How to Treat and Prevent Swimmers Ear This Summer

Summer is a popular time for young and old to spend a lot more time in bodies of water. While the ear does a great job keeping a lot of that water out the ear canal, it’s not perfect. For many people, they end up with water caught in their ear. After a while, this can lead to inflammation and infection, if left untreated. To avoid the miserable pain that comes along with swimmers ear, consider the following to treat and prevent the condition.

Treat Swimmers Ear Quickly and Easily

You can treat swimmers ear quickly and easily. All you need to do is ensure all of the water stuck in the ear comes out. You can do this by tilting your head to the side and waiting for a few minutes. If you don’t feel anything come out, it’s possible to help it along with some hot compresses. Place a hot compress on the ear while tilting the head. This should result in discharge. Some of it can be the water that’s stuck in the ear, but a lot of it will be earwax. Earwax melts when warmed up and then it naturally drains.

Be sure the hot compress is not too hot. This can burn the ear, which will cause more problems. A warm compress that is comfortable on the ear will do just as well as a hotter one.

Besides hot compresses, it’s possible to remove water from the ears with eardrops. Most eardrops sold in stores contain alcohol. Alcohol will dry up the inside of the ear and help excess water drain. Simply place the eardrops in the ear and tilt the head. Do this for a few minutes to see if water starts to drip out of the ear.

Since swimmers ear can lead to severe inflammation that causes pain, an over-the-counter pain reliever may be needed. Tylenol, aspirin, Motrin, and other pain relievers are appropriate for swimmers ear pain. If the pain worsens or continues for more than a couple of days, it’s best to contact a doctor for evaluation. Swimmers ear can sometimes turn into an infection, which will require antibiotics to treat. Antibiotics prescribed by a doctor should be taken in its entirety to ensure the infection is completely resolved.

Preventing Swimmers Ear

Swimmers ear is caused by having water stuck in the ear. To prevent the inflammation that occurs, it’s important to keep water out of the ear. The easiest way to do that is to wear earplugs. Not all earplugs will work because they need to fit in the ear. Earplugs in stores usually do not fit everyone’s ears the same and some people end up with water in their ear anyway. In this case, it is worse because instead of the water naturally coming out, it becomes stuck because of the earplug. This is why it is important to speak to a doctor to have earplugs specifically made to fit into the ear.

If earplugs are not desired, eardrops can be used to help move the water out of the ear. Eardrops specifically for people vulnerable to swimmers ear are available in stores, but it’s possible to make some at home. One part vinegar and one part alcohol work well. Simply use a couple of these drops in the ears before going swimming and any water that enters should easily come out.

Whenever water does become lodged in the ear, it’s critical to remove it as soon as possible. Do this by tilting the head to the side for a few minutes. Shaking the head in the direction of the tilt can help the water move towards the exit of the ear canal. Using the hand as a suction can also help with removing the water. Simply place the palm of the hand on the ear and push slightly against the ear and then away from it. Doing this several times can greatly help bring the water outside of the ear.

Swimmers ear is not serious unless it becomes infected. It’s frustrating to deal with, though. Try to prevent swimmers ear as much as possible. If it does happen, treat it quickly with the options above. If it doesn’t get better, turn to a medical professional for help.

Is Your Dizziness a Concern?

Everyone gets dizzy once and a while. It’s common for adults.

While most of the time, it isn’t serious, there are some medical issues that you need to be aware of to ensure your dizziness isn’t a sign of a bigger problem.

Causes of Dizziness

Vertigo

What you need to know, which will calm your fears, is only 40 percent of people actually suffer from vertigo. Vertigo is a serious condition in which a room can spin as you stand still. Vertigo is a symptom of a balance disorder. It can cause you to vomit or just feel nauseous.

Inner Ear Problems

Inner ear problems can also contribute to dizziness, and it isn’t a sign of vertigo. The inner ear condition is called benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV). Everyone’s ear has calcium and otoconia (protein crystals). When those become dislodged and float around your ear, you end up with the spins.

The only way to correct this is through physical therapy. With specific movements, the crystal and calcium move to where they need to be, and the dizziness ceases. While physical therapy is effective, the results can be temporary in about 50 percent of the cases. Many sufferers need to repeat the therapy in five years.

