Exploring The Importance Of Kid's Eye Exams

Going Barefoot: Advantages Of Going Without Shoes

For some people, the best part of the day is the moment they can kick off their shoes and walk around barefoot. Nothing feels better than digging your toes into some plushy carpet and feeling your feet relax. If you love that barefoot feeling, you may wonder if it is healthy for you when you are being active. If you are careful, you can go without shoes, even while exercising.

Natural Way

Some people claim that you are missing out on natural benefits by putting on shoes. Your feet are not as strong as your ancestors’ were, as you will learn the first time you step on a rock while shoeless. According to some barefoot enthusiasts, you gather valuable ions from having your feet in contact with the earth. Whether you  believe that theory or not, you can benefit emotionally from connecting with the Mother Nature. Going barefoot makes you feel free and attuned to your surroundings, definitely a positive development. You do need to toughen up your feet before you take off for a long barefoot stroll, however. Start off slowly and add a few minutes to your walk daily.


If you enjoy going barefoot, you may want to work out without shoes. If you do not have any foot problems, your podiatrist or orthopedist might be on board with this method as long as you are careful and prepared to deal with a few cuts and abrasions. In fact, running without shoes has the potential to improve your stride. You may also improve the strength of your arches and actually avoid some foot issues that plague athletes, including shin splints.

You might also want to try cycling barefoot the way you did as a child to recapture summer memories, but you should probably throw a pair of shoes into your bag to put on once your feet begin to hurt. For some gym activities, you will have to put on a pair of shoes to protect everyone’s foot health, but it’s worth noting that yoga students never wear shoes. After all, yoga is all about being natural and connecting with the universe.

Going barefoot is more than a physical action: it’s also an emotional one. A barefoot life may not be possible, but barefoot interludes certainly are. You will feel liberated but also may benefit. In some instances, you can strengthen your feet and prevent some problems. If you plan to exercise without shoes, check with a doctor like Family Medical Clinic to get their expert advice.


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Ulnar Entrapment: Surgery Isn’t The Only Answer

Most people are familiar with the condition known as carpal tunnel syndrome, which is so common in grocery store clerks, mechanical assemblers and other workers who continually perform repetitive motions. Fewer are familiar with the less common but similar condition known as cubital tunnel syndrome. However, instead of affecting the wrist, cubital tunnel syndrome affects the nerves associated with your funny bone in the elbow, but the condition is far from funny. There are several options for treating cubital tunnel syndrome, and sometimes it will require surgery for permanent relief. Here are some alternative solutions to try before you opt for the knife.

What Is Cubital Tunnel Syndrome?

To understand cubital tunnel syndrome, also called ulnar nerve entrapment, you need to know a little about the anatomy of the arm. The ulnar nerve runs from the neck to the hand. At the elbow the nerve crosses through a tunnel formed by the humerus bone or upper arm, the muscles that bend the wrist and a ligament that holds the nerve close to the elbow joint. The nerve has little protection as it travels through this tunnel, so it is subject to trauma through bumping (as when you hit your funny bone) and repeatedly bending your elbow. Over time, the irritation of the ulnar nerve can cause tingling, pain and numbness of the forearm and hand and can affect the ability to grasp objects.

How Is It Treated?

Conservative treatment includes wearing an orthopedic brace to protect the elbow and keep it from bending, ultrasound for inflammation, and oral or injected steroids. If these treatments fail to relieve the condition, surgery to “untrap” the nerve may be required.

What About Alternative Treatments?

Before resorting to surgical intervention, you might want to try alternative therapies such as yoga, chiropractic or acupuncture. These should be done along with wearing a brace.

Yoga: Cubital tunnel syndrome causes pain and tingling from the neck to the fingers. That’s why it’s so important that yoga exercises address all these areas. Arm and wrist stretches, exercises that strengthen the shoulder, and those poses that open the chest are effective in relieving the discomfort, stretching the muscles so that the ulnar nerve is able to better glide through the tunnel, and promoting oxygenation of the injured area to help it heal faster. Contact a reputable yoga instructor to help you get the most benefit and relief from your yoga sessions.

