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Monday, November 14, 2016

7 Facts to Know About Water and Weight Loss














Losing weight can be a difficult process. And whether you get supplements from http://www.phentermine.net or go to another resource to get the help that you need, you will find that there are a lot of things that you need to look at to make sure that you can drop your pounds easily. In this article, we’re going to look at issues related to water so that you can see how it can help you to lose weight.

1. Drinking water helps with calorie burning. There is a lot to be said about water, but how many calories that it burns is definitely a plus when all is said and done. It helps to burn calories because it takes more calories to drink it than it even has.

2. Lots of foods have water. Worried about your water intake? If you have plenty of fruits and veggies in your diet, you don’t necessarily have to worry too much. There are plenty of foods that have water in them and as long as you eat and drink as much as you should be for your weight and activity level, you’ll be good to go.

3. You need to drink more than 8 glasses of water a day. Eight glasses is a minimum, and it’s not meant to be a number that everyone adheres by. Make sure that you take other things into account, including your activity level and your overall health before you make a decision as to how much you should be drinking.

4. Drinking more water can help you to reduce your appetite. Sometimes, that feeling that we mistake for hunger is actually thirst. So, by filling your stomach up with some water at first, you can make sure that you get everything that you need and reduce the amount of hunger that you feel before you start eating.

5. Some people need more water to stay hydrated than others do. If you’re a larger person or you’re trying to deal with other issues at hand, you want to make sure that you pay attention to your body. As long as you get hydrated enough to take care of things, you can make sure that you are in good shape when it comes time to get through your day.

6. Water helps to reduce weight gain. Water is what most of our bodies are made of, and if you’re concerned about dropping weight at all, you want to make sure that you look into what is out there. Water drinking helps our bodies to reduce how much weight that we are trying to deal with in the first place.

7. If you don’t like water, consider mixing it up somewhat. Add something like a calorie-free flavor or something else to make sure that you get the most out of what you’re doing. Then you can be certain that you’ve got everything that you need and will be able to get down more water than you could have otherwise.

This is a guest blog entry.

Monday, November 07, 2016

Quit Smoking with E-Cigarettes

Although smokers don’t like to think about it, there is no denying the fact that smoking kills.  From heart disease to cancer, inhaling smoke from traditional tobacco products is a deadly habit, not only for smokers themselves but also for the people around them who are exposed to second-hand smoke.

Quitting is hard, mostly but not only due to nicotine addition, but switching to E-cigarettes may help even heavy smokers to reduce or quit smoking traditional tobacco products.

Nicotine – E-cigarettes allow smokers to avoid the negative withdrawal effects of going “cold turkey” with liquid formulas that contain nicotine. E-cigarettes allow users to gradually wean themselves from nicotine over time.  However, users immediately benefit from not inhaling tobacco smoke.  There are different concentrations of nicotine available to refill or replace capsules, so smokers can reduce their nicotine consumption and eventually switch to non-nicotine formulations.

One of the major advantages of opting for e-cigarettes over other quit-smoking aids like nicotine patches or gum is that many smokers smoke for reasons that are not directly related to nicotine addiction.  Even when they are receiving nicotine from these aids, they still feel the desire to smoke because of its social aspects, because it has become a ritual associated with other pleasurable things, or because they simply enjoy the sensation of smoking.  Patches and gums are not able to address these issues, but e-cigarettes can, in the following ways:

Social smoking – there is an undeniably social aspect to smoking that is difficult to give up.  Indeed, many people who are trying to quit feel that it is more difficult to do so because their colleagues or friends smoke.  As smoking is not allowed in most places, the act of smoking involves leaving a restaurant or office to go outside – people trying to quit feel excluded from social activities if they do not go, but feel pressure to smoke if they do go.  E-cigarettes can be very helpful in this situation, because it gives the smoker who is trying to quit a way to maintain the social aspects without risking that they will have a cigarette.

Habit - many smokers can do with or without the nicotine, but find it much harder to give up the ritual of having a cigarette with their morning coffee, or after a meal.  Some smokers feel that a regular smoke break helps them to be more productive.  E-cigarettes allow smokers to tackle the process of quitting in stages – with or without nicotine, they allow people to break their dependence on tobacco without also requiring them to take on the equally difficult challenge of changing habits at the same time. 

Feel and function – for many smokers, the act of smoking itself is one of the pleasures they enjoy about smoking.  E-cigarettes very often resemble real cigarettes in terms of how they feel in the hand, and some even have an LED tip that glows as you inhale the vapor.  The vapor that is inhaled contains no tobacco or carbon monoxide, but it can be felt as it is inhaled, and gives a satisfying smoke-like appearance and feel as it is exhaled.

In these different ways, e-cigarettes may help smokers to wean themselves from a dependence on traditional tobacco products and immediately reap the benefits of a smoke-free life.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Remember This Before Getting Laser Hair Removal Done

People from all around the world now use laser hair removal in order to get rid of the hair they do not want. Most people simply do not want to be faced with constant tweezing, shaving and waxing. Everything becomes tiring in that case so alternatives are always considered. When using laser hair removal, there are various advantages that appear. However, this does not mean that you can simply go to the first clinic, even the awarded best in Kelowna, without knowing as much as possible about the procedure.

You Have To Be A Candidate

Technology has advanced a lot and the number of people that can use laser hair removal is definitely a lot higher than it used to be a few years ago. For instance, just those that had dark hair and lighter skin were able to use the procedure with huge success. Now, this is no longer the case since we are faced with advanced lasers that are capable of working for most people in the world. However, there are cases in which you will not be a great candidate. It is vital that you talk to the doctor before you get your hopes up.

Work Only With Qualified Technicians

Laser treatment has to be seen as being a serious procedure. This is the case even if you perform the procedure for a cosmetic reason. You will need to go through many appointments for all the hair to be removed and you have to be 100% sure that the technician that will work on you will have the necessary skill to get the job done right. Proper training and certification are always needed.

Waxing Before The Initial Visit

This is something that you should not do. In fact, any follicle removal method should be avoided. This does include epilating, tweezing and waxing. You can shave but only in some specific situations. There are clinics that will tell you that shaving should be avoided. In most cases it is really important that you talk with the technician so you see exactly what the best option is for you.

Avoid Tanning

Skin colour is going to have a huge impact on the efficiency of the laser hair removal session. Because of this, you have to always avoid tanning, especially before your very first appointment. When there are colour contrasts, lasers work better and tanning will reduce that contrast. In addition, skin sensitivity will be reduced as you avoid sun rays.

Never Expect Instant Results

Every interested party should know that laser hair removal will be a pretty long process. You will not be able to get instant removal after your very first treatment session. Gradual hair removal will happen after every single appointment. The number of appointments that will be necessary varies from 6 to 10 in most cases. Due to safety reasons, your appointments will have to be spread over around 8 weeks. You cannot be exposed to too much laser since that would damage your skin. Always respect doctor indications.

This is a guest blog post.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Considerations For Opening Your Own Practice

Owning one's own practice is the goal of most medical practitioners. They want that sign with their name out front, and the ability to oversee the every detail of their operation, holding it to their own high standards.

It sounds appealing, and it can certainly be very rewarding. But things can go wrong if you don't manage the practice correctly.

If you are getting started on the process of running your own practice, keep these major areas in mind to avoid problems down the road.

Data Handling

The way you handle patient information and the reports, notes, and results you gather about them is critical to your success--and to your ability to stay on the good side of the law.

HIPAA is very specific about how you can and cannot use this information, who can have it, and how it must be handled. The great thing about starting out new is that you will be able to implement HIPAA-compliant systems from square one, as opposed to having to back up and change existing records.

Start with your systems. Go with a system that will meet meaningful use guidelines and use a quality computer system that can handle it and expand later. Get a large server, use top-quality virus protection, get an impermeable firewall, and establish strong passwords.

That last step involves your employees. Hire people who understand medical records, preferably experienced people with a sharp eye for computer technology. They will be able to set things up on a course for effective records management that will take care of your patients and you.

