The Best Cure for Toenail Fungus That Can Get Rid of Toenail Fungus FAST

Feet are the wheels that allow the body-vehicle to travel. But when these wheels are compromised by an infection like toenail fungus, the journey can become slow, smelly, and even painful.

What is toenail fungus?

Toenail fungus is simply a fungal infection caused by spores – microscopic reproductive units – that get into the nail in order to grow. The fungi that cause the condition are found in moist environments that invite shoeless traffic, like swimming pools, locker rooms and showers.

How is toenail fungus spotted?

Toenail fungus takes the form of a whitish-yellowish speck that appears underneath the toenail. In a short amount of time, the growth can completely deform and destroy the nail, leaving a dried-up, discolored, hollowed-out piece of skin.

How is toenail fungus treated at home?

  • Foot bath: Foot baths are the best and least expensive way of dealing with nail fungus. Using one-part vinegar and one-part water, fill a basin/bath to the anklebone. Soak feet for 20-30 minutes, twice a day. Vinegar is a mild acidic that will kill the fungus without harming the skin or nail.
  • Mouthwash foot wrap: Soak a small hand towel in an antiseptic mouthwash-water solution for a few minutes so the entire fabric can become saturated. The solution should consist of one-part mouthwash and one-part water. Now, wrap the affected foot with the towel. Let it sit for 20-30 minutes. Once the wrap is removed, dry the foot completely and apply a moisturizing lotion. Do this once a day. Antiseptic mouthwashes contain bacteria-fighting chemicals that are effective at killing fungi, but can also dry out the skin.
  • Tea tree oil cotton ball: For those that are on the move, a tea tree oil cotton ball may be the best remedy. Soak a standard cotton ball in tea tree oil, an aromatic essential oil native to Australia, and then lay it on the nail. Then, wrap a gauze or adhesive bandage around the cotton balled-toe for 30-60 minutes and continue on with the day. This is an ideal option for those that have to go to work or attend school.

Vigilance is the first line of defense against toenail fungus. Fungus is, literally, a living, breathing thing. To stop this organism in its tracks, action must be taken as soon as it is spotted. And because it is alive, toenail fungus can come back at any time. Treatment must be administered regularly. Use any of these simple, inexpensive home cures to successfully defeat this foot foe and continue onward..

Identifying Common Allergy Symptoms

Do you have allergies? Whether you have seasonal allergies or you are allergic to certain situations, such as being exposed to animal dander, coping with allergy symptoms can be quite difficult. Not only are allergy symptoms uncomfortable, they can slow you down during the day and interrupt with your sleep cycle. Therefore, it is important to know how to recognize allergy symptoms and to know what to do in order to alleviate the symptoms you experience.

Recognizing Allergy Symptoms

Since there are so many different types of allergens and because everyone's body reacts differently to these allergens, allergy symptoms can differ from person to person. Nonetheless, there are several different signs and symptoms that are commonly associated with allergies and may signal that you have allergies.

Some of the most common allergy symptoms include:

o Abdominal pain
o Congestion
o Cramps
o Diarrhea
o Difficulty swallowing
o Dizziness
o Itchy and watery eyes
o Itchy skin
o Mental confusion
o Problems breathing
o Rash
o Vomiting

Whether or not you experience these symptoms will depend upon the type of allergy and how you make contact with the allergen. Physical contact with an allergen, for example, is more likely to cause rashes and itching, while inhaling the allergen is more likely to cause breathing problems.

Coping with Allergy Symptoms

Depending upon the type of allergy you have, you may be able to prevent allergy symptoms by taking certain types of allergy medicine. If you have seasonal allergies, for example, you might want to discuss the issue with your doctor and begin taking a prescription allergy medicine that will help prevent allergy symptoms from developing. If you are allergic to animals, on the other hand, you may want to talk to your doctor about prescribing an allergy medicine that you can take before being exposed to the known allergen.

Of course, you can not always prevent an allergic reaction. Sometimes, you may find yourself unexpectedly exposed to allergens. In this case, you will need to treat the allergy symptoms after they develop. It is important to keep in mind that you can only treat the symptoms when they occur rather than "curing" the allergy. Therefore, you should search for medication that will help alleviate the symptoms you are experiencing. If you have a rash, for example, you will need to use a topical ointment to treat the rash. If you are experiencing diarrhea and vomiting, on the other hand, make certain to stay hydrated and to seek medical attention if you can not get the symptoms under control.

The 5 Most Painful Effects of Insomnia

What Are The Effects Of Insomnia?

Insomnia is a disorder that affects millions across the world. We know we are losing sleep but very often we do not realize the other effects of insomnia that can ensue. If you are experiencing sleeplessness you need to be aware of how it is affecting your life and your health as well as your interaction with others. The best way to stay informed is to discuss your symptoms with a doctor who can evaluate your health and offer you ways to improve your sleep/wake cycles.

An important fact to keep in mind is that insomnia is actually a symptom and not a separate condition. Finding the source of your sleeplessness is the best way to resolve the issue. Discussing your sleep problems with a doctor also means keeping them informed of other things in your life that can have an impact on your health or stress levels. Reducing the amount of stress in your life may have a large impact on insomnia and its effects.

