4 Monumental Health Risks that Fly Under the Radar

4 Monumental Health Risks that Fly Under the Radar

Certain health conditions freak people out and grab headlines around the world. Think about the panic surrounding so-called outbreaks like mad-cow disease and the bird flu that caused momentary fright, but ultimately didn’t amount to much. These sorts of diseases get undue media attention, while other health risks tend not to receive the same sort of sensational coverage. Indeed, most if not all people are at-risk for these damaging health-related conditions, yet many aren’t even aware of them as potential problems. And while tweaking your workout routine and adding vegan meals to your diet is great, neither will help you gain insight into some truly appalling diseases. So, in order to help you take better control of your well-being, here are four dangerous health risks that tend to fly under the radar:

Radiation Sickness

We’re only just beginning to scratch the surface of radiation’s effect on the body. While radiation does well-and-truly allow for some critical medical and technological advancements, the negative side effects to prolonged radiation exposure are varied and horrifying. Often, the degree to which radiation sickness will affect a subject depends on how long and how severe their exposure to the radiation was. So while industrial accidents and nuclear facilities carry greater risks, even relatively innocuous devices that emit radiation could still exhibit some threat.

STDs

During the HIV/AIDS epidemic of the 1980s and early 90s plenty of ink was devoted to STDs in general and AIDS in particular. People were confused and understandably worried about the nature of this new disease, and misconceptions still abound about how STDs can be spread. One big issue in regard to sexual wellness is that most people assume that if they don’t notice any symptoms, then they must not have an STD. That’s not the case, though. In fact, many STDs can remain asymptomatic for long periods of time, and the only way to know for sure if you’re STD-free is to visit a professional testing clinic. Otherwise, you could be opening yourself up to a whole host of potential issues.

Brain Aneurysms

Like the mythical thunderbolt, massive brain aneurysms typically occur without warning and leave little recourse for those stricken. What makes this possibility all the more frightening is that more often than not, no symptoms manifest themselves in the build-up to an aneurysm. Indeed, people can even live with minor aneurysms for years and not even realize it. Moreover, aneurysms can happen to anyone at anytime. Freaky.

Alcohol

Glorified everywhere from Super-Bowl advertisements to frat-house parties, alcohol is nevertheless a killer. Unlike tobacco, which has received an onslaught of negative PR for the better part of four decades now, the alcohol industry continues to operate with relatively few restrictions, despite the fact that around 90,000 people die from alcohol-related deaths annually. And that’s not even beginning to factor in the long-term effects of alcohol dependence. Plain and simple, the truth about alcohol abuse is sordid and ugly.

Simple Life Changes You Need to Make To Look Your Beautiful Best

Simple Life Changes You Need to Make To Look Your Beautiful Best

Beauty clinics can offer you some great treatments and remedies to some issues which you are having, but the truth is that much of the way you look comes down to how you live. I have lived in Scottsdale Arizona for a couple of years now and I haven’t really found a clinic which was right for me. I have seen some great reviews and helpful comments for places, the Sono Bello reviews for example are wonderful, but I’ve been more focussed on getting the way live right first. If you want to amp up the beauty stakes, it actually isn’t all that difficult, and these are the steps which should be taken.

Sleeping

When you don’t get enough sleep your entire body feels tired and drained, and guess what, that is how you look too. When iii don’t get enough sleep your body cannot rejuvenate and recuperate as well as it should, leaving you looking withdrawn and ultimately, a little less beautiful.

Water

Drinking enough water is such a simple task but one which so many of us fail to do. The effects of not drinking sufficient water each day are that your body becomes dehydrated and to hydrate itself again, it takes water from different parts of the body, in a priority system. What this means is that hair, skin and nails can all be negatively affected and it can leave people looking in poor health. When should drink between 2-3 liters of water every day, and men should be downing around 3-4 liters of that magical H2O.

Nightly Routine

I was asking a beautician friend of mine about which product I should buy for my face, and she shocked me when she said that it wasn’t all that important. What was important she said, was that I applied a cleanser, toner and moisturizer every single night without fail. The results of doing this have been magnificent and in truth, with the exception of one or two products which don’t work well  with my skin, she was right about it not being important which products that I used.

Sunshine

Sunshine is crucial if you want to look your best as it gives you a healthy boost of vitamin D which is great for anti-oxidizing, and for breathing life into your skin. I haven’t too much to worry about here in Scottsdale, AZ, as the sun is a feature of daily life. The sun however, does not need to be hot in order for the vitamin D to get into your skin, it simply needs to be out. Try to ensure that you are getting out enough and letting the sun touch your skin, it really can make a huge difference.

Beauty doesn’t have to be complex, it is generally the simple things which will have the biggest impact. There is no excuses either, the simple tips are easy to achieve and require very little effort.

Health Benefits Students Get from Playing Video Games

Health Benefits Students Get from Playing Video Games

Video games; there’s so much negativity around them. Growing up, it was probably a norm to hear parents telling their kids to ‘put that console away’ or else they would get grounded!

In fact, a large part of society has branded video games as a negative contributor to a child’s normal growth and development.

Moreover, a number of studies have shown that video games requiring minimal movement can adversely affect a child’s physical, as well as social development.

Counter-intuitively, there have also been numerous studies that have demonstrated the health benefits of gaming. That being said, here are 7 reasons why a video game a day can help keep the doctor away!

