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Make no bones about this - Men have osteoporosis tooOsteoporosis is a condition in which the bones of the body lose their strength gradually and become thin and brittle. This is most commonly seen in women who have attained menopause. The reason being the decrease in the hormonal levels, particularly estrogen. Studies reveal that 20% of sufferers are men. Falling levels of testosterone are one of the causes for men developing brittle bones. Men's bodies convert some amount of testosterone into estrogen, which is very essential in maintaining the bone mass. Genetic deficiency of the enzyme that helps the conversion of testosterone to estrogen also is a major factor for men developing osteoporosis. Calcium and vitamin D play an important role in developing the bone mass and in helping the bone grow. Exercising helps too. When you exercise, the muscle gets pulled and the bone responds by growing. Too much of indoors and sedentary work may make men get the less of all three and it eventually leads to weak bones and osteoporosis. Studies reveal that 20% of sufferers of osteoporosis are men. Certain medications like anti-seizure drugs, drugs for prostate cancer and steroids have side-effects that make it impossible for the body to use vitamin D. Using them for a long time reduces the bone mass density and leaves the bones brittle making them easily prone to fractures. Smoking is a vice that has to be quit for more reasons than one. An analysis of several major studies on the effects of smoking shows that smokers have a 55% higher risk of hip fractures and low bone mineral density than non-smokers. Nicotine has also shown to have a direct effect on bone cells. A long list of medical conditions like diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and digestive and blood disorders can take a toll on your bones. Long term medications for the same also have side-effects on the bones. How to prevent osteoporosis? Exercise- As young boys, men have usually been exposed to a lot of bone building exercises through sports. This helps in building up on the bone strength and comes in handy in the later years. A brisk walk for 30 minutes 5 times a week and moderate impact exercises help in maintain the bone mass and reduce the thinning of bones. Calcium intake- The daily calcium needs for men is the same as women. Hence, the dietary recommendations remain the same too. 1,000 mg of calcium a day from ages 19 to 50 and 1200 mg of calcium a day if you're over 50.Along with this, make sure you get the required dose of vitamin D too, so that the calcium you eat is absorbed properly. The standard recommended dietary allowance is 400 IU. Some doctors advise to increase the intake to 800 IU. Regular medical checkups will help you to know beforehand about the risk factors and the necessary precautions you will need to take.Osteoporosis in men is as much a reality as in women. However, there are ways to avoid it too. Awareness about the condition and about the ways to prevent it can help keep osteoporosis at bay. Bone mass matters. It could mean the difference between a hip fracture later in life - or keeping an active, high-energy lifestyle.
Is male menopause a reality?As opposed to the sudden drop in ovulation and hormonal levels in women, menopause in men is a gradual process. The consequences in men aren't that clear. The health risks, though, are significant and it is important to recognize the symptoms of male menopause early on. Read along to know more. A testosterone level of 300-1200 ng/dL is considered normal in a healthy male. As one ages, the testosterone levels too drop gradually. After 30 years of age, the levels drop by 1% per year. By the time a man crosses 50 years of age, he is in menopause. Look out for the following signs to know if your testosterone levels are dropping : Low Libido : A low sex drive or decrease in inclination to have sex is the first sign of decreasing testosterone levels. Erectile Dysfunction : Testosterone is responsible for releasing nitric oxide that leads to erection. As the levels of testosterone decrease with age, getting an erection and maintaining it for longer periods of time may become difficult. Low Semen Level : The normal amount of semen ejaculated each time varies between 0.1 and 10 mL. This normal level is due to the efficient functioning of the testes, seminal vesicles, and prostate, all of which work under the influence of testosterone. As you age, the testosterone levels drop and the amount of semen ejaculated also drops. Orgasm Troubles : As you age, having an orgasm every time may be a bit difficult due to the dropping testosterone levels. Mood Swings : This happens in men as much as in women! The interesting thing here is that the man who suffers from it is the last one to note it and acknowledge. So, if you find yourself snapping and getting irritated at the smallest of things, get your testosterone levels checked. Depression : When you feel dull and demotivated at all times, and even doing the slightest of activity seems like a chore, it means that your testosterone levels have dropped to a significantly low level. Abdominal Fat : This is again an early sign of decreasing testosterone level. Belly fat is a sign of advancing age. Low testosterone levels are a sign of advancing age. Not all men who have low testosterone levels may show symptoms. In such cases, there is no need for any kind of treatment. Low testosterone may also be due to some other conditions like thyroid disease, excessive alcohol use, sleep apnea, etc. After 30 years of age, the levels of testosterone drop by 1% per year. By the time a man crosses 50 years of age he is in menopause. Identifying and eliminating these causes will restore the testosterone levels to normal. However, if no cause can be attributed to the low testosterone levels, it is a clear indication of normal aging and 'menopause.' As with women, men too have the option of hormone replacement therapy. However, this treatment is controversial. In some men, the testosterone replacement may relive several symptoms, but the risks far outweigh the benefits. An increased chance of heart attack, prostate cancer, and other health problems are associated with testosterone replacement therapy. Herbal supplements for problems associated with decreasing testosterone levels are generally considered safe, but they too have no proven health benefits and are known to increase the risks for prostate cancer. Male menopause isn't as dramatic and abrupt as the menopause in women, but it is a reality. It happens gradually over a period of several years.
