Toll Free: 1-877-335-2455
Fax: 877-889-9157

blood

Why Do We Have Allergies?

Allergies make thousands of people miserable in a day. We don’t even fully understand why our bodies bother to stir up such an uncomfortable reaction. Even though scientists and immunologists don’t have an exact explanation as to why we have allergies, the basics to this pertinent issues exist. The haze might still be there but scientists believe they have uncovered a molecular reason that could drive human allergic reactions.

What Are Allergies?

Allergies are otherwise immune reactions gone wrong. They will upset the stomach, activate sneezing, lead to skin rashes or even lead to catastrophic anaphylactic shock. The reaction occurs when your immune system detects a foreign body and activates a series of reactions meant to remove that foreign body from our system.

This is a normal reaction that occurs when the body detects germs and pathogens only that the allergen in this case would be relatively harmless to the body. It could be as simple as pollen, dust or egg protein.

How Does the Allergy Process Occur

When the allergen enters the body, your plasma cells release immunoglobulin E antibodies specific to that allergen. These antibodies make their way to mast cells located in areas like your skin and the mucous membranes. These cells are in charge of inflammatory responses that improve the way your body reacts to foreign objects.

The other time your body encounters the allergen, the Mast Cells will release histamines, prostaglandins and leukotrienes, cells that will in turn trigger a wide range of allergic reactions whose sole purpose is to get rid of the allergen before it gets deeper into your body.

This will lead to:

  • Constricted airways in the case of asthma
  • Sneezing and runny nose
  • Sore throat
  • Dry cough
  • Increased phlegm or runny nose due to hypersecretion of mucus
  • Itchy or rashy skin

So far, the best way to fight an allergic reaction is by taking specific antihistamines that will cool down the rate at which the body reacts to the allergen. Scientists are yet to devise a fool-proof way of fighting allergens that will make you immune to that specific compound that gets your immune system tripping.

Drug Free Alternatives to Combat Allergies

Most people opt to keep of their triggers in order to avoid allergic reactions. Stocking a couple of reaction specific antihistamines also seems to be a great way to come prepared since most of the allergens are almost inevitable.

Apart from this abstinence and medical intervention, there are other medicine free approaches that help people with allergic reactions live an almost normal life.

If you are not allergic to honey, you can use it to accustom your body to pollen and reduce asthma or allergic reactions to pollen. Locally produced and unprocessed honey is the best. Use it sparingly until you are sure your body can tolerate it.

Acupuncture is a mythical treatment procedure that delivers results. Weekly acupuncture treatments can lead to fewer breathing problems and could be a great way out to people allergic to pollen.

A healthy diet and healthy living gives you more wiggle room. A research proved that junk food is directly related to allergies and asthma especially in kids.

Allergic reactions don’t have a perfect cure. The best you can do is mitigate the effects and be ready to appease the symptoms once they kick in. At least this will be our way around these unwanted and uncomfortable immune responses until doctors and scientists find a way to teach our bodies that allergens aren’t as harmful as it thinks they are.

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Allergies & Their Genetic Pathways

Image result for genetic

An allergy is defined as a condition where the immune system reacts abnormally to a foreign substance. There are many different types of allergies. These include:

  • Medications
  • Food
  • Pollen
  • Latex
  • Animal Dander
  • Mold

The Genetic Risk

The tendency to develop allergies is genetic, therefore, they are hereditary, which means they are passed down from parent to child. However, this does not happen 100% of the time. Just because you or your spouse may have allergies doesn’t mean your child will definitely inherit them. For example, while approximately 17.6 million adults have been diagnosed with hay fever, less than half of that number of children, 6.6 million, have inherited the same allergy.

Additionally, children do not inherit a particular allergy, rather they inherit the tendency to develop them. For example, a parent may be allergic to pollen and develop hay fever, while their child may be allergic to chocolate and develop atopic eczema or dermatitis. Conversely, some children develop allergies when no known family member has them. Chances are if you are allergic to one substance, you are likely to be allergic to others.