Marketing


You're a physician, not an advertising genius. At least not officially. But you will have to work like one if your practice is going to be successful.

The first thing you need to understand is that a medical practice doesn't advertise or market itself in quite the same way as any other business. Most consumers will not make a "cold call" to a doctor unless they're just new in town and don't know anybody else.

The most common thing to draw a patient to a doctor is a referral. If you're a general practitioner, your referrals will come by way of your other patients. If you're a specialist, that will still be true but you may also receive referrals from other physicians.

For you as a marketing doctor, this means you have to do everything you can to make the experience positive for your patients. Touch up your bedside manner. Make sure the office is clean, comfortable, and spacious. Make sure billing is accurate, fair, and timely. And as far as referrals from your colleagues, stay engaged with the medical community. Get to know other practitioners outside the hospital, since many of them might not interact with you there for many years.

In short, then, work the traditional advertising channels, but simultaneously work to engage with your colleagues and existing patients.

Local Regulations

Let's back up a little bit to the actual establishment of your place of practice. If you're just starting out and want to get patients into the exam rooms as soon as possible, you'll probably want to seek an existing medical building so that you can get up and running quickly.

If that's not the case for you, you may be building or renovating for your practice. Make sure you spend some time with local code enforcement officials to make sure your plan is acceptable. There will be issues about everything from sign types to placement of walls that will have to be addressed, and particularly if you're doing renovation yourself, you may get things built that inspectors will later force you to change.

Your time in medical school, residency, and internship has made you ready for the daily work of caring for patients. But when you introduce all the considerations of running the actual practice, you may feel hopelessly unqualified. Don't let the process overwhelm you. Take a practitioner's approach.

Diagnose each problem, plan a course of action, and track its progress. And just as with patient care, the most important thing is to keep sight of the things that you are less experienced with and making sure that you get expert help when needed.

This is a blog post by Nancy Evans.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Is it Possible to Ever Really Get Over an Addiction?

The world is filled with stories of how addicts have been able to, miraculously as it sometimes seems, beat their drug addiction.  However, there are millions of people who wonder if it is possible to completely be free of the urge. The late 60s and early 70s provide a plethora of stories of both civilians and military personnel who were caught up in troubling times—half was across the world and at home.

People tuned to amphetamines, operations, heroin, marijuana, alcohol, and other drugs. Some military personnel were even encouraged to take drugs that would sharpen their senses and keep the awake. College students abused cocaine and relied on so-called mind-expanding drugs. Many military and civilian personnel went on to detox themselves and lead productive lives. Others, were not so fortunate. Then, there are those who found treatment for drug addiction.

The Stark Reality of Drug Addiction


Forward to the present day. Not much has changed in the world, except that there are a whole new set of illicit drugs with names to match. An addiction will arrest an individual’s will, and even after overdosing or spending time in jail, the urge to continue drug abuse still lingers within many.

Addiction knows no boundaries. It has no respect for race, income, age, or gender. Parents, friends, and family members are often left devastated and not knowing what happened to their “gifted” friend or child. There is always that hope that the addict will somehow find a solution to stop. Sometimes the addict will find clinical help; only to relapse after several months of being on the outside again.

Addiction and Two Schools of Thought

Addiction is often debated within two schools of thought. First, a person’s brain is chemically hijacked and the addict has absolutely no control over their progressive, chronic disease. The second school of thought centers around the thought that addicts always had a disposition of not caring for themselves, or others. Many people associate addiction with criminality. When an addict steals or commits other addiction-related crimes, it simply plays into the stereotype that millions of people have about addicts.

When addiction takes control of someone you know or love, the belief is that a “good” person’s mind is under the influence of a wicked substance. When addiction happens to someone you do not know, it is often attributed to a person’s perceived criminal disposition toward life.

Time for a New Perspective

Today’s world has ushered in a whole new understanding of neuroscience. Drug rehab centers in Florida both understand and embrace this new paradigm. Thus the treatments for addiction have changed. Clinicians now understand and know that addiction, while a disturbing brain problem, is not the same as a degenerative disease like Alzheimer’s disease. However, it is a disorder brought about by a change in brain chemistry.

The brain process information in a particular way because of how its wired. It does this naturally. So it stands to reason that if its wiring is altered, it will process information and help direct behaviors in a different manner. Today’s research of both animals and humans has brought the medical community closer to recognizing what areas of the brain are actually involved in addiction—and more importantly how they are involved. Drugs, simply put, have a tendency to alter that part of the brain where we formulate values and goals, such that focus is on obtaining the addictive substance.

Treatment Centers for Drug Addiction


Today’s treatment for drug addiction takes on a dual approach. A recovering addict will receive medications that can help ease their withdrawal symptoms. Through very careful screening and assessments, the patient is also screened for co-occurring mental disorders that may have attributed to their addiction. A number of drug rehab centers in Florida take this approach. Patients receive the medications and therapeutic solutions that can help them detox and successfully navigate rehab. Cognitive therapies are essential to the process as well. They instruct patients how to examine their own thinking processes, which invariably leads to their actions.

Effective drug rehab centers in Florida can also provide an earnest aftercare program that can help individuals transition back into a normal lifestyle. Treatment for drug addiction is comprehensive, and it works. So, it is possible to stay sober for life. However, sobriety can be a lifelong struggle for many. Treatment centers for drug addiction play an integral role in helping addicted individuals piece their lives back together.

This is a guest blog entry.

How to Find Help for Addiction

Within society, there is a growing epidemic that is threatening the well-being of everyone.

This disease is addiction.

With repeated and continued use, addiction creates a continued cycle of abuse that only becomes more severe with time.  Thus, the answer lies in services provided by drug and alcohol rehab centers.


Addiction often requires the outside intervention of alcohol and drug rehab centers.  In order for individuals to be more willing to enroll in local Arizona treatment centers, a successful intervention may be necessary to stress the need for alcohol and drug rehab centers.

Denial can often be a prevalent issue, which may impair individuals from seeking help at drug and alcohol rehab centers.  Most interventions that successfully people to alcohol and drug rehab centers consist of a delicate balance of assertiveness and a genuine display of concern and love.

Diagnosis

Most Arizona treatment centers provide comprehensive diagnosis and assessment regarding substance use.  Before one can really begin the therapeutic at drug and alcohol treatment centers, the exact nature of circumstances surrounding the addiction itself must be addressed before drug and alcohol rehab centers can further assist.  Once clients have finished screening and assessment at their respective alcohol and drug rehab centers, the therapeutic process may then begin.  When undergoing counseling in Arizona treatment centers, licensed clinicians are dedicated to helping clients identify the core root of any issues that may have contributed to the onset of addiction.

Treatment Methods

●    Most drug and alcohol rehab centers employ holistic philosophies to accommodate for any specialized needs the client may have.

●    Within counseling sessions at alcohol and drug rehab centers, clients will also be able to learn specific knowledge and skills that would be able to support a life of recovery. 

●    Most drug and alcohol rehab centers employ the latest treatment modalities to provide the most effective care.

●    Alcohol and drug rehab centers also utilize current administrative techniques, allowing for better communication with all of your caretakers.

Even if one does not feel any sense of hope when entering drug and alcohol rehab centers, that does not mean that hope is absent.  Numerous clients have gone through alcohol and drug rehab centers with similar sentiments, and have completed treatment.

The Meaning of Hope

Drug and alcohol rehab centers strive to help give clients their lives back, lives free from addiction.  If one feels nervous about entering alcohol and drug rehab centers, clinicians licensed within these drug and alcohol rehab centers are dedicated to providing a safe and nurturing environment.

Arizona treatment centers provide a wide variety of care, able to accommodate a large variety of needs.  Drug and alcohol rehab centers understand that each client is unique and that the only answer lies in unique treatment.  Clients in alcohol and drug rehab centers can help themselves and other most if they are honest.

With greater trust, drug and alcohol rehab centers are more able to help with deeper needs.