Ageing gracefully and happilyEverywhere we look there are constant reminders that we are growing old each passing day. There are creams that tell us that will make our wrinkles vanish and make us look younger. There are hair care products dyes that claim to cover our grey hair so that we can look and feel young. Our doctors tell us about how we have to take care of all our body parts to keep several diseases at bay in the old age! It is a rare and difficult attainment to grow old happily and gracefully. Is there anything good about old age? It doesn't seem so, going by the look of things. Here we give you 5 reasons that will make you look forward to old age! Old age is the happiest time in life: You are constantly living life to the fullest when you are young. Survival is your prime priority. You work hard to keep yourself and your family happy and financially stable. Too many responsibilities bog you down. Old age is the time when there is nothing of this sort. You are retired, free from all responsibilities. You have passed the baton to the younger lot. Now is the time to sit back and enjoy. Now is the time to relax and do the thing you always wanted to do. Imagine living with not a care in the world? That is old age for you. Old age is when the brain functions the best: It is a proven fact now. It was believed that we lose more brain cells as we age. Now it has been proven that our cognitive functions peak between the ages of 48 to 60. Old people make the wisest and toughest decisions quickly. People may call them worldly wise. Have you ever given a thought to how all the judges are old men? And how when someone says the word 'wise' the picture formed is usually of an old man with a beard? No more fashion policing: When you are young, there is a lot of stereotyping involved! Going to a board meeting, wear formals? Going for a lunch meeting, wear something that is suitable keeping in mind the place. Are you at a certain position in life? Dress accordingly! So many restrictions! Old age comes with none of this. You can wear what you please and no one will really mind! Only when you actually get to do it will you realize how much f a relief it is! Relationships improve: According to a 2011 study; married oldies are more satisfied and positive about their marriages than young couples are. Arguments involve less anger, and senior spouses show more positive emotions and affection than middle-aged couples. It's not only marriages, however, that benefit in older age. Seniors also seem to be happier with their other social relationships too. They have a smaller but closer circle of friends and gain more benefits from these close, emotional bonds. Old Age makes you feel better on the whole: You have lived life to its fullest, your kids have now flown the coop and you have seen it all. As you age, you start feeling better about things in general. You look at things more positively and make the fullest of every situation presented to you. You live in the moment and are not worried about future repercussions. Old age is a happy place to be. Look forward to aging positively.
