Thursday, February 24, 2011

Does Acne Need a Doctor's Advice?

If your acne is well controlled by gently washing with soap and water, and by using over-the-counter lotions or creams, you may not have to visit your doctor.

On the other hand, the University of Michigan Health System says you should see your doctor if:
  •  Your acne keeps getting worse.
  •  You have large, fluid-filled pimples that may feel hard to the touch. This is called cystic acne.
  •  Your acne keeps you from social activities, such as parties or dates.
  •  You are depressed or very embarrassed because of acne.
  •  Either or both your parents had severe acne that caused permanent scars.
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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Causes of Diabetics becoming Hyperglycemic

It's essential for diabetics to keep their blood sugar (glucose) levels stable. That means taking all medication as prescribed, and following a healthy lifestyle.

When blood glucose levels become too high, the medical condition is called hyperglycemia. The American Diabetes Association offers this list of potential causes:
  • If you're a type 1 diabetic, getting insufficient insulin.
  • If you're a type 2 diabetic, the insulin your body produces may not be processed effectively.
  • Overeating or lack of exercise.
  • Having an illness or infection.
  • Being under emotional stress.
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Monday, February 21, 2011

Causes of Arthritis Pain

It's no secret to any person with arthritis that pain comes with the territory. But what makes arthritis so painful? The Arthritis Foundation offers this list of contributing factors:
  •  Arthritis causes painful inflammation (swelling) of the joints.
  •  Arthritis over time damages joint tissue, causing additional pain.
  •  Arthritis leads to a feeling of fatigue, which makes pain feel worse and more difficult to manage.
  •  Arthritis can lead to symptoms of stress or depressions, making you focus more on pain and lament not being able to do the things you once enjoyed.
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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Diet Soda increases Risk of Heart Attack and Stroke : Study

New research has found that drinking diet soda may in fact be unsafe; increasing you risk of suffering cardiac events such as heart attacks or strokes.

Researchers led by Hannah Gardener of the University Of Miami Miller School Of Medicine did a study on more than 2,500 people, focusing on the impact that drinking diet soda had on their health. The idea was to see if it had any health impact, especially on those who consumed daily. What researchers found is that diet soda may be indeed dangerous and unsafe to consume.

They discovered that those who consumed diet soda on a daily basis were 61% more likely to suffer vascular events, and 48% more likely to suffer a heart attack or stroke. This research is something that is clearly going to worry many of those who drink diet soft each and every day.

Researchers have stressed though that this study does not prove anything in regards to a link between diet soda and heart attacks or strokes. The belief is that the increased risk could be due to poor lifestyles of these people who consume diet soda every day. They could be smokers, consume alcohol, have poor diets, etc.

Future studies will look into whether or not diet soda has any real impact on the development of these diseases.
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Sunday, February 13, 2011

iPod addicts may become Deaf

A new study conducted by Dr. Tony Kay, an audiologist, has unveiled that teenagers listening to loud music for long periods by using iPod can turn them into deaf in later years of life.

He explained that such youngsters are at high risk of suffering from tinnitus and thus are prone to deafness in later stages of life. Tinnitus is a hearing problem in which continuous ringing in ears occurs. Mr. Kay claimed that the number of young people suffering from hearing ailments is continuously increasing.

Mr. Kay explained that the people who are regular commuters usually set the volume of their audio players at high levels to snuff the background noise and that volume is high to reach the ears of the people sitting three seats away from them. He added that since last two decades the number of teenagers and youngsters in their early twenties suffering from hearing complications has increased.

According to Kay, by reducing the time of listening to the music through headphones or earphones, reducing the volume of music player, the risk of getting hearing problem can be minimized.

Mr. Kay said, “Youngsters who listen to music on personal music players do not understand the damage they are causing. In the last two decades we have seen more people in their late teens and early 20s with tinnitus because they have been exposed to music that is too loud.”
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Thursday, February 10, 2011

Teens with dogs are more active

A new study on dog ownership and adolescent physical activity has revealed that the key to get your inactive teen off the couch is bringing a 'fun loving' dog home.