Blood Flow Problems

Blood flow has to do with people experiencing dizziness as well. When someone lies down, blood flow slows down, so when the person stands up, it’s the lack of blood flow that causes the dizziness. Meeting with a neurologist can help you understand if this is a concern, so treatment can be prescribed to keep blood flow constant.

Low Levels of Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 deficiencies can lead to a host of neurological problems, especially dizziness. If this is the problem, simply taking vitamin B12 supplements will solve the dizziness. Diagnosing it is easy with a blood test.

Don’t take vitamin B12 first. It’s important to know if you are deficient first before trying to increase the amount you have in your body.

Heart Disease

This is the reason you need to have your dizziness assessed. It can be a symptom of heart disease. If you find the spins are most likely happening when you get up quickly from a sitting or lying down position, it may be cardiovascular-related. Your heart valves may be leaking or narrowing or you may have arrhythmia. The dizziness is caused by the reduction of blood flow to the brain.

Migraines

If you’re a migraine sufferer, the dizziness may be coming from that. Some people may not experience the pain of a migraine but be suffering from one. The only sign is the dizziness. According to the Duke Vestibular Disorders Clinic, 40 percent of people with migraines also experience dizziness.

Anxiety

Anxiety can cause dizziness. The reason this is serious is that you could be in a dangerous situation when you experience the spins. This can put you at risk. For example, if you’re operating a piece of equipment at work and get dizzy, you may end up falling and injuring yourself.

Make an appointment with your doctor if you experience high levels of anxiety. The doctor can prescribe anti-anxiety medication to help you, so you don’t end up with as many episodes of dizziness.

Drug Side Effects

Many prescription drugs have dizziness as a side effect. If you’re withdrawing from any medications, dizziness can also be a problem. If you recently started or stopped a prescription, ask the doctor about it. You may need to either reduce the dose, change medication, or titrate off the medication to prevent the dizziness.

Diet and Dehydration

When you don’t drink enough, you can experience dizziness. The American Heart Association reports dehydration leads to a drop in blood pressure, and that is what causes the dizziness.

A diet can cause dehydration too. When losing weight, the body loses water. If the person isn’t drinking enough water to compensate the loss, dehydration happens. This is why many people who diet become dizzy.

Check with Your Doctor

Dizziness isn’t something you should ignore. Call your doctor today to make an appointment about the dizziness you’re experiencing. While it may not be life threatening, it’s good to know for sure. Dizziness is not something that happens for no reason. With a single appointment, you can find out if you should be really concerned.

10 Ways to Protect Yourself During Allergy Season

Spring is right around the corner, and you know what that means – allergies! As many as 50 million American suffer from allergies. If you’re one of them, you are probably already starting to think how you can protect yourself from all of the sneezing, headaches, and congestion you’ll have to deal with in a few short weeks. The following can help you do that, so you can make this allergy season much less bothersome.

#1: Make an Appointment with Your Allergist

This is the time to schedule an appointment with your allergist if you haven’t done so already. He can test you for allergens, so you know exactly what you’re fighting against this season. He may even be able to give you some tips on how to avoid them when the results come back.

#2: Stock Up on Meds

You should shop for allergy medications now. You can save money if you buy ahead of time because of coupons and pre-allergy season sales. The other benefit of buying allergy medications now is that you won’t have to rush out to the store when you’re feeling sick from them.

If you need prescriptions for medications, be sure to ask for as much as you need for the entire season when you’re at the allergist’s office. You don’t want to be stuck with no medication, and for some allergists, it can take a while to get a refill.

#3: Eat Healthy and Exercise

Eating healthy and exercising can strengthen your immune system, which takes a huge hit during allergy season. If you start now, your reactions may not be as bad because your immune system will be well-rested and ready to combat all of the allergens.

#4: Pay Attention to Pollen Counts

If pollen is your biggest allergen, you need to pay attention to pollen counts each day. Your local news station will tell you, but there are many apps and website that will give you the same information when you need it for your area. Simply conduct a search on Google or in the App Store or Google Play on your mobile device.

#5: Plan Your Day Around Pollen Counts

If the pollen is going to be high during the morning, it makes sense to wait to go outside until the afternoon or evening.  If it’s going to be bad during the afternoon, you should go outside in the morning. It may be frustrating to plan your day over something as trivial as pollen counts, but it can help you feel less miserable the next couple of months.

