Social Anxiety Revealed

What is Social Anxiety

Most of us will feel shy and self conscious on occasions like interview or seminar. When it becomes more intense and unreasonable, it limits social activities of a person and turned as social anxiety. It is a kind of social phobia in which the person feels an excessive and unreasonable fear of socail situations. Intense nervousness and self consciousness arises of a fear of being scrutinized, embarrassed or judged in public. It causes both physical and mental symptoms that are extremely uncomfortable.

Though the sufferers knows that their fear is overblown and irrational, they are helpless to shake it off. These people are usually well interactive with family and friends. but meeting new people, speaking in public or attending parties makes them more concerned and focused about their social performance which gets in their way of life and kick in. Instead of enjoying social activities, they might dread them and avoids altogether.

Causes of Social Anxiety

Social anxiety is the most common type of anxiety disorder and millions of people around the world are suffering with this phobia. It can affect anybody of any age like teens, kids and adults. Biological makeup, life events and experiences are the two major factors. People can probably blame their ancestors as it run in families. Neurotransmitter serotonin is a special chemical messengers helps to pass information from nerves to brain. Lack of this transmitter, alters the reaction of brain towards stressful situation, leads to anxiety. Behavior learned from role models like parents. Overprotective or shy parents are unintentionally sets an example to avoid certain social situations. People who received constant disapproving or critical reaction may develop negative thoughts on social events.

How the body reacts to social anxiety

At the time of anxiety, our body experiences some physical symptoms as result of ‘fight-flight response’. Rush of hormone called adrenalin, prepares the body either to fight or getaway. This response is activated too frequently in persons with social anxiety. Most common physical symptoms are blushing or red face, rapid heart beat, shortness of breath, chest pain and sweating. Some may experience mild to severe trembling, dizziness, nausea and diarrhea. Both nausea and stress turns the skin pale.

How it affects our life

Social anxiety is distressing and kills rejoice of the beautiful life. Human beings are social beings but unfortunately people are getting themselves isolated and house bound. Being hound bound, makes the people to feel lonely and disappointed on missed opportunities for fun and friendship, which paradoxically heightens the stress level. It prevents from chatting with friends, attending parties or joining an after-school clubs and so on. In schools, it keeps the person from reading aloud, volunteering an answer or giving a presentation. They may feel so shy to ask a question or to approach teacher for a help.

It makes impossible to show their talents and chances of new learning is in vein.

The world is highly competitive and fast moving. One should learn skills to thrive and survive. Social anxiety impairs one’s communication which is one of the most important aspect of day to day life and makes the people to freeze in their working environment, growth and achievement are in mystery unless they are ready to break their anxiety.

If anxiety is a learned behavior, it is certainly possible to unlearn it! Drinking before social situation to sooth nerves, staying quite or hiding in background, Avoiding social activities and being patched with buddies are not going to help to conquer anxiety. Being open to seek help is the success formula. There are several cognitive and behavioral therapies available to get rid of this phobia and to function maximum. In certain cases, anti anxiety medications are helpful. Medication and psychological therapy go hand in hand to treat social anxiety. Feel free and live maximum!

Use Sleeping Hypnosis To Solve Your Insomnia Problem

If you have trouble sleeping at night you are not alone. What you may not realize is that self-hypnosis can help you with this problem. Sleeping hypnosis is designed to assist you in dropping off to sleep and sleeping through the night. Sleep is important so that you can function properly during the day. Without sufficient sleep you go through life like a zombie and live a life that hardly seems worth living.

Helping sleep problems with self-hypnosis is only slightly different than dealing with other kinds of problems. In dealing with sleep issues you do the induction as you normally would and then go into your script. You do not however count yourself out of the trance but rather allow it to continue and turn into normal sleep. This is possible because of the close similarity between the hypnotic state and normal sleep.

Begin your induction by slowing down your breathing by taking deep, slow, and regular breaths as you breathe this way imagine yourself traveling down in an elevator, as you pass each floor you see the number, 10, 9, the numbers go by slowly as you count down; your body relaxes more and more as you count down. By the time you reach the first floor you will be at some level of hypnosis. Whether it is a light trance or a deep one is not important.

Now you begin your script and your visualization, in this scenario you see yourself sleeping deeply all night long. As you lay there you imagine that you are having a pleasant dream. Perhaps you are on a beach at sunset and you can hear the relaxing sound of the waves as they go in and out. As the sun sinks away slowly you sink deeper and deeper into sleep. You continue the scene, your manufactured dream if you will and let it carry you deeper and deeper asleep. As long as any part of you maintains awareness acknowledge the dream and let it carry you away. If you have problems sleeping due to any sort of fear you can address those fears in the session too. In this case see yourself overcoming the fear and sleeping safely and peacefully as a result.

You simply keep up the dream and some suggestions about being relaxed and sleepy and you never enter the part where you exit the state. Rather you keep to the dream and relaxation suggestions. You know that you are safe and secure and that you will awaken in the morning refreshed and full of energy. These are the basics of sleeping hypnosis and your plan of how to deal with your sleep problems.

