Clean Teeth Help Fight Heart Disease

Every time you watch TV, you always see commercials endorsing brand of toothpaste or a brand of toothbrush. Of course, these commercials were meant to bring profit to their companies and at the same time, promote oral hygiene to all people. Oral hygiene is a very important thing to be observed. Starting from when you were still in pre-school, you teachers have been teaching you the importance of brushing your teeth. They even tell you to brush your teeth for three times a day. Now, brushing your teeth three times a day is no longer enough. Most people eat more than three times a day and the number of times you eat in a day should also be the number of times you brush your teeth. That is what our teachers before have taught us: Brush your teeth every day after each meal. You all know, three meals a day, sometimes, are not enough.

Having good oral hygiene is also important in practical situations. An example is when you are supposed to have a job interview. You would not want to appear disgusting and not presentable to your employer. You must want to impress your employer in any possible way. Having a good oral hygiene is a part of being well-dressed and being presentable. Another example is when you are going on a date with someone. You would be having a lot of speaking and smiling to do during your date. That's why a good oral hygiene is very significant. You will be embarrassing yourself if he sees that you have an unclean set of teeth.

Those are just some of the practical reasons why it is important to have a clean teeth but a lot of people do not know that having poor oral hygiene can increase the probability that you would acquire a heart disease. At first glance, you might think that having clean teeth does not have any connection with the presumable condition of your heart. But experts have found out this year that having clean teeth can reduce the risks of acquiring heart diseases.

Heart diseases kill millions of people every year. Some get them because of heredity and some develop them through time, by eating foods which are full of cholesterol. Now, we will see that we can also get them because of poor oral hygiene. Based on the researches which have been conducted recently, results showed that accumulated plaque on and between our teeth can produce bacteria. These bacteria, when not removed, can lead to infections which would eventually result to having gum diseases. Researches did not end there. Cardiologists also found out that gum diseases help in the development of a heart disease in a person's body. Your blood vessels might experience a prolonged inflammation due to bacterial infections which have developed in your gums. The bacteria present in your gums might also be the ones which could contribute to your probable heart disease.

With those research-based facts, you can really say that it is really important that we observe proper oral hygiene. It has been proven that do not only get heart disease from eating fatty foods and from the genes of your parents. You can also get heart diseases from having teeth which are filled with plaques and tooth decays. Sometimes, people tend to neglect the importance of taking care of their teeth and gums, At an early age, it really is vital that parents teach their kids to take care of their teeth. It is also vital that you remind yourself every now and then to have regular dental check-ups. This could help in maintaining the perfect condition of your teeth. Having regular dental check-ups could require a little amount of money but you will find out later on that the money that you have been spending could all be worth it. It would be also helpful to get your teeth cleaned by your dentist time after time. After such, you would be certain that you have already reduced your risk of getting a heart disease. By doing so, you did not just have healthy gums and clean set of white teeth to show to your employer or to your date, you even got yourself a healthier heart.

How to Get Rid of a Cold? Case: Chaga

What Is Chaga?

Chaga (Inonotus obliquus) is a fungus parasitic that grows on birches and in some rare cases in other trees. Chaga can easily be identified as it has the distinctive appearance of burnt charcoal. It can be found in birch forests of Europe, Russia and Korea. Also in some parts of the United States and in Canada are regions where you can find chaga. Chaga is defined as medicinal mushroom and it has been used in Russian and Eastern European folk medicine for centuries as a treatment for cancer, gastritis, ulcers and tuberculosis. Chaga has also been used to treat hypertension, viral infections, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Recent studies have shown that chaga could be used as a treatment for HIV.

Chaga As a Cold Remedy

Scientific studies have proven that chaga truly has anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, immunostimulating, ache-relieving and antiulcer properties. Antioxidant activity (ORAC level) is higher than in any other medicinal mushroom tested so far.

Chaga is an interesting cold and flu remedy because of its antiviral activities and capability to improve immunity. Chaga is also natural, non-toxic and thus safe even in long-term daily use. Traditional method to use chaga is to grind it in to a fine powder and infuse a hot beverage. Hot extraction method like this ensures that the major active components, the polysaccharides will be in the infusion. More than a few extraction rounds are generally useful for achieving very high amounts of polysaccharides. Typically though single extraction round is enough when preparing a drink to be used daily for immune boosting and as a cold treatment. To be able to pull out also the non-water soluble components of chaga, an alcohol extraction technique is should be used. Then by combining drops of alcohol extract and hot water brew you will get an infusion with high-level remedial value. If you are wondering how to get rid of a cold, this is a beverage you should try.

Availability

Chaga is nowadays offered in the form of tea bags, chunks, powder, tablets, extracts along with tinctures. The quality of commercial chaga products can vary and some of them can also be quite expensive. Thus it is recommendable to purchase chaga in type of chunks and prepare the extracts by yourself or search and gather chaga by yourslf from the woods. Here are a few advice for searching, collecting and preparing Chaga:

  • You can typically find chaga in older birch forests
  • Don’t collect chaga if it is growing in a dead birch
  • After finding chaga cut it off by utilizing a large knife, chisel, axe, etc.
  • If you are not after anticancer properties of chaga, remove the outer charcoal-like part
  • Chop into tiny cubes
  • Use an oven (105°F/50°C) or a dehydrator for drying the cubes
  • As soon as the cubes are totally dry put them in air-tight container for storage, or grate cubes in to a powder by using a powerful blender
  • Simplest method to prepare a hot water extract is to bring couple of liters (couple of quarts) water into a boil and add two tablespoons of chaga powder. When using chaga cubes, add two to three cubes and note that you can use the same cubes at least three times. Boil slowly for ½-2 hours or longer. Enjoy no less than couple glasses daily.
  • You can store chaga tea in fridge for 3-4 days

Restrictions On Use

Chaga can safely be used daily even for long periods of time. If you are pregnant or nursing please consult your physician before using chaga.

