Healthy Diet – How Eating Healthy Can Prevent Illnesses and Leave You Healthier

Unlike the people a few hundred years ago, we don’t need to worry anymore about food. Today, we can get almost everything, anytime of the year. But is that always a blessing? Is it not this confusing offer of so many products advertised greatly, that often leads us to make the wrong choices?

Not everything lives up to its promises, and not every product is healthy. Many foods contain additives that can badly influence your health, and in our hectic time we more and more often grab ready-made meals and fast food, calorie-loaded chocolate bars or chips. It’s a proven fact that unhealthy nutrition can lead to various severe conditions and illnesses, like obesity, high blood pressure or diabetes, each of which again can trigger other diseases. Eating healthy, on the other hand, can lower the risk of such health problems significantly:

  • Some foods help preventing diseases
  • Healthy eating avoids unnecessary strain on the body
  • A healthy diet prevents overweight and the illnesses that might follow

Healthy foods preventing diseases

It is proven that some foods, because of the nutrients they contain and their influence on our body, help to prevent certain diseases. These are mainly fruits and vegetables, foods that are cherished in a healthy nutrition and eaten regularly. Some examples for foods with a positive impact on your health are:

  • Lemons: fight fever, colds and pneumonia
  • Carrots: protect arteries and eyes, reduce diarrhea and constipation
  • Onions: inhibit stomach cancer, fight asthma and chronic bronchitis
  • Oranges: prevent colds and flues, but also more severe illnesses like heart disease, stroke and certain types of cancer
  • Brokkoli: prevents ulcers and cataracts, also seems to prevent lung, breast and colon cancer

Less strain on the body

The core principle of eating healthy is to give your body what it needs when it needs it how it needs it. A healthy diet focuses on providing nutrients in a balanced way, meaning you ensure eating all nutrients you need in the right amount, whilst avoiding overeating and unhealthy foods which place unnecessary strain on your body:

  • Fat is an important nutrient which your body needs, but we often eat way too much of it and the wrong fats. Eating healthy keeps your fat intake to the level you need and rather chooses healthy fats like vegetable fats.
  • Overeating with carbohydrates, a common problem of our time, places a big strain on your body too. A healthy diet avoids this by cutting down on carbs and preferring the complex ones.
  • Unhealthy food additives like preservatives don’t have a place in a healthy diet.
  • People suffering from various illnesses often experience a relief of symptoms when following a certain diet. A vegetarian for example helps to remove toxins from the body, thus reducing arthritis pains.

Preventing overweight and its follow-diseases

It is common knowledge that unhealthy eating habits are one of the most frequent reasons of overweight and obesity. A healthy diet on the other hand can effectively prevent overweight and at the same time significantly lower the risk of its following diseases like diabetes, heart attack and stroke. And even more, eating healthy, when combined with increased physical activity, is the most effective way to lose weight.

Hopefully, by now you grasped the fact that eating healthy is definitely worth the effort. If you eat healthy, you will significantly lower your risk of suffering severe illnesses. So, what is eating healthy? Lots of fruit and vegetables, whole grain products, moderate amount of dairy and protein-rich foods (meat, eggs, legumes, fish) and as little as possible sugar and fat. There is no magic formula to prevent illnesses, but a healthy diet will certainly make a good impact on your health. That’s why it’s worth it.

First Aid for Parrots

Unfortunately, accidents can – and DO happen, so it’s always a good idea to be prepared! While accidents usually produce obvious injuries, illnesses are often kept well hidden by birds. In nature, if you’re sick you pose a threat in making your whole flock vulnerable to predators, so parrots have become adept at masking signs of illness. This is one reason that it’s vital to have a “well bird” check-up annually. Needless to day, once a bird is showing obvious signs of illness, he’s often very sick and needs immediate vet attention. First Aid is intended to help you get by until you can see the vet, or in treating minor injuries.

It’s helpful to have a “hospital cage” for emergencies – a smaller, easily portable cage where you can isolate a sick or injured bird and easily move him to a warm, quiet, area of your home. It’s advisable to have a quarantine area as well – for new birds coming into the home, as well as sick birds recovering from an infection. This area should be well separated from the rest of your birds to prevent air-borne transmission of germs, as well as those spread by direct contact.

Some of the signs of possible illness include: more time on cage floor, talking and playing less, fluffed feathers, lack of appetite, drinking more water, personality changes (such as becoming bitey or not wanting to come out of the cage), tail bobbing, puffy eyes, sleeping on both feet with head tucked, droopy wings, sneezing or coughing, “clicking” in chest, vomiting, diarrhea, soiled vent, etc. I won’t go into specific diseases here, but hopefully you get the general idea – if things are “different,” get to the vet! Other problems include broken blood feathers or egg binding.

It’s a good idea to put together a first aid kit (Your Parrot Place has a nice one for sale!)

Include:

· Eye and skin wash

· Styptic powder

· Corn starch

· Antiseptic wipes

· Cotton Swabs and balls

· Eye dropper

· Assorted bandages – gauze, adhesive, vet wrap

· Scissors

· Latex Gloves

· Forceps or hemostats

· Betadine or iodine swabs

· Adhesive tape

· Penlight

· Heating pad and/or lamp

· Hydrogen peroxide

· Pedialyte (Electrolyte solution for babies)

· Hand feeding formula and syringes

· Phone number for vets and poison control

Generally, with any illness or injury, remove the bird to a hospital cage and put him in a warm, quiet, dimly lit room (bathrooms can work). Provide fresh water (and Pedialyte if needed). Feed favorite foods (healthier things you know he’ll eat) plus warm foods like cooked rice or oatmeal. IN addition, spray millet is often enjoyed by smaller birds. If he’s not eating well on his own, offer some warm food with your fingers or a spoon. If need be, you may have to mix up hand feeding formula and give by cup or syringe. If you’ve kept your bird in the habit of eating from a spoon or cup, this will be easier. DO NOT use over the counter remedies from pet stores. It’s too much of a guessing game. I know a Pionus who became psychotic after being given an OTC bird “remedy” and would not stop thrashing around her cage. A little chamomile tea can help the bird relax and ginger tea is good for digestive upsets. If you’re familiar with herbal remedies, you can safely

use those without causing harm to your bird. NEVER give antibiotics without knowing your bird actually has a BACTERIAL infection (and which bacteria!)

