Natural Ayurvedic Remedies for Anxiety, Stress, and Panic Attacks

Anxiety and Ayurvedic Remedies

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older (18% of U.S. population).

Anxiety disorders develop from a complex set of risk factors, including genetics, brain chemistry, personality, and life events.

Ayurvedic herbs can bring about a calming influence on the body and mind, enabling a release into a happy and relaxed state. Anxiety is primarily associated with Vata imbalance.

In Ayurveda, three psycho-physiological categories are identified: Vata, Pitta and Kapha. These need to be in balance as they govern the mind-body functions.

Vata Dosha – initiates and promotes the overall biological functions and activities

Pitta Dosha – is responsible for proper metabolism, and certain individual traits of the person

Kapha Dosha – balances fluids such as water, along with fats, and also promotes healthy growth of body tissues

The following Ayurvedic herbs are very helpful in reducing anxiety.

a) MANOMITRAM – blend of Ashwagandha, Brahmi and other therapeutic herbs

b) SUMENTA – blend of Ashwagandha, Brahmi and other therapeutic herbs

The above herbals products are very useful in treating anxiety and stress and both contain a variety of herbal blends with Ashwagandha and Brahmi among the main ingredients in the mix.

Ashwagandha (Withania Somnifera) is one of the most useful herbs in resolving anxiety. In Sanskrit it is translated to mean “the smell of a horse,” indicating that the herb imparts the vigor and strength of a stallion. It has traditionally been prescribed for strengthening their immune system after an illness. It is referred to as “Indian ginseng” because of its rejuvenating properties (although botanically, ginseng and ashwagandha are unrelated).

Brahmi ( Bacopa Monnieri) is another herb used to increase memory and relieve stress naturally. The herb has a soothing effect on the mind and is also used for treatment of depression. It brings down elevated hormonal levels in the body and can relieve insomnia and worries. Good for memory and concentration as it nourishes the neuron connections in the brain.

The herb is considered to be soothing agent for in older age, wherein the nature of an individual can become peevish. Elderly people can take Brahmi regularly in order to feel relaxed and to have undisturbed, flawless sleeps at nights.

One can also aid the process of relaxation by adopting the following lifestyle modifications:

a) Getting adequate rest and moderate exercise

b) Favoring warm milk and other light dairy products

c) Performing a full-body warm oil self massage everyday

d) Avoiding stimulants like coffee

e) Daily meditation sessions for 10-20 minutes

Spider Vein Treatment – Sclerotherapy Vs Natural Solutions

Spider veins are purple, red, blue or grey web-like streaks termed “spider veins” due to their similarity in appearance to a spiders web. You may notice them near varicose veins on the calves of your legs or as thread-like streaks on your thighs or your face or other areas of your body.

This condition can be quite severe, creating a burning sensation and because of their unattractiveness, some people experience emotional pain because of them as well. Although they are unsightly, they are not considered harmful to your health however.

Sclerotherapy

In this procedure the veins are injected with a dilute sclerosant solution directly into the “feeder veins” that have caused the condition in the first place.

The solution causes the vein wall to swell and stick causing it to close. Being without any blood supply, the closed vein turns into scar tissue and becomes permanently sealed shut, eventually fading over time.

This is the most preferred method over laser to treat larger spider veins as well as small varicose veins. This treatment usually requires repeated visits to your doctors office with anywhere from 5 to 40 injections each visit. Cotton balls and compression tape is applied during the procedure and tight-fitting support hose may be prescribed to guard against blood clots and to promote healing.

The tape and cotton balls can be removed after 48 hours, however, you may be instructed to wear the support hose for 72 hours or more. Although you may need to have injections more than once, the procedure is effective if done correctly. It is not permanent however, and as much as 70% of the condition may re-appear with 3-4 years.

Side Effects

The possible side effects you may experience are: burning sensations, leg cramps, red blotches, sores, bruising and brown lines that may appear in the area that you are having treated.

If the doctor injects the sclerosant solution properly, there should not be any damage to the surrounding skin, but if by accident the solution is injected outside the vein, tissue necrosis and scarring can result which may take months to heal.

If the doctor uses too much hardening solution, allergic reactions such as headaches and an ulcer at the site of your injection can occur. In many cases, skin discolorations (brownish pigmentation) will remain at the site of the affected area for up to a year.

Other complications, while rare, include venous thromboembolism, visual disturbances, thrombophlebitis, skin necrosis (as mentioned), and hyperpigmentation.

Alternative Therapies

Non-invasive therapies for spider veins are becoming more popular and, in some cases are a better choice because they rejuvenate veins, reduce pain, and provide a more permanent solution than surgery.

Often, an honest plastic surgeon will recommend that you try alternative methods before resorting to surgery. After all, although spider veins may be unattractive and sometimes painful, they are not considered to be a health concern.

Creams and lotions made especially for this purpose may take a little longer to work, but in the long run they are more permanent and have no harmful side effects. Products are available containing herbs and essential oils noted for their healing, circulation-enhancing, vaso-constricting and pain reducing properties.

Natural solutions can effectively heal and reduce this painful condition and can give you back your youthful vitality, energy and attractiveness!

Get Rid of Cystic Acne Fast – 2 Tips To Heal Cystic Acne

Cystic acne or what is scarily called acne vulgaris is the worst kind of pimple breakout. They are more than just a little bump on the skin. These acne breakouts are deep large blemishes that are often accompanied by cysts, or soft painful lumps just inside the skin. They are commonly caused by an overproduction of oil from the sebaceous glands, dead skin cells along the follicles and the presence of Propionibacteria acnes, the hated acne-causing bacteria.

Also known as nodulocystic acne, this condition is common in young men, especially teenagers. However, there are cases that this form of acne breakout has involved both sexes from different age groups. What is startling is that cystic acne is considered hereditary. So if someone in your family suffered from it before, chances are high that you might too.

Natural Cystic Acne Remedies that Works Fast

Strawberries are not just delicious snacks but also effective remedies against cystic acne. Blend for 8 to 10 seconds five fresh strawberries along with the white part of a raw egg. You can also blend half a cup of strawberries, a tablespoon of heavy cream, and one spoonful of rice flour. Both mixtures and pastes can be applied on the affected areas. Leave them for about 30 minutes before washing them off. Strawberry leaves can also be used. Steep a handful of leaves in hot water for around five minutes. Wash the leaves after steeping and then put them on the acne. Strawberries have alkaline that decreases the size of the cysts.