10 pregnancy risk factors that every pregnant woman should be aware ofFollowing are the possible risk factors for pregnant women: Hypertension: Blood pressure rises during pregnancy due to changes in osmotic level. Persistent high blood pressure leads to a condition called as pre-eclampsia. It retards the growth of the baby in the womb and can even result into death of foetus. It can lead to convulsions in mother. Exposure to medicines and drugs: Self medication is a strict NO NO during pregnancy. Certain drugs have harmful effect on the growth and development of baby. Take gynaecologist's opinion and ask a doctor before taking any medication.  Smoking: Smoking retards the growth of foetus (baby in womb). Moms who indulge in smoking give birth to babies with a very low birth weight. It also increases chances of miscarriage. Mother's weight: It is important to make sure that there is a steady weight gain during pregnancy. A weight gain of 11 kilograms is expected over a period of 9 months. Watch for a steady weight gain for a healthy pregnancy sake. Anaemia: There is an increase in blood volume during pregnancy. This can cause the iron levels to drop down resulting in anaemia. Haemorrhoids add further to the iron loss. Iron and folic acid are therefore prescribed. Haemorrhoids: Haemorrhoids are common during pregnancy and after pregnancy due to constipation which is because of hormone induced reduced motility of intestine. The pressure of gravid uterus on intestine may also cause it. Increased consumption of green leafy vegetables and laxative would relieve it. Alcohol: Drinking can cause a harmful effect on the growth and nourishment of child. Child may be born with a serious medical problem. Sexual intercourse: It's strictly not advised during last trimester. Radiation exposure: Exposure to radiotherapy or chemicals in the surrounding should be avoided. Bleeding per vagina: Consult your gynaecologist soon, if you have problem of bleeding per vagina. It could be a sign of abortion.  
A baby - proofed guide to childcareCaring for kids is an important task. Everyone wishes to nourish kids in a loving and caring yet protective atmosphere. Initial stages of development call for more care and attention. Health, hygiene and safety at home and outside are important when it comes to kids. Here are a few helpful tips to all the parents: Nurture your infants with massage. Learn a right way or get it done from a professional. It is a great therapy to make muscles strong and bond with the baby. Prolonged crying bothers parents a lot. Usually continuous crying for long hours is suggestive of colic or stomach ache. It is the most common problem in kids, the reason being immature gastric system. Do not panic. Keep medicines at hand and give them as per instructions by your kid's doctor. Toddlers often insist on being carried even when they know how to walk well. Make sure to hold them comfortably. Diapering a baby is a skill that must be mastered especially when the baby is fidgety. Holding baby in right position flat on the back simplifies the task. Parents adapt to doing the job effortlessly with practice. Transition period of swapping from breastfeed to bottle known as weaning is a tough task for most of the babies. Consider gentle weaning strategies advised by the doctors. Do not be abrupt. Go slow! Some Safety Tips: Cap and lock the medicines, detergents, chemicals etc. in containers keeping them far away from the children. Bathingwater should be always checked before bathing the baby. Do not leave kids alone near water tub or any water source alone. Avoid leaving baby in a highchair to prevent injuries such asbaby climbing out, falling, or sliding. Lock up all the knives, matches, and plastic bags away from children to prevent poisonings, bleeding injuries, burns and suffocation.
16 myths about baby careA new mother experiences a range of emotions. Chief among these is fear, which is a result of the love and attachment that she feels for the baby. In such situations, mothers often tend to believe myths that make no logical or medical sense. Myth 1: If I don't breastfeed my baby immediately after the birth, I won't be able to bond with him adequately. Fact: Although the first few hours of a baby's life are important for both mother and child, sometimes due to unavoidable circumstances, the baby is kept away from the mother. For instance, in cases of cesarean delivery, the new born babies need immediate medical attention, and hence are kept away from the mothers.  However, the love and care you show the child over the years will more than make up for the loss of attachment with the baby during its first few hours. Myth 2: Pinching the baby's nose will make it pointed. Fact: Pinching the nose will only hurt the baby. It will not make the nose pointed. It is possible for a baby to be born with a flat or tilted nose if it gets pressed during delivery. But this is temporary and the nose becomes normal as the nasal bridge develops completely. Myth 3: Mothers should not use yellow clothes and yellow food while breastfeeding as it causes jaundice in the newborn.  Fact: The color of the mother's clothes can't affect the baby's health. There isn't any evidence to show the relationship between yellow food, clothes and jaundice. Myth 4: Umbilical cord stump should be cleaned with alcohol swab every time after changing diaper.  Fact: Alcohol may delay the healing. It is recommended to keep stump clean and dry till it falls off. Myth 5: Some babies can be allergic to mother's milk.  