Personal Healthcare Information

February 2, 2009

Anxiety: Don’t Worry, You Are Not Alone

Filed under: healthcare — Healthy life for a happy day @ 10:21 pm
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It’s true that just about everyone will experience anxiety in one form or another during the course of his or her life. Just hearing the phone ring in the middle of the night or hearing about an impending snowstorm can cause a measure of anxiety or nervousness.

But when people talk about anxiety, they usually mean something much more severe than just a bit of nervous reaction to some unexpected event. Full-blown disorders including panic attacks, post-traumatic stress disorder, and even obsessive-compulsive disorder are considered forms of anxiety, and entire fields of medicine are dedicated to their study. Some people experience these symptoms so severely that they are somewhat socially crippled, unable to hold down a job, meet new people, or function outside their home at all.

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), “approximately 40 million American adults ages 18 and older, or about 18.1 percent of people in this age group in a given year, have an anxiety disorder.” They also bring out that it’s not uncommon for people to suffer from more than one type of anxiety disorder – for example, someone experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder may also feel frequent panic attacks. Obsessive compulsive disorder can also be tied to depression, and so on.

Eighteen percent of people is almost one in five, so the next time you think that you’re the only one that feels the way you do or are the only one battling these symptoms, walk through the mall or think of a group of people you know, such as at work or your place of worship. Chances are that for every five or six people there, one of them has an anxiety disorder of one type or another. As said, entire fields of medicine are devoted to helping the sufferers of all of these types of anxiety disorders, and new medicines and other treatment options are being explored every single day. There are just far too many people in the world today that experience these disorders for doctors and biologists to ignore it.

So if you think that there’s something inherently wrong with you or that you’re somehow weak because you experience severe anxiety, it’s time to set that thinking aside and speak to your doctor about how he or she can help. There are ways of coping with these symptoms and there are even cures available to you.

January 14, 2009

The Growth and Power of Appetite

Filed under: healthcare — Healthy life for a happy day @ 2:15 pm
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One fact attendant on habitual drinking stands out so prominently that none can call it in question. It is that of the steady growth of appetite. There are exceptions, as in the action of nearly every rule; but the almost invariable result of the habit we have mentioned, is, as we have said, a steady growth of appetite for the stimulant imbibed. That this is in consequence of certain morbid changes in the physical condition produced by the alcohol itself, will hardly be questioned by any one who has made himself acquainted with the various functional and organic derangements which invariably follow the continued introduction of this substance into the body.

But it is to the fact itself, not to its cause, that we now wish to direct your attention. The man who is satisfied at first with a single glass of wine at dinner, finds, after awhile, that appetite asks for a little more; and, in time, a second glass is conceded. The increase of desire may be very slow, but it goes on surely until, in the end, a whole bottle will scarcely suffice, with far too many, to meet its imperious demands. It is the same in regard to the use of every other form of alcoholic drink.

Now, there are men so constituted that they are able, for a long series of years, or even for a whole lifetime, to hold this appetite within a certain limit of indulgence. To say “So far, and no farther.” They suffer ultimately from physical ailments, which surely follow the prolonged contact of alcoholic poison with the delicate structures of the body, many of a painful character, and shorten the term of their natural lives; but still they are able to drink without an increase of appetite so great as to reach an overmastering degree. They do not become abandoned drunkards.

No man safe who drinks ….

But no man who begins the use of alcohol in any form can tell what, in the end, is going to be its effect on his body or mind. Thousands and tens of thousands, once wholly unconscious of danger from this source, go down yearly into drunkards’ graves. There is no standard by which any one can measure the latent evil forces in his inherited nature. He may have from ancestors, near or remote, an unhealthy moral tendency, or physical diathesis, to which the peculiarly disturbing influence of alcohol will give the morbid condition in which it will find its disastrous life. That such results follow the use of alcohol in a large number of cases, is now a well-known fact in the history of inebriation. The subject of alcoholism, with the mental and moral causes leading thereto, have attracted a great deal of earnest attention. Physicians, superintendents of inebriate and lunatic asylums, prison-keepers, legislators and philanthropists have been observing and studying its many sad and terrible phases, and recording results and opinions. While differences are held on some points, as, for instance, whether drunkenness is a disease for which, after it has been established, the individual ceases to be responsible, and should be subject to restraint and treatment, as for lunacy or fever; a crime to be punished or a sin to be repented of and healed by the Physician of souls, all agree that there is an inherited or acquired mental and nervous condition with many, which renders any use of alcohol exceedingly dangerous.

The point we wish to make with you is, that no man can possibly know, until he has used alcoholic drinks for a certain period of time, whether he has or has not this hereditary or acquired physical or mental condition and that if it should exist, a discovery of the fact may come too late.

Dr. D.G. Dodge, late Superintendent of the New York State Inebriate Asylum, speaking of the causes leading to intemperance, after stating his belief that it is a transmissible disease, like “scrofula, gout or consumption”, says “There are men who have an organization, which may be termed an alcoholic idiosyncrasy; with them the latent desire for stimulants, if indulged, soon leads to habits of intemperance, and eventually to a morbid appetite, which has all the characteristics of a diseased condition of the system, which the patient, unassisted, is powerless to relieve since the weakness of the will that led to the disease obstructs its removal.

Again, we find in another class of persons, those who have had healthy parents, and have been educated and accustomed to good social influences, moral and social, but whose temperament and physical constitution are such, that, when they once indulge in the use of stimulants, which they find pleasurable, they continue to habitually indulge till they cease to be moderate, and become excessive drinkers. A depraved appetite is established, that leads them on slowly, but surely, to destruction.”

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