Monday, March 30, 2009

Differentiating the Different Menstrual Irregularities

Women have been given the birth right of child-bearing. In relation to that privilege, they also have to endure monthly menstrual periods. If you think all women regularly have their menstrual cycle or that they have it easy during their menstruation, then you may want to think again.

Although some women go through their periods easily, a lot of women experience different kinds of menstrual irregularities. Some don't get their periods while some bleed irregularly. Now, if you're not pregnant and you're experiencing these things, then there's a possibility that a bigger condition needs to be sought out.

But let's talk about the different menstrual problems. Here's a list of them:

Amenorrhea. Literally translating to an absence of bleeding or blood, this condition is characterized by not having menstrual period by the age of 16. It could also refer to a condition wherein a woman stops having menstrual cycles for at least 3 months and is not pregnant.
Oligomenorrhea. This term refers to an infrequent menstrual period or by having menstruation come every now and then.

Dysmenorrhea. This refers to having painful periods. One of its many symptoms include menstrual cramps and migraines.

Endometriosis. This condition occurs when tissues that usually grow inside the womb grows outside instead. This can cause pain before your period and during the first five days of your menstruation. This condition may also cause a woman to bleed heavily during her period.

Among the four indicated here, only endometriosis is an actual condition. Amenorrhea, oligomenorrhea, and dysmenorrhea are all just symptoms or indicators of a more serious condition. Amenorrhea and oligomenorrhea can both be caused by polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), while dysmenorrhea can be a symptom of endometriosis.

With this in mind, women should be keen to pay attention to what happens during their menstrual periods. You wouldn't know when those simple menstrual irregularities could turn out to be something serious.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Major Reasons To Consider Quitting Smoking

There are a lot of smokers out there who are still unmotivated enough to actually stick to their plans to quit smoking. If you ask them, they simply have no reason to stop, so why do it?

As if friends of smokers haven't said this enough, the effects of smoking may not be as prominent at the moment, but soon enough, it'll take its toll on your health as well as theirs. So you might want to start thinking of getting rid of your smoking habit.

If you want more specific reasons to want to quit smoking, here are some of the conditions that may come about from constantly smoking:

Smoking causes heartburn. Smoking can bring about changes in the digestive tract that could cause heartburn. It slows down saliva production, stimulates stomach acid production, makes the stomach acids stronger, injures the esophagus, weakens the digestive valves, and slows down digestion altogether.

Smoking may cause eye problems like blindness and cataracts. Studies on cigarette smoking showed that it lowers the level of plasma antioxidant levels in the blood stream that serve as protection for the retinal cells. Smoking makes the retina's protective layer and blood vessels to erode, leading to poor blood flow, irritation, scarring, and eventually, blindness. On the other hand, the carbon monoxide from cigarette smoke causes an oxygen deficient that degrades night vision. Smoking also produces cyanide which is known to be toxic to the retina.

Smoking may cause erectile dysfunction. It has been observed that smoking can cause plaque to build-up in the arteries. This condition, called atherosclerosis, is one of the known causes of erectile dysfunction. The plaque build-up may occur somewhere in the blood vessels that bring blood to the penile shaft, causing improper blood flow, and thereby an inability to have an erection.

These are only a few of the many serious conditions that could arise from long-term chain smoking. If these don't give you enough reason to stop smoking, you might want to talk to your doctor to get a full rundown of diseases that smoking can cause.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Finding Ways To Save On Prescription Drugs

The high cost of spending for prescription drugs, which seem to keep on getting higher every time you go to a pharmacy, is proving to be a problem as much as the condition that needs medical attention. All the more reason for some lifestyle changes to help reduce your need for medicines.

There are popular, safe, and effective ways to save on prescription drugs. By increasing your activity level, losing weight, and improving your diet, some chronic illness like high blood pressure, diabetes, and low back pain may have fewer medicine requirements.

Another way is by going generic. Generic drugs are cheap medicines or less expensive duplicates of brand-name medicines. Consult your doctor or pharmacist if you can take a generic equivalent for the brand-name medicine that you are taking. Generic medicines are made according to the same strict U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) standards as brand-name drugs and therefore have the same quality, strength, purity, and stability as their more expensive counterparts. However, not all brand-name medicines have generic equivalents.