Apricots have anti-inflammatory abilities which make them effective natural remedies against cystic acne. Gather the juice from fresh apricots, soak a cotton ball in it, and rub some of the juice on the affected areas. Leave it on for several hours before rinsing it off lightly. Cold compress will help decrease the swelling. Use some ice wrapped in a towel or cheesecloth on the cysts. You can also dab a cotton ball soaked in apple cider vinegar on the cystic areas. Leave the cotton ball on the acne for 15 minutes before you lightly wash it off.

Fast-Working Medications for Cystic Acne

As with other forms of acne breakouts, benzoyl peroxide is also the most recommended topical cream against pimples. In fact, it is even better than oral antibiotics because bacteria do not develop a resistance to its effects unlike in some antibiotics. These antibiotics can be topical or oral, depending on you and your dermatologist’s preference. The most common antibiotics for cystic acne are erythromycin, clindamycin, and tetracyclines. Women are given oral contraceptives as a remedy for severe acne breakouts. The reason behind this is that hormones are believed to be a major cause of pimples. Other medications given are oral and topical retinoids, anti-inflammatory drugs, and antiseptics.

In severe cases, some medical procedures are necessary. Dermabrasion, phototherapy, and surgical lancing are the common procedures done on cystic acne. Surgical lancing is done by making an incision and then draining the pus and other infected substances from the area.

Diabetes and Carbohydrate Consumption – Are You Being Poisoned by What You Eat?

Obesity, type 2 diabetes, and a number of metabolic ailments, such as irritable bowel syndrome and chronic fatigue, have reached epidemic levels in the Developed World. These conditions, once only a concern of the middle ages and the elderly, are now affecting young people equally. The alarming increase of type 2 diabetes has set off alarms among Government Officials and the Medical Community.

Although a mountain of research has and is being done to better understand each of these metabolic infirmities and their relation to each other, there is always an entity hiding in the shadows, refined processed carbohydrates. Could carbohydrates be at the root of all these metabolic dysfunctions? Could a condition such as carbohydrate poisoning exist and could it be the cause of many of these metabolic conditions suffered by an increasing number of people in the Developed World. A look at how the body deals with carbohydrates may convince you, that indeed, carbohydrate poisoning exists and very well could be the cause of many of these metabolic ailments.

The human body has two systems for using and storing the food we eat. One system deals with the fats we eat, the other deals with carbohydrates. The fat system stores the fat we eat and has a seemingly unlimited capacity to do so, but must get a series of green lights from other systems before it will use this fat as fuel. On the other hand, the system that deals with Carbohydrates will use them as fuel first then attempt to store them. I say attempt because the body’s ability to store carbohydrates, in the form of glycogen, is limited to only a few pounds.

When we eat carbohydrates they are turned into glucose and go directly into the blood stream. Depending on the type of carbohydrates, and the other foods eaten with the carbohydrates, determines how fast glucose is pumped in to the blood stream. As glucose enters the blood stream, insulin is released from the pancreas that tells the cells throughout the body, and the liver, to grab this glucose and use it for fuel and the production of glycogen that will be stored for later use. Glycogen is the form in which carbohydrates are stored in muscles and other organs of the body, such as the liver, for later use as fuel when blood glucose levels are low. The release of insulin also signals the fat system to stop burning fat. A fast large spike in insulin, that which you get from refined processed foods, causes a greater response from systems affected by insulin, such as the halt of fat burning and the forced feeding of cells throughout the body.

The glycogen storage capacity of the body, although very limited compared to the capacity to store fat, is determined by a person’s genetics, his activity level, and how often he eats. If a person is active and/or fasts he will have a far greater capacity to store glycogen then a person that is sedentary and eats all the time. A sedentary person who eats refined processed foods all the time might have virtually no storage capacity for carbohydrates. This is what’s called, a one two punch, in boxing terminology. Let’s look at what happens to this person being knocked out by the food he’s eating.

As he eats and drinks, cupcakes and sodas, his insulin spikes. This insulin spike causes all the fat used in the making of the cupcakes to be stored as fat. So over time this adds up until he becomes obese. This insulin spike also demands that the cells in his body use or store the glucose in his blood stream. Because he’s sedentary these cells don’t need this glucose for energy nor do they have a place to store it, so the liver tries to convert this glucose into fat. But what ends up happening is the liver floods the blood with triglycerides.

As this continues over the years the cells develop a resistance to the effect of insulin. As a result of the high glucose levels in the blood stream, because the cells are not responding to the insulin as they should, the pancreas is forced to produce more and more insulin in an attempt to lower this glucose, all the while the triglyceride level in the blood stream is rising higher. Soon the pancreas begins to falter. Insulin level begins to drop and blood glucose levels begin to skyrocket. The liver, in an attempt to deal with the skyrocketing glucose levels, begins to flood the blood with triglycerides. While all this is going on, this person begins to suffer from chronic fatigue, because the cells in his body, no longer responding to the low level of insulin that signals them to eat, are starving. This causes great hunger promoting this person to eat even more.

As this person increases his intake of food in an attempt to quell his hunger, he begins to have bouts of vomiting and uncontrollable diarrhea, because the high levels of triglycerides in his blood has caused him to developed pancreatitis. The pancreas can no longer neutralize stomach acids in his intestines causing irritable bowel syndrome and uncontrollable diarrhea. As systems after system begins to fail, the body does the unthinkable; it begins to dump glucose via urination. This is unthinkable because the body was not designed to discard anything other than toxins. At this point, carbohydrates in the form of glucose have probably caused major damage to many organs. Dehydration due to the uncontrollable diarrhea and frequent urination causes this person to begin drinking soda after soda resulting in a vicious cycle of destruction.

Due to the high glucose levels in this person’s blood he would be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. But this diagnosis is just describing the result of organs poison by excess carbohydrate consumption. Refraining from refined processed food and adding exercise to one’s daily routine will most likely result in the cessation of most of the symptoms mentioned above in just a few days. Long term adherence to a low carbohydrate diet and daily exercise as described at parsonsdiet.com has seen a reversal of the damage done to organs by carbohydrates poisoning. As shown here type 2 diabetes may not be a disease, but rather a symptom of poisoning by carbohydrates and compounded by the chemicals use to process foods for taste and shelf life.