#6: Take Medication Before Being Exposed

Unless you take medication daily, you should try to  prevent an allergy attack before it happens. When going outside, be sure to take a dose of your medication, even if the pollen counts are low. With this defense, you’ll have even less of a chance of becoming sick.

#7: Invest in Face Masks

It’s not the most stylish thing you can do, but it’s worth it when you don’t feel ill after mowing your lawn. The best ones are the N95 filter masks because of their effectiveness in blocking pollen.

#8: Limit Stress

Stress can make your immune system tired, which will decrease its efficiency in keeping allergens from hurting you. Be sure to take good care of your mental health during allergy season by engaging in stress-reducing activities – yoga, meditation, prayer, reading, or whatever works you.

#9: Wash Your Hair at Night

Pollen can cling to hair, especially if you use mousse or gel. Be sure to wash your hair at night, so you’re not breathing in the pollen while you sleep. Try not to use mousse or gel during allergy season to limit the amount of pollen that gets trapped in your hair.

#10: Wash Your Nose

Your nose has little hairs inside of it to keep dust, germs, and yes, allergens out of your body. It’s important to wash your nose during allergy season for more of a defense against them. Use a saline sinus rinse or a nasal spray.

Live Better This Allergy Season

You can make it through this upcoming allergy season. Just take care of yourself and do what you have to do to prevent allergens from invading your body. It’s time to fight the allergy battle and win this time.

 

10 Reasons You’re Always Tired

It’s never fun to feel tired all of the time. You just want to return to bed, so you can drift off to sleep land. The problem is that even if you do sleep, you may get up and STILL feel just as tired. It’s a never ending battle.

The problem is that you may not be tired because you aren’t sleeping. There could be a medical cause for your tiredness. The following are some of the most common medical issues that can cause fatigue.

#1: Celiac Disease

Celiac disease is when your body reacts negatively to gluten. Yes, all of that talk about gluten free foods being good for you is true. Gluten is found in bread, cakes and cereals. Other symptoms that are part of celiac disease is diarrhea, weight loss, and anemia.

Celiac disease can be diagnosed with a blood test. Schedule an appointment to find out if this could be the reason you’re tired all of the time.

#2: Anemia

Iron deficiency is common for men and women, but more women suffer from it. Tiredness is one of the first signs of it. Many people also complain of having no energy and their muscles feel heavy.

Identifying anemia is easy with a blood test. This will show the doctor your iron levels, and then you may be prescribed an iron supplement.

#3: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

This syndrome can make someone extremely tired for more than 6 months. Many people aren’t able to work or go to school because they can’t bring themselves to move around much. Usually, people experience a sore throat, muscle and joint pain, and a headache when they are suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome.

If you have these symptoms, contact your doctor for an evaluation. While this is not a serious condition, it can make life very difficult and you may even start to feel depressed because you believe as though you have nothing wrong – you’re just tired.

#4: Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is when your throat narrows while you sleep. This keeps you from breathing and then you end up waking up, or you’ll snore most of the night. Since you are not getting restful sleep, you end up extremely tired the next day.

There is treatment for sleep apnea. It starts with a sleep study to diagnose the condition. If you have it, you may need to wear a device that will allow you to breathe easier.

#5: Underactive Thyroid

The hormone thyroxine can make you feel incredibly tired when it’s out of control. You may also find yourself gaining weight and suffering from aching muscles. While this condition is mostly seen in women, men can suffer from it,

A blood test is the only way to diagnose a thyroid condition. Speak to your doctor about it.

#6: Diabetes

Diabetes is one of those silent conditions because you can feel the effects of it way before you know you have the condition. Diabetes is when you have too much sugar in your blood. This makes you feel tired. People often have other side effects along with tiredness – they may feel thirsty, have to go to the bathroom and lose weight.

#7: Glandular Fever

This is a viral infection. The infection causes people to feel extreme fatigue. Most of the time, sufferers will also have a fever, sore throat and swollen glands.

Teenagers are most susceptible to glandular fever. Most cases will resolve on their own in 6 weeks, but it can last for months.

#8: Depression

Depression is a mental disorder that can make you incredibly tired. You are unmotivated and have no energy at all. You just want to stay in bed or on the couch all day. You feel as though life is a huge weight on your shoulders.

Depression is treatable. Simply call your doctor and let him know what you’re experiencing. Medication can help you feel better, so you don’t feel so exhausted all of the time.

