Chronic Sciatic Nerve Pain – What it is and How to Deal With It

Chronic Sciatic Nerve Pain or Sciatica is a condition in which there is pain felt on the lower back, buttock or lower part of the leg. It’s a fairly common condition, actually, as thousands of people experience this kind of pain, too.

Usually, Sciatica is due to a spinal disk herniation. When, for instance, you try to reach out for something and you are not in the proper posture, you can accidentally cause herniation or displacement of your spinal disk. As a result, the spinal disk would press on the nerve, causing much pain.

The Piriformis syndrome, a condition wherein the piriformis muscle on the buttock presses on the sciatic nerve, may also cause Sciatica.

Spinal tumors, too, may cause severe pain on the back, radiating down to the legs and feet.

So how do you deal with chronic sciatic nerve pain? The most common relief for Sciatica is taking anti-inflammatory meds. Physical therapy is also recommended, as is doing some stretching exercises. It’s always wise to do the exercises under the guidance of a professional to ensure that you get things right. After all, you need to consider the fact that you must rebuild the strength of your muscles in order to obtain relief from Sciatica and there are proper ways you can do it. Doing the exercise on your own or without help from a professional may only worsen your case.

Keep in mind that if you have been a chronic sufferer of Sciatica, obtaining relief may not be immediate in your case. In fact, it can take weeks or even months of physiotherapy and muscle stretching at home before you can experience relief.

If worse comes to worse, the only other option left is to go under the knife. You must know, however, that this is very risky and a very delicate procedure, so it’s not often recommended unless absolutely necessary.

Shingles Rash – Initial Symptom of Shingles Outbreak

Shingles also called the herpes zoster will lead to awfully painful skin rash. These shingles rashes are caused by the virus known as Vermicelli zoster virus, which is also said to cause chickenpox. If a people had suffered from chickenpox in the past, this virus stayed dormant in his nerve tissues. Due to any form of physical stresses if the immune system is weakened, the virus trigger to spreads all along the nerve fibres to the specific area of skin abounding by the concerned nerve described as dermatome. Once the Shingles rash appears in an affected body, it will also suffer from pain and itching or tingling sensation as well as burning sensation on the skin.

Shingles Rash takes the shape of blisters which appears like a chickenpox lesions. They are said to concentrate in a specific area where specific nerve is present. You will see blisters on the whole path of the patient’s nerve or just in confident areas given by the nerve. Shingles Rash as well as blisters burst after certain period which gradually crust over then heal.

The complete shingles outbreak will stay for more than three weeks. If a person next to the patient with Shingles does not have proper immunity either by to chickenpox vaccination or from previous infection, he will be easily caught by virus that travels all its way through the ruptured blisters of the infected person.

The pain due to shingles rashes is unbearable and can be compared to the pain that arises from appendicitis or heart attack and kidney stone. The pain varies depending on the nerve location where infection occurred.

Shingles is diagnosed by examining the growth of the featured shingles rashes. The rash duration can be lessened by the use of antiviral drugs but the effectiveness of such medicine is limited. The pain of shingles is sometimes controlled by using pain medications or steroids.

People with proper immune systems get well absolutely from shingles but recurrences are always viable. Since older people tend to be affected by this disease as they tend to have weak immune systems due to old age. Record found the shingles cases mostly in people over 60 years. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the year 2006 approved a vaccine called Zostavax, against shingles which is in fact the first vaccine of its kind. The vaccine is applicable to people over 60 years of age. The vaccine has proved to be 60% effective for reducing symptoms of this disease including Shingles Rashes and lessen at least two-third of the painful complication generally called postherpetic neuralgia.

What Are the Symptoms of Myofascial Pain Syndrome?

People with Myofascial pain syndrome have chronic muscle pain in specific locations. This pain can sometimes be severe, and is caused by trigger points.

Trigger points are tightened bands within the muscle. They are switched on by a protective reflex – ie. when you are thrown suddenly to one side your muscles will to into spasm to protect themselves from being stretched too far.

