Overcoming Sleep Paralysis

Overcoming can sleep paralysis can be very easy to some people and complex to others. Here is some enlightenment to help people that want to overcome this sleep disorder.

The "Old Hag" or "The Witch" is not what you may think. For over forty years I suffered with sleep paraylsis. It was one of the most frightening things that happen to me upon awakening. Iwas eight years old when I had my first experience. I tried to move … but could not.

I tried to shout … but could not. I felt a presence in the room but I could not see it. What ever it was …, it felt like it was from the land of, "I'm going to get you!" After the spell was over, I got out of bed and went to my mother. I told her what had happened to me and she said it was "The Witch that riders you. To be honest, that was not comforting. What child wants to hear that they have a" Witch "that rides them in the night. As a child I was afraid of the dark. This fear followed me well into my adult years. As a Christian, I was ashamed. Perhaps you too have experienced being afraid of the dark; better known as the "Bogey-Man" syndrome. Finally, a new revelation caused me to think differently about this folklore, riding "Witch."

The Bible actually gives it one interpretation and my medical manual on the other hand gives it another and yet both books are right.

A) Sleep paralysis can be avoided by getting lots of sleep.
B) Avoid sleeping on your back.
3) Maintain a regular sleeping pattern schedule
4) To alleviat the fear of over sleeping / napping, use a alarm clock.
5) Turn the television off while sleeping.
6) Avoid substance abuse.

Discuss you fears and anxieties with someone you can trust. Often people do not understand what sleep paralysis is and will not talk about it as during the Salem Witch Trials. The hag is a malevolent witch. Folklore has it that the hag / witch comes to sit on their body in effort to entrap their soul.

What is Gallbladder Sludge?

The gallbladder is an organ and it is there to store bile that builds up before it travels further to the small intestine where it plays a role in processing fats and neutralizing acids from foods that have been digested. Bile can build up in the gallbladder and particles can attach to other substances found there, such as calcium, salts or cholesterol from fats. Gallbladder sludge is the result of the combination of bile particles, calcium salts and cholesterol crystals. The sludge also builds up when certain other factors and conditions are present. For example, gallbladder sludge is especially prone to building up during pregnancy, crash dieting with fast weight loss or when certain medications are being taken. In most cases, however, the sludge forms with no particular reason at all behind it.

One problem that is directly caused by a build up of gallbladder sludge is the formation of gallstones. Whereas the sludge itself does not cause many symptoms at all, the gallstones can produce more severe pain and become a problem. The gallstones that form from the sludge that remains in the gallbladder can be small in size or large and the big sizes stones are the ones that cause the symptoms to appear. Other problems caused by sludge include an inflammation of the pancreas, inflammation of gallstones and obstruction of biliary ducts which provide passage for the bile to the small intestine.

For the majority of people that have a build up of gallbladder sludge, they will experience no adverse effects or symptoms at all. The only real symptoms that sludge cause are pains linked to vomiting and nausea. Finding sludge and determining that it is even there can only be done through an ultrasound examination or by testing the contents found in the bile itself. Since sludge and gallstones are usually asymptomatic, no medical treatment is necessary. Sometimes the gallbladder sludge dissolves on its own and disappears for reasons unknown to doctors. If the sludge remains and starts causing symptoms to appear and when large gallstones start developing, then the most effective treatment is to just remove the entire gallbladder.

Why Orthopedic and Neurological Spine Surgeons Prefer Minimally Invasive Kyphoplasty Surgery?

Minimally invasive spine surgery is the method of choice for most orthopedic and neurological spine surgeons when surgery is indicated for an individual with severe back pain. With a smaller incision, allowing a patient to heal more quickly, and better visualization of the procedure on a screen in front of him or her, it can produce a more positive result for the patient, with quicker recovery and less time in the hospital.

The reasons why it is becoming more appropriate are better visualization techniques and improved tools and procedures. Endoscopic procedures for spinal fusion and a technique called kyphoplasty can reduce a patient’s pain and offer them better quality of life after the procedure. In addition, organizations such as the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery and the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons are continually conducting research and training new physicians to offer the best minimally invasive spine surgery techniques possible.

Spinal Visualization

Only in recent years has endoscopy been used in disc replacement surgery. Initially developed for surgeries of the female organs and the gastrointestinal tract, endoscopy was first introduced in the early 1800’s. Today, arthroscopy is the most widely used method of minimally invasive surgery for the joints. A minimally invasive spine surgery requires only a one inch incision in the anterior (front) of the body for the cervical (neck) area, or on the back for the lumbar (lower back) region. This procedure uses an endoscope – a thin, lighted tube with a camera at the end – to show the physician on a monitor the ruptured or herniated disc, vertebral degeneration or other issue needing treatment removal or repair on a TV monitor in front of him. With small tools placed through the incision, the surgery is conducted with a blown up version using a digitally superior camera and lighting. Being able to visualize the procedure on a video screen enhances the precision with which a surgeon can perform the surgery.

Minimally Invasive Kyphoplasty

Kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive spine surgery performed for those who suffer from osteoporosis. Often, an individual with this condition will incur a vertebral compression fracture, yet even after non-surgical interventions such as pain medication, bed rest, back bracing and physiotherapy, their quality of life is still greatly diminished because of pain. Balloon kyphoplasty involves using orthopedic balloons filled with bone cement to repair the fractures. Nearly 50,000 people a year with osteoporosis, cancer and cancer treatments and hyperthyroidism receive this treatment.

A study regarding kyphoplasty vs. non-surgical care by the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons revealed in 2010 that after 24 months of follow-up that kyphoplasty was an excellent option. 149 patients were treated with minimally invasive balloon kyphoplasty and 153 had only non-surgical treatment.

Measurements for quality of life, back pain and function and days of disability were monitored for two years. The outcomes were that those that had undergone the kyphoplasty reported: 1) improved quality of life, 2) reduced back pain and disability and 3) did not increase adverse affects including the risk of vertebral fracture over the two years. This was a first in clinical trials for this research.

A number of conditions can be treated with minimally invasive spine surgery and with positive outcomes for the patient is a good alternative to non-surgical treatments that are not effective.

