Should I Consult a Doctor If I Have a Cold?

A cold can make a person thoroughly miserable. What's worse than having a stuffy head and drippy nose, along with perhaps a cough, headache, or sore throat?

Lots of things of course, but when you're suffering from a cold it's hard to think about those worse off. All you want is relief, and fast. Should you see a doctor?

Think for a moment what you'd like to accomplish by seeing a doctor. You probably know that colds are caused by viruses, and that an antibiotic will not help a virus. Unless you have an underlying problem that predisposes you to more serious infection, such as asthma or chronic obstructive lung disease (COPD), an antibiotic will not get you well more quickly. Your own body's immune system is what heals a cold.

Since no medication will provide a true cure, what about symptom relief?

There was a time, not that many years ago, when the "good" medicines were available by prescription only. Not any more. Almost every so-called cold medicine is now available over-the-counter, the same medications that were once by prescription.

The biggest problem with treating yourself at home is knowing what medication to use for which symptom. If congestion or stuffiness is your main symptom, a decongestant is what you'll need to open your air passages and relieve sinus pressure. There are no prescription decongestants stronger than over-the-counter pseudoephedrine, which you'll have to ask your pharmacist to obtain. The medicine is available without a prescription, but still kept "behind the counter."

Some people benefit from an expectorant, which simply thins the mucus so that it drains more easily. Again, there is no stronger prescription medication than over-the-counter guaifenesin, found in Mucinex, Robitussin, and similar products.

If a runny nose or post-nasal drainage is the problem, you may want to dry up the mucus using an antihistamine. Diphenhydramine (Benadryl) and chlorpheniramine are inexpensive and effective, but sometimes cause drowsiness. Cetirizine (Zyrtec), a non-sedating antihistamine, is another option. Loratadine (Claritin) works well at drying up an allergic nose but is not as effective for colds. Again, all these medications were prescriptions just a few years ago and are every bit as good as medications a doctor might prescribe.

Over-the-counter pain medications such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen can relieve the sore throat and sinus pain associated with a cold. Doctors will not prescribe anything stronger for your discomfort. Aspirin works, well, too, but is more likely to cause stomach upset and should not be used in children under the age of 18 due to the increased incidence of Reye's syndrome.

Dextromethorphan, found in many OTC cold preparations, is an effective cough suppressant. The only thing stronger is a narcotic, which you would have to obtain from a physician, who would probably suggest you try the OTC dextromethorphan first anyway.

So we've covered congestion, drainage, cough, sore throat, and pain. What's left? Chest symptoms, perhaps, but then that's going beyond a simple head cold. If you have a chest cold you're probably better off consulting your doctor.

Lastly, if a cold persists beyond 10 days or so, it's possible that a secondary infection has set in, for which an antibiotic might be advisable.

But overall, if you're not to sick to work or go to school, you probably do not need to see a doctor. Give your body some time to heal itself.

Copyright 2010 Cynthia J. Koelker, MD

Back Pain Basics – Four Common Reasons For Your Pain

There are four common types of back pain: pain that increases with flexion (bending forward), pain that increases with extension (leaning backwards), radiating, shooting, or burning pain, and finally, muscular aches.

Pain that increases with flexion, such as bending forward to touch your toes, is usually the result of a herniated or bulging disc. Flexing the spine pushes disc material to the back of the spine (which is the part of the spine where nearly all herniations occur), exacerbating the pain. Spending long periods of time sitting can also cause further irritation, as it is difficult to not flex the spine while seated.

Back pain that increases with extension is usually the result of irritated facet joints. Each vertebra is part of four facet joints, two connecting with the vertebra above and two connecting with the vertebra below. These joints are very sensitive to pressure, and extending the spine by leaning backwards increases compression in these joints. In addition to facet joint injury, there are also a variety of conditions which could contribute to extension-based back pain, such as osteoarthritis and spondylothesis (a type of dislocated vertebra).

Pain that radiates and “shoots” down the leg that may be accompanied by a burning sensation is generally referred to as sciatica. The term sciatica simply refers to the type of pain rather than any one specific underlying condition. In other words, sciatica is caused by sciatic nerve irritation and many different things can irritate this nerve. Sciatica could be caused by a tight piriformis muscle (which can pinch the nerve) or could be caused by a herniated disc pressing on one of nerve roots that contribute to the sciatic nerve. Both of these injuries can result in the same symptoms.

The last major type of back pain is aching muscles. This type of pain is not felt in the spine itself but rather on either side of the spinal cord in the muscles known as the erector spinae. In this type of pain, there is a feeling of tightness which has two predominate causes: an over-worked muscle or a muscle that is splinting an injured area.