Video games serve as therapy for students suffering from chronic illnesses

A recent study conducted last year by the University of Utah revealed that children suffering from chronic illnesses such as Parkinson’s disease, depression, and autism showed signs of improvement when allowed to play specific games designed for the study. The children showed a marked enhancement in resilience, as well as developing a fighting spirit.

Researchers that conducted the study believe that the games had the ability to target specific neuronal mechanisms that triggered the children’s reward systems. This greatly helped improve the kids’ demeanors as they tackled the daily challenges of their illness.

Video games greatly advance a preschooler’s motor skills

One might think that letting their 5-year old spend a few hours in front of the TV with a video controller held in their petit hands is not such a good idea. On the contrary, it just might be doing them some justice.

Not only do interactive video games improve a developing child’s motor skills, but it can actually help them improve their concentration levels as they have to focus on one thing for a long period of time.

Video games reduce stress as well as depression

A study conducted by the 2009’s Annual Review of Cyber therapy and Telemedicine found that people who suffered from mental health issues, but happened to be gamers, were able to easily vent their aggression and frustration by indulging in video games.

That being said, perhaps trying out a couple of Arcade Games Online might just be the stress reliever one needs.

Video games provide relief from chronic pain

Video games just don’t provide an avenue of relief and healing of emotional pain, but can also assist those in sever physical pain. A study was conducted by the psychologists from the University of Washington.

In the process, they developed a game that assisted hospital patients suffering from chronic physical pain to greatly reduce their discomfort.  The game in question was ‘Snow World.’

During the study, they noted that the patients that indulged in the video game required less pain medicine during their recuperation.

Video games can help improve one’s vision

Yes that’s right. Prior to what most parents believe, spending hours in front of the tv can actually improve one’s eyesight. In fact, fast-paced games such as ‘Call of duty’ require a lot of attention, and in turn, improve one’s eyesight thanks to increase levels of dopamine and adrenaline.

4 Ways to Treat Seasonal Affective Disorder

4 Ways to Treat Seasonal Affective Disorder

As the seasons change, so do people’s moods. If you are someone who struggles with seasonal affective disorder, or SAD as it is more commonly known, you will understand this all too well. Despite the fact that mental health disorders can cause disruption in people’s lives throughout the year, mood disorders are much more likely to materialize in winter.

According to the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), 4-6 percent of people will experience winter depression and an additional 10-20 percent will experience mild SAD. Instead of letting SAD negatively impact your life, learn how to regain control with some tried and tested treatment options.

What are the signs of Seasonal Affective Disorder SAD?

Also known as seasonal depression, seasonal affective disorder usually arises during the onset of winter. When the days are shorter and there is less sunlight to give the body a healthy dose of Vitamin D, the full-body symptoms of SAD may transpire.

They may include a few or all of the following:

  • Excess sleepiness
  • Social isolation/withdrawal
  • Appetite changes
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Feelings of loneliness
  • Loss of interest in formerly enjoyable activities

Perhaps the best way to truly understand if it is SAD that you are suffering from is to visit a doctor who can provide an accurate diagnosis.

Why shouldn’t I use prescription drugs to treat SAD?

Sometime back in the late 1990s, prescription opioid drugs began circulating, with devastating outcomes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 42,249 people died as a result of opioid overdose in the United States in 2016 alone.

Since opioid medications are usually prescribed to patients with depression and other mood disorders, it is imperative that you make yourself aware of the risks prior to using this type of treatment.

The most common risks include:

  • Addiction
  • Overdose
  • Drowsiness
  • Mood swings
  • Irritability
  • Intense itching

So, how can you steer clear of the risks?

Well, there are many other effective treatment options for SAD. Here are four ways in which you can relieve the symptoms of SAD without using medications with potentially unpleasant side effects.

1.Enjoy a Vacation

Geographic variation may have an intense impact on the prevalence of SAD, with people in Nordic countries experiencing the symptoms of SAD more often than people in sun-drenched places around the world like Jamaica, Africa and Australia, for example. For this reason, consider taking a trip to warmer climates. Exposing yourself to new environments will undoubtedly lift the mood and inject much-needed hope into the life of a person who is feeling hopeless.

2. Explore the Great Outdoors

In addition to relaxing on vacation, make sure you spend plenty of time exploring the great outdoors, too. Heck, you don’t even need to go on vacation to experience the benefits of getting outdoors! A stroll in the park, a walk along the beach or a run with the pet dogs amidst the picturesque winter landscape could be just what the doctor ordered. Natural light from the sun will stimulate Vitamin D production and act as a form of light therapy, which has been proven to lift the mood.

3. Get Into a Routine

After a while, routine can get boring. This is why it is important to mix it up. On the other hand, routine is crucial for making you feel balanced and less stressed. It also ensures you accomplish all of the things you strive to do each day, which is always a perk for the mood. A harmonious lifestyle will positively influence your mental state, so give it a go.

4. Be Open About Your Feelings

Keeping things inside will make you overthink, which may contribute to SAD. Discuss your feelings with the people you trust, whether this is a neighbor, family member or your doctor. If you find it hard to talk it out, try writing it down. Surrounding yourself with good company is also an instant mood-booster.

5. Treating SAD with Medicinal Cannabis

If you’re sold on the idea of using medical marijuana to treat your mood disorder (and why wouldn’t you be?) the next step is to find San Francisco dispensaries that stock suitable cannabis strains/products. Although you can expect one of the seasoned budtenders inside a store to aid you in your quest to find a cannabis strain for SAD, it wouldn’t hurt to familiarize yourself with the best strains for mood management.