Broken blood feathers (or those accidentally clipped) can be hard to stop bleeding. Do not use styptic powder on skin or soft tissue – only on bleeding nails. Otherwise, use corn starch as a coagulant. If the blood feather (immature feather with live blood supply) won’t stop bleeding, it has to be pulled or the bird can bleed to death.

A note on egg binding: If a hen is on the cage bottom, fluffed up and straining, she may be “egg bound”. Put her in a warm, humid place (like the bathroom). You can rub some vegetable oil around her vent. Egg bound hens can die fairly quickly, though, and if the egg does not pass within several hours, she needs to get to the vet immediately (a good diet with extra calcium will help prevent this.)

So get in the habit of inspecting your birds on a daily basis, and being alert for signs of distress. Read up on diseases and gain a basic knowledge of illness in birds. “Bird proof” your home, avoid toxic fumes and unsafe toys. Have a first aid kit and hospital cage available. No what’s “normal” for your bird and act quickly if things don’t seem right. Find a good AVIAN vet and see them annually. Be sure your house and your bird’s cage and play areas are as safe as possible. Feed the best diet you can to ensure your birds best possible health. Wouldn’t it be nice if your first aid kit never gets used?!

The First Aid kit available at Your Parrot Place (under accessories) contains most of the essentials such as: Styptic Powder, Latex Gloves, Eye Skin Wash, 1″x6 yd Sterile Bandage, Scissors, Locking Forceps, Iodine Swabs, Antiseptic Towelettes, 2″x2″ Gauze Pads, Cotton Swabs, Adhesive Tape, Hand Wipe, Emergency Info Card, Directions, and Case. Perishables, like hand feeding formula, should be stored in the freezer and replaced every six months.

What Are Centers of Excellence at Hospitals?

When I first began researching information on various hospitals across the United States, I came across many hospitals that offered a variety of Centers of Excellence. I was curious as to what constituted a Center of Excellence as opposed to just listing a program as a specialty service, so I decided to research this as well.

What I found out was that a Center of Excellence essentially means that a hospital specializes in the treatment of a certain illness or specializes in particular treatments. Centers of excellence can be anything from heart or cancer care to neurosurgery or organ transplants. Some hospitals offer a variety of Centers of Excellence whereas other hospitals might just offer one or two.

It was more difficult to find out how a hospital was able to claim the distinction of having a Center of Excellence. From what I could gather, each individual program and treatment has particular criteria that needs to be met in order for the hospital to state that their program is a Center of Excellence. They might require that the treatments be performed by a certain type of doctor or that a certain amount of treatments are performed annually.

I also found that different health care programs and health insurance programs will also designate a program of a hospital as a Center of Excellence based on their own criteria. This might mean that they are more likely to recommend this hospital as opposed to another hospital. They do this as a service to the patients who have their insurance to help them make an informed decision about which program is right for them. If you have a question about a particular hospitals Center of Excellence designation, you should ask them about how they received the designation and who gave it to them.

Doctor of Oriental Medicine (OMD) – A Growing Profession in Traditional Chinese Medicine

Oriental Medicine (OM) is a traditional Chinese medical practice that is based on the concept of balanced flow of energy through human bodies. Practiced for more than 2,500 years, it is one of the traditional forms of Chinese medicines that primarily include some of the traditional therapies like acupuncture, herbal medicine, and oriental massage. In fact, it is one of its kinds of medicine system that generally categorizes body patterns into the particular types of diagnoses with corresponding treatment plans.

For many years, this form of traditional Chinese medicine has been practiced in many regions of China, Korea, Vietnam, Tibet and India, but in recent years the this medical theory and practice has even spread to other countries like England, France, Germany, and much of Middle and South America as well. It has gained worldwide recognition as an effective medical treatment. Adding to this, because of the pure weight of evidence, today this form of medicine has taken serious clinical approach of considerable value. Millions of Americans have turned to it, and many students are taking it as the new complementary treatment procedure and making a career as oriental medicine doctor.

An oriental or Chinese medicine doctor majorly uses healthcare therapies like acupuncture and moxibustion and tries to find out the energy imbalance in a patient’s body and if diagnosed, treat it is through acupuncture cupping, needling, and other Chinese herbal remedies. Today it is counted among few alternative medicines that are completely free of side effects and deliver numerous benefits.

If you are planning to make a career in this field then enroll yourself in an oriental medicine program. A proper education honors and supports the integrity of this medicine and gives you training in addition to vast practical exposure. You can also select this course through distance education program as theses days there are various alternative medicine institutes that are offering oriental medicine distance education programs. Nevertheless, whether it is a correspondence program or an on-campus program, the main goal of this course is to help you understand the philosophies of this form of medicine and develop your instinctive healing skills.

The key benefit of this traditional Chinese medicine course is once you complete the program, you acquire through knowledge on anatomy, pharmacology, physiology, pathology and other traditional Chinese medicine theory and practices. Adding to this, on the completion of this course you also become eligible to acquire national certification from the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM), which is a prerequisite for all doctors prior to attain license in oriental medicine.

