Seizures in Pets

Witnessing your precious dog or cat having a seizure can be a most frightening experience. During seizures pets often lose control, fall over, chomp their teeth, salivate or drool, whine, paddle with their feet, and begin to urinate or defect on themselves. Their eyes become large (dilated) and unresponsive. A pet caregiver feels panicked and helpless while watching it all happen.

Hopefully, you and your pet have never, and will never, have to experience this shocking event. But, if you have, or if you experience it in the future, this article will help you to understand what causes seizures, what you can do while your pet is having a seizure, and the various treatment options available.

What causes seizures? Epilepsy is one cause. Certain dog breeds are more susceptible to epilepsy. These include: cocker spaniels; poodles; collies; german shepherds; irish setters; golden retrievers; dachshunds, labrador retrievers, saint bernards, miniature schnauzers, siberian huskies, and wire-haired terriers. Veterinarians are not sure what causes this "hereditary" epilepsy.

In cats hereditary epilepsy is unusual. Vets can typically find the cause of seizures. These include chemical toxins (which includes chemical preservatives used in many pet foods), brain tumors, feline leukemia, feline infections, peritonitis, feline AIDS, head trauma, and problems with the liver and kidneys.

In dogs there are many causes of seizures besides hereditary epilepsy. Allergies to food and the chemicals, preservatives, and artificial flavors put into the foods can cause seizures. Other causes include liver and kidney disease, tumors, poisonings, and low blood sugars.

What can you do while your pet is having a seizure? Try to stay calm. This is hard to do, but using a calm, reassuring quiet voice will comfort your dog or cat. Move any furniture or other objects on which your pet could hurt itself. If you're unable to move the object, place pillows or wrap blankets between the pet and the object. Slide something soft under your pet's head, but be sure to keep your hands and face away from his head so that you do not risk a possible bite. You can gently stroke his hip or side, but position yourself opposite the side of the feet and toenails as the muscle spasms make the feet curl into claws that can gouge or rake your skin. Dim the lights, and keep the environment as quiet as possible by turning off the TV and loud music.

If possible take notes about the seizure so that you can give details to your vet. Jot down the time of day it occurred, the length of each seizure, and the time in between each seizure if they are recurrent. Your vet will also want to know whether your pet urinated or deficated, if the seizure hit suddenly or progressed from mere body twitching, whether your pet regained consciousness, and how long it took before your pet appeared normal again. In addition, you'll need to figure out if there were any possible triggering events. These include loud noises such as fireworks, unusual items that were ateen, and excessive playing or exercise.

After the seizure, pets usually appear lost or drugged. This drug state can last a few minutes to several hours depending on the severity of the seizure. Your pet may respond to you, but do so in a very slow manner. Since seizures are exhausting for your pet, he will probably want to sleep afterwards. It is best to allow him to sleep, but check in on him occasionally without disturbing his rest.

If this is your pet's first seizure, call your vet as soon as possible. Some vets will want to see if another seizure occurs, while others will perform a variant of blood tests to check for anemia, liver & heart functions, calcium, glucose, & electrolyte levels. Your vet may even run a screen for possible toxins, take x-rays, or perform an electroencephalogram.

The test results may not indicate the specific reason for the seizure. In this case, your vet may wait to see if another seizure occurs or he / she may suggest medicines. If the diagnosis is epilepsy, pets have an excellent chance to live a normal life as long as proper medical care and follow-up are provided.

If you discover the cause of the seizure, you may be able to eliminate future seizures by eliminating the seizure's source. For instance, if the seizure is due to chemical toxins, make sure your pet remains as free of toxins as possible. Provide human grade food and fruits that do not contain chemical preservatives, fillers, or byproducts. Clean your house with chemical-free products. Also, use more natural flea, tick, & heartworm prevention products as some of these products may lower your pet's seizure threshold and make seizures more difficult to control. Avoid products containing organophosphate insecticides. For safer heartworm prevention, use products containing interceptor and filaribits.

What can you do if your pet's seizure condition can not be cured and you realize you and your pet may have to live with the seizures? In the past, the only treatment options available were strong anticonvulsants that could have serious side effects. These still may be your only option. But, more natural approaches have been found to help some pets, either prior to stronger medications or in addition to them so that you may be able to lower the dose. There are a variety of treatment options that include a natural diet, acupuncture, nutritional supplements, homeopathy, herbs, and conventional medications.

As mentioned above, give your pet a human grade diet, free of chemicals and additives. Also, remove other toxins from your pet's environment. Clean with natural products and use more natural flea, tick, and heartworm prevention measures.

Minimize stress in your pet's life. Try to avoid sudden changes in his environment, loud noises, and other stressful situations.

You can also try herbs that act as sedatives. These include valerian root, kava, skullcap and oatstraw. Note that when using herbs and supplements, you may need to lower the dosage of other anticonvulsants.

Several supplements appear to help in preventing seizures. Try an antioxidant combination of Vitamin C, E, B-6, and selenium. Your vet can recommend the dosage for your pet. Magnesium and DMG (dimethyl glycine) are other helpful supplements.

Acupuncture is another helpful option which has helped to control seizures in many pets. Sometimes just placing an ear acupuncture tack in a dog's ear will stop seizures, and this only requires one acupuncture visit.

If the ear tack does not work, gold implants can be placed in different locations under a pet's head. Or your pet can be treated with traditional chinese acupuncture.

As you can see, there are many natural approaches to treating seizures in pets. These should help your beloved pet to live a normal and comfortable life.

What You Do not Know About Georgetown, Penang

History

Hello and 'lu ho boh'- that's' how are you?' in Hokkien, the main Chinese dialect in Penang.

The historic city of George Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Before we begin, let me tell you a little about Penang, or sometimes known as the Pearl of the Orient.

Penang used to be part of Malay Sultanate of Kedah, across the sea in the mainland. But in 1786, Captain Francis Light managed to get Penang from the Sultan of Kedah for the British East India Company, together with Singapore and Malacca. He then built what is known today as George Town.

Penang gets its name from the Malay word Pinang which means 'betel nut', and Pulau Pinang literally meaning 'betel nut island'. It was later named Prince of Wales Island, commemorating King George IV. Georgetown was named after King George III. Today Penang is the third largest economy in the country, after Selangor and Johor.

In the World Heritage Committee Session in July 2008, Georgetown, along with Malacca were listed as UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Georgetown was voted twice as one of the best cities in Asia. It is also ranked as 10th among the top locations in Asia where Europeans prefer to work and live in, based on its weather, air quality, infrastructure, health services, housing, security and politics.

Sights

Georgetown has some of the best tourist places in Malaysia. Let's get to know a few of them.

Fort Cornwallis

On top of our itinerary is definitely Fort Cornwallis. The largest standing fort in Malaysia, Fort Cornwallis is a star-shaped fort named after the late 18th century Governor-General of Bengal in India, Charles Cornwallis. It was built by Sir Francis Light after it took possession of Penang from the Sultan of Kedah in 1786. The original fort was built with nibong, or palm trunk. A few years later, the new fort was rebuilt with manpower of Indian convicts, and finally completed in 1810.

The fort is intended to defend the island against the pirates and the French because of the Napoleonic Wars. There used to be a deep and wide moat surrounding the fort, but it is now filled due to a malaria outbreak.

Even though the fort was built for defense, it was used more for administrative purposes. In fact, the funny thing is that the fort has never engaged in any battle.

There you will see many old cannons. The largest one, called the Seri Rambai cannon, was a gift from the Dutch to the Sultan of Johor. Later, the Potuguese took possession of the cannon where it stayed in Java until it was located by the British and placed here in Fort Cornwallis.

