An Overview of Abdominal Pain

We can hardly find a person who has not suffered from abdominal pain at least once in his life. Abdominal pain may be of different types, caused by a number of causes, which range from simple to life threatening conditions. Irrespective of the cause and the severity, it is troublesome for the sufferers and the caregivers, and hence forces them to go for a medical consultation.

Abdomen is the part of the body between the thorax and the pelvis, which is separated from the thorax by a diaphragm and from the true pelvis by an imaginary plane. Anteriorly the anterior abdominal wall supports it and posteriorly, the spine and back muscles. Skin, superficial fascia, deep fascia, muscles, layers of fascia (Fascia transversalis), extra peritoneal connective tissue and the outer layer of peritoneum form the anterior abdominal wall. The abdominal cavity extends upwards in to the concavity of diaphragm and downwards in to the pelvic cavity. Since there is overlapping by the ribs in the upper part and pelvic bones in the lower part, the exact size of the abdominal cavity is masked.

The abdomen contains digestive organs like stomach, small intestine, large intestine, liver, gall bladder, pancreas, and uro-genital organs like kidneys, ureters, bladder, fallopian tubes, ovaries and uterus. It also contains organs like spleen, adrenal glands, mesenteric lymph nodes, blood vessels and lymphatic vessels etc. Ligaments formed by peritoneal tissue attach these organs and keep them in position. The peritoneum is a large serous membrane lining the abdominal cavity and has got two layers. The outer layer is called parietal peritoneum and it covers the inner surface of the abdominal wall and the inner layer is called visceral peritoneum, which covers the organs and restricts their mobility. These two layers of peritoneum are connected by omentum and mesentery through which the organs get blood supply and nerve supply. The cavity formed by the two layers of peritoneum is a potential space, called peritoneal cavity, which is moistened by a serous fluid to avoid friction of abdominal contents.

Types of abdominal pain:

Depending upon the origin, there can be different types of abdominal pains.

1. Visceral pain (Splanchnic pain): This is caused by stimulation of visceral nerves by a noxious agent, which may be living organisms, toxins, mechanical stimuli like stretching, excessive muscular contraction or an ischaemia. Visceral pain is dull in nature and is poorly localized and felt in the midline.

2. Parietal pain: This is also called somatic pain. Here, some noxious agents stimulate the parietal peritoneum causing a sharp and localized pain. This type of pain is worse by movements.

3. Referred pain: Here the pain, though originating in other sites, is felt in the abdomen due to common nerve supply. Example: Conditions like pleurisy, pericarditis, torsion of testes etc. cause pain in abdominal region due to supply of nerves having the same root value (Spinal segments).

It has already been mentioned that abdominal pain is agonizing for the affected person and his family members irrespective of its cause and severity. Intensity of pain may not always indicate the seriousness of the condition because severe pain can be from mild conditions like indigestion and flatulency, where as mild pain may be present in life threatening conditions like perforation, cancer etc. Hence proper diagnosis and management is very essential.

Modes of presentation of abdominal pain:

1. Acute abdominal pain: Here, the pain is sudden with a rapid onset and short course, which may be due to severe or mild lesions. The term ‘acute abdomen’ is used in conditions wherein the patient complains of acute abdominal symptoms that suggest a disease, which definitely or possibly threatens life and may or may not demand urgent surgical interference. Acute pain may be colicky or non colicky in nature.

2. Chronic abdominal pain: Here the pain is long lasting and recurrent or characterized by long suffering. The complaints persist for a long time with fluctuations in the intensity of symptoms.

3. Sub acute abdominal pain: As the name indicates the duration of pain lies between acute and chronic conditions.

4. Acute exacerbation: In this state, a person having chronic symptoms comes with sudden onset of symptoms that simulate an acute condition. In such cases the patient or the bystanders give the history of chronic sufferings.

Causes of abdominal pain:

The etiology of abdominal pain can be discussed under the following headings.

A. Pain due to lesions in the abdomen: Example: Gastritis, Duodenitis, Appendicitis, Peritonitis, Pancreatitis, Intestinal obstruction, Renal colic, Cholecystitis, Gall stones with obstruction, Peptic ulcer, Intestinal perforation, Non ulcer dyspepsia, Food allergy, Hepatitis, Liver abscess, Mesenteric lymphadenitis, Inflammatory bowel diseases (Ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease), Dysentery, Cancer of the gastro intestinal tract (GIT), Abdominal TB, Abdominal migraine, Acute regional ileitis, etc.

B. Pain due to metabolic and general problems: Example: Poisoning, Renal failure, Diabetes, Thyroid problems, Hyper parathyroidism, Porphyria, Drugs, Lead colic, Black widow spider bite, Blood diseases, Malaria, Leukemia, Peri arteritis nodosa, Hereditary angioedema, Cystic fibrosis.

C. Pain due to lesions outside the abdomen (Referred pains & neuralgic pains): Here the pain is referred from other sites due to common innervations. Example: Pneumonia, Heart attack, Sub acute bacterial endocarditis, Torsion of testes etc. Pains as a result of some neurogenic lesions are also included in this category. Example: Herpes zoster, Spinal nerve root pains, Tabes dorsalis, TB spine, Abdominal epilepsy, etc.

D. Functional pain: Here, the pain comes without any lesions, mostly due to some psychological causes. Example: Panic disorder, School stress, Somatisation disorder, History of sexual abuse, Irritable bowel syndrome.

E. Pain due to lesions in the urinary tract: Both upper and lower urinary tract lesions cause abdominal pain. Example: Urinary tract infection, Cystitis, Pyelonephritis, Urinary retention, Renal colic, Ureteric colic.

F. Pain due to gynecological and obstetrical problems: Even though the gynecological organs are situated in the pelvis, most of the lesions present with pain in lower abdomen. Example: Menstrual colic, Ruptured ectopic gestation, Acute salpingitis, Endometriosis, Endometritis, Pelvic inflammatory disease, Torsion of polyp, Pelvic abscess, IUCD pain, Puerperal infection.

G. Causes in children: In children there are some common causes, which are worth mentioning. Example: Babies colic, Lactose intolerance, Milk allergy, Intussusception, Volvolus, Torsion of testes, Accidental swallowing, Streptococcal throat infection, Congenital megacolon, Overfeeding, Food allergy, Aerophagy.

H. Non specific abdominal pain: Here, no immediate cause is found even after history taking and investigations.

In about 35 to 40% of cases of abdominal pain, the cause may not be identified easily and hence treated symptomatically. But, if the pain persists along with the appearance of other signs and symptoms that indicate the underlying cause, it should be identified as early as possible to manage the case properly.

Provisional disease diagnosis:

Here the probable condition causing abdominal pain is diagnosed by considering the history, signs and symptoms along with other clinical findings.

Lab investigations:

This includes several diagnostic procedures that can help for the final disease diagnosis. The choice of investigation depends upon the signs and symptoms that indicate a probable condition. The suitable investigation helps to reach a final diagnosis.