Since this form of medicine is counted among Chinese medical studies, it is not that easy to understand. Therefore, the best thing that you can do is, you must possess a formal education before entering an oriental medicine program. A comprehensive career in this field is a complex medicine system. It takes many years of training before you can have a command on this Traditional Chinese medicine and so it requires a lot of commitment. Thus, if you want to have a career in this field, it is advisable that you wisely review the curriculum, associated costs and other offerings of programs prior to enrolling in one of them.

As Traditional Chinese Medicine train you effectively about alternative medical approaches that work in harmony with a human body’s natural ability to heal, enroll yourself in oriental medicine course and fulfill your dream of becoming a Doctor of Oriental Medicine (O.M.D.), which is considered as a growing profession in Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Rotator Cuff Surgery Recovery Time – When Can I Have My Life Back?

Rotator cuff surgery recovery time is one of those subjects that everyone wants to ask about but no one wants to hear. It’s only natural that you want to return to a normal life as soon as possible. The simple fact is that recovery from this type of procedure is slow, a minimum of six months. You have to be patient; this is not a quick fix.

Obviously, everyone is different and will have had slightly different procedures. Despite that, no matter what was done, it takes the body the same time to heal. Yes, some heal quicker than others, but there really isn’t a significant difference.

The simplest and most effective way to reduce your recovery time is through rotator cuff surgery rehab. No matter what rotator cuff tear surgical treatment you have had, you can directly influence the speed of your recovery. Rotator cuff therapy after rotator cuff surgery is crucial in this process.More importantly however, therapy is aimed at ensuring your surgery is a success.

One of the main reasons for surgery failure is poor patient adherence to rehabilitation programs. You will be expected to carry out a program of exercises.Initially this is to prevent the formation of scar tissue and stiffness. Eventually exercise will build strength and increase range of movement.

When To Return To Work?

As with most things this is entirely dependent upon the individual. If you have a sedentary job that requires little use of the affected shoulder then possibly as early as four to six weeks. Others with a much more physical or demanding job must wait as long as six months. It is entirely possible that you may have to find a new line of work.

What about sports?

Rotator cuff surgery recovery time can be a slow process. Often it is our favourite pastimes that cause the problem in the first place. Patience is the key, no matter what your chosen sport, you must let the repair heal properly. Again everyone is different so this is just a rough guide so you know what to expect.

Cardiovascular activities that work the heart and lungs without straining the injured shoulder are beneficial. Such activities include walking and bicycling. Walking can be started almost immediately after surgery, cycling may be best started on a static exercise bile, falling off doesn’t bear thinking about!

Three months after surgery you can probably start running again. It is also possible to begin swimming, but seek advice first! Start slowly and avoid the crawl initially; since it puts a large strain on the injured shoulder.

The golfers amongst you should wait at least four to six months before resuming play. When you do finally return to the fairways, start slowly, with putting and chipping. As the shoulder becomes stronger, you can start to hit soft iron shots. Driving from the tee requires an absolute minimum of six months and probably something more like nine to twelve months.

Anything that requires overhead use of the shoulder such as tennis, softball, throwing sports, cricket and weight lifting will require the longest period of rehab. A break of approaching twelve months will be the norm.

Finally consider sitting out things such as soccer, hockey and skiing, or any major contact sport, a fall could have catastrophic consequences.

There is really no point in having any surgical treatment and not doing the rehab. Do not cut corners and do not take chances in order to rush your recovery.

If you do the post surgery exercises you will recover faster and stronger. Remain patient, be sensible, work hard and I guarantee you will reduce your rotator cuff surgery recovery time.

Setting Up a Dental Clinic – The Right Way

Attractive dental offices are the gateway to a dentist’s lasting successful career. Small dental clinics/offices often house a single dental practitioner and a dental assistant. Dental associate teams often occupy an entire floor of a hotel or building. Depending on the spatial preferences of the dentist, the clinic must always look amiable and inviting to attract patients. Putting an easily recognizable signage on the doorstep of the office, as well as advertising the clinic on websites, phone directories and putting it on Google maps will increase your likeliness of getting the attention an untapped demographic.

Here are just some of the few important ideas to consider before setting up a dental clinic:

  • It would be more profitable and practical if you acquire lease in good spot the metropolitan district of a city.
  • It would also be practical if you choose a spot where there is a nearby hospital or a pharmacy, where customers can buy prescribed medication.
  • Know where most patients flourish.
  • Consider the monthly rent and the amount of the lease, and also other expenses you would have to pay if you set up the clinic inside a building, apartment or condominium.

The windows/doors of the dental clinic can either be clear or tinted, depending on the location of the clinic and the number of practitioners. We’ve asked a number of people if they want to be seen by passersby whilst they are in the waiting room, and a majority replied that they would if they were on the inside or upper floor of a building, and wouldn’t if the clinic was situated on a pedestrian location. Still, we would recommend that the privacy of the patient by undeterred by the outside view.

A dental clinic for a single practitioner is typically just a small room, measuring an average of 50 square feet and is divided into two to four sections, mainly the waiting area for the patients and the treatment room (which can include the desk of the dentist), or a separate room for the dentist and also a lavatory. The vestibule or waiting room for the patients should at least have magazines (or better yet, a TV or any entertainment system) to keep them preoccupied while waiting their turn. The room should also have a cozy feel to it by using sofas instead of chairs and putting flowers, paintings, and other intriguing works of art and furniture on each side of the room. The patients should also get proper ventilation, as well as access to a lavatory. Most dental clinics have only have comfort rooms inside the treatment room-it shouldn’t be that way.

The clinic should be fully equipped with the necessary tools and machineries, and the variety of which will depend on the field of specialty. The dental chair, at all times, should be comfortable to lie on and should not have any malfunctions or falling parts. The dentist can order online from authorized manufacturers for a full set of dental equipment, and they can be given a handsome discount if they buy in bulk.