  • Irritability: We’ve all experienced irritability at some time or the other. Not getting enough sleep leaves us feeling cranky and more than a little frustrated. As a result of which we scowl, growl and interact poorly with others.
  • Depression: One of the more serious effects of insomnia, depression can also be the cause that started it. A lack of sleep can leave us feeling helpless, out of sorts and also weak. Caught up in these emotions we can easily become depressed.
  • Impaired Memory or Judgment: When our mind has been deprived of rest and the ability to recover sufficiently from absorbing information, it begins to falter. Your ability to focus enough to make decisions and your ability to create and remember memories may be delayed or may become frustratingly difficult.
  • Response Time Delays: When we’re driving, walking or doing other activities that require focus we don’t react as quickly as we would normally. Without enough rest the mind and the body do not react in sync or register changes that need to be made to avoid getting hurt.
  • Drug Dependency and Alcohol Abuse: Both of these problems are associated with insomnia. In desperation insomniacs try many methods to resolve the issue on their own. Alcohol may be used for its hypnotic effects which make it easier to drift off and drugs may be used to force the user to sleep without a natural sleep/wake cycle (or to achieve better concentration and energy levels where meth and cocaine are involved) being present. It’s far too easy to abuse these methods and therefore abuse of these substances can become a problem for insomnia sufferers. The problem only worsens when the substance is required to get to sleep.

These are only a few of the effects of insomnia. Along with these, diseases such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease can also be triggered off by chronic insomnia. When the lack of sleep goes on for long periods it can even cause the sufferer to prematurely age. Sleep is a necessary part of life. It gives us the ability to not only properly rest but also digest the information we’ve taken in that day and regenerate tissues that have degraded over the course of the day. If you feel insomnia may be a problem, it is imperative to seek the necessary help as soon as possible.

How to Spot Clinical Depression Symptoms in Yourself Or a Loved One and What to Do About It

If you are suffering from the following clinical depression symptoms –

– Depressed mood, or

– Loss of interest or pleasure.

Are you clinically depressed?

Either of these symptoms must also team up with four other clinical depression symptoms, which include:

– Constant sadness or fear, or inability to feel emotion.

– Loss of interest in enjoyable activities.

– Changing appetite and weight gain or weight loss.

– Disturbed sleep patterns, can not sleep or sleeping all the time

– Changes in activity levels, restless or moving significantly slower than normal.

– Fatigue, both mental and physical.

– Feelings of guilt, helplessness, anxiety, and / or fear.

– Lowered self-esteem.

– Decreased ability to concentrate or make decisions.

– Thinking about death or suicide.

Depression alters the way you think and react to situations to the point where you may become so pessimistic that you can do little or nothing about your condition. Because of this terribly negative outlook, it is extremely important that you seek professional help if you suffer from any clinical depression symptoms.

Untreated clinical depression symptoms can get worse. You may be temporarily stable or in remission but the depression comes back with a vengeance. If left untreated it may get better on its own within six months to two years, but there are times depression becomes chronic and lasts for many years or indefinitely. In many cases (but not all) treatment can shorten the period of distress to a matter of weeks.

While depressed, you may suffer socially (eg the break up of relationships), occupationally (eg loss of a job), financially and physically. Treatment of clinical depression symptoms can significantly reduce this damage, including reducing the risk of suicide. For all of these reasons, your treatment of clinical depression symptoms is necessary and could save your life.

There is hope! You are worth it!

Merri Ellen

Dating Commitment Phobia

Are you a person who has problems dealing with phobia? If your answer is like, "Come on, she is the one who always have the problems. I have absolutely no issues about commitment."

Are you sure? Think again. The reason why people are usually so afraid of commitment is because that they are unable to lead their regular lifestyles! Are you prohibiting her from living her regular lifestyle? Sometimes, it is good to review your wooing techniques. Are you too aggressive? Are you too self-centered? Or are you simply too possessive?

Do not assume quickly that these qualities can be derived after the woman has dived into the relationship. Most of the time, women decipher your characteristics before they decide they want to enter the relationship.

"Hey, but some women complain that their boyfriends are possessive after they enter the relationship!"

I agree absolutely. But, there is something that you have forgotten. Usually, guys act like gentlemen before they enter a relationship as well! Basically, it is quite hard to be comfortable with someone you fancy.

So, do not lie to yourself. Do not act who you are not. If you do not have deep feelings, it is wise for you to consider moving on in your life. Otherwise, when she maintains status quo after a few months of courtship, it is time to change your dating habits and traits.

No one said that a major change in your habits is going to be easy. Therefore, you should always start with taking tiny steps to fulfill your goal of finding a cute girl. There are really no shortcuts. Just take things as they go along and do not force your own ideals on others.

Types of Anxiety Disorders

The types of anxiety disorder include Panic Disorders in which there is an intense feeling of being out of control, unable to function with feelings of impending doom. Panic attacks can be so severe that a person can be disabled from leaving a secure environment such as their home, or they may need a person to be with them.

Agoraphobia which is strictly a disorder in which open spaces are feared, can sometimes include situations in which a person is enclosed, such as in a supermarket, but feels exposed to public scrutiny.

There is also Social Phobia which occurs when a person feels themselves to be inadequate to meet the demands and expectations of a social role. Such people will tend to avoid social events unless with people and in places where they feel totally secure. People suffering from social phobia may also have difficulty in dealing with people in many situations of potential conflict, such as disputing an account or requesting further product information from a shop assistant. In any situation where assertive social behavior is called for they may become inhibited, self conscious and shy.

There is a wide range of special phobias, some unique to the individual person and some, of broader scope, which affect a whole range of people. These can include a fear of flying, a fear of heights at a general level. Some very specific phobias can include fear of string, of the color red, a fear of snow or a fear of houses. Often specific phobias require some intensive investigation as to the background of the person concerned before recovery can be made.

There is also a condition known as Generalized Anxiety Disorder in which a person never feels entirely content or rested. They constantly feel distressed although cannot determine a precise reason for it. Most probably people with this disorder have some underlying concerns which have never been properly addressed such that many incidents in life arouse excessive levels of anxiety. This type of anxiety can be contributed to by media presentations, stories in the news, difficulties at home or in the workplace.

