Neck Pain and Car Related Injuries – infographic

December 2, 2014 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE

According to data published by FORBES and provided by the U.S. Department of Transportation, nearly 150,000 Americans are injured every year simply in the process of opening and closing their car door! I know that I am part of that statistic – and, I live in Manitoba Canada.

I have a small 5mm protusion on my spinal nerve endings (L5-S1) that affect my left side of my lower half of my body and neck and lower back, I did resurface my back injury getting out of my car. I pulled into the gym parking lot and reached over to the floor by the passenger side and grabbed my gym bag. Then, I twisted left and put my left foot out of the open car door and tried to get out, carrying my gym bag in my right hand and I felt a jolt going through my entire body from my left foot to my neck and couldn’t walk for about half an hour. It has taken me about 2 months after that to get my act together where I can walk at a pace and bend down and lower back not bother me.

Please pay attention to this important infographic supplied about common injuries suffered suffered in car crashes and car accidents. I don’t want you to suffer any injuries or whiplash during the holiday season!

Have a safe holiday!


Via: Riverside Personal Injury Lawyers

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6 Tips to Reduce Skin Cancer Risk

July 12, 2014 by  
Filed under CANCER, HEALTHCARE

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Exposure to ultra violet ray of sunlight is most often regarded as the biggest threat for skin cancer. But other factors like overweight syndrome or obesity, malnutrition or developing skin moles or other lifestyle factors can also play significant contributory role in causing skin cancer. Anybody can become victim to skin cancer considering the wide array of risk factors that the disease involves. Skin cancer though can be treated conclusively if diagnosed in the early stage, but it is life threatening as any other type of cancer if it grows deeper enough to spread internally. Considering the huge amount of risk factors of this type of cancer you cannot help but can take a few precautionary measures. Here we provide 7 tips to reduce skin cancer risk.

1.    Avoid artificial tanning and tanning booths

For a nice brownish skin tan if you are considering artificial tanning in tanning booth as safer than direct exposure to sunlight, then you are terribly wrong and vulnerable enough to this disease. This type of artificial tanning procedure involves more dangerous radiation than normal sunlight. UV radiation in artificial tanning is 2 to 5 times greater than sunlight and thus undergoing such procedure you are more susceptible to get cancer. UV radiation causes sunburn, skin blemishes, skin aging and can fast lead to skin cancer.

2.    Check your moles as soon as you spot them

Moles or discolored spots on our skin often look harmless but in many cases they pose the potential threat or significant first symptom of a lurking cancer on skin. Moles that are there on your skin for years without changing color or shape or causing any symptom may have nothing to do with skin cancer. But if you see a mole that appears very recently and seems to change in color or size or appearance, it should be checked medically as soon as you observe it. A red and bumpy spot on skin that bleeds often or gives you an itchy sensation can be a potential risk factor. Any type of skin sores, discolored spots on skin or rashes that appear suddenly should be medically examined without delay.

3.    Cover your body with protective clothing

Protection from the torching heat of sun or direct exposure of sunlight is the first precaution one should take to prevent skin cancer. Ultra violet rays in sunlight can even penetrate through cloud, moisture or any type of climatic condition, but they are particular strong in the day sun. Wearing protective clothing that prevents the body skin from getting direct exposure to sunlight is the best preventative measure against the risk of skin cancer. Wearing garments of lighter shades is recommended especially in summer season as they absorb sunlight less than the darker shades. When roaming out in a sunny day cover your head and wear a pair of sunglasses.

4.    Apply sunscreen before going out in sun

Still if you want to bath your body in sunlight, apply sunscreen lotion generously on the bare portions of your body. Sunscreen lotion prevents the ultra violet rays of the sun from penetrating the skin and thus protects skin from harmful effects including the risk of skin cancer.

So if you prefer to roam bareback on a sunny beach do not forget to apply plenty of sunscreen all over your body. When buying sunscreen look out for SPF level of 15 or more, because sunscreen with higher SPF only protects skin both from UVA (ultra violet ray long wave) and UVB (ultra violet ray short wave). It is recommended that you apply sunscreen at least 15 to 30 minutes prior to going out in the sun and do not forget to reply in every 2 hours or more, especially if you are involved in swimming, playing or any other physical activity.

5.    Get your daily need of Vitamin D Safely

Getting too much exposure to sunlight is risky enough to get skin cancer as we already know. But getting too little of sunlight got its own demerits too. Ultra violet ray in sunlight is also the source of natural Vitamin D that is crucial for several health reasons. Vitamin D regulates calcium in blood and in effect crucial for our bones, teeth and muscles. Getting exposed to sunlight in a safe and controlled manner is the best solution to avoid either sides of health risk. In summer months early morning or late afternoon exposure to sunlight can provide you required level of UV. In winter months you can enjoy a better share of soft sunlight in a sunny day.

6.    Prevent weight gain

It has been observed that the lifestyle factors that are responsible for overweight or obesity syndromes in most cases are also frequently linked with developing cancer and skin cancer is no exception from this. Derogatory lifestyle factors like consuming junk foods, less physical exercise, hectic and frantic lifestyle, lack of rest or sleep, etc. are not only responsible for weight gain but they make us more vulnerable to cancer.


The History Of Madness – Infographic

June 19, 2014 by  
Filed under DEPRESSION, HEALTHCARE, SCHIZOPHRENIA

“People are crazy and have always been. But the ways we’ve dealt with the off-kilter have changed drastically over time…”

Take a look over this infographic created by Best Counseling Degrees to see how!