Diabetes – A Degenerative Disease

Diabetes Disease:

In normal individuals food is broken down to glucose in the presence of insulin the glucose present in blood is utilized by body cells with the aid of insulin secreted by pancreas for getting energy to maintain optimal health. Diabetes is a condition which is signified by a higher concentration of glucose levels in the blood because person cannot utilize glucose due to deficiency of insulin secretion by the pancreas of the body.

Types of Diabetes:

Type 1 Diabetes: The Cells of Pancreas responsible for secretion of Insulin do not function properly or are completely damaged. This type of diabetes is found in children and young persons, hence it is also known as Juvenile Diabetes.

Type 2 Diabetes: In this type of Diabetes the pancreas cells do make some insulin but the body prevents the insulin to perform it’s function. This type is usually found in elderly obese patientsonly but now a days it is encountered in children and young persons also.

Diabetes is found in the pregnant women also, if it is not treated properly the mother and child can also develop many health disorders.

Diabetes Symptoms:

Diabetes is characterized by:

1. Feeling of exhaustion all the times.

2. Sensation of great thirst (Polydipsia)

3. frequent urination.

4. Blurring of the eyesight.

5. Felling of hunger all the times.

6. Sudden fall of body weight.

7. Non-healing of wounds.

8. Numbness of hands and feet.

Causes of Diabetes:

Definite causes of Diabetes are not known, possibly body lacks a gene which can provide protection at the time of onset of disease. Diabetic patients are usually obese with a sedentary life style, hiving higher levels of triglycerides in thir blood or suffering from hypertension and also having a diabetic hereditary family history

Diabetes a Warning Signal:

The health of the Diabetic patient is on the thresh hold of rapid worsening of the status of his health if not properly taken care of initially and maintaining of care through out his life.

Diabetes affects both rich and poor alike and for a considerable peiod remains undiagnosed, because for minor symptoms the patients donot take medical advise and the disease progresses to a stage when the symptoms become uncomfortable for the patient to bear. Because of this trend of accessing delayed medical advice, India has become the Diabetes World capital with more than 33 million people suffering from type 2 Diabetes representing about 20 % of World Diabetic Population. With the present progression rate it is estimated that by the year 2030, about 80 million Indian population shall be diabetic. A similar progression trend has been noticed in other Asian Countries also.

Diabetes a life long association:

Diabetes patients are destined to live their rest of their life with Diabetes with lot of care to keep the disease under control by regularly taking the advised medication and adjusting their food and lifestyle habits. Patients have to remain regularly under medical care

Diabetes & Future Onset of Serious Complications:

Diabetic patients carry a high risk of exposure to other serious complications, like hypertension, coronary heart disease, Degenerative vascular system and tissues of lower limbs. When there is continued high blood sugar level, the blood sugar generates certain substances, which are potentially harmful to the body cells, which damage delicate organs like heart, Blood Vessels, Kidneys, Nerves, Teeth and lower limbs. If with the passage of time treatment is not initiated serious complications start setting in.

Diabetic Disease Education to patients:

The Diabetic patients need to be educated about their disease and the necessary care and precautions they have to religiously follow in the true sense particularly about the lower limbs. The Diabetic patients are carrying a higher risk of degenerative vascular system of lower limbs resulting in Nerves and Tissues damage progression of which requires amputation of Toe, Foot depending upon the severity of the affected part. Thus they have to lead a life of dependency.

Diabetes & Heart Disease:

Diabetic Patients are 2 to 4 times more prone to suffer from heart attack as compared to normal persons. In the obstructructions developed in the arteries of heart and in the entire circulatory system there is slowing of blood supply resulting in pain in the Chest,difficulty in breathing, swelling of Heels, thickening of the blood vessels all these quickly lead to a Heart Attack

Protection of Heart & Blood Vessels:

The quick onset of serious complications can be reduced by:

1. Bringing down high blood glucose levels to normal.

2. Reducing intake of foods containing high quantities of Saturated fats, Trans Fats and High

Cholesterol foods.

3. Reduction in intake of Common Salt.

4. Keeping blood Pressure and blood Lipids in control.

5. No smoking and no consumption of tobacco.

6. Moderate Exercise.

Kidney Disease:

The filtration membrane gets thickened. The Protein metabolites excretion is reduced, which damages the kidney. The incidence of Renal failure due to Diabetes is in 45 % of the Renal failure cases. Special kidney function tests are performed to ascertain early involvement of kidney complications because no specific symptoms are witnessed in early stages of kidney complications.

Complications of Eyes:

Diabetes can damage the smaller capillaries of the eye. Diabetes can precipitate Glaucoma because of increase of internal pressure in the eye ball. There can be eyesight complication or even complete blindness due to the damage to retinal blood vessels and detachment of Retina.

Amputations of affected foot:

The complication of the foot can be loss of touch sensation, Pain or swelling of foot, Delayed or non-healing of foot, Change in the colour of skin to redness. As a precaution the foot should be protected from any cut, scratch or from any other injury. Wounds because of faulty blood circulation in the feet the Nerves and Tissues get damaged resulting ultimately gangrene development resulting into amputation of toe or foot in diabetic foot damage progression.

Gateway optimal health is with you on your journey to Disease free Healthy Life Styles

Fatty Liver Treatment – 5 Fat Reducing Remedies For Your Liver

Fatty liver treatment is a topic of much debate. It’s commonly accepted that there is no “cure” for fatty liver, but the best way to treat the disease is still open to opinion.

Various treatments and remedies continue to be tested, and some are showing positive results. Until science proves otherwise, fatty liver disease (FLD) will continue to be a rather asymptomatic disease in its early stages that can turn lethal in the form of cirrhosis, liver cancer, and liver failure if not kept in check.

Here are 5 fat reducing remedies commonly used to treat excess fat in the liver.

Epsom Salts

Epsom salts are sometimes recommended as a type of “liver flush” aimed at removing fats and toxins from liver tissues. Epsom salts work by solidifying cholesterol into small stones that are then excreted. This treatment can be done at home although some patients experience discomfort during excretion and occasionally feel sick afterward.

