How to Cure or Alleviate Edema, Including Lymphedema

By edema excess fluid fluid in body parts or greater areas of the body, making the areas swollen. Edema is most often a problem in the legs, but can occur anywhere in the body.

There are several types of edema, and many cases are also a mixture of more than one type. By lymphedema the drainage from the tissues through the lymph vessels are impaired or excessive fluid goes through the blood capillary walls into the spaces between the cells in a tissue. Edema can also occur because of poor drain of blood through the veins towards the heart. Edema can further be caused by general accumulation of excess fluid in the body.

The causes of edema are many. Edema is a symptom by most inflammations. Insufficient heart action by congestive heart failure can cause edema. A too high intake of salt can cause general water retention in the body. Sitting and standing long in the same position can cause edema in the lower limbs. A still sitting life without exercise can cause or aggravate edema.

Insufficiencies of the liver or kidneys can cause fluid retention and theby edema. Edema can be a side effect of antihypertensive drugs, steroids surgery and radiation therapy. Further causes of different types of edema are varicose veins, cancer, hypothyroidism, blood clots, constipation and physical injuries.

To treat edema, it is important to treat the underlying disease or injury. However, medical treatment does not always cure the underling condition or the cause is wholly or partly lifestyle aspects. Therefore various measures targeted directly against the edema are useful. These are presented here:

Pharmacological treatments: The physician will sometimes prescribe diuretics to reduce fluid retention in the body and theby reduce edema. This treatment should always be used for serious edema or edema persistent when other measures do not work.

Salt intake restriction: Restriction of salt intake is an important measure by edema. People suffering from edema should avoid adding great amount of salt into their food or consume preprocessed food with a salty taste.

Diet: A good general diet that alleviates chronic inflammation is useful. The diet should especially contain enough sources of omega-3-fatty acids and monounsaturated fatty acids, like: Fat fish, seafood, flax oil, olive oil, almonds, rape oil and canola oil. Also vegetables and fruit in a natural shape are useful.

Avoiding constipation: Constipation should be treated, since a stomach engorged by excessive content can cause injury of fluid circulation.

Variation of corporeal position: You should avoid sitting or standing still a long time during the day. When sitting during work or rest, you should change position with regular intervals.

Exercise: Every day you should have some exercise adjusted to your health condition. This could be walking, cycling, swimming, running or any other sport activity where you use greater parts of your body. Doing regular stretching exercises or yoga is useful. By severe edema special therapeutic exercises should be prescribed by a professional.

High position of limb: When you are sleeping or resting the swollen body parts can be placed in an elevated position by means of pillows, pads or by resting in an adjustable bed or chair.

Massage: By minor edema yourself, your spouse or a friend can massage the affected body part to alleviate the edema. The massage should be done in the direction of natural flow of blood and lymph that is towards the heart. You should however avoid massage distinctly injured or distinctly inflamed body parts. By severe edema a professional massager should be engaged to perform the massage type called "manual lymphatic drainage".

Elastic bandaging: You can use elastic gloves, stockings, tapes or bandages around the swollen body parts during the day or during physical activities after instruction from a professional person.

Inflatable garments: There are inflatable garments to be found that can be used around the engorged body parts some times of the day. Also these should be used after professional instruction.

Sequential gradient pump therapy: One can get special electric pumps connected to inflatable garments. The pump inflates and deflates the garments repeatedly. Each garment has several rooms that are inflated sequentially in the direction of the natural fluid stream towards the heart. In this way the fluid is dynamically pumped the right way out of the engorged body part. This type of therapy is used in professional settings or at home after instruction from a professional.

Skin care: The skin on a body part affected by severe edema should attain special care to avoid and treat sores. Proper cleaning, daily use of moisturizing creams, proper rinsing of skin injections, antiseptic creams by injuries.

Complete decongestive therapy: This is a complete set of edema treatment techniques done by a professional person combined with self-care instructed by the professional. The techniques used are: Manual lymphatic drainage, compression bandaging, therapeutic exercise and skin care.

Herbal and natural products: Many herbs and products composed of a blending of these herbs are used against edema. Such herbs are: Dandelion, Gingko biloba, horse chestnut, buchu, goldenrod, corn silk, horsetail, juniper, butchers broom, cleaver and ginger. Some people have experienced a good effect from using apple cider vinegar.

The flavonide rich product pycnognenol extracted from the bark of the French maritime pine has shown promising effects against edema according to scientific studies. The flavonides hydroxyethylrutosides also seem to have good effect against edema. Other natural substances that may help to treat edema are the flavonids diosmin and hesperidin and vitamin C.

OIL PULLING: The procedure called "oil pulling" may help for edema. It consist of rinsing the mouth with one tablespoon of natural oil for 15-20 minutes and then spitting the oil out. It is done in the morning before eating. Sesame or sunflower oils are usually recommended for this use.

How to Evaluate a Construction Software Vendor

One of the most difficult facets of a Construction Management Software selection project for a sizable construction company is that of picking the right Construction Management Software vendor. Obviously, there are a number of suppliers of Construction Software who would like us to believe their product is the best there is. They go to great lengths to market the strengths of their products, and to differentiate the weakened weaknesses of other software vendors' products. Such is the game of the free enterprise business system.

There are some things you can do to help you "separate the wheat from the chaff," as the saying goes. As is true with most major business enhancement endeavors, it is well worth it to do lots of research and homework before actually soliciting software sellers to come in to demonstrate their products and services. If you do not do this, and you end up with a vendor who is full of hot-air promises but can not deliver, there will be regrets. Likewise, depending how deeply involved and entrenched in the project the hot-air vendor before before you realize that they are not satisfactory, you could lose a lot of time and money on getting now. Some suggestions to minimize or prevent such risks follow:

1. Do the research! Check with internet resources, listen to other construction company recommendations, see what the Better Business Bureau has to say, and look in financial newspapers, bulletin boards, etc.

2. Look for red flags! Have any vendors been sued for non-performance or deceptive practices? Has the Construction Management Software package itself been kept up to date with technology and business practices? Has the vendor shown stability in their own business arena with regard to staff turnover, profits, employee treatment and satisfaction, and the like? Has the Construction Management Software vendor been taken over or bought out by others?

3. Look for green flags! Do not forget to look for positive, as well as negative issues about Construction Management Software vendors. Has the vendor been recognized for any substantial or meritorious software-related accomplishments? Has the software vendor been cited for Community and Public involvement? Have they been recommended by any of your business colleges and associates?

4. Sift, sift, sift! Once you've done the research and developed your evaluation matrix to plug in your findings, you can begin to sift all the data so the finest and best Construction Management Software vendors will become readily apparent. After you jump the data once, do it twice; even three times. That way, you will be sure to have eliminated those Construction Management Software vendors who might not be all they are cracked up to be. Let the data speak for itself; try to leave emotions and sentiments out of the equation, since those things tend to add confusion.

5. Insist on the best! Be assertive with your final selection of Construction Management Software vendors with regard to the individuals that they will be assigning to work on your software selection and implementation process. Do not forget; you are paying them to give you their best possible product or service. If, at any time during the selection process, you feel the vendor representative is not working out, do not be too hesitant about letting the vendor know that. Again, it's your money!

Tuberculosis (TB) Part 2

CLINICAL

History:

* Pulmonary TB: Typical symptoms of pulmonary TB include a productive cough, fever, and weight loss. Occidentally, patients may present with hemoptysis or chest pain. Other systemic symptoms include anorexia, fatigue, or night sweats.

* Tuberculous meningitis: Patients may present with a headache that is either intermittent or persistent for 2-3 weeks. Subtle mental status changes may progress to coma over a period of days to weeks. Fever may be low-grade or absent.

* Skeletal TB: The most common site of a complication is thae spine (Pott disease). Symptoms include back pain or stiffness. Lower extremity paralysis occurs in as many as half the patients with undiagnosed Pott disease. Tuberculous arthritis usually involves only 1 joint. Although any point may be implied, the hip of the knee is affected most commonly, followed by the ankle, elbow, wrist, hip or the knee is affected most commonly, followed by the ankle, elbow wrist and shoulder. Pain may precede radiographic changes by weeks to months.

* Genitourinary TB: Reported symptoms include flank, pain, dysuria, or frequency. In men, genital TB may present as epididymitis or a scrotal mass. In women, genital Tb may mimic pelvic inflammatory disease. TB causes approximately 10% of sterility in women worldwide and approximately 1% in industrialized countries.