"You can think of your dog not only as your best friend, but also a social support tool for being active," said John Sirard, the study's lead author and an assistant professor at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.

In the study, Sirard and his colleagues assessed 618 pairs of Minneapolis adolescents and their parents about the number of dogs in their home and how much time they spent in physical activity. For a week, 318 of those teens also wore accelerometers — devices used to collect data on time spent moving.

It turns out that teens from dog-owning families recorded greater amounts of movement on the accelerometer devices, even after researchers took into account demographic variables, like gender, race and socioeconomic status. This might mean that teens with dogs could log about 15 additional minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity per week, according to the authors.

Finding ways to encourage teens' physical activity levels is critical, since time spent exercising drops precipitously after the elementary school years, said Cheryl B. Anderson, Ph.D., a visiting assistant professor of pediatrics at the Children Nutrition Research Center at Baylor College of Medicine.

"You may walk it, you may not, but the fact that you have this animal in the house makes you get up off the chair more. Every bit of activity is important," Anderson said.
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Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Common Causes for Edema

Edema is the medical term for swelling that result from fluid build-up in your tissues. It is most common in the feet, ankles and legs. But it can occur anywhere in the body.

The U.S. National Library of Medicine says common causes for edema include:
  •  Consuming too much salt.
  •  Getting sunburn.
  •  Having health problems such as cirrhosis, kidney disease or heart failure.
  •  Being pregnant.
  •  Having lymph node problems.
  •  Having an adverse reaction to certain medications.
  •  Being on your feet for long periods, especially in warmer weather.
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Monday, February 7, 2011

Symptoms that may indicate Preeclampsia

Preeclampsia arises when a pregnant woman's blood pressure spikes rapidly. It can lead to stroke, organ failure and other life-threatening conditions in both the mother and baby.

The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists says possible warning signs of preeclampsia include:
  • Headaches.
  • Vision abnormalities.
  • Quickly gaining weight.
  • Swollen face and hands.
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Sunday, February 6, 2011

Drinking milk everyday can protect against Cancer

Researchers in New Zealand have conducted the study and found that children who drink half-a-pint of milk daily are 40% less likely to suffer bowel cancer as adults, the ‘American Journal of Epidemiology’ reported.

According to them, milk has a powerful protective effect against cancer and the key to its anti-cancer property lies in daily consumption over long periods.

“Our results suggest daily consumption of milk in childhood may reduce bowel cancer incidence, possibly by the action of calcium,” the ‘Sunday Express’ quoted Prof Brian Cox, who led the study, as saying.

In fact, in their study, involving a group of students, the researchers discovered that the subjects were 40% less likely to suffer a tumor later in life if they had milk every day for six years or more. The findings support prior evidence from the World Cancer Research Fund that milk protects against cancer. Campaigners said the research highlighted the benefits of school milk.

Dr Judith Bryans, director of the Dairy Council, said: “School milk is hugely important because it ensures children have an adequate supply of nutrients. One glass of milk has the same amount of calcium as a kilogramme of spinach.”

However, a spokeswoman for Cancer Research UK said: “The best ways to reduce bowel cancer risk are to keep a healthy weight, drink less alcohol and be physically active.
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Friday, February 4, 2011

Side Effects of getting too much Caffeine

You may be consuming caffeine in everything from your favorite soda or a mug of coffee to the  medicine you took to ease your migraine. Caffeine is a stimulant, and the University of Maryland Medical Center says too much of it can lead to following side effects:
  •  Rapid heart rate.
  •  Tremors.
  •  Trouble sleeping.
  •  Urinating frequently.
  •  Vomiting or nausea.
  •  Anxiety and restlessness.
  •  Feeling depressed.
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Thursday, February 3, 2011

Coffee enhances Women’s Brainpower

Drinking coffee can enhance the brainpower of women in stressful situations, but scrambles men's thinking, says a new study.

