Do I Have Water Retention?

Water retention is one of those things that most people would rather diagnose themselves than have to go and see their doctor about, but do you know what to look for? Should you be going to see your doctor anyway, or is this something that you can easily treat yourself?

In this article we’re going to check out what water retention is, next we will find out a few fast ways of seeing if you are retaining water, and finally we are going to see if this is something that you can tackle yourself, without having to trouble your local doctor about it.

What is water retention?

Water retention (also referred to as bloating or more scientifically as   edema ) is a condition where the body retains water rather than passing it in the usual ways i.e. urine. It will start to cause tenderness and swelling around the abdomen and in the extremities such as the hands and feet.

How do you know you have water retention and not some other condition?

One of the quickest ways to test for water retention is to press for a couple of seconds on the lower part of your shin. If you are retaining water then you should notice a tiny indentation where you’ve been pressing with your thumb.

When you take off your socks do you notice a ring left around your leg where the elastic was? This can also be an indication of water retention.

Your hands will tend to swell, so if you’ve noticed that you can’t remove any rings that you might be wearing, this could also be a sign of water retention.

Have you noticed a rapid weight gain i.e. quite a few pounds in just a few short days? Or problems when you try to fully unzip your trousers? Again, these are possible signs that you have  edema .

You may also suffer from  edema  late into pregnancy, or if you’re taking estrogen.

Can you treat the  edema  yourself, or should you visit the doctor?

The answer to this is yes – in both instances.

 Edema  can be caused by an underlying health issue, so it’s always a good idea to consult your doctor rather than treat it yourself – in the beginning, anyway. The doctor may prescribe a diuretic drug for you like bumetanide, indapamide, frusemide or bendrofluazide. These diuretics help to increase the output from the kidneys.

Always visit the doctor if you’re pregnant and suffering from water retention.

If you want to go it alone, and are after a homespun solution to your water retention, you should start by cutting out salt. The body will be trying to pass a lot of the salt you have via the kidneys, so drink enough water or fluids to keep yourself regular.

Then there’s the exercise route. It is widely accepted that when you start exercising and losing weight, the first thing to go is water that’s been stored in your body – which is one of the main reasons why you can lose weight quicker at the start of a diet than a few weeks into one – so start off slowly and you should begin to shift the water.

If the water retention appears to be in your hands or your feet you can try elevating them for a few minutes. Also, a bag of peas can work wonders when used on swollen ankles for ten to fifteen minutes.

So, do you have  edema ? You can use the quick and easy checks to give you some indication. If you have, check with your doctor to see if it could be the result of some other medical condition, and if it’s just a mild case then start exercising more, and visiting the toilet on a regular basis.

Now, let’s say goodbye to water retention.

Blood Pressure – The Basic Facts

What is Blood Pressure?

Blood Pressure is the force of the blood pushing against the walls of the arteries. Blood Pressure is recorded as two numbers. For example 120/80.The larger number indicates the pressure in the arteries as the heart squeezes out blood during each beat. It is called the Systolic Blood Pressure. The lower number indicates the pressure as the heart relaxes before the next beat. It is called the Diastolic Blood Pressure. Blood does not circulate in an even stream around the body, but travels in a constant series of spurts. Therefore the pressure peaks in the blood vessels just after a heart beat and then ebbs until the next one. This is a continuous process.

What is Normal Blood Pressure?

There are no hard and fast figures which represent a normal Blood Pressure range. However, it is usually agreed that somewhere between 110/70 and 125/80 is considered to be an average Blood Pressure for a grown person. Though someone with naturally low Blood Pressure may be closer to a range of 100/60. A Blood Pressure of 140/90 is considered to be high, although as a person gets older, this falls into the normal range for people.

What Does High Blood Pressure Do To the Body?

High Blood Pressure causes the heart to work harder, putting a person at increased risk for heart attack, stroke, heart failure, kidney and eye problems. A Blood Pressure above 140/90 may be considered to be on the high side for a young adult, but a Blood Pressure higher than 180/110 is too high and dangerous. There are no symptoms to identify High Blood Pressure and therefore many people are unaware that they have it. High Blood Pressure usually does not give warning signs.

COQ10 And Cardiovascular Health

Cardiovascular problems are the major cause of deaths in the world. Every year millions of dollars are spent for the prevention and cure of cardiovascular problems. Our body produces a natural enzyme called coenzyme Q10 which is very helpful in fighting the heart disease. This coenzyme is also available commercially in the form of a natural supplement.The mechanism by which coenzyme helps in the improvement of cardiovascular health is a follows:

The actions of coenzyme Q10 mainly involve the reduction of free radical concentration in the body. During the natural cellular process of energy production chemical reactions take place. The chemical reactions result in the formation of free radicals like superoxide, hydrogen peroxide etc. These free radicals are responsible for damaging the blood vessels. As a result there is deposition of fats in the damaged walls of vessels causing the atherosclerosis. This causes narrowing of the vessels increasing the blood pressure. The increased blood pressure is the major reason of cardiovascular problems. By neutralizing the free radicals coenzyme Q10 helps in the protection of the vessels thus decreasing cardiovascular problems.

The major heart problems in which coenzyme Q10 supplements can help are as following

Angina: The narrowed vessels result in decreased supply of blood and oxygen to the heart muscles under the conditions of exertion and stress. This decreased oxygen supply cause the angina pain. By protecting the arteries coenzyme Q10 supplement help in relieving angina.

Myocardial infarction: Coenzyme Q10 supplements are the best solution to prevent myocardial infarction. Atherosclerosis causes the formation of plaque in the arteries. As the plaque grows in size it detaches from the arteries and blocks the supply of blood to the myocardium resulting in myocardial infarction.

Hypertension: Hypertension is the increased blood pressure in the arteries and veins. Hypertension can be controlled by regular use of coenzyme Q10 supplements.Coenzyme Q10 supplements have additional effect on the cardiovascular system due to their tendency to increase the metabolism. The increased metabolism results in the burning of stored fats and utilization of extra calories for energy. By burning stored fats coenzyme Q10 protects the cardiovascular system.

Due to all these useful effects coenzyme Q10 supplements are considered the best solution for the heart problems.

There are many other benefits that you can achieve by taking a Coenzyme Q10 supplement. Some of those benefits are increased energy, cancer prevention, body detox, antioxidant booster, and an anti aging supplement. It’s best to consult with a doctor before taking a supplement so that you can figure out what the right dosage is for you.

Is It Heartburn Or A Heart Attack?

Many times as people we do not eat right. We will quickly tell you which foods don’t agree with us, but that does not always deter us from consuming them. For many of us, these poor choices lead to a case of heartburn or acid reflux. Many times these minor symptoms can be alleviated with over the counter antacids, or other heartburn remedies. But for some people it can mean a trip to the emergency room or doctors office due to the severity of the symptoms. At times if severe enough, a bad case of heartburn can feel like you are having a heart attack.