* Gastrointestinal TB: Any site along the gastrointestinal tract may become infected. Symptoms are ferable to the site infected, to include the following: nonhealing ulcers of the mouth or anus; difficulty swallowing with esophageal disease; abdominal pain mimicking peptic ulcer disease with stomach or duodenal infection; malabsorption with infection of the small intestine; and pain, diarrhea, hematochezia with infection of the colon.

* Tuberculosis lymphadenitis (scrofula): The most common site is in the neck along the sternocleidomastoid muscle. It usually is unilateral. It usually is unilateral, with little or no pain. Advanced disease may suppurate and form a draining sinus.

* Cutaneous TB: Direct inoculation may result in an ulcer or wartlike lesion. Contiguous spread from an infected lymph node typically results in a draining sinus. Hematogene spread may result in a reddish brown plaque on the face or extremities (lupus vulgaris) or tender nodules or abscesses.

Physical: Finding upon physical examination depend on the organs involved.

* Patient with pulmonary TB have abnormal breathing sounds, especially over the upper lobes or areas invovled.

* Sign of extrapulmonary TB different depending on the tissues involved. Signs may include confusion, coma, neurologic deficiency, chorioretinitis, lymphadenopathy and cutaneous lesions (as described above).

* Postnatal TB is contracted via the airbone route. The most common finds are adenopathy and a lung infiltrate. However, the chest radiography findings can be normal in infants with disseminated disease. Many experts increase treatment time to 9 or 12 months because of the possible impaired immune system in children younger than 12 months. Bacille Calmette-Guerin vaccine is no longer recommended for infants.

* Causes: M tuberculosis is a slow-growing organism, requiring 4-8 weeks for visible growth on solid medium. The organism grows in parallel groups called cords (see Image 1). It keeps many stains after decoloration with acid-alcohol, which is the basis of acid-fast stains.

The Importance of Studying Zoology

Zoology is the aspect of science that deals with the study of the animals’ evolution, habitat and behavior. Many students wonder why they need to study zoology. It is a branch of science that does not have anything to do with people so they are left wondering why they have to learn it.

1. The first answer to the question, why is zoology important to us is for humans to have an appreciation for nature. Our nature is not just composed of the humans but of plants and animals as well. Everything in our environment is connected in a complex cycle. If you have a better understanding of how animals would behave and interact with us then you would appreciate nature better. You would feel nature should not be taken for granted.

2. The second answer to the question, why is zoology important to us is for people to have a better understanding of the animals. Some animals are usually misunderstood by people like sharks and snakes. These creatures are thought of as human killers, and this is mainly because we don’t understand why they behave that way. In this branch of science you would be able to learn their natural behavior as well as their habitats so you would completely understand why they would behave in a defensive manner when they seem threatened. Studying zoology would help people achieve clarity over the common myths we have on different wild animals

3. The third answer to the question, why is zoology important to us is to understand the urgency of preserving the animals. Studying this subject would help people know the real facts about animals. One of the negative facts is the dwindling numbers of some species of animals. It makes people realize that there is a need for nature to be always balanced. We need animals to maintain the balance in our environment and for humans to survive as well. This branch of science would help us learn the needs that animals lack and we can respond by thinking of solutions we can give to the endangered species of animals.

4. The fourth answer to the question, why is zoology important to us is for people to learn the importance of the role of humans as caretakers of animals. Modern progress is needed for a country to grow in terms of its economy however it should not force us to compromise our rainforests and oceans. It reminds us that modernization should not just be equated with tall buildings and skyscrapers. People should realize that our modern lives should include the lives of the animals that live with us. They should not be contained in zoos but in their natural habitats as well. We will learn that every living creature on earth has the right to own a habitat and as their caretaker, we need to fight for them to have permanent habitats.

Cancer Overview: Types, Causes, Diagnosis And Treatment

Cancer is the name given to a cell that has lost its normal physiological or natural growth control and multiplications very quickly to produce a large new growth called tumor or neoplasm (swelling). This new growth or neoplasm could be confined to the local region or directly invade the surrounding tissues. It may also break out with tumor particles transported by blood to distant parts of the body. This is what determines the stage of the tumor.

Such cancers that invade neighboring tissues or spread to distant organs as said to be malignant. Those confined to the original tissue type are said to be benign. The level of disorganization of the tissue architecture also gives a sense of whether the tumor is benign or malignant. Benign cancers are not as dangerous as malignant cancers, although large ones depending on their locations could produce dangerous pressure effects as occurred with fibroids causing abortions.

Cancer can arrise from virtually any tissue of the body, in the presence of the right stimulus and genetic predisposition. The stimuli that initiate cancer could have radiations (x-ray, solar, etc), chemicals like carbon tetrachloride or asbestos or cigarette smoke, drugs used in early pregnancy, biochemicals like VEGF, etc. The stimuli generally alter the genetic code of the individual cells to disable the tumor suppressor genes that prevent uncontrolled cell growth or ensure programmed cell death (apoptosis)

Different tissues are sensitive to different stimuli, but those cells that naturally grow rapidly are most sensitive to cancer stimuli. Such tissues include the skin, testis, ovaries, breast, uterus, liver, spleen, gastro-intestinal tract, growing bones, blood cell, lungs, lymph nodes etc. The commonest cancers therefore involve the lungs (carcinoma), blood (leukemia), lymphoid tissues (lymphoma), bones (osteoma or steosarcoma), skin (carcinoma), liver (hepatoma), ovaries (cystadenoma or cystadenocarcinoma).

The destructive potential of a particular cancer depends on the type and location. Lung and breast cancers are known to be the two leading causes of death among women in the US. Colon cancer kills a lot of men and women. Leukemia kills a lot children in America by destroying their bone marrows and making them very anemic. Prostate cancer kills a lot men each year in the US. Sun exposure causes a lot of skin cancer in States like Florida. Tumors affecting blood vessels cause them to be fragile and bleed easily. This can be a huge problem in the eyes and brain.

The general approach to treatment of cancers is to detect them early when they are still very local and ablate them surgically, thermally (diathermy) or cryoscopically (freezing). Surgical biopsy is used to obtain some of the cancer tissue for laboratory examination and classification. Early stage cancers are generally cured by surgical excision.

Mid stage cancers, involve both wide surgical dissection, as in breast cancer, and radiation therapy to kill off residual cancer cells. Late stage cancer is mostly treated with chemotherapy and radiation. Leukemias, often involve the wiping out of patients' bone marrow cells and replacing them with donor cells. (See Part II)

Pneumonia – The Simple Facts And The Cures

What is Pneumonia: Pneumonia is an infection that causes the air sacs in the lungs to fill with fluid, making it hard for you to breathe, and causes you to cough up phlegm. Pneumonia is an ancient Greek word, which means 'lungs'. Pneumonia can occur in patients of all age groups, but young children, and older people are especially at risk.

What causes Pneumonia: Pneumonia is caused by many things. However, bacteria are the most common causes of pneumonia. The most common bacteria that causes pneumonia is 'Streptococcus pneumoniae', Streptococcus pyogenes or Group A Streptococcus can also cause pneumonia. Workers that are exposed to cattle are at risk for pneumonia caused by anthrax.

Symptoms Of Pneumonia: There are quite a few symptoms that may show up with Pneumonia, the most common ones are: Cough with a yellow or greenish mucus or Phlegm, Fever often with chills and the shakes, Soreness or pain in the chest, worn by breathing deeply or coughing, Shallow breathing, Shortness of breath, Bloody mucus or phlegm, Headache, Sweating and sometimes clammy skin, Fatigue and weakness, Decreased appetite. If left untreated Pneumonia can advance to 'blood poisoning', and severe respiratory distress.

Treatment For Pneumonia: If you have a bacterial pneumonia, you will need to take an antibiotic. The antibiotic will depend on your age, and your medical conditions. You should also drink lots of fluids to stay hydrated, since this helps your body fight the pneumonia. Anti-fever medicines such as Tylenol or Advil may also help you feel better. Cough as much as you comfortably can, to help clear the mucus and phlegm from your lungs. You must avoid cigarette or other tobacco smoke while you recover from pneumonia, since smoking hurts your body's ability to fight infection and makes your healing take a lot longer. If you've been diagnosed with viral pneumonia, you need to rest and drink plenty of fluids. If you work much or over-exert yourself when you have viral pneumonia, you can possibly get sicker. You can use over the counter medicines to reduce fever, body aches, and cough. You can take over the counter medicines such as Tylenol to help you feel better, but you still must rest and drink lots of fluids in order for your body to heal and get better.

