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News

State Government’s Impact on the Middle Class – Economic Health

NJEA.org – Somerset County teachers, school employees pressure local legislators to demand full pension funding

How does taking away someone’s retirement help the Economic Realm of the Middle Class?  It took many years for these individuals to pay into their State Retirement Savings Fund a.k.a. Pension Fund only to have it stolen from them.  The biggest insult to the American citizen, in my opinion,  is the disrespect toward their “American Dream” to trust the government to hold their money until they are ready to withdrawal during their retirement.

Americans, stand up to the governing body of the people, by the people and for the people and ask  every government official:

Who in the United States Government will directly support the Middle Class?

Who in the State Justice Department represents the needs of the people and not the needs of an inadequate politician trying to balance or amend a budget discrepancy?

How does taking away a Pension that people pay into help balance anything when now these citizens will need to be provided for by the State through other programs funded by taxpayers?

What recourse will be taken to give back to all of the citizens who paid into a State Pension Fund?

Use your freedom of speech and write to your Senator and State Representative today.  Let yourself be heard concerning the recent decision to take away the Pensions of Retired Middle-Class teachers of New Jersey.    

Respectfully submitted,

Judith  

 

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Health

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: How it Works and What You Can Do About It

Whether Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) is interfering with your work, crafts, or sleep, finding relief from pain quickly starts with understanding how CTS occurs.  CTS is the result of inflammation around the medial nerve passing from the forearm through the wrist into the cannal, also known as the “Carpal Tunnel.”  Although musicians and administrative assistants often feel that repetitive motion activities cause their pain, Harvard researcher, David Ring, MD told his fellow orthopedic surgeons in 2007 that the underlying cause of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome more often is genetic. Ring found that there is more evidence of narrow canals responsible for CTS and only weak evidence for typing and other repetitive movements of the hands. (Ring: 2007)

Inflammation can cause or aggravate inflammatory conditions at another site which explains why arthritis, obesity, and diabetes all raise the risk of this painful disorder. Conversely, blocking inflammation and treating it wherever it exists may also improve CTS.

The diagnosis of CTS can be made by a physician or chiropractor. Beyond a physical examination, lab studies are used to rule out arthritis, gout and diabetic nerve damage, any of which can mimic the symptoms of CTS.  Because each condition requires a different treatment approach, getting the right diagnosis is important.  Some measures can be taken even before a medical diagnosis is made.
Fascial manipulation, a massage technique offered through chiropractors and physical therapists is a non-invasive approach that involves manual manipulation of the fascia, a membrane of connective tissue that surrounds muscle and groups of muscles, blood vessels and nerves.  A study led by Dr. E. Pratelli and published in the Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies, January 2015, found fascial manipulation to significantly reduce pain. (Pratelli:2014)

Eating anti-inflammatory foods such as berries, fish, avocados, nuts and vegetables and avoiding sugar, wheat, processed foods and saturated fats can provide relief; likewise, positioning the wrists above the hands may minimize pain during periods at the computer keyboard or while playing a musical instrument. Another anti-inflammatory lifestyle intervention recommended by the National Institutes of Health is getting 6 ½ to 7 ½ hours of sleep each night and waking at the same time each day. (Sabanayagam: 2010)
Track the results of these interventions daily and identify which ones are providing optimal relief for your CTS.  There are no downsides to using them and their added benefit provides an overall feeling of well-being.   
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Works Cited
Pratelli, Elisa, MD. “Conservative Treatment of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: Comparison between Laser Therapy and Fascial Manipulation.” Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapy 19.1 (2015): 113-18. Print.
Ring, David M., M.D. “Gentic Cause of Carpal Tunnel.” Proc. of 74th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, San Diego. 
Sabanayagam, Charumathi, M.D., Ph.D. “Sleep Duration and Cardiovascular Disease: Results from the National Health Interview Survey.” Web.

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News

Nurturing the Academic Realm of Life

The most significant aspect about a program such as this one is that it provides the student with less stress and more time to focus on one subject at a time.  It opens a new concept in higher education that is “nurturing” to the mind and prioritizes one’s desire and sense of purpose in life while acquiring the knowledge.

Unlike conventional education, the student takes once class a semester and attends throughout a full year.  The learning experience is enjoyable without the pressure of trying to cram several courses into a short period of time and overload the brain with too much information at once.  Emphasis is placed upon why the student wants to learn the information, takes that energy and places it into the learning process.  Meditation recharges the brain’s ability to focus and calms the body through breathing techniques that balance hormones between the Sympathic and Parasympathetic nervous system.

This approach to higher education offers an edge to the learning process that does not include paying off a huge student loan or pressure to compete for a grade.  Take a virtual visit to this unique human-friendly University at www.mum.edu.  

