Monsoon And Child Health Issues

Well, everyone loves the rains, more so the foodies as the season where you hog on hot pakoras or samosas, bhutta or chalebi while sipping on your hot piping tea. Coming to the flip side Monsoon does bring along health hazards in form of illness like Dengue, Jaundice, Cholera, Malaria, thypoid, Gastro-intestinal infections, hepatitis A. Here’s a run-down five of the most common illness viral/bacteria borne, that you need to protect your child from –

Dengue – Caused by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, Dengue mosquitos breed in stagnant water be it flower pots, buckets, tree holes or drums etc. The incubation period is four to seven days after being bitten. The symptoms include high grade fever with decreasing platelet count as well as rashes. To prevent dengue try to keep your body covered as much as possible and use mosquito repellents. Citronella is a good mosquito repellent plant.

Diarrhoea – This is one condition that can be prevented with proper precautions as it is caused because of unhygienic food and water consumption. The best way to prevent it is to drink boiled water and eat home cooked food. Both the types of diarrhea, chronic as well as acute can be managed through appropriate and timely treatment.

Typhoid This is another waterborne condition that is caused by S typhi bacteria. The main reason is poor sanitation. The symptoms include weakness, pain, fever as well as sore throat to name a few. This condition can also be prevented by avoiding street food, keeping your hands clean and keeping yourself hydrated with healthy fluids.

Malaria – This is also a water borne condition that is caused due to the female anopheles mosquito. This mosquito breeds in water logged areas and hence is a common condition in monsoon. The symptoms include fever with chills or shivering, body ache and weakness, etc. The best way to prevent the cause of malaria is to keep surroundings clean especially water tanks.

Jaundice – Jaundice is also a water borne disease that could go serious if not treated properly. This is again a result of consuming contaminated food and water. The symptoms of jaundice include yellow eyes and urine, weakness and liver dysfunction.

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Second Hand Smoke Is Also Dangerous To Health

We are aware how dangerous smoking is for health, but second hand smoke viz. the smoke that we inhale when someone else is smoking could be life threatening too. As per statistics second hand smoke is known to cause over 3000 deaths due to heart disease to non-smokers.

Second hand smoke can be particularly harmful to children because their lungs are still under development. Many children inhale this dangerous smoke at home if their parents or family members smoke, primarily. Even parents who smoke outside risk their children to harmful chemicals because of second hand smoke.

Also, known as environmental tobacco smoke, the smoke that is breathed out as well as the smoke that is released from pipes, cigars, burning cigarettes, cigars or pipes contains around 4000 chemicals. Almost 50 of these chemicals are carcinogenic and are known to increase the risk of cancer.

The American Academy of pediatrics (AAP) did a research on third hand smoke also. Third hand smoke is the smoke that is left behind in areas where people smoke. Though people leave the place after smoking, the harmful toxins remain for a while for example in bars, upholstery, even child’s hair if the care taker smokes.

Well, second hand smoke and third hand smoke both are harmful to adults, children and even the unborn developing ones. Unborn and children are at a higher risk. Children whose parents smoke cough more than children generally do. They are at the risk of getting coughs and colds, tooth decay, ear infections and respiratory problems. Children suffering from asthma are particularly prone to second hand smoke as it can lead to asthma attacks that to frequent and severe leading to a rise in hospital visits.

Well, so if you think that only smoking is injuries to health, you are certainly not right, its also the people around the smokers that are at the risk inspite of being not guilty of smoking. Take care. Quit now.

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Dengue Is Back! – How To Deal With It?

As almost 500 cases crop up in Dakshin Kannada or Mangaluru, Dengue is back this season and with a big bang for sure in Karnataka. Already four people have succumbed to the deadly fever that is a result of the Aedes mosquitos. Unike malaria mosquitos, Dengue mosquitos breed inside the house in clean water. A viral infection, Dengue is at its peak in the monsoon season every year. The most common symptoms of dengue include headache, swollen lymph nodes, rashes, exhaustion and high fever. The main characteristics of dengue include high fever, rashes and headache.

The acute phase of the fever can last upto two weeks. The more serious and life threatening condition of Dengue is Dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) occurring mostly in under 10 years children. This complication can cause circulatory collapse, hemorrhage and abdominal pain. The symptoms often occur after 3 days to 15 days of the mosquito bite. The weather conditions also are responsible to an extent for breeding the dengue mosquitos. Outbreaks are more common in tropical and subtropical areas. Though the condition is not contagious, if a mosquito bites a dengue infected, it does contract the dengue virus too and spread it onward to other people.