This fort was gazetted in 1977 as an Ancient Monument and Historic site and today is one of Penang's most famous tourist attractions.

Convent Light Steet

The next interesting attraction is the Convent Light Street, or Convent of the Holy Infant Jesus. It was founded back in 1852 by 3 French nuns who took over the previous government house to start their convent. It originally houses within its walls the Francis Light bungalow, which was build in 1790. It was historically leased out to the East India Company as a government house, before finally settling as a learning institution.

The building was expanded, and eventually housed a chapel, cloisters for the Sisters, an orphanage, a boarding house for students and classes for the school. The Convent continues to serve as a school and has been painstakingly and regularly restored in recent years with funds raised from the public.

St. George's Church

Next is the St. George's Anglican Church along Farquhar Street. Founded by Reverend Robert Sparke Hutchings, it is the oldest Anglican Church in Southeast Asia, which goes back all the way to 1818. It is designed in the Georgian Palladian style, a combination of the Georgian style, which is attribute to King George I and King George IV, and the Palladian style, which is attributed to the Grecian architecture by a Roman called Palladius.

Look at the long Roman columns and pillows and the white washed walls. The original roof was flat, but there was a tiny problem. The weather, or more precisely, the tropical rains made it unsuitable to have a flat roof and it was later made into the present shape. Look out also for the tall steeple that forms the apex of the roof.

There is a pavilion that sits opposite the church that houses a memorial to Francis Light. There is an inscription that reads: "In Memory of Francis Light, Esquire, who first established this island as an English Settlement and was many years Governor. Born in the county of Suffolk in England and died October 21st 1794. In his capacity as governor , the settlers and natives were great attached to him, and by his death had to deplore the loss of one who watched over their interest and cares as a father. "

The church is declared one of the 50 National Treasures of Malaysia.

The Cathedral of the Assumption

Next is The Cathedral of the Assumption on Faquhar Street. It got its name from the Feast of the Assumption, which happened to be the day when the first group of Catholics arrived in Penang in 1786. It was in 1955 that the church became a cathedral according to a decree by the Vatican.

This majestic gray white colored building with horizontal bands is an example of fine colonial architecture.

Eastern and Oriental Hotel

Next is the world renovated Eastern and Oriental Hotel. Once known as the "Premier Hotel East of Suez," it is commonly called the E & O Hotel or Eastern & Oriental Hotel.

The E & O Hotel was one of the few hotels in the region that was managed by the Sarkies Brothers. The Sarkies also operated the Raffles in Singapore, the Strand in Rangoon and the Crag Hotel on Penang Hill. In fact, they are still in existence today and are considered top-notch hotels, except for the one on Penang Hill, which is not functioning anymore.

In 1884, the E & O began its operations and by the Roaring 20s had gained much international recognition for being an opulent establishment through the generosity of Arshak Sarkies, the most flamboyant of the brothers. He would waive off friends' bills and allow some planters to stay for free, which led to people calling the E & O 'Eat and Owe'. Sarkies ran the hotel out of pleasure more than for profit and it ever shown, when the hotel came close to bankruptcy. However, today the business has been revitalized and the E & O continues to retain its charm.

The E & O has had many famous patrons, and they include Sir Noel Coward, Douglas Fairbanks, Mary Pickford, Rudyard Kipling, Somerset Maugham, Hermann Hesse, Sun Yat Sen and Charlie Chaplin. Despite having gone through periods of uncertainty and sometimes teetering on the brink of obscurity, the E & O still runs and functions as one of the best hotels in Penang. Weddings, dinners and special occasions are still celebrated here.

If you can not afford to stay there, you can still go to the bar or restaurant and unwind like Charlie Chaplin and Rudyard Kipling did!

Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion

Next is the Cheong Fatt Tze mansion. Cheong Fatt Tze was a rag to riches story. Coming to Malaya in 1856 to work in the tin mines at 16, he worked his way and made a fortune trading tea, pepper, coffee and tobacco with the British Empire.

Cheong Fatt Tze had a reputation of a smart businessman and eventually became Consult General for China, and had the position of 'Mandarin of the Highest Order'. He also became the director of China's railway and first modern bank and was nicknamed the "Rockefeller of the East" by the New York Times, who also dubbed him as "China's last Mandarin and first capitalist."

Despite having homes all over Asia, and in particular Indonesia and China due to his business and personal interests, Cheong Fatt Tze still favored this mansion in Penang the most, and consulted feng shui masters in building it. When Cheong Fatt Tze finally passed away in 1916, the Dutch and the British honored this extra man by flying flags at half-mast.

The mansion is open everyday from 11.00am and 3.00pm with tours conducted at these times. The tour is well worth your time and you can marvel at the art of feng shui that went into Cheong Fatt Tze's mansion. Beside the architecture, the mansion is also dedicated to the memory of the man himself.

Apart from the architecture, the Cheong Fatt Tze mansion also has many antiques and old photographs that will give you a glimpse of the lives of genteel Chinese business people then. An interesting fact is that Cheong Fatt Tze's seventh wife was awarded the privilege of living in the mansion with him. The mansion has also been used for filming as well, one of the more famous films filmed here was 'Indochine' starring Catherine Deneuve.

The Cheong Fatt Tze mansion used to also consist of the row of terrace houses across the street, which you can see when you visit. This particular row was where the kitchen, storage rooms and servants' quarters used to live. Maids wearing their usual white shirts and black pants would hurriedly prepare food for their mistress and master.

Christian Cemetery

Next is the Protestant Cemetery. Although it may seem a bit sombre and morbid, walking through the old Protestant Cemetery is a great idea while you are in Georgetown. It provides you with a sense of the hardships that were faced by those who had chosen to make their home here. Some of the tombstones have been restored by the heritage trust, although many inscriptions can no longer be read. Reading the epitaphs on the stones brings a melancholic, romantic feel especially when reading about the lives of the early settlers. Many died from tropical ailments such as malaria and one stone even mentions that the Deceased died from jungle fever.

Most of these people were laid to rest here because it was too far to take their bodies back, and doing that would take many weeks, further deteriorating the bodies. So the Christian Cemetery is the final resting place of many pioneers including Sir Francis Light, Sir Stamford Raffles' brother-in-law and a young officer named Thomas Leonowens. You may be familiar with the story of his wife, Anna Leonowens, who moved to Singapore after Thomas died of apoplexy. Here, she received an invitation to teach English to the children of the Siamese King. A romanticised account of her life in Siam inspired the film called 'Anna and the King' star Deborah Kerr and Yul Brynner, and the musical 'The King And I'. The remake of this film in 1999 starred Jodie Foster and Chow Yuen Fatt, and part of it was shot in right here in Georgetown.

Suffolk House

Next is the Suffolk House, or what was once Sir Francis Light's Residency. Francis Light built his home, where he landscaped and constructed the interior to resemble that of a country home of his birthplace of Suffolk, England.

He lived in Suffolk House as it was named, with his life long companion, Martina Rozells and his 5 children. The Suffolk House served as the governor's residency for the first 100 years and was later bought over by a planter, and the house and land became part of the Methodist Boys' School, last used as a canteen for the students.

The Suffolk House won the 2008 UNESCO Award of Distinction. It is one of the two cultural heritage conservation projects in Malaysia to win the UNESCO award in 2008 and this Award of Distinction is the second highest award given by UNESCO Asia Pacific for Cultural Heritage Conservation.