Below, we touch upon some of the most effective cannabis strains for treating SAD:

  • Blue Dream – A sweet strain with a pungent blueberry flavor/aroma, Blue Dream is a sure-fire SAD-buster, thanks to its cerebral high and stress relieving qualities. You can also expect a burst of creativity when you try this strain.
  • Sour Grape – Why not try this balanced hybrid strain? A popular choice for pain relief, Sour Grape will leave you feeling clear-minded and free from anxiety.
  • AK Cherry Lime – Enjoy an indulgent body high when you try this sativa-dominant hybrid. Sweet yet spicy, AK Cherry Lime is also frequently used for treating clinical depression.
  • Lemon Skunk – Melt into a state of sublime relaxation with this appetite-promoting cannabis strain. The citrus-flavored strain is a good option for treating SAD, because it calms the entire mind.

A cannabis store that holds the relevant licenses and permits to legally sell medical-grade weed products will be worth looking into. Check out their online menu before visiting to get an idea of how you can medicate with cannabis.

4 Ways Beautiful Scenery Impacts Your Health

4 Ways Beautiful Scenery Impacts Your Health

Need some inspiration? Taking in beautiful scenery doesn’t just boost creativity. It can also benefit your health. Here are four ways it does that.

It’s no secret that taking the time to appreciate the outdoors can put you in good spirits.

But did you know that immersing yourself in beautiful scenery can positively affect your long-term well-being?

Here are some ways that your health can be improved by taking in the great outdoors.

Improve Memory and Focus

Are you often forgetful? Has anyone ever accused you of being aloof or not present?

This could be because the everyday grind of life is making you feel overworked and mentally exhausted. It can be tough to function under these conditions, and you might notice that your personal and professional relationships are suffering.

Multiple studies have been conducted that show taking the time to appreciate nature can help you remember important details and focus better in your daily life. Even a short trip to the park can help.

Helps Deal With Stress

Sometimes it can seem like your stressors are taking over your life. This is especially true if you live in an urban area, where people generally report feeling more stressed than in rural communities.

It’s important to take the time to appreciate mother nature. If you have a free weekend, go camping with some gear from 4WD Supacentre. The longer you spend away from your stressors, the better off you will be.

Fights Against Disease

There is preliminary evidence that suggests people who spend more time outdoors tend to have lower rates of illnesses like cancer and heart disease. Spending more time in nature may even be able to help curtail high blood pressure.

For those with anxiety, depression, or other mental illnesses, taking in the beautiful scenery can have a seriously positive effect on your mood. Spending time outside may even be able to prevent your vision from deteriorating.

If you take the time to go on short walks in nature every day, you may end up living longer and healthier.

Provides Creative Energy

Are you a creative type who is struggling to find inspiration for your next project? Try taking a break from your process and immerse yourself in the great outdoors! Spending time outside may be able to help you be more creative.

Furthermore, because it can help with memory and focus, as stated before, taking a walk or going on a camping trip may be able to boost your overall intelligence in the long run.

Try it yourself. If you ever feel like you’re experiencing brain fog or unfocused thoughts, get out of your workspace and into nature. You might find that you have a renewed sense of energy for your upcoming project.

Beautiful Scenery Increases Your Quality of Life

If you take the time to appreciate the wonders of nature, it’s very possible that you and your family might live a happier, healthier, more fulfilling life. It’s never too late to get out there and experience the rejuvenating qualities of the outdoors.

For more information on how traveling can do wonders for your health, check out this post! And don’t forget to visit the rest of our blog for more tips.

Finding and Choosing Between Rehab Options

Finding and Choosing Between Rehab Options

If you struggle with addiction, getting sober will help you become your best self. Read on to learn how to find and choose between the rehab options available.

Did you know that in 2015 alone, substance abuse caused over 47,000 deaths in America? This is three times the number of fatalities in 1999?

Drug addiction is the most neglected problem in America, according to medical professionals and researchers.

The issue isn’t a lack of rehab options, as there are more than 14,500 drug treatment centers all over the US.

Lack of information is one of the primary contributing factors.

From the less-than-useful information provided by rehab websites to the countless rehab options available, choosing a treatment program is challenging.

That’s why we’ve created this practical guide to help you understand your options.

With the tips here you can choose the right rehab facility for your specific circumstances.

Determine Your Goals and Needs

Rehabs vary by specialty. Even those facilities with a similar specialty will gauge success differently and use different methods to reach there.

It’s important to pick a rehab facility that’ll assist you to reach your treatment goals, but you’ve got to know your goals before doing that.

The first thing to do to determine your treatment goals is to decide which drugs and/or behaviors you wish to recover from.

Next, you should determine whether there any underlying issues, including medical conditions, you want treated at the same time.

Then you’ve got to figure out your definition of success.

Is your initial aim to undergo detox and stay sober for the first month? Would 6 to 12 months of sobriety mean success to you?

Only you and/or your nearest and dearest can determine your goals.

Consult a Treatment Professional

Consulting a treatment professional is the best way to figure out your treatment options and find a rehab that best suits your treatment goals. The countless rehab options available make it difficult to avoid poor fits.

Also, treatment professionals have extensive knowledge about many things associated with rehab centers that you probably don’t know, or never would have imagined. They also know many rehabs quite well and can give invaluable information.

Investigate Different Rehab Options

Whether your own research generated various rehab options or a treatment professional gave them to you, it’s vital to investigate them.