The History of Madness
Source: BestCounselingDegrees.net


Online AA Meetings

September 10, 2013 by  
Filed under ADDICTION, HEALTHCARE

aaGo to any search engine and type in your query and you’ll get almost instantaneous results. There might be millions of results to sort through, but for most topics, you can find some hint at your answer within the first page. You can find maps, places to shop, bios on famous people…maybe even search your own name (I admit I’ve done it). There’s a new trend emerging online that most people have probably never thought of – online help for addicts and alcoholics. 

 

People go online for social networking, employment searches, dating: ways to connect themselves to the world from the privacy of their own home. Whether it’s because it’s faster, easier, more accessible or just more comfortable, most people go online multiple times a day for any number of tasks. If you can find a job online, why not an AA meeting? 

 

A lot of people who are struggling with drugs or alcohol may not be ready to face a room full of strangers and confess their secrets. Now you have access to a meeting where you can choose to simply listen without turning on your webcam. You can use a first name only or make up a name. You can choose to put up a picture or remain anonymous – pun intended. If you feel comfortable, you can turn on your camera and share you story. You may be talking to people in your neighborhood or on the other side of the world. 

 

There’s a line in the book of Alcoholics Anonymous that says “We are people who would normally not mix”.  The idea being that people from all walks of life, from every socioeconomic class, every race, religion, etc are affected by alcoholism. You take someone who you think you have nothing in common with and say “My name is ____ and I’m an alcoholic” and when they say they are an alcoholic also, you suddenly can talk endlessly. There’s a sense of camaraderie there. If you can chat with people all over the world who share this common thread, the possibilities of a connection grow exponentially. 

 

There are mixed feelings in the AA community about online meetings. Some feel it’s a great way to get people to a meeting if they can’t or won’t go to a traditional meeting. Others feel it goes against the principles of AA, that people should meet in church basements or treatment facilities. In-person meetings give you a sense of fellowship and allow for human contact such as a hug or handshake. Online meetings allow you to chat with people from wherever you are. In-person meetings allow you to read someone’s body language and offer a helping hand to someone who may be grieving and not speaking it in words. Online meetings give people a chance to attend a meeting when they may not have a car or license or babysitter. They both have pros and cons. The idea is that it gives people options and they can choose what works best for them. When online dating started it was almost risqué or embarrassing. Now it’s commonplace. Someday online AA meetings may be the same way. 

 

If you’re new to sobriety, thinking about rehab, a seasoned veteran to the AA scene or just curious about options to connect to other people in sobriety, an online AA meeting gives you the chance to reach out to others who understand your situation. Sometimes hearing a few words of encouragement is all a person needs to take the next step. 

About the Author:

Stephanie wants you to check out MyRecovery.com … They have online aa/na meetings and other recovery tools as well.


The Benefits of Hot Water

August 10, 2013 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE

Bathtime

Think back to injuries and pain you experienced as a child (or more recently). Chances are, heat and cold were recommended as therapy by your doctors, grandmothers, school nurses or parents.

It makes sense then, that there are real benefits of using heat when it comes to your health. This is especially true of hot water. While heat packs may be great for localized pain and injuries, being able to submerge in hot water eliminates limitations associated with small, stiff heat packs by being able to reach every spot at one time.

While drinking water is beneficial for overall health, soaking in hot water as you do in hot water plunge pools may be just as important.

Relaxation

In the fast-paced society in which we live, relaxation is hard to come by. Between constant appointments, the availability of mobile technology and other distractions, stress levels seem to be at all time highs.

Think of what requires you to take a break from technology and the other distractions…water. Even if you are not suffering from an injury, pain-causing condition or anything else, by taking the time to relax in hot water, you’re forcing your body to slow down. That’s something that can be hard to come by and the benefits are truly immeasurable.

Muscle Recovery

Following workouts for high-performance athletes or even physical therapy for individuals recovering from injuries or medical procedures, warm water therapy is often recommended.

By taking the time to soak in warm water (optimally between 94 and 104 degrees Fahrenheit), tight muscles are given the opportunity to relax and endorphins are released. Some hot water pools (available for homes and professionals) are equipped with massage hoses that add the additional benefit of deep tissue therapy during the soak.

Proper muscle recovery is critical for future performance and long-term prognoses in individuals recovering from injuries. Hot water offers this type of recovery in an affordable fashion.

Pain Relief

In the same way that hot water provides for relaxation and muscle recovery, it can be used for pain relief (for injuries and chronic conditions).

Hot water heats the body’s muscles and tissues, increasing circulation and thereby restoring blood flow throughout the entire body. Increased blood flow decreases stiffness in joints, relieves pain and has been known to calm muscle spasms in individuals with muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy and other medical conditions.

By regulating the neuromuscular and endocrine systems (through increased blood flow), benefits can be seen quickly when hot water therapy is used on a regular basis.

When it comes to tangible health benefits from a naturally occurring element, hot water offers demonstrated relief from pain, shorter muscle recovery times and increased stamina to individuals suffering from injuries and chronic conditions.


Taking a Look at ED: Peyronie’s Disease

July 9, 2013 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE

Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a condition that is quite common among men of all ages, but it’s also a condition that not many people want to talk about. A very common form of ED called Peyronie’s disease can be painful, as it causes a bend in the penis due to a variety of contributing factors.

Peyronie's Disease

According to the Mayo Clinic, the cause of Peyronie’s disease is mostly unknown. However, some researchers believe that the condition may develop after trauma to the penis, such as bending or hitting. This can cause scar tissue build-up and bleeding. While injury will likely be the cause of Peyronie’s disease, the National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Clearinghouse (NKUDC) says that this disease often occurs without any injury present.