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Thus the Aedes mosquito is considered the vector or transmitter and humans as the source of infection. As mentioned Dengue Hemorrhagic fever or DHF is a shock syndrome of dengue that mostly affects children under 10 years of age. DHF starts abruptly with consistent fever accompanied with headache. Other symptoms include cough, nausea, sore throat, and vomiting as well as abdominal pain. The shock occurs around 2 to 6 days after the onset of symptoms with sudden collapse, mouth blueness, weak pulse to name a few. Bleeding is also a common possibility and DHF requires close monitoring. There is no particular treatment and only intensive care with blood transfusion and oxygen provision as well as immediate fluid replacement are some of the treatments. If proper treatment is provided the mortality rate could be less but it could rise to as high as 20% if not treated properly.

The best idea is to take care around your house and avoid travelling to mosquito prone areas. Check for water storage possibilities for breeding mosquitos and treat appropriately.

*Sourced from the Internet

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Hodgkin Lymphoma – A Sneak Peek

One of the common cancers across the world, Hodgkin Lymphoma affects the lymphatic system of the body. The cancer causes the cells in the lymphatic systems grow uncontrollably and spread across the body. There are mainly two types of lymphoma cancers, Hodgkin Lymphoma (HL) and the other Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (NHL). The latter is much more common as compared to the first one. The treatment is different for both and hence it’s vital to know what kind of lymphoma you suffer from.

Hodgkin’s Lymphoma usually occurs around 20 to 40 years of age of after 55. The risk factors for this condition include a family history with the condition and a history of Epstein Barr infection. The condition is most common in between 15 and 30 year olds and particularly males.

The diagnosis requires a physical examination and blood tests, imaging tests or biopsy if lymph node as well as bone marrow if needed. The treatment is based on the diagnosis and the stage of cancer. The Hodgkin’s lymphoma has four stages of cancers.

Cancer Stages

Stage 1 – It’s the preliminary stage of cancer when it is limited to the single organ or lymph node only.

Stage 2 – If the cancer has spread through other lymph nodes and another nearby organ as well, it is stage 2.

Stage 3 – Stage 3 cancer is when the cancer spreads to lymph nodes both above and below the diaphragm.

Stage 4 – Known to be the most advanced stage of Hodgkin’s lymphoma, Stage IV is when the cancer is spread through lymph nodes as well as other parts of the body like lungs, bones and liver.

If diagnosed at an early stage the cancer can be cured to a great extent and even the life expectancy levels increase. Though, accurate diagnosis is the key and it requires an expert pathologist to do so because there have been a lot of cases of misdiagnosis based on biopsy tests due to lack of experience. So, a good idea is to take second opinion even if it is diagnosed.

Treatment

Based on the diagnosis, the treatment involves chemotherapy sessions that uses chemicals to treat the affected cells. Post the chemotherapy, radiation therapy is carried out. At times they are done in combination. While chemotherapy can be done using pill or even through veins, radiation therapy involves usage of high energy rays like protons and X-rays to kill the cancer causing cells. The therapy is spread over several weeks and is carried out daily for half an hour period. Another option that could work is bone marrow transplant but there is a possibility of underlying infection risk. Targeted therapy is another kind of treatment that focuses on targeting specific cells and immunotherapy works in activating your immune system to fight these cancer cells. If these treatment are of no use then genetic mutations is another way that involves using drugs that target specific mutations of the lymphoma cells. Targeted therapy is the latest in cancer treatment options and is under research.

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Thunderclap Headache – Know More About This Sudden Intense Painful Condition

This is rare kind of headache that starts suddenly out of the blue and is an experience you won’t forget. The intensity of it is very high, something you would not have experienced ever. It lasts for a while but that few minutes could be to painful. No wonder, it is known to be worst headache in one’s life.

young woman who have a headache

Though many of us might just forget about it once it is gone, it is advisable to get yourself checked if it happens to you because it could be life threatening. Even if it is not, better to visit a doctor. The symptoms of thunderclap headache include-

  1. Sudden high intensity headache
  2. Vomiting or nausea
  3. Headache with neck or lower back pain
  4. Dizziness and losing consciousness
  5. Experiencing the worst ever headache

The intensity of pain of a thunderclap headache can reach its zenith is a matter of 60 seconds. Sometimes it just goes away forever while at times it could last over a period of seven days. There is a difference between thunderclap headaches and migraine but thunderclap headaches that are not categorized as life threatening are considered as a kind of migraine only.

Triggers / Causes

A thunderclap headache is known to be the result of bleeding in the brain or a symptoms of subarachnoid hemorrhage. The life threatening causes for this headache include –

  1. Internal bleeding due to rupture of blood vessel in brain
  2. Ischemic stroke
  3. Hemorrhagic stroke
  4. Inflammation of blood vessel
  5. Reversible cerebral vasoconstriction syndrome

The common triggers though could include bowel movement strain, injury, sexual or physical activity as well.

