Archive for July, 2015

Digital Eyestrain and Its Daily Impact on the Eyes

Like most people, you probably spend most of your day sitting in front of a computer, browsing on your smartphone, reading on your tablet, and watching TV. These modern-day necessities, however, take a significant toll on the eyes.

More than half of all eye injury cases in Australia are workplace-related, and account for about eight percent of such injuries. To put the numbers into perspective, that’s around 50,000 incidents each year.

Digital Eye Strain

Most millennials are familiar with digital eyestrain, which is the feeling of physical eye discomfort and fatigue. Prolonged exposure to the electronic displays in computers, smartphones, and TVs is the primary culprit.

digital eye strainAIES.com.au is a respected laser eye surgery clinic in Sydney, Australia and agrees with MayoClinic.org in saying that the feeling is usually temporary and diminishes with rest.

Long-Term and Serious Effects

While the effects of digital eyestrain are usually temporary, the problem is that children are introduced to digital devices earlier and earlier in their development and there is a growing concern about the effects of glowing screens. Experts believe that it could put the eyes at risk for nearsightedness and myopia. Some raised concerns that the blue-violet wavelengths emitted by the screens could cause cataracts macular degeneration.

Preventing Digital Eye Strain Through “Eyegonomics”

You can prevent digital eyestrain by limiting your use of smartphones, tablets, PCs, and other digital media. For the vast majority of Australians who cannot (or refuse to) reduce their usage, there are still multiple ways to lessen the impact of screens on your eyes.

Start by paying attention to your body and keeping your distance. Position your device so that there is enough distance between the screen and your eyes. If you are using a computer, extend your arm while seated in front of the computer screen. The correct distance is when you can comfortably place your palm flat on the monitor.

If you are using a hand-held device, hold it just below eye level and at a distance that still allows you to look at the screen comfortably.

Digital devices are here to stay, but don’t let digital eyestrain slip your mind. Be conscious of your physical limitations, and if it affects your eyes seriously, laser eye surgeries can bring your good sight back.

July 29, 2015 at 6:07 amHealth & Lifestyle

Fillings Are Not Forever: Why Fillings Deteriorate & What You Can Do

When you have a nagging toothache caused by a cavity, your dentist removes the decayed area and — depending on the case and your preference — may fill it with silver or amalgam composite fillings. After the procedure, you might think that your tooth is good as new and requires no further treatments in the future. All you have to do is brush and floss regularly.

Unfortunately, fillings do not last forever.

According to dannythedentist.co.uk, a team of Weybridge dentists, dental fillings last for an average of 12 years.  Dentists often remind their patients about the removal and replacement of their dental fillings. While you may choose not to address the issue now, failure to pay attention to old fillings may lead to the worsening of cavities.

Why fillings deteriorate

dentalAs time passes, tooth-coloured fillings or composites turn yellow, darken or pick up stains from food and drinks. Discolouration occurs, which leads to the deterioration of your fillings. Apart from staining problems, fillings also suffer damage from chewing due to the tremendous pressure. If it not placed properly, it may cause complications.

Chipped, cracked or broken fillings also provide an entry point for bacteria. Presence of bacteria in the mouth leads to tooth decay, which infects the dental pulp and raises the need for a root canal treatment. If left unresolved, this may lead to the loss of the tooth.

Small filling cracks due to pressure

Activities that place pressure on your teeth, such as grinding and teeth clenching, lead to added stress on your existing fillings. Despite their durable composition, fillings have a tendency to develop small cracks and lines.

Whilst you cannot tell if your fillings are suffering from wear, your dentist can identify filling weaknesses during regular check-ups.

Talk to your dentist

Regular check-ups are essential to oral health, especially for filling maintenance. Keep in mind that fillings can suffer wear and may fail you unexpectedly. When you visit your dentist constantly, you save yourself from pain and other troubles of deteriorating fillings.

Save your fillings by speaking with your dentist. Before every treatment begins, make it a point to discuss your options in order to avoid costly procedures.

July 28, 2015 at 8:56 amHealth & Lifestyle

A Holistic Health for Your Aging Body and Soul

Life does not stop at 70, nor does it at 80, 90 or even 100. Life stops only and only when we take our last breath. Until that moment comes, every minute of our lives is an opportunity to live.

There is more to living than just surviving. It is about seizing every chance at new experiences and taking every spur of inspiration that life throws our way.

As you age, this adventure never stops. It will continue as long as there is blood in your veins and vigour in your spirit.