Backyard Tomato Gardening Tips – Dealing With Overgrown Tomato Plants

When you think about pruning tomatoes, you have to figure there are three different strategies based on where in the growing season you are. There will be different tomato gardening tips to use with the ultimate goal being avoiding overgrown tomato plants. Everyone has their own opinion about this, so reading more tomato gardening problems and how to solve them will be a good plan. This article talks about the issues based on personal experience, not the textbook version.

At first when the young plants are growing, your pruning tomatoes activities center on the new leaves and new growth shoots that appear between the leaves and the main stem. You only want one main trunk and that can grow to be large and sturdy by snipping off the lowest leaves on the vine. By eliminating the side shoots, all the energy goes to the new tomatoes and lets them grow larger. Once the tomato plant gets tall enough, about the height of the stake, things start to change.

Tomato plants at this size become more difficult to keep up. What you will do is turn things around and let the new shoots form and cut off new growth at the top. With this tomato gardening tip you keep the same principal, but in reverse. You will get a bushier plant, but it will not outgrow your stakes or cage. You can pinch back some of the new growth, but let some of them grow out. Keep pulling unnecessary leaves off, but be aware that this is the hot time of the summer and the ground and the tomatoes need the shade the leaf provides. Your goal is to still channel the nutrients to the tomatoes and not the foliage.

Eventually, there is nothing you can do, you can officially be classified as having overgrown tomato plants. You officially have tomato gardening problems! One of the better pruning tomato tips for this situation is to calculate how much time is left in the growing season. Usually it is well into August when you get to this point, so look ahead. Once the average date for the first frost is about 30 days away, you can start cutting off all the new growth, and flowers, a lot of the leaves and let the tomatoes already started mature.

Do the best you can for as long as you can is some of the most practical tomatoes gardening tips and advice there is when dealing with overgrown tomato plants. You could really apply that advice to other tomato gardening problems like your fungus and pest issues, too. Everyone really needs to think about being sure not to overdo it by putting in more plants than you need in the spring!

Is My Headache Caused by a Brain Tumor?

Almost everyone experiences a headache now and then. In most cases these intermittent headaches will not be a sign of a more serious health condition. However, in some instances the headache will only be a symptom of some underlying disease or condition.

There are two types of headaches, primary and secondary. Primary headaches are simply head pain. Secondary headaches are caused when some other health condition such as a disease, infection, brain tumor, or other factor is present. With secondary headaches the head pain is just a symptom of the primary health disorder. By looking at a few factors it is usually possible to determine if your head pain is nothing to be worried about or a serious health condition.

If you suffer with three or more headaches a week, this is not a natural thing. If you are having three or more headaches a week you should see a medical doctor. You should also seek medical help if you are taking painkillers almost every day or if the pain is continually getting more intense, it’s time to talk with a doctor about your problem.

The sudden onset of a headache after a fall or other head injury could signify a major problem and immediate medical assistance is required. If a headache appears suddenly and is severe in intensity, you should again seek immediate medical attention. There are many reasons to seek immediate help from a doctor and the most common reasons are if you have a headache that is accompanied by a fever, seizures, double vision, stiff neck, loss of mental focus or confusion, or rash. Additionally, if you are over 50 years of age and start experiencing new headache pain that you never had before, it’s time to seek help.

Migraine headaches are usually experienced on one side of the head, but will switch sides from one headache to the next. The pain can be on one side for a headache or two and then be on the other side the next time or two. This is normal. However, if the pain is continually on the same side it could be caused by a brain tumor.

Brain tumors will normally be associated with other symptoms as well. They tend to cause a loss of sensation or function on one side of the body as the tumor pushes against tissues on one side of the brain. When a tumor causes an increased amount of pressure on the brain it can cause other symptoms such as loss of balance, vision problems in one eye, or other one-sided symptoms.

If you ever experience symptoms that you believe may be caused by a brain tumor it’s important to seek medical help immediately. The quicker a tumor is discovered the better your chances of successful treatment.

The Feds Are Still Pushing Pneumococcal Pneumonia Vaccine – What About the Side Effects?

According to the Associated Press article published in the New York Times on 10/22/08 (The New York Times), a Federal Government panel, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, recommended the Pneumococcal Pneumonia Vaccine for all adult smokers in addition to the prior recommendations for all person over the age of fifty and all infants under two. The attempt to protect the population from a devastating epidemic is commendable, but are vaccines the only way to achieve that goal? No. We all have immune systems that our Creator built to take care of protecting us from pathogenic organisms. Yet we have epidemics and the medical establishment and federal government are selling us these synthetic magic bullets called "vaccines" made from the actual organisms that cause the diseases.