Pay Attention to the Signs

It’s important to know if you are at risk of ED or Peyronie’s Disease. Some of the factors that seems to play a role in this disease is age and heredity. As men age, their tissue changes can lead to easier injuries and a slower healing process, putting them at greater risk for this condition. Also, men with connective tissue disorders like Dupuytren’s Contracture have a greater chance of developing Peyronie’s disease than others. This disorder refers to a thickening in the hand that makes your fingers pull inwards

Tests that Might be Helpful

If you suspect that you might have Peyronie’s disease, the first step will be to visit your physician. A physical exam will be a good indication if you have this condition, and the exam may involve taking a measurement of your penis. During future visits, this may help to determine if the penis has shortened and also to identify the amount of scar tissue. Based on this information, your doctor may suggest an ultrasound or x-rays to reveal the presence of any possible scar tissue.

Choosing Treatments for ED

If you aren’t experiencing severe pain or symptoms, doctors may choose to wait a while and monitor your condition before they give you medication to solve the problem. If you are experiencing more pain over time, doctors will recommend medicine, injections, or even surgery. Research is inconclusive at this time on whether or not penile injections are effective, but there are two types of medicine that might be prescribed: verapamil and interferon. Verapamil helps to treat high blood pressure, while interferon helps to break down fibrous tissue. Surgery is always reserved as a final option.

Managing Anxiety

Sexual problems can be stressful for many people; men with ED may feel embarrassed or ashamed, and this might make them feel less of a man. This kind of anxiety can lead to other problems too, which is why you should take the necessary steps to avoid this from happening.

You should see a doctor or therapist if you feel you need support or therapy, so that they can help you cope with your condition. It will also be helpful if you can find out more about Peyronie’s disease so that you know what to expect and what the warning signs are.

Author Bio:

Lorien Roux is an editor and copywriter for HealthLine.com, a popular resource that offers expert health advice from qualified professionals and experienced contributors. You can also find Lorien on Google+ or connect with her on Twitter.


Go Flexitarian and Diversify Your Diet

April 4, 2013 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE

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A diet rich in soy and whey protein, found in ...

Although the constraints of a strict vegetarian or vegan diet isn’t for everyone, more and more people are becoming aware of meat consumption’s health drawbacks and ecological impact. For those folks who want to avoid meat but aren’t ready to give up the joys of a good steak, there’s a new term: flexitarian.

The flexitarian is the centrist in a world where our friends and neighbors range from the fast-food-obsessed carnivore to the strict vegan who is always on a “cleanse.” Flexitarians believe moderation is the key to everything, and that staying mindful of your intake while still enjoying a variety of delicious foods is the key to living a balanced dietary life.

The Case for Flexitarianism

While it’s possible to get a healthy intake of fats, vitamins and protein without animal products, the human body evolved to eat meat. However, most believe it is simply unnecessary to consume it every day.

Most societies throughout history relied on fish or animal flesh for at least part of their protein requirements. When industrial farming started making meat cheap and plentiful, however, contemporary society moved to a much heavier consumption model.

In addition to being painful and traumatizing for the animals, the conditions in industrial farms are devastating to the local environment. Waste runoff, excessive resource consumption and the trash associated with packaging are all causes of concern.

The health benefits of reducing meat consumption are also well documented. Most animal products are high in saturated fat and can promote long-term weight gain as well as other serious health problems. Increasing your vegetable intake to make up for the missing meat not only reduces these risks, it also means more helpful vitamins and nutrients in your diet.

Adjusting To The Lifestyle

It can be difficult to go flexitarian when you have been conditioned to think of a “meal” as a big piece of meat with perhaps a starch or vegetable on the side. When you start thinking of chicken, pork, beef, fish or other animal proteins as a luxury, you can open yourself up to a greater variety of cooking styles.

If you’re having difficulty feeling full without meat in your meal, try figuring out which alternative protein sources are hearty enough to fill you up. Eggs, beans, nuts and certain whole grains such as quinoa help increase feelings of fullness, as does ingesting high-fiber foods.

The joy of flexitarianism is that you can still modify your diet to include whatever you like without feeling constrained. You may choose to bulk up your stir-fry with some shredded chicken, or make a veggie lasagna instead of your usual beef Bolognese version. It’s all up to you!

Going Flexitarian For The Long Haul

Sticking with flexitarianism can require some creativity and willingness to try new things, but the rewards are outstanding once you get the hang of it. Who knows — after a few months reducing your meat intake, you may choose to take the stairs instead of the elevator, buy e cigarettes instead of your old pack of Camels, or even order the tofu instead of the burger!

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Choosing a Martial Art

March 8, 2013 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE

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English: A match between Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu b...

A match between Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu blackbelts Gabriel Vella and Romulo Barral at the 2009 World Jiu-Jitsu Championships. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I never could get into gym life. I knew weightlifting and aerobic training improved my strength and stamina, but I never found either particularly motivating — a death sentence for any exercise regime. Don’t get me wrong: weight training and aerobic gym classes are excellent exercise; they just didn’t work for me personally.

My training motivation comes less from seeing improvements in my health and more from learning a new skill. So martial arts were a much better choice for me. I found I enjoyed the traditional structure and ritual of the karate dojo, and the belt system provided a built-in goal setting system. Besides, after a few months training I got to play with tonfa, Bo sticks and other weaponry, which impressed the hell out of my inner child.

Like other exercise programs, martial arts aren’t one-size-fits-all. Fortunately, dojos and donjons are easy to find across the country, whether you live in Los Angeles, California, or are staying in one of the Dover, Delaware hotels. Below are some of the more commonly taught martial arts, each with its own benefits and philosophy.

Aikido

Aikido forgoes attack, focusing solely on defense. The art relies on transforming your attacker’s motion and movements into controlling counter-techniques. Attacks are taught only as a means to practice defense.

Jiu-Jitsu

Another Japanese art, Jiu-Jitsu is a grappling art focusing on throws, holds and ground fighting. A subset of Jiu-Jitsu, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is very popular, and teaches tactics where a smaller person can defeat a larger, stronger individual by taking the fight to the ground, using choke holds and joint locks to control the opponent.