Example: Routine blood, Routine urine, Blood biochemistry, Stool examination, X-ray Barium x-ray Ultrasonography, Endoscopy of GIT, CT scan, MRI scan, Gastric acid secretion studies, Laperoscopy, Mucosal biopsy, ECG, Excretory urography, ERCP, IVP, Exploratory laparotomy etc are some useful investigations.

Final disease diagnosis:

After doing necessary investigations, the disease or the condition causing abdominal pain is diagnosed by correlating with the clinical findings and the history of the patient. In case of a diagnostic dilemma, a team of doctors are involved in the diagnosis and management.

How to Avoid Anxiety Attacks When Flying

Have a fear of flying? You’ve landed at the right place. Here, you’ll discover lots of tips on how to avoid anxiety attacks while flying, and all without the use of drugs.

The fear of flying is very common. And the fear can be so intense that many people just don’t fly if they can help it. Of, course there are others who need to fly for business reasons, and others for more personal reasons, such as not wanting to let the family down on holiday trips, etc.

There are medications that can be taken before a flight to try to help calm the nerves and lower anxiety on takeoff and during the flight. But some of these can have some side effects, and in any case, many people just don’t like taking these kind of drugs.

But there are natural ways to avoid anxiety attacks while flying that you can implement to help make your flight stress and anxiety free. To understand how these can work, it’s worth looking at what causes anxiety attacks in the first place.

What Causes Anxiety Attacks

Anxiety attacks are the physical and mental manifestation of your body’s primeval ‘fight or flight’ response to a ‘perceived’ physical threat to itself. Your body only needs to ‘think’ there is a threat, and it’ll trigger chemical changes around your body that set you up to be better able to fight against an aggressor or run away to safety.

But there is no physical threat is there? Remember I said it only needs to ‘think’ there’s one. And this perception can be simply through your own anxiety levels rising, through your fear of flying, to such an extent that your subconscious reads that as being the ‘threat’ and so triggers the fight or flight response.

When this happens, the changes in your body, to instantly prepare you to stand and fight or run away, manifest as the symptoms of an anxiety attack; rapid breathing, racing heartbeat, tightness in the chest, hot / cold flashes, tingling in hands, nausea, a feeling of detachment, a feeling of impending doom, etc.

You can see, then, that anxiety attack symptoms are just the result of your body’s natural response to something that doesn’t exist. In other words, you aren’t in any danger, and these symptoms cannot harm you. It is all a big mistake!

You need to reduce the stress and anxiety that you build up within yourself before the flight. Because it’s your very fear of having an anxiety attack during the flight that will trigger the anxiety attack. You see, your fear of an attack builds upon your already (natural) high stress and anxiety, that nearly everyone has prior to travelling, particularly when flying.

But most people don’t suffer anxiety attacks when flying, so don’t have that in-built fear of one. But folks – perhaps like yourself – who do suffer anxiety attacks, do have this fear, and it builds on your naturally heightened travel anxiety to trigger an anxiety attack.

How to Avoid Anxiety Attacks When Flying

Okay, you now understand what causes your attacks, so how do you avoid anxiety attacks when flying, without drug-based medication?.

The following are practical things you can do to help prevent your general anxiety levels rising too much when travelling by air:-

(1) When planning your trip, make a checklist of all documents you need and tick them off. Also, anything else you need to do, tick those off as you do them. Ensure you’re aware of any luggage or other restrictions. Make sure you tick off everything as you do them, so that you don’t need to worry like ‘did I switch off the…’ and ‘did I cancel the…’ type issues.

(2) Make sure you keep all your documents safe and for easy access. Arrange to get to the airport check-in in plenty of time. That way you can be through and have plenty of time to relax in the lounge.

(3) Don’t drink alcohol before or during the flight. It might be tough, I know, but alcohol is a known stimulant so can actually raise your general anxiety levels, making it easier for your ‘fear’ of an attack to trigger one.

(4) In the same way don’t drink too much coffee, tea, fizzy drinks, energy drinks, etc., because they contain the stimulant caffeine.

(5) Do drink lots and lots of water before and during your flight in order to stay well-hydrated.

Next, the following are techniques to follow should you feel an anxiety attack coming on:-

(1) Important! At the onset, repeat to yourself words along the lines of ‘I know what this is now, and, I know that these symptoms cannot harm me. I also know that they will pass very shortly. Go on do your worst!’

(2) Breath slowly and rhythmically, not fast and shallow. And not too deeply either. Breath in through the nose and out through your mouth. You do this to re-balance your carbon dioxide / oxygen ratio.

(3) Use ‘distraction’ to take your focus off of your attack. Try to engage in conversation, read a magazine, listen to music, study a particular facet of the aircraft cabin, etc. Close your eyes and think of a particularly peaceful / happy event in the past and replay it in your mind, over and over again.

You Must Break the Vicious Cycle of Anxiety

The tips above can be very effective in controlling anxiety attacks when flying. But you need to get to a position where you won’t even worry about flying and anxiety attacks anymore. How can you do this? You achieve this by eliminating your fear of always having anxiety attacks every time you fly.

It’s not the flight that is worrying you, it’s the fear of having an attack whilst flying. This is a vicious cycle of general anxiety >> fear of an attack >> an attack >> general anxiety >> fear of an attack >> an attack >> and so on, and on. You must break-out of this cycle to achieve your goal.

Asthma: Why You Need to Use a Peak Flow Meter

Key Asthma Symptoms

The key symptoms of asthma are also common in other major illnesses and so self diagnosing is not recommended. Only a doctor can diagnose asthma and then only after several tests have been taken.

The most common identifiers of asthma are:

• Wheezing

• Chronic cough.

• Tightness in the chest

• Shortness of breath

Having said that, these symptoms are also common with some heart ailments, cystic fibrosis, bronchitis, allergies and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

Sometimes, a person with severe asthma can have a debilitating illness; they are so impacted by the symptoms that they are not able to function normally on a day to day basis. Fortunately, the vast number of asthma sufferers have symptoms that are much more mild. For these sufferers an asthma attack my occur infrequently and the use of Ventolin HFA is all they need.

For some sufferers, their asthma may be too severe to be controlled with the use of an inhaler or nebulizer and their symptoms continue to get worse; the throat muscles can become so inflamed that they have serious difficulty breathing, they wheeze, have a tightness in their chest, and, develop a chronic cough. When this happens, going about their daily lives is impossible.

If your regular medication does not relieve the symptoms then your progress to a severe attack and medical intervention is usually necessary. As the symptoms get worse your ability to breathe is reduced and your body takes in less oxygen than it needs. Without immediate help this can be fatal.

Some people suffer infrequent mild asthma attacks and they are able to manage their symptoms by using an inhaler, or, nebulizer. On the onset of an attack a puff or spray of asthma medication is all they need.

With regular use of a Peak Flow Monitor it is possible to know in advance if you are going to have an asthma attack.

Without knowing what your regular lung capacity is, it is not easy to know if you are having a severe asthma attack, A Peak Flow Meter, properly used, will let you stay on top of your regular measure of breathing capacity; during an asthma attack using the flow meter will give you a measure of your of breathing ability, and hence your level of oxygen intake.

