What Is Chiari Malformation?

Arnold Chiari (pronounced key-are-ee) Malformation is a rare malformation of the brain located in the area where the brain and spinal cord connect. This malformation occurs when the cerebellum is too large to fit within the confines of the skull.

When the cerebellum is over-sized, the cerebellar tonsils are forced to extend down into the spinal cord canal through the small opening in the base of the skull. As the cerebellar tonsils elongate, they may restrict or cut off the normal flow of cerebro-spinal fluid of the brain and around the spinal cord as well as apply pressure to the brain stem and the top of the spinal cord. This condition is usually a congenital abnormality but there have been a few reported cases of spontaneous development due to trauma.

According to the Duke Center for Human Genetics, “The affected regions of the brain are the lower brainstem and cerebellum. The lower brainstem controls breathing, swallowing, balance, the vocal cords, eye movements, and sensation and movement of the arms and legs. The cerebellum’s most important function is to coordinate body movements.”

The symptoms of Chiari vary with each individual and are quite extensive. Most commonly, Chiari patients have some or all of the following symptoms:

  • Headache in the back of the head that may radiate behind the eyes and into the neck and shoulders.
  • Disordered eye movements, vision changes.
  • Dizziness, autonomic symptoms (orthostatic intolerance, NMH).
  • Muscle weakness.
  • Unsteady gait.
  • Cold, numbness and tingling in the extremities.
  • Chronic fatigue.
  • Tinnitus (ringing, buzzing or watery sounds in the ears).
  • Sleep apnea.
  • Speech impairment.
  • Hearing loss.
  • Gastrointestinal problems, irritable bowel syndrome, frequent urination.
  • Lack of gag reflex, difficulty swallowing.
  • Symptoms are exacerbated by exertion, and especially by leaning the head backward or coughing.
  • and the list continues beyond the symptoms listed above…

Some patients with Chiari have no visible symptoms. For these patients, careful monitoring by a neurologist or neurosurgeon is all that is needed. These patients may live a full life with no adverse effects appearing. Other patients with the adult onset variety of Chiari Type-I will begin to exhibit symptoms in their late 20’s or 30’s. For most people who are exhibiting symptoms, surgery is the only option available to help stop the progression.

Generally, the surgery is meant to decompress the area of the brain that is being squeezed. Surgery to correct the malformation may not be able to reverse any neurological damage that has already been done. Once the pressure has been relieved, the patient may see some of their symptoms lessen or disappear.

The long-term effects of the surgery are still being studied. However, surgeons will not guarantee that symptoms will disappear after the surgery, or that symptoms, either old or new, will not return in the future. The main goal of the surgery is to attempt to prevent the patient from worsening from their current neurological status. For some patients, a second decompression surgery will be needed some years after the first surgery was completed.

As a person living with Chiari, I can not stress enough the importance of finding and staying with a neurosurgeon that specializes in dealing with Chiari. This is a complex disease. Receiving the wrong medical advice can be extremely detrimental to your health. To find qualified medical care near you, I suggest that you join a Chiari support group and ask the other members for their help and guidance.

The support group that I belong to and rely on is very active and is filled with helpful, sympathetic, and concerned group members. The members have been where you are now and are eager to share their stories and advice.

Encouraging Potty Training

For many parents, potty training can be one of the most frustrating parts of early child rearing. In the act of weaning their children from diapers to the potty, a mother or father must learn to be a psychologist, a teacher, and, at times, a drill sergeant.

There are literally hundreds of books on the subject, many of them more than a few hundred pages in length, detailing the best methods to use in potty training, and certainly an entire field of child psychology devoted to the subject, and still, it has not yet been perfected to a science. Every child will learn at a different pace, and every child will respond to different techniques than the next child.

Serious study into the psychology of potty training began, of course, with Sigmund Freud, who put forth that potty training is one of the most important components in the early phases of an individual’s psychological development. The general theory being that a child must be taught that bodily desires do not always take immediate precedence over social and other imperatives. As such, a child who is potty trained poorly may grow up to experience difficulties in controlling their own inhibitions in a social setting, and a child who is potty trained too strictly may grow up to experience issues of self worth centred around cleanliness and perfection.

While many of Sigmund Freud’s theories have been considered less and less important over time by the psychological community at large, they remain the foundation upon which much of modern psychology is based, and Freud’s theories on potty training are no exception.

While different children may respond differently to various methods, the one constant, believed by nearly all child analysts, is that a potty training routine must remain consistent, and must focus on positive reinforcement as opposed to punishment or scolding. In short, a child spends the first year and a half of life using diapers. Rather than punishing a child for doing something they consider normal, it is much more effective to reward them for taking a developmental step forward.