Developing allergies because of your genetic links is known as atopic. While over half the children from atopic families will develop allergies, only one in five from unaffected families will be diagnosed. In families where both parents have allergies, this risk of their children inheriting them is slightly higher. If only one parent has been diagnosed, that risk decreases, however, it is important to note that if the mother has allergies, there is a slightly greater chance her children will develop them than if the father does.

The Allergic March

An allergy often follows a particular pattern where it is diagnosed in infancy through the toddler stage and into childhood, sometimes persisting into adulthood when a lifelong condition is diagnosed. When one allergic disease subsides and another takes its place, it is called the Allergic March. A common pattern is when atopic eczema leads to a food allergy, then asthma, and finally rhinitis. Some children, instead of experiencing the Allergic March, will experience a cumulative effect, meaning that one allergy does not replace another; it just gets added onto what they already have. Keep in mind, however, that all children are different; some may simply develop one allergy for life, instead of experiencing the Allergic March or a cumulative effect.

Common Allergens

Unfortunately, there are many allergens out there. The most common types are airborne and food. Some airborne allergies include:

  • Pollen
  • Dust Mites
  • Mold
  • Pets
  • Cockroaches

Food allergies include:

  • Wheat
  • Soy
  • Peanuts and tree nuts
  • Fish
  • Shellfish
  • Eggs
  • Cow’s milk.

Other common allergens include:

  • Insects, such as a bee sting
  • Chemicals
  • Medications

There are also cross-reactions and cross contamination. Cross-reactions happen when someone who has an allergy to one thing, has a reaction to another. For example, someone who is allergic to birch tree pollen might react to eating an apple if it contains a protein similar to one in the pollen. Another example is that people who are allergic to latex often react to bananas, avocados, chestnuts, and kiwi.

Cross contamination happens when you come in contact with a substance you are not allergic to, but it was processed with something you are during production or packaging. It can also happen at restaurants or even at home when the same utensils or surfaces are used for more than one type of food.

While genetics is not the sole cause of allergies, it has been proven that many allergies are hereditary, so you should be evaluated if you have a family history.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Complete Pathogen Detection from MD GeneticPro

 pmls_mdlogos_genetic

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

48-hour Results

Get right to the source of infections with our comprehensive infection management program, utilizing rapid molecular diagnostic testing to quickly identify over 90% of the pathogens that cause two of the most common and life-threatening infections in long-term care; respiratory and gastrointestinal infections.

Results produced within 48 hours give clinicians the ability to accurately determine treatment paths based on the specific infectious agent rather than based only one clinical symptoms.

Advantages to Pathogen Detection Testing  

  • All-in-one test in one sample within 48 hours compared to separate tests in 3-5 days for cultures
  • Identify causative co-infections with the same sample in the same test
  • >95% sensitivity and specificity compared to the low sensitivity and high false negative rates of cultures and other methods

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Understanding Sickle Cell Disease

Microscopic view of sicke cells causing anemia disease.

There are many kinds of diseases that are associated with blood. Some are contagious diseases. Others are developed within the body because of lifestyle or unhealthy habits. On the other hand, there are also such diseases that are inherited, and one of these diseases is sickle cell.

What Is Sickle Cell Disease?

Sickle cell disease, or SCD, is a red blood cell disorder that is passed on from parents to children. This red blood cell is identified as sickle hemoglobin or hemoglobin S. There are many people with abnormal hemoglobin such as hemoglobin S, but the most common type of SCD is hemoglobin SS or sickle-cell anemia.

Overview

Our body tissues require oxygen, and this is being supplied by our hemoglobin or red blood cells throughout our body. Since hemoglobin has a round shape, it becomes flexible enough to easily flow through blood vessels. It’s soft and elastic, so it can fit freely flow along with other red blood cells.