You’ll find some information from websites and other sources, but you should ask for more information from the rehabs themselves.

The best rehabs want to ensure you will succeed with their program and have nothing to hide. They’ll happily answer all your questions too.

To find out what rehab facilities to avoid, learn more here.

Factors to Consider

Many factors affect which rehab facility is right for your situation, and some are more crucial than others. The following are some of the most important factors to many addicts.

Licensing and Accreditation

Carry out some research and ensure that the rehab you’re considering has official state accreditation. This is vital as it’ll ensure that you receive safe and evidence-based treatment.

You should also ensure that the medical professionals operating in that rehab are all licensed.

Success Rates

Can the rehab you’re considering walk the talk? After all, you do not want to be anybody’s guinea pig.

Research the success previous individuals have enjoyed at the facility and verify the success story claims published on the rehab’s website.

Treatment Options

According to the New York Times, there’s no one treatment works for everyone. Therefore, a crucial part of getting the best treatment program for you or your loved one’s needs is considering the various rehab options available.

Consider the treatments provided before you decide.

You want to pick a program that provides various options, including one-on-one counseling, cognitive behavior therapy, and suitable medical therapies for any underlying issues that may exist.

Never settle for a program that doesn’t provide a range of options for a customized treatment approach.

Personalized Treatment

Since substance addiction is a complex issue, a personalized treatment program is vital for recovery. Here are some reasons why personalized treatments are quite effective:

  • They target individual needs
  • They identify issues that lead to substance abuse
  • They treat causes of addiction
  • They help you avoid treatments that won’t work well for you

Personalized treatment plans are designed for you or your loved one’s needs.

Type and Length of Aftercare

Aftercare is fundamental to the success of a rehab facility. Help Guide recommends that you think about the aftercare program before making your decision.

Addiction recovery is a long-term endeavor, so a comprehensive aftercare program that’ll continue to help you or your family member throughout the move back to personal responsibilities is a crucial consideration.

Treatment Types

Alcohol and substance addiction are conditions that develop through predictable phases.

Whether it’s an inpatient or outpatient program, it takes a trained health professional specializing in drug addictions to accurately diagnose and prescribe the right treatment.

A drug rehab center should provide a range of treatment plans that meet individual needs.

Treatment programs may include outpatient, inpatient, residential, and/or short-stay options.

Some offer hospitalization and others provide counseling onsite. You’ll also find rehab facilities that focus on group therapy while others offer intervention services.

Each rehab facility is different. Do your legwork and make sure to choose a facility that best suits your individual needs.

Cost

For many addicts, the cost is the one biggest factor that determines their choice of rehab.

The fact is that cost widely varies between rehab options depending on the center, length of stay, and the programs the patient enrolls in.

Fortunately, there are various options out there to help you pay for treatment, meaning that you’ll have access to different options no matter your budget.

It’s also crucial to bear in mind that the financial burden of long-term substance abuse is far bigger than rehab.

Some common options for paying for rehab include:

  • Loans
  • Self-funding
  • Private Health Insurance
  • Medicaid and Medicare
  • Obamacare (The Affordable Healthcare Act)

Amenities

The amenities available is one of the most obvious things that set apart rehab options.

Some rehabs offer a lifestyle that matches or surpasses that of 5-star hotels, and others provide very basic but adequate facilities that help patients to recover.

The variety of amenities available in rehab centers is really wide, so you’re likely to find a center that offers whatever you’re looking for.

Length of Program

Most treatment programs take 30-90 days, but many other options exist too.

Many experts strongly encourage 60-90-day programs as they consider 30 days to be too short to successfully work through drug abuse problems.

However, there are plenty of 30-day plans with an excellent history of success.

Additionally, longer stays may be impractical for many patients due to family, professional, or financial commitments.

Location

There are multiple viewpoints regarding the issue of whether or not it’s right to pick a rehab center located near the home of the addict.

Of course, nearby rehab options offer more convenience and may be ideal for patients with commitments near home they can’t leave for a long time.

But it’s also very useful to travel as far as you can for rehab. This more completely shatters the connection between you and your former life, especially harmful routines and relationships that encourage drug abuse.

Family Involvement

Alcoholism and drug abuse not only affects the alcoholic/addict, but also the entire family.

Family members often don’t realize how seriously they’ve been affected by drug dependency.

Getting your family involved is a crucial component of recovery. Rehab facilities vary by the quality and degree of family participation opportunities they offer.

Some offer family therapy while others provide a couple of lectures. Ask if there’s group therapy or if there’s any time allocated to family programs.

Rehab’s Core Principles

Some rehabs focus on a single religion, while others employ a 12-step program. Consider the kind of program you or your family member would most likely welcome.

Compare Rehab Facilities

Once you have all the relevant info about the different rehab options you’re looking at, it’s time to compare them. Choosing the right facility means you’ll have to weigh all factors carefully.

Before making a decision, you must determine what characteristics matter the most to you and select the rehab that best suits what you’re looking for.

It may not be possible to find a rehab that suits all your preferences and needs. However, you’ll be able to locate an excellent facility that’ll help you start your journey to recovery.

Sign Up

Once you’ve settled on the right rehab center, it’s time to sign up.

Every rehab facility has its own procedures and policies for registration, but they’ll have no qualms giving you that information.

Many rehabs will even let you enroll over the telephone.

Be sure to carefully go through and follow all registration and admission procedures to ensure your enrollment is successful.