Fact: No. A baby is never allergic to mother's milk. Myth 6: Baby should be wrapped up tightly. This helps to straighten the hands and feet.  Fact: A child's limbs develop faster when they are free to move and not wrapped. Myth 7: Holding the baby all the time will spoil him. Fact: Babies cry to express pain, anger, irritability, hunger, sleep everything. Holding or picking him up to comfort won't make him a spoiled child. Myth 8: Do not take your newborn baby outside. Always keep him in the house.  Fact: Fresh air is good for the baby too. Just avoid heat, crowds and unhygienic places. Myth 9: Vaccines cause autism. Do not vaccinate the baby.  Fact: It is a rumor. Immunization is very important to protect the baby against a number of diseases. Myth 10: Babies do not spit up if they are breastfed.  Fact: It is normal for the babies to burp, spit up, and drool. Do not worry about it if the baby is gaining weight normally. Myth 11: Sleeping on the head causes flat head.  Fact: It is advised medically that all babies should sleep on the back to prevent sudden infant death syndrome. Alternate the head position daily as flat head can be caused only if baby sleeps in same position daily for long time. It is an occasional occurrence.  Myth 12: Putting few drops of oil in baby's ears will keep it clean.  Fact: Do not put oil in the baby's ears. It can hurt the tiny eardrums leading to pain, soreness, and even hearing loss. Oil can cause ear infection too. Myth 13: Use crib bumpers to protect head of your baby. Fact: They are not advisable. The baby's head can get wedged against a bumper causing strangulation or suffocation. Bumpers are dangerous. Myth 14: Stop mother's milk if baby fed only on breast milk has loose motions.  Fact: Passing 5-6 loose motions is normal in a baby. Continue to breastfeed. Do not stop it. Myth 15: Attention span is very short in babies.  Fact: Babies, in fact, have excellent attention spans and have interest in the all things around them. This is why babies learn things so quickly.  Myth 16: Wrap up the baby in blanket if he has fever. Sweating will bring the fever down.  Fact: The fever will rise if you wrap the baby in a blanket. Try to keep the child cool and sponge him with cold/warm water to bring down the fever with the doctor's advice.    
Faking illnesses - An illness in itself?In 2008, a 28 years old woman in the US shared some shocking news with her friends. She had been detected with cancer. She posted updates on social networking sites and wrote blogs on her illness. Sympathy poured in from all corners. Some even sent in monetary help to cover her expenses. The saddest part of the incident though was not her cancer; it was the fact that she had faked it! Police investigations revealed her little trick when no evidences or records were found at the hospitals! Apparently, this isn't a unique case;  faking illnesses or malingering is a very common occurrence. All of us have done it at some point in our lives. While we may have done it to escape a school punishment or to take undue advantage of the office 'sick leaves' for personal purposes, it is usually done on a harmless level. But faking illness can be a chronic disorder too and  medical professionals even have a name for it-; Munchausen's Syndrome. People suffering from this syndrome fake illnesses that they don't actually have, to gain sympathy or simply to be the center of attention. Usually gaining sympathy is the main reason why people fake illnesses. It gives them a chance to be in the spotlight. Everyone calls and visits, expresses concern and fusses over them. Lots of love is showered upon them. Another common reason for faking illnesses, is money and at times, the monetary benefits are higher than the emotional ones. No one hesitates to fulfill the last wish of a dying person, however expensive it may be. Often there are mixed motivations and the person faking an illness has many reasons to keep up the pretense of being sick, for as long as possible. Some people really do have a disease — a mental illness known as a factitious disorder. People with this disorder pretend to have an illness, which is usually a terminal one and often go to great lengths to maintain their hoax. Munchausen syndrome by proxy, is another form of faking illness. People with this disorder, fake illnesses of people under their care; and they usually do this, for monetary benefits. Children are the most common victims in this disease. When you tell someone that your child has cancer, you will receive a great amount of sympathy and all the money you want, no questions asked! People with these disorders are extremely cunning. They go to great extents to maintain their lies. They will build grand stories, complain of fake pains and aches, get admitted to hospitals and undergo a battery of tests, numerous times. Interestingly, they never allow and frequently discourage medical professionals, from talking to any of their family members. Since they know they are faking the illness, they will refuse to undergo treatment, for obvious reasons. . If you think a loved one may be exaggerating or faking their health issues, attempt a gentle conversation, voicing your concerns. Avoid anger, judgment or confrontation, while offering support and care and if possible, help them in finding a treatment. Treatment includes empathy, helping in identifying feelings and issues that led to the development of the disorder and finding  alternative healthy ways to deal with those feelings and issues.