As a defense to feeling anxiety, some people resort to obsessive- compulsive behaviors and these can sometimes be most bizarre forms of rituals and repetitive behavior, designed to ward off stress. A person may clean their teeth several times, or wash their hands a great number of times per day. Some will spend hours making sure that cushions are arranged precisely, and that there is not a speck of dust in the house. These behaviors are compulsive in that if any attempt is made to stop the person from doing them, then the person will become hysterical and distressed, and exhibit signs of extreme anxiety.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is also an anxiety disorder and it occurs when a person has failed to fully process and discharge all of the negative impact of an earlier stressful situation. They may continue to have nightmares, flashbacks and painful memories of incidents which have been largely repressed or partial memories of incidents that were not fully processed at the time.

The other main category of anxiety disorder is acute stress disorder and this usually occurs as a result of a singular traumatic event. A person may become highly aroused and aggressive or virtually catatonic. Acute anxiety is resolved by a person taking on a fighting stance, or effectively running away from the issue by closing down their ability to receive any more input of information. People with acute anxiety disorder may have to be restrained, or hospitalized for their own safety or that of the community.

Is Tinnitus Dangerous?

The constant ringing of the ear may compel one to look for treatment. This is because the noise is irritating and an individual may fail to withstand it for a long time. Tinnitus miracle system gives an overview of this symptom and helps one to understand more about the condition and how to go about with it. It generally describes what the condition is, its causes and how one can lead a normal life even with the condition. In addition, it gives an overview of how to prevent the symptom.

Ear ringing is not a disease as many would think but a condition. It is experienced as sounds that do not seem to go away from the hearing organ or head when no such exterior physical sound is present. This condition mainly results as an effect of a fault within the hearing system. This fault is what brings about the hearing nuisance and disturbance.

The drumming sounds from the hearing organ can arise from all parts of the organ not excluding the abnormalities of the brain. People are usually not aware of normal body sounds as the external noise marks them. Wax inside the ears or alien object that block the background sounds will make us aware of our head sounds.This may traumatize most individuals as at the onset of any symptom most people usually do not know how to embrace the situation.

The greatest causes of this condition is the damage to the microscopic nerve endings in the inner part of this hearing organ. The damage can be caused by age factor. Thus as one ages a certain hearing impairment develops and the condition kicks in. Most doctors would recommend the aged to visit them more often than not to solve the issue before it takes roots.

Exposure to sudden or long term noise is also another factor that contributes to humming of the ears. Unfortunately many people are not aware of its harmful effects that come with too much noise. Industrial and transport workers are among the groups that are highly affected.International labor laws should therefore be applied in such firms.In addition, occupational, health ans safety standards should be complied to for the safety and satisfaction of the worker.

Fatigue and stress can also make this condition worse. Concentrating more on this condition can really undermines ones lifestyle. People with this symptom should therefore learn to take their minds away from such situation. For instance by maybe engaging in sports or yoga.

It is also relevant to see a doctor if one detects that they have this symptom. This is because some people are affected by certain drugs. Therefore the ear drumming maybe just but a side effect of these drugs. The most common drugs are antibiotics and drugs that treat arthritis among others.

Easing off beverages such as tea and chocolate can also help. Quitting smoking marijuana and common cigarettes will also help. This is because smoking leads to inefficient supply of oxygen to ones ears therefore accelerates the ear condition. Tinnitus miracle system provides all this knowledge and many more.

Are You Suffering From Pain in the Toe? Maybe Ingrown Toenail

Ingrown Toenail causes considerable pain in the toe. There are many symptoms for the same. Usually it causes pain and tenderness on either or both sides of the toenail. Swelling accompanied by fever also happens sometimes. Puss formation is also possible. The affected area becomes red and warmer than other parts of the foot.

There are a number of reasons for ingrown toenail. Not wearing the proper shoes is one prime reason. Improper cutting of the nails, injury to the nail base, are also reasons. In some people it may be inherited. The infection may spread, if not treated in the initial stage itself. The affliction may be chronic and it will appear as if there is no permanent cure. Usually the big toe is affected but it is possible with any toe.

Of all the reasons for ingrown toenail, the major cause is ill fitting shoes and defective trimming of nails. It so happens that the symptoms will appear only when the pain is noticed. The nail, if they happen to be bigger than the toes itself there is a possibility for the growth of toe nail. Children are not usually affected. It is a serious affliction for diabetics. If for any reason blood circulation to the feet is affected, very severe complications may result because of the ingrown toenail.

Temporary relief can be obtained by keeping the foot soaked in warm saline water. Infection may spread to the toe itself from the nail once the ingrown toenail takes hold. Injury to the toenail should be avoided always. Unnatural shape of the toenail, with extraordinary curvature is susceptible to the grown of ingrown toenail. While cutting the nail, care should be taken that it is not too short, it leaves the fleshy portion without any protection.

Infection of the foot due to ingrown toenail may be contagious and therefore it may spread to other members of the family also. Therefore treatment should start immediately and it can be done at home. Applying antiseptic is the first step. Soaking the feet a number of times every day, in salty warm water is a must. The warm water need not contain any antiseptic or antibacterial agent. Clean water will do. Padding with antiseptic cotton will help in stopping the puss coming out and also as a cushion against any external pressure.

It has been found that in majority of cases, coagulating the affected region with heated instrument or an alkaline substance has been very successful in treatment. With all steps being taken, unless the person chooses to wear the correct shoes, the problem will arise again and again. The essential point is that the toes should not get crowded within the shoe and they should have ample space in the shoes to occupy the necessary area required by them.

Sandals instead of shoes may be an option, the condition reaches normal. Use of antibiotics may help control the infection. Surgery is the last resort, done under local anesthesia. It will involve removing a part of the nail.

Funginix For Nail Fungus – Is it an Effective Treatment?

Yet another over the counter treatment for nail fungus, Funginix, has joined the multitude of other products that claim to cure this rather common albeit annoying health condition.