What causes heartburn? When we eat, our food is swallowed and goes down our esophagus, at the bottom of our esophagus it then enters through a small valve or gate that leads to the stomach. If this valve does not shut completely when the food reaches the stomach, then stomach acid backs up into our esophagus. This acid that is designed to break down the food, is now irritating your esophagus and causing pain. This is the reason that one of the leading heartburn remedies is an over the counter antacid. It serves to neutralize the acid that is causing the problem.

One of the best heartburn remedies is to identify which foods we have trouble with. Many times this can be caffeine, tomato products, spicy or fatty foods, citrus, certain medications and more. Different people have reactions to different foods. Other causes can be being overweight or obesity, especially when you are carrying the weight in your mid-section. Overeating and then lying down, or even bending over, too soon after a meal can cause you to have heartburn.

Other heartburn remedies to try to alleviate the symptoms are as follows:

  • Raising the head of your bed six to nine inches.
  • Lose weight
  • Avoid tight and restrictive clothing
  • Don’t overeat
  • Quit smoking
  • Eat more low fat meals

If you have more than occasional heartburn, and find yourself buying antacids or some other heartburn remedies at a wholesale club, it may be something more serious. You need to make sure that your doctor is aware of your symptoms.

Heart Disease in Women

According to the American Heart Association’s Heart Disease and

Stroke Statistics, cardiovascular disease (CVD) is still the

United States number one killer of men and women of all ethnic

groups. The statistical update for 2005 utilized the statistics

compiled for 2002, or the most recent year that data are


Cardiovascular diseases include high blood pressure,

arrhythmia, valve disease, congestive heart failure and stroke.

Coronary heart disease (CHD) or hardening of the arteries is the

largest killer of Americans. There were 494.4 thousand coronary

heart disease deaths in 2002 including 179.5 thousand deaths

from heart attack. The deaths from CHD included 241.6 thousand

females of which 25.9 thousand were Black females. The number of

deaths from strokes for Black females was 9.6 thousand.

CVD* Profile:

o 1 in 4 females has some form of cardiovascular disease.

o Since 1984, the number of CVD deaths for females has exceeded

those for males.

o In 2002 CVD caused the deaths of 493, 623 females compared

with 433,825 males. Females represent 53.2 percent of deaths

from CVD.

o In the United States in 2002, all cardiovascular diseases

combined claim the lives of 493,623 females while all forms of

cancer combined to kill 268,503 females. Breast cancer claimed

the lives of 41,514 females; lung cancer claimed 67,542.

o The 2002 overall death rate from CVD was 320.5. Death rates


¬–265.6 for white females

–368.1 for black females.

o *In 2002 cardiovascular disease was the first listed diagnosis

of 3,164,000 females discharged from short-stay hospitals.

Discharges include people both living and dead.

The risk factors for CVD are not only common in the African

America community, they are also preventable. These factors

include high blood pressure, abnormal cholesterol profile,

overweight & obesity, abnormal blood glucose and the use of


Risk factors are preventable at an early age, before manifesting

as cardiovascular disease later.

Lifestyle choices for prevention include but are not limited to:

o Exercising 30 minutes daily

o Eat vegetables, fruits and grains

o Eat a low fat, low carbohydrate, low cholesterol, low salt


o Eat fish, lean meats, poultry

o Drink eight glasses of water daily

o Eliminate processed foods, sugar, pastry

o Reduce life stressors and/or reaction to stressors

o Engage in spiritual activities

o Give community service

Due to the urgent need for ongoing intervention to reverse the

trend of increasing numbers of diabetes and obesity, heart

disease and stroke, I have partnered with the American Heart

Association to provide a community awareness program to help

improve the health and wellness of community residents. This

program revolves around the National Go Red for Women and Heart

Health initiatives.

To help raise the awareness of community residents and its

members at large, of the need for heart health and the

prevention of CAD in women, I encourage women to join me on

February 3 by wearing red, in accordance with the American Heart

Association’s National Go Red for Women Day. In addition I ask

women to schedule an appointment for themselves and family

members to see their nurse practitioner, internist, or



*Source: The American Heart Association

Real Vampire Graves in America

In researching my books, I come across all sorts of strange trivia, but even I was taken back by this one. It seems that in New England there are real vampire graves from the great “New England Vampire Panic” of the early 19th century. How is it that this is the first I heard about this?

In the early 19th century, an outbreak of tuberculosis swept across New England. At the time, little was known about the disease and it was believed that consumption was caused by the dead rising from the grave to consume the life of their surviving relatives. Of course, the only “logical” explanation for this was vampirism.

To protect the survivors, the bodies of those that died of tuberculosis were dug up and examined. If the corpse was unusually fresh or if the heart and organs were filled with blood, it was thought that it was feeding on the living. Once the vampire was identified, there were numerous way to remedy the problem and rid the family of the vampire including burning organs, flipping the body in the grave, decapitation, and sometimes ever dismemberment.

Newspapers in other parts of the country were skeptical of the belief in vampires. Even Thoreau weighed in on this contemporary superstition saying, “The savage in man is never quite eradicated”.

The most famous instance of this panic is the Mercy Brown burial. In the final two decades of the 19th century, the family of George and Mary Brown suffered a sequence of tuberculosis related illnesses and deaths. First to die was the mother Mary and then the eldest daughter Mary Olive also died. The son, Edwin, became ill in 1890, followed in 1891 by Mercy. Mercy died in 1892 and she was promptly buried at the Baptist Church in Exeter.

Believing the illness and deaths were the cause of the dead returning to consume the lives of the living, George gave permission for the bodies to be exhumed on March 17, 1892. While the mother and first daughter suffered significant decay, Mercy was still unchanged. This was taken as a sign that she was undead and feeding off of Edwin. Her organs were removed, burned, and mixed with water that was given to Edwin to drink. There was hope that this would cure him, but alas he died two months later.

So, in the case of the New England Vampire Panic, the truth really is stranger than fiction.

Does Rogaine Work? The Facts!

Rogaine is the brand name for a drug which contains Minoxidil in 2% and 5% doses designed to combat hair loss. The main question is: Does Rogaine work?

Consider these facts:

Minoxidil was originally developed to reduce high blood pressure. One of the side effects noted was increased hair growth in some patients. This aspect of the drug was then utilized to market a medication with huge profit potential given the number of men and women in the global market concerned about hair loss or thinning hair.

The individuals who experienced this side effect would obviously answer YES to the question “Does Rogaine work?”

However, the human body is a complex organism and each individual responds differently to drugs and medications. What works for some may not work for others.

The manufacturers of Rogaine brought out a heavier dosage version, called Rogaine Extra Strength (5%). Some sources report that this version of Rogaine was 45% more successful in stopping hair loss and generating new growth than the standard version (2%).

However, it is important to note these other observations:

About 55% of the men who took part in clinical trials reported an improvement in their hair loss dilemma. This means that in some men hair loss stopped, in others, hair loss not only stopped but there was an increase in density of hair on the scalp.

So 55 out of 100 men would say that Rogaine does work to a degree. The other side of that percentage is that 45 men out of 100 did not see any difference.