When scouting for cheap medicines, it is important that your pharmacist knows your medical history, including all the prescription and over-the-counter drugs, dietary supplements, and herbal alternatives you are taking, even if they are not dispensed at that particular pharmacy to avoid potential drug interactions, side effects, or other problems.
Online drugstores offer savings schemes by means of price discount promos aside from saving you trips to the pharmacy.

Another strategy that can help you save money without losing drug effectiveness or safety is by pill splitting. Some tablets are available at double the dose with the same or almost the same cost as lower doses. By splitting the larger dose, you can essentially get two doses for the price of one. However, some medicines should not be split, including timed-release pills and capsules.

Ask your doctor or pharmacist if any of your prescription medicines are sold at higher dosages and if it's possible to split them. Talk to your pharmacist about how to split pills with an inexpensive, easy-to-use pill splitter.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Coping With Stress In Different Situations

All of us encounter a lot of pressures everyday. Wherever we go, be it in the workplace, in school, or just staying at home, there will always be some situations that will put some stress sometime depress to our daily existence concerning our job, studies, health, and relationships.

Here are sanity-saving tips to help you cope with stress no matter what situation you are in:
Stress in the Work Place. Most experts suggest a periodic change in routine as a stress reliever.

If you usually check your emails and voice mails once you arrived in the office, try to spend the first hour on creative and strategic thinking instead. During this time, you are at your sharpest and best form. That’s why this is the best time to break down your day into specific tasks, rather than trying to juggle everything. Recent studies reveal that a 50-minute task takes four times as long if you juggle too many tasks at once. Choose a day in a week to leave 30 minutes earlier than usual. Allowing yourself that early exit will keep you on deadline and make you
hyper-focused to complete jobs more efficiently.

To de-stress doesn’t mean to eliminate all of your stresses. It simply means getting control of them, one at a time. Start by making minor adjustments in your life, not the big ones, so as not to add more stress. If you're working on being prompt, get to every appointment, not just to work, five minutes earlier than normal. Successful change is permanent, not dramatic.

The Anti-Stress Diet. Being in stress mode makes you produce chemical reactions inside your body.
It can make the hormone cortisol to surge and the sugar levels to spike or plummet, which can leave you feeling under pressure and sluggish. Eating the right food can help counteract such reactions.

Avoid sugary cereals or breakfast bars in the morning. Instead, eat whole-grain cereals and a piece of fruit. Supplement your food intake with vitamins including a daily dose of 500 milligrams of calcium and 250 milligrams of magnesium. Magnesium is flushed out when you’re under stress to help regulate the cortisol levels. Snack on crunchy veggie sticks or carrots to help release a clenched jaw and the tension headache that usually accompany stress. Before bedtime, settle with a light carbohydrate-rich snack, like toast and jam which can help quicken the release of the feel-good hormone serotonin, which will help you sleep better.

Stress on Emotions. Do not over-generalize situations, such as: first dates never work out; she always gets promotions before me; he always arrives at least 5 minutes late. The habit of using ‘always’ and ‘never’ steers you away from feeling that you have any control over changing the things that stress or worry you.

Do not allow stress to eat away at you like a squirrel with a nut. Such constantly worried mentality impedes decision-making. Many experts suggest that you write down what you're worried about, and then set aside some quiet time for at least 30 minutes to figure out solutions. This is beneficial in keeping worries from disrupting your work so you will be able to think over whatever problem you might have or whatever situation you are in.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Dealing With The Voices

Schizophrenia, if nothing else, has one benefit. For what its worth, the patient may never become bored again. With voices in their heads and the possibility of actually seeing things, there will certainly to occupy the mind and the time of the average schizophrenic. However, while that may seem interesting, that is not always something that can be taken as a benefit by the person involved. Oftentimes, living with the voices is a hard thing to do, and many would prefer to just be rid of them entirely.

Most of the time, auditory hallucinations are associated with severe cases of mental illness, such as schizophrenia, and often find themselves connected to bizarre delusions. Disordered thought and emotional dissociation are also commonly observed symptoms occurring with auditory problems. An approximate 75% of all people who report experiencing auditory hallucinations are eventually diagnosed with schizophrenia, and the vast majority of these people find that being part of the psychiatric care system is highly negative. This is on top of the highly negative nature of what they hear from their voices. Berating, insults, commands, and comments of an unpleasant nature are often reported, sometimes bringing patients to contemplate suicide.