Judo

Judo evolved from Jiu-Jitsu. Also a grappling art, judo has become a popular Olympic sport, and emphasizes immobilizing and subduing an opponent without causing significant damage.

Taekwondo

A Korean art, taekwondo emphasizes the use of kicks, capitalizing on the greater reach and strength legs have over arms. Sparring and competition are important aspects of the art, with safety gear worn for protection.

Karate

While most people think of karate as Japanese, the art developed in the islands of Okinawa. Practice includes set forms (kata), prearranged drills and sparring. Karate dojos may include instruction in traditional Okinawa weapons such as the sai and tonfa.

Kung Fu

Kung fu, more correctly known as wushu, describes a wide range of fighting styles from China. Popularized in the west by Bruce Lee, kung fu schools vary widely in their philosophy, training focus and forms. Some styles mimic graceful animal behavior, some on external strength, and other on cultivating internal “qi,” or inner energy. If you’re a fan of weapons training, kung fu offers a broad range of weapons, from long swords to three-sectioned staffs.

Muay Tai

Muay Tai is a Thai art known for vicious elbow and knee strikes from close quarters and clinches. Full-contact Muay Tai is a powerful fighting style with connections to Chinese and India martial arts. The art places great emphasis on conditioning and strength.

Mixed Martial Arts

Mixed martial arts (MMA) are full contact schools, which borrow striking and grappling techniques from many different schools.  Some purists deny MMA qualifies as a martial art, but the fighting style is often brutally effective.

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The Best Ways to Prep for a Strengthening Program

March 7, 2013 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE

Gym Free-weights Area Category:Gyms_and_Health...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

You’ve heard that it’s wise to get a physical before starting any kind of new workout regimen. That’s true, but do you know why? In addition to checking to see if you’re fit enough for a particular program, you can also uncover some hidden health issues. I recently got back into Mixed Martial Arts, and my physical revealed a problem that was easy to fix.

My iron levels were shockingly low. That was hurting my endurance, seriously increasing fatigue and caused issues with building muscle. Of course, upping iron levels is relatively easy with a change in diet and supplements. However, skipping that physical would have caused a lot of frustration and plateaus that were completely unnecessary.

Tackle Your Diet First

Depending on your goals, you’re going to have to change your diet. If you solely want to build bulk, there’s a good chance you’ll need to increase your protein and the number of meals you eat per day. It might sound like eating more protein is easy, but that’s not necessarily true. A rough estimate of how many grams of protein you need is three-quarters of your body weight (or between half and three-quarters for women).

A man who weighs 180 pounds needs about 135 grams of protein a day when on a bodybuilding regimen. Similarly, a 180 pound woman would need at least 90 grams. That’s a lot of protein, and eating it all in meats isn’t necessarily healthy. Always work with a nutritionist if you’re a newbie to eating for bulk. This can drastically reduce risks and help you quickly get on track.

Less is More

If you think you’ll get bigger the more time you’re in the gym, think again. I know exactly how you feel. You might think the whole “working out too much” thing is only an issue for seriously athletes. However, when it comes to building bulk, the majority of your success happens outside the gym when your muscles are repairing.

The Colorado Experiment is proof that you don’t need to work out a lot to gain muscle. While this experiment dealt with a former bodybuilder who was, for lack of a better phrase, a genetic freak, the facts are still there. He only lifted for 30 minutes per day a few days a week and packed on 60 pounds of muscle in one month. If you don’t allow your muscles to repair, they won’t get any bigger.

Diversify Yourself

Your body gets used to routines, so don’t stick with a lifting program for more than three months. You might feel like avoiding cardio all together, but that’s not always smart. At the very least, opt for a 10-minute warm-up before lifting. Diversify these warm-ups with running, walking at an incline, stairs or the elliptical.

Most importantly, make sure you enjoy what you’re doing. If you dread going to the gym, you’re likely going to fail. Whether you’re a Harrisburg wrongful death attorney or a florist, you still have other things going on in your life. A strengthening regimen should fit into your life, not overpower it.

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Taking on Tunnel Vision

January 30, 2013 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE, VISION

eye

The world is full of beautiful things, and being able to see all the breathtaking images the world has to offer is a cherished gift.  However, vision does deteriorate due to age and various medical conditions, and losing quality of sight is detrimental to many people. Tunnel vision limits the ability to see peripherally, and depending on the cause, could eventually lead to blindness. Fortunately, there are many treatments out there to help protect your vision and keep you from losing sight of the beautiful things around you.

What Causes Tunnel Vision?

There are many possible causes of tunnel vision, and some pose more serious threats than others. If you experience difficulty concentrating on areas that stray from the direct center of your vision, poor night vision, or dizziness, contact a doctor immediately to have your condition evaluated.  There are many causes of peripheral vision loss and understanding the root of the disorder can help determine what treatment option is the best bet.

The most common causes included:

·         Glaucoma 

·          Blood loss

·         Eye strokes

·         Mercury poisoning

·         Intense anger or anxiety (temporary)

·         High altitudes (temporary)

·         Alcohol consumption and some hallucinogenic drugs (temporary)

·         Brain damage

·         Certain eye disease

·         Cataracts

·         Wearing glasses

·         Sagging, droopy skin around the eyes

Treatment Options

The cause and severity of tunnel vision can help determine what treatment option is best for you, and always check with a credible doctor about any health issues you experience. Remember the tunnel vision might be the cause of a more serious disorder.

·         For those suffering from glaucoma, eye pressure lowering eye drops are prescribed (along with other medication) that help with the disorder. Unfortunately, tunnel vision is hard to reduce if it stems from glaucoma, but the good news is the mediation can keep it from getting any worse and affecting the optic nerve.