#9: Restless Legs

If you have ever experienced restless legs, you know it’s what is keeping you up at night. It’s a crawly feeling in your legs that make you want to move them continuously. You may have to stand up and walk around to relieve the awkward feeling in your legs, which of course takes away from your sleep.

Medication is available for restless legs, so ask your doctor. He will likely perform a neurological test on you to determine that is what is causing your tiredness.

#10: Anxiety

When you’re stressed and worried about something, you will have a much harder time relaxing and falling asleep. If you find that you’re always anxious, speak to your doctor. Like depression, there are anti-anxiety medications that can help you.

It might be good to engage in stress relieving techniques as well. Exercise and meditation are extremely effective.

Speak to your doctor about your tiredness and get the help you need.

Surprising Health Benefits of Walking

Walking…it’s simple. You just put one foot in front of the other. Since it is so simple, you probably wouldn’t think there would be much benefit to it. That’s the surprise. It has a tremendous effect on your health. The following are some of those health benefits to motivate you to do this simple but yet powerful exercise.

It Could Make You Live Longer

A new study found that people who walked 20 minutes a day lived three to seven years longer. It would be great to think it’s just the act of walking that would increase your longevity, but it’s really the health effects that are from walking that makes you live a few years more.

 Decreases COPD Risk

Another study found that people who walked at least two miles a day were less likely to be hospitalized for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Actually, it cuts the risk of COPD by half.

Reduces the Risk of Stroke

Walking ever day can also reduce the risk of stroke for men over the age of 60. For men who walk an hour or two a day, their risk decreases by a third. What’s even more surprising is that it doesn’t matter how fast they walked – they just needed to walk.

Promotes Mental Health

Walking three hours a day can improve your mental health. When you walk, your body releases endorphins. This can be a natural painkiller. So, the more you walk, the more feel good hormones are released, which makes you feel even better.

Improves Sleep

Sleeping can be difficult as you age because of aches, pains, and other ailments. Walking can strengthen joints and bones, which can help with the aches and pains. It can also help people feel more tired, so they are ready for bed at night. This can lead to falling asleep faster and staying that way for longer.

Decreases Risk for Osteoporosis

When you walk, you force your body to stand up straight and move. This exercises your muscles and bones to keep them strong and even increase strength. This can prevent the onset of osteoporosis.

Helps Maintain Body Weight

While you may not burn many calories, you’re still burning them. This can be just enough to keep your weight stable. Just don’t think you can eat a lot and maintain your weight.

Lowers Blood Pressure

When you walk, your heart gets a workout, which keeps it strong. This is what will lower your blood pressure over time. The more you walk, the stronger your heart will be as you get older.

Decreases Stress Levels

Many people don’t realize how much walking can help with stress. Just getting away from a stressful situation or environment with a walk can lower all of the anxiety inside of you. With every step you take away, you’ll feel better and better. When you decide to go back, you’ll be much more likely to deal with it all because you’ve had a chance to process it all.

How to Get the Most Out of Your Walks

Walking is powerful, but the more you can do the better. Try to vary your pace as you walk. Speed walking and slowing down is great for your heart.

You may want to consider barefoot walking. Many people believe that there is an added benefit because your feet absorb free electrons from the Earth. Those electrons can decrease inflammation and kill off free radicals that can cause cancer. Other benefits include curing sleep apnea, helping PMS, and strengthening the immune system.

If you haven’t been walking, check with your doctor before starting this or any other exercise regimen. It’s important to know if you are healthy enough for it, and to ask your doctor for advice on how much you can do.

Always wear comfortable shoes when you go for your walks. Injuries often happen because of not having the right shoes, so this is important. You should also replace them every 6 months. They do wear out, and that can cause injury as well.

With all of these benefits of walking, there’s no reason not to start doing it. Ask some friends to join you to make it much more fun. Before you know it, you may just feel much better physically and mentally.

 

 

 

 

Why You Shouldn’t Be Drinking Lemon Water to Lose Weight

There’s a trend that people who drink warm lemon water will lose weight. You’ve probably seen it on Facebook, and many other places online. Articles tell you that if you drink warm water with lemon juice in it as soon as you make up in the morning, you will be more likely to lose weight.

We hate to break it to you, but it doesn’t work.

