestingly enough, a vaccine can be useful after a possible HBV infection to help prevent the disease from developing. Check with your doctor to get current recommendations on HBV vaccinations.

Often times a Hepatitis B infection can pass without the person even being aware that they had it. Sometimes there are no symptoms. There can also be symptoms ranging from very minor to very serious. On relatively rare occasions, a Hepatitis B infection can cause death, though this happens to a very small percentage of infected individuals.

This article is for information purposes only and is not meant to diagnose, treat, or prevent any health condition. Seek the advice of a qualified medical professional if you have or think you might have any health condition, including Hepatitis B.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Ankylosing Spondylitis, Treatment and Symptoms

What is Ankylosing Spondylitis?

Ankylosing Spondylitis is a condition which is related to arthritis.  Ankylosing Spondylitis affects approximately 1 in every 250 mainly young men so while many may have not heard about it, it is quite common.

The word Ankylosing means inflammation of the spine while Spondylitis means joint which is fixed solid and unable to bend.  So, in simple terms, Ankylosing Spondylitis is a condition which involves the spine becoming inflamed and as a consequence becoming fixed and solid.  What tends to happen, is that tendons or ligaments attached to the spine become swollen.  When the swelling reduces, it is replaced by growths of bone.  When this happens a number of times, there becomes more and more bone where there used to be tendons or ligaments until eventually the joint fuses together.

As with many conditions, different people are affected with varying degrees of this condition, with some barely noticing it while others lose their full independence.  What is also interesting is that the Ankylosing Spondylitis symptoms can come and go over time.

What are the Symptoms of Ankylosing Spondylitis?

The first time people tend to notice that they have Ankylosing Spondylitis, is when the experience lower back pain and some muscle spasms.  This tends to be worse during the night.  This pain often spreads to the upper back, neck and buttocks.  Also, in the morning, neck pain may be experienced which is relieved during the day through exercise.

Without treatment, it is possible that the symptoms could develop into fever, fatigue and a loss of appetite.  There may be some weight loss as well.

As the spine starts to fuse together, you may start to find it more and more difficult and painful to move around.  Also, in a number of cases. as the joints start to become more and more affected, it becomes harder to breath as the ribs start to stop moving.  This means that breathing is now being conducted using only the muscles of the diaphragm.  On top of this, the lungs could be affected by Ankylosing Spondylitis.

Ankylosing Spondylitis in approximately 1 in 3 cases can cause inflammation in one or both eyes.

Causes of Ankylosing Spondylitis

Nobody knows exactly what causes Ankylosing Spondylitis.  It is generally thought that the antigen HLA-B27.  This may explain why this condition appears to run in families.  This is also linked to a condition called Reites Syndrome.

Treatment of Ankylosing Spondylitis

There are no drugs in existence today which can slow or stop the condition.  However, there are drugs called Non Steroidal Anti Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) which can help to control the inflammation and reduce the pain.

Also, daily exercise consisting of gentle stretching exercises or swimming can help to improve the movement of the spine and help to create a more positive posture.  On top of this, hydrotherapy and physiotherapy can also help to relieve the symptoms.

Unfortunately, there are a small number of people suffering from Ankylosing Spondylitis who will require hip replacements.  Thankfully, those cases are few and far between.

Interestingly, the symptoms of Ankylosing Spondylitis can be present for a period of time and then they reduce significantly.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Autism Spectrum Disorders Explained

Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) cover a variety of behaviors and abilities and are caused by abnormal brain development. While ASDs begin when the individual is a child, they will last throughout the individual’s life. Most individuals with ASDs will display a lack of social skills, as well as communication skills. While these individuals with ASDs may have a variety of different behaviors, each individual is unlike another. While the symptoms may be severe in one individual, they may be very mild in another. The following are some common behaviors emitted by individuals diagnosed with an ASD.

Generally, individuals diagnosed with ASDs will not want to socialize with others. Some things you may notice are a lack of eye contact with others, preferring to do activities by themselves, and they may not want to be touched. Depending upon the severity of the symptoms, some individuals may not even notice when others speak to them or are trying to get their attention. In mild cases, it may be that an individual will simply not understand how to relate to others and in case of a young child, they may not know how to play with other children.

