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As glorious as the human body can be, we do get ill from time to time. Even a simple cold can have a drastic impact on the week; runny nose, agitated cough, or maybe something more severe. If there’s one thing we all learn as we grow up, it’s that we’re not as invincible as we might have thought, even in our prime. So when you wake up with a throat like a furnace, your head is throbbing behind your eyes, and venturing to the shop for relief feels like climbing Everest, you call work and let them know you’re ill, simple. Work then gives you the time you need off, and after a few days respite, it’s back to the office with a skip and a hop. Depending on what’s ailing you, work should give you adequate time to recover, so what do you do if the situation is a little more serious?

Approximately 1 in 3 of us will get cancer in our life time, a sobering fact and no mistake: it’s a complete world changer. Medical technology has advanced a long way in the last decade, but we are still a long way from discovering a proper cure for many diseases. For now, treatments in cancer and genetic disorders can take anywhere between 6 months and a year. In the event that something should happen to you, securing your finances should be a priority as well as the protection of your family and friends.

Unfortunately, the world keeps on turning and money will always be a prime concern, especially after a terminal diagnosis. Thankfully, companies like The Women’s Wealth Expert can help sort out finance for women all over the UK in preparation for something as world-shattering as a terminal diagnosis. Working men and women suffer the same problems, but it’s nice to know that financial advice, specifically tailored for working women, is available to help working women prepare for whatever the future may bring. The days of the man of the house bringing home the bread are long gone, so services like this make for a welcome change for working women all over the country.

There is tailored help like this available for both men and women, but finding the right support for your situation can often feel like running a maze. See this video of testimonies from surviving cancer patients if you are unsure of what to do, or who to speak to.

The most important thing for you to remember is to communicate. Talking about an illness can help influence what you do about it and set you on a more active path to recovery. For more information on dealing with severe illness, visit the BBC Health site, or speak to your local GP.

There are things we do everyday to ensure we are as healthy as we can be. We brush our teeth twice a day, floss as often as we remember, try and eat five fruit and veg a day and regularly check for lumps and bumps.  Though all this is commendable and comforting, what are you doing to ensure your eyes a spick and span?

Note: eating the odd carrot doesn’t count as making sure your eyes are in working order either.

It has been recorded that over 21 million Americans are currently legally blind with that number set to increase so it’s important to keep these things in mind when thinking about your eyes and not turn a blind eye to a really important issue.

Smoking

It comes as no surprise that smoking can seriously affect your eyes as well as a multitude of other body parts. Smoking is bad for your eyes because is deprives the retina of oxygen and the vitamin B12, both essential to the health of the optic nerve. It can also cause an increased disposition towards wrinkles related to the oxygen depriving properties of nicotine and tobacco.

Drinking

Alcohol consumption can be really harmful for eye health with many doctors and eye specialists claiming it is among the worst culprits for affecting healthy eye tissue. Alcohol increases blood circulation around the body and when a person has been drinking, you may notice that their face appears quite flushed. This increased blood circulation rushes blood to the eyes which are rich in small capillaries.  It is particularly the capillaries which are affected by affects of alcohol as the rush of blood burst the capillaries and deprive the eye of oxygen. This is why eyes can appear to be quite blood shot after heavy drinking.

Diet

The public are always receiving information about their diet- what’s good for them, what’s not, saturated fats, calories, super-foods- the list goes on and often it can be quite confusing.  What we eat has an effect on every part of our body so making sure they’re beneficial is essential.

Foods such as kale and other greens are packed full of the required protein lutien which renew and protect healthy cells, apricots are packed of the helpful carotene proteins and sweet potatoes have plenty of vitamin C. Zinc is also very important and can be found in foods such as oysters and eggs.

Diet is intrinsically linked to eye health with diseases such diabetes being detrimental to eye health with many sufferers going blind if a good diet is not maintained.  It is estimated that over 2.9 people suffer from diabetes in the UK so taking care of our diets will help the eyes look after themselves.

Check

Regularly going to have your eyes checked by an eye specialist is a good idea.  This can determine whether visual aids are needed when you read or watch TV or even all the time.  This can mean that as a result you are  putting unnecessary strain on your eyes and damaging them for good!

 

For years now, celebrities and middle aged women (and men) have increasingly turned to cosmetic surgery and advances in beauty sciences to reverse the signs of aging.