An over-worked erector spinae is generally the result of poor posture or poor lifting form. Poor posture and lifting form can result in tight muscles because these two things interfere with the way the muscle is built to contract. The fix here is to make sure you maintain the natural “S” shape of the spine whenever lifting an object or sitting for extended periods of time.

The other major reason for erector spinae tightness is when these muscles attempt to “splint” the low back. Just like a broken bone is splinted, the brain forces the erector spinae to maintain a tight contraction in order to prevent the lower back from moving. This is the result of the brain trying to prevent further injury or can be the residual effect of a previous lower back injury. This generally requires some sort of exercise program to correct.

Possible Sports Injuries From Full Contact Martial Arts

Many people around the world participate in martial arts. There are 3 types of martial arts namely the light, medium and full contact martial arts and as the names suggest, each differs in the amount of body contact involved. Martial arts have many benefits to it, most prominently are the health benefits as well as the coordination between various parts of the body, body balance and flexibility. However, as with all kinds of full contact sports, there are injuries that are associated with it.

Facial Laceration

Facial lacerations are the most common injuries sustained from full contact martial arts. They account for nearly 50% of all injuries in martial arts. It is also all about predicting what your opponent will do next and if you fail to react accordingly, it can cause trauma to parts of your body, commonly the face. The result of a full blown kick to the face can cause facial laceration.

Knee tendinitis

During practice, tremendous stress is placed upon both of the knees and kicking is required throughout the whole session. As such, it can cause hypertension of the knee joint which will result to tendinitis. It can create strain to the back of the knees, patellar tendons and patella, causing pain and discomfort in players.

Ankle sprains

Ankle sprains are also a common injury in martial arts due to the nature of uneven surfaces that the event take place. Most venues will place gym mattresses or other soft cushioning materials to absorb the impact of players. However, these soft and uneven surfaces can lead to improper weight distribution when kicking, causing sprains in the ankles.

Kneecap dislocation

Kneecap dislocation is a serious injury that happens when the patella is shifted out of alignment with the knee. It is often caused by improper leg alignment or sudden kneeling motion, causing a sudden trauma to the knee.

Plantar fasciitis

Whenever our feet is in use, the connective tissue or plantar fascia which supports the arch of our foot will tighten and stretch. However, it is prone to overuse if the incorrect footwear is worn. It is especially common in people with flat feet and who do not use the correct footwear with the correct support.

Martial arts have a low risk of injury as compared to other full contact sports such as rugby. Most of the injuries that are suffered are often minor such as bruises. However, more serious injuries can happen either due to trauma or due to improper protective equipment.

Common Misconceptions Surrounding Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy is a well-known reality to the families and friends of those who have it. To many of the rest of us, sadly, it has received little consideration. Because cerebral palsy (aka CP) is rarely just one thing, many misconceptions about it has persisted for decades. Here are 4 common misconceptions-myths, if you will-about cerebral palsy and the people who have it:

1) Children with CP are mentally disabled

2) Children with CP will never walk or talk

3) Children with CP can never lead independent lives

4) CP comes from an unknowable and unpreventable neonatal condition

All of the above can be true. For some. BUT NOT FOR MOST.

Cerebral palsy is an umbrella term referring to a (currently) incurable, non-progressive set of neurological conditions that produce physical and neurological abnormalities during human development. Cerebral palsy is caused by brain damage, either through injury or irregular development during the early stages of life. The damage usually occurs just before, during or shortly after the birthing process. Very few infants are born with noticeable symptoms. Most will begin exhibiting them in the first few years of life as developmental milestones are missed.

MYTH #1: CHILDREN WITH CP ARE MENTALLY DISABLED

Depending on what part of the brain is affected, CP can present itself as any of a variety of developmental impairments and in variable degrees of severity–from barely noticeable to severe. More than anything, CP affects the motor and muscular development of those afflicted with it.

Some children with CP do, in fact, experience damage to the parts of the brain that controls thinking and therefore suffer lifelong cognitive disabilities. However, many children with CP suffer little to no cognitive impairment and are very bright. Google ” famous people with cerebral palsy ” and you will find an impressive list of scholars, authors, actors and doctors.

MYTH #2: CHILDREN WITH CP WILL NEVER WALK OR TALK

Because CP primarily affects the parts of the brain associated with movement and muscle control, learning to walk, and then walk with a steady gait, can sometimes be a challenge for children with CP, but many walk in such a way that you would never know they were impaired. There are those who will ultimately require a wheelchair, walker or cane to get around, but advancements in early intervention, physical therapy and more advanced medical procedures have allowed more CP kids becoming independently ambulatory.

