Health trend to watch in 2018

Personalized medicine–

Genetic Code(NewsUSA) – When scientists first read the entire genetic code of a human being in 2003, the monumental achievement promised a new era in medicine.

What diseases we get, and how we respond to drugs, depends in large part on our own individual genes. Knowing our own genetic code, therefore, makes it possible to design specific treatments that work best for each person – an approach known as personalized medicine.

This personalized approach turns out to be especially important in cancer treatment. Tumors that seem to be of the same type can actually have very different underlying genetic mutations. And because many of today’s drugs are designed to target particular genetic vulnerabilities of cancer cells, a drug that is effective for some tumors will fail for others.

Realizing the enormous promise of personalized medicine hasn’t been quick or easy. It has required major scientific and technological advances to prove the links between genetic variations and diseases, and to dramatically lower the costs of identifying and sequencing genes.

But recent progress has been impressive. In the last few years, more than one-quarter of all new drugs approved by the FDA have been personalized medicines. And by 2020, the total market for targeted therapies and gene tests is expected to top $149 billion per year.

One of the many companies that have been driving this rapid progress is Pittsburgh-based Helomics. The company has developed clinical tests for key genes and other biomarkers in a whole range of different cancers. Studies show that a personalized approach using Helomics’ ChemoFx test brings a 14-month improvement in overall survival in patients with gynecologic cancer. The BioSpeciFx test, for example, examines the genes that are active in cancer cells to reliably inform the patient’s tumor response to drugs.

Helomics is also expanding its reach with a new technology it calls D-CHIP™ and a strategic collaboration with Skyline Medical (NASDAQ:SKLN), which markets an innovative system for collecting and disposing of fluids from patients. So more and more in 2018, your drugs will be personalized just for you.


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The saga continues

And thank God it does!

Post Surgery Me
It looks worse than it is. Sort of. Okay, it looks Frankenstienish. Praying for an amazing outcome of the reconstructive surgery.

In August 2016, I was diagnosed with cervical cancer. The doctor caught it early and – after removing all my reproductive lady parts in September 2016 – I was deemed to be cancer-free and not in need of chemo, thank the Lord. In May 2017, Bob fell and broke his femur, had surgery and spent five weeks in rehab and another eight weeks in physical therapy. He is much improved, but continues to require the security of a walker, although he can use a cane for short distances.

A couple of weeks prior to Bob’s May accident, I was diagnosed with a basal cell cancer on my nose and prescribed a topical treatment, which I began to apply the same week of Bob’s fall. I used it as prescribed, but between going to the rehab center and keeping up with things at home, I ran out of steam and quit using it after about three weeks, but not before it had severely “burned” my nose, which took almost a month to heal. That should have told me something. Right?

Bob came home from rehab after five weeks and began physical therapy. I somehow managed to sustain a sacral fracture that pretty much took me down for about five days, and I had to do PT for a month, two times a week. I improved rapidly and was walker-free within two weeks. That would have been sometime in June.

Come August 2017, my oncologist – who had been keeping an eye on my innards ­­– found a troublesome lesion on the vaginal wall. Mr. Cancer was back. The doctor excised the lesion in an outpatient procedure in September. At the follow-up visit, she recommended focused radiation to make sure the cancer was eradicated.

In November, I went for a dermatology appointment and learned the cancer on my nose was more serious than first thought and Mohs surgery was recommended.

But first I had to do the radiation treatments. One thing at a time, please. I had five brief but intense treatments in late November and early December. Very little in the way of side effects, but by the end I knew I’d been fairly well blasted from the inside. It’s over – but not ­– as I have some internal “expansion” I must do to assure the tissue doesn’t scar over. Believe me, you don’t want to know. Suffice it to say, I’d rather go on a long vacation.