Can Shingles Cause Back Pain in the Shoulder Blades?

The term “shingles” refers to a condition caused by the varicella zoster virus, the same virus that causes chicken pox disease. After a person has had the chicken pox, the virus remains dormant, residing in nerve cells. Later on, as a result of many different factors, the virus may reactivate and leave the nerve cell and this is what causes herpes zoster, or shingles.

Reactivation usually occurs as a result of immune function abnormalities. Age, the presence of disease such as rheumatoid arthritis, or the use of immunosuppressive drugs all are risk factors.

Symptoms of shingles consist of an early prodrome or “time before the storm”. A patient will experience flu-like symptoms, headache, and possibly a low grade fever and chills.

Shortly thereafter, the patient will notice an itching, burning, uncomfortable sensation. This discomfort usually takes place on the chest or back, but it may also occur on the abdomen, head, face, neck, or an arm or leg.

Swelling of the lymph nodes near the area of discomfort may also be present.

The next phase after the prodrome is the active phase when the rash appears. The rash is fairly typical in its appearance. It presents as a small area or band of reddish, slightly raised bumps. While the rash can occur in a number of locations as mentioned above, shingles only affects one side of the body. As the rash evolves it becomes blister-like.

During this period of time the pain may intensify and if it occurs on the upper back can cause pain radiating into the shoulder blades.

If the rash presents on the forehead or face, the danger is eye involvement which can lead to blindness.

Over a period of days, the blisters open up, ooze, and then begin to crust over. While the healing process can take a few weeks, some patients are left with scarring.

The unfortunate issue is if a patient goes into the chronic phase which is called post-herpetic neuralgia. This is a dreadful complication which may last years. The key symptoms are persistent burning, stabbing pain in the area where the shingles rash was present. Because the pain is chronic and persistent, it interferes with activities of daily living.

One fact is that shingles can occur without producing a typical rash. However, the other symptoms of burning pain are present.

There is a shingles vaccine. It is a live vaccine meaning it contains live virus and shouldn’t be given to patients who are on biologic drugs. While the vaccine is not effective for everyone, it is highly recommended for the following situations according to the CDC…

“The vaccine for shingles (Zostavax®) is licensed for use in people 60 years old and older to prevent shingles. The older a person is, the more severe the effects of shingles typically are, so all adults 60 years old or older should get the shingles vaccine.”

Top 8 Frequently Asked Questions About Chiropractic

What is Chiropractic?

Does it really work and how?

Is Chiropractic Safe?

At what age should a person have a chiropractic check-up?

Does it hurt?

Does my insurance cover Chiropractic? / Is Chiropractic expensive?

How much time does a chiropractic visit take?

Once I start care do I have to go forever? / Does my body become dependent on chiropractic care?

What is Chiropractic?

Chiropractic is a natural healing science, art and philosophy primarily concerned with detecting and then eliminating interference to your nervous system. Since your nervous system controls every aspect of your body, chiropractic can have a major impact on multiple areas of your health. Founded in 1895, it is the world’s largest drug-free healthcare system and the 3rd largest primary healthcare system in the USA behind medicine and dentistry. Over 25 million Americans will see their chiropractor this year.

Does it really work and how?

Yes Virginia, chiropractic is the real deal! Chiropractic is firmly grounded in science and has an ever-growing body of research showing it to be safe, effective, comfortable and affordable. The latest estimates show that over 85% of Olympic athletes utilize chiropractic care to enhance performance and stay healthy as do most professional athletes. No question that it works!

Chiropractic is based on the fact that every structure and function of your body is controlled by the nervous system. If there is interference to the nervous system, then whatever body part or function that nerve was controlling will stop working at 100%.

For example, if a person suffers a pinched (irritated) bundle of nerves in their lower back they frequently experience back pain and muscle spasms. What most people do not realize is that the nerves in the low back not only control the muscles but other organs as well including the colon, bladder and reproductive organs. Irritation to the same nerve bundle can, in addition to muscle spasms, cause symptoms such as constipation, diarrhea, bladder control issues and menstrual cycle problems. What surprises many is that a person with a pinched nerve bundle in their low back may have the other symptoms but no pain and no muscle spasms! Only about 10% of your nervous system tells you about pain so you can have a problem in 90% of your nervous system and NO PAIN.

Chiropractors focus on the spine because this is where the delicate nerves are most likely to be compressed or irritated as they pass through on their way to control all parts of your body.

The majority of spinal problems arise from physical, mechanical stress to your body such as accidents, injuries, prolonged sitting etc.. These stresses and injuries result in stiff immovable joints which in turn cause surrounding joints to become overworked, loose and eventually damaged. The treatment to correct these problems also has to be physical and mechanical in nature.

It is crazy to think that taking a drug is going to loosen up a stiff, damaged spinal joint. The drug may cover up the pain and symptoms but will do nothing to correct the physical cause of the pain. In fact taking drugs over time will allow the joint to become more and more permanently damaged.

Chiropractors employ many gently methods of physically restoring the normal motion and function to your spine which reduces nerve interference and allows your body to heal itself. These treatments are called spinal adjustments and are typically, not only pain-fee, but an enjoyable experience.

Is Chiropractic Safe?

Yes, chiropractic care is exceptionally safe! The minuscule risks of chiropractic care have been greatly exaggerated by our competition in order to scare you away from the safest form of healthcare and back to medicine, the most dangerous form. Chiropractic has a better safety record than any drug, even baby aspirin and Tylenol! Medical treatment has become the 3rd leading cause of death in the USA, right behind heart disease and cancer, killing hundreds of thousands of Americans every year.

An interesting statistic is that you are more likely to be killed by being struck by lightning than killed by a vending machine and you are more likely to be killed a vending machine than by a shark and more likely to be killed by a shark than by a chiropractor!

Now knowing how safe, conservative and effective chiropractic care is, doesn’t it make sense to you to start with chiropractic first and then if you don’t get well go on to more radical and dangerous forms of care like drugs and surgery? We are a backward society that often starts with the most invasive dangerous treatments first and then sees the chiropractor afterward as a last resort. Insanity.