For some children, the brain injury affects the muscles that control the mouth and tongue, which is why some labor to speak clearly or speak at all. Unfortunately, uninformed people often equate speech impediments with a lack of cognitive ability. This is simply not the case.

MYTH #3: CHILDREN WITH CP WILL NEVER LEAD INDEPENDENT LIVES

Again, some cannot. However, hundreds of thousands of adults with cerebral palsy live completely independent lives. They may have needed a little extra help preparing for independent living. Occupational therapists help prepare teens and young adults with basic skills such as preparing meals, handling money, knowing when and where to seek medical care and driving a car or using public transportation. Sometimes adults with CP require specially designed living spaces in order to live alone.

MYTH #4: CP CAUSE IS UNKNOWABLE AND UNPREVENTALBE

Because the diagnosis of cerebral palsy often occurs years after the event that triggered it, it is sometimes difficult or impossible to trace it back to one specific, documentable event. It may have been the physical or emotional lifestyle of the mother, an undetected infection or an error by one or more healthcare providers that went unnoticed or was intentionally covered up. Historically and unfortunately, the myth has been perpetuated in the courtroom as doctors, healthcare management companies and insurance providers have endeavored to deflect blame and cloud certainty in the minds of jurors to avoid financial liability.

Make no mistake about it, the cause of cerebral palsy CAN be knowable and IS OFTEN preventable.

As the medical community, legal community and insurance industry continue to battle it out in the courtroom, we inch ever-closer to understanding all the things we need to do to prevent and eradicate these injuries from ever happening in the first place. After all the finger-pointing, it’s the children and the families that need to be put first.

Paralysis and Hemiplegic Migraine

Those who think of migraine as "just a bad headache" may be surprised to hear about hemiplegic migraine, a type of migraine that can involve weakness or even paralysis on one side of the body. But those familiar with migraine know that it's much more than a headache. In fact, it's often not a headache at all! Migraine attacks involve a number of symptoms. Headache is a common one, but there can also be nausea, skin sensitivity, a sensitivity to light or sound, confusion or weakness.

Hemiplegic migraine is a specific type of migraine. Usually, it's divided into two types – sporadic hemiplegic migraine and familial hemiplegic migraine. Both types are similar, the difference being that those with familial hemiplegic have a close relative that gets migraine with aura – particularly the symptom of weakness.

If you've got hemiplegic migraine, either familial or sporadic, you may experience:

* Sudden weakness or paralysis on one side of the body (temporary)

* Numbness, a pins-and-needles prickling sensation

* Difficulty speaking

* Headache

Headache and hemiplegic migraine may go together. This is considered to be one of the most severe forms of migraine, with reason. The sufferer can be incapacitate by an attack. This is good reason to see a doctor, and if diagnosed to make sure that you carry with you some sort of medical identification at all times.

There are other challenges when it comes to hemiplegic migraine. First, the number of severe symptoms that need to be treated all at once, including weakness or paralysis. Second, the connections with stroke mean that the most common migraine-targeting medications (triptans and egotamines) are not recommended.

There is good news! For one thing, new genetic research is helping us to diagnose this type of migraine more easily. Also, there are many other migraine treatments and medications that can be used, and that have been used successfully. The important thing, however, is to seek expert help as soon as possible. If you're already aware of a migraine connection, find a headache and migraine specialist if at all possible. If you're not sure, make sure you see a doctor so that she can rule out other severe problems, such as stroke. If you seek help right away, you can avoid serious problems. There is help available, as we understand more and more about migraine, paralysis and other types of headache.

Flush Gallstones – 5 Tips to Flush Gallstones at Home

Thousands of gallstone sufferers each year are passing their gallstones with a safe, simple gallbladder flush. Yet millions of other people get their gallbladder removed without knowing about this simple flush.

What should you do?

If you have gallstones right now, it would be a good idea to read this article – you might save thousands of dollars and keep your gallbladder after all.

What Makes the Gallbladder Flush Work?

Here’s a couple of things to consider:

• Studies have shown that people who remove their gallbladder stand a much higher chance of getting bowel and colon cancer.

• Many natural doctors are predicting that gallbladder surgery, or cholecystectomy, will be obsolete 10 years from now.

So if you have any concerns about surgery, now is the time to look into a natural flush for your gallbladder. There are several ways to flush your gallbladder organ naturally, including diet, simple remedies, vitamins, the drinks you consume, and your lifestyle choices.

The 5 Secrets of Flushing Gallstones

1. Water – Drink as much as you can. Most of us don’t get enough water, which helps us in hundreds of ways. It helps our body run more efficiently by flushing out toxins we don’t need, cholesterol, and even gallstones at times. A guideline is to drink half or more of your body weight in ounces of water a day. So if you weigh 200 pounds, you would need at least 100 ounces of water a day.