What is megalomania?Bertrand Russell's quote on megalomania perfectly describes the condition:"The megalomaniac differs from the narcissist by the fact that he wishes to be powerful rather than charming, and seeks to be feared rather than loved. To this type belong many lunatics and most of the great men of history." Megalomania is a delusional bipolar disorder. The sufferer believes he is an all-powerful person and that he is superior to all other people. Megalomania comes from the Greek words megalo which means large or great and mania which means madness. It is a psychopathological disorder that has delusional fantasies of power, exaggerated self esteem and a sense of omnipotence. The sufferer may believe he is God or some famous athlete. Although megalomania is a term used for power hungry people, it is clinically described under the mental disorder of narcissism. Narcissism is self-love. Though self-love is a healthy concept, narcissism is a pathological state where one loves oneself to the extent that he starts despising others. Megalomania is caused by certain phobias and mental conditions associated with emotions and personality. In everyday life, megalomania can be a person's mental way of reacting to frustration, abandonment or some serious loss. In the social world, the term megalomaniac is often synonymous with control freaks, power-drunk army generals, executives and politicians. The treatment of megalomania includes medications. The challenge here is that the person may not believe he has anything wrong with him. He, in fact, believes that he is so great that no harm can come to him, so talking him into getting himself treated is very difficult. Adolf Hitler, the German dictator, was a power-hungry control freak. He believed that he was the supreme commander and that his race was the only race suited to inhabit earth. All other races, especially Jews, were inferior and had to be wiped off the face of the earth. Adolf Hitler was megalomaniac.
Exercise, a healthy way to deal with hypertensionYou have not exercised for a long time. You took it easy when it came to physical activity. Now that you are diagnosed with high blood pressure, you will do anything to control it. Even exercise! Exercise, weight management, and a healthy diet are important ways to help prevent high blood pressure and lower the blood pressure that is already high. Benefits of exercise for people with hypertension include: Improve blood and oxygen circulation in the body Promotes sound sleep Improves stamina and endurance Keeps heart healthy Reduces stress and promotes mental health Exercise enhances the effectiveness of medication So how much should one exercise? An exercise session of atleast 30 minutes per day is important. Get started Start slowly and increase gradually. Start with 10 to 15 minutes of exercise and increase it, as youget comfortable. Choose exercises you enjoy and will do consistently. Avoid sudden vigorous activities; they can cause injuries and hamper the routine. Warm up Warming up helps the body adjust slowly from rest to exercise. A warm-up will reduce stress on the body muscles, increase heart rate and respiratory rate, and body temperature slowly. It will also decrease soreness of muscles. Best exercises for lowering blood pressure Stretching: It is the best. It relaxes and helps prepare the body and muscles for activity and prevents injury and muscle strain. Stretching regularly will make you flexible and improve motility. Aerobic exercise: This helps to improve circulation to the entire body. It improves heart function. It gives maximum benefits to the heart. They also help to reduce heart rate and blood pressure by improving breathing pattern thus lowering blood pressure. Walking, swimming, jogging, and skipping are all aerobic activities. Do aerobics for at least 30 minutes three times a week. Strengthening exercises: These include exercises that have repeated muscle contractions till the muscles are tired. These include side balance crunch, climbing a rope, and push-ups. Join a gym. Here are some  exercise guidelines for a better exercising routine in the gym:  Schedule a fixed time for exercise. Find a buddy to exercise with you. Select an exercise that you like. Make variations to avoid getting bored. Boredom can make you stop exercising. Start slowly and increase gradually, especially if you do not exercise regularly. You should wait for an hour after eating before you exercise. Ten minutes of warm up and ten minutes of cool down sessions are must Keep a record of daily exercise.
