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Autism Risk Factors

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Image is from Spectrum

What is Autism?

Autism was first defined in 1943 by Leo Kanner as the inability to create normal, determined, emotional contact with others. Other definitions surround this primacy of lack of social reciprocity. Over the years, there has been major improvements in the conceptualization of autism and related disorders.

Risk Factors for Autism

There has been a lot of awareness that has been created concerning autism due to the rising number of autism cases in the last decade, but most people are still in the dark when it comes to establishing what puts unborn babies at risk of developing this disorder. With 10-15% of all babies being born with one neurodevelopment disorder or the other, it is crucial for people to be knowledgeable on the avoidable and unavoidable risk factors.

Mycotoxins

Mycotoxins are mold byproducts that are mostly found in wine, grains, coffee and pork. Several studies have been able to positively link the presence of mycotoxins in these foods with autism. Mycotoxins are known to put males at a higher risk of developing theses disorder. Although there are numerous studies being conducted on the effects of mycotoxins on animals and human beings, the jury is still out on the long-term effects. This does not mean that mycotoxins are not a risk factor just that you need to be careful with foods that contain them.

C-Sections

There has been a new study that has shown that babies who are born through C-Section, rather than other traditional methods stand a higher chance of developing autism-related disorders. This study is important because 1 in 3 babies in the United States is born via C-Section. The reason for the increased risk is because the babies are born before their due date. It is therefore important for parents to pursue other methods of giving birth before settling on C-Section.

Maternal Antibodies

This is an unfortunate risk factor since our own bodies produce these maternal antibodies which attach themselves to the baby’s proteins that are used for cognitive and neurological development therefore hindering the normal process of fetal development. Scientists are now working on ways of separating these antibodies and prevent them from causing autism.

Placenta abnormalities

Studies have established a relationship between placentas that have an abnormal structure and children who have neurological disorders such as autism. It is therefore advisable to check the condition of the placenta at birth so as to predict whether the child will have any neurological disorder.

Smoking

Tobacco smoking comes with a plethora of health issues and unfortunately, smoking while pregnant can lead to autism in children. Although a direct link has not yet been established between smoking and autism, women who smoke while pregnant stand a higher chance of birthing children suffering from Asperger’s (an autism spectrum disorder).

Air Pollution

New evidence has come out suggesting that some particles in polluted air may increase the risk of autism. By reducing air pollution indoors and doing our part as the society to deal with outdoor pollution, we can contribute to an overall healthy society.

Endocrine Disruptors

Endocrine disruptors affect chemicals that are crucial in the development of the thyroid and many experts believe that they are hormone related since males are 4 times more likely to be diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders.

Vaccines

Thimerosals and aluminum found in vaccines have a causal relationship with autism. Vaccines have the power to save lives but we need to do more research so as to establish a clear relationship between ingredients in vaccines and neurological development.

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Symptoms of Whooping Cough

child-getting-vaccinated

Due to the years of medical research, many of the ‘old time’ illness, such as the following showed rarity. Medical communities all agreed that there was no longer any need to vaccine children and adults due no incidents of these diseases reported for many years.

Now in recent years these ‘old time’ illnesses are starting to rear their ugly head because vaccinations stopped. Now the CDC is starting to urge you and your children to be vaccinated once again. A DPT vaccination is a combination of Diphtheria, Pertussis, and Tetanus.

Those vaccinated need a revaccination against this with a TDap booster. Whooping Cough is a serious disease and can cause death. Every age group should get a vaccination to protect them against this illness. It is hard to diagnose Whooping Cough because the symptoms are that of a common cold.

  • Whooping Cough
  • Chicken Pox
  • Scarlet Fever
  • Polio

Whooping Cough, Pertussis, or the 100-Day Cough

Whooping Cough is a difficult and challenging illness for any child or adult. This disease takes on a more difficult elimination, and the signs and symptoms become worse in seniors and infants.

If you, as an adult, or a baby is exposed to Pertussis it takes from five to ten days and sometimes up to three weeks to develop symptoms.

If you received a vaccination and then exposed to Whooping Cough, your cough would not last as long. If a baby contracts Pertussis and they are less than one year of age, hospitalization is usually required. Symptoms of this illness include,

  • A whooping type cough
  • Constant coughing fits
  • Instances of vomiting after coughing fits
  • Symptoms mimicking a cold such as, mild cough and low-grade fever
  • Periods of apnea in babies

Early on in the process of this illness symptoms can last for one to a few weeks and may include,

  • A mild and occasional cough
  • Low-grade fever
  • Episodes of apnea in a baby
  • Runny nose
  • Sneezing
  • Common cold or bronchitis

If you have a baby with Whooping Cough, the chances of them coughing may not be apparent. Instead, a child displays apnea and cyanosis (bluish tinge to the skin) from lack of oxygen.