Chiropractic: Chiropractic manipulation is used to promote proper movement of the bones in the wrist and hand to relieve pressure on the ulnar nerve. The chiropractor will use myofascial therapy (a type of muscle massage) to remove scar tissue and release nerve entrapments. He or she often will use deep tissue laser therapy as part of the treatment. It reduces the pain and inflammation around the elbow and promotes healing of the injured tissues.

Acupuncture: This Eastern healing technique is used to relieve many different conditions and has been used successfully to reduce the discomfort cubital tunnel syndrome and aid in the healing process. By placing tiny needles in certain points on the body, practitioners attempt to regulate how neurotransmitters, some of which are responsible for pain relief, relaxation and calm, travel through the nervous system.

If you have an entrapment of the ulnar nerve causing pain and numbness, one of these non-invasive, non-pharmaceutical alternative therapies may offer the relief you need. Give one or more of them a try. What do you have to lose? Contact a company like Human Technology for more information.

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When Your Child Has Allergies: Understanding The Signs Of A Serious Reaction

If your child has been stung by a bee for the first time, this can be a scary experience. While there may be only a slight area of redness, children and adults who are allergic to bees can have a wide range of reactions. From mild hives to anaphylaxis, knowing the signs of an allergic reaction to bees can be lifesaving for the individual who is stung. If your child has been stung and is showing signs of distress, swelling, or difficulty breathing, it is critical to get medical help right away.

Allergic Reactions From Insect Stings Look Different Person to Person

If a child is stung by a bee or other insect and the area swells up quickly, this is a clear indication that your child is allergic to that insect. While the swelling might not go beyond a few inches from the area of the sting, the next time the reaction can be more severe. It’s important to get allergy testing done on your child if you notice any hives or swelling after an insect sting, as this is not a typical reaction. To reduce swelling and decrease hives, your pediatrician may suggest medications such as Benadryl to help with the reaction.

If Your Child is Nauseous or Vomiting

Young children aren’t always able to indicate that they are under duress, but a child who is going into anaphylactic shock will often begin vomiting or complain that their stomach is hurting. This is a life threatening reaction to a bee sting and one that requires medical treatment in order to reverse the reaction. If your child is stung by an insect, has hives, and begins vomiting, call for immediate emergency help. Your child may require epinepherine to stop the reaction, which is the medication found in the EpiPen which many children who have allergies are prescribed.

The Reaction can be Delayed

While some serious anaphylactic reactions can occur within seconds, others can be delayed for up to two hours. This means that if your child shows signs of hives, coughing, or swelling, you will need to keep a close eye on them for at least two hours to ensure their condition doesn’t get worse. If the reaction is severe enough, a child who is given epinepherine can have a subsequent reaction when the first shot wears off. If in doubt, always call for medical attention to ensure the safety of your young children. 

For more information, visit sites like http://www.oakbrookallergists.com. 

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Neurological Treatment And Stroke Recovery

Strokes are considered the leading cause of disability within this country. While the severity and impact of strokes vary greatly, one factor remains consistent – proper treatment is essential. In addition to prompt, emergency medical treatment, on-going rehabilitative treatment and therapy is key to recovery. Neurological services can help.

Neurology And Strokes

Neurological treatments and therapies fall under the realm of neurological medicine. Neurological medicine is an area of biology that involves the function and anatomy of the nerves and nervous system, as well as organic disorders that effect these areas, including strokes.

When an individual suffers from a stroke, there is an inherently high risk of damage to the nervous system. This damage is often witnessed in the form of hearing loss, paralysis or involuntary eye movement. Exactly what type of damage is suffered to the nervous system is determined by the side of the brain that is affected.

What Is The Goal Of Treatment?

The most important thing to understand about neurological treatment is that it doesn’t have the goal of curing the damage to the nervous system, or even reversing it for that matter as nerve damage is permanent. It is instead about teaching patients to overcome the difficulties produced by the damage sustained so that they can lead the most independent, rewarding and comfortable life going forward.