The problem occurs when this muscle spasm is not turned off. Trigger points are spasms in the muscle that remain switched on. They can cause pain locally in the muscle or refer pain to other locations. For example, a trigger in the trapezius muscle of your shoulder can refer pain up your neck.

Myofascial Pain Syndrome describes when you have many of these trigger points actively causing you pain.

To break down the term – Myo is the Greek word for muscle. This is skeletal muscle that moves your joints and bones (as opposed to muscles that work automatically without you thinking like your heart.)

Fascia is the layer beneath your skin that covers all your muscles and joints. It acts like the glue that binds all these together. It does the important job of smoothing out movements by organising the individual muscles into groups which act together.

Syndrome is a word describing a collection of symptoms. This is quite different from a disease. A syndrome is a malfunction that isn’t destructive and doesn’t cause ongoing damage.

So the malfunction here is the muscles going into a protective spasm and then not releasing. Although Myofascial Pain Syndrome can be extremely painful, it doesn’t cause long term damage and can be treated.

You can employ massage, acupuncture and myofascial release to help stop the pain. It’s also important to examine your posture and workstation to see if you’re causing stress and tension in your muscles that can lead to muscle knots being switched on.

There is a relationship between myofascial pain syndrome and fibromyalgia. People with fibromyalgia tend to have a lot of active trigger points.

In general, fibromyalgia pain is felt all over the body in a diffuse way, while myofascial pain syndrome is specific to a muscle or a group of muscles. The exact muscle or muscle group that’s causing the pain can sometimes be difficult to track down without some knowledge of trigger points.

This is because muscles can refer pain, sometimes to surprising locations, and sometimes quite far from the trigger point itself.

How to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Concerta, a brand name for the drug Methylphenidate, is an amphetamine-like prescription stimulant commonly used to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, ADHD in children and adults.

Other brand names include Ritalin, Ritalina, Metadate, Methylin and Rubifen. Concerta is also one of the primary drugs used to treat symptoms of traumatic brain injury and the daytime drowsiness symptoms of narcolepsy and chronic fatigue syndrome.

This drug and was initially prescribed as a treatment for depression, chronic fatigue, and narcolepsy, among other ailments. Beginning in the 1960s, it was used to treat children with ADHD, known at the time as hyperactivity or minimal brain dysfunction.

Today Concerta is a popular medication prescribed to treat ADHD around the world. According to most estimates, more than 75 percent of prescriptions containing Methylphenidate are written for children. Boys being about four times as likely to take Concerta as girls.

Concerta is a central nervous system stimulant. It has a “calming” effect on many children who have ADHD, reducing impulsive behavior and the tendency to “act out”, and helps them concentrate on schoolwork and other tasks. Adults who have ADHD often find that Concerta increases their ability to focus on tasks and organize their lives.

Concerta has been found to have a lower incidence of side-effects compared to dextroamphetamine, a less commonly prescribed medication. When prescribed at the correct dosage, Concerta is usually well-tolerated by patients.

Some consider the treatment of children with stimulant medication to be controversial since the number of children taking them has increased dramatically over the years. However, criticism that Concerta and other brand name drugs that contain methylphenidate are over prescribed may be unfounded. The incidence of ADHD is believed to be between three and five percent of the population, while the number of children in America taking Concerta and Ritalin is estimated at one to two percent.

Some have argued that prescription of stimulant medications sets children up for future addictions. However, recent research suggests that boys with ADHD who are treated with stimulants like Concerta are actually less likely to abuse drugs including alcohol later in life.

As long-term use of Concerta and other drugs that contain methylphenidate was relatively uncommon before the 1990s. The long-term neurological effects were not well researched. In a 2005 study, no “clinically significant” effects on growth, vital signs, tics, or laboratory tests including urinalysis, hematology/complete blood counts, electrolytes, and liver function tests were observed after 2 years of treatment.