Additionally, we get a barrage of news articles, advertisements and health care providers telling us that we are at risk and we need protection. Ah, but if you should ask, "What about the side effects?" The government officials and healthcare workers will tell you, "Oh, there might be a few rare casualties along the way, but the general population will receive protection from this devastating disease." Of course, the rationale being that the need for protection of the many outweighs the vaccine-induced illness and death of a few.

On the other hand, the whole issue of vaccines begs the question, "Is this 'protection' really protecting us, and, if so, from what?" Well, for one thing, each vaccine stimulates the production of antibodies for that one specific strain of bacteria or virus and for no other. As the vaccine sales people forgot to tell us, the Pneumococcal class of bacteria as well as every other pathogenic (disease causing) organism has an innumerable variety of subspecies and we can not keep tract of them all because they have this uncanny ability to mutate with each new generation. Thus, it is impossible for the health care system to inoculate us against all the different strains of a particular class of potential infection.

Furthermore, there are the side effects of the Pneumococcal Pneumonia Vaccine, and I had to search through many links to find out what they are. I finally came across a report of the known adverse affects of this vaccine from Drugs.com (Drugs.com) This site reported "Fever; redness, soreness, swelling, or a lump at the injection site; severe allergic reactions (rash; hives ; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); weakness. The authors also said that there may have been side effects that no one has reported thus far. The standard disclaimer also appeared saying, "check with your doctor", notwithstanding that your physician can not prevent the reaction unless he or she uses Taro cards and tea leaves with a high degree of accuracy. Although, those who disclose the known side effects are telling us that they are rare, but we have yet to find out how rare. It's a meaningless statement unless you are ordering a steak.

Therefore, in view of all of the above, the government is doing a disservice to we the people with all this hype about pneumococcal pneumonia vaccine. We do not have enough information and the questionable benefit of maybe being inoculated against one type of pneumonia and still remaining susceptible to all other types does not outweigh the risk of injury and death from unexpected reactions.

In conclusion, the immune system is a complex array of many different organs working in a coordinated effort to protect our bodies from foreign invasion with many lines of defense from outer barriers and inner layers to secretions of hormones and various kinds of white blood cells that are always in search and destroy mode (UHA). Thus, we need to spend more resources researching natural ways to beef up our immune systems with nutritional supplements and other modalities, rather than injecting our bodies with weakened antigens. Although, vaccines do work, you the public need to have sufficient information to make an appropriate choice. It's up to you if you want to take the vaccine, but you need to know that there are alternatives in being protected against contracting pneumococcal pneumonia.

Ice Chest Coolers

Ice chest coolers are a portable one which has an insulated box. The insulated box inside the cooler helps to keep drink or food in cool condition. Ice cubes or ice packs are placed inside the box which make food and drinks to remain cold. Ice packs contain melted water inside and are sealed with a gel to keep it cold for longer period. Ice chest coolers were first invented by Richard C. Laramy. Later the Coleman Company popularized the box.

There are different types of Coleman:

1. Classic steel
2. Wheeled coolers.
3. Kids coolers.

Ice chest coolers can be easily taken to vacations, picnics and holidays. During summers they can be used to keep groceries from home or store. They are also used to protect ice creams from melting in hot car. Ice chest coolers remove the dilemma of bringing drinks and food across different places. Smaller side coolers have different styles and colors and fits to different personalities depending on occasions and places. If any person is thirsty during summer months and wants cold food and water then they are the best option for cooling water and food.

Ice chest coolers generally have exterior and interior walls made of plastic. Between the interior and the exterior walls of the box is hard foam. Customers usually purchase them according to the size of family. There are with wheels and handles. Many ice chestcoolers are disposable in nature as they are made from styrene foam.

Some trendy coolers are:

Rolling
Insulated tote bags,
Chine wine carriers,
Lunch boxes,
Beach bag
Golf bag
Fishing
Backpack coolers

Mostly all the coolers are tough and have durable features due to the presence of thick urethane foam insulation. Ice chest coolers have tight seals on their leads along with rugged handles, drain plug and strong hinges.

Cure Bronchitis Quickly – 8 Home Remedies For Bronchitis

Bronchitis can be caused by a bacterial or viral infection, or it can be triggered by an allergic reaction to molds, pollens, dander or dust. This lower respiratory disease is characterized by a deep, hacking (dry) cough that comes in sudden attacks. It results from inflammation of the bronchial tubes, the large airways that lead from the trachea (windpipe) to the lungs. The disease occurs in two forms: acute infectious bronchitis (usually viral) and allergic asthmatic bronchitis.

These home remedies are proven to help heal bronchitis infection and ease the symptoms like congestion and coughing, which causes patient irritability, uneasiness and to some extent pain.

1) Getting enough rest
Taking time to rest is the one of the most important remedies. Having bronchitis can cause you with discomforts and you may not be able to sit still or lie comfortably. All you have to do is take it easy until your body can fight the infections.

2) Gargle with warm water with salt
Gargling with warm water with enough salt can relieve an inflamed throat and can loosen up mucus that is attached to the throat. Gargle as often as possible and remember to spit out after gargling.

3) Environment humidification
By using humidifiers it can moisten the air within the house and can help in bringing up the sputum and loosening the phlegm through coughing. These may include a hot bath with closed doors, slow boiling of water with added eucalyptus oil if available.

4) Taking plenty of liquids
Drinking of plenty of fluids is helpful in thinning out sputum and makes it easier to expel. Most common drinks are water, fresh fruit juices, soup and sometimes tea. It is more helpful as long it is warm because it can soothe the throat from too much coughing.

