Posts from the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

What to do if you’re bedridden — guest post by Austin Sheeley

A Hill-Rom hospital bed

A Hill-Rom hospital bed (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Being bedridden is a challenge both physically and mentally. You may start to feel lonely or depressed and your body  could develop bedsores. But remember, you’re not alone. This is an issue many people have faced. You may not be able  to control the circumstances that made you bedridden, but  you can control how you adapt and grow because of it.

Caring for Your Mental State

If you’re bedridden, don’t allow boredom, or worse yet, depression take over. Instead, keep yourself mentally active  and have some fun! Here are just a few ways.

1.    Pray/Meditate
Prayer and meditation help us center ourselves and remember  what’s important. They’ve helped many, many people  through trying times.
2.    Practice Thankfulness
Many psychologists believe that true, lasting happiness  comes not from getting everything you want, but from being  thankful for everything you have. Don’t let life’s  trials stop you from seeing life’s blessings.
3.    Learn!
Now is the perfect time to learn. Take an online class. Or  simply choose a subject that interests you and learn  everything you can about it. Thanks to computers and the  internet you may even be able to get a job or do volunteer  work online.
4.    Do Physical Activities From Bed
Even though you can’t run a 4K at the moment, that  doesn’t mean you can’t do any physical activities. If  you’re able, try playing guitar, knitting, or doing other  simple things from bed.
5.    Do Good for Others
Some believe that true happiness comes from doing good for  others. Send a loved one an encouraging email. Call a lonely  friend. Answer people’s questions online, or provide  encouraging feedback to one of the internet’s many wannabe  authors.
6.    Read
If ever there was a good time to catch up on reading, this  is it. See if your caretaker can bring you some books from  the library.

Caring for Your Physical State

Another way to avoid becoming depressed is to take good care  of your physical body. Now more than ever it’s important  to—

1.    Eat Healthy
Proper eating will help you maintain strength and avoid  physical decline. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables, and  make sure to get some protein. Avoid excessive sugars or  fatty foods.
2.    Drink Lots of Water
Water is important for circulation and cleansing so you can  stay healthy.
3.    Exercise If You Can
Some bedridden people may be able to walk across the room.
Others can sit up in a chair for a while. Whatever you can  do,  do it—even if it’s simply rolling from side  to side in bed.
4.    Reposition Yourself Every 2 Hours

If you can, reposition yourself every two hours with the  help of a bed rail or bed trapeze. This will help you  prevent bedsores—injuries to the skin caused by the  prolonged pressure of lying in one position.
5.    Use Pressure Prevention Products
In addition to repositioning yourself, you may want to use a  pressure prevention pad or mattress. These products help  prevent bedsores and can allow current bedsores to heal.
Bony areas of your body, such as hips, elbows, and the back  of feet, are particularly susceptible to bedsores so  consider getting a cushion or bed wedge to protect them.
6.    Keep Your Skin Clean
Ask your caregiver to regularly wash your skin with mild  soap and warm water, dry it off and inspect it daily for  bedsores. Depending on your condition, you may be able to do  some of the inspecting yourself.

Austin Sheeley is a senior health blogger for home medical  supplies store, http://www.justhomemedical.com, which offers a wide  variety of pressure prevention pads and other bedsore  related products.

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Oncologist: Meditation is now Science-approved medicine — guest post

English: Meditation

English: Meditation (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There have been countless anecdotal claims about the benefits of practicing meditation since the Eastern tradition has become more popular in the West. Now, there’s plenty of Western-based scientific evidence to support them, says Dr. Matt Mumber, a radiation oncologist and co-director of a non-profit integrative oncology program.

“Meditation is to the brain what physical activity is to the body. We’ve found meditation to be an important facet of health care, both for prevention and maintenance as well as in the treatment of disease, including cancer,” says Dr. Mumber, co-author with colleague and Yoga instructor Heather Reed of “Sustainable Wellness: An Integrative Approach to Transform Your Mind, Body, and Spirit,” (www.sustainablewellnessonline.com).

Mumber and Reed, who are co-facilitators of non-profit residential retreats for cancer patients, say one can experience sustainable wellness by developing a life practice grounded in the cultivation of awareness. This awareness is paying attention without attachment. The ability to be aware can be increased by a meditation tool called mindfulness.

“Life is a constant series of adjustments, matching your inner being with your outer doing,” Reed says. “One way to heighten your awareness is through practicing meditation.”

Mumber and Reed say there’s plenty of new evidence that the resulting sense of balance and peace is not just a psychological effect:

• Mindfulness meditation leads to increases in regional brain gray matter density: Recently published in Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging, shows that measurable changes in gray-matter density in parts of the brain associated with memory, sense of self, empathy, and stress occurred with study participants who meditated for 30 minutes a day for eight weeks.