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Yoga

Developing a Spiritual Realm of Life

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Yoga

The “Change” has Come – How to handle perimenopause

The blog “Healthcare De-Mystified” has been dormant because the author has been going through some “changes”that needed readjusting.  These changes led to a life-style congruent to the needs of the body and mind known as CAM Therapy (Complementary Alternative Modality Therapy).  Since today’s blog will only reference CAM Therapy you can go to a reliable reference regarding CAM Therapies such as healthlibrary.standord.edu and webmd.com.

It has been many years since my body went through “surgical menopause”, however, there are still times when my body experiences a “hormonal impact” as if those female organs were alive and kicking.  Sometimes I still awaken at night in night sweats with subsequent fatigue in the morning.  It continues with a fogged mind to which I try to remedy with a “caffeinated” morning beverage.  Throughout the day there is a struggle with “mental blurring” which encompasses forgetfulness, lack of concentration and daydreaming.  

Ten years post-menopause I had a body with high blood pressure, high cholesterol and continued night sweats from time to time.  Medical intervention with pharmaceutical agents were administered by my Healthcare Professionals to prevent further damage to the heart, brain and kidneys.  The night sweats still  continued from time to time.  Body changes ensued with some hair loss, side effects from cholesterol medication and a weight gain that won’t budge with exercise and nutritional corrections.

One day I decided to look into Complementary Alternative Modalities also known as CAM Therapy.  The result of discovering CAM and integrate it into my life relieved the insomnia and managed stress in order to facilitate the blood pressure medication to work more effectively.  Focus and concentration have improved as well as sleeping through the night without waking up in night sweats.

I posted this video regarding “Menopause The Musical” as a tool for women to recognize and know  areas of  life that are affected by going through Menopause also known as “Perimenopause” or “The Change”.  Talk to your Healthcare Professional about alternative therapies and if they are not familiar with any of them refer them to the American Holistic Nursing Association at www.ahna.org and FEMTIQUE Associates Incorporated at www.femtique.org.  It is very important that you are seen by a qualified Medical Professional even though you might engage in a CAM Therapy.

Healthcare De-Mystified is getting ready to post more information regarding CAM interventions that address perimenopause, premenstrual syndrome, hormone needs when reaching puberity or “menarche”, post-partum hormone imbalance, hormonal benefits to lactation as well as adrenal dysregulation.

Stay well and be happy!

Femtique e-nurse Judith  

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Yoga

Society versus Mother Nature

History always repeats itself in some way. Take a look at the struggles women face just being females. During the 1950s the actress, Lucielle Ball, overcame a fopoux by appearing on her own television series in the state of pregnancy http://scholarworks.umass.edu/berksconference/Workshops/180/5.  She was met with resistance and rose to the challenge with persistence and political savvy.

Now, in the 21st Century, women face the challenge of Breastfeeding their babies outside of their home.  How has the American Society dehumanized this basic function of a woman’s body and replaced it with a lessor means of healthy nutrition?  Why is it that a non-pregnant, non-lactating female can reveal more of her body than the aforementioned female without a controversial remark?

Isn’t is about time for all of America to show support for a Baby-Friendly world?!  Retailers, grocery stores,      Universities and Colleges and any other entity where women use their products and services need to pool together to support safe, respectable ways to offer our Breastfeeding Mothers a comfortable place to feed their babies.  It is a basic need and one that has the very valuable function of helping babies grow into healthy human beings.

Who is driving this message of negativity about Breastfeeding?  How did all of this suddenly start to become an issue instead of a natural function of life?  The United States Department of Health and Human Services and the Maternal Child Health Bureau as well as the Baby-Friendly USA, Inc. have joined forces with the WHO/UNICEF Baby-Friendly Initiatie (BFHI) to help support Breastfeeding exclusively for the first six months of a baby’s life.  It is part of a global strategy for optimal health and wellness of infants and young children.

At the present time, the US has a score of 7 out of a possible 50 points on the US National Report Card which is produced by the Healthy Children Project.  Fulfill your Academic Realm on this subject by going onto the following websites:  www.surgeongeneral.gov; www.cdc.gov; www.unicef.org and www.babyfriendlyusa.org.  These sites will provide you with the information on why it is so important to supply human breast milk only for our babies.

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Yoga

Defining Successful Health and Wellness Coaching

There is a saying “The difference between a successful person and a non-successful person….A successful person continues to do things he doesn’t want to do.”  I don’t know where this quote comes from or who said it, but it is a truth in life when someone persists toward achieving a goal no matter what stands in the way success doesn’t stop with achievement.  Success is also measured in how one continues to deal with roadblocks that stand in the way of maintaining an achieved goal.