Between the ages of eighteen months and two years of age, most children enter a phase wherein they hope to earn parental approval. Almost invariably, child psychologists recommend making the most of this time by focusing on potty training. Some parents wait too long, and wind up with their children going through a stubborn, rebellious phase, where they are more concerned with asserting their independence than they are with impressing their parents. It’s certainly not impossible to teach a stubborn child to use the potty, but it’s nothing if not an uphill battle.

In general, it’s a good idea to make the act of potty training fun. You need your child’s cooperation. Obviously this begins with a training potty, and Fisher Price’s My Potty Friend is as good a place to start as any, with a clicking “flush” lever, and an actual toilet paper roll holder. Furthermore, there should be some form of consistent reward system in place. Many parents opt for the “star system”, wherein a gold star sticker is placed on the calendar (one for number one, and two for number two, of course). When a certain number of stars have been reached, the child may be rewarded with anything from a new children’s book, to a trip to the pet store, so long as it is something that the child enjoys.

However, ultimately, the most important reward system in potty training is simply parental praise. Let your child know you love them, and let them know when you are happy with their progress.

What You Eat – Curing a Sore Throat Naturally

There is nothing worse than a raw and tickly sore throat which is often indicative of one of the first signs of contracting a cold. Ordinarily, sore throats are caused through the presence of the virus. The Streptococcus bacteria can also lead to sore throats and in some cases a fever manifesting itself in what is known as strep throat. It has been documented for some time that factors leading up to the contraction of tonsillitis and other throat infections can be caused as the result of a poor diet. A poor diet containing refined carbohydrates such as biscuits, excessive amounts of sugar and cakes are extremely low in nutrients required for the effective use of the bodies natural warriors helping to fend off stress, and tiredness.

To help your body deal with sore throats and to an extent stopping it developing into a cold, ensure that your daily diet is giving you sufficient intakes of vitamin D. Vitamin D is located in oily fish and evidence suggests that vitamin E will also be beneficial in this process which is contained within nuts, seeds, olive oils and avocados. Vitamin D and vitamin E are high in essential fatty acids which have been shown to provide your immune system with the nutrients it requires to function efficiently.

A lack of vitamin C can also weakened peoples ability to fight off colds and infections. Good sources of vitamin E can be found in oranges, red peppers, strawberries, blackcurrants and watercress. Iron is also an essential part of your body’s defenses given that it is required in the formation of antibodies. Iron is located in liver, bread and sesame seeds.

If you start to notice a sore throat you may find it helpful to consume orange or yellow fruits and vegetables such as carrots, apricots and dark green vegetables, spinach is a good example. These foods contain vitamin C whilst they also contain beta-carotene which our bodies ingeniously convert into vitamin A. Vitamin A helps to assist the body in maintaining the health of the mucous membranes and the inner lining of the throat. Another popular home remedy for curing a sore throat is adding the juice of half a lemon and a teaspoon of honey to a cup or glass of hot water thereby providing your throat with a soothing drink. Vitamin C is contained within the lemon juice which helps stimulate your saliva glands thereby soothing your irritated membranes, and the warm honey also acts as a natural throat soother.

Sore throats ordinarily persist for around 3 to 4 days however, if your sore throat continues for longer than this period, then you should consult your doctor or medical practitioner given prolonged symptoms may indicate other conditions such as mumps or glandular fever.

Bad Breath Tonsils

Many people don’t realize that when you have bad breath tonsils may have something to do with it. Your tonsils, located in the back of the mouth at the top of the throat, are not only a frequent site of infection, they can also accumulate debris and harbor bacteria. Tonsils and tonsillar crypts provide a moist sheltered airless environment where many species of bacteria do well. Although most of the bacteria that live in the mouth and throat are harmless, and many are even beneficial, invasion by the wrong kind of bacteria can cause problems.

A first step in bad breath prevention is to keep the tissues in your mouth and throat healthy, including your tonsils. Seek medical attention immediately if you suspect you have tonsillitis and have sinus problems assessed as well. See your dentist at least once a year and practice good dental hygiene between dental cleanings. Regular medical checkups are a good way to keep a close eye on your general health and avoid bad breath tonsils and other health problems as you get older.

To deal with bad breath tonsils, first rule out bacterial infection. The organism to worry about is streptococcus, the cause of strept throat. This is an acute infection that usually clears up fairly quickly and is routinely treated with antibiotics. Because there is destruction of healthy tissue in the throat, strept throat often results in a foul odor on the breath. The odor problem resolves with the infection, fortunately, so if this is what’s causing your halitosis, treatment for the strept will also be effective bad breath prevention.