It is certainly no secret that toenail fungus is extremely stubborn and traditional, prescription medication hasn’t had much success in terms of a treatment or cure for the millions who must cope with the condition. But, does Funginix stand out from all the other products available and could it really be a viable alternative to prescription medications and their side effects?

What You Should Know About Funginix

Although the brand name is new, Funginix has actually been available as Fungisil since July 2008 and was rereleased under this new name on May 1, 2010. In the few short years it has been on the market Funginix has gained quickly in popularity as many consumers are now recommending it as their treatment of choice.

Funginix was developed by The Sisquoc Healthcare Corporation, a reputable healthcare company who is well versed in the field of nail fungus as well as skin care and beauty products. The topical treatment contains a total of 24 inactive ingredients known for their antifungal properties, one active ingredient (undecylenic acid, USP 10%) and no harsh chemicals.

Funginix has been approved by the U.S. FDA (Food & Drug Administration) for treating nail fungus and it causes no side effects and also comes along with a 60 day, no questions asked, money-back guarantee.

How Funginix Works

Funginix, or Fungisil, is one of the top selling OTC toenail fungus treatments in terms of its effectiveness and its stellar customer satisfaction rates. According to our research, an impressive 80% of consumers thus far have reported clear, fungus-free nails after 6 to 12 weeks of treatment while 40% noticed improvement after a mere two weeks.

Even those with the most severe cases of nail fungus state that their problem was solved within three to six months after using Funginix and the company’s customer service record also receives rave reviews.

The ingredients used to create Funginix include a combination of proven anti-fungal agents that have undergone extensive testing to determine their efficacy along with natural, essential oils and herbal extracts used to sooth the irritated skin and nails.

Some of the inactive ingredients you will find within Funginix include camphor, menthol, vitamin E, bearberry extract, and the essential oils jasmine, lavender, rose hip, sweet almond, and tea tree. All 25 ingredients in Fungisil are blended together in therapeutic dosages, as opposed to the bevy of home remedies that recommend using only one all natural ingredient such as tea tree or oregano oil. The benefit of carefully blending these ingredients is that they are brought to their absolute maximum effectiveness to fight nail fungus infections while neutralizing any possible irritation or allergic reaction.

Using Funginix

Funginix is incredibly easy to use and is applied directly to the infected nails twice daily allowing the topical solution the chance to attack the fungus that has invaded the nail bed. The hands, feet and nails should always be kept clean and dry before applying Funginix.

Using the included brush applicator, apply Funginix to the affected nails in the morning before putting on socks or shoes and then again in the evening before bedtime. The applicator should be used for working the solution under the nail bed and you can use a cotton swab for applying it to the cuticles.

The suggested length of treatment for completely killing all nail fungus is three to six months according to the severity of the infection although you may see a marked improvement in the appearance of your nails long before then.

What You Can Expect from Funginix

Although there are no clinical studies available on Funginix in regards to its effectiveness our consumer research showed a satisfaction rate that is head and shoulders above most products on the market and it put this product in the rather short list of effective treatments to consider. And while no product or treatment can guarantee that everyone who uses it will be rid of fungus forever, the vast majority of Funginix users do say their toenail fungus problem has been cured.

In conclusion, Funginix, the formerly named Fungisil, definitely has an established track record and a solid reputation as being an effective means of eradicating toenail fungus. This is definitely good news for nail fungus sufferers but they should remember that Funginix is not the only option to consider before starting treatment. When you decide to treat your nail fungus it is still best to fully explore all of your options and educate yourself on the most current information regarding this irritating but relatively harmless condition before proceeding with any type of treatment.

How to Prevent Ankle Sprains – Risk Factors (Part 3)

There have been numerous studies about how ankle sprains are caused and what factors increase your risk for ankle sprains. In this article I will go over some of the more and less common risk factors for incurring an ankle sprain. While ankle sprains can occur in anybody who walks or runs, they occur most frequently in athletes. There are several proposed risk factors for ankle sprains in athletes. While it can be difficult for researchers to design good studies of risk factors there are a few that are generally accepted for ankle sprains.

History of Ankle Sprain. The strongest predictor of ankle sprains is a previous history of ankle sprains. This conclusion is shared by nearly every study conducted on the subject [1], [2], [3], [4]. The people with the highest risk after they have previously sprained their ankle are those who did not proper rehabilitate the injury. An unrehabilitated ankle can be unstable afterward and is open to being sprained over and over again. The reason for this, some researchers think, is that when an ankle injury occurs some of the nerves that tell your body what position your ankle is in are damaged. These nerves are called proprioceptors and the ability to determine the position of your body parts is called proprioception. When these nerves are injured it can be more difficult for your body to know how to position your foot to keep it safe.

Balance. Lack of balance (also referred to as Postural Sway), may indicate a lack of proprioception due to ankle stability. A study of ankle sprain risk factors identified athletes with poor balance as those who could not maintain a single-leg stance for at least 15 seconds without touching down the unplanted foot to remain steady [5]. These people had an increased occurrence of ankle sprain injuries. Another researcher studied high school basketball players using a specially designed machine to identify those with poor balance [6]. Players with low pre-season testing scores experienced nearly 7 times more ankle sprains than those with normal balance.

Height and Weight. There is not much agreement as to whether height and weight are significant factors for ankle sprains. Studies of soldiers in basic training exercises indicated that being taller and heavier were risk factors. Another research study, however, experienced different results and determined that height, by itself, was not a risk factor [7]. This was based on a study of 1,601 West Point cadets who participated in basketball with no history of ankle sprain or instability. There were no findings to indicate height and weight as something that would increase or decrease the risk of an ankle sprain. Until more research is done it is unclear whether taller or heavier people have a greater risk for spraining an ankle.

