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symptoms

Signs and Symptoms of Dehydration

DehydrationThere is more to dehydration than just being very thirsty. When your body doesn’t get enough water, it cannot function properly. When you become dehydrated, it can be mild or severe. It all depends on how much fluid is missing from your body. It is normal to lose water throughout the day. It can happen when you sweat, when you cry, when you go to the bathroom, and even when you breathe. There are certain situations where you can lose too much water, and it can become a hazard to your health.

  • Diarrhea: When you have diarrhea, your intestinal tract cannot absorb water from the foods that you eat. Over time, this can result in severe dehydration.
  • Vomiting: If you have the flu or food poisoning, excessive vomiting can make it impossible to keep food and liquids down. This can quickly result in dehydration.
  • Excessive sweating: If you are sweating excessively, whether it be due to a fever, intense exercise, or being out in the hot sun, you can lose more water from your body than you can put in. This can quickly result in dehydration.
  • Frequent urination: There are certain drugs that can cause you to urinate frequently. Drinking an excessive amount of alcohol can also cause you to urinate excessively. This can cause you to become seriously dehydrated.

Signs of Mild Dehydration

If you become mildly dehydrated, you will experience a few minor symptoms. These symptoms include:

  • Thirst
  • A dry mouth
  • Dark, yellow urine
  • Dry skin
  • A mild headache
  • Muscle cramps

Signs of Severe Dehydration

The signs of severe hydration are more noticeable. These are signs that your body is becoming dangerously low on fluids and if you don’t replenish the water in your body soon, your health could be in jeopardy. Signs of severe dehydration include:

  • No need to urinate
  • Dark, yellow urine
  • Dizziness
  • Rapid breathing
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Sunken eyes
  • Fatigue
  • Lack of energy
  • Tiring very easily
  • Irritability
  • Confusion
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Low blood pressure

Treatment For Dehydration

The treatment for dehydration would depend on how dehydrated you are. If you are experiencing symptoms of mild dehydration, you would just need to sit down in a cool area and drink water. It can take drinking two quarts of water over a period of two to four hours to replenish the fluids that you have lost.

If you are suffering from symptoms of severe dehydration, you may need to seek medical assistance. In severe cases, you may not be able to get the amount of water that you need in your body fast enough by drinking alone. In severe cases, you should go to the hospital where you would be given IV fluids for several hours until you have replenished the water in your body.

How To Prevent Dehydration

Preventing dehydration is much safer than becoming dehydrated and then needing to treat it. There are several ways that you can prevent dehydration.

  • Try to drink 8 to 10 glasses of water each day. This will keep hydrated.
  • If you are vomiting, have a fever, or if you have diarrhea that lasts for longer than a day or two, seek medical attention. You may need IV fluids to keep from becoming dehydrated.
  • If you are going to be outside in the hot sun, bring along enough water. Try to drink 10 ounces of water every 30 minutes.
  • Drink water while you are exercising.

Dehydration can be very dangerous and in some cases, deadly. It is important to know the signs of dehydration and what you should do if you beleive that you are becoming dehydrated.

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The Main Causes & Symptoms of Juvenile Arthritis

Image result for juvenile arthritis

 

Juvenile arthritis is a disease that affects children ages 16 and under, and it involves inflammation of the tissue that lines the inside of the joints. This tissue is called synovium.

What are the Causes?

Most forms of juvenile arthritis are caused by a malfunction of the immune system, which places it in the category of autoimmune disorders. An autoimmune disorder occurs when the body attacks it’s own healthy cells and tissues. The result is inflammation of the synovium.

However, not all cases of juvenile arthritis are autoimmune. Another cause is labeled an autoinflammatory condition. The disease process behind an autoinflammatory condition is different from that of an autoimmune disorder.

While autoinflammatory conditions result in inflammation and involve an overactive immune system, the similarities between it and an autoimmune disease end there. With an autoimmune response, the body releases proteins called autoantibodies that attack the body. An autoinflammatory condition involves a more primitive part of the immune system, and the reason it malfunctions remains unknown.

What is Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis?

Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis is the commonly accepted term for the seven different types of arthritis that affect children. These are:

  • Systemic
  • Oligoarticular
  • Polyarticular with a negative Rheumatoid factor
  • Polyarticular with a positive Rheumatoid factor
  • Psoriatic
  • Enthesitis-related
  • Undifferentiated

What are the Symptoms of Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis?