If your oxygen intake is low you should go to the hospital immediately. Let’s look at this in more detail;

What is a Peak Flow Meter

A hand held device, a peak flow meter measures the speed of your breath (air) coming from your lungs after you have exhaled forcefully immediately after fully inhaling. Peak flow meters are available in a variety of shapes and sizes. Portable and affordable, these devices are easy to take with you wherever you go.

Keeping records of the results – your peak expiratory flow (PEF) is part of an asthma management plan. If your asthma is under control your readings will be consistent, if they are not, your asthma may be getting worse.

How do I find out my best peak expiratory flow

When you start using a Peak Flow Meter you need to record each of your readings two or three times a day for at least 2-3 weeks. Always take your tests at the same time each day and always take your test prior to using your Ventolin HFA inhaler. Follow the instructions that come with your meter on how to take the breath tests. The highest number you have recorded over the test period is your peak expiratory flow.

Sometimes, during a severe asthma attack it may seem that your symptoms have eased because you are not wheezing, when instead, your lung capacity has become too low to let you wheeze. By taking your flow rate and comparing it to your recorded peak rate, you will know if you should be going immediately to the hospital. Failure to do so could be fatal.

Regular use of your meter can assist you in identifying when an asthma attack may be due. An asthma attack may present symptoms up to a week before it actually occurs; knowing when to use your Ventolin HFA ahead of an attack can prevent an attack from occurring.

Talk with your doctor about how a Peak Flow Meter may help you manage your symptoms.

High School Wrestling: The Path to Wrestling Greatness

Wrestling is not just a sport; it is a state of mind. It is a way of life. Wrestling embodies principles and concepts that one can follow on and off the mat.

The samurai of Japan followed the Bushido Code. Bushido means “Way of the Warrior.” Taoists follow certain principles as well. Tao means “way” or “path.” Zen Buddhists also follow certain principles. Zen has to do with being quiet and observant. In Zen, meditation, self-contemplation, and intuition are very important concepts. Someone online made this observation regarding Zen: “One way to think of Zen is this: a total state of focus that incorporates a total togetherness of body and mind. Zen is a way of being. It also is a state of mind. Zen involves dropping illusion and seeing things without distortion created by your own thoughts.”

What principles do wrestlers follow? Does a wrestling code exist? What is the path to wrestling greatness? I contemplated these questions and others and wrote this article to share some of my thoughts.

The Way of the Wrestler:

Remember Your Elders and the Rich History of Wrestling

Wrestling is considered one of the world’s oldest sports; it has been around for thousands of years. Wrestling was practiced in the ancient Egyptian, Babylonian, Grecian, and Roman empires.

Wrestling is mentioned in the Epic of Gilgamesh, one of the earliest known works of literature. Wrestling is also mentioned in the Bible. Jacob wrestles through the night with a man (possibly God) and ends up with a dislocated hip. In Beowulf, the hero Beowulf “grapples” with the monster Grendel eventually tearing off Grendel’s arm. Beowulf is said to have a strong handgrip. He grapples with Grendel because he doesn’t want to have any advantage by using weapons. Other ancient works of literature mention wrestling as well.

The philosopher Plato was a wrestler. Plato was actually a nickname given to him by his wrestling coach. Plato means “broad” and may have referred to Plato’s broad shoulders or perhaps his sturdy, powerful build. Plato thought highly of wrestling. In his book entitledLaws, Plato states, “…the art of wrestling erect and keeping free the neck and hands and sides, working with energy and constancy, with a composed strength, and for the sake of health-these are always useful, and are not to be neglected…”

Some famous politicians (including presidents), soldiers (including generals), businessmen, actors, writers, comedians and other celebrities were wrestlers at one time. George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, General George Patton, General Norman Schwartzkopf, Senator John McCain, John Irving (author), Tom Cruise, Vince Vaughn, Ashton Kutcher, Jay Leno were all wrestled. Some famous football players and boxers wrestled as well. Hall of Fame Football Coach John Madden stated, ” I would have all of my offensive lineman wrestle if I could.”

In the book Wrestling Tough, author Mike Chapman mentions legendary football coach Paul “Bear” Bryant who coached the University of Alabama to six national titles. According to Chapman, “Bryant held wrestling in such high esteem as a developer of athletes, physically and mentally, that he made the Alabama football team work out in the wrestling room in spring practice, shooting takedowns and engaging in live scrimmages.”

Of course, it almost goes without saying that many mixed martial artists that fought or continue to fight in the UFC and Pride were wrestlers. Dan Henderson, Dan Severn, Matt Hughes, Tito Ortiz, Randy Couture, Chuck Liddell, Sean Sherk, Frankie Edgar, and Brock Lesnar were all wrestlers just to name a few. Other mixed martial artists have successfully added wrestling to their skill set.

I could mention many famous wrestlers. Some wrestlers have made their mark in folkstyle, freestyle, Greco-Roman, catch-as-catch-can, and other forms of wrestling. Some wrestlers have excelled in more than one form of wrestling. Some have been formidable wrestling coaches as well as exceptional wrestlers such as Dan Gable and John Smith.

Some Notable Wrestlers

  • Martin “Farmer” Burns
  • Frank Gotch
  • Karl Gotch
  • The Great Gama (He was never defeated during his career.)
  • Robin Reed (He was incredible. He never lost a match.)
  • Ivar Johansson (A Swedish wrestler who competed in the 1932 Olympics; he won a gold medal in Greco-Roman and in freestyle.)
  • Danny Hodge (Have you heard of the Dan Hodge Trophy?)
  • Yojiro Uetake
  • Bobby Douglas
  • Dan Gable (Do I really need to say anything about Dan Gable? He was phenomenal.)
  • John Peterson
  • Ben Peterson
  • Wade Schalles (One of the greatest pinners of all time.)
  • Lee Kemp
  • Kenny Monday
  • Bruce Kinseth (Another incredible wrestler. He finished his collegiate career by pinning his way through the Big Ten and NCAA tournaments in 1979.)
  • Bruce Baumgartner
  • Dave Schultz
  • Mark Schultz
  • Gene Mills
  • John Smith (Do I really need to say anything about John Smith? He was phenomenal.)
  • Tom Brands
  • Terry Brands
  • Cael Sanderson
  • Henry Cejudo

Well, I could list hundreds of notable wrestlers. I’m sure you have your idols and role models that inspire you.

You should remember the rich tradition wrestling has and the great men that have wrestled before you. One of those great men may be your coach, father, or brother. You should always be a good representative for the sport of wrestling.

Go With the Flow

One of Taoism’s central concepts is wu wei. Wu wei has to do with not forcing things. Wu wei means “without action.” Wu wei could also be defined as “effortless effort.” The closest American equivalent is probably the expression “going with the flow.” Or, perhaps you’ve heard the expression “rolling with the punches.” Have you ever had a match that seemed effortless? Have you ever had a match where you were totally focused and everything went right? Sometimes we work hard in practice and in our conditioning and yet it doesn’t feel hard.