And then came the nose cancer surgery. It’s called Mohs, after the fellow who came up with the procedure. It was supposed to be easy peesy, scrape and check, scrape and check, close… except that the tip-of-my-pinky-sized spot turned out to be dime-sized and had four or five “fingers” that radiated out. Let’s just say the result of the surgery is not a pretty sight. They tell me (the doctor and tech), that it will be okay after reconstructive surgery, which will take place in about six or seven weeks. In the meantime, I’m wearing a bandage that hides about 15 stitches and a lump of skin from my smile line that’s heaped on the spot on my nose the doctor dug out to get rid of the cancer. Are you still with me? In a week, I get the stitches out and six weeks after that, my nose will be reshaped to what it was before. I pray that is the case.

Interestingly, the cancers that were more worrisome have turned out to be the least of my concerns and the one I thought would be a piece of cake has turned out to be more like burned toast.

Why am I writing about all this? I haven’t been doing much in the way of original work for my online magazine, One Roof Publishing. And I backed away from my freelance writing gig with the Optic, so I could concentrate on Bob’s health and mine. And now it occurs to me, given our ages – 73 and 87 – if I wait to write until we’re 100 percent healthy, I’ll never write another word!

So. I know my saga is no more dramatic or important or life altering than yours. This is not a “poor me” diatribe. In fact, it’s a story of resilience and thankfulness. Bob and I have excellent medical care, fabulous insurance and supplemental, and caring friends and family. Our faith has kept us going when we both thought we’d had quite enough, thank you very much. But the truth is, we have been blessed and the last thing I want to do is complain.

So. I have a few things in the works, including a novel, Blind Curve, with a target publication date of Jan. 15. My serialized sci-fi novel, which will be available through One Roof Publishing, will launch around the first of the year. The opening episode will be free. Following episodes will be available to paid subscribers exclusively. When the novel reaches its conclusion, it will be published in paperback. Subscribers to the online serial will receive a signed print copy. And I’m getting back to writing articles for One Roof Publishing, combining my original work with news and information from around the web. If you have an interesting story idea for me, or if you’re doing something interesting and would like to share, please e-mail fsharon@msn.com. I’m looking for great stories and engaging Q&A articles.

More to come.

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10 Ways to make yourself feel better

Is there a magic elixir for happiness? Should we be that thing called “happy” all the time? Is there value in disappointment and trials? Down days are inevitable. Sometimes all you need is a little boost to get you over the hump.

  1. Call a friend and tell them something you admire about them. This isn’t the same as giving someone a compliment when they have accomplished a noteworthy achievement. This is recognizing a trait that helps others or that has had a personal influence in your life. You know your friends well enough that coming up with an admirable trait or activity should be easy. It’s important to call instead of e-mail. One-on-one interaction is how we build relationships.
  2. Smile. Motivational writer and speaker Denis Waitley wrote: “A smile is the light in your window that tells others that there is a caring, sharing person inside.” Your smile makes you feel better and has an equally beneficial impact on those you encounter.
  3. Make peace with yesterday. Are you carrying a grudge? It’s probably the heaviest weight you will ever carry. You may not even know how it began. Someone did this, you did that, they retaliated, you pushed back. Suddenly a long standing friendship (or family relationship) hit the iceberg of anger and broke apart. Even if your offer to make peace is rejected, you will know you made the effort, which will lighten your load.
  4. Hang in there. Success is not measured by how many times you fall down; it is measured by how many time you get up and try again. If you have an achievable goal, go for it with everything you have in you. Be energized by the small successes and treat mistakes as learning experiences. You will feel better about your accomplishments and have a more positive outlook.
  5. Be flexible. When life does not go your way, be open to other options. Not getting the promotion or the perfect job is a bump in the road, not a barrier. Too often we believe, “My way or the highway,” shows strength or power. It creates roadblocks to communication and personal growth.
  6. Maintain perspective. My husband jokingly says the words “always” and “never” should be stricken from the dictionary. When you think of your life in absolutes, you begin to see your problems as overwhelming, insurmountable. Take life in small increments and check off the solvable objectives one box at a time. You will feel better with each accomplished goal.
  7. Guard your thoughts. Proverbs 23:7 reads, “… for as he thinketh in his heart, so is he. ‘Eat and drink,’ saith he to thee, but his heart is not with thee.” (KJV) When you are helping, reaching out, lifting up, do so with the right mental attitude and with a generous spirit. A gift given begrudgingly is no gift at all.
  8. Avoid comparing yourself to others. Yes, you are unique. Don’t argue with me. You are you, created in a mold solely your own. You have been given a wealth of gifts and talents. How – or if – you use those gifts and talents is up to you. While it is true that the beautiful people seem to have ideal lives, they’re just like the rest of us, as full of insecurities as you or I. And think about it, some of the most famous actors were anything but beautiful; they were talented men and women who capitalized on their talent and opportunities. You can do it, too.
  9. Disappointment is part of life; get over it. Pain and disappointment are inevitable. It happens to all of us. If there is a lesson to be learned, it is that life is not fair. Living under the rationale that what happens to you is unfair will bring you down and create a defeatist attitude. “This, too, will pass,” may be a cliché, but it is a valid, positive way to handle disappointment. Tomorrow is another day. How can you make it a great day?
  10. Trust yourself. Self-doubt opens the door to defeatism. If you think you can’t, you won’t even try. If you think you can, you will make the most of every day and use the gifts and talents you’ve been given in the best way you know how.

