Testing for Heart Risk More Cheaply

Here's a quick quiz: what's the world's No. 1 killer? It's not AIDS, TB or malaria. The world's deadliest disease is heart disease, which kills nearly 18 million people a year. Once considered predominantly an affliction of the wealthy, the prevalence of heart disease has been growing in the developing world — 80% of heart-disease deaths now occur in low- and middle-income countries, which has got global health workers and epidemiologists considering better ways to screen, track and treat the illness.

Now it looks like screening, at least, could get a whole lot cheaper and faster. A team of U.S. researchers publishing this week in the medical journal Lancet finds that simple, inexpensive tests for cardiovascular risk factors — performed in less than 10 minutes, using a scale, a tape measure and a blood-pressure check — are every bit as effective at determining heart-disease risk as more expensive procedures involving laboratory-based tests. It's not exactly a do-it-yourself kit, but it can help doctors screen patients more quickly, leading to potentially more effective treatment — in both the developed and developing world.

The researchers, led by Thomas Gaziano at Harvard Medical School and Brigham & Women's Hospital in Boston, trawled through data on 6,186 American adults participating in the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Participants were initially examined in the early 1970s and had no prior history of cardiovascular disease; they were tracked for 21 years, during which time 1,529 of the participants suffered cardiovascular events (such as heart attacks, stroke, angina or heart failure), including 578 deaths due to heart disease.

Researchers looked at patient measurements typically used to assess heart disease risk: age, systolic blood pressure, smoking status, total cholesterol, diabetes status and any hypertension treatment. They found that they could substitute body mass index (or BMI, a ratio of height to weight), a noninvasive measure, for the lab-based blood test for cholesterol and still accurately predict patients' five-year cardiovascular disease risk.

Gaziano and his colleagues show that if simple measurements, like BMI, are thoughtfully considered, doctors with fewer resources in the developing world can screen for heart-disease risk just as effectively as their counterparts in high-income countries. There is some question about whether results from the U.S. can be applied accurately to other populations — for a given BMI, for example, Asians tend to have a higher body-fat ratio than Caucasians — but, in many ways, Americans of the 1970s may be more similar than not to populations elsewhere today. In the '70s, Americans smoked a lot more tobacco than today, and few were getting treatment for high blood pressure or high cholesterol. That's not so different from 21st-century Russians or Eastern Europeans, Gaziano suggests.

A second article in this week's Lancet shows that heart-disease risk factors are rapidly becoming more common worldwide, even in sub-Saharan Africa, where infectious disease remains a big killer. In theory, African doctors should be among those who benefit most from the new paper's findings. In resource-poor settings, saving the $1 to $3 cost of a lab blood test (in the U.S. it costs $10, according to the Lancet paper) would certainly be meaningful — but that's assuming the tests were being performed to start with. The real savings are difficult to calculate, in large part because the populations most likely to benefit from dropping lab tests are those that are least likely to have any labs or technicians available be doing them at all.

The reality is that some developing countries spend as little as $30 a year per person in health care costs; the rich world spends thousands. For patients in low- and middle-income countries, meaningful costs also include the cost of taking time off work to take the test, then traveling back to the clinic for the results. For those reasons, the World Health Organization's current guidelines for assessing cardiovascular disease risk where lab resources are scarce have already dropped the cholesterol testing.

The new findings may in the end offer more cost-saving potential — and raise more interesting questions — in developed nations, including the U.S., where medical costs have spiraled upward in the last two decades. Neither doctors nor patients may want to drop cholesterol testing altogether — more information is better, especially when the consequence of missing a diagnosis is heart attack — but there is still a practical lesson to be learned. "I think in the U.S. we might use this as an initial test," Gaziano says. "We can at least narrow the group of people for whom we need to screen cholesterol." Those with very few other heart-disease risk factors, for example, probably don't need the extra blood work, since their cholesterol profile wouldn't make a big difference to overall risk anyway. Similarly, those patients with several risk factors for heart disease probably need treatment no matter what their cholesterol levels. By giving blood tests only to those on the fence, doctors can save resources for the tests and treatments that are warranted.