Choose the Best Rehab Today

With so many rehab options out there, it may be difficult to pick the right facility, but it definitely doesn’t have to be.

So many rehab professionals out there are waiting to assist you or your loved one overcome an alcohol or drug addiction.

Contact us today and start the process of picking the right rehab facility right away.

How To Deal With Knowing You Need Long-Term Nursing Care

How To Deal With Knowing You Need Long-Term Nursing Care

Is it time for you to seek out long-term nursing care? It’s a difficult choice to make and to deal with. Read this for tips on how to cope with your decision.

Getting older is no cake walk, though it beats the alternative.

As we age often there are things we can’t do for ourselves anymore such as driving, easily getting around or even remembering why we walked into a room.

Sometimes it goes beyond the occasional need for assistance or bout of forgetfulness. For many there comes the time when it’s just not safe to go it alone and not have someone there to help out when needed.

Long-term nursing care is an option that most of us eventually have to consider for ourselves or a loved one.

It can be a difficult decision to come to terms with but it doesn’t have to be a frightening process.

Here are some tips to help you cope with the decision to seek long-term nursing care.

Assess Your Needs Honestly

We all get by with a little help from our friends. But sometimes no matter how loving and attentive family and friends are, you need more help than they can safely provide.

Some signs that long-term nursing care may be the right decision are:

Decline in Hygiene

Often as one’s ability and mobility decline so does their hygiene. This may be for physical or mental health reasons. There’s no shame in needing help and it’s important to get it when it comes to hygiene and activities of daily living.

Not being able to care for one’s self can lead to further health complications and conditions such as infections, illnesses, and depression.

A Decline in Mental Health

More than 2 million Americans over the age of 65 suffer from depression. While depression is rampant in the older generation 68% of them know very little or absolutely nothing about the condition.

Depression can often go unrecognized and untreated leaving the individual to spiral into a melancholy and sad isolation from the world and experience a diminished quality of life.

Long-term nursing care can provide socialization and provide medical and mental health support that may not be possible at home.

Physical and emotional needs can be monitored and met by the attentive staff there to help more consistently and professionally than family would be able to.

Memory and Organization Decline

We all occasionally forget an appointment or have a bill payment slip our minds. When these instances are interfering with daily life and creating problems on a regular basis you may benefit from long-term nursing care.

Safety can also become an issue with memory decline. Forgetting to turn off the stove or wandering the streets looking for something familiar can have devastating consequences.

Physical Decline

Mobility issues can be dealt with through adapting your home if it’s just a question of stairs being difficult to climb or activities are a little more difficult to complete.

When activities of daily living become nearly impossible or a safety risk when performed alone, you may need long-term nursing care.

Knowledge is Power with Long-Term Nursing Care

Change is scary. It’s often the unknown that paralyzes us with fear. The more you know the better-informed decisions you can make and the less frightening the process will be.

Talk to friends, family, health professionals and trusted professionals about options they recommend.

Learn more about the various long-term nursing care facilities in your area. Go for a tour, ask questions and make a list of positive and negative points about each one.

The government has a tool to help compare care facilities across the country.

Gather as much information as you can about the facility, staff ratios, services and financial details to assist you in making the right choice for you.

After the Choice is Made

The right choice isn’t always the easiest and this is especially true when it involves your life changing in a major way like going into a long-term nursing care facility.

It can be quite a blow to one’s self-esteem to have to admit they can’t do the things they used to. There’s no shame in needing help but it can be a struggle to accept that you do.

There are some things you can do for your self-esteem and emotional health as you adjust to your new reality.

Remember What You Love and Do What You Can

You may have slowed down a bit but you are still you, you have tons to offer and lots of things you can still do.

Remember what you love, who you love, and why you do. Long-term nursing care can help you find joy in the journey again. Many have extensive recreation and occupational therapy programs to help you still do the things you love.

There are ways to stay connected to your hobbies and to your loved ones. Many facilities have guest rooms where out of town loved ones can come and dine with you or stay overnight to visit.

Share Your Talents and Find New Ones

Ensure you let staff know what your hobbies and favorites activities are. They can help you find ways to still enjoy many of the things you love to do.

Music, art, games, and crafts are activities many facilities will offer in a group and individual settings.

Participate, share your talents with other residents and find a purpose and joy in each day.

Don’t assume you’re done doing the things you love. In fact, you may have a chance to take up hobbies you haven’t been able to enjoy for years at home.

You’ll have the opportunity to try new activities and hobbies you’ve never thought of delving into before.

Join in activities that are offered, get to know the other residents and expand your horizons by trying new things and finding new ways to enjoy favorite pastimes from years gone by.

Find the Joy in Each Day and Take It One Day at a Time

Change is scary and if you focus on the negatives of what you are leaving behind it can seem overwhelming. Try to focus on the joys of each day by giving yourself positive things to look forward to.

It takes time to adjust. Take the changes one day at a time and talk about your feelings when they come up. Long-term nursing care can be the best decision you ever made for your emotional and physical health.

For more articles on taking care of your physical and emotional health check out our blog.

3 Self-Care Practices to Fix a Hormonal Imbalance

3 Self-Care Practices to Fix a Hormonal Imbalance

A hormonal imbalance can throw your whole life and sleep schedule out of whack. Add these self-care practices to your routine to help balance your hormones.

Are you tired of dealing with your hormonal imbalance and all its symptoms? You’re not alone.

The physical and emotional symptoms of unbalanced hormones affect millions of people worldwide, leaving some at a loss for what to do to fix them. You’ve seen doctor after doctor, but still no change.