Milk Thistle

Milk thistle is a herb containing silymarin which is a liver-friendly compound with excellent antioxidant properties. Milk thistle treatment aims at protecting the liver from damage and toxins and also assists in regenerating damaged hepatocytes (liver cells). It keeps the liver healthy so the liver can better deal with conditions like fatty liver and cirrhosis.

Vitamin E and Vitamin C

The third liver remedy is vitamin E and vitamin C supplements. Much like silymarin in milk thistle, these serve as antioxidants to protect the liver from damage and deterioration.

Prescription Drugs

A wide variety of drugs have been prescribed as ways to treat fatty liver. They generally aim at combating problems resulting from a damaged liver. These include drugs like:

  • Orlistat
  • Metformin
  • Rosiglitazone
  • Pioglitazone
  • Gemfibrozil
  • Atorvastatin
  • Pravastatin

Diet And Exercise

By far the most common and widely accepted treatment for reducing fat in the liver is proper diet and exercise. This remedy also still has the most positive results for improving and sometimes even reversing the condition.

Controlling excess fat in the liver through this method focuses on a combination of removing fatty foods from the diet and following an exercise program for gradual weight reduction. This method improves overall health and not just the health of your liver.

Diagnostic Essay – The Way to Present Your Educative Skills

Your teacher has given you a topic for writing an essay in the beginning of the academic year. It is called a diagnostic essay. It helps your teacher to judge your writing skills and check your knowledge of that subject.

Here are a few tips to help you write the diagnostic essay:

o Do not start writing as soon as you get the topic. Compose an outline of your essay in your mind. Usually the essays has five subsections divided into introduction one paragraph, main content three paragraphs and conclusion in one paragraph.

o Three main sections should include different but inter linking informative ideas about the given topic.

o Each paragraph should have such an ending that will introduce second paragraph’s idea.

o Introductory paragraph should tell about the basic information about your thesis. Try to give rough sketch of your thesis subject.

o While writing the concluding section of your diagnostic essay, do not just summarize your essay. It should be convincing enough and justify your topic.

Your teacher may give you anything between thirty to fifty minutes to write your diagnostic essay. You may also get two to three topics to choose from. Select your topic sensibly. Whatever you write is going to be assessed and judged by your teacher or counselor for your writing skills and depth of knowledge.

Work on your weaknesses and improve your illustrative skills. You may have knowledge of your topic, but you should be able to express it in writing too. It is a good idea to go through websites which are related to essay writing.

Cerebrovascular Diseases – Cerebral Thrombosis

Approximately 30% of all strokes is due to atherosclerotic thrombosis. Usually, the major occlusion is preceded by one or more transient ischemic attacks. Sometimes, there is only a single attack. The stuttering intermittent progression of neurologic deficits over several hours or days (stroke-in-evolution) is often diagnostic of thrombosis. Headache is an infrequent symptom. It is located on one side of the head in carotid occlusion, in the occiput in basilar occlusions, and behind the ear in vertebral occlusions. In the initial 48 hours, there is gradual deterioration of neurological status due to the development of cerebral edema. The patient may become comatose during this period and the condition may end fatally.

The course of the stroke is often unpredictable. Deterioration of the condition is usually due to extension of the thrombus along the vessel, increasing stenosis of the artery or acute brain edema. Intercurrent infections of the respiratory or urinary tract are constant dangers, which lead to rapid deterioration if they set in. On the other hand, hemiparesis start improving within hours and become completely alright in a week. The term “lacunar infarcts” is applied to infarcts smaller than 2cm in diameter, placed subcortically in the distribution of the perforating arteries, commonly seen in the internal capsule, basal ganglia, and pons. Delay in recovery suggests a poor prognosis. The paralyzed limbs are flaccid in the acute stage and this flaccidity persists for the first few days or weeks. Gradually spasticity develops and the tendon jerks become brisk. The upper limb assumes a flexed adducted posture while the lower limb remains extended. This is the classic picture of an internal capsular stroke.

Incomplete capsular strokes may be associated with involvement of the lenticular nucleus and thalamus. This results in hemichoreo-athetosis or hemitremor of the paralyzed side. This is called striatal hemiplegia.

Diagnosis: The CSF is normal, except in those areas of cerebral thrombosis secondary to infection. The electroencephalogram (EEG) shows low voltage records of a lower frequency over the infracted area. The CT scan usually shows the infracted area as a low dense lesion within a few days of the stroke. Ultrasound investigations (Doppler echo flow studies) will detect the presence of narrowing of extracranial carotid system. Radionuclide scans and positron emission techniques reveal the infarct before it is recognized by computerized tomography. Arteriography is the definitive diagnostic procedure for identifying the abnormal vessel. Since there is the risk of causing complete occlusion in a partially occluded artery, this procedure should be undertaken only if the diagnosis is uncertain or if surgical treatment is contemplated.

Occupational Therapy For Children With Epilepsy

The Effect of Epilepsy on Development

Epilepsy is the name of a group of conditions where there are electrical disturbances in the brain. Children with epilepsy have the same range of intelligence and abilities as other children. However, learning disabilities, emotional problems, and motor impairments commonly accompany seizures and may be exacerbated by the medications used to assist with seizure control. These complications in the child with epilepsy frequently lead to poor school performance, depression, low self-esteem, and withdrawal, drowsiness or hyperactivity) and behavioural disturbances.