Pneumonia Prevention: There are a few things you can do to help reduce your risk for getting pneumonia, such as: Washing your hands frequently, Don t smoke, and avoid second-hand smoke, Stay away from those who have a cold or the flu , Drink plenty of fluids, Keep Active, and if your in the hospital try deep breathing exercises and cough up any mucus or Phlegm to help keep the lungs exercised and clear.

There is a website that provides cures, facts and other great information on Pneumonia and numerous medical conditions, the website is called: All About Health, and can be found at this url:

http://www.rb59.com/medical-health-info/

By Robert W. Benjamin

Copyright © 2007

You may publish this article in your ezine, newsletter, or on your web site as long as it is reprinted in its own and without modification except for formatting needs or grammar corrections.

How to Treat and Avoid Bronchitis

Bronchitis is the inflammation of the bronchi of the lungs. It is a pulmonary disease from the COPD category. COPD means chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and the agents that may lead to this disease are viruses, bacteria, fungi or just breathing a polluted air, smoking or breathing the cigarettes smoke.Low temperatures in winter also influences the inflammation.

There are a lot of symptoms that are characteristic in Bronchitis. First of all there is a persistent, expectorating, dry or wet cough which is very frustrating for the patient, dyspnea or shortness of breath, fatigue, mild fever and mild chest pains.The breath sounds are also very important for the diagnosis. In Bronchitis apes the rhonchi which is the result of a decreased intensity of breath sounds and extended expiration.

There are two kinds of Bronchitis. The acute or the short -term Bronchitis and the chronic or long-lasting one. There are different agents that determine the disease. Acute bronchitis is often the result of influenza, a cold or an infection. It may be caused by viruses or bacteria. Smoking, pneumoconiosis, excess alcohol consumption and exposure to cold and draughts are the most frequent agents that cause chronic Bronchitis. Chronic Bronchitis manifests with a persistent cough that produces sputum that lasts from three to six months during one or two years. Only in this circumstances can we talk about chronic Bronchitis. It also involves long lasting irritation caused by inhaling certain substances and especially tobacco smoke. This harmful substances determine the glands of the trachea and bronchi to increase the secret of mucus. In this case the mucus can not be evacuated anymore and it can determine the obstruction of the airways. It is also very possible that an acute Bronchitis becomes chronic.

It is quite difficult to choose an appropriate treatment in chronic bronchitis. It is recommended to drink lots of liquids which are very helpful for the evacuation of the mucus. It was shown that antibiotics are not the right choice to treat Bronchitis, because the most of them are caused by viruses which do not respond to this kind of treatment. The most appropriate medication is aspirin, an anti-fever drug and steroids to open bronchial tubes and ease coughing. It is also very important that the doctor prescribes anti-tusive drugs. This kind of drugs thin the mucus and they make coughing more effective. And they also helps patients to have a quiet sleep, this because the dry coughing that characterizes the early stages of bronchitis wakes them up and do not let them sleep. So the best results are given by the oxygen therapy, bronchodilator drugs and if it is necessary lung volume reduction surgery.

The first symptoms in Bronchitis are dry cough which turns into a wet one, fever, fatigue and headaches. All this may last for few days, maximum eleven days but the coughing lasts for weeks and even months. It is very important to mention that acute Bronchitis is very contagious. If the symptoms lasts for more than six months it is recommended that the doctor makes the necessary examination to find the cause of the persistent coughing, because it can be asthma or TB. In TB it is characteristic the coughing accompanied by blood.

If the Bronchitis complicates it may cause pulmonary hypertension, chronic respiratory failure or even heart disease.

It is not very hard to avoid acute Bronchitis. It is necessary just to wash your hands frequently, get more rest and drink plenty of liquids. Acute bronchitis is usually caused by viruses or bacteria. One can be contaminated with these agents by breathing coughing droplets from the air or by touching contaminated surfaces, by breathing polluted, by smoking or breathing cigarette smoke or other harmful smokers. It is recommended for the smokers in the early stages of chronic Bronchitis to quit smoking. This will help them to avoid complications and the treatment will give best results.

What Is Erotic Power Exchange?

Erotic power exchange is any situation where partners, of their own free will and choice, actively and willfully incorporate the power element in their lovemaking (and usually for a great deal in their relationship). Erotic power exchange is best known as either BDSM, S&M, D/s or sadomasochism, but these terms are all too limited, incorrect and all too frequently confused with stereotypes and forms of mental illness, which is why we like to call it Erotic Power Exchange (EPE).

The Holistic Approach

Allow us to quickly explain our view and approach. Not in order to try and force you into any direction, but to explain where we are coming from, so you will have a better understanding about the way, this online educational facility has been set up.

Erotic power exchange is a situation that incorporates – or often even encloses – spirit, body and mind and as a result will have an effect on each of these three areas that, together, make up the human being. As a result, we try to approach each area of the art of erotic power exchange on each of these levels who – in order to create the wholeness of the human being – are equally important and all deserve their, individual, attention.

Erotic power exchange can take any shape or form within a relationship. From little things like blindfolding her when making love to anything like 24 hours a day, 7 days a week servitude.

The shape and form it takes totally depends upon the fantasies, situation, preferences and boundaries of the partners involved. As long as it is informed consensual, safe, sane and voluntary it is called erotic power exchange. If any or all of these four elements are missing, it is called abuse.

Next, erotic power exchange requires a specific environment. Call it a biosphere, if you like. What it requires is a very sound, honest and sincere relationship, intense and open communication, trust, a lot of mutual understanding, an open mind, lots of love and care and a fair bit of creativity. Which does not mean the relationship necessarily has to be a long term one. Even within a one-night-stand or casual situation all these requirements must be there – albeit probably on a less intense level – to make things work.

People will often ask: what is wrong with straight sex? Why add things like power exchange. Well, there is nothing wrong with straight sex. But there are people – such as yourself – who want more out of their relationship. Maybe even more out of life. These are the people that will identify the power element, present in every relationship, and start to work with it, magnify it, play with it, explore and experiment. In every day life all of us have to deal with power. Your boss’ power or political power for example, but not all of us become bosses or politicians or even take an interest in management or politics. The same is true for power within the sexual/relational context. Some do, some don’t.

Giving away power to your partner can be an immense erotic sensation. Being tied up, relatively helpless and being launched by your partner into your own fantasies and dreams – some people call that sub space – can be thrilling, relaxing and revealing at the same time. Pain, tickling and all sorts of other impulses – when administered with care and skill – can pump up your endorphins, giving you the same sensation sports people will sometimes feel. On the other hand, the dominant partner will feel the adrenaline and serotonine flow freely through his or her body, giving them a very powerful feeling and very intense and caring emotion at the same time. No, the people that do it don’t need the power element to be able to have an orgasm or an interesting and rewarding relationship, but yes, they do need the power element to be present and used in their relationship.

An umbrella for lots of different things

Erotic power exchange is a very individual, personal experience. That is why it is very hard to describe what it is exactly. The only element all these people – and that includes you – have in common is the fact that – for their own individual reasons – they are fascinated by the power element in a sexual/relational context. What they do, how they do it and why may be completely different things.

Erotic power exchange is an umbrella argument. One couple may fill it in as tying her up in bed, another may be fascinated by the idea of a “strange” man walking into the bedroom capturing her and a third may have a relationship where he serves her in any aspect. Many others will look for the spiritual and personal growths, this may bring about. Others are in it for the kink. All of that is quite all right, as long as it feels good for you and it brings you what you are looking for.

Erotic power exchange is like golf: it is highly individual, you are the master of your own game and you are also your own referee.

It is entirely about what you want to do. You do not have to copy others. You do not even have to agree with what others do. It is your game, your thoughts, your emotions and your fantasies. It is what you and your (future) partner share. It is being able to explore the borders of your mind and imagination in a very safe environment.

To many people erotic power exchange is not just about sex, but a lifestyle. Most people that do it will recognize it as something very personal, something very much belonging to themselves. To many it is a way to express themselves.