Please help us permanently dispel this myth about chiropractic care being risky. Educate your friends and family. Spread the word and save a life!

At what age should a person have a chiropractic check-up?

Chiropractic care has fantastic benefits for all ages and ideally a person should have their first check-up shortly after birth.

I know what you may be thinking, “Infant check-up!!?” Why would a brand new baby need chiropractic care? Stop for a minute and just think about what a baby goes though coming into this world. Even during a normal natural delivery there are tremendous pressures on the baby’s neck, back and pelvis of up to 90 pounds per square inch.

With modern medicine turning childbirth into a medical procedure instead of a natural process, infant trauma and injuries are sky rocketing. You see when you drug the mother, her ability to feel and push the baby out is impaired which forces the doctor to have to pull and twist the baby out from the birth canal. Babies are not designed to be pulled and stretched during delivery which is unnatural and causes injury, they are designed to be compressed and pushed out of the birth canal which is natural and much safer. This is the same reason c-section deliveries have a much higher rate of spinal injury compared to natural childbirth.

It takes just a split second for a spinal injury to occur during birth. An unexpected push from the mother, a pull at the wrong angle from the doctor, too much force from the doctor, the use of forceps or vacuum and you have a sprain or even worse injury to the baby’s spine. This injury, called a vertebral subluxation, if undetected and left untreated can plague the baby for the rest of their life, limiting them from reaching their full potential. “As the twig is bent so grows the tree!”

OK, chiropractic is safe and good for babies but what about senior citizens? I have heard the most ignorant statement repeatedly from seniors: “I know, at my age, I have arthritis so there is no point in trying to fix my spine” WRONG! WRONG! WRONG!

ALL ages can benefit from chiropractic care. Even a single chiropractic adjustment in the right circumstances has resulted in unbelievable improvement in the quality-of-life of many patients. Until you are dead, your body has an incredible ability to heal and improve. Never give up on improving your health! If your doctor ever tells you “You’ll just have to learn to live with it” he/she is actually telling you it is time to find a new doctor, one that will help keep you improving and maintaining your health and well-being for life.

Does treatment hurt?

For most people the chiropractic treatments, called spinal adjustments, are not only comfortable but are actually an enjoyable experience. All treatment is geared to each individual’s comfort level and the old “No Pain No Gain” approach is never used. It is heartwarming to see children who are so small they can’t even get up on the adjusting table by themselves, fighting with their siblings to be the FIRST one adjusted. Pediatricians would be green with envy to see how even the smallest kids are happy to be in the chiropractic office and how they love to get adjusted.

Does my insurance cover Chiropractic?

Although most insurance policies have some coverage, the reality is that in most cases it is very limited and so highly managed that, like most other health services, it pays for only a portion of needed care.

There is currently a prevalent form of craziness that I call “Insurance Insanity”. It has 2 main parts: Firstly many people have this notion that if they can just somehow obtain really great health insurance (which by the way no longer exists) that this in some way protects them and makes them healthy. Secondly, they think that if a service is not covered by their insurance that they really don’t need it. CRAZY! A prime example is a patient who needed about $1,200 worth of chiropractic care, who had the money but refused the necessary treatment because he felt it was too expensive. When asked if it was more cost-effective to let his spine continue degenerate to the point where he will need a $200,000 surgery which would leave him disabled for life? His straight-faced answer was “Well, my insurance will cover the cost of the surgery.” Now that my friend is just plain crazy.

When it comes to care, if you need it, you need it! Regardless of if it is covered, regardless of if you can “afford” it and regardless of if you want it! If you need it, you need it.

A much better question to ask is “What is the best value for my healthcare dollar?”. Investing your money is all about value not amount. For example, I believe that a dollar wasted is too much but spending a half of a million dollars to buy a one million dollar house is an extraordinary deal.

The truth that any patient with a severely degenerated spine would gladly sign over the deed to their million dollar house, to the doctor, if he could restore their health. The sad fact is that once damaged, there is no cure. There are no spine and nervous system replacements and it is very unlikely there ever will be. What is absolutely tragic is that this type of degeneration is almost 100% preventable with regular check-ups and proper chiropractic maintenance.

Chiropractic is an exceptional value for your healthcare dollar. If you need it, the benefits you receive from chiropractic are incalculable compared to the amount of money spent! In fact they are priceless.

How much time does a chiropractic visit take?

For your first visit, allow 45 minutes to 1 hour. On this visit you will need to complete some obligatory health forms, you will have a chance to sit down and consult with the doctor to review your symptoms, history, lifestyle and your health goals.

The next step is a chiropractic physical examination, some very high-tech nervous system scans, possibly an x-ray study and finally, if you are in pain, some first aid care and home instructions.

Typically on the second visit allow 30 to 45 minutes. On this visit you will receive your doctor’s report of findings where he will let you know if he can help you, he will show you what is wrong and why, how long care will take, how much care will cost and finally he will let you know of your options for care. You will then receive your first full chiropractic adjustment (treatment).

On subsequent visits allow 10 to 20 minutes door to door. The actual treatments may only take a few minutes once your work-up is complete and you have set up your treatment plan and goals.

Once I start care do I have to go forever?

In a great practice the doctor should support all clients at the level and frequency that they choose. There should never be any pressure to do anything you are not 100% behind. You may take advantage of all the phenomenal health and wellness benefits for as long and as often as you choose. Great doctors should always respect and support the wishes of their clients.

Does my body become dependent on chiropractic care?

This question always make me smile. There is absolutely nothing about chiropractic care that makes you dependent on care. There is however something that is highly addicting about feeling really good. It is funny but once people start feeling great they tend to want to stay feeling great. Chiropractic care helps your body to function at a much higher level which feels fantastic. Chiropractic care is similar to exercise but without all the sweating. If you consistently work out, the benefit is you become physically fit which feels much better that being unfit and out of shape. Most people who are in great shape continue to work out because they like the feeling of being in shape. What happens if they stop exercising? They continue to feel good for a time but all too quickly lose their conditioning and lose the benefits of feeling great. Now I ask you is exercise addicting? Does your body become dependent on exercise? Of course not and there is also nothing about chiropractic care that makes you dependent either.