Added to that, it appears that Rogaine works best on younger men whose hair loss has not gone longer than 10 years. Also the bald patch should be smaller than 4 inches across with some hair growth in the middle.

Does Rogaine work for hair loss on any part of the scalp?

The answer to that is No! Rogaine can improve hair growth or at least stop hair loss on the top of the scalp, called the vortex area. Hair loss on the sides (temples) or a receding hairline are not helped by Rogaine.

The lower dosage 2% version can be used by women. They are not advised to use the extra strength as the 5% version can result in increased facial hair growth which many women would find unacceptable.

In this though Rogaine scores an advantage over the other FDA drug approved for hair loss, namely Propecia. Propecia is only for men as it works in a different way to Rogaine by neutralizing DHT through a process involving the male hormone testosterone. So at least women have some hope of arresting hair loss by using Rogaine.

In the hair loss industry it pays to be skeptical over wild claims of success. According to government guidelines, there is no current treatment that can be guaranteed to stop hair loss and promote new hair growth.

So keeping those factors in mind a realistic answer should be given to the question: Does Rogaine work!

Yes, Rogaine does work for some but be prepared for disappointment. Rogaine can help hair loss on limited areas of the scalp, it is not a total hair loss solution.

Additionally, only when it is used daily and persistently does Rogaine work for some. Patience and determination are needed as results may not be seen for some months. Hair loss can even increase in the early stages of taking the medication so be prepared to stick with the treatment.

Metastatic Brain Tumors at a Glance

Most individuals that suffer from brain tumors have metastatic brain tumors. When it comes to brain tumor diagnoses, this is the most common type of brain tumor identified in patients. When an individual suffers from this type of tumor, it means that it is a type of cancer that has developed in the brain that has originated from another region of the body.

There are many different types of cancers that a person may acquire that have the capability of spreading to the brain region. Cancers that affect the lungs, the kidneys, the breasts, the bladder, and other areas of the body may result in the onset of metastatic brain cancer.


There are many symptoms that may develop when an individual develops a metastatic brain tumor. These symptoms come as a result of the fact that tumors have the capability of destroying cells in the brain, the inflammation that typically occurs with tumors, and the pressure that the tumor may cause as it grows.

The symptoms that are experienced are typically unique to the individual that experiences them. No two patients typically have the same symptoms. The following represents the symptoms that may be experienced when a patient has a metastatic brain tumor:

• It is quite common for individuals to experience complications when it comes to basic coordination. It is not at all unusual for a person to appear to be quite clumsy, to drop things that they are carrying, or to fall. Weakness in various areas of the body is also quite common when it comes to the physical complications associated with brain tumors.

• Emotional changes are quite common when it comes to those that have brain tumors. These changes usually occur quite rapidly and the person may exhibit an entirely different personality than they normally exhibit.

• For most people that suffer from any type of brain tumor, headaches are common. These may be mild, moderate, or severe.

• Cognitive changes and complications are quite common among those that experience a metastatic brain cancer. These may include the inability to retain information as well as they used to, a general form of memory loss, judgment that is impaired, and even complications associated with numbers and basic complications.

• Many patients will start to experience seizures. When seizures are experienced, it is typically a new issue for those that have a tumor.

• Complications with both the vision and the speech are relatively common among patients with this common tumor type.

• Many will experience a general feeling of malaise that may or may not be accompanied by a low grade to moderate fever when they experience a metastatic brain tumor.


As you can see, there are many challenges for the individual that suffers from a metastatic brain tumor. This is the most common type of tumor that an individual may suffer from. Since doctors deal with this tumor type on a regular basis, there are many treatments available that may assist in eliminating the tumor and/or reducing it in size so that the symptoms are reduced and the patient is more comfortable overall.

If you are diagnosed with this condition, be certain to work closely with a medical doctor in order to ensure that you have the opportunity of improving your quality of life by reducing symptoms.

The Early Signs of Multiple Sclerosis

There are several early signs of multiple sclerosis. Have you ever experienced tingling, numbness, loss of balance, weakness in one or more limbs, blurred or double vision? These are some of the most typical signs or symptoms that might suggest to a doctor that you have multiple sclerosis.

The signs may come on so gradually that you may not even know you’re having any symptoms until you look back years later. The signs can range from very mild to very severe. When mild, the signs may be barely noticeable. When severe, you may end up in the hospital wondering what is going on. The doctors may have to put you through several tests to find out the cause of your symptoms.

The when and who of MS

When do these signs or symptoms usually occur? They usually occur in women or men typically around the ages 20 to 40. Very rarely do they effect children or adults over 50, but it does happen. Most young adults are otherwise healthy and active.

They may be at the beginning of their careers, as well. A diagnosis of multiple sclerosis can force them to rethink and possibly even change their life goals. If the diagnosis is relapsing-remitting MS, then there may be very little change other than learning how to manage the symptoms so that they can continue working.

These early signs of multiple sclerosis can come and go over a period of several years. Vision problems are another sign that many people who come to develop MS experience early on. An episode of optic neuritis (ON) may cause your doctor to send you to a neurologist to decide if it was caused by multiple sclerosis.

Maybe it’s a CIS

Have you ever experienced one or more of the early signs of multiple sclerosis? Some people may experience what is called a clinical isolated syndrome or a CIS. It is a single symptom or a set of symptoms that happens only once. The person is only considered to have MS if the sign or symptom happens a second time. An MRI or other test must confirm that the cause is indeed a result of MS, and the diagnosis is usually said to be the relapsing-remitting type of the disease after the second attack.

Occasionally there is no second attack. About twenty to forty percent of the time, a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis can’t be given. The CIS is said to be the only cause. The person has one sign or symptom that is typical of MS like optic neuritis, but no other episodes or attacks in the months or years that follow. Unfortunately, in about sixty to eighty percent of those who have a CIS, multiple sclerosis will develop later on.

List of early signs

The following is a list of the earliest signs common to MS. Of course, in and of themselves, they could be a symptom of any number of things. That’s why it takes a complete examination by a neurologist to rule out any other diseases or conditions. This examination may take more than one visit, however. A complete medical history and battery of tests, including an MRI, will show whether or not you actually have the disease.

optic neuritis


sensations in the arms or legs

muscle weakness

lhermitte’s sign



Even though you may experience one of the signs or symptoms in the list above, don’t automatically assume that you have MS. The best thing to do is to go to your doctor and talk to them about your concerns. Your doctor knows your history, and you know your body better than anyone.

Sooner rather than later

You are more likely to realize that something is not right long before anyone else does. Obviously, the earlier this condition is diagnosed, the earlier you can begin to do something about it. Whether it’s learning how to manage the symptoms or making decisions about which treatments to use. If you have any of the early signs of multiple sclerosis listed above, and they are bothersome, the best course of action is to see your doctor. He or she may be able to rule out MS or some other condition. And if it turns out to be multiple sclerosis, at least you’ll know and can begin to deal with it now rather than later.

