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Scoliosis: Symptoms, Treatment and Unknown Facts

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Almost everyone has heard of Scoliosis, it’s a very common disorder. The sideways curvature of the spine, which usually happens during a growth spurt before puberty. Scoliosis also can be caused by cerebral palsy and muscular dystrophy, but the cause of most cases are unknown.

Symptoms

The causes of scoliosis are unknown but symptoms are similar in most cases.

  • Uneven Shoulders
  • One shoulder blade that appears more prominent than the other
  • Uneven waist
  • One hip higher than the other

In worse cases the spine will rotate or twists causing the ribs on one side of the body to stick out. If you see any signs in your child, even mild ones, take a trip to your doctor. Some mild cases of scoliosis will straighten as the child gets older, but it’s still good to see a doctor and do regular checkups. Detecting scoliosis early is key, undetected scoliosis can cause back pain, and interfere with heart and lung function.

These check ups will monitor the curving of the spine with x-rays. If no treatment is done there is a chance that the curve will get worse. Your doctor might recommend your child wearing a brace to help contain the curve and keep it from getting larger. This can minimize the need for surgery.

For more information on the brace: https://orthoinfo.aaos.org/en/treatment/nonsurgical-treatment-options-for-scoliosis/

Unknown Facts about Scoliosis

There is a lot of myths floating around about scoliosis along with some unknown facts and statistics!

  • Scoliosis is not caused due to bad posture
  • There is a 30% chance that you might have scoliosis if someone in your family has it.
  • Girls are more at risk for developing scoliosis
  • Most cases are mild and don’t require treatment with braces or surgery
  • It appears during the ages of 8-12 and 60
  • Scoliosis dates back to 400 BC and researched by Hippocrates

 

Sources and more information about Scoliosis:

https://www.carrellclinic.com/blog/5-interesting-facts-about-scoliosis-scoliosis-awareness-month-11783.html

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/scoliosis/symptoms-causes/syc-20350716

 

Making Your News Year’s Resolutions Stick

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New year, new you! Starting a New Years Resolution is one of the joys of the new year! We plan to workout, and better ourselves so the next year can be even better than the last. Although the failure rate of New Year’s resolutions is about 80%, and most people give up mid February. This is how to make you New Years Resolutions stick in 2020!

Why resolutions don’t last.

Many times we set big goals with unrealistic expectations. When a goal is out of reach it’s easy to forget and give up and “try again next year.” Having a time line for your resolutions is helpful. Setting short-term, medium-term, and long-term benchmarks can give you little victories along the way to keep you motivated! Starting off small, like going to the gym a couple days in the week or slowly cutting out those guilty pleasures can make prolong your motivation to continue.

Another reason why resolutions don’t work is there’s a negative connotation. Try to frame your goal positively, instead of saying “I can’t eat these chips” say “I can eat the carrots and ranch as a snack.” Focusing on what you want to avoid makes it even more tempting to do/eat.

Last, but not least, the goal you set, is not about you. Make sure your goal is unique to you and not influenced by friends, family, or society. Do what you want in life and what you want for yourself!

How to make them last this year.

  • Start small: Make small changes to your diet or routine and slowly make your way to your goal.
  • Focus on one goal at a time: It takes a long time to change a habit so reassessing everything in your life can get overwhelming.
  • Share it to the world: Tell your friends and family, neighbor or even you local grocery store cashier! You can also join a support group or workout class to help reach your goals. It’s a great way to share your struggles and successes with that’s on the same journey makes things less intimidating.
  • Don’t beat yourself up: Nobody’s perfect, we all make mistakes. Small slip ups are ok, don’t just give up because of one mistake. Pick yourself back up and get back on track!
  • Ask for support: You can’t do everything on your own! Having emotional support from those who care about you will help you strengthen your resilience and manage your stress.

New Year Resolution Ideas

Can’t figure out a resolution for this year or need some new ones? Here is a list of a few unique resolutions to add to your list!

  • Learn something new everyday
  • Be more grateful
  • Set aside an hour a day to achieve your dreams
  • Enjoy the little things
  • Learn a new skill
  • Be kinder to yourself
  • Travel

Make this decade count! Set aside your bad habits and create new memories! Happy New Year!

Sources and more Resolutions:

https://www.apa.org/helpcenter/resolution

https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/health/wellness/advice/g985/achievable-new-year-resolutions/

 

 

 

 

 

Long Term Effects of Concussions

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Concussions have been a huge topic in this day and age but there still so much we don’t know about them. For starters one doesn’t have to play a sport to get a concussion and they are most common in young children.

What is a Concussion?

A concussion is mild traumatic brain injury that can occur after an impact to your head or from a whiplash type injury. The brain shakes quickly hitting the skull either in the front or back. No matter how they happened, concussions require time to heal. Brain injuries, even the mildest have short and long term effects. Symptoms can last for days, weeks, or even longer.