It used to be a pot of Pond’s cold cream on  every woman’s dressing table in the past but today anti aging creams can contain everything from Keratin, collagen and caffeine to give skin a more youthful look.  Apart from anti aging creams, Botox has become as popular as ever, with middle aged women, and men, throwing Botox parties where they are injected with the drug to erase crow’s feet and gobble a smoked salmon canape simultaneously.  In America, though it was unlicensed as a wrinkle treatment until early this year, it has seen the use of Botox increase by four times as reported in The Daily Mail.

Botox is a different form of the poison botulinum toxin.  The chemical poison works by being injected into the muscles which control the lines that cause wrinkles in the face and then temporarily paralysing them.  In Botox treatment, this can be effective for up to six months.

Although this may seem the ideal solution, there are many risks with injecting Botox into your facial tissue especially if the person administering the drug is not properly qualified. Improper use may result in drooping muscles, injecting too deep and causing real sensory damage and injecting a nerve and pushing the drug directly into your bloodstream.

Doctor’s are still unsure about what the long term effects of the drugs are too but recent animal study suggests that there may be long term damage associated with using the drug in sensory muscles.

In recent news, The Royal College of Surgeons are calling for a ban on the administration of the drug by beauticians and other beauty professionals and instead are calling for only Doctors and Dentists to be allowed by law to administer the potentially dangerous drugs.

They say that this way, it will increase people’s awareness that this drug isn’t something to treat lightheartedly and is actually a medical procedure they are choosing to use for cosmetic reason. Additionally, it will deter rogue and counterfeit versions of the drug being more readily available which can cause much damage and could even prove to be fatal

Aside from cosmetic use,  there are many more medicinal uses to the drug Botox.

This includes treating cerebral palsy in children,  relieving writer’s cramp, curing facial ticks such as upper lip spasms and research is being carried out for the treatment of bladder weakness using Botox.

It is important to keep in mind when considering Botox, that it is a potentially dangerous drug which could cause facial paralysis if used incorrectly.

Used correctly however it can be used to treat a number of illnesses and conditions which otherwise would be even more  uncomfortable for the sufferer than necessary and researchers are working on using it to treat even more conditions too.

 

 

Medical advancements are being made continuously, bringing good news for everyone, but all of this inevitably costs money. As new drugs and treatments become available they will be expensive or hard to get on the NHS. This is where personal medical insurance can be the difference between getting the right treatment now, or getting seen eventually.

Personal medical insurance need not be expensive and nearly everyone can be covered to a certain extent, be it a new pair of glasses each year or getting a life saving transplant months quicker than usual.

There is a huge range of cover options available which can help people with recurring problems or just for people to get peace of mind so that they are covered should the worst happen. Some things can affect your cover when recurring illnesses are involved though. If you are diagnosed with a long term or recurring illness such as an asbestos related diagnosis, it can affect how well you are covered and this may need to be adjusted.

Here are some advantages to getting your own medical cover;

  • Queuing time. NHS waiting list times have improved to a minimum of 18 weeks between referral and treatment, but with private care you can get seen much quicker than this, which gives you one less thing to worry about.
  • Decreased risk of infection. Many people are worried about MRSA in NHS hospitals, especially the elderly and those more susceptible to infections. In private settings this can be greatly reduced.
  • Choice. You can get a much greater range of choice from where you see consultants and what treatment you get. On the NHS it is often one set option, which may not be the best for you.
  • Private room. You can have more privacy in between treatments and have your family visit in a quiet room rather than on a ward. Some policies go one further and give you a en-suite too. This will often have the added bonus of unrestricted visiting hours, which can be greatly beneficial.
  • Continuity. You will get a more personal service and be seen by one consultant throughout, only being passed on when it is required. This can let you get a better relationship with your doctor and let them understand your needs.
  • Specialist claim teams. If there is blame for your condition then there will be people at hand to help you through the process.

There are numerous other advantages in addition to those listed, so if you can afford it, you should get covered today.

The power of sight is undoubtedly one of the most miraculous features of the human body. The visual system enables us to incorporate our visible environment into various other mental and physical reactions. The process of sight is initiated when the eye lens focuses on a particular image which reflects onto a light-sensitive membrane present in the back of the eye, otherwise known as the retina. The retina is formally an essential area of the brain, which functions solely as a transducer to convert light patterns into specific neuronal signals. The lens and the retina work simultaneously to produce the signal; the lens instigates the process by focusing light onto the photo-receptive cells of the retina, which subsequently respond by detecting the light photons and converting them into a neural impulse which travels upstream to the lateral geniculate nucleus via the optic nerve, which then proceeds the signal onto the primary and secondary visual cortex within the brain.

