Thursday, June 19, 2008

The wisdom teeth are gone

Well, it’s over. The wisdom teeth are out. Thanks to the happy miracle of chemicals, I have no recollection of the procedure, but man, did I hurt last night for a while. On a scale of 0 – 10 with 0 being no pain and 10 being the worst ever, I’d rate the pain on the right side, pretty darned close to a 9. The left side is fine. So, my conclusion is that it’s the bottom wisdom teeth that are the toughest. Whether that’s true or not, I don’t know, but I only got 3 out, my upper left, and both upper and lower right. And it’s the right side that’s painful. I barely feel the left at all.

I remember when my son had his out about three years ago, I told him to be sure to sleep with his head elevated. He didn’t. He told me he did, figuring that one pillow was elevating his head – and he had an absolutely horrible first day with lots and lots of pain plus massive swelling. So, having remembered that, I set myself up on the couch with lots of pillow that didn’t raise my head, but raised my whole upper body – almost like a hospital bed would lift you.

While I didn’t sleep terribly well, I did sleep and I don’t feel as bad this morning as I know my son did. So, here’s to hoping that this was a major key to helping prevent the worst.


Today at Help My Hurt:

10 ways to prevent injuries in your home

What’s your score?

Legitimate patients with chronic pain vs drug seekers

Today at Womb Within:

b5media Blogs For a Cause And Raises Money in Support of Charity

Postpartum depression can hit dads too

Pregnant Pause

News: Caesarean sections associated with risk of asthma

Tsk, tsk Ricki Lake

News for Today:

TV viewing, computer use linked to obesity: StatsCan

U.S. firm hopes to end need for vitamin B12 shots

Worldwide allergy, asthma rates rising, report says

Diet supplement can lead to seizures: Health Canada

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Do you know how to call for help?

It seems like an easy question - and it seems like an easy answer. But do you truly know how to call for help during an emergency?

1- Know where to call. Know your emergency numbers wherever you are in the world. Emergency numbers like 9-1-1 are for North America, for example, but there are areas that don't have 9-1-1.
So, where ever you are, be sure you know the emergency number.

2- Know where you are. If you're visiting a friend or babysitting for a relative, you may know exactly where the house is and the phone number, but do you know the street address and the nearest cross streets? You do need to know these.

Ok - that's what you need to know. Now, how do you call for help?

Dial the emergency number.
Speak *clearly* and slowly. State the nature of the emergency first so that the dispatcher can be ready to call the appropriate response team.
State how many people, so it could be something like, "one young child found at the bottom of a swimming pool" or "5 people in a car accident."
Be prepared to answer questions about the environment and what may have happened.
Give your own name.
DO NOT HANG UP until the operator tells you that it is ok to do so.

Now - you've done all that, but you're not finished. The emergency personnel have to be able to find you. If you're in a house, can someone wait outside to flag them down so they don't waste time looking at house numbers? If it's night time, is the outside light on?

If you're in an apartment building, did you specify your floor? If you're in a public building, have someone by the main entrance to guide the responders.

Does the home have pets, specifically dogs? Make sure the dog is locked up in another room. Even the most docile of pets can go off during an emergency with a lot of strange people.

If you're in a crowd, point to others and directly address them with cues for help: "You, in the blue shirt, go direct traffic on that corner; you with the blond hair and green shirt, go to the front door and wait for the responders," and so on.

I used to teach first aid and many of my students were afraid that they would not be able to remember what they learned. I would tell them that if all they remembered was HOW to call for help, they learned a lot.

Today at Help My Hurt:

Radio interview about CRPS/RSD

Migraine relievers you may not know about

10 causes of chronic pain in seniors

Today at Womb Within:

Protecting your back after baby is born

What do you know about folic acid?

Pregnancy exercise - and DVD give-away

Are maternity bras necessary?

News for Today:

Not enough new nurses to meet demand: report

Episiotomy raises tear risk in next delivery

The right moves may prevent injury

Finding The Best Medical Care

Stress of Dealing with Diabetes Linked to Depression

Health leaders aim to cut premature birth rate

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

I don't want to!

The number of times I've read and hear dthat line, "I don't want to," when it comes to taking medications is beyond amazing. There are a lot of things I don't want to do either, but I do them because 1) I have to, 2) I should, and 3) it would be better if I did.

Not too long ago, I was browsing an on-line forum for women. One woman was ranting and raving about how she had to take a drug for osteoporosis once a month. She said that it was horrible, that her doctor only cared about giving her pills and this was one big conspiracy to get us all to take more pills. Plus, it was horrible inconvenient to have to follow the rules of not lying down for a certain amount of time following ingesting the pill.

Yesterday, on that same forum, another woman wrote about how she was tempted to not tell her doctor that her blood pressure monitoring test wasn't done properly so he wouldn't realize how high her blood pressure really is. Why? Because, she wrote, "I don't want to take any pills."