Foot Shape / Joint Laxity. You might expect a lax ankle joint to be at a greater risk for ankle sprains. However, evidence indicates that this is not the case. One research study evaluated ankle joint laxity using orthopedic testing [8]. Based on these results it was not possible to predict an increased likelihood for ankle sprains based on the mobility of the joint. Other factors like the shape of the foot or whether it over-pronated during running or walking, did not indicate a higher risk for sprains. However, over- and under-pronation may indicate some degree of foot instability.

Gender. Males and females tend to experience the same frequency of ankle sprains. When all other risk factors are taken out of the equation, neither gender is at a greater risk for an ankle sprain.

Muscle Strength and Reaction Time. Muscle strength and reaction time are not risk factors for ankle sprains. The muscles in your legs control the position of your foot. Researchers have studied the velocity and forces necessary to sprain an ankle [9], [10]. In order to rupture a ligament in the ankle complex the speed required is greater than the speed with which your muscles react to the stimulus that your ankle is about to go too far in one direction or another. In addition it takes even longer for your muscles to reach full contraction. By the time this happens your ligaments could be long gone. What reaction time and muscle strength do affect is the positioning of your foot before it hits the ground. This positioning can be very influential when it comes to increasing you risk of ankle sprain [11].

Shoe Type. Shoes may increase or decrease your risk for ankle sprains. Some researchers theorize that certain types, such as high-top basketball shoes, may increase proprioceptive feedback from the ankle joint [12]. There is also some evidence that shoes offer some resistance to the excessive range of motion in the ankle [13]. One study was done of over 10,000 recreational / elite basketball players to determine some ankle sprain risk factors. In a questionnaire distributed to players who had suffered an ankle sprain they asked several questions about shoes including: cut (high, mid, low-top), cost, brand / model, and condition (good, fair, poor). When they noticed a high frequency of players wearing more expensive shoes also suffered ankle injuries they looked at other commonalities in the high priced shoes. The most common feature of these shoes was the presence of air cushions in the heel portion of the shoe. From this research they conclude that these air cushions increase the likelihood of an ankle sprain. The same may be true for shoes with energy return systems like Nike Shox. There are four key features of a shoe that will help limit ankle injury. These are lateral (side-to-side) stability, torsional (twisting) flexibility, cushioning, and traction control. The most significant of these features is traction control [14]. Among soccer and football players, cleat length and design has been linked to an increase in ankle injuries [15]. The increased traction increases foot fixation. This foot fixation increases the vulnerability of all of the lower joints of the leg, in particular, the ankle.

Surface conditions. The quality and condition of the playing surface is a risk factor for ankle sprains. Any surface that has friction which is not optimal (too high or too low) increases an athlete's risk for injury. For instance artificial turf increases friction, while water on a court surface may drastically decrease it. High friction will hold the contact foot stationary while the momentum of the rest of the body will create great stress on the joints and ligaments of the ankle. Low friction will cause the contact foot to slip from under the body causing excessive motion at the ankle joint, thereby stressing the ligaments. With these risk factors in mind it is possible to greatly reduce your likelihood of suffering and ankle sprain. Some risk factors can not be avoided. To help protect yourself in these situations there are some proven methods for decreasing your risk of ankle sprain. Now with this information in mind we are ready to discuss the top three methods for preventing ankle sprains: taping, braces, and exercises.

[1] Thacker SB, Stroup DF, Branche CM, Gilchrist J, Goodman RA, Weitman EA. Prevention of Ankle Sprains in Sports: A Systematic Review of Literature. The American Journal of Sports Medicine 1999; 27 (6) 753-760.
[2] Beynnon BD, Murphy DF, Alosa DM. Predictive Factors for Lateral Ankle Sprains: A Literature Review. Journal of Athletic Training 2002; 37 (4) 376-380.
[3] McKay GD, Goldie PA, Payne WR, Oakes BW. Ankle Injuries in Basketball: Injury Rate and Risk Factors. British Journal of Sports Medicine. 2001; 35: 103-108.

[4] Willems T, Witvrouw E, Verstuyft J, Vaes P, De Clercq D. Proprioception and Muscle Strength in Subjects With a History of Ankle Sprains and Chronic Instability. Journal of Athletic Training. 2002; 37 (4) 487-493.
[5] Watson AW. Ankle Sprains in Players of the Field-Games Gaelic Football and Hurling. Journal of Sports Medicine, Physiology and Fitness. 1999 v39: 66-70.
[6] McGuine TA, Greene JJ, Best T, Leverson G. Balance As a Predictor of Ankle Injuries in High School Basketball Players. Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine. October 2000 v10 (4): 239-244.
[7] Sitler M, Ryan J, Wheeler B, McBride J, Arciero R, Anderson J, Horodyski M. The efficacy of a semirigid ankle stabilizer to reduce acute ankle injuries in basketball. A randomized clinical study at West Point. American Journal of Sports Medicine. 1994: v22: 454-461.
[8] Barrett JR, Tanji JL, Drake C, Fuller D, Kawasaki RI, Fenton RM. High-versus low-top shoes for the prevention of ankle sprains in basketball players: a prospective randomized study. American Journal of Sports Medicine. 1993; 21: 582-585.
[9] Vaes PH, Duquet W, Casteleyn P, Handelburg, Opdecam P. Static and Dynamic Roentgenographic Analysis of Ankle Stability in Braced and Nonbraced Stable and Functionally Unstable Ankles. American Journal of Sports Medicine. 1998 v 26.5: 691-702.
[10] Konradsen L, Voight M, Højsgaard C. Ankle inversion injuries. The role of the dynamic defense mechanism. American Journal of Sports Medicine 1997: 25: 54-58.
[11] Carnes, Michael. Personal communication. February 2007.
[12] Barrett J, Bilisko T. The role of shoes in the prevention of ankle sprains. Sports Medicine. 1995 Oct; 20 (4): 277-80. [13] Ottaviani RA, Ashton-Miller JA, Kothari SU, Wojtys EM. Basketball Shoe Height and the Maximal Muscular Resistance to Applied Ankle Inversion and Eversion Moments. The American Journal of Sports Medicine. 1995. v23 (4): 418-423.
[14] Reinschmidt C, Nigg BM. Current Issues in the Design of Running and Court Shoes. Sportveri Sportschad 2000; 14: 71-81.
[15] Torg JS, Quedenfeld T. Effect of shoe type and cleat length on incidence and severity of knee injuries among high school football players. Res Q. 1971; 42: 203-211. 16] Hamill J, Knutzen KM. Biomechanical Basis of Human Movement 2nd ed. Baltimore: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins 2003