What Does Treatment Look Like?

After a stroke, neurological treatment typically begins almost immediately after the patient has been stabilized. For this reason, treatment often begins while the individual is still in the hospital. As previously mentioned, nerve damage is not reversible; however, the faster a patient begins rehabilitation, the easier it is for the scope of damage to be minimized. Phase one of treatment involves independent movement. During this phase, the physician is more interested in finding out what the patient is able to do, as this data can help the neurologist gauge the range and severity of their nervous system damage.

The next phase of treatment is generally active exercise. In many instances, by the time an individual reaches this phase of therapy, they have been released from the hospital; however, this isn’t always the case. Active exercise is when the patient is instructed to perform a variety of exercises, without the assistance of the medical provider. These active exercises help rebuild muscle and balance, which overtime, can help the patient return to normal, or near-normal, functionality.

The minutes, days and weeks following a stroke are critical to the long-term quality of life for the patient. Patients should seek both immediate medical treatment and therapy from a professional like Mohsen M. Hamza, M.D.

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Natural Treatments For Outbreak Of Hives

Did you know that Urticaria, better known as hives, can be successfully treated with natural products found in your kitchen cupboards? There are quite a number of household products such as ginger, turmeric and Aloe vera that you can try using the next time you fall victim to the dreadful itching that you experience when your skin breaks out into hives. Hives materialize for different reasons..

Hot Temperature Causes Hives Breakout

If the temperature is particularly hot and you’ve sweated heavily on your back, a combination of the wet-with-sweat clothing you’re still wearing and your continued exposure to hot temperatures will trigger an unbearable itching episode. The itching will continue for long periods even after your back is dry again.

You can use a towel or a clean old cotton T-Shirt to wrap ice cubes. Experts suggest that you place the wrapped ice cubes on the area where hives are located and let the application rest there for 10-minute intervals. The ice application will reportedly shrink inflamed blood vessels and block histamine, which powers your body’s histamine release and associated inflammation.

Hives From Food Allergies

When there is an overall onslaught of hives all over your body brought about by an allergic reaction to certain foods, reach into your kitchen pantry or cabinets and choose a product that can bring you instant relief from itching and scratching. By applying the product, you can stave off your body’s major inflammatory response in the form of increased swelling.

Oatmeal Applications

Talk about oatmeal, and people immediately think of a food item for breakfast or lunch that keeps them healthy. There is more to oatmeal though. It’s also promoted as having a rich supply of anti-inflammatory and anti-itching qualities that help to soothe and heal your skin when it breaks out in hives. Experts say that you should grind the oatmeal and combine two cups of it with a cup of baking soda. Pour the mixture into your warm bathwater and mix it in. Soak yourself for approximately 15 minutes in the tub.

They also suggest that you later mix two cups of oatmeal with two tablespoons of cornstarch and create a paste. Apply the paste to areas with hives. Remember to allow the mixture to remain on your skin for about 15 to 20 minutes. After that time period, go ahead and wash the paste off, but you must only use this application once a day.

Vitamin D3 Lessens Hives Symptoms

There is a good reason why you should take your vitamins. Researchers urge that you consume your daily dose of vitamin D3. They advise that you take either 600 or 4000 IU of vitamin D3 along with your antihistamines and other medicines. Their research reveals that patients who use this high dosage vitamin for three months show significantly less symptoms of hives at the end of that period.

For more help dealing with hives, visit websites like http://www.nwasthma.com.

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Health Issues Resulting From Advanced Varicose Veins

If the cosmetic appearance of varicose veins is not an issue for you, it’s easy to ignore their treatment. Beyond how they look, these deformed blood vessels can create serious health issues as they continue to expand. The sooner you have them treated, the less likely it is that you’ll experience additional health problems. The treatment of these vessels when they are small is also less invasive. Here are some of the complications resulting from untreated varicose veins and the treatment options available to you.

Varicose Veins Affect the Blood Flow

Varicose veins are blood vessels that have lost the ability to move the blood through them. Tiny valves in the vessel walls fail to push the blood along into the general circulation. This allows blood to slowly pool in the blood vessel.

