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How to Reduce Stress

How to Reduce StressStress sometimes overtakes our lives, we are a society on the go and something or someone always needs our attention.  Sometimes we just need to have a few moments to ourselves away from it all to unwind.  First, it is good to recognize stress and realize you need to take a “time out” and be by yourself.  Now, you need to know how to combat stress.

Everyone has different stress triggers.  For the woman in the house, it may be taking care of the children and house while her husband is at work, though, that scenario is fading fast as most families have a two-income household.  For some women managing both the domestic and work duties prove to be a little too much.  Early mornings are frenetic getting kids fed, dressed and out the door.  For some commuters, the traffic rattles them and sets them on edge.  A CEO may be stressed out by responsibilities, while subordinates are stressed and anxious because the big boss expresses angst or anger or… they feel they’ll be the CEO’s next target.  For the worker bee, often the stress is an everyday torment; some people take it in stride and leave the stress behind at the workplace door, while others carry it home with them.  What kind of person are you – what are your stress triggers and how do you resolve them?

Health Benefits of Fruit

Health Benefits of FruitThere is a popular expression people often use about “comparing apples to oranges” sometimes it is used in a rather snarky manner, as if to indicate that there are apparent differences between two items – in other words, the distinction is a “no brainer”.

Even though that delicious orange orb with its dimpled appearance versus the apple which could take on any number of appearances (red, green or yellow, not to mention some 2,500 varieties of apples grown here in the United States), those two fruits have something more important in common – they are good and good for you.

vein specialist Repair Damaged Veins

How to Repair Damaged Veins

Many people suffer for years with damaged veins, when the answer to their problem is as simple as a consultation with a vein care specialist.  That consultation, along with a few tests could yield valuable information about your painful condition, and how to resolve it.  Often a patient waits, thinking the pain or the symptoms will abate, but they do not.  You should consider a consult with a vein care specialist when:

  • You have increased swelling in your leg(s);
  • The skin on your leg and/or ankle has become dark or thickened;
  • One of your veins has become red, painful and warm to the touch;
  • You have developed a sore or rash near your ankle;
  • Your leg veins have become more pronounced; and,
  • Your leg symptoms have begun to interfere with your daily activities,

Most Common Vein Conditions

There are many types of vein conditions that people develop over the course of their lifetimes.  Many people are genetically predisposed to develop venous issues and suffer with longstanding vein disease, where others breeze through life with just minor vein issues in later years.  Anyone who has had vein disease for many years is at increased risk for developing Chronic Venous Insufficiency (often abbreviated as “CVI”).  CVI is an umbrella term for the more advanced stages of venous disease.  This would include swelling of the ankle and leg, or edema, stasis dermatitis and venous ulcer.  Probably the most-common vein condition, and the one most people are familiar with, is the malady of varicose veins.  A brief synopsis of each of these vein conditions is discussed below:

cosmetic look younger

Dry Brushing and Other Treatments for Spider Veins

Venous disease is common to both men and women (20% of men and 40% of women get Venous disease).  Why do women suffer more than men with vein problems?  For women pregnancy and hormonal fluctuations (namely progesterone) are the biggest culprits.  Swelling of the legs, a/k/a edema is more prevalent in men, with superficial thrombophlebitis more likely to affect women.

If you’re lucky enough to have remained unscathed by any type of venous disease thus far in your life, just wait a little longer.  People in their 70s are twice as likely to have venous disease as those in their 40s.  A lifetime of activities like heavy lifting, coughing, even straining to have a bowel movement, all contribute to pressure on leg veins.  A sedentary life style, obesity and a diet high in fat are all contributing factors to venous issues, because a fatty diet and lack of exercise decrease the efficiency of blood flow through large leg veins, thus increasing the likelihood of developing varicose veins or spider veins.

How to Avoid Consuming Pesticides

Avoid Consuming PesticidesIt seems these days you must think about everything that you eat or drink.  Back in the day, you ate most meals at home, and, when the family went out for dinner, the last thing you worried about was if you’d come down with botulism, E.coli or listeria symptoms before the evening was over.  Now, you must consider everything you put into your mouth.  And, then there are the recalls or bulletins about “undeclared allergens” that come to light, long after the product’s expiration date, or after you’ve already ingested them.

To be healthy, we are encouraged to eat whole grain products and colorful produce.  First Lady Michelle Obama has done a very good job of introducing the benefits of fruits and veggies taking up the largest portion of your food pyramid, and even kids have jumped on that bandwagon.

Healthy eating is one thing, but your daily health tip is to be mindful of the hidden dangers that come with supposed healthy eating.