When it comes to communication skills, more often than not, individuals with ASDs will show lack of development in these areas, as well. Many children that have been diagnosed with ASDs do not talk at all. Some may display a repetitive speech, such as echolalia, where they repeat the words that are said to them. Instead of answering a question, they’ll simply repeat what was asked of them. A child with ASDs may be able to talk and then at a later date, stop talking altogether.

Other communication behaviors may be a flat tone to their voice and they may not be able to control how loud or softly they talk. They may have a hard time sticking to a topic of discussion for a long time and they may also show a lack of listening skills. Some may stand too close to someone they are talking to, as well as talking a lot and not letting someone else get a chance to talk.

Individuals with ASDs may also display repetitive actions. It might be that they have to line their items on their nightstand up perfectly before going to bed or it may be they simply have to stick to a certain routine. Any change in this routine may upset them badly and throw them off kilter. These repetitive behaviors become very important to them.

The fact is that children who have been diagnosed with ASDs simply develop differently than those without ASDs. While they may exhibit motor skills that are similar to other children their age, their language and social skills may be severely underdeveloped compared to others. Children with ASDs might be able to put together a very intricate puzzle, but have a hard time making friends.

The symptoms of ASDs may become less severe over time or perhaps become more pronounced. Again, while there are many symptoms associated with ASDs, each individual that is diagnosed will display varying degrees of each one.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

The Vitiligo Skin Condition Explained In Plain English

Vitiligo

White patches on the skin, premature graying of the scalp, eyelashes, eyebrows, and beard, and sometimes a loss of color inside the mouth—these are some of the distinct signs of vitiligo.  Some people might mistake it as a disease brought about by too much sun exposure.  While signs of this disease commonly appear in the sun-exposed areas of the body, the cause of vitiligo is generally unknown.  Doctors and researchers have formulated several theories….

One would be that people develop antibodies (produced by the immune system, these are protective proteins which fight infectious agents including bacteria and viruses) which destroy melanocytes (special skin cells that produce melanin) in their own bodies; two, that melanocytes destroy themselves; and three, that a particular event, such as sunburn or emotional distress, triggers these distress—all of which have no scientific backing yet.  Another theory says that is hereditary, making children whose parents are affected, prone to the disorder.

Vitiligo affects 40 to 50 million of the world’s population, including all races males and females.  Majority of the people affected by vitiligo usually develop it before turning 40.  Given the shady causes of vitiligo, doctors make it a point to find out about important factors in an affected person’s medical history—family history, a rash or a skin trauma two to three months before depigmentation began, stress, physical illness, and / or premature graying of the scalp.  While a scientific breakthrough is yet to be done determining the cause of vitiligo, several preventive measures have been developed over the years.

Treatment

Treating vitiligo would always prove to be risky.  The side effects of treatments are as unpredictable the disorder’s cause.  That is why vitiligo treatment should always be done with utmost care and patience.

A person’s own tissues mat be used for surgical treatment through autologous skin grafts.   The doctor removes portions of the pigmented skin and then replaces the affected skin with it.  Possible complications for this treatment include infections, scarring, a cobblestone appearance, or a spotty repigmentation.  The greatest risk would be the skin’s failure to repigment at all.

Another surgical treatment using the pigmented skin is skin grafts using blisters.  The patient’s pigmented skin is exposed to heat, which then causes blisters.  These blisters are cut off and then transplanted to the depigmented area.

Another simpler option is tattooing or micropigmentation.  This is usually done on patients with dark skin.  Tattoos, however, tend to fade in time and may even lead to blister outbreaks.

Lastly, vitiligo can be cured surgically through autologous melanocyte transplants.  Multiplying a patient’s pigmented skin through a special cell culture solution that grows melanocytes does this.  The reproduced skin then is transplanted over the depigmented areas.

Additional therapies include sunscreens, which helps protect the screen from the damaging effect of the sun.  Cosmetics, on the other hand, are temporary solutions, which are used to cover up the patient’s affected areas.