Meanwhile, sickle cell has a sickle shape similar with that of a leech. Inside the sickle cell, there are strands that form such a shape, and these stands are hard. As a result, sickle cells don’t easily flow through blood vessels. Instead, they stick to the wall and block the blood vessel. Because of this, the supply of oxygen to our tissues are slowed down or even blocked completely.

When your body tissues don’t have enough supply of oxygen, you may suffer from severe pain crises. Such pain comes without early signs or warning, and this usually ends up being sent to the hospital for immediate treatment. In some cases, it can also harm or damage organs such as lungs, heart, brain, kidneys, and liver.

Causes

SCD is only inherited from a parent as it’s not contagious nor developed overtime. Nevertheless, the probability of inheriting sickle cell disease is low because even if your parent has SCD doesn’t necessarily mean you have also inherited it. There are factors that affect the transfer of SCD such as another parent’s condition. This means that both parents should have SCD in order to pass it on to their children. If only one of the parents has SCD, the disease will not be passed down.

Symptoms

There are different symptoms of sickle cell disease, and they vary from one patient to another depending on health condition. Nonetheless, these are some common symptoms you should observe:

  • Eye Problems
  • Slow Growth
  • Infections
  • Swelling
  • Pain

Swelling takes place in hands and feet; however, chronic pain is usually experienced by young adults who have SCD. If not managed properly, it may lead to bone damage and ulcers. Meanwhile, vision problems happen when eyes have the lack the supply of blood as a result of sickle cell blockage.

When You Should See a Doctor

Symptoms may be a false sign or just a sign of another different disease. It’s difficult to predict until you see a doctor. Visit a doctor if you see and experience the following signs:

  • Yellow Skin
  • Frequent Fever
  • Abnormal Swelling
  • Episodes of Pain

Treatment

The only cure for SCD is stem-cell transplant or bone marrow transplant. However, it has a lot of challenges to do so. Aside from the fact that it is difficult to find a donor, only those who are16 years old or below are able to undergo such an operation. Moreover, the operation is risky, and it sometimes leads to death. Nevertheless, antibiotics are administered to cure the crises or pain.

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Taking Care of Your Bladder

Woman Drinking Water

Your bladder is a hollow organ that holds the urine that is produced by the kidneys. The urine remains stored in the bladder until you go to the bathroom. If you don’t take care of your bladder properly, there are certain conditions that you can suffer from both now and in the future. A few of the most common bladder issues include:

  • Frequent bladder infections
  • Interstitial cystitis: A chronic bladder condition that causes bladder pain and frequent and urgent urination.
  • Overactive bladder: A serious condition that squeezes urine out of the bladder at inopportune times.
  • Urinary incontinence: A condition where a person is unable to control their bladder.
  • Bladder cancer

To avoid these conditions and to ensure the health of your bladder, there are a few tips that you should follow.

#1 Let It All Out

Women are especially susceptible to urinary tract infections that involve the bladder. Frequent infections of the urinary tract and the bladder can cause permanent damage to your bladder over time. When you go to the bathroom, it is important to empty your bladder completely each time. If you tighten up your muscles and you stop urinating before your bladder is empty, the urine that didn’t make it out of the bladder will bring bacteria back into the urinary tract and bladder which will cause an infection.

#2 Drink Plenty of Fluids

Drinking plenty of fluids will help to flush out your bladder. It will also flush your urinary tract, preventing you from developing an infection. It is recommended that you drink six to eight glasses of water each day. If you find that you are urinating too often, cut back slightly.

#3 Get Moving

If you spend your day sitting at a desk, fluid can build up in your legs during the day. At night, the fluid build-up will cause you to empty your bladder. The longer you leave the fluid in your bladder, the higher the chances are of developing an infection. To prevent this, try walking throughout the day. You can also try raising your legs to your waist and flexing your calf muscles.