The Health Coach is a guide who has the ability to provide information and resources to guard against failure.   Coaching is a process that involves identifying your strengths and empowering you with knowledge, ideas, solutions and complementary alternative methods of health and wellness toward achievable goals.   The Health Coach brings information from all areas of life to help you achieve your health goal; translate research or concepts into understandable language; pose questions that may need answers and direct you to sources of information including but not limited to your Insurance Provider, Non-profit Organizations, Healthcare Provider and others, as well as to reliable internet sources.

Success is yours.  “Yours and yours alone……No one else can live your life.  No one can eat for you or exercise for you or create your career.  Your sleep is your own and every waking moment is yours to use.  You are at the center of your body with all its beauty and strength as well as all of its challenges.  you are also in control of your thoughts and decisions.  Experiences happen to you, this is true.  But you are able to frame them at will; to decide if they will be learning opportunities or weapons of destruction in your life experience.  Even when we work from a faith base that says God is in control of life there we recognize that the responsibility for making decisions is entrusted to us.” (“Maximum Level of Attainable Wellness and Performance; 8 Realms of Life by Intention”; W.Carranza, Ph.D., 2010)      

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Health

The Detriment of the Integument System

Recent findings about the risks associated with the use of tanning beds and the incidence of skin cancers have hit the news.  The WHO (World Health Organization) and the IARC (International Agency for Research on Cancer) have added UV radiation-emitting tanning devices (beds and lamps) as the most dangerous forms of cancer causing radiation.

The risk of melanoma – the deadliest form of skin cancer – has been found to  increase by 75% for those individuals under 30 years of age. Why this age group and not older?  The reason is that the younger population use it as a means to darken the skin in order to appear darker-skined which has been considered appealing in the eyes of teens and young adults.  They frequent the tanning beds more often than older adults and therefore expose themselves to the dangers of UV radiation on the skin.

Tanning began as an unintentional trend back in 1923 when the fashion icon, Coco Chanel, became overly exposed to the sun while sleeping on-deck of a yacht while sailing in the South of France.  At the time of this incident, women protected themselves from the sun using parasols and covering up as much of their exposed skin in order to protect themselves from getting burned.  (http://health.howstuffworks.com/skin-care/beauty/sun-care/spray-tanning/.htm)

The skin is the largest organ of the body.  It is responsible for protecting deeper tissues from injury.  It regulates body temperature and has excretory and absorbing functions.  Knowing this about skin, how does burning it to a point of discoloration affect your health?  Today, this is known to happen when human skin is exposed to UV rays.  The sun can cause unhealthy changes to your skin, dehydrate your body and cause cancer.  There are other things to consider when exposed to UV light such as medications that make the skin and eyes more sensitive to sunlight.  A brief list includes acne medicines, antibiotics, antihistamines, oral contraceptives and sulfa drugs.  The tanning industry misleads the public about these health risks which has led organizations such as the American Academy of Pediatrics to ban tanning beds and lamps being used by individuals under 18 years of age. (www.skincancer.org)

In lieu of tanning beds and lamps,  if each of us took a walk in the early morning sunshine for about 1 hour, it benefits the human body with Vitamin D needed for healthy bones and for the absorption of calcium.  However, beyond this amount requires applying at least an SPF 30 sunblock and “limiting” your time of sun exposure by moving into the shade, wearing a hat and sunglasses.

May has been designated as “Skin Cancer Awareness Month” by the US Government.  Congressman Jim Gerlach of the 6th District within my beautiful community of Chester County, Pennsylvania, has supported the FDA initiative on sun safety and has provided the following FDA intervention:

“….the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced new requirements for over-the-counter sunscreen labels in June 2011, which will be effective starting this summer.  These labeling requirements will ensure that the standards for safety and effectiveness are met and consumers like yourself can make an informed decision when purchasing sunscreen.  While prior rules on sunscreens focused exclusively on ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation to protect against sunburn, those rules did not address ultraviolet A (UVA) radiation, which contributes to skin cancer and early skin aging. As a result, FDA established a “broad spectrum” to establish that a given sunscreen provides proportional UVA and UVB protection.” 

Another way to safeguard against skin cancer is by getting a full body check by a dermatologist.    A yearly visit is all that is necessary to keep a professional’s eye on skin changes.  WebMD.com has pictures on the appearance of different skin cancers.   This information is valuable in assisting you with your own assessments in between the yearly visits to the dermatologist.

        

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News

Celebrating Nurses week with the Prana of Yoga

May 6th through the 12th is known as “National Nurses Week”  declared as such through the endeavors of the American Nurses Association and the United States Government (www.nursesweek.com)  The  date is aligned with the birthday of Florence Nightingale who was known as the “Founder of Modern Nursing”.  ALL nurses from every level of the profession are shown recognition for their service to humankind.