A definition of Erotic Power Exchange

Probably the most dangerous thing to do is to try and come up with definitions of erotic power exchange. Usually this will lead to furious discussions. However, the POWERotics Internet discussion group (one of the largest in its kind) managed to agree on a definition that seems a workable one as well as one that a large group of (Maledom/femsub oriented) people can agree upon. This is the definition, agreed upon by this group, plus the relevant notes about it.

* Erotic power exchange is defined as: voluntary and informed consensual acts of power exchange between consenting adults.

* Voluntary is defined as: not having received or being promised any – financial or non-financial – incentive or reward in order to try and coerce or force any of the partners involved into actions they would not consent to without such reward or incentive; not otherwise being forced or coerced (either through physical, mental, economical or social force or overpowering) into actions any of the partners involved otherwise would not consent to, of the own free will of all partners involved.

* Informed consensual is defined as: partners involved – prior to the act – have chosen voluntary to enter into acts of erotic power exchange and all partners involved – to the best of their knowledge – have made a serious effort to establish all other partners involved have a reasonable level of understanding of both the activities, they consented to, as well as the potential consequences and risks of such activities.

* Adults are defined as: of legal age in their area or country. Should such legal age be under 18 years of age, adult is defined as 18 years of age or older.All of the above may sound a little over the top to you – and in fact, to a certain extent we agree. However, it IS the first ever attempt to come up with a definition that is workable and that, although probably a little bit too “legal” for those inside the community, makes perfectly clear where the lines are drawn between consensual erotic power exchange on one end and abuse or outright sick or criminal behavior on the other.

Stigma & Truth

There are all sorts of knockdowns on the subject of erotic power exchange around, all of them often used by legislators as well as others who oppose erotic power exchange. All of these are based on assumed psychological or psychiatric “knowledge” or “facts”. The fact of the matter is that none of these are actually true or proven. We have collected the most common ones around and compared them with the real facts.

“Once you start, you will want more and more”

This is what pseudo-experts will introduce as the “stepping stone theory”.

In other words, once you have tasted the effects of, for example, pain, you will want more and more of it and it will end in excessive behavior and addiction. In fact there is no “stepping stone theory” (the term originates from research into the causes of drug-addiction in the late 1960’s and by the way the theory didn’t work in that area either) as far as erotic power exchange is concerned.

Fact number two is this. Like almost anything about erotic power exchange, there is hardly any serious and published scientific research on this subject. Next, nearly all research commonly referred to as being about EPE has been research done in individual cases or extremely small groups. Any conclusions, based on such research, are not valid for the entire group for simple statistical and mathematical reasons only, if nothing else. Research has predominantly been done by psychiatrists and psychologists – into cases that almost all relate to direct questions for help or significant health-related problems. And the objective of almost all of these articles is to promote the therapy of that particular therapist. General sociological research in the area of erotic power exchange is rare and, if available, has been done predominantly in the gay community or with such small – and country or area specific – research groups that it is impossible to draw any general conclusions in a responsible way.

Fact number three is that the reality of erotic power exchange shows an entirely different picture. People who are into erotic power exchange will usually start to experiment with it and in this experimental phase will usually want to explore all possibilities. As time progresses their emotions will settle down, pieces of the puzzle will fall into place and their wants and needs – once explored and identified – will settle down to the level that usually corresponds with the fantasies people originally had.

“The need to go into power exchange always hides a traumatic experience”

This knockdown is based on Freud who, as we all know, tried to explore the relationship between all sorts of human behavior – not only the sexual behavior – and (early) childhood experiences. His method is called psycho-analysis and in modern psychology is considered outdated and largely irrelevant.

Although it is a fact that some people who are into erotic power exchange have a history of abuse or childhood trauma, a general connection has never been established. What may be true in individual cases most certainly is not true as a general argument. What research did establish is that there are no significant differences between the number of people with traumatic experiences in the erotic power exchange community than there are in any other group.

More recent research points to both genetic influences as well as to a creative and inquisitive mindset as factors that may be of influence to the development of erotic power exchange feelings and emotions. However, this research is far from finalized and in fact again is only limited to individual cases, like most of the scientific research done in this area.

Another – relatively new – area that may play a role is the influence of endorphins. Endorphins are hormones, natural opiates, produced by the body and commonly known as “emotion” amino acids. Different mixtures of different types of endorphins will create different emotions. Some of these mixtures are created as a result of fear, stress and pain. What role they play when it comes to the development of erotic power exchange emotions is yet unknown.

“The need for power exchange points to a stern upbringing”

Again a “semi-Freudian” misconception and based on one case of one man, researched and published about by Freud.

The fact of the matter is that most of the people who are into erotic power exchange have had a perfectly normal youth and upbringing and the majority come from families where sexuality was a subject that could be discussed freely and openly. Again there may be individual cases where people had a stern – or sometimes very religious – upbringing but whether or not there are any connections between upbringing and erotic power exchange emotions in general is yet to be determined and probably very unlikely as far as the development of the emotions as such is concerned.

“People into erotic power exchange can not find full sexual satisfaction in other ways”

This is an outright lie, based on research done in cases of excessive clinical sadism and masochism (i.e. the mental illnesses). It is true that the severe mental distortions usually described as sadism and masochism may (but not always do) show this type of behavior. Erotic power exchange, however, has nothing to do with mental distortions but with perfectly normal erotic/sexual behavior between perfectly normal, well-adjusted, responsible adults.

People into erotic power exchange will usually consider their feelings and emotions important and will identify erotic power exchange as a lifestyle, but that does not mean they have a compulsive need. The lack of compulsive behavior in fact is what separates erotic power exchange from clinical sadists and masochists.

In fact in many cases people will identify their erotic power exchange emotions as entirely different from sexual emotions or – for example – an orgasm.

“Dominant men are just male chauvinists”

The fact of the matter is that the majority of dominant men are very caring, loving and open minded people – as are most dominant women by the way. The position of the dominant in erotic power exchange by definition requires a lot of understanding, caring, trust and most of all a great interest in the wants and needs and emotions of the submissive partner. What to the outsider may seem a very strict, direct, powerful and maybe sometimes somewhat aggressive looking macho man in fact is only role play, using symbols and role behavior but underneath is almost always a very caring person.

The average submissive partner, when asked, will usually describe the dom as understanding – generally knowing more about his submissive partner than (s)he does (or did) him or herself – supportive, careful, loving and protective.

“Submissive women betray the movement for women’s rights”

Being submissive and allowing these emotions to come out is a very self-confident statement and decision as well as a difficult and scary process. Submissive women are usually very self aware and are making very conscious decisions about their submissiveness. They are anything but “doormats” and have – generally speaking – gone through a long process of identifying and accepting themselves as well as their submissive feelings and emotions.

Just as dominant erotic behavior is not an indication of general dominance, neither is submissiveness an indication that the (wo)men will display submissiveness in every day life. Usually they will be anything but submissive, although it is a fact that as long as submissive emotions have not settled down, submissive women especially sometimes may have trouble separating some of their submissive feelings from other things.

The argument itself originates from hard line feminist activists who – predominantly out of fear for unwanted influence – try to separate women from other opinions than the ones such activists have.

“People who are dominant in every day life are submissive in bed and vice versa”

Sexual/erotic behavior is usually not an indication for any other form of social behavior, neither are there any proven links between the two. Dominants can have both dominant as well as non-dominant positions in every day life and the same goes for submissive’s. A female executive can be submissive in the bedroom, a male nurse can be dominant. The above statement is a classic example of stereotyping, mainly based on pornography and stories from prostitutes who – through indicating they have “socially important or significant customers” – in fact try to market their profession and often use arguments like these in a rather naive effort to gain more social acceptance and respect for their trade.

“Erotic power exchange is dangerous”

There are all sorts of stories around about accidents, that happened during erotic power exchange sessions. The most “famous” one around is the story about the man who – after cuffing his wife to the bed – climbed the nearest cupboard in an effort to jump on her, broke both his legs, fell into the locked closet and the couple had to wait for two days before help arrived. This story – like many others – is around in almost all countries and – like nearly all others – is a tall story. Of course, anything one does without sufficient knowledge can be risky or even dangerous. The truth of the matter is that safe, sane, voluntary and informed consensual erotic power exchange is perfectly safe, provided people know what they are doing.

