Category Archives: Health

How to get rid of Cocaine Addiction

Cocaine is a strong psychotropic drug, obtained from coca leaves, which has psychostimulating effects upon admission. The addict feels a rush of strength, euphoria, gives freedom of action, liberates. In addition, cocaine relieves pain, improves well-being, gives a surge of energy, speeds up the thought process and improves memory. Many of these effects only seem to be a drug addict, and this effect lasts up to an hour, after which there is a breakdown, depression, hallucinations and other disorders. If you are thinking about how to quit using cocaine, you are already on the path of recovery. The desire is motivated by the real problems that the drug creates, which means that you have the incentive to get rid of addiction.

How is the dependence formed?

Cocaine forms a strong dependence from the first doses. Sometimes it seems that when you use a drug, for example, once a week, you are not yet a drug addict, because you can easily live without a drug for a few more days. But most drug addicts do not even notice how the “dry” period between doses shrinks, and cocaine intake becomes daily.

Before starting Crack cocaine treatment, the addict lives in the heaviest dependence on the drug. Constant use provokes irreversible changes in the brain, affecting the centers of pleasure, self-control and will. Because of this, even a person who wants to stop physically cannot live without a drug. Even categorically deciding to quit using cocaine, you will come across an obsessive desire to take a dose for several months. Even after a year or more after taking the last dose, the addict feels a desire to once again experience the buzz. This desire becomes stronger with accompanying stress, depression, which ultimately increases the chances of relapse.

Symptoms of Cocaine Consumption

Cocaine dependence is one of the most difficult varieties of cocaine addiction, getting rid of it is accompanied by an intensive withdrawal syndrome. If you decide to quit using cocaine, you will have to face such symptoms:

  • Insomnia
  • Depression
  • Various mental disorders, including suicidal tendencies
  • Apathy and a strong decline of strength
  • Excessive irritability
  • The inability to focus on something
  • Headaches and other pains
  • Problems with appetite
  • Very strong craving for drugs

The condition of the thrower can be consistently bad for several months. Even when the physical condition improves, the psyche will demand the next dose. How to stop using cocaine in such conditions? It is very important not to switch to any substitute drugs or other drugs yourself, as well as alcohol. Soon it will lead to addiction and a new addiction. Coping with this will be much more difficult.

General principles of treatment

The vast majority of former drug addicts who won the craving for cocaine underwent a specialized course of inpatient rehabilitation, which is the most preferred form of treatment for this type of addiction. A variant of outpatient therapy is also possible, but everything depends on the patient’s condition.

Hypokalemia (Potassium Deficiency)

Even mild potassium deficiency can snowball into a life-threatening condition at times and therefore, should not be taken lightly. In this particular article, we will shed light on hypokalemia treatment, so as to give you a rough idea about the process involved.

A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that only 2 percent of American adults meet the recommended dietary intake of potassium through their daily diet.
Potassium has a crucial role in numerous body functions, ranging from contraction and relaxation of muscles to transfer of messages in the nervous system, and therefore, it is important for us to maintain optimum levels of the same in the body. The optimum levels in this case are in the range of 3.6 to 4.8 milliequivalents per liter (mEq/L). A fall in the same results in hypokalemia―a medical condition typically characterized by deficiency of potassium in the body.

If potassium levels are in the range of 3.0 to 3.6 mEq/L, it is known as ‘mild hypokalemia’, and if they are lower than 3.0 mEq/L, it is known as ‘severe hypokalemia’. If blood potassium levels fall below 2.5 mEq/L, it can cause life-threatening complications with fatal consequences. A person suffering from potassium deficiency―regardless of whether it is mild or severe―should be promptly subjected to medical attention to avoid unnecessary complications.

How is Potassium Deficiency (Hypokalemia) Treated?

Basically, the treatment of potassium deficiency will revolve around the treatment of the underlying cause of this condition. Most of the causes of the same are attributed to loss of potassium through urine or the digestive tract as a result of some underlying health problem. Other causes of the same include diarrhea, vomiting, eating disorders, overuse of laxatives and diuretics, and even something as serious as chronic kidney failure at times. Yet another surprisingly common cause of low potassium in the body is lack of potassium-rich foods in the diet.