Fungus Among Us

Fungal infection of the nails, also known as onychomycosis, is a very common foot condition treated by podiatrists. This condition is usually found in older patients. It is reported that 60% of people over 40 years old have evidence of fungus in their toe nails. Fungal nails are white to yellow in color and cause the nail to become thickened and lose their normal shape. Nails that have become abnormal in shape are called dystrophic. If the infection is severe, the thickened nail can begin to crumble. These infected thickened nails can also result in pain and discomfort when wearing shoes.

Lab tests for fungal nails: The presents of thickened dystrophic nails maybe an indication of a fungus infection. However, they can also occur in patients with a skin condition called psoriasis. Sometime, thickened nails can occur in patients with damaged nail roots due to major trauma such as a having an heavy object fall on the toe. More commonly, the trauma can be delivered to the toe in small doses, this is called micro trauma. This is caused by jamming the toenail into the top of the shoe. This kind of micro trauma is often associated with runners and people who wear narrow pointed shoes. Thus, before prescribing any creams, solutions, or oral medication to treat fungal nails, the podiatrist must send a sample of the nail to the lab to confirm the presence of fungus.

Prescription treatment of Fungal Nails: Using prescription medications to treat fungal nails usually takes many months before any improvement is seen in the nail. This is due to the long life cycle of the fungal organism and the slow growth of the toe nail. Most anti-fungal drugs attack the replication or reproducing cycle of fungus. Therefore, the improvement will only be seen in new growth of the slow growing nail Thus, a great deal of patience is required in treating fungal nails. It is also important to realize that after the completion of anti-fungal drugs, there can be a recurrence in fungal infection.

Common Types of Anti-fungal drugs: Terbinafine also known as Lamisil is the most potent anti-fungal drug used for fungal nails. It is easily distributed by the body into the nail via the nail root. Since terbinafine is broken down in the body by the liver, it is essential that a liver function blood test is performed before starting this drug. Patients with liver problems should not use terbinafine since this can result in severe damage to the liver. Thus, the podiatrist must request a blood test before prescribing this medication and during the course of the medication. The drug is taken once a day for 3 months. If side effects such as stomach or abdomen pain, diarrhea, rashes or headaches occur, the podiatrist should be notified. Lamisil will work to cure the fungus about 77% of the time.

Itraconazole (Brand name is Sporanox) is another oral anti-fungal drug that prevents the fungus from building its skeletal structure. The course of this treatment is 3 months as well. Additionally, this drug interacts with other medications, so a complete list of current medications should be given to the podiatrist. Cure rate is about 66%.

Ciclopirox 8% lacquer is an anti-fungal solution that is applied to the entire nail and 5 mm of surrounding skin for 12 months. This prevents the fungus from receiving its nutrients needed to grow. Common side effect is redness around the nail. There is a cure rate of 29%-36% with this medication.

During the course of the treatment for the fungal nails patients should follow the a hygiene protocol. Wash the feet two times a week with Betadine and soap. (As long as there is no history of Iodine allergy) Use anti-fungal foot powder in the socks. Change socks every day. Use a fungal spore killing agent in the shoes such as Micomist by Gordon Labs, as directed.

Management of Fungal Nails: For patients with poor kidney/liver disease, prescription medication may worsen these medical problems. Oral anti-fungal medication can decrease kidney and liver function. Thus, the best option in these cases may be routine nail debridement by a podiatrist. The podiatrist will cut the thickened fungal nails with special nail clippers, which then may be followed by grinding and filing of the nail by using a sanding disc or burr. The routine nail debridement usually requires the patients to return to the podiatrist about every 3-4 months.

Prevention of Fungal Nails: 1. Wear sandals when using public showers 2. Alternate shoes every day 3. Change socks daily 4. Avoid sharing shoes or socks

Final Thoughts: Lasers for the treatment of fungal nails. This therapy has become very popular in the last two years. There are currently two types of lasers being used to treat fungal nails. The first uses patented technology to attack the fungal spoors. The other laser uses infrared light waves to cause light or photo damage to the fungal cells. At this time the have been no large studies to prove the effectiveness of these treatment modalities. At this time, there are multi-center studies in progress to accurately determine the cure rates for the use of lasers on fungal nails. However, until these studies are published there is no evidence based proof that lasers can successfully treat this condition.

Copyright (c) 2010 Bruce Lashley

Acrylic Nail Fungus – Cause and Prevention

These days, acrylic nails, or known as artificial nails, are popular among ladies who want to enjoy something different and fun on their nails since these are highly decorative as well as hide out any discoloration that might have appeared on their nails due to long term nail polish use. The application of acrylic nails involves various thickening, altering, lengthening of the person’s natural nails. Because of this, there’s a possibility of an acrylic  nail   fungus  infection occurring between these layers.