• Meditation practitioners have longer attention spans: Published by the journal PloS Biology, a study analyzed people with three months of rigorous training and found that they gained a drastically improved attention span – not only longer, but less susceptible to internal or external distraction. They also showed improved memory and enhanced performance in several tasks, from driving a car to playing piano.

• Reduces stress and blood pressure: Presented to the American Heart Association by researchers at the at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee and the Institute for Natural Medicine and Prevention, a study including 200 high-risk patients for heart attack found that meditation reduced their chances for heart attack by 50 percent.

“Studies involving people seeking to reduce stress and other problems in their lives via meditation will continue, as well as for those who want to enhance performance of various duties,” Mumber says.

“For those skeptical of the medical benefits of this Eastern practice, there’s now plenty of Western proof.”

About Matt Mumber, MD & Heather Reed

Matt Mumber, MD, is a practicing board-certified radiation oncologist with the Harbin Clinic in Rome, Ga. He completed his radiation oncology residency at Wake Forest University Bowman Gray School of Medicine and graduated from the Associate Fellowship Program in Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona. Dr. Mumber is past president of the Georgia Society of Clinical Oncology. He founded Cancer Navigators Inc, a non-profit organization offering cancer patients access to nurse navigation, social services and educational programs to support and augment the clinical care they receive. Dr. Mumber received the Hamilton Jordan Founders Award for involvement in statewide oncology activities and in 2008 he was named a Health Care Hero by Georgia Trend magazine. He serves on the editorial board for the journals Current Oncology and Journal of Oncology Practice and is on the board for the Society of Integrative Oncology. 

Heather Reed has been teaching Yoga since 1996. She expresses an integrative, adaptive approach and specializes in using Yoga and meditation techniques for people living with cancer, post-polio syndrome and other chronic illnesses. Heather received an Experienced Teacher Certification from Esther Myers Yoga Teacher Training Program and has had extensive training with senior staff of the Commonweal Cancer Help program and Dr. Dean Ornish’s Program for Reversing Heart Disease. She developed Yoga classes for cancer patients at The Wellness Community, Atlanta. Since 2008, she has been Yoga teacher and co-facilitator for the Residential Retreat Program for Cancer Navigators of Rome, Ga.

 

Seven mistakes nearly all back-pain sufferers make. Expert debunks common myths — guest post by Jesse Cannone

Back pain is one of the most common health issues in the United States, with up to 80 percent of the population suffering the condition at some point in one’s life.

“But this exceedingly high number is just the beginning of the problem, because multiple studies indicate that roughly 70 percent of back surgeries fail,” says Jesse Cannone, a back-pain expert and author of “The 7-Day Back Pain Cure,” (www.losethebackpain.com). “It’s so common that there’s a name for it – failed back surgery syndrome, or FBSS.”

One recent study monitored 1,450 patients in the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation database; half of those on disability endured back surgery, half did not. After two years, only 26 percent of those who had surgery returned to work. Additionally, 41 percent of those who had surgery saw a drastic increase in painkiller use.

“The success rate for the most common treatments is pathetically low, so it’s no surprise people often struggle years or decades with back pain, with few ever finding lasting relief,” Cannone says. “The majority of back surgeries are not only ineffective, but most could have been completely avoided.”

He reviews seven common mistakes made by back-pain sufferers:

• Continuing a treatment that doesn’t work: One of Cannone’s clients experienced 70 treatments with a chiropractor, resulting in no relief. “Here’s a general rule to follow,” he says. “If you see no improvement after going through a three-month period of treatment, consider making a change.”

• Failing to solve the problem the first time: Take pain seriously the first time. Cannone’s own mother suffered a significant bout of back pain, which subsided after a few days. But two years later it came back, and the second time was so debilitating she couldn’t work. “If she had taken the first bout more seriously, she probably would have prevented the second, more debilitating bout.”

• Thinking you’re too healthy or fit to have back pain: Staying in shape is always a good idea, but it does not make you invulnerable. People who train their body can be more prone to back pain because they often push their body’s limits, says Cannone, who has been a personal fitness trainer since 1998.

• Treating only the symptoms: Cortisone shots, anti-inflammatory drugs, ultrasound and electrical stimulation only address pain symptoms. “You may get rid of the pain, but the problem causing the pain will persist if not addressed,” he says. “If you want lasting relief, you must address the underlying causes, and it’s never just one.”