So, how can we go with the flow? I think that a wrestler needs to drill and practice his moves and techniques repeatedly until they become second nature. If you flow seamlessly from move to another in a match, then you have probably reached that state of “effortless effort.” Sometimes a match doesn’t go as expected and you have to make some adjustments. You can’t lose your composure and give up. You need to go with the flow. You need to say to yourself, “No problem, I can handle this situation.” Going with the flow does not mean giving up and accepting whatever happens. It means being ready to react and deal with whatever comes your way. I think that going with the flow means being flexible so that you can handle challenging situations. Maybe you need to change your strategy during a match. When an opportunity presents itself you need to “strike while the iron is hot.” Often, you don’t really need to think during a match because you simply react and handle whatever your opponent does.

Stay in the Moment

Zen Buddhism has a concept called “mindfulness.” Mindfulness essentially translates to “staying in the moment.” Do you get distracted during a match? Do you get nervous and find yourself thinking about whether you will win or lose? I think that a wrestler needs to focus on the process or the means (i.e. his moves and techniques) as opposed to the outcome of the match. We all want to win. Thinking about winning before your match and visualizing winning is fine. But, when you are actually wrestling you need to be focused on the task at hand and nothing else. If you focus on your moves and wrestle a focused match, then winning will take care of itself.

Do you stay focused during wrestling practice? Do you make the most of it? A wrestler shouldn’t be distracted thinking about other things during practice. He needs to stay in the moment. He needs to focus on his training. He needs to be observant and listen to his coach. He should encourage teammates. He should immerse himself in practice and give it his undivided attention.

Be desireless. Be excellent. Be gone.

I watched a funny movie called The Tao of Steve. In this movie, the main character practices his personal form of Taoism. He tries to help a friend by giving him advice on how to get a girlfriend. His friend summed up the advice as, “Be desireless. Be excellent. Be gone.” I think this advice can apply to wrestling as well. If you approach a wrestling match as though it is a matter of life or death, you are probably putting way too much pressure on yourself. In addition, too much desire to win can be detrimental. Of course, you need desire. You need passion. However, as I stated previously, you shouldn’t get overly focused on the outcome of the match. Focus on the process. The process involves focusing on executing your moves and “being excellent.” Your moves and technique will be excellent if you drill and practice religiously. Finally, be gone. I never cared too much for wrestlers that did victory dances or back flips after winning a match. I’m not saying I didn’t pump my fist in the air once or twice. Usually, I just shook hands and walked off the mat. Victory was reward enough without celebrating. I was happy and proud on the inside. I’ve noticed that many great wrestlers are actually humble. They wrestle a great match, shake hands, and run off the mat. Maybe they are already thinking of preparing for the next match. Julius Caesar famously stated, “I came. I saw. I conquered.” I like to see aggressive wrestlers who wrestle a focused match, take care of business, shake hands, and then run off the mat. That’s how I remember Tom Brands and many other University of Iowa wrestlers. Tom didn’t smile or pump his fist in the air. He simply took care of business and then ran off the mat. I read a horoscope once that stated, “Don’t chase admiration – be humble, quietly take care of business. I am reminded of the lone cowboy (without a name) who rides into town, defeats the bad guys, and then leaves without any fanfare. He just takes care of business and then vanishes.

Way of the Warrior

The Bushido code of the samurai is associated the following seven virtues:

  • Rectitude
  • Courage
  • Benevolence
  • Respect
  • Honesty
  • Honor
  • Loyalty

What sort of code should a wrestler follow? Do what is morally right. Conduct yourself in a responsible and professional manner. Never waver in your quest to be in excellent condition and to excel in competition. Be a good role model for your teammates. Be courageous and believe in yourself even in the face of challenges. Be kind. Help your teammates and support them. Treat all of your teammates well including underclassmen. Respect your coaches, teammates, opponents, family, friends, and community members. Have integrity. Tell the truth. Be a person who keeps his word. Be loyal to your coaches, teammates, school, family, friends, and community. Be a dutiful wrestler by practicing hard and competing with the intention of performing to your utmost ability.

Lao Tzu is considered to be the father of Taoism. The following are some quotes by him and my thoughts.

“Do the difficult things while they are easy and do the great things while they are small. A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.” –Lao Tzu

Earlier I mentioned going with the flow. Be ready to react. It’s easier to stop a takedown attempt if you stop it before your opponent already has a tight grip around your leg. Working hard in practice is easier when you build up your work capacity slowly. If you drill and practice hard then competition may seem relatively easy. Don’t wait until the last minute to get into great condition. Don’t wait until the last period to get aggressive in a match.

“An ant on the move does more than a dozing ox.”–Lao Tzu

You may face wrestlers who are bigger and stronger than you are. You may face wrestlers who are supposedly more talented than you are. You can win matches by using skills that you have drilled repeatedly, by being aggressive, by being confident, and by being in excellent condition.

“Great acts are made up of small deeds.” –Lao Tzu

You can achieve greatness. There isn’t any real secret to being a great wrestler. Greatness comes from doing many small things repeatedly and consistently. You need to drill and practice. You need to get into excellent condition. You need to educate yourself about proper technique and proper conditioning by observing and listening to your coach. You can also learn from teammates, camps, clinics, books, and videos. You can practice visualization and positive self-talk. You can practice good nutrition. All of theses “small deeds” can lead to wrestling greatness.


Although I don’t care much for wrestlers who do victory dances or back flips on the mat following a win, I didn’t mean to imply that you shouldn’t be happy after winning. You should be happy and proud of your accomplishments. You should be happy with the knowledge that your hard work and dedication paid off. Encourage your teammates and celebrate their victories as well. Sometimes teams get together and celebrate after a competition. This is a great thing to do as well. So, yes, celebrating is a good thing. I simply prefer to celebrate off the mat.

Review of Main Points

  • Remember your elders and the rich history of wrestling.
  • Go With the Flow. Be ready for whatever your opponent does and for whatever situations arise in a match.
  • Stay in the moment. Don’t think too much about the outcome of the match while you are wrestling. Focus on the process (i.e. executing your moves powerfully and flawlessly) and then winning will take care of itself. Always make the most of practice time.
  • Be desireless. Be excellent. Be gone. Focus on your moves, take care of business, then run off the mat and begin to prepare for the next competition.
  • Conduct yourself in a responsible and professional manner. Be a good representative for your school and for the sport of wrestling. Strive to be a good role model. Always practice hard and compete with the intention of winning. Practice virtues such as courage, honor, and loyalty.
  • Be prepared physically and mentally for every match. Be confident in your abilities and in your conditioning. Remember that you can always learn new moves and new techniques. Drill and practice moves repeatedly until they become second nature.
  • Celebrate!

I hope that some of these concepts and principles can help you on your path to wrestling greatness.

Choosing the Right Shoulder Sling

The shoulder is a commonly injured joint and to effectively rest it following aggravation, a shoulder sling is required.