If the breath problem is more of a chronic issue, bad breath prevention may be more difficult. The odor may be coming from tonsiloliths, small accumulations of dead cells and other debris that lodge and grow around the tonsils. Tonsiloliths are often associated with sinusitis or post nasal drip, where there is a constant flow of sinus drainage down the back of the throat. Dead cells and other tiny particles get caught up in the tonsil area forming tiny aggregates like stones – the aggregates grow larger as they catch more and more debris. Your tonsils become bad breath tonsils when oral bacteria start proliferating in and on the tonsiloliths, deriving nutrients from the proteins and other molecules there.

When it comes to bad breath prevention, tonsiloliths can be difficult to get rid of. Each individual tonsilolith is eventually dislodged and swallowed, carrying away its load of odor producing bacteria

– but another tonsilolith soon takes its place. The best approach to bad breath tonsils caused by tonsiloliths is to gargle regularly with a good breath freshening product designed to reduce bacterial growth in the mouth.

Home Made Remedies For Diabetes

The metabolic disorder that hinders the utilization of glucose completely and partially is known as diabetes. Diabetes can further be of two types namely: 1-diabetes mellitus (insulin -dependent diabetes) and 2-diabetes mellitus (non insulin -dependent diabetes). In 1 type of diabetes the blood sugar level is not normal due to the inefficiency of the body to produce sufficient insulin and in the type numbered 2, the cells are unable to respond properly to the insulin. The first type of diabetes generally occurs during childhood or adolescence but other ages are also attacked. In order to be healthy these patients need insulin daily. The normal blood sugar without having food is between 80 to 120 mg/dl and this can move up a level of 160mg/dl within two hours after having your meals. The second type of diabetes is found mostly in adults and specifically in those who are overweight and over forty years old. These people can control the sugar level in their blood by controlling their weight along with regular exercises and a balanced diet.

Some of the basic symptoms of diabetes are increased thrust, urination very frequently, an appetite increase, able to feel weakness and loss of weight along with erection problems. The probable causes of diabetes are insulin deficiency or resistance, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, a life full of stress and burdens and eating excessively. It is also a hereditary disease and can be transferred to you by your parents.

Some home made natural remedies for curing diabetes in an effective manner are as follows:

1. In one glass of water you need to boil fifteen fresh leaves of mango and leave it for one night. In the morning filter this and drink it. This should be the first thing you need to intake in the morning.

2. Half teaspoon of ground day leaf and half teaspoon of turmeric needs to be mixed with one tablespoon of gel of Aloe Vera. The mixture should be taken twice a day before the lunch and dinner.

3. Small Bitter Gourd’s watery juice with its seed removed should be drunk two times every day. This is considered to be the best natural remedy for diabetes.

4. In one liter of boiling water add 3- tablespoons of cinnamon and simmer it for the duration of twenty minutes in a low flame. Now strain the mixture and drink this at least two times every day.

5. You can also eat fresh curry leaves two times a day to reduce the sugar level in your body.

6. Fish-berry is crushed and soaked in water for one day and the juice is taken as the first thing in the morning.

And some more home remedies for diabetes:

o Boil 1 cup of water with 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, cool and drink daily.

o Soak almonds in water and eat every morning before you eat anything else.

o Boil a cup of water with mango leaves; drink the water every morning to treat diabetes.

o A good treatment is to eat soybeans.

o Eat cucumbers daily.

o Exercise to keep your body balanced.

o Add turmeric powder to your food it’s good for diabetes and add flavor.

o Eat tomatoes every day.

Diabetes Symptoms in Women

There is no reason to get scared if you have been diagnosed with diabetes. Especially, women are termed as’ weak and scary’ by the society. Whereas, I believe women are much stronger and sensible mentally. Even though, a diabetic life is bit difficult to maintain, it is overall a good life. We just need to have patience and get our treatment started as soon as possible. And all this is not possible unless we do not get proper diagnoses of our problem.

If diabetes is diagnosed at early stage, we can definitely avoid the severe intensity of diabetes. Due to the hectic lifestyle, diabetes has become a common illness in the modern world. The ratio of women suffering from diabetes has increased in recent years. The diabetes symptoms differ from one another. Diabetic women tend to have hormonal and sexual disorders. They mostly suffer from women ailment like yeast infection in vagina, frequent secretion of white cells, and complication during menstruation cycle. Diseases related to sexual organs are often found in diabetic women.

Women can suffer from all three different types of diabetes; diabetes type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes. The women who are suffering from diabetes type 1 and type 2 should be highly cautious about their diet. The quantity and time are the prime factors enclosed in diabetic diet. Certain food items that can be harmful should be strictly refrained from their diet. A diet should comprise of healthy and nutritious food items. The diet should be consumed at recommended time with prescribed quantity. Obesity and poor eating habits are two main causes of diabetes. Lack of nutritional food, inadequate sleep, no exercise, stress, and poor lifestyle also lead to diabetes.