Are Cosmetics Safe?

Harmful chemicals to look goodSocial media assails us every day about what is considered “safe” … coffee’s bad for you today and okay to chug it next week, or eggs cause cholesterol, then more studies say you can eat as many eggs as you want.  Many years ago, women were scared by a study that said wearing red lipstick could cause oral cancer, but they refused to give up their tubes of red lipstick so easily.  In this ever-evolving list of what you should and should not do, perhaps it is time to take a look at some of the products women use on an everyday basis, and examine if “natural” products are safe or not.

Are High Heels Safe?

Are High Heels SafeWay back in the 10th century, during the Tang Dynasty, a rather barbaric practice of Chinese foot binding of young girls, aged six years or younger, began.  The feet of these poor children were wrapped in tight bandages and broken so they couldn’t grow any bigger.  Why would such an atrocity be done you may ask?  Well, binding the feet to make them appear tiny and delicate was practiced by wealthy families, as only wealthy families could afford to have the women of the house stay at home and not work.  When you saw a Chinese woman with very tiny feet, you instantly recognized that as a status symbol representing prestige, beauty and wealth.

If you scoff at the above idea, consider this – the people of Western civilization, all these years later, think nothing of a woman teetering on heels so spindly that she can barely walk and with only a prayer she will not topple over and break a bone, or two, or three.

Women even joke about their infatuation with high heels – they don’t care how much pain and suffering they have to endure, because, after all, stilettos transcend them into a femme fatale.  Even if women are short in stature, heels give them a commanding presence.  Heels are a boost to any woman’s ego because suddenly their legs look long and shapely as opposed to short-heeled, sensible shoes which make them feel short and dowdy.

How to Protect Your Back During Daily Tasks

Protect Your Back During Daily TasksUnless you live in a warm-weather state where you can enjoy (or merely tolerate) doing yard work all year around, once the last of the snow has disappeared, it is time to start thinking about yard work once again.  Even if you’ve been shoveling snow all Winter, you’re likely to use different muscles, plus you will be squatting and bending, as opposed to lifting and throwing the snow.  If you have a snow blower, or your spouse or a service takes care of the snow, you might be out of shape somewhat, so, before you plan on doing yard work, you might want to begin by doing stretches, squats and lunges a few weeks before you tackle the raking/thatching and bagging up of debris, or tending to the yard in general.  It really will help to be more flexible for the job at hand, and, you sure don’t want to overdo your unused muscles just because you insist on doing all the work in one weekend.  That’s the way to likely incur pain in the back, or aching shoulders.

Probably the best and most-important advice from a top spine doctor in Summit, New Jersey would be to bend your knees.  Those 40-pound bags of topsoil are a challenge for a lot of people once gardening begins in earnest.  First you must heft them out of the back of your car and that can strain your back, especially if you twist and turn your torso the wrong way.  Why not have a four-wheeled dolly at the ready to move those heavy bags from the car to where they will be used?  Also, getting up and down from a kneeling or squatting position may be awkward or difficult for some.  Don’t risk damaging your back – why not treat yourself to a rolling garden seat to make gardening easier and more enjoyable?

Common Triggers for Sciatica and What to do About Them

Causes of SciaticaThere are several causes of sciatica, which is identified as a painful condition which occurs from soreness or pain that travels from your lumbar or lower spine, to your buttock and all the way down your leg.  Sciatica only affects one side of your body, but that one side might as well be both sides for all the pain you will experience.  Sciatic pain does not discriminate where it chooses to wreak havoc – it might be a tolerable ache, or an excruciating pain.  There are ways to try to thwart sciatica and stop it in its tracks, but many times, other medical issues are the underlying cause of the sciatic problems, thus, the malady is not strictly your own doing.  For example, although sciatica is believed to originate from prolonged sitting, even the simple act of coughing or sneezing can cause a sciatica sufferer great discomfort.  Sometimes (but rarely), the sciatic nerve can be compressed by a tumor, or damaged by a disease such as diabetes, or, it could become pinched, usually by a herniated disc in your spine, or by an overgrowth of bone (bone spur) on your vertebrae.

While the consequences sound dire for a person that suffers from sciatica, the good news is that, for most cases, 90% of sciatica sufferers have a full recovery from a bout of sciatica without the need for surgery.

Some of the triggers for sciatica are listed below.  Remember:  if pain persists, you should contact a specialist who will evaluate you to determine the appropriate measures to get you feeling more like yourself again a spine specialist in NJ is the answer to your sciatica woes.