Some people assume that this isn’t that big of a deal. However, there are cases wherein they actually turn out to be very problematic. This is because of the fact that  fungus , if left untouched, especially in damp and airless areas such as the inside of your shoes, sweaty feet and in between the acrylic and your real  nails . Some  nail  professionals also make the mistake of applying the acrylic  nail  over the natural  nail  that, unknown to them, is already harboring spores of the  fungus . Not only would this promote the decay of the person’s nails, it would also mean that the tools they used have already been infected. In the even that they use it immediately on a different client then they would further promote the spread of the  fungus .

So how does one prevent acrylic  nail   fungus ? One of the most effective routines when it comes to acrylic  nail   fungus  would be the use of Lamisil cream to the entire area. You should also try Fungoid tincture on your nails before you head to bed. If you fail to follow through with these preventive routines then you might risk getting a fungal infection or if you have your infection under control, it might start appearing again.

Remember to keep your fingers and nails as dry as possible and in the event that they do become moist or wet, you should dry them thoroughly. Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure and that definitely applies to taking care of your nails. It’s also good to remember to never underestimate the first simple signs of an infection because it can quickly become something more serious.

Types of Ankle Braces Sold at Online Medical Supply Stores

There are three types of ankle sprains; high, medial and lateral that people suffer from. Among them, lateral ankle sprains are those that occur most frequently. According to statistics obtained recently, as much as 85% of all ankle sprains turn out to be lateral sprains. Medical practitioners commonly refer to this type as an outside sprain of the ankle.

The majority of the ankle braces available in retail settings are designed for preventing an outside sprain and or to provide support while healing this type of sprain. By limiting the ankle’s range of motion, braces can prevent any further injury while providing comfortable support for what is usually a painful condition.

Before our discussion of the different types of medical supports available for the ankle, note that you that you can purchase low-end, inexpensive braces at any commercial store that offers sporting goods. Be aware though, if you are looking for high-end, medical grade ankle braces, you will either need to contact a reputable medical supply or place your order online.

Types of Ankle Braces

Lace-up units: These are semi rigid units made using a specially formulated nylon-vinyl material. The most prominent feature of this unit is that you will be able to tighten it according to you own comfort level. The semi-rigid design of the unit makes it much more flexible compared to the rigid braces available on the market. You can use the lace-up braces as prophylactics, or in other words, to prevent injury and create support for the ankle during athletic activities.

Post-injury units: These units are either gel-filled or air-filled and are equipped with plastic panels meant for contouring either side of the wearer’s leg. In addition, these units also have a hinge, which allows for comfortable dorsiflexion or backward bending and plantarflexion or forward bending. Post-injury units are mostly used for preventing inversion and pushing out swelling and are not meant for functional activities. These braces stabilize the leg and ankle for comfortable healing.

Rigid units: Rigid braces can be of two types, lace-up and stirrup. Doctors ask patients to use these braces during injury rehabilitation periods. A stirrup unit has been designed for making the up and down motion of our ankle comfortable and also for ensuring that the ankle doesn’t roll in or out.

Volleyball and basketball players often wear stirrup ankle braces when playing; the high stability of these units allows these players to avoid injuries caused by frequent jumping. Here, it must be noted that both volleyball and basketball involves frequent jumping. The lace-up units, on the other hand, are primarily meant for preventing eversion and inversion. Some companies have started making rigid units with straps, which wrap around the wearer’s foot to provide additional support.

Ultrasonic Liposuction – What You Should Expect

For some people, a few weeks of light workouts and a more health-conscious diet is enough to shed those excess pounds. Yet, for some, removing fat from trouble spots can seem next to impossible. If you want to really lose weight in a hurry, ultrasonic liposuction may be the answer.

What is it

When choosing to remove fat using this method, the doctor will use ultrasound waves that produce heat to help with fat removal in the area. While the traditional fat-removing methods can work well on a host of people, some folks have areas, such as the back, that may not respond as well to common procedures. Ultrasonic liposuction allows fat to be removed yet the skin will look better and be smoother. That’s because during this process, the fat turns into a liquid form and therefore it’s easier to draw out from the region. Once done, you can enjoy a smaller mid-section, less flabby back, tighter arms and more.

Benefits

For some people, looking great in their clothes means they have to lose a few pounds in order to feel comfortable. With ultrasonic liposuction, you can lose those extra layers of insulation and begin to enjoy a new body. In addition, shopping for clothing will be easier and you won’t have to feel self-conscious about how you look in a short dress, bathing suit, or skimpy t-shirt. Furthermore, you may even experience a boost in self-esteem since you are more confident about your body.

Finding a doctor

You don’t want to trust your body to just anyone. So that’s why you need to make sure you seek a professional physician to handle your ultrasonic liposuction. This procedure needs to be done by someone with very capable hands. If something goes wrong you want to know you’re in good hands. Also, working with a professional can help ensure you get the results you want. Furthermore, be sure your physician is certified to do the procedure and also has had at least a few years of experience with doing this type of fat removal. Once you do, you’ll have the peace of mind you want.