Being happy is not a single thing, or getting what you want; it comes from contentment, loving others and being loved, helping those around you and making a difference in the ways you can. Believe in yourself. Live your faith. Make the most of who you are. You will feel better.


NOTE: Clinical depression is a serious illness. It is nothing to be ashamed of. Sometimes you can’t make yourself feel better. Seek help. See your regular doctor and ask for a referral to a psychologist or other mental health professional. See the signs of clinical depression here.


I am an indie author of six books and two chap books of poetry. Check the BOOKS tab to find out more. Follow me at www.vandermeerbooks.com, https://www.facebook.com/vandermeerbooks, Amazon Author Central


 

The purpose of purpose

In a recent study, researchers at University College London found that, for people over the age of 65, a sense of purpose and overall well-being meant that they were 30 percent less likely to die over a period of eight and a half years. This study followed over 9,000 English people and found that, at the end of the eight and half year period, only 9 percent of people in the highest category of well-being had died, compared with 29 percent of those at the lowest level of well-being. Those who reported the highest level of fulfillment lived, on average, two years longer. From a Psychology Today blog article. Read more…

Golden YearsWhat is your purpose? Do you have one? It’s important for everyone to have a reason to get up in the morning. It’s important for businesses and organizations to have a purpose, one that goes beyond making money. As you get older, purpose is crucial to well-being and having a healthy lifestyle, even when you may struggle with physical challenges. You don’t have to jump out of a plane to make life interesting.

So, what is purpose? Purpose is that thing you dedicate yourself to that shapes who you are. That’s not the Webster definition, but that is the essence of what it means to have purpose. When you have no purpose, ­ no goal – life becomes dull and meaningless. Not having purpose can rob you of joy.

Your purpose may be as simple as sending notes of encouragement to people in your family or social group, or as grand as creating art or building a business, or being in a profession that by its definition is one that serves others.

My purpose is to write something every day, and most of the time, I do. When my husband and I went through recent bouts of health issues, I scarcely wrote at all and the result was a descent into negativity and gloom. When I went back to writing, my spirits lifted and my outlook improved dramatically. How often have you heard about retirees who after they no longer have their jobs – their purpose – they go into decline, to the point of giving up on living.

Those who do best are those who continue to contribute in some way to society and to the lives of those around them. Sitting in a chair waiting to “get better” or get back what you once had, is not the answer. Getting up to the degree you are able and getting with it – whatever “it” is for you – will make a difference for you and those around you.

Stuck for something to do after you’ve done it all? Here are some suggestions to give you food for thought.

• Take classes: Check out the activities and events section of your local newspaper. Are there classes offered you might be interested in? The senior group Our Healthy Circle at Alta Vista Regional Hospital here in Las Vegas, offers a wealth of opportunities. Check out the classes and become an active participant in their dinners, travel events and other activities.

• Visit a nursing home: If you have the gift of song or art or anything else creative, check with a nursing home in your area to see if they would welcome you to give a class or provide entertainment for the residents. Or they may need other volunteer help you are well suited to provide.