Early Recollection

The vast majority (over 50 percent) of the people actively nurturing erotic power exchange emotions recollect fantasies about power role play at an early age, prior to their 18th birthday. Just about half of this group (in other words 25 percent of all BDSM-people) recollects having such fantasies before the age of twelve – quite frequently as early as six or seven.

Research by the POWERotics Foundation shows women usually recollect erotic power exchange fantasies and emotions earlier than men on average. Recollections of fantasies and emotions before the age of 12 for example are more frequent (24%) in the female group (men 16%). Very recent recollections, after their 18th birthday, are more frequent in the male group: 22% as opposed to only 5% in the female group.

There are no real differences when it comes to the importance of personal fantasies. Between 40 and 45 percent of both groups indicate that it have been these fantasies that triggered their erotic power exchange emotions. The same goes for the influence of books and general media on the development of such emotions. Around 20 percent of both groups indicate this as a trigger. There are, however, big differences when it comes to the influence of the Internet. Almost twice as many young women (15% opposed to 8%) name the Internet as a trigger of their emotions, whereas almost twice as many young men (11% versus 6%) say they have been influenced by pornography. It is important to notice however that the influence of both the Internet and pornography are only of minor influence, when compared to other triggers such as private fantasies and general media.

Young women in general consider erotic power exchange of a greater importance in their lives than young men. 53% of the young women consider it to be either a very important or the most important thing in their lives, whereas 44% of the men consider it important but have other priorities as well. Slightly more young men (12%) than women (10%) see erotic power exchange as just a kick.

The History Of Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy is a new name for a disorder that has affected children for millennia. Since cerebral palsy is caused by brain damage occurring before, during or after birth, it has most likely occurred through human evolution.

Cerebral Palsy in the 1800's

The first medical descriptions of cerebral palsy were recorded by a British surgeon named William Little in 1861. Dr. Little was an orthopedic surgeon puzzled by a disorder he saw repeatedly in his practice of medicine. The disorder appeared to strike children in their first few years and was characterized by stiff, spastic limbs. Dr. Little published a paper describing his patients and their difficulties walking, crawling and grinding objects. He noted the condition did not seem to be progressive, nor did it improve. His paper was the first of its kind receiving any real study so the disease was named Littles Disease. As Dr. Little studied the disorder, he further noted many children affected by the disease were premature or had experienced a difficult delivery. He proposed the disease might be caused by a lack of oxygen during the birthing process.

As science progressed and more doctors studied Littles Disease, differenting opinions arose. In 1897, Dr. Sigmund Freud published papers describing his beliefs about the origins of Littles Disease. His studies led him to believe the cause of Littles occurred much earlier than the birthing process. Dr. Freud observed affected children had other problems not just associated with movement disorders. Since many children with Littles also had vision injury, mental shortcomings and seizures, Freud thought the disorder began as the brain developed in the womb. He believed Dr. Little's observances of disease's association with premature and difficult birth were correct. However, Freud thought the birthing difficulties were spurred by earlier developmental problems of the fetus. Freud's scientific observations were later proved correct, but were not accepted until the late 1980's.

Advances in Cerebral Palsy Treatment

The term cerebral palsy was first used by Sir William Osler, a British medical doctor in the late 1800's. It became widely known and soon replaced the earlier name of Littles Disease. No great strides were made in the field of cerebral palsy until the 1980s when a government funded study combined about 35,000 cerebral palsy births. The study found relatively few cases of cerebral palsy were actually accompanied by trauma at birth. This revelation sparked interest in the medical community about cerebral palsy.

Great changes occurred in the field of medicine in the past 50 years. As medicine advanced there came new understanding of cerebral palsy. Biomedical research found new risk factors for the contraction of the disorder when studies determined infection during fetus development could result in cerebral palsy. German measles, jaundice and Rh disease were found to be risk factors for cerebral palsy as well. Medical advances provided ways to mitigate risk factors responsible for the brain damage causing cerebral palsy.

The 1990's brought advances in the early diagnosis of cerebral palsy in infants. It was determined early identification of the disorder helps prevent permanent contracture of limbs. Progress was made in diagnostic techniques for brain imaging and analysis. Therapies were developed to help increase physical movement. Braces and assistive technologies helped facilitate mobility and increase quality of life. Changes in the perception of counseling and psychological services helped people with cerebral palsy deal with the emotional effects of the disorder.

Cerebral Palsy Treatments Today

Recently, three new therapies have been successful in treating the symptoms of cerebral palsy. Botox injected into certain muscle groups allows for increased range of motion and stretching of the limbs. The Baclofen pump continuously supplies a drug to spinal cord nerves which helps relax muscle tension. A new surgery called selective dorsal rhizotomy permanently reduces spasticity in muscle groups, especially in the legs.

As advances in medicine continue, new and better treatments for cerebral palsy will emerge. Research continues to investigate all aspects of the disorder. The more information overlooked, the more advances made and the better prospects will be for those suffering from cerebral palsy.

Catastrophic Injuries – Paralysis, Amputation, Burns

Overview:

A catastrophic injury or illness usually occurs suddenly and without warning. Injuries may be considered catastrophic when they disrupted a person's life and livelihood, or ability to earn a living. Management of catastrophic injuries is complex and may require the expertise of a team of health care professionals as the injured person moves from hospital to rehabilitation, and return to home and community.

The financial fallout from a catastrophic injury makes essential the careful valuation of the claim by an experienced personal injury attorney working with economic and voluntary specialists, life care planning specialists, and specialists in rehabilitation medicine.

The goal of an attorney handling these matters is simple: to secure for the client the Best Possible Future.

Paralysis

One type of catastrophic injury is paralysis.

Definition: "Complete loss of strength to an affected limb or muscle group."

Normal muscle function requires unbroken nerve connection from the brain to a particular muscle. Damage at any point along this path reduces the brain's ability to move a muscle and may cause muscle weakness. Complete loss of the nerve prevents movement and is called paralysis.

Weakness may sometimes lead to paralysis. Other times, strength may be restored to a paralleled limb.

While paralysis may affect an individual muscle, it usually affects an entire body region. Some types of paralysis are:

Quadriplegia: where the arms, legs and chest are paralleled;

Paraplegia: where both legs, and sometimes part of the chest, are paralyzed;

Hemiplegia: where one side of the body is paralyzed.

Paralysis may be caused by damage to the spinal cord or brain.

Damage to the brain may come from a stroke, tumor, certain diseases and a fall or blow to the head. – Damage to the spinal cord is most often caused by trauma, such as a fall or car accident. There may be other causes, such as a herniated disc or various diseases or conditions. The type of paralysis may give important clues to its origin. Paraplegia, or paralysis of the legs, occurs after damage to the lower spinal cord, and quadriplegia occurs after injury to the upper spinal cord, at the shoulders or higher. Spinal cord damage too high on the neck will affect the nerves serving the lungs and heart paralyzing the muscles that circulate blood and cause breathing, resulting in death.

Not all paralysis is treatable. But for non-permanent paralysis, the only way to treat paralysis is to repair its underlying cause. Rehabilitation may include: physical therapy to rebuild the muscles; occupational therapy to help restore the ability to perform daily activities, such as bathing, getting dressed; respiratory therapy to help breathing; voluntary rehabilitation to retrain for a job; social worker to help adjust to one's condition; speech-language pathologist; nutritionist and others.

Legal consequences: In a lawsuit from an accident causing paralysis, an injury attorney may have to consult many of these specialized experts, in addition to medical doctors, to best understand what the future holds for a paralleled accident victim and how best to present that person's claim to a jury.

Where the paralysis affects the injured person's ability to earn a living, there may also be coordination with Medicare, Medicaid, private health and disability insurance, and other alternative sources of income or payment for medical care.

Amputation

Another type of catastrophic injury is amputation.

Definition: "Loss of a body part." Usually a finger, toe, arm or leg, due to an injury, accident or trauma.

Sometimes an amputated body part can be re-attached, especially when care is taken both of the body part and site of the amputation.

In a partial amputation, some tissue remains connected. Re-attachment may or may not be possible.

Complications common to this type of injury include bleeding, shock and infection.

50% to 80% of amputees experience the phenomenon of "phantom limbs." This means that they feel as if the missing body part is still there. These phantom limbs can itch, ache and feel as if they are moving.

Some causes of amputation: factory, farm or power tool accidents or from motor vehicle accidents.

Amputees may require long-term care which may include a prosthesis and training in its use.