Kuan Yin Teng

Next is Kuan Yin Teng, one of the oldest Chinese temples in Malaysia. It was built in 1801 by early Chinese immigrants. The building is decorated with intricately crafted dragons and two stone lions guard the door. This temple is dedicated to Kuan Yin, the Chinese Goddess of Mercy. It is one of the most visited tourist sites in Penang.

The Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi

The Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi is a clan association, one of the many in Malaysia. Built in 1850 by the forefathers of the Khoo family who emigrated from South China, it functions as a clan-house for anyone who has the surname Khoo. A temple was built but a fire razed the entire wooden structure. The local Chinese believed that the gods had burned it down because the structure resembled the Heavenly Emperor's palace. The version you see today was completed in 1906. All around, you can see richly ornamented carvings of the roofs, walls and pillows that reflect the art and architecture of ancient China. At the end of the tour, expect to have a stiff neck.

Queen Victoria Clock Tower

Next is the Queen Victoria Clock Tower. This 60-foot-high clock tower was presented to Penang by local millionaire, Cheah Chen Eok, in 1897 to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria.

Wat Chaiyamangalaram

The Thai Buddhist Temple is famous for its 33 meter long reclining Buddha, one of the world's longest. The temple was built on a piece of land given by Queen Victoria to four women trustees as a gesture of goodwill to boost trading relations with Thailand. Look out for the guardian dragons at the entrance.

Kapitan Keling Mosque

Next is the Kapitan Keling Mosque, was built in the early 19th century, by the Kapitan Keling Caudeer Mohudeen. It is the most prominent historic mosque in Penang and features a dome-shaped minaret reflecting Moorish Islamic influence. The Kapitan Keling Mosque is the place of worship of the Indian Muslim community who have lived and worked around the mosque for over two hundred years. Unlike modern mosques that are mainly frequented on Fridays, the Kapitan Keling Mosque is used by worshipers five times a day, seven days a week. If you'd like to visit, you have to be decently dressed and women would have to wear a robe that you can get from the mosque staff.

Food

Every Malaysian claims his or her hometown is the food capital of Malaysia. The people of Penang would claim Penang food is the best in Malaysia, and it is not easy to disagree.

Some of the must trys in Penang is the Penang Kuay Teow, or fried noodle dish with eggs, cockles and vegetables. Ask for it to be cooked less spicy if you can not take spicy food.

Other Chinese dishes you must try are: beef noodle and 'chee cheong fun' or steamed flat noodle topped with shrimp and chilli sauce. You can also try the fried oyster, a popular seafood dish. 'Hokkien mee' is a noodle dish in spicy prawn based soup. You must also try Penang laksa, which is also a noodle dish but this time with fish based soup.

For something sweet, some highly recommended street food are the 'tau sah pneah' which is biscuit with green paste inside, 'muah chee' which are peanut coated glutinous rice balls; and 'bee koh moy' which is a black glutinous rice porridge usually taken as an afternoon dessert.

For Indian Muslim food, the Penang nasi kandar is very famous in Malaysia. It is a rice meal with many types of dishes made using many types of spices. Also, try the rojak pasembur which is a vegetable salad with sweet and spicy sauce.

Other unique delicacies include 'otak-otak' or steamed fish cake wrapped in banana leaves and 'Or Koay' or steamed yam cakes topped with dried shrimp, fried shellots, spring onion and sliced ​​red chilli.

I hope I did not make your stomach growl. Penang is really a food haven, and you must try at least a few local delicacies before leaving.

Transport

Getting around in Georgetown is easy. You can take the bus or taxi. One fascinating mode of transportation is the trishaw, a type of bicycle vehicle, but the trishaw is getting more and more rare. Trishaws were actual modes of transportation in the olden times but today- they cater to tourists and can go up to 30 Ringgit per hour.

Well, this is the end of the guide for Georgetown. I hope you will enjoy yourself visiting the old standing fort in Malaysia, marvelling at some 17th century churches, unwinding in a world famous hotel, touring some Muslim mosques, Buddhist mystices, and old colonial buildings and not forgetting, savoring food in Malaysia's food capital .

Until the next time, Selamat Tinggal and goodbye!

A Stroke Struck and Changed My Family Forever

Time waits for no one. Can ten years fly like a stroke of lightning? Was it not yesterday I was disillusioned by what happened on August 16th, 2007? Was the pain not sharper than the sharpest razor blade ever manufactured? Didn’t I struggle to believe the saying that time will ease the emotional injury and eventually heal me? Wow! As I look back this month, I have no option but to thank God for where He has brought me and my loved ones from. If it had not been Him on our side all these years, where would we be? Time has indeed reduced the indescribable pain. May the name of the Lord be glorified for ever more.

Back in 2003, an unexpected phone call from my younger brother Osa woke me from deep slumber. He had bad news! His close friend in Nigeria had just called informing him our mother suffered a stroke – the right side of her body was paralyzed. A very cold chill raced down my spine as it dawned on me all her children resided outside the country. We were thousands of miles away. How was she going through this nightmare without anyone of us by her side? Tears became the order of the moment and stayed so till I broke the news to my younger sister Uyi who lived in the same city with me.

Trying to imagine our mother partially paralyzed was traumatizing. After all, I just saw a few months ago. She bubbled with so much life during her vacation with us in the U.S. I saw her off to the airport and stood there waving and watching her till she was out of sight. Little did I know I was watching my mother walking with her two legs unsupported for the last time. Such is life!

Preceding the advent of a stroke, my mother lived in the world of happiness she created for herself. We called it “her paradise.” She loved convenience and paid for it in an instant. She always had a staff for any and everything – a house help, a cook, driver, gardener and security or Gatemen like we call them. My mom did not need to lift a finger as everything was done for her.

Her love for God was immeasurable. I remember her gathering children in the neighborhood and wetting their fleeting appetites with cookies so that by the time the real food (the Word of God) came they had no choice but to participate. She also dedicated a room in our house to prayer. When we were young, my siblings and I used to dread being summoned into that room. We were known to spend at least one full hour in prayer with hunger pangs struggling to strip us of the little concentration we battled to maintain.

Entertaining people was something my mother did with a raw passion. Even if we had a visitor at midnight, she had a unique way of coming up with a dish with or without ingredients in the house. Her love for music went side by side with entertaining people. Back in the early seventies my mother connected loudspeakers from her bedroom all the way to the kitchen. How can I forget how the whole house woke up to classical music or hymns most mornings? As music had a permanent place in our house so did my mother’s love for art. From sculptures to paintings, she bought them like they were going out of fashion. Assorted flowers in her well kept garden was priceless for her. She talked to her plants every day and mourned even when the ugliest flower in the garden died.

One of us had to travel to Nigeria to be with our darling mother. Although the timing was bad for all us because coincidentally, we were all dealing with individual storms raging like mad dogs in our lives, my brother Osa, her only son and last child hopped on the next available flight.

Reality set in as Osa arrived in Lagos, Nigeria. Our mother was worse than we imagined. The original plan to get her taken care of till she was strong enough to travel to the U.S. a month or two later went out of the window. Osa had to bring her back with him. They left three weeks later on a flight with a stopover in London.

Uyi and I spent the morning preparing to receive our mother. I had a hard time mentally picturing what laid ahead. For one, I can’t stand seeing people sick or suffering. How was I going to stomach seeing my mother sick and helpless? I had no choice but to sweep my fears under the rug of fate and wait till I set my eyes on her. On the other hand, my sister was more than prepared. She loves caring for people and had once toyed with the idea of pursuing Nursing. She was mentally and physically ready to take on the challenge of looking after our mother.