Occupational Therapy Intervention:

  • Doctor referral
  • Evaluation and diagnostic process when seizures are suspected
  • Work with relevant health care staff (speech pathologists, physiotherapists, psychologists), family and teachers for seizure control and modification of lifestyle and activity
  • Look specifically at any problem areas such as using a knife and fork, getting dressed, writing etc. This may involve recommending specialist equipment like adapted cutlery, kitchen equipment, specialist seating, bathing and showering equipment
  • Coping skills for dealing with social and psychological stresses of seizures and unanticipated vocational change
  • Compensatory techniques for long term difficulties and to reduce the risk of injuries
  • Modify work or home environment that will support the child and the seizures
  • Set up supportive environment that facilitates and promotes autonomy and independence
  • Encourage and assist with organisation and preparation for participation in sporting and social activities
  • Consider providing protective helmets or pad aspects of the environment, if required.

    For more information:

  • Epilepsy Helpline Tel. 1300 852 853
  • Children’s Epilepsy Program, Royal Children’s Hospital Tel. (03) 9345 5661

Symptoms and Treatment for the Thunderclap Headache

A thunderclap headache is a severe and sudden headache with enough force to literally knock a person over. It feels like the worst headache of your life. The sudden impact of the headache can come out of nowhere. The pain can peak within 60-seconds, with the pain often starting to fade and clear after 60-minutes. A very severe thunderclap headache is still noticed after a period of 7 days or longer. The pain is noticed anywhere in the region of the neck or head.

A thunderclap headache is rare. But can be an early indication of a life-threatening condition. They could be giving a warning related to a subarachnoid hemorrhage (bleeding in the brain), a brain aneurysm (swelling blood vessels), or a blood clot in the brain. Other issues may relate to pituitary apoplexy (a burst pituitary gland), a stroke, or meningitis. Since some of these conditions can result in death within hours, it is crucial to seek medical attention as soon as possible.

Symptoms

Thunderclap headaches are dramatic and don’t come with any early warning signs. The feeling of experiencing the headache is much like a sudden kick to the head which results in crippling pain. Beside the crippling head pain, other symptoms associated with this condition include vision problems, vomiting and nausea. In the most serious cases, such as those related to bleeding in the brain, the patient is certain to fall unconscious with a short period. The pain can last for 60 minutes to seven to 10 days. The most noticeable pain starts to recede within minutes, but this can often give a false belief that the thunderclap headache is improving on its own.

Treatment

Treatment given for the thunderclap headache depends on the results of the doctors check-up. The areas of greatest concern like swollen or burst blood vessels in the brain or thyroid glands are checked as a matter of urgency. It is also crucial to check for blood clots in the brain. A patient receives a MRI or CAT scan to help diagnosis the condition. If the imaging equipment detects one of the serious conditions, the patient is certain to receive immediate surgery to treat the bleeding.

If a scan is inconclusive, the patient is likely to receive a lumbar puncture or spinal tap to look at the spinal fluid. The cerebrospinal fluid can give more information on internal bleeding or reveal signs of the infection. Pain medication is given to help relieve the pain of the more persistent headache. When other symptoms are noticed like strange red marks, a stiff neck or high fever, this is often related to an outbreak of meningitis.

Schizophrenia – Do You Think You Have It?

There are several reasons and excuses for why Schizophrenia goes undiagnosed or mistreated.

Sometimes it is the result of denial by the person affected with the illness, or by the people around them. Other times it is the result of lack of education about the illness and an inability to understand what the symptoms are. It is also possible that a Learning disability can be the direct effect of a bigger underlying mental illness issue that a medical professional has over looked.

These are just some of the reasons why Schizophrenia can go undiagnosed for years until something that is hard to explain occurs, such as a pyschoatic episode.

In the early stages of the illness, it is easy to say there is nothing wrong and choose to ignore the signs of the illness. It is very unsettling at the thought of having Schizophrenia and being diagnosed or labeled with it.

But if left untreated or undiagnosed, Schizophrenia doesn’t get better and will intensify with age.

Fortunately, there have been medical advancements to help treat and manage Schizophrenia.

It is an illness that you can count on it getting worse and depending on the severity, death could be the end result. Living with Schizophrenia that is untreated is a terrible way to live your life!

Denial of the Illness & Why it is not Diagnosed.

I have a daughter that has Schizophrenia and in the early parts of her life, I knew as a mother that something was not right.

There were many signs and things I noticed that were different, I would question them in my mind, touch on them with our family doctor, and then dismiss them saying, With time she would out grow these things.

I would fight with my husband all the time about her and his response would always be that she was just trying to get attention.

When it did become evident that there was definitely something wrong, he still would not acknowledge that he had a daughter with any problems let alone an illness as debilitating as Schizophrenia.

Even now my ex-husband still denies the fact he has a daughter with mental illness.

Denial is the number one reason why Schizophrenia is not diagnosed and why people do not seek help. Either denial by the person suffering or by the family around the person suffering, who denies it and says there is nothing wrong.

We all look for other possible non-severe reasons for a behavior. We tell ourselves lies, we think that it is our fault that things are this way, but they will get better over time. We say that time heals all wounds, but in this case, it will only get worse if not treated.

The second reason it is not diagnosed, is for the lack of information that is available about mental illness. For several decades, mental illness was never mentioned.

For a long time it was not even taught in medical schools, let alone, mentioned in public information.

We all thought of Schizophrenia as something that a psychopath had, because we would only hear about it when it was connected to a violent crime.

In my mind, when I thought of mental illness, I thought of a person who was put away in an asylum and forgotten about, because you couldn’t deal with them.

The fact is, in severe cases of mental illness, the person suffering can gravitate to the darker side of the mind. But as time passes and if they are not diagnosed, it is possible for these dark thoughts to become a reality for them and they may do something violent.

But if the illness is diagnosed early enough, then it is possible to treat and manage.

The obvious and not so obvious symptoms of Schizophrenia

The symptoms of Schizophrenia may and can include:

Hallucinations (hearing voices, seeing people, seeing things that are not there)

People with Schizophrenia can have varying degrees of this illness. Sometimes they will hear just voices and never seen anyone attached to the voice. Other times it is more severe and they will actually see people, creatures and things that are not there in reality, but to them they are very real.