General symptoms include:

  • Joint pain
  • Tenderness
  • Stiffness
  • Warmth
  • Swelling

These symptoms last for more than six continuous weeks. The following symptoms are specific to each type of Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis:

  • Systemic Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis – Arthritis symptoms with or preceded by an intermittent fever that lasts for at least two weeks. One or more of the following symptoms accompany it: lymph node, liver, or spleen enlargement, inflammation of the lining of the lungs or heart, a flat, pale, pink rash that does not itch and can move from one part of the body to another.
  • Oligoarticular Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis – Arthritis affecting one to four joints for the first six months of the disease.
  • Polyarticular Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (Negative Rheumatoid Factor) – Arthritis in at least five joints for the first six months of the disease and all tests for the presence of Rheumatoid Factor proteins are negative.
  • Polyarticular Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (Positive Rheumatoid Factor) – Arthritis in at least five joints for the first six months of the disease and two out of three tests for the presence of Rheumatoid Factor proteins are positive. Tests must be taken at least three months apart.
  • Psoriatic Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis – Patient has both arthritis and psoriasis or arthritis and at least two of the following: a relative diagnosed with psoriasis, nail splitting or pitting, or inflammation of one entire toe or finger.
  • Enthesitis-related Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis – This occurs where a joint capsule, tendon, or ligament attaches to the bone. The most common locations are the Achilles tendon behind the ankle and around the knee. Both arthritis and inflammation must be present or either one with at least two of the following: inflammation of the sacroiliac joint with inflammatory bowel disease or acute inflammation of the eye, enthesitis arthritis, arthritis in males over six years, a positive HLA blood test, a family history of ankylosing spondylitis, or inflammation at the base of the spine or in the lower back area.
  • Undifferiented Arthritis – Symptoms do not fit with any of the six previous categories.

Researchers now believe that both environmental and genetics play a part in the development of juvenile arthritis.

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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.

 

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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.

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Signs of Lung Cancer

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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.

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Understanding Addiction

addictions

The word addiction originates from a Latin term meaning enslaved to or bound by, which is a very apt way to describe it. Addiction’s influence on the brain is very powerful, which is why it is so challenging for you to overcome it. It hijacks the brain in three distinct ways:

  • A strong craving for a particular substance or activity
  • Loss of control of it
  • Continuing with it despite negative consequences

Experts in the field of addiction believed for many years that the only source of addictions were alcohol and drugs. Advanced diagnostic studies of the human brain and subsequent studies have proven otherwise, however. Pleasurable activities such as gambling, shopping, sex, and food can also take over your brain.

A Common Problem

Many people experiment with drugs or alcohol or find themselves engaged in an activity that they have become addicted to. Nearly 23 million Americans, approximately one out of every ten people, are addicted to alcohol, drugs, or some other harmful activity. The reasons are vast. Some of them are:

  • Curiosity
  • Relieve stress, anxiety, or depression
  • Pain management
  • Improve athletic performance
  • Fit in with others
  • To have a good time.

Engaging in these activities does not automatically lead to addiction, however. Everyone is different. The way to determine an addiction has less to do with what or how much you are participating in it and more to do with the consequences of it.

If the chosen activity is causing problems in your relationships, or at work, home or school, you probably have an addiction.

The Pleasure Center

Your brain reacts to all pleasures the same way. It doesn’t matter whether we are engaging in addictive behavior or not. Technically, pleasurable behavior causes your brain to release something called dopamine. It originates from a cluster of nerve cells located in the cerebral cortex portion of your brain. This connection is so consistent that doctors actually refer to this portion of the brain as the pleasure center.

The result of addiction is that your brain actually goes through physical changes of structure and function. It begins with recognizing pleasure and ends with compulsive behavior. It is a chronic disease not unlike other diseases such as heart disease or diabetes where the heart or pancreas is physically affected and changed.

The Addict’s Brain

Recent research has indicated that the changes to your brain are rather complicated. Every time you participate in addictive behavior and your brain’s pleasure center is flooded with dopamine, it causes a chain reaction. A portion of your brain associated with memory records the activity and creates a rapid sense of satisfaction while another area of your brain creates a conditioned response to it. Addiction stimulates this circuit of your brain and then overloads it.

When the pleasure associated with your addiction subsides, the memory centers in your brain remember it and cause you to want to recreate it. There are certain environmental cues that trigger those memories, at which time an intense craving develops.

Are You Addicted?

If you answer yes to any of the following questions, it is time to seek a professional evaluation:

  • Are you using or indulging in the activity more than before?
  • Do you go through withdrawal symptoms without it?
  • Have you ever lied to anyone about it?

 

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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.

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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.

 

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Cataract Awareness Month

examining-eye

What is a Cataract?

A cataract is a clouding of the clear lens that filters light in your eye. Cataracts can interfere with your vision and can slowly develop over time or can enlarge quite suddenly. Cataracts are often diagnosed on routine eye exams, but sudden changes in vision should be reported to an eye doctor.

Symptoms of a Cataract

Signs and symptoms of cataracts can vary depending on the size of the cataract and how far advanced at is. Some of the most common symptoms of cataracts include:

  • Blurry or clouded vision
  • Light sensitivity
  • Problems with glares
  • Frequent eyeglass and contact lens prescription changes
  • Clouding of the middle part of the eye
  • Halo effect when looking at lights
  • Double vision in only one eye
  • Needing increased light to do activities such as reading, sewing, or puzzles

A cataract may start as a small spot of blurry vision in your eye and get noticeably worse as time goes on. Regular check-ups with your doctor will help to track the development of the cataract and come up with a proper treatment plan.