#4 Avoid Tobacco

Each year, over 50,000 people are diagnosed with bladder cancer. According to a recent study, cigarette smokers are two to three times more likely to develop bladder cancer than non-smokers. If you are a smoker, now is the time to quit. It will greatly reduce your risk of developing bladder cancer and a variety of other health conditions.

#5 Drink Cranberry Juice

The best way to avoid bladder infections is to drink cranberry juice. The ingredients in the juice can keep harmful bacteria from sticking to the walls of your urinary tract. This will keep the bacteria from moving up into your bladder. If you don’t like cranberry juice, you can also take cranberry tablets.

#6 Watch What You Eat

There are certain foods that can cause bladder pain and frequent urination. If you suffer from these issues, avoid acidic food such as orange juice and tomatoes.

#7 Drink Less Before Bed

It is not healthy for your bladder to remain full all night. This is why you should drink fewer fluids two hours before bedtime. Also, avoid caffeinated drinks before bed because caffeine will make you urinate more often. If your bladder remains empty at night, the chances of an infection greatly decrease.

If you want to avoid bladder infections and chronic bladder problems in the future, you should start taking care of your bladder now. Each of the tips listed above will ensure a healthy bladder now and in the future.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Signs of Lung Cancer

Image result for lung cancer image

Lung cancer does not have a lot of noticeable signs in the early stages. Most people do not usually get a diagnosis until when the disease has progressed. However, there are signs you can look out for that will show if you have lung cancer. Noticing the signs can help you get diagnosed at the early stages.

Unending cough

You should be keen on any new cough that is prolonged. A normal cough that is associated with a cold or respiratory infection is likely to go after a week or at most, two weeks. However, a persistent cough can be a sign of lung cancer. If you notice a cough lingering for more than two weeks, you should visit your doctor to have more tests done.

Cough changes

You should also pay attention to your cough if it starts changing. It is especially the case if you are a smoker. Some things to look out for is if your cough gets deeper if you get an increased amount of mucus or start seeing blood.

Breathing changes

A lung tumor can cause fluid buildup in the chest, and the cancer can also block or narrow an airway. One way you can identify this is if you notice that you start getting easily winded or have extreme shortness of breath.

Pain in the chest area

Lung cancer is known to cause chest pain in some patients. The chest pain may be sharp, constant, dull or intermittent. It can also occur throughout the chest or can be confined to one spot. The pain can be due to enlarged nymph nodes or metastasis to the lining around the lungs, the chest wall or ribs.

Wheezing

You experience wheezing when the airway becomes constricted, inflamed or blocked. It can be easily diagnosed as a symptom of allergies or asthma and treatment is simple. However, if the cancer blocks the airway, wheezing might also occur and should be taken seriously.

Drop in weight

One common symptom of any type of cancer is loss of weight. If you notice that you have lost about 10 pounds without trying to lose weight, you should find out the reason.

Bone pain

If the cancer progresses, it might spread to the bones leading to bone pain. The pain might increase and usually gets worse at night. You should take note f any unexplained neck, back, chest, shoulder or arm pain that worsens at night.

Headache and fatigue

If the cancer spreads to the brain, you might experience headaches. However, it can also mean that the cancer is putting unnecessary pressure on the superior vena cava that triggers the headache. Another thing to look out for is fatigue even when you have not done any work. If the fatigue does not wear off even after resting, then you should visit your physician to find out the cause.

Nervous system problems

There are patients who experience nervous system problems when the cancer causes the immune system to start attacking parts of the nervous system. It can lead to muscle disorders characterized by difficult getting up from a sitting position, loss of balance and lack of steadiness in the arms and legs, weakness in the hips and trouble swallowing.

If you notice any of the above symptoms, it is important to visit a physician as soon as possible. Early screening is important especially if you are at high risk of getting the disease.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Prevent Food Allergies

foods-that-boost-immune-system-health

There are a range of allergies, and food allergy falls among them. A food allergy is described as an abnormal response to the food eaten at that given time. Not all allergies are identical, as their indications maybe be minor or other times severe.