Focusing on the human spirit

Aging Body and SoulThe human spirit is often misunderstood and overlooked when it comes to assessing a person’s health. Acher.org.nz says a healthy spirit translates to a healthy body. While it sounds abstract, the spirit is much more concrete than you think. Through reconnection with your passions and interests, you can enrich the spirit and live out your last days more meaningfully.

Re-embracing faith

For most aging people, reconnecting to their old faith or embracing a new one can be a spiritual experience that makes the days feel more valuable and meaningful. Some retirement villages prioritise the exploration of faith and focuses on its role of helping elder loved-ones cope with aging.

Being physically active

In addition to spiritual and mental health, physical health is just as important. Immersing yourself in the beautiful sights of nature, like a relaxing day trip to your local springs and mountain trails, does not only make for a healthy heart, but also for a healthy eye and mind.

Being in communities

Finally, the social health of an aging individual is also a significant aspect in his or her overall wellbeing. Now is a good time as any to build and renew friendships. Connecting with new people and strengthening bonds with old ones can enrich your experience as you make that journey together.

Thankfully, modern retirement homes offer programs that give aging loved-ones purpose to live today, a reason to look forward to the future and become a part of a community that nurtures the mind, body and spirit.

July 22, 2015 at 7:21 amHealth & Lifestyle

Chernobyl Power Plant: The World’s Worst Nuclear Disaster

On April 26, 1986, the world was stunned with the news of explosion at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine. Reports say human error caused the accident. The tests went wrong and a power surge caused the reactor to explode, releasing considerable amounts of radiation into the environment.

According to the World Health Organization, 36 people died due to the accident. This was, the authorities believe, the worst nuclear disaster in world history. Compared to the atomic bomb dropped in Hiroshima at the end of World War II, the Chernobyl nuclear disaster was 400 times worse.

Events after the Explosion

Chernobyl Power PlantAs the emergency crew tried to suppress the fire and radiation leaks, they exposed themselves to the health effects of fallout. Day by day, the death toll of plant workers increased as they succumbed to acute radiation sickness. Within just four months, 28 Chernobyl nuclear power plant workers died.

Residents of nearby city Pripyat evacuated about 36 hours after the explosion, with some already showing signs of radiation sickness, such as vomiting and headaches. Officials then closed off a 30km area around the power plant. Some accounts say the radiation even reached as far as Sweden.

Decommissioning of the Plant

The reactor that exploded in 1986 was #4. The other three continued operation until authorities decommissioned #2 in 1991 due to fire. Reactor #1 shut down in 1996, while #3 was decommissioned in 2000. The website EnergySolutions.com mentions that innovative programs and facilities enable safe and cost-effective decommissioning and waste management of nuclear power plants.

Authorities sealed the damaged Reactor #4 inside a concrete sarcophagus. Its efficiency to hold the remaining radiation for many more years is still in question. There are plans already, but the construction of a more permanent structural container remains unimplemented.

Despite the health risks of exposure to radiation, a handful of residents went back to their homes. In 2011, Ukraine opened the area to tourists who want to see the aftermath of the disaster firsthand.

July 21, 2015 at 9:32 amDirections

Planning to Move to Canning Vale? Know the Pros and Cons

Canning Vale ranked as the 147th best suburb in Perth. That is not bad when you consider that there are 352 suburbs. It is not exactly a glowing recommendation, but if you are thinking of moving to the area, a closer inspection may help you decide.

You may want to be ready with a skip bin hire if you plan to do any construction, though. Local authorities want to keep the place clean.

Overview

Canning Vale is about 25,000 square kilometres in size. It has around 30,000 people and the majority speak only English. However, there is a good mix of cultures in the area and most are highly educated. Most housing units are single detached; if you plan to rent, you will pay about $410 a week. If you plan to buy, expect to pay about $500,000 for a 3-bedroom home.

Best Suburb in PerthPros

Canning Vale is a good place for families, single professionals and retirees. Residents consider it safe and secure for children. There are many nice parks and recreational areas where parking is not a problem.

Canning Vale is also home to many good restaurants. Schools, recreational areas, restaurants and airports are within walking distance from any point in Canning Vale.

Cons

Residents claim that housing in the area is overpriced. Prices are higher than the median rental and purchase price in Perth overall.

There are plans to sell off the recycling plant in Canning Vale. Because of this, skip bin hire company Kwik Skips says citizens should deal with domestic and commercial waste properly to keep the place clean.

The proximity of the Jandakot Airport means residents regularly hear the noise of passing planes, but with new flight paths, this should not be a problem for long. There are also poor public transportation services in the area, which is inconvenient for people who do not own or want to bring a car to work.