Researchers in Britain have found that while sipping a cappuccino or downing an espresso boosts women's performance when working with others, the same drinks could impair men's memories and slow their decision-making.

In their study, the researchers from Bristol University examined what coffee does to the body when it is already under stress, such as during a tense meeting, the 'Daily Mail' reported. They recruited 64 men and women and put them in same- gender pairs. Each pair was given a range of tasks to complete, including carrying out negotiations, completing puzzles and tackling memory challenges, and told they would have to give a public presentation relating to their tasks afterwards.

Researchers then gave the pairs either caffeinated or decaffeinated coffee and observed them throughout the experiment.

They found the men's ability to perform well under stress was 'greatly impaired' if they had drunk the caffeinated coffee. For example, they took an average of 20 seconds longer to complete puzzles than those on the decaffeinated coffee. Women, on contrary, completed those puzzles 100 seconds faster if they had been given caffeine.

Experts think the reason coffee affects the work performance of men and women differently are due to the way each respond to stress.
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Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Sleeping enhances Important Memories : Study

A new study has revealed that brain evaluates information during sleep and retains the ones they know could be useful in the future. The study has thrown light on how the brain decides what to keep and what to forget.

"Our results show that memory consolidation during sleep indeed involves a basic selection process that determines which of the many pieces of the day's information is sent to long-term storage. Our findings also indicate that information relevant for future demands is selected foremost for storage," said lead author Jan Born, of the University of Lubeck in Germany.

The researchers conducted two experiments to test memory retrieval in a total of 191 volunteers. In the first experiment, people were asked to learn 40 pairs of words. Participants in the second experiment played a card game where they matched pictures of animals and objects - similar to the game Concentration - and also practiced sequences of finger tap.

In both groups, half the volunteers were told immediately following the tasks that they would be tested in 10 hours. In fact, all participants were later tested on how well they recalled their tasks.

Some, but not all, of the volunteers were permitted to sleep between the time they learned the tasks and the tests.

They found that people who slept performed better than those who didn't. But more prominently, only the people who slept and knew a test was coming had substantially improved memory recall.

The researchers also recorded electroencephalograms (EEG) from the individuals who were allowed to sleep. They found an increase in brain activity during deep or "slow wave" sleep when the volunteers knew they would be tested for memory recall.
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Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Stop Googling your Symptoms: Doctors Warn

Doctors have warned that they are seeing too many "cyberchondriacs," those patients who misdiagnose their illnesses after Googling their symptoms.
   
The Australian Medical Association is concerned that the plethora of online medical information is doing more harm than good, with patients increasingly referring to the Internet for advice before consulting a trained GP.

"You can't make a diagnosis using the Internet," AMA vice-president Steve Hambleton said. "Patients turn up with sheets of paper convinced they have a particular problem. "Doctors have to explain why patients haven't got something — before explaining what they have got. It certainly increases stress for the patient.

"Medical practitioners go through a minimum of 10 years of training before they can practice independently. You can't match that with an Internet search engine."

Over the past 12 months most health-related Google searches in Australia were for information related to "symptoms", "blood" and "cancer". Moreover, online queries about "hemorrhoids (sic)" and "thyroid symptoms" have doubled since 2009.

Google's user experience researcher, Dan Russell, said the onus to assess the accuracy and credibility of online information was on the individual. "We now as individuals have access to huge amounts of information and you can pull up thousands and thousands of pages about Alzheimer's or irritable bowel syndrome," Mr Russell said.

"The irony is that people once learned how to look at the page of a book, document or journal and understand roughly how believable it was... but now for basically no money any wacko can write anything and put it on the web."As an individual at home looking at all this stuff, you have to constantly ask, 'Can I believe this?'"

Mosman GP Penny Shaw said simple symptoms were often misconstrued by patients using the Internet, resulting in severe anxiety.

"I've had patients who have come in with a headache thinking they have a brain tumor and many who've had tingling in their fingers and thought they had multiple sclerosis," Dr Shaw said.
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