Adverse Effects

For a person affected by vitiligo, the first few white patches that appear on his skin can be quite tolerable.  These patches usually appear in patterns.  These patterns have three forms.  One is the focal pattern wherein depigmentation occurs in a limited area.  Second is the segmental pattern wherein patches appear only on one side of the body.  Third, which is probably the worst one, is the generalized pattern wherein the depigmentation occurs in different areas of the body.  Adding to this is the uncertainty of how the vitiligo will spread.

For some people, the white patches spread gradually while for some, in quick succession.  Some findings say that emotional distress can cause the affected areas to increase in number.  Common areas of appearance are the armpits, groin, around the mouth, eyes, nostril, navel, and genitals.  A person with vitiligo may also have premature graying of the scalp hair, eyelashes, eyebrows, and beard.

There are several treatments for vitiligo patients.  There are medical therapies, surgical therapies, and adjunctive therapies.  Under medical therapies are topical steroid therapy, topical psoralen photochemotherapy, oral psoralen photochemotherapy, and depigmentation.  Surgical therapy, on the other hand, include skin grafts from a person’s own tissue, skin grafts using blisters, micropigmentation or tattooing, and autologous melanocyte transplants.

Coping with Vitiligo

Skin cleansers, moisturizers, toners, and facial masks—these are just some of the basic beauty maintenance products that are a part of a person’s daily regimen.  It has long been accepted that the adage “Real beauty is found within,” is generally a concept that people raise their eyebrows at.  While beauty is, as they say, skin-deep, physical appearance is the first thing that impacts on a person upon the first meeting.

When a person is affected by vitiligo, the change in his or her appearance can cause quite an emotional trauma.  While some people attempt to appear blase, the white patches on the skin are actually quite hard to ignore especially if the person who has them is dark-skinned.  The emotional trauma this causes affects the affected people in various manners depending on their age.

For adolescents, this could be the root of severe insecurity.  Going to school, wherein students generally don’t have the mature capacity to be discreet or sympathetic might prove to be difficult.  The stares alone could prove to be traumatic to a teenager for these are the years wherein looks are of primary concern.  For adults, some might find it hard to land jobs especially ones that involve dealing with people or public relations.

There are several strategies that can be used to cope up with the emotional stress that comes with this disorder.  The most important one would be finding a doctor who has inept knowledge of vitiligo and will give the patient a firm sense of security.

Medical Therapies for Vitiligo

The manifestation of vitiligo’s effects on a patient’s body is seen not only through the white patches that appear but also through the weakening of the skin’s function.  The occurrence of this disorder affects the melanin content of a person’s skin, thus making him more prone to the damaging effects of the sun.  The primary goal of the treating vitiligo is to improve the person’s physical appearance and restore the important functions of the skin making him less susceptible to even more skin damage.

The first option is the medical therapies.  When started early, topical steroid therapy helps a great deal in repigmenting the skin meaning returning the color to those white patches that have spread around the body.  Doctors advice the patients to apply corticosteroids, which are a group of drugs that resemble the hormones produced by the adrenal gland. Results usually manifest after two to three months of application, taking note this is not a therapy to cure vitiligo but a treatment that can help.

Even if it is time-consuming, psoralen photochemotherapy is proving to be one of the most beneficial treatments for vitiligo patients.  It is also known as the psoralen and ultraviolet A therapy).  Ultraviolet A (UVA) is a type of radiation that reaches the earth’s surface and cause the skin to tan while psoralens are drugs that contain chemicals, which react with ultraviolet light.  This treatment is done by exposing the skin to UVA light from a special lamp.  This must be done careful so as to not overexpose the skin.

Patients who will undergo psoralen photochemotherapy have two options: oral which is taking psoralen by mouth, and topical which is done by applying the medicine to the skin.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

New Program Helps Children With ADHD Learn to Read

Studies show that attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) remains a problem with youth in the U.S.

According to a study by the Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 7.5 percent of children are diagnosed with ADHD by age 19. Those affected by the disorder are more likely to experience learning problems in areas such as reading and writing.

Many of these difficulties are due to problems with decoding, comprehension and retention. Some signs that a child is having trouble with these tasks are as follows:

Having problems sounding out words and recognizing words that are out of context.