Gestational diabetes usually occurs during pregnancy. This type of diabetes is cured naturally after the birth of child. Usually, diabetes symptoms for type 1 are developed after short period while, the symptoms for type 2 occurs at slower speed. The people suffering from mild diabetes are unable to discover the symptoms for longer time. They do not experience any kind of symptoms for many years, which usually are noticed after many years. Thus, it is essential to for women to be aware of all symptoms which might indicate the arrival of diabetes. Diabetes symptoms in women are as follows:

  • Excessive thirst
  • Sudden loss of weight
  • Irritation
  • Frequent urination
  • Blurred vision
  • Slow healing process
  • Itchy and dry skin
  • Infections affecting women sexual organs
  • Recurrent hunger
  • Swelling of heels, gum, and feet

As I said earlier, the symptoms differ from one another person. Women should be aware of all symptoms as, neglect action towards them may lead to severe complications. As soon as you even find any of the above mentioned warning, consult your physician

Rashes From Chemicals – Understanding Skin Reactions

Did you know that you may contract rashes from chemicals that you use on a daily basis? It is a frightening thought to consider, but these are a real concern for many people. Do you have sensitive skin? Do you have a family history of skin problems and allergies? Are you frequently around chemicals at work or in your home environment? If you think that you might answer yes to any of these considerations, you may have some answers to the causes of the eruptions.

The biggest concern when it comes to chemical burns and rashes is allergies. If you have ever experienced any seasonal allergies, and sometimes even if you have not, you may also suffer from allergies to chemicals that are used in common products such as cosmetics, perfumes, and even contact solutions. Many of these products contain a preservative called thimerosal, which has been known to set off allergic reactions that may manifest as a rash. The common pesticide known as deet, which is used in many popular insect repellants, can cause severe skin rashes, blisters or other skin irritations. Some people are very sensitive and cannot be around certain fragrances without getting a respiratory reaction and skin inflammation.

If you find that you have been afflicted with skin rashes and you do not seek treatment, your rashes may turn into large blisters or patches. These blisters may break and cause skin to turn dark or leathery. If you have found that you are susceptible to any dermatitis problems from chemicals, how can you go about life without these problems? Fortunately, there are many hypoallergenic options on the market that are tested by dermatologists as well as health store items using natural oils and herbal products.

The best thing that you can do to treat your skin eruptions is to get it diagnosed properly. Make sure that you keep a diary of both foods you may not be able to tolerate as well as environmental triggers that can cause your skin to turn red and form bumps.

Impetigo – What Is It, What Causes It and Is It Just a Cold Sore?

The two types of bacteria that cause the very contagious skin infection, impetigo, are staph and strep. Kids between the ages of two and six are most likely to have it appear on them. In it’s early stages it looks innocent enough. It can start from something as simple as a tiny scratch or a sore that looks akin to a fever blister.

A blister is then formed and it begins to secrete a brownish-yellow covering. It then has the ability to spread to others through use of their personal items. This can be things like washcloths, clothes, telephone or kitchen utensils.

This skin condition can appear as one of two types, non-bullous and bullous impetigo. The type that is most often encountered is the non-bullous strain. This is the type that is caused by staph and strep and is characteristic of the brownish-yellow blisters. Bullous is only caused by the staph bacteria and is characteristic of breakages in the skin.

Staphylococcus and streptococcus bacteria are normally harmless until they are able to find a break in the skin where they inevitably enter and end up causing infection. Things you should be worried about are insect bites, burns or skin that has already been invaded by other types of infections. So watch out when you see that poison ivy or chickenpox!

If you suspect your child may have acquired it then get to the family doctor as soon as possible and stop sharing household items. They might take a sample from the blister with a cotton swab in order to test it.

Ok, I understand what impetigo is, but is it the same as a cold sore or fever blister?

It can be tough to tell the difference between impetigo and cold sores as they share many common symptoms: appearance, can look like blisters, crust over as they heal, and are located around the mouth.

On the other hand, cold sores (or fever blisters) are skin infections caused by a virus (the herpes simplex virus), and look like small reddish blisters. They are most often found on the corners of the mouth or around the lips. They normally go away on their own over a couple of weeks, developing scabs as they heal.

Since cold sores are also spread by touching or direct contact with affected area, make sure not to kiss, or share glasses, eating utensils, towels, or washcloths with someone if you have cold sores. Unlike impetigo, cold sores can be painful, especially during the first few days of appearance.

What can I do to help impetigo?

Your treatment plan will vary depending on which type of impetigo your baby has acquired, how severe it is and age. Things that are common in treatments are antibiotics (oral and topical) and specific measures at covering hygiene. If the infection is just minor it really can be treated by keeping the wound clean as a result of washing it 2 to 3 times a day with soap and water.