Disclaimer: The information presented here should not be interpreted as medical advice. Please seek professional medical advice regarding the use of Concerta or any other medication containing Methylphenidate.

Resveratrol and Diabetes

Diabetes is very much a lifestyle and aging disease, and Resveratrol, with its uncanny ability to maintain and repair the body has now been proven to help with the control, reducing the risk of the onset of diabetes, and some are saying, the curing of diabetes. This is a huge claim, I know, but it has been studied and scientists are jubilant and optimistic for this application alone.

There are actually two ways that Resveratrol can help control the onset of diabetes and help to keep diabetes that has already occurred in line. One is by increasing the body’s sensitivity to insulin and activating a very powerful enzyme.

Insulin resistance is one of the prime contributing factors to diabetes. If we can heighten the body’s sensitivity to insulin, then we are on our way to stopping the disease. When the body loses its sensitivity to insulin, more insulin is required to maintain healthy blood sugar levels. Resveratrol has been proven to increase the body’s sensitivity to insulin and therefore reduce the amount of insulin required to maintain a healthy blood sugar level.

The other way that Resveratrol is helping in the treatment and prevention of diabetes is that it actually activates an enzyme in the body called the SIRT1 enzyme. This enzyme is responsible for insulin secretion and insulin sentivity.

There are some mighty lofty claims out there about Resveratrol and it is a good plan to be cautious about them until you have found explanations to back up these claims. That being said, there is no doubt that Resveratrol has incredible anti-aging and anti-disease properties and one of the diseases that is truly affected by the discovery of this power house anti-oxidant is diabetes!

Understanding a Skin Rash – Causes, Symptoms and Types of Common Rashes

When you are trying to understand a skin rash, it can be difficult to sort through and identify the primary cause for the eruptions. If you or your child have a fever, it may be a case of the chicken pox or measles. Seeing if there is an outbreak at school or day care can be an important clue. Schools will usually alert parents when this is the case, but e-mail and notes can get lost.

Another contagious skin outbreak may be the scabies rash which is communicated by physical contact usually. This can be transmitted at school playgrounds, in nursing homes and via sexual contact.  Though it sounds scary to have mites, it can be treated with a prescription pesticide cream and your child can return to school after 24 hours. For this rash, it is advised that all family members in the home treat themselves as well to prevent the spreading of mites.

Allergic rashes can occur due to contact with metals like nickel, foods that one cannot tolerate, chemical exposure, plants such as poison ivy or a drug rash to a medication like penicillin. These are not contagious rashes and often may be hard to identify. For instance, some people have a response to hot tubs due to the chemicals that clean the water. This rash may not appear immediately so the source of the red pimples isn’t discovered right away.

Certain rashes require contacting a physician immediately including having any accompanying respiratory problems, rashes with fevers and purple spots or areas that are inflamed and very warm to the touch. Keep your immune system strong by getting rest , hydrating the skin and drinking water till the rash resolves.

Natural Treatment for Cold Sores

Cold sores are an unpleasant condition caused by the herpes simplex virus. While it remains in the body permanently, most of the time in a dormant state, there are steps we can take to prevent recurrence of the lesions. The drug companies have several OTC and prescription medicines available for treatment that deal with the symptoms; but there are also natural remedies available – treatment for cold sores that can prevent them reoccurring by helping strengthen the immune system.

Lysine is an essential amino acid, required by the body which cannot synthesize it itself and therefore requires we get it through food sources. It is used to make protein, which is required to produce hormones, enzymes, antibodies, and body tissue. Food sources such as red meat, eggs, milk, cheese and yeast all provide lysine, which has been linked to keeping cold sore outbreaks at bay. However, there is another essential amino acid that has the opposite effect; too much arginine in the diet has been demonstrated to raise the risk of an attack, which may be due to an imbalance between lysine and arginine. Dietary changes can therefore certainly help to reduce the frequency and duration of cold sores, which can also be treated with lysine supplements to aid healing, or lysine based ointment.