In a lawsuit from an accident causing amputation, an injury attorney will have to focus on rehabilitation and the injured client's ability to earn a living. Vocational and occupational experts are frequently consulted. The question often arises about future expenses, such as future medical costs and care and replacement of the prosthesis.

Burns

From kids washing under a too-hot faucet to the incidental steam explosion from a car radiator, burns are a potential hazard. Babies and young children are especially susceptible to burns, as they are small and curious and have sensitive skin.

Common causes of burns are:

Scalding (from hot liquids or steam) – contact with open flame or heated objects (stove, fireplace, etc.) – chemical burns (bleach, battery acid, etc.) – electrical burns – sun burn Types of burns:

First-degree: Mildest. Limited to top layer of skin. Redness, pain minor swelling. No blisters.

Second-degree: More serious. Involve skin layers benefit the top layer.

Third-degree: Most serious. Involves all layers of skin and underlying tissue. Nerve damage may mean little pain.

What to do:

Seek medical assistance if:

Burned area is large or looks infected (swelling, pus, redness, etc.); Burn is from a fire, electrical or chemical source; Smoke was inhaled; – Burn is on the face, scalp, hands or genitals. A lawsuit for an accident involving burns can require sophisticated engineering assistance to show negligence, particularly in the cases of chemicals and / or defective products. An experienced legal team is essential.

Rehabilitation Exercises for Spine Related Neck Injuries and Back Injuries

Injuries involving the spine are very common and these can lead to a wide variety of symptoms, from mild pain to paralysis and even death. The spell can be viewed as the wiring harness of the body. It carries and protects the spinal cord and enables the brain to communicate with and control the whole body. Serious damage to the vertebrae can lead to impingement of the spinal cord, pain or loss of any feeling (eg in the hands, arms, chest) and in the worst case total loss of control in certain parts of the body.

Like a wiring harness in a car, the spinal cord branches out into adjacent parts of the body as one moves down from the neck to the end of the spine (coccyx). This means that the location of a spinal injury (ie which vertebrae are damaged) can be determined by identifying which part of the body is exhibiting injury symptoms.

The vertebrae are divided into 5 main groups:

1. Cervical spine (top 7 vertebrae forming the neck)
2. Dorsal spine (next 12 vertebrae forming the upper back)
3. Lumbar spinal (next 5 vertebrae forming the lower back)
4. Sacrum (bottom 5 fused vertebrae between the buttocks)
5. Coccyx (the 3 to 4 fused vertebrae at the end of the spine)

When you visit an injury specialist they will explain to you which vertebrae are injured by using a simple code system. For example, C3 is the third cervical vertebrae from the base of the skull.

Most of the vertebrae are separated by an intervertebral disc and articular cartilage that allows a certain range of motion of the spine. Each disc contains a gel like substance to provide cushioning, lubrication and energy absorption. Anterior (front) and posterior (rear) longitudinal ligaments connect the vertebrae. In addition, various other ligaments manage how the spine is loaded and integrated into the various muscle groups during lifting. For example, in the cervical region (ligamentum nuchae) and from C2 / C3 to L5 / S1 (ligamenta flava).

Some of the injuries that can occur to the spine include:

1. Vertebrae fractures can be especially dangerous because the spinal cord passes through the vertebrae and displacement of the vertebrae walls can put pressure on this very elaborate structure. Cervical fractures in particular need immediate medical attention and neck immobilization to avoid serious injuries (eg paralysis) and long term problems (eg Osteoporosis). The most common fractures occurring in the lumbar (eg L5) and these cause pain spreading across the lower back, back stiffening and tight hamstring muscles (that often cause muscle imbalances and postures changes).

2. Vertebrae abnormalities such as bone spurs (bony projections that form along joints) can cause pain and limit joint motion. Some of the symptoms include neck, shoulder and arm pain, loss of balance and even headaches radiating to the back of the head.

3. Spinal cord and surrounding nerve root damage can occur in whiplash injuries (eg due to a car accident) or nerve stretch injuries (eg due to a rugby tackle from behind that causes the neck to be bent backwards). A pinched nerve reflects to a condition in which one of the cervical disks is putting pressure on one of the spinal nerves connected to the spinal cord. There are a very wide range of symptoms from numbness, tingling and burning feelings in the skin to muscle weaknesses, pains and stiffening in the neck and arms to ear ringing, blurred vision and even irritability.

4. Disc injuries. The term slipped disc (also known as a herniated, ruptured or prolapsed disc) is used when a disc becomes split and the gel like filling leaks out to cause pressure on the spinal cord or surrounding nerves. These injuries normally occur in the lower back. Symptoms may include neck and back pain, tingling in the buttocks, back, legs or feet and even incontinence.

5. Thoracic muscle strains. The spine can not be considered in isolation to the groups of muscles that support the whole upper body. These muscles can be divided into three main groups; the extensors (back muscles and the buttock muscles), the flexors (front of the body muscles such as the abdominals) and the obliques or rotators (the side muscles). They work together to protect and support the spine. However, if for example, a certain back muscle is strained during lifting this protection is compromised. The body reacts with muscle contractions that cause a stiff back and a more limited range of motion.

6. Spinal ligament sprains. In general, the strong but relatively inflexible ligaments will take longer to recover than muscles because of their poor blood circulation. This means that more care should be taken in ligament rehabilitation with a longer period of rest and flexibility rather than strengthening exercises.

The key objectives of an injury workout routine are to regain the range of motion, flexibility and strength of the spine and surrounding ligaments and muscles. The first objective is to regain the flexibility, stability and range of motion of the spine and this article describes injury workout routines to do this. This will enable muscles to relax, injured tissues to regrow in the correct manner and a person to restore a normal life faster (eg with no pain). These routines should always be followed up by whole body workout routines to restore muscle strength and balance in the whole body, for example to restore correct posture (one of the main factors that can contribute to spinal injuries).

Daily stretches can be used to slowly increase the flexibility of the spine and these should be followed by gentle strengthening exercises so that the body is ready to move onto whole body exercises. The following is a list of injury workout routines for stretching and strengthening the cervical spine, dorsal spine and lumbar spine. Hold a stretching position for as long as feet comfortable and repeat a strengthening exercise for as many times as you are able to (aim for 5 to 10 repetitions and hold each repetition for a few seconds initially).

Cervical spine (neck) stretching exercises:

1. Supine spinal relaxation and lengthening. Lie on your back next to a wall so that your feet are resting on the wall, your lower legs are horizontal and your knees are bent at 90 degrees. Start with your spreadsheet in a natural curved shape (your hand should be able to just pass under your lower back). Slowly relax your spine into the floor and lengthen it by imagining a piece of string pulling the top of your head, so that your spine is straightened out. A warm blanket, water bottle or electric blanket under your back will help you to relax the muscles. All you need to do is relax and listen to the TV or music for as long as you like!

2. Sitting posture correction. Sit on a bench next to a wall. Begin by sitting upright in good posture with your shoulder blades folded together and downwards. As with the first exercise imagine a piece of string gently pulling the top of your head upwards so that you lengthen your spine upwards. In the beginning you can sit against the wall to check how right your post is. However, try to hold this position away from the wall once you get a better feeling for the correct posture. Every day try to increase how long you can sit like this.

3. Once you are able to hold a good sitting post you can move on to some neck flexibility exercises. The first is simply rotating your head forwards (remember to imagine the spine lengthening) until your chin touches your chest and then rotating it upwards as far as you feel comfortable.

4. Taking turns on each side of your body and facing forwards, bend your neck sideways towards each shoulder blade (remember to keep your good posture beyond!).

5. Roll your head forwards (only) from one shoulder to the other with your chin remaining in contact with your chest.

6. Roll your head all the way around (as in the previous exercise but roll your head behind you as well) in a smooth gentle motion.

Cervical spine (neck) strengthening exercises:

1. Sitting with good posture place a palm on each side of your neck with your thumbs under the back of your jaw and your elbows raised sideways above your shoulders. Tense you muscles on the back of your neck downwards against your fingers (that are resting on the base of your skull).

2. Again sitting with good posture move your elbows forwards and upwards. Place your palms on each side of your forehead. Gently press your forehead against your palms so that the front of your neck becomes tense.

3. In the sitting position raise one elbow sideways above your shoulder and place your palm on the side of your forehead. Gently press the side of your forehead against your palm so that the side of your neck becomes tense. Repeat on the other side of your body.

