Friday, 21 June 2019

What Should Health Priorities be

This may at first glance, seem a fairly obvious question with a fairly obvious answer that stress has an adverse or negative impact on an individual's health, either physically or mentally.

Whilst this may seem true to most people, there is a slightly more underlying complex issue which concerns the nature of stress, its value as well as its detriment's, and why an understanding of the nature of stress and how it should be handled can have a major impact on an individual's health.

It is a fairly recent understanding in the field of holistic medicine that stress can have an impact on an individual's health. Until fairly recently there was a belief that external factors had a relatively limited impact on an individual's health, and it was largely how the individual handled their external environment that determined how they felt.

This in effect was saying that an individual should really be bullet-proof, and that with a few exceptions the external environment and the stresses of that environment had relatively little impact on an individual's ability to function.

This belief has pretty much swung the other way nowadays, with an understanding that external environments that generate stress do have an impact, and there is a much healthier focus on either removing some of the levels of stress if possible, or on finding ways of helping an individual to cope with the nature of stress.

There is also an understanding that certain levels of stress can in fact be quite a good thing at times, partly because they generate a degree of motivation and impetus within an individual to change and do things and move their lives forward in ways that they might not do otherwise.

The whole focus of an individual maintaining their own sense of health promotion by understanding their health and what works for and against them as an individual becomes more of an imperative with the rising costs of health insurance and health care, and the onus that puts on an individual to take responsibility for their own health and the factors that affect it.

The issue of stress should perhaps be clarified by splitting it into two main areas, the external motivators of stress and the internal motivators of stress. This in part is important because it clarifies areas of life that an individual is in control of, and clarifies areas of life that an individual is not in control of.

Once an individual is clear, or clearer about what they are in control of in their life then they have a sense of purpose about being able to change the things they can. Often external stress such as work pressures, travel/commute pressures and family pressures are often seen as being outside the control of the individual, and as such represent a greater level of stress because they are powerless to affect the outcome. Health promotion is a slightly stuffy term in one sense in that it is normally used by official bodies, governments and academic experts to talk about a wide range of social activities and behaviours that collectively have a big impact on an individual's health and sense of well-being.

The most common and obvious examples relate to issues such as smoking, drinking, gambling and diet, as well as a range of social conditions such as housing, poverty and unemployment, all of which have an impact on determining levels of health.Whilst these areas of health promotion are important and valid, they tend to be areas that have a huge amount of research done into the in order to produce evidenced-based processes of solutions to public health issues.

Whilst this is an important area for many people, there is another aspect to health promotion which actually has much more of an impact in some ways, which is the way an individual promotes their own health and well-being on a daily basis.This invariably raises the question of what is health and what is not health and what is health promotion and what is not health promotion.

The notion of health has a number of standard academic definitions, the majority of which are fairly meaningless in that they are so broad and generalised that they can mean pretty much what anyone wants them to mean. The nature of health to an individual tends to be something that they take for granted until in some way they are alerted that they could have a problem.

Such a problem could well be of a physical or emotional nature or could relate to a close family member or friend or could relate to a change in circumstances such as bereavement, moving home or losing a job. All these areas have an impact on the nature of health in terms of physical symptoms, emotional stability and a general sense of well-being.

The circumstances of life tend to challenge and question a person's core sense of self, how much of a belief they have themselves and capability of running their own life, and their ability to deal with the challenges that invariably arise from these areas. An individual's sense of health promotion may not be a conscious process, but can be enhanced considerably by healthy levels of emotional and social support in terms of family and environment.

The healthiest form of promotion in terms of an individual's health care relates to their own internal locus of control in many ways. Other health prevention areas such as diet/exercise which are well known, will to a large extent depend on how much an individual values their own well-being and is willing to undertake these other areas as a result. Having knowledge of one's own health is important, but more important is the level of motivation behind it.  Most individuals are familiar with a pacemaker, it is a device that regulates the human heart in cases where the natural regulating mechanisms no longer work properly. Aside from what it is and what it does, not many know how this intricate medical device is manufactured.

The pacemaker is a sophisticated device that has evolved over the years through medical device development. There are several main components in a pacemaker; the battery, leads, motherboard and the assembly and packing. Some of these electronic components are difficult to make, therefore some manufacturers outsource production to medical machine shops that have the equipment and skillset to create such intricate devices.