The Symptoms of a Hormone Imbalance and What You Can Do About It

Many women feel that painful periods, irritability, bloating, breast swelling and tenderness are all a normal part of menstruation. Whilst these symptoms are extremely common among women, they are not normal. A healthy menstrual cycle should ideally be pain and symptom free. Unfortunately, in today’s society, hormonal imbalance and premenstrual tension are commonplace and more serious problems such as infertility and hormone related conditions such as polycystic ovarian syndrome, endometriosis, uterine fibroids and cancers such as uterine, breast and cervical cancer are all on the increase.

Other typical symptoms associated with hormonal imbalance may include depression, teariness, anxiety, cravings, headaches, cold or flu like symptoms, skin outbreaks, low energy, digestive complaints (constipation or diarrhoea), hot flushes and insomnia. These symptoms typically occur 7 to 14 days prior to menstruation and for some women may be extremely debilitating.

Let’s explore some of the factors contributing to this epidemic of hormonal disorders.

• Poor diet & nutrition: increased incidence of pre-packaged foods, takeaways and cold storage of fresh foods means most are devoid of essential vitamins and minerals. In addition, there has been a significant increase in the level of fat consumption in our diet. The type of fat has also changed from relatively unsaturated vegetable fat to saturated animal fat, causing a significant shift in the hormones that promote or modulate inflammation in the body called prostaglandins. An excess of inflammatory prostaglandins causes painful periods, breast pain and even headaches.

• Pollution: we live in large cities with high amounts of air and water pollution. Unfortunately, our water supply is contaminated with a variety of harmful substances such as pesticides, fungicides, and heavy metals. These pesticides can attach to the hormonal receptors on our cells and provide an estrogenic effect contributing to the symptoms mentioned above.

• Toxicity: increased exposure to poisonous chemicals contained in cosmetics, cleaning products, deodorants, pesticides in the food supply, plastics, cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, hair dyes, drugs (both recreational and pharmaceutical), anaesthetics, etc. As mentioned above chemicals such as pesticides are able to attach to our estrogen receptors and cause unfavourable effects. Every chemical we ingest or absorb through our skin must be detoxified by our liver. The more chemicals we consume the more stress we place on our liver. If our liver is stressed, our body’s ability to detoxify and remove chemicals is reduced. Hormone breakdown may be affected so that hormones such as aldosterone required for fluid balance accumulate and lead to sodium and water retention resulting in bloating. In addition, estrogen may not be broken down and excreted from the body leading to symptoms of estrogen dominance, including breast swelling and tenderness, pain, bloating, etc.

• Electromagnetic radiation in the form of x-rays, electricity and transmission towers, mobile phones, cordless phones, electronic appliances, microwaves and any form of wireless appliance may have negative effects on our immune system and consequently our ability to produce hormones.

• Genito-urinary infections, particularly gonorrhoea, chlamydia and pelvic inflammatory disease may lead to irreversible damage to the reproductive organs and consequently reduce our fertility.

• Stress and lifestyle habits (physical and emotional stresses, overwork, cigarettes, alcohol, excessive exercise or lack or exercise, etc.). Stress is a well-known hormonal disruptor. Exposure to stressful situations will induce the hypothalamic pituitary axis (HPA) located in the brain. The HPA sends messages to our thyroid, and ovaries to produce various hormones to keep our body in balance. An excess of stress may alter ovarian and thyroid function and result in imbalances in estrogen and progesterone levels which may manifest in premenstrual symptoms or altered menstrual cycles. In addition, stress also negatively impacts digestion and immune responses.

Having established some of the factors which may adversely affect our hormones, let us now explore what we can do improve our hormonal health and reduce some of the unfavourable symptoms associated with hormonal imbalances.

• Avoid toxin exposure: Where possible try to avoid exposure to chemicals and toxins by drinking filtered water; eating organic foods or washing all fruits and vegetables thoroughly to remove chemical residues; buying organic eggs free of antibiotics and pasture fed hormone free meat; using organic, sulphate free shampoos and natural cleaning products and cosmetics; avoiding excessive amounts of heavy metals: lead, cadmium (active/passive smoking), mercury (dental amalgams, fish, vaccines), aluminium (cookware, antiperspirants, antacids), copper (intra uterine devices, oral contraceptive pills), paints, glues, solvents, household cleaning products (especially bleach based products), insecticides, industrial products, hair dyes, perfumes; and minimising electromagnetic radiation exposure, including, microwaves ovens, wireless networks and broadband, cordless phones, transmitters, electric blankets, water beds, and clock radios.

• Avoid excessive amounts of saturated fats such as red meat, butter and dairy products as these are pro-inflammatory and aggravate hormonal imbalances and premenstrual symptoms. Remember grass or pasture fed meat is not only lower is pesticides but contains more omega 3 fats which are anti-inflammatory. Also avoid excessive amounts of refined carbohydrates such as sugar, white bread, cakes, biscuits, pasta and potatoes. Instead eat a balanced diet with an emphasis on fresh fruit and vegetables (aim for 5 serves per day), nuts and seeds, healthy oils such as olive oil and coconut oil, deep sea fish, organic eggs and lean red meat and chicken. Also drink at least 2 litres of filtered or spring water per day.

• Reduce social toxins such as caffeine and alcohol. Not only do these substances place extra stress on our liver, they have also been shown to exacerbate hormonal imbalance and reduce fertility.

• Take a good multivitamin or mineral supplement. In particular, B vitamins are required for healthy energy and nervous system function, as well as to support our liver detoxification pathways. B6 taken in the week prior to menstruation may reduce premenstrual tension (PMT), bloating and breast tenderness. Magnesium is very beneficial for those suffering with headaches, period pain and PMT and is often deficient in our diets. Essential fatty acids such as evening primrose oil and fish oil are also often deficient in the Western diet and may reduce bloating, headaches, breast swelling and tenderness and improve mood.

• Detoxification programs: since many environmental toxins have been shown to have a direct effect on hormonal pathways and foetal development, a detoxification program may be useful excrete harmful chemicals and heavy metals from the body and improve liver function. This is of particular importance for those having difficulty conceiving or suffering from disorders such as fibroids and endometriosis. Detoxification programs are best conducted under the supervision of a naturopath or herbalist.