5) Ginger
Ginger is a common ingredient in your kitchen, with a mixture of ginger on your tea or honey it can alleviate fever associated in bronchitis and soothe your throat.

6) Onion Juice
Onion juice when taken first thing in the morning can thin out phlegm and avoid further formation, because onion is said to be a natural expectorant.

7) Almond
Almond is another remedy effective when you have bronchitis or other respiratory illness. It can be taken in any form.

8) Spinach and asparagus
Spinach mix and asparagus drinks are also good expectorants. Your diet should also be limited to an all fruit diet and a well balanced diet, including orange juice and water.

If the bronchitis became worse in spite of the home remedies available, you can take aspirin or ibuprofen for aches and pains. It is best to consult your doctor, before taking any medications or trying to treat yourself. Your doctor is the best source of treatment for bronchitis.

Dangerous Shoulder Exercises

Have you ever suffered from shoulder discomfort after working out? I am referring to aching or sharp pain experienced in the front of the shoulder or lateral upper arm that is felt with overhead activities, reaching behind the back or even laying on the shoulder. These symptoms are often indicative of rotator cuff inflammation. This is a common problem for many people who perform resistance training on a regular basis. It is also a problem that can easily be prevented by modifying the following “dangerous shoulder exercises.”

Bench Press – This is a popular exercise chosen to build the chest, along with the anterior deltoid and triceps. Most teach taking the bar down until it lightly touches the chest. However, I believe this is unsafe because it exposes the anterior shoulder capsule to excessive load, in addition to compressing the soft tissue of the rotator cuff between the humerus and the acromion. Over time, with repeated bouts and heavy loads, the rotator cuff becomes inflamed.

Individuals with any anterior shoulder laxity (loose joints) or history of subluxation/dislocation are also at increase risk for rotator cuff injury or labral (shoulder cartilage) damage. Furthermore, you also have the potential to rupture the pectoralis tendon with full range pressing during heavy loads. The safe answer is to lower the bar until the upper arm is parallel to the floor (elbow bent to 90 degrees). This prevents the shoulder joint from moving into the unsafe range. The same advice applies to push-ups.

Lat Pull Downs – This is a good exercise to strengthen the back, but when done behind the head it can cause problems. Like the bench press, pulling the bar down behind the head positions the humerus in such a way that the rotator cuff can be pinched. This may depend on other factors, including the shape of a person’s acromion and degree of any present arthritis, but I still believe the risk outweighs any benefit. Not to mention that keeping the bar in front of the head still accomplishes the same movement for the target muscle, while eliminating the risk of shoulder injury. Remember not to sway during the movement, and position the body in a slightly reclined position, pulling the bar toward the sternum. Another unrelated reason not to do behind the neck pull downs is that it places undue stress on the cervical spine.

Military Press – This exercise when performed behind the neck with a bar, positions the shoulder in the aforementioned unfavorable position. Done repeatedly, the rotator cuff can become inflamed. Similar to behind the neck pull downs, you also expose your neck to unnecessary stress. It is safer to perform the exercise in front of the head or utilize dumbbells and work in the scapular plane. You must watch to avoid arching the low back and it is best to use a bench with back support to prevent this.

Dips/Upright Row – As before, the key mistake made with these exercises is allowing the shoulder to move beyond 90 degrees relative to a position parallel to the floor or perpendicular to the body. I always recommend stopping at 90 degrees to protect the shoulder capsule and the rotator cuff.

Dumbbell Lateral Raise – In my opinion, this exercise is often done incorrectly. The mistakes include lifting too much weight, keeping the arms straight, and raising the arms out away from the body in the plane of the body. The force on the rotator cuff reaches 90% of your body weight when the arms are raised to 90 degrees with the arms straight and in the plane of the body. That is a lot of force on four relatively small rotator cuff muscles. The target muscle is the lateral deltoid, but the rotator cuff is extremely active, and it functions to allow you to raise the arm by depressing the humerus so that it passes under the acromion during active elevation. When heavy loads are introduced in the wrong plane of motion, disaster usually occurs. I am fanatical about performing this exercise correctly.

The proper way to execute a lateral raise is to keep the elbows comfortably flexed (20-30 degrees) and raise the arm to no higher than parallel to the floor. The arm should be in the scapular plane of motion (approximately 30-45 degrees from being perpendicular to the body) and the weight should be relatively light. Once you feel you have to shrug or use momentum to raise the weight, you need to rest or lower the weight. In my opinion, this is one of the worst exercises for the shoulder if done incorrectly.

In summary, I want to emphasize that good intentions may spell bad results for the shoulder if proper form is lacking. The rotator cuff and shoulder joint is extremely vulnerable to heavy loads and repetitive bouts of exercise. Gradually, it may become inflamed and hinder or limit your workout altogether. Be sure to master form before increasing weight, and do not attempt to work through pain, as this often perpetuates the problem. Remember to assess risk and reward at all times, and rest assured that these modifications will not hinder your gains. Instead, they will prevent missed time in the gym and produce happier, healthier shoulders!