Even though Arizona treatment centers address substance use, they can do more than simply be drug and alcohol rehab centers.  Other issues like mental illness or family issues are often taken into account by alcohol and drug rehab centers.  Arizona treatment centers also often provide systems of social support in the form of groups, even after sessions are finished in alcohol and drug rehab centers.

With all the drug and alcohol rehab centers available, it is easier than ever to receive care.

There is no need to live in addiction any longer when drug and alcohol rehab centers are ready to help.

This is a guest blog entry.

Outpatient Vs. Inpatient Alcohol Rehab

On your quest to seeking help for your addiction, you may have come across many alcohol addiction treatment centers.  How do you know which program is right for you?  Start by identifying the two major types of alcohol addiction treatment: inpatient alcohol rehab and outpatient alcohol rehab.  It's important to find the right type of treatment for your unique situation so that you have the best chance at success.


When comparing inpatient alcohol rehab treatment and outpatient alcohol rehab treatment there are many factors to consider.  Each model of treatment has its benefits and disadvantages.  Whether choosing inpatient or outpatient treatment, you will want to find a treatment center that recognizes your individual needs and that is equipped to handle alcohol addiction with medical experts on staff.  Some benefits of entering treatment of any kind are medical stabilization, which means that you will have help getting through withdrawal, prevention of relapse, peer support, and much needed therapeutic intervention.

Outpatient Alcohol Rehab

If you choose an outpatient model to treat your addiction you will receive rehabilitation services while you remain living in the comfort of your own home.  You may be required to check in with your addiction specialists at your chosen treatment center throughout the week.  You may receive such services as an evaluation, medically supervised detoxification and withdrawal, medication, counseling and peer support.

You may choose from various types of outpatient centers who may use different approaches and levels of treatment.  Among outpatient treatment, you can find varying levels of intensity ranging from low-intensity substance abuse education to intensive day treatment.  Outpatient alcohol rehab is more suitable for individuals who have work or family obligations and extensive social supports to help keep them on track with recovery.  Although addiction treatment in both inpatient and outpatient settings will be very similar, the program at an inpatient facility will be much more intensive.

Inpatient Alcohol Rehab

The defining characteristic of inpatient alcohol treatment is that the individual is required to check into the treatment center and remain in the center for the entire length of the treatment program.  This allows for a more intensive and highly structured approach to treatment.  Some of the benefits of inpatient treatment includes 24-hour around-the-clock care, privacy, less distraction from everyday life and obligations make it easier to fully focus on recovery, specialized treatment for co-occurring disorders, more specialized services, and most importantly no access to alcohol lowers the risk of relapse during the length of stay.

If you are able to take a leave of absence from your job, school, or home duties you may wish to enter treatment on an inpatient basis.  Just as with outpatient treatment, you will begin the process with a medically supervised detox and withdrawal before beginning treatment or rehabilitation.  You will then go through rehabilitation before learning how to maintain your new sober living lifestyle.  During your stay, you will have 24-hour care and the level of privacy that comes with living in the inpatient community.  Without the distractions of everyday life and following the structured days, you will be able to focus solely on recovery and getting the support you need.  You may have access to specialized services such as nutritional planning, exercise programs, and various therapeutic methods.  If you have a co-occurring disorder, you may receive specialized care to address your addiction and mental health needs simultaneously.

Therapy

You may find a range of therapeutic methods available during your inpatient treatment.  Some of these may follow the 12-step program to alcohol recovery, behavioral therapy, group counseling, peer support, and other types of therapies and counseling.  You may also decide with your medical team to start medications to help with withdrawal or to address your mental health needs that will encourage you to remain sober and get on a path to successful healthy living.  Once you go through the rehab program you will learn how to maintain your new lifestyle by using resources such as Alcoholics Anonymous or other support groups to help you remain sober.

Whether you choose inpatient or outpatient alcohol treatment, the process can only begin when you accept that there is a problem and reach out for help.

References:

Choosing Inpatient Rehab vs.  Outpatient Rehabilitation.  (n.d.).  Retrieved September 07, 2016, from http://www.rehabs.com/about/inpatient-vs-outpatient-rehabs/

Types of Treatment Programs.  (n.d) Retrieved 08 September, 2016, from
https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/principles-drug-addiction-treatment-research-based-guide-third-edition/drug-addiction-treatment-in-united-states/types-treatment-programs

This is a guest blog entry.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Why Exercise Alone Isn’t Enough For A Total Body Makeover

When you first learn to get back into shape, your personal trainer or class will teach you what exercises to do. When you watch a fitness DVD or read a book about fitness, this appears to be the main focus, too. You will find yourself engaged in learning and practicing how to perform each exercise properly.

While the value of diet will be mentioned by your trainers and fitness literature, it will almost seem peripheral. After all, the idea of cooking a bland meal is far less exciting than the endorphin rush that comes from a vigorous workout session in the gym.

What’s more, if you find classes through a facility like Fitness 19, you’ll have a tremendous amount of fun working with other people just like you who are also eager to get back into shape. Perhaps you’ll get quite good at Power Core Yoga or feel totally exhilarated after a session of a Total Tone workout. Thinking about proper diet might be limited to grabbing a protein bar on your way out of the gym or drinking a little more water than you usually do.

Why You May Not Be Getting Noticeable Results


Still, somewhere in your fitness journey, you’ll notice that others in your fitness classes, who are doing the same amount of work as you are getting much better results than you. They may be building up more muscle or burning off more fat.

Recalling how they first looked when you met them, their transformation has been remarkable. Yours, by comparison, are rather modest.

If you ask them about the secret of their success, ask them about what they are doing right, you will discover that they are putting an emphasis on eating healthy.

The Missing Ingredient to Success

While exercise will certainly transform your body, compared to before you got on a fitness rampage, you will notice dramatic improvements too once you add the missing ingredient, a healthy eating plan.

If you don’t eat healthy, continuing to enjoy your favorite foods, from pizzas to French fries and coffee lattes—after all, the tastiest foods have plenty of salt, sugar, and fat—then the benefits of your workout will be countered by the nutrient poor foods that you enjoy.

The way to make the most of your workout is eating healthy! Now everything is aligned. Exercise is good. But exercise and diet is better. And if you can improve how much sleep you get every night, the supplements you take, and how much water you drink every day, you will be optimizing your health.

Before we discuss how to get on track with eating the right meals on a regular schedule, let’s briefly cover the idea of supplementation.

Supplementation

If you’re eating a nutritious meal four to six times a day, why do you need supplementation?

Three reasons:

• 1. Your carefully-chosen foods may not contain all the vitamins and minerals that you need. Our soils are not as rich as they used to be and the fruits and vegetables you eat may not be able to give you the recommended daily allowance of certain vitamins or minerals.
• 2. When you cook food, some vitamins and minerals are destroyed.
• 3. Since you are putting an additional strain on your body, you may be in need of more micro- and macro-nutrients than you are able to get from a regular diet.

If you don’t like the idea of taking tablets, you can get your supplements in a powder form and blend it into a delicious smoothie.

3 Tips for Meal Prepping

By preparing your meals ahead of time, you will be able to stick to your diet plan.

Here are some tips for meal-prepping:

1. Spend a few hours on your day off to prepare meals for the week. Plan a week’s worth of breakfasts, lunches, dinners and healthy snacks.
2. Store the meals in Tupperware containers. Label everything to make it easy to find.
3. Each Tupperware container should have the perfect blend of protein, carbs, and vegetables -- for instance, chicken, rice, and broccoli.

5 Major Benefits of Meal Prepping

• 1. You are less likely to be tempted to cheat with an unhealthy snack or meal during the week when you are hungry but have no time to cook.
• 2. You are going to save time and money by not running to the store several times a week or going to a restaurant.
• 3. You’ll be able to know exactly how many calories you are eating, and how many grams of proteins and carbohydrates and healthy fats you are getting from each meal.
• 4. You’ll be able to adjust your meal plan if your current plan is not working for you.
• 5. You’ll be regularly fueling your body with what it needs throughout the day.
• 6. You will have more energy during the day, sleep better at night, and recover faster from your workouts.