Conclusion: Safe conservative chiropractic care is an essential part of a natural wellness lifestyle. Not only will you enjoy less pain and an enhanced quality of life but you will avoid permanent damage and degeneration to your body.

Home Remedies for Soothing That Sore Throat

A sore throat can sometimes feel as though someone is holding a match at the back of your throat. The burning sensation seems to spread throughout your entire head. It can be caused by any number of things including a cold, a viral infection, dry air, smoking, or even yelling. Other than over the counter throat lozenges and cough drops, the options are limited as far as medications that you can purchase to relieve throat pain. There are, however, several home remedies that many people have found useful for a sore throat:

  • One of the oldest sore throat remedies that seems to work the best is to gargle with warm salt water.
  • Add the juice of one lemon and a tablespoon or two of honey to an 8oz. glass of hot water. Warm lemon and honey are great for soothing a rough or sore throat.
  • Simmer chives and scallions in water for 5 minutes. Drink this as a tea for a sore throat.
  • Cover one half of a lemon with salt and pepper and press with a knife or the back of a spoon so that the salt and pepper absorbs into the lemon. Warm the lemon either in the oven or in the microwave. Do not overheat. When it is warm, slowly lick the lemon, squeezing it at the same time until there is no more juice. Repeat this 2 to 3 times daily.
  • Add 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar, a pinch of cayenne pepper, 1/4 cup lemon juice, and honey to a of hot water. Drink four times a day.
  • Boil 1 or 2 teaspoons of dried chamomile blossoms to one pint of water, steep and then drink a cup every few hours to help to eliminate the pain of a sore throat.
  • Add five drops of grapefruit seed extract to a glass of water and gargle with it. Grapefruit seed extract has powerful antimicrobial properties and is therefore an excellent antiseptic.
  • Mix one tablespoon of ground mustard seed, the juice of one half of a lemon, one tablespoon of salt, one tablespoon of clear honey, and 1 1/4 cups of boiling water. Allow the mixture to stand for 15 minutes and then gargle with it.
  • Add some pomegranate rinds to some water and bring to the boil. Drink it as a tea. It is highly effective, as pomegranate contains astringents.
  • Add two tablespoons of fenugreek seeds to one liter of water and simmer over low heat for half an hour. Cool to room temperature, strain the mixture, and gargle with the strained liquid.

These are just a few of the home remedies that people having been using for many years to soothe their sore throats. Relief does not have to come in a bottle or pill. Natural, home remedies are safe and many people find them to be just as effective as any of the over-the-counter medications, if not more. For more sore throat home remedies, try searching the Internet or look through some of the home remedy books that are available.

The Many Amazing Properties of Tea Tree Oil

Tea Tree oil is well known to be a good natural antiseptic treatment. But did you know that is also an anti-fungal and an anti-biotic? Here a just a few of the many things that it can be used to treat:

Herpes – around the mouth (It actually removes it for good – unlike many other pharmaceutical creams).

Impetigo – If caught early, Tea Tree oil may eradicate it.

Bad Breath – Yes, dilute 1 drop in a glass for water for a very effective mouth wash.

Ulcers – Again, dilute into a mouthwash and use 3 times a day.

Fungal Infection such as Athletes foot.

Acne

Insect Bites

Itchiness

Tonsillitis – I personally recovered from major Tonsillitis when I was stuck in the rainforest once – miles from a doctor. I had nothing but a bottle of Tea Tree oil and I made a full recovery. Before that I had been getting recurring tonsillitis nearly every year and always had to take antibiotics. After recovering without antibiotics however, and using only Tea tree mouthwash, I never got it again.

As you can see, tea tree is a bit of a wonder plant. I personally started using it for a mouthwash 2 years ago and since then very rarely get any mouth ulcers or tooth ache.

I'm not even trying to sell this stuff – I just really do believe in the power of it so much that I wanted to tell people about it.

Do be careful though as you should never swallow it and you should not really put it onto an open wound unless diluted in a carrier oil. And also you need to be careful when making a mouthwash as the difference between 1 and 2 drops can be quite a shock! It does have a taste that takes getting used to. But after rinsing it out you do feel very fresh. When making mouthwash you can also add a drop of mint oil to make your mouth really fresh.

As an antibiotic it can effectively treat Impetigo. But be warned – unless you notice improvement within a week or if your condition get rapidly worse, you must go to a doctor immediately. Impetigo can very quickly get bad and cause your body to swell up. However if you catch it very early and rub Tea tree oil (diluted in a carrier oil) onto the infected area, it can heal within a few days.

4 Types Of Bipolar Disorder Explained – How They Affect Individuals

In psychiatry Bipolar Syndrome and Manic Depression falls under a group of mood disorders where a person experiences emotional states where they go from being clinically depressed to states where their moods are elevated, or the opposite cycle, and can be or include both these mood states. This can be a crippling condition if it is left untreated or ignored, and has been known to cause suicide.

During the late 1950’s was when the term “manic depressive” first came about, although it is now commonly referred as Bipolar Disorder, which is the name for it now. This mood disorder will have been around long before it was discovered. Word such as ‘ania’ and ‘manos’ which come from Latin, used by the Romans. A Roman doctor by the name of Caelius Aurelianus came up with these etymologies (history of words). The meaning of ‘Ania’ is a creating great mental suffering, whereas ‘manos’ on the opposite scale can be translated as being calmer and more relaxed. Through centuries past those known to great minds have tried to work out how these strange mood swings have come about. Gao Lian, a Chinese encyclopaedist was one of the first to cite this illness in his ‘Eight Treatises on Nurturing of Life’; the Frenchman Jules Baillarger found that the origin of these frequent cycles of depression and mania could be explained through two phased mental disorder.