4. A partial diagonal crunch. Lying on your back on a soft mat with your knees together and bent at 90 degrees place your fingertips on your ears and allow your elbows to rest on the floor (at the same level as your shoulders). Raise one elbow while keeping your fingertips (only) in contact with your ear and your neck in line with the rest of your spine (ie try not to poke your neck forward). The main idea is to force the neck to carry the weight of your head rather than concentrating on working the abdominal muscles.

5. The plank position enables you to strengthen all the muscles that support the spine. Begin by lying face down on the floor and then place your elbows directly under your shoulders whilst making your upper arms vertical and placing your forearms forwards so that your hands are clasped together. You should only have your toes, elbows, forearms and hands touching the floor. Make sure that your whole spine is in its normal curved position and your body is effectively straight without the bottom sagging down or unnaturally pushed upwards. It is important to keep your abdominals and core tightly engaged.

6. Standing press ups against a wall with your hands wide apart, your feet together and your shoulder blades pulled together and down will help to start rebuilding the strength of the neck and shoulders.

Dorsal spine (upper back) stretching exercises:

1. Supine spinal relaxation and lengthening. See the cervical stretching exercises description for the details.

2. Sitting posture correction. See the cervical stretching exercises description for the details.

3. Standing upright place the palms of your hands behind the neck and smooth rotate the upper body first to the left and then to the right. Concentrate on rotating your head, neck and shoulders as one. This means that you begin facing forwards and your face ends up looking to the left or the right.

4. Again standing in good posture and facing forwards with your palms touching your hips, bend your body sideways by first sliding one hand down your thigh and then the other hand. Remember to keep your body in a vertical plane (do not lean forwards or returns when bending).

5. In a sitting position hold a rod behind your back between both of your hands (with your elbows pointing downwards). Use the rod to pull your shoulder blades down and together so that you form a valley between your shoulder blades.

6. Kneeling on the floor on all fours with your arms straight and vertical rotate your pelvis forwards so that your back arches up. Hold this position for a few seconds and slowly lower back down to a normal spine position (ie do not arch your back down).

Dorsal spine (upper back) strengthening exercises:

1. Hip lift. Lying on your back with your knees bent at 90 degrees, feet shoulder width apart and your arms folded across the abdomen raise your hips upwards as far as is comfortable and then gently lower.

2. Partial crunch. Lying on your back with your knees bent at 90 degrees, feet shoulder width apart and your arms folded across the abdomen raise your chest upwards as far as is comfortable and then gently lower. Try to keep your neck in line with the rest of your spine and not to poke your neck forward.

3. Partial back extension. Lying face down with your hands resting on your buttocks gently try to raise your chest upwards a small distance. As with the other exercises keep your spine in line with your neck and rotate from the hips. The aim is to tense the back muscles and not to lift the body high off the floor.

4. A partial diagonal crunch. For full details see the cervical spine strengthening exercises.

5. The plank position. For full details see the cervical spine strengthening exercises.

6. Standing press ups against a wall. For full details see the cervical spine strengthening exercises.

Lumbar spinal stretching exercises:

1. Supine spinal relaxation and lengthening. See the cervical stretching exercises description for the details.

2. Sitting posture correction. See the cervical stretching exercises description for the details.

3. Lying on your back with your knees together and bent at 90 degrees, first move them to one side on the floor and then the other. Keep the whole upper back in contact with the floor so that your face does not move.

4. Lying on your back (on a soft mat) with your knees together curl up into a ball with your arms wrapped around your shins and pull your legs to your chest. You can also rock to and fro slightly when fully curled up.

5. Lying on your back with your knees together and bent at 90 degrees, begin by sliding one hand under your lower back to check the curvature of your spell. Hold this spell curvature as your starting point and then close the gap by rotating your hips forward. As with many of the exercises imagine your spine being stretched and straightened not shortened and compressed.

Lumbar spine strengthening exercises:

1. Lie on your back with both legs straight and your hands by your sides. One at a time rotate each bent leg towards your chest as far as is comfortable. Keep your buttocks in contact with the floor at all times and the hips remain horizontal (ie do not lift one side).

2. The same as the first exercise but rotate both legs at the same time with the knees together.

3. Lie on your back with your hands by your sides, both legs straight, knees together and your feet resting on a small box about 20 cm high. Rotate both straightened legs upwards and then slowly downwards down on to the box again.

4. The same as the second exercise except that when both legs are fully raised move them as if you were cycling.

5. A partial crunch. See the second dorsal spine strengthening exercise for full details.

6. A partial diagonal crunch with opposite knee lift. Lying on your back on a soft mat with your knees together and bent at 90 degrees place your fingertips on your ears and allow your elbows to rest on the floor (at the same level as your shoulders). Raise one elbow while keeping your fingertips (only) in contact with your ear and your neck in line with the rest of your spine (ie try not to poke your neck forward). As you raise your elbow lift the opposite knee up at the same time.

In summary, spinal injuries are reliably common and you should always consult an injury specialist to fully understand the nature of your injury and undergo some initial treatment. However, this is not the end of the story if you want a full recovery. You need to follow up any medical treatment with injury workout routines that focus on the spine and then workout routines for the whole body. This article has focused on appropriate stretching and strengthening routines for the three main parts of the spine; the neck, upper back and lower back.

I Woke Up This Morning and I Can not Move My Neck!

Ever wake up with extreme neck pain?

Well if you have, I'm sure you have felt like your neck was stuck, or worse yet, it actually was stuck. When it feels this way, obviously something is going on that should not be going on, and if you've ever felt this way, you know how bad it can get.

So what's the deal? How can you go to bed one night seemingly fine, and wake up the next morning all locked up, not being able to move? How can this be? Did I sleep in the wrong position?

Usually a lot of questions arise when I consult with a patient who comes in to see me with this type of pain. The main consistent historical finding, or what the patient relates to me is that "it just came out of nowhere". When this type of unexpected neck pain occurs, when the individual is unable to move their neck when they wake up in the morning, the most common diagnosis is known as "Torticollis".

Torticollis comes from the Latin words of "torti" which means "twisted" and "collis" which means "neck". So the words combined literally mean "twisted neck". Which pretty much sums up the way it looks, and certainly the way it feels.

Another term for this condition is something known as "wry neck". Basically it is similar to a really bad muscle spasm, almost similar to the sensation of a "Charlie-horse", but in the case of Torticollis, it occurs in the neck.

Another historical finding, or what the patient relates to me, is the fact that they awoke with it in the morning after sleeping with the air conditioner or cold air blowing in the room in which they were sleeping. Often times as well, you may have just finished having a cold, or flu virus. Lastly, trauma such as a motor vehicle accident may cause a Torticollis as well.

Like I said earlier though, many times torticollis patients do not really know why or what caused this condition, ie, they really did not do anything to get this, or deserve this.The torticollis is characterized by very sharp pain and spasms, and an inability to move the neck at all, or if you do try to move it, extremely sharp pain is accompanied.

This sharp pain can be extremely limiting, from your day to day activities, as well as your ability to be productive and perform your job.

If you do not do anything at all, torticollis and the extreme neck pain will greatly improve over a 2 week period. In my practice, and with chiropractic in general, Torticollis will resolve over a couple of days. If you happen to get better after one or two days (hopefully) without doing anything at all, then you probably did not have torticollis.

In fact, I often see patients who have never been to the chiropractor before, because they would rather try to end their pain quickly vs waiting it out over a period of 2 weeks. In this situation, they are so desperate, desperate to resume their fun activities, to just going back to work, or feeling like their old self.

Of course taking prescriptive pain medication is always an option, but many of my patients have the attitude of "been there done that", they are tired of the way that that makes them feel.

Unfortunately, sometimes torticollis can last longer then a month, and in rare cases even longer, without treatment. So I would strongly recommend getting treatment ASAP.

The 3 most common finding of Torticollis are:

1. spasms of the neck muscles
2. Shoulder, side of the neck, upper back, and neck pain.
3. Neck being twisted to one side of the other, and feeling stuck in this position.

So what are the best solutions for Torticollis pain relief?

Well, ideally not getting in the first place right?

I say that half jokingly, but truthfully as well.

Like anything, prevention is the best medicine, but unfortunately, in the real world, prevention is really hard to sell. Having great posture, great muscle balance, flexibility, endurance, and strength are certainly very great prophalactic variables for avoiding torticollis in the first place.