Sure, you can trick yourself into losing weight with lemon water. It’s the placebo effect. When you think you are going to lose weight, you will do things that will make you lose weight such as exercising more and eating less. So, with that, it’s not the lemon water, but the exercising and diet change.

What will lemon water provide?

  • Cancer-fighting antioxidants
  • Energy-boosting vitamin C

If you are looking for these effects, then lemon water is exactly what you want to drink. You don’t have to drink it in the morning. You can drink it any time of the day to give you those effects.

The Reason You SHOULD NOT Drink Lemon Water

While there are a couple of benefits to drinking lemon water, you may wonder what’s so wrong about it. The following will help you see you may want to tame down the gallons of lemon water you consume each day.

Causes Heartburn

Lemons are acidic. When you drink large amounts of lemon water, the acid can cause heartburn. Usually, people who are susceptible to heartburn are more likely to experience it, but it can happen to people who don’t normally get it too.

Damages Tooth Enamel

The acid from the lemons can also wear away tooth enamel. This is the protective cover on your teeth that keeps you from getting cavities and having tooth sensitivity.

The damage to your teeth is intensified if you brush your teeth after drinking lemon water. The acid in the lemons loosens the enamel and then your toothbrush brushes it away. Since many people usually brush their teeth after they have their lemon water, this has become a big problem. You should wait about 30 minutes to brush your teeth after having anything acidic.

Can Contribute to  Vitamin C Toxicity

Vitamin C is good to get, but too much can be bad for you. The most you should get a day is 2,000 mg. If you get more than that, you could end up having diarrhea and/or kidney stones.

The good news is that one cup of lemon juice contains 60.5 mg, so it would take A LOT of lemon juice to end up exceeding the 2,000 mg limit. You just need to be careful if you drink lemon juice and eat a lot of foods with lemon in it or lemons themselves.

Aggravates Gastroesphageal Reflux Disorder

Gastroesphageal reflux disorder (GERD) causes heartburn, nausea and vomiting. It is triggered by acid from foods like lemons. When people who suffer from GERD drink lemon water, they irritate their esophageal lining. This triggers the symptoms of GERD.

Slows Healing Time for Ulcers

Lemons can aggravate ulcers, too. Those suffering with an ulcer should stay away from lemon or other acidic foods because they inflame ulcers, which slows down the healing time. It can also cause the ulcer to heal incorrectly, which can lead to pain later in life.

Gives You a Stomachache

Have you noticed you’ve had a stomachache ever since you tried to lose weight with lemon water? It’s not because you’ve changed your diet – it’s the lemon. Again, the culprit is the acid in the lemon juice. Your stomach just can’t take the irritation from the acid, which is why you tummy seems to hurt by the end of the day.

Saying Good-Bye to Lemon Water

Don’t think you should say good-bye to lemon water forever. It’s good for you when you consider the vitamin C and antioxidants in it. It’s just important to cut down on your consumption.

If you’re using lemon water to get in all of the H2O you need to drink a day, try different flavor boosters. You can always add cucumbers, blueberries, strawberries, or some other veggie or fruit to the water to give it a better taste. Be creative with your add-ins and you may just end up finding a new favorite.

5 Ways You’re Beating Up Your Immune System

Did you know your immune system does a lot for you? Every single day you encounter millions of germs, and your immune system fights them off, so you don’t get sick. You can thank this function of your body for days when you are not stuck in bed with a cold or something worse. The problem is that most people don’t take care of their immune system as they should. What happens is that they usually end up sicker than others who do treat their immune system with the respect it deserves. If you’re finding it hard to stay healthy, you may be beating your immune system up without even knowing it.

Pain Medication

Pain medications can wreak havoc on your immune system. Steroids and NSAIDs are the worst because they damage the lining in your intestines. This can cause leaky gut syndrome, which increases your risk for infections.

When you suffer from an infection, your immune system is hit hard. It knows there’s something wrong inside of your body, so it usually uses all of its energy to try to get rid of it. Meanwhile, there are still millions of germs trying to make you sick, and it just can’t keep up. That’s when you become ill.

Discuss alternatives with your doctor. That way you can get the same effects of pain medication without depleting your immune system’s energy.