The concept behind what we know today as Bipolar Disorder was considered to be a German psychiatrist – Emil Kraeplin. Long before mood stabilisers were created, he looked at untreated patients and studied their case files and was able to sort them into those that were afflicted with this illness. He conceived and is known as the father behind the term “Manic Depressive Psychosis”. Under observations Emil’s patients were found to undergo cycles where they had acute depression one moment then mania, with intermissions in between where the patient had no symptoms and were acting normally.

While Kraeplin discovered the concept behind the illness, it was Dr. John Cade who was credited with coming up with the treatment. He discovered that Lithium Carbonate was effective as a mood stabiliser, suitable to treat all kinds of mental illness. As a pioneer for this medication, it was the first of its kind to be used for treating all psychiatric conditions, which were often treated by electroconsulive therapy or lobotomy.

Bipolar syndrome can be said to be having mood swings, but on a much more frightening scale. These abnormal mood swings will make an individual’s life very difficult or can enhance it depending on the severity of the disorder (on a scale from mild to severe) and which route it takes (a depressive or elevated mood). It can alter a person’s active and energy levels, their cognitive behaviour, affect their social life and disturb their normal sleep cycle.

Whilst a person is in their early teens they will just start of with depression which comes and goes. As they reach their late teens, the Bipolar Disorder begins to surface. In some cases, a person has started with this illness as a young child, and others later on in their life. Bipolar can strike anyone at any age regardless of their ethnic background, their sex, their race or their social class.

Females diagnosed with the illness usually began firstly with episodes of depression, whilst male patients are more known to have started with manic episodes. The disorder is known to be genetic, so if you are blood related to someone with this illness there is a tendency for it to passed on.

These changes or episodes of mood swings can last from a few hours and even for months; everyone is affected differently and have dissimilar coping mechanisms. Where a patient has four or more depressive episodes or mood changes and a combination of mania in any single year, they are known to have Rapid Cycling Bipolar Disorder.

A patient with Rapid Cycling Bipolar Disorder can reach a full cycle within hours or days. In Bipolar Disorder the patients progressively move through the mood changes. They are extremely unstable and it is difficult to find the correct treatment for each affected individual. It is the females who are more prone to Rapid Cycling.

Bipolar Disorder is classified and split into four types depending on the intensity and the patterns:

1. Bipolar I Disorder – A patient will suffer one or more mixed cycle, with at least one or more long episode of depression. The severest of all the forms as the manic episodes are extreme.

2. Bipolar II Disorder – The presence of one or major depressive episode with at least one hypomanic episode. The depression is more intense than the mania ( which can last for at least four days). A person can become quite destructive although it may not be troublesome.

3. Cyclothymic Disorder – Milder than Bipolar II, there are varying episodes of depression and mania which are acute stages, but less severe. They do not occur as much as in Bipolar I or II, but could progress to either one of these at a later stage.

4. Unspecified Bipolar Disorder – This is where a person is experiencing depressive and episodes of mania which cannot be classified in those conditions mentioned about, so a person can recover fully from this.

People should not regard this type of disorder as if it was something awful like Leprosy, and wash their hands of sufferers. They should learn to gain a better understanding, that this illness can be treated and stabilised with the correct medication. There is also excellent choices of therapy available to make this disorder more manageable so that patients can lead a normal life. They are able to take control again and be confident.

Type 2 Diabetes – Understanding the Diabetes of Yesterday and Today

I feel compelled to explain Type 2 diabetes because it is one of the most misunderstood diseases out there. In the past, we just did not know enough about any form of diabetes. The earliest records of diabetes were made back in Ancient Egypt, where physicians discovered frequent urination as the first symptom. Moving forward to another thousand years, it was in 500 BC that a correlation was discovered between obese individuals and the sugar found in their urine.

Hundreds of years later in Ancient Greece, physicians diagnosed the condition as a form of kidney dysfunction, where it was as if the flesh and limbs were melted down into urine. Furthermore, it was only in the 16th-century diabetes was finally characterized as a serious disorder by the physician Paracelsus.

One salient fact is for thousands of years since the first charted records; nobody knew how to treat or manage the disease. While various forms of treatment were attempted, none were ultimately successful. The result was there were many generations where children and adults fell victim to the lethal effects of diabetes and an uncontrolled blood sugar level. At best, they were left to deal with its devastating complications without a means to control it.

In the modern-day, we are fortunate to understand so much about the different forms of diabetes. We now understand its pathology. And Type 2 diabetes doesn’t simply affect anyone; it usually afflicts those who lead unhealthy lifestyles. Since Type 2 diabetes is ultimately characterized by hyperglycemia, those individuals who allow themselves to be susceptible to chronically elevated levels of blood sugar will be at risk.

Of course, it goes without saying no one chooses to have hyperglycemia voluntarily. But much can be said about the decisions one makes in regards to their lifestyle…

  • if you eat poorly,
  • if you’re overweight, and
  • if you’re physically inactive,

you are essentially a prime candidate for Type 2 diabetes in the near future. It would benefit you to get a physical checkup immediately, especially if you’re a middle-aged adult. Unfortunately, millions of people around the world are undiagnosed Type 2 diabetics, so it hurts to say you might be a diabetic if your health status is currently below a healthy standard.

With all of that said, we live in a time where we know how to treat high blood sugar levels. No longer will there be untimely death due to unknown reasons. If you’re a Type 2 diabetic in today’s day and age, you have the essential knowledge available to you to help you treat your condition.

But it is up to you to take the initiative. The decision is yours to make.

Childhood Obesity – 10 Mind Blowing Facts

I know that when you are studying obesity facts, it’s quite shocking all by itself. However, you must remember that knowledge with action really is power. You are getting ready to learn some information that can actually save your life or your love one’s, if you take what you are about to learn seriously. Once you know the signs to look for, you can begin working on a solution.