If the infection is really crusty then it is a good idea to keep it soaked with warm water or make a compress with saline solution. Make sure that you keep your childs fingernails cut nice and short to discourage scratching the problem area. The doctor is likely to prescribe some antibiotics such as bactroban.

You can also try some herbs to help fight it from the inside out. Extract of African Potato, Mentha Piperita and Buchu all help to keep the immune system healthy and strong. Cleavers and Red Clover can be mixed together, with specific homeopathic ingredients, into a tincture that helps to heal the skin.

What can I do to help a cold sore or fever blister?

While there is no cure or vaccine at this time, there are things you can do to ease the pain of cold sores, speed up their healing, and stop their spread. For pain, you can apply ice to the area or take over-the-counter pain medications such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen.

Take 4 500mg Lysine at first sign of a cold sore. Take 1 each morning and 1 each evening for a few days and if caught early enough it will not progress but go away completely. If not caught early enough it will greatly reduce the amount of time for the outbreak and make the severity less. Lysine is very inexpensive and can be found in the vitamin section.

Treating Toenail Fungus The Natural Way

Are you obsessed with treating toenail fungus because you hate the way your nails look? Well I used to try all sorts of drugs and medicines from the doctors but none of them seemed to work. I later decided to opt for the natural way, and the results were amazing! Let me share with you some of the more well known methods to get rid of the fungus naturally.

Firstly, you can use apple cider vinegar. You see, the bacteria that are behind the fungus hate apple cider vinegar. It is like hell for them. That is because apple cider vinegar has strong anti-fungal properties. In fact, it is also used to treat other infections. All you have to do is get some apple cider vinegar, dilute it in some water, and dab it on the affected area. You could also drink the apple cider vinegar, but I would prefer to apply it topically.

Besides applying apple cider vinegar, you could also apply Listerine to the affected area. Now most people would not even have thought that Listerine would be one way for treating toenail fungus. However, studies and experiments have shown that Listerine does indeed get rid of the fungus. After all, Listerine is an anti-bacterial mouthwash. Maybe it should not come as a surprise that it can be used to treat such a condition.

Besides Listerine, another alternative you could try is Vicks VapoRub. Just like Listerine, Vicks VapoRub has anti-bacterial properties and is effective in getting rid of that horrible fungus. It is also an inexpensive option so I am sure you will want to consider using it.

The last method for treating toenail fungus that I would like to talk about would be using crushed garlic. This may be a little disgusting at first, but it is effective and also inexpensive. Garlic has long been known to be very effective when it comes to fighting infections. Crush a clove of garlic, mix it with water until it turns into a paste, and apply that paste onto the affected area. I would not recommend you doing this before going out because it can get rather messy.

Having said all that, I also need to point out that you should do your utmost best to maintain a high standard of hygiene while you are trying out any of these remedies. It is really pointless if you go three steps forward but two steps back. Try not to wear shoes that are too tight, and keep your feet dry and cool as much as possible.

By now I hope you have learnt something new about treating toenail fungus. Give any of these methods a try, but remember to take care of your feet while you are at it.

The Different Types of Allergic Reactions

Allergies are quite common today with practically everyone suffering from some form of allergy or the other. It is the overreaction of the immune system to antigens like bee stings, some food, insect stings or pollen that triggers an allergy. There are different types of allergic reactions that manifest itself in different ways in the body.

Allergies are generally mild with mild symptoms that go within a few days of getting rid of the trigger of the allergen. Occasionally, there are cases of people suffering from anaphylaxis which is a life threatening condition where there is difficulty in breathing and loss in consciousness.

One type of allergic reaction is seasonal allergic rhinitis, or hay fever. This is an allergic response to pollen and other microscopic substances that exist at certain times of the year. There are also conditions where allergic rhinitis works out to be perennial, or year round.

One of the types of allergic reactions is allergy to insect stings, which is very common. Some people however will not be aware of their allergy to insect stings until they are stung by an insect. More often than not, it is the second sting that triggers an allergy reaction while the first sting produces only a normal sting reaction. However if you have an allergy to insect stings, the severity of the reaction varies from person to person.

Allergy to latex is another of the types of allergic reactions where the person is allergic to substances made of natural latex. One of the main sources of this allergic reaction is rubber gloves while sometimes, latex that is used in other products like condoms and medical devices can trigger a reaction.

Mold allergy is an allergy that does not have a defined season as mold and fungi grow in all weather and thrive both indoors and outdoors. However some forms of outdoor mold tend to thrive in higher concentrations from spring to late fall. There are some people who suffer from allergy to cosmetics. With cosmetic allergy, you experience skin irritation because of some ingredients in the cosmetics like fragrances and preservatives. The two types of allergic reactions here are irritant contact dermatitis and allergic contact dermatitis.