Reading orally at a slower rate than most children of the same age.

Confusing the meanings of words and sentences.

Showing difficulty in distinguishing significant information from minor details.

Having trouble remembering or summarizing what is read.

Fortunately, there is hope for children with ADHD who are having trouble reading and writing. For many, the answer lies in watching movies, such as the ones developed by SFK Media Specially for Kids Corp.

ReadENT learning system is a patented program that uses “Reading Movies” to help children with special education needs develop reading and language skills while being entertained.

These movies use an innovative tool called “Action Captions” that shows spoken words on screen in real time, without disrupting the flow of the movie. By providing these visual words, the movies make it easier for viewers to grasp language concepts and build vocabulary.

ReadENT Reading Movies are available as interactive DVDs of the classic children’s movies “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea,” “Tales of Gulliver’s Travels” and “The Trojan Horse.” They also come with interactive games and quizzes to make the learning experience even more fun.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

What Exactly Is Psoriasis?

Hardly noticeable at the beginning, the rash first appears on your knees, elbows or on the hairy side of the skull, as small reddish scales. Then it transforms into large spots, covered by silver scales. Later in the process the rash extends on other skin surfaces, turning your body into a cubic picture and you life in a nightmare. Most people have no idea that psoriasis isn’t contagious and they can’t help their fear and disgust as they meet a sick person. Throughout recorded history there was no case of the disease being transmitted from one person to another, even when coming in contact with infected blood. Regardless, even in the richest countries of the world, there is about 4% of the population recorded as suffering from this disease.

What do we know about it?

A lot of physicians point out endocrinal disturbances as well as metabolically and changes in the immune system of the patient. There are papers stating that the disease is caused by certain types of neuroses as well as stress, but many admit that this illness is still a mystery for physicians. Unfortunately, there is no known treatment against this disease that keeps it away for good. However, by studying the numerous forms and types of psoriasis, doctors have managed to develop a treatment which guarantees a lasting remission of the disease. They can also guarantee a drastic demise up to complete disappearance of symptoms for many years.

More information on psoriasis

Most people inherited psoriasis. 60% of the patients have relatives who suffered, or still suffer of this terrible illness. There is just one chromosome responsible for it. But, even if someone were to trace back to a few hundreds of years his genealogic tree, and if it could be proven that no one in his family ever suffered from psoriasis, this wouldn’t matter a lot. Because of the pathology, the chromosome can be dormant for years, and kids with infected parents could live a long life without a spot on their body. Nevertheless, some circumstances can be looked in. Like the age for instance – most of the sick are between 15 and 25 years old. This happens because of the hormonal transformations the body goes trough at puberty, as well as increased psychical instability.

The three stages

The first noticeable thing when studying psoriasis is the red skin. Any doctor would tell you about the three stages of the disease: progressive, stationary and regressive. During the first stage of the disease, the spots are swollen, hard to the touch and they have a bright color. The spots appear in friction and pressing areas, such as where the bra closes, or on an injury. In the second phase, no more spots appear, but the existing ones tend to link together to form larger and pail ones. The final stage, the regressive stage, is characterized by the partial and sometimes complete disappearance of the spots. It should be noticed that the pail spots are then replaced by darker ones.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Are You Eligible To Get A Flu Priority Shot? You Need To Know

A flu priority shot is something that many people are eligible for but many of them don’t realize it. Most people should get the flu shot each year in order to stay healthy throughout the flu season but some people are able to get the flu shot earlier than everyone else and these people are eligible for what is known as the flu priority shot.

The flu priority shot is what health care workers and some other people in the public can get. If you are able to get the flu priority shot you will have until October 24 to get the flu priority shot before anyone else can get their flu shot. The flu priority shot is the same flu shot as the regular one, the “priority” part of the flu priority shot is only referring to that fact that these people can get their shot first thus ensuring that they get it at all.

The flu shot goes fast and that is why they have set up the flu priority shot program, to make sure that those who really need to get the flu shot get it while it is still available.