As this illness progresses, symptoms become more intense after one to two weeks. These symptoms can include,

  • You have frequent, rapid coughing. Coughing fits come so frequently and violently it takes all the air from your lungs. To breathe you must try to take in a deep breath causing a whooping sound.
  • Vomiting, sometimes
  • Extreme fatigue

There is no quick recovery from Pertussis. Coughing fits last for weeks, usually up to and exceeding 10-weeks.

Vaccinations for Whooping Cough lessen the duration and intensity of a cough and time ill.

Recovery

Recovery is slow and agonizing. A cough starts to decrease and is milder. Symptoms can return over the course of many months, whenever you develop another respiratory infection.

Vaccination against Diphtheria,Tetanus, and Pertussis is essential to good health and lessens the symptoms should you get any of these illnesses.

This vaccination is essential to good health and lessens the symptoms should you get any of these illnesses.Vaccinations are highly safe, but you may experience some mild reactions such as in the following.

  • Mild pain and redness at injection site
  • Mild fever
  • Slight headache
  • Mild fatigue

When you consider full-blown Pertussis and the weeks and months of difficult recovery, these few possible reactions are minimal and you will be glad you protected yourself and children from Whooping Cough.

Pertussis is on the rise and proves a very contagious respiratory infection. Vaccination of adults and children every ten years is essential for a healthy life.

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Understanding Whooping Cough

girl-coughing

Image is from Live Science

Whooping cough is a bacterial infection also known as pertussis. The infection gets into your nose and throat, and it is very contagious. When a person with whooping cough sneezes, coughs, or laughs, small drops of the bacteria can fly into the air. When a person walks by and breathes in the air, they can develop the disease if they haven’t completed their series of vaccines or if they have not had a booster shot. Fortunately, there are vaccines such as Tdap and DtaP that can prevent both adults and children from contracting the disease.

Symptoms of Whooping Cough

The early symptoms of whooping cough start out like a cold. You can have a mild cough, sneezing, a runny nose, and a low-grade fever below 102. After about 7 to 10 days, the cough will start getting worse. A mild cough can turn into coughing fits. By the time the disease is full blown, you will create a whooping sound when you cough as you try to fill your lungs with oxygen. Since the cough is dry and not productive, you can have a coughing spell that can last for up to a minute. During this time, you face can turn red or purple. There are, however, some people who don’t have coughing spells .When an infant has whooping cough, they won’t have the whooping sound or the cough. They will just gasp, trying to catch their breath. Also, some babies will vomit.

Whooping Cough is Extremely Dangerous in Babies

If a child under 6 months old and they develop whooping, cough, they would need to be hospitalized. Even if you think that your child could have this disease, you should take them to a doctor immediately. When a child under 18 months old has whooping cough, they would need to be watched at all times. This is because the disease can cause the baby to stop breathing, and they would need help to get their breathing started again.

Preventing Whooping Cough

Babies get a series of DtaP shots when they are 2 months old, 4 months old, 6 months old, a 15 to 18 months old. They are then given a booster shot between 4 and 6 years old. Because a baby won’t be fully protected against the disease until they are 18 months old, the best way to prevent them from developing whooping cough is to make sure that any adult who will be around the child has been vaccinated. This includes parents, grandparents, siblings, and other family members. If you baby is in a licensed daycare, the people who work in these facilities will have been vaccinated. It is the law.

Treating Whooping Cough

If you have whooping cough and it is diagnosed early, the doctor can put you on antibiotics to help stop the coughing and the other symptoms. The antibiotics can also stop the disease from spreading. Unfortunately, whooping cough is often diagnosed too late for antibiotics to work well. You should avoid using over the counter medications to treat the cough as they won’t work. Finally, if the coughing is so bad that you are unable to drink, you should contact our doctor. If you are unable to drink fluids, you could become dehydrated.

Whooping cough can make the life of an adult miserable. The constant coughing can make it difficult to sleep at night and even to hold a conversation. When a baby has whooping cough, it can be much more dangerous. Prevention, early diagnosis, are treatment are very important if you get whooping cough, no matter how old you are.

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