I can never forget the moment we met our mum and Osa at the Arrivals area of the airport. We were so shocked to see our beloved mother! She was a far cry from the woman I saw off to the airport the last time she visited. Who would have imagined her next visit to the U.S. would be in a wheelchair? I was speechless, frozen with fear and in denial. Her size and exuberance had shrunk so much – she was half her size and so helpless. Her signature laughter that always announced her presence was nowhere to be found. She could hardly talk. I remained in a cocoon of shock the whole day. I just could not look at her in the face. How could I?

That night I got into bed with her. She was lying on her back and staring at the ceiling as if she was looking for answers to the many questions on her mind. She seemed to be glad to be around her children and grandchildren but I knew my mother was wrestling with the unfortunate trap her body was caught in. I laid besides her in total silence. Sleep was far from me because of how much I ached emotionally. I looked at her in the dark and noticed tears rolling down into her pillow. I was also weeping in silence until I summoned up strength and asked in a voice like I just woke up “Are you okay Mommy?” She whispered to me “I am fine my dear.”

The first few weeks were rough. We wore the cloak of patience, dedication and tolerance as we did everything under the sun for our mother. She was like a new baby in our helpless arms. I babysat her at night while my sister took care of her during the day. Although we were feeling burnt out because we didn’t know better plus the guilt of seeing her like that plagued us a great deal. Her visit to a particular doctor opened another chapter.

Series of tests were performed on her and she was referred for Physical Therapy. Her first day in therapy was the beginning of the slow death of dependence in the life of my mother. The beautiful but assertive American therapist made my mother do some things we never imagined she could do even with the presence of partial paralysis. The therapist made us promise not to assist her except it was necessary. I openly welcomed the idea with relief but inwardly doubted if my mother could cope – she was used to being pampered. My mom did not find this verdict funny. How could she? We assured her it was going to be a gradual process for her own good. This was the beginning of the gradual banishment of my mother totally relying on us or anybody to do things for her.

We started by ignoring her constant request to be put on the next available flight back to her comfort zone in Lagos, Nigeria. We were not going to help her escape to her “paradise” because with the stroke she had to do it herself or resign to the fate of permanent paralysis. As our mother attended therapy on a constant basis, she saw some patients coming in without hands or legs but a fierce determination to do things without assistance. She started seeing the liability of depending on others to do the little things you can do for yourself. This motivated her and with time, faith, and encouragement from everyone, she started doing things for herself to the point of mastering the use of her left hand and leg. She learned to groom herself without assistance, get into and out of bed by herself, move around with little or no assistance, feed herself using her left hand and even go on outings with the family with minimal assistance.

She improved dramatically and realized that her idea of “paradise” was actually hell because the ability to do things by yourself is an invaluable asset. Although the stroke is the worst thing one can experience, in my mother’s case it helped us learn some invaluable lessons. For one, it exposed the ugly side of dependence, taught us patience and tolerance, increased our faith in God that nothing is impossible, fostered unity in our family and discouraged taking advantage of any situation. We learned to live every single day intentionally.

We were privileged to have our mother for four more years. We all rotated caring for her in our homes for 6 months to one year at a time. At about 9:30pm on August 16, 2007, our beloved mother went to glory. It left a huge void in our lives but 10 years later, I can look back and thank God for seeing us through this very stormy but valuable part of our lives.

Darling Mommy, though it still seems like yesterday, your lovely memory will continually linger in our hearts. I miss you so, so much! Fond, memories of the good times, your unique laughter, jokes, mozzarella and almond craze and all you stood for. I am eternally grateful to God for the privilege of having a mother like you. I will always love and cherish you. Thank you for bringing me to this world, the beautiful life you gave all of us, your values and all you stood for. No day passes without a memory of you. May your beautiful continue to rest in peace until we meet again.

May the souls of all our loved ones departed, rest in perfect peace, in Jesus’ name.

Hair Loss And Baldness

How does hair loss occur?

Hair loss or baldness is the state where the area which hair normally grows starts to decrease in count or gets thinner in size. The amount of average hair loss per day starts to increase by the day. Hair mass starts to get visible less and sometimes scalp can be noticed easily with the naked eye within a short distance.

A hair follicle is part of the skin that grows hair by packing old cells together. Attached to the follicle is a sebaceous gland, a tiny sebum-producing gland found everywhere except on the palms, lips and soles of the feet. Sebums are made from fats or simply oil and the debris of dead fat-producing cells. This is the oil that determinates whether you should buy the 'for oily or normal hair type' shampoo. The thicker density of hair, the more sebaceous glands are found.
Stem cells are located at the area near the follicle and are primarily responsible for the ingoing hair production during a process known as the Anagen stage. During this stage the cells division quickly and this when your hair starts to grow. The average growth rate of hair follicles on the scalp is 0.0 cm per day or about 1cm every 25 days. Hair loss occurs when the stem cells do not divide quick enough to produce that amount of hair within that time frame. Sufferers of hair loss may take a little more than 1 month to grow that 1cm of hair. The bulb shaped structure at the base of the follicle is called the papilla. The papilla is made up primarily of connective tissue that holds the whole hair shaft.

Why does hair loss occur?

There are some men who keep their hair well into old age while others start to lose their hair at a tender age. Okay we do not notice that and so what? When men who start to suffer from hair loss starts to ask why, most professionals will say the answer is in your genes. If our father has a bald head, the chances of us being another bald guy is very high. This inherited hair loss is very similar to the eye and skin color. This genetic coding has been implanted right during the time we are being formed in the womb. The genes would make the hair follicles on our head be sensitive to the male hormones dihydrotestosterone (DHT). When puberty kicks in and these hormones are produced at light speed the hair follicle will start to produce less and less hair causing hair loss. This stage goes from thinning hair and receding hairline to complete baldness.

This theory is believed by most professionals to the main cause of hair loss or male pattern baldness. There are however other causes of hair loss not linked with hereditary reasons. Another reason is poor health which includes medication, stress levels and diets. A person who is sickly and ill and will affect the nutrients being absorbed by the body and released through it. Trichologists would be able to show that with the use of a microscope. After a bout of lets say flu, strands of hair will get crooked indicating the period where hair thinning occurs due to loss of nutrients.
Temporary loss of hair can also occur in areas where sebaceous cysts are present for considerable duration; usually one to several weeks in length. This is the reason why we should shampoo our heads regularly.

Iron deficiency is also a common cause of thinning of the hair, though frank baldness is not usually seen.

Radiation to the scalp, as occurs when radiotherapy is applied to the head for the treatment of certain cancers can cause baldness of the irradiated areas.

Some mycotic or fungal infections can also cause massive hair loss.

What treatments are available and effective for hair loss?

There are of course many products and treatments available out there in the market that claims to give you back the beautiful mane you can be proud of. There is also a secret you might want to know because many hair treatment companies do not want you to find out. This is because their multi million dollar profit business depends on you not knowing.

Although there are many products that do what they claimed although none one single type of treatment is suitable for all hair loss causes. It is better to find out what treatment is most suitable. Instead of starting to ask and search for treatments and cures for hair loss, perhaps you would like to adopt a different approach. One way would be to search for ways to improve hair growth rate. What are the available treatments that can help your hair follicles to start producing longer and thicker hair? Find out ways on how to prevent hair loss and methods to ensure the virility and strengthening of hair.There are many types of treatment that can help your hair follicles to kick start the engine again and produce back the amount of hair you always had until the dreaded hair loss scenario started.

If you are just looking for some hair oils and shampoo just to revitalize back your dull looking hair there is something you should take note about. Many commercialized shampoos contain hazardous chemicals. This not only causes skin and scalp irritation it could also lead to hair loss. It is always safer to read and check what goes into the mixture of the shampoo before buying. Organic or herbal based shampoos are always more often than not a safer bet.
Is hair loss a problem at all in the first place?