If you’re ready to finally address your hormone health and resolve your imbalance once and for all, you are in the right place. This article will teach you three ways to naturally fix your imbalance through self-care.

Keep reading if you’re ready to learn how.

Common Symptoms of Hormonal Imbalance

There are common and consistent symptoms most people endure when they have a hormonal imbalance. They are:

  • Fatigue
  • Acne (especially along jawline)
  • Digestive issues
  • Weight gain
  • Mood swings, sometimes with anxiety and depression

If you are experiencing multiple symptoms from that list, it’s time to address this imbalance once and for all. No one should have to suffer from these effects; you deserve to find a solution.

Here are the 3 best practices in self-care that will fix your hormonal imbalance.

1. Decrease Stress

Stress is the most common roadblock to healing your body. It takes all of your body’s energy and resources so other issues aren’t focused on.

When you’re stressed, your body goes into fight-or-flight mode; cortisol levels rise which leads to inflammation and other health concerns. Address your stress so your body can focus on balancing.

There are lots of awesome ways to practice destressing self-care. Here are some examples:

  • Exercising
  • Journaling
  • Therapy
  • Meditation
  • Practicing mindfulness

If your stress is work-related, consider how you can delegate tasks so you aren’t under as much pressure. You should also consider taking up a creative hobby that allows your to decompress after a long workday.

Alleviating stress in your life is imperative to decreasing cortisol levels and allowing your body to heal.

2. Essential Oils

As mentioned above, stress is a huge factor in your hormonal imbalance. Essential oils are a great tool in alleviating stress as well as helping the hormone-producing systems to regulate themselves.

Here are some oils that you should consider adding to your self-care routine:

Clary Sage

This oil can be used for aromatherapy, direct inhalation, and as a massage oil.

Clary sage can reduce cortisol levels from stress as well an improve your thyroid hormone levels. Simply open the bottle and inhale 1-2 a day.

Hormones are directly related to women’s reproductive systems, so it’s no wonder you can feel cramping and bloating in that area when your hormones are off. Use clary sage as a massage oil on your lower abdomen to help your reproductive organs relax.

Stress often increases during the menstrual cycle so during that time of the month it’s especially beneficial to use clary sage to reduce it.

Thyme

This oil can be used for aromatherapy to address multiple symptoms of hormonal balances at once.

Since thyme can lower your progesterone levels, you could see an improvement in your mood swings, hot flashes, weight gain, and insomnia.

It has also been known to increase estrogen levels, so if you already have high estrogen levels, it’s not recommended to use thyme oil.

Bergamot

This oil is beneficial when used for aromatherapy to allow your body to heal from stress.

It’s known to reduce blood pressure and heart rate which allows your body to feel calmer and be able to focus on healing the damages from your stress.

Bergamot can help lower cortisol so that your body has time to balance and regulate its systems that were affected.

3. Eat Clean

Your diet is intensely linked to your endocrine system where hormones are produced. So much of processed food and food from mass-producing farms contain hormones that don’t belong in our bodies. Livestock is sometimes fed hormone-enriched feed which then ends up on our plates.

Here are some tips to follow that will make your diet cleaner:

Go Organic

Mass-produced fruits and vegetables are often sprayed with pesticides and the soil is treated with fertilizers to ensure pests stay away and the company can sell everything it grows.

These pesticides have growth hormones in them to promote the unnatural growth of the plant. They also mess with your hormones when you consume those fruits and veggies.

To avoid ingesting these hormones, choose to buy organic produce.

Support Gut Health

The bacteria in our stomachs break down the metabolized hormones in our body. This process is incredibly important to ensure we don’t have too many hormones in our system.

To promote healthy bacteria in your stomach, eat 1-2 tablespoons of fermented food each day. Some options are sauerkraut or kimchi.

Reduce Caffeine

Caffeine can increase cortisol levels, stress, and even estrogen levels.

Try to limit your coffee intake or replace it with less caffeinated beverages like matcha green tea or half-decaf-half-caffeinated coffee.

What About Hormone Replacement Therapy?

In some cases, self-care practices and holistic approaches may not be enough to balance your hormones.

Many sufferers opt to try hormone replacement therapy. If you choose to go with this option, consider using bioidentical hormones because they will be absorbed more naturally in the body than synthetic ones.

The success some patients achieve can far outweigh the bioidentical hormones cost. Always do your research and speak to a health practitioner before starting any new treatment.

Interested in Learning More?

Self-care practices can seriously impact your hormonal imbalance, you just have to find the method that works best for you.

For some, that will be meditating and getting regular exercise. For others, it could be changing their diet or implanting essential oils into their routine. Some will try every option available.

Whichever route you choose to go in your healing, remember that healing is half physical and half emotional. You must address wounds in both sections to fully heal.

To learn more about health issues and how your body can be affected, check out our Health Archives.

How to Change Up Your Gym Routine

How to Change Up Your Gym Routine

Getting a little bored of the same gym routine? Read on to learn how to change up your routine to stave off the boredom!

You already know that getting regular exercise provides a whole host of benefits — more energy, less stress, better sleep, a stronger immune system, higher self-esteem, and a greater shot at living to a ripe old age. That’s why you already make it a point to hit the gym or go for a run almost every day.

Fully half of all people who begin a new workout program abandon it within six months. If you’ve made it past the half-year mark and successfully incorporated regular exercise into your schedule, then congrats! However, you may now be facing a new challenge: the dreaded plateau.