Long Term Effects of a Concussion

Long term effects of concussions are rare, most symptoms resolve within a few weeks. However, if the brain doesn’t have enough time to heal between injuries than post-concussion syndrome can form. Only 20% of people might suffer from post-concussion syndrome, this is when symptoms continue after six weeks.

Symptoms such as:

  • Trouble concentrating
  • Memory problems
  • Irritability and other personality changes
  • Sensitivity to light and noise
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Depression and other psychological problems
  • Disorders of smell and taste

To reduce risk of short-term problems turning into long term ones, please see a doctor within 1-2 days of a head injury.

If diagnosed with a head injury take it slow. Get plenty of rest and refrain from pushing your body. Go for light walks or riding a stationary bike and for once we advise not to do any homework!

 

A Plant Based Diet May Help Prevent Coronary Artery Disease

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“Heart disease is the world’s leading cause of death. This study proves it doesn’t have to be.” – Dr. Kahleova

Coronary artery disease is a caused by plague buildup in your coronary arteries. The coronary arteries are the blood vessels that bring oxygen to your heart. The plaque in the blood vessels stiffens them and makes it harder to get oxygen-rich blood to the heart.

This plaque is sticky and things like inflammatory cells, lipoproteins, and calcium attach to it. These materials, along with cholesterol, increase the build up and make the vessel narrower.

Eventually, this blood vessel may develop a new one around the blockage to get blood to your heart. Although this may sound good and dandy, under stress and over working, this new vessel might not get enough blood to the heart and this can cause a heart attack.

Doctors have noted that there can be a solution to this problem: a plant based diet.

They not only found that the vegetarian diet can prevent heart diseases but can also sometimes reverse them. This diet works because plants are rich in fiber and phytonutrients. Phytonutrients are known for reducing inflammation and oxidative stress.

Animal meat is often high in fat, cholesterol, heme iron, and environmental pollutant which can all cause problems with the heart.

This is a life style change that many doctors want to push, moving away form excessive meat consumption and going toward more plant-based diets.

 

Many think starting a plant-based diet is tricky but you can substitute meat with, tofu, tempeh, Seitan, Jackfruit, eggplant, lentils, beans, and so much more! With restaurants having more accommodations, eating out doesn’t have to be hard either!

 

Here is a quick recipe even the toughest meat eater will love!:

 

Skillet Ratatouille

Step 1

Drain 1 can tomatoes in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/2 cup liquid. Drain remaining 1 can tomatoes; discard liquid. Combine tomatoes, reserved 1/2 cup liquid, and chickpeas in a bowl.

Step 2

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add garlic, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and next 5 ingredients (through eggplant); sauté 7 to 8 minutes or until slightly tender. Stir in tomato mixture and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt; cover, and cook 5 minutes.

Step 3

Uncover pan; stir in vinegar, paprika, and black pepper. Cook 5 minutes or until vegetable mixture is slightly thickened. Divide vegetable mixture among 4 shallow bowls; drizzle servings evenly with remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil. Sprinkle with basil leaves, if desired.

For ingredient list and a video guide:

https://www.cookinglight.com/recipes/skillet-ratatouille

For more recipes:

https://cookieandkate.com/24-meatless-recipes-that-carnivores-love/

 

Read more about these topics!

Links:

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/321992.php#4

https://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/guide/heart-disease-coronary-artery-disease#1

Strokes: How to Save a Life

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Strokes are the 5th leading cause of death in the United States. It occurs when a blood vessel in the brain ruptures and bleeds. The rupture prevents blood and oxygen from reaching the brain. Knowing the symptoms of a stroke and reacting quickly can be a matter of life and death. The simplest way to remember what signs to look for is the acronym FAST: Face, Arm weakness, Speech difficulties and Time to call 911. Although not everyone has the same symptoms and its important to recognize that. Men and women show completely different symptoms when having a stroke!

Symptoms of a Stoke in Men

Stroke is the 5th leading cause of death in men

  • Drooping on one side of the face. The best way to check this is to ask them to smile.
  • Slurred Speech, difficulty speaking, and trouble understanding speech
  • Arm weakness or muscle weakness on one side of the body

Symptom of a Stroke in Women

Stoke is the 4th leading cause of death in women. Women have a higher lifetime risk of having a stroke than men.

  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Hallucination
  • Pain
  • General weakness
  • Shortness of breath or trouble breathing
  • Fainting or losing conscious
  • Seizures
  • Confusion, disorientation or lack of responsiveness
  • Sudden behavior changes, increased agitation

 

What to do when someone is having a stroke

  • Call 911
  • Remember the time you first see symptoms
  • Perform CPR if there is no pulse or breathing
  • Don’t let the person go to sleep
  • Do NOT give them medication, food, or drinks
  • Don’t drive yourself of someone else to the emergency room

 

 

 

Sources and to read more: https://www.healthline.com/health/stroke

https://www.pennmedicine.org/updates/blogs/neuroscience-blog/2019/april/if-someone-is-having-a-stroke-3-things-to-do-and-3-things-not-to-do

 

Arthritis: What it is, Myths and Prevention

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Arthritis is a very common and painful disease that affects about 350 million people worldwide. It is the number one cause of disability in America! Here we will be debunking common myths and how to prevent this disease.