How to say 'Bye' to split ends? Check out these 10 tips!One of the main reasons for split ends is the use of curling irons and other heat-induced styling treatments. When you go for hair products like hair colors or perms, the shield over your hair's shaft that protects it can get stripped off, thus making your hair liable to split ends. You could also be mechanically stressing your hair by pulling them too much while combing or combing repeatedly. Remember that rubbing your hair up towards the direction of the scalp does not lead to split ends. While there is no remedy to treat split ends, there are ways in which you can keep them away. Did you know that a medical research showed that the only way to keep split ends away is to put a stop on the excessive use of chemical on it? Hairdresser, Holly Kensen, says that split ends are the results of pushing out the natural process and pulling in too many chemicals. It is best to stay away from the styling products and embrace your natural hair! TIP 1 : Get hold of a piece of rosemary (fresh ones are the best!) and immerse them in a cup of hot water for 30 minutes. Once the temperature of the water is back to normal, whisk an egg into it. Mix this blend onto your hair. Rinse after 15 minutes using a light shampoo. TIP 2 : Bring home a ripe papaya and cut it into halves. Choose the part which you believe will be sufficient for your hair. Take off the skin and seeds. Mash it until it becomes a paste. Then, drop a cup of yogurt and stir them into a smooth paste. Apply it on your hair and let it hold for about 30 minutes. Use cold water to rinse it off. TIP 3 : Condition your hair with castor oil. Mix equal amounts of castor, almond, and olive oil and apply it on your hair generously. Wrap your hair in a towel and let it stay for 30 minutes. Then, shampoo your hair. TIP 4 : After you have shampooed your hair, apply a mix of cream and milk on them for about 20 minutes. Focus especially on the ends. Rinse your hair with cold water. TIP 5 :If you decide to trim your hair on your own, then don't use the paper scissors! They are called 'paper' scissors for a reason. Get hold of hair shears which will not leave your ends damaged. TIP 6 : Trim your hair every six to eight weeks at least up to ¼ to 1 inch. Due to our environment, it is natural for the hair to get damaged in a few weeks. It is important to remove the split ends and let them grow healthy. TIP 7 : Do not trust products which say that they can 'cure' your split ends. Split ends are not curable. They are preventable. The only thing that these products do is to seal up the splits which only makes your hair unhealthy. TIP 8 : Try to stay away from chemicals as much as you can. Chemicals only tamper with your natural hair and ruin their texture. If you really have to use it then make sure you condition them regularly. TIP 9 : Use coconut oil to fix your split ends. Buy an extra-virgin and organic coconut oil. Before washing your hair, apply about 2 spoons of the oil on your dry hair. Emphasize on the hair ends. If you want, you can steam your hair for some time (about 20 minutes). Then, wash your hair with a light shampoo and condition them. TIP 10 :This is one of the best ways to help your split ends stay away: Get hold of chamomile tea and brew it on a pot. Then pre-rinse your hair with it. After you have rinsed them, wash and condition your hair normally.
Dos and don s during heat crampsHeat cramps can affect people who exercise or work in the heat. It could be due to dehydration, so if you are going to be active in the heat then you need to drink a lot of water even if you are not thirsty. Before going out, find out what the temperature is and do not exercise outdoors in the heat. Heat cramps may not be as serious as heat exhaustion or heat stroke, but the condition needs to be treated with the same urgency. People who are on low-sodium diets may be affected more than others. Heat cramps may seem mild, but they can be the first sign of heat exhaustion, so pay attention and stop all activity, and rest. Here is what you can do and what you should avoid if you suffer from heat cramps: Dos : If you have muscle spasms and the muscles are unable to function properly, then immediately stop all activity. Get inside a room or go into the shade and take some rest. Raise the feet to 12 inches above the body. Gently massage and stretch the muscles. Wet a paper towel or handkerchief and drape it around your face, at the back of your neck and underarms. Drink a clear natural juice or a sports drink to get the electrolyte balance back. Do not go out in the sun again even if the spasms have subsided. If the cramps last more than an hour then go to a doctor. If you are on a low-sodium diet then tell the doctor about it. Don s : Don take any painkillers or fever tablets as they could cause harm. Avoid caffeine, alcohol, and sugary soda drinks. Don rub alcohol on the muscles. Don drink ice cold drinks as they can cause stomach cramping. Don take salt tablets unless the doctor has prescribed them. Don do your full quota of exercises if the heat is getting on to you. Don stop drinking water even if you do not feel thirsty. Don resume any strenuous activity for several hours after a heat cramp. Prevention:Prevention is always better, so it’s a good idea to reduce exercise in the summer, especially when it is extremely hot. If people are working outside, like construction workers, then they must take more breaks, keep their heads covered and sip on water after every 10 minutes to prevent heat cramps. Always plan ahead and get acclimatized if you know you have to do a physical activity in the heat that could cause sweating. If you are an athlete, then do take a mix of sports drink, water, and juices to maintain the electrolyte balance. Always carry water with you if you are playing any sport in the heat. All events must be planned at a time when the heat is bearable and not when it is too hot. Keep a close watch on the person if there are signs of vomiting and nausea along with flushed skin. Rush them to the hospital.