Starting with the battery, pacemakers are typically manufactured with a lithium/iodine cell that is hermetically sealed. One method used to create this component starts with combining iodine and a polymer. These two elements are heated, which creates a molten charge-transfer complex. After this step has been completed, the molten liquid is added to a preformed cell that is shaped like a half moon. This cell contains lithium anode, which has a positive charge, as well as a cathode collector screen. From this point, the hot liquid is allowed to cool and form. The formed product is called a cathode. Once the cathode has been created, it is sealed hermetically so no moisture can seep into it.

The leads in a pacemaker are wires that are about as thin as a spaghetti noodle. These wires are soft and insulated. To form the leads used in a pacemaker, a metal alloy is used. First, the metal alloy is heated causing it to become molten. After the metal alloy has been made into this liquid form, it is pushed through a small opening and cut. The cut pieces are bundled together and then treated with a polymeric insulator like polyurethane, for example. The leads then have a shaped tip placed on one end and a pacemaker connector on the other.

All of the electrical circuitry of a pacemaker is contained on the motherboard. This includes semiconductor chips, resistors and capacitors along with other components. The motherboard is very small, usually around two square centimeters. Electronic configurations are mapped out on this small board and then the necessary components are installed. Components are attached to the motherboard with soldering welds.

Once the battery, leads and motherboard are ready, they can be assembled. The battery and circuitry are connected and then inserted into a metal casing made from titanium or titanium alloy. The assembly also has a fitting placed on it. The fitting serves as the connecting point for the leads. PQRST, a mnemonic used by doctors and nurses for evaluating pain, can also be used by patients to improve communication in healthcare. The potential benefits of the improved communication include making doctor visits and other physician encounters more productive, improving the quality of healthcare and lowering the cost of health care.

P in the mnemonic stands for provocation and palliation which stated more simply means, what brings the pain on and what eases it. Q represents quality and calls for a description of the pain with an adjective or adjectives such as cramping, dull, sharp, electrical-like, or burning. R refers to the region of the body where the pain begins and where it radiates if it moves from that position to another. S stands for severity and should generally be rated on a scale of 1+ - 10+, with 1+ meaning the pain is barely noticeable or just above 0 and 10+ meaning that it is virtually unbearable. T represents the relationship of the pain to time. That temporal description should include when the pain first started, how long it lasts, how often it occurs, how long it takes to be relieved by whatever relieves it, when the severity changed (if applicable) and whether other associated symptoms precede, follow, or occur together with the pain.

Since studies have shown that in most cases information provided by patients is more important than diagnostic tests or physical findings for accurate diagnosis, a complete and accurate description of pain is very important. During many doctor-patient encounters however, patients are not prepared to give that all-important information in an accurate, succinct and organized manner, thus resulting in suboptimal productivity. That in turn often times results in increased reliance on diagnostic testing and a delay in diagnosis. In addition to the increased costs resulting from overreliance on diagnostic testing, there is a cost factor associated with the need for additional office visits because of suboptimal productivity during prior visits.

In order for patients to make the best use of PQRST communication in healthcare, it is necessary to track and document the various PQRST elements of pain and to have the documentation available at the time of doctor visits or other physician encounters. Recording PQRST information about pain immediately as the information becomes available and well prior to seeing the doctor increases the likelihood that it will be accurate, organized and useful for a doctor to make a diagnosis and provide appropriate treatment.

The improved communication in healthcare resulting from patients' use of the PQRST system in describing pain can be of benefit to patients with respect to it promoting more timely diagnoses, better healthcare, and reduced healthcare costs. Phrases like "gut feeling" or "butterflies" are familiar to us and although these may appear to be cliches, research shows that the link between the gut, the brain and our emotions is real. The gut is a hollow tube of tissue, embedded with nutrient absorbing folds and chemical spilling cells. It's considered a unique system with a tremendous impact on how we feel. Indeed, it is here that 95% of serotonin, the happy neuro-chemical is produced. Therefore, paying attention to our bowels, more specifically, tending to our good bacteria is essential.