Symptoms of Food Allergies

The major symptoms of allergies may include among others the following:

  • low blood pressure
  • itchiness
  • diarrhea
  • itchiness

Most of the time it varies from different people. Some react within minutes, and others react within a couple of hours after exposure. However, when the condition is severe, it is referred to, as anaphylaxis.

Methods of Preventing Food Allergies

You can curb food allergies through the following ways:

Keep Away from Trigger Foods

It is also advisable to do away with trigger foods from the kitchen counters. Due to the fact that certain types of foods may cause allergy, keeping them around in the kitchen maybe lure one to consume the food, either intentionally or otherwise hence leading to allergic reactions. Exercising this may greatly reduce your risk of consuming allergic foods. Some of the most known foods to cause allergies include:

  • Milk
  • Eggs
  • Fish
  • Soy
  • Wheat
  • Peanuts

Be Keen on Ingredients

Another useful precaution is to throw away any food products that you are not certain of the ingredients. Always keep it a practice to read food labels as possible as you can. This requires you first to identify the ingredients that often cause allergic reactions and avoid foods with such contents. Most developed countries require manufacturers to label their food containers with the top ten allergenic foods on food containers. Most allergens have code names for allergens an example is lactose, whey or rennet casein for milk.

Let your Baby Suckle

Medical experts advise that a mother should breastfeed her infant for at least 4 months of age, this helps in preventing allergies such as cow’s milk allergy, wheezing and atopic dermatitis.

Replace your Stock with Trigger Free Food or Their Alternatives

Removing your favorite foods because of allergy maybe not be an easy thing to do but alternatively, you can keep your pantry full of alternative foods thus minimizing the risk of consuming food with allergic content. In case you are in an environment around those who freely consume your trigger foods, you might want to consider storing your food separately.

Other times it causes no harm to walk around in stores to check for products specifically for folks with allergies, this may be a good idea because many manufacturers are considering that trend.

Limit Cross Contamination

In many typical homes, it is not so accidental to get into contact with trigger foods through cross contamination. This, however, can be prevented by being on the look lout on what you bring home and how you store and even cook it. Some precautions may include; using different utensils from others, owning your own cooking appliances such blenders and lastly cleaning your hands properly before handling any food stuff.

Put Down Your Meal Plans

If you constantly prepare your meal yourself, at a personal level, you stand a chance of reducing the risk of consuming trigger food. This also goes a long way in ensuring you get the right amounts of required vitamins and keep fit. This can occasionally be, maybe once a week. Take keen notice on meals you often miss at home. If you get to a restaurant, it is advisable to check the menu first.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Understanding Radiation Therapy

Radiation-Therapy

If there is one illness that many people are afraid of, it’s cancer. This is because cancer is one of the most fatal illnesses that is hard to treat. Moreover, there is really no definite treatment for it yet.

Although chemotherapy is the most popular treatment for cancer, there is still no guaranty it can cure all types of cancer. This is why another type of treatment has been developed to treat cancer. This treatment is called radiation therapy.

Radiation Therapy Explained

Radiation therapy is the use of radiation such as gamma rays and X-rays to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. This happens with the help of three types of radiation therapy such as:

  • External-Beam Radiation Therapy
  • Internal Radiation Therapy or Brachytherapy
  • Systemic Radiation

External-Beam Radiation Therapy

This type of radiation therapy is done with the use of a radiation machine. The machine is similar to the X-ray machine will release its charged particles through a beam radiation. The radiation will penetrate the cancer-infected area from outside the body.

Internal Radiation

Internal radiation, on the other hand, is the method of directly placing the radioactive materials in the area around cancer cells. The process is a bit complicated, but it can be more potent.

Systemic Radiation

Meanwhile, systemic radiation treatment is the use of radioactive substances that can move through the blood to reach the areas with cancer cells. This works like a regular medicine in the sense that the substances are absorbed into the blood stream. An example of a radioactive substance is radioactive iodine.