If you are 65 or older you may be eligible to get the flu priority shot each year as long as you do not have any chronic health conditions that would make this dangerous to your health. And if you live in a long-term care facility you will also be able to get the flu priority shot every year.

There are others who are eligible for the flu priority shot and they are as follows:

Those who are over two and under 64 can and should get the flu priority shot if they have health conditions that would make the flu very dangerous to them.

Smaller children who are 6 months to 23 months of age should get the flu priority shot because they can be in danger from the flu each year as well.

All pregnant women should get the flu priority shot to keep them and their babies safe from the flu and its side effects.

Anyone who is in the health care field and who comes into contact with the patients are eligible for the flu priority shot and in some cases they actually have to get the flu priority shot or they will not be allowed to continue working.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Stroke is the Nation’s Number Three Killer. Know the Signs. Act in Time

Stroke is the nation’s number three killer and the leading cause of long-term disability in the United States. More than 700,000 Americans will suffer a stroke this year. Yet many Americans do not know the symptoms or what to do when they witness someone having a stroke. The following information is provided to you by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), part of the National Institutes of Health.

“Stroke is an unmistakable event. Few other medical conditions come on so suddenly or are so noticeable to a bystander,” said John R. Marler, M.D., associate director for clinical trials at NINDS.

A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is interrupted. Brain cells die when deprived of oxygen and nutrients provided by blood. Because stroke injures the brain, if you are having a stroke, you may not realize what is happening. But to a bystander, the signs of a stroke are distinct:

- Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg (especially on one side of the body);

- Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding speech;

- Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes;

- Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, or loss of balance or coordination; and

- Sudden severe headache with no known cause.

In treating a stroke, every minute counts. New treatments are available that greatly reduce the damage caused by a stroke. But you need to arrive at the hospital as soon as possible after symptoms start. Knowing the symptoms of a stroke and getting to the hospital quickly can help you act in time to save yourself-or someone you know-from serious long-term disability.

And making changes in your lifestyle can help prevent stroke. NINDS is dedicated to research and education on the causes and treatments and prevention of stroke. Risk factors include family history, high blood pressure, smoking, diabetes, physical inactivity, heavy alcohol consumption, and being overweight. Talk to your doctor. Find out your risks and take action.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Hepatitis – Cause, Symptoms and Treatment

Hepatitis is caused by viruses and Bacteria (Leptospira sps.) and can be Acute(sudden) or Chronic(prolonged). The easy infection of viruses is due to immuno deficiency in humans against the viruses.

The Major Symptoms of hepatitis are Malaise(Inactivity), Anorexia(Loss of appetite), nausea, jaundice, Liver failure, Cirrhosis(Liver Fibrosis), Hepatic coma, Atrophy of Glands etc.

Hepatitis is categorised into 5 types depending on different viruses causing it into namely :

1. Hepatitis A – Infectious Hepatitis or epidemic hepatitis.

2. Hepatitis B – Serum Hepatitis or Serum Jaundice.

3. Hepatitis C – Non A non B hepatitis.

4. Hepatitis D

5. Hepatitis E

Hepatitis A is ahighly infectious disease caused by Enterovirus reffered to as Hepatitis A Virus(HAV) and the incubation peiod for this disease is about 2 – 8 weeks and the disease is called Short Incubation Hepatitis. The virus replicates in the liver of the host.

Treatment of this disease can be done by immunising with inactivated viral vaccine. This disease in comtaminted in the water and feed, so sanitory conditions should be improved to prevent the disease.

Hepatitis B is a parentally transmitted disease. It is caused by HBV, a hepadna virus which is present in the blood. It shows few symptoms and sometimes if passes off asymptomatically. The incubation period is 1 – 6 months so the disease is called Long Incubation Hepatitis.

It is transmitted from mother to child, between intravenous drug abusers, also in Male Homosexuals.

The disease causes Cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. The disease can be prevented by using sterlised needles for testing and can be treated by vaccinising with Hepatitis B vaccine.

Hepatitis C is Non A non B hepatitis with an incubation of 7 – 8 weeks. This disease is common in parental drug abusers and also through Blood transfusion.