The glenohumeral joint is the articulation between the ball at the top of the arm bone and the socket that is part of the shoulder blade. It offers a very high level of mobility, allowing movement in all directions but this freedom comes at the expense of stability. The shoulder relies on a number of soft tissue structures to maintain this stability and these are prone to injury. The muscles of the rotator cuff are often torn and in many cases require surgery to repair them. Shoulder dislocations are common and once the joint has been displaced the first time, the risk of it happening again is greatly increased. Apart from these significant injuries, the shoulder can also suffer mild strains and sprains following falls or contact sports.

Before choosing a shoulder support you need to determine if you require a basic shoulder sling or if you need a shoulder immobilizer. A shoulder sling has just the single strap that goes from the point of the elbow, over the opposite shoulder before attaching near the wrist of the injured arm. A shoulder immobilizer also has this strap but in addition has a second strap that is like a waist belt that acts to hold the arm snugly to the body.

For minor injuries when short-term support is all that is required, a basic shoulder sling is suitable. More significant damage to the shoulder often needs the added support a shoulder immobilizer offers.

Dark Chocolate Decreases Cholesterol-HDL Ratio

Diabetic Medicine recently published a placebo-controlled, double-blind crossover study that evaluated the effects of dark chocolate on weight and glycemic control and cholesterol levels in 12 patients with type 2 diabetes on stable medication. Two groups were randomly selected. The first group was given 45 grams of 85 percent dark chocolate to eat per day for 8 weeks and the second group was given a placebo which contained no cocoa solids but was dyed the same color as the dark chocolate.

When the 8 week trial had concluded, both groups undertook a 4 week washout period and then crossed over to the opposite group for a second 8 week period. The results revealed that none of the participants gained weight despite eating 45 grams of chocolate per day and that HDL cholesterol (the good cholesterol) increased significantly when the subjects ate dark chocolate on a daily basis. A decrease in the total cholesterol: HDL ratio in the dark chocolate group was also found. Researchers suspect that the high polyphenol content in dark chocolate is responsible for the positive results observed in this study. Although this was a relatively small study, it appears that dark chocolate in moderation is not harmful and may actually offer significant benefits.

50% of the world population say that they could not live without chocolate and it seems impossible to think that lives can be changed and health restored, or greatly improved, by eating dark chocolate, but it’s true! 1,200 studies have verified a long list of proven health benefits that are associated with the consumption of dark chocolate. For example, research suggests that it may lower blood pressure, improve cognitive function and act as a mood elevator, reducing stress and nervousness. It may also suppress appetite and promote better sleep cycles. Cacao powder contains sulfur which helps to promote healthy skin and builds strong hair and nails. It also helps detoxify the liver, and supports healthy functioning of the pancreas. Fresh cocoa beans are also super-rich in flavanols which are strong antioxidants that help maintain healthy blood flow.

The Oxygen Radical Absorbant Capacity (ORAC) index is a method of measuring antioxidants in a wide variety of foods. Research has found that 100 grams of raw cacao powder has an ORAC value of 26,000 making it the highest level of any normal food. There is one dark, organic chocolate which laboratory tests have confirmed, has an ORAC rating of 33,928 per piece as compared to 18,500 for Acai Berries, 1,540 for Strawberries, and only 1,260 for raw Spinach.

If your chocolate choice is bland and unhealthy, why not consider changing it! You can still enjoy the creamy, smooth taste of chocolate and receive some essential health benefits. Your body will love you!!

Fast EFT – How to Be Emotionally Free Faster

EFT (Emotional Freedom Therapy) is a therapy that involves tapping on specific meridian points in the body. The purpose of it is about returning our current mind and body connection to a state of balance so you are not being overrun by negative emotions.

The mind is a very powerful device and is designed to recover from unpleasant experiences and patterns of thinking, however the mind also has the power to ‘minimize’ our exposure to negative experiences recurring such as negative relationships, trauma or fear. The negative experience that was enforced would have been beneficial at the time it was created, however more than likely is no longer beneficial today. An example of this would be a relationship that ended unpleasantly. The mind may then associate any new relationship with the strong possibility that it will end in pain.

Eventually these emotional patterns can become automated to the point we are not actually aware of their existence. Our behaviors then become automated and it often times takes an external influence to actually make us aware of them. There are many traditional approaches including prescribed medication from a doctor or counseling via a therapist. These all have merits, however many people do not gain much relief from the core roots of the issue. Medication for instance is designed to dull the bodily experiences however the underlying cause is still operating. Therapy can be beneficial but this relies on the therapist and their expertise. They may bring the issues to your awareness but unless their specific approach is aligned with how you think and operate you may not gain much benefit.

How does EFT Work?

EFT is a gentle non-invasive method of directly bringing the body’s energy system into alignment. Energy can get stuck like debris blocking a river from flowing naturally. You don’t need to understand how it works as there are many differing views. Some believe that by tapping on particular meridian points has a direct impact on the body’s energy system. Other people believe that it is simply a method of distracting the mind from the emotions that arise.

How to Perform Faster EFT

EFT involves tuning into the emotions or the feelings surrounding an issue and tapping on specific pressure points with the tips of your fingers. The difference between regular EFT and Faster EFT is that regular EFT involves a lot of long-winded wording that relies on you putting words to your emotions and this can be difficult. For example if a person from your past hurt you, you may still have anger towards them. Regular EFT would have you put your feelings into words. Faster EFT on the other hand is much simply, much more efficient, and as I will show you later can also be done anywhere at anytime.

Not everybody will be able to fully change the negative pattern but doing this work will result in a reduction of the severity allowing you to be able to consider other options. By simply being aware of the negative feeling and using very simple statements you can successfully work on the issue from the core.

Faster EFT Process

You begin by closing your eyes and going back to a memory that you know brings up negative feelings. Once these feelings are felt you then begin the process of tapping. When you tap on the meridian points you must focus only on the sensation of your fingers tapping the point. The feelings will still be there but they will be secondary to the tapping. In a way this is where the concept of distraction comes in to play. The tapping points are:

  1. Above the middle of the eyebrows
  2. To the side of the eye
  3. Beneath the eye
  4. On the collar bone

On each point you say ‘I let this go’ and when you are on the collar bone point you say ‘It’s okay to let this go’. You can actually say almost anything positive, the words are not that important. I choose the ones above as they are very simple and very quick to say. Once you have tapped each point you then squeeze your wrist, take in a deep breath and as you let it out you repeat a mantra that has meaning for you. The one I use is ‘peace’. I then choose to force a full smile as I find this more beneficial than the typical system of giving the feeling a number from 1 to 10. As the emotions begin to weaken you may find that the smile starts to become more natural. I have personally gone from a completely fake smile to almost laughing.

The memory will still be retained however the emotions that come bundled with this memory will be much duller or at best completely gone. It is always recommended that you do this process until there is no emotional charge left from that memory. I would recommend taking 30 minutes out of your day and tapping for the entire time. Take this time as ‘you’ time. If you have a bath pour yourself a nice warm bath and settle in. Be prepared to confront some potentially challenging memories depending on what you are working through, however the benefit of EFT is that the rewards far outweigh the effort.

