QUICK TIP:

If you have trouble hearing, sit away from the kitchen and with your back to a wall when you eat
out. Noise levels will be kept to a minimum, and the waiter will have to face you when speaking.

 

 


 

 

 

A Quick Remedy for Insect Bites

Want to quickly take the sting out of those insect bites? Make a paste of baking soda and lemon juice and smear it on the bite for quick relief. This remedy also is good for jellyfish stings.

 

 

 

 

 

Staying Well

Recovering Quicker After Surgery

Will you be having major surgery? Help ensure a smooth recovery by following your doctor’s recommendations, knowing what to expect after surgery and planning for your recovery. If you and your family are prepared for any difficulties, you’ll be better able to cope with and take action to remedy them.

Steps to Recovery

How long it takes you to resume your normal lifestyle will depend on many factors: what type of surgery you have, your general health and whether there were any unforeseen complications or reactions to medications, for example. Let the following steps help get you back on your feet again.

  • Ask your doctor for written instructions and follow them. For example, take your medicine — including pain relievers — as directed. Trying to endure pain so you won’t have to take these medications can actually slow your recovery and cause complications. Follow your exercise regimen as prescribed.
  • Know how to take care of yourself after surgery. Find the answers to questions such as the following. Is it okay to get your incision wet? Should you drive? Should you hold to a particular eating plan at first? Are there limits to your physical activity? How much bruising, swelling, scarring and pain should you expect after surgery? How long do they typically last? Will any therapy be necessary?
  • Know what symptoms should spur you to call your doctor. Let your doctor know about any change that worries you.
  • Allow other people to take care of you. Being more active than your doctor recommends or ignoring lifting restrictions can prolong your recovery.
  • Be patient. Don’t become discouraged if your recovery takes longer than expected or if you suffer complications.
  • See your doctor for follow-up appointments.

 



Alert for Signs of Stroke

The sooner a stroke victim receives treatment, the better the chance of recovery. A stroke that damages part of the brain because its blood supply is cut off is called an ischemic stroke. One that is caused from blood leaking from a vessel into the brain is called a hemorrhagic stroke.

Brain cells die when they no longer receive oxygen and nutrients from blood or when they’re damaged by sudden bleeding in or around the brain. With timely treatment, these cells can be saved.

Although some strokes result in barely noticeable health problems, others can cause rapid loss of consciousness, coma, severe physical or mental handicaps and even death.

Stroke Symptoms

Sometimes the symptoms are fleeting and indicate a transient ischemic attack (TIA), also called a mini stroke. TIA symptoms can last for a few seconds or up to a day and then they subside. They frequently warn that a full-fledged stroke is impending. Anyone who experiences stroke or TIA symptoms should be seen by a doctor at once. Doing so can be life-saving.

  • a sudden blur or decrease in vision in one or both eyes
  • confusion
  • difficulty understanding others or speaking
  • numbness or weakness in your face or an arm or leg
  • dizziness
  • loss of balance or coordination
  • a severe headache of unknown cause

Who's at Risk?

The more of the following risk factors you have, the more important it is to prevent it.

  • a family history of stroke or TIA
  • health problems such as high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, atherosclerosis or heart rhythm disorder
  • little or no physical activity
  • smoking
  • African-American descent
  • heavy alcohol consumption
  • high blood cholesterol levels
  • illicit drug use
  • in women, pregnancy, childbirth and menopause

Diagnosis & Treatment

Diagnostic tests and treatment for stroke vary according to the underlying cause. Brain scans help detect hemorrhages. Ultrasounds of the main arteries supplying blood to the brain detect narrowing that decreases blood flow. Blood tests reveal if your blood has a tendency to clot. Echocardiograms can uncover heart problems that lead to blood clots.

Treatments for problems such as these include taking drugs that thin the blood or treat another problem, and surgery to stop a brain hemorrhage or open a narrowed blood vessel.

For more information:

National Stroke Association Information and Resource Center
www.stroke.org

American Heart Association
www.americanheart.org


Cleaning Your Ears

In most people’s ears, wax forms in small amounts, is soft and works its way out naturally. But some people’s ears produce so much wax that it blocks the ear canal and must be removed by a doctor. These plugs can cause pain in the ear, impaired hearing, tinnitus (ringing in the ears) or redness, pain and swelling of the ear canal.

If you think you have too much wax accumulating in your ear, don’t use a cotton swab to remove it. Sometimes doing so will push the wax farther in your ear canal.

Instead, warm some wax-softening drops or mineral oil. Insert a couple of drops in the affected ear two or three times a day for a few days. The drops soften the wax. Then you can use an ear syringe to flush the ear with warm water. Heed label instructions and your doctor’s advice about how often to use these drops. (Caution: People who have perforated ear drums shouldn’t use ear drops.)

If wax becomes impacted in your ear, have your doctor remove it.


These Outfits Help Ward Off Allergies

If you’re one of those seasonal allergy sufferers, a few changes in the way you dress can help. Here’s how to be among the “best dressed” for allergy season:

  • Wear natural fibers. When synthetic clothing materials rub against each other they create an electrical charge that attracts pollen. Natural fibers breathe better, stay drier and are less hospitable for molds and bacteria.
  • Dry all clothes and bedding in the dryer. During allergy season this helps avoid bringing pollen into the house.
  • Choose glasses over contacts. Or wear sunglasses, preferably wraparounds, for extra protection against pollen.


High Heels — Bad for the Knees

They may make the calves look sexy, but high heels are not only bad for a woman’s feet, they’re also bad for her knees, ankles, hips and spine.

Research from Harvard University shows that wearing high-heeled shoes of any type make a woman’s knees more susceptible to the development of osteoarthritis. The most common type of arthritis affecting Americans today, osteoarthritis can seriously affect a person’s ability to walk, stand up from a chair, or even operate gas and brake pedals while driving. Some study results:
* Wearing narrow high-heeled shoes put 22 percent more pressure on the knees than walking barefoot.
* Wearing wide high heels added slightly more pressure — 26 percent.

Women already are twice as likely as men to get arthritis in the knees. Many choose wider high-heeled shoes because they are more comfortable. But according to this study, they can actually increase the risk for injury because women tend

 


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