  1. Whenever you hear someone talk about hypertension, you automatically think about an adult being diagnosed with it. Well, I have some interesting news for you. This could not be farther from truth. Hypertension is definitely one of the risks of obesity in children as well.
  2. Here’s another shocker for you. Did you not know that when your child is overweight, it greatly increases the chances of them being diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes? As a matter of fact, there are a lot of these children already in pre-diabetes status.
  3. How’s your child diet on a daily basis? Because even though a poor diet is not the only cause of this problem. It is certainly one of the major contributing factors. You know the old saying, you are what you eat. Well, I can’t think of a better phrase to use when it comes to what you allow your kids to put into their bodies. Please monitor their diets!
  4. How does your child feel about themselves? I’m sure you maybe wondering why I’m asking this question. Well, it is important to know that if your child is having some peer pressure problems or not feeling good about themself. This could lead to overeating. They will sometimes use food to comfort themselves.
  5. Yes, genetics and hormones do play a role to your children’s weight. But don’t think for once that it’s the only thing that leads to an obese child. There are many obesity effects that we can look at. But you must know all the facts if you want to solve the problem.
  6. Does your child complain about joint issues? This is very common in children that has to carry around a lot of extra weight. Some common problem areas are the lower back and knees. It’s really not fair for kids to have to deal with this!
  7. Strokes and Heart Attacks, are some more common crippling diseases that these poor children have to sometimes deal with. It’s really heartbreaking to think about any child having issues such as these.
  8. How often are you feeding your child fast food? The definition of obesity is simply eating to much of the wrong type of food. Just prepare meals more!
  9. Have you had your child’s cholesterol level checked lately? Because this is another issue that will go up very high when your child weight is not under control.
  10. How well does your child sleep? Many times when they are overweight they have trouble breathing, which actually will sometimes cause them to stop breathing momentarily. This is another one of those obesity health risks that’s not to be taken lightly.

Hopefully, these facts will help you to better monitor your children’s weight situation. A child at a time, this issue can be brought under control. All it takes is some parents that really love their children and don’t mind taking a little time and doing what it takes.

Penis Skin Rash – 5 Most Common Causes

Five of the most common penis problems are described here, along with their causes and options for treatment, from medication to the regular use of penis vitamins and minerals that may help to resolve penis problems and promote male intimate health.

Irritation

Reddened and irritated penis skin which occurs especially after sex, naturally enough raises concerns about the last sexual partner and the possibility of a sexually transmitted disease. While it is always advisable to use protection and to be selective in the choice of sexual partners, the explanation for irritation and penis skin rash is often more straightforward: friction caused by deep or vigorous penetration is often enough to cause redness, rash and soreness on the sensitive skin of the penis.

However, if irritated skin does not heal within a few days, becomes worse, or is accompanied by fever or other flu-like symptoms, men are always advised to seek medical treatment right away.

Thrush

Another common type of penis skin rash results from a condition called thrush, which is a form of yeast infection. Thrush is caused by an overgrowth of yeast on the skin which is in most cases due to a chemical imbalance. Thrush is easily passed between sexual partners and can affect women too, so when symptoms of a yeast infection are present, it is best to abstain from sex until the infection disappears.

Thrush is generally treated with over-the-counter anti-fungal medications (similar to those used to treat vaginal yeast infection). Men who are experiencing these symptoms for the first time should talk to a doctor to verify the diagnosis before self-medicating.

Jock Itch

Jock itch, known in medical terms as tinea cruris, is a type of fungal infection. It is caused by an overgrowth of the same type of fungus that is responsible for athlete’s foot and ringworm. Jock itch presents as a red, spreading rash which may be accompanied by severe itching and/or burning, and it can affect the entire groin area.

Jock itch is a stubborn infection. It can be treated with over-the-counter antifungal medications – these should be used for the recommended duration, even if the symptoms clear up quickly, or the infection can recur. Taking steps to prevent infection in the first place is the best way to avoid this infection. Men should avoid sharing towels and articles of clothing, keep the area clean and dry, and wash items such as athletic supports regularly. All fungal infections thrive in moist, warm areas and can live on in unwashed clothing and towels for an extended period of time.

Penile Psoriasis

A spreading, flaking penis skin rash with clearly defined edges and/or a scaly appearance may be an indication of psoriasis. While this condition is not contagious, it can cause social embarrassment and is often extremely off-putting to potential sexual partners.

Treating psoriasis often involves the application of vitamin A creams; steroid treatments may also be used in difficult cases. Because this condition is chronic, ongoing treatment may be necessary to promote smooth, healthy-looking penis skin.

Penis Papules

Whitish or pink bumps that resemble acne are common on the penis skin and may resemble a rash. However, these growths, which are usually found around the crown of the penis, are benign and generally don’t cause any other symptoms. Treating the skin with a conditioning and moisturizing cream may help to maintain smooth, attractive penis skin.

Maintaining Penis Health

The key to preventing many common penis problems or to promoting rapid healing of minor penis skin rashes lies in adequate attention to hygiene and nutrition. Bathing regularly and using mild cleansers, rather than soaps (which are often drying and can result in further irritation) is recommended. Wearing loose, comfortable clothing can allow the skin to breathe and discourage the growth of yeast and fungal infections in intimate areas.

Nourishing the penis skin with a male-specific penis health formula (most health professionals recommend Man1 Man Oil) containing skin nutrients such as vitamins A, C, D, and E, as well as antioxidants and all-natural moisturizers, may help to reduce the incidence of infection, soothe irritated skin, and leave the penis looking and feeling smooth, supple and healthy.

The Sore Penis and Dry Humping – Protecting the Equipment During "Outercourse"

While getting in her pants is the ultimate goal of most guys, dry humping can be a very exciting substitute, and it can offer a safe alternative for couples who are worried about pregnancy or who are not quite ready to take the final plunge into full intimacy. On the other hand, this technique can lead to a very sore penis if it is not handled properly, so if things are getting hot and heavy, it is best to take some precautions, and to have follow-up penis care measures handy to soothe a chafed and throbbing member.

First of all, what is dry humping?

Dry humping is a slang term that is applied to sexual activity in which there is no exchange of, or contact with, the body fluids of a partner. It may involve stroking through the clothing, massage, masturbation of the penis (without ejaculation), body rubbing and going through the motions of sex while fully clothed. “Making out” while completely unclothed may also qualify.

Dry humping does not include female masturbation, oral sex, finger penetration or rubbing the exposed penis against the vagina. By definition, no penetration takes place during dry humping; therefore, it may sometimes be referred to as “outercourse” (as opposed to intercourse).