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10 Health Benefits Of Yoga For Holistic Living

We are all aware of that yoga has immense benefits when it comes to health, whether it is physical or mental and overall fitness as well. Yoga, a 5000 years old practice is known to have numerous health and fitness benefits. Let’s look through 10 of the benefits that Yoga provides and that you can reap. – And yes, you do not have to be a pro to do so.

Present day, not only physical health is an issue, but so is mental health. The unhealthy lifestyles are topped with hectic and stressful work schedules taking a toll on the mental and emotional health of humans. While exercise, walks and activity helps work on physical health, Yoga works well with mental health issues as well. Yoga is responsible for stimulation of the love and bonding hormone called oxytocin. Hence, those who practice yoga on a regular basis

Stress Buster – Yoga can help heal issues of mental health like depression, psychiatric conditions, schizophrenia by increasing the secretion levels of the hormone called oxytocin, known to be the boding hormone.

Back Pain Relief – There are studies to prove that yoga does help in providing relief with chronic back pain. Yoga is even good for people who do not have any back pain issues as yoga can help improve spinal flexibility.

Fertility boost – Doing yoga on a regular basis helps de-stress and thus opens up the energetic channels of the body. The body is relaxed and thus enhances the fertility as the blood flow to the reproductive organs of the body increases, leading to positive conception results.

Arthritis Healer – Yoga is a healer when it comes to rheumatoid arthritis, particularly iyengar yoga. Study has already proved that gentle yoga like bikram yoga does have benefits as arthritis allows slow movements.

Heart Attack – With heart disease yoga just works wonders, to say the least. Study has proved that doing yoga on regular basis improves hearth health, stamina and overall helps in reducing heart disease risk

Well, these are not the only health benefits that yoga offers, there are many more advantages of yoga that help you to lead a healthy lifestyle physically as well as mentally.

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*Sourced from the Internet

Burnout – A Medical Condition Or Not?

Do not misunderstand burnout to be a medical condition says WHO, that erroneously stated that it was a medical condition. The clarification comes as stating it as a “chronic workplace stress that hasn’t been managed successfully”. So, what is burnout exactly and what are the symptoms of this condition that has been termed as permanent stress of work. Let’s explore –

Burnout

Burnout – Definition, Symptoms and Causes

A state of being in permanent stress as a result of work is what Burnout means. It is more of a psychological problem rather than a physical issue. The symptoms usually include work anxiety, aggression and anger outbursts, detachment from work, feeling unworthy, aloofness, mood swings, insomnia, fatigue, stomach ache, appetite loss, breathlessness, headaches, chest pain, drug or alcohol addiction and lack of interest in the job, to name a few . It is a gradual process and not an out of the blue sorts. With time the symptoms worsen.

Risk Factors

People who are workaholics and too much into their work tend to suffer from it and most of them are known to be high achievers at work and perfectionists. Their passion about work is so fueled that they even ignore the symptoms of Burnout.

Behavioral Indications

Burnout is definite to bring in some symptoms like withdrawal from responsibilities, coming late to office and leaving early, slowing down when it comes to work, to name a few. There is a visible difference between Burnout and Stress like stress is about losing energy while burnout is about losing motivation, hope and ideals. It causes anxiety while burnout causes depression and detachment. Stress leads to physical damage while burnout to emotional one.

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Dealing with it

One of the most effective ways to deal with it is to speak to someone who is very dear or close to you and also is a good listener. This will help you calm down. Try spending quality time with your dear ones. Socialize a bit with the people you are working with, participate in activities in workplace. Indulge yourself into some hobby or outdoor activity or take a break from work. You could be at a phase where you might just have to consider quitting your job and taking a break before you begin again. Alternatively, joining a support community with cause can help you connect with like-minded people and help you de-tress on a regular basis. If nothing else seem to find you a way out it’s never too late to find new friends. With internet at your help finding friends is not a difficult task.

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Know About The Vital Screening Test That You Could Ignore!

In the times when pesticides and carcinogenic stuff has become a daily part of our life and is laying the path for different types of cancers, preventive screenings can help a lot in catching cancer in time and improving the quality of life.

Today people are very much aware about preventive screenings at an early age but due to lack of time and hectic work schedules and other priorities you tend to ignore a few. Definitely, people are taking cancer screenings seriously.

Vital Screening Test

One such condition is Osteoporosis. In this condition the body loses a lot of bone and makes very less or sometimes it could be both together. In Osteoporosis, bones become brittle. They could break even if there is a simple fall or at times even due to sneezing.

As per health experts early detection and intervention can help you curb the progression of the condition with the help of medicines as well as required life style changes. To detect osteoporosis, you need to go through the bone mineral density (BMD) test.

The diagnosis can help you detect the condition, the risk factors as well as the tracking over the course of your treatment. The test that is commonly taken and is painless in nature is the Central DXA test or the Dual energy X-ray absorptiometry test similar to X-ray. This test is recommended for the 65 and above women. As of now age based recommendations are not there for men. As per the NIH below 65 women who are at the risk of fracture also need to get tested.