A fine spine - Common disorders of the spineThe spine is made up of small bones called vertebrae that are stacked one upon the other. When viewed from the side, the normal spine has gentle curves to it. Because the spine is a complex structure and happens to be at the center of all our activities, it is subjected to a lot of diseases. A common misconception of low backache is that you should rest. In fact, rest is not recommended at all. Keep up with light non-strenuous activities after the symptoms have subsided. Given here are a few common conditions of the spine: Loss of curvature: The spine, when seen sideways has gentle curves to it. The curves, when lost, can lead to pain and imperfect posture. Kyphosis and Scoliosis are the commonest form of spine curvature abnormalities.Kyphosis is the abnormal and excessive curving of the upper part of the spine. It is commonly called as a hump. It may be present since birth or may develop during the teenage years. The most common symptoms seen are a hump, back pain and muscle stiffness. The pain remains constant and does not worsen over time. If the curvature is too much, then the thoracic cage may get compressed and pressed for space. This may cause cardio-thoracic problems like chest pain, shortness of breath and even death. Compression of spinal nerves may cause loss of bladder and bowel control, loss of sensation and muscle weakness. Kyphosis is treated with physiotherapy, anti-inflammatory drugs and in severe cases, with bracing.Scoliosis is the side-to-side curvature that occurs during growth spurts before puberty. It may also be caused by spinal cord injuries and arthritis. Scoliosis develops gradually. The symptoms seen are usually by people other than the patient, where they may notice a slight slouch while walking. At times it may be seen that clothes that used to fit earlier are now ill-fitting. The pants seem to have shortened on one side. The curvature if mild responds well to physiotherapy. Physiotherapy is also useful as it helps to stretch and strengthen the muscles. This helps in stopping the progression of curvature. Severe cases require bracing and even surgical intervention with rods, hooks, wires and screws to correct the curvature. Sciatica: Sciatica is a condition that arises when the sciatic nerve is pressed upon. This condition arises when a degenerated vertebra presses upon the disc below it, or when there is a disc prolapse.  Abnormally tight piriformis muscle of the buttocks and a tumor in the spine may also cause sciatic pain. The hallmark symptom is the characteristic pain along the leg that starts from the hip and radiates all the way down. The pain is worsened by sitting and tingling numbness also develops. Treatment includes anti-inflammatory medicines and physiotherapy. Spondylolisthesis: When the spine is subjected to the pressures of daily activity, there is a lot of wear and tear that goes on in the vertebrae. This may cause the vertebra to move forward and slide on the vertebra below it. As a result, you may experience a constant backache. Spondylolisthesis can be congenital, it may occur due to trauma to the vertebral column, due to a tumor in the vertebra or due to degenerative changes in the vertebra and cartilage as a result of diseases like arthritis. Low backache is the hallmark of this disease. The pain is typically worse after any exercise that involves the lower back. The motions of low back are restricted and if there is nerve compression then tingling and numbness along the leg may also be seen.Rest and avoiding exertion of back muscles helps reduce the symptoms. Physiotherapy helps in restoring the strength and improving the range of motions. Spinal Stenosis: Degenerative diseases like osteoarthritis cause development of bone spurs in the vertebral column leading to its narrowing. This puts pressure on the nerves and leads to pain and tingling and numbness. Cervical Spondylosis: This condition occurs due to degenerative changes in the vertebrae of the neck region. Commonly seen as neck stiffness with pain that radiates all the way down the arm.  The pain occurs as the nerves get compressed by disc prolapse or bone outgrowths in the vertebra. Treatment includes neck immobilization, cervical traction, medications for pain and physiotherapy. Ways to reduce spine problems and backache are: Quit smoking Adopt a perfect posture Do exercises that will strengthen your core, lower back muscles and abs. Do not ignore or overlook the pains. Consult your doctor at the earliest. Spinal problems are the ones that are frequently overlooked. Ignoring the symptoms may lead to worsening of the problem. See your doctor at the earliest to be safe. The spine is the backbone of our body, in the true sense of the word. It is up to us to keep our spine in good condition as an unhealthy spine will interfere with almost all our body functions.
