Saturday, August 25, 2012

Air Moisture And Your Health

Having clean air to breathe is not just a luxury and many people are learning about the various ways to improve air quality when they are indoors. One of the methods to help improve air quality is the use of humifiers and dehumidifiers to control the moisture in the air. Air moisture may not be something that you thought a lot about, but it could be a large contributing factor to the negative symptoms that you experience at times.
That means then that air moisture can be a very important factor in comfort when you are indoors and can also significantly contribute to your overall health as well. Consider the following health issues and how it relates to air moisture:
Many allergy sufferers have a severe allergic reaction to mold in the are or on surfaces and fabrics around them. This mold issue is usually directly tied to the amount of moisture that is present in the air in that space. By reducing the air moisture content the mold allergy can often be brought under manageable control. High humidity at high temperatures can also sometimes lead to heat exhaustion or heat stroke in extreme cases. And dust mites that often trigger allergy attacks begin to die off when the humidity level drops below 50%.
On the flip side, when the air is too dry people can be uncomfortable and can suffer from dry mucus membranes which can lead to nosebleeds and infections. Low humidity can also aggravate the symptoms of asthma at times.
A good way to track air moisture indoors is to get a digital hygrometer to actually monitor the humidity in the air. It's a simple gadget to read and the information it produces can be invaluable.
You see most people feel comfortable at 45-50% humidity between 68-72 degrees. That is considered the optimal comfort zone. Some variance on either side of the optimum zone is fine, but wide fluctuations can be hard on your health. If the humidity level falls below 30% you should turn on an air humidifier to help put moisture back. If the moisture level consistently rises above 60% in your home, you should employ a dehumidifier or air conditioner to reduce the moisture level.
By following the guidelines listed here you can help increase your indoors comfort level and improve your health easily and quickly.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Top 10 Tips for More Fun and Better Health

Professionals and small business/home office workers have tremendous freedom to schedule their days, arrange the furniture, choose the music and take care of themselves at work. Unfortunately, they also have all the responsibilities, make all the decisions, and carry all the burdens. The result is too often we forget to take care of ourselves. Use the advantages you have! The following tips can make the day go easier and help you work smarter, better and healthier.
1. In the morning, limit caffeine to one cup. Or better yet, switch to herbal teas! Start out calm and you're more likely to stay that way through the day.
2. Use up-beat music and humor (I love my daily Far Side calendar!) to get your morning off to a great start.
3. Make sure your first appointment of the day is a great one! Meet a friend for breakfast, greet co-workers with a big smile, schedule a favorite client first thing in the morning. Start the day with some fun!
4. At mid-morning, stand up, stretch and move around, at least for a moment. Take several deep breaths, wave your hands above your head, be silly, dance a jig, move your body!
5. Eat a light lunch of fruits, vegetables and carbohydrates. The traditional soup and salad is great, or a half-sandwich and an apple. Your body needs sustenance, not a heavy load, so lighten up!
6. Take a few minutes during your lunch break to do something totally different: read poetry, call an old friend, take a nap, go for a run. What you do is not as important as getting your mind and body away from your work. Take a real break!
7. During the afternoon, stand up and stretch at least once every hour. Gently arch your back, touch your toes, or touch the sky. Turn your head from side to side, and take some deep cleansing breaths. And while you're at it, smile!
8. When stress and work pile up, take a mini-vacation. Close the door (or go to the restroom, or a broom closet if you have to!) but get alone, close your eyes, and imagine a tropical island, or your favorite picnic spot. Life is good! Breath slowly, and relax.
9. Once a day, do something "extra" - call an old client to check in, thank a colleague for a referral, send a note to a friend. Have fun with this. Make it a game to combine business with pleasure and broaden your circle of contacts. (Hint: Send a quick 'thinking of you" email! People love 'em!)
10. At the end of the day, clean off your desk, and straighten up the office. The janitor will do the routine stuff, but take pleasure in closing down for the day. Develop a routine that signals the end of the day, it's time to quit, time to go home

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Learn How To Cope With Narcolepsy

Narcolepsy is a malfunction of the sleep/wake regulating
system in the brain which until recently was of unknown
origin. Its most common manifestation is Excessive Daytime
Sleepiness and sleep attacks.
Symptoms of Narcolepsy includes:
a. Temporary paralysis on falling asleep or awakening (sleep
b. Hallucinations - vivid images or sounds - on falling
asleep or awakening (Hypnagogic and hypnopompic
hallucinations respectively).
c. Moments (but sometimes extended periods) of trance-like
behaviour in which routine activities are continued on
"auto-pilot" (Automatic behaviour).
d. Interruption of night-time sleep by frequent waking
periods, marked by quickening of the heart rate, over-
alertness, hot flushes, agitation, and an intense craving
for sweets.
Is there any treatment?
There is no cure for narcolepsy, but the symptoms can
be controlled with behavioral and medical therapy. The
excessive daytime sleepiness may be treated with stimulant
drugs or with the drug modafinil. Cataplexy and
other REM-sleep symptoms may be treated with antidepressant
Medications will only reduce the symptoms, but will not
alleviate them entirely. Also, many currently
available medications have side effects. Basic lifestyle
adjustments such as regulating sleep schedules, scheduled
daytime naps and avoiding "over-stimulating" situations may
also help to reduce the intrusion of symptoms into daytime
Drug Therapy
Stimulants are the mainstay of drug therapy for excessive
daytime sleepiness and sleep attacks in narcolepsy patients.
These include methylphenidate (Ritalin®), modafinil,
dextroamphetamine, and pemoline. Dosages of these
medications are determined on a case-by-case basis, and they
are generally taken in the morning and at noon. Other
drugs, such as certain antidepressants and drugs that are
still being tested in the United States, are also used to
treat the predominant symptoms of narcolepsy.
The major side effects of these stimulants are irritability,
anxiety, quickened heart rate, hypertension, substance
abuse, and disturbances of nocturnal sleep. Methylphenidate
and dextroamphetamine are known to cause hypertension. A
common side effect of modafinil is headache, usually related
to dose size, which occurs in up to 5 percent of patients.
Pemoline poses a very low but noticeable risk for liver
complication. None of these stimulants influence the
occurrence of narcolepsy's auxiliary symptoms and usually
are not used to treat them.
Modafinil does not carry the addiction potential that
methylphenidate and dextroamphetamine do. In fact, the
latest development in treatment is a new modafinil drug
called Provigil®, which does not act as a stimulant and so
does not produce side effects like anxiety and irritability.
Provigil's therapeutic effects have been observed in
maintenance of wakefulness test research, where patients
have tripled their wakefulness.
Although there is no cure for narcolepsy, excessive daytime
sleepiness, sudden sleep onset, and cataplexy. Proper sleep
hygiene,which includes a consistent sleep schedule and the
of shift work and alcohol, can drastically reduce the ill
impact of narcolepsy.
And often, patients with narcolepsy feel refreshed after a
short nap; therefore, taking short scheduled naps may
greatly benefit patients combatting excessive daytime