Benefits

Aside from the obvious excitement factor, dry humping can be beneficial in that it virtually eliminates the risk of unwanted pregnancy since there is no exchange of body fluids. Furthermore, it greatly reduces the chances of contracting or spreading sexually transmitted infections (STIs). On the other hand, the risk is not completely removed, as some STIs may be transmitted via skin-on-skin contact, so precautions should still be taken.

“Outercourse” seems like a perfectly safe option – what could go wrong?

On the whole, dry humping is a safer choice than full intercourse in terms of protecting against pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections, but there are still some small risks involved.

In the first place, it is very easy for partners to become overheated, so to speak, during the course of heavy petting. In the heat of the moment, they may get carried away and decide to go for broke, and penetration may take place without the benefit of protection; this may put both partners at risk for contracting a sexually transmitted infection, not to mention an unwanted pregnancy.

Even if full penetration does not take place, it is easily possible for men to have a “spill” if they become overexcited; this can also lead to an STI, and if ejaculation takes place close to the vaginal opening, there is also a risk of pregnancy.

Furthermore, in spite of the fun factor, dry rubbing, especially against clothing and other abrasive surfaces, can leave the penile skin feeling chafed and sore. Over time, the high level of friction can even dull penile sensation, making it more difficult to experience pleasure during any form of sexual activity.

Protecting the penis during heavy petting

In order to reduce the chances of negative aftereffects caused by dry humping, men should take a few precautionary measures. First and foremost, any time the clothing comes off, a condom should go on, even if penetration is not on the agenda. This can not only prevent spillage of semen and transmission of STIs; it can also create a protective barrier between the skin (or clothing) of a partner and the equipment, saving it from rubbing and chafing.

Aftercare

To reduce the side effects of chafing and to soothe sore, roughened skin, guys may turn to a moisture-rich penis health crème (health professionals recommend Man1 Man Oil). Applied daily, a crème that is formulated with skin-friendly nutrients such as vitamins A, E and C can boost healing of the outer layers of skin while supporting the collagen layers beneath that provide elasticity and tone. When a soothing emollient such as Shea butter is added to the ingredient list, men can experience immediate relief from soreness as well as advanced healing that will leave the skin supple and responsive.

Why Most Psoriasis Treatments Don’t Work – The Truth

The one thing you need to understand about psoriasis is that it starts from within the body. It is not caused by an allergy or reaction to any external irritants. This particular disease is not a skin disorder, although it does affect the skin. It is an embarrassing complaint that, in its most severe form, causes pain, discomfort  and social isolation for many people. This article looks at the causes and latest treatments of psoriasis to help people better deal with it.

What is psoriasis?

 

It is an immune system disorder where skin cells or keratinocytes multiply faster than their normal 28-30 day cycle. These extra skin cells then build up on the surface of the skin forming red inflamed plaques or lesions with silvery scales, which can be found on all parts of the body, but more commonly on the elbows and knees and occasionally on the scalp, arms and legs.

Psoriasis does not discriminate! People of any age, sex or race can become victims. However the severity of the disease can vary greatly in different people. Some people only ever have one outbreak and are never troubled again while others suffer a severe form and are in constant discomfort. The severity of psoriasis is measured by a system called PASI, or psoriasis area and severity index which is based on the skin area affected and the level of inflammation and redness present.

 

Causes of psoriasis

 

An immune system malfunction is believed to be the most common cause. The immune system is mistakenly triggered which causes an increase in the white blood cells which causes inflammation. A flare up can also be caused by prolonged stress. Genetics may also play a part and some doctors believed it can be passed down through the generations. Certain medications can also bring on an attack.

 

Is psoriasis contagious?

 

The answer to this is a definite no. It cannot be passed on to others on contact or in any other way.

 

How can I find a psoriasis treatment?

 

Many treatments have been tried but most have only a temporary effect as they are treating the disease from outside and not from within. The most common medical treatment is topically applied cortisone cream followed by coal tar ointment, anthralin and calamine lotion.

 

Of all these the calamine lotion is probably the safest but it only stop the itching for a little while. Coal tar ointment can be effective but is messy and can cause skin irritation. Cortisone cream can cause thinning of the skin when used for long periods so should only be used sparingly.

 

Some people find that moisturizing the skin can bring relief. If this is to work properly a natural moisturizer should be used, not one based on mineral oil which can actually worsen the skin’s condition.

 

Exposure to sunlight or ultra violet A rays (UVA) is one of the latest treatments of psoriasis, but the side effects can be skin cancer and premature wrinkling of the skin. This option should be used very carefully.

 

Then there are the internal treatments such as methotrexate and cyclosporine. I often say if you can’t pronounce it you shouldn’t swallow it, well here are 2 good examples of this! Methotrexate can lead to hair loss, decreased resistance to infection, headaches and miscarriage among other things. Side effects associated with cyclosporine include insomnia, acne stomach pains and nausea.

 

Is there anything that’s safe to use to treat psoriasis?

 

Since the disease is triggered by the immune system the logical answer is to treat the immune system. There are homeopathic treatments which can build skin health from the inside and these help enormously. Simple remedies like drinking enough water and ensuring your diet is healthy can also help.

 

Because psoriasis comes from within, it will always respond better to an internal treatment. Treat the body from within and use a natural anti itching cream or lotion on the skin itself. We can’t yet cure psoriasis but we can manage it well enough so it doesn’t have such a debilitating effect on our lives.

Scalp Fungus Can Be A Hair Growth Deterrent

Several years ago while researching hair loss in women I realized there was something wrong with my scalp. What I once thought was a simple cause of “dry scalp” turned into a horrific experience. I began to see the uprising of yellowish crusted scabs on my scalp, along with abnormal sized flakes of dandruff. Literally, it was like I had little patches of sores all over my head. My scalp would itch so hard, that I would wake up in the middle of the night with blood beneath my finger nails from scratching my head while I slept.