Colloidal Silver – What it Can and Cannot Do For You

This article is a continuation of our previous article on colloidal silver. To recap the last article lets briefly reveal what we had covered involving the background information. We began by discussing how the colloidal silver has for many years been a major source of inexpensive antibiotics which presented no known side effects when prepared and used properly. We further went on to explain how the early pioneers had used their silver coins in the milk containers to protect their milk from spoilage while traveling across the prairies.

In this session I would like to provide you with a small list of some of the various medical conditions which can potentially be remedied by the use of colloidal silver. Once again I would like to present my legal disclaimer in the event that you use this information. As previously stated the article is intended to provide an educational background in colloidal silver and is not meant in any way to be substituted for professional advice. I do not profess to be a medical doctor and as such I am unable to neither advise nor prescribe silver for any condition. I can however relate to you my experiences and those of others.

Without further ado let’s proceed to the meat of this article. Colloidal silver is an effective antibiotic for a vast number of medical conditions. It has demonstrated its ability to correct many human aliments without damaging side effects. The key here is to use your colloidal silver effectively in a proper manner.

Colloidal silver should never be used when consuming salty products. You should wait for at least ½ hour after eating salt before using the silver. The idea here is to prevent the creation of silver nitrate which is a salt which has in the past turned human skin to a blue-gray shade. Under normal conditions and in the absence of salt this does not happen. Another important thing to remember when you make your own silver is to filter it properly. You don’t want large silver chunks to get into your body. The human body normally will expel colloidal silver however when these larger chunks of silver are taken into the body then they accumulate in the various tissues. This is a condition that we do not want.

Usually we would like the colloidal silver to enter the blood stream as quickly as possible. When using the colloidal silver you should try to get it under your tongue prior to swallowing it. It seems that your body absorbs a certain amount of the silver from the area just under the tongue. In addition, you should be on a specific schedule for 3 or 4 days straight. As we had mentioned in our previous article you should start by taking a spoonful daily for 4 days and then reduce it to ½ spoonfuls. I have under extreme conditions used complete 16 ounce bottles at one sitting but that is generally under what I consider emergency conditions.

Let me take a few minutes to relate some of my personal events concerning colloidal silver. I had initially begun using colloidal silver ten years ago. Now I am not a stupid person who rushes out and tries just anything that comes along. I did a considerable amount of research on this subject. I started making my own colloidal silver and found it to be extremely healthy. I never use it on a daily basis. Generally I will start treatments with it at the first sign of an illness.

One time I had to go into the hospital for a heart attack. They were scheduling me for having stents installed the following morning however with all the germs in the hospital I managed to catch a very bad cold. This would have put a damper on the medical procedure that was planned so I asked my wife to bring me a 16 ounce bottle of colloidal silver from home. She complied and I drank the complete bottle down immediately. By morning my cold was completely gone and the procedure went as planned.

Another situation involved my youngest son who was in his mid to late 20’s at the time. He seemed to develop a bad case of food poisoning. I wanted to take him up to the hospital but he refused and requested that I make him some of the colloidal silver that I use. He fully knew that it usually took me 3 hours to make a batch of it so he lay down on the coach and waited with tears in his eyes. After the 3 hours were up he drank the complete 16 ounces down and by morning his food poisoning was completely gone.

In another situation my wife had strep throat. She took the same amount of colloidal silver and by morning her strep throat was gone. In my opinion the product is a wonder drug. No bacteria or virus can survive it.

Colloidal silver has been known to be effective against more the 650 different diseases. That is effectively 650 various microorganisms that plaque the human body. A few of the human diseases that silver has successfully been used for are as follows:

  • Acne
  • Allergies
  • Arthritis
  • athletes foot
  • bladder inflammation
  • blood parasites
  • blood poisoning
  • boils
  • burns
  • cancer
  • cholera
  • colitis
  • conjunctivitis
  • cystitis
  • dermatitis
  • diabetes
  • dysentery
  • eczema
  • fibrosis’s
  • gastritis
  • gonorrhea
  • hay fever
  • herpes
  • impetigo
  • indigestion
  • keratitis
  • leprosy
  • leukemia
  • lupus
  • lymphangitis
  • Lyme disease
  • Malaria
  • Meningitis
  • Neurasthenia
  • parasitic infections
  • pneumonia
  •   pleurisy 
  • prostate
  • psoriasis
  • rhinitis
  • rheumatism
  • ringworm
  • scarlet fever
  • seborrhea
  • septicemia
  • shingles
  • skin cancer
  • staphylococcus
  • stomach flu
  • syphilis
  • thyroid
  • tuberculosis
  • tonsillitis
  • toxemia
  • trachoma
  • whooping cough
  • yeast infection

The above list is only a start. You should keep in mind that the diseases and conditions listed above may have various degrees and in some cases it may be too late for the colloidal silver to help. A typical example of this would be cancer. If the cancer has progressed too far the silver can not help the person.

I leave this information for you to digest until the next article which will cover making your own colloidal silver machine.

Copyright @ 2009 Joseph Parish

Natural Cough Remedies For Babies

When your baby comes down with a cough, you want to do whatever you can to make her more comfortable. Yet at the same time, you don’t want to grab over the counter medication, since there are usually side effects and chemicals that you’d rather not expose babies to if it can be avoided. What’s more, recent studies have shown that cough syrups are worthless and the sugar they contain may even prolong illness.

Thankfully there are quite a few natural remedies that you can try to calm your baby’s cough. If your baby seems congested, take her in the bathroom and run a hot shower. The steam from the shower will help loosen that congestion in her lungs.

Putting your baby in a warm (not hot) bath can have the same effect. Make the bath even more effective by adding a few drops of eucalyptus, sage or thyme oil into the bath water. The vapors from these essential oils will help open baby’s airways, allowing her to breath easier. The vapors from these oils will also sooth a sore throat.

If your baby’s cough is caused by croup, sometimes the best course of action is to wrap her up warmly and take her out in the night air. The cold air sometimes calms the inflammation in the upper airways.

You can also use sage and thyme to make tea out of them. The warm herbal tea will help clear mucus out of your baby’s lungs. Please check with your pediatrician to find out at what age you can start giving your baby these herbal teas.

Licorice tea is another great natural cough treatment. Licorice has antibacterial properties that will help you baby fight the bacteria that are causing the cough. It also soothes the throat and calms the respiratory tract; helping her get some much needed sleep. Make a cup of licorice tea and give it to your baby as warm as possible, of course without burning her.

Another very effective and gentle natural cough remedy for babies is an herbal rub. Start with 3 to 4 tablespoons of olive oil and add 2 drops of essential oils to the olive oil. Good oils to use are eucalyptus, sage, rosemary and peppermint oil. A mixture of eucalyptus and rosemary works really well at night, since the eucalyptus will calm your baby’s cough and allow her to breath easier, while the rosemary helps calm her down and drift off to sleep.

Mix the olive oil and essential oils well, then apply the mixture to your baby’s chest and back. If the baby is small, swaddle her in a soft blanket, otherwise keep her back and chest as covered as possible with a thicker, tight fitting shirt to build up body heat which will allow the essential oils to vaporize. As baby breathes in the fumes, breathing will get easier.