Some people are allergic to pets; where it is not the pet’s feathers or fur that triggers a reaction. It is the invisible flakes of animal skin called dander that triggers sneezing, watery eyes and stuffy noses in some people. When you suffer from food allergies, it means that some food likes peanuts and jalapeños trigger an allergic reaction.

Symptoms here are like symptoms for different types of allergic reactions like hives, swelling of the throat and tongue, vomiting, abdominal cramps, diarrhea and a drop in blood pressure.

Beck Depression Scale

The Beck Depression Scale (BDI) is a scientific depression test to measure the presence and level of depression symptoms used by psychiatrists worldwide. It is meant to use the inventory to help diagnose individuals suffering of different forms of depression. Different settings make an important part of the test. The scale is meant to identify the presence and severity of symptoms and for this reason the Beck Depression Inventory can help professionals to learn more of the case.

The Beck Depression Scale can be used for both adults and adolescents of at least fifth or sixth grade reading level skills and up. It means that also teenagers are able to take the inventory. Since its inception in the 1960s the inventory got further developments and updates.

The BDI, as the scale is also called, consists of 21 items to assess the intensity of depression in clinical and normal patients on a self report scale. The BDI assesses physical and physiological symptoms of depression such as mood, pessimism, sense of failure, self-dissatisfaction, guilt, punishment, self-dislike, self-accusation, suicidal ideas, crying, irritability, social withdrawal, body image, work difficulties, insomnia, fatigue, appetite, weight loss, bodily preoccupation, and loss of libido. Only about ten minutes is enough for the most people to complete the BDI and afterwords a health professional gets an indication about presence of depression with a patient and severity of the disease.

Each of the inventory items corresponds to a specific category of depressive symptom and/or attitude and scores on the BDI indicate personal state of mind to confirm the presence of depression. The BDI has been shown to be valid and reliable, but anyway the tests scores can be manipulated by a testing person if he decides not to give correct answers.

The scale does not provide overall reliability: if one goes through the inventory at a different time it often demonstrates different results all depending on changes in a patients mental state since the previous depression testing. Even the testing environment can be a factor of influence for BDI results. Also social factors and expectations can be influential on the answers of a patient.

The Beck Inventory is not meant to serve as an instrument of diagnosis, it is more intended to assess the presence and severity of depression in psychiatrically diagnosed patients. After testing patients take a talk to their doctors about the test results and further treatment if necessary. That is why it is very important not to use BDI as a diagnostic tool, as depressive symptoms may be part of other primary psychiatric disorders.

Learn more about the Beck Depression Scale and take a talk to your psychologist about BDI procedure and outcomes. The early BDI testing can prevent you from deepening into depression and helps you to find the shortest way back to happy life.

How To Stop Anxiety and Depression

Anxiety and depression are psychological conditions that affect a large degree of people at various circumstances in life. Attacking anxiety depression can be somewhat puzzling because anxiety and depression are two separate conditions thought it has similar symptoms and can occur together or separately.

Anxiety and depression usually occur due to direct stress affecting our lives, these changes in mental health has a direct bearing on our physical health. We cannot isolate the mind from the body, both are interconnected and the impairment of one will follow suit with the other. Therefore it is important to start attacking anxiety depression as early as possible.

A few simple guide lines can help you to start attacking anxiety depression effectively, it is very important to understand thoroughly if you suffer from this condition, therefore you must arm yourself with self knowledge, know its triggers, symptoms, its impact on your life and effective relaxation techniques, Knowledge and acknowledgement is a key component to attacking anxiety depression.

People get bouts of anxiety depression due to pessimism or sudden let downs, betrayals, disappointments etc and you see yourself at an unexpected cross road in life and yet with no end in sight.

One way to overcome this wallowing in depression is to realize and learn to cope with very situation in life as a new direction, think of experiences as an opportunity to learn more about life and move on to better things. Power of positive thinking can go along way not only can it dispels the blues away in all actuality it can bring you closer to what you really want and value in life.

Another positive way of attacking anxiety depression is find an outlet to vent your emotions that may be causing anxiety depression. This can vary from person to person, if you’re an introvert writing poetry or keeping a journal may be very therapeutic, if you prefer the finer arts joining a theater club, dancing, even martial arts can be helpful, actually any physical activity will be helpful for it helps to release endorphins and oxytocin the bodies natural feel good hormones.

Meditation is perhaps the best way to start attacking anxiety depression, since all these problems appear due to proliferation of the same line of thinking which nurses all the fears and anxieties associated with this condition, meditation can bring much needed relaxation to your mind.