·         In some cases, vision therapy can be used to restore peripheral vision, and it’s implemented in a similar way as any other physical therapy.

·         Eye doctors might prescribe a prism, a special type of lens that helps to expand the field of vision, for patients suffering from tunnel vision.

·         Eye lid surgery removes excess skin that droops down and blocks the peripheral vision.

·         Getting cataracts removed often helps to expand the field of vision.

Tips to Help Improve Peripheral Vision

The best way to strengthen any part of your body is exercise, and just like any other muscle, your eyes need to get active once in a while, too. Even if you have already suffered a bit from tunnel vision, it doesn’t have to go downhill. 

·         If you work a desk job and focus mostly on a computer screen all day, it can be hard to exercise your peripheral vision. Deliberately place pictures, flowers, or other décor on the side of your desk, and try to pay attention to those objects as you’re working on the computer. Focusing on more than one thing at once will help keep all areas of your vision sharp.

·         Complete hidden word puzzles, or play hidden picture games. Both of these force you to look at the whole thing at once and use all areas of your sight, not just the centralized part.

·         There are numerous sites online that offer free eye strengthening games such as eyecanlearn.com.

·         Try focusing on one center item such as a painting on a wall. Then, shift your eye as far left as it will go while still maintaining focus on the painting and then do the same thing for all directions. You might feel a bit of strain coming from the eye muscle, but that’s a good sign that your muscles are being exercised.

·         If you wear glasses, try to take them off periodically. Some lenses can obstruct the field of light and cause a limited field of vision.

Peripheral vision affects your ability to drive a car, read a book, watch television, and many other daily activities. It’s unfortunate that there are so many causes that can increase the risks of tunnel vision, but there are plans out there that work to help those suffering. By talking to your doctor and finding the right treatment plan, as well as taking time to exercise your eye muscles, you’ll help add years and health to the wonderful world of sight.

About The Author:

Benji Grayson is a freelance health and fitness writer. He currently writes about skin treatment and eyelid surgery in Melbourne, Florida for the Clevens Center for Facial Cosmetic Surgery. His personal interests include helping other people achieve their personal health and wellness goals.


So you want to get into the healthcare industry?

January 18, 2013 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE

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You love all things medical. You love the idea of the rush of the emergency room. You love the idea of helping those in need. You even love the idea of wearing scrubs and the smell of anesthetic. If you know the hospital is the place for you to etch out your career, you just need to figure out what it is you want to do there. If you’re considering a career in the healthcare industry, here are some things to consider first.

How much education are you ready to complete?

Physicians need to complete about 15 years of school. If you don’t like school, you may want to reconsider this as your future profession. Even if you are into school, but are anxious to get into the field sooner rather than later, there are several ways to get into the healthcare field. A Nurse Practitioner or a Physician’s Assistant operates in a very similar way to a doctor. They see patients, they write prescriptions, and they solve problems for people. Nurse practitioners and physicians assistants need a few years beyond a bachelor’s degree. High-level nurses with nothing more than a bachelor’s degree can make a good living and can participate as intensely in the healthcare world as doctors can.

What role in the healthcare world fits you best?

Some people swear off the healthcare industry because they don’t like blood and guts, but what they fail to understand is that the healthcare industry includes so many facets that pretty much everyone can find a place if they want one. If you’re interested cardiology, you don’t have to be a cardiologist. You can be involved on the technology side. You can be a nurse involved in cardiac health, or you could be a perfusionist. Often, cardiologists aren’t able to have much of life. Ask a cardiologist’s wife. It may be worthwhile to take a different route into heart health. If you’re interested in taking advantage of the growing healthcare industry, but you don’t like blood and guts, consider a healthcare administration job. In this position, you can use your management and analytical skills to help organize a hospital’s needs.

What is the environment in which you want to work?

Environment is crucial to your happiness and wellbeing in the work world. If a hospital is too big and too clinical, consider finding a smaller and more private place to work. If you enjoy a lot of action, you won’t be happy in a one-doctor private practice. If you are a people person, don’t work in a lab. If you’re not a people person, do research. The bottom line is there’s a place for everyone in the healthcare industry.

How do you want your job to impact your personal and social life

If you can have a nine to five job, you can still have a really healthy personal and social life. If you are working an 80-hour work week and are on call most every weekend, you might have a harder time in the social and family realm. It’s not that it can’t be done; it’s just that it won’t be easy.

The health care industry is growing by leaps and bounds, and there’s a lot of room for people with every personality, skill set and background. Just make sure that you consider your background and future plans before you choose your place in the health care industry.

About The Author:
Natanya Pulley is a full-time writer for higher education blogs and journals nationwide. Several schools offer degrees in the health field, including University of Southern California and Berkeley University.


Easy Habits for Preventing Heart Attacks

January 15, 2013 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE, HEART AND STROKE

Ambulance

Photo credit: Andrew Malone

You’ve probably heard that taking a baby aspirin daily can help prevent heart attacks. The bulk of Bayer’s commercials are centered on the idea, and what better way to up sales than prescribing aspirin daily? However, there are a number of other ways you can help prevent a heart attack. If your parents have had a heart attack, you’re especially at risk and should take precaution.

Not everyone likes the idea of taking medication to become healthier. Kicking the tobacco habit and working out at least 30 minutes a day are natural ways to lower your risk. Maintaining a healthy weight by eating foods low in fat, bad cholesterol and sodium is also wise. However, just like e-therapy, this is easier said than done. Check out these ways to keep heart-healthy easily.

