Auto Warranty Quotes Not the Final Step

If you are shopping for a new warranty for your car, you have probably gotten your share of auto warranty quotes, both online and over the telephone. But there are three important things you need to remember about every quote you get:

The quotes you have in your hand are not binding. That is why they call it a quote. A company can provide you with an estimate of how much your extended warranty coverage will cost, but that does not mean that the price they have delivered you will be the price you pay. Factors, including the amount of time you let pass between getting the quote and attempting to make a purchase, can have an impact on the validity of your quote. The best way to protect yourself is to make sure that all of the information you provide is accurate and timely. If you guess on the mileage on your car, and you are wrong, your quoted rate is no longer correct. There are other ways that a company can change a quote, but that one is the easiest way, and the worst part is, it will be your fault.

A quote does not mean that you can skip the fine print. Do not assume that because you have a price in front of you that you can skimp on the research. You may know how much your extended warranty will cost up front, but until you know what it covers and what it does not cover, you will not know the true cost of your warranty. If you skip the fine print, you might miss important information that could save you thousands of dollars down the road – not to mention a lot of heartache when you suddenly realize that the repairs you need are not covered.

The quotes you get are not likely to be better online than on the phone or in person. If you call the company that sells the extended warranties, you might get quicker service, but do not expect a better or worse quote because of it. The same thing applies for in-person quotes that you might obtain at an auto show or by talking to a rep at another live event. The only exception here would be quotes that you get from a broker, who can sometimes work their magic with warranty providers, getting discounted bulk rates that you, as an individual, could never get. But otherwise, the auto warranty quotes you get online are going to be as good as any others.

Recommended Working Solutions When Trying To Get Pregnant

Trying to get pregnant is something that many couples struggle with. The reason for this is that couples either take a wrong approach or simply do not deal with the underlying reasons for their failure to have a baby. Other than poor timing when it comes to sexual intervention, the following are the most common reasons why couples fail to have babies and the recommended solutions.

Blocked Fallopian Tube, Uterine Fibroids, Ovarian Cysts and Getting Pregnant

It is impossible to have a baby when your fallopian tubes have been blocked. This is because the blocking of fallopian tubes will prevent conception since fertilization will not be able to take place. This may be due to genetic factors in that one may be born with fallopian tubes that are blocked or may be due to other conditions that develop during the lifetime of the person who is trying to get pregnant.

Abnormally large ovarian cysts and uterine fibroids are a common cause of conception problems. This is because these growths either prevent fertilization of the egg from taking place or make it impossible for implantation of the embryo to take place. When uterine fibroids grow in the fallopian tube, they may block the passage and thus preventing the egg from being fertilized by sperms. This makes becoming pregnant almost impossible.

Natural Methods Are Still Effective In Boosting Chances Of Conception

Natural methods of unblocking fallopian tubes are always the best solutions for this kind of problems. Eating a healthy balanced diet and leading a healthy lifestyle is recommended for any woman who wants to avoid the growth and development of ovarian cysts and fibroids. As a result, a healthy diet and lifestyle may go a long way in helping one to get pregnant.

Additional Options

Since natural methods take time, it is sometimes advisable to opt for laparoscopy. This is so in cases where the conditions are severe. Removal of endometrial tissues may be done through recanalization, a procedure which has over the years proved to be effective. One may also opt for the sealing off of the blocked fallopian tube to allow for the normal functioning of the one which is not blocked. This is likely to increase the chances of a woman getting pregnant.

When Trying to Get Pregnant Late In Your Child Bearing Years

It is no secret that as women age, their chances of getting pregnant diminish. This is usually because of the various changes that occur in the body of a woman as she ages. The most effective solution for people who try to get pregnant late in life is to eat a balanced diet and to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Fertility medications are also recommended in some cases to help one along. Since one's periods tend to become irregular with time, having regular sexual intercourse is a good strategy to maximize one's chances of getting pregnant.

The Current State of Ankle Arthroscopy

Introduction
Burman in 1931 scoped 3 ankles using a 4.Omm sheath without distraction, he found it too tight for satisfactory visualisation. Ankle arthroscopy really came of age in the 90’s with the development of 2.5mm arthroscopes, noninvasive distraction techniques and irrigation systems.

Historical developments
Tagaki was the real father of the arthroscope. He developed a 2.7mm arthroscope. However Watanabe developed matters further producing a self-focusing 1.7mm arthroscope and arthroscoped 28 ankles, describing the standard portals and normal anatomy.

Andrews wrote one of many texts on the subject in the late 80’s. Guhl developed a skeletal distracter for the ankle and wrote an excellent text.

Yates was the first to develop a non invasive distraction technique.

Advantages and Contra-indications
ADVANTAGES
Arthroscopy allows direct articular inspection + assessment of ligaments and synovial change. One can perform intraoperative stress testing.

The following diagnoses can be made. OCD – 23.5%, Impingement – 21.3%, Chrondromalacia – 7.9%, Instability – 7.2%, DJD – 7.2%, Acute Fracture – 6.5%, Arthrofibrosis – 4.8%, Loose Bodies, Osteophytes, Synovitis, Ossicles, Torn ATFL, Cryptogenic Pain, Cyst, Chondral Fracture, Peroneal Subluxation, Torn Peroneal Tendon.

The following procedures can be performed. Debride lateral gutter – 21.8%, Excise/Drill OCD – 19.4%, Chondroplasty – 13.3%, Excise fibrous bands – 6.8%, Loose bodies – 5.7%, Rx of fracture, Diagnostic, Synovectomy, Osteophytes, Ossicles, Arthrodesis, Stabilisation CONTRA-INDICATIONS – Relative – DJD, Oedema, Impaired vascularity.

Absolute – Soft tissue infection, Advanced DJD.

Instrumentation
Ankle arthroscopy developed from the principles of knee arthroscopy and hence initially the same instruments were applied. However as experience developed with smaller instruments, distraction, and fluid management systems, arthroscopy evolved.

Irrigation – Gravity, Gravity assist, Pumps.

Athroscopes – Hopkins 2.3mm, 2.7mm and 1.9mm diameters, 30 & 70 degree.

Distraction – Non invasive.

Instrumentation – Spinal needles, Probes, Dissectors – elevating OCD lesions, ossicles, Graspers – flat tipped or pitbull for small or large loose bodies (2.7-3.Omm), Basket forceps – straight, right and left, up and down angles (2.53.00mm), Knives, Curettes, Osteotomes, Power Instruments, Thigh/Ankle Holder, Aiming jigs.

Diagnostic Arthroscopic Examination of the Ankle
Ankle arthroscopy is a useful diagnostic modality to evaluate pathology and determine correct treatment. It should not be used as a substitute for careful history taking, examination and investigation. Its main advantages are that it allows direct inspection and probing of all intra-articular structures and their dynamic assessment. As such it is virtually 100% accurate in diagnosing intra-articular disorders.

The ankle is first distended with approximately 30cc of saline. Then the anteromedial portal is established just medial to tibialis anterior at the level of the joint line carefully avoiding the saphenous nerve. Then the anterolateral portal is established using transillumination, avoiding the superficial branch of the lateral popliteal nerve. A full diagnostic inspection of the anterior compartment is then carried out. Then the posterolateral portal is made localising the entry point with a spinal needle. Then a full inspection of the posterior compartment is made. Using these three portals a full 21 point systemic ankle examination can be carried out.

SOFT TISSUE LESIONS OF THE ANKLE
These are difficult to diagnose without arthroscopy despite careful assessment and investigation. They represent some 3050% of lesions found within the ankle joint and are diagnosed and treated by arthroscopy.

Patients with such lesions present with a combination of pain, swelling, tenderness, locking and giving way.

On examination one finds a combination of tenderness, wasting, swelling, restricted range and instability.