Antacids

You may not think there’s anything wrong with popping some Tums, but it can end up causing you to get more sick than you feel when you take them. Tums and other antacids have proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs), and they alter the pH in your stomach. This chemical sterilizes the food you eat, which is what makes your stomach feel better. The problem is that when you have too much of this, infection can occur. Again, infection causes the immune system to fight harder, which then makes it unavailable to fight off other illnesses and diseases.

In addition to the pH effectives, antacids can cause vitamin deficiency as well. Usually, it’s a deficiency in B12, zinc, vitamin C, and iron. These are all crucial nutrients for the immune system.

It’s best to not take antacids regularly for three months or more. If you need to take them to calm your stomach, you may want to figure out what is causing it to be upset rather than continuing the antacids. Speak to your doctor more about your issues to find out what you should do instead.

Drinking Excessive Amounts of Alcohol

You’ve probably heard you should drink red wine because it’s good for you. While this is true, it’s only moderate amounts of red wine. When you drink too much in the case of binge drinking, you can suppress bone marrow production and red and white blood cells. When there isn’t enough bone marrow, red and white blood cells, the immune system believes it needs to compensate for the loss, so it works harder. What happens is it gets tired and isn’t able to protect you from all of the germs.

Juicing or Starving Yourself

Your immune system needs fuel to work for you. The fuel comes from the food you eat. When you juice or starve yourself, you are depriving your body and immune system of what it needs to keep you healthy. This will wear down the immune system, which will make it hard for it to work for you.

Eat a well-balanced diet. You need all of those vitamins and nutrients. You can still count calories, just be sure you get enough to give your body what it needs. You can also still drink juices; just don’t make it the only thing you consume the entire day.

You’re on the Move

When you are on the move, your immune system is too. If you don’t get enough sleep or rest, don’t eat regularly, or you’re around more germs than usual, your immune system will not be able to keep up. That’s when you’re bound to get sick.

To keep you from getting sick all of the time, especially when you have to travel for business or you’re just busy, be sure to get enough sleep and rest and eat well. While you may still be around a lot more germs, at least your immune system will have the rest and fuel it needs to have a fighting chance against them all.

Keep all of these ways you are beating up your immune system in mind. You will be able to strengthen your immune system, so you can stay healthy and active much more.

Most Common Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

Tooth sensitivity is not fun to deal with, and it’s rather common. According to Journal of American Dentistry, 1 in 8 people have sensitive teeth. Just knowing you have tooth sensitivity doesn’t make you feel better, but the cause may because then you can possibly prevent it.

About Tooth Sensitivity

Your teeth are covered in a protective layer of enamel and dentin. When the enamel wears down, your teeth becomes sensitive to extreme temps and chemicals such as hot, cold, sweet or acidic foods and drinks. These foods and drinks seep into the teeth through tubules and then hit the nerves, which is what causes the pain. Some people experience the pain for just a moment, while others will have it for hours.

The Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

To keep yourself pain-free, consider these causes of your tooth sensitivity.

Irregular Bruising

Many times, people have tooth sensitivity because they do not brush their teeth regularly. The enamel wears down from all of the acid that gets left behind. Brushing your teeth will help you build back that enamel.

You should brush after every meal. At least twice a day is what most dentists recommend.

Hard Brushing

When you brush your teeth too hard, you end up pulling your gums from your teeth. This exposes nerves, which is what causes your pain.

Simply brush gently. Remember, it’s the brush that’s doing the work, not you.

Incorrect Toothpaste

People suffering with tooth sensitivity cannot use all toothpastes. Many find their pain is worse when they use whitening toothpaste, so stay away from that type specifically.

You may want to try desensitizing toothpaste. This has a compound that blocks sensitivity from the tooth to the nerve. It can take a few days to kick in, but once it does, you’ll be pain-free for as long as you use it.

Not Using Fluoride

Fluoride is essential to your oral health. It not only protects you from decay and cavities, but it can keep teeth sensitivity away.

Use fluoride mouthwash daily after you brush. Some brands are made especially for people with teeth sensitivity, so seek those out over others.

Drinking Too Many Acidic Drinks

Orange juice, soda, and other acidic drinks can decrease the amount of enamel you have on your teeth. It can also cause your gun line to recede, which exposes the nerve. You don’t have to cut out all acidic drinks, but limit them.

Whenever you do drink someone like orange juice, be sure to brush your teeth, but wait 30 minutes. The acid will loosen enamel and the brushing removes it causing teeth sensitivity.