EFT and the Rabbit hole

Emotions are linked and are multi-layered. You will find that the core issue may be buried under many layers and as you clear one layer or one memory another memory will arise. For many people only a small number of memories from their past are available consciously. As these are released other memories that are not yet conscious will arise to fill the gap. You then repeat the process on the next layer and so on. I was at a seminar one time where a woman started off feeling poor because of her car; through doing this process with a trained practitioner the true issue became something that was much deeper.

Mental EFT – How to tap in the moment

It’s all good and well to sit back at the end of the day and think back through what has bothered you and tap away at it. But this doesn’t help in the moment as the feelings occur. Can you imagine what people would think if you sat there in public tapping on yourself and repeating your statements.

There’s a great way of performing this technique wherever you are without anyone worrying about you. Simply allow the thoughts and feelings to arise then mentally imagine the feeling of tapping on the points and think your statements. The key to making this effective is you focus on the imagined feeling of your fingers tapping on the points.

Developmental Delays in Children With CP – Ages 2 to 3 Years

Children grow and develop on different timetables, often influenced by injury, illness or environmental conditions. Cerebral palsy, a brain injury disorder, originating from pre-birth, delivery or shortly after birth, can take several months to several years to exhibit enough indicators to warrant a diagnosis. Most children with CP are diagnosed by about 18 months because the common age of walking (between 10 and 14 months) came and went without the child mastering the task and the parents sought a medical explanation.

Accepting that your child may be developmentally delayed is not an easy pill to swallow and many parents are reluctant to do so, wanting instead to embrace that their child is just a “late bloomer.” Other parents don’t want to appear a “worry wart” and are therefore hesitant to bother doctors about “every little thing.” To those parents, while we all hope and pray for the best for our children, early diagnosis and intervention for ANY problem beats addressing it only when the symptoms are undeniable. If “better safe than sorry” ever applied, this is it. Also, doctors must ride that thin line between over-reacting and causing undue worry for the parents and missing a pre-diagnosis hunch. “Let’s wait and see,” is not the correct response to ongoing worries about your child’s developmental issues.

One of the more common causes of cerebral palsy is a sudden and significant lack of oxygen to the brain (brain asphyxia) during pregnancy or the birth process. However, young children can also experience this if they experience a near drowning, poisoning or choke on a foreign object, including food. If a child stops breathing for even a brief time, the child should see a doctor.

Because infant brain tissue is so soft and delicate, brain injuries can also occur during any blow to the head or from being violently shaken (shaken baby syndrome). Brains also need the active participation of parents and caregivers to ensure they receive proper stimulation and develop correctly. Children deprived of a loving, nurturing, stimulating environment can experience developmental delays regardless of the health of their brain. Bacterial and viral infections such as encephalitis and meningitis and can also lead to brain damage in the very young.

Signs of brain damage from any of these circumstances may not become evident for months or even years to come. Parents need to know what to look for and remain vigilant for developmental delays until the child is well into his or her school years.

By the time a child is 3 years old, they should be walking alone, climbing on and off furniture and able to stand on tiptoe. The manifestations of cerebral palsy vary greatly in terms of type and severity, so any “guide,” including this one, is just that: a guide. If you suspect developmental anomalies, seek appropriate health care professionals for guidance. Here are some warning signs specific to children between 2 and 3 years who may be experiencing developmental delays:

By 15 months, a child should understand the use of objects such as cutlery, brushes, telephones and bells. By 18 months, they should be walking. If walking, it should be in a heel-to-toe manner and not only on the toes. 2-year olds should be able to speak at least 15 words, put together 2-word sentences, follow simple instructions and push wheeled toys. Another warning sign is if a child suddenly regresses and loses one or more skills they once had.

By 36 months, children should be able to negotiate stairs, speak and eat without excessive drooling, stack 4 or more blocks, manipulate small objects, copy a circle, speak short phrases, participate in “pretend” play, exhibit an interest in other children, make eye contact and show an interest in toys.

Many of these problems can be helped with early intervention and therapy. Physical therapy aimed at strengthening muscles in the legs, jaw, mouth, tongue and core body can improve mobility, eating and communication skills, all of which provide wholesale benefits to health and well-being. Likewise, hearing and vision issues can be improved with adaptive equipment. The sooner your child with cerebral palsy gets help, the happier they will be and the more likely they will develop the skills required for a full and happy life.

Anesthesia Errors

Undergoing a surgical procedure is a traumatic experience on the human body. Operations often include things that would generally be extremely painful to endure, so the patients and doctors rely on the anesthesiologist to ensure comfort during the procedure.

There are several different types of anesthesia and each serves a different purpose. Depending on the type of surgery that a patient needs, the doctors will decide the amount and type of anesthesia that should be administered. A local anesthetic is applied directly to the area that will requires treatment and is generally used in less serious procedures.

Regional anesthesia is injected into major nerves around the area that needs surgery and can numb much larger sections of the body. General anesthesia is administered through a vein and will make the patient unconscious during the procedure.

No matter which type of anesthesia is used, there are risks associated with this type of medication. If the patient is not closely monitored, they can have poor reactions to the anesthesia or it may not serve its purpose and prevent the patient from experiencing pain. If anesthesia is administered incorrectly it can lead to:

  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Brain injury or coma
  • Seizure
  • Partial or total   paralysis 
  • Asphyxia
  • Anesthesia awareness

The sole purpose of an anesthesiologist is to administer anesthetics and monitor the comfort and safety of a patient during a surgical procedure. When this type of doctor is careless or disregards standard medical procedures, the well being of the patient may be in jeopardy. Such actions can be potentially fatal, and individuals responsible for making anesthesia errors must be held accountable for their actions.

Harvey Putter and the Ridiculous Premise – Harry Potter Parody Film Slated For ’10 Release

Have you read Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, and still can’t get enough of Harry Potter? Then get out to the next wizard rock concert in your area. Here in Northern Indiana, the wizard rock band to see is The Quaffle Kids.

The Quaffle Kids rocked Fun FX in Mishawaka, Indiana on Friday, October 12th. The show opened with a short acoustic set by Neville’s Diary, a side project by Quaffle Kids guitarist Bryce Cone. Bryce sang a cool song about the rivalry between Lupin and Snape, and another about Neville at the Yule Ball.

The Quaffle Kids took to the stage, dressed in suits and ties much like Harry and Ron wear under their Hogwarts robes. Singer Tim Richardson sported atomic-red hair. The band launced into “Black Hand/Long White Beard,” their tribute to Albus Dumbledore. Other songs worth noting:

“Quidditch Time,” which cleverly borrowed on the riff from “Closing Time”

In the same vein, a song about Luna Lovegood in the style of the Green Day tune “Basket Case”

“Ron’s Rant,” a hilarious song about the downside of being Harry Potter’s best friend

“Wizard Rockers Unite,” a musical shout-out to other wizard rock bands, including the more well-known Harry and the Potters.

