Feeling Back Pain? It could be Your Office Chair

Back pain is one of the most common health complaints of office workers today. Long hours spent sitting at a desk, poor posture, incorrect lifting of heavy items and constant twisting and bending to reach things all contribute to causing back strain. However, the type of chair you sit in is also likely to be a major contributing factor.

Ergonomic Chairs

Ergonomics is all about the study of human physicality and the adaptation of lifestyle, furniture and other factors to maintain a healthy body. Ergonomic chairs have been on the market for many years now, and are designed to provide the correct support for those with sedentary jobs or lifestyles. At the very least, your office chair should have adjustable seat height, back height and back tilt to allow you to adjust it to your personal needs. If it does not, you have the right to ask for another chair that does.

On top of this, a good chair will also have a curved lumbar support and adjustable or removable armrests, along with adjustable seat depth. If your desk is at a height where when you are sitting in the correct position for the upper body your feet are not flat on the floor, then your company should also provide you with a footrest. Most businesses now realise the benefits of providing ergonomic chairs for employees, as the initial purchase cost is off-set by employees being far less likely to need time off for back pain.

Posture

Ergonomic chairs encourage us to sit correctly, but they need to be tailored to the individual to work properly. Your feet should be flat on the floor and knees bent at ninety degrees. You should be able to draw a straight line from your shoulders through your elbows to your hips, and your spine should curve naturally around the lumbar support curve of your chair. Your forearms should be parallel to the floor, and you should be able to rest your wrists on the desk in front of you. The top of your screen should be level with your eyes to prevent neck strain.

Using Your Chair To Best Advantage For Your Health

Once you have a workstation set up that offers you the best support, it’s time to take responsibility for your own health in the workplace. One of the most common causes of back strain is sitting for too long in one position. Taking regular breaks from sitting helps, but is not always possible in an office. There are plenty of stretching exercises you can perform without leaving your chair however. Learning a few simple stretches that can be done in your chair and performing them at regular intervals throughout the day will not only alleviate immediate pain but look after the long term health of your back also.

Easing Back Pain During Pregnancy

Having a baby can be a really big thrill especially for first time parents, but there are a lot of things that you need to consider. Pregnancy is a shaky experience for some and an awesome one for others. For soon-to-be mothers, you have to be prepared to deal with some discomfort, and this may include back pain during pregnancy.

The first thing that you need to know is that back painis perfectly normal for pregnant women. These are the reasons why:

Posture changes – As the belly expands and gains weight, the woman’s posture naturally changes. It tends to put some pressure on the back, specifically the lower areas.

Changes in the gravity center – This can be very evident in the latter part of the pregnancy. As the baby grows inside the womb, it gains size and weight. This causes the gravity center to shift to the belly. To accommodate such, the lower back needs to adjust and bear the weight. This can cause frequent back pain during pregnancy.

Mobility adjustments – Having that additional baggage makes it hard for pregnant women to move. They would need to exert extra efforts when taking the stairs, walking to and from the kitchen, and even an activity as easy as standing.

Now that you know the causes of back pain during pregnancy, the next thing that you need to know about is the ways on how to ease them. Here it goes:

Chiropractic treatments – Chiropractic treatments are known for treating physical injuries and disorders. If you are worried that this may affect your pregnancy, you are mistaken. On the contrary, Chiropractic treatments may even help you improve the condition of your pregnancy. It helps re-align the spine in its proper position by gently (at least for pregnant women) applying manual manipulation of the bones, joints and muscles.

Treatments may include spinal decompression procedures, therapeutic treatments, etc. all of which are safe and can be availed of at any stage of the pregnancy.

Pain relievers – This cure is temporary, but this will have to do in mild cases. Just make sure that you get a prescription for every medicine intake to make sure that it’s completely safe for you and for the baby.

Weight management and proper nutrition– Try to manage your weight so it does not become an additional burden. Do some mild exercises and eat healthy foods rich in Calcium to strengthen and improve bone density.

Eating Foods That Help Whiten Teeth

People often refer to teeth as “pearly whites”. Sometimes, however, our teeth may look quite “pearly” but not as white. There are many different things that cause our teeth to become yellow, and the most common causes are the foods that we eat. Certain food items, especially drinks, stain teeth. But it’s also good to know that there are many kinds of foods that help in making our teeth whiter, which means that we don’t have to immediately resort to bleaching.

Munch on Fruits and Veggies Fruits and vegetables aren’t just healthy foods, but these are also great for the teeth as well. When you munch on crunchy veggies, like carrots, cucumber or celery, or snack on apples or berries, you stimulate the mouth to increase saliva production. Saliva aids in neutralizing acidic foods, which stain teeth and make the enamel weaker. Also, since these foods are crispy, these sort of scrape teeth when you bite into them. So, raw fruits and veggies somewhat polish teeth by way of mild abrasion. Some food items, such as strawberry, can be combined with a bit of baking soda. The mixture can be wiped onto teeth and then rinsed away.