Busting misconceptions about homosexualityIn the past few years, homosexuality has become a subject of public discourse in India. Thanks to gay pride marches and the Delhi High Court's historic ruling decriminalizing same-sex intercourse in 2009, more people today are willing to accept homosexuality as normal. However, there are still a large number of people who are still confused about whether homosexuality is normal. Homosexuals are people who get attracted to people of the same gender. Gay is a term used for both male and female homosexuals, but some prefer the term 'lesbian' when it comes to women homosexuals. Some misinformed people consider homosexuality as a purely decadent western phenomenon which is far from the truth. Homosexuality finds its place in recorded history throughout the world. So is homosexuality abnormal? A few decades ago a gay person would have ended up on a psychiatrist's couch where attempts would have been made to re-orient him/her towards the heterosexuality. However, as the American Psychology Association notes, "No, lesbian, gay, and bisexual orientations are not disorders. Research has found no inherent association between any of these sexual orientations and psychopathology. Both heterosexual behavior and homosexual behavior are normal aspects of human sexuality." Some scientists are trying to find a genetic link to homosexuality. Results so far have not established a definite link. A whole lot of factors could play a role in deciding sexual orientation - genetic, hormonal, developmental, social, and cultural. One cannot safely conclude that being "gay" is in one's genes and is therefore, hereditary. Legalizing gay marriages Same-sex marriage is legally recognized in several jurisdictions within the United States. As of April 2013, nine states—Connecticut, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont, and Washington—as well as the District of Columbia and three Native American tribes[1]—have legalized same-sex marriage, representing 15.7% of the US population.
Sex at 50 for womenAs you age, your reflexes slow down. The passion to love and to be loved is never dying and just because you have grown in age, you should not stop enjoying sex. The body, especially in case of women also undergoes many changes after the menopausal period. Although it may take you more time to become aroused but the desire to have sex is always there. Moreover, with no children and no worry of getting pregnant you can enjoy sex uninterrupted without any tension. Women who continue to remain sexually active after their menopause retain their ability for enjoying normal orgasms. But this does not mean that there is no difference in the enjoyment factor. Several factors can be detrimental in continuing sex activity. However, there are solutions that can help the couple in their fifties still enjoy sex. Better sex can be possible even during the fifties but for this, you should be ready to take some extra efforts and make your body more comfortable for sex. Using lubrication After the menopause, the body of a woman starts producing less female hormone-estrogen. Lower estrogen level leads to physical changes such as less elasticity of vagina, dryness in vagina and so on. Your vagina may also take more time to swell and lubricate; in turn making intercourse painful or uncomfortable. Instead of getting discouraged by such occurrence, you should try to find out a remedy for it. For overcoming the dryness of vagina, you can use different sexual lubricants that are specifically prepared for the older women. You get them in suppositories or gel forms, which you apply liberally to the vaginal area before having sex. There are certain vaginal moisturizers also available in the market that makes vaginal penetration easier by maintaining elasticity and lubrication. Increase the frequency The more often you have sex, the easier it is for you to maintain elasticity and lubrication. So, go for it more often to enjoy it more now. Hormonal therapy treatment If you are suffering from distressing menopausal symptoms like hot flushes, you can opt for hormonal therapy treatment. This will help to relieve the vaginal dryness. Some doctors also suggest local intra-vaginal therapy to avoid discomfort and dryness during penetration. Application of local estrogen into the vagina enhances the blood flow to this area and ensures more sensation and lubrication. Intra-vaginal estrogen treatment This treatment is carried out in three different ways: A small ring of silastic is inserted high inside the vagina and is kept there for three months. This ring release estrogen in right amount to promote optimum vaginal health. A small tablet of estrogen is inserted inside the vagina twice in a week. Conjugated estrogen cream is applied with small applicator twice in a week. So, there are different methods for increasing responsiveness, vaginal lubrication and elasticity that help you enjoy sex better even in your fifties. Overcome awareness about your body The body of women in fifties is saggy and wrinkled. However, if you have a young heart and passion for sex, you should not let the body image spoil your enjoyment. It is your response towards your partner that matters the most as both of you are going to age slowly and get more wrinkles as the age progresses. Like someone said, it's the imperfections and not the perfections that we fall in love with.
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