One treatment that is popular in Europe due to its effectiveness is lemon balm. A member of the mint family, lemon balm can reduce the severity and duration of an attack and is believed to decrease the tendency of cold sore recurrence. This treatment is not widely available in the United States however.

Looking to traditional eastern medicine, we find that Reishi, a type of mushroom found in Asia, is commonly used in the treatment of cold sores by strengthening the immune system. Available in the form of powder, it is advisable to see your doctor because it thins the blood and prevents clotting and should therefore not be used in conjunction with medicines such as aspirin. Reishi can also be used with Astragalus, a kind of herb. It also helps associated with boosting the immune system.

Other natural ingredients that have been used to treat cold sores successfully include resveratrol, peppermint oil and propolis. The former is a compound found in red grapes, while propolis is a substance used by bees to keep their hives germ free and is collected from buds. Care should be taken with peppermint oil, however, as it can have a toxic effect on the body and should never be taken internally.

Anyone suffering from cold sores regularly knows how unpleasant an attack can be. However, taking care of what we eat and looking after our own well-being have proved to be an extremely effective long term treatment for cold sores for many sufferers.

Get Rid of Psoriasis – How to Cure Psoriasis the Easy Way!

Psoriasis is an autoimmune, chronic disease that emerges on the skin. It takes place when the immune system sends out defective signals that accelerate the growth cycle of skin cells. According to the National Institutes of Health, over 50 million people worldwide have psoriasis. Several people are still under the misconception that psoriasis cannot be cured. Well, it is complicated to treat but it can be cured even without the use of any medications or drugs. The natural remedies can really help get rid of psoriasis naturally. They are safe and do not produce any negative side effects on the health of an individual. They are economical and reasonable for the common man. A few of the more popular natural remedies to get rid of psoriasis include:

1. Cow Cream and Bag Balm: Applying cow cream and bag balm just after a bathe while the skin is still moist will help the skin maintain moisture and relieve the flaking and itching linked with psoriasis.

2. Go gluten-free: One of the most effective remedy to get rid of psoriasis is a going on a gluten-free diet. Gluten is a compound of starch mostly available in barley, rye and wheat. It has been found that gluten raises the risk of developing symptoms of psoriasis. Gluten free diet helps to recover the condition. Choose grains like amaranth, buckwheat, corn, rice, and quinoa, and starches like soy, potato, and tapioca as alternates for gluten-containing products

3. Garlic Oil: Applying garlic oil used in combination with aloe vera oil has been known to be very beneficial for this chronic skin condition. It can help moisturizing the skin and reduce the itching at the same time. This is a good natural remedy to get rid of psoriasis.

4. Lactic Acid Moisturizer: One approach that is often ignored by many is to moisturize. Excessive dryness, flaking and itching are the main symptoms of psoriasis. Regularly applying quality lactic acid moisturizers will go a long way in helping alleviate these symptoms and also help the skin keep its elasticity.

5. Light: Using the light is a highly efficient way to get rid of psoriasis. The use of the sun’s rays has been used to cure psoriasis for over a century, however, of the ultraviolet rays released by the sun, only UVA and UVB is of benefit to folks with psoriasis. Brief exposures of sunlight can aid diminish psoriasis, but over exposure can worsen symptoms.

How Fungus Spreads and How to Treat It

Everyone has ten fingers where fungus may infect, but more than ten reasons to get rid of fingernail fungus. Nail fungus make your nails jagged and brittle, and you will lost confidence with embarrassing appearance of nail fungus. Do you know the reason how fingernail fungus spreads and what you can do to eliminate it.

If you left untreated, the longer you wait, nail fungus can spread out to other hand or toes of body. this may get serious health risks. Most of people do not know how to deal with this.many people just let it spread and develop simply. Actually it is not difficult to remove fingernail fungus. To protect yourself, try to know the facts and the fiction on fungus.