A Strange Approach

A recent study shows getting annual flu shots may prevent heart attacks. The study involved over 3,000 patients over 60 and it seems that these shots can lower your risk by up to 50 percent. Many people are divided over the benefits of flu shots, but this information might sway some doubters. Flu shots are especially helpful for vulnerable populations, such as the elderly.

Less than half of all Americans get the shot, but that may change. Shots are widely available at pharmacies and at a reasonable cost. Older people are more prone to heart attacks, and a weakened immune system with the flu can’t help. It might be time to consider a new, annual autumnal habit.

Health Habits to Start

Vitamin K2 is crucial for a healthy heart, and fermented foods are rich in this vitamin. Yogurt and kimchi are just two examples. Of course, you can also check to make sure your multi-vitamin has appropriate K2 levels. A study has shown that people with proper K2 levels are 52 percent less likely to suffer a heart attack.

Cod liver oil is another essential nutrient for a healthy heart. If you were traumatized by foul-tasting spoonfuls in the past, don’t worry. There are a number of pill forms available, and some even come with a non-fishy taste. This is an important supplement to add to your regular regimen.

The Hardest Easy Tip

Reducing stress and being happy is the best way to prevent a heart attack, as well as other ailments. It might seem that if you could be happy and stress-free, you would. However, many people pile stress on themselves unnecessarily. It’s essential to find an outlet for stress and make time for activities you enjoy.

There’s no guaranteed way to prevent a heart attack. Knowing your family history and taking care of yourself (mentally, physically and emotionally) can, however, provide a great boost to your health. The next time you feel like skipping the gym, lighting up or taking on that extra project you don’t have time for, think again. Is it worth it?

About the author:

Adrienne is a blogger and aspiring writer. When she’s not blogging about tech and social media, you might find her practicing her French, whipping up some recipes she found on Pinterest, or obsessing over vintage postcards and stamps.


The Seven Chakras Of The Human Body

January 8, 2013 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE

 

Chakra chart describing the seven chakras of the human body: Crown Chakra, Third Eye Chakra, Throat Chakra, Heart Chakra, Solar Plexus Chakra, Sacral Chakra, Root Chakra. Learn what these chakras are responsible for and what happens when they are blocked

 

 

 

Chakra Chart

 

Check out the full article about seven chakras here


Benefits For Your Mind and Body

December 18, 2012 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE

14504094_mWhile working as a career counselor for three years, I noticed that many people not only let their health get in the way of their current work, but many also let their health keep them from getting a new and better career that they deserve. Nowadays, health insurance companies are not only offering terrific benefits to their employees, even with the raising costs, but also providing counseling and health and wellness programs to make sure their employees are taken care of physically and emotionally.

Counseling 

For those plagued by the unseen mental and emotional problems that many have not understood the gravity of in the past, it is great to know that most insurance companies are providing more and more participating mental health professionals to insure you are of sound mind and body to perform at your best each day at work. Someone suffering from mental problems associated with depression, abuse, traumatic stress, or a psychological disorder can receive counseling to help them cope with the disappointments, stress, and roller coaster of emotions that an employee can feel from day to day while trying to juggle work, family, and social responsibilities. Many companies have reaped the benefits of providing these services to their employees and some even offer free crisis lines where employees can call anonymously to speak with a professional about the current mental or emotional stresses that are keeping them from feeling happy and performing their job to the best of their ability.

Health and Wellness

Programs such as the health and wellness programs are new programs implemented by top insurance companies to ensure you are educated on your current health conditions and advised on how to improve your health by giving you one on one counseling with a Wellness counselor to keep you on track to lower your cholesterol and your blood pressure, as well as giving you tips on problems that are common to office workers such as: migraines, eye strains, carpal tunnel and arthritis. The health and wellness program is usually free to employees with full health insurance benefits and many companies even offer incentives to employees who keep regular contact with their counselors. Also if the employees are at high risk for conditions associated with high blood pressure, high cholesterol and obesity many employers and health insurance providers will offer the employees lower monthly rates for participating in this program to improve their health.

Nutritionist

Although this may not be a free benefit with full coverage health insurance, many health insurance companies offer incredibly subsidized rates for employees who wish to work with a participating nutritionist or dietician. This benefit can open incredible doors for employees to realize the ease of participating in diets to shave off the pounds and improve the condition of their heart and other vital organs. Many who felt that they couldn’t get a green bean down if forced, soon begin to see and feel the benefits of a well-balanced diet and receive help and coaching all along the way. Not only will you receive nutrition and dieting advice, but your nutritionist will also help you work out a fitness regime to move along your weight loss and fitness, and help you see results faster than ever! The monthly or quarter visits you have with your nutritionist will include regular weigh-ins which is a terrific way of remaining accountable for your efforts, as well as reaping the benefits of living a healthy and well-balanced life.

If you’re unsure if your current employer offers these benefits at little or no cost to you, speak with your Human Resources to department to see if there is a possibility of participating in the counseling, health and wellness, or nutrition programs through your insurance provider. The little time it takes to see what your insurance company offers can put you on track to improving your mind and body to better perform at work.

About the Author:

Lucy Markham worked as an academic and career counselor for three years while earning her B.A. in English from the University of Florida. She is currently pursuing her M.A. in Education from the University of Utah

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Eat All That Chocolate

December 6, 2012 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE, OBESITY

Are you craving chocolate yet?  What if I told you not to eat it and that it would make you fat?  Now how do you feel about eating it?  Are you mad-jonesing for it?

That’s what a recent study found.  A joint research team of the University of Western Australia and the University of Strathclyde in Scotland found that when a group of 80 women were presented with videos or images warning that chocolate could lead to obesity that they were more likely to crave it.  When shown images of thin models, their desire to eat chocolate increased while their food consumption desire decreased.