[Via - Testing for Heart Risk More Cheaply]

Anti Aging Tips

I have seen many a womens who want to look young and they have tried several methods. I know my mother who always used to dye her hair and I used to always ask her what is the reason for this. She used to give me the reason that it was to hide her age from outsiders and I always used to think why are they doing so. It is not so difficult for guys as they are not that conscious when somebody comments on their age but when a female is being commented on their age they get conscious and that is how spa baths and facial massages have gained so much importance. Scientists across the world have been involved in researching a method in which they can find methods in order to make sure that their age gets compacted under their skin. The methods are not foolproof as age is something that will show up sooner or later. But some of the tips mentioned below are outcomes of hardwork and lots of research. These herbal juices and teas are tested and have proved to be successful to a great extent. The real key here is to make sure you have healthy diet and good excersise in any form. Small methods like these are also very helpful.

Try these healthy drinks at home. They are easy to make. You just need hot water!

1) Five flower tea – detoxifies and reduces inflammation e.g. acne, skin eruptions

2) American wild ginseng tea – rejuvenates & boosts energy, reduces heat, relieves stress e.g. insomnia. Ideal for modern working women.

3) Chinese rose tea – stimulates appetite, eases menstrual cramps and pain.

4) Rooibos tea – caffeine free, rich in minerals and anti-oxidants. Suitable for young & old. Good source of supplement.

5) Mini Tuo tea – from Yunnan’s superior green tea. Eliminates fat, reduces weight, stimulates metabolism, regulates cholesterol.

6) Green tea – lowers cholesterol, inhibits growth of cancer cells.

I hope these methods mentioned are really helpful.

List of Phobias

Phobias means fear of something and there is no person in this world who does not posses a phobia. Some may have multiple phobias and some Phobias existed when we were small and have continued with us even today. I am one such example and I had phobia of height. ven though I am a 6 footer guy I am scared when I travel on top of a mountain or when I am on a water ride from top. The anxiety level increases. So what exactly are these phobias. It can be your fear for height, animals, darkness, sound, pain, abuse and a list of other things it never left us. Some would die a natural death and some would persists until we die. Personally, i have always been afraid of heights and that would make me an acrophobic.

There are weird phobias however that just makes me imagine how the people are coping from it. Here is a complete list of phobias:

Ablutophobia — washing, bathing, or cleaning
Acarophobia — itching or the insects that cause itching
Acerophobia — sourness or things that are sour
Achluophobia — darkness or the dark
Acousticophobia — noise or sound
Acrophobia — heights or high levels
Aeroacrophobia — open high places
Aeronausiphobia — vomiting secondary to airsickness
Aerophobia — draft, swallowing air, or airborne noxious substances
Agateophobia — insanity or becoming insane
Agliophobia — pain
Agoraphobia — open spaces, leaving a safe place, or crowded public places
Agraphobia — sexual abuse
Agrizoophobia — wild animals
Agyrophobia — streets or crossing the street
Aichmophobia — needles, pins, or pointed objects
Ailurophobia — cats
Albuminurophobia — kidney disease
Alektorophobia — chickens
Algophobia — garlic
Alliumphobia — opinions or beliefs
Altophobia — dust
Amathophobia — riding in cars
Amaxophobia — walking
Amnesiphobia — amnesia
Amychophobia — scratches or being scratched
Anablephobia — looking up
Androphobia — men
Anemophobia — wind or air drafts
Anginophobia — angina, choking, or narrowness
Anglophobia — England, English Culture, or English People
Angrophobia — anger or becoming angry
Ankylophobia — immobility of a joint
Anthophobia — flowers
Anthropophobia — people or society
Antlophobia — floods
Anuptaphobia — staying single
Anxiety — Anxiety and a state of apprehension, uncertainty, and fear resulting from the anticipation of a realistic or fantasized threatening event or situation, often impairing physical and psychological functioning
Apeirophobia — infinity
Aphenphosmphobia — being touched
Apiphobia — bees
Apotemnophobia — persons with amputations
Arachibutyrophobia — peanut butter sticking to the roof of the mouth
Arachnephobia — spiders
Arithmophobia — numbers
Arsonphobia — fire or flames
Asthenophobia — fainting or weakness
Astraphobia — thunder and lightning
Astrophobia — stars and celestial space
Asymmetriphobia — asymmetrical things
Ataxiophobia — ataxia (muscular incoordination)
Ataxophobia — disorder or untidiness
Atelophobia — imperfection
Atephobia — ruin or ruins
Athazagoraphobia — being forgotton, being ignored, or forgetting
Atomosophobia — atomic explosions
Atychiphobia — failure
Aulophobia — flutes
Aurophobia — gold
Auroraphobia — Northern lights
Autodysomophobia — one that has a vile odor
Automatonophobia — ventriloquist's dummies, animatronic creatures or wax statues
Automysophobia — being dirty
Autophobia — solitude, being alone, oneself, or being by oneself
Aviophobia — flying Bacillophobia — microbes
Bacteriophobia — bacteria
Ballistophobia — missiles or bullets
Barophobia — gravity
Basiphobia — inability to stand or falling
Bathmophobia — stairs or steep slopes
Bathophobia — depth
Batophobia — heights or being close to high buildings
Batrachophobia — amphibians, frogs, newts, or salamanders
Bibliophobia — books
Blennophobia — slime
Body Dysmorphic Disorder — having ugly or unattractive features
Bogyphobia — bogies or the bogeyman
Bolshephobia — Bolsheviks
Botanophobia — plants
Bromidrophobia — bodily odor or bodily smell
Bufonophobia — toads Cacophobia — ugliness or things that are ugly
Cainophobia — newness or novelty
Caligynephobia — beautiful women
Cancerophobia — cancer
Cardiophobia — the heart
Carnophobia — meat
Catagelophobia — being ridiculed or ridicule
Catapedaphobia — jumping from high and low places
Cathisophobia — sitting
Catoptrophobia — mirrors
Cheimaphobia — cold
Chemophobia — chemicals or working with chemicals
Cherophobia — gaiety
Chionophobia — snow
Chirophobia — hands
Cholerophobia — anger or Cholera
Chorophobia — dancing
Chrematophobia — money
Chromatophobia — colors
Chronomentrophobia — clocks
Chronophobia — time
Claustrophobia — confined or small spaces
Cleisiophobia — being locked in an enclosed place
Cleithrophobia — being enclosed
Cleptophobia — stealing
Climacophobia — stairs, climbing stairs, or falling down stairs
Clinophobia — going to bed
Cnidophobia — stings or being stung
Coimetrophobia — cemeteries
Coitophobia — coitus, sex, or sexual intercourse
Cometophobia — comets
Coprastasophobia — constipation
Coprophobia — feces and fecal matter
Coulrophobia — clowns
Counterphobia — The preference by a phobic for fearful situations
Cremnophobia — precipices
Cryophobia — extreme cold, ice, or frost
Crystallophobia — crystals or glass
Cyberphobia — computers or working on a computer
Cyclophobia — bicycles
Cymophobia — waves or wave-like motion
Cynophobia — dogs, canines, or rabies
Cyprianophobia — prostitutes, venereal disease, or STDs
Daemonophobia — demons or daemons
Decidophobia — making decisions
Defecaloesiophobia — painful bowels movements
Deipnophobia — dining or dinner conversation
Demophobia — crowds
Dendrophobia — trees
Dentophobia — dentists and dental procedures
Dermatopathophobia — skin disease or skin lesions
Dextrophobia — objects at the right side of the body
Diabetophobia — diabetes
Didaskaleinophobia — going to school
Dikephobia — justice
Dinophobia — dizziness or whirlpools
Diplophobia — double vision