A humidifier is another great option when it comes to making your coughing baby more comfortable. Use a few of the same essential oils suggested above and run the humidifier in baby’s bedroom.

Some Moms have found that breastmilk will help soothe and heal a cough better than any other drink. If you’re nursing and baby develops a cough, don’t stop breastfeeding. Increase baby’s feedings. Breastmilk is not a dairy product and is the safest food for baby when he’s sick.

This article is provided for information purposes only. Please consult your baby’s health care provider before trying home remedies.

Juniper – Uses and Side Effects

Juniper berries have long been used as a flavoring in foods and alcoholic beverages such as gin. Gin’s original preparation was used for kidney ailments. Immature berries are green, taking 2 to 3 years to ripen to a purplish blue-black. The active component is a volatile oil, which is 0.2% to 3.4% of the berry. The best described effect is diuresis, caused by terpinene-4-01, which results from a direct irritation to the kidney, leading to increased glomerular filtration rate. Juniper berries are available as ripe berry, also called berry-like cones or mature female cones, fresh or dried, and as powder, tea, tincture, oil, or liquid extract.

Reported uses

Juniper berries are used to treat urinary tract infections and kidney stones. They’re also used as a carminative and for multiple nonspecific GI tract disorders, including dyspepsia, flatulence, colic, heartburn, anorexia, and inflammatory GI disorders.

Juniper berries may be applied topically to treat small wounds and relieve muscle and joint pain caused by rheumatism. The fragrance is inhaled as steam to treat   bronchitis . The oil is used as a fragrance in many soaps and cosmetics. Juniper berries are the principle flavoring agent in gin, as well as some bitters and liqueurs.

As a food, maximum flavoring concentrations are 0.01% of the extract or 0.006% of the volatile oil. Other reported effects of juniper include hypoglycemia, hypotension or hypertension, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic effects, and stimulation of uterine activity leading to decreased implantation and increased abortifacient effects.


Dried ripe berries: 1 to 2 g by mouth three times a day; maximum 10 g dried berries daily, equaling 20 to 100 mg essential oil

Liquid extract (1:1 in 25% alcohol): 2 to 4 ml by mouth three times a day

Oil (1:5 in 45% alcohol): 0.03 to 0.2 ml by mouth three times a day

Tea (steep 1 teaspoon crushed berries in 5 oz boiling water for 10 minutes, and then strain): three times a day

Tincture (1:5 in 45% alcohol): 1 to 2 ml by mouth three times a day.


Adverse reactions to juniper include local irritation and metrorrhagia. When used with antidiabetics such as chlorpropamide, glipizide, and glyburide, hypoglycemic effects may be potentiated. Concomitant use of juniper and anti-hypertensives may interfere with blood pressure. Juniper may potentiate the effects of diuretics such as furosemide, leading to additive hypokalemia. A disulfiram-like reaction could occur because of alcohol content of juniper extract.

There may be additive hypoglycemic effects when juniper is combined with other herbs that lower blood glucose level, such as Asian ginseng, dandelion, fenugreek, and Siberian ginseng. Juniper may have additive effects with other herbs causing diuresis, such as cowslip, cucumber, dandelion, and horsetail.

Women who are pregnant or breast-feeding should avoid juniper because of its uterine stimulant and abortifacient properties. Juniper shouldn’t be used by those with renal insufficiency, inflammatory disorders of the GI tract (such as Crohn’s disease), seizure disorders, or known hypersensitivity. It shouldn’t be used topically on large ulcers or wounds because it may cause local irritation.

Safety Risk Juniper may cause seizures, kidney failure, and spontaneous abortion.

Clinical considerations

Advise patient that he shouldn’t take juniper preparations for longer than 4 weeks.

Overdose of juniper may cause seizures, tachycardia, hypertension, and renal failure with albuminuria, hematuria, and purplish urine. Monitor blood pressure and potassium, BUN, creatinine, and blood glucose level.

Warn patient not to confuse juniper with cade oil, which is derived from juniper wood.

Advise female patient to report planned or suspected pregnancy before using juniper.

Inform patient that urine may turn purplish with higher doses of juniper.

Tell patient to avoid applying juniper to large ulcers or wounds because local irritation (burning, blistering, redness, and edema) may occur.

Caution against using alcohol while taking juniper.

Recommend that patient seek medical diagnosis before taking juniper. Unadvised use of juniper could worsen urinary problems,  bronchitis , GI disorders, and other conditions if medical diagnosis and proper treatment are delayed.

Tell patient to notify pharmacist of any herbal and dietary supplements that he’s taking when obtaining a new prescription.

Advise patient to consult his health care provider before using an herbal preparation because a conventional treatment with proven efficacy may be available.

Safety Risk Kidney damage may occur in patients taking juniper for extended periods. This effect may stem from prolonged kidney irritation caused by terpinene-4-ol or by tur pentine oil contamination ofjuniper products.

Research summary

Juniper may have some benefit in diabetic treatment, but further study is necessary. Juniper has an extensive toxicology profile, and therefore must be used with caution.

How a Professional Juggler Cured His Rotator Cuff Injury

Let’s start this off with an understatement: Tearing a rotator cuff is a drag!

It is such a common cause of pain and disability in the adult population that it was only a matter of time until it was my turn.

But as a professional juggler, I wasn’t ready to put my balls away quite yet.

The rotator cuff is made up of four muscles and their tendons. These combine to form a “cuff” over the upper end of the arm. The rotator cuff helps to lift and rotate the arm and to stabilize the ball of the shoulder within the joint. Which means if you use your arms a lot to, oh, I don’t know – juggle – beware. Overhead actions, repetitive motion, stressful movement – all take their toll on this gentle piece of anatomy.

Risk Factors/Prevention

A rotator cuff tear is most common in active adults who are over 40. It may occur in younger patients following acute trauma or repetitive overhead work or sports activity. Common exceptions to the over-40 rule include:

* Workers who do overhead activities such as painting, stocking shelves or construction

* Athletes such as swimmers, pitchers and tennis players

A cuff tear may also happen with another injury to the shoulder, such as a fracture or dislocation, but this is less common.


Acute pain usually follows trauma such as a lifting injury or a fall on the affected arm. More commonly, the onset is gradual and may be caused by wear and degeneration of the tendon. You may feel pain in the front of your shoulder that radiates down the side of your arm.

At first the pain may be mild and only present with overhead activities such as reaching or lifting. It may be relieved by over-the-counter medication such as aspirin or ibuprofen. Over time the pain may become noticeable at rest or with no activity at all.

I had severe symptoms when lying on my right side at night.

Other symptoms may include stiffness and loss of motion. You may have difficulty using your arm to reach overhead to comb your hair (you’re lucky if you still have hair to comb – wasn’t a problem for me) or difficulty placing your arm behind your back to thread your belt. When the tear occurs with an injury, there may be sudden acute pain, a snapping sensation and an immediate weakness of the arm.