Hepatitis D & E are less common diseases with very less effect and symptoms. Hepatitis D virus requires the presence Of hepatitis B virus for its multiplication.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Helpful Treatments Keep People With Arthritis

But what if joint pain and stiffness are inevitable if you don’t take the medication, yet heart problems could occur if you do? Health officials say that, as with any drug, only you and your doctor can determine the level of risk that is acceptable with medications currently available to treat arthritis.

The unsettling news in late 2004 that the popular anti-inflammatory arthritis drugs Vioxx (rofecoxib), Celebrex (celecoxib), and Bextra (valdecoxib) could cause a heart attack or stroke or aggravate high blood pressure has left some patients wondering whether they should keep taking them.

Data from clinical trials showed that cyclooxygenase-2 selective agents, better known as COX-2 inhibitors, may be associated with an increased risk of serious cardiovascular problems, especially when used in high doses or for long periods in patients with existing cardiovascular disease, or in very high-risk situations, such as immediately after heart surgery. COX-2 inhibitors are the newest subset of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). COX-2 inhibitors were developed specifically to decrease the well-recognized gastric side effects and intolerance associated with the use of some NSAIDs.

Traditional NSAIDs, such as aspirin or ibuprofen, act by blocking the production of a family of chemicals known as prostaglandins, which are not only important in the development of inflammation, but also play an important role in maintaining the integrity of the stomach lining. At least two enzymes are involved in this inflammation, namely cyclooxygenase-1 (COX-1) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2). Traditional NSAIDs inhibit both COX-1 and COX-2. Unfortunately, this non-selective inhibition of both COX enzymes also inhibits those prostaglandins involved in some of the important “housekeeping” functions of the body, such as helping blood to clot and protecting the stomach from ulceration.

It is this non-selective inhibition of both enzymes by aspirin and other non-selective NSAIDs that increases the risk of stomach ulcers and consequent bleeding. In theory, the newer COX-2 selective inhibitors only inhibit the enzyme involved in inflammation, leaving the other functions alone.

But Sandra Kweder, M.D., deputy director of the Food and Drug Administration’s Office of New Drugs, says that new studies have had a surprising twist. “The downside of the COX-2 selective inhibitors is that they appear to be associated–particularly when used for many consecutive months to years–with an increased risk of cardiovascular problems,” she says. Moreover, COX-2 inhibitors, like other NSAIDs, don’t influence the course of the disease–which doctors say is a common misconception among patients–because these drugs only provide for symptom relief.

Coincidentally, preliminary results from a three-year trial on the non-selective NSAID Aleve (naproxen) also suggested that long-term use may be associated with an increased risk for cardiovascular problems.

Since the results of studies on both non-selective and selective NSAIDs are preliminary and conflict with data from earlier studies of the same drugs, the FDA issued a public health advisory in December 2004 concerning use of all NSAIDs, pending further review of data that continue to be collected. The agency has recommended, among other things, that physicians limit the use of COX-2 inhibitors until further review.

“Monitoring the drug safety of marketed products requires close collaboration between our clinical reviewers and drug safety staff to evaluate and respond to adverse events identified in ongoing clinical trials or reported to us by physicians and their patients,” says Kweder. “The most recent actions concerning [NSAIDs] illustrate the vital importance of the ongoing assessment of the safety of a product once it is in widespread use.”

Others Weigh In

The concerns with the safety of so many pain relievers used to treat arthritis underscores the importance of arthritis as a major health care issue in the United States. Arthritis experts, patient advocacy groups, and other health organizations also are weighing in on the uncertainty of NSAIDs, and are recognizing the need for developing new and safer medications.

The American College of Rheumatology is advising physicians to follow current treatment guidelines and manufacturers’ dosage recommendations for NSAIDs. Treatment guidelines exist to help doctors choose the best options for their patients, based on current scientific studies.

The Arthritis Foundation said in a statement that the findings about the drugs should not have any immediate impact on the clinical use of them.

“Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs continue to play an important role in the management of arthritis pain,” says John H. Klippel, M.D., president and CEO of the Arthritis Foundation. “Patients who derive benefit from these drugs should remain on their treatment regimen, and discuss concerns with their physicians,” he says.