I turned to the internet in my frantic search for more information on my condition. Soon I realized that there was a strong possibility I had seborrhoeic dermatitis. This is an unhealthy yeast that grows on the scalp. A few symptoms of this, and other fungi related to the scalp can cause the following:

  • Dry itchy, scalp accompanied by redness
  • abnormal odor ( my hair had his moldy/sour like smell all of the time)
  • excessive skin buildup that is a color other than your natural scalp (yellowish scabs)
  • dandruff
  • clumps of hair falling out
  • excessive itching that does not go away with washing, even with dandruff shampoo
  • pus-like drainage ( I had tons of this and my hair would stick to my scalp I would have to literally pick my hair from the dried goo)
  • abnormal shedding
  • clumpy flakes that you have to literally dig up and off of your scalp
  • bumps
  • bleeding

Now, most of this might seem alarming and by all means if you feel as if you need to seek medical help, do so. But, I’m a research rat and because I have taken herbs pretty much all of my life I knew there had to be a way to fight off this scalp fungus.

I was really glad that I caught it in time, and recognized what was going on because it truly was destroying my hair.

First, I started using Miconazole Nitrate, which is yeast infection cream. A lot of people, including my mother assumed I was crazy for putting monistat 7 on my scalp. Yes, this did actually help to eliminate the fungus that had been breeding heavily on my scalp.

It works on your scalp just as it would down stairs. Killing off the “bad fungus” which is in turn killing off your hair follicles. Fungus grows anywhere, it’s asexual which means it reproduces at a steady rate and very easily spread. Its method of feeding is basically absorption and too much sebum on the scalp can cause a feeding frenzy and in turn the fungus grows out of control.

The natural oil that our scalp produces is called Sebum. Sebum maintains the natural moisture and balance of our hair. The hairs natural PH balance is between 4.5 and 5.5.

Too much sebum, or sebum build up can clog the hair follicles and lead to malnutrition of the hair root. Over production of sebum means that the hair follicle is drowning in the oil, weakening both the hair strand and the scalp by preventing other necessary nutrients from being absorbed by the follicle. Under production of sebum can also lead to hair loss due to the fact that when the natural oil is not produced the hair follicle becomes dry, thin and brittle.

Also too much sebum can increase the production of DHT which is Dihydrotestosterone. This hormone leads to hair loss can be caused by too much sebum on the scalp. So you see that is why it is very important to keep your hair’s natural PH balance.

Apple cider vinegar rinses are great for restoring PH balance to hair. Some people do it once a month, I do apple cider vinegar rinses once a week at least. Two cups of water and 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar is used as a final rinse “after” rinsing conditioner from my hair. Apple cider vinegar also helps to combat scalp fungus.

There are so many natural remedies that can help to treat fungi of the scalp.

Some oils that have anti-fungal properties are: Jojoba,Karanja,Lavender,Neem,Olive,Tea Tree,Rosemary,Ylang Ylang,Patchouli,Melissa,Myrrh,Lemon Myrtle,Bergamot,Coconut,Oil of oregano (yes the stuff on pizza, use essential oils to mask the smell but it works).

Herbs that help fight fungus: Burdock Root, Stinging Nettle Root, Black walnut, cedar, chamomile, cinnamon, cloves, fennel, frankincense, garlic, geranium, golden seal,henna, lemongrass, oregano, neem, peppermint, rosemary, and sage.

Infusing anti-fungal herbs and oils together can create an all natural scalp oil that can help to destroy unhealthy fungus that can lead to hair loss. Once the hair’s balance is restored and the fungus (if there is any) is removed, you have a HEALTHY HAPPY scalp for your hair follicles to thrive and flourish.

**disclaimer** The above statement(s) is not intended to replace or override the medical advice of your physician or dermatologist. Although these items are all natural and can be bought without a prescription, please use personal discretion when applying/using infused herbs.

How Children Can Overcome Their Egg Allergy

It's not easy living with an egg allergy – especially if you eat out, buy prepackaged foods, or eat fast foods. Eggs are in so many food products these days, that you can be eating eggs without even knowing it.

Eggs are an ingredient in many breakfast cereals, lots of breads, nearly all baked goods, tons of sauces, and frozen foods of all kinds. Much like those who suffer from a peanut allergy, if you have an egg allergy you are going to have to become extremely proficient at reading labels to ensure that you do not have a negative reaction to foods.

It's not uncommon for many kids to have allergies as infants and then to lose it by they enter grade school. But some researchers believe that the process can be hastened by intentionally exposing them to eggs that have been heat treated over a period of months.

In a study published by the Allergy and Clinical Immunology journal, 94 children with egg allergies were gradually exposed to heat treated eggs. The heat treated eggs were in the form of baked goods such as breads and cakes. After six months they were then tested with less processed eggs and ninety five percent had no reaction. This strongly indicates that those who suffer from egg allergies can gradually build up their tolerance to eggs through mild exposure to heated egg products over a series of months.

When a person has an egg allergy, he actually has an allergy to the egg proteins. An egg allergy is triggered by a person's immune system overreacting to proteins in the egg. Thinking that the proteins are a danger to the body, the person's system begins to create antibodies to combat the intruders. The antibodies, in turn, cause the body to release hormones into the body – called histamines. These histamines are the real cause of the reactions that many people immediately begin to experience such as shortness of breath, hives, and stomach aches.

Egg allergy is primary a child's disease. By the time a child reaches the age of about 5, he has most likely outgrown the allergy. In a very small percentage of cases, however, the child does not develop a tolerance for eggs and continues to have allergic reactions into adulthood.

Recent studies suggest, however, that it is possible to lessen the amount of time that it takes a child's immune system to become tolerant of eggs by slowly and continually exposing her to heat treated eggs over a six months period. The same may be true for adults, but it has not yet been tested.

An allergic reaction to eggs is usually instantaneous – within minutes. The person may develop hives and he may develop extreme redness in the facial area. The reaction can also affect the person's breathing making it difficult to draw breaths. In extreme cases, it can also cause the face to swell up and close the airway passages and possibly trigger an asthma attack. Reactions vary from person to person, but even in the worse cases, the attack is normally completely over in less than twenty four hours.