Although eating fruits and veggies is really a healthy way to live, watch out for things that can stain your teeth. For example, blueberries or beet can discolor teeth, which is why you have to brush them immediately after eating. If you don’t have access to your trusty toothbrush, gargle with water.

Use Acidic Juices and Solutions

Some acidic things can help to whiten teeth. However, extreme care must be exercised because acidic juices can make the teeth’s enamel thinner and weaker. Once the enamel is damaged, it’ll be much easier for bacteria to attack teeth and cause cavities. Also, using acidic solutions excessively can make teeth really sensitive. But if you still want to try using slightly acidic fruits to make your teeth whiter, you can go for oranges and lemons. You can extract lemon juice, mix this with some baking soda, and apply to teeth. Don’t forget to rinse. As for oranges, the peel can be used for buffing teeth. Make sure to use the white inner surface. Another option is apple cider vinegar, which you can use like you would a mouth wash.

Get Some Dairy

Dairy products, like milk, yogurt and cheese, increase your body’s calcium stores. Calcium isn’t only beneficial to your bones; it also makes teeth stronger. Stronger teeth are more resilient to cavities, as well as staining. Other foods that are rich in calcium will also do you and your teeth a great deal of good. So, have some seeds, like flax and sesame seeds, and some nuts, like almonds and Brazil nuts. Many varieties of leafy veggies, like kale, collards and dandelion greens, have high levels of calcium too.

Have Some Shiitake Too

Shiitake mushrooms contain lentinan, which is a type of polysaccharide that fights off cancer-causing elements, and helps in whitening teeth too. How? Lentinan aids in reducing bacteria in the mouth. The healthier your mouth, the stronger and whiter your teeth will be.

Back Pain Relief: How to Choose the Right Mattress

Have you ever woken up with back aches and joint pains? This may be due to the kind of mattress you have. The right mattress can definitely help you get a good night’s sleep and feeling well rested; while sleeping on the wrong mattress will only cause back pain and sleeplessness. For people who are suffering from chronic back pain, the wrong mattress will only make the pain worse than it is.

If you are suffering from chronic back pains, the right mattress for back pain relief are those that can provide proper support for your spine in all the vital areas. Chronic back pain is usually caused directly by a wrong mattress, or a previously occurring back injury becomes more swollen due to sleeping on the wrong mattress. For this reason, you have to find a mattress that can support your spine in its natural curves and can relieve the pressure on any bony areas. You have to understand that a firm and supportive mattress is best, especially for the bony and muscular structure of the back. This will help maintain the proper alignment of the spine.

The main reason why it is crucial to find the best mattress is because you spend about a third of your life sleeping on it. The thought that a firm mattress can help relieve or prevent chronic back pain is not always true; however, choosing a mattress that is neither too hard nor too soft according to your preference is the best way to go. A mattress that is too soft or too hard will only put more stress on the lower back structures of your body. Here are some tips for relieving back pain and successful mattress selection.

Selecting the right bed. When choosing a bed, you have to realize that it is not only about the mattress. You must also have an excellent bed foundation. If you try putting a new mattress for your lower back pain on a worn-out bed spring, it won’t be a smart idea. It is better to look for a mattress with a matching foundation or box spring.

Mattress support and comfort. As mentioned earlier, a mattress that can relieve back pain must be able to provide proper support for the heaviest parts of your body where your natural curves are located. Some of the main areas to consider are your head, shoulders, and hips. In addition, a mattress must also be comfortable. For instance, sleeping on a mattress that is too firm can lead to back pains, or aches on pressure points. Medium-firm mattresses may be more comfortable for those suffering from back pains because it allows the shoulders and hips to sink in slightly into the mattress. Furthermore, if you want a firmer mattress for more back support, you can get a mattress with thicker padding since this will offer better comfort. The three types of mattresses that are considered effective for back pains are: memory foam mattress, latex mattresses, and adjustable air mattresses.

Space. When you are choosing a bed mattress, you have to consider the size of the mattress. For instance, if you are sharing a mattress with someone else, you may need a larger bed, such as a queen- or king-sized mattress. This will allow you to have enough space to move around.

Know when to buy a new mattress. If you start waking up with back pains, your current mattress may no longer able to support you. You have to remember that your spine must never sink into your mattress to avoid back pains. For this reason, you have to observe your current mattress, and if it cannot provide you the same support and comfort as it once did, it is time to buy a new one.

The best mattress for your chronic back pain is one that can support the normal curves of your back. The right mattress type for back pain won’t put stress on the important areas of your back while sleeping. Lastly, you also need to remember to try out the mattress before buying it.