Osteoporosis – Natural Solutions to Bone Loss

44 Million People in the US over the age of 50 have bone problems. 1.5 million Americans suffer fractures due to weak bones. Half of all women over 50 years old will have an osteoporosis related bone fracture. If you are over 50 years old you are at risk. Some other risk factors are:

o Older than 65

o Experienced a bone fracture after 50

o A close relative has osteoporosis or has broken a bone.

o Health is poor

o Smoke

o Underweight

o Started menopause before 45

o Not physically active

o Suffer from Hyperthyroidism

o Cancer

o Inflammatory Bowel Disease

o Multiple Sclerosis

o Rheumatoid Arthritis

So what are the drugs that are being prescribed for millions of people worldwide to treat Osteoporosis? Primarily there are three: Fosamax, Boniva and Actonel. There are others that are administered intravenously but let’s concentrate on the three most popular.

These drugs are classified as bisphosphonates which is an ingredient used for many years in fertilizers, soaps, laundry detergents and industrial lubricants. Fosamax, the best selling of the three bisphosphonates, is Merck’s second best selling drug. It has topped $4 billion in sales and millions of prescriptions are written every year. Incidentally, Consumers Affairs in 2007 reported that Merck set aside 48 million for a defense fund against lawsuits related to the side effects which for many people are very debilitating.

Actonel is the second most successful drugs in this category and coincidentally Proctor and Gamble who makes Actonel also makes laundry detergent and toothpaste.

Boniva is a taken once a month – I am sure you have seen the commercials with Sally Field.

The bisphosphonates in these drugs work by slowing the rate at which our bones lose their density. Our bones break down and then build back up, it their natural cycle of growth. When we are younger our bones build faster than they break down and of course as we age this process slows down. So these bisphosphonates appear to be doing the job – not really since slowing down bone loss also inhibits new bone growth. Old bones are more susceptible to fracture, the very condition they are trying to avoid. Dr. Susan M. Ott states “Many people believe that these drugs are ‘bone builders’, but the evidence shows they are actually bone hardeners”. She goes on to say “bones could become brittle with long-term accumulation.

Can bisphosphonates that are used in laundry detergent, fertilizers and industrial lubricants be safe for human consumption?

Side Effects:

The most common side effects of the bisphosphonates are gastrointestinal. They include systems such as:

o Cramping

o Nausea

o Diarrhea

o Constipation

o Inflammation of the esophagus

o Ulceration of the esophagus

o Heartburn

o Difficulty swallowing

The list goes on with a whole host of other symptoms such as dental problems, blood clotting problems, irritability, anemia, joint problems, muscle pain, vision loss. The absolute worse side effect is irreversible and is called Osteonecrosis which is the inability of the jaw to heal after dental surgery or tooth extraction. This condition is very painful and can cause ulcers, infection, exposed bone and sores.

The problem with all these side effects is that other drugs are then prescribed to deal with them. So then we start taking an acid reducer to deal with the gastrointestinal symptoms, an anti-inflammatory to deal with the inflammation symptoms, and a pain reliever to deal with our joint and muscle symptoms.

Is this really the best way to deal with an issue that until a view years ago wasn’t even classified as a disease? Mayo Clinic in 2006 stated that 37% of women older than 50 do not meet the true criteria of Osteoporosis and are wrongfully diagnosed. Why then, the rush to get millions of women taking drugs that are so dangerous.

Conclusion:

Osteoporosis is not inevitable. Regardless of genetic risks, most of us can maintain strong, healthy, fracture-resistant bones throughout our lifetimes. While a certain amount of bone loss may occur with aging, developing dietary and lifestyle habits that lead to bone loss, exercising regularly, getting enough calcium and vitamin D and other supportive nutrients.

It is important to speak to your doctor about your bone health since there are so many factors involved. Hormones play a big part in this disease so bio-available hormone replacement may be an option for you.

Ultimately, the decision about what to do about your bone health rests with you. It is your responsibility to get educated and there are many, many resources available.

o Talk to your doctor and get prevention tips as well as treatment options.

o Thoroughly investigate the drugs, their claims of success, and their side effects.

o Learn about which food you should be eating that will increase your calcium intake.

o Learn about how much calcium and vitamin D you need

o Develop an exercise program that is right for you..

Will My Face Fully Recover After Bell’s Palsy?

Question:

I’m experiencing my second attack of Bell’s palsy in five years. Other people with the condition seem to have varying rates of recovery. The only conventional treatment is a short course of steroids, which I’m currently taking. I did get referred to a physiotherapist last time, with limited results. A course of acupuncture was beneficial, but the facial nerves to my eye and mouth grew back incorrectly, so I am worried that this second bout could weaken the area even more. Is there an alternative way to aid recovery?

Answer:

I know patients who have had repeat attacks of Bell’s palsy, but it is quite rare. The condition is caused by one of the seventh (often written as VIIth; each is identified with Roman numerals) pair of cranial nerves. There are 13 pairs of nerves that come out of the cranium directly from the brain. The VIIth pair control the facial muscles, one for each side of the face. With palsy there is a malfunction in the nerve-to-tissue connection, so the eyebrows, eyelids and mouth are visibly distorted. The eyelid doesn’t close and usually has to be patched or taped so that dusts particles. don’t settle in the eye. The lips tilt to one side, which may cause drooling. Talking and drinking can be difficult because the mouth won’t close properly. As the facial muscles don’t work, there is no expression on the affected side.

The worst aspect is the psychological effect, as people may stare and ask embarrassing questions. Because the recovery period varies, as you mention, patients are always worried about the long-term effects.