The treatment options generally range from increased potassium intake to intravenous potassium supplements, depending on―like we said earlier―the underlying cause. The doctor will run some tests to diagnose the condition and recommend the suitable treatment option. If potassium loss is caused as a result of diarrhea or vomiting, then medication for the treatment of these conditions will be prescribed. In contrast, if the condition is triggered by prescribed medication, like diuretics or laxatives, the interfering medication will be replaced with some other medication.

If the person is suffering from mild hypokalemia, wherein the level of potassium in the blood is higher than 3.0 mEq/L but less than the required 3.6 mEq/L, the doctor may prescribe oral potassium chloride supplements. On the other hand, if the person is suffering from severe hypokalemia, wherein the level of potassium is less than 3.0 mEq/L, the doctor will recommend intravenous (IV) supplementation to initiate quick recovery. In case of intravenous supplementation, the condition of the patient will be monitored in order to avoid any complications.

Quit Smoking Cold Turkey

Quitting smoking cold turkey does not come easy as it seems so in black and white. It involves immediate cessation of the habit without any room for gradual reduction in dosages. Know more on this from the following…

‘Cold turkey’, refers to a process taken up by a person to help him shun a habit at once. In this process, there is no room for gradually leaving the habit through reduction or by using any kind of alternative. The prospect of this process is not easy as it may seem. How many people do we come across who have tried shunning the habit of smoking and succeeded. Certainly, not many? Records reveal that only 9 out of 90 people succeed in their first try. If you happen to be a smoker, particularly a chain smoker, then you many not deny the fact that the task of keeping yourself away from those puffs is a daunting one. You just can’t help looking at those slim beauties, and ignore the thought of kissing them and playing around with the smoke. But at the same time, you cannot ignore the plethora of diseases which you might have to go through if you continue to be in love with cigarettes. Going the cold turkey way to quit smoking, although may be difficult, is an inexpensive method which may help you get over smoking for good.

How to Stop Smoking the Cold Turkey Method

# You are most likely to smoke when you are stressed or when alone. So, take a break from your work and go for a short vacation. Keeping your mind stress free provides a great deal of help in quitting smoking. The next tip is to know the importance of drinking plenty of water. Keeping yourself hydrated would reduce the intensity of the side effects which you might experience, when you suddenly stop taking nicotine. Moreover, the water would help to get rid of the impurities from your system.

# Another important point to follow to help quit smoking immediately is to keep your mouth busy. Whenever you feel the urge to smoke, chew sugarless gum or suck on hard candy. It may sound funny, but sucking on a lollipop also helps. Get some changes in your daily routine. Try new exercises and adding new recipes to your diet. If you are not in the habit of cycling, then consider giving it a start. Develop the habit of reading instead of watching TV. All such changes and the like, would surely help you through the initial stages of quitting smoking by making you feel different.

# Not to mention, for the process to work, you need to get rid of your stash of cigarettes and other tobacco products from your home and car. If you find it difficult to do it, then ask your friend or partner to do it.

# You can make up your mind to quit smoking as much you can, but if you are not able to avoid situations which may trigger your cravings, then the whole process would be jeopardized. So learn to identify such situations and avoid them. Having said that, it is important to inform your friends and colleagues about your endeavor so they that may offer their support and motivation. Also, prefer going to public places which do not allow smoking.

# Besides doing good to your health by not smoking, you are doing good to your pocket too. Start saving the money which otherwise would have puffed into the air with smoke.

How Diabetes Affects the Body?

Diabetes is a metabolic disorder characterized by an increase in the level of blood sugar. A consistently high level of blood sugar can have serious consequences for various parts of the body, including the vital organs like the heart and the kidneys. This Buzzle article will give a brief idea about how this metabolic disorder can affect the body.

Diabetes usually refers to diabetes mellitus, a condition characterized by high blood sugar or hyperglycemia. This condition can be caused by a deficiency of the hormone insulin, or a failure of the body cells to respond to insulin. Insulin is the hormone secreted by the beta cell of the islets of Langerhans found in the pancreas. This hormone enables the body cells to absorb glucose from the bloodstream.