• Check with your church: Most churches have volunteer programs to provide meals for the ill or visitation to the home bound or those in hospital. What skills do you have that would be helpful? In our church we provide prayer shawls for people undergoing trying times. We always need more shawls. Want to volunteer to make one? Perhaps your church has a similar program. Check it out. See how you can help.

Write your memoir• Write that memoir: What a gift for your family. Your history is something only you can tell. Even if you have orally told your stories time and again, much will be lost to misinterpretation or plain old forgetfulness. With the advent of self-publishing (www.createspace.com as an example), you can write it, upload it, and – once you’ve approved the proof – you can affordably order as few or as many as you like. (A little sales pitch here. If you need help with formatting and uploading, I’m available. 🙂 ).

• Learn how to use a computer: It will open a whole new world of information for you. Caution, don’t let it become the only social interaction you have. Face-to-face is better than Facebook any day.

• Write a recipe book: You can publish it in paperback for your family, or do it digitally. Either way this is a gift that will keep on giving, which is really what having a life purpose is all about. Reaching out and making a difference.

A recent study followed nearly 1,500 older people for 10 years. It found that those who had a large network of friends were about 22 percent less likely to die during the 10 years. www.webmd.com.

• Maintain friendships: There is a tendency among elders to isolate themselves. It becomes a challenge to get out if you are on a walker or have other disabilities. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make the effort. According to one study, elders who remain socially active are happier and healthier. Unable to drive? Check resources in your community. You might be surprised what is available at low or no cost to get you to activities and events.

• Get a part time job: If you have time on your hands and don’t know what to do, consider working part time. Older employees are valued for their work ethic and reliability. Don’t believe for a second your age puts you out of the running, especially for part time work.

These are a few suggestions; I’m sure you have plenty of your own. Your purpose today may not be your purpose tomorrow. That’s okay. The point is to have a reason to arise in the morning and do something during that day that will put a smile on your face at night. Benefits? Countless, the most significant being that you are opening the gift of life each day and making the most of it.
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Photos: www.clipart.com

Attitude and aging gratefully

Life After a FallLife has sort of been on hold for my husband and me since early May when his femur broke and he had to have surgery. The surgery went well and thanks to great care at Alta Vista Regional Hospital and Vida Encantada, he came home from rehab a week earlier than anticipated. For the first two weeks, we scooted along quite well… until I got a sacral fracture (result of osteoporosis and overdoing it gardening), that really sent us topsy turvy. Since then we’ve both been on walkers and confined to the house, or so we believed because neither of us was confident enough to get behind the wheel.

The experience has given us a whole new appreciation for the ability to drive. We have relied on – and thank you very much nephew Seth and great-nephew Carter, Tom Trigg and Mary Schipper, and Karyl Lyne – as well as Lydia Palomino, who worked us into her busy schedule – for getting us to and from appointments and the store (and sometimes Charlie’s!).

We are on the mend, but I want to especially thank my long-time friend Kathy Allen, whose phone call this week helped me see how much of our isolation came as much from self-inflicted and unfounded fears as it did from our actual afflictions. She didn’t tell me that, but my whining about my plight – which resonated long after the conversation was over, did. If I’ve learned anything from this experience, it is that as you age, fear sneaks in where you least expect it.

Fear of falling is a real thing, especially as you get older. Fear of falling in older folks is greater than that related to robbery, financial stress, or health problems, according to an article on the Anxiety and Depression Association of America website. Click here to read the full article.

Julie Loebach Wetherell, PhD, an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego, writes that about ten percent of older adults report excessive fear, and at least three percent avoid leaving their homes or yards. That may not seem like much, but when you consider that the aging population is the fastest growing demographic globally and that by 2050, two billion adults older than sixty-five will be living on this planet, the percentages become more significant.

“Most people who fear falling avoid some physical activities. This fear is a better predictor of decreased physical activity than age, perceived health, number of prescription medications, gender, or history of falls,” Wetherell writes. She notes that fear of falling and less physical activity lead to disability, including decreased capacity to perform daily living activities such as bathing and shopping.