But Charles A. Birbara, M.D., a rheumatologist and associate professor of medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester, Mass., says that he has prescribed COX inhibitors cautiously in older people or those with cardiovascular or renal disease ever since early clinical studies discovered a possible risk in this patient population.

“I’m not always willing to take a risk with my patients, because we clearly don’t have a complete understanding of all the potential clinical issues associated with use of these drugs,” he says. Even before the controversy, Birbara notes that the long-term effects of COX-2 agents were unknown. Besides, he says, there are other treatment options available that are equally effective.

“There are so many wonderful things happening with respect to current therapies of arthritis,” he says. “Clearly, we are so much better able to control inflammatory arthritis with new biologic agents.” Birbara adds that so many people whose lives were diminished by joint disease can now look forward to an unrestricted lifestyle, which was “not even imaginable just a few short years ago.”

Richard Shirley, 64, an avid birdwatcher from Wrentham, Mass., battled rheumatoid arthritis in nearly every joint in his body for more than 25 years before he saw Birbara. He couldn’t button his shirt cuffs, walk frontward down a flight of stairs, or get in and out of a car without a struggle. At times, his hands were so swollen he couldn’t grasp small objects or make a closed fist. Shirley had his wedding ring resized so it would fit.

“Richard had seen a number of physicians and had been on many medications to treat his disease,” Birbara says. “However, the aggressive nature of his arthritis was not very responsive to standard medications.” According to Birbara, X-rays of Shirley also showed evidence of joint destruction.

“Doctor Birbara has a zero tolerance for hot and inflamed joints,” Shirley says, “because that’s when the damage is done.” Shirley also believes, from his own experience, that each person needs to work with his or her physician to find the appropriate medicine. For him, a new biologic product made the difference.

Finding the right treatments for those at greatest risk for the potential complications of arthritis and other rheumatic conditions, Birbara says, hopefully will lessen the burden of this disease, not only in the United States, but for the entire world.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Fibromyalgia – The Mysterious Condition

Fibromyalgia is also know as “chronic fatigue syndrome”.  CFS is also called “Epstein-Barr Syndrome”.  Although fibromyalgia and Epstein-Barr have since been diagnosed and recognized as two different illnesses, the CFS name is still attached to both.  We will cover fibromyalgia in this article and leave Epstein-Barr for another.

Signs and symptoms of fibromyalgia can include wide-spread body aches, sensitivity and pain when touched (even gently), fatigue, sleep disruptions, irritable bowel syndrome, headaches, facial pain, tenderness in the back and shoulders, numbness or tingling in the hands and feet, painful menstruation, irritable bladder and dry eyes, skin, and mouth.

There has not, at the time of this article, been a specific cause cited for fibromyalgia.  However, many doctors believe that the following are contributing factors:

- Chemical changes in the brain

- Sleep disturbances

- Injury or trauma, especially to the upper spine

- Changes in muscular metabolism

- Abnormalities of the autonomic (sympathetic) nervous system.

Risk of developing fibromyalgia seems to be higher in women and the age groups most affected tend to be those in their early and middle adulthood.  It has, however, been diagnosed in children, men, and teens.

No conclusive evidence has been found as to whether sleep disorders are a cause, or a result, of fibromyalgia.  But those who suffer from restless leg syndrome, night time muscle spasms in one’s legs, or sleep apnea frequently develop fibromyalgia.  Family history may also be a contributing factor.  If one has a relative with this condition, one may be a higher risk for having it.

Further, if one has a rheumatic disease such as ankylosing spondilitis, rheumatic arthritis, or lupus, the likelihood of fibromyalgia increases.

Currently, there are no specific tests for diagnosing the disease.  One may be tested for numerous other illnesses and diseases, and have those ruled out, before a physician decides to check further using the guidelines set forth by the American College of Rheumatology.  For further information on those guidelines.  go to:

http://www.rheumatology.org/public/factsheets/fibromya_new.asp

Once diagnosed, there are many ways that the disease can be treated, BUT, there is no cure for fibromyalgia yet.  One’s physician may prescribe medications to treat the symptoms and could recommend that one seek out alternative, non-medical treatments for relief from the chronic pain associated with it.  In the meantime, medical scientists continue to search for answers about this mysterious disease.  With symptomatic treatment, along with some possible and achievable lifestyle adjustments, one can cope.