Most people thing that fingernail fungus is the result of poor hygiene and this poor hygiene encouraged the spread of the disease. which let sufferers an undeserved social stigma. The truth is that you can not remove fungus by washing, scrubbing or using any kind of cleansing regimen. The reason that you gotten started because bacterial infections may from others who has skin and nail problems. You may think use soap to eliminate fingernail fungus. However, this does not works. To eliminate fingernail fungus, you need to kick your immune system into high gear.

Another common reason is that you will catch fingernail fungus by going to a communal area where bare feet are exposed, such as public swimming poor, public shower, school gymnasium, or a locker room where fungus may attack your nails. You may think avoiding there area will help you to eliminate this problem. However, this is not true. Because nail fungus is not highly contagious between people. You can find fungus everywhere including floating in water, lodged in soil, even in the air. Many healthy people are exposed to different kind of fungus every day.

Always keep your nails clean and dry. Never allow moisture to remain under the nails. Do not pick at the skin around the nails, and wash your hands frequently. This will keep germs from breeding in and around the nail. Visit a reputable manicurist who uses sterilized instruments. Do not apply nail polish or artificial nails. All of these affords will help to cure it. Also, some treatments such as Claripro nail fungus treatment can give you a big help in just a few weeks!

Can Hormone Balancing Improve Allergies Or Asthma?

If your allergies or asthma seem to worsen at certain times of the month or with age, the blame may lie in your hormones.

Research has shown allergies are often triggered or intensified by natural body transitions and cycles such as puberty, pregnancy and menopause. Hormonal fluctuations also cause more severe asthma attacks in many women, especially older women, usually before or at the start of menstruation and the risk of serious asthma attacks quadruples at menopause.

Progesterone levels rise just before the onset of menstruation and remain high until it ends, and are linked to worsening asthma in up to 40% of women. One study linked the development of allergies and asthma to irregular menstrual cycles.

During menopause, a woman’s ovaries decrease production of estrogen and progesterone, and this has also been linked to worsening allergies. Some women, however, seen to experience decreases asthma and allergy symptoms with menopause. It appears that women’s bodies can react differently to estrogen and progesterone, so that hormonal fluctuations can affect existing allergies or asthma differently.

Research also shows that autoimmune diseases like arthritis, celiac disease, Chron’s disease, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and insulin-dependent diabetes are also affected by hormone levels. They are three times more common in premenopausal women than in the rest of the population.

One reason for hormonally-driven fluctuations in allergies and asthma is a reduction in cortisol. When this occurs, the body tries to compensate by producing more adrenalin, which causes inflammation and hence, an increase in allergic and asthma symptoms.

Low progesterone levels can also aggravate allergies and asthma, as can too much estrogen (estrogen dominance). That’s why estrogen therapy and the Pill are of little help, and actually aggravate asthma. A 2004 Harvard study showed that women on Hormone Replacement Therapy (which increases estrogen levels), were twice as likely to develop asthma as women not on estrogen. Oral contraceptives, which contain estrogen, were found in a 2004 Norwegian study to increase risk of asthma by 50%.

Natural hormone balancing should therefore be considered a key element of allergy and asthma solutions. Patients whose hormones are brought into natural balance are often astonished to find that their allergy and asthma symptoms are also significantly relieved.

Yet it is not surprising. Hormones play such an important role in the health of our bodies and immune system that they are inevitably involved in allergies and asthma, either increasing their severity or helping to provide relief.

How to Recognize and Cope with the 34 Menopause Symptoms

Suffering from hot flashes or night sweats? Maybe you’ve suffered irregular periods now that you’re going through the menopause. There are actually 34 symptoms that are commonly associated with menopause, although thankfully it is rare for one person to suffer from all of them. Here is a quick list. You may be able to spot some that you can relate to on this list.