Investigations include XR, CT, MRI, Arthritis tests. These all may be negative.

CLASSIFICATION
Congenital – Plicae / bands – excise

Traumatic – sprains, fractures, prior surgery – excise generalised synovitis, excise localised bands, excise meniscoid lesions secondary to impingement.

Impingement lesions
Lateral ligament injuries are very common, with 1 ankle sprain per 10,000 occurring per day. Some 1-50% have some chronic pain.

Anterolateral impingement is the commonest soft tissue impingement lesion and cause of pain after ankle inversion injury – Wolin coined the term “the meniscoid lesions” for the arthroscopic appearance of the lateral gutter in these patients.

Arthroscopic treatment is very successful in alleviating chronic pain in 84% both subjectively and objectively.

During dorsiflexion of the ankle the malleoli are separated and the syndesmosis is stressed, syndesmotic injuries are undoubtedly underestimated. Syndesmotic injuries are best diagnosed by a localised tenderness and a positive squeeze test pressing the tibia and fibula together proximal to the syndesmosis half way up the calf. Syndesmotic impingement is also associated with a separate distal fascicle to the anterior talo-fibula ligament. The incidence of syndesmotic injury is 3% of all ankle sprains.

Posterior impingement can occur and was first described by Hamilton with posterior “meniscus” displacing inferiorly. Also a labrum on the posterior lip of the tibia can hypertrophy when injured.

Inflammatory Lesions
Rheumatoid arthritis, X-tal synovitis, PVNS and Synovial Chondromatosis can all affect the ankle. Rheumatoid arthritis has been reported to have an arthroscopic cure. A 95% synovectomy is possible, and early synovectomy is better than later.

PVNS can be treated arthroscopically in the ankle as elsewhere. Synovial Chondromatosis is rare in the ankle, but is treated along standard arthroscopic lines.

Other arthritides have been described such as gonarthritis, Crohn’s gout, chondrocalcinosis and are treated with arthroscopic synovectomy.

Infections
Bacterial and fungal infections occur and are best treated with arthroscopic aspiration and synovial biopsy followed by washout and irrigation then appropriate antibiotic therapy.

Degenerative disease
Primary and secondary osteoarthritis can be treated arthroscopically.

Miscellaneous
Arthrofibrosis post fracture or sprain can occur and is satisfactorily treated by arthroscopic resection of the fibrous bands and early physiotherapy.

ARTICULAR SURFACE DEFECTS, LOOSE BODIES AND OSTEOPHYTES
OCD Lesions of the talus – OLT
Osteochondral lesions of the talus as such were first described in 1856 by Monro but Konning coined the term “osteochondritis” when he found similar pathology elsewhere in the body and thought the aetiology was osteonecrosis. Kappis in 1922 first applied the term osteochondritis to the ankle joint.

Berndt and Harty in 1959 postulated a traumatic aetiology and used the term transchondral fracture of the talus. O’Donoghue said the lesions were intra-articular fractures and Campbell and Ranawat felt the cause was ischaemia in 1966. Alexander and Lichtman + Canale and Belding have subsequently lent support to the traumatic aetiology in 1980. However the exact aetiology remains uncertain.

It is certainly a condition which tends to be under diagnosed bearing in mind that talar osteochondritis accounts for 4-10% of all osteochondritides. It affects males more commonly than females and a peak incidence at 20-30-years of age.

The lesions are either posteromedial or anterolateral. If they are posteromedial – 70% are traumatic – are deep and not usually displaced. They are usually caused by inversion of the dorsiflexed foot (torsional impaction) ref. Of the anterolateral lesions – 90% are traumatic – are usually thinner and are more commonly displaced. They are typically caused by inversion of the plantar flexed foot.

Clinically patients present with a history of trauma, pain, swelling, catching, givingway or locking. On examination one may find swelling and tenderness.

The diagnosis is best made by CT or MRI. A classification based on CT correlates better with the arthroscopic findings than the original classification of Berndt and Harty. Zinman and his colleagues found CT to be superior to XR’s in diagnosis, but MRI also has been advocated particularly by Dipaoala. Anderson has developed an MRI based classification and found CT to be as good as MRI except in diagnosing grade 1 lesions.

Cheng and Ferkel went on to show CT to be the scan of choice if the diagnosis is known but MRI if it is not. They have also developed an arthroscopic classification.

Treatment of the stage 1& 2 lesions is 6-12 weeks in a cast, but arthroscopy if conservative treatment fails. Stages 3 & 4 lesions are treated arthroscopically immediately.

Results of treatment are good with Loomer showing 80% good or excellent results.

The surgical approach is as follows for acute OLT. They are palpated with a hook. Loose chondral fragments alone are excised but osteochondral fragments are pinned or screwed into the base of the defect whether displaced or undisplaced.

For chronic OLT again palpate with a hook, see if it is loose. Fix it if it is loose and the underlying bone is healthy, if the underlying bone is unhealthy you need to excise the loose fragment and drill the base of the defect. Large areas can be treated by osteochondral graft large.

It has been shown by Buckwalter that penetration of subchondral bone disrupts subchondral vessels, this produces bleeding, a clot and fibrocartilagenous repair. The cells responsible for this enter from the marrow. Significant cartilage defects can be repaired by tissue which grows up drill holes to cover exposed subchondral bone.

The results of arthroscopic treatment of OLT are as good if not better than open surgery i.e. 80% plus.

Osteophytes, loose bodies, and chondral lesions of the ankle
Arthroscopic ankle surgery is also successful other pathologies apart from impingement and OLT. Martin and Ferkel in 1989 reported 71% good/excellent results for OLT lesions, 57% good/excellent results for loose bodies and osteophytes and 12% good/excellent results for DJD.

With loose bodies it is necessary to inspect the posterior compartment and you need to check all the articular surfaces carefully after their removal.

Osteophytes in the ankle are a common condition known as the “anterior kissing lesions” or “Footballers Ankle”. It is O’Donoghue in 1966 who reported a 45% incidence in American Football players, there is an even higher incidence of 59.3% in dancers. Patients with “Footballers Ankle” present with pain catching and restricted joint motion (dorsiflexion) and swelling.

Treatment aims to reproduce the normal 60 degree tibiotalar angle. One must be careful to avoid neurovascular injury when performing surgery open or closed. Arthroscopically the borders of the osteophyte are exposed with a 3.5mm soft tissue resector then the bony spurs themselves are removed with burrs. Per operative lateral x-ray prior to completion can be taken to ensure sufficient bony resection, it has been shown that one obtains better results if the patients have isolated spurs than generalised DJD but overall excellent results are achievable.

A classification with grades I-N was described by Scranton, (1-111 treatable arthroscopically) but even grade IV lesions can be addressed arthroscopically. Interestingly talofibular bony impingement can also occur.

Chondral lesions also occur and are usually caused by a sprain or also by an RTA with direct compression of the articular cartilage. The pathologies range from blistering to full thickness flap tears. These lesions are frequently missed because of normal XR in A/E. If such lesions are suspected then ankle arthroscopy is the only sure way to diagnose them with a full examination of anterior and posterior compartments required. Arthroscopic surgery is straight forward resecting chondral flaps to stable base and drill exposed bone to encourage vascular invasion and fibrocartilage formation.

Ankle arthroscopic debridement and lavage parallels that of arthroscopic treatment of DJD in other joints.

Lateral ligament instability
Lateral ligament injury of the ankle is very common; with one person in 10,000 sustaining the injury per day it is the commonest ligament injury seen by surgeons. Repeated lateral ligament injuries interfere with normal daily life and with chronic instability a minor trauma can cause a significant inversion injury with unpredictable outcome.