How Does Radiation Therapy Work Against Cancer?

Radiation therapy kills cancer cells by damaging cell DNA. This also can happen by creating free radicals within the cells that kills the cancer as well.

Does Radiation Therapy Kill Other Cells?

The drawback in using radiation therapy is that it kills not only the cancer cells but also other cells nearby. This problem causes side effects depending on which cells are damaged as the result of killing cancer cells. Nevertheless, our tissues have a certain level of tolerance against radiation. It’s your doctor who will determine such levels before this treatment is performed.

Why Is Radiation Therapy Needed?

Radiation therapy is a powerful treatment against cancer. It’s so strong that other cells may also be sacrificed in the process. Nonetheless, the result is significant. It’s needed when the purpose is to completely eliminate the cancer. This means radiation therapy is used for curative intent, and it can also be used for palliative care to shrink tumors.

On the other hand, radiation therapy can also be applied along with chemotherapy. It can also be used for curative intent, control treatment, and palliative care at the same time.

How Is Radiation Therapy Scheduled?

Before radiation therapy is scheduled, your oncologist will ask you to undergo several tests such as CT scans, MRI, PET, and ultrasounds. All such tests will determine the location and the position of cancer infections inside the body. Once identified, radiation therapy will be applied in the target areas.

Conclusion

Radiation therapy may be much stronger than chemotherapy. However, there are risks involved as the radiation can also damage other non-cancer cells. Radiation therapy is ideal for curative intent as it requires patients to be much healthier and tolerant against certain radioactive materials and substances.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

What is Oral Cancer?

Image result for oral cancer ad

Oral cancer is a persistent growth or sore inside the mouth that is caused by an uncontrollable growth of cells that invade and cause damage. It will not go away on its own. It includes the following surrounding tissues:

  • Throat
  • Tonsils
  • Sinuses
  • Hard and Soft Palate
  • Floor of the Mouth
  • Cheeks
  • Tongue
  • Lips

What are the Symptoms?

There are numerous symptoms associated with oral cancer. The most common ones are:

  • Any lesions or swelling on the lips, gums, or other areas inside your mouth
  • Unexplained oral bleeding
  • Unexplained numbness, tenderness, or pain in any areas of the mouth, face or neck
  • Persistent sores in the mouth or the neck and face that do not heal within two weeks.
  • Red, white, or red and white speckled patches in your mouth
  • A feeling that something is caught in the back of your throat
  • Difficulty speaking, chewing, swallowing, or moving the tongue or jaw
  • Chronic sore throat, hoarseness, or change of voice
  • Earache
  • A change in your teeth or the way your dentures fit together
  • Large weight loss

If you notice any of these symptoms, it is important to make an appointment with your dentist or primary care physician as soon as possible.

Who is at Risk?

It is estimated that over 40,000 people are diagnosed with oral cancer each year. Men face twice the risk than women, and men over the age of 50 face the greatest risk of all.

Oral cancer risk factors include:

  • Smoking. Whether you smoke cigarettes, cigars, or a pipe, you are six times more likely to contract oral cancer than nonsmokers.
  • Using smokeless tobacco. Chewing tobacco, snuff, or dip makes you 50 times more likely to develop cancers of the lining of the lips, gums, or cheeks.
  • Drinking a lot of alcohol. You are six times more likely to contract oral cancer than nondrinkers.
  • Family history of cancer. If cancer runs in your family, then you are more genetically predisposed.
  • Too much sun. If you have excessive exposure to the sun, especially when you are young, it increases your odds of contracting oral cancer.
  • If you have been diagnosed with HPV (Human Papillomavirus), some strains put you at a higher risk for contracting oral cancer.

It is important to note, however, that 25% of diagnosed cases of oral cancer do occur in nonsmokers and social drinkers.