The pancreas is responsible for monitoring the level of blood sugar, and supply insulin accordingly so as to maintain the level of blood sugar within the normal range. The excess glucose present in the bloodstream is converted into fats and then stored in the adipose tissues. On the other hand, when enough glucose is not present in the body, the body breaks down stored fats to produce energy.

A deficiency of insulin, or an inability of the body cells to respond to insulin can cause the level of blood sugar to rise. Diabetes and an abnormally high level of blood glucose level can lead to several complications over a period of time. A consistently high blood sugar level due to uncontrolled or poorly controlled diabetes can affect the blood vessels and the nerves. This disease can literally affect any part of the body.

Types of Diabetes

Diabetes is mainly classified into three types – type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes, of which type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is caused by the lack of insulin due to the failure of the body to produce this hormone. On the other hand, type 2 diabetes is characterized by the inability of the body cells to use or respond to insulin. This is known as insulin resistance.

Along with insulin resistance, insulin insufficiency can be associated with type 2 diabetes. Gestational diabetes is the condition that develops during pregnancy. Irrespective of the type, diabetes causes a rise in the level of blood sugar, which can ultimately affect several parts of the body, and cause a number of health problems.

Effects of High Blood Sugar on the Body

The normal range for blood sugar level is less than 100 mg/dL when fasting, and less than 140 mg/dL two hours after having a meal. The effects of type 1 and type 2 diabetes on the body are more or less similar, as both the conditions increase the level of sugar in blood or cause hyperglycemia. In the long run, a consistently high level of blood sugar can affect the entire body.

However, certain parts of the body are more likely to be adversely affected by this condition. The presence of excess sugar in blood makes the red blood cells stiff, which in turn, impairs the circulation of blood. It can also cause deposition of fats inside the blood vessels. It has been observed that the tiny and fragile blood vessels of the kidneys, eyes, and the feet are more likely to get damaged due to hyperglycemia.

The Probable Causes and Symptoms of Diabetes

Diabetes or diabetes mellitus is a condition, where the body fails to manage the level of blood sugar. It can give rise to a number of symptoms in men and women. The following write-up provides information on diabetes symptoms in men, as well as the causes and treatment for this condition.

Diabetes is a medical condition that is characterized by an abnormal rise in the level of blood sugar or glucose due to an inability of the body cells to absorb and utilize glucose from the bloodstream. The body cells require a hormone, known as insulin to absorb glucose from the bloodstream, and insulin is produced by the beta cells of the islets of Langerhans of the pancreas. A shortage of insulin, as well as failure of the body cells to respond to insulin can manifest in the form of high blood sugar or hyperglycemia.

Symptoms of Diabetes in Men

Though diabetes can produce a number of symptoms, many of its early signs can look quite similar to the symptoms of certain other health conditions. This can make it difficult to recognize this condition. But it is important to identify and treat it early, as untreated diabetes can lead to some serious health complications. Knowledge about the symptoms of this condition is immensely important for preventing such complications. The symptoms in men are explained below.

Excessive Thirst and Urination
Excessive thirst and urination are considered as some of the most common symptoms. Both men and women can experience frequent urination or ‘polyuria’ and excessive thirst or ‘polydipsia’. Frequent urination is caused by a high level of glucose, which adversely affects the filtering capacity of the kidneys. The kidneys start to draw more water from blood, as a result of which the affected person experiences an increase in the frequency of urination. Frequent urination causes the loss of excess fluid from the body or dehydration, which manifests in increased thirst.

Unusual Weight Loss and Fatigue
Unexplained weight loss can result due to the fact that the body cells fail to absorb and utilize glucose from the bloodstream effectively. The cells of the body need glucose to produce energy and so, an inability to absorb glucose can also result in unusual fatigue.

Increase in Appetite
Diabetic patients experience constant hunger or an increase in appetite, if the body produces a high level of insulin in an attempt to bring down the level of blood sugar. Presence of a high level of insulin in the body can increase hunger, for which some diabetic patients can start eating more. An increase in appetite can sometimes result in weight gain. However, some of the affected individuals could lose weight in spite of eating more than usual.