A Word about Ab Sculpting


Remember that perfect abs are made in the kitchen and the gym! Whether you are trying to lose weight or to gain muscle, sculpted six-pack abs will be the central focus of attention when you are wearing a swim suit. While aerobics and specific ab exercises like crunches or leg raises will build your ab muscles, diet still plays a huge role in burning off fat around your abs, hips, and buttocks.

This is a blog post by Nancy Evans.

Monday, October 24, 2016

What is "Late Recurrence" and How to Prevent It

As a breast cancer survivor, it is no secret that you’ve fought hard. But unfortunately, there’s no guarantee that the battle is over. Recurrence is a scary thought, and even after 5 years, the cancer could come back. For most estrogen receptor-positive (ER+) patients, prognosis is very good.

However, for women who do experience a recurrence, about half of the time, this will occur after 5 years.

Though nothing is guaranteed, there are some measures you can take to help prevent late recurrence. In addition to following your treatment plan, there are some changes that you can make to reduce your risk of recurrence and help you get through the next chapter in your life — healthy and happy.

1.  Follow your treatment plan.

The first step is to follow your treatment plan.

If you’ve just completed initial treatment, one of the best ways to prevent early and late recurrence is to be consistent with your anti-estrogen therapy.  It is not uncommon for women to forget or decide to stop anti-estrogen therapy because of the side effects. But if your doctor has put you on a 5 year treatment plan, it’s really important to take your medication regularly.

For some, continuing anti-estrogen therapy after the first 5 years can significantly reduce the risk of recurrence. Studies have shown that about 3 to 5% of women with ER-positive breast cancer benefit from extending their treatment to ten years.

If you’re an ER-positive survivor coming close to 5 years of treatment, you may be wondering if you fall in that 3-5% that may benefit from extending anti-estrogen therapy beyond year 5. The good news is there’s more information available now than ever before.

To learn if you might benefit from extending anti-estrogen therapy beyond 5 years, ask your doctor about Breast Cancer Index – a test that uses your initial tumor sample to help you and your doctor understand your personal risk of late recurrence and your likelihood of benefit from extended anti-estrogen treatment.

2.  Prioritize your mental health


While there’s no direct link to stress increasing risks of cancer, stress can encourage unhealthy habits like smoking and drinking that directly impact your physical health, and reduce your overall quality of life.  So finding ways to manage stress and anxiety following your breast cancer treatment is also important.

When your initial treatment is over, cancer doesn’t need to control your life anymore. Give yourself time to prioritize your mental and emotional health. Find hobbies and passions that help you relax, and discover ways to feel like yourself again. Enjoy time with family and friends, and make yourself a priority.

Lots of women find that keeping a journal, physical activity, and other creative outlets can help them recover from the stress of treatment. Others take up yoga, meditation, or join a support group to connect with other survivors. You have lots of options, it’s just a matter of what works best for you.

3.  Eat nutrient-rich, healthy foods

Adjusting your diet to include lots of fruits and vegetable, whole-grain fibers, and fish, is a great way to maintain a healthy weight, and make sure your body gets the nutrition it needs.

Avoid processed foods, reduce the amount of red meats you eat, and cut back on saturated and trans fats. Instead, choose organic options, eat poultry and beans for protein, and incorporate healthy fats like olive oil, nuts, and avocados into your meals.

If you haven’t already, cutting back your alcohol consumption to less than one drink a day is recommended. Alcohol can increase estrogen levels in your blood, and lower your folic acid levels, which are important in repairing and copying DNA.

To gain more insight on your dietary needs, speak to your doctor to help you decide what foods you should eat to fuel your body and stay healthy.

4.  Stay active


Physical activity is one of the best ways to stay in shape after surviving breast cancer. Incorporating something as simple as walking for 3 or more hours a week can help reduce the risk of death and mortality. And the benefits of exercise aren’t just physical. There are so many ways that staying active can help you recover from the emotional and psychological strain of breast cancer. It can relieve stress, improve body image, maintain bone health, and more.

So next time you’re out and about, take the stairs, bike to your destination, take a short walk on your lunch break. Join a sports team, go hiking, or sign up for a fitness class. There are so many ways to get moving in a way that’s enjoyable and fits your lifestyle!

5.  Maintain a healthy weight


Diet and exercise may help to prevent recurrence because they’ll help you maintain a healthy weight.

As a survivor, it’s very important to consider your BMI (or body mass index) to help prevent recurrence.

Weight is such a significant factor in recurrence because of the way fat cells work in a woman’s body. Fat cells produce estrogen — and increased estrogen levels can directly impact ER-positive survivors. In fact, women who are overweight are at an increased risk for recurrence.

There’s always time to adopt new healthy life choices, so if you’re a survivor who is overweight, work with your doctor to come up with appropriate goals and a weight loss plan that will help you reduce your risk of recurrence.

Conclusion


Whether you just finished your initial treatment, or you’re further along and are wondering what to do after the first 5 years of survivorship, these tips will help you live a healthy life and discover ways to prevent late recurrence.

Resources:

http://www.breastcancer.org/research-news/20080813

https://docs.google.com/a/wirebuzz.com/document/d/1OyWuvyEm4XmDIMfTfa1hhlrCDeBS9QER0XulNHli9I8/edit?usp=sharing

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/812513

http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/breast_center/treatments_services/survivor_care/reducing_recurrence.html

http://www.breastcancer.org/symptoms/types/recur_metast

http://www.prevention.com/health/health-concerns/breast-cancer-new-treatments-prevent-cancer-recurrence

http://www.cancer.org/treatment/survivorshipduringandaftertreatment/understandingrecurrence/can-i-do-anything-to-prevent-cancer-recurrence

http://www.cnn.com/2013/10/18/health/food-breast-cancer-survivors/

http://www.answersbeyond5.com/understanding-recurrence

http://www.drdeborahmd.com/preventing-recurrent-breast-cancer#hafull

This is a blog post by Nancy Evans.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Having Sleepless Nights? Sleep Disorders You Should be Wary Of


Most of us have experienced having problems like falling asleep at one time or another, but what constitutes a real sleeping disorder? Sleep disorders are conditions that prevents a person from getting a restful sleep and, as a result, may cause daytime sleepiness, stress, and dysfunction.

There are different types of sleep disorders, and it can be confusing what you have if you don’t know which symptoms to look out for. Here’s a quick list of the most common types of sleep disorders you should be wary of.

Sleep apnea. A sleep disorder that is easily construed as normal snoring, but this is actually a more serious issue since it virtually stops a person’s breathing during sleep. While medical devices like Resmed CPAP machine are aplenty right now for effectively treating sleep apnea, many people still don’t know they have this life-threatening disorder.

There are two types of sleep apnea: obstructive and central. The ‘obstructive’ sleep apnea is more common. It is caused by a blockage in the airway, usually when the soft tissue of the throat collapses during sleep, blocking oxygen throughout the body, and thus causing a person to wake up. Central sleep apnea (CSA) is related to the brain’s function where no obstruction happens, but it fails to tell the body to breathe.

Symptoms of OSA include snoring, daytime sleepiness, stress, lack of motivation, restlessness, gasping for air when sleeping and trouble focusing. Untreated sleep apnea can lead to clinical depression, diabetes, heart attack, stroke, and many other dire health complications.

Restless Leg Syndrome. A sleep disorder that can cause an irresistible, and often intense urge to move the legs. This is brought on by resting as when you sit, lie in bed, or prolonged periods while driving or at a show. RLS usually occurs in the evening, which make it more difficult for people with this disorder to fall and stay asleep.

RLS can also be associated with daytime sleepiness, lack of concentration or irritability. People with this disorder also tend to move around and shake their legs to somehow relive the uncomfortable sensation.

Narcolepsy. This is a neurological disorder of sleep regulation that can affect the control of sleep and wakefulness. Sufferers experience daytime sleepiness, fatigue, and intermittent, uncontrollable episodes of falling asleep regardless of time. The sudden sleep attacks can occur during any type of activity as well. Many people with narcolepsy experience sudden muscle weakness with emotions, such as laughter. This disorder happens typically between the ages of 15 and 25, but it can happen at any age as well. Many such cases are undiagnosed, and therefore, untreated.