2. Get more fiber in your diet. Start checking fiber content on labels. Fiber helps with bowel movement and also helps flush cholesterol and gallstones as well. Get at least 10 grams of fiber for every 1000 calories you take in.

3. Keep an eye on fat and cholesterol labels. Gallstones are made up mostly of cholesterol. So reducing cholesterol intake lessens gallstone formation. Fast foods, fried foods, and red meats are heavy on cholesterol and should be avoided or reduced. Eggs, pork, onions, chicken, mild, corn, beans, and nuts may also be making your gallstone problems worse.

4. A liver cleanse might benefit you. It’s been found that the liver and gallbladder depend on each other. So cleansing the liver of toxins, alcohol, chemicals, and fats can only help the gallbladder to flush itself as well. A simple, effective liver and gallbladder cleanse is found at this Gallstone Elimination Report.

5. Foods high in chlorophyll, like vegetables, help to naturally flush the liver, kidneys, and gallbladder. It can also remedy your gallstone problems. Why not eat these 3 vegetables which are full of chlorophyll: wheatgrass, spinach, and parsley.

What’s the Next Step in Flushing Gallstones?

Once you try these 5 tips and begin flushing your gallstones at home, consider taking the next step: an easy, step-by-step guide that will reveal a proven, 100% natural gallstone home remedy.

What Are the Sources of Back Pain?

Evaluating low back pain in patients can be extremely difficult. Thankfully, 90% of acute back pain resolves within three months no matter what the treatment. However, if appropriate pain management treatment is instituted pain relief can potentially be achieved sooner rather than later.

Statistics show that over 30% of the time, medical providers can not give an accurate low back pain diagnosis with regards to the pain generator. Even in this day and age of such modern technology as MRI and CT scans and EMG testing, low back pain still remains a conundrum in many cases.

The main categories of pain generation include fracture, infection, tumor, trauma, arthritis, soft tissue, or neuropathic.

1) Fracture or Trauma – Vertebral Compression Fractures are seen as a result of an axial load on the spinal column. The number one cause is osteoporosis, number two is a traumatic event like a car accident or fall from a height. These fractures are typically seen on plain x-rays, and also very easy to see on an MRI. Traumatic injuries also can result in soft tissue sprains / strains with damaged ligaments, tendons, or spinal musculature.

2) Infection – There are two areas of infection around the spine. One is the vertebra itself, which is called vertebral osteomyelitis. Another is infection in the intervertebral disc, which is called discitis. Infections occur post-surgical, post-procedure, and also in immunocompromised patients such as diabetics.

3) Tumor – There are various tumors that affect the spine and cause low back pain. Most commonly, the spine has a tumor from metastasis of a tumor elsewhere, such as the breast or lung. There are some tumors that occur primarily in the spine, such as multiple myeloma.

4) Arthritis – Just as degenerative arthritis occurs in the knee and hip, it also occurs in the spinal column. The joints of the spine are called facet joints, and they are about the size of a thumbnail. The facet joints are located on each side of each level of the spine. For instance the L3-L4 facet joint is the one located between the third lumbar and fourth lumbar vertebra. When arthritis occurs in facet joints, it is called facet syndrome or simply facet arthritis.

5) Soft tissue – The soft tissue areas of the spine include the following: Intervertebral disc, spinal ligaments, and also the para-spinal musculature with its tendons. Patients involved in a trauma can experience spinal ligament injury with resultant pain. Para-spinal musculature strain is extremely common. Often times the para-spinal mucles will react to other injuries such as fractures, ligament sprains, etc by going into spasm. This is called muscle guarding. Pain from the intervertebral disc itself is a result of disc injury. This can be chronic, called degenerative disc disease, or more acute. The outer part of the intervertebral disc contains pain fibers. This area of ​​the disc is called the annulus and an annular tear can cause significant pain in the low back.

6) Neuropathic – This refers to pain emanating from an intervertebral disc herniation that is impinging on a nerve root. The pinched nerve sparks up inflammation and causes pain to radiate down the leg, called sciatica.

Evaluating a patient with low back pain takes determination and thoroughness with a specific algorhithm. If done correctly, it will give patients the best chance of success by leading to an appropriate treatment regimen.

