A fever in a child tends to worry most parents and naturally so. It is a sign of some disturbance within the body where the core temperature has been raised to levels above the norm. Often a fever is a sign of an infection and usually there are other symptoms that may indicate where the problem is located, like a sore throat with a fever may be due to tonsillitis. But not always. Sometimes a fever occurs for no apparent reason. The raised body temperature may be all that is present with no other clearly identifiable symptoms. This does not mean it is any less serious.
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Most of us just worry about the taste of the food we are eating. Is it well spiced? Does it have enough salt? But for people with allergies, every meal is a potential obstacle course of what to eat, not eat or sample with caution. Food allergies are not uncommon. It is often seen in children, many of whom outgrow it. But allergies can be just as much of a problem for adults and the dietary and even lifestyle changes that follow can be a bother. Remember that allergens are not only in foods. More commonly allergens are in the environment and when airborne, it can be inhaled and trigger an allergic reaction. However, food allergies are more likely to trigger a severe allergic reaction than airborne allergens.
Many parents are cautious about using over-the-counter (OTC) medication to treat a cold in very young children and rightfully so. These drugs, while safe for teen and adult use, is not considered safe for young children. Widespread media attention about the dangers of using cold medicines has not been sufficient to stop the practise entirely – many parents continue to administer OTC cold medicines to their children despite being told not to. It results in thousands of emergency room visits every year, which could have been avoided if parents were more cautious.
Cold medicines can cause a range of side effects in children, some of which are very serious. Although the incidence of childhood death from using cold medicines is very low, it is nevertheless a possibility and most cautious parents would rather not take the chance. Some authorities advise that cold medicines should be avoided in children under 2 years only but now it is being recommended that these drugs should not be administered to children under 4 years of age. Using it in children who are older should be done so with caution and only with proper advice from a doctor and/or pharmacist.
Substance abuse can refer to a number of different substances that alters mental and physical abilities, induces euphoria and there is some degree of addiction to the substance. Addiction means that a person will actively seek out the substance often at the cost of other aspects of their life, experience withdrawal symptoms without using it and constant use has negative social/financial/personal impact on the user’s life. It is not only about illicit drugs (street drugs) like marijuana, cocaine, crack, ecstasy (MDMA) and heroin. It can also involve legal substances like alcohol, prescription medication and even tobacco although the latter may not have the same degree of psychosocial effects as abuse of the other substances.
How do you know if a person is high?
It is not always obvious to say when a person is misusing drugs, addicted to these substances or even intoxicated. Most of us think that we can spot a person who is drunk or high but this is not always the case. You may not even know when your spouse or children are misusing drugs. Often people are ignorant or sometimes in denial about their loved ones abusing substances. Identifying drug misuse as early as possible and intervening can spare your loved one a lifetime of suffering and even save them from an early death.
The fear about poisoning is not unfounded even with the regulatory and medical advances these days. Many household goods that previously had the potential to be dangerous poisons have been made safer. Those that are still dangerous are usually clearly marked and have safety measures like tamper-proof caps thereby decreasing the chances of accidental poisoning especially in children. But poisoning still occurs, even with otherwise relatively “harmless” OTC medication, stronger prescription drugs, antifreeze, brake fluid and strong detergents.
Insecticide or pesticide poisoning is still a real risk within the household. The formulation of many insecticides/pesticides has been changed in recent years to make it less toxic to humans. But not entirely so. Garden pesticides that are often needed to battle more hardy pests in the outdoor environment is still highly toxic. But even indoor insecticides can also be a problem if it is ingested or large amounts of an aerosol insecticide is inhaled especially in a closed room. So how do you know if you, an adult or a child has been poisoned with an insecticide/pesticide? Spotting the signs and symptoms of acute poisoning as early as possible can make the difference between life and death.
continue reading 10 Acute Pesticide Poisoning Symptoms (Ingested, Inhaled, Skin Contact)
A heart attack is the point that is too late. You may survive it. You may return to your normal activities within a few weeks. You may go on to live till a ripe old age. But you would want to avoid a heart attack at any cost. Many heart attack patients will tell you that life changes after the event, not just physically but also mentally and emotionally. No matter which way you look at it, prevention is better than cure and it is no different for a heart attack.
But it is not always entirely within your hands. A heart attack can occur without any previous symptoms. It can occur even if you have normal blood cholesterol levels and blood pressure. It can occur even if you are young and have no family history of cardiovascular diseases. But this is rare. In the vast majority of heart attack patients, there was some indication somewhere or other of an impending heart attack or that a person should be considered at high risk of cardiovascular diseases.
As public awareness about prevalent diseases like HIV increases, there is still some confusion about medical terms and the meaning of some of these words. Many people know what HIV/AIDS is in a broad sense, what it happens in the body to some extent and how it is contracted. Given the prevalence of HIV/AIDS these days, it is important to know many of the related medical terms that are widely used. Even if you do not have the diseases, understanding the meaning of these words will help you better relate to friends, family and colleagues who are living with HIV or have AIDS.