Before the Knife

Do your reading! There are some excellent resources available that will help many people with rotator cuff pain. On my site I have links to articles and books which kept me off the operating table – and I am feeling better than new.

Resilience in the Individual and in the Family System

Webster’s Dictionary (1974) defines resilience as “an ability to recover from or adjust easily to change or misfortune” (p. 596). Although this definition is widely accepted, resilience may be conceptualized as being more than merely bouncing back from setbacks. Resilience may also be the ability to bounce forward in the face of an uncertain future (Walsh, 2004). Resilience has been conceptualized as the forging of strengths through adversity (Wolin & Wolin, 1993). Like the willow tree, people thrive if they have a strong, healthy root system. With branches flexible enough to bend with the storm and firm enough to weather strong winds without breaking, the willow tree can continue to grow despite being twisted into differing shapes. The willow tree may be a metaphor for the resilient individual and resilient family system. Resiliency is critical to mental health and healthy aging.

Bonanno (2004) defined adult resilience as a person’s capacity to resist maladaptation in the face of risky experiences. Bonanno’s individually-based definition of adult resilience assumes that resilience resides in the person, an observation supported by the list of individual attributes that covary with resilient outcomes in Bonanno’s work (hardiness, self-enhancement, repressive coping, and positive emotion.). Importantly, this definition of resilience does not identify the positive outcomes that can result from adversity in the hardy individual. Despite Bonanno’s (2004) narrow definition, his analysis includes an interesting finding that loss and brief traumatic experiences, despite being aversive and difficult to accept, are normatively not sufficient to overwhelm the adaptive resources of ordinary adults. Bonanno’s research calls into question the research of Sameroff, Bartko, Baldwin, Baldwin, and Seifer (1998), which demonstrated in longitudinal analyses that as levels of adversity rise, and as resources fall, resilience becomes less tenable.

Rutter (1985) observed that strong self-esteem and self-efficacy make successful coping more likely, whereas a sense of helplessness increases the likelihood that one crisis will lead to another. In a similar vein, Kobasa’s (1985) research findings supported his hypothesis that people with resilience possess three general traits: (1.) the belief that they can influence or control events in their lives; (2.) an ability to feel deeply committed and involved in activities in their lives; and (3.) a tendency to embrace change as an opportunity to grow and develop more fully. Thus, resilient children are more likely to have an inner locus of control (Seligman, 1990), or an optimistic belief that they can positively impact their fate.

Dugan and Coles (1989) suggest that individuals prevail over adversity more effectively if they have moral and spiritual resources. In a phenomenological study of nine subjects who had experienced such traumas as life in a concentration camp, disability, breast cancer, massive head injury, a life of violence and abuse, and loss of a child, Rose (1997) identified similar themes of resilience which emerged from individual interviews: the role of supportive others, empathy, self-care, faith, action orientation, moving on, positive outlook, and persistence. Rose identifies the foundational structure of resilience as faith, self-respect, striving, supportive others, coping, empathy, self-reliance, and moving on.

Closer scrutiny of children and families that are at risk reveals many exceptions to the “damage model” of development, which considers stress or disadvantage as predictive of dysfunction. For example, Werner and Smith (1992) conducted an extensive longitudinal study of almost a half a century of children from Kuai. The researchers found that in spite of early medical distress, poverty, school difficulties, teen pregnancy, or arrest, children were able to learn and persevere through difficulty, given adequate supports. In their analysis of how these impoverished children matured successfully, Vaillant (2002) notes that Werner and Smith emphasized, “. . . the importance of being a ‘cuddly’ child and of being a child who elicits predominantly positive responses from the environment and who manifests great skill at recruiting substitute parents” (p. 285). Werner and Smith point out that key turning points for most of these troubled individuals were meeting a caring friend and marrying an accepting spouse. It is also salient that Werner and Smith found that more girls than boys overcame adversity at all age levels. Walsh (2004) speculates that this finding reflects the notion that “. . . girls are raised to be both more easygoing and more relationally-oriented, whereas boys are taught to be tough and self-reliant through life. . . [and] often because of troubled family lives, competencies were built when early responsibilities were assumed for household tasks and care of younger siblings” (pp. 13-14). Werner and Smith’s study is especially important in reminding clinicians that early life experiences do not necessarily guarantee significant problems in later life. Walsh (2004) suggests that their most significant finding is that resilience can be developed at any point over the course of the life cycle. Walsh extrapolates from Werner and Smith’s research that “. . . unexpected events and new relationships can disrupt a negative chain and catalyze new growth” (p. 14). Favorable interactions with individuals, families and their environments have a systemic effect of moving resilience in upward spirals, and a downward spiral can be reversed at any time in life (Walsh, 2004).

Felsman and Vaillant (1987) followed the lives of 75 males living in impoverished, socially disadvantaged families. People who suffered from substance abuse, mental illness, crime and violence parented these men. Several of these men, although scarred by their childhoods, lived brave lives and became high functioning adults. Felsman and Vaillant concluded, “The events that go wrong in our lives do not forever damn us” (1987, p. 298).

Another study refuting the accuracy of the “damage model” is Kaufman and Zigler’s (1987) finding that most survivors of childhood abuse do not go on to abuse their own children. Similarly, other research found that children of mentally ill parents or dysfunctional families have been able to prevail over early experiences of abuse or neglect to lead productive lives (Anthony, 1987; Cohler, 1987; Garmezy, 1987).

Werner (1995) identified clusters of protective factors that have emerged as recurrent themes in the lives of children who overcame great odds. The protective factors that were characteristic of the individual were myriad. Resilient youngsters are engaging to other people. Additionally, they excel in problem-solving skills and display effective communication skills. Problem solving skills included the ability to recruit substitute caregivers. Moreover, they have a talent or hobby valued by their elders or peers. Finally, they have faith that their own actions can make a positive difference in their lives.

From a developmental perspective, Werner (1995) emphasizes that having affectional ties that encourage trust, autonomy, and initiative enhances resilience. Members of the extended family or support systems in the community frequently provide these ties. These support systems reinforce and reward the competencies of resilient children and provide them with positive role models. Such supports may include caring neighbors, clergy, teachers, and peers.

In Vaillant’s (2002) Study of Adult Development at Harvard University, arguably the longest longitudinal study on aging in the world, it is suggested that resiliency researchers who focus on risk factors and pathology are mistaken in believing that misfortune condemns disadvantaged children to bleak futures. Instead, Vaillant calls upon clinicians to count up the positive and the protective factors when conducting assessments. Vaillant cites Sir Michael Rutter (1985), who reminds clinicians, “The notion that adverse experiences lead to lasting damage to personality ‘structure’ has very little empirical support” (p. 598).

Vaillant (2002) identifies four protective factors in the individual’s potential to age well. A future orientation, a capacity for gratitude and forgiveness, a capacity to love and to hold the other empathically, and the desire do things with people instead of to people are personal qualities identified as resiliency factors. He posits that “. . . marriage is not only important to healthy aging, it is often the cornerstone of adult resilience” (p. 291).