If you are feeling very confident about looking the way you are without any hair on your head I would really love to congratulate you. You are definitely one of the few guys I know who can really carry hair loss well. But if you are like any one of us bald headed guy, I would say it is a problem both physically as well as mentally. One of the causes of hair loss is called alopecia (al-oh-pee-she-uh) and that is a medical problem which is best to be treated.

Unless you are Vin Diesel, being bald will certainly in certain ways affect the way confidence is planned. How important is it portraying the correct image especially at work and not to mention social life as well.

Hair Loss Disease – What is Alopecia Areata?

Alopecia is the medical term for hair loss. Alopecia Areata is the most common form of an unusual auto-immune skin disease resulting in patchy hair loss on your scalp. It usually starts with a small patch of hair loss and lasts with one or more small, round patches of hair loss on your head.

Alopecia Areata affects approximately 2% of the overall population, including more than 5 million people in the United States, according to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation (NAAF). Alopecia Areata is considered a skin disease because it occurs on the skin of the hair, or scalp, and is usually diagnosed by your dermatologist. Luckily, agree experts, it includes no rashes, hives or itching, although exposed scalp areas do require extra care.

In the 1990's, Alopecia Areata was classified as an auto-immune disease. Researchers found that the disease is the result of the body producing an inappropriate immune response against itself. However, "I find that most patients report a history of acute stress which precipitated the condition," says Sara Wasserbauer, MD, a Board Certified, California-based hair transplant surgeon.

The Normal Hair Growth Cycle

Dr. Wasserbrauer explains that the normal growth rate of scalp hair is about a fourth to a half an inch every month. Hair growth is a repeating cycle that can be disrupted by genetics, diseases, infections, infections or other more common factors that may cause hair loss. During the anagen growth phase, a follicle actively grows hair until the catagen phase in which the follicle slows down growth. During the telogen phase, the follicle rests ahead to the start of a new anagen phase or growth of a new hair shaft. As the new hair shaft pushes out the 'dead' hair shaft, the old hair is shed. "About 50 to 100 telogen hairs are normally shed every day and you find them in your comb, brush and shower drain," says Dr. Wasserbrauer. About 10 percent of scalp hair follicles are normally in telogen phase at any given time if the scalp is healthy and not affected by any condition that causes hair loss.

What Does "Autoimmune" Mean?

According to the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions Autoimmune Disease Research Center, a healthy human body uses an effective set of weapons, the immune system, against viruses, bacteria, and parasites that can attack your body. Unfortunately, this powerful immune system sometimes mistakenly attacks the body itself. Misdirected immune responses are called auto-immunity. In Alopecia Areata, it's your hair follicles that are mistakenly attacked by your own immune system, resulting in the disruption of the hair growth stage.

Types of Alopecia

The NAAF classifies three types of Alopecia. The first is Alopecia Areata which presents as random patches of hair loss. When hair loss involves the total head, it is called Alopecia Totalis and when it extends to the total body hair loss it is called Alopecia Universalis, there is no sure cure for the conditions but many doctors prescribe medications to help control the episodes. In all forms of Alopecia, the hair follicles remain alive and are ready to resume normal hair production whenever they receive the appropriate signal from the body. In all cases, hair re-growth may occur even without treatment and even after many years, according to the NAAF.

Do You 'Catch' Alopecia … or is it Genetic?

Experts believe there is a genetic component to Alopecia Areata, because one out of five people who have the symptoms, have a family-member also affected by hair loss, according to the NAAF. Current research has found that if onset begins after age 30 you are less likely to have an affected family member. When sunset of the first patch of Alopecia Areata begins before age 30, it is more likely other family members are affected. The NAAF has focused a lot of its research into investigating the genetic elements of the disease to finally identify who is most susceptible to the disease and why. "Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA) is the name for the inherited condition however associated with a specific gene (or genes) nor yet identified with certainty," says Dr Wasserbauer.

Alopecia Treatment Options

According to the NAAF there are no FDA-approved treatments specifically for Alopecia Areata, however, many medical professionals are willing to try treatments off-label. There are treatment options available for mild, patchy Alopecia Areata (less than 50% scalp hair loss) however none of the acceptable treatments work in all cases. Many hairstylists are using low-light laser therapy to stimulate the follicles to create new hair which only works on clients who still have active hair follicles at the beginning stages of hair loss.

Acute Otitis Media (Middle Ear Infections) – Part II

Part II – here ya go!

At what point do I start worrying that my child may need an antibiotic to treat their ear infection?

Some guidelines have been set-up to help decide whether antibiotic therapy should be used or not.

According to these guidelines, antibiotics are recommended for use in children less than 2 years of age and in children older than 2 where both letters are infected or where there is discharge from the affected ear.

Children older than 2 years who have mild symptoms of AOM and only one infected ear can take the "watchful waiting" approach.

With the "watchful waiting" option, you would observe your child's condition for 48 to 72 hours, and if the signs or symptoms of AOM worsen or persist, you would follow-up with your child's physician.

At this point, the physician would most likely start your child on a course of antibiotics. The "watchful waiting" option is not appropriate in those cases where follow-up can not be ensured or where parents or caretakers do not understand the risks and benefits of this kind of approach.

I know what you're probably thinking; there is no way you're going to take the chance with this watchful waiting deal. But just think, one less medication means fewer medication side effects and an opportunity to avoid being involved with the antibiotic resistance saga.

You know your child the best; you will be able to tell if they are not getting better. You can do it – I have faith in you!

Continuing on …

Signs and symptoms of middle ear infections appear so quickly you will not even see them coming!

The obvious signs of AOM are ear pain, fever, and hearing loss. Be on the lookout for your infant pulling on their ear; it's a good way to tell if their ear is bothering them since they can not share this with you in words quite yet.

Also, do not panic with the hearing loss idea, it's happening because of the fluid build-up in the eustachian tubes and it is a temporary problem .

There are times when the signs and symptoms of a middle ear infection will be less obvious, especially in young children. These not so obvious symptoms include fatigue, irritability, loss of appetite, or vomiting, and they usually occur more often in children who have been suffering from an upper respiratory tract infection for several days. Ugh, two infections in one, that's a double whammy right there!

Also, be aware that it is possible for your child to not have any signs or symptoms of AOM other than a fever, in which case it's important that their ears still get examined.

Regardless of whether antibiotics are used or not (check out Part I of this ear infection series, and do not forget about Part II and Part III!), Symptoms caused by the ear infection can be treated. Some good options to treat ear pain are Tylenol, Motrin, and Auralgan, all of which have a generic available.

Auralgan is an eardrop that contains a combination of antipyrine, benzocaine, and glycerin and is available by prescription only. The benefits of using Tylenol and Motrin are they can be purchased over-the-counter and they help treat a fever too.

I would NOT , I repeat, I would NOT use antihistamines (like Benadryl) and / or decongestants (like Sudafed) because they have not been shown to be effective in treating AOM and they only lead to more medication side effects.

It's GI Joe time; the true American hero is calling my name … going to the movies and the rose gardens here in Portland! No worries – I'm still here for discussion, questions, and comments. Get at me at http://www.getpharmacyadvice.com !

Nerve Deafness, Why You Do Not Understand What People Say

If you are hard of hearing, one of the most difficult problems which you may experience is comprehension of speech. You may know that someone is speaking to you, but many times, if you have nerve deafness, you miss a lot of the words in the course of the conversation. This is made much worse whenever there is any background noise such as in a crowded room with a lot of people talking in the background. You may notice that you hear better and understand better when you can look directly at the person with what you are speaking.