Surgery to correct lateral ligament instability was described as early as 1949 by Nilsonne who described a peroneus brevis transfer. But it was Brostrom who showed that direct repair of the lateral ligament was possible even years after acute injury and Hamilton reported 93% good or excellent results with a modified Brostrom procedure. With lateral ligament tears it is the anterior talo-fibular ligament fails first, calcaneo fibular ligament rupture is rare. A repair/reconstruction ideally needs to reproduce the ATFL in its anatomic position and this is what a Brostrom or Hamilton procedure does.

The diagnosis of lateral ligament instability is straight forward, there is a history of instability the lateral ligaments are tender and moving the ankle demonstrates excessive inversion and an exaggerated anterior draw test, this is when the foot and talus are translocated anteriorly in the mortis and the amount of anterior movement recorded and compared with the normal side.

Radiographic lateral stress views can be performed applying set forces of inversion. But results of such instability testing can be questionable if the calcaneofibular ligament is intact and these patients still have instability.

Arthroscopically there is ballooning of the anterolateral capsule which appears and feels thinner than normal. One frequently sees scarring of the lateral gutter and syndesmosis with associated loose bodies or ossicles and lateral dome or plafond chondral changes.

Treatment is either an open or closed modified Brostrom repair with three weeks in a below-knee cast then standard physiotherapy. Arthroscopic results are as good as open.

Ankle arthrodesis
An ankle arthrodesis if successful allows a patient to return to work and some sports with a virtually normal gait. Fusion rates have been reported from any series as in the order of 80% and infection occurring in 5-25%. Morgan in 1985 reported a 96% fusion rate with 90% good/excellent results. He maintained the contour of the talar dome, kept the ankle in neutral and used cross-screw internal fixation.

Two years earlier Schneider first described arthroscopic ankle arthrodesis. But it was Morgan who published the first report in 1987. Myerson compared open and closed techniques of ankle arthrodesis with a reported quicker fusion time arthroscopically of 8.7 versus 14.5 weeks theoretically because of the lack of disruption of the soft tissues and therefore a better blood supply to the fusing surfaces. The faster fusion rate was backed up by Ogilvie-Harris who reported an 89% fusion rate arthroscopically with 88% fused by the third post operative month!

The advantages of an arthroscopic arthrodesis are reduced morbidity, shorter Hospital stay, faster fusion rate, better cosmesis and lower complication rates. Against these are long learning curve for the surgeon and theatre staff, it is a longer procedure and requires expensive arthroscopic equipment. Also it cannot correct large varus, or rotational deformities.

The contra-indications for an arthroscopic arthrodesis are >15 Degrees deformity, a previously failed arthrodesis, the presence of infection, RSD and a charcot joint. Mann showed that the best fusion position is with the ankle in neutral, avoiding >10 Degrees plantar-flexion and with the os-calcis in 5 degrees valgus. Also the “Mann” position results in the best gait. You do however lose 70% of your total motion arc with an ankle fusion and tarsal hypermobility is increased 85%.

The arthroscopic technique is to have the standard arthroscopic set up with either invasive or non-invasive distraction. Remove all articular cartilage initially from the talar dome and planfond then the gutters to expose bleeding underlying bone and finally the anterior osteophyte needs removal as this would otherwise resist talar reduction. The fusion is secured with crossed cannulated screws. Screw positioning is arthroscopically assisted and the length of the screws can be image intensifier assisted.

The patients then spend 3 weeks non weight bearing followed by 4-6 weeks partial weight bearing. The screws can be removed later if they are causing pain. A range of 3-12 months has been reported for standard open fusion to occur, this compares unfavourably with the arthroscopic technique. Mann from a multi-centre trial recently demonstrated a 91% fusion and 84% good/excellent results. This fusion rate leaps to 96% if known poor techniques are avoided, e.g. laser, external charley type compression.

This article was specifically written for Chiropody Review and we thank Mr Simon Moyes for the time and trouble he took.

CHIROPODY REVIEW,DECEMBER 1998

Ascites – Ayurvedic Herbal Treatment

Ascites is a condition of pathologic fluid accumulation within the abdominal cavity. Most cases of ascites are due to liver disease usually caused by alcoholism, chronic viral hepatitis, and intravenous drug use. Tumors, obstruction in the portal vein, and diseases causing loss of protein, may also cause ascites.

Ascites as a disease has been described extensively in Ayurvedic literature. Medical treatment and surgical procedures related to the management of this condition are described in detail in the Ayurvedic texts. Diet restriction is an important and interesting feature of the management of this condition. All patients with confirmed ascites are kept on an exclusive milk diet for a minimum period of six months, followed by milk and other liquid diet for the next three months, and a combined milk and light diet for the next three months. Fluid intake in the form of water is totally restricted in the first few months.

All eligible patients are given induced purgation using special Ayurvedic formulations like Jaypal-Ras and Icchabhedi-Ras. This purgation reduces the excessive accumulation in the abdominal cavity and gradually prevents further retention of fluid by removing the causative obstruction. Needless to say, such purgation has to be done under the close observation of an experienced Ayurvedic physician.

Medicines are used to treat the basic pathology of the disease, and differ according to the known cause. Arogya-Vardhini, Shankh-Vati, Kutki (Picrorrhiza kurroa), Tamra-Bhasma and Sharpunkha (Tephrosia purpuria) are used to reduce inflammation and swelling in the liver, spleen and portal vein. Medicines like Punarnavadi-Qadha, Gokshur (Tribulus terrestris), Amalaki (Emblica officinalis), Guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia), Kutaj (Holharrhina antidysentrica), Patol (Tricosanthe dioica), Kutki, Saariva (Hemidesmus indicus), Patha (Cissampelos pareira) and Musta (Cyperus rotundus) are also very useful in this condition.

Suvarna-Malini-Vasant, Suvarna-Parpati and Suvarna-Sutshekhar-Ras are used in refractory cases and also to prevent recurrence. This condition is usually difficult to treat; however, persistence and patience in treatment gives great dividends in the form of prolongation of life. It is important to note that, avoiding known causes, e.g. a total abstinence from drugs and alcohol, is essential to prevent recurrence.

Proven Ways to Lower Cholesterol Naturally

It is believed that atherosclerosis is partly caused by high cholesterol. Atherosclerosis is commonly known as hardening of the arteries, which a danger sign for increasing risk of catastrophic diseases like stroke or heart attack. So, keeping your cholesterol levels under control is of paramount importance. There are several effective ways to lower cholesterol naturally including easy diet changes, stress reduction and natural cholesterol lowering supplements.

As far as diet adjustments go, there are several different approaches that have proven to be effective. A low fat diet is often recommended to lower cholesterol although research does not necessarily support this method.

For some examples of different dietary approaches that are being used successfully, Dr. Dean Ornish has assisted many people with heart disease by combining a vegetarian diet with exercise and stress reduction. Dr. Barry Sears has success using a much different approach to diet. Dr. Sears is the creator of the Zone Diet which is usually considered to be one of many different variations of the so called “low carb diet.”

A balanced ratio of carbohydrates, fat and protein is emphasized by Dr. Sears in the Zone Diet. Sr. Sears’ diet has been described as “eating the way our grandparents ate.” Many people report success in losing weight with a low carb approach, without having to count calories or going hungry. Along with healthy weight loss, many different health conditions have seen improvement, including reducing high cholesterol.

Cholesterol lowering vitamins are another tactic that works well with diet changes. Concerning dietary supplements, it pays to go with quality rather than basing your decision on cost alone. There’s a lot of variation in the quality of supplements on the market, and it’s common to see exaggerated claims without providing research to back them up.

Some of the most effective cholesterol reducing nutrients include;

  • policosanol
  • guggulipid
  • beta sitosterol
  • theaflavins
  • green tea extract
  • tumeric extract

These natural substances are very effective at helping to balance cholesterol levels and have been validated in many clinical research studies. Of the nutrients listed, policosanol and guggulipid can be considered the most important.