• Herbal medicines are extremely effective in alleviating premenstrual and menopausal symptoms, balancing hormones, improving uterine tone and enhancing fertility. Chaste Tree is a herbal remedy used to alleviate premenstrual symptoms and regulate periods. Black Cohosh is traditionally used to reduce hot flushes, night sweats and menopausal symptoms. Other herbs which may be effective in treating hormonal imbalances include Dong Quai, Shatavari, Wild Yam and Peony. Often a combination of herbs works best so it is best to consult a professional herbalist or naturopath for an individualised prescription.

• Stress Management Practices. With our increasingly hectic schedules it is becoming more and more difficult to find time to exercise and relax. Since stress has a direct effect on our hormones, it is essential that we find time to incorporate practices such as meditation, yoga, tai chi, and “down time” into our schedules. This will not only improve our feel good chemical or “endorphins” but also increases our immune system function. Exercise is also extremely beneficial for our overall health. As well as increasing our endorphins, it also improves our bone density and cardiovascular function. Aim for 40 to 60 minutes of exercise 4 to 5 times per week.

Remember that balance and moderation are the keys to a healthy life. Finding the time to eat well, exercise, relax and avoid harmful toxins and chemicals is an essential prescription for healthy hormones and a healthy life.

Depression of a Breakup – How to Conquer it and Get Your Wife Back

You’d probably give anything if you could change your current reality. To wake up tomorrow morning and find everything the way it was…comfortable and familiar. It’s not the way life works though. So, when you are trying to mend a broken relationship, you need to take care of yourself before you can take care of anything else. Once that’s done, you can begin to restore your relationship.

A confident, cheerful attitude is the first objective you need to tackle. Let me run the old “experts say” by you first. They say, and it’s true, an optimistic, confident attitude can turn amazingly hopeless situations into positive, promising ones. It might seem hard to be cheerful and confident following a breakup, but you can do it! Did you ever see the movie “A Christmas Story?” In my favorite scene, Ralphy was dreaming about his revenge for having his mouth washed out with soap. His day-dream was that he came back to visit his parents after he had gone blind. His wonderful, vengeful delight was that they were tormented because “soap poisoning” had caused him to go blind. Great scene.

But, it’s the dream of a child. Let’s be adults here…man up! Your feelings can lie to you. If you act as if you are confident (instead of walking around gloomy) you’ll soon feel more confident. Keep the depression out of your demeanor. Women dislike men who are desperate, clingy or needy. Allow her to see that you are strong and more than capable of handling this situation. Show her that you are also capable of surviving very well on your own. Eliminating tension and stress in your life will make this task easier. One way to accomplish this is to accept the breakup. By accepting this current reality, you stop fighting against it and can begin to work with it. Another way to accomplish a confident, cheerful attitude is to find ways to keep yourself occupied and happy. And that brings us to your second objective.

You need to remain socially active. Surround yourself with well wishers, supportive family, and good friends. Let your ex see that people appreciate you, and that they love being with you. Entertain at home, be available for group activities. As more people begin to feel good about your presence in their lives, your ex will begin to see you in a whole new light. It will give her an opportunity to remember what a good person you are, and wonder why she is about to let you go. So remember the lesson in the previous paragraph, and do the opposite of what you are feeling. Do you feel like hiding in your bed and crying all day? Ignore that tendency! Get together will family or friends instead. But, before you head out the door, make your third objective your new code to live by.

You must maintain a good appearance; there is no option! Do not let your appearance reflect your emotional state. Pay attention to every detail of your looks. Your hair, your clothes, your shoes. Even the way you walk, your posture and the tone of your voice convey your mood and feelings. And, it goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway. Shower and brush your teeth every day. There’s no question that it can be hard to take care of yourself following a bad breakup. But, this is one of the best ways you can let your ex know that you are doing just fine. Do not use a rumpled appearance to beg for her sympathy (remember Ralphy)! If you are going to get back together, get back together like an adult who is mature and responsible. If you always look your best, she will notice, and will respond positively.

Secrets of the Alpha Male – How to Deal With Separation Anxiety

Many times separation can trigger episodes of extreme anxiety. You should learn how to find your inner strength, and deal with separation in a healthy way. Claim control over your life! And specially, claim control over your feelings!

Don’t give your power away; because once it’s gone it will be very hard to gain it back. One of the top traits of alpha males is their ability to stay in control. Of course, this doesn’t mean that they don’t experience difficulties in life; they just know how to deal with them in a mature way.

I want to share some principles that will help you overcome the separation anxiety…

#1. – Make the most of your alone time

The more you think about your girl, and on the fact that she is gone, the more anxious you will get. Don’t use your alone time to hurt yourself. Look at the separation as a positive thing. Fill your life with fun and exciting activities. Specially concentrate on the things that you were not able to do when you were dating.

#2. – Fight the physical symptoms

Separation will produce some chemical and physical reactions in your body. These reactions will make you feel anxious, and depressed. If you fight the symptoms, right away, you will be able to overcome them easily. On the other hand, if you do nothing about them it will be very hard to fix them, and you will even need some professional help, depending on their severity.

So, how do you react on the first signs of depression, and anxiety? First, you need to workout regularly. Exercise will make your body produce endorphins; this is a natural way to fight the body reactions that make you anxious.

Second, breathe slowly. Breathing slowly will help you fix most of the physical symptoms associated with anxiety: high pulse, shortness of breath, nausea, shaking, etc. Your subconscious will assume that you are relaxed, and once the subconscious accepts and idea it becomes a reality.

Finally, make a conscious effort to feel happy. You have a lot of control over your feelings. A positive attitude is a powerful tool. Don’t let any negative thought into your mind. Negative self-talk will make you anxious; and this will create chemical and physical reactions in your body that will aggravate the condition. It’s a vicious circle.

I know, the time spent away from your loved one can be heartbreaking, especially if you believe it is definite. Don’t let any circumstance destroy you! Revive from the ashes and become the man you deserve to be.

The Tragic Effects of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect

It isn’t always easy to recognize when a patient at a nursing home is being abused or neglected. Many of the perpetrators of this type of behavior know full well the risks and will take active measures to abuse their victims in such a way that no noticeable damage is apparent, or, when it is, being sure to keep it hidden from concerned parties that might find them out. Even in the case of neglect, active precautions may be taken to ensure no red flags go up.

Not only that, but elderly people are often already insecure about the fact that they are so much more vulnerable later in life and may be so embarrassed by their inability to take care of or defend themselves that they just keep the abuse to themselves. But the effects of nursing home abuse on an elderly individual are extremely serious and for that reason it pays to always be curious and aware of what is going on.