Getting help. If you suspect that you or a loved one has a sleep disorder, then immediately discuss the symptoms with a physician or a sleep expert. They can perform a physical test and assist you in identifying the difficulties that you’re having with sleep.

Your doctor may suggest a medical device like Resmed CPAP machine if you suffer from obstructive sleep apnea. This treatment is the most utilized treatment for people with this type of sleeping disorder. A sleep study can also be done at home for some patients as well.

This is a guest blog entry.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Common Skin Ailments Many Moms Have and What to Do About Them

During pregnancy, many women get to enjoy the healthy glowing skin, but that gorgeous glow typically fades soon after your bundle of joy has arrived. After pregnancy, it's common to notice an assortment of skin problems that you may have never even had before. Before you panic, it's important to understand that you are not alone and there are ways to correct these problems.

Wrinkles 

Wrinkles are a sign of aging that no one is ever prepared to embrace. Children can really seem to speed up the aging process, especially with sleepless nights and insanely busy schedules. If you've begun to notice fine lines, there are ways you can make your skin appear smoother and younger. Consider trying topical treatments such as Alpha-hydroxy acids, retinoids, and topical vitamin C, including products like Dermaclara Advanced. There are ways to slow down the aging process of your skin by protecting it from the sun, avoiding smoking, getting plenty of sleep, and including more fish in your diet, especially salmon.

Stretch Marks

Stretch marks can appear on almost any part of your body, especially breasts, the belly area, and legs. Some stretch marks do fade over time, but some can take longer to fade than others. The best time to work on getting your stretch marks to fade is while they're still reddish. A dermatologist can prescribe a retinoid to help promote new collagen growth which will plump the problematic areas up, reducing the appearance of stretch marks. Other ways to get rid of stretch marks include lasers to boost collagen and dermabrasion which helps renew skin.

Acne

Even if you've never had a problem with acne before, you can still get hormonal acne after pregnancy due to fluctuations in estrogen. Hormonal acne usually appears on the neck and lower facial area and appears in red painful to touch bumps. Typically, this acne will go away within a few months, but it can be aggravating to deal with. One of the best ways to combat acne is to have a proper skincare routine. It's very important to cleanse your face daily and moisturize. Your diet also plays a very big role on your complexion. Try to consume foods that are high in antioxidants and vitamin C. Try to avoid sugar because this can only increase hormones, which can lead to worsening acne.

Dry and Flaky Skin 

Hormone changes can also cause your skin to become dry and flaky. One of the easiest things you can do for dry skin is to drink more water. You can also try switching to a gentle body wash, one that won't dry your skin out. It also helps to use a gentle facial cleanser and follow up with an ultra-hydrating moisturizing cream afterward. Another thing you can do for your dry skin is to apply a rich lotion or a body oil to your body right after you take a shower while your pores are still open.

Skin problem can cause low self-esteem and frustration, but understand that many moms of all ages are in the same boat as you are. Make time to take care of your skin and drink plenty of water.

Getting plenty of sleep might be a challenge if you're a new mom, but definitely snooze when you can. Many post pregnancy skin problems are just temporary and will go away after a few months when your hormones get back to normal levels. If you have really persistent skin problems, don't hesitate to talk to your dermatologist to figure out a solution that works for you.

This is a blog post by Nancy Evans.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

5 Benefits to Christian Drug Rehab Centers

Like the Prodigal Son, everyone loses their way every now and again.  Despite this, however, the Son is still forgiven by the Father, giving them the opportunity to start anew and live a more meaningful life.

Here are some of the rewards and benefits you can get out of your Christian addiction treatment:

1. Strengthen your faith in Christ.


By joining Christian recovery programs, you can trust that the counselors, staff, and other members will tap into your faith to help you heal.  Here, you will be encouraged to refer to your pre-established core of values and beliefs. 

Think of the recovery process as a way to apply your faith to your past experiences.  Make it stronger by applying your faith to your futures as well: when you think about how your faith has helped you before, think also of how your faith will help you move forward.  Your faith can only grow stronger from there.

2. Find that extra boost to begin your path to healing.

Once you have reaffirmed your faith in Christ and regained your bearings, you will become reinvigorated and more motivated to pursue a better life.  After living with the pains of addiction for so long, you’ll find that a renewed faith in Christ will refresh you completely. 

With this shift in attitude, you will be able to feel more significant changes, like a change in the way you view things and a renewed love for life.


3. Join a new community of friends and family.


Christian drug rehab centers are all about community – this sense of community, after all, is one of the main principles of the faith.  Not everything has to be done alone, and with your new community, you will find more than just a new network of friends.  Because all of you have the same shared experiences, you may even be able to consider them your new family as well.

4. Experience no judgment from other like-minded individuals who share your faith.


With your newfound community, you share not just the experience of addiction, you also share the same faith in Christ.  With them, you need not fear judgment or disapproval for your mistakes. 

As community prayers, healing sessions, and group counseling are all highly encouraged in these recovery programs, you will be forming strong bonds with both Christ and your community.  In this environment, you can feel at ease when talking about your most despairing experiences, and find comfort in listening to other people's’ stories as well.

5. Get the opportunity to help others.


Possibly the most rewarding benefit of joining Christian recovery programs is gaining the chance to help other Christians who’ve lost their way.  After receiving all the help you needed with the program, you can now pass on what you’ve learned to new, incoming patients. 

Truly, there is nothing more satisfying than getting the chance to pay it forward.  More than anything, the knowledge that you’ve helped save a life is much more fulfilling than anything else.

There is hope for everyone, no matter the sin and no matter who the sinner is.  To begin your path to recovery, you must first recognize that you have done wrong and express a desire to change.  Before signing up for a treatment program, it’s important to note that this is the attitude to have.  Truly, you cannot begin your path to recovery if there is no admission of the fact that you have made a mistake in the first place.  Only then can you begin to seek out Christian drug rehab centers to help you along the recovery process.

This is a guest blog entry.

How to Support Your Loved One Through Addiction Treatment

Family members have a vital role to play when it comes to women’s addiction treatment.  Women need to feel the support of family members as they seek treatment for drug or alcohol issues.  It is important for family members to learn how to support a female member of the family during Christian addiction treatment programs.  From attending therapy sessions yourself to helping with medications, there is a role for family members to play in the recovery process.  You can help them be successful by learning what roles you can play in their process.

Remember to Take Care of Yourself


While your family member is the actual addict, you have to recognize that you were affected by their behavior and actions.  Because of this, you have to be involved in the treatment process of your loved one.  Educational workshops, family visits, and therapy sessions should all be included when considering women’s addiction treatment.  Family members will need to work on themselves as well as learn how to be supportive of the addict.  It can also help to go through therapy sessions with the addict to be able to better understand what is going on and to be able to help with recovery.  Be prepared to hear things that might shock you or sadden you.  It’s all part of this process.

Providing Support


Providing actual support can be difficult for family members, especially if you have no idea where to start.  Start by understanding that your loved one is in recovery and must take ‘me time’ to be able to focus on what they are dealing with.  Try not to feel neglected or resentful of the time an addict takes for themselves as they must begin to feel emotions and deal with feelings before being able to have a strong relationship with others.

http://www.crchealth.com/addiction/drug-addiction-rehab/drug-addiction-rehab-2/home-2/drug_addiction/how-to-support-a-spouse-in-addiction-recovery-04161/

Be there for your family member by educating yourself.  Learn the steps of the recovery process as well as risk factors involved with relapse.  Have an open line of communication with your loved one, helping them to feel comfortable talking with you about anything.  It is important to be patient at this time as you are dealing with an addict who needs to go through a great deal before even being ready to be sober.

Continue to praise the success of your loved one.  Celebrate milestones and even offer to go to meetings with them if it will help.  By simply showing that you are supportive of the actions they are taking will mean a great deal.