Many products on the market are claiming to contain policosanol, while sometimes they in fact are using a nutrient called octacosanol. This is an issue to pay attention to because octacosanol does not provide the same benefits as policosanol. Only genuine policosanol which is made from sugar cane wax produced in Cuba has shown significant cholesterol lowering abilities in clinical research trials.

So do your “due diligence” before choosing a nutritional supplement to help lower cholesterol. Make sure it contains genuine policosanol and that it has been tested for micro biological contamination in a GMP approved laboratory. Also try to verify that it meets the standards set by the U.S. and/or the British Pharmacopoeia. This way, you can be sure of the purity and the effectiveness of the supplements you buy.

These proven ways to lower cholesterol naturally can help you avoid the side effects and possible dangers of prescription medications. Of course, you may want to consult your health care provider before changing any medications you may be taking and before beginning any new supplementation program.

Online Jobs For Teens 15 Years of Age

Are you a 15 year old or know any 15 year olds that are looking for some work online and can not find it either do to lack of jobs, or actual laws, well there is work online in which your 15 year old can start working, believe it or not, there are actually1 2 year olds that are making small fortunes on the internet, so age is definitely not a factor when it comes to trying to make cash online.

The opportunity that is important for a 15 year old is something known as a paid survey. There are some people who believe these are scams, but overtime the consensus is coming to believe that this is a legitimate opportunity as it truly is. This is how it works:

There are multimillion dollar corporations out there that are willing to pay you big time to hear your opinion. What do they get out of it? They get to hear your opinion and to make their company better, you may give them new insight on what they can do differently, a view point in which they really did not see before, so in the end they’ll be quite successful.

You will be sent survey opportunity straight to your e-mail, so all you have to do is to check your e-mail and to immediately make sure that you have some opportunity to fill out some surveys.

Another thing that happens is the simple fact that you will have unlimited opportunity to succeed, as there will always be a need for consumers opinion as long as there are consumers! That’s why you should start today and start taking surveys immediately!

Cell Phone Radiation – Facts About Its Harmful Effects

The cell phone industry would want us to believe that there are no harmful effects of cell phone radiation; However, the facts tell us otherwise. There are more than 200 million cell phone users in America and this number is increasing by the day. This means that there are millions of cell phone users who are unaware of the danger of using this device.

Wireless Technology Research

The cell phone industry is never going to admit that there are serious health hazards related to cell phone radiation. In fact, when the industry set up a Wireless Technology Research in 1993, a non-profit organization, to prove to the public that cell phones are safe, the research boomeranged on them, so to speak.

The Study Found

The research team was headed by Dr. George Carlo. More than 200 doctors and researchers were involved in the WTR project. In total, more than 50 studies were conducted. Based on the studies, Dr Carlo and the scientists concluded that cell phone radiation was harmful to the user. The studies found that

  • Radiation from the cell phone can cause DNA damage and damage the DNA repair process.
  • The cell phones interfered with cardiac pacemakers.
  • The radiation from the cell phone increases the risk of brain dysfunction, tumors, cancer, autism, attention deficit disorder and neurodegenerative disease.
  • In children, the mobile phone radiation causes behavioral and psychological problems.

More Findings Against Cell Phones

More recently, a study conducted by Dariusz Leszczynski at the Finnish Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority, Helsinki, concluded that cell phone radiation did affect cells in living humans. The study found that there is a strong possibility that mobile phone radiation changes the expression of some proteins in living cells in human beings. According to Leszczynski, the study has proven that our body does recognize the low-level of radiation emitted by cell phones and hence reacts to it.

More and more studies have shown that there is a very convincing link between non-ionizing radiation from the cell phone to various diseases like cancer, brain tumors, Alzheimer, Parkinson, fatigue and headache.

We Need To Ask Ourselves

Many of us would not like to believe these studies and their findings. However, if we sit down and think clearly, we will realize that there are indeed too many questions that are unanswered. For example, is it not surprising that in the last decade there has been a dramatic rise in brain cancer? According to epidemic curve projections, there would be 400,000 to 500,000 new cases of brain and eye cancer worldwide, every year.

Why are we witnessing such a significant rise in diseases like, Alzheimer, Parkinson, autism and attention deficit disorders? Some experts believe that electropollution from technology has something to do with it. And that the information-carrying radio frequencies from cell phone communications play a big part.

Although the cell phone industry goes to great lengths to claim that cell phones are absolutely safe, their actions speak otherwise. Think about it – why do many cell phone providers have their customers sign a contract stating that they would not sue the cell phone maker or participate in a Class Action Lawsuit. If the phones are so safe, why do they have this clause in their contracts? It appears that they are trying to cover their behinds, just in case.

The fact is that several studies have already shown that cell phone radiation has effects considered harmful to the user, and the customers need to know of this so that they can take proper precautions.

Increased Intracrnial Pressure

1. INCREASED INTRACRNIAL PRESSURE
“Brain swelling with edema and blood collects within the brain.”

2. ANATOMY AND PHYSIOLOGY OF BRAIN:
* Brain the most critical organ of human body.
* Protected through three protective structures;
A. Skull-bony structure
B. Meningies-Dura, Arachnoid, Piamatter
C. Cerebrospinal Fluid.

3. PHYSIOLOGY OF INTRACRANIAL PRESSURE:
Intracranial pressure is normal at 4-15mmhg and 50-300mmof water. Skull is not flexible structure. If pressure of any of the above three will increase compensatory decrease in other two. If exceed the compensatory efforts increased intracranial pressure.

A. CEREBRAL BLOOD FLOW;
Brain injury can result from brain stem compression and reduction in cerebral blood flow.
Ohm’s law
CBF = (CAP-JVP) CVR
CAP=CAROTID ARTERIAL PRESSURE
JVP= JUGLARVENOUS PRESSURE
CVR= CEREBROVASCULAR RESISTANCE

B. CEREBRAL PERFUSION PRESSURE;
A clinical surrogate for the adequacy of cerebral perfusion. CPP is defined as mean arterial pressure (MAP) minus ICP
CPP= MAP-ICP.

4. PATHOPHSIOLOGY:
Oedematous brain tissues lead to inflammationhematoma formation
o increase pressure in the cranial cavity
o compensatory decrease in cerebral blood flow
o cerebral blood flow
o cerebral hypoxia
o ischemia of vasomotor centre
o CUSHING’S sign (increase B.P, decrease pulse) – late sign of increased intracranial pressure suggest irreversible brain damage.

5. CAUSES:
a. Mass lesion abscesses
b. Extadural hematoma
c. Subdural Hematoma
d. Subacutesubdural intracerebral hemorrhage
e. Stroke
f. Hepatic encephalopathy.
g. Brain Herniation
h. Seizures.

6. CLINICAL MANIFASTATION;
• a. Severe Headache (e.g. head trauma, subarachnoid Hemorrhage)
• b. Confusion or Diminished responsiveness
• c. Hemiparesis
• d. Seizers
• e. Spontaneous periorbital bruising
• f. Bradycardia
• g. Respiratory Depression
• h. Contra lateral papillary dilation
• i. Loss of gag reflex
• j. Glass cow coma scalelessthen or equals to 8
• k. Temperature may rise
• l. Cushing triad: increased systolic blood pressure, widened pulse pressure and slow heart rate.
• m. Decorticate or decelerating posturing.
• n. Occasional transient elevation associate with Sneezing, Cough,

DIAGNOSTIC FINDINGS

7. ROLE OF COMPUTED TOMGRAPHY:
CT scan may suggest elevated ICP based on the presence of mass lesion, midline shift. Since ICP monitoring is also associated with a small risk of serious complication that is CNS infection, intra cranial hemorrhage.