Here are some of the effects that can manifest as a result.

1. Physical Injury and Suffering

Of course, any abuse, whether it be physical mistreatment, sexual abuse, or even rough handling, can lead to physical injuries or suffering. These can be bruises. They can be bedsores. They can even be broken bones or internal injuries.

These physical manifestations of abuse are obviously the easiest to notice, but most abusers will be sure to do their best to hide them, and since they are the ones in charge of the patient’s care, they often have the power to do just that.

2. Emotional Wounds

Just as damaging can be the emotional scars created by a victim who is unable to defend themselves, and this is equally true when the abuse is more emotional than physical. Elderly people are often experiencing a lot of difficult emotions later in their lives, and anyone who is a victim of abuse will obviously suffer emotionally. In some cases, they will become extremely depressed if someone does not intervene.

3. Financial Losses and Theft

If the abuser is taking the elderly person’s money and pocketing it or diverting it into their own bank account-possibly even just using it to purchase themselves expensive things-the end result can be severe financial damage to the elderly person’s accounts or estate. In some cases, if enough money is taken, the victim can end up in a bad enough financial position that they can no longer take care of themselves in these later years of their life.

4. Sickness and Disease

Whether due to unsanitary conditions in the nursing home, neglect, or a lowered immune system stemming from emotional suffering, abuse can even lead to sickness and disease. As patients are often already physically weak in their old age, this can be a dangerous problem.

5. Premature Death

In a severe enough case, physical abuse can result in death. And even in other cases where the emotional effects of the abuse get bad enough, an elderly person may suffer declining health and premature death as a result of depression and an inability to cope with what is happening to them. It’s tragic that we even have to think of such things in this day and age, but unfortunately, we cannot always trust the people who we depend on to keep our families safe and sound later in life. It’s of utmost importance to always be aware of what’s going on-most importantly, communicate with your aging loved ones as much as possible and inquire about their care.

And if anything is suspect, do not hesitate to contact legal help to get to the bottom of things.

Ovarian Cancer: The Importance of Detecting It in Early Stages

Treating the ovarian cyst is a matter that depends on a lot of factors. Some of them are the dimension and the appearance of the cyst, whether there are or not symptoms, or if you have been through the menopause.

Sometimes, pre-menopausal women who discover they have a cyst don’t need to follow any treatment if it turns that cyst is a small and functional one. All they must do is to have an ultrasound scan after a month, to check on the cyst, because there are chances that it will disappear without any treatment in a few weeks.

In the case of post-menopausal women, if a cyst is detected on one ovary, the risk of developing cancer is very low. More than half of this type of cysts will disappear in about 3 months. For detecting the ovarian cysts, there are ultrasound scans and blood tests for the CA132 protein. This post-menopausal women are advised to follow a ultrasound scan 4 months after the cysts have disappeared.

Sometimes, when the cyst is large, it causes symptoms or appears during pregnancy, the doctor might recommend a surgery operation to take the cyst out, because without looking at it under a microscope, it is difficult to say if it will turn into a cancerous one or not.

There exists a surgical technique called laparoscopy, which is proper to use when you want to remove smaller cysts. This method consists in two small cuts that are made in the lower abdomen and through those cuts air is blown into the pelvis so that the abdominal wall shall be lifted away from the organs inside. A laparoscope is then introduced into the abdomen, and the surgeon can see the internal organs. With the small tools attached to the laparoscope, the surgeon can make a little cut in the cyst and will drain the fluid away. He can also just take a sample from the cyst, to determine what kind it is.

Laparotomy is another surgical technique, which is recommended to be done when the cyst presents the risk of bursting or spilling while it’s being removed. This operation requires a larger cut that must be made across the top of the pubic hairline, so the surgeon will have access through that cut to take out the cyst and sent it to the laboratory to see if it is cancerous or not.

If it turns out that the cyst is cancerous, the doctor might need to apply to you a treatment to remove both of the ovaries, the uterus, the omentum and some lymph nodes.

Every year, 6,800 new cases of ovarian cancer are discovered in the UK, and there are about 4,650 deaths per year caused by the ovarian cancer. The average age of woman that are diagnosed with ovarian cancer is 63, but this disease frequently appears between ages of 50 and 80, sometimes even at younger ages.

Using a long time oral contraceptives reduces the risk of ovarian cancer by three quarters, and this kind of cancer appears more often in women who have never had children than in those who have.

The cancer is hard to detect in early stages, but when it is caught in time and it is still confined to the ovaries, it can be cured with surgical treatment.

A New Strategy For Reversing Diabetes

Diabetics are deficient in a key hormone involved in regulating blood sugar levels. The hormone, called amylin, is normally secreted by the pancreas to help regulate the interaction between blood sugar, insulin, and glucagon.

It plays a critical role in minimizing blood sugar spikes after eating through three primary mechanisms. Mimicking the effects of amylin is a potential new strategy for reversing diabetes. The following nutritional strategies target amylin’s effects and may help to reverse diabetes:

Preventing Glucose Production

The liver makes glucose when energy supplies drop. Amylin normally inhibits glucose production after eating a meal. However, diabetics continue to make glucose because they lack amylin. This excess glucose production raises blood sugar levels.

The following suggestions may help to mimic amylin’s inhibitory effects on glucose production:

  1. Supplement with 5 grams of soluble fiber 10 to 20 minutes before eating a meal. A fiber shake made with beta-glucans and cocoa polyphenols (antioxidants) is a great combination for inhibiting glucose production by the liver.

    Beta-glucans are soluble fibers found in oat bran. They help to control sugar spikes by limiting carbohydrate absorption. The cocoa polyphenols enhance the blood sugar effects by preventing the digestion of the soluble fibers.

  2. Drink 1-2 ounces of apple cider vinegar 10-20 minutes after eating a meal. Apple cider vinegar has been shown to optimize carbohydrate metabolism, eliminating the need for the liver to make glucose. The exact mechanism is unknown.

Slow Digestion

The faster you digest carbohydrates, the greater the spike in blood sugar. Amylin slows down digestion and helps to control blood sugar levels. Diabetics, deficient in amylin, quickly digest carbohydrates and experience sharp spikes in blood sugar.