Getting regular chiropractic care is a sure way to avoid ever having acute torticollis as well. But if you happen to be in a full blown episode of acute torticollis, analgesics do help immensely, because a lot the pain is caused from the muscles being in spasms.

Getting To Understand Metal Braces

If you happen to be having crooked teeth or what is referred to as a misaligned bite, several treatments could assist in straightening your teeth. Such dental techniques include braces and retainers. In several instances, a removable retainer may be all that is required. In some other rare cases, particularly when one has extreme underbite or overbite, surgery could become necessary. However, in most of the cases, all that will be needed are braces.

Which Brace Types are Available?

If your case requires braces, the orthodontist will recommend a suitable appliance that is specific for your particular requirements. Braces might consist of metal wires, bands and several other corrective dental appliances. There is no one method that works for everyone.

According to a recent study, when it comes down to the good looks of braces, the less the metal, the better. The study indicated that those kinds of dental appliances having no observable metal were viewed to be the best-looking. These findings have recently been published in an issue of the American Journal of Orthodontis and Dentofacial Orthodontis. Braces combining clear ceramic brackets having clear wires or thin metal were a less attractive option. Purely metal braces having metal wires and metal brackets got rated as being the least attractive blend.

How Do They Work?

On the whole, braces operate through application of constant pressure over sometimes to gradually shift teeth in a particular direction. While the teeth shift, the bone alters its shape as the pressure gets applied.

The period required for braces will vary from one individual to the other, depending on the problem severity; the available movement room; the space the teeth have to move; health of the gums and teeth; the supporting bone; and of course how well the patient adheres to instructions. However, on average, once the braces come on, they typically stay there for between one and three years, sometimes four. Once they are removed, majority will require wearing a retainer continuously for the initial 6 months and thereafter only when sleeping which can be for many years.

The orthodontist will need to check you about once a month in order to ensure the braces are applying constant pressure on the affected teeth.

Are Braces Painful?

A number of the dental adjustments that the dentist or orthodontist might make to the braces could make your mouth feel uncomfortable or sore. If ever required, pain killers bought over-the-counter could help in relieving the pain. However, in case you are always experiencing lots of pain when your braces get adjusted, discuss it with the orthodontist; it may be possible to make the brace adjustments somewhat different.

Recent Developments

A fresh concept in terms of orthodontic treatment is accelerated orthodontics that accomplishes the same objectives as conventional orthodontics but in less time. According to an Atlantic City orthodontist Robert Bray and President of the American Association of Orthodontists, accelerated orthodontics has become popular with grownups for the reason that the procedure lets the teeth straighten in a matter of months instead of years. The chief benefit of accelerated orthodontics is the speed at which it works because with conventional orthodontics, a patient may require to put on braces for between 2 and 4 years, but this recent development shortens that period to less than a year.

Traits of a Rainy Day Tent

Rainflys & Tub Style Floors

A tent with a rainfly is like a tent within a tent. The rainfly acts as an outer waterproof/ water resistant barrier to help keep the rain away from the actual tent. Ideally it should be kept out of direct contact with the tent material, as contact will promote the transfer of water to your belongings on the interior. Anyone ever been startled awake by a 4 year old scream crying because they just woke up in a soggy wet sleeping bag? I shudder just thinking about it. A good rainfly is worth its weight in gold, and beats trying to hastily rig up tarps or retreating to the car for the next 14 hours straight. A tub, or bathtub, style floor will also go the extra mile to keep the water off of your belongings. This floor style carries the waterproof floor material partially up the tent wall, usually 8 -12 inches, and keeps much of the rain dripping off of the roof from mixing with the mud and soaking through the tent sidewall.

Adequate Ventilation

With 4, or more, people stuck inside a tent on a rainy day, the humidity inside the tent is going to shoot up rather quickly. You’ll be trying to play cards only to have one suddenly disappear… to be found an hour later stuck to the side of little Trent’s clammy leg. You won’t be able to stop the rainstorm, or your breathing for that matter either, but you can choose a tent that has at least 2 screened windows on opposite walls. Or equally effective, a vented dome top with a ground vent that’s shielded by the rainfly or a vestibule. Any combination that allows for the movement of air will be a great benefit.

Vestibule & Screened Porch

Many tents are now available with a vestibule… a semi-sheltered area over the door opening that is formed by an extension of the rainfly. These work quite well to shield the door from direct exposure to the rain. A Vestibule is also very handy to take off and leave wet and muddy shoes, soaked clothing, and to stash anything else that is waterproof to free up room for the stir-crazy occupants trapped inside the tent. Some of the larger, “cabin” style, family camping tents now come with a screened porch. If the rain isn’t too torrential, these screened porches are awesome for allowing the family to spread out a bit till the rain lets up. Not only does it let your family physically spread out, it may go a long way to promoting mom and dads emotional well-being as it allows them a few minutes of relative peace while the kids occupy their own time at play nearby, safely out of the weather.

Creature Comforts

Alright, some of these are not on the Old School “roughing it” list, but lets face it, few of us set out on this rainy weekend adventure to be Davy Crockett or Lewis & Clark. There are tents currently on the market that have built-in LED lights and fans, powered by readily available, rechargeable DC sources. No more kicking over the lantern or attempting to hold the flashlight in your mouth while you shuffle the cards and help your daughter into her hoodie at the same time! Most tents have some form of pockets for interior storage, but did you know that there are now tents with closets? Yep, you read that correctly. These specially designed, “bump out” closet areas free up valuable floor space on a rain-filled day, giving you more room to maneuver around the sea of humanity stuck in the tent with you.

Ceiling Height

Seems that many of the 12 year olds are almost 6′ tall these days? If you’re stuck inside of a tent all day, or worse, ALL weekend due to rain, the ceiling height of the tent is going to become extra important. Your body is going to naturally want to stand up at some point, and it’s rather uncomfortable if you’re 6′ tall and the tent is only 5′ 8″! Selection used to be somewhat limited for tall tent campers, but has recently blossomed with quite a large number of tents with ceiling heights at 5′ 10″ or greater. I would also suggest looking into a cabin style camping tent rather than a dome, as the former will offer more room to move about at the taller head room.

So if you’re new to tent camping, looking to retire or upgrade your existing tent, or busy compiling your Christmas camping wish list, consider these traits in a new tent. Doing so, before you’re trapped inside with the whole family during an extended downpour, might go a long way to a more enjoyable weekend outing… and to maintaining your ongoing sense of sanity.

How to Make Your Penis Bigger Naturally With L-Methionine

If you suffer from a smaller than average penis, or if you simply want to increase the size of your penis to provide more sexual satisfaction to your partner, then you should know about L-Methionine.  L-Methionine is a unique way to enhance the size of your penis, both in terms of length and girth. If you want a bigger penis, then L-Methionine provides a safe, effective, and low cost solution.

Here, we’ll go over some of the benefits using L-Methionine to enlarge your penis can provide.

It makes the human penis longer after a period of use, which carries several advantages during sex and in everyday life. The female pleasure centers sit roughly four inches back in the vaginal cavity, and are the primary source of stimulation during intercourse. Most men will be able to reach this pleasure center with their penis, although some men may not.

However, even those with average or slightly larger than average penises may be unable to reach the cervix and fornix, which sit at the back of the vaginal cavity. Some women derive a huge amount of sexual pleasure from the stimulation of these two areas, and some are even unable to orgasm unless they are stimulated there. This means a longer penis is a very effective tool during intercourse.

L-Methionine also increases the girth of the penis, which is important in sex for several reasons. Firstly, it fits more snugly into the vaginal cavity, which increases wet friction and thus increases stimulation for both partners.

A thicker penis also provides an easier way to pleasure different areas of the vaginal cavity. If you are looking for a way to increase the sexual satisfaction of both your partner and yourself, then using L-Methionine to increase the length and girth of your penis is an excellent way to do so.

The penis also plays a role in mental and emotional health. Men who feel like they have smaller than average penises often have lower self esteem and less confidence (both sexually and otherwise) than men who feel like their penis is larger than average.

If you lack confidence or self esteem, or if you feel embarrassed about your penis, then enlarging it using L-Methionine is an easy solution. This ingredient provides a low cost, highly effective way to get the results you have been looking for, without any embarrassing products to be found around the house.  So, now you know how to make your penis bigger – L-Methionine!