• Not understanding that back pain is a process: In most cases, back pain, neck pain and sciatica take weeks, months or even years to develop; the problem may exist for quite a while before the sufferer notices it, except for rare one-time trauma incidents like automobile accidents. Most people sit for hours at a time, yet the body was developed for diverse movements throughout the day. “Think of a car with steering out of alignment; eventually, tires will wear down unevenly and there will be a blow out,” Cannone says. “The same is true with your body.” Just as the damage was a process, recovery is the same and can be time-intensive.

• Believing there are no more options left: Not only does back pain hurt and prove physically debilitating; it also tries the morale and determination of the patient. A sufferer can run the gamut of treatments. But, often, it takes a cocktail of treatments that address all of the underlying causes. “Remember, you can’t really treat the root of pain until you know what’s causing it,” Cannone says. “In so many cases, this is precisely the problem.”

• Failing to take control: Doctors and other specialists are ultimately limited to what they know and what they’re used to. If you have a debilitating back problem, it should be among your top priorities to learn all you can about it, and how to fix it. Get a second, third and fourth opinion if treatment isn’t working; try out alternative therapies, and consider a healthy mix of treatment. Most importantly, take control; it’s your back, your body and only you can heal it, with help from others.

“I may be critical of how most handle back pain, but that’s because I’ve proven to patients that there are flaws in the traditional approaches as well as more effective alternatives,” Cannone says. “I also feel that I’m offering a hopeful message because of my high success rate in helping to cure the back pain from my clients.” 

About Jesse Cannone

Jesse Cannone is a leading back pain expert with a high rate of success for those he consults. He has been a personal trainer since 1998, specializing in finding root causes for chronic pain, and finding solutions with a multidiscipline approach. Cannone publishes the free email newsletter “Less Pain, More Life,” read by more than 400,000 worldwide, and he is the creator of Muscle Balance Therapy™.

 

Baby boomers, do you know the signs of a heart attack?

heart attack anatomy

heart attack anatomy (Photo credit: gandhiji40)

February is not only known for Valentine’s Day. It’s also American Heart Month. For you baby boomer guys and gals (and men and women of all ages), it’s time to brush up on the warning signs of a heart attack.

There is an informative article in Medical News Today, written by Kelly Fitzgerald, that examines the signs of a heart attack, and you might just be surprised.

The article suggests that a heart attack does not necessarily mean a stabbing, crushing, horrible chest sensation. In fact, you may experience mild symptoms at first…with little pain. That’s why it’s important to learn the warning signs.

The article also links to another Medical News Today article on how blueberries and strawberries may reduce a women’s risk of heart attack. By the way, women can experience slightly different symptoms. No, heart attacks don’t just happen to men.

It’s also important to call 911 immediately, if you feel symptoms, and have a friend or family member drive you to the hospital.  Too many people have made the potentially fatal mistake of assuming sudden chest pain is the result of one too many burritos.

 

Foods men should eat everyday — guest post by Paul Taylor

tomatoes pictureI am going to share with you foods that men should be eating as part of their meal regimen on a daily basis. These foods have substantial benefits for men as you will see. I am also going to share with you some foods you may or may not have been eating in your regular diet but should consider adding because of their great health benefits.

Tomatoes: The red tomatoes are the best because they are full of the antioxidant lycopene. There are many studies that make it clear that lycopene can decrease many risks such as prostate, lung, bladder, stomach, and skin cancers. It can also help to reduce risks associated with coronary artery disease.
Yogurt: Make sure when you are buying yogurt that it says “live and active cultures” since these are the yogurts that are probiotic. Probiotic organisms strengthen the good bacteria in your body and strengthen your immune system which protect against cancer.
Spinach: It may not look like much but this is one of the ultimate man foods. A rich source of folate and plant-based omega-3s, it helps reduce risks of osteoporosis, heart disease, and strokes. It is well-known in weight training circles as a biceps builder because it is jam-packed with lutein which is a compound that wards off age-related macular degeneration.
Black Beans: We all know that beans are good for your heart but did you know that black beans boost your brain power? That’s because they contain anthocyanins that are antioxidant compounds which improve brain function.
Blueberries: Who hasn’t heard about the benefits of blueberries as an antioxidant fighting for us to ward off diabetes, cancer, and age-related memory issues? They have earned the nickname “brain berry” because of these benefits. They are rich in fiber and vitamins A and C also which helps to boost cardiovascular health.
Carrots: Low in calories and easy to prepare, carrots are a great source of carotenoids, a fat-soluble compound which helps in reducing the risk of and the severity of rheumatoid arthritis and asthma. They are also linked in reducing a variety of cancers. Most of the orange, yellow, and red vegetables and fruits contain carotenoids as well.
Oats: We have all heard the commercials that laud the benefits of oats and as well they should. They are full of soluble fiber and have 10 grams of protein for each half cup serving. They are loaded with carbs and deliver muscle-building energy because those sugars are released so slowly because of all the fiber. Oats have been shown to greatly lower the risk of heart disease.
Walnuts: I will bet you did not know that walnuts had more heart-healthy omega-3s than salmon and have more anti-inflammatory polyphenols than red wine. They also give you about half as much protein for muscle building as chicken. No other nut has as many benefits as the walnut.