8. TYPES OF MONITORS
A. INTRVENTRICULAR;
Intraventricular monitors are considered the ‘gold standard’ of icp monitoring catheters. They are surgically placed into the ventricular system and a fixed into the drainage bag and pressure transducer with a three way stopcock .It allow the treatment of some elevated ICP via drainage of csf.

B. INTRAPARENCHYMAL;
Consist of a thin cable with an electronic or fiber optic transducer at the tip. The most widely used device is the fiber optic Camino system. These monitors can be inserted directly into the brain parenchyma via a small hole drilled in the skull. It cause ease of placement and lower the risk of infection.

C. SUBARACHNOID;
Subarachnoid bolts are fluid coupled systems within a hollow screw that can be placed through the skull adjacent to the dura. The dura is then punctured, which allows the CSF to communicate with the fluid column and transducer. The most commonly used subarachnoid monitor is the Richmond bolt. It has low risk of infection and hemorrhage.

D. TRANSCRANIAL DOPPLER:
Measures the velocity of blood flow with in the proximal cerebral circulation. TCD can be used to estimate ICP based on characteristic changes in waveforms that occur in response to increased resistance to cerebral blood flow. TCD is poor predictor of ICP, although in trauma patients. TCD finding may correlate with outcome at six months.

9. GENERAL MANAGEMENT:
Evacuation of a blood clot
Resection of a tumor
CSF diversion in the management of hydrocephalus
Treatment of underlying me
Metabolic disorder

10. SYMPTOMATIC TREATEMENT:
a. SEDATION AND BLOOD PRESSURE CONTROLING:
Keeping the patients appropriately sedated can decrease ICP by reducing metabolic demand, venous congestion and the sympathetic responses of hypertension and tachycardia.

b. POSITIONING:
Patient with elevated ICP should be positioned to maximize venous out floe from the head. Important maneuver including excessive flexion or rotation of the neck avoiding restrictive neck taping, minimizing stimuli that could induce valsalva responses, such as end tracheal suctioning. Keep head elevated above the heart level at 30 degree to increase venous outflow

c. FEVER:
Elevated metabolic demand in the brain results in increase cerebral blood flow and can elevate ICP by increasing the volume of blood in the cranial vault .Conversely; decreasing metabolic demand can lower ICP by reducing blood flow. Fever increase brain metabolism, and has been demonstrated to increase the brain injury in animal model. Aggressive treatment for fever includes acetaminophen and cooling.

d. HYPERVETILATION:
Use of mechanical ventilation to lower paco2 to 26 to 30 mmhg has been shown to rapidly reduce ICP through vasoconstriction and a decrease in the volume of intracranial blood

e. THERAPEUTIC HYPOTHERMIA:
Hypothermia decrease cerebral metabolism and may reduce ICP and cerebral Blood flow.

11. PHARMACOLOGICAL TREATEMENT:
a. ANTIEPILEPTIC THERAPY:
Seizures can both complicate and contribute to ICP Anti convulsant therapy with EEG done

b. MANNITOL:
It reduces brain volume by drawing free water out of the tissues and into circulation, where it exerted from the Kidney.

c. BARBITURATES:
The use of barbiturate s is predicated on their ability to reduce brain metabolism and cerebral blood flow, thus lowering ICP and exerting a neuroprotective effect.

12. SURGICAL TREATEMENT:
a. REMOVAL OF CEREBROSPINAL FLUID:
When hydrocephalus is identified, a ventriculostomy should be inserted, Slow removal can also be accomplished by passive gravitational drainage through the ventriculosomy.

b. DECOMPRESSIVE CRANICTOMY;
Decompresive cranictomy removes the rigid confines of the bony skull, increasing the potential volume of the intracranial content, cranictomy alone lowered ICP 15 PERCENT, but opening of the bony skull resulted in an average decrease in ICP of 70 percent.

13. NURSING DIAGNOSIS AND INTERVENTIONS:
a. NURSING DIAGNOSIS
Ineffective breathing pattern and ventilation related to hypoxia.

a. NURSING INTERVENTION:
• Reassure person that measures are being taken to ensure safety.
• Distract person from thinking about anxious state by having him or her maintain eye contact with you; say, “Now look at me breathe slowly with me like this”.
• Explain that one can learn to overcome hyperventilation through conscious control of breathing.
• Discuss possible causes, physical and emotional and methods of coping effectively.
b. NURSING DIAGONSIS:
Altered Nutrition less than body requirement related to metabolic changes and inadequate intake.

NURSING INTERVENTION:
• Determine daily caloric requirements that are realistic and adequate. Consult with dietitian.
• Weight daily, Monitor laboratory results.
• Explain the importance of adequate nutrition. Negotiate with client intake goals for each meal.
• Plan care so that unpleasant or painful procedures do not take place before meals.
• Provide pleasant, relaxed atmosphere for eat in (no bedpans insight).
• Arrange plan of care to decrease or eliminate nauseatic odors.
• Maintain good oral hygiene.
• Try commercial supplement available in many forms (liquid, powder, pudding).
• Establish intake goals with client, physician and nutritionist.

c. NURSING DIAGNOSIS:
Altered temperature related to damage to temperature regulating mechanism.

NURSING INTERVENTION:
• Teach the person the importance of adequate intake (> or = 20,000ml per day unless contraindicated by heart or kidney disease)
• Monitor intake and output.
• Assess whether the clothing or bed covers are too warm for the environment.
• Teach the importance of increasing fluid intake during warm weather and exercise.
• Explain the need to wear loose fitting clothing.
• Teach the early sign of hyperthermia or heat stroke.
• Flushed skin.
• Headache
• Fatigue
• Loss of appetite.

d. NURSING DIAGNOSIS:
Potential for impaired skin integrity related to bed rest and hemi paresis.

NURSING INTERVENTION:
• Assess the integrity of skin.
• Identify the stage of pressure ulcer development
• Assess the status of ulcer: size, depth, edges, undermining.
• Assess necrotic tissues, type, (color, consistency, adherence) and amount.
• Wash reddened area gently with a mild soap rinse thoroughly to remove soap and pat dry.
• Gently massage healthy skin around the affected area to stimulate circulation.
• Increase protein and carbohydrate intake to maintain a positive nitrogen balance.
• Weight the person daily.
• Determine serum albumin level weekly to monitor status.

e. NURSING DIAGNOSIS:
Altered thought processes (deficit in intellectual function, communications) related to brain injury.

NURSING INTERVENTION:
• Explain attitude about confusion (in self, caregivers, significant others) Provide education to family, significant others and caregiver regarding the situation and method of coping.
• Maintain standard of empathic, respectful care.
• Encourage significant others and care givers to speak slowly either low pitch and at an average volume.
• Provide respect and promote sharing
• Pay attention to what person is saying.
• Pick out meaningful comments and continue talking.
• Call person by name and introduce your self each time.
• Use name the person is prefers, avoid “pops” or “moms”
• Convey to person that you are concerned (through smile and unhurried pace).
• Use memory aid if appropriate.
For communication
• Use pad, pencil, alphabets, letters hand signals, eye link head nodes and bell signals.
• Make flash cards with pictures or words depiciting frequently used phrases (Move my foot, glass of water).
• Use normal loudness level, speak unhurriedly in short phrases.
• Encourage person to take plenty of time talking and to enunciate word carefully with good lip movement.
• Delay conversation when the person is tired.

f. NURSING DIAGNOSIS:
Impaired physical mobility related to increased intracranial pressure.