The following strategies may help to slow digestion and limit blood sugar spikes:

  1. Drink 3 large glasses of water or unsweetened tea throughout each meal. Drinking fluids when eating, decreases the gastric emptying rate (the rate at which the stomach passes food into the small intestines.
  2. Add 1-2 ounces of extra virgin olive oil to salads or whole grain breads with each meal. The healthy fats found in olive oil take longer to digest, mimicking amylin’s effects.

Suppress Hunger

Hunger is the result of a complex interaction between brain chemicals and intestinal hormones. It drives a food-seeking behavior in response to cellular energy demand. Hormones, like amylin and leptin, are supposed to inhibit hunger once the energy demand is met.

But an amylin deficiency promotes overeating and disrupts normal sugar metabolism. The result is devastating to diabetics as blood sugar rises and body fat accumulates. The following suggestions may help to suppress hunger:

  1. Eat complex carbohydrates. Complex carbs fill you up. Eat lots of whole grain, oat bran, and oat meal.
  2. Ease systemic inflammation. Inflammation interferes with chemical signals originating in the intestines that are supposed to inhibit hunger. Adding the spice turmeric to your diet and supplementing with fish oils can dramatically ease inflammation and stop hunger.
  3. Supplement with Irvingia gabonensis, a West African plant. A 2008 study showed an average weight loss of 28 pounds in 10 weeks with 300 mg/day of Irvingia. A preliminary publication in the journal Nutrition concluded that this West African plant could significantly inhibit hunger.

What You Need to Know

There’s a good chance that diabetics are deficient in amylin. This leaves you at risk for higher blood sugar and excessive body fat. Mimicking amylin’s effects is a new strategy for reversing diabetes.

Herbs And Stress Relief – 5 Common Herbs To Help With Your Stress

The use of herbs for stress is getting much more common. Herbal treatments have become readily obtainable, from special teas to pills and capsules. Dealing with anxiety can be a very difficult task and there are many distinct approaches on exactly how to conquer stress.

A lot of people are looking to natural stress and anxiety remedies instead of the traditional medicine for a wide range of stress associated signs or symptoms. When it comes to reducing the side effects of stress on the body, herbs tend to be the ideal solution as they assist to decrease stress associated build ups of harmful toxins, to calm an over active mind and to help break down adrenaline as well as reinforce the heart and breathing system. All of which are under attack through continuing stress and anxiety.

Here I have chosen 5 common herbs for stress that can help reduce your levels: Siberian Ginseng, Ashwagandha, Rhodiola Rosea, Valerian Root and Chamomile.

These therapeutic herbs have been used for nearly 5,000 years. The Ancient Romans, Greeks, Egyptians and especially the Chinese have all used them for their healing properties. Today taking natural herbs for stress is an easy and often inexpensive way to overcome stress.

Siberian Ginseng is an especially useful herb in the treatment of stress. It can increase energy levels and diminish irritability. It can combat mental and physical fatigue, relieve depression and anxiety and increase resistance to stress by strengthening the nervous system.

Ashwagandha is a famed Indian herb used against stress for thousands of years. It is an adaptive herb that improves our ability to adapt to change and to productively react to external and internal stress factors. It is particularly useful if you suffer from fatigue. It increases energy levels and works as an anti-inflammatory. The anti-inflamatory properties of Ashwagandha are very important in times of stress, as excess stress can cause systemic inflammation.

Another of the important herbs for stress is Rhodiola Rosea. It also helps fight tiredness, which in turn improves memory and concentration. It also stimulates the immune system which helps fight off illness and disease.

One of the most common symptoms of stress is insomnia. Most of us prefer not to take prescription drugs for this, due to their sometimes adverse effects. Valerian Root can be of great benefit in the relief of insomnia. It soothes the nerves and has a sedating effect if used at bedtime.

And lastly, a common herb that can reduce your stress is Chamomile. This is one of the most popular herbs for stress due to it’s relaxing qualities. Taken as a cup of herbal tea, it is one of the most widely and easily used remedies to relieve anxiety. It is also sedating and promotes a good nights sleep.

The benefits of using natural herbal remedies to reduce your stress are numerous. They are generally safe, gentle, readily available and inexpensive. Most herbs for stress can be found in many different forms such as teas, tablets, capsules or liquids. They can all be found in your local health food store, supermarket or even online. But as with all remedies the best person to take advice from should be a health care professional, especially if you already have a pre-existing condition or are taking prescription drugs.

Bipolar Disorder In A Nutshell

Bipolar disorder, formerly called manic-depressive illness, is one of several disorders known as mood disorders. Mania and depression alone or in combination are the hallmarks of the mood disorders. Mania is characterized by a feeling of euphoria in which the individual has grandiose ideas, exhibits boundless energy, needs little sleep, and exhibits great self-assurance. While in a manic state people’s thoughts race, they speak too fast, and they demonstrate poor judgment. Manics may impulsively spend too much money, commit sexual indiscretions, and alienate people with their irritability and impatience. Hypomania refers to a milder form of mania that is an excessive amount of elation but does not significantly impair the individual’s life.

Depression can be characterized by many symptoms, including feelings of worthlessness, guilt, and sadness. When one is depressed, life seems empty and overwhelming. The depressed individual has difficulty concentrating, cannot make decisions, lacks confidence, and cannot enjoy activities that previously were pleasurable. Physical symptoms may include gaining or losing weight, sleeping too much or too little, agitation, or lethargy. Depressed individuals may be preoccupied with death or suicide. They may believe that they have committed the unpardonable sin and that loved ones would be better off without them.

Bipolar disorder is so named because those afflicted with it experience both mania and depression, in contrast to those with unipolar disorders, who experience only one extreme, usually depression. Bipolar disorders are categorized into two types, Bipolar I and Bipolar II. In Bipolar I the individual experiences both mania and depression; in Bipolar II the individual experiences hypomania and depression. Mania or hypomania is the key to diagnosing bipolar disorder. A person who experiences a manic state even once is presumed to have bipolar disorder. Manic and depressive states may immediately precede or follow one another or may be separated by long time intervals, and the individual may have more episodes of one pole than the other. Some individuals, known as rapid cyclers, will experience four or more episodes per year.