A Cold Sore Vaccine is Coming Soon – Information About Current and Soon-to-Be-Released Vaccines

Current Herpes Vaccines

The odd thing is that there has been a vaccine around for the herpes virus for a while now: it’s called Zostavax. The thing is, though, that it’s a vaccine designed to prevent shingles, also known as “herpes zoster”–yes, the herpes virus causes the disease normally found in people over 60 usually known as shingles. In a 2005 study of 38,000 elderly adults, Zostavax prevented 1/2 the cases of shingles and reduced the number of cases of postherpetic neuralgia by 2/3. In October 2007 the vaccine was officially recommended in the U.S. for healthy adults aged 60 and over. Now, obviously, the problem with this is that it’s only effective against herpes zoster (shingles), and not cold sores or genital herpes, but don’t lose hope: the point of me telling you this is that herpes vaccines are in the works, and when one is successfully developed then another one for a different version of the virus, cold sores for example, is just one step away.

Vaccines Yet To Be Released

A much more promising vaccine that has been specifically said to potentially end up becoming a vaccine against HSV-1 (Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1, the strain of the virus that causes cold sores), is a vaccine currently in Phase III trials that’s designed to be a vaccine to prevent genital herpes in women. Herpes Simplex Type 2 (HSV-2) is typically the strain of herpes that causes genital herpes, but HSV-1 and HSV-2 are over 99% genetically identical and the scientists developing the vaccine are saying that they’ve found that those persons who: 1) Have never been exposed to either HSV-1 or HSV-2 and, 2) Receive the Herpevac vaccine, show immunity to both strains of the virus.

This means that the Herpevac vaccine, which is due to be approved by the FDA sometime in the very near future (probably less than a year), could potentially provide protection against HSV-1 IF you’ve never been exposed to herpes (either strain), thereby keeping you from ever developing a cold sore, or getting genital herpes for that matter (nice bonus isn’t it?).

If you’d like to get more information about the Herpevac trial OR you’d actually like to possibly participate in it (you must be a woman), then you can go to the official National Institute of Health Herpevac Trial for Women website at http://www.niaid.nih.gov/dmid/stds/herpevac/default.htm.

Middle Back Pain On Right Side – What To Do?

Backache is a common problem, and middle back pain right side is one of many different types of back problems that can be experienced. The location of the pain is an important factor in helping to determine just what might be causing the problem, and if you are experiencing discomfort towards the right side of your back there could be a number of things that are causing the problem.

Of course, if you cannot get rid of the pain that you are experiencing you should always seek medical assistance, as out of the various problems that could be causing this pain some are more serious than others. Some of the possible causes of middle back pain right side could be very simple – such as accumulated gas – and may simply resolve themselves. However, other problems, such as slipped disc, are more serious and will need medical attention and treatment in order to both alleviate the pain and resolve the problem.

Some of the causes of this pain

If you have not suffered any obvious fall or injury but you are still experiencing pain in the right side of your back then there are a number of conditions and problems that may be causing it. Some of these include:

Trapped nerve: This is where a nerve may have become trapped by a muscle or even by a slipped disc, and the pain in the back comes from the nerve being pinched as it is trapped

Slipped disc: A slipped disc can be tremendously painful, and can result from a number of things including poor posture. These discs are provided as ‘shock absorbers’ for your body, and also provide flexibility. A slipped disc can result in surrounding nerves being trapped, which then causes severe pain and discomfort.

Muscle strain: Another cause of the pain can be spasms or straining of the muscles. You will find that muscle spasms can be caused by a number of factors, including muscle imbalance or poor posture. Muscle spasms can occur as a result of your back muscles trying to protect nerve injury to the spine.

Inflamed gallbladder or gallstones: This can be a common cause of this type of back problem. Although the pain may stem from the middle back and right side it can spread upwards towards the upper back and even the shoulder. If left untreated gallstones can cause serious problems so it is important to get this checked out as soon as possible.

Trapped wind: Trapped wind that has accumulated could be another cause of the discomfort, and although not one of the main causes it can trap nerves in the back thus causing the discomfort and pain.

Simple ways that could help resolve the discomfort

He Can Say it, But He Can’t Write it! What Does That Mean?

How can this be? A child is asked to spell a word out loud and is successful in doing so, but then is unable to write the same word onto a piece of paper. Surely if one can say it, they can write it…right? This simple action, although apparently similar in content, can be impossible for one who suffers from dysgraphia. Dysgraphia is a term used to identify individuals struggling with what is known as visual motor execution deficits and is a recognized learning disability. Although individuals with dysgraphia may have other learning disabilities, dysgraphia does not indicate an intellectual impairment. In fact, there are rarely any co-existing academic or social issues. Those suffering from dysgraphia can learn and they do learn – they just learn differently.