I've heard this time and time again and the frustrating thing is not that they're denying their illnesses - it's this attitude of not wanting to take pills.

My answer? Fine - stop whining and don't take the flipping pills then. If you don't care about trying to stay healthy, don't take them. When you do have a stroke or you break a bone because of osteoporosis, you'll learn that the doctor wasn't taking you for a ride.

As far as I know, very few people like to take pills. We do it because we have to. So knock it off. Stop using the excuse, "I don't like taking pills." because, quite frankly, I don't really care.

I know, sounds harsh, but I'm tired of the self-centeredness of a lot of people these days. And yes, I think it's self-centered because if you don't take the pills, you will either be leaving behind people who love you, or give them something to stress about when you do become ill.

Today at Help My Hurt:

What are wisdom teeth and why do we have them?

Press Release: FDA Approves Cymbalta for Management of Fibromyalgia

NY state may be moving forward with medicinal marijuana law

Today at Womb Within:

Are maternity bras necessary?

Ectopic pregnancies

Pregnancy can be hard on your feet

What you probably didn’t know about the newborn brain…

Why you shouldn’t rush your due date

News for Today:

Rare breast cancer targets women of color

Obese Women in Canada Less Likely to Get Pap Tests

Coffee drinkers may live longer than non-drinkers

What You Should Know During and After an Emergency

Obese patients tried on average 24 diets before surgery

Mentally ill face extra-long ER waits

High Blood Pressure in Kids Tracks Into Adulthood

Osteoporosis study suggests bone density tests could be done less often

Time to rethink blood pressure tests: experts

Monday, June 16, 2008

When you feel overwhelmed, what do you do?

If you have depression or anxiety, how do you handle it when things get overwhelming? Do they build up suddenly and then the dam breaks, or do things just pop up all of a sudden?

This should be a happy time for me. My youngest son is having his high school graduation ceremony today. As a mom, I never got upset when my kids hit milestones, like the first time at school, graduation, etc. - but this one has got me anxious and tearful. I know, it's probably because he's my youngest. But I find myself morosely going over all my faults as a mother and all the things I've done wrong, rather than celebrating.

On top of that, I'm having my wisdom teeth out and from everything I read and hear, it's no picnic when you're 47 years old, due to the solid jaw and embedded nerves. That's this coming Wednesday. I thought I was cool about it, but I'm more stressed than I realized. I also don't like the idea of not being able to work for a few days. I guess I'm more of a workaholic than I've been willing to admit.

So, what do you do if you start feeling this way? All I want to do is curl into a ball under the covers and have a good cry. :-(

Today at Help My Hurt:

5 new places for you to visit

Help My Hurt continues to follow Kristin Armstrong’s ride to the Olympics

Today at Womb Within:

Antiretrovirals for pregnant women with HIV reduce transmission risk to baby

When they tell you time flies….

News for Today:

Though no West Nile cases to date, precautions should be taken: microbiologist

Risk Of Bladder Cancer After Childhood Cancer

Young Children In Mostly Caucasian Countries Obtain More Sleep Than Those In Asian Countries

Most cancer doctors avoid saying it's the end; study shows that's wrong

U.S. hospitals underperform with breastfeeding support for mothers: CDC

Teens most danger-prone on Canadian job sites

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Checking expiry dates - on medications

Do you check for expiry dates on medications? I don't when I'm buying them; I may at home if they've been in the cupboard for a while.

There's only one non-food product that I am very careful about checking, and that is sunscreen. I've seen the results of using sunscreen that is well beyond the "best before" date and it's not pretty. But, I never thought to check for medications. Maybe we all should start though.

In New York City, investigators found over 600 items from two chains, CVS and Rite Aid that were expired, and many of those medications were for children. As they emphasize in this article (Officials Find Expired Items at Drugstores in New York) though, taking expired medications isn't usually harmful, but you may be paying for something that won't work properly.

Today at Help My Hurt:

Back pain in children, especially under 4 years old

Too good to be true? "Half new patients with RA become pain free within 36 weeks"

Tonabersat, new migraine drug being studied

How many joints can a person have replaced?

Helmetless motorcycle riders = organ donors?

Today at Womb Within:

2 exercises for sciatica pain during pregnancy

Finding and Choosing a Doula

What is a birth plan?

If you’re obese, your pregnancy may be more expensive

Can epidurals affect breast feeding?

News for Today:

Women Get Lung Cancer From Smoking at Same Rates as Men (HealthDay)

Working Overtime Linked to Anxiety and Depression

Rheumatoid arthritis doubles heart risk: experts

Should we screen women over 70 for breast cancer? (Just don't mention "rationing")

Women, Latinos face higher brain aneurysm risk

Oily fish can protect against RA, but smoking and psychosocial stress increase its risk

1 patient's account of becoming a live kidney donor

1 in 10 adults has a non-earlobe piercing