The age of onset for bipolar disorder is younger than for unipolar depression and usually begins in the late teens or twenties but seldom begins after age 40. In some cases it is preceded by a disorder named cyclothymia, which is a milder form of mood disorder, characterized by marked moodiness and mood swings for at least two years. Bipolar disorder is a chronic disorder and even with treatment less than half of the individuals who experience it go five years without a manic or a depressive episode. People with bipolar are at risk for suicide in the depressive phase and are more prone to accidental death in the manic phase due to impulsiveness and poor judgment.

The causes of bipolar disorder are unclear, but it is probably determined by multiple factors. Family and adoption studies have consistently indicated a genetic predisposition toward mood disorders. First-degree relatives of persons with bipolar disorder are much more likely than the general population to experience bipolar depression, unipolar depression, and anxiety. At this point, however, there is no clear evidence that a particular gene is linked to the transmission of bipolar disorder; instead it seems that a family history increases vulnerability to several disorders.

Neurotransmitters in the brain have been widely investigated and are very likely involved in bipolar disorder but in complex and interactional ways not yet understood. The relationship between neurotransmitters and the hormones secreted by the hypothalamus, pituitary, and adrenal glands seems to be significant. There is also speculation that bipolar disorder may be related to circadian rhythms because some people with bipolar disorder are especially light-sensitive and show abnormalities in sleep patterns such as entering REM sleep too quickly, dreaming intensely, and missing the deeper stages of sleep.

Stressful life events may precipitate episodes of mania or depression but do not seem to be the primary cause of bipolar disorder. Psychosocial factors such as attributional style, learned helplessness, attitudes, and interpersonal relationships all seem to be correlated with bipolar disorder but have not been identified as causes; they are often the result of having such a disorder. It seems that a genetic vulnerability coupled with stressful psychological and sociocultural events may result in bipolar disorder.

Three primary treatment modalities are most frequently used for bipolar disorder. Medication is commonly used, especially lithium. For reasons not yet fully understood, lithium reduces the frequency of episodes, and many persons with bipolar disorder are maintained on lithium for long periods. Lithium levels must be carefully monitored through blood tests, and there may be side effects such as weight gain, lethargy, and kidney malfunction. Because of the side effects of medication and because they miss the energy of hypomania and manic states, people with bipolar disorder may discontinue their medications. The newer antidepressants that affect serotonin levels are often used, but there is some suspicion that they may contribute to more rapid cycling. Antiseizure medication, such as carbamazepine, is also being used.

A second treatment approach that is sometimes used is electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). This approach is used only in severe cases in which uncontrollable behavior or the threat of suicide makes it impossible to wait the two to three weeks for medication to take effect. ECT, used to treat people who have not responded to other forms of treatment, is often effective but is subject to side effects: temporary short-term memory loss and confusion immediately after treatment.

Psychotherapy is the third treatment approach. While many psychotherapeutic approaches have been tried, cognitive therapy and interpersonal therapy are currently the most popular. Cognitive therapy focuses on identifying and correcting faulty thinking and attributional styles, so that the client can gain cognitive control of emotions. Interpersonal therapy focuses on developing the skills to identify and resolve interpersonal conflicts, which frequently accompany bipolar disorder. Both of these psychotherapies are highly structured and short-term. Many people receive a combination of both medication and psychotherapy to stabilize them and prevent relapse.

In addition to addressing the potential causes of bipolar disorder, psychotherapists help people cope with a number of problems that arise in living with the disorder. One is the difficulty of living with interruptions to one’s life that manic and depressive states bring. People may be too ill to work or parent and may even be hospitalized. Another problem is undoing or coping with inappropriate behavior that was performed during a manic state, when the individual may have recklessly spent money, made grandiose promises, or said inappropriate things. A third common problem is dealing with negative reactions and the distrust of family, friends, and co-workers who have been affected by the individual’s extreme mood swings. Taking medication regularly is a struggle for some people, a struggle that is compounded by the tendency for people in a manic or hypomanic state to feel that they do not need medication. People with bipolar disorder deal with the constant anxiety that their feelings may spin out of control. They often feel powerless and as though their illness is in control and may take over any time. There is also the question of why God allows people to go through such struggles. People with bipolar disorder need therapists who help them exercise cognitive control over their emotions, recognize when they are getting too high or too low, manage interpersonal relationships, cope with life stresses, and understand how to accept and live successfully with bipolar disorder.

Grandma’s Proven Tips Reveal Her Self Help For Anxiety And Depression Secrets

Modern notions of success and achievement don’t always jibe with more traditional notions of community, balance, and personal wellbeing. The hustle and bustle of modern life often brings with it the symptoms and syndromes associated with high stress and anxiety – overeating, depression, chest pain, and a host of immune system related illnesses. Perhaps it’s time for you to consider the timeless wisdom of grandma’s advice regarding self help for anxiety and depression.

Grandma’s Tip #1: “Count To Ten Before You React” – Not stopping to consider your statements and actions before making them is responsible for untold amounts of largely unnecessary stress, anxiety, and depression. Before reacting to another’s slight, or thoughtless behavior, stop to consider the consequences of your possible reactions. You can choose a course that escalates and magnifies tensions, or you can choose to diffuse the tension by letting it pass. Reduce and manage the symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression by, “Counting to ten before you react.”

Grandma’s Tip #2: “Stop To Smell The Roses” – Why are you rushing about so? Is the world really going to end if you take fifteen minutes for yourself? Make a habit of scheduling “mini stress vacations” right into your day. Whether it’s at your workplace desk, or even in the bathroom at home, be sure to schedule 2-3 breaks of between five and fifteen minutes everyday when you shut your eyes, clear your thoughts, and work on accomplishing absolutely nothing! Reduce and manage the symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression by, “Stopping to smell the roses.”

Grandma’s Tip #3: “Sit Down and Eat Something” – While overeating and obesity are huge modern day problems associated with stress, anxiety, and depression, “grandma” wasn’t advocating unhealthy eating. The point of grandma’s advice was for you to sit down, forget about the business of living, enjoy some good conversation and company, and take in a little nourishment. Reduce and manage the symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression by, “Sitting down to eat something.”

Grandma’s Tip #4: “A Place For Everything and Everything In Its Place” – One sure fire way to alleviate the effects of stress and anxiety is to get organized! Aside from the obvious time savings associated with knowing where things are and not having to search around for them, it is a surprisingly true fact that an organized personal environment stimulates feelings of confidence, peace of mind, and wellbeing. Reduce and manage stress symptoms and beat anxiety and depression by creating, “A place for everything, and putting everything in its place.”