1. Hot flashes (hot flushes)

2. Night sweats

3. Chronic fatigue

4. Irregular periods

5. Low sex drive or loss of sex drive

6. Hair loss

7. Sleep disturbance

8. Difficulty concentrating

9. Incontinence

10. Dry or thin skin

11. Vaginal dryness

12. Allergy symptoms

13. Leg cramps

14. Digestive problems

15. Facial hair

16. Muscle tensions

17. PMS symptoms

18. Water retention

19. Memory lapses

20. Dizziness

21. Weight gain

22. Heart palpitations

23. Mood swings

24. Itchy skin

25. Cold or tingling hands and feet

26. Depression

27. Breast tenderness

28. Migraines and headaches

29. Aching joints and muscles

30. Osteoporosis

31. Burning tongue

32. Irritability

33. Panic attacks / Anxiety

34. Low metabolism

There are steps that you can take to overcome some of these symptoms if you need to. You can visit your doctor and ask what treatments are available. In cases of severe symptoms you may be offered HRT (hormone replacement therapy). This has become quite controversial recently with some commentators saying that this treatment carries an increased risk of cancer with it.

You can also take natural remedies for the condition. Wild yam is a plant that grows in North America and contains phytoestrogens – plant material that very closely resembles female hormones. Many women have said that they have had great results when using this product.

You can also take simple measures yourself that will decrease the severity of symptoms. If you suffer from night sweats you should look at the type of bed linen and nightwear that you have. Natural fibers are best, such as cotton. You should avoid polyester and other manmade fibers that can make you hot. Keep the room cool and don’t put too many covers on the bed.

If you have hot flashes during the day you can also take some sensible measures. Try and find out if your hot flashes are related to eating a particular type of food. Some women have found that cheese or red wine can trigger an episode. You can also dress to be prepared. Rather than one big sweater you can wear layers that can be taken off if you feel hot. Wearing a cardigan is also a practical piece of clothing that can easily be removed.

Depression: Can NLP Help With Depression?

Can NLP Help With Depression?

Depression is affecting more and more people everyday. Of course, depression is also a normal aspect of life. Feeling sad, overwhelmed, uninterested in life, morose and dejected are normal emotions to feel after a loss, embarrassment or an unachieved goal. These feelings typically resolve on their own. Clinical depression is the ongoing exacerbation of these feelings.

Symptoms of depression include:

  • difficulty concentrating, remembering details, and making decisions
  • fatigue and decreased energy
  • feelings of guilt, worthlessness, and/or helplessness
  • feelings of hopelessness and/or pessimism
  • insomnia, early-morning wakefulness, or excessive sleeping
  • irritability, restlessness
  • loss of interest in activities or hobbies once pleasurable, including sex
  • overeating or appetite loss
  • persistent aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems that do not ease even with treatment
  • persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” feelings
  • thoughts of suicide, suicide attempts

It is imperative to have a medical doctor treat you for symptoms of depression, however, one treatment found to be effective that your doctor might suggest is hypnosis or an advanced form of hypnosis known as neuro-linguistic programming or NLP.

NLP is a combination of techniques derived from hypnosis and psychiatry. NLP can be useful in treating depression because it changes the internal beliefs that may be exacerbating the symptoms of depression.

The difference between NLP and psychiatry is the practice of NLP says people are not sick they just have incorrect behaviors. By changing the internal habits and beliefs of the subconscious mind, the behaviors being experienced by the depressed person can be effectively altered. Again if a clinical depression exists any complementary therapy would be done with the medical doctors approval.

Neuro-linguistic programming is an effective treatment for depression and has been shown to greatly help in the recovery of those afflicted by this condition. The exact practices used with each client would very depending upon the individual. The treatment of depression in NLP was modeled from people who overcame depression on their own. Following the same protocol as others who were successful in overcoming depression allows for an effective road map out of the dark tunnel of depression.

Discover the Different Types of Phobias Today

There are many different types of phobias today. A phobia is a type of fear that is considered to be either excessive, or irrational in basis. In many cases, a phobia includes both an excessive and an irrational fear.