HIV/AIDS

Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is characterized by weakening of the immune system on contracting the notorious Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). This virus specifically attacks the immune cells called T-helper cells, which leads to increased susceptibility to infections.

Did You Know?
A specific genetic defect in a set of people with European and Asian heritage has rendered them resistant to AIDS.
The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is one of the most notorious viruses, and affects about 50,000 people ever year in the USA alone. This virus infects several types of cells in the body including a set of white blood cells called T-helper (Th) cells. Reduction in the number of T-helper cells weakens the immune system, ultimately leading to Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS), which is characterized by increased bacterial, fungal, and parasitic infections.

In an infected individual, HIV is present in the genital fluids and blood. Hence it gets transmitted sexually as well as through the use of infected syringes, transfusion of infected blood, and on contact of a wound with the infected fluids. The virus also spreads from an infected mother to the child during pregnancy, delivery, or through breast milk. After transmission, the virus may persist in a latent state for several years before leading to AIDS.

The interaction of HIV with T-helper cells, as well as the different stages of HIV infection have been explained below.

HIV and T-helper Cells
HIV belongs to the family of retroviruses, which are RNA (ribonucleic acid) viruses characterized by their ability to synthesize DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) from RNA by a process called reverse transcription. The HIV genome comprises two copies of single stranded RNA (ssRNA). These RNA molecules and the enzymes required for multiplication of the virus are enclosed inside a conical protein structure called capsid. The capsid is surrounded by an envelope that is similar to the cell membrane of human cells.

T-helper cells are the main targets of HIV, and are also called CD4 positive cells due to the presence of a specialized protein called CD4 (cluster of differentiation 4) on their cell surface. These cells are a type of soldier cells present in the body, and play an important role in detecting foreign bodies and pathogens, as well as activating other cells of the immune system. HIV attacks these cells, multiplies inside them, and ultimately destroys them. In simple terms, HIV reprograms the T-helper cells into HIV-producing cells. This replication cycle of HIV occurs through the following sequence of events.

Attachment and Entry

The HIV envelope contains specialized protein stems onto which a set of glycoproteins called gp120 are attached. These glycoproteins can identify and bind to CD4 molecules present on T-helper cells. This interaction is analogous to lock and key interaction, and serves as a gate opener for HIV. Once HIV docks onto the cell membrane of T-helper cells, fusion of the viral and cellular membranes occurs, and the viral capsid is released into the cytoplasm.

Naturopathy

Naturopathy is a form of alternative medicine and is often referred to as naturopathic medicine or art of healing using natural remedies. Naturopathy uses a holistic approach to cure an illness. A naturopathic doctor understands the body, soul and mind of a person before he starts the treatment. Naturopathy focuses mainly on two areas – the healing ability of body and the lifestyle of a person. Naturopathy stresses on using various therapies such as acupuncture, sauna bath and so on to cure the disease. In early 20th century, naturopathy was practiced in the US on a wider scale than any other country in the Western World.

A Brief Look at Naturopathy

The history of naturopathy can be traced back to 400 BC when it was practiced in ancient Greece. However, Dr Benedict Lust is considered the founder of modern-day naturopathy. Dr Lust not only practiced the art of natural healing but also introduced it to the US in the year 1892.

Dr Benedict Lust was a student of the hydrotherapy practitioner Father Kneipp.1n 1902, Dr Lust established the American School of Naturopathy.

1902-1917 was the formative period of naturopathic medicine and art of natural healing in the US. Dr Lust stressed on the hygiene, diet habits, hydrotherapy and emotional strength as essential tools for a healthy body. He merged herbalism with naturopathic healing.

The years ranging from 1918-1937 were known as the halcyon years. During this period, naturopathy gained importance and the public not only supported but also showed a keen interest in naturopathic medicines and therapies. Many states in the US introduced naturopathic license laws during these halcyon years.