Terrifying Medical Mistakes – Blunders With Devastating Results

When you get sick or when you need medical attention, you immediately turn to your physicians. You trust them with your very lives, and you have utmost confidence that they will be able to treat your ailments. Since doctors have studied, trained, and continue to study and train in their respective fields, you believe that they know everything and that they can easily heal diseases. But doctors are also just mortals. They are also just people who aren’t perfect. So, physicians could, and many actually do, make mistakes. But the thing here is that when a doctor does something incorrectly, the results are often quite devastating. If you do become a victim of a hospital or doctor error, you should get in touch with a medical malpractice lawyer.

Surgeons are actually great hospital heroes. They can cut patients open and fix things inside them. Then, they just sew them up to recover. Most of the time, procedures go well, with patients fully recovering from typical surgical procedures. However, surgeons also make mistakes; and one of the biggest mistakes a surgeon could do is leaving souvenirs inside you. If you think that jokes about forceps or gauze pads being left inside a surgery patient are not true, think again. Many patients have actually sued doctors for leaving small instruments inside their bodies. There are even some doctors who overlook 13-inch retractors in patients. It must be all that blood, right? Hospitals want to avoid these mishaps, which is why they have scrub nurses counting everything that’s being used in surgery, from small gauze pads to huge medical instruments.

Amputating Wrong Body Part

You might have heard of hospital horror stories wherein doctors amputate or cut the wrong body parts. Seems like urban legends, huh? Well, not exactly. These things actually happen. For instance, there are true tales about diabetic patients coming in the hospital to have their infected legs cut to prevent gangrene. But they come out of the OR with their infected legs still on and their good legs gone. Horrific.

Not Using Enough Anesthesia

If you are into psycho-horror movies, then, surely, you must’ve seen movies where people being operated on by crazy psychotic killers wake up in the middle of being cut open because little to no anesthesia was used. Such a cringe-worthy scene couldn’t really happen in a modern hospital, right? Well, it actually could. This is what’s known as “anesthesia awareness”, wherein a patient wakes up in the middle of a procedure, but is unable to move, much less cry out. Who’s to blame? The person most likely to be blamed here is the anesthesiologist. But everyone in the surgical team must also take proper care of their patients. Also, it could really help if they have apt monitoring devices, like the bispectral index, in order for them to gauge a patient’s level of consciousness.

Operating on Wrong Patient

This is so petrifying in so many levels. Imagine yourself being admitted for, say, a somewhat serious case of food poisoning; and then you leave the hospital with a new heart. What?! Seems so far-fetched – but it could happen. There have been cases wherein patients have undergone open heart surgery or other invasive procedures even though they did not need these. Why? Because the doctor or the medical team was negligent, that’s why. So, in case you are in a hospital for some minor case, make sure that you get to know the nurses in your floor. Also, always ask questions about things that are being done to you. They may find you irksome, but you’re only looking out for your welfare.

Basic First Aid Controlling Bleeding

Knowing how best to deal with bleeding in first aid situation is vital. Any form of blood loss can – of not addressed – lead to further complications (and even in the worst cases, death). That sounds intimidating but, in fact, there are some very simple procedures to follow to control bleeding.

It may seem beyond obvious, but the first thing to do with any bleed is stem the flow of blood. Obviously, the level of blood loss differs depending on how severe the accident is. But the principle remains the same: stop the flow and you will make it easier for the blood to start clotting and get the healing process underway. Here’s a rundown of the main ways you can do this.

Plug the wound using a simple gauze or other improvised material (ordinary towels work well but you may have to use an article of clothing if nothing of that nature is available)

Apply pressure to the wound – again, using some kind of sterile material is best, but you may have to improvise. Keep the pressure on until the bleeding subsides, but never pull off blood-soaked gauze (this can remove the coagulated blood and vital clotting agents, restarting the flow of blood). Be careful not stop the flow of blood to other unaffected areas in doing this – e.g fingers, toes etc – as it can cause tissue damage

Elevate the affected area – this particularly applies to bleeding limbs. By lifting the arm or leg you can redirect the flow of blood back into the body

In life-threatening cases, you may have to apply a tourniquet – a tight knot around the affected area designed to stop the flow of blood completely. This is an emergency measure (for example, in the case of amputations) and not recommended for less severe bleeds.

Of course, as well stopping the flow of blood and stabilising the victim, you may need to seek further medical attention – essential if the wound or bleeding is heavy to severe. Bear in mind too, that blood loss can lead to shock, so it’s important to act quickly and look out for possible signs of shock including: low pulse rate, feeling faint, weak or nauseous, dizziness and cold and clammy skin. So please remember that stopping bleeding can really help save lives and having the correct first aid kit is essential. Stay safe out there and take care!