Although Bell’s palsy is similar to a stroke, the damage is focused on just one nerve and its centre in the brain. One theory is that it is viral in nature, and I have seen several people who have developed it after a ‘chill’. My hypothesis is that the culprit is the vertebral arteries whose branches feed the Vllth nerves and their centre in the brainstem. The vertebral arteries, which are located in a bony-fibrous canal in the cervical spine, supply blood to the subconscious part of the brain. I remember two patients in particular who came to me shortly after they had suffered attacks and showed remarkable signs of recovery after I used my technique to correct the disalignment in their necks. This improves the blood flow to the brain, and if we accept that improved blood flow can ameliorate the condition, then it is logical to assume that the vertebral arteries, if they are mildly compressed by tight neck muscles, can impair the function of the VIIth nerve.

Having used this technique to rehabilitate stroke and palsy victims for a couple of decades, I have some experience in this field. The technique is now being researched by a leading British hospital to study its effectiveness in acute stroke cases.

Here are my suggestions

* Don’t drink any coffee or alcohol.

* Do drink freshly juiced carrot and; celery: the potassium helps the muscles and nerves.

* Drink two mugs a day of home-made chicken broth, about an hour before your main meals, for two weeks. This provides calcium and other nutrients.

* Take one capsule daily of vitamin B complex and one Bioenergy tablet twice daily, to help boost the healing of nerve.

Massage the effected side

* Use Lifestyle Massage Oil to massage the neck, shoulder and behind the ear on the affected side, once a day. Start gently, then massage more deeply as you grow to tolerate it. Do this for ten minutes.

* Now move on to the face. Massage deeply (with the index finger) the areas in front of the ear lobe and the jaw muscles for three to five minutes, followed by the remaining pressure points shown left (for right-sided palsy; reverse for the other side). They will be sore to touch. Do the following facial exercises. Try to close the on the affected side while lifting your eyebrows (this offers resistance to the muscles that help to open the eyes); pout your lips, then relax; blow out your cheeks.

Practise therapeutic yoga

Helpful postures include the bridge, supine twist cobra, half spinal twist, locust and corpse. These are detailed in my book Therapeutic yoga, co-written with Jiwan Brar. You could also join a local yoga class.

Unknown Sleep Paralysis Symptoms

Sleep paralysis is a state of awareness that a person enters before falling asleep or before waking. Shortly before entering the sleeping state your mind paralyzes the body from 3 seconds to a few minutes. Also, during REM sleep, our body is paralyzed entirely so that we don’t act out our dreams and “fall off trees”. There are 2 different entering points.

Hypnagogic or Predormital

Hypnagogic sleep paralysis occurs when a person tries to fall asleep. After relaxing all muscles and about to enter the “sleep state” that person becomes aware that he or she is paralyzed.

Hypnopompic or Postdormital

Hypnopompic sleep paralysis occurs after a person’s REMs. Often occurring after lucid dreaming, a person becomes aware that he or she is paralyzed before leaving the REM state. This can cause numerous things from hearing & seeing strange things to a “chocking sensation”.

There are numerous symptoms pointing to sleep paralysis. This page will confirm whether or not you have or might have it.

The first and most obvious symptom is having the sensation of being paralyzed without being able to wake yourself up. Often times people wake up and discard it as being some crazy dream without realizing that they in fact were paralyzed. An episode may last anywhere from 5 seconds to 3 minutes, maybe even longer if you fail to exit properly. During the longer episodes you gain consciousness of what’s going on yet your senses aren’t 100% clear; your eyes can be blurred a little, your hearing is altered, and it still feels to some degree like a “dream”.

The 3 most common symptoms are 1) consciousness of what’s going on, 2) realization of the paralyzed state, 3) extreme horror.

It’s difficult to control it because of the intensity of the horror that sleep paralysis sufferers experience is unbearable. In fact, when undergoing sleep paralysis, the person does in fact think that he or she is going to die. Of course, only after you know about and the causes of sleep paralysis that you can actually try to treat.

Here’s a list of other reported symptoms:

* Buzzing noise in your ears

* Seeing the old hag, cartoon characters, and dream objects come to life in their room

* Shifting gravity

* Sensation of something pressuring you

* Levitation

* Inability to speak/call out for help

* Choking sensation

This contributed to many of the night stories ancient cultures spread ranging from the old hag to demons, the devil, and other “evil” religious figures like witches. We have our own share of alien abduction stories many of which begin with “suddenly I couldn’t move”. Now you know that aliens aren’t probing you – during an episode superstitious religious people will see demons, alien believers will see aliens, and others will see cartoon characters, people, strange animals, and pretty much anything that your mind can come up with. Get more sleep paralysis symptoms information.

Ringing in the Ears – How Can I Stop This Ringing in My Ears?

Do you have a constant ringing in the ears? Are you asking yourself "How can I stop the ringing in my ears?" Are you wondering what the cause of that ringing is? Well that ringing sound might be due to Tinnitus in your ears. This article will help you identify the cause of the ringing and help you cure it safely.

Did you know that there are about 12 million people in the USA that are so badly affected by a constant ringing in their ears that they are unable to function normally? These people can not work, they battle to socialize with others and find themselves completely and utterly in the grip of a condition modern medicine has no clue how to deal with!

It is estimated that some 19% of the population are tinnitus sufferers in the US and that this percentage is increasing dramatically as a result of the noisy and stressful world we live in.