What Causes Cataracts?

While cataracts typically develop as you age, there are other issues that can lead to cataracts. Injuries to your eye or surgical procedures can damage the lens of your eye leading to cataracts later in life. Genetics and long-term medical conditions such as diabetes also increase your risk of developing cataracts.

Types of Cataracts

There are four different types of cataracts that you may be diagnosed with. These usually differ by how they develop as well as their location.

  •      Nuclear Cataracts

A nuclear cataract usually begins with a disturbance in your near-sighted vision. As the cataract develops, it will become yellow and more cloudy before becoming brown and will eventually cause a disturbance in both close and far vision.

  • Cortical Cataracts

Cortical cataracts will begin as white streaks throughout the lens that will eventually spread to the middle, causing more vision disturbance as more light is blocked.

  • Posterior Subcapsular Cataracts

This type of cataract typically starts a small opaque area towards the back part of the lens that sits directly in the pathway of the light trying to come through. Posterior subcapsular cataracts will often spread quicker than most and tend to affect reading vision and vision in bright lights. It often creates halos and glare issues.

  • Congenital Cataracts

Congenital cataracts are ones that a child is born with or they develop sometime during their childhood. This can often be the result of genetics, infection in the uterus, trauma, or medical conditions such as rubella or myotonic dystrophy.

Cataract Surgery

If your cataracts begin to interfere with your ability to read, drive, or perform routine daily activities, cataract surgery may be the best option for you. During the cataract surgery, the doctor will remove your clouded lens and replace it with a new clear lens that will significantly improve your vision.

Cataract surgery is very safe and is an outpatient procedure that does not require a hospital stay. Your doctor will discuss the risks and benefits or surgery with you if it is the recommended course of action.

While cataracts can cause significant problems with everyday life, they are most often treatable with surgery. If you have any vision disturbance or think that you may have a cataract, schedule an appointment with your eye doctor.

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Signs to look for with Alzheimers

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Alzheimer’s is a very serious brain disease that can cause a slow decline in the patient’s cognitive skills. Over time, the patient’s memory, reasoning skills, and thinking can begin to decline. As the disease progresses, the disease can get so severe that the patient doesn’t recognize their family members and they don’t even know who they are. If you are caring for a loved one and you are concerned that they may be in early stages of the disease, you should know what symptoms to look for. It is important to understand that every person is different. The combination of symptoms can differ from person to person.

#1 Memory Loss That Effects Their Daily Life 

Forgetfulness is a normal sign of aging, however, if your loved one becomes especially forgetful, it could be cause for concern. There are certain memory issues that a person with Alzheimer’s will have that aren’t a normal part of aging.

  • Forgetting recently learned information
  • Forgetting important dates or events
  • Relying on memory aids often such as notes or electronic devices
  • Asking to have the same information repeated again and again
  • Forgetting names or important dates but then remembering them later

#2 Problems With Planning and Problem Solving

It is not uncommon for a person with Alzheimer’s to suddenly have trouble making plans. Something simple like following a recipe or understanding the directions to a board game can become difficult. People with Alzheimer’s also struggle with numbers, therefore, paying bills and balancing their checkbook can become difficult. Finally, a person with Alzheimer’s may need to concentrate much longer to do things that were once easy for them.

#3 Familiar Tasks Suddenly Become Difficult

When a person is suffering from Alzheimer’s, familiar tasks that they have been doing for years can become difficult. This can include driving to a familiar location, remembering their daily routine, and forgetting how to use their household appliances.

#4 Confusion With Time or Place

People with Alzheimer’s often lose track of time. This doesn’t mean that they forget what day of the week it is. People who suffer from this disease will often forget what year and even what decade it is. Also, they might have trouble understanding if something is happening immediately. Finally, it is not uncommon for a person to go somewhere and forget how they got there.

#5 Difficulty Seeing and Understanding Visual Images

Many people who suffer from Alzheimer’s have problems with their vision. This doesn’t mean needing a pair of reading glasses. Alzheimer’s patients often have trouble judging distance. They also have trouble determining color or contrast. These vision changes can make it dangerous for a person with Alzheimer’s to drive a vehicle.

#6 Sudden Issues With Speaking

As a person gets older, it is not uncommon for them to have trouble finding the right word, however, if they are in the middle of a conversation and suddenly forget what they were talking about, it is a serious cause for concern. People with Alzheimer’s often repeat themselves because they forgot what they just said. Finally, many Alzheimer’s patients will call things by the wrong name because they cannot remember the correct one. For example, if the person says little clock instead of watch, it is cause for concern.

#7 Difficulty Retracing Steps

Alzheimer’s patients will often misplace things. While this is common for many people, Alzheimer’s will make it difficult for them to remember where they just were so that they can retrace their steps.

Some people confuse old age with Alzheimer’s, however, when it is Alzheimer’s, the symptoms are more serious and disruptive to their life.

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