By focusing on a meditative object you will feel yourself letting go of all harmful destructive thoughts and symptoms, don’t forget the mind cannot think two things at the same time. Cultivating lifestyle changes such as meditation and physical exercise which helps to combat stress can go long way in attacking anxiety depression for good.

Toenail Discoloration

You looked at your toes and toenails today while running though your daily routine and noticed something unusual. They don’t look as fresh as they usually do and you decide to take a closer look. Upon closer inspection you notice that they are dingy and off color and one in particular is turning color. You know for sure that you haven’t injured your nails and you certainly did not notice it after your last visit too the nail salon, so what exactly are you seeing?

Welcome to the toenail fungus world. Like millions of Americans, you have just joined the ranks of the masses. When I say masses, I am talking about 6 million Americans who are affected with this disease, approximately 30 million worldwide.

Toenail discoloration is the first sign of toenail fungus. Possibly you have one or more nails affected and it gets worst. It spreads from human to human like the plague. It invades your nail beds, discolors the nails and can turn very nasty. So nasty in fact that the nail can eventually root off your feet. It can distort, twist and cause ingrown toenails and its out of sight ugly to look at.

Toenail discoloration – What color is ugly?

Toenail fungus comes in all colors. The most popular is yellow, green, brown and even white.

It starts at the nail bed then works itself down the nail until the entire nail is an ugly color. It can look spotted, white on green or any combination of other colors could emerge. Advanced cases look white or completely white in color and show signs of a serious deformation of the nail. Splitting, cracking, bumpy, lumpy, scaly, thick and even total loss of the nail best describes this condition.

What can I do about toenail discoloration?

Early signs of toenail discoloration should be attended too immediately. The longer you wait the worst it gets so please don’t wait for it too get better because it wont get better on its own. Its a disease of the nail which harbors bacteria (spores) and can be transmitted to others so be very careful.

Recommendations

You should seek an immediate solution, one that treats the condition naturally. There are quite a few products on the market that can be purchased without having to visit a doctor. These include natural ingredients but be sure to choose a product that includes something like Tree Tee Oil, Lemon grass extra and Vitamin E oils, to name a few. Usually you will find a fast cure using an over the counter product instead of reverting to a prescription ( not recommended), that could harm you.

Do yourself a favor! Take control of your discolored toenails before it take control of you. I cannot stress this enough. Being an ex toenail fungus sufferer for 2yrs I can tell you that this is no laughing matter. You heard it from June Holland a real person who finally got rid of it.

Instant Nail Fungus Cure – Is it Possible to Treat Nail Fungus Instantly?

Nail fungus is an infection that affects the nails of fingers and toes. The condition arises when you expose your feet and fingers in damp places such as pools, shower rooms etc. Though fingernail infection has been observed in several people, it is actually the infection in toenails that is more common in humans.

The human nails are strong barriers that protect the inner skin from the invasion of tiny organisms. However, for the organisms that do get in, the nail makes it just as hard for us to remove them. You will have to do a number of procedures to allow the treatment to get to the nail fungus, especially if you’re using a treatment option that is to be applied directly into the nail. One such type of treatment involves exposing the nail to vinegar. You have to scrub the vinegar solution on your nails regularly for quite some time before you see the symptoms of the nail infection dissipating.

Nail infection is not known to cause any serious damages to the body less a few rare conditions where it may cause pain and a few other complications. However, even under normal conditions when the infection is not posing any physical harm to the body, people look for different treatment options simply because the infection is very unsightly.

Fungi find the nail a perfect habitat, suitable for the organisms’ growth and they may infect the nail for a limitless period if left untreated.

There are different treatment options for getting rid of the fungal infection in nails. First and foremost, you should exercise a little care to prevent the condition in the first place. Wear slippers when walking around damp places like swimming pools. Additionally, you should always change your socks whenever they become damp. This prevents your toenails from being infected. Clean your limbs regularly with a solution of water and salt, and avoid putting on airtight shoes.

Treatment is offered in the form of prescribed medication. You may consult your physician and get a prescribed dose to rid the nails of fungi. However, some people avoid this procedure for fear of the medicine’s side effects. A drug that is strong enough to destroy the fungi can pose serious threats to other parts of the body as well. Liver damage is one known side effect of these medications.

Another treatment is offered by laser beams. The laser treatment destroys the fungi without posing any harm to the nail or other parts of the body. However, the costs of this treatment are relatively higher than other treatment options, and laser therapy is not covered under your medical insurance.

You will find a number of over-the-counter products that are marketed as effective anti-fungal remedies. While some of these products are indeed helpful, most manufacturers make false claims about new formulas that show no real results. If you’re looking to buy a worthy over-the-counter offering, it would be best to do thorough research before making the purchase. An effective anti-fungal remedy will help you in getting rid of the condition painlessly and instantly. However, it is important to continue this treatment even after the earliest signs of the fungal infection dissipate as there are chances that the organisms have only been weakened, but are still surviving inside the limbs.