However, some groups question whether or not the voices are actually a sign of mental illness. Certainly, they can be very distressing and there is no end to the problems they can cause, but they might not be as indicative of psychosis and mental damage as previously believed. Some groups assume that psychiatry is incorrect in many assumptions regarding the voices. One theory is that more people hear these voices, or hear a wide variety of them, than the statistics would have people assume. Another holds that hearing these voices is not a pathological problem in need of treatment, but an experience that is ultimately linked to the person's life and experiences, and may lead to unresolved personal issues.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Saving Lives With Nicotine Replacement Therapy

Experts say that smoke alone from cigarette already contains over 4,000 chemicals in it, 40 of which are known carcinogens, and at least 200 of those chemical are considered poisonous. That is why if second hand smoke can kill, how much more can smokers be in greater risk of its hazardous effects because they breathe in both mainstream and sidestream smoke?

While cigarette smoke is worse than nicotine in itself, it does not discount the fact that nicotine is a harmful drug. Long term use of nicotine may affect how the body's function, increases pain by putting stress on the heart and increases blood pressure. As nicotine harms the linings of our arteries, it leads to the build-up of plaque, thus, increasing the risk of heart attack and stroke. Moreover, nicotine suppresses insulin output creating a hypoglycemic condition. It could also lead to cancer.

For people who are trying to quit smoking cigarettes, there's a substitute for oral activity that provides a source of nicotine to reduce withdrawal symptoms usually experienced when smoking is stopped. This substitute is nicotine chewing gum.

Nicotine chewing gum has already helped many thousands of people to stop smoking successfully. It isn't easy to quit from smoking and nicotine chewing gum is just one of the many nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) products in the market today. Having a wide variety of quit aid options ultimately means more lives saved.

However, NRTs are not intended for long-term use because some quitters are getting addicted to them, like the nicotine chewing gums and lozenges, that they find it hard to quit from the new habit. Aside from being expensive, the gum can also potentially stick to and damage dental work. Health professionals do not advise pregnant and nursing women to use nicotine products due to the side effects, such as headaches, hiccups, sore jaw and hives.

Treat NRTs the way you would a prescription drug. Consult your doctor and follow the product directions. Proper use helps ease the discomforts of recovery from nicotine addiction. Be sure to wean yourself off in the time period suggested. Being dependent on it may lead to an increased risk of a smoking relapse. As in the case with habit-forming drugs, tolerance will increase over time and so will the intake.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Meal Portioning and Weight Loss

Healthy Weightloss? Setting up goals of losing weight can be difficult as it requires a lot of effort and an iron will to stick with your diet plan and exercise routine. One of the most difficult part of dieting is meal portion control. Why so? Think about it. If you've come from an eating habit where you eat anything you want and as much as you want, wouldn't it be hard to start restricting your food portions all of a sudden?

But you must keep in mind that one of the successful tricks that weight loss experts suggest is healthy meal portioning. By learning how to control the amount or or the number of times you eat, you can slowly tip the scales to a healthier weight.

To make meal portion control easier, here are some simple tips:

1.Learn about serving standards. Knowing how to differentiate a small sized serving from a medium or large-sized one can help you determine whether you've put enough or too much on your plate.
2.Go kiddie size. Notice how kiddie meals are automatically portioned? Then it's perfect for your goal of eating in controlled portions. Not only do you save yourself the hassle of having to deliberate how much to eat, you also get to save money from the cheaper kiddie meal.
3.Close the door on second helpings. Instead of letting leftovers sit on the table to invite you to second helpings, put them aside in the ref or somewhere you won't be tempted to touch them.
4.Pack leftovers into many single-serve containers. By doing so, the next time you'd like to heat them up, you can only heat enough food and avoid the temptation of overeating the entire leftover.
5.Take your meals half and half. You can try cutting your meal in half. Take one half for lunch, save the next half for dinner. You can also split the meal with a friend or ask for one half of the meal be wrapped up for take out before digging in.
6.Spread your meals out. Don't go for the regular 3-meals-a-day routine. Keep your blood sugar at a constant level by eating mini meals throughout the day, best to keep it at least 4 hours apart.
7.Veggies over meaties. If you're used to eating meats in bigger portions than vegetables, it's time to hit reverse and eat more greens than meats. This way, you get more dietary fiber into your diet.

The most important thing that dieters should keep in mind, as a lot of weight loss experts would say, is to not deprive yourself of the things you want. It's okay to indulge in sweets or fatty foods once in a while, so long as you keep it at a controlled amount. Remember that you increase your chances of breaking your diet if you completely cut out forbidden foods.
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