Recovery

  Bruising , swelling and numbness are common when trying to recover from ultrasonic liposuction. Also, it’s essential that you follow all of your doctor’s instructions when trying to heal. You want to be sure to take it easy and avoid any strenuous work or exercise right after the procedure. And if you had to get stitches, you want to be extra careful.

Risks

As with any medical procedure, you want to be in optimal health before getting anything done. When it comes to ultrasonic liposuction, there are a few risk factors that should be considered. Some people experience excess bleeding, a negative reaction to anesthesia, swelling,  bruising  and more. In addition, it’s possible to get blood clots as well as nerve damage. While rare, these side effects are possible, so it’s vital that you understand these possibilities before getting this procedure.

The Benefits of Low Body Fat

Low body fat in a human body is frequently linked with increased health benefits and appealing physical features in both sexes. The human body consists of several lean tissues such as muscle, bone, and organs that are metabolically active and adipose tissues such as fats that are less active. As per medical scientific tests, the healthiest percentage of fat for males is five pct, whereas for females it is twelve percent. Nonetheless statistics show that on average males have fifteen to eighteen percent fat and women have twenty two to 25 percent.

Low body fat does not determine whether or not a person is overweight or skinny. A pro bodybuilder may be overweight in respect to his height, but his body has exceptionally little fat and the majority of the extra weight is in lean muscles. On the other hand, other professional athletes such as marathon runners are usually underweight and thus have exceptionally little percentage of fat.

In both the cases, the body fat is more or less the same, nevertheless one is overweight and the other is skinny, which proves that body fat does not decide the obesity or leanness of an person. While inherited factors do affect the makeup of fat in an individual, it is frequently a mixture of inherited factors and chosen lifestyle. After the age of sixteen body fat composition changes are commonly due to changes in fat cell size and not owing to the amount of fat cells.

The most important benefits of low fat levels

The most prominent health advantage resulting from a low fat percent is probably the lower risk of heart troubles that may begin due to clogged arteries or veins. A number of persons might enjoy good health even after having a high body fat percentage, but when it comes to the general population, information clearly reveal that most of the population suffering from heart troubles have a higher percentage of body fat. Reports have revealed that people with additional fat around their tummy are more likely to suffer from Type 2 Diabetes than those with lesser fat around the waist.

Low body fat also reduces the danger of an assortment of types of cancers such as uterine cancer, cancer of the gallbladder, cervical cancers, ovarian cancer, and colon cancer in females. In males, chances of colon cancer, prostate cancer, and cancers of the rectum are less. Even though this theory has been applicable in lots of cases, it is still being debated, as the actual causes of cancers have not yet been overwhelmingly deduced.

Low fat might avert many health ailments

Low fat is linked with a reduced risk of Sleep Apnea, which can produce shortness of breath and even lead to heart attacks in some cases. It also reduces the risk of developing Osteoarthritis, that is common among the elderly and affects the joints in knees, hips and lower back.

If you are by now suffering from Gout, a disorder affecting the joints brought on due to high levels of uric acid in the blood, dropping your proportion of body fat may help in reducing the ache and suffering. The occurrence of gallbladder diseases in addition to gallstones is also unusual amongst people with little body fat. Bearing in mind the benefits of low fat, its time to get started with the keeping fit regimes that you have been planning for a long time.

Gastroscopy – Indications For Gastroscopy and What to Expect

Gastroscopy is performed by inserting a narrow, flexible, telescopic camera (a gastroscope) down the oesophagus, and into the stomach and initial part of the small intestine (the duodenum). Hence the name Oesophago-gastro-duodenoscopy, or OGD for short.

OGDs are performed in patients to check for conditions such as:

  • Gastritis (inflammation of the stomach lining)
  • Gastric ulcers
  • Barrett’s oesophagus
  • Gastric cancer
  • Coeliac disease

Who should get a gastroscopy?

Common indications for an OGD include:

  • Diagnosis: persistent gastric pains, heartburn, difficulty swallowing, upper gastrointestinal bleeding, unexplained anemia, ulcers (gastric and duodenal), Barrett’s oesophagus.
  • Biopsy: eg. Following an abnormal barium meal or barium swallow examination.
  • Therapeutic: removal of ingested foreign bodies, tamponade of bleeding oesophageal varices, feeding tube placement, injection/banding to stop bleeding

Preparing for the gastroscopy

You will need to ensure that your stomach is empty before the procedure. Generally, you will be asked to fast for at least 6-8 hours preceding the gastroscope. Medications that you usually take, such as those for hypertension, should be continued. Always check with your doctor should you have any doubts.

Dentures, glasses and contact lenses, if any, will have to be removed. You will usually be given some form of sedation to make you more comfortable.

The Procedure

You will be made to lie to your side with your head bent slightly forward. An anaesthetic will be sprayed to numb the back of your throat, thus reducing your urge to gag. Your doctor will place a mouth guard over your teeth (to prevent you from biting the scope) before putting the well lubricated gastroscope into your mouth. As the scope is guided gently down your oesophagus and into your stomach, you will be asked to swallow. Try to relax and follow your doctor’s instructions. A nurse will generally be on hand to suck the excess saliva from your mouth.