The study that appears in the journal Appetite, while interesting, highlights a problem we are probably all aware of but do little to acknowledge.  We want to do the things people don’t want us to.  There is a part of human nature that enjoys rebelling against a system of order.  And when people are dieting, the life of their eating habits is a system of order.

It is actually the lack of discipline relating to rebellion that is the reason why many diets fail.  Because diets, and worse yet fad diets, are short term solutions that are often not adopted as permanent lifestyle changes.  Any short term benefits of dieting are often lost very quickly when the diet ends and a person reverts back to their normal eating habits.

It’s the big changes to our habits that we have the biggest problem dealing with.  There is often a short-term immediate acceptance but in the long run we’ll naturally want to go back to an old way of doing things.

Instead of trying to make sudden sweeping changes to your habits consider small changes.  Nutritionists have seen better long-term results when people adopt smaller changes to their eating habits.

When you start small think of how many calories you take in each day.  Are you drinking three cans of soda a day?  Could you live with two?  Are you getting the fast food combo with large fries and a drink?  Maybe go medium instead, that is if you absolutely need to have that fast food meal.

Do you find yourself constantly snacking in front of your television or your computer?  What is it that you’re snacking on?  Is it cookies or chips?  When you sit down to browse your queued instant videos or check your email, consider putting a bowl of baby carrots in front of you.  Health experts have found that people have a tendency to reach for and snack on whatever is close at hand.  If what’s close at hand just happens to be a healthy fruit or vegetable snack it could be much better for your belly than a box of doughnuts.

Little changes to your fitness can be adopted as well.  It can be as simple as just parking your car a little further away from the entrance to the shopping mall.  If you’re walking up a few floors in a building take the stairs instead.  If you are going up thirty floors though it is probably just fine to take the elevator so you don’t show up at your business meeting sweating and huffing and puffing.  If you do have the gusto to climb thirty flights of stairs then go for it!

When you step into 2013 for the first time and think about that most common of mantras people like to attempt every time a New Year starts, think about taking small steps.  When somebody tells you not to eat chocolate because it will make you fat don’t just eat that chocolate out of spite.  Take small steps and pay attention to your habits when it comes to eating and you may find that positive change may be coming your way.

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How To Burn Fat Fast


The Importance of Public Health Surveillance

November 6, 2012 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE

Hospital

Who teaches the public about the dangers of smoking? How about the consequences of drunk driving? Who spreads information about HIV transmission, flu outbreaks, or epidemics like SARS? The staff of public health organizations who are trained in public health surveillance implement different methods of tracking the growing trends and widespread issues in the health of the population. They can work in labs, conduct surveys, or analyze reports and data from hospitals to find out how and why people are in danger, and their ongoing research saves lives. Public Health Surveillance can be very complicated. Public health workers often monitor all kinds of health issues across a variety of spectrum – locally, nationally, and globally. But there are three basic types of surveillance they use.

1. Passive Surveillance

Passive surveillance involves collecting and analyzing data, usually from health facilities who want some help with the disease in question – knowing how widespread it is, how serious the cases are, or what can be done to prevent it. Passive surveillance is normally cheap and easy to perform, because it is part of routine health services and research. But in passive surveillance, no attempt to contact outside sources or acquire additional data is made – it is simply for keeping track of population trends and discovering what the baseline trend for a disease usually is.

2. Active Surveillance

Active surveillance is when a problem is identified and public health workers actively seek information on how to diagnose and prevent it. This can be due to an outbreak or due to a common problem that the health industry continuously works to solve, like cancer or infertility. Most of the time, though, active surveillance is a response to a threat. When data that is routinely collected shows a spike in a certain disease or an outbreak of an unidentified disease – such as the early days of AIDS – public health workers begin surveillance to study it. It is usually a much more expensive undertaking than passive surveillance, and so it is reserved for serious problems or important studies.

3. Mixed Surveillance

Combining passive and active surveillance, public health workers strive for disease control. When a disease is very serious and also continuously affects the population, public health workers may want to seek out data on their own, combined with the hospitals and health facilities that are offering their information. AIDS, cancer, and diseases in developing countries like malaria are all controlled by a system of mixed surveillance.

There is a huge shortage of trained, educated workers in public health, which is worrisome because public health surveillance is incredibly important when it comes to protecting the general population. These are the people we turn to when there is a threat, and their research into how to diagnose and prevent the diseases which already impact the lives of so many people can result in medical breakthroughs. We see their work on the evening news telling us what to do to stay healthy, but most people don’t even realize that there are professionals behind the scenes, working to keep us safe.

About the Author:

Nancy Meyers writes for education blogs where you can read more about the Top 10 Best Online Bachelor’s in Public Health Programs.

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When Allergies Attack [Infographic]

October 22, 2012 by  
Filed under ASTHMA, HEALTHCARE

Are you the 1 in 5 people that suffers from allergies? You’re not alone. Over half of the U.S. population test positive for at least one allergen. It should come as no surprise when 100% of U.S. households have detectable levels of pet dander and that indoor pollution can be between 2 and 100 times worse than outdoor pollution. When you consider that we spend nearly 90% of our time indoors, that’s a lot of caughing, sneezing and dry, itching eyes.

 

 

Infographic authored by Oransi LLC. To view the original post, check out the original Asthma & Allergy Infographic.

 

TAGS: allergies, asthma, infographic, health


Nurses Press for New Patient-Handling Regulations

October 16, 2012 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE

Nurse Becky

America’s obesity epidemic has spread beyond overweight people who put themselves at risk of diabetes, heart disease and stroke; now, the nation’s runaway weight problem has serious consequences for healthcare workers who must lift and move overweight patients when they cannot move on their own.