NURSING INTERVENTION:
• Perform passive ROM exercise on affected limbs.
• Support the extremity above and below the joint.
• Use a footdrop.
• Avoid a prolong period of sitting or lying in the same position.
• Change the position of the shoulder joints every 2 to 4 hours.
• Use a small pillow when in fowler’s position.
• Support the hands and wrist in natural alignment.
• If the client is supine or prone, place a rolled towel or a small pillow under the lumbar curative or under the end of the rib cag.
• If the client is in the lateral position, place pillow to support the leg from groin to foot and a pillow to flex the shoulder and elbow slightly; if needed, support the lower foot in dorsal flexion with a standing.
• Use hand and wrist splints.

14. TEACHINGS:
o Back Care
o Hand and foot care
o Suctioning
o Medications
o Diet
o Deep breathing exercise

15. REHABILITATION THERAPY:
o Speech therapy
o Continuous GCS monitoring
o Memory orientation and repetition
o Swallowing therapy
o Use of assistive devices range of motion and walking
o Continues lab monitoring, aggressive chest physiotherapy
o Family teaching sessions

Natural Cold and Flu Remedies

There are two schools of thought when it comes to colds and the flu, prevention and treatment. There are natural remedies for both. If you begin your natural approach to prevention before you get a cold or the flu, you will get over both of these a lot sooner and your symptoms will not be as bad. Below are some ideas for natural prevention and natural treatments.

Natural Prevention

There are natural cold and flu prevention remedies available at most stores today. They come in the form of pills, nasal sprays and drops. These types of remedies are also safe for children. Many of the natural remedies that are offered in pill form are to be dissolved slowly under your tongue.

There are even natural forms of the flu vaccine that is available each year. These natural forms are available in liquids, gels, sprays and swabs and are applied directly to the nose or throat. Natural prevention remedies are best used right after or right before you are exposed to the virus to prevent you from getting the symptoms. Some natural cold and flu prevention remedies are:

1.      Wild Cherry Bark is commonly sold as syrup but you can also find it in tea form. It is a good natural remedy when some of the symptoms that you have are a cough and a sore throat. The fruit itself is rich in Vitamin C and it is good to take to prevent the onslaught of a cold or the flu. It is easy to use. You just put crushed wild cherry berries in a drink or eat them plain.

2.      Another great natural remedy that works as a treatment or as a preventive measure is Elderberry. Elderberry commonly is sold as syrup and in some areas, it is locally grown. People that use Elderberry on a consistent basis say that it works great to prevent you from getting the cold or the flu.

3.      Astragalus is a Chinese medicine and it is generally used for night sweats and diarrhea. However, it is also widely used to improve one’s immune function.  Some people use it for heart conditions and it is said to lower blood pressure. However, no human studies have been conducted on astragalus so you might want to speak with your doctor before using this natural remedy. It is commonly found in capsule form.

Natural Treatments

Natural treatment options are readily available in stores and it is best to use them right after your symptoms appear. Here are a few of the more common ones:

1.      Garlic is a very common and powerful herb. To make a very effective broth for the common cold, simmer four minced garlic cloves in four cups of chicken broth for 10-15 minutes. Add as much cayenne pepper as you can stand and drink this mixture throughout the day.

2.      Echinacea is a very common and widely used natural remedy. It is a plant known as the purple cone flower. It works as an immune system enhancer and a cold and flu treatment. The only thing is, you should not use it for more than 2 weeks at a time because it does lose its effectiveness after a 2-week period. It helps with lessening the effects of a cold and it does help shorten the time that you have symptoms. It is also used to help numb and treat a sore throat.

3.      Then there is the tried and true natural treatment, raw honey. Raw honey is one of the best treatments for a sore throat and cough. You should buy the raw, unfiltered honey versus the regular kind you buy in the grocery store that comes in the honey bear plastic container. Raw honey is also good for young children, over 1 year old. It can be mixed in a warm beverage like tea for even more soothing effects.

These are just a few of the natural preventive and treatment remedies that are available.

Tasty Drinks for Diabetics: Cappuccino Mix and Milk Shakes

Sometimes we tend to forget about the sugar in the beverages we drink.  But it is very easy to get too much sugar from our drinks even though we are watching the sugar content and carbs in our food.  If you are a diabetic or dieter who has to watch your sugar/carb intake but you love a good milkshake or cappacino, do we have some recipes for you.  Just the titles of these recipes are enough to send you scurrying to the kitchen to whip up a tasty treat.  Look over these titles and find the easy recipe below.  There’s sure to be at least one that will become a favorite beverage of yours!  Get ready to start lickin’ your lips as these titles appear; Cappuccino Mix, Your Favorite Flavor Milk Shake for One, Strawberry Buttermilk Shake, and Banana Shake for Two,

CAPPUCCINO MIX

1 cup powdered non-dairy coffee creamer

1 cup instant chocolate sugar-free drink mix

1/2 cup Splenda

2/3 cup instant coffee granules

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

Mix all ingredients together and store in an airtight jar or canister.  To use:  Add 3 tbsp to 1 cup boiling hot water.  Stir well.  Can also be used to flavor coffee by add 1-2 tsp per cup of coffee.

NOTE:  Check your instant chocolate drink milk for sugar content.  Use sugar-free if available. 

YOUR FAVORITE FLAVOR MILK SHAKE FOR ONE

1 cup 2% milk

2 tbsp sugar-free pudding mix, dry (flavor of your choice)

2 tbsp lite frozen whipped topping

8 ice cubes

Place all ingredients into blender cup and blend until smooth. Pour into a cold glass and enjoy. 

STRAWBERRY BUTTERMILK SHAKE

1 1/2 cups fat-free milk

1/3 cup fresh strawberries OR sugar-free frozen berries

2 tbsp fresh squeezed orange juice

2 tbsp Splenda

1/2 cup fat-free buttermilk

In the container of a blender, combine milk, strawberries, orange juice, and Splenda.  Process until the berries are pureed and the mix is frothy.  Pour into a small pitcher.  Stir in the buttermilk.  Pour into two glasses and serve immediately.

1 cup = 105 calories, 16 g carbs, 8 g protein

BANANA SHAKE FOR TWO

1 banana, sliced

1 cup fat-free milk

1 cup non-fat, low-sugar vanilla yogurt

1/4 cup unsweetened pineapple juice

1 tsp honey

Process all ingredients together in a blender.  Pour into two cold glasses.  Serve immediately.  This recipe makes two servings for diabetics!

NOTE:  This is also a good shake for anyone who has high blood pressure.  This shake has 622 mg of potassium per serving and potassium is known to help reduce high blood pressure!. 

Enjoy!

Kill Obesity before Obesity Kills You

While heart disease ranks as the number one cause of death for men and women, because it is linked to so many other causes of death, perhaps obesity should really claim that title. Whether it is heart disease, diabetes, smoking related deaths, or even cancer, obesity is at least a causal factor that can make each one of these ailments much much worse.

The fact is obesity has now become an epidemic. More than 40 MILLION Americans are considered obese. This statistic is staggering and in my opinion, pathetic. In 1982, less than 4% of children were considered obese, but today, that number is a mind blowing 30%! People are dying from heart disease in record numbers and the number of individuals who have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes (which is DIRECTLY related to being overweight) is on a sharp incline. Add to that the numbers of individuals who are diabetic and who have not been diagnosed yet, and you can see we have a huge problem on our hands. The sad fact is, there is perhaps no other malady that a person can suffer that is more curable than obesity, and the cures are more than obvious, and in fact, are free.

If you are overweight, you simply must do something about it NOW before it gets out of hand. The first step you need to take is to visit your doctor. If you do have some type of disease or ailment, it is best to be diagnosed as soon as possible so treatment can occur. In addition, you will want to get your heart checked to see if you are healthy enough to begin a fitness regimen.

Once you have visited your doctor, it is time to get moving. Exercise is movement, so I don’t care if all you do is walk, but you must do something, and do it every day. Sixty minutes of rigorous exercise per day is recommended. Sure, we all have time to play on the computer or watch the Simpson, I am sure that ANYONE can make time for a daily exercise routine if it means saving their life. If you don’t know how or what to do, hire a fitness trainer to help get you on the right track. They can help get you started on a regular exercise program of fat loss and weight training to help get your weight under control.