Relapses Happen

As a family member, it is important to realize that relapses can happen.  Christian drug and alcohol treatment centers provide quality care but a relapse can happen at any time.  Be supportive of your loved one and help them get treatment once again if a relapse does occur.  Try not to pass judgment on them as it does happen.  Finding a solution that will help them go through the relapse is a better way to approach the situation.  Perhaps a different type of Christian addiction treatment program needs to take place.  Find alternatives to treatment to ensure your loved one receives quality care.

Being supportive means something different to every individual.  Speak with your loved one openly to find out just what they need.  Perhaps they just want you to be willing to listen when they need to talk.  Or maybe they want you to attend meetings or therapy sessions with them at Christian drug and alcohol treatment centers.  Whatever the case may be, make sure you are willing to help to assist in the recovery process. 

This is a guest blog entry.

Making a Healthy Lifestyle Choice with Green Cleaning Services in Dallas

Everywhere around the world, people are adapting healthy and green products that are good for Mother Nature as well as for their own well-being and that of their families’. The choice of green, healthy, and environment-friendly products can be seen anywhere you go.

The concept has also crept its way into the home cleaning business, with more and more homeowners going green for a healthy home cleaning session.Whenever home owners get their homes cleaned by a home cleaning service, they choose the green option as it is much healthier for them and their families.

Most of the cleaning services in Dallas working in the market make use of harsh chemicals in cleaning products to get quick results. These chemicals can be extremely dangerous for the entire family due to the fumes they give off and also due to their poisonous nature. They can cause harm to anyone who comes in contact with them, which is mostly unsupervised children. When you hire a cleaning service, you must make sure that company does not bring any of those chemicals with them. You must ensure this to ensure the health of your family and kids.

The market is full of products that contain naturally occurring ingredients that cause no harm whatsoever to you, your family, or your kids; and more and more products are being released every day. But you need to be careful. When the cleaning company comes over, make sure to check the products yourself. Not all brands list all the chemicals they use in the products, but if you have a definitive idea about the majority of ingredients, then you are good to go. Extra precaution is always a good idea, as not only your kids, your pets may even get harmed by the harmful chemicals. So always plan to be extra careful.

The green products are usually affordable in price, as they are made from natural ingredients. So any professional cleaning services in Dallas can easily afford them to put them to good use at your home. These products can also be purchased from eCommerce websites, which often offer lucrative deals and discounts on bulk purchase. So you really will not have a hard time in finding a company that uses such products.

Researches and studies are being conducted all over the world, that point to one same conclusion that green products are quite healthy, as the chemical ones can cause severe damage on first contact. Doctors are of the opinion that homeowners need to discard these chemicals as soon as possible to ensure that their kids grow up in a healthy environment, free from poisonous pollutants.

The research further suggests that exposure to harsh chemicals over an extended period of time may cause skin cancer and blindness, which definitely can be very painful for a human being of any age. The rise of different kinds of cancers is also being attributed to the regular use of harsh chemicals. So, to make things better and healthy, preventive measures must be taken, in the form of green cleaning products.

This is a guest blog entry.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

What to Expect from a CT Scan

CT scans, or Computed Tomography, is a diagnostic procedure that helps in the diagnosis of different conditions within the body. CT scans can provide a closer look at different areas within the body such as muscles, tendons, soft tissues, blood vessels and bone.

Like any diagnostic procedure you might have some questions about what it looks for, how it works and what to expect during the procedure. Sevenoaks Medical Centre explains what a patient can expect from a CT scan.

What is a CT scan?

A CT scan uses X-Rays and sophisticated software to produce detailed 2D and 3D images of the body.

These images are used to help diagnose a variety of conditions, including:

•    Vascular diseases
•    Musculoskeletal disorders
•    Muscle injuries
•    Joint injuries
•    Heart disease
•    Cancers

A CT scan may be part of a range of diagnostic procedures you have to undertake in order to reach a diagnosis.

How does the procedure work?

Essentially a CT scan involves a patient wearing a gown, removing all metallic objects and lying down on a motorized bed that then moves through the circular scanner taking pictures at intervals.

This process takes a number of images, individual cross sections of a body, which allow for analysis of different tissues at intervals along the body.

Once the scan is complete the images can then be sent to a Consultant for analysis.

What else should I be aware of?


Prior to the procedure, depending on the focus of the scan a patient may be asked to fast, or may be asked to refrain from drinking before the procedure takes place. This is to allow for clearer images to be taken.

The scan itself is completely painless, however it is worth noting that much like with an MRI the patient will be in the testing room by themselves, although they will be in contact with the radiographer.

This can be unsettling for some patients, especially children, in these cases it is possible for a parent or guardian to remain in the room, however they will be required to wear protective clothing due to the radiation used as part of the scan.

Following a CT scan the images are sent to the required consultant for analysis before the findings are discussed with the patient. In some cases this could be on the same day as the scan takes place (normally in the event of a private CT scan), otherwise it could require a follow-up appointment.

A CT scan is a routine procedure and not something to worry about. If you do have any concerns or other questions then it always best to raise them with your GP when you are referred.

This is a guest blog entry.

Thursday, September 08, 2016

The Importance of an Active Social Life for the Elderly

Depression is, unfortunately, a common affliction for many elderly people in New York City. Isolation, mourning, and in some cases, dementia-related illnesses are all common reasons for depression in seniors. When it’s your own mother, father, or another older relative (like a grandparent or an uncle), you want to spend as much time with them as possible. But you’re busy raising your own family and staying on top of your job. You can’t spend all day with them, or even visit as much you would like.

You’re not the only one facing this dilemma and help is available. Home care for the elderly is not restricted to seniors suffering from dementia or recovering from a surgery. Home care with the right agency evolves as your family needs it to, and it can begin with senior home care services in NYC. That means a personal support worker will come to your home to socialize with the loved one you’re worried about. If the elder in your life also suffers from limited mobility or they can’t manage household chores like they used to, a home caregiver can also help out. If your needs increase, the tasks you need to be done and the frequency of visits can change as well.


What does companion care look like?

To take New York City-based Mavencare as an example, companionship with an at home caregiver involves everything from shopping trips and doctor’s appointments to mealtimes and medication reminders.

Meal preparation – As mobility becomes an issue, your older parent may find it harder to reach frying pans or lack the strength to safely empty pots of boiling water. That can mean that they aren’t cooking what they may have for most of their lives, and aren’t getting enough nutrition. A caregiver can help with meal preparation, making sure your parent’s nutritional needs are satisfied, as well as providing some much-needed company at meal times.

Going shopping – If, whether it’s due to visual impairment or decreased mobility, your loved one has lost the ability to drive or safely take public transportation, it can be difficult for them to get the grocery store or go shopping for other necessities. A good sign that this is an issue is spoiled food or empty cupboards in your loved one’s kitchen.

Getting to the doctor’s – Another side effect of decreased mobility is trouble getting to the doctor. If they’ve missed a critical appointment because of bad weather or troubles with public transportation, caregivers with companies such as Mavencare can help them get where they’re going. You can also enjoy peace of mind knowing that your loved one has arrived safe, sound, and on time with a digital app that connects families with caregivers. Get live updates on your loved one throughout the day and always know that they’re safe.

Getting outdoors – While shopping and making doctor’s appointments is important, don’t undervalue the importance of getting outside for pleasure. If your loved one was always a gardener, spending a little time planting bulbs and pulling weeds in the sun can go a long way for their mental health. Bringing a caregiver into your loved one’s home (or your own) is a great way to prevent depression and improve the health of the senior in your life.

This is a guest blog post.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Moving Mountains Together Through Faith

If you are struggling with a substance abuse problem and need help, a residential treatment center is often the best solution. Inpatient treatment allows you to recover in a safe environment, free from outside distractions. You will have the opportunity to learn tools and strategies to help you deal with cravings, and to learn life skills that will help you cope with life on life's terms.