Dipsophobia — drinking
Dishabiliophobia — undressing in front of someone
Doraphobia — fur or skins of animals
Doxophobia — expressing opinions or of receiving praise
Driving Phobia — driving a motorized vehicle
Dromophobia — crossing streets
Dutchphobia — the Netherlands, the Dutch, Dutch Culture
Dysmorphophobia — deformity
Dystychiphobia — accidents Earthquakophobia — earthquakes
Ecclesiophobia — churches
Eisoptrophobia — mirrors or of seeing oneself in a mirror
Electrophobia — electricity
Eleutherophobia — freedom
Emaciatophobia — Fear of Being Too Thin
Emetophobia — vomiting or throwing up
Enetophobia — pins
Enissophobia — having committed an unpardonable sin or criticism
Entomophobia — insects or bugs
Eosophobia — dawn or daylight
Ephebiphobia — teenagers
Epistaxiophobia — nosebleeds
Epistemophobia — knowledge
Equinophobia — horses
Eremophobia — being oneself or lonliness
Ereuthophobia — red lights, blushing, or the color red
Ergasiophobia — work, functioning, or Surgeon's operating
Ergophobia — work
Erotophobia — sexual love or sexual questions
Euphobia — hearing good news Fear of Success — success, achievement or moving forward in life
Francophobia — France, French people, or French culture
Frigophobia — cold or cold things Gamophobia — marriage
Geliophobia — laughter
Geniophobia — chins
Genuphobia — knees
Gephydrophobia — crossing bridges
Gerascophobia — growing old or old people
Germanophobia — Germany, German People, or German culture
Geumaphobia — taste
Globophobia — balloons
Glossophobia — speaking in public or trying to speak
Graphophobia — writing or handwriting
Gymnophobia — nudity
Gynephobia — women Hadephobia — hell
Hagiophobia — saints or holy things
Harpaxophobia — being robbed
Hedonophobia — feeling pleasure
Heliophobia — the sun
Hellenologophobia — Greek terms or complex scientific terminology
Helminthophobia — being infested with worms
Hemaphobia — blood
Hereiophobia — challenges to official doctrine or of radical deviation
Herpetophobia — reptiles or creepy, crawly things
Heterophobia — the opposite sex
Hierophobia — priests or sacred things
Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia — long words
Hobophobia — bums or beggars
Hodophobia — road travel
Homichlophobia — fog
Homilophobia — sermons
Homophobia — sameness, monotony, homosexuality, or becoming homosexual
Hoplophobia — firearms
Hormephobia — shock
Hyalophobia — glass
Hydrargyophobia — mercurial medicines
Hydrophobia — water or drowning
Hydrophobophobia — rabies
Hygrophobia — liquids, dampness, or moisture
Hylephobia — materialism or epilepsy
Hypegiaphobia — responsibility
Hypnophobia — sleep or being hypnotized Iatrophobia — doctors or going to the doctor
Ichthyophobia — fish
Ideophobia — ideas
Illyngophobia — vertigo or feeling dizzy when looking down
Insomnia — Inability to Sleep
Iophobia — poison
Isopterophobia — termites, insects that eat wood Japanophobia — Japanese
Judeophobia — Jewish People Kakorrhaphiophobia — failure or defeat
Kenophobia — voids or empty spaces
Kinesophobia — movement or motion
Koinoniphobia — rooms
Kolpophobia — genitals, particularly female
Kopophobia — fatigue
Kosmikophobia — cosmic phenomenon
Kyphophobia — stooping Lachanophobia — vegetables
Lalophobia — speaking
Lepraphobia — leprosy
Leukophobia — the color white
Levophobia — things to the left side of the body
Ligyrophobia — loud noises
Lilapsophobia — tornado or hurricanes
Limnophobia — lakes
Linonophobia — string
Liticaphobia — lawsuits
Lockiophobia — childbirth
Logizomechanophobia — computers
Logophobia — words
Luiphobia — lues or syphillis
Lutraphobia — otters Macrophobia — long waits
Mageirocophobia — cooking
Malaxophobia — love play
Maniaphobia — insanity
Mastigophobia — punishment
Mechanophobia — machines
Medomalacuphobia — losing an erection
Medorthophobia — an erect penis
Megalophobia — large things
Melanophobia — the color black
Melophobia — music
Meningitophobia — brain disease
Menophobia — menstruation
Merinthophobia — being bound or tied up
Metallophobia — metal
Metathesiophobia — changes
Meteorophobia — meteors
Metrophobia — poetry
Microbiophobia — microbes
Microphobia — small things
Misophobia — being contaminated with dirt or germs
Mnemophobia — memories
Monopathophobia — definite disease
Motorphobia — automobiles
Mottephobia — moths
Murophobia — mice
Mycophobia — mushrooms
Myrmecophobia — ants
Mythophobia — myths, stories, or false statements Narcissistic Personality Disorder — -
Necrophobia — death or dead things
Neopharmaphobia — new drugs
Nephophobia — clouds
Noctiphobia — the night
Nomatophobia — names
Nosocomephobia — hospitals
Nosophobia — becoming ill
Nostophobia — returning home
Novercaphobia — your step-mother
Nucleomituphobia — nuclear weapons
Nudophobia — nudity or nakedness
Nyctohylophobia — dark wooded areas or forests at night Obesophobia — gaining weight
Ochlophobia — crowds or mobs
Ochophobia — vehicles
Octophobia — the figure 8
Odontophobia — teeth or dental surgery
Oenophobia — wines
Oikophobia — houses, home surroundings, or being in a house