There are different types of dysgraphia; however the end result is evident in poor written expression, or handwriting. Science has yet to identify a true cause of dysgraphia. It is usually attributed to poor fine motor skills (using your fingers and hands) and/or decreased visual perception skills. Some theorize problems in left right brain integration; in other words, deficits in the left side of the brain and right side of the brain communicating with each other, and thus creating an error in attempts to work together. Fortunately, brain learning activities which specifically address neurological processing can strengthen those connections.

Those suffering with dysgraphia can easily recount a story told them without any hesitancy or errors, but when asked to write about the same story produce an illegible page of nonsense. There are capital letters in random places and letters ranging in size from tiny to huge – sometimes in the same word. Spacing between words and between each letter is inconsistent, and very often letters will be reversed and mirrored. True dysgraphia exists despite appropriate instruction on how to form letters. The person knows what they want to write and knows what words they want to use and how each letter should look; however, somehow the brain is unable to communicate that information to the fingers. Their grade writing outcomes are poor.

There are treatment possibilities for individuals diagnosed with dysgraphia. Neurologically based treatment programs designed to strengthen the brain’s ability to process, store and correctly retrieve information are available to assist those with dysgraphia. Brain learning treatment is becoming much more recognized in specialty professions such as Occupational Therapy and Speech Therapy. Individuals do not have to accept these deficits, nor do they have to always rely on compensatory strategies to complete daily writing skills. There is hope for those who have difficulty in successfully transferring their thoughts to paper.

In summary, the neurological disorder known as dysgraphia is quite perplexing. How can it be that a person can say what they want to, even spell words correctly out loud, but cannot write what they are thinking? By seeking out the assistance of professionals that specialize in learning style exercises and right brain left brain processing therapy, significant gains can be made for more productive functional skills. The appropriate program, or combination of programs can be of invaluable asset to the intervention plan. There is hope for the person diagnosed with dysgraphia!

Natural Sore Throat Remedies

A sore throat is a condition which could be a symptom of many health disorders.

Generally, infections cause the majority of sore throats and are contagious. Infections are caused either by viruses such as the flu, the common cold, mononucleosis, or by bacteria such as strep, or hemophilus. While bacteria do respond to antibiotic treatments, viruses do not. Most viral sore throats accompany flu or colds along with a stuffy, runny nose, sneezing, and the accompanying aches and pains.

These viruses are highly contagious and spread quickly, especially in winter. The body builds antibodies that destroy the virus, a process that takes about a week. Sore throats accompany other viral infections such as measles, chicken pox, whooping cough, and croup. Canker sores and fever blisters in the throat also can be very painful.

What To Initially Do When A Sore Throat Gets Really Painful

When an individual has a sore throat, and persists longer than the usual five- to seven- day duration of a cold or flu, and is not associated with an avoidable allergy or irritation, the afflicted person should immediately seek medical attention.

The following signs and symptoms should alert you to see your physician, and these include: Severe and prolonged sore throat, difficulty in breathing and swallowing, difficulty opening the mouth, joint pains, earache, rashes, a fever over 101 °, blood in the saliva or phlegm, frequently recurring sore throat, appearance of lumps in neck and a hoarseness which lasts over two weeks

Natural Remedies for Sore Throat

Many natural ingredients and herbs are proven to reduce pain and inflammation, provide immediate or temporary relief, and help ease painful raw throat tissues.

– Herbal immune system enhancers such as echinacea and goldenseal or Oregon grape root are effective when you have a sore throat that is caused by a cold or flu. The wonder herb, garlic, can also prove helpful when battling illness, since it will ward off harmufl bacteria or viruses. Try to add raw garlic to your salad and other dishes.

– Mucilaginous herbs can ease any sore throat. Slippery elm and marshmallow do help a lot. Gargling with astringent herbs will alleviate discomfort. Raspberry or blackberry leaves along with elder flowers are good for this purpose. Mix these with marshmallow and licorice for a soothing, relaxing effect.

– Herbal Throat Lozenges. These herbal lozenges are simple, easy to make, and are effective in treating sore threats. In preparing these lozenges, mix 3 tablespoons powdered licorice, 3 tablespoons marshmallow or slippery elm, 3 tablespoons red raspberry leaves, 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 10 drops scented geranium, sage, or rosemary, essential oil, honey and cornstarch.

Combine the herbal powders together with just enough honey to make a thick mixture. Add essential oil and mix well with fork or fingers. Pinch off small pieces, roll into balls, and flatten slightly to form a lozenge. After forming a lozenge, dry the mixture for 12 hours and store in an airtight container.

– Cayenne pepper also is an effective herb in stopping throat pain. Add this to a gargling mixture.

There are countless remedies available for sore throat, and whichever remedy you choose, these herbal treatments can be of great help in healing sore throat, whether the throat infection is caused by a cold, voice overuse or other viral or bacterial infections.