Paradoxically, the fear of falling increases the risk of falls. It also increases the risk of having to enter a health care facility and the loss of independence. Those who had excessive fear but no falls over a two-year period increased their risk of entering a nursing home five-fold relative to those with low fear. Of older adults in one scientific study, fifty-six percent with high levels of fear fell again within the following year, while only thirty-seven percent of those without fear did. – Julie Loebach Wetherell

I confess that fear of falling and making my back injury worse has contributed to our isolation, which, by the way, also leads to feeling discouraged, even depressed. These are not characteristics in my essential make up. Quite the contrary. I always think life will get better, every obstacle can be overcome, and bloom where your planted. I’ve scarcely written a word in the last six weeks that wasn’t related to my daily prayer journal and devotional journal. I dropped out of Pasateimpo Art Academy, simply because I had neither the energy nor the time (or physical ability), to conduct the writing classes I had signed up to do.

I realized after my whine-fest with Kathy, the problem wasn’t my circumstances; the problem was my attitude, which was being shaped by my fears.

No more. Time to get back to normal. Ordinary caution makes sense; hiding behind anxiety does not.

Onward and upward.

We met Kathy and Fred for coffee at Charlie’s today. I drove.

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Photo: Life after a fall.

 

Wow, Do I Feel Great!

Feeling Good!

Honestly, I think there must be something wrong with me. A week out from major surgery and I feel fantastic! The cautionary guidance from my doctors indicated I wouldn’t feel like doing much for at least two weeks (maybe more). In truth, I’m feeling strong and raring to go. A twinge of discomfort now again, and ibuprofen on those more twingey days, but I’m glad to say my recovery is moving along rather well.

That doesn’t mean I won’t be following medical advice and taking things slow for the next four or so weeks; it does mean I’m not going to allow myself to go bat-poop crazy staying home and doing nothing.

Of course I’m not idle. In fact, I’ve gotten some writing done and intend to do more. I’ve also read several books including Craig Johnson’s latest Longmire, An Obvious Fact, Ladies of the Canyon by Lesley Poling-Kempes, Die Like an Eagle by Donna Andrews (funny lady), and Blood on the Tracks by Barbara Nickless, a Colorado writer. As you may have guessed, my reading habits are a little eclectic.

I plan to do reviews of one or more of these books and maybe Q&As, depending on my attention span and my ability to reach the authors.

So, on to my topic of the day: My Adventures as a Patient
Five things I learned from my recent surgery and hospital stay:

Surgery, knifely done (Okay send in the pun police!)
I don’t remember much – make that anything – about the surgery THANK GOODNESS. I do recall that everyone was thoughtful and kind from the minute we found our way to the surgical waiting room at UNM Hospital on Tuesday at 6 a.m., until I left on Thursday at around 2 p.m. Dr. Carol Muller and her oncology surgical team are the best. I knew from the get-go that I was in excellent hands. My advice to anyone being treated for any type of illness that requires surgery or a hospital stay, trust your medical team. It relieves you of stress and in most cases, speeds up healing. ABC News reported in July that an optimistic attitude can do wonders for a patient’s recovery. The report cited a Canadian Medical Association Journal article about  researchers who reviewed 16 studies that looked at patients’ attitudes toward health. The studies spanned 30 years and looked at patients’ attitudes after surgery.

No room for you…?
There was a bit of hiccup getting into a room following surgery. I spent more time in recovery than I would have liked, but Casandra, the surgical nurse with me throughout the afternoon, kept me updated and compassionately cared for while I waited. I could have been a grumpy Gertrude, but that’s not my style. Yes, I did wonder why a room wasn’t “reserved” for me since I was scheduled for surgery, but a hospital isn’t a hotel. Rooms fill up for reasons that have nothing to do with the surgery schedule, discharge is delayed for reasons beyond the patient’s (and sometimes the doctor’s) control, and protocol requires a thorough cleaning before a new patient moves in. Plus, UNM Hospital is one busy place! As it turns out I was mostly two of the Seven Dwarfs, Dopey and Sleepy, so it didn’t much matter where I was :).