Spiritual Growth And Recovery

A lack of spiritual connection may alternatively be thought of as a cause or a symptom of addiction. It's true that for those in the midst of the struggle, the feelings of loneliness, disconnection and desperation can make recovery seem impossible. You may be feeling alone, ashamed and desperate.

For many people, the solution lies in uncovering and nurturing a spiritual connection that builds faith and offers solutions through a closer connection with that faith. A Christian rehab center is an ideal way to achieve this.

Christian rehab centers offer the best of evidence-based addiction treatment while nurturing the spirit. Many are twelve step based, and offer a combination of clinical and spiritual counseling which may include one-on-one sessions with on-site clergy, bible study and prayer groups and weekly church services as well as topic-based group counseling, substance abuse education and twelve step meetings.

Issues Faced By Christians Who Suffer From Addiction

Most people who face substance abuse problems will also find themselves feeling guilt and shame, but for those of faith, these powerful feelings are often magnified. Many will feel abandoned, unworthy and unable to access or draw comfort from their faith. This is not only an addiction crisis, but also a crisis of faith. By getting help from a rehab with a strong Christian message to share, and counselors who understand and can offer support and guidance from a Christian perspective.

Christian Rehab Is Real

Some people may wonder if a Christian rehab offers the same benefits as a non-secular rehab. The answer is yes. These are credentialed, professional facilities. Staff members are certified and knowledgeable about addiction and treatment practices. What you get with a Christian rehab is quality care that also offers faith-based teachings, support and practices. For many people who have struggled with addiction, their faith and Christian beliefs are integral to their recovery. Not only that, but the support they gain from a Christian fellowship that understands their struggles is an invaluable source of support they are able to draw on.

Another advantage to Christian rehab centers is that they don't just treat the addiction, they treat the whole person. More and more, addiction professionals are realizing the addiction isn't just about the lack of ability to stop using drugs. There are underlying issues and crisis that must be addressed in order for recovery to take place. People have needs for fulfillment and connection, and many turn to substance abuse to fill their need to belong, to fit in and to be a part of something. They also turn to substance abuse to cover up pain, or to help them cope with the feelings of loneliness, anxiety and depression that they feel. Christian rehab centers offer a more holistic treatment that addresses these often overlooked issues that can keep people from achieving sobriety in the long term.

If you are seeking relief from active addiction, a Christian rehab center may be the solution you need. It's important to understand that Christian rehab isn't something that should be forced on someone who doesn't want it. While there are other options that can be explored, many people have finally found the help and healing they need through Christian rehab.

This is a blog post by Joyce Kim.

No Stigma: Why More People are Getting Help Than Ever

Today more Americans are seeking out mental health treatment centers than ever before. While many people still cite the cost of treatment, as well as lack of insurance, as barriers to seeking help, they note the stigma which used to surround mental health treatment is less of an obstacle than it once was.

https://www.adaa.org/college-aged-adults-face-less-mental-health-stigma

Less Stigma

Young people have more accepting views of mental health than older adults. In fact, a 2015 Harris Poll showed the majority of adults aged 18 to 25 viewed seeing a mental health professional as a sign of strength, not weakness.

When it comes to college students, their rates of anxiety and depression have soared in the past decade. Nearly 65% percent of those surveyed in the Harris Poll said they believe they have, or had, suffered from a mental illness. Students have more of an awareness to their problems because mental illness is discussed more openly today. Schools often address the problem, providing counseling and courses for treatment.

This year nearly half of all American households will have someone seek mental health treatment. The APA's Practice Directorate conducted a telephone survey of 1,000 randomly selected Americans between the ages of 18 and 64 and those Americans agreed the stigma about seeking mental health treatment is becoming less of an obstacle to getting treatment. In fact, 91% of those polled said they wouldn’t hesitate to consult or recommend mental health treatment if they or a family member needed it. The Practice Directorate conducts this poll every few years to gauge public sentiment regarding mental health care.

Nearly everyone surveyed, 97%, said they considered access to mental health treatment centers "important”. Only 30% of those surveyed said they would be concerned if anyone found out they were seeking mental health treatment, and only 20% said the stigma would keep them from seeking help.

NAMI

The National Alliance of Mental Illness, or NAMI, says society is changing. In fact, in an article by Dr. Bernice Pescosolido called ‘The Stigma Complex’, published in The Annual Review of Sociology 2015, she says Americans are finally understanding that mental health issues are simply brain disorders and need not be stigmatized. She wrote that while society doesn’t change quickly, it will change, we just have to stay the course and continue to educate people and continue to try and raise awareness of these issues.

Seeking Treatment

More Americans are finding it easier to seek treatment because of the Affordable Care Act. To date the Obama Administration has provided the largest expansion of insurance coverage for behavioral health services; this has been made possible by the Affordable Care Act and the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act. These acts have helped to increase access to mental health services for all segments of society. It has provided Americans who experience mental and substance use disorders with treatment and services that have transformed and revitalized their lives.

Sites such as ‘No More Stigma’ and ‘No Stigmas’ on social media are helping reduce the stigma, allowing people to come together and see mental health is no joke; these sites allow sufferers to know they are not alone and that there is no shame in mental health disorders.

Mental Health Treatment

There are a variety of treatment options available to those who need it. From mental health outpatient treatment centers where patients come and go, to mental health residential treatment centers where patients live for a specified period of time and receive supervised care around the clock; these residential treatment settings offer more intense benefits than multiple outpatient sessions each week. However, residential settings are less intensive and less restrictive than mental health inpatient treatment centers.

This is a blog post by Joyce Kim.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Is Gambling a Medical Addiction?

Gambling can be a lot of fun, when enjoying in moderation, of course, pretty much like every other source of pleasure. People have always been aware of the dangers of gambling too much or too often, but it seems that nowadays, the awareness of compulsive gambling is higher than ever. Casino operators cooperate with other independent bodies, trusts, government and non-governmental organizations in order to tackle problem gambling and especially compulsive gambling. Check out this responsible gambling guide if you want to know how to recognize and how to avoid becoming a problem gambler. We all think that we can recognize when someone has a gambling problem, but it is not as easy as it may seem. Gamblers are often not aware themselves and don’t realize who serious things are.

Cause of Gambling Addiction

There is a part of the brain that is believed to play a role in gambling addiction and it is called the insula. Whenever a person has a hyperactive insula they are prone to compulsive gambling. The activity of the insula can give a person an unrealistic view on what is going on. Those people tend to see regularities in arbitrary sequences of number and they are convinced that they can predict outcomes which they can’t possibly do. A gambling addiction makes the addicted person react to gambling just like an alcoholic reacts to a drink. Just like with alcoholism, there are people who have a natural tendency to become gamblers. The more they gamble the more likely it is for them to become addicted. However, if they learn how to control themselves, they may overcome the addition. So, in short, it is a medical addiction.


It Is a Serious Problem

Moderate gambling, wagering and all other forms of risking a small amount of money for an opportunity to earn more, is accepted. It is fun, it is a social activity and there is nothing wrong with it. But addictive, compulsive gambling hurts not only the person’s financial well-being, but also their personal relationships and their general well-being. Addicted gamblers tend to be depressed and gambling often causes them to lose their job and/or partner. The story of Justyn Rees Larcombe who lost three quarters of a million, shows just how serious gambling problems can be.


It Can Be Cured

Fortunately, like all other addictions gambling can also be treated and cured. Sure, there are many people who are addicted to gambling, but there are even more who are able to gamble in moderation, have fun and still not suffer financial or other losses. There are several approaches that can help cure compulsive gambling. Organizations like Gamblers Anonymous, GambleAware, GamCare and few other have a lot of programs that help people with a gambling addiction. 

Symptoms 

The first thing that you need to do if you suspect that you, or a person who is close to you has a gambling problem is to check if the person in questions is experiencing some of the symptoms. The list of symptoms includes, but is not limited to:

• Postponing other commitments in order to gamble.
• Being obsessed with gambling and using every opportunity to engage in some form of gambling.
• Constantly stating “I can give up whenever I want, I just don’t feel like it right now”, and “I am going to get very lucky soon, I can feel it”.
• Lying about gambling and their gambling habits.
• Feeling guilty about gambling, but not being able to stop it.
• Spending money that was planned for something else on gambling.