The ability to see is unquestionably an incredible feature that we, as humans often take for granted. As time moves on and the aging process develops many of us notice a certain degradation in our vision, may that be a ‘blurriness’ or the difficulty in adjusting ones eyesight as a result of changes in light or distance. The deterioration of our eyesight can be a painful reality, there are many ways in which we can unintentionally damage our eyesight, and in most cases this can be prevented quite easily. We cannot underestimate the power of U.V light, exposure to bright light can permanently damage our eyes even after just a few hours of exposure. The harmful U.V rays can be easily blocked by wearing sunglasses, a simple solution to a potentially dangerous hazard.

It’s not the most popular past time to sit considering what life might be like following your death for your family and friends, yet if you have dependants it is important to ensure they will be looked after should something unfortunate happen to you. Many people have some kind of standard life insurance policy in place but not many consider how they might support themselves should they suffer some other unpleasant but less terminal fate. This is where critical illness life insurance comes in, allowing you to guarantee the short term financial security of your family not only in the event of your death but also on you suffering a serious downturn in your health.

Life insurance can generate a cash lump sum for you or your loved ones once you develop one of any of the serious ailments listed in your policy documents. This list is fairly standard from policy to policy but you can ask for additional illnesses to be written in to the cover should you wish. This is a good idea if you have a strong hereditary link to certain illnesses although some conditions may require an increase in the premium to the critical illness life insurance.Critical illness life insurance can be taken out from any number of financial institutions, and you may even get some kind of discount or other special offers from taking it out with a company you’re already a customer of, such as your bank.

The human immunodeficiency virus is characterized as a retro virus which causes Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS). Aids develop within the body as a condition which causes the progressive degeneration of the immune system; causing the carrier to become immunocompromised, meaning they are extremely more susceptible to infections and cancers, which ultimately can become life-threatening.

HIV infects vital T helper cells within the immune system; more specifically CD4+, macrophages and dendritic cells. Once a human becomes infected with HIV the CD4+ cells rapidly decrease in number via three specific mechanisms; direct viral killing, increased rates of apoptosis (cell death) and finally the destruction of CD4+Tcells by cytotoxic lymphocytes. These three lethal systems contribute to the breakdown of cell-mediated immunity and the body progressively becomes more susceptible to opportunistic infections.

Over the past few decades scientific research has dramatically enhanced our knowledge and understanding of the retrovirus and our subsequent advancements in support and treatment areas. Support and empathy is not only targeted at the diagnosed individuals but to the family and friends affected by what can be in most cases an extended painful progression. Although AIDS is characterized as incurable, there are an ever-evolving range of treatments available which to the majority greatly improve quality of life. Alongside treatment, an essential aspect of managing the virus is to take advantage of the various support groups available.

A number of AIDS charities have been established to provide help and support where needed within the lives of AIDs sufferers and their families. A great deal of energy and money derived from the charities are used to directly fund medical research into improved courses of treatment, directly targeting the source of the condition.

Unicef Volunteers Delivering Aid

There are millions of people across the globe that are affected by AIDS, in the past few decades the disease has become a central focus in medical developments and mainstream consciousness. Since the AIDS pandemic has surfaced there have been a large number of AIDS charitable foundations and support groups established to help people who have been infected by the disease; both directly and indirectly.

The aids charity symbol of the red ribbon is now a universal icon representing the support of the wearer. The AIDS charity foundations invest an extensive amount of time and effort into assisting the lives of those unfortunate individuals who have been affected by the disease. The money raised by the charities is invested into all imaginable aspects of combating the disease, from research and treatments to counselling for sufferers and their families.

UNICEF is an example of a large charitable organisation established to assist with children diagnosed with AIDS across the globe. UNICEF work with local families, communities and governments in more than 190 countries worldwide to protect and promote the rights of children. For over 60 years Unicef have been delivering support to institute a lasting change by responding to the consistently evolving challenges which children face on a global scale.

More recent charity work from organisations such as AVERT responds dynamically to the effect of AIDS in a three step programme. The first of which is the community programme, AVERT builds partnerships with local organisations to directly avert the spread of HIV and aids, ultimately improving the treatment, care and support given to those individuals affected by the disease. The second step in the programme is to provide information and promote awareness about the HIV virus to target the transmission and consequent spread of the virus. Finally AVERT delivers help and advice to the general public through specific enquiries, as well as campaigning for improved responses on specific issues, such as preventing children being born with HIV.

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