Fibromyalgia is not a progressive illness and there are no indications that it will lead to other diseases or conditions.  One must be prepared, however, to experience the chronic pain, sleeplessness, depression, and anxiety which accompany it.  This in turn can cause problems with one’s ability to work, and maintain healthy familial and friendly relationships.  And frustration from coping with this frequently misunderstood illness can add more complications to the conditions.

Stress can be a major factor in the intensity of one’s pain, due the further tensing of already-stressed muscles, tendons, and ligaments.  It is important to help in educating those around you so that they have a better concept about what you are experiencing.  Their understanding and coping when one has a particularly bad day can help to reduce your stress and, perhaps, help to alleviate your pain.  Taking time out to relax, calm, and soothe one’s body and mind can also be beneficial to keeping the pain to a minimum.

In conclusion, if you suffer any of the symptoms, discuss it with your health care provider or doctor.  After ruling out any other possible reasons for your suffering, he or she can help you with controlling your symptoms with pain relievers (over-the-counter or prescription), stress reduction (by medication and/or alternative treatments), and lifestyle adjustments.

One can also join a support group.  Check with your doctor to find one in your local area.  Or go online at:

http://www.fmnews.com or http://www.fmaware.org

These sites can provide you with excellent information, updated reports on the latest research, where to find support groups in your area, and free information with many topics on the subject of fibromyalgia.

If you are diagnosed with FM, know that you are not alone.  There’s an incredible network of support out there which is helping to educate others about the illness.

See your physician or health care provider then join in with others who are suffering, or know someone who suffers, from this sometimes overwhelming illness.  Together, let’s teach more people to understand and cope.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off

Arthritis – The Inflammatory Disease

One of the most common conditions in the United States today is a debilitating inflammatory disease that affects our joints.  It is estimated that there are over 100 different forms of this disease and over 40 million people suffer from one form or another.

Though typically thought to be an affliction of the aging, arthritis can affect anyone at any time, and with all of the different forms, each with their own symptoms, it could be hard to determine just what type of arthritis an individual is suffering from.

The signs and symptoms of arthritis are varied, though some of the first symptoms are familiar and easy to recognize.  Symptoms such as general pain or swelling around the joints, an increased stiffness in the joints in the morning, a cracking sound in the knees when standing, and joints with a red appearance that feel warm to the touch are all signs of arthritis.

However, before you rush to purchase an over-the-counter arthritis treatment, you should talk to your doctor. Your doctor is the only one who will be able to tell you what form of arthritis you may have and how to treat it.

Rheumatoid arthritis is one of the most common forms of arthritis that plagues sufferers.  It affects the joints and is a systemic disease that can affect other organs.  Rheumatoid arthritis symptoms tend to disappear after sometime, but the problem is still there.  The true cause of rheumatoid arthritis is presently unknown, though many suggest that things such as infections, fungi, or bacteria are the culprits.  However, there are also those that believe that rheumatoid arthritis is hereditary.  Painful and swollen joints are a common warning sign of rheumatoid arthritis, followed by muscle pain, extreme fatigue, redness and warmth at the joints, even a low grade fever and appetite loss.

Next to rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis is a common affliction, caused by breaking down of joint cartilage.  Osteoarthritis commonly begins in one joint and typically only affects the one joint.  It does not move to internal organs.  Osteoarthritis commonly affects the knees, hips, hands, and spine.  By the time the pain starts setting in for an osteoarthritis sufferer, the damage to the affected joint cartilage could be considerable.

Relieving pain from a form of arthritis can be as simple as over-the-counter or prescription medication.  However, in the most severe cases, surgery may be necessary.  Being overweight can also play a role in arthritis.  Some physicians believe that a change in diet can also ease the pain of arthritis, though there is a lot of debate on the topic.  Regardless, you should speak to your doctor who can tell you just what form of arthritis you may have, and what treatment options may work best for you.

Posted in Medicine for you | Comments Off