Once the gastroscope has reached your stomach, some air will be pumped in to expand your stomach. You may experience slight fullness in your stomach at this stage. Your doctor will then proceed to examine the linings of your stomach and duodenum in sections to ensure that all surfaces have been examined. Should there be a need for a biopsy to be taken, this can be done by passing a small instrument down a side port of the gastroscope. Tissue samples may be sent to the laboratory for testing to determine the nature of the tissue (ie if benign or malignant). Sometimes, testing for H. pylori infections are also done.

Once the examination is completed, the gastroscope is removed.

The whole procedure usually lasts between 10 to 20 minutes.

Following the Procedure

You will generally be made to rest in the recovery area of the clinic until the sedation wears out. If any of the following occur within 48 hours of the procedure, you should consult your doctor immediately:

  • Fever
  • Vomiting of blood
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Worsening abdominal pain
  • Allergic reactions such as eye swelling, wheezing or rashes which may occur with medications prescribed for the gastroscopy

Fibromyalgia Alternatives

Have you been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and you’re not feeling better or were not informed of the cause of your condition? Were you just put on antidepressants or anti-inflammatory drugs? Fibromyalgia did not emerge in the medical literature until the late 20th century and to this day does not have clear diagnostic criteria. Those of us practicing alternative medicine offer a much clearer picture of the causes and treatment options for Fibromyalgia. In 1990 the American College of Rheumatology published their criteria for the classification of Fibromyalgia Syndrome. These criteria consist of only two parts: (1) chronic, widespread pain that has been present for three months, and (2) pain elicited by palpation of specific tender points, more specifically 11 of 18 predetermined sites. Many authors began to report many more symptoms by the early 1990s. These included fatigue, irritable bowel, headache, cold sensitivity, atypical patterns of sensation, exercise intolerance, anxiety, depression, irritable bladder, dysmenorrhea, bruxism, and other symptoms associated with increased nervous system activity.

Muscle biopsies of FMS patients revealed no changes in muscle tissue, which exploded the theory of Fibromyalgia being an inflammatory disorder of soft tissues. It was also found that antidepressants did help to reduce patient symptoms by lowering nervous system hyperactivity. No underlying cause of Fibromyalgia was ever found and thus the cluster of symptoms became Fibromyalgia Syndrome

To clump all these symptoms together into one is fatally flawed and has left many patients with no answers, no help and more medications. Schneider and Brady have elegantly classified Fibromyalgia into “Classic FMS” and “Pseudo FMS.” Classic FMS consists of the following criteria: sleep disorders, anxiety syndrome, depression, alterations of brain and central nervous system chemistry, and brain injury/trauma. Classic FMS patients have low serotonin levels which is our “feel good” neurotransmitter. Serotonin is the target of many antidepressant medications but it can be boosted without drugs. 5-HTP and vitamin B6 can support serotonin levels as well as meditation and psychotherapy. Serotonin can become depleted after a major traumatic event or chronic stress. 

Pseudo FMS is broken down into three categories:

  1. Organic diseases: anemia, Lyme’s disease, hypothyroidism, rheumatoid arthritis, cancer and multiple sclerosis
  2. Functional disorders: improper diets, functional nutritional deficiencies, intestinal dysbiosis, dysfunction of liver detoxification.
  3. Musculoskeletal disorders: Multiple trigger points, joint dysfunction, muscle imbalances, postural distortion, undiagnosed disk/facet lesions.

Have you had a thorough examination and the necessary testing to rule-out any of these possible causes? Were you tested for dysbiosis (abnormal ratios of bacterial flora in the intestines)? What about your liver’s ability to detoxify or a thorough thyroid evaluation? I routinely test for these types of metabolic disorders and find the underlying cause of FMS patients. You don’t have to live with fatigue, depression, chronic pain, anxiety etc., there are answers for you.

Taking the Pimples Out of PMS

“Nooooo!” shrieks Shelly. Gazing into the morning mirror, she sizes up the latest addition to her face, an anticipated, though uninvited pimple loitering on her chin. “It’s like freaking clockwork.”

Ironically, these pimples do arrive like clockwork according to dermatologist Alan R. Shalita, MD. During PMS, some women- like Shelly- release more androgens (male hormones) from their adrenal glands. This hormone release alters the skin pH and increases facial oil secretion, a combination that encourages an onslaught of acne eruptions.

Dr. Shalita’s research of how the   menstrual   cycle  affects acne confirmed that premenstrual acne flare-ups are a reality for millions of women. However, Dr. Shalita offers a means for forecasting PMS pimples by pointing out that a previous investigation has demonstrated a link between the skin’s pore size and the  menstrual   cycle .