As mentioned previously, ear ringing sufferers get very little help from conventional medical doctors and ENT specialists. The reasons foe this is that they can not actually prescribe any medications to cure tinnitus. The reason for this is simple – tinnitus is not a sickness. It is caused as the result of some other problem.

Be Careful With That iPod!

Experts are predicting that devices such as the Apple iPod and other MP3 players are going to leave users a legacy of hearing loss, deafness and tinnitus. Some of these devices have the capability to deliver 100 decibels of sound deep into the inner ear canal and the harm this is causing, especially with habitual users is simply being ignored, despite all the warnings.

How To Treat Ear Ringing

The only successful way to get lasting relief from tinnitus and ear ringing is to correctly identify the underlying problem. Find the root cause of the tinnitus and then to treat the problem.

Spinal Stenosis: Just the Facts

What is Spinal Stenosis?

As a chiropractor with a focus on Structural Correction, I am seeing more and more people come in to my office with a diagnosis of spinal stenosis. Though more people seem to be walking around with the diagnosis, very few people seem to actually know what the condition is and how it can impact someone’s life. For all intents and purposes, people just know that something bad has happened to their spine.

Spinal stenosis is actually a very vague descriptor. Literally speaking, it means the holes in your spine have gotten smaller. I bet that sounds a lot less intimidating doesn’t it? No one is scared of small a disease called small holes in the spine. The most important thing issue is what is CAUSING the spinal narrowing. Here are the primary types of spinal stenosis:

1. Large Disc Herniations

2. Bone spurs/Ligament growth

3. Fractures and dislocations

4. Tumors

As you can see, some causes of stenosis are a lot more serious than others. Fractures, dislocations, and tumors are certainly nothing to joke about, and require immediate medical attention. Most cases however, are of the herniation and bone spur variety which can respond very well to conservative methods.

Stenosis can also occur in different parts of the spine. Depending on what region the stenosis occurs will dictate symptoms. Stenosis in the lumbar vertebrae in the lower back can create back pain, sciatica, numbness, and weakness. Lumbar stenosis will usually be painless at rest, but the thought of moving can be painful for many people. Severe cases that need medical attention are seen when bowel or bladder symptoms are seen because it may indicate cauda equina syndrome.

If stenosis happens in the neck, it is a much more sensitive and severe situation. Stenosis of the neck can put direct pressure on the spinal cord and create symptoms in both arms, both legs, shooting electrical pain, and disrupt the ability to do fine hand movements.

In serious cases, surgery may be necessary to prevent a more dangerous progression. However, most people will attempt to just suffer through the pain. The good news is that many of these cases can and do respond very well to conservative means. Although many people think that chiropractic can be dangerous for spinal stenosis, I’ve taken care of several people who didn’t qualify for surgery, but their surgeon recommended my office for gentle Structural Chiropractic care.

While most people associate chiropractic with getting your back or neck cracked when you’re in pain, there are actually many approaches to taking care of the spine that do not require any popping or cracking. One such example is the NUCCA Protocol ( http://www.nucca.org )

The most important thing is that a problem that preceded the stenosis is identified, and corrected. We call this type of problem a Structural Shift. When there’s a long standing Structural Shift in the head and neck called Atlas Displacement Complex, spinal stenosis can be the end result after years of wear and tear. By getting these Structural problems corrected, you can stop the progression of disc related stenosis and possibly prevent it from beginning in the first place.

How to Treat Herpes Zoster/Shingles Naturally and Permanently

Besides the two major types of herpes– simplex virus-HSV 1 and herpes simplex virus-HSV2, there is yet another type of herpes. It is called herpes zoster or shingles. Herpes zoster may cause severe pain in people over 60. It may last very long and may not be treated by pharmaceutical medicines.

The virus of herpes zoster actually has no relationship with the virus of herpes 1 or 2 although it also bears the name of herpes. Its virus owes its origin to chicken pox that usually attacks young people especially children.

As is well-known, chicken pox usually appears and goes away after a certain duration with or without treatment.

But while the overt symptoms of chicken pox disappear, its virus stays in latent form in the body of the patient and reappears at some later stage absolutely without any fore-warning.

It may appear even after decades when the person may even have crossed the age of seventy or even more and forgotten all about the chicken pox. It takes you off-guards and shocks you out of your wits.

The new avatar of chicken pox is called herpes zoster or shingles.

It appears as rashes generally on the right side of the chest and travels below the arm and reaches over to the back opposite to the affected chest area. Of course, it may appear on other parts of the body also.

The rashes aggravate into lesions or blisters and cause severe pain when they burst.

When it attacks you and by the time you collect yourself, react to it and decide to consult your doctor, it takes a serious turn. The itching rashes become dense and deep and start developing into blisters within a period, say of 48 hours. What happens if you are travelling and can’t show yourself to a doctor?

The first remark a doctor may make on seeing you may generally be that you are a bit late.

Allopathic prescription for the rashes is generally the same as that of herpes 1 and 2. It is Valtrex, Famvir and Acyclovir capsules or tablets.

The symptoms disappear within a week or fortnight. But the real problem begins when you suffer from post herpetic neuralgia-a very painful condition.

As mentioned above, if you have an attack of shingles when you are past 60-70, your suffering may show no end because the immune system of old people generally becomes quite weak. And unless your immune system becomes strong, which may take quite some time and effort, you won’t be able to get substantial relief from neuralgic pains unless you consume pain killers on a daily basis.