Read on to learn why plateaus happen and why it’s important to change up your gym routine, as well as some expert tips to keep yourself from getting bored.

What’s a Plateau, and Why Is It So Bad?

It’s common for people who are working out for weight loss to hit a plateau, but this phenomenon also occurs to anyone looking to build muscle or increase endurance. A plateau occurs when the gym routine and eating habits that were successful in the past simply stop working.

Believe it or not, your body is pretty darn smart. It also adapts relatively quickly. Workouts are stressors, which trigger your body to respond by rebuilding muscles and burning calories. But after a while, three miles on the treadmill or a 20-minute HIIT routine becomes the norm. A plateau is basically your body saying, “What else ya got?”

Plateaus can be incredibly frustrating, especially if you’re used to seeing significant progress. The good news? You won’t be spinning your wheels for very long if you take steps to vary your gym routine every four to six weeks.

Other Reasons to Change Up Your Workout

Getting past a discouraging plateau is a great reason to get out of the gym routine rut. Another is keeping yourself mentally engaged.

If there’s a particular form of exercise that you love, great! In many ways, that’s half the battle. When a workout feels like a punishment or a chore, it can be incredibly difficult to motivate yourself to keep doing it, day in and day out. When you are having fun, on the other hand, you might not even notice that you’re breaking a sweat or putting your body through its paces.

No matter how much you love your usual regimen, however, there are bound to be days when you’d rather stay in bed — or hit the couch for a serious Netflix binge. By trying something new, you can give yourself an extra boost of motivation.

Lastly, changing your gym routine can help prevent injury. Repetitive exercises can lead to muscle overuse, so it’s important to make sure you’re targeting all muscle groups. It’s also smart to aim for flexibility, mobility, and balance, in addition to strength and cardio.

How to Break Out of Your Gym Routine

Ready to get out of that rut? There are a couple of paths that you can take.

Check Out a Class

First, if you belong to a gym, check out the class schedule. The variety of options may just surprise you. Try yoga, pilates, Zumba, spinning, aquafit, kickboxing, pickleball, or an aerial workout. Who knows — you just may fall in love with your gym all over again.

Classes are fun, but there’s also some scientific evidence that working out with others can actually help you reach fitness milestones faster. According to a study published in the Journal of Social Sciences, people tend to emulate their peers when exercising in a group. Another study, this one in the journal Obesity, found that simply spending time with fitter friends can actually an obese individual to lose weight.

Enjoy the Great Outdoors

Prefer an outdoor workout? Of course, you can walk, run, hike, or bike, but don’t forget about roller skating, rowing, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing. Or go super old-school and bust out a jump rope! Jump ropes are small and lightweight, which makes them perfect for a heart-healthy cardio workout — whether you’re indoors or outdoors, at home or traveling for vacation.

Increase Weight, Reduce Reps

If you love lifting, never fear — there’s a way to mix up your strength routine, too. Rather than the typical one to three sets of eight to 12 reps, try upping the weight by 5% or 10%. See how many reps you can do at that level. When that becomes easy, increase the weight again.

Don’t forget to target complementary muscle groups. That means quads and hamstring, biceps and triceps, pecs and lats. These workouts will ensure a well-toned and balanced physique.

Change Directions

Are bodyweight routines your go-to? Think about the ways that you typically move, and mix that up. For example, if you usually do squats, you’re only moving up and down. Substitute bilateral moves, like lunges. Bilateral exercises also give you the advantage of working each side of your body separately, for more even results.

It’s also easy to switch up your gym routine by categorizing each move as a push or a pull. Say you do pushups and lateral pulldowns every day at the gym. What if you reversed that, and swap in bench presses and pull-ups? Sometimes, small changes like these are all you need to break you out of your habits and get your body responding once again.

Get FITT

You’ve heard of HIIT, but do you know what FITT stands for? Frequency, intensity, time and type. Make changes to any of those factors, and voila! You’ve changed your gym routine.

Runners who enjoy a slow, steady jog for 30 minutes can breath new life into their workout by doing sprints every other day. If you usually use free weights, try kettlebells, medicine balls, or a bodyweight routine.

It might not sound like much, but making fairly minor adjustments like these will get you maximum results. Tiny tweaks to your normal sweat sessions are all that’s needed to catch your body off-guard.

What Does Your Gym Routine Look Like?

Are you addicted to your weekly Bikram yoga class? A diehard runner? A kickboxing powerhouse? Or maybe all you can manage is a walk around the block with your dog. It doesn’t matter. What’s important is that you’re getting out there and taking charge of your health.

We’d love to hear about your favorite workout, or about any tips for changing things up that we may have forgotten. Leave a comment below to join in the conversation!

Strength Through Sobriety: A Guide to Living the Good Life

Strength Through Sobriety: A Guide to Living the Good Life

Living a sober life can be a challenge, particularly in social situations. But we’ll show you how staying sober can make you a stronger person.

In the United States alone, nearly 14 million adults abuse alcohol or have an alcohol problem. If you are sober, congratulations! You are one of the few who made it.

Living a sober life isn’t always easy. In fact, many people who get sober struggle with the idea of “going back out,” or picking up drinking again.

If you are getting sober, you have so much to look forward to. And if you’ve been sober for a while, there are so many aspects of your life you can improve upon.

Getting sober isn’t just about saving your liver and avoiding blackouts; sobriety actually improves a ton of areas in your life.

Let’s talk about that.