Interestingly, gut microbe research has shed new light on the relationship between ecosystem stability and our emotions. Recently an article in Animal Behaviour and the Microbiome explained how molecules involved in gut-brain communication in mice is related to depression and anxiety. Indeed, many creatures in the animal kingdom appropriate bizarre behavior to acquire microbes for survival. The bumble bee, for example, obtains much needed bacteria through social contact with hive mates and by feeding on their faeces. A study by the American Society for Microbiology suggests that colonies of intestinal bacteria differed between autistic and non-autistic children. Autistic children exhibit more gastrointestinal problems including severe inflammation which has been linked to behavioral problems. This evidence suggests that our world view about ourselves and our bodies is too simplistic. Bodily systems are not separate from each other but work in tandem. Current research suggests that looking at the relationships between our bowel bacteria and the terrain (us) is important. One solution yielding great results is taking mold-free, human-strain, raw, fermented pre and probiotics. This combination replaces a lost ecosystem and provides them with essential nutrients (prebiotics). Many of the pre/probiotics on the market are moldy due to processing techniques, causing additional toxicity in the body.

The story does not end there a change in the internal environment allows good bacteria to create a niche in the gut; thus restoring numbers that were lost through bad eating habits, antibiotics, heavy metals exposure, radiation, artificial flavors and the myriad of additives that are found in our modern foods. Research on the effects of antibiotics in 2008 showed that after a 5 day dose gut bacteria were radically changed. Those that were previously abundant were reduced and those of a lesser ranking increased. Therefore directly or indirectly our gut bacterial colonies have become unbalanced, explaining the sharp increase in obesity, allergies and inflammation. So just as skin bacteria protect against infection so too the microbial community in the gut support immunity and detoxification. Herein lies the key to good health; a colony of gut bacteria that is well maintained, allowing a symbiotic relationship between our human cells and 90% of bacterial cells in our bodies. Communication between cells is heightened, communication between the brain and the rest of the body becomes more efficient and the rhythm of life changes.

Furthermore, there is a bidirectional relationship between our minds, emotions and our environment. Thus as Bruce Lipton, Ph.D. so aptly explained the lens through which we view the world is created by our belief systems, thoughts, emotions and experiences. These in turn shape our bodily mechanisms, cell factories, microbes, determining the gut, brain and emotion dance that is human life.

It is fitting to say that we are all interconnected. We are an entanglement of microbes and human cells infused with consciousness. Humanity's evolution starts one individual at a time from the inside-out. By changing our belief system and working in symbiosis with our microbial colonies we can change our lives. What tune are your gut, brain and emotions dancing to? Cognitive testing is an examination performed to determine the cognitive function of a person. A professional mental health practitioner, educational professional or neurologist - depending on the use of the results often conducts these tests. Nevertheless, several standardized tests have been published. People have the opportunity to develop their own standards, matching and mixing aspects of different tests that can be used to measure the cognitive function.

Importance of cognitive tests

Cognitive assessment helps to evaluate important aspects of brain functions including memory, processing speed, concentration, reasoning capabilities and language. In effect, the tests help to define a personalized benchmark for future comparison. Changes in the waistline or blood pressure can help the physician track the patient's risk of contracting metabolic syndrome. On the same note, regular cognitive tests help the neuropsychologist to track down changes in the brain health. This helps the team to locate early signs and symptoms of problems, in order to take immediate action. The tests provide a point of reference to help address concerns or problems, including brain injury. These helps to develop a treatment and prevention plan.

Cognitive tests are recommended for all groups of people, regardless of their health status. However, the test may be of greatest interest to people seeking for early detection and prevention of problems. The tests are also recommended for people who have attained the age of 55 or older. Furthermore, the tests are performed on those with chronic health conditions, such as cardiac, vascular disease. If you come from a family with a history of dementia, Alzheimer's disease or neurological condition, cognitive tests are recommended. In addition, if you are involved in activities which put you at an increased risk of getting head injuries, e.g. workplace duties or sports- you may consider the tests.

How cognitive tests are performed

A person is often required to complete several tasks that demand cognitive skills. The exam is normally broken into different components to assess the levels of different aspects like understanding language, reasoning and more. Each of these sections is scored separately. The results derived thereof are compared with the results of other people. This helps to define exactly where the person falls on the scale of performance.