The next step is the foods you eat. In order to kill obesity, you have to take control of what you put in your mouth. Natural foods, not processed ones, are the key to success here. If it didn’t exist 3000 years ago, don’t put it in your mouth. In addition, focus on fruits and vegetables not meats and fats. Eating less can be tough, but it is the key to a long and health life.

These admonitions should be made clear to everyone in the entire world. Prevention is the key to so many diseases, not to mention what a healthy world would do to our cost of healthcare. If you are overweight, take action now, and kill obesity before it kills you.

Issues about Scabies Rash

Scabies rash can be identified only if it is accompanied by other symptoms of scabies. If you have a severe, persistent rash that doesn’t seem to ease up it might be caused by infestation with scabies mites. Scabies rash is characterized through itching and soreness and it tends to intensify at night. Scabies rash may also become very irritated after taking a hot shower or bath. If the skin appears to be blistery and scratched and the presence of small burrows is revealed on the surface of the skin, it is a possible sign of scabies rash and appropriate dermatological treatment is required.

An overwhelming number of 300 million people worldwide are diagnosed with scabies each year. Scabies can be very easily acquired by simply touching a contaminated person. Although scabies is very contagious, scabies rash can’t be transmitted from a person to another. Scabies rash usually occurs when the body develops allergic reactions to scabies mites and their feces. The only contagious aspect of scabies involves the mite infestation. If the mites responsible for causing scabies are transmitted to a person, they will quickly infest the skin and the symptoms of scabies will occur within a few days. Scabies mites can be acquired through direct contact with an infested person or by touching or wearing contaminated clothes or personal items. Scabies mites can live without their human hosts for about 3 days and therefore they can easily contaminate bed sheets, clothes, towels, etc.

The main cause of scabies in people is contamination with a particular type of mite, called Sarcoptes scabiei var. hominis. This microscopic mite lives only on the bodies of human hosts and an infected person can spread it to hundreds of other persons.

It is important to note that scabies rash, just like other scabies symptoms, doesn’t occur due to improper hygiene. Although in the past, when the true nature of scabies wasn’t completely understood, people considered scabies rash to be the consequence of poor hygiene, today the cause of scabies rash is clear to most people. It is true that scabies occurs mostly to people from the lower classes of society, but this has nothing to do with hygiene. The factors that facilitate the transmission of scabies are overcrowding and situations that involve a lot of physical contact (factory workers). Hygiene can neither facilitate the occurrence of scabies, nor prevent it.

The most common symptoms of scabies are inflammation, discomfort, pain, swelling of the skin, pustules, burrows, nodules. However, the most intense of all seems to be the scabies rash. This symptom of scabies occurs as a result of allergic reactions to the mites’ feces, secretions, eggs and larvae.

Scabies rash is among the first symptoms that occur and it is usually the last one to disappear. Even if the condition is appropriately treated with topical medications, scabies rash may persist for another few weeks! This is due to the fact that even after they die, the mites remain under the skin and continue to produce allergies that cause scabies rash. The mites’ secretions contain substances that are toxic to the human body. However, there are ways of easing the itch, soreness and pain characteristic to scabies rash. Dermatologists usually prescribe hydrocortisone and antihistamine along with the treatment for scabies. These topical medications are usually in the form of creams, gels and ointments and they ameliorate scabies rash. However, if the scabies rash persists and even intensifies after a few weeks, it is a sign that the mite infestation hasn’t been eradicated and the treatment needs to be repeated.

A Quick Cure For Putting Woes

In resent years I have discovered a new technique that has taken 6 strokes off of my golf score. The amazing thing is that it’s all about putting. I use to average 38 puts per round, now I average 32.

For years I have tried to improve my putting. I have taken lessons, bought the latest equipment, and experimented with different techniques. All most all of these helped to some degree, but then I would slip back to my 38 putt rounds.

Have you ever had the experience of trying out a new putter in the store that really seamed to work? Then when you got to the course it didn’t perform any better then your old one. There is a reason for this phenomenon. You’ve heard the expression “this putter fits my eye”. When you look down at the new putter blade for some reason the line to the hole looks clearer. This increases your confidence and you put a better stroke on the ball. Unfortunately after a period of time this goes away. You could continue to go out and buy new putters, but that will get expensive.

My discovery is a new putting stroke. In fact it’s three new putting strokes. That’s right I show up at the golf course with three putting strokes. I have no idea which one I’m going to use that day until I go to the practice green. I’m looking for that stroke that fits my eye. As you have seen by watching the pro’s there are many ways and styles that can be effective. Here are my putting strokes.

#1 TRADITIONAL

This stroke requires a relaxed fluid motion. Square up your body, use the rotation of your shoulders to stroke through the ball and down the line. Grip should be loose. It is imperative to keep you head down and still. Another good checkpoint on this stroke is to have your head directly over the ball.

#2 CLOSED FACE

I stumbled on this and man dose it work. The theory here is to address the ball and line up your putt. Now, close the face of your putter blade so its aiming 6 to 8 inches left of target. (This is a little firmer grip then normal). Now rotate your upper body to the right 9 (don’t move your feet) until the blade is back in line with the target. This will give you a whole new look at the line.

#3 TOP SPIN

I use this stroke on rough or bumpy greens a lot. Bend your knees and get lower to the ground. Take a short back swing and accelerate through the ball with an upward stroke. This will put over spin on the ball and it will keep a truer track.

Traditional style is the style that most teaching pro’s like. Its greatest asset is that it makes you use your large muscles (your shoulders). When your nerves are amped up your small muscles will fail you. It’s imperative in all putting strokes to keep your wrists and hands still through the stroke. The two other key essentials in any putting stroke are; your back swing must stay on line with the target and you must accelerate through the ball.

Closed Face style is my favorite. It has two assets, the first one is a totally different view of the line, and the second is it’s easier to keep your back swing on the line. This is a great cure for the yips.

Top Spin style is a must for rough or sanded greens. I live in the northwest and as you might imagine, our greens get a lot of rain in the winter. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve used this stroke on fast greens, it just felt right for the day.

You may wonder if one stroke works better for short putts and one for long putts. My answer is no, but I have changed to another stroke in the middle of a round. You see its all about confidence. When I look down that line, I need to believe that putt will track to the hole.

Let’s talk about the yips. I define them as an inability of your body to perform a task that your mind wants. We have all had the experience of standing over a 5 foot putt and our nerves blowing it for us. This becomes more apparent as we age. Our best defense against this disabling affliction is confidence. You can’t think your way through a putting stroke. You can’t tell yourself how many inches to take your putter back and how hard to hit it, to make a 6 foot putt. It’s all about feel and confidence.

How can you develop confidence? Have you ever gone to the driving range and counted the number of golfers hitting their driver? They want to see how far they can hit it. When I go to the range I use this drill. I pick a green or flag at about 115 yards out. I must hit 10 balls in a row on that green. If I hit 9 and then miss, I must start over. Only after I hit 10 in a row can I graduate to my next club. You can use this same drill in putting. Start out with 4 balls at 4 feet and then graduate to 5 feet. This will build consistency and confidence in your putting game.

Analyze your golf game. It is imperative that you know where you are now before you can improve. When you ask the guys in my group for their score on a hole, you will probably hear an answer like 42 or 31. The first number represents the score for the hole and the second number is their putts for that hole. Keep your cards and take an average of the last ten rounds to establish average number of putts per round.