Individuals who suffer from these fears may or may not know and understand that their fear is irrational. However, if one does recognize their fear as irrational, it is still difficult to overcome it as it feels and seems very real.

The body experiences a high level of stress regarding the cause of the fear, and results in physiological and psychological responses of the body preparing itself for danger. Here, you will discover the different types of phobias today, as well as symptoms that are associated with these fears.

Common Phobias

While there are literally hundreds of different types of phobias experienced today, there are a few that are more common than others. These include phobias that are social, phobias that are considered to be specific, as well as phobia that are special or related to specific spaces and the excess or limitations of those spaces.

Individuals who suffer from these common phobia types experience not only a fear that is directly related to these phobias, but also a number of uncomfortable symptoms that can cause physiological and psychological stress on the body.

1. Social Phobia – This type of phobia is actually a type of anxiety that exists when social experiences and situations are encountered. These social situations can be as simple as those that are encountered on a daily basis. Individuals who experience this find that they are scared of others watching and passing judgments on them.

These individuals are also worried when it comes to dealing with embarrassment in public situations. Many may be fearful of to speaking in front of others, or doing other things in front of others, such as eating.

2. Specific Phobia – A specific phobia involves being fearful of a particular situation or thing. When an individual suffers from this, they tend to avoid the item or area that they have a fear of. An example of this type of phobia includes that of Arachnophobia, which is a fear of spiders.

3. Spatial Phobia – A spatial phobia involves a particular area of the amount of space present. This may include a fear of closed in spaces, a fear of open spaces, and even a fear of heights.

Common Phobia Symptoms

When an individual suffers from a phobia, there are many different types of symptoms that are prevalent when he or she comes into close contact with the source. One may constantly fear coming into contact with the source of his or her phobia at any time. Listed below are some common symptoms that may occur when an individual suffers from phobias:

1. One may feel mild to severe levels of dizziness.

2. It is common to feel a certain amount of nausea, and even experience vomiting.

3. Individuals with specific phobias may experience a feeling of “unreality”.

4. It is common to experience complications in breathing.

5. It is not uncommon to have an extreme level of fear.

There are many different types of phobias today. The most common forms are social, specific, and spatial. While phobias are basically an irrational fear of something, most individuals with the fear understand that there is no reason to have the fear. Unfortunately, the fear that is experienced by one seems very real. Symptoms that resemble that of panic are quite common when an individual experiences phobias.

The Most Effective Treatments For Anxiety

Anxiety is an overwhelming sensation of fear and apprehension. And different people suffer varying kinds and degrees of anxiety disorders. Fortunately however, all cases of anxiety can be treated, and the treatments are diverse.

The underlying causes of anxiety can vary from traumatic experiences to chemical imbalances in the brain and from substance abuse to medication. And depending on the severity of the condition, the attacks could me light or very serious indeed. But the proper and prompt application of treatment can enable it to be managed or even eliminated.

An anxiety attack may be light or chronic, but notwithstanding the severity, various treatments are available. The most effective treatment often recommended by experts is a combination of medication and cognitive behavioural therapy. In cognitive behavioural psychotherapy, the patient is encouraged to review and re-examine thought patterns and habits with a view to isolating the causes of the anxiety, and replacing them with more wholesome patterns. This therapy helps the sufferer to identify and confront the irrationality in his thoughts, proving that our emotions are the result of how we perceive events or situations and are not derived from the events and situations themselves.

Most sufferers of the anxiety disorder find this cognitive behavioural treatment especially effective and prefer it to other forms of treatments. Medications like benzodiazepines are also widely used. These are quick acting anxiety drugs which may be used to alleviate the symptoms of an attack when it occurs.

Antidepressants are also commonly used to treat anxiety, only it may take a few weeks before the results are obvious. Antipsychotic and beta blocker blood pressure medications may also be of some benefit and can be taken regularly or on a plan.