Risk factors include low body weight, genes, early menopause, addictions like smoking and rheumatoid arthritis disorder. People with family history of osteoporosis are at the risk of getting it early on in their 40’s. So, thinking that osteoporosis can only occur post 65 years is not apparently true.

Well, get a little more aware and serious around some conditions that might not be life threatening but still vital because it could affect quality of life by getting you into painful problems.

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5 Common Food Allergens in India

Allergies are very common amongst us. Either we know we are allergic to stuff based on our experience post consumption of these foods or we aren’t. Many people have hiccups on eating spicy stuff like a chilly, while many get a runny nose. There are people who suffer from lactose intolerance and suffer from diarrhea after consuming foods like milk or cheese. But, if you think all these are allergies, then you aren’t completely right. These can be categorized under food intolerance or insensitivity. A food allergy is not the same. It occurs when your body considers harmless food to apparently harm the body. Food allergies could range from creating simple reactions like rashes on skin, or irritation to eyes or breathing problems to turn out to be life threatening if immediate steps are not taken. The best way to keep yourself safe is to be aware of such triggers and avoid them.

5 Common Food Allergens in India

Let’s look through 10 different food allergens and their side effects or reactions they cause. The most common allergens are as follows –

Eggs – The trigger that causes food allergies in eggs is egg protein like conalbumin, ovumucoid and ovalbumin. This allergy is found mostly in children than in adults. Some of the allergens are destroyed when the eggs are cooked but not all. This allergy can also cause anaphylaxis. The allergy can vary from person to person. While some might be allergic to yoke, some to egg white and some to all.

Fish – Fish allergy could be really harmful. It can be life threatening and lead to anaphylaxis. The allergy can show reactions like throat swelling, diarrhea and puking, skin irritations, blood pressure drop and anaphylaxis as well.

Milk – Many children may be allergic to cow’s milk. It can also be passed to the child indirectly through breast feeding. Many children out-grow of the allergy once adults but one fifth of them are said to have it in their adulthood too. The presence of the milk antibodies can be determined with the help of the blood test.

Soyabean – Soy bean is also one of the common allergy to have. The reactions of soya bean allergy includes vomiting, diarrhea, ashes as well as stomach cramps. Sometimes it could also cause swelling of the tongue, lips as well as hand, feet and puffed eyes too. Other reactions include bloating, flatulence. Though, it rarely gets life threatening and cause anaphylaxis.

Shellfish – Shell fish includes aquatic life like shrimp, oyster, crabs, mussels, clams, scallops, to name a few. This allergy can get serious and even vapor of the cooking shell fish can be allergic. The reaction are very much similar to other allergic reactions

As far as allergens go, prevention is always the best idea. So be aware of allergies if you have any and avoid food that can cause allergies primarily. Also, in case you get one for the first time, take immediate action and consult a doctor without wasting much of a time.

 

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E-Cigarettes are Harmful Too

A Harvard study says that the chemicals that are commonly used to in flavoring e cigarettes may damage our lungs in a way that its ability to fight the dust, dirt and other allergens can be put to risk, thereby increasing risk of diseases like asthma.

The researchers found that two chemicals namely diacetyl and 2, 3 – pentanedione are responsible for the impairment as they affect the functioning of antennae like proturberances. These proturberances are present on 50-75 percent of the cells lining the human airways and are very important contributors in keep the human airway free from dust dirt and mucus thus allowing people to breathe easily without irritation.

e-cigatettes

Cilia is the first line of defense in lungs and as per the study these chemicals harm it, by altering the gene expression pertaining to the cilia function as well as production.

The study carried out the testing of e-cigarettes and found that 90% of them have the flavoring chemicals diacetyl and 2 as well as 3-pentanedione are present.

The chemical diacetyl is also found in food flavors like butter flavored microwave popcorn, candy as well as baked goods. Though for foods it is not known to be harmful but only when it is inhaled that if turns dangerous.

HOW ARE LUNGS AFFECTED
Impaired cilia function is responsible for lung conditions like asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. An associate professor at the Harvard University also mentioned that even though chemicals are used for flavoring e-cigs but it is known as to how they impact the health. This study therefore throws light on the chemicals that are responsible for harming the lungs and how.

The chemical Diacetyl was earlier linked to lung conditions like bronchilitis obliterans, a lung condition also dubbed as popcorn lung for a reason that it was first found in workers of popcorn processing facilities after they inhaled artificial butter flavor.

As per researchers the present standards of safe limits of chemical exposure for workers are not enough and need to change as even low levels of the chemical does affect gene expression.

Thus as per researchers, today e-cigarette users are heating as well as inhaling the flavoring chemicals are in common use and users do not know that they are not tested for inhalation safety as well.

 

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