Some residents complain about heavy traffic in the early hours of the morning and evening.

No place is perfect and Canning Vale is no exception. Overall, however, Canning Vale is a good place for a family with kids, professionals, students and retirees.

July 21, 2015 at 12:07 amDirections

Available Treatment Options for Cleft Lip and Cleft Palate

An orofacial cleft is characterized by an opening in a baby’s palate or mouth roof and/or the lip. Cleft palate and cleft lip occurs in roughly one or two out of 1,000 newborns in the U.S. alone and is considered a common birth defect. Both of these orofacial clefts are treatable with most children being subjected to oral surgery for repairing their cleft before one or two years of age.

Oral Surgery for Cleft Lift and Palate Repair

Cleft lips are normally repaired through oral surgery in a hospital and under general anesthesia for children aged three to six months old. Special procedures such as a molding plate or lip adhesion for bringing together the lip parts prior to being completely repaired may be used if the cleft lip is considered to be wider than normal. This will be determined by the oral surgeon. After surgery, some scarring can occur.

Cleft Lip and Cleft PalateCleft palates, on the other hand, are normally repaired during a child’s 9th to 12th month of life. During surgery, the surgeon will connect the soft palate’s muscles and rearrange tissues within close proximity of the cleft. This is performed under general anesthesia and requires a few days of hospital stay. The main objective of the surgery is to fix the palate for proper speech. But, some children may still sound nasal even after surgery, while some can potentially develop a nasal tone in time. More oral surgeries can be performed as a child’s face structure changes due to aging and these will be recommended by an oral surgeon.

Orthodontic and Dental Treatment

It is crucial to maintain oral health for children following their cleft lip or cleft palate surgery since they are susceptible to a host of dental problems. Regular visits to the dentist and proper oral hygiene should be practiced religiously. In addition, children with cleft lips and cleft palates can start orthodontic treatment beginning at age six. These can include palatal expansions for younger children and braces or dental implants as they grow older.

July 15, 2015 at 12:02 amHealth & Lifestyle

Fear Not the Metal: Putting Braces in a Positive Light for your Teen

Most teenagers are not too keen on the idea of installing metal in their mouth to help their teeth look straighter. When the time comes for them to visit their dentist, teens shudder at the thought of wearing dental braces. Some are fearful of the metal contraption’s effect on their appearance. Will kids at school call them rude names such as ‘metal mouth’ or ‘tin grin’?

If your teenager experiences hesitation about seeing an orthodontist, a little encouragement from Mum and Dad goes a long way.

Each year in the UK, millions of adolescents visit their dentists for their braces appointment. The likelihood of your teenager being the only one amongst peers sporting braces is low. Some teenagers fear that braces will invite bullies and painful insults; some pupils face bullying at school, which lowers their self-esteem.

A social common ground for teens

Dental BracesBefore you consult for braces or six month smiles in Glasgow, it is important to help your teen realise that braces also serve as a great way to bond with others in the same situation. As well as share their experiences and struggles with braces, teens can also build stronger and more meaningful friendships with their peers. Teens who are friends with other children wearing braces find more things to talk about and build a social common ground.

A stylish trend and form of self-expression

Unbeknownst to other teens, braces also serve as a form of self-expression. Braces come with a wide selection of colours for their elastics; teenagers can choose the colours to represent their school or their favourite hues.

The endless choices of colours allow teens to choose the one that best represents their style. They can choose colours that complement their daily colours or simply express themselves. Creativity goes a long way and it certainly livens up the braces experience.

Removing the fear itself

One of the best ways to help your teen is by assuring them of the benefits that come with braces. While they will experience some discomfort in the beginning and right after every adjustment, the rewards of patience are often the sweetest. With braces, your teen will enjoy a straighter and better smile in the future. A good smile goes a long way for an educational future and career outlook.

Braces are beneficial for teens; they need not fear the dental appliances. With a little encouraging nudge from Mum and Dad, your teen will enjoy the new braces sooner than you think.

July 14, 2015 at 6:59 amHealth & Lifestyle

Safety Begins from Learning: Why Training is Important

According to an article by the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), nearly 4,600 worker deaths occurred in 2013. This is a considerably lower rate than before OSHA was established. Back then, 14,000 workers have died while on the job.

Nevertheless, this highlights the importance of implementing safety training and making sure each worker undergoes such programs. It doesn’t matter whether you provide OSHA safety training videos or conduct the training yourself; the important thing is that your workers have access to these safety measures.

Safety Begins from LearningWhat Should Your Safety Programs Include?