As many know, arthritis is the swelling and tenderness of one or more of your joints. The main symptom of arthritis are joint pain and stiffness, which typically gets worse with age. There are over 100 forms of arthritis, the most common being osteoarthritis, rheumatoid, psoriatic and gout. They tend to share the same symptoms but are caused in different ways. Arthritis isn’t only in your hands, it can be in your hips, knees, back, and shoulders, the pain can be extreme and limit your everyday activities.

Here are some of many myths of arthritis:

  1. One common misconception is that only older people get arthritis but this is just not true. While the risk does increase with age, people of all ages are capable of getting it, this including children and young adult. In fact about 300,000 infants, children, and teens live with arthritis.
  2. Once diagnosed with arthritis, its game over right? In realty this isn’t true, yes there is no cure for it, BUT there are great medications for some types of arthritis. Also keeping a healthy lifestyle, losing weight, staying active, eating nutrient rich meals, and getting enough sleep, can help decrease the pain and developing rate.
  3. Arthritis can’t be caused by cold weather. Trust me, moving to a warm, dry climate will not cure arthritis. It’s bone rubbing on bone after cartilage has worn down and it causes pain in any climate. Warmth can be soothing so soak in a warm bath or take a hot shower.
  4. Lastly there are ways to prevent arthritis. Some of the risk factors for arthritis is your family history, age, your sex, previous joint injuries, and obesity. Not all risk are in your control but there are a few habits you can practice to reduce developing painful joints as you get older. Such as: eating fish with omega-3 fatty acids, controlling your weight, exercise, avoid injury, wear protective gear during exercise and sports, protect your joints in general (learn the right techniques when sitting, working, and lifting), and most importantly see your doctor if you start feeling pain in you joints!

Don’t brush off any joint pain no matter the age, make sure to get it checked out by your doctor. You can visit a chiropractor at any age to help with arthritis. Chiropractic practices are one of the safest therapies you can use for back and neck pain due to osteoarthritis.

 

Read more about Arthritis: https://www.arthritis.org

10 Simple Ways to Be Healthier

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In many cases our lives are very busy and trying to be healthy alway seems like a time consuming thing.

We’ve compiled the 10 most simplest and not time consuming things you can start doing in your life to be healthier. Having no time is no longer an excuse!

  1. Shop on a full stomach. Such a small idea but can really make a difference in what ends up in your shopping cart. Shopping on an empty stomach is a easy way to buy what ever sounds good on impulse. This leads to buying more unhealthy things an you would usually buy.
  2. Eat from a smaller plate or bowl. This one might sound silly but it truly makes a difference on the amount you eat. Eating with a smaller plate helps you feel satisfied with less food and is a easy way to keep yourself from eating way more than you need to!
  3. Take the stairs. The elevator is so nice, brings you to your floor with minimal effort, but taking the stairs once in a while is a good way to check off being healthy for the day. It’s also a great way to tone your leg muscles without a traditional workout!
  4. Buy a plant. Plants are a great way to add some character into your office or home and they purify the air around you. Snake plants are a great choice to start as they’re low maintenance and have a great simplistic look to them!
  5. Turn off your phone time to time. This may help stressed individuals achieve some relaxation, no more pestering emails and mindless social media for a little can really improve your mood. Take this extra time to get to know your new plant friend!
  6. Go to bed at the same time every day, even on weekends. Having the same sleep schedule every day is a great way to create a sense of routine. If you wake up at different times during the week it can lead something called social jet lag, which can throw off your body’s natural sleep schedule. A great addition to that is turning off phones and electronics an hour before bed.
  7. Say hello to a old friend. When’s the last time you caught up with your old pall? Take some time to make those close relationships because Harvard psychologist found that they’re the key to living happier, healthier lives. Lack of social connections could be as big of a risk to your health as smoking!
  8. DRINK WATER! Water can help you stay energized and hydrated. Some fitness experts even claim you can lose weight if you drink water before ever meal!
  9. Practice mindful eating. The idea of mindful eating is to pay attention to what you’re eating, why you are eating, and how fast you’re eating. Take the time to eat slowly, chew thoroughly, focus on how you feel while eating and if you’re actually hungry, and turn off the TV. Many studies show that mindful eating can help you lose weight!
  10. Snack on healthy foods. Instead of candy try some fruit or a healthy granola bar. Keeping healthy snacks in reach is a great way to fight those food craves we all get. Some great healthy snacks can include nuts, fruit or even dark chocolate!

Don’t forget to add a little healthy in your day!

 

Links to sources and more simple ways to be healthy:

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/22-ways-to-get-healthy#section10

https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/how-to-be-healthier-with-minimal-effort-a7477321.html