Herbal Remedies Store : Prime – Http://primeherbal.com

Common Illnesses Among Children

Being a parent is never easy. That is the reason why parents want to know what to do if their kids fall ill. Below are four of the most common illnesses among children.

One of the most common illnesses a child may get is the common cold. Common cold is usually caused by a virus or bacteria. Oftentimes, it is spread by direct hand-to-hand contact with infected secretions or by contact with contaminated surfaces. Treating colds caused by a virus with antibiotics would not work nor alter the course of viral infection. Antibiotics may kill beneficial bacteria inside the body and may even cause antibiotic-resistant bacteria to develop. The common cure for common cold is to let the illness stake its course. You can help the body recover fast by taking a lot of rest, drinking lots of fluids and taking a lot of Vitamin C. Decongestants can also be given to children to alleviate the nasal symptoms of colds.

Another common child sickness is measles. Measles is caused by a virus. It is transmitted through cough or sneeze of the infected person. Symptoms of measles are high fever, cough and small white spots inside the cheeks. Rashes eventually develop on the forehead, then spread throughout the body. There is no specific treatment for measles and most patients just recover provided they are given adequate support treatment. Home remedies can be administered to ease the discomfort brought about by rashes. Orange juice can be given to children with measles since the digestive power of the body might be seriously weakened. Oftentimes, kids with measles have no desire for food or water because of the lack of saliva that coats the tongue. Orange juice can be very helpful in overcoming these drawbacks. If the illness lasts for a much longer period of time, it is best to seek medical treatment.

Chickenpox is also another common ailment among children. This is caused by varicella-zoster virus and is transmitted by the cough or sneeze of the person with chicken pox. Having direct contact with the fluid from the chicken pox blister can also be a way for the disease to be acquired. During the early stage of infection, a child may experience high fever and then followed by an itchy rash and blisters. It usually takes 7-10 days for the child to get well after the first symptom appears. There is no exact cure for chickenpox; however, medicines can be taken to reduce the fever and itching.

Most children also suffer from tonsillitis that is often caused by a bacteria or a virus. Its primary symptoms are fever and swollen tonsils. Sometimes, white or yellow pus can also be seen on the tonsils. Children suffering from tonsillitis are most likely to lose appetite because of the pain they experience while swallowing. Tonsillitis caused by a virus will disappear on its own, but if tonsillitis is caused by bacteria, taking antibiotics is recommended. Kids can also be asked to gargle with warm water and salt to minimize the pain of swollen tonsils.

Knowing what are the common diseases among children, its causes, its symptoms, and how it can be treated helps on how you will address to your child’s needs while he or she is sick.

Types of Headache and their Treatment with Ayurveda

Headache is known as Shiro Roga in Ayurveda. Literally it means ‘disease of the head’. Headache is not a single type of disorder; but it is a name given to several problems of the head. There are 11 types of headache in Ayurveda. They can be caused due to a various number of causes. Some of them are:-

– Trauma

– Inflammation of the meninges

– Encephalitis

– Cerebral abscess

– Migraine

– Hypertension

– Cerebral hemorrhage

– Vasodilator drugs

– Alcohol hangover

Apart from these there are several other factors such as fevers, metabolic disorders and diseases of the eye, ear and nose which can cause headaches.

Though pain is predominantly vitiation of the vata dosha, vitiation of the pitta and kapha doshas can also cause headaches. The chief symptoms of the three different doshic types of headaches are:-

1. Vata type of Headache – The pain is intermittent, i.e. of a hammering type. There is constipation, insomnia and depression. These pains are compounded by mental tensions.

2. Pitta type of Headache – The pain is usually felt on half of the head. It is accompanied by a burning sensation and wateriness in the eyes. The person is generally scared of light.

(1) Useful Herbs in the Treatment of Headache

1. Betel (Piper betle)

The leaves of the betel have analgesic and cooling properties. When a paste of them is applied to the center of the headache, then immediate relief is obtained.

2. Bishop’s Weed (Trachyspermum ammi)

Bishop’s weed can keep severe headaches away. It is most effective in headaches that occur due to migraine. The fumes of the lighted bishop’s weed seeds are used for the treatment. These fumes are smoked or the seeds are sniffed directly.

3. Clove (Syzygium aromaticum)

The aroma of the clove has a headache-allaying effect. It can soothe the nerves and bring it back to a pacified state.

4. Garlic (Allium sativum)

Garlic has almost miraculous properties in relieving headaches, of whatever type they are. Their juice slowly permeates the head region and acts as a painkiller.

5. Ginger (Zingiber officinale)

Ginger has painkilling properties. Due to this property, it is used as an external application on the affected head region. This gives relief from the headache.