Food for thought
Hospital food is notoriously unappealing. I’m not sure it’s the food; it is more likely a consequence of having no appetite. My meals were certainly edible; I just couldn’t eat. There are two reasons for that: one, I couldn’t sit in any way that would allow me to eat without dribbling food all over myself. Come on, people! Can’t someone design a table/bed/bibb that will keep more food in your mouth and less falling down your gown? Or am I just clumsy? Okay, forget the last point. I am clumsy. Totally unrelated to this post, the Sunday before surgery I dropped the collection plate at church. On. The. Floor!

Now, where was I…

Two, I simply was not hungry, which on one morning was really disappointing. They served the most delicious French Toast Casserole I’ve ever eaten! So why couldn’t I eat it? That appetite thing again. Two bites and my tummy could take no more. Boy, I wish I had the recipe.

Nurses and other staff are underrated
You may think you and your roommate are the only two people in the hospital. Get real. The wing I was in had a number of rooms, all of them double occupancy, and all of them full. I don’t know how many nurses, techs, and other staff are on any given rotation, but I can tell you they are all busy all the time. Some patients are more demanding (or their needs are more demanding) than others. Despite all that, I never felt neglected and the care I was given was compassionate, timely and personal. I wish I could remember all their names, but I hope my behavior and “thank yous” let them know how much I appreciated being treated as more than a job.

Getting out
The prediction was a three- to four-day stay in the hospital. I think I beat that by a day, mostly because no matter how well you are treated by compassionate caregivers, there is no place like home for recovery. That doesn’t mean the discharge process will move along in quite the way you want it to. If I have a complaint it is that – at least on the day I was discharged – the place was a madhouse overseen by Alice in Wonderland. It is hospital policy for patients to be taken to their “rides” by wheelchair. There were four discharged patients (on my wing) at the same time I was released and only two wheelchairs available. My husband had been sent to get the car. I was put on “hold” waiting for the magic carpet to arrive. Let’s just say the timing couldn’t have been worse. Bob was in the patient pickup area (which was jam packed with cars and patients coming and going) about ten minutes before I finally said, “I’m leaving,” after having already sat there for at least twenty minutes.

Hospital staff: “You can’t. We don’t have a wheelchair.”
Me: “My husband is waiting for me, I’m leaving.”
Hospital staff: “But we don’t have a wheelchair.”
Me: “I can walk!”
Hospital staff: “It’s against policy.”
Me: “My husband is waiting for me, I’m going and I CAN WALK!” (Okay, I make it sound like I was yelling, but I wasn’t. I said if quite nicely, but firmly.)

After a bit more back and forth, they agreed to let me walk with a tech at my side. This was a bit of a joke. The tech who volunteered was a veteran who took my arm and the bag of hospital crap I had to take with me, but the aide (or whatever you call the person whose job it is to take you down in a wheelchair), intervened and said, “No, no, that’s my job.” She did not take my arm, carry the bag of meds and other stuff I was discharged with, or ever once look at me (she was too busy looking at her text messages). Aaargh!

Chaos reigned when we got downstairs. The aide (based on my descripton) did spot my car and pointed it out to me, and then turned around and left as I walked briskly across three lanes of slow-moving traffic to get to the car. Some old fart – excuse me – nice old gentleman with an attitude was yelling at Bob for blocking traffic even though he was clearly in the area posted as patient drop-off and pick-up!

All-in-all, my hospital adventure was positive. Getting to my car after the fact, not so much. That in no way detracts from the care I received, which I attribute to my continuing speedy return to wellness.

Thanks Dr. Muller, your team, UNM Hospital, and my wonderful husband, family and friends.

I would add that getting from here to there is the direct result of Lacy Houdek of Meadow City Clinic, Alta Vista Regional Hospital, and Dr. Manske in Santa Fe. All of these medical specialist were responsibile for detecting my cancer and expediting treatment.