What may be even more distracting is when you turn up the radio or TV to try to hear better, it may make matters even worse because the level of distortion becomes worse. You may not noticed that if you have nerve deafness (sensori-neural deafness), you have more trouble with women's voices. This is in to a large extent, due to the fact that women's voices are higher pitched than men's voices. Children's voices represent a similar problem relative to pitch but in addition, they tend to talk quickly, and are constantly moving about. Also, especially with smaller children, they may not always enunciate clearly since they are just learning language. You may notice that when watching a movie or the TV that if the person speaking is on screen and looking at the camera, that you have better understanding that if the speaker is off screen. With nerve deafness, you may not noticed that in large rooms with poor acoustics, that you have more difficulty.

As a result of all of being hard of hearing, you may find that you would rather stay at home than go out and expose yourself to all of these problems. Also, if you have nerve deafness and trouble understanding speech, your family may be less understanding than strangers. They think that you are not listening or simply ignoring them.

The reason that these problems arise with nerve deafness is related to the fact that there are two parts to our hearing mechanism. One is whether or not we are able to hear the sound while the second and equally important part is, we can process the sound we hear in order to understand what we hear. In mechanical forms of hearing loss (conductive hearing loss), such as occurs when you have a hole in your eardrum or wax blocking your ear canal, your ability to understand is normal and if the sound is turned up loud enough, you understand normally. However, with nerve deafness and impairment of comprehension, even when the sound is turned up loud, understanding is not usually improved and may be worse.

An additional problem which is frequently present in people with nerve deafness is the presence of tinnitus, a ringing, roaring, buzzing or similar sound which you perceive in your ears or head but which other people do not hear. This also interferes with hearing and understanding speech.

The cause of nerve deafness is related to the deterioration of the hearing nerve cells. Two common causes are noise exposure and the aging process itself. There are many other causes, but the scope of this article does not permit discussion of any in detail. There may be other associated symptoms such as dizziness.

If you are experiencing some or all of the above problems then you should see your ENT doctor for evaluation, hearing tests and any other needed tests to determine the cause of your difficulty. In some situations, the hard of hearing problem is indicative of more serious conditions in addition to the nerve deafness. Help is available.

How to Sell Life Insurance – Learn Where the Sales Process Should Begin

How To Sell Life Insurance – The First Step

There are a lot of sales books out there that place emphasis on what great one liner to say to a prospect that is sitting across from you. Some type of guidance like statement that gives them the feeling that they are in control when you are really leading them down an avenue that they really may not want to go down. Is not that sort of a form of lying? Think about that for a second, how would you feel if you were mislead into doing something that would only benefit the other party?

The truth on how to sell life insurance successfully does not stem from some sales pitch. The real mechanisms and where the sales process actually starts is from good marketing. Marketing is severely undervalued in the life insurance sales industry. It is undervalued by the life insurance companies themselves, and then that trickles down to the field marketing organizations, which in turn trickles down again to affect the agents directly.

So what exactly is good marketing? Would you agree that good marketing would get you leads that you can contact and get in front of to do your presentation, and then they may or may not buy from you? Well I do not think that this is a form of good marketing at all. I believe that good marketing would sell the prospect on your idea, service, or product before even getting in front of them to begin with. So why is it that most companies out there are still doing the same old marketing tactics of buying life insurance lead lists, and making cold calls, and not to mention bugging their family and friends? The reason why most companies do just that is because they believe in the old "they are either going to sink, or they are going to swim" motto.

Sounds pretty counter productive if you ask me. Remember that trickle down affect that I mentioned earlier? Well if the companies teach their agents that motto, then the new agents who are going to be underneath those existing agents are going to learn the same motto. Its a very destructive and uncaring motto, that is the reason why so many people have a strong negativity at the very mention of the words "multi-level marketing". I am sure that you know at least one person who would flip out if you had mentioned those words to them. Marketing properly is a very important step on how to sell life insurance. Without proper marketing you are just a drop of water in the ocean.

How To Sell Life Insurance – What To Look For

OK! So you are finally in front of your prospect and you really do not know much about the individual that is sitting in front of you. Well how in the heck are you supposed to sell them on your idea, product, or service? The very first thing you should do is get to know the individual who you are talking to. What exactly do i mean by that? I mean do not be interesting, instead be interested. Have you ever gone to a party or gathering and had someone who is a complete chatterbox there?

People tend to avoid that person like the plague. Have you ever dodged someone like that? Do not worry, the secret stays amongst us. Do not become that person during your meeting with your prospects. That is definitely one way to completely lose your prospects attention. Think about it this way, the more you talk about yourself the more of a reason they have to say no to you and your idea. Now this does not mean that you should be a deaf mute. I am trying to say that you should be doing 80% listening, and 20% talking.

A very interesting thing happens when you listen more than you talk. It actually has a reverse affect, and your prospect will feel that they know you a lot better. They will feel that you are truly there for their best intentions, and you better be. The second you start to pitch them, you are doing them a disservice and they will notice it. There are no need for sales pitches if you just follow this simple rule of listening more than talking.

Knowing what to look for will help you on selling life insurance. Look for the emotion that your client is feeling, look deep and hard. Find out what their ruin is. What exactly do I mean by that? If they have a fear of passing away because they have a child then that is their ruin, and the emotion is fear of death. If they have a concern of losing money in the stock market, because they just lost 20 thousand dollars then acknowledge that concern and work them into a product that protects them to never have that ruin happen again. They will come back to you for advice, which brings you more business. They will refer you to a friend, colleague, or family member. You must acknowledge their concerns, emotions, and fix their ruin.

How To Sell Life Insurance – NEVER Hype Sell

Hype selling … This concept is implemented everywhere you go. Car dealerships, retail stores, MLM recruitment, insurance sales, etc. What the heck is a hype sale? Its a false promise. If you are going to see a prospect and you start talking about all the benefits of your product, idea, or service you are hype selling. I will use MLM recruitment as an example to this, because hyping people up is the most abused tactic in MLM recruitment. The promises of millions of dollars, the saying "help your family and friends, and in tern you will help yourself", and not to mention "the product sells itself".

The problem with this picture is reality. You are not being real with the person you are talking to. Instead of listening to the issue that they are having and focusing on how to fix that issue, you are just hyping them up with all of these benefits. The bottom line is they have a problem, and no matter how much you hype up your product if it does not fix their problem, or address their wants and needs then they will not buy from you.

Think about the MLM opportunities that you were approached by and how hyped up they tried to get you. Did it work? Yea, probably. Now, did you make millions like they said you would? Most likely not. Now what did you do right after the hype was over? Did you not tell anyone about your experience or did you go to everyone you knew and their mothers and said how it was a scam, its all fake, and they just want your money.

The same process works in sales. If you hype something up, your prospect will not buy, and they will tell everyone about their experience. Just remember the old rule, if you do something positive for someone, they will tell 2-3 of their friends about you, but if you do something negative or harmful to someone they will tell at least 10 people about you.

How To Sell Life Insurance – Taking Action

You can read all of the books, articles, and e-books in the world, but unless you take action nothing is going to change. By applying what you have read in this article you will get better results in your life insurance sales. Remember, it is not just about selling life insurance to your prospect, it is about acknowledging their concerns and fixing their ruins. Proper marketing is where it all starts, do not follow the herd on the same old marketing tactics that will get you the same old results. The sales process should begin with your marketing, and should already pre-sell your prospect on your idea, service, or product.