Bleaching Your Teeth

As much as you want to bleach your teeth, it’s not recommended. It can cause tooth sensitivity.

If you really want pearly whites, speak to your dentist. He may have something especially for people with sensitive teeth.

Not Using a Mouth Guard

People who grind their teeth or more susceptible to tooth sensitivity. When they grind, they wear down their enamel.

Speak to your dentist about getting fitted for a mouth guard. Wearing one every night may be the answer to ending the pain.

Other Ways to End Tooth Sensitivity

If you can’t figure out the cause, it may be genetics. In that case, you can pursue some treatments that have helped people with their pain.

Gel fluoride treatment is an option. You would go into the dental office and the dentist places a high concentrated fluoride on your teeth. This can help build up enamel faster and thicker. You have to do this regularly.

You may also be a candidate for crowns, inlays or bonding. All of these cover your teeth, which would prevent food and drinks from hitting the nerve.

When nothing helps, a gum graft may be performed. This is a dental procedure in which the dentist removes a piece of your gum form one section of your mouth, and places it where the gum has receded.

As a last resort, a root canal may be recommended. The dentist will remove the nerve from where the sensitivity is, so you don’t feel anything anymore. This is not something to jump into because the procedure is expensive and painful, so try all other options before considering this one.

 

 

 

Why Some People Suffer from Anxiety More Than Others

Most people have experienced anxiety. A test, a new job, and moving can all cause you to feel nervous. While these are typical anxiety-causing situations, some people become just as nervous over other situations that aren’t as life changing. These people tend to have an increased risk for anxiety.

New research suggests people who suffer from anxiety more than others perceive the world differently. It’s not about what happens in life, it’s about how those situations are perceived.

In the study, which was published in Current Biology, researchers found that people who were anxious most of the time do not have the ability to distinguish between a safe and unsafe stimulus. Every stimulus is viewed as unsafe, which causes nervousness.

Anxiety and Over-Generalizing Situations

The study found that people who were more likely to become anxious seemed to over-generalize. For instance, when one bad thing happens, they believe everything around them is bad. They perceive their world as negative. This creates more anxiety and then they fuel it more with more negativity.

Testing concluded people who had an emotional experience end up with plasticity in their brain circuits. Those plastic changes lasted much longer than those who didn’t suffer from anxiety issues. This caused them to be at a higher level of nervousness for much longer, which then led them to take other situations and roll them into the first nerve-wrecking one.

Functional magnetic resonance images (fMRIs) of the brains of people in the study showed that anxiety activates many brain regions, particularly in the amygdala. This is the region most responsible for fear, anxiety, and sensory. This indicates that those who experience anxiety often may end up changing those areas of the brain. This then leads them to become more anxious throughout their life. This explains why some people seem to become nervous over situations that don’t normally cause anxiety in others.

“Anxiety traits can be completely normal; there is evidence that they benefited us in our evolutionary past. Yet an emotional event, sometimes even a minor one, can induce brain changes that can potentially lead to full-blown anxiety.” according to Professor Rony Paz of the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel.

Diagnosing Anxiety Disorders

It can be difficult to know whether you’re an anxious person, or you have an anxiety disorder such as generalized anxiety disorder. The symptoms are:

  • Feelings of apprehension or dread
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Feeling tense
  • Always anticipating the worst
  • Irritable
  • Restless
  • Looking for signs of danger
  • Feeling as though your mind has gone blank
  • Experiencing a pounding heart
  • Sweating
  • Stomachache
  • Dizziness
  • Diarrhea
  • Increase in urination
  • Tremors
  • Twitches
  • Muscle tension
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia

Medical professionals often look for signs of anxiety and how it affects the person’s life. If it interferes in school, work, and relationships for more than 2 weeks, this indicates a problem that should be treated.

Treating Anxiety Disorder

Some people can deal with their anxiety; they simply live with it. Other people can’t function at school, work, and with others because of it. These people often have to seek professional help from a medical doctor or psychiatrist.

A medical doctor or psychiatrist can assess the anxiety to find out if there is an anxiety disorder causing the problem, or if there is some other medical condition causing it. Identifying the cause is essential since that is what will be treated. Some people who feel anxious have a medical condition that can be treated, which will keep them from feeling that way. Others will need anti-anxiety medication to help balance brain chemistry. Some medications for anxiety will slow down the neurotransmitters in the brain, which will calm the person and help them perceive situations differently.