Symptoms of Leukemia: Spotting Them Before It’s Too Late

Leukemia is a type of cancer that is very common nowadays. It does not choose who it attacks: men, women, children, adults, Caucasian, African-American, Asian, Hispanic – we are all at risk. According to the latest survey conducted, almost 44,000 people will be diagnosed with leukemia by 2010. It is now 2011. However, with developments that we have had in the aspect of health and medicine, the outcome of leukemia is looking bright. There is now a significant increase in the survival rate – a little over 50 per cent. That might not be a very big number for you, but compared to the 1970s when they only had a 14 per cent chance of survival, 50 per cent is almost like being disease-free. Won’t you agree?

Surviving leukemia would largely depend on the severity of the disease by the time it gets diagnosed. As you could deduce, an earlier diagnosis of leukemia would give a better prognosis as compared to a late detection. Knowing which symptoms to look out for would be a great help in getting the earliest treatment possible. The following would be the most common symptoms of leukemia:

• Fever and recurrent infections. The reason behind this is that in leukemia, you do not have mature white blood cells to combat foreign bodies. You do not have a good defense system to protect you from invading viruses.

• Fatigue. Leukemia is a condition where there is a massive production of abnormal white blood cells. These cells would take up a lot of space, thus impeding the production of other types of cells. Since the production of red blood cells is decreased in the process, oxygen delivery to your various systems would also be decreased. This is what’s causing fatigue.

• Bleeding and/or easy bruising. Bleeding, when associated with cancer, is painless. The same goes with bruising. A normal bruise would be tender when touched. Bruising, as related to leukemia, does not have any pain at all. Platelets, the ones responsible for clotting, are decreased in leukemia. This causes the bleeding and the bruising.

• Petechiae. They are tiny, rash-like spots found on the skin. Unlike rashes, though, petechiae are not itchy. This is caused by the rupture of capillaries and a decrease in platelet count.

• Pain. All types of cancer have pain. In the case of leukemia, it is bone or joint pain. This should not be confused with symptoms of bone cancer, though. The pain in bone cancer is caused by the compression of nerves due to tumor growth. In leukemia, the pain is caused by the overcrowding of blood cells in the bone marrow.

There are many other symptoms of leukemia, but the aforementioned would be the most common of the lot. If you experience any of those mentioned above, consult with your doctor immediately. If you get treatment early in the disease, there is a chance that the cancer cells might be eradicated and you would be one of the few survivors who would live to tell your story about battling with death.

AFOs – A Down To Earth Guide on Ankle Foot Orthoses and Orthopedic Braces – Part 13

The Difference Between Traditional AFOs & CAM Walkers

CAM Walkers are effective orthopedic braces that should not be confused with AFOs. Yes, it is considered to be an orthosis for the ankle and foot, but there are large differences between a CAM walker and a traditional AFO.

What Does “CAM” Stand For?

CAM is an acronym that stands for “controlled ankle motion”. These kinds of orthopedic braces are like removable casts for patients, except better. Many times patient’s will wean into one after a cast is removed. The benefits here are that a CAM Walker can be removed so the patient can monitor their skin and clean themselves. From here, eventually, a patient can then wean into an AFO when the physician

sees fit.

Why Would A Patient Use A Cast Instead of A Cam Walker?

Interestingly enough, patient’s might not go directly into a CAM walker after an ankle or foot fracture. For example, if the physician is concerned that the patient might now wear the orthosis provided, or it will worn incorrectly, then a cast might be applied and left on for these reasons. Not everyone is able to notice whether they have a brace on correctly (due to confusion or not being alert) and this is a major reason why a cast might stay on instead.

What Do These Braces Look Like?

CAM walkers usually have an open toe, are gray or black in color, and will also have tread and a rocker bottom on the plantar surface. (The plantar surface is considered to be the bottom of the foot.) These braces are typically prefabricated. These orthopedic devices also typically come up your leg as high as a traditional AFO (ankle foot orthosis). This means that a CAM walker will come up to the widest part of the calf for most people. As a result of having tread and a rocker bottom, as opposed to a traditional AFO, the patient does not have to put them inside a shoe, in the vast majority of cases. Why? Because of the presence of the rocker bottom and tread, these brace are already like their own shoe in effect.

Closing The Toe On A Cam Walker

If you are a professional in any field, or a student perhaps, then your association with work or school may insist that you have closed toe footwear. Yes, it is probably to protect your toes. You can also probably assume that closed toe footwear is required for insurance reasons as well. CAM “boots” as they are sometimes called (incorrectly) do not usually have a closed toe, so if you need one added to your orthosis, then do not worry. You can go to your local, licensed orthotist and they can help provide this for you.

* This is health information. Brace scenarios can vary slightly, so it is best to get medical advice from your local, licensed orthotist regarding your particular situation.

Gastroenterology Medical Coding – Upper GI Procedures

Gastroenterology is a medical specialty that deals with the digestive system and its disorders. Gastroenterologists use a number of diagnostic procedures to accurately identify the patient’s medical condition and prescribe treatment. Coding for gastroenterology involves accurate coding of the various procedures and services offered by the physician. Reimbursement is offered for procedures provided in in-office, in-facility, hospital outpatient and ASC facility settings. Payment policies vary with individual payers and therefore these should be verified before providing treatment to identify limitations if any, on diagnosis, site of service or coding requirements.