Doctors call these hallucinations, but to a person with Schizophrenia, the voices and people that they hear and see are as real to them as you and I.

People who are seeing or hearing these imaginary voices have a high tendency of talking out loud, becoming very vocal, and carrying on conversations with things that are not there.

They will even turn music on really loud in their room so no one can hear them talking to these imaginary forces. They will lock themselves into their own room, to have these conversations where no one can hear them, and they can be left alone.

When you hear the mentally ill talking to someone or something that is not there, you get the sense that the conversation is happening with a real person, but there is no one in the room with them.

Most of the time, if you ask them if they know the people they are talking to, they will typically say that they do not know they are.

But, depending on what is going in their life, they may start to believe that they are seeing people who have passed away, or an actor that they saw on TV in a movie. Sometimes the people they choose to talk to in their mind, are strangers on the street that they walked by days or weeks earlier.

The problem with these hallucinations is that these interactions will often turn to a Dark Theme. They will start to talk or think about death, loss, evil, anger and fear.

To some with Schizophrenia, the voices would verbally attack them about the person they are, and what they have done. They will say things like you are dumb, worthless, should never have been born and these dark comments and thoughts can continue to escalate to thoughts of harming themselves.

The voices typically never stop and they are very distracting, judgmental, critical, and over bearing.

Delusions (false beliefs)

It is very hard to say to someone with Schizophrenia that the voices and people they see are not real. They can draw pictures of what they are seeing and can give you an exact recount of what is being said to them. But the reality is all these things that are being told to them, they will start to believe as absolute truth.

One such example of this belief of the voices involves my daughter. The voices in her head told her that the food in front of her at meal times was poisonous and to eat it because they wanted her dead. If she did eat it, they would tell her that they are succeeding in killing her, and she would instantly throw it up.

As a result of this constant mental pestering, my daughter started to lose weight and became anorexic, and would not eat or keep food down. Because she believed what the voices told her about the food being poisonous, so she stopped eating.

When the mentally ill start to believe the voices and people they see and hear, that is when the person you know, no longer acts and thinks the same way as they once did.

Even if you tell them over and over again that these voices are not real, they will not believe you. In their mind it is a perpetual dream or nightmare that never ends. But when you confront them about these voices that they consider to be absolute reality, they will start to become more secretive and will withdraw into their own world. Thus, shutting you out of their life as much as they can and it is almost impossible to reach them at that point.

Lack of emotions or inappropriate display of emotions

As the illness progresses, people with Schizophrenia become more and more withdrawn into this world of imaginary visions.

They hear and talk freely with the voices and they stop relating to reality. This disconnection from reality can and will result in loss of emotions, and inability to interact in the world.

Once they have accepted this loss of reality, sometimes they start to believe that they have special powers that is given to them. Some of them believe they are receiving prophecies of what is to come, or they believe they are talking directly to god, angels, or the devil.

Sometimes they believe that they have an important mission to do and no one else understands, so they need to keep it a secret.

Because they feel no one understands them, the typical day to day interactions with normal people will result by acting out with anger and frustration.

As I explained earlier, the illness does not get better if left untreated or undiagnosed. It will not improve as time goes on and they slip into their own self-made imaginary world.

Lack of motivation

They lose the desire to go to school, work, take care of themselves or do anything in life. Interactions with people can feel strained and stressful for them and they will choose to avoid people all together.

They just want to be left alone to do what they feel they need to do. If they believe they have received a mission from the voices, then they just want to focus on that mission and forget about everything else.

Lack of motivation can be the direct result of a person with mental illness that is focusing entirely on the voices in their head. They will spend hours and days trying to decipher the supposed information they are being told.

In several cases, what they are being told makes absolutely no sense to them, but they feel they need to do something to make the voices go away.

Trouble functioning at school or in social situations

The constant nagging and pressure from these imaginary voices and people that pester the mentally ill is over whelming for them. As a result, they can become disorganized, easily distracted, an inability to focus or maintain consistent thinking.

They will act out inappropriately, say things in conversations that don’t make sense, and laugh at things that are not funny. A complete social awkwardness. This makes functioning in school or social situations almost impossible for them.

For young adults and children, this type of social awkwardness can result in teasing and tormenting from people around them, making the illness even worse.

When this happens, they only want to disconnect from the world even more which will make it harder for them to function or fit in at school, work, or in social interactions.

Self-inflicting pain with the intent of a distraction from the voices and people they see.

Sometimes the constant voices in their head can be so overwhelming, that they just want it to stop and go away. In an attempt to get rid of voices, they will purposely injure themselves or cut their body to inflict pain. They will focus on the pain to push away the voices that they hear or the thoughts they have no control over. They will take extremely hot showers and try to focus on the hot sensation to draw their mind away from the voices.

They will drink or do drugs in attempt to shut out the voices to have some peace in their life.

This is just a short list of the several ways a mentally ill person will deal with the imaginary world in their head.

If any of these symptoms sound familiar to you or someone you know. Please take the necessary steps to get help.

Talk to someone you think will listen. Maybe your parents, friends, family member, or a Doctor.

Explain to the best of your abilities what is happening to you and the specific things that are going on in your mind.

People with mental illness can act very secretively and will keep a lot of things to themselves. They are very good at saying just enough to get by and not draw any attention to themselves. But with no treatment, after awhile it will become very obvious that something is not right.

They are afraid of what people may think about them, even worse they think that no one will believe them. In many cases, the voices in their head tell them that something bad will happen if they say anything. So they live in fear and will be scared of the possible repercussions of saying something.