Look for the emotions that your client is feeling, and be sure to address them by incorporating your product into your prospects life so that they do not have to have that burden anymore. Finally, "hype selling" is out, never do it. It will come back to bite you, if you have marketed properly, and you have really listened to your client then they should buy from you because they trust you. Hype selling as a recruitment tactic for your MLM business will only cause negativity. Instead, be real with the person you are talking to. Tell them how it is, and they will respect you much more.

How to Cure Stammering

Stammering is a big problem for a lot of people. If you have issues with stammering or stuttering, then you know exactly how it makes you feel. You do not have any confidence when you speak. You try not to talk to new people because you are afraid that your stutter is going to become present. This makes life really hard for you. All you want is for your stammer to be gone so you can be normal.

The reason why so many people have issues with stammering and stuttering is due to nerves. Although your stutter is almost always present, you feel it growing worse when you are nervous. When you have to meet someone new or speak in front of a group of people, you can feel your stutter getting worse. How can you cure stammering and calm your nerves so you can speak fluently?

There are many things that you can do that will help you to become a better speaker, without a stutter. For example, yoga is a great way to calm your nerves. Taking a yoga class will help you to become a calm person so you will be able to speak with ease and clarity. Another way to cure stammering is to practice speaking in front of a mirror. Doing this will help you to control your pace of speech so you will be able to calm your nerves better. You can also see which words cause you the most trouble and you can practice those better.

Getting Your Tonsils Removed? Important – Read This

If you have been suffering from complications with your tonsils or adenoids, you may be considering having your tonsils removed. How can you be sure surgical treatment will make a difference? Will a tonsil removal or adenoidectomy resolve issues with tonsiliths?

Prior to surgical treatment, your health care provider may consider less invasive treatment methods. This may include self or in office removal of the tonsil stones using a curette or cotton swab, surgical removal of the tonsiliths alone, laser cryptolysis, or pulsating irrigation (stone removal with water).

When tonsil stones are recurrent and begin to cause problems such as bad breath or enlargement of the tonsils or adenoids due to infection or irritation, surgery often becomes the most effective treatment. Although having your tonsils removed is considered radical treatment, the surgery is quite common and very safe.

If you need to have your tonsils removed, you will be put under general anesthesia for the procedure. Using a scalpel or electrocautery, the surgeon will perform the tonsillectomy, removing the tonsils from the connective tissue. Cauterization, surgical sutures, and packing may be used to stop bleeding and close the wound.

Upon waking from your surgery, you may require a short hospital stay. Initial discomfort from the surgery may last from 10 to 20 days. A soft diet and a focus on hydration is required during the recovery period.

Tonsillectomy can eliminate tonsil stones, enlargement, and infection. While having your tonsils removed is a major event, you may find that the improvement in your quality of life more than makes up for the discomfort.

Leber’s Optic Atrophy – Ayurvedic Herbal Treatment

Leber’s optic atrophy is a hereditary condition usually transmitted through the mother, in which gradual loss of central vision occurs due to degeneration of nerve cells in the retina. This condition is usually observed in adult young males. The vision loss can be either acute or sub-acute, and is usually observed in one eye, followed a few weeks to a few months later by the other eye. There is no specific treatment for this condition in the modern system of medicine. Conservative management of Leber’s optic atrophy includes regular supervision and monitoring, and avoiding the use of substances which are known to aggravate this condition. These include the use of tobacco, alcohol, and medications like ethambutol and some anti-hypertensive medicines.

Ayurvedic medicines have a special role to play the management and treatment of Leber’s optic atrophy, since there is no specific treatment for this condition in the modern system of medicine. Treatment involves the use of high doses of herbal medicines which have a specific action on the retina, and which also strengthen the optic nerve. According to the basic principles of Ayurveda, the eye is made up of the ‘Majja’ tissue in the body and hence, all medicines which act on this tissue are equally useful in the management of vision loss due to Leber’s optic atrophy. Majja is closely related to the ‘Rakta’ tissue in the body and hence, by this logic, all herbal medicines which act on the Rakta tissue are equally effective in the management of this condition.

Herbal medicines which have a specific action on the eyes include Saptamrut Loh, Punarnava Mandur, Panchtikta Ghrut Guggulu, Triphala Ghrut, and Maha Triphala Ghrut. Medicines which have a direct action on the retina and optic nerve include Bruhat Vat Chintamani, Vasant Kusumakar Ras, Pathyadi Qadha, Dashmoolarishta, Saraswatarishta, and Brahmin Vati. Herbal combination medicines as well as herbo-mineral medicines which are useful in the treatment of Leber’s optic atrophy includes Maha Manjishtadi Qadha, Saarivadi Vati, Abhrak Bhasma, Heerak Bhasma, Lohasav, and Mandur Bhasma.

Single herbal medicines useful in the treatment of Leber’s optic atrophy include Manjishtha (Rubia cordifolia), Saariva (Hemidesmus indicus), Haridra (Piper longum), Daruharidra (Berberis aristata), Triphala (Three fruits), Amalaki (Emblica officinalis), Shatavari (Asparagus racemosus), Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), Usheer (Vetiveria zizanoidis), Bala (Sida cordifolia), Patol (Tricosanthe dioica), Patha (Cissampelos pariera), Musta (Cyperus rotundus), Kutki (Picrorrhiza kurroa), Kutaj (Holharrhina antidysentrica), and Guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia),

Early treatment with Ayurvedic herbal medicines is important in order to bring about the maximum possible recovery and improvement in vision. Usually, medicines need to be given for prolonged periods ranging from 12 to 18 months. The aim of treatment is to control the condition, prevent further degeneration of nerve cells in the retina, stabilize, and improve the retina and optic nerve to the maximum extent possible, so that optimum vision can be salvaged.

Oral therapy with herbal medicines can also be supplemented with localised therapy which includes a special procedure known as Akshi Tarpan. This procedure involves the retention of herbal, medicated oils and ghee (clarified butter) on the eyes for specific periods. Medicated herbal eye drops can also be used along with oral treatment. Ayurvedic herbal treatment thus has a definite role to play in the management of Leber’s optic atrophy.

Basic Fundamentals of Glaucoma

In a person with normal vision and eyesight, the clear liquid in the eye flows in and out of the anterior chamber. This liquid nourishes the eye tissue. However, in people suffering from glaucoma the liquid is unable to flow and this creates a pressure to build up in the eye, which extremely leads to loss of vision or blindness.

The most common type of glaucoma is the open angle glaucoma. In this type, the fluid flow stops gradually because the canals get blocked. However, there is another type of glaucoma which is rather rare and is known as angle closure glaucoma. This is caused by complete blockage of the canal and this restrictions the immediate flow the liquid in the eye. People suffering from angle closure glaucoma experience a rapid rise in the eye pressure.

Another rare form of glaucoma is the normal tension glaucoma wherein the person sufferers from damage to the optic nerve and this in turn causes loss of vision although there is no blockage of the eye canals and no build up of pressure. There is not too much information on normal tension glaucoma but a general consensus shows that it is caused due to unusually delicate optic nerve or it can be inherited.

Most people do not realize that they are getting glaucoma. This is the reason why the condition goes undetected in hundreds of people and is only uncovered after they experience vision loss which is irreversible. That is why if you are suffering from eye pain, headache, nausea, vomiting, or seeing halos around lights, you should immediately consult an ophthalmologist. This way the condition can be used early and proper treatment regimen can be started.