Common Gastroenterology Procedures

• ERCP (endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography) – this procedure combines the use of X-rays and endoscope. It is used to identify disorders such as gallstones, tumors, cysts, blockages and narrowing in the ducts.

• Sphincterotomy – to treat abnormalities diagnosed during an ERCP

• EUS (endoscopic ultrasound) – ultrasound of the pancreas, transduodenal or transgastric

• Sigmoidoscopy – enables the physician to view the lower end of the colon.

• Gastroscopy – this helps to examine the lining of the oesophagus, stomach and duodenum using an endoscope.

• Colonoscopy – is utilized by physicians to have a direct view of the whole of the large bowel or colon.

Upper Gastrointestinal Procedures and Codes

Upper gastrointestinal procedures include endoscopic and esophagoscopic procedures. These help the physician to view the interior of the upper GI tract including the esophagus, stomach and duodenum. When billing for Upper GI procedures, you have to verify payer conditions for covering the procedure. The services are usually covered when medical conditions such as esophageal disease, anemia, gastric ulcer, Celiac disease, persistent upper abdominal symptoms, and involuntary weight loss have been diagnosed.

• 43200 Diagnostic esophagoscopy

• 43202 Esophagoscopy with biopsy

• 43215 Esophagoscopy with foreign body removal

• 43216 Esophagoscopy with electrocautery removal of tumor or polyp

• 43217 Esophagoscopy with snare removal of tumor or polyp

• 43220 Esophagoscopy with dilation

• 43227 Esophagoscopy with control of bleeding

• 43232 Esophagoscopy, rigid or flexible; with transendoscopic ultrasoundguided intramural or transmural fine needle aspiration/biopsy(s)

• 43234 EGD – simple primary examination

• 43235(dagger) EGD – diagnostic

• 43238 Upper gastrointestinal endoscopy with transendoscopic ultrasoundguided intramural or transmural fine needle aspiration/biopsy(s) esophagus (includes endoscopic ultrasound examination limited to the esophagus)

• 43239(dagger) EGD with biopsy

• 43241 EGD with transendoscopic catheter or tube placement

• 43242 Upper gastrointestinal endoscopy with transendoscopic ultrasoundguided intramural or transmural fine needle aspiration/biopsy(s)(includes endoscopic ultrasound examination of the esophagus, stomach, and either the duodenum and/or jejunum as appropriate)

• 43246 EGD with PEG tube placement

• 43247 EGD with foreign body removal

• 43250 EGD with electrocautery removal of tumor or polyp

• 43251 EGD with snare removal of tumor or polyp

• 43255 EGD with control of bleeding

Certain codes 43200, 43202, 43234, 43235 and 43239 require prior authorization with some payers, and this has to be verified beforehand.

Some Important Considerations

A comprehensive endoscopic evaluation of the upper GI tract has to be reported with the code 43235. This usually involves a detailed view of the esophagus, stomach and duodenum and a thorough examination of the duodenal bulb. Physicians should use code 43239 to report EGD (Esophagogastroduodenoscopy) with biopsy. An EGD that is provided just as a primary examination and does not include “comprehensive” components can be reported with the code 43234. Lesser services such as esophagoscopy and esophagoscopy with biopsy should be reported only using their specific codes, 43200 and 43202 respectively. Physicians should avoid the practice of adding modifier -52 to 43239 to signify these reduced services, because this usually results in pointless delays or even denials of payment. When reporting biopsies and procedures for removing foreign bodies, physicians should take care to choose the code that clearly specifies these.

In cases where more than one procedure is carried out during a single visit, physicians should ensure whether these come under the multiple endoscopy payment rules. Here, Medicare as well as most private payers will reimburse the full value of the highest-valued procedure, along with difference between the value of the remaining procedure and the base endoscopic procedure. Modifier -51 has to be used along with the lesser-valued procedure.

What Influences Female Orgasm?

Have you ever noticed how her libido ebbs and flow at different times? Do you ever wonder why on some nights she is very horny and really wants you, yet on other nights, she needs some coaxing? Do you know that her libido is controlled by her hormones which can fluctuate on a daily basis depending on where she is in her menstrual cycle? Would you like to know the sexual implications about the changes in her hormone levels?

One of the ingredients of great sex is it should be mutually enjoyable and fulfilling. It therefore helps a lot that as guys, we should have a good understanding about the hormonal changes happening in a woman’s body and how these can affect her sexual desire.

4 Hormones Influencing Her Monthly Menstrual Cycle

(1) Follicle-stimulating hormone is responsible for stimulating the ovarian follicles (the tiny sacs of eggs) to grow.

(2) Estrogen is produced by specialized cells within the developing follicles. When this hormone reaches the blood stream, it will build up the lining of the uterus in expectation of a fertilized egg. It also thins the mucus in the cervix (the narrow outer end of the uterus) to make it easier for the sperm to reach and fertilize the egg.

(3) Luteinizing hormone triggers the egg to break from the follicle (sac). It also causes the broken follicle to grow new cells that produce the progesterone.

(4) Progesterone causes the lining of the uterus to secrete protein-rich substances for nourishing the egg if it is fertilized. If not, these substances will be drained out of her body together with her menses. This hormone also helps to thicken the cervical mucus to make it more difficult for the sperm to reach the uterus.

The rise and fall of estrogen and progesterone seem to be responsible for the shifting physical and psychological sensations many women experience in their monthly cycles. When estrogen is in command (during the 1st half of menstrual cycle), women tend to feel better both physically and emotionally, more self-assured and less irritable.