Olfactophobia — smells
Ombrophobia — rain or of being rained on
Ommatophobia — eyes
Oneirogmophobia — wet dreams
Oneirophobia — dreams
Onomatophobia — hearing a certain word or of names
Ophidiophobia — snakes
Ophthalmophobia — being stared at
Opiophobia — Fear of medical doctors experience of prescribing needed pain medications for patients
Optophobia — opening one's eyes
Ornithophobia — birds
Orthophobia — property
Ostraconophobia — shellfish
Ouranophobia — heaven Pagophobia — ice or frost
Panophobia — everything
Panthophobia — suffering or disease
Papaphobia — the Pope
Papyrophobia — paper
Paralipophobia — neglecting duty or neglecting responsibility
Paraphobia — sexual perversion
Parasitophobia — parasites
Paraskavedekatriaphobia — Friday the 13th
Parthenophobia — virgins or young girls
Pathophobia — disease
Patroiophobia — heredity
Peccatophobia — sinning
Pediculophobia — lice
Pediophobia — dolls
Pedophobia — children
Peladophobia — bald people
Pellagrophobia — pellagra
Peniaphobia — poverty
Pentheraphobia — mother-in-law
Phagophobia — swallowing or eating
Phalacrophobia — becoming bald
Pharmacophobia — taking medicine or drugs
Phengophobia — daylight or sunshine
Philemaphobia — kissing
Philophobia — falling in love or being in love
Philosophobia — philosophy
Phobophobia — phobias
Phonophobia — noises, voices, one's own voice, or telephones
Photoaugliaphobia — glaring lights
Photophobia — light
Phronemophobia — thinking
Phthisiophobia — tuberculosis
Placophobia — tombstones
Plutophobia — wealth
Pneumatiphobia — spirits
Pnigerophobia — choking of being smothered
Pogonophobia — beards
Poliosophobia — contracting poliomyelitis
Politicophobia — politicians
Polyphobia — many things
Ponophobia — overworking or of pain
Porphyrophobia — the color purple
Potamophobia — rivers or running water
Potophobia — alcohol
Proctophobia — rectums
Prosophobia — progress
Psellismophobia — stuttering
Psychophobia — the mind
Psychrophobia — the cold
Pteromerhanophobia — flying
Pteronophobia — being tickled by feathers
Pupaphobia — puppets
Pyrexiophobia — fever Radiophobia — radiation or x-rays
Ranidaphobia — frogs
Rectophobia — rectums or rectal diseases
Rhabdophobia — being severely punished, beaten by a rod, or severely criticized
Rhypophobia — defecation
Rhytiphobia — getting wrinkles
Rupophobia — dirt
Russophobia — Russians Samhainophobia — Halloween
Satanophobia — Satan or The Devil
Scabiophobia — scabies
Scelerophobia — bad men or burglars
Sciaphobia — shadows
Scoleciphobia — worms
Scolionophobia — school
Scopophobia — being seen or stared at
Scoptophobia — blindness in visual field
Scriptophobia — writing in public
Selachophobia — sharks
Selaphobia — light flashes
Selenophobia — the moon
Seplophobia — decaying matter
Siderodromophobia — trains, railroads, or train travel
Siderophobia — stars
Sinistrophobia — things to the left or left-handed
Sinophobia — China, Chinese, or Chinese culture
Sitiophobia — food or eating
Soceraphobia — parents-in-law
Social Phobia — social situations
Sociophobia — society or people in general
Somniphobia — sleep
Sophophobia — learning
Soteriophobia — dependence on others
Spacephobia — outer space
Spectrophobia — specters or ghosts
Spheksophobia — wasps
Stasibasiphobia — standing or walking
Statue Phobia — statues or effigies
Staurophobia — crosses or the crucifix
Stenophobia — narrow things or places
Symbolophobia — symbolism
Symmetrophobia — symmetry
Syngenesophobia — relatives Tachophobia — speed
Taeniophobia — tapeworms
Taphephobia — being buried alive or cemeteries
Tapinophobia — being contagious
Taurophobia — bulls
Technophobia — technology or computers
Teleophobia — definite plans or Religious ceremony
Telephonophobia — telephones
Teratophobia — bearing a deformed child, monsters, or deformed people
Testophobia — taking tests
Tetanophobia — lockjaw or tetanus
Textophobia — certain fabrics
Thalassophobia — the sea or the ocean
Thanatophobia — death, dying, being buried, cremation, or entombment
Theatrophobia — theaters
Theologicophobia — theology
Theophobia — gods or religion
Thermophobia — heat
Tocophobia — pregnancy or childbirth
Tomophobia — surgery or surgical operations
Topophobia — fear of certain places or situations
Toxicophobia — poison or being accidentally poisoned
Traumatophobia — injury or battle
Tremophobia — trembling
Trichinophobia — trichinosis
Trichopathophobia — hair
Triskaidekaphobia — the number 13
Tropophobia — moving or making changes
Trypanophobia — injections
Tyrannophobia — tyrants Urophobia — urine or urinating Vaccinophobia — vaccination
Verminophobia — germs
Vestiphobia — clothing
Virginitiphobia — rape
Vitricophobia — step-father's Walloonphobia — the Walloons
Wiccaphobia — witches and witchcraft Xanthophobia — the color yellow or the word yellow
Xenoglossophobia — foreign languages
Xenophobia — strangers or foreigners
Xerophobia — dryness
Xylophobia — wood, wooden objects, or forests
Xyrophobia — razors Zelophobia — jealousy
Zemmiphobia — the great mole rat
Zeusophobia — God or gods
Zoophobia — animals