But the truth is, if the illness is not treated or diagnosed, the symptoms will only intensify. It will become harder and harder for the person suffering from the illness to function in the world. Eventually, the many secrets that they have been hiding from loved ones and friends will come out.

But depending on the amount of time that has passed with no treatment it can result in several personal losses. Such as friends, family, work, school, and other loved ones in their life who do not want to be around them.

For Schizophrenia, the earlier it is diagnosed in life, the better chance a person has of living a normal and happy life.

There is hope of living a normal life with Schizophrenia. But it is only possible through treatment and management of the symptoms with medicine and diagnosing it as early as possible. In my opinion, having a great caretaker is essential.

The Mental Health Continuum

Mental health is beyond the absence of mental illness. It is “a state of emotional and social well-being in which every individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community'”, as defined by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Mental health includes having the necessary life aptitude, social skills as well as having a balance in different aspects of life. It contributes to building resilience and improves individual learning potential.

Below are the descriptions of each stage of the mental health continuum:

Mental Wellness

Mental wellness or mental health support is about increasing proficiency, resilience, emotional and social well-being, as well as creating supportive atmospheres for all. It seeks to develop social and emotional competencies and life skills, and incorporate children and youth protective factors against mental illness.

Mental Health Problems

Mental health problems occur when someone is in a susceptible position of entering into the mental illness continuum. They do not have adequate resources and capacity to manage with the challenges they are facing and need better support from others to help them through the hard times. Some people with unsettled mental health problems might go to develop a mental illness.

Mental Illness

This stage is a more serious or ongoing medical problem, which needs medical treatment, support and diagnosis.

Mental illnesses can be put into two types – neuroses and psychoses.

Neuroses: Symptoms are typically of less severity than psychoses although they are distressing for those involved. The person is still in touch with reality. They are aware of the fact they are ill and have some worries over their illness.

Psychoses: Symptoms are generally severe so much so that the person really looses touch with the real world. People are usually not alert to the fact that they are ill or their actions are abnormal.

Mental illness can either be Chronic (lasts for a long time) or starts slowly Acute (short in duration, severe and unexpected).

Here are some examples of mental illness:

– Social anxiety disorder

– Schizophrenia

– Rett Syndrome

– Post-traumatic stress disorder

– Parkinson’s Disease

– Panic Disorder

– Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

– Huntington disease

– Generalized anxiety disorder

– Depression

– Bulimia nervosa

– Borderline Personality Disorder

– Bipolar disorder

– Autism

– Alzheimer’s disease

– Antisocial Personality Disorder

– Anorexia nervosa

– ADHD

7 Things You Should Know About Optical Migraines

Sometime in our lives, we experience headaches that come and go and are often so severe that our daily routines are affected. Oftentimes, when these headaches occur, we also experience some form of visual changes. Then we say, “It’s probably just a migraine.”

1. What is a migraine?

Migraine is a recurrent type of headache that is severely painful and usually occurs only on one side of the head. An aura occurs right before one of these attacks. An aura could be manifested as visual flashes or spots or even ringing in the ears which is opposite of the side where the headache is about to occur. The migraine attack may also come with symptoms of dizziness, vomiting, nausea and double vision.

2. What is an optical migraine?

As opposed to a real migraine, an optical migraine also involves an aura that comes before a migraine attack, but there is the absence of pain. This is rarer than the migraine that comes with severe pain. It is also know as acephalgic migraine or visual or ocular migraine. It is a migraine aura unaccompanied by headache.

The visual disturbances that are experienced are flashing lights that look like zigzag or “fortress-like” lights. These auras usually begin as small visual marches crossing the field of vision that slowly fades away. Attacks like these last for several minutes to almost an hour.

If it will come with a headache, the pain will follow in an hour. An optical migraine can also be experienced as a blind spot in the field of vision.

3. How sure am I that I am experiencing an optical migraine?

Migraines are usually diagnosed if the same symptoms are experiences over and over in many years. It is optical migraine if the same aura is experienced. In case there is a change in the visual pattern, it might be something more serious. A doctor should be consulted in this case.

4. What could be the cause of these migraines?

The cause for migraine is not yet confirmed, it has remained unknown. However, there have been theories that these headaches are caused by allergies, temporary edema of the brain and even endocrine disturbances. One thing is for sure, it is due to disturbance in the blood circulation in the brain. It has been proven that the pain is associated with the narrowing of blood vessels in the brain followed by dilation.

5. What could be more serious causes of headaches if they are not migraines?

Not all headaches are migraines and not all visual disturbances are caused by migraines. There could be more serious causes that may force you to consult a doctor. Visual changes can also be caused by partial seizures, a retina in the eye could have been detached, a “mini-stroke” or a transient ischemic attack, multiple sclerosis or even a brain tumor.

6. Who is more likely to get an optical migraine?

Optical migraines are usually experienced by more women than men at a ratio of 3:1. This is an illness that is usually inherited.

7. What is the common treatment for optical migraines?

Sedatives and aspirin are common medications prescribed to patients with this illness. Resting or sleeping in a dark room usually relieves the symptoms. However, if the aural migraine is accompanied by severe headache, injection of triptans or ingestion or nasal spraying of the same drug gives relief. Beta-blockers, antidepressants and antiepileptic drugs are also effective for most patients.

It is important to recognize the aura that comes before the headache so that medication can be taken before the actual attack. This will prevent the pain from setting in. Biofeedback has been proven to be a good type of therapy for patients who get these attacks.

Having all these in mind, you would now know if you are experiencing an ordinary headache or a true-blue migraine. Now, you could also determine if those weird visual disturbances are auras previous to a migraine attack or if it is an optical migraine.

What is important here is for you to recognize the symptoms that go with the headache. Observation is the key. You must recognize the tell-tale sign that you are about to get a full-blown attack of a migraine or if you should seek medical help because it is a sign of something more serious. Never take these headaches for granted, they could mean your life.