For example, the study showed that the skin’s pores are smallest in days 15 to 20 of a 28-day  menstrual   cycle . Facial oil secretion increased in days 21 to 26 of the cycle and decreased again two days before menstruation. The worst premenstrual acne flares occurred on day 22 of the average 28-day cycle.

It appears that Mother Nature, a procreative mastermind, designed the skin of women to look most radiant and alluring when fair-game maidens most likely have an egg in utero- awaiting a sperm bath.

If you are fantasizing that Mrs. Nature will ease up and that you will grow out of acne, dermatologist Alan R. Shalita, MD omens, “Acne that worsens during a women’s monthly cycle isn’t something that women will grow out of as they get older”.

“That’s some consolation doc,” snorts Shelly. Nevertheless, lay your worries aside ladies. You can derail PMS pimples with preparation.

Counteract the excess oil secretion during your PMS days by using clay masks to extract excess oils. Additionally, ensure that you are eating foods containing Omega 3 such as olive oil, salmon, spinach, mustard greens and rainbow trout. The essential fatty acid found in these foods helps the body eliminate pro-inflammatory substances that can trigger acne. Also, during PMS, give yourself permission to relax. Rest removes stress from your adrenal glands and helps reduce the amount of androgens circulating in your system.

Sinus Polyps – What Are the Symptoms, Causes and Treatment?

Whereas sinus polyps (sometimes called sinus cysts) are fairly easy to diagnose, without identifying the root cause and then following up with targeted treatment, medication or surgical removal could be a futile exercise.

Why? Because nasal polyps have a tendency to grow back within a relatively short time unless they are nipped in the bud.

When you first present your complaint to your doctor, s/he will ask a number of questions and then follow up with a physical examination of your nose.

Polyps are often detected by simply shining a light up the nostril. If not, s/he will use an instrument called an ‘Endoscope’ to examine the nasal passages in order to pinpoint the frequency, size and location of any polyps present.

Once identified, the physician should either refer you to an Ear, Nose & Throat (ENT) specialist or conduct the following tests in order to identify and treat the underlying causes:

  • Computerized tomography (CT) scan: This is a type of X-ray used to produce a clear image of the nasal cavities. This will identify the exact size and location of any polyps present, together with any other abnormalities such as a deviated septum (crooked nasal passage), nasal tumors or foreign objects causing obstruction.
  • Allergy tests: A qualified Allergist should carry these out. He will conduct skin prick tests on your forearms or upper back, using drops of known allergens in order to identify possible causes of nasal inflammation.
  • Blood tests: If the skin tests are inconclusive, a laboratory blood test may be recommended in order to screen for specific antibodies to various allergens.
  • Tests for cystic fibrosis: If the patient is a child, this test is essential. This genetic abnormality causes the overproduction of mucous that often leads to nasal growths. This is a non-invasive sweat test that measures the levels of chloride and sodium in the child’s perspiration.

Whereas fungi tests are expensive and often produce false negatives, an experienced physician can often identify symptoms of fungal allergies.

Medication

One or more of the following drug treatments may be recommended:

  1. Nasal corticosteroid spray: These medications are highly targeted and carry few, if any harmful side effects. They are designed to reduce inflammation, shrink polyps and sometimes eliminate them altogether.
  2. Oral corticosteroids: If nasal corticosteroids are ineffective, a brief course of oral corticosteroids may me recommended, either instead of or as a supplement to nasal steroids. Due to harmful side effects, this treatment should never be given for a period exceeding one week. Side effects include ailments such as hyperglycemia, insulin resistance, and bone loss leading to osteoporosis. As an alternative, your doctor may recommend a corticosteroid injection instead.
  3. In order to control inflammation caused by allergies, your doctor may prescribe specialized antihistamines that don’t cause the mucous membrane to dry up.
  4. If symptoms of fungal allergies were detected, s/he would recommend fungicidal medication.
  5. Chronic bacterial sinusitis may call for extended treatment with antibiotics.

Please note: A daily dose of 2 to 4 ounces of Mangosteen juice (obtainable from health food stores) may be an effective alternative to all of the above.

Surgery

If medications are ineffective and fail to shrink or eliminate the polyps, your doctor may refer you to an ENT specialist. If surgery is called for, the options include:

  1. Polypectomy. A small mechanical suction instrument called a ‘microdebrider’ is used to remove small isolated clusters of polyps. This procedure is carried out on an outpatient basis.
  2. Endoscopic sinus surgery. During surgery, the ENT would carry out a sinus drainage procedure by opening the osteomeatal complex (this is a series of tubes connecting the nasal passage to the sinus cavities). At the same time s/he would straighten a crooked septum if necessary, and finally, the surgeon would remove any obstructive polyps.

After surgery, you’ll likely use a corticosteroid nasal spray to help prevent the recurrence of nasal polyps. Your doctor may also recommend a regular saltwater rinse or sinus irrigation to promote healing after surgery.