But don’t panic. You can cure shingles permanently through natural, herbal and or homeopathic treatment. For example, the leaves of a popular Indian plant called neem–Azadirachta indica – have amazing curative properties for diseases like shingles.

Brief Information on Cervical Spondylitis

Introduction of Cervical Spondylitis:

Cervical Spondylitis is a common spine problem refers to inflammation of the vertebral joints pertaining to cervical area which primarily affects the axial skeleton, peripheral joint & extra-articular structures. It may lead to cervical disc problem or nerve compression. It is one of the causes of neck pain which starts to increase gradually. Other symptoms of spondylitis include extreme pain and contraction in the cervical region of the neck and shoulders. The pain usually flows further downwards. It also causes neck stiffness that it becomes difficult to move the neck and shoulders.

Cervical Spondylitis Symptoms:

Symptoms can vary from mild to severe. Symptoms often develop slowly over time, but may flare up if you over-use your neck, or if you sprain a neck muscle or ligament. Symptoms include:

1. Neck pain

2. Shoulder Pain

3. Neck stiffness, particularly after a night’s rest

4. Neck movement pain

5. Radiating pain from neck to arms on both side or back of head

6. Vertigo

7. Headache

8. Numbness of hands

9. Morning Vertigo

10. Giddiness

11. Weakness in hands

12. May feel irritable and fatigue, disturb sleep and impair your ability to work

Diagnosis of Cervical Spondylitis:

Examination often shows limited ability to bend the head toward the shoulder and rotate the head.

Weakness or loss of sensation can be signs of damage to specific nerve roots or to the spinal cord. Reflexes are often reduced.

Physical examination- The doctor may identify tender spots along the neck and evaluate your ability to move the neck in various directions. The function of the nerves and muscles in the arms and legs may be tested. Others include the following with possible findings:

• Spurling sign – Radicular pain is exacerbated by extension and lateral bending of the neck toward the side of the lesion, causing additional foraminal compromise.

• Lhermitte sign – This generalized electrical shock sensation is associated with neck extension.

• Hoffman sign – Reflex contraction of the thumb and index finger occurs in response to nipping of the middle finger. This sign is evidence of an upper motor neuron lesion. A Hoffman sign may be insignificant if present bilaterally.

• Distal weakness

• Decreased ROM in the cervical spine, especially with neck extension

• Hand clumsiness

• Loss of sensation

• Increased reflexes in the lower extremities and in the upper extremities below the level of the lesion

• A characteristically broad-based, stooped, and spastic gait

• Extensor planter reflex in severe myelopathy

B. The following Tests may be done used to show bone spur and other abnormalities and reveal the extent of damage to the cervical spine:

• CT scan or spine MRI

• Spine or neck x-ray

• EMG

• X-ray or CT scan after dye is injected into the spinal column (myelogram)

Outlook (Prognosis) of Cervical Spondylitis:

Most patients with cervical spondylitis will have some long-term symptoms. However, they respond to nonsurgical treatments and do not need surgery.

Possible Complications of Cervical Spondylitis:

• Chronic neck pain

• Inability to hold in feces (fecal incontinence) or urine (urinary incontinence)

• Progressive loss of muscle function or feeling

• Permanent disability (occasional)

Cervical Spondylitis Treatment:

They may be treated medically, by changing lifestyle factors or a combination of the two. However, they do not need surgery in most of the cases.

A) Lifestyle modification for Cervical Spondylitis:

Important lifestyle changes include using proper equipment and techniques in daily routine activities, and exercising regularly.

B) Conventional Treatment for Cervical Spondylitis:

The painkiller (analgesics and anti-inflammatory drugs) with some muscle relaxant with physical therapy. Eg: hot packs and TENS etc. is given in acute stage with gentle exercise being the mainstay for chronic disease.

C) Homoeopathic Treatment for Cervical Spondylitis:

Homoeopathy includes many effective medicines for the relief in cervical spondylitis symptoms:

Colocynthis vulgaris – Remedy for constrictions and contractions felt wherever in the body, thus, indicated in muscle cramps; headache; & neuralgia esp. pain radiating to right side of neck, shoulders, arms & hands.

Ruta graveolens – Acts on periosteum and cartilages indicated by pain in nape of neck, back, loins.

Hypericum perforatum- Acts on nerve endings releasing their compression & inflammation indicated in pain in nape of neck radiating to arms to fingers; pressure over sacrum; spinal concussion; coccyx injury from RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury) with pain radiating up spine.

Ledum palustre – Indicated in painful stiffness in neck & back after sitting esp. radiating to left side of neck, shoulders, arms & hands, aggravated by cold or cold water.

Cuprum metallicum – Indicated in hyperaesthsia of spinal column; twitching of muscles of back up to neck.

Dulcamara – Indicated in stiff neck esp. in damp weather; pain in small of back; shooting contractions in the loins, shoulders and arms.

Conium maculatum – Indicated in tension, stiffness & pain in the nape of the neck as from friction in the cervical vertebrae or sprains; pain between shoulders; vertigo & headache.

SPONDINTM Drops – It is a homoeopathic proprietary medicine, a unique combination of the above seven universally acknowledged homoeopathic medicines. This is useful in comprehensive management of Cervical Spondylitis/Spondylosis and relieving its associated symptoms and improving the quality of life in the patients.