But listening to the Quaffle Kids is only half the fun. In addition to singing in The Quaffle Kids, Tim Richardson is an independent filmmaker, producer and writer. His last project was the Lord of the Rings parody Dork of the Rings. His newest project is Harvey Putter and the Ridiculous Premise, which was filmed in 2008 and will be released in January 2010. Set at Snogwarts wizard school, it chronicles the seventh year of Harvey Putter and his friends. The Ridiculous Premise is sure to be wildly popular with Harry Potter fans . . . and even with Harry haters, who will have a good time laughing at all the hype.

Now we can all follow along with the progress of this production on Internet Movie Data Base (IMDB). See a sneak preview of Professor Snake’s Lotions class at YouTube.

I’m really excited about the adventures of Harvey Putter and his best friends, Hernia Grunger and Rod Cheesely, as they prepare to do battle with Lord Moldymort. Now that the last pages of Deathly Hallows have been read and re-read, and only one book has yet to be filmed, what else do we Potter fans have to look forward to?

You can visit the Harvey Putter homepages on MySpace and FaceBook.

Thoracic Back Pain – Pain Under Left Rib Cage

Thoracic back pain below the left rib cage is a problem for all those in agony of this pain. Doctors consider any regular pain as a very grave disorder that needs instant notice and treatment. Arrangement of the rib cage is contains the sternum-breastbone, thoracic vertebrae and ribs and the coastal cartilages that joins the ribs to the sternum. The expression cage is known as a formation to home animals. The formation of rib cage is an identical formation that provides protection to the heart and lungs of the animals, in a doctors language it is also called as a thoracic cage.

In the chest-thorax, nerves come out from the spine and are there is division of this into two sections. One part heads towards underneath the skin and additionally drives fibers to the face of the skin and it as well moves partly about the chest. The other nerve moves from underneath of the right rib about the sternum bone, and additionally surfaces to the skin. It then moves rear towards the surface of the similar stage as the first nerve. Any discomfort caused to the area of the ribcage can lead to a pain in the rib cage.

After other serious cardiac problems, some grounds of thoracic back pain can include osteoporosis, costochondritis (inflammation in the cartilages where the ribs join the breastbone) or pleurisy (swelling of the linings of the lung).

In such circumstances, it’s essential to get x-ray done in order to check for any possibility of rib fracture. Incase this does turn out to be true, then a surgery is recommended. In case this pain has been prolonged for 3 months or more it’s essential to go for an MRI or CT scan and check with an expert to test out for damage of the nerve, cancer or tumor.

If cartilage is swollen up between the breastbone and the ribs, that can lead to thoracic back pain and pain below the arms. This kind of pain may give an indication of a heart pain or lung problem as well. This situation generally does not last for very long, but for the time it occurs it leaves you in extreme pain.

Many a times you will pay a visit to the gastroenterologist due to regular pain in the back beneath your left rib cage as the issue begins with your stomach. It will not make a difference to whatever and in how much quantity you eat as you will constantly be hungry. However it will only lead to heart burn and pain towards left side beneath the cage. Regular blood pathology is carried out in order to eradicate the option of an illness of the pancreas or intestine. One should seek advice from a practitioner on gastrointestinal, digestive, and bowel disorders and this possibility should also be eradicated. These signs may make you believe it’s due to abnormal bowel, so a complete checkup of the colon should be carried out.

Women who are pregnant, especially those in advance stages will feel highly uncomfortable with this kind of pain. They feel excessive pain close to the area where the ribcage and breast get together. The pain leads to great disturbance and at times causes difficulty to sleep.

The Magnificent Ducati Monster

 I don’t know about you but I like them beautiful, naked, noisy and lively; bikes that is!


If you’re the same then you’ll love the Ducati Monster range.

The Ducati Monster was originally designed by Miguel Angel Galluzzi (god bless him!) and was first launched by the Bologna superbike firm in 1993.


It is a testament to Galluzzi’s vision that the Monster now accounts for half of Ducati’s overall sales.

Like all of the best Ducati’s the Monster is an 90 degree v-twin, often called an L-twin. It has the now infamous desmodomic valve engine lovingly cradled within a tubullar steel trellis chassis.


With its initial launch in the early 1990s Ducati introduced three Monster options; M600, M750 and M900.


The M900, was the first model released in in 1993


The M600 followed a year later in 1994 and the M750 finally graced our shores in in 1996.

Later on a smaller displacement model, the M400, was developed for those countries where the tax system punishes the ownersof large capacity, high performance bikes.

The M400 was mainly aimed at the far east and pacific rim,although it was also sold in Ducatis native market;Italy.  The M400 had the same engine components as the M600 but had a shorter stroke crankshaft and smaller diameter pistons.


The design of the Monster remained pretty much unchanged until around 2000, when fuel injection was added to the M900. In 2001 Ducati unveiled the S4, adding a liquid-cooled 4-valve Superbike to the range.


2001 also saw the addition of improved braking capacity using semi-floating front disc brakes with Brembo four-piston calipers, weight was further reduced with much lighter Brembo wheels, and suspension was upgraded to 43 mm Showa inverted forks.

In 2002 a special edition, the first of many; the S4 Fogarty was offered. To guarantee exclusivity it was limited to a production run of 300.

Between 2005-7 the Monster freak could choose from six basic models: the 695, 696, S2R 1000, S4R Testastretta, S4R S Testastretta, and S4R S Tricolore.


The Monster 695 replaced the Monster 620 and was the foundation of the range and offered the greatest power per CC of any Ducati air-cooled engine to date.


The new flagship model;the S4RS Testastretta was a beast and employed the engine from the 999 Superbike and was supplied with Öhlins suspension front and rear and radial front brakes.


The Monster 696 was officially launched in early April, 2008 in Barcelona. It soon became the best selling Monster in the history of the range.


Ducati Followed rapidly with the awesome Monster 1100 in September 2008.

This was Based on the Monster 696, but came with a much larger 1100cc engine, radial brake calipers and a single-sided swing arm.

A sportier edition,the 1100 “S” came with upgraded Öhlins suspension.

Weight savings such as a lighter crankcases and a single-sided swingarm that is 11lb lighter than the


1098 sports bike’s, contribute to making the 373lb bike the lightest in its class.

The Monster has lots oodles of torque much of which is delivered well before the 6,000rpm peak.

It is the torque, combined with lightness that make the Monster so popular.Above 2,000rpm the bike is a delight to ride on tight twisting roads.There may be more powerful bikes but show me something more fun to ride than the Monster and I’ll eat my crash helmet.

For a Ducati the Monster is well priced and relatively cheap to maintain and run.The tank is quite small but even the 1100 will see 50mpg if you don’t strangle the throttle too much.

Did You Inherit Your Neuropathy?

Chances are good, if you’re reading this and you’re already in your late 20’s or early 30’s (or older) and you have

Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease

Hereditary Neuropathy with Liability to Pressure Palsies (HNPP)

Dejerine-Sottas Disease (DSD)

Hereditary Motor Neuropathy (HMN)

You were probably diagnosed in your teens or possibly earlier. But if you or someone you know is in their teens (or younger) and they have a combination of the following symptoms:

Tingling or numbness

Pain in the feet and hands

Weakness and loss of muscle mass (especially in their calves or lower legs and feet)

Impaired sweating

Insensitivity to pain

Foot deformities such as hammer toes or high arches

It might be time to do some genetic testing to determine if they have a form of inherited neuropathy.