Sobriety and You

Making the decision to get sober is a bigger life change than a lot of people may think. Once you get sober, you realize how much alcohol is ingrained in our social lives.

At brunch, people have mimosas. Coworkers go out for drinks after work. Everything seems to revolve around booze.

The good news is, once you’ve gotten sober, your life doesn’t have to be like that anymore.

The first thing many people realize when they get sober is how many times they have tried to problem-solve by using alcohol and nothing else.

Alcohol is a break-up’s best friend, a late night thinktank fuel. We use it in lieu of actual solutions.

Now that you are sober, you can start to look at the world through a clear lens. You no longer have to use an escape mechanism to function.

Notice that I said “have to use,” instead of “get to use.” Getting sober isn’t about punishing yourself for being bad at drinking; au contraire, it is a gift to your future self.

Instead of falling into an inescapable pattern of running away from problems, you are working on creating an environment where you can face them head-on. You are building a set of skills that are sadly rare nowadays. Skills to become a self-actualizing being.

Too many people spend their sad times drowning themselves in the drink instead of learning from them. People use alcohol as a replacement for self-improvement.

Living a sober life gives you a chance to pause. In the midst of stopping a habit that facilitates a brain fog, you have actually taken the first step toward discovering yourself.

A Sober Life Is a Healthy Life

This world is full of advertisements and spam about how to live a healthy lifestyle. Can anyone say that they know what that looks like? We’re drowning in fad diets and articles about how cellphones are bad for you. We have no concept of personal wellness.

A sober life is all about rediscovering yourself. When you live a sober life, you are constantly changing and growing.

It’s like once you stop pushing all your problems deep down inside, they start to get confronted with a healthy desire for change. How weird is that?

All jokes aside, being sober is a journey that leads you to personal wellness. What that means is that all of a sudden you start to see how your personal health might look different from other people’s.

Some people can drink with no problems. If that is not your case, you actually have an advantage, not a curse. You have the power of insight.

Too many people walk around life blindly, trying to find the next “in” thing. Getting sober puts you on a different life track- you are now in the sober life school, and here we learn about introspecting.

Sound boring? Not even a little bit. Learning about who you are is an incredible journey.

You know those people who are constantly reminiscing about how high school was the best time of their lives? Yeah, that means they peaked there. You, however, have bigger and better places to go.

Living a sober life leads to seeking out those who also live a sober life. These people tend to be people who are all about learning how to be the best versions of them they can be.

Surrounding yourself with positive people means you now have a supportive network that is on the same path as you. These people made a life change to pursue growth and happiness, not the next trend.

How many people can say they have that?

Rediscovering You

Living a sober life brings up many things, including retrospect. But the best part about being sober is that all of a sudden you realize that you can become any kind of person you want to be.

Once the brain fog lifts and your sober life takes full effect, you have much better control of your mental faculties than you used to. You sleep better, which means you are more aware during the day. Your weight stabilizes. Your skin gets clearer.

Yes, these are all surface benefits, but they are benefits nonetheless.

All of these things can help you look at yourself in a new light. If you have mental health issues (which, let’s face it, who doesn’t), you can finally have the clarity to address them.

Your self-esteem improves. Sobriety has a way of making you feel better about yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally. You no longer have to live with regrets from nights prior because you were too drunk to function. You can look the world in the eye.

Do you remember the last time you had a hobby that didn’t involve drinking? Well, now you can explore all the world has to offer. Try everything that looks interesting. You can develop a whole new side of you that you didn’t know existed.

There are so many new facets of yourself to explore, and living a sober life you can explore it all.

The Other Good Stuff

Obviously, living a sober life isn’t all about meditating on a mountain to find your inner self. Unless you want it to be, of course.

Once you get sober, you also save lots of money. Did you even realize how expensive going out drinking was? Either way, now you can save it or spend it however you please instead of just getting plastered.

You also have more fun. Fun that you can remember the next day. I mean sure, getting drunk can be a good time, but now you can be present. Go out dancing and really hear the music. Your senses become clearer in a sober life.

Your memory also improves, which is great considering how much you’ve probably forgotten before. Your relationship building skills get stronger. You develop boundaries and healthy ways of communicating with people.

You’ll find that getting sober makes you a better friend, partner, and person in general.

In addition, you also have so much more free time than before. You can spend your mornings learning new pancake recipes instead of being so hungover that you can’t leave your bed. You also develop more motivation.

You will rediscover a will to live fully, even more fully than before.

Struggling in Sobriety

Remember that bit about dealing with problems better once you’re sober? Well, you’re going to need those skills. Life doesn’t stop just because you got sober. And learning how to deal with life on life’s terms is a process.

It can be difficult to transition from stuffing your problems down to facing them and solving them as they come up. But it is doable, provided you stay sober during the process.

If you feel like you want to start drinking again, don’t give up hope. There are so many resources for people struggling with alcohol problems nowadays. This website alone has dozens of resources and references to help you get through the tough times.

Working through the tough stuff is never fun, but now that you are living a sober life, you can start to see it as a growth process, rather than a pain.

No matter what happens in your life, you never have to drink again. There are so many options for help in the world that you can go through anything and come out the other side sober and successful.

Going Out in The World

The world is full of people who don’t understand the sober life. Hopefully, you have already found people who understand, and if you haven’t, I promise they are out there. You just have to keep focusing on being the best you that you can be.

There are more people out there living a sober life than you think.

For more information, explore the health section on our blog.