A Closer Look at Seasoned Skin: Natural Changes As We Age

The topic of aging skin is usually addressed only when someone is trying to sell you something. Talk of the natural changes that occur in our largest organ often get drowned out in this age of Botox and lasers. As we age, we see and feel certain changes in our skin. The skin becomes drier, wrinkled, also spots and warty growths appear. People use terms like “liver spots” and “barnacles” to describe them. Skin bruises easily and heals much slower than in younger years. These changes are a normal part of aging.

As our skin ages, changes are inevitable. They can cause distress in even the most healthy adults. Most of these changes are inescapable and unwelcome but harmless. Unfortunately some can be itchy or painful, even cancerous and require medical attention. Many of these skin problems can be prevented. Many cannot. Hopefully this article will help you make sense of what you observe happening with your skin. It is however no substitution for the trained eye of a dermatologist.

“I just barely bump myself and I get these!” one of my favorite elderly patients gasped in frustration as she showed me her bruised arms. Quarter sized purple and red bruise were scattered over her hands and forearms. “It looks like my husband beats me!” she joked. Purpura, or bruise, is the name given to the appearance of blood that has leaked out of damaged vessels into the skin. As we age our skin grows thinner and more fragile from years of sun damage. The underlying fatty layers and collagen that normally cushion and protect the blood vessels also will decrease; making the shallow vessels in your skin more prone to injury. As my patient experienced, even the slightest little bump against your skin can cause massive bruising. Often the visible appearance of the bruise is out of proportion to the injury, or the injury is simply not remembered because it was so minor. Medications like aspirin or blood thinners can make this worse. I’ve heard vitamin C and Co enzyme Q10 recommended over the years but have yet to really observe it working for anyone. Although it can be alarming, skin bruising is a normal part of the way our skin ages and does not specifically indicate any other medical condition.

“Doctor, I just itch all the time and my skin is dry.” This gets said at least daily in my office. As we age, our skin becomes drier. This can result in flaky and itchy skin, especially in cold, dry, windy climates. The skin does not hold in moisture as well as it once did. Elderly patients often are not as active as they had been previously. But many still bath as frequently as when they were active. Bathing daily is not absolutely necessary if you are not soiled in sweat or filth. I often have people just use a gentle, non fragranced soap on only their armpits, buttocks and genitals in the shower. To put a cleanser on larger areas like your arms and back often causes them to dry out easily and itch. With the loss of the fatty layer we discussed earlier, people get cold more easily and crank up the heater in the wintertime. Since this is such a dry climate that only exacerbates the issue for them.

Just like an untended garden sprouting weeds, our skin grows all sorts of harmless but unsightly lumps and bumps. Small red dots on the skin are called angiomas and are a result of a superficial blood vessel in the skin that does not know to stop growing. They cause people some concern but are also part of the aging process. 85% of them occur on the torso. Your dermatologist can easily treat these if they bother you. Flat brown or fawn colored spots are usually harmless but should be checked before you embark upon any treatment for them. The medical term for these is lentigo, but they are referred to as “liver spots” by most people. Fortunately, they have nothing to do with the health of your liver; but are a result of sun damage (which tends to be a reoccurring theme in dermatology).

Perhaps the growths that cause people the most concern are seborrheic keratosis. A similar sounding entity call actinic keratosis is pre-cancerous unfortunately. Often people will just say “I had a keratosis” and not know if it was pre-cancereous or not. The seborrheic keratosis can be a variety of colors from flesh-colored to brown to black. Most of them tend to be raised and crusty, resembling a giant wart. Men love to absentmindedly pick at them while watching the ballgame on TV. Women usually cringe at their appearance. These seborrheic keratosis may look dangerous but there is no reason to be alarmed most of the time. They do serve a useful purpose in the world however; they get people in the door of their dermatologist’s office. While people’s attention is focused on the big, ugly, warty, black lesion, they may be ignoring the tiny little melanoma next to it that escapes their notice. Seborrheic keratosis know no boundaries and can occur anywhere on the body, including the face and scalp.

It is sometimes hard to ascertain if a spot is cancerous or not. A simple biopsy is often needed to delineate between what bugs you and what can kill you. Every dermatologist who has been practicing long enough has a horror story of a spot that looked 100% benign but came back a cancer. The skin is sneaky and cancer can be a great mimicker of benign spots. So while these harmless skin growths discussed here are a natural part of the aging process, so is cancer. Skin cancer almost seems like a rite of passage now it so common. A yearly skin exam by a dermatologist and high index of suspicion on your part will go a long way to catching cancers early and ease your mind.