The blood vessel expands to hold the pooling blood. You’ll start to notice this as a small swelling under the skin. As the vessel continues to expand, you’ll be able to see the bluish vessel more defined. The blood will eventually force the vessel into a large convoluted shape that can extend far down your legs. When the pooling of the blood is sufficient to impact the amount of blood that gets to your lower legs, ankles and feet, you’ll develop additional health issues.

Symptoms of Advanced Varicose Veins

The lack of blood in your legs, due to advanced varicose veins, will cause a number of uncomfortable symptoms, such as:

  • feeling of coolness in your lower legs and feet
  • numbness develops down your leg from the point where the varicose vein begins
  • muscle cramps develop because of the lack of oxygenated blood to them
  • pain can develop along the length of the affected vein
  • an increase in your blood pressure can occur as your heart works harder to get blood down into your legs

The pain and numbness in your legs from the impact of the varicose vein on your circulation can be so intense that it keeps you off of your feet.

Treating Advanced Varicose Veins

Small varicose veins can be treated with medication so they don’t become a health hazard. If your varicose veins have advanced to the point where they are causing painful symptoms, vascular surgery is required to remove them. The two procedures used are:

Vein Stripping – This procedure is used when the enlarged vein extends down through your leg. A rod is inserted through an incision and into the vein. The rod is then threaded down the length of the vein. Small incisions are made at intervals along the vein where it is then tied to the rod. The rod is pulled out of your leg with the vein attached to it.

Phlebectomy – Large, short varicose veins must be removed from your leg in pieces. Several incisions are made over the vein. It is then cut into sections and removed.

Both of these surgical procedures leave bruising and scars where the veins developed in your legs. By getting your varicose veins treated early, you’ll avoid any painful symptoms and they can be removed easily without leaving a trace. Contact a business, such as Cedar Surgical Associates PC, for more information.   

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Practical Tips For Getting The Most Out Of Therapy

Going to therapy is a brave step and an act of self-care that is worthy of respect. It’s a privilege that can help you gain insights into your own mental health and well-being, and it can empower you to truly own your life and no longer be tied to a past that no longer serves you. Some actions can help you progress, while others may cause problems. Follow these tips to get the most out of your experience in therapy.

Express Disagreements

You may not always agree with everything your therapist says. Your therapist may suggest a book that you should read, or you may even disagree with a psychiatrist’s assessment of what you need. That’s okay. It’s important to then explain that you disagree and give your reasons why. You may even state that you need more time to formulate the opinion, but that the suggestion makes you uncomfortable.

Trust yourself when you feel that something may or may not be working. Bringing these disagreements up directly with your therapist is an important part of the healing process, and you may be pleasantly surprised with how your therapist reacts to your concerns.

Be Consistent

Sessions need to be a priority in your life. You need to commit the time, effort, and resources to going to therapy each week. Making it a regular part of your routine is key. Be consistent in going to sessions on time. Avoid cancelling a session. Even if something unexpectedly comes up that prevents you from having therapy at your regular time, try to reschedule the therapy session to another time in the week, rather than canceling it altogether. If you are inconsistent with your therapy sessions, you can sabotage the progress that you would otherwise be making.

Remember that Honesty is the Best Policy

Don’t lie to your therapist. There’s really no point in doing so. A good psychologist will have clear boundaries that are maintained in all sessions, and there is no need to try to impress someone whose job is to help you heal. However, some people feel compelled to lie as part of the treatment or even to get a diagnosis they would prefer to have. In the end, lying to your therapist only hurts yourself, and it can prevent you from making genuine breakthroughs that can improve your life. Instead, tell the truth, and you and your therapist can better help you.

Finally, keep in mind that therapy is very much a unique experience for each person. What someone else gets out of going to therapy may be something very different from what you take away from the experience. Ultimately, it’s important to focus on your needs and do what’s right for you when you’re going to therapy. To get started, contact a facility like Commonweath Affiliates PC.

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