The nursing profession is a calling meant for those who love to be of service to others. It evolved into many career sub-pathways.  Registered Nurses are now highly-educated to serve the public and are required to continue their education through courses offered within their specialty in order to maintain licensure and ensure public safety.  The bottom line is that nurses need to show the public that they are up-to-date on their skills, knowledge and memberships within associations that serve them.

This week I, Judith Beaulieu, Registered Nurse, serving within the great state of Pennsylvania, am honored to have completed a Certification Course in Yoga that enables me to be an instructor.  Yoga is recognized by the Medical Profession as a beneficial intervention for many chronic diseases.  Yoga therapy is considered a CAM (Complementary Alternative Medicine) by healthcare professionals.

A paradigm within the Nursing Profession is integrating complementary alternative medicine into wellness care as evidenced by the creation of the American Holistic Nurses Association (www.ahna.org).  The Standards of Practice for Holistic Nursing were first established back in 1990.  This organization is supported by the American Nurses Association (ANA) which is another nursing organization that supports the nursing profession in order to ensure patient safety.

Practicing Yoga has become a daily routine for me that began in August 2011.  I was suffering from lower back pain for many years and could not find anything to keep it “quiet” – even medications such as NSAIDS (non-narcotic) anti-inflammatory medications and muscle relaxants worked for a short period of time only.   Empathy for patients who suffer from chronic back pain was a strong link to becoming a Certified Yoga Instructor.  After finding out how to cure myself first, I was able to provide testimony to share how it worked and offer to provide Yoga to other individuals who suffer from it.   Today I am back pain free and have been after 3 months of practicing Yoga carefully and with assistance on a daily basis.  

Through the help of a well-qualified instructor (Susan Smith, MYI – Yoga One, ERYT – Yoga Alliance,
Director of Academics, AFI – Wilmington University) I was able to complete a 200-hour curriculum that included the assistance of certified yoga instructors.  Today, I salute and honor the dedicated Certified Yoga Instructors (including Susan) from Yoga Secrets in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania.  The prana of Yoga has strengthened my professional needs and my personal life.  Thank you and Nameste!  

Categories
Yoga

Travel to Puerto Rico

A destination that has always been on my wish list is Puerto Rico.  It has beautiful people, captivating beaches, great food and the shops in Old San Juan are quaint and inviting.  Experiencing my wish for the past 10 days has been all that I envisioned except one thing.  

After five days of experiencing our present surroundings, we contemplated spending time engaging in adventuresome activities.  I noticed that the tour desk at the Hotel we were staying advertised tours to the rain forest.  The rain forest was quite a distance drive and isolated within an area high up in the mountains. It occurred to me that maybe it could be a health risk since the forest is home to many parasites, snakes and other dangers not made known to unsuspected human visitors.  Due to my nursing instincts, my husband and I decided not to take any tours away from the area where we were staying.  This turned out to be a very good decision based upon a subsequent encounter.

While we were having diner across the street from the Hotel, our waiter introduced himself as an American from the states who just graduated from college and came to Puerto Rico to be with his brother and sister who have been living in Puerto Rico for the past few years.  He went on to explain that he was interested in going to graduate school in Puerto Rico to study epidemiology which in layman’s terms is the study of the occurrence of disease in well-defined populations.  He explained that he read that there is a high incidence of malaria-like disease in the more remote areas of Puerto Rico.  The opportunity to combine his studies with helping the island’s population was motivating him to stay and explore the demographics of this issue.

Upon our return home to the US, I researched some information about the incidence of malaria and malaria-like diseases and found out something that everyone who travels to tropical areas should know about.  The malaria-like infection is known as Dengue Fever or Dengue Infection and is endemic (prevalent) in Puerto Rico (www.cdc.gov).  Currently, there is not a vaccine to prevent this infection.  The CDC reported that there were 2 confirmed cases reported in Dade County, Florida back in October 2011.

This infection is caused by a mosquito bite.  Initial symptoms are a sudden high fever up to 104 degrees Farenheit or higher, a flat rash 2-5 days after the fever turning into a raised rash that looks like measles.  Fatigue, headache behind the eyes, joint and muscle aches, swollen lymph nodes, nausea and vomiting are also other symptoms that may occur (www.ncbi.nim.nih.gov).

The point of sharing this with you is to make you aware of researching before you go on any trips in order to avoid getting sick through exposure to parasites or elements within an environment that can harm you.  Even trips within the US to areas that have undergone floods in the past have the potential to breed species of bugs that might not have been indigenous to that area in the past.  When I think about Dade County, Florida, and the discovery of Dengue Fever within our country, it compels me to make everyone aware of the importance of implementing precautions.

The best resource to use is the Center for Disease Control website for knowing about up-to-date information.  Stay well everyone!  e-Nurse Femtique Judith