For a safety training program to be highly effective, it should be industry-specific and not just cover generic topics. For instance, if your organization is a construction firm, it should educate your employees on the following:

  • Safety in residential construction
  • Safety in bridge erection
  • Safety in paving, demolitions, and excavations
  • Safety in other high risk jobs, such as large-scale paint work
  • Proper use of machineries and equipment
  • Prevention and avoidance of accidents such as falls and electrocutions
  • Proper handling of materials containing health hazards such as asbestos, lead, radon, and silica dust
What Should You Feature in Job-Specific Construction Safety Programs?

Construction firms must comply with the general laws and regulations implemented by OSHA. As construction workers are involved in different activities, they should also undergo training for the specific job they are assigned to.

Some examples of job-specific, OSHA construction safety training include:

  • Working in confined spaces or environments
  • Working on demolition sites
  • Prevention of back overs
  • Operation of cranes and derricks

The great thing about safety training is you can use different materials. Rather than just provide plain text or audio files, you can use more visuals to keep your workers informed. This gives way to a faster, more effective learning process.

July 10, 2015 at 5:34 amStraight Study

Don’t Play the Hero: Dealing With a Loved One Suffering from Alcohol Abuse Disorder

Alcoholism is a chronic and progressive disease that can affect a person not just physically, but mentally and socially as well. If you know someone who is suffering from alcoholism, it can be extremely difficult to know how you can actually help them.

Don’t Put the Blame on Yourself

A typical behavior of an alcoholic is to blame their circumstances and even the people around them. Don’t beat yourself up if he or she tells you as such. They have become dependent on alcohol and their actions are clouded by alcohol. As painful as it may be, your love and concern for them are not enough to make them see the real deal. Your loved one will need professional help. The best thing you can do is to support them on their way to recovery.

Alcohol Abuse DisorderRemember: You cannot save them, but you CAN help them save themselves.

Seek Support and Empower Yourself Through Knowledge

Seek help and support for you and your loved one. An alcoholic would need professional help so that both of you will know the underlying cause of the disease. Talk with a professional, so you can understand the disease better and what you can do for your loved one. Also, a professional will be the best judge for treatment options. In some cases, it can be as an outpatient, but for severe cases among women, annieshouse.com says an alcohol rehab center might be needed. Some centers offer options like being exclusive for teens, for women, and the like.

Apart from seeking treatment, you might also want to join support groups. You can learn more about the disease from them and have a network of people who understand the position you are in.

Talk With Your Loved One

In a quiet and caring atmosphere, reach out to your loved one. It’s best to do this when they are sober. Remain calm even when they start pushing your buttons. Just let them feel that you genuinely care for them and let them know about your concerns.

July 9, 2015 at 10:19 amHealth & Lifestyle

What Happens When You Ignore Your Gutters

Roof GutterThe repercussions of not cleaning and maintaining your gutters can go beyond water damage and insect infestation. When gutters are filled with debris like leaves and twigs, the water cannot escape properly and could end up seeping inside your home. This results in leaking roofs and gutters and major ceiling and wall damage.

Totally Guttered Limited shares the other possible misfortunes when you fail to clean or maintain your gutters.

Clogged Gutters

When gutters are ignored, they get so clogged with debris that they become useless. The excess weight of twigs, leaves and standing water, furthermore, can make the gutters sag and pull away from the fascia. This can also cause extensive gutter leaks and damage to the exterior of your home.

Leaks in the Basement

If your gutters are clogged or not working properly, the excess water will collect and accumulate in your basement, and eventually leak in. A leak in the basement is a serious problem, as it can lead to electrical shock, a gas leak or pollutants in your home.

Structural Damage

Homes and foundations made with wood are vulnerable to major structural damage. When rainwater cannot drain properly, it will collect and enter the house. This will cause the wood to rot, leading to costly foundation damage and repairs.

Washed Out Plants

Excess water from clogged gutters can kill plants, grass and trees. This can also cause severe erosion, washing out your landscaping and ruining young plantings. Overflowing gutters, furthermore, can cause the pavement and driveway to become slippery from excess water.

Insect Invasion

Without properly maintained gutters, moisture will build up, causing bug infestation. Insects like ants, roaches and termites may invade and cause infestation in your dirty and faulty gutters. Pooling water can also attract mosquitoes around your home.

If you’re not comfortable with heights, consider hiring a contractor to clean your gutters. Cleaning and maintaining them can prolong the life of your roof and keep water damage out of your ceilings, walls and basement.

July 2, 2015 at 5:35 amHealth & Lifestyle