Psychology – A Science As Well As an Art

Psychology is commonly defined as ‘scientific’ study of human behavior and cognitive processes. Broadly speaking the discussion focuses on the different branches of psychology, and if they are indeed scientific. However, it is integral in this to debate to understand exactly the major features of a science, in order to judge if psychology is in fact one. There must be a definable subject matter – this changed from conscious human thought to human and non-human behavior, then to cognitive processes within psychology’s first eighty years as a separate discipline. Also, a theory construction is important. This represents an attempt to explain observed phenomena, such as Watson’s attempt to account for human and non-human behavior in terms of classical conditioning, and Skinner’s subsequent attempt to do the same with operant conditioning. Any science must have hypotheses, and indeed test them. This involves making specific predictions about behavior under certain specified conditions.

Science is meant to be objective and unbiased. It should be free of values and discover the truths about what it is studying. Positivism is the view that science is objective and a study of what is real. For example, schizophrenia, when diagnosed as being caused due to excess dopamine, is being studied in a scientific manner. The explanation does not take into account any cultural customs or individual differences that might lead to ‘schizophrenic’ behavior. However, even in scientific research like this the person is doing the diagnosing has his or her own views, and may misinterpret behavior because of his or her own subjective biases. For example, if someone talks about hearing voices, they may be referring to a spiritual experience, but a medical practitioner might well diagnose schizophrenia. So objective, value-free study is not easy, because the scientist has views and biases, and cultural or other issues are perhaps important factors. Some say that a truly objective study is not possible, and that a scientific approach to the study of people is not desirable.

Definitions of psychology have changed during its lifetime, largely reflecting the influence and contributions of its major theoretical approaches or orientations. Kline in 1998 argued that the different approaches within the field of psychology should be seen as self-contained disciplines, as well as different facets of the same discipline. He argued that a field of study can only be legitimately considered a science if a majority of its workers subscribe to a common, global perspective or ‘paradigm’. According to Kuhn, a philosopher of science, this means that psychology is ‘pre-paradigmatic’ – it lacks a paradigm, without which it is still in a state of ‘pre-science’. Whether psychology has, or ever had, paradigm is hotly debated. Others believe that psychology has already undergone two revolutions, and is now in a stage of normal science, with cognitive psychology the current paradigm. A third view, which represents a blend of the first two, is that psychology currently, and simultaneously, has a number of paradigms.

With regards to which perspectives are regarded as ‘scientific’, and which are not, the majority lies with ‘scientific’. There are four perspectives that clearly lie under ‘scientific’, the behavioral, cognitive, cognitive-developmental and the physiological. The psychodynamic and humanistic perspectives are argued to be idiographic, in that they look at individual differences, instead of universal laws. The social approach can be seen as an intermediate, as, although it appreciates that there is a strong element of science involved in psychology, for example the treatment of some mental disorders, it focuses on social and environmental factors. For example, the biological perspective is said to be scientific fundamentally because it looks at the biological functioning of every human being and searches for reasons and solutions which can be applied nomothetically. It focuses on biological behavior, which can be empirically tested, and findings generalized. It emphasizes on the importance of the nervous system and the importance of genetics on behavior. These aims are clearly scientific, and the methods used are scientific – empirically measured, hypothesized and nomothetic.

One example of this is the medical approach to mental illness. The biological approach suggests that schizophrenia could be down to several factors, such as genetics or a chemical imbalance. The psychodynamic approach however, as been criticized as being ‘unscientific’. Many of Freud’s theories are not able to be tested, and many of his studies, because empirical measures cannot be applied, remain firmly in theory and cannot be tested, they are difficult to operate – it is impossible to test if the unconscious exists if we are by nature meant to be unaware of it. One could however argue that we cannot prove that it does not exist either. The majority of the approaches suggests that psychology is in fact a science, but within the field of psychology, in order for it to be classified as a science, each of its perspective should be seen as scientific. The humanistic approach, a so-called ‘third-force’ between behaviorism and the psychodynamic approaches, is idiographic, since it studies the individual, and holistic, as it looks at the whole person. A scientific approach for general laws will not capture this active interacting individual, and so the humanistic approach uses methods that are not scientific.

The issue of psychology as a science is cloudy. On one hand, psychology is a science. The subject matter is behavior, including mental aspects of behavior such as memory, and the subject matter is divided up for study. Variables are measured, and carefully controlled to a point. Laboratories are often used in an effort to improve controls – controls are as thorough as possible, so that general laws about behavior can be built.

On the other hand, psychology can be viewed not as a science, as it does not aim at scientific principles to measure the whole world. In many areas of psychology there is no attempt to generalize from some human behavior to all human behavior. The social representation theory focuses on interactions, and the humanistic theory focuses on self-actualization and the individual’s experiences and actions. Where there is focus on interactions between people, and on the individual’s experiences, scientific methods are not useful. Non-scientific methods include case-studies and unstructured interviews. If a method in not scientific, it aims for good validity, in-depth material about someone or a small group, qualitative data and a richness of data that is not found by isolating variables, as in many psychological studies.

Psychology as a separate field of study grew out of several other disciplines, both scientific (such as physiology) and non-scientific (in particular philosophy). For much of its life as an independent discipline, and through what some call revolutions and paradigm shifts, it has taken the natural sciences as its model. Ultimately, whatever a particular science may claim to have discovered about the phenomena it studies, scientific activity remains just one aspect of human behavior. I feel that psychology should be viewed as a science, even if it does not concur with traditional scientific specifications.

Mental Health Benefits of Scrapbooking

Watching someone who is absorbed in the art of scrapbooking, the observer gets a feeling that there is more taking place than participation in a hobby. Immersed in photographs and memorabilia, the hobbyist appears to rise above the current stress of life as the task provides a mental break from the demands of the day. Shared with loved ones or friends, scrapbooking is also an avenue for spending quality time together while sharing ideas behind a single purpose.

But don’t just accept the words of an insider. Indeed the Craft and Hobby Association emphasizes the “therapeutic benefits” of this particular hobby. According to estimates by the association, people in 35 percent of U.S. households both enjoy scrapbooking a regular basis and enjoy the therapetuic rewards. In addition, there is a benefit that should not be overlooked: The pride in a finished product, or the complete scrapbook itself.

The benefits of scrapbooking have long been embraced by St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, which launched a therapeutic scrapbooking program for parents 10 years ago. Now a study published in the Journal of Psychosocial Oncology, which analyzed the influence of the scrapbooking sessions, found that they promote hopefulness and help parents expand their support network. The study highlights a previously unknown benefit of scrapbooking.

“Even though the craft of scrapbooking is widespread, its use as a tool for mental health professionals is just developing,” stated Paul McCarthy, a St. Jude social worker. “I hope our experience at St. Jude encourages others to try it in diverse settings with a variety of different groups, both young and old.”

Plainly, the association and St. Jude are convinced of the lifetime benefits of scrapbooking. While there are most likely too many to list all of them, these benefits usually fall into one of five areas.

The first is the benefit of giving, or the joy one feels when one creates a unique piece that requires great thought and the sharing of memories.

The next is the recording of events for people in the past, and future, to remember important occasions and life events that help to define individuals and families in unique ways.

The quiet and reflective mindset that accompanies scrapbooking is a third benefit. In a culture where medication is often a first resort for addressing anxiety, scrapbooking provides a meaningful and soothing break from the stresses of life.

The benefit of normalizing traumatic events, such as divorce, illness and death by putting memories in a cohesive yet expressive order, is a fourth benefit. In this way, scrapbooking promotes not just self-expression, but self-healing and a sense of inner peace, as the people at St. Jude have discovered.

In conclusion, there is the benefit of self-worth in putting the finishing touches on a signature project, which, like the human being who created it, is an inimitable creation. And this benefit, as any seasoned scrapbooker will confirm, is one of the greatest benefits of all: It is a fun, rewarding hobby that provides hours of enjoyment after the book is complete.