Fibroids Natural Treatments – How To Ease Your Symptoms

Are you in search of fibroids natural treatments in order to ease the symptoms that fibroid tumors bring? Uterine fibroids are usually benign and don’t need treatment but they can become a huge problem and cause painful symptoms. Are you experiencing pain during sexual intercourse? Have you noticed that you are having heavy menstrual periods? Are lower back pains as well as pelvic pains bothering you? These may be symptoms that you have fibroids in your uterus. It can be difficult to live with these painful symptoms and you can ease the pain, shrink those tumors and stop future growth of uterine fibroids.

Here are some of the fibroids natural treatments that you can make use of:

Knowledge

Why knowledge? It’s because you can’t solve a problem if you don’t really understand what that particular problem is. In this case, you need to know what womb fibroids are and what causes them. The sad part is that the definite cause of fibromyoma (uterine fibroids) is not yet known as of the moment. However, researchers have found out that estrogen plays an important role in the development of uterine tumors. It has been reported that increased levels of estrogen in a woman’s body contribute to the growth of fibroids. Knowledge alone won’t directly ease the symptoms of fibromyoma but at least it’s a pretty good start. Normalizing the level of estrogen and other hormones in your body are good fibroids natural treatments and can help relieve the painful symptoms brought about by myoma.

Saying No To Birth Control Pills

Contraceptives are being prescribed to women who have no intention of getting pregnant anytime soon. The problem with birth control pills, aside from having side effects, is that some of them are very high in estrogen. This means that if you take such pills on a regular basis, you store a lot of estrogen in your body. This can result in hormonal imbalances. Uterine fibroids are likely to develop in a body with hormonal imbalances and in a body with high levels of estrogen.

Eating Organic Foods

Why go for organic foods you may ask? When you go for processed foods, it’s highly possible that non-organic produce might contain chemicals, preservatives and other artificial additives which are felt to contribute to fibroid growth. Of course, this includes junk foods and fast food items. Make sure that you also consume enough hormone balancing foods.

Homeopathy

One of those fibroids natural treatments that you can try is homeopathy. Several homeopathic mixtures involving calcarea carbonica, silica, phosphorus, lachesis,silica, nux vomica and others can help ease the fibromyoma symptoms and shrink the fibroids as well. It won’t hurt to try them but they are not for long-term use.

Recurring Ovarian Cyst Prevention – Effective Natural Remedies

Are you experiencing a recurring ovarian cyst? If so, you are no doubt aware of how discomforting it can be, and are likely looking for a way to get rid of it once and for all. Common remedies offered by doctors include hormonal treatments, painkillers, and surgery.

Drawbacks to Traditional Ovarian Cyst Treatment

Traditional treatments have their drawbacks. Surgery to remove a cyst is invasive and risky, not to mention expensive. Moreover, removal through surgery does not guarantee that a cyst will not reoccur yet again.

Hormonal treatments can be effective in preventing cysts from recurring. However, hormonal treatments are often accompanied by side effects that may be as discomforting as those originally brought on by the cyst in the first place. For example, birth control pills are often prescribed as a remedy for cysts, but common birth control pill side effects include nausea, weight gain, and mood swings.

Natural Prevention of Ovarian Cysts

Clearly, neither surgeries nor ongoing hormonal treatments offer ideal solutions, particularly in the case of cysts that are recurring. For this reason, an increasing number of women are turning to natural remedies as an alternative, healthier means of eliminating recurring ovarian cysts.

There is growing evidence to suggest that there is a connection between physical health and the occurrence, and recurrence, of ovarian cysts. Conditions including an unhealthy diet, lack of exercise, and a stressful lifestyle can result in conditions that make it more likely for cysts to occur.

For example, a diet that is high in sugar and simple carbohydrates can result in an elevated insulin level that causes the ovaries to produce too much androgen, which in turn can interfere with the ovulation process and lead to the formation of painful cysts.

Ultimately the best treatment for ovarian cysts is prevention, and to this end, natural approaches that include a healthier diet, proper hydration, sufficient exercise, and a reduction of stress may be more effective in ultimately eliminating a recurring cyst than traditional remedies like invasive surgery and hormonal treatments.

Vaginal Thrush Treatment

Vaginal thrush, also known as yeast infection or Candida, can be an incredibly irritating, embarrassing and, at times, painful, complaint to deal with.

  • Irritating, because that itch-scratch-itch cycle can drive you crazy,
  • Embarrassing, because if you’re in public, it’s not always appropriate to scratch the itch, and
  • Painful, because amongst other conditions, thrush can lead to bladder infections and sore, swollen and broken tissue.

Over the years, I must have tried a few dozen thrush treatments. I’ve used creams, jellies, pessaries, pills, herbal and holistic treatments, most of which gave some temporary relief, but only one of which gave any lasting results.

So, how do you get thrush, what are the symptoms and how can you treat it?

Causes of Vaginal Thrush

We all have the thrush bacteria and Candida Albicans (the yeast that causes thrush) present in our body. Under normal conditions, they hang out together, causing us no problems at all. However, if something should occur to create an imbalance which causes the level of yeast to rise, that’s when a thrush infection can occur.