Here are some other super foods to consider as well:
·    Cabbage – Boosts cancer fighting enzymes, neutralizes cell damaging free radicals
·    Beets –Lowers risks of heart disease and can protects your arteries
·    Guava – Fights prostate cancer and full of fiber
·    Swiss Chard – Protects your retinas
·    Cinnamon – Controls blood sugar which in turn helps to fight heart disease
·    Pomegranate Juice –Lowers blood pressure and improves blood flow to your heart, also provides fifty percent of your vitamin C needs
·    Dried Plums – Fight cancer causing structural damage to your cells
·    Pumpkin Seeds – Full of magnesium which is important to men because it has been recently determined that men with the highest level of magnesium have a forty percent lower risk of early death.

Author Bio: Paul and his wife Julie both spend quite a bit of time coming up with ideas, blogging, and researching all things related to childcare. He personally thinks his blog will help with finding information on all things related to a babysitter. Visit http://www.babysittingjobs.com

Still monitoring my prostate cancer

I have been a bit slow in updating this blog lately. I have had a number of newspaper writing assignments. But things are getting back to normal. Throughout this blog, I have updated you on my prostate cancer. A couple of holiday seasons ago, I wrapped up radiation treatment. My cancer was caught at an early stage, so I had a choice between surgery (removal of the prostate) and radiation. I just finished another PSA test. The number is 1.17, down a tad from four months ago. My radiation oncologist is pleased, but I will need to monitor my PSA every six months. With cancer, you need constant check-ups, because cancer can always grow. I hope men reading this blog will follow their doctor’s directions on when to begin cancer screening.

 
You read a lot about prostate cancer and PSA testing. There are a variety of opinions out there. In my opinion, the best advice is to start discussing prostate issues with your doctor at an early age and let your doctor know if prostate cancer runs in your family.

 
Your doctor will suggest a good time to begin screening. Men procrastinate. That’s a main focus of this blog. So guys, get on the phone and schedule a visit with your doc.

Five most helpful things husbands can do for their wives — guest post by Lyndsi Decker

This is a health and wellness blog that focuses on baby boomer men, but for a fun change of pace, enjoy this guest post from Lyndsi Decker.

Are you a husband who wants to do something loving and helpful for your wife? Are you looking for ideas to surprise your wife on an ordinary day? Do you want your wife to know that you appreciate all she does for you and your family?

If you are ready to surprise your wife with a helpful, loving gift, then follow this quick and easy guide listing the top five most helpful gifts you can give your wife. Do not wait for a special occasion! Your wife is special enough to do these tasks for her any day of the week.

1) Cook Dinner and Clean the Kitchen

Does your wife normally cook the meals at your house? Does she also wash the dishes? Surprise her one night by cooking a meal for the entire family. Call her that morning and tell her to take the night off. Prepare the meal, set the table, and clean the kitchen from top to bottom once dinner is over. While you cook and clean, tell her to relax.

2) Wash Her Car

Get up early on a Saturday morning and wash your wife’s car. Make sure to dry it and wax it thoroughly. Once she is awake and ready, toss her the keys and tell her you will watch the kids while she goes wherever she would like to go for the day.

3) Organize a Closet or Garage

Is your house filled with clutter? Do you have closets that are overflowing? Is your garage disorganized and filled with junk? Do your wife a great favor and spend a few hours cleaning out the closets or garage. Organize the clutter and take unneeded items to a local donation center.

4) Make the Bed

Surprise your wife by making the bed every morning for a week. Start off the week by changing the sheets and washing the old ones. Fluff her pillow a little extra.

5) Mow the Lawn

Make the lawn and shrubbery around your house look well-groomed and beautiful. Mow the grass and clip the shrubs. Rake the leaves and plant new flowers. Add a little aesthetic artistry to your front or back yard. Create an oasis that the two of you can enjoy together. Add a charming wooden park bench into the mix and invite her to come outside and sit with you once you have finished your project.

 

Author Bio

Lyndsi and her husband are entrepreneurs and work with self storage Santa Maria and storage units Greenville. In her free time she enjoys cooking and walking her dog.