The tests do not provide information about intelligence. However, they can provide information pertaining to how an individual acquires and processes information. Furthermore, information can be derived identifying areas where the individual lags behind cognitively compared with peers. 1. The Cold Water Therapy

Cold water is the way to go when you've got eye bags. Yes, it's as simple as dipping a clean piece of cloth in cold water and then touching it to your eyes for about 10 minutes each. Rest your eyes for the night and when you wake up, the hideous eye bags will be gone!

2. The Classic Cucumber Solution

You've probably seen it done on TV or in the movies--- the use of cucumber for removing eye bags. This classic solution is certainly effective, safe, and cheap. You just need to grab two slices of cucumber and place them on one eye each. Close your eyes and relax for about 10 to 15 minutes. The cucumber contains antioxidants that will do the trick in eliminating the irritation. Meanwhile, make sure the slices are cold so the cooling effect can help with the puffiness.

3. The Tea Bag Treatment

Your tea bags are actually worth more than just a healthful drink. Simply place them inside the refrigerator until they feel cold enough. Then you can position them on top of your closed eyes, just like what you did with the cucumber slices. With this treatment, your eyes will feel relieved and the eye bags will significantly be reduced. After all, tea is known to be a powerful antioxidant that battles aging. It also contains anti-inflammatory properties which significantly lessens swelling. Just make sure to use only green and black tea bags.

4. The Aloe Gel Remedy

You need to pick a leaf from a fresh aloe plant and squeeze the gel out. Now all you have to do is rub the gel on the eye bags in a gentle manner until you feel that it has been absorbed already. This aloe gel is great for giving a cooling and moisturizing effect. It's also known to keep the eye bags from appearing again. This is because the aloe plant is known to have great medicinal value. It's known for anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Hence, you can expect the gel not only to remove the eye bags but to rejuvenate the skin too.

These natural remedies are easy, quick fixes that have been used time and again by many individuals. They are safe, fast, and effective and will not burn a hole into your pocket. However, you must also do your part in the prevention of returning eye bags by getting enough sleep, not tiring your eyes in front of the TV or computer, and generally living a healthy lifestyle. Whether you like it or not, stress is an unavoidable part of modern day life. Some people enjoy stress as they love challenges and perform better under pressure, while others succumb to stress as at times it becomes too devastating to disrupt their healthy state of equilibrium and make them sick both mentally and physically. If your work or family life is becoming too stressful due to anonymous reasons, following are some of the stress relief techniques that can help you prepare for the challenges of contemporary life.

• Don't be a pessimist:
One of the biggest reasons why people get stuck in a stressful situation is the fact that a major part of the situation is created by the person himself/herself. When an individual starts thinking in a negative way, they are bound to find problems in even their biggest achievements. One of the simplest, and perhaps even the most effective, way to minimize stress is to start looking at the bright side of things. If you are optimist, you will end up coping better with situations that can lead to stress.

• Change your response towards stressful situations:
If you are a pessimist and have a knack of finding problems in great situations, you are bound to get stressed out with even the smallest of problems. The best you can do to avoid stress and maintain a healthy lifestyle is to believe that the stress is a result of the event and not the event on its own. Once you have figured out the problem that leads to stress, you can even find out the solution to the same problem. Identifying the core problem that is leading to stress will help you deal with stress in a much better way.

• Become spiritual:
No matter what your doctor believes about spirituality, the fact remains that meditation and being spiritual in nature can help you have a better control over your mind, body and your emotions. Spirituality and meditation can help you figure out healthy and better ways to deal with stress, ensuring that you do not overreact to situations, which can be handled in some other way. In fact, spirituality is one of the best stress relief techniques that can help you sustain the challenges of modern life.

• Don't make yourself available to everybody:
While we do not want you to neglect others who are in need, you should make sure that you do not always take up all the problems of your colleagues and friends. If someone discusses an issue with you, try to avoid it if the issue is not serious and can be handled by anybody else. Saying yes to everything and everybody will take a toll on your mind, leaving you with less time to relax and adding to stress. Try to encourage your friends to deal with their problems on their own, unless, obviously, you can easily solve their problem. Visit here to know about definition of stress.

• Maintain a social network of your own:
One of the best ways to deal with stress and a problematic situation is to get out of the situation completely. If you are in a stressful situation and want to give your mind and body sometime to relax, nothing is better than visiting an old friend or going to a place, which you always wanted. Once you are out of the situation, you can get enough rest and hence plan out your next moves.

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