While most other anxiety treatments are effective, studies have shown that cognitive behavioural therapy in combination with medication afford the best results to patients. This condition can be greatly disturbing to the life of a sufferer, but this shouldn’t be the case as many treatments are available.

When the Toenail Goes Bad

Gertrude (names changed to protect the… health information – Google HIPPA) came into the office and I noticed right away that she was very distressed and wringing her hands. When I see a patient for the first time, we go through their medical history. This includes any current medical information, medications, allergies, past surgeries and just overall how they are feeling. What Gerty (for short) had is one of the few things that I just have to look at once and I immediately know what is going on. There is perhaps nothing that disrupts the serenity and beauty of a foot more than an ugly blackened toenail. (Well, there may be a few more disruptive things, but black toenails are pretty icky, all the same.) Dark discolorations in the toenail don’t always have to be black, either. They may also look purplish or brown, two other colors that don’t go very well with the foot’s natural décor. As soon as she saw me Gerty threw up her hands pointing at her left big toe nail saying, “I just woke up with this and I don’t know how it got there.”

The cause of these discolorations is usually pretty straightforward-generally they’re from a blood clot or bruising under the toenail, most likely caused by that time you dropped your toolbox on your foot, or possibly the way you keep jamming your toes during football practice.

However, occasionally the cause could be something more severe, such as melanoma (or skin cancer) that’s growing under the nail. In this case, you likely see the discoloration as a brown or black streak under the nail. This type of melanoma is more likely to occur in people with dark skin (it accounts for about 30-40% of melanomas in the non-white population), although it strikes both men and women fairly equally.

Black toenails may also occur because of fungal infections, really bad ingrown toenails (often when they’re recurring), or other health concerns, although these tend to be more rare.

These are fairly easy to pick up just clinical examination and Gerty had none of these. Obviously, the main symptom of a black toenail is…well…a black toenail. Gerty’s discoloration was caused by bruising under the nail, the bleeding caused some pain with pressure to the area, since the blood has no easy escape route. Gerty just about jumped through the false ceiling of my treatment room when I applied the lightest touch.

Gerty, much to her credit, had become very suspicious what was happening because she couldn’t remember injuring the toe in any way. Melanomas will tend to show up as a streak under the nail, usually dark but occasionally white. Because they can show up in any form, it’s usually a good idea to treat any nail discoloration with suspicion-checking with me was a good idea.

If I had suspected melanoma I would have obtained a biopsy of the tissue. This is really the only way to find out for sure if the tissue is cancerous. Melanoma is certainly no fun, but early detection makes treatment that much easier, and often more successful.

Knowing Gerty had developed some trauma to the area (and likely within the past day) it was just a matter of going through her itinerary of the day before. Gerty had gone dancing the night before. She pulled out the dancing shoes from 10 years before. “It had been awhile, I know,” she said. “And they felt a little tight but I just had to use them,” she said with a wistful smile suggesting more of a nostalgic rather than functional motive for subjecting her tootsies to these shoes of bygone days. She also mentioned that during the course of the evening she frequented the bar at the club and by the end of the evening required the help of her husband to get back home. She could not, for the life of her recall how she got from the venue to her bed.

I explained to her that her feet had enlarged over the years and as her right foot was a little smaller (and likely always had been) than her her left that the right great toe did not get as much pressure. I had to numb up Gerty’s left great toe and remove the nail to make sure no additional damage was done to the nail bed and to relieve the pressure from the bleeding under it.

If I suspected that Gerty had a melanoma this would have required more aggressive treatment. If the disease is caught early enough, I can just cut out the melanoma (again with the toe numb of course). However, in more advanced stages, it may be necessary to amputate the affected toe. Removing nearby lymph nodes may be needed to prevent the spread of the cancer, and treatment may also involve other cancer-fighting methods, such as chemotherapy.

After much reassuring and a followup visit Gerty was relieved to know we did not have to call the toe truck.