There are many things which can cause this to happen, amongst them:

  • The level of estrogen in the body being unusually high (e.g.; during pregnancy or menstruation)
  • Using steroids or medication which contains steroids
  • Having sexual contact with a partner who has the infection
  • Diabetes – a high blood sugar level can bring on a bout of thrush
  • The use of antibiotics
  • Having a weakened immune system or being generally run down
  • The use of an IUD (some say that IUD’s which contain copper more likely to cause thrush)
  • The use of the contraceptive pill

Symptoms of Vaginal Thrush

The symptoms of vaginal thrush can literally keep you awake at night.

The maddening itch, which can drive you to utter distraction, is bad enough on its own. However, a really bad case of thrush can be made much worse if the inner and outer lips of the vulva become affected, resulting in sore, swollen and broken skin on the most sensitive of areas.

If this occurs, even the most simple and natural of bodily functions, e.g.; urinating, can cause extreme pain as the acid in the urine comes into contact with raw or broken skin.

It’s not unheard of for a person suffering from thrush to develop cystitis as well. If this occurs, a dull ache in the lower-back and an internal burning sensation when urinating are the tell-tale symptoms. These are sometimes accompanied by feelings of being shivery and weak.

Oftentimes, but not always, vaginal thrush is accompanied by a creamy white discharge, which if you’ve never had it before, can be quite alarming the first time you see it.

Thrush Treatment

If you’ve ever suffered from thrush, I’m sure you’ll agree that it’s a condition which, as soon as it develops, the only thing on your mind is how to get rid of it.

For most people, the first port of call is the pharmacy, where numerous over-the-counter treatments can be purchased in pill, cream or pessary form. (Incidentally, applying natural yogurt to the sore areas can bring pretty immediate relief, but unfortunately, it’s only temporary).

If none of the above help, or the thrush recurs, a visit to the doctor for an examination and some prescribed medication may be the solution.

However, if conventional medicine isn’t your preference, you may wish to investigate an holistic thrush treatment. This will not only treat the symptoms, but work on establishing, treating and eliminating the root cause of the infection.

Personally, this is the treatment that has suited me best, although I have to say that it took some time to get to grips with. Having said that though, it is, without doubt, the only thrush treatment which (so far!) appears to have prevented any recurrences of infection, which in my mind, makes it well worth having persevered with.

Hepatitis A, Symptoms, Treatment & Vaccinations

International travelers need protection against hepatitis A. This viral infection is contagious, common and preventable with an effective vaccine. Travelers should consult with a travel physician to learn how to minimize their risk.

What is hepatitis A?

Hepatitis A is a viral infection that infects the liver. It is common in many parts of the world and poses risks for international travelers. Illness severity is variable and most patients make complete recoveries.

How is hepatitis A transmitted?

This disease is transmitted when an individual ingests food or drink that is contaminated with microscopic amounts of infected feces. Physicians and scientists use the term fecal-oral transmission to describe this pathway. For example, travelers in a restaurant can become infected if a cook or a waiter did not practice adequate hygiene after using the rest room. Diners can also become infected if the food was contaminated prior to delivery to the restaurant. Food and beverages that are more likely to harbor the virus include fruits, vegetables, shellfish, ice and water. In the United States and other countries, chlorination eliminates Hepatitis A in the water supply. Fecal-oral transmission can occur in other settings. For example, if an infant is infected with the virus, then anyone who changes a diaper or bathes the child is at risk of contracting Hepatitis A. Finally, certain sexual practices can transmit the hepatitis virus.

What are the symptoms?

Hepatitis A symptoms include fever, fatigue, nausea, vomiting and joint pains. A characteristic symptom is jaundice when the eyes and skin turn yellow. Jaundice develops gradually and is rarely noticed by the infected person himself. All of these symptoms are called non-specific, meaning that they can occur in many other diseases also. Many people who are infected with hepatitis A have no symptoms at all. These individuals, however, can still spread the disease to others.

How is hepatitis A diagnosed?

If your doctor suspects that you have hepatitis A, then there are accurate blood tests available to establish the diagnosis.

Is treatment available?

Viral diseases generally are not treated with specific medications like antibiotics. Nearly all patients recover fully, although the illness can last for weeks or longer. After recovery, the individual is immune from future hepatitis A infection.

Can hepatitis A be prevented?

Definitely yes! The most effective strategy is vaccination. Hepatitis vaccine is strongly recommended to individual at risk including travelers to parts of the developing world where this infection is common. Even last minute travelers should receive the vaccine as they will still receive protection. Ideally, travelers should meet with a travel physician months before departure to discuss vaccinations against hepatitis A and other a preventable illnesses. Travelers should also be very cautious about where they dine, avoiding questionable establishments where sanitary conditions may be suspect.

What if I am exposed to Hepatitis A?

See your doctor. Depending upon the time of exposure and other circumstances, your doctor may advise the hepatitis A vaccine and other treatments. Of course, if you’ve already been vaccinated, then you are protected.