Recent statistics from the Centers for Disease Control confirm that the “average” American is over-weight, and the population is still packing-on excess pounds. Robert Longley reports, “Average adult Americans are a whopping 25 pounds heavier than they were in 1960. Average BMI has increased among adults from approximately 25 in 1960 to 28 in 2002.” BMI above 25 is the clinical standard for obesity. The BMI numbers translate to 191 lbs for the average American male and 165 for the average American woman. Therefore, if four female nurses “team lift” an ordinary man or woman from a gurney to a bed, each of them exceeds the OSHA lifting limit of 35 lbs.

Given the exigencies of everyday hospital operations, nurses more often violate the OSHA weight limit than ask for extra help. Amy Williamson, workplace safety coordinator for Baptist Hospital in Nashville, tells USA Today , “In the course of an eight-hour day, a nurse will typically lift 1.8 tons, which is pretty astronomical.” Follow-up studies indicate a nurse’s total daily lifting is up to 10 times that of commercial construction workers and workers at home improvement retailers, the two professions with exceptionally high rates of lift-related injuries.

In the wake of nurses’ record-high numbers of back injuries and workers’ compensation claims for knee, shoulder and joint problems, the American Nurses Association has launched a major initiative to update patient-handling requirements and assure their strict enforcement in America’s hospitals.

California leads reforms.

A model for other states’ new patient-handling regulations, California’s Employment Safety and Health Facilities Act (AB1136)…
Cites background data that inspired the legislation, including first and foremost the Legislature’s acknowledgement that injuries to healthcare workers accounted for 11 percent of California’s musculo-skeletal injuries in 2008 and 99 percent of those injuries came as a result of overexertion.

Amends the California Occupational Safety and Health Act and requires employers’ development, implementation and enforcement of safe patient-handling policies for all their units. The amended OSHA act also mandates properly trained staff and specially skilled lift teams in every general hospital and acute care facility.

Requires employers to phase-out manual lifting and transfer of patients, and it specifies they must replace obsolete lifting procedures with power-assisted lifting devices and specially trained lift teams.

Mandates employers’ adoption of comprehensive patient-handling plans and standard operating procedures which assure patients’ safety while making special provisions for doctors’, nurses’, orderlies’ and other professionals’ protection against musculo-skeletal injuries.

Redefines crimes and torts to assure local governments’ compliance with and enforcement of the statewide mandate for healthcare workers’ protection against musculo-skeletal injuries.

Nashville Baptist Hospital makes the case.

Under nurse Mary Ann Baylor’s direction, Nashville Baptist Hospital launched its own back injury prevention program which includes all the elements of California’s law and adds a buddy system. Tom Wilemon, reporter for the Nashville Tennessean, writes, “The buddy approach — matching up a new user with someone skilled at using the lift devices — boosted compliance. Baptist wound up reducing its patient handling injuries by more than 74 percent from 2008 to 2011.” Baylor herself exults, “We have not had any injuries since our pilot. It’s really a team project. We buddy up so that whenever we are using the lift, the chance of injury is nil.”

About the Author:

Ashley Stevens writes full-time for education blogs nationwide. If you’re interested in a career in health care, you might consider an online masters in nursing, like those programs offered by Ohio University and Georgetown University.


The Challenges of Health Care for an Aging Population

October 15, 2012 by  
Filed under HEALTHCARE

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Many dire predictions surround the effects of the aging Baby Boomer generation on the health care system. A severe shortage of health care workers combined with costs that threaten to implode Medicare have worried analysts for more than two decades. How bad are things really? With the number of elderly in the United States already reaching 70 million strong, most experts agree that the growing and changing needs of the population mean that health care needs to change with them. There are several factors at work in the health care situation today.

1. People are Aging Differently

Not only are there more people over retirement age than ever before, they also have access to procedures, treatments, and medications that their parents never did. We spend an average of five times more on the health care of an elderly person than a working adult . The unhealthy American lifestyle greatly increases the money spent on heart disease, cancer, and other conditions. But health costs are also increased by relatively modern developments such as home care equipment, cosmetic surgery, and increased physical therapy. This has also given way to a number of more specialized health careers. Hospitals and clinics are in constant need of trained professionals who can provide the greater quality of life services that seniors are growing to expect.

2. Supply could be Worse than Demand

Even considering the fact that seniors are interested in a greater quality of life, many argue that the aging population is far less of a problem than the commercial nature of the health industry. In other words, patients are costing more money because of an industry rife with excess and fraud which is trying to make money off of them. The invention of new drugs and technology can often be a great thing, but it can also lead to unnecessary medicating and needless products, which the manufacturers charge higher and higher prices to provide.

3. The Growth of Seniors is a Global and Economic Issue

The current economic climate as well as the issues with health care costs is not unique to America – these issues have effected every major nation in the world. By 2050, the percentage of people over 65 will more than double, and their health costs could rise to an average of 5 percent of the world’s GDP. This also means that combined with a decrease in birth rates, senior citizens and the elderly will be of vast importance to the world’s economy. Their well-being is beneficial to everyone in the long run. Providing seniors with quality care and affordable health care options results in economic growth.

The discussion of changes to the health care system is a response to the fear that higher taxes and reduced Medicare benefits will soon be the only way to manage an unsustainable rise in costs. The aging population is definitely not the only factor in this problem. But solutions can begin with a greater dedication to recruiting and training nurses, medical staff, and caregivers, as well as working to rid the health care industry of excess and fraud. The most important thing to remember? No matter where you are in terms of age or income, the health care crisis affects us all – and we’re all in it together.

Darlene Jamieson Top Masters in Healthcare www.topmastersinhealthcare.com/

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NOTE: The contents in this blog are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical advice, diagnosis, treatment or a substitute for professional care. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before making changes to any existing treatment or program. Some of the information presented in this blog may already be out of date.