What Can You Do to Prevent a Diagnosis?

There are some things you can do to lower your risk, such as:

  • Drink alcohol in moderation, and do not smoke or use any tobacco products.
  • Maintain a well-balanced diet.
  • Limit your exposure to the sun, and when you are out in the sun, apply UV-A/B sun blocking products on your skin and lips.

Early Detection is Key

The earlier you see any symptoms, the greater the chance of successful treatment. You can also take an active role in early detection by doing the following:

  • Do a Self Exam Once per Month – Use a bright light and a mirror to examine all the surfaces of your mouth and lips. Feel for lumps and thoroughly look over every part of your mouth, throat, and gums. Check for enlarged lymph nodes in the neck. If you find anything suspicious, contact your health care professional immediately.
  • See your Dentist Regularly – No matter how thorough, you can’t always see everything, so ask your dentist to conduct an exam at your next visit.

Remember, understanding what oral cancer is and how to detect it increases your chances of successful treatment.

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Quick Facts about AIDS

Image result for HIV

One of the world’s most significant health problems today is HIV and AIDS. The epidemic is worse in low and middle-income countries, however, it is a problem all over the world. In 2017, there were an estimated 20.9 million people in the United States who were receiving treatment for the HIV virus. Over the last decade or so, progress has been made in preventing AIDS. People who are diagnosed with the HIV virus can start taking anti-retroviral medications that can slow down the progress of the AIDS virus. There are plenty of facts and data about this disease that everyone should know to prevent it and treat it.

#1 The Virus Was Not Always Called AIDS

In the late 70’s and early 80’s, doctors didn’t know what the AIDS virus was or what caused it. It was originally thought that only homosexual men could contract the virus. Because of this, it was called Gay Related Immune Deficiency (GRID). It wasn’t until heterosexual people were coming down with the disease that they realized that everyone was susceptible to the virus.

#2 HIV Infects The Immune System

The disease causes the immune system to deteriorate. This can make it difficult for the body to fend off infections and diseases. AIDS is the most advanced stage of HIV and there are over 20 infections and cancers that can occur during this stage.

#3 It Can Be Transmitted in a Variety of Ways

There are a few ways that this disease can be transmitted.

  • Unprotected sex with an infected partner (oral, anal, or vaginal)
  • Sharing needles with an infected person
  • Transfusion of contaminated blood
  • Between mother and baby during pregnancy
  • Use of contaminated surgical equipment

#4 HIV/AIDS Can Be Prevented

There are several ways that you can keep from contracting the HIV virus. These methods include:

  • Have protected sex by always using a condom. This includes when having oral sex.
  • IV drug users should only use clean, fresh needles and they should never share with others.
  • When getting a tattoo or a piercing, make sure the artist is always using fresh needles.
  • Ensure that any blood products you are given have been tested.

#5 Early Detection Can Save Your Life

It is important that people are tested for the HIV/AIDS virus regularly. If the virus is caught in the early stages, anti-retroviral drugs can be taken to prevent the HIV virus from progressing to AIDS. When the virus progresses this far, the prognosis is much worse. Expectant mothers should also be tested. If they do have HIV, they can take medication to keep from spreading it to their unborn child during delivery.

#6 There Is a Link Between HIV/AIDS and TB

According to a study performed by the World Health Organization (WHO), there is a link between HIV/AIDS and TB. In 2015, 10.4 million people developed TB. Of that number, 1.2 million or 11 percent of them were also HIV positive. That same year, 390,000 of the people who died of TB were also living with HIV. Of these deaths, 75 percent of them were people living in the African region.

The HIV/AIDS epidemic is very serious. Knowledge and education are two of the best defenses that people have against contracting this virus. The more people understand about how the disease is transmitted and the more they know about how to avoid contracting it, the safer they will be. While there is currently no vaccination against the virus, scientists and researchers are working every day to develop one so that one day, HIV/AIDS will no longer exist.

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,