Friday, August 8, 2008

Hard Days

What do you usually think when we say HARD? Hmmm, lot's of meaning isn't it? Well, what I mean of it is CONSTIPATION!

Most people do experienced that hardship to defecate. With constipation stools are usually hard, dry, small in size, and difficult to eliminate. Some people who are constipated find it painful to have a bowel movement and often experience straining, bloating, and the sensation of a full bowel. And once passed out, whew!!! SUCCESS!!! But why does it happen?

Well, constipation is just a symptom not a disease. The cause is typically poor diet, not enough fiber in the diet, lack of physical activity (especially in the elderly), medications, milk, irritable bowel syndrome, changes in life or routine such as pregnancy, aging, and travel, abuse of laxatives, ignoring the urge to have a bowel movement, not enough water intake, specific diseases or conditions, such as stroke (most common), problems with the colon and rectum, problems with intestinal function (chronic idiopathic constipation).

What can we do to treat it? Although treatment depends on the cause, severity, and duration of the constipation, in most cases dietary and lifestyle changes such as daily exercise will help relieve symptoms and help prevent them from recurring. Also, there's bunch of different laxatives you can choose from. But, let put it into mind that laxative is the very far option we could take and it is only for short term use.

So nothing would be better than diet and exercises. Lifestyle modification would really help people to have a BETTER days not HARD days!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Alzheimer's Disease

I've been to one of the Nursing Home here in Fresno, who are taking care of elderly who have Alzheimers Disease. I just remember during my college years we studied Psychiatric Nursing, and all of the diseases has been tackled and that includes Alzheimers disease. At first I really don't have the idea what really it is, how worst it is until I've seen people in the state of this certain problem. They couldn't talk, think right, and even do right. I've seen one patient walking back and forth and who had motor problems, shaking his hands. That's just one example.

But what really an Alzheimers Disease?

According to the Alzheimers Association, it is a progressive and fatal brain disease. Alzheimer's destroys brain cells, causing problems with memory, thinking and behavior severe enough to affect work, lifelong hobbies or social life. Alzheimer’s gets worse over time, and it is fatal. Is the most common form of dementia, a general term for the loss of memory and other intellectual abilities serious enough to interfere with daily life. Vascular dementia, another common type of dementia, is caused by reduced blood flow to parts of the brain. In mixed dementia, Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia occur together. Has no current cure. But treatment for symptoms, combined with the right services and support.

10 warning signs of Alzheimer's:
  1. Memory loss. Forgetting recently learned information is one of the most common early signs of dementia. A person begins to forget more often and is unable to recall the information later.
  2. Difficulty performing familiar tasks. People with dementia often find it hard to plan or complete everyday tasks. Individuals may lose track of the steps involved in preparing a meal, placing a telephone call or playing a game.
  3. Problems with language. People with Alzheimer’s disease often forget simple words or substitute unusual words, making their speech or writing hard to understand. They may be unable to find the toothbrush, for example, and instead ask for "that thing for my mouth.”
  4. Disorientation to time and place. People with Alzheimer’s disease can become lost in their own neighborhood, forget where they are and how they got there, and not know how to get back home.
  5. Poor or decreased judgment. Those with Alzheimer’s may dress inappropriately, wearing several layers on a warm day or little clothing in the cold. They may show poor judgment, like giving away large sums of money to telemarketers.
  6. Problems with abstract thinking. Someone with Alzheimer’s disease may have unusual difficulty performing complex mental tasks, like forgetting what numbers are for and how they should be used.
  7. Misplacing things. A person with Alzheimer’s disease may put things in unusual places: an iron in the freezer or a wristwatch in the sugar bowl.
  8. Changes in mood or behavior. Someone with Alzheimer’s disease may show rapid mood swings – from calm to tears to anger – for no apparent reason.
  9. Changes in personality. The personalities of people with dementia can change dramatically. They may become extremely confused, suspicious, fearful or dependent on a family member.
  10. Loss of initiative. A person with Alzheimer’s disease may become very passive, sitting in front of the TV for hours, sleeping more than usual or not wanting to do usual activities.

Unfortunately, this disease has no cure. But here are some basic care to modify the symptoms and control the aggravation. Orientation of the patient about time and place, ongoing treatment focuses on making the most of the person's abilities as they change and dealing with new problems as they arise. Caregiving tasks range from maintaining a safe environment and helping the person get dressed every day to finding ways to manage or minimize disruptive behaviors such as wandering and sleep problems. No single strategy works for everyone. Successful care also depends on making sure the caregiver is involved in making decisions about treatment.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

What is Whiplash Injury?

My husband's friend had a total car wreck 4 days ago, he consulted me about his bad neck. He said his neck, sholder, back and head are so sore. And he loss motion of his neck. Giving me all those data, it could be WHIPLASH INJURY. So I told him it is best to consult a doctor to determine the location and severity of the injury and to establish an appropriate treatment plan of care.

What is Whiplash injury?

Whiplash Injury is caused by sudden jerking or relative backward or forward acceleration of the head with respect to the vertebral column. This injury may occur in a vehicle that is suddenly and forcibly struck from the rear. The collision's impact forces the head to hyperextend than the normal range of motion it' is used to be. Causing bone & tissue damage and pain surrounding the neck and shoulder.

A victim of Whiplash may experience some/all of these symptoms:

  • neck, shoulder blades, arm pains
  • headache
  • dizziness
  • soreness of muscles
  • tinnitus
  • vision problems
  • fatigue
  • loss of motion or stiffness of the neck

The initial treatment of whiplash has been soft cervical collar. The goal of the collar is to reduce the range of motion of the neck and to prevent any additional injuries. More recent studies have shown that more prolonged immobilization actually slows the healing process. Early range of motion exercises have a more reliable and rapid improvement of the symptoms. This includes the rotational exercises performed atleast 10 times. Physical therapy can be useful in helping to wean a patient from a cervical collar as well as to help strengthen muscles and reduce painful motions. These are just some basic remedies to lessen the severity of the symptoms.