What is Hereditary Neuropathy?

Hereditary neuropathies are inherited disorders that affect the peripheral nervous system, often resulting in peripheral neuropathy, and can affect you in many different ways; but they are usually grouped into four different categories. As the names imply, they are classified based on exactly which nerves are affected and which functions are impaired.

The most common form of is Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (a motor and sensory neuropathy) affecting 1 out of every 2500 people. Most people with CMT are diagnosed before they reach their 20’s but their symptoms can begin years earlier. CMT may take a while to diagnose because the symptoms can wax and wane over a period of years.

How Can I Find Out if I Have These?

The only way to diagnose hereditary neuropathy is through blood tests for genetic testing, nerve conduction studies and nerve biopsies. If you’ve been diagnosed without going through any of these tests, you probably don’t have a good diagnosis.

Your doctor should take a very thorough history and physical. In order to really determine if you are at risk for, you need to look as far back as three generations. However, a word to the wise, even if your condition has not shown up in your family previously, all inherited diseases have to start somewhere. You could just be the person starting it in your family. That makes genetic testing even more important.

Are These Curable?

There are no known cures as of today. Treatment is usually to treat the symptoms and give your body the support it needs to function as normally as possible. That usually means physical and occupational therapy, as well as

Care and correction for your muscular and skeletal system

Treatment for any other underlying medical problems

Nutrition education and diet planning

A step by step exercise regimen

Medication as needed or necessary

Sore Throat Or Strep – That Is The Question

There is nothing worse than a child waking up in the middle of the night: sick, and complaining of a sore throat. Whenever this happens, rather than take the child into their doctor immediately, most parents try treating them at home first, with children’s aspirin or cough syrup. While this may not do any harm to your child, it is still a good idea that they see their doctor, because there is a very real chance that it is not simply be sore throat pain that you are dealing with.

A sore throat is a common symptom for a host of childhood and adult diseases. Allergies, bacterial infections and viral diseases all have this common symptom. But how can a parent tell the difference, and how can they know when it is far more serious than it appears? The quick fix is to just bundle the kid into the car and take them to their doctor or an immediate care facility. But, a little knowledge could go a long way to you being able to understand what your child is going through, and how best to make them feel better before you can get them to a doctor.

Common throat pain will go away on its own, and you could give them some simple cough medicine and cold drinks to help them feel better, but what if it does not seem to help? The first thing to do is to take a look at their throat. If it just looks red, and you do not see anything out of the ordinary, then it may just be a sore throat, especially if they have or are just getting over a cold. But, if their throat has white spots on it, or if their tonsils look swollen, then it could be far worse.

Tonsilitis, a common childhood ailment, has the following symptoms that you should be aware of:

Fever: Usually 99 and up.

Tonsils: Tonsils appear red and swollen at the back of the child’s throat.

Throat pain: The child will have trouble swallowing because of the enlarged tonsils.

If this is the case, take your child to their doctor as soon as possible. The only treatment for this condition is surgery to remove the tonsils. They may remove the adenoids as well, especially if they show any signs of the infection that caused the tonsilitis. Treatment afterwards is usually antibiotics, followed by lots and lots of ice cream.

Another common illness that has severe throat pain as part of its symptoms is the ailment known as strep throat. Signs of strep throat may include any of the following:

Fever: The fever is usually 101 or higher than that and accompanied by a cold or flu, usually 101 or higher.

Tonsils: The tonsils are red, just like with tonsilitis but with white sacs of pus on them.

Lymph nodes: The lymph nodes on the neck, just under the jawbones will be swollen and tender to the touch.

Rash: Some children develop a small rash around their throat and chest that is rough to the touch, like sandpaper.

Headache: A headache will usually appear around the same time as the fever, and may be a sign that the infection is worsening.

Abdominal Pain, Nausea and Vomiting: some of the sacs on the tonsils may have burst and leaked into the throat, causing nausea. Most viral infections will cause abdominal pain and vomiting as part of their symptoms as well.

Mononucleosis is another common infection that has throat pain as a symptom. Most often seen in children older than 12, and in young adults, mono also has the following symptoms to watch out for:

High fever

Enlarged lymph nodes in the neck, armpits and groin areas

Malaise and fatigue: a general feeling of illness and being tired all the time.

Loss of appetite


Nausea and abdominal pain

Any time a child complains of a sore throat, with a fever or without, they should be seen by a doctor as soon as possible. You can never be too careful with childhood illness.

Cold Sore Remedies – Quick and at Home Solutions!

Home remedies for cold sores are becoming more and more well-liked as they have proved to be just as, or even more, effective as conventional medicine. There is no cure for cold sores but these remedies will reduce the severity and frequency of the cold sores. At-home remedies also prevent the virus from spreading further in the body and form person to person.

Below are some easy cold sore remedies you can use at home.


Get in tune with your body and pay attention to what causes or trigger a cold sore outbreak. Find out if there is any resemblance or a pattern in what precedes the onset of a cold sore. Some common triggers include colds, fever, exposure to sun, stress or menstruation. Once you know what triggers your cold sores you will know exactly what to avoid! This is probably the easiest remedy for preventing cold sores.

Clean and dry

Avoid frequently touching the cold sore and covering it up with makeup as this will worsen the condition and may even cause secondary infections.


Replace your toothbrush when you feel the tingling sensation at the onset of a breakout and again after the blister breaks and when the sore is gone. This will prevent reinfection of the cold sore.

Petroleum jelly

Cover the cold sore with petroleum jelly (Vaseline) to assist healing and to prevent the area form drying out and cracking. It is important to wash your hands before and after you have touched the cold sore, or even better, use a cotton swab.


This mineral has the ability to bind with the herpes virus on a molecular level and this prevents the virus form duplicating and spreading. You can apply a water-based zinc ointment on the cold sore three to five times a day.


This amino acid is very important in the fight against cold sores. Lysine inhibits the growth of cold sores. Taking lysine supplements or including lysine-rich foods, such as potatoes and dairy products, will ease and shorten the duration of the cold sore.


The herpes virus needs arginine to grow and reproduce, so you must avoid foods rich in this amino acid such as chocolate, grain cereals, cola, peas, peanuts, gelatine and beer.


When you feel the first tingling of a cold sore in the making, apply a cold compress to the area immediately. The cold will stunt the growth of the cold sore and it will decrease the inflammation.

Immune system

If you suffer from cold sores frequently give your immune system a boost every now and then. Echinacea and goldenseal are excellent immune boosters. Taking a daily Vitamin B complex supplement will also help the immune system and will rapidly improve the cold sore.


If you know you have the herpes virus, be sure to protect you lips form excessive UV and wind exposure. If you have to go out into the sun, apply a high factor sunscreen.

There is no cure for the herpes virus and it is better to prevent a future breakout. You can prevent recurring cold sores by learning how to deal with stress, a strong immune system, relaxing, good health and regular exercise.