Therapy is another great way to treat anxiety. Since a large part of the mental health issue is the way people perceive situations, a therapist can help the person come to alternative conclusions. With cognitive behavioral therapy in particular, people can learn how to use their thoughts to change the way their brain and body respond to situations. In time, the brain will be less likely to perceive every situation as a threatening one.

If you are suffering from anxiety, seek help. You do not have to live with it.

What Women Need to Know About Thyroid Disorders

Women are at a high risk of developing a thyroid disorder. In fact, the National Endocrine and Metabolic Diseases Information Service reports 1 in 100 American suffer from it. If you’re a woman, you need to know what it is, what it does, and how to treat it effectively.

About the Thyroid Gland

The thyroid gland is what keeps your body functioning optimally. The gland is located in front of the larynx. It’s job is to produce and secrete hormones, which reach every cell and organ in the body.

It controls:

  • Body temperature
  • Cognitions
  • Heart rate
  • Organ functions

When someone suffers from thyroid disease, they either have too many hormones produced or not enough – hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism.

Symptoms of Hyperthyroidism and Hypothyroidism

Hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism can make you feel ill and cause medical conditions. Each of them have their own distinct symptoms.

Hyperthyroid symptoms include:

  • Losing weight
  • Inability to tolerate the heat
  • Increase in bowel movements
  • Tremors
  • Anxiety and irritability
  • Enlarging of the thyroid gland
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Tiredness

Hypothyroid symptoms include:

  • Fatigue
  • Unexplained weight gain
  • Inability to tolerate the cold
  • Dry or brittle hair
  • Memory difficulties
  • Depression and irritability
  • High cholesterol
  • Slow heart rate
  • Decrease in bowel movements or constipation

While these symptoms are easily identified, diagnosing thyroid conditions can be difficult.

The Problem with Diagnosing Thyroid Disorder

It’s quite similar to find out if someone suffers from thyroid disease. A doctor just needs to check the hormone levels of the thyroid with a blood sample. The clinical term is checking your TSH.

The problem is that the symptoms are common of many other medical conditions. Doctors usually start with the most common conditions first when pinpointing a diagnosis. Thyroid doesn’t seem to be at the top of their list.

Once the blood test is taken, doctors often disagree on the levels it takes to justify a thyroid problem. For a long time, doctors thought when the TSH level was 0.5 to 5.0 was okay, but now they believe that range way too far apart, so many people with the disease wouldn’t be diagnosed.

The National American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists decided to narrow the range to .03 to 3.0 for what is considered normal. Any levels below .03 will constitute hypothyroidism, and any levels over 3.0 will indicate hyperthyroidism. Of course, the narrow margin has caused push back from some endocrinologists who believe that many people who don’t have thyroid disorder will be diagnosed with it.

The best doctors will use the test results only as one piece of information for a diagnosis. For example, if someone has a high TSH level, but no other symptoms of thyroid disorder, they will likely not give that diagnosis. If the TSH level is considered normal, but the person has all of the symptoms, the doctor may still conclude that the thyroid is malfunctioning.

A complete clinical examination is needed to determine the cause of the symptoms and blood test results. Some of the factors doctors consider are:

  • Does the person have diabetes or an autoimmune disorder?
  • Did the person have radiation treatment to the thyroid area?
  • Have other family members suffered from thyroid disorder?
  • Is there a chance for pregnancy or menopause?
  • Is the patient a woman? Women are three times more likely to suffer from it.
  • Does the person have an enlarged thyroid gland?

Treatment for Thyroid Disorder

Medication is prescribed to treat thyroid disorder. Usually, it’s one-time pill that is radioactive. It targets the gland and burns it out. This can keep the thyroid from over generating the hormone. Unfortunately, this can lead to an underproduction, which then will require thyroxine medication to replace the missing hormones (what is prescribed for people with hypothyroidism).

Getting Help for Your Thyroid Problem

If you’re experiencing the symptoms of hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism, you should make an appointment with your physician immediately. The longer you wait, the worse you may feel and the longer it will take to get your thyroid back to functioning the way it should be right now. If you’re approaching or in menopause, it’s even more important to bring up the possibility of thyroid disorder. It may be enough for the doctor to make it a priority to get your blood tested and examine you for other signs of a thyroid problem.