During late 1920s and early 1930s, many naturopathic journals were circulated among the public in the US. This was done to provide information on how to prevent diseases and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Naturopathic journals emphasized on the eating habits of the common man and focused on taking measures to correct poor eating habits. Naturopathy advises the inclusion of fiber rich food in, and stresses on curtailing red meat from, one’s diet.

After Dr. Lust’s death in 1945, there was a considerable decline in the usage of naturopathic healing methods and therapies in the United States. During this period, more importance was given to allopathic medicines and treatment.
During the 1960s, the public of America became more aware of the importance of good nutrition and healthy lifestyles. During this period importance was given to alternative medicines and the science of naturopathy was revived.

In 1978, the first naturopathic college, known as the National College of Naturopathic Medicine, was established in America. This was the first registered college for naturopathy.

Benefits of Wheat Oil for Health

Wheat germ oil is an unrefined oil that is obtained from the germ of the wheat kernel. It is the richest source of Vitamin E than any other vegetable oil. It also has a high content of Vitamin A and Vitamin D. It is rich in protein and lecithin. It is very popular for external application due to its beneficial effects on the skin. Hence, it is increasingly finding place in the manufacture of skin care products. Other benefits of wheat germ oil include its antioxidant properties and its effect in strengthening the immune system and restoring overall health.

What is Wheat Germ Oil?
Obtained from the embryo or kernel of the wheat grain, wheat germ oil is a light yellow, fat soluble natural oil. As it is an unrefined oil, it has a thick consistency and a strong aroma. Although the germ of the wheat forms only 3% of the weight of the wheat grain, the benefits of wheat germ stem from the fact that it contains almost 25% of the total proteins, vitamins and minerals of the wheat grain. It is a very sensitive oil that tends to degrade if not stored with care. It should be kept away from high temperatures because if exposed to extreme temperatures, it may turn rancid. However, if kept properly, the shelf life of wheat germ oil can be extended up to a few months.

Benefits
If you are wondering what is wheat germ oil good for, consider the following benefits:
The benefits of this oil include curing skin conditions like psoriasis and eczema. It works effectively to heal burns and skin ulcers. As an external application it is very helpful for dry skin.
Wheat germ oil is beneficial for the general health of the skin as it improves circulation of blood in the skin when used externally. It also helps the skin cells that may have been damaged due to the scorching heat of the sun. It also fights off conditions like dermatitis and reduces scarring.
Health benefits of this oil include improving the overall working of the heart. Research has shown beneficial effects of octacosanol and specifically policosanol in improving cardiovascular functions. Policosanol has been found to be effective in controlling production of cholesterol by the liver. It is believed to raise the level of ‘good’ cholesterol and reduce that of ‘bad’ cholesterol.
Wheat germ oil is known for its antioxidant properties. Hence it helps in preventing the skin from bearing the signs of aging. It is probably this reason that it is added to other carrier oils. However, it is used in lower amounts to prepare carrier oil blend as it is high in nutritional value.

That Accurately Indicate Anxiety and Stress

Stress, as well as anxiety are some of the main contributing factors for health problems. This write-up provides information on the physical symptoms that are indicators of anxiety and stress.

In today’s fast paced life, anxiety and stress seems to be affecting people from different age groups. These can have an adverse effect on the functioning of the human body, which in turn might give rise to a series of physical symptoms. Such symptoms should not be overlooked or neglected, as these can give rise to major health problems in the absence of prompt treatment.