When progesterone is on the rise (during the 2nd half of menstrual cycle), women tend to have more negative feelings such as low esteem, impatience and lethargy. They may also experience more physical ailments such as headaches, swollen ankles and muscle fatigue. Therefore, when she turns down your sexual advance claiming she has a headache, she may not be lying to you. These shifts are tendencies that may not happen to every woman. The intensity of these changes also varies from woman to woman and from month to month for each woman.

The average length of the menstrual cycle is 29.5 days. It is normal for women to have a cycle ranging from 15-49 days. Most women’s cycles get shorter as they age, from an average of 35 days during teen years to 28 days by mid 30s. The length of menstruation also varies among women from 2-8 days. A variety of factors can shorten the cycle from month to month, including crash diets, stress, excessive exercise and prolonged use of contraceptive. Some research indicates that a sexually active female (having sex at least once a week) tends to have a shorter and more regular menstrual cycle.

How The 4 Phases Of Menstrual Cycle Affects Female Sexual Desires

(1) Bleeding Or Menstruation Phase (Day Number 1 To 5)

The bleeding can last from 2-8 days. A woman may feel depressed and normally little or no sexual activities.

(2) Pre-Ovulatory Phase (Day Number 6 To 14)

Estrogen continues to rise and peak on around the 12th-14th day as her body is getting ready to ovulate. The lining of the uterus begins to thicken and cervical muscles get thinner making it easier for the sperm to enter the uterus. During this period, she is feeling confident and is in the mood for romance. The 10th-14th day will be a good time for some long, slow romantic lovemaking.

(3) Ovulation Phase On The 14th Day (Peak Sexual Desire Day)

On this day, she is at her peak desire (if she is not taking birth control pills) with her eggs readies to drop and her testosterone spiking. Men will flirt with her today too, since she is giving off an animalistic level of pheromones. If you want to get her pregnant, today is the perfect day. Today is a great day for quickie sex as she wants you a lot and probably more than once. She is most likely to be multi-orgasmic today, so be sure to satisfy her any way you can.

(4) Premenstrual Phase (Day Number 15 To 29)

Within 24-28 hours after ovulation, her body temperature will increase by about 0.5 to 1 degree and stays there for several days. Cervical mucus gets thicker making it difficult for the sperm to enter the uterus. Progesterone continues to rise and peak on around the 22nd day. Some women will have bad mood during this period.

However, some sex researchers discover that women have a 2nd stretch of days during this period when they tend to be more sexually active. This resurgence of sexual desire may be caused by the sudden drop in progesterone that occurs after the 22nd day. It is believed that high levels of progesterone suppress female libido so when the level falls, her desire will go up.

On a daily basis, the best time to have sex will be between 9 am to 12 noon, when estrogen levels are at the highest. The bad time for intercourse is between 6 pm to midnight when estrogen levels are at the lowest. This is a problem because most working activities are organized in the day time and most people can have sex on evening except on weekends.

This implies that for evening sex to be mutually enjoyable, a lot of foreplay (touching, manual and oral stimulation, dirty talking, role-playing, sex toys, lubricants) plus patience is needed to get her in the mood. In places that have 4 seasons, female libido is at the peak at around late summer period which explains why a lot of births occur at around early summer.

Moving House Tips

Moving house is generally said to be the third most stressful thing that you can do in your life after death and divorce. There’s a huge unknown factor when moving house and a certain amount of uncertainty as you pack up all your possessions and move from one place to another.

Some people may only move once or twice in their life whereas others may move house every few years but either way, there is usually a time and cost factor when you move house but fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to prepare yourself in good time ahead of your move to reduce many of the unknown factors as well as reduce the subsequent stress factor.

Use the following moving house tips for your next move;

1) Get out the pen and paper and make a list of the things to do

Compile a checklist of the companies you need to notify of your house move and make sure you notify them in good time, especially if you need post redirected. A list of things to do will help you maintain perspective of the situation and keep you proactively working towards checking off each item on the list.

2) Use your packing as the perfect opportunity to have a spring clean of your things.

As you begin to sort out every item in your house you could benefit from the chance to throw away junk items that may have mounted up over the years and give clothes that may no longer fit you to charity or your friends and even sell unwanted items on eBay.

If you can take the time to reorganise the possessions in your current home, you will find it much easier to pack and move the items you actually want to keep into your new home.

3) Pack anything you have no immediate need for

In the months leading up to your move you can begin to think about the items you will not have any need for before you move house and which can be safely packed away into temporary storage to save you time on the final packing.

4) Make sure you have enough packing materials

When moving house the last thing you want to find is that you don’t have enough boxes to pack all of your possessions. You may find it easy to go from room to room to gauge a rough idea of how many boxes and of what type you may need for your packing. Alongside the boxes you will need a few rolls of brown tape, bubble wrap and a few black markers to clearly label your boxes.

A specialist packing and storage company may be ideal for you to buy your packing materials from as there will be a wide range of box sizes and types to choose from and you can also purchase specific packing containers for items such as clothing, bed linen and special boxes for items that need to be kept hanging such as suits, wedding dresses etc.

5) Use common sense when packing your boxes

It may sound obvious but items such as books and paperwork can be quite heavy when bulked together and will be difficult for you, or even the removals men, to lift. Use smaller and thicker boxes for bulky or heavy items that can be swiftly transported from your home to the removals van.

Delicate items and breakables should be carefully individually wrapped in newspaper or bubble wrap to give support when in transit. Also ensure you carefully label them. Similarly, it’s also wise to label any hazardous chemicals so that both you and others can transport with additional care.

Make sure you also know where your valuable items are at all times. Important paperwork and jewellery should be packed last and it may be advisable to keep these items with you during the move.

Also advisable is to keep one box handy at all times that contains essential items such as toilet paper, the kettle and tea bags and a few mugs and potentially matches and some spare light bulbs for the new house.

With careful preparation, time and due care, there is no reason to think that moving house need be at the top of your list of most stressful things.