6. Henna (Lawsonia inermis)

Henna flowers have the capacity to reduce headaches if they are caused by excessive heat. The henna flowers are applied externally on the head with vinegar to get the desired results.

(2) Dietary Treatments for Headache

Sweet and mild tastes are better in relieving headaches than other tastes. When there is a headache, consuming a sweet preparation or even a spoonful of sugar helps.

Milk and ghee are also beneficial in headaches. Preferably, the milk of a cow should be warmed and had when there is a headache.

Rice is the preferred carbohydrate to be taken in times of headache. The water left after cooking the rice should be had when it is warm, with a dash of ghee added in it.

Spicy and fried foods must be avoided when there is a headache.

(3) Ayurvedic Treatment for Headache

Since there are many different types of headaches, there are different treatments for them in Ayurveda. Ayurveda does not treat all headaches with uniformity. The following are the different treatments prescribed:-

1. If the headache is of vata type, then Triphala choorna is first prescribed to clear the digestive system. Then Shirashooladivajra rasa must be taken, or Mahavata Vidhwansana rasa must be taken twice a day in dosages of 125 milligrams in warm water.

2. If the headache is of pitta type, then amalaki is prescribed, or Triphala which contains amalaki can also be given. Half a gram of Shatavari is to be taken twice a day for a month.

3. If the headache is of kapha type, then anu taila is applied first to clear the nostrils. Then medicines such as Shoola Gajakesari rasa are given in dosages of 125 milligrams thrice or four times a day.

(4) Home Medications

a. A paste of clove and salt crystals is prepared in milk. The main curative ingredient in this is salt, which, being hygroscopic, absorbs the fluids in the head and decreases the tension.

b. Early morning after waking up dab an apple with salt and eat it. After that, drink some warm water or milk. Continuing this for ten days will reduce the problem of continuous headaches.

c. Peel a piece of garlic. Put it in the mouth and chew it slightly. Let its juices spread around the mouth region and upwards into the head. Keep on chewing the garlic mildly and allow the juices to spread. Within some minutes the headache would disappear. This treatment works even for the most persistent of headaches.

d. For headaches that are caused due to common colds, drinking a decoction of coriander and sugar helps tremendously. One more method to clear common cold related headaches is to place both feet in warm water for about half an hour.

e. For headaches that are caused due to excessive gas in the stomach, drinking a glass of warm water with a fresh lemon squeezed in it brings the headache as well as the gas problem down.

f. Grind some cinnamon and make it into a paste with water. Apply this on the head. This reduces headaches.

g. Soak some almonds in water overnight. In the morning, grind them into a paste and warm them slightly in ghee. Mix this in water and drink. This helps in treating headaches that have been going on since a long time.

h. Drinking a glass of water in which jaggery has been mixed helps in reducing headaches.

Type 2 Diabetes – Is Fasted Cardio Right For Diabetics?

One type of exercise you have likely heard about is fasted cardio training. The idea behind this training is you wake up and before eating anything (in the fasted state), you go on to perform some cardio training.

In theory, this is supposed to help amplify your total rate of fat burning because you won’t need to worry about having to burn off the calories from the food you just ate for breakfast. So your body can go right into burning the body fat stores it has. But, is this training best for people diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes? Or would you be better off passing on it entirely?

Here are a few quick points for Type 2 diabetics to keep in mind…

1. The Intensity Level. The first thing to note is the level of your blood sugar. You will more than likely have to use a lower overall intensity level when doing fasted cardio as your blood sugar level will be below the best level for carrying out high-intensity training.

Now will not be the time to do those high-intensity interval sprints you normally do. Instead, you’ll be stuck doing steady state cardio training. If you don’t mind steady state exercise, this might be fine but for those who get bored quickly, it simply isn’t ideal.

2. The Question Of Blood Sugar. You know as a Type 2 diabetic taking medications to lower your blood sugar, it’s not wise for you to go hours without eating. In fact, you may already find on waking from your overnight fast your blood sugar levels are much lower than you would like them to be.

Now if you exercise, this will only amplify the effect. For many Type 2 diabetics, doing fasted state cardio training could potentially give them dangerously low blood sugar levels, rendering this type of training entirely impossible.

If you are going to attempt fasted cardio exercise, make sure you speak with your doctor before doing so. You will also need to monitor your blood sugar very carefully as you go about the exercise session.

So there you have the two main points to consider about fasted state cardio. All in all, the fat loss benefits of it aren’t even all that pronounced because the intensity of the cardio does come down. It will be just as beneficial to your body if you do an HIIT session later on in the day after you’ve taken in some food and have the energy to perform the most intense exercise.