Symptoms Associated with Anxiety and Stress
Anxiety can also be described as a response to stress. It is estimated that around 18% Americans are affected by anxiety disorders. The physical signs and symptoms that can be observed in individuals affected by anxiety are enlisted below.
Sweating: This is one of the commonly observed symptoms. It is often a physiological reaction or response to anxiety that might occur in response to nervousness, embarrassment, anger, or fear.
Trembling: The problem of trembling that might occur in response to anxiety might be a deep-rooted one. The body shakes or trembles because of the biochemical changes that take place in the body. These changes directly affect the nervous system and brain.
Difficulty in Breathing: Anxiety might also cause difficulty in breathing. This is because of the insufficient oxygen supply to the body. The affected individual can also experience dizziness during this phase.
Chest Pain: A feeling of tightness in the chest might be experienced by the affected person. The chest pain might sometimes be confused with the precursor to heart attack. The chest pain associated with anxiety can be either dull or sharp.
Nausea and Vomiting: These symptoms are stimulated by different states of the body including anxiety. Nausea is the central nervous system’s way to respond to anxiety. There is a vomiting center in the brain that is responsible for vomiting.
Most of the stress-related symptoms are similar to those experienced in the anxiety phase.
Lowered Immunity: Prolonged stress can lower a person’s immunity, thereby making one susceptible to recurring infections. The affected person is more likely to experience aches in different parts of the body.
Headaches: Stress can trigger headaches and migraine, which can create a lot of problems in daily life. The feeling of tightness in the head, or continuous pounding/throbbing sensation can certainly disturb one’s routine.
Fatigue: An individual who has been under stress for long periods is likely to feel fatigued.
Digestive Problems: Stress can act in different ways on different people. It can make one susceptible to diarrhea or constipation.
Aches: The affected person might frequently experience aches or pains in different parts of the body.
Insomnia: One’s sleep pattern might get affected due to prolonged stress. It can give rise to sleeplessness.

Sinus Infection Symptoms and Treatment

Sinus infection, also called sinusitis, is the infection of the sinuses, which are the hollow air-filled cavities connected to the nasal passage. It is usually caused by cold, allergies, infection or abnormal growth that blocks the nasal passage. Here is a brief overview about sinus infection symptoms and treatment.

According to statistics, around 37 million Americans develop sinusitis, at least once a year.
When Does Sinusitis Occur?
Sinusitis occurs when the sinuses get blocked and develop inflammation. A sinus cavity with blocked passages is a perfect location for pathogens to multiply and cause damage to the inner lining of the cavity, causing the symptoms.

Apart from that, the air already inside the sinuses causes pressure, leading to sinus headache. In short, the sinus infection symptoms are caused by the inflammation within the sinus cavities and/or activity of pathogens.
Sinus Infection Types
Sinus infection can be classified on the basis of various factors like the location of the sinuses, specific causative agent, duration of the infection, etc.

Duration: As far as duration is concerned, sinusitis can be divided into acute (sudden onset of symptoms that last for 8 to 10 days) or chronic (lasts for more than 2 months). While chronic sinusitis occurs four to five times a year, the recurrence rate in acute sinusitis is less than three times a year. Another type is sub-acute sinusitis, which lasts for four to eight weeks.

Causative Agent: If the cause is a pathogen or an infectious microorganism like bacterium or virus, then the condition is called infectious sinusitis. If the underlying cause is an allergy or some type of structural blockage, then, it is non-infectious sinusitis. According to some studies, around 30% of patients with sinusitis do not have any infectious microbes in the sinuses or the nasal passage.

Location: Sinus infections may sometimes be named according to the location of the infected cavity. For example, if the infection is in the maxillary sinus, then the condition can be called maxillary sinusitis. Whatever may be the type, sinus infection symptoms can cause severe discomfort to the affected person.

Symptoms of Sinusitis
Some of the common sinus infection symptoms are headache, facial pressure and tenderness. The affected person may also have swollen areas around the eyes, reddened nasal passages, drainage from the nose that is similar to pus and tender facial areas (corresponding to sinus cavities). The type and severity of the symptoms may vary with the type of sinusitis, location of the affected sinus, underlying cause, etc. Let us take a detailed look at the symptoms.
Acute Sinusitis
In this case, sinus infection starts with symptoms like stuffy nose, nasal discharge, facial pain and pressure, etc. Some people may experience loss of smell too. As the condition advances, symptoms like fever, fatigue, bad breath, and post nasal drip may occur. Even cough, dental pain, etc., are noted. The nasal discharge may be thick with a green or yellow color.
If the infection is in the maxillary sinuses (under the eyes), the pain and pressure will be felt under the eyes, across the cheekbone on one side or both. This sinus infection may sometimes cause dental pain too.
In this case, the pain may worsen with movements like bending forward. The person may feel better while leaning back, but again the pain may aggravate in an upright position.