Any nerve in the body can become compressed for a number of reasons. But it is often the nerves emanating from the spine that are the most prone. These spinal nerves have to pass out between the bones of the spine (vertebrae) to different parts of the body. It is at the root, as it passes out of the vertebral column, that these nerves are more likely to become compressed. Therefore this condition is referred to as nerve root compression (radiculopathy) or simply as a pinched back nerve. Compression affects the nerve’s function which is to carry signals to and from the spinal cord.
As a result there are a number of symptoms arise – abnormal sensations when sensory nerves are compressed or muscular symptoms when the motor nerves are compressed. Back symptoms are not always present. This means that you may not even have back pain yet there are nerve root compression symptoms present at different parts of the body, like the arms and hands or legs and feet. This can be misleading because the cause of the problem is at the back, and not at the location of the symptoms.
So how do you know if a nerve in your back is compressed or not?
Headaches are are quite common among adults. Although it is not often thought of as a serious ailment, some of the causes of headaches can be life threatening medical conditions. However, even less serious cases that may not be fatal can be severe enough to require emergency medical care. The pain may be unbearable and even adversely affect a person’s quality of life, ability to work and have relationships. Headaches account for as many as 4% of emergency room (ER) visits and is the ninth most common cause for patients to consult with a doctor in the United States.
Visual acuity is our ability to see clearly. As humans our eyesight may not be as impressive as some other mammals but nevertheless it serves us sufficiently to conduct our daily activities. But eyesight problems have become commonplace in the modern world for a number of different reasons. It is lifestyle-related, due to genetics and even associated with some of the chronic diseases that have become common these days. The common causes of bad eyesight can vary. It may be a problem with the way light is bent, the amount of light that can enter the eye or a deterioration of the light-sensitive eye tissue.
Hay fever is a common nasal condition that affects some 40 million Americans. It is estimated that 20% of the US population has hay fever but not all cases are diagnosed or appropriately managed by a medical professional. Some cases are worse than others and with the convenience of over-the-counter allergy medication, many people choose to treat mild hay fever on their own. But you may not know as much as you think you do about hay fever. There is a lot more to the condition than just a runny nose and sneezing during spring, summer and the fall.
Some of the symptoms that you may be experiencing may not seem like typical hay fever symptoms. Or these symptoms only arise when your hay fever is poorly managed as a result of complications developing. Similarly you may be surprised to learn about some of the lesser known triggers of hay fever. For these reasons it is always important to consult with a medical doctor and have your condition professionally managed particularly if you suffer with severe and/or chronic hay fever.
Hypertension (high blood pressure) is the most common cardiovascular condition across the globe. It is believed to affect as much as 20% of the world’s adult population and the prevalence may be much higher since hypertension often remains undiagnosed for long periods of time. High blood pressure is often termed the silent killer – you may not know that you have it for years due to the lack of symptoms at the outset but eventually it damages various organs that can kill you without warning. Fortunately modern medicine is able to effectively control your blood pressure on a long term basis. But this does not remove the need for conservative measures – changing your diet and lifestyle in order to improve your blood pressure beyond the effect of the drugs.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is the most common condition that affects the upper part of the gut. Most of us simply know it as acid reflux or by the main symptom – heartburn. But there is much more to the condition than just heartburn. Sometimes gastroesophageal reflux disease does not even present with heartburn. A person may have almost none of the typical signs and symptoms of acid reflux but could be suffering with the condition to a severe degree.
So how do you know if you are suffering with acid reflux? Despite being the most common upper GI condition, many cases remain undiagnosed. Acid reflux is a condition where stomach acid passes into the esophagus (food pipe) when the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) fails to prevent this backward movement of the stomach contents.
HIV infection and AIDS remains a global health concern. While greater awareness about the disease has helped in curbing the number of new cases in some parts of the world, it continues to spread unabated in other geographical areas. Advances in antiretroviral therapy (ART) means that people living with HIV and AIDS patients can now live longer. But it is not a cure. The key to curbing the HIV pandemic is prevention primarily through lifestyle measures as no vaccine is yet available.
Smelly feet may often seem to be more of an inconvenience than an actual symptom. But it is a problem that should be viewed from a medical perspective. Smelly feet is not a problem for every person. In fact some people can wear closed shoes, with no socks for several hours on a hot day and not experience any bad foot odor. While others may use a closed shoe for just a short period without apparently perspiring on the feet and the odor is horrific. So why do some people suffer with smelly feet and others don’t?
A burning sensation inside the nose is one of the common symptoms that arises for a number of different reasons. We all experience it at some point or the other in life. Usually it occurs in conjunction with other nasal symptoms like a runny nose, sneezing and nasal congestion. The nasal passages are highly sensitive and a burning sensation inside the nose can be quite bothersome. It is often not serious in nature but may at times be a sign of a very serious cause. For example, a child complaining of a burning sensation may have lodged a foreign body within the nose. Identifying the cause and not only focusing on the symptom is therefore important. Treating the causative condition will eventually resolve nasal symptoms.
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