Furthermore, Vaillant (2002) describes resilience as being a combination of nature and nurture. Both genes and environment play crucial roles. He explains, “On one hand, our ability to feel safe enough to deploy adaptive defenses like humor and altruism is facilitated by our being among loving friends. On the other hand, our ability to appear so attractive to others that they will love us is very much dependent upon the genetic capacity that made some of us ‘easy’ attractive babies” (p. 285).

An essential part of resilience is “. . . the ability to find the loving and health-giving individuals within one’s social matrix wherever they may be” (Vaillant, 2002, p. 286). Thus, like Werner and Smith (1992), Vaillant’s research identified extended families and friendship networks as key foundations to resilience in the individual and the family system.

American culture glorifies the “rugged individual.” John Wayne, the personification of masculinity and strength, has been adored by generations of Americans as a hero. However, there is an inherent danger in the myth of rugged individualism, which implies that vulnerability and emotional interdependence are weak and dysfunctional (Walsh, 2004). As Felsman and Vaillant (1987) note, “The term ‘invulnerability’ is antithetical to the human condition. . . In bearing witness to the resilient behavior of high-risk children everywhere, a truer effort would be to understand, in form and by degree, the shared human qualities at work” (p. 304). Avoidance of personal suffering and the glorification of stoicism are hallmarks of American culture. Such cultural attitudes are typified by the call to “move on,” to “cheer up,” to get over catastrophic events, to put national and global tragedies behind us, or to rebound (Walsh, 2004). Higgins (1994) notes that struggling well involves experiencing both suffering and courage, effectively processing and working through challenges from intrapersonal and interpersonal perspectives. In Higgin’s study of resilient adults, it became clear that they became stronger because they were severely tested, endured suffering, and developed new strengths as a result of their trials. These adults experienced their lives more deeply and passionately. Walsh (2004) observes that over fifty per cent of the resilient individuals studied by Higgins were therapists. Egeland, B. R., Carlson, E. and Sroufe (1993) offer an alternative approach to thinking about resilience as “. . . a family of processes that scaffold successful adaptation in the context of adversity” (p. 517).

Important research conducted by Wolin and Wolin (1993) points toward the notion that although some children are born with innate resiliencies, resiliency can be modeled, taught, and increased. They emphasize that persons tend to seek healing from pain instead of holding on to bitterness. The researchers note that the resilient person draws lessons from experience instead of repeating mistakes, and that they maintain openness and spontaneity in their relationships rather than becoming rigid or bitter in interaction. Wolin and Wolin also found that resiliency in individuals is strongly correlated with humor and creativity, as well as mental and physical health. The Wolins identify seven traits of adults who survived a troubled childhood: insight (awareness of dysfunction), independence (distancing self from troubles), relationships (supportive connections with others), initiative (self/other-help actions), creativity (self-expression, transformation), humor (reframing in a less threatening way), and morality (justice and compassion rather than revenge). Traits are viewed as dynamic processes by which resilient individuals adapt to and grow through challenge, rather than static properties that automatically protect the invulnerable. These observations are correlated with empirical studies of resilient children (Baldwin, Baldwin, & Cole, 1990; Bernard, 1991; Garbarino, 1992; Masten, Best, & Garmezy, 1990; Werner & Smith, 1992) and adults (Klohnen, Vandewater, and Young, 1996, Vaillant, 2002).

Walsh (2004) asserts, “In the field of mental health, most clinical theory, training, practice, and research have been overwhelmingly deficit-focused, implicating the family in the cause or maintenance of nearly all problems in individual functioning. Under early psychoanalytic assumptions of destructive maternal bonds, the family came to be seen as a noxious influence. Even the early family systems formulations focused on dysfunctional family processes well in the mid-1980’s” (p. 15).

The popularity of the Adult Children of Alcoholics Movement surged in the late twentieth century and encouraged people to blame their families for their problems. This movement tempted the individual to make excuses for his behavior in terms of his dysfunctional family history instead of looking for family strengths that might help him/her overcome challenge and become stronger. Adult Children of Alcoholics “. . . spend much of their time other-focused, and it is easy for them to become preoccupied with another group member’s problem, take responsibility for it, and avoid the painful job of self-examination and taking responsibility for their own behavior” (Lawson & Lawson, 1998, p. 263).

In contrast to this damage model, the Wolins offered an alternative way to view challenging family backgrounds: a Challenge Model to build resilience, stating that “. . . the capacity for self-repair in adult children of alcoholics taught [them] that strength can emerge from adversity” (p. 15). The Wolins reflect a paradigm shift in recent years, as family systems therapists have started to focus upon a competence-based, strength-oriented approach (Barnard, 1994; Walsh, 1993, 1995a). A family resilience approach builds on recent research, empowering therapists to move away from deficit and focus upon ways that families can be challenged to grow stronger from adversity (Walsh, 2004). From the perspective of the Challenge Model, stressors can become potential springboards for increased competence, as long as the level of stress is not too high (Wolin & Wolin, 1993). Walsh notes, “The Chinese symbol for the word ‘crisis’ is a composite of two pictographs: the symbols for ‘danger’ and ‘opportunity'” (p. 7). Wolin and Wolin (1993) observe that we may not wish for adversity, but the paradox of resilience is that our worst times can also become our best.

It is clear that the extensive research on resilient individuals largely points toward the social nature of resilience. However, most resiliency theory has approached the systemic context of resilience tangentially, in terms of the influence of a single, important person, such as a parent or caregiver (Bowlby, 1988). Looking at resilient family functioning through a systemic lens calls upon the clinician to view individual resilience as being embedded in family process and mutual influence (Walsh, 2004). Walsh suggests that if “. . . researchers and clinicians adopt a broader perspective beyond a dyadic bond and early relationships, [they] become aware that resilience is woven in a web of relationships and experiences over the course of the life cycle and across the generations” (p. 12).

It has only been in the last twenty five years or so that families that cope well under stress have been the subject of research (Stinnet & DeFrain, 1985; Stinnett, Knorr, DeFrain, & Rowe, 1981). A growing body of knowledge has pointed toward the multidimensional nature of family processes that distinguish adaptive family systems from maladaptive family systems (Walsh, 2004). Walsh (2004) defines “family resilience” as “. . . the coping and adaptational processes in the family as a functional unit,” [and adds that]. . . a systems perspective enables us to understand how family processes mediate stress and enable families to surmount crisis and weather prolonged hardship” (p. 14). Strong families create a climate of optimism, resourcefulness, and nurturance which mirrors the traits of resilient individuals (Walsh, 2004). In fact, research on family adaptation and on family strengths suggests the following traits of resilient families: commitment, cohesion, adaptability, communication, spirituality, effective resource management, and coherence (Abbott, et al., 1990; Antonovsky, 1987; Beavers & Hampson, 1990; Moos & Moos, 1976; Olson, Russell, & Sprenkle, 1989; Reiss, 1981; Stinnett, et al., 1982). Walsh observes, “. . . a family resilience lens fundamentally alters our perspective by enabling us to recognize, affirm, and build upon family resources” (Walsh, 2004, p. viii). Rutter’s (1987) research added further confirmation that resilience is fostered in family interactions through a chain of indirect influences that inoculate family members against long-term damage from stressful events. It is essential to consider family resilience as a major variable in a family’s ability to cope and adapt in the face of stress (McCubbin, McCubbin, McCubbin, & Futrell, 1995).