The most common treatment for angle closure glaucoma is surgery where a part of the iris is removed to relieve the pressure and to facilitate the flow of the liquid in the eye. Other treatments include using medicines and eye drops. Although there is no cure for glaucoma, the effects can be reduced if the condition is done early.

What Causes Rapid Myopia in Children?

Nowadays, more and more parents wonder what causes rapid myopia in children. It's an understandable question. It's all too common to see kids wearing glasses or putting away contact lens solution in a desk drawer, and in many cases, their myopia increases rapidly.

Let's first face the facts. Myopia, more generally known as near-or shortsightedness, is a frequent eye ailment. This condition comes about when the eyeball is elongated. Nearsightedness often goes together with eyestrain, tiredness and headaches, when you have to concentrate on something that's more than a few feet away.

One severe form of myopia is degenerative myopia, also called pathologic myopia. When people talk about rapid myopia, they often mean pathologic myopia, though a rapid increase does not necessarily mean it's caused by this particular form of shortsightedness. Any, degenerative myopia becomes worse over time, and could even lead to blindness. It is usually an genetic condition that develops in adolescence (approximately age twelve).

So if you want to know what causes rapid myopia in children, you will likely think of heredity. Generics play a big role in myopia altogether. Chances are, if one of your parents is myopic, you will be, too. And if both parents are myopic, there's even more of a chance you'll be.

However, heredity is not the sole myopia cause. In today's society, children pass a lot of time indoors doing activities like watching the telly, playing video games or gazing at a computer screen. There's a recent study that indicates kids who spend more time outside are less myopic or do not suffer as much from rapid myopia than those who spend more time indoors.

This is all easy to explain. When you spend a lot of time concentrating on objects at close range, your eye begins to compensate by elongating and by doing so, it does not have to work as hard. By the way, it's not just electronics that may lead to nearsightedness. Any time you focus on something close up for a long time period, your eyes can be affected. Playing with things that are small, like constructing models, for example, can increase myopia.

Now you know what causes rapid myopia in children. But what can you do to stop it? Since heredity is often a cause and probably the major cause, some of it is out of your control. However, there are changes in lifestyle you are able to make that will help prevent nearsightedness from progressing too quickly, and that keep your eyes as fit as possible.

A few tips:

When your kid is concentrating on something close, like a computer screen, tell him or her to take regular breaks to give the eyes some rest. It is also really important that your child spends more time outdoors. This will improve the physical condition as a whole and is good for nearsighted eyes. You can try doing some eye exercises. Contrary to what some will tell you, they can not correct myopia, but eye exercises can help your eye muscles remain forceful.

Advantages Of Following A Vegetarian Diet During Pregnancy

Just because a woman becomes pregnant does not necessarily mean she has to alter all of her eating habits. If she lives off of take out Chinese food and Oreos, it should be changed, but if she's determined to live a healthy and well balanced vegetarian lifestyle, it can easily be incorporated into her new pregnancy diet.

The most important thing when choosing what to eat when pregnant is putting foods into the body that will be healthy and nutrient rich. Many times vegetarians are acutely aware of everything that they put into their bodies and oftentimes already have a healthy outlook on diet and eating. Eating a variety of vegetables can do nothing but good for both mommy and baby as long as the basic nutritional values ​​for the day are met. Some guidelines to follow are:

– Iron: Eat lots of leafy green vegetables, along with bran, nuts, and seeds to obtain the daily recommended values.

– Vitamin B: This is most often found in dairy products so chances are you getting enough without even realizing it; wheat germ, beans, whole grains, eggs, and cheese are all sources of Vitamin B.

– Calcium: The best way to get calcium, which is essential for a healthy pregnancy, is through dairy or soy products. Calcium supplements are also a good alternative.

– Folic Acid: This can be obtained by eating nuts, dairy products, and yeast.

– Protein: Beans, nuts, seeds, and soy all contain hardy doses of protein.

While everyone knows that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, the American Dietetic Association recommends that a pregnant mother increase her fruit and vegetable servings from five to seven a day. Fat content should also be limited as much as possible, and any food with poor nutritional value should always be avoided.

There are also some natural solutions available for the mother who is not keen on taking a supplement:

– Energy levels can be naturally increased by eating more legumes and whole grains.

– Milk production can be increased by certain teas, such as raspberry.

– Drinking ginger tea can relieve feelings of nausea and morning sickness.

– Increasing fiber by eating whole grains can reduce any problems of constipation.

It's important when pregnant to discuss any diet with a doctor. While a vegetarian diet may be a healthy option most of the time, only the doctor knows if there are certain things that should be avoided as each pregnancy is different.

Manganese and Prostate Health

Manganese is an essential trace mineral. It is essential to the health and functioning of the human body and human mind in several ways. The adult human body contains about 10 to 20 milligrams of manganese. Half of the body’s manganese is stored in the bones. The remainder is stored in the liver, pancreas, pituitary gland, and kidneys.Manganese is often referred to as the “brain mineral”. Manganese is required for all mental facilities and functions. Manganese supports the functions of nerves, and helps us to retain memory and maintain emotional stability. Without the presence of manganese, thiamin (Vit B1) cannot be processed by the body.

Reproductive Health

Manganese supports reproductive health. It helps to produce sex hormones and sperm. Manganese acts as a catalyst for breaking down fatty acids and cholesterol.Manganese has a positive effect on the male reproductive system.

  • It increases sexual energy. It also enhances the brain’s aptitude for receiving and sending messages.
  • Manganese impacts tissues and nerves, and thus assists in the functioning of the reproductive organs.
  • Sex hormones are produced in the pituitary gland, where a considerable amount of manganese exists. Because of this, manganese is believed to assist in sexual health.
  • Manganese increases the mobility of sperm.
  • Manganese is needed for the development and health of the reproductive organs.

A deficiency in manganese in men may lead to impotence, disinterest in sex, and a low sperm count. A deficiency may contribute to infertility.

Other Functions

  • Bone health depends on manganese. Manganese is found in a molecule called mucopolysaccharides. These molecules are utilized to build collagen and form the framework for deposition of calcium, magnesium, and other bone building minerals.
  • Enzymes called glycolsyltranserferases and xylosyltransferases are vital to bone building. Manganese is known to activate these enzymes.
  • Tendons, tissues, ligaments, and linings found in organs and outside them are built up by manganese.
  • Manganese reinforces muscular reflexes and in this way supports the nervous system and the functioning of the brain.
  • It enhances the natural functioning of the immune system. It also helps to supply oxygen from the lungs to the cells.
  • Manganese works in combination with certain enzymes to help in the digestion of food. These enzymes help to release the energy from food, and use it as fuel for the functioning of body and mind.
  • Manganese is a part of the enzyme, superoxide dismutase (MnSOD), a powerful antioxidant. Antioxidants can help to combat the damage of free radicals. Research suggests that MnSOD may reduce the risk of prostate cancer in certain men.

The Health and Nutrition Examination Survey estimate that as many as 30% of Americans do not get the recommended daily amounts of manganese in their diet. This may be due to the fact that whole grains are a major source of dietary manganese, and many Americans consume refined grains more often than whole grains. The milling of grains removes 73% of manganese.

Natural Food Sources

Tea, whole grains, raw nuts, and green leafy veggies, avocados, carrots, pineapples, eggs are rich sources of manganese, with other fruits and vegetables containing moderate amounts. Maple syrup has a high zinc and manganese content. It is believed that maple syrup may help to support reproductive health. Manganese has been included in Super Beta Prostate because of its role in supporting the reproductive health of men. Certain nutrients are important for protecting and sustaining men’s health, especially prostate health. Good nutrition and regular exercise with supplementation can provide nutritive health support.