Diabetes Drug May Cut Med-Related Weight Gain

TUESDAY, Jan. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Improved diet, more exercise and the diabetes medication metformin can help people suffering with schizophrenia control the weight gain that typically accompanies their medications, a Chinese study suggests.

Three months of both medication and lifestyle change resulted in a loss of two centimeters around the waist as well as improvement in other health measures, such as insulin resistance, the researchers report in the Jan. 9/16 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Metformin is typically prescribed to help control blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. Previous research has shown that metformin can prevent weight gain in people with diabetes and may help manage weight in some overweight people.

Doctors prescribe atypical antipsychotic (AAP) medications to manage a variety of psychotic disorder and behavioral disturbances, including schizophrenia. However, the drugs often also affect the body's metabolism, resulting in unhealthy cholesterol levels, weight gain and glucose intolerance.

A team based at the Mental Health Institute of the Second Xiangva Hospital, Central South University, China, tested the effect of metformin and lifestyle changes, together and separately, on the weight and insulin levels of 128 adults with schizophrenia. All the participants had gained at least 10 percent of their body weight after starting antipsychotic medications.

The participants were randomly assigned to one of four groups for 12 weeks, while continuing their medication: One group received a placebo or sugar pill; the second one received 750 milligrams per day of metformin; the third received 750 milligrams per day of metformin with lifestyle intervention; and the fourth went through the lifestyle intervention alone. The lifestyle interventions included health education, diet and exercise.

An analysis of the data found that patients in the combination group and patients who took either metformin or engaged in lifestyle change all reduced their weight, body-mass index (a measure of height and weight), waist circumference, insulin levels and insulin resistance.

The participants who took metformin and changed their diet and exercise saw a decrease of 1.8 in their body-mass index, 3.6 in insulin resistance and lost two centimeters in waist circumference. Metformin alone resulted in an average loss of 1.2 in body-mass index, 3.5 in insulin resistance and 1.3 centimeters from the waist. Those who only exercised and changed their diet saw a loss of 0.5 in body-mass index and 1.0 in insulin resistance, but they were no slimmer at the waist. People who took the placebo continued to increase in body mass, waist and insulin resistance, said the researchers.


[Via - Weight Gain News with Medline Plus]

Seasonal Safety Tips for Older Adults

MONDAY, Dec. 31 (HealthDay News) -- Older adults should take additional precautions to preserve their health and safety during winter, according to the American Geriatric Society's Foundation for Health in Aging.

The foundation has released a checklist of safety steps seniors can take to avoid the ill effects of colder weather.

Hypothermia, frostbite, falls, injury while shoveling snow, carbon-monoxide poisoning and driving accidents are on the list of dangers to look out for.

The foundation reminds older adults to dress for the weather. As people age, metabolisms slow and produce less body heat, but older adults may still have a hard time determining whether they are feeling the chill, says the foundation. Wearing two or three layers of loose-fitting clothing, as well as a hat, mittens, a coat, boots and a scarf to provide cover for the face are among the group's suggestions.

Older adults should stay indoors when it's very cold outside, especially if it is windy and wet. The foundation recommends keeping the thermostat indoors set to at least 65 degrees Fahrenheit.

Hypothermia is a condition in which the core body temperature drops to unhealthy levels. It can be fatal. The warning signs of hypothermia include: lots of shivering; cold skin that is pale or ashy; feeling very tired, confused and sleepy; feeling weak; problems walking; slowed breathing or heart rate. Unfortunately, older people do not shiver as much as they used to, so it is best to look for other warning signs, according to foundation recommendations.