Bennett, Wolin, and Reiss (1988) concluded from their research that children who grew up in alcoholic families that deliberately planned and executed family rituals, valued relationships, and preferred roles were less likely to exhibit behavior or emotional problems. They argue that families with serious problems, such as parental alcoholism, which can still impose control over those parts of family life that are central to the family’s identity, communicate important messages to their children regarding their ability to take control of present and future life events. These messages can determine the extent to which the children are protected from developing future problems, including alcoholism in adolescence and adulthood.

Patterson (1983) asserts that it is only to the extent that stressors interrupt important family processes that children are impacted. However, from a systemic perspective, it is not only the child who is vulnerable or resilient; most salient is how the family system influences eventual adjustment (Walsh, 2004). Even those family members who are not directly touched by a crisis are profoundly affected by the family response, with reverberations for all other relationships (Bowen, 1978). Following from these ideas, it is clear that “Slings and arrows of misfortune strike us all, in varying ways and times over each family’s life course. What distinguishes healthy families is not the absence of problems, but rather their coping and problem-solving abilities” (Walsh, 2004, p. 15).

From an ecological perspective, Rutter (1987) suggests that it is not enough to take into account the sphere of the family as influencing risk and resilience in the individual and family life cycles. He emphasizes that it is also incumbent upon therapists to assess the interplay between families and the political, social, economic, and social climates in which people either thrive or perish. Rutter’s findings suggest that it is insufficient to focus exclusively on bolstering at-risk individuals and families, but there must also be public policy efforts to change the odds against them.

In the twenty first century, it is apparent that the configuration of the family is shifting. Diverse forms of family systems do not inherently damage children (Walsh, 2004). Walsh emphasizes, “It is not family form, but rather family processes, that matter most for healthy functioning and resilience” (p. 16).

One family process that governs how a family responds to a new situation is the way in which shared beliefs shape and reinforce communication patterns (Reiss, 1981). Hadley and his colleagues (1974) found that a disruptive transition or crisis could potentiate a major shift in the family belief system, with both immediate and long-term effects on reorganization and adaptation. Additionally, Carter and McGoldrick (1999) suggest that how a family perceives a stressful situation intersects with legacies of previous crises in the multigenerational system to influence the meaning the family makes of the adversity and its response to it.

Walsh (2004) asserts, “A cluster of two or more concurrent stresses complicates adaptation as family members struggle with competing demands, and emotions can easily spill over into conflict. . . . Over time, a pileup of stressors, losses, and dislocations can overwhelm a family’s coping efforts, contributing to family strife, substance abuse, and emotional or behavioral symptoms of distress (often expressed by children in the family)” (p. 21). Figley (1989) noted that catastrophic events that occur suddenly and without warning can be particularly traumatic. Bowen (1978) suggested that shock wave effects of a trauma might reverberate through the system and extend forward into multiple generations. Thus, Walsh (2004) calls upon therapists to take a systemic approach to intervention in the face of crisis, with interventions that “. . . strengthen key interactional processes that foster healing, recovery, and resilience, enabling the family and its members to integrate the experience and move on with life” (p. 22).

To understand resilience, one must also look through a developmental lens (Carter & McGoldrick, 1999). Neugarten (1976) found that stressful life events are more apt to cause maladaptive functioning when they are unexpected. Also, multiple stressors create cumulative effects, and chronic severe conditions are more likely to affect functioning adversely. However, Cohler (1987) and Vaillant’s (1995) research found that the role of early life experience in determining adult capacity to overcome adversity is less important than was previously believed. Thus, discontinuity and long-term perspectives on the individual and family life cycle point toward the idea that people are constantly “becoming” and have life courses that are flexible and multidetermined (Falicov, 1988). Furthermore, Walsh (2004) suggests that “. . . an adaptation that serves well at one point in development may later not be useful in meeting other challenges” (p. 13). Research has pointed toward a greater risk in vulnerability for boys in childhood and for girls in adolescence (Elder, Caspi, & Nguyen, 1985; Werner & Smith, 1982). All these variables highlight the dynamic nature of resilience over time.

In the field of family therapy, it is incumbent upon researchers and practitioners to recognize that successful treatment depends as much on the resources of the family as on the resources of the individual or the skills of the clinician (Karpel, 1986; Minuchin, 1992). Family processes can influence the aftermath of many traumatic events, reverberating into the course of the lives of people in future generations. Individual resilience must be understood and nurtured in the context of the family and vice-versa. Both immediate crisis and chronic stressors affect the entire family and all its members, posing threats not only to the individual, but also for relational conflict and family breakdown in current and future generations. Family processes may mediate the impact of crisis on all members and their relationships. Protective processes build resilience by promoting recovery and buffering stress. Indeed, healthy family processes influence the effects of present and future crises far into the future (Bowen, 1978; Kerr & Bowen, 1988). Since all families and their members have the potential to become more resilient, family therapists should work to maximize that potential by strengthening key processes within the individual and within the system.

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Ulcer Symptoms

Do you feel a sharp pain around your stomach region? Or are you feeling a bit nausea or tiredness? If so, you may have ulcer symptoms. But first what exactly ARE ulcers? Ulcers are generally crater-like sores about 1/4 inch to 3/4 inches in diameter, but can often range from 1 to 2 inches in diameter. These small crater-like sores can form in the lining of the stomach, in the small area just below the stomach near the beginning of the small intestine in the duodenum, or in rare cases, even in the esophagus area. Ulcers that are in the stomach or duodenum are often referred to as peptic ulcers.

Ulcers are created when the lining of the stomach (or duodenum) is damaged in one or more places. The hydrochloric acid and pepsin (the stuff that digest and break down your food) works on the lining of your stomach as they would on food. Trying to break down the lining of your stomach as though to digest it. An ulcer can be created in two ways. Known mainly as the defensives and aggressive factor.

One way is when too much acid and pepsin damages the stomach lining, which results in ulcers. And the second, more commonly way, is when the damage is first caused by some other means making the stomach lining vulnerable to even an ordinary level of acid and pepsin.

Each individual is different and ulcer symptoms can be similar of differ greatly to one another. Some common cases of symptoms are either NO symptoms at all, OR:

A sharp, burning pain in the upper abdomen around your breastbone and naval. The pain can be excruciating a couple hours after a meal, or in the middle of the night when your stomach is empty.



Loss of Appetite

Loss of Weight

Weakness and Tiredness

Blood in vomit or in the “stool”

If you have any of these symptoms, it is recommended that you seek medical attention immediately. These ulcer symptoms are common among other diseases/illnesses. Remember, you may or may not have an ulcer, but another medical condition. The best way to find out is to seek professional attention.