Gamblers often lose their possessions, including their houses and cars, because they sell them in order to have more gambling money available. Remember that the frequency is not the only indicative of a gambling habit. Some people may gamble more frequently without being addicted. The strongest indication is not being able to stop once you start gambling.

Treatment Methods 

There’s more than one method to treat problem gambling and they could be combined. The first important step, and probably the most difficult one for every person with an addiction is to stop gambling altogether, at least for a certain period of time. That is why most operators nowadays offer self-exclusions that can last from several months up to few years.

• People whose problems are very serious may enter a treatment programme at a rehabilitation centre. That measure should be a last resort only and most people would be able to cure their gambling addiction without staying a facility.

• Psychological and regular medical therapy in combination with other hobbies and activities that will take their mind off gambling is a viable option. Patients will still be able to function normally and do their everyday chores.

• Gamblers Anonymous has its own 12-step program which might be helpful as well. People meet other people who have the same problem and together they fight to overcome the addiction.

• In some cases the gambling addiction is caused by another mental illness or condition and in such cases it is essential for the person to take the prescribed medication regularly, as that will not only help them with their condition, but it may also lead to overcoming the gambling addiction.

• Gambling condition like other conditions is a state of the mind and the reasons why people resort to gambling are mostly psychological. It takes a lot of willpower and determination to be able to defeat the problem and the help from friends and family is essential. Addicts should always be honest with their close ones.

This is a guest blog post.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

How Liposuction Can Bring Hope to Cancer Sufferers with Lymphoedema

For most cancer patients, early detection and timely treatment is usually enough to contain or even end the problem. However, after treatment, there are those who may end up experiencing swollen limbs (either legs or hands). This usually happens due to a condition known as lymphoedema, which is caused by accumulation of lymph in tissues.

The consequences of this rarely-talked-about problem can be dire. The swelling can significantly alter one’s physical appearance and even paralyze them psychologically and physically. Such is the story of Sharne Willoughby, a cervical cancer survivor who shared her experience with the debilitating problem in a recent interview.

“I was unable to work full time, moving was difficult. It was debilitating, both physically and emotionally. I felt uncomfortable around people” said Sharne Willoughby.

The 46 year old talked about her struggles with a problem that only seemed to get worse by the day. How she battled low self-esteem. How she struggled accomplishing daily tasks. And finally, how she triumphed amidst all odds – all thanks to liposuction surgery.

Effectiveness of Liposuction in Dealing with Lymphoedema 

Liposuction is an excisional procedure through which fatty tissue is removed from under the skin using a vacuum tube. In the case of lymphoedema, the fat tissue is not the only one removed but also the swollen lymph vessels that are embedded on it.

The decrease in the volume of fat cells can reduce the swelling because the lesser the size of fatty tissue there is, the lesser the fluid it retains.

It’s a delicate procedure that is only handled by trained surgeons (do your research and preferably choose a clinic with positive reviews). And while it is highly effective, the surgery should be limited to cases where the excess tissue is comprised of adipose tissue, which is often the case in the late stage of lymphoedema.

Scientific literature suggest that large amounts of excess tissue can be removed when liposuction is performed correctly. In addition, the incidence of bacterial infection can be reduced by up to 75%.
What You Should Know About Liposuction

Lipo is considered safe, effective and minimally invasive. It makes a very tiny incision to the skin through which the excess liquid is sucked out. And although that alone may not entirely eliminate the problem, it can control lymphoedema to manageable levels.

It’s An Outpatient Procedure

One good thing with lipo is that it is an outpatient procedure. You can be up and about in just a few hours after the surgery. To top it up, the results are apparent immediately after. Usually, the swelling reduces and normal movement is restored within days.

Side Effects

Bruising and scarring are the main side effects of liposuction. The incision, which is just about a quarter of an inch long can be painful in the first few days but it is gone in several weeks’ time. Also, one may need to wear a compression sleeve to prevent lymphoedema from coming back in the long term.

Cost

On the flip-side, though, the liposuction costs can be prohibitive. In addition to the procedure itself, you may need to pay various fees including medications, surgical garments and appropriate medical test fees. However, considering the great benefits it provides to cancer survivors, the cost is definitely worth paying.

Additional Tips for Dealing with Lymphoedema after Liposuction

Skin


Taking care of your skin is vital, because it reduces the risk of developing an infection such as cellulitis.

Exercises and movement


Lymphoedema can damage your limb muscles. It is therefore important to devise a movement and exercise plan to help strengthen the tissues involved in lymph drainage. Exercise may involve limb exercises alongside gentle activities that encourage whole body movement such as walking and swimming.

Massage

You can use self-massage techniques in addition to manual lymphatic drainage (MLD) which are usually carried out by a therapist. Specialized massage routines can play a huge role during the maintenance phase of recovery, to help avert long-term effects of lymphoedema.

Final Word

If left unattended, lymphoedema can significantly affect your day-to-day life and ruin your self-esteem. The condition can impair your physical movement and even cause a skin infection. Fortunately, like in the case of Sharne Willoughby, there is a scientific way to manage the problem – and that is through liposuction. That’s the kind of hope cancer survivors need to overcome all odds.

This is a guest blog entry.

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

Fighting Through Withdrawal Symptoms

Perhaps the least-discussed topic in addiction recovery is the process of handling withdrawal. As a person's body begins to adapt to functioning without the presence of drugs or alcohol, there can be a very painful process of readjusting to a chemical-free life.

Withdrawal can be the strongest force drawing an addict back to substance abuse. The pain is real, and the misery is so deep that even the strongest willpower can give way simply in search of relief from the withdrawal symptoms.

When a person is making progress in a 12-step or other program to conquer addiction, withdrawal must be managed to help solidify the gains being made. If these symptoms are left untreated, the entire process can fail.

There are several ways that addicts can combat withdrawal symptoms.

Getting Monitored Medically

The most important thing throughout the entire withdrawal process--both acutely and over the long term--is to make sure that health is monitored and maintained. Because withdrawal can last for months, there may be multiple withdrawal episodes that require medical care.

Bear in mind that most addictive substances being dealt with today are not conducive to "cold turkey" treatment. Cigarettes and other milder addictions can largely be conquered with this mental approach, but opioids and many other hard narcotics have chemical triggers that cannot be overcome with sheer willpower. As a result, certain medical interventions may be needed to treat withdrawal effectively and keep recovery on track.

Nutritional Management

Because most people take on a very poor diet while in the throes of a chemical addiction, most are badly malnourished. As recovery begins, the addict needs every bit of strength available to be able to withstand the withdrawal process, as well as to maintain the energy needed to sustain the psychological elements of recovery.

Eating a diet with appropriate levels of needed nutrients and adequate fiber, water, and vitamins can be very helpful. Proper hydration and fiber intake encourage good excretory function, which in turns helps to eliminate substances of addiction from the body. Vitamins and minerals help improve overall health so that the person is as strong as possible in this battle for life. The combination of a balanced diet and therapy for the psychological demands of recovery can give a person a good chance at sustaining the withdrawal process.

Redirecting Attention

Often it's simply the need to get the addict's mind off the withdrawal symptoms that is necessary to get through the process. Obviously, it takes more than a crossword puzzle or a game of Frisbee, but an activity that requires a lot of concentration and activity can do wonders for helping the person push through. And exercise in between withdrawal flare-ups can strengthen the body to fortify it for the next episode.

It doesn't take intense exercise if the person is unable to do it. Yoga, stretching, or simple aerobics can be enough. These activities build physical strength, improve cardiovascular health, and pull mental focus away from addiction and onto something more constructive.

Withdrawal is an inescapable process. For some people, it can be incredibly difficult. A good detox process and a strong recovery program, accompanied by skilled medical monitoring, can help the addict conquer all the powerful side effects of overcoming addiction. The key is to find what works and to stick with it.

This is a blog post by Nancy Evans.