Grandma’s Tip #5: “Go Tell xxxxxx You’re Sorry” – Grandma was smart in knowing that unresolved conflicts will normally only fester and get worse over time if not nipped in the bud before given the chance to grow. Don’t let your pride get in the way of good relationships. Take the high road by being the type of person who is quick to forgive others, and who is quick to make amends. Reduce and manage the symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression by, “Telling the other person that you’re sorry.”

Now, listen to grandma’s advice! By following her proven tips and techniques of self help for anxiety and depression you will be going a long way towards reducing the effects of modern day stresses and strains upon your life.

My Love Life is Falling Apart – How Can I Enhance My Relationship?

The most prevalent reason that so many people fail to mend their breaking relationships is that they fail to be able to stand back and patiently examine the situation – and then go about fixing it in a methodical, logical and effective manner. Instead, they fall apart, and so does their relationship. There are powerful, psychologically-driven techniques that have been proven time and time again to repair bruised relationships – even those that are ready to completely disintegrate. Here are some of the basics to consider:

1) Stop leading with your emotions. This is a time for examination, thought and deliberate action – not emotionally-charged actions and words. So many times, people doom their relationships to the point of no return by exhibiting anger, jealousy, insecurity and suspicion. If you want to save your relationship, then you need to first gather your senses and INTEND to be a proactive force for positive change.

2) #1 above in no way means that you need to be a sucker and sacrifice your integrity. It means quite the opposite in fact. If you want to save your failing relationship, then you have to represent yourself – your desires, your needs, your feelings, your thoughts – with great confidence and self respect levels. Nobody likes a whiner, but everyone likes a winner. In a positive and fair fashion, you need to be assertive, not aggressive, about everything that you think and feel. Many times, all that a relationship needs is some honest and open communication in order to get it back on track.

3) Start loving yourself just as much as you love your mate – if not more. It is a definite true fact that you are unable to love another unless you first love yourself. By loving yourself, you treat yourself better. You spend time developing yourself. You enhance your own existence. You in turn become more attractive to others, including your mate. By understanding how to love yourself, you become able to love others. You also make them stand up and take notice of the fact that you consider yourself to be a valid and worthy individual – even if they do leave you.

4) Never a beggar be! Do not ever fall down crying and begging your mate to love you. If you have to do that, then he or she doesn’t love you anyway. Not all relationships are destined to be. You have to face that. If you and your mate are meant to succeed as a couple, then time, patience, effort and love will prevail. If not, then no amount of begging and pleading will ever change the facts. Always maintain your self-respect and your integrity no matter what.

There are so many more tips for you to consider when you are feeling like your relationship is truly on the rocks. Stand back and take your time. Look yourself in the eyes in the mirror – deep in your eyes – and tell yourself that you are strong. Tell yourself that you are worthy to be loved. Create your future in a positive, self-loving manner. Then and only then will you be able to save your failing relationship with genuine effect.

Who, What, Where is a Wen?

Mimi: Your boyfriend probably has a Sebaceous Cyst. The old name was a Wen. Each hair follicle has a sebaceous (oil) gland attached to it. The oil should pour into the hair follicle and wick up the hair shaft to keep the hair shiny and lubricate the skin. If the follicle or pore gets clogged, several things can happen. If the skin grows over the follicle and the oil just sits there, the oil can congeal and turn into a hard little “seed” called Epstein Pearls. These whiteheads are not infected. They just sit there and will not go away by themselves. Do NOT pick at them. They must be removed by a professional Esthetician or a Dermatologist.

The follicle can get infected with Staph and turn into a boil. It can get infected with P. acnes and turn into an Acne pimple.

Or the oil can just keep collecting and collecting and build into a sebaceous cyst. These are benign. They don’t hurt, and can just be ignored.

Doctors usually excise cysts. They cut two lines in an ellipse around the cyst. They remove the affected hair follicle and sebaceous gland. Then the two incision lines are brought together and sutured. The result is a scar that dips below the surface of the skin. The indentation is caused by the tissue that was removed. Most doctors prefer to excise the cyst rather than draining it. By totally removing it, it is permanently gone. With draining there is a chance that it will return. Also, draining the cyst is a messy, tedious job.

If you are up to draining a cyst, here are your directions. DO NOT CUT THE SKIN. The collected oil in the cyst will have probably become rancid and will stink. It is not an infection, so you don’t need to wear gloves. However, because it stinks, I recommend wearing disposable gloves. Have a plastic bag handy to throw away paper. Use paper towels, toilet paper, cotton or gauze. You will need more than you think, if the cyst does drain. Cysts are usually on the back, so have the “victim” lie down. Massage the cyst to soften the hardened oil. The oil will have turned to a liquid with lumps in it. It resembles cottage cheese. With paper covered fingers, bend your index fingers so the side of each finger is along side the cyst. Don’t use the tips of your fingers because they aren’t strong enough and will tire.

Press in toward the center of the cyst. Move your fingers to another position and press deeply and firmly. You are trying to find the clogged pore that the oil will escape from. Once a bit of white or yellow “thread” comes out, you know what pore to work on. Continue pressing and changing the position. As the ribbon of yellow or white old oil comes out, continue pressing and cleaning it up. You can also support your thumbs with the sides of your hands and press with your thumbs. You need to be firm. You can push with your knuckles. Feel the cyst and get to the outside edge of it. Don’t press right where the clogged pore is or you won’t be successful.

Between pressings and cleanings, massage the cyst. When nothing comes out, you probably have a lump of congealed oil. Continue pressing firmly. Watch out, when the lump comes out under pressure from your pressing, it may “explode” like Vesuvius. The stinky goop can shoot 2 feet or even more. Continue pressing and cleaning until the bump feels flat. The pressure is uncomfortable for the “victim” but not painful. Wipe the area clean. Since the cyst is not an infection, no special clean up is needed other than getting rid of the stinky paper towels in the trash.

After the cyst is drained, it may never return. Or it may come back repeatedly. So drain it again, whenever it becomes troublesome. If this seems too icky, ask your skin care specialist if she drains sebaceous cysts. Some facialists are not trained in paramedical esthetics. Some don’t like or don’t know how to do it. Call around until you find someone who has done this work and isn’t grossed out by it. The fee will probably be nothing to $1.25 a minute. A flat rate may be impossible to figure because nobody knows how long it will take until the work is actually done.