Frostbite may also result from exposure to cold weather. Nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers and toes are all at risk. Keep an eye out for skin that is turning red or darkening and beginning to hurt. That's a sign to go inside. When skin is already frostbitten, it is often white, ashy or yellowish and feels numb and waxy. Immediate help is needed.

Aging bones may be more at risk during the winter, when icy sidewalks increase the chance of slipping and falling. The foundation recommends seeking out dry areas to walk if possible, putting new rubber tips on any canes or walkers, and wearing boots with non-skid soles.

Older people may find themselves shoveling snow, but the foundation suggests checking in with a physician before the season starts. Shoveling is heavy work that can affect older hearts. Hiring someone to shovel the snow may be a healthier option.

Indoors, fires can create an undetectable hazard: carbon monoxide. The odorless gas can build up with fatal results, according to the foundation. Before the season starts, people should have their chimneys cleaned and checked out. Opening a window a crack for circulation is also helpful.

People who are relying on space heaters for warmth should keep them at least three feet from anything flammable, such as curtains and furniture. Make sure all smoke detectors and fire extinguishers are ready for use.

Finally, winterizing cars and stocking them for bad weather can help reduce the risk of accidents. Emergency supplies inside the car should include a first-aid kit, blankets, extra warm clothes, a windshield scraper, rock salt, a bag of sand or cat litter, a shovel, booster cables, a flashlight and some water and food. Above all, drive carefully and slowly, after checking the weather reports, the foundation says.


[Via - News with Medicine Plus]

Different Types of Headaches

Are you prone to headaches? Find out the what, why and how of headaches…

Each time I move, I cringe. My head is ready to burst. I do not know what to do, it is yet another headache. For now I am going to settle with popping aspirin and getting twenty minutes of sleep. The next thing I am going to do is get some concrete information on headaches. So many of us feel this way, when we feel that headache building. What I did was get as much information as I could.

A headache is a pain that is felt in the head, between the eyes, ears, behind the head and even at times at the back of the upper neck. A headache should never be treated lightly; it should be treated as seriously as chest pain or dizziness. Headaches are of two types, primary and secondary headaches. Primary headaches are not caused by any other diseases. Primary headaches are migraines, tension headaches and cluster headaches. Secondary headaches on the other hand are caused because of another disease. These may be associated to a disease that is serious, minor or sometimes life-threatening.

Tension headaches are the most common type of primary headache to plague people. More than 90% of the totally adult population had had a tension headache. Women are more prone to tension headaches than men. Where migraine headaches are concerned, these are the second most common types of headaches. In fact it has been found that nearly 28 million people in the United States and that’s 12% of the population has experienced migraines. Adult women are more prone to migraines than men. Most often people confuse migraine headaches with sinus headaches or tension headaches and hence migraines don’t get treated properly as they should. Cluster headaches on the other hand are rare type of headaches, only about 0.1% of the population is affected by them and its more prominent in men that women.

Secondary headaches on the other hand are much more complex. This is because they have different causes and could be ranging from brain tumors, stroke, meningitis and even hemorrhages. Most people suffer from mixed headaches, which means people start off with getting sinus or tension headaches which later on lead to migraine headaches.

Tension headaches normally begin at the back of the head and upper neck and feel like someone is tying a tight band across your head and putting immense amounts of pressure around the eyebrows. Tension headaches are mild and do not affect both sides of the head. They sometimes cause nausea and vomiting and also make the sufferer sensitive to light, sound and movement. There is no fixed pattern to tension headaches, they are painful but people can mange with them.

Migraines on the other hand are chronic headaches. These are more intense and normally attack one temple, and sometimes the pain seems to radiate in the forehead, near the eye and behind the head. A migraine normally attacks on side of the head, but can also affect both sides sometimes. Migraines affect people to a great extent so that it hampers day-to-day activities. People are prone to nausea, vomiting, cold hands, and cold feet and are more sensitive to light, sound and movement.

Cluster headaches as the name suggests comes in groups lasting for weeks or months at a time, followed by a headache free period. When a person has a cluster headache, he or she will sometimes get 2 headaches in a day. Each of these can last from 30 minutes to 90 minutes. The pain is unbearable and is located on one side of the head near or behind on eye. The nose can also get congested and runny during this headache. These cluster headaches are more common in men than women.

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