4 Delusions People Have About Addiction

When the subject of addiction comes up in conversation, there are many things that immediately come to mind. Many people have different ideas and opinions on addiction… some of them accurate, some of them completely inaccurate.

Addiction is a complex, many times misjudged concept. Those who suffer from addictions often feel misunderstood and misrepresented.

So, let’s take a minute and work to clear up some of the confusion just a bit. Here are 4 delusions many people have about addiction:

1. Addictions are all in your mind.

Many people think that addictions are “all in the mind.” They think that people who have addictions developed them because of certain weaknesses, maybe an inability to deal with the normal stresses of life. But the truth is, there are many different causes behind someone developing an addiction.

Some life experiences or stresses can help cause and/or intensify an addiction, but they are rarely the only cause of an addiction. Most addictions, specifically substance addictions, are caused by actual physical reactions that happen inside of an addicted person’s body and mind. Their body literally craves their addicted substance. They have physical reactions if they are not able to take their addicted substance.

2. If you take the addicted person away from the substance, they will no longer be tempted.

Many people think that an addicted person needs to just stay away from their addictive substance, and then they will be just fine. It is true that being able to stay away from the addictive substance is a very important part of overcoming an addiction. But it is not enough on its own.

If there are psychological reasons that are part of the cause of the addiction, those must be addressed too. And an addict is never going to get over their temptation to their addictive substance. It will always be a temptation to them… their temptation level never goes down, it is their ability to fight the temptation that increases over time.

3. People can only be addicted to substances.

Some people view addictions as only being centered around substances. It’s true that addictions to substances like drugs and alcohol are very prominent, but there are many different types of addictions. People can develop addictions to shopping, the Internet, video games, overeating, dieting, pornography, etc. Addictions come in many different forms, there are many different causes, and many different roads to recovery.

4. Addicts can do it on their own.

Some people have the harsh feelings that an addict got into this problem on their own, so they should get out of it on their own. This is so far from the truth! People struggling with addictions need all the help they can get. They need love and support from their friends and family members. They need people cheering them on and encouraging them when they hit low points. Many addicts may need to seek professional help to aid them in overcoming these addictions. All of these things can prove vital to the success on their road to recovery.

5 Nutritional Benefits of Baby Spinach

Baby spinach has lots to offer in terms of nutrition. One of the most important components is the fact that it is low in calories and fat. In fact, a cup of this vegetable yields only 7 calories, including 1 from fat. Those on a weight loss diet will benefit from the lack of fat and calories, and high amount of nutrients.

Calories

As with many other types of vegetables, baby spinach is popular for many reasons. The calorie count is something that many consumers first look for, and this food is no exception. A single cup of this vegetable contains 7 calories, one of which is from fat. When the total amount of calories is broken down, the highest amount comes from carbohydrates. Following closely behind is protein, then fat.

Protein

Protein is an essential part of the human body, and it is found almost everywhere. For example, it is found in cells, organs, and tissues. The protein is first digested into amino acids, and is then replaced by protein. There are many different types of foods that contain protein, such as tofu, eggs, nuts, and seeds. A single cup of baby spinach contains 0.9 grams of protein, which equals 2 percent of the recommended daily value.

Fat

When eaten plain, this vegetable contains just a trace amount of fat. For this reason, it is a prime option for the health-conscious consumer. A single cup of raw spinach yields just 0.1 grams of fat, and does not contain any saturated, monounsaturated, or polyunsaturated fat. In addition, it is high in the good types of fat, such as Omega-3 fatty acids. There is also an abundance of Omega-6 fatty acids, which comprises close to 8 milligrams of the recommended daily value.

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are one of the main forms of nutrients that the body relies on to maintain its normal functions. In fact, carbohydrates are some of the most notable forms of energy for the body. The digestive system turns carbohydrates into sugar, providing energy for tissues, cells, and organs. If there is any leftover sugar, it will be stored in the liver and muscles until it is needed. A cup of baby spinach contains approximately 1.1 grams of carbohydrates.

Fiber

There are many benefits of dietary fiber, and it is easy to include more of it in your diet if necessary. Dietary fiber is naturally found in different types of food, such as vegetables, fruits, legumes, and whole grains. While it is well known for keeping the digestive system healthy, it also plays a vital role in maintaining a healthy weight. In addition, it can even help to lower the risk of heart disease and diabetes. A cup of spinach contains 1 gram of dietary fiber, or approximately 3 percent of the recommended daily value.

From salads to toppings on sandwiches, greens have long been an important component of every diet. If you do not like the taste of one kind, you can eat a different type of green or cook it in a way that you prefer. Baby spinach is packed with nutrition and will help to keep you healthy. If you are on a weight loss diet, you will be pleased to know that this vegetable contains only a trace amount of fat.