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Image: clipart.com

 

 

 

 

Woman to woman, okay? And men, too

Sharon Vander MeerBy the time this posts, I will be in the midst of an operation, or in recovery. This is by way of telling every woman to be alert to changes in your body and unusual occurrences for which you have no reasonable explanation. Don’t wonder if that worrisome anomaly is something to be worried about or not. Make an appointment with your doctor and let her or him help you understand whether it is something that needs further treatment.

My anomaly turned out to be cervical cancer and the recommended treatment was removing stuff from my body invaded by this sneaky beast. Fortunately, it was caught early – partly because I have a history of this cancer in my family so I was on the lookout for signs, partly because I’m more scared of what I don’t know than I am of what I do know. The medical team is top notch and I’m confident the next time you see me I’ll be pretty much back to what passes for normal in this upside down world we live in. Okay, maybe not normal, but on the road to recovery.

This message of medical follow-up isn’t just for women. Men are the worst for putting off going to the doctor. It may “be nothing,” but whatever your symptoms are may be “something” that can be treated when caught early. That seems to be the key in the successful treatment of most ailments. Early detection.

I read the other day in a post from Max Lucado, that if you want to put life in perspective, make a list of all the people who will be affected by decisions you make. He was talking about life-altering decisions like cheating on your husband or wife or doing drugs or relying on alcohol to get you through life’s trying times. That same philosophy can be applied to putting off taking care of your health. Make a list of all the people who will be affected if you choose not to seek the advice of a doctor when you know you should. The sicker you are, the more difficult and costly it will be to treat whatever ails you.

Listen, I’m not trying to over-simplify diagnosis and treatment. Sometimes there is nothing you can do, but if you have symptoms and ignore them, you help neither yourself nor your family.

I take part in an online prayer ministry and I’m surprised when people say they’ve been “feeling bad for months,” but are afraid to go to a doctor and find out what’s wrong with them. Their prayer requests may be for healing or for the problem to simply go away. What I pray is that they will let go of fear and beat a track for the nearest doctor or health clinic.

I am a believer in God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. I have no fear of surgery. I trust the medical team taking care of me. And I appreciate prayer. It works. It heads the list of the best medicine has to offer. So, say a little prayer for my speedy return to wellness.
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 I’m stock piling posts, which will appear on a schedule during my recovery. I love to hear from followers and subscribers, so please comment, like and share.

 

De-Stress: Websites With Tips & Tricks

Burning the Candle at Both Ends

Burning the candle at both ends? Slow down! Rethink. Renew. Stress is a contributing factor in physical wellness and mental well-being. Handling stress can be nearly as as stressful as the stress itself. Check out these websites sponsored through health organizations that give a variety of tips and tricks to help you make good choices about how you deal with those little aggravations that pile up and turn into one big headache.

Meditation: A Simple Fast Way to Reduce Stress can take a bad day and make it manageable by bringing you a sense of peace. These Mayo Clinic team suggestions are simple and practical, no special tools needed. Get your anxiety, tension and worry under control. It only takes a few minutes, is time well spent, and can be done anywhere. Read the recommendations here.

10 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress is a slide show from Healthline.com. It outlines easy to follow tips for facing stress head on and putting it in its place. The ideas are as simple as calling a friend or listening to music, whatever it takes to reorganize your thinking and put the irritations of the day behind you. Stress can have negative power over you. Turn that into the power of positive realignment by following one or two, or all if need be, of these  Healthline recommendations.

Stress Management: Ways to Relieve Stress is found at WebMD.com. “The best way to manage your stress is to learn healthy coping strategies. You can start practicing these tips right away. Try one or two until you find a few that work for you. Practice these techniques until they become habits you turn to when you feel stress. You can also use this coping strategies form to see how you respond to stress.” This opening paragraph from WebMD.com is an example of how the site provides expanded tools. The site’s “Actionset” keys lead you to other helpful strategies, whether you are working to reduce stress or have other health concerns you want to learn more about. Continue reading here.

Life tends to be stressful. When you feel anxiety and frustration getting the upper hand, assert control. Practice any of these stress management techniques and regain your perspective. It’s good for you and for those you interact with on every level.

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