Tag Archives: anxiety

JUST WEEKS AWAY – 6th INTERNATIONAL FIBROMYALGIA CONFERENCE 2015

If you have not booked for our 6th  international Fibromyalgia Conference on April 24/27 2015, at Chichester Park Hotel,  it is not too late but  do not waste time. We have a lot of interest. The hotline to book  0844 887 2512.

Once again the cost is as low as we can make it to enable folks to enjoy the education, research news, make new friends, as well as entertainment, fun and laughter. You will have a chance to talk to the speakers personally 1-2-1 – almost a private consultation as part of the conference weekend and you will be among folk who understand your aches and pains. It has been said, “Conference is a great educational and life changing experience”. We aim to please.

If finding the fee is a stumbling block, you could make payment by using your credit card. Why not add it to your Tesco shopping credit card  as a “lend” and pay off a little each month. Paypal will accept  credit cards with an additional 4% charge. If you need help with the process please ask.

When folks talk about fibromyalgia there are several symptoms most of us suffer and  live with. This includes pain 24/7, chronic fatigue, sleeplessness, cognitive behaviour, IBS, morning stiffness,  depression and many more. This conference our experts will be highlighting some of these symptoms. With a wide and varied programme around the main FM symptoms, we are aiming to help with interesting speakers from the USA, Canada, Australia and the UK.

Iris Weverman, a registered physiotherapist from Canada who specialises in FM, will talk  about chronic fatigue, stiffness and exercise  for fibromyalgia. In her second talk she will discuss trigger points versus tender points … not to be missed.

Dr. Nick Read,  a gastroenterologist psychoanalytical psychotherapist, human nutritionist, interested in FM, will talk about his active involvement in the IBS Network , and integrated medicine.  As a nutritionist we are hoping he will give us a recommended diet for those with IBS.

Andrew Pothecary, a specialist pharmacist in Rheumatology & Biologics at the Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust, will be  lecturing at The Clinical Pharmacy Congress on the Future of Clinical Pharmacy in London on the Friday. As an old friend, he has agreed to stop over and talk to us on Saturday. We hope to learn more about the medications that our GPs prescribe for fibromites  pains.

Afifah Hamilton, MNIMH Cert Phyt ITEC, GAP practitioner and nutritionist, is an alternative medical practitioner who uses herbal remedies for wellbeing. Afifah is medically trained and a specialist in physical, psychological and conventional treatments with herbal options. She will be discussing sleeplessness  among other symptoms. If you are prone to too  many drugs, you should not miss this presentation.

An American lady with fibromyalgia and a great reputation, will be with us to talk about her commitment for FM. We hope she will include news of research, life with FM in the States and living with fibromyalgia. Jan Chambers is President of the USA National  Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association, founder of the Centre of Understanding, Research and Education of Fibromyalgia (CURE FM) and co-founder of the NFA Leaders Coalition, Executive Committee. Married for 35 years and the mother of 5 children, Jan has had a roller coaster ride with fibromyalgia since 2005. Her background really makes interesting reading and will save a lot of questions if you are coming to conference. This is a lady who commands my highest respect and I am honoured she has agreed to visit us. Try http://www.fmcpaware.org/jan-chambers. “I’ve got my life back, and I love every minute of it” she said.

Another interesting speaker with big claims is Philip Rafferty. Born in the UK he lives  in Australia and travels the world. A specialist in fibromyalgia, chronic pain and CFS he is a kinesiology ‘wizard’. He claims the corrections he teaches fibromites keeps them out of fight/flight/ freeze/survival. What he does he says is different to anything else. He  claims he achieves instant dramatic pain reduction. This I  must see!

We are again pleased to welcome Wes and John with the Benefits & Debt Clinic which will be operating Friday afternoon from 3.15pm. Look at their website – for debt and benefits http://frontlinedebtadvice.org.uk/ – you might find it interesting.

As usual there will also be other attractions. On Friday evening we have the film premier of the documentary movie made at FM Conference 2014. Called ‘Focus on Fibromyalgia’ it includes consultants’ comments as well as the views of those who live with this condition. Be sure to see the film as it is a movie you should not miss. Lasting 65 minutes, it is full of information and you will need to go back and back again to the film to see what you missed. Copies of the film will be available to purchase with a donation from sales  to fibro research.

THERE IS MORE

Jen Lee is back with us again for some light relief and with more Belly Dancing steps to learn. We hope to have all doctors on stage Sunday afternoon for discussions and questions. Do not forget the fun auction of wine and other gifts donated by delegates on Monday morning.

Simon Stuart, a leading member of the FibCon team, who works in the medical profession with the elderly, will be giving a talk about Alzheimers – a hot topic at present. You will also meet Nicki Southwell this time. A name some will know, Nicki has been working with Simon and I for several months as Assistant Co-ordinator. We were sorry to lose Teresa White towards the end of last year, due to her health problems. We understand she is on the mend but taking things slowly. We have a great team of helpers this year who will be wearing their pink badges and should be able to help delegates and answer questions.

To join us for some worthwhile education, fun, laughter,  email Simon Stuart at fibcon2015bookings@gmail.com to check availability and book or ring the HOT LINE 0844 887 2512  to book or email jeanne@follypogsfibro.org. to reserve a room and get a booking form.

This conference will be an action packed weekend as usual – Friday to Monday –from April 24th  to 27th  2015 at Chichester Park Hotel, plus evening entertainment, all included for £220 per person sharing double room – just £55 a day all found. This covers the cost of  food, accommodation,  the conference and entertainment. There are no single bookings now only a waiting list. The food is good and the staff are very helpful. The hotel has an indoor pool, jacuzzi, spa and some  exercise equipment for use of our visitors.

STOP PRESS –  We have been offered  a trial run of the new and exciting ActiPatch. We have a patch for each delegate to try.  If it works for you Boots sell the patches which  I believe is  a forerunner of a Electromagnetic Pulse Therapy device which provide 90 hours of 8 hour treatments (720 hours). We only have patches.

ActiPatch is said to be a highly effective therapy by chronic pain individuals and trials have increased purchases. This reflects the result of the reported benefits of clinically significant and sustained decreases in chronic pain, large improvements in quality of life, and decreases in the reliance of analgesic pain medications including opioid based drugs. We have had news from an American FM group where members used the patch and are excited about it. There is only have a limited number of patches for FM delegates only.

Finally it is worth mentioning the weekend conferences are sponsored by Folly Pogs Fibromyalgia Research. Every booking makes a contribution to fibromyalgia research and the raffle and other paid items contribute to FM research. No one gets paid except the bills. We survive under The Old Pal Act 1845. We beg and borrow to make ends meet.

There is always someone to  talk to at conference if you come alone. You will soon make new friends and meet others at our Friday ‘onesie’ meeting for those who are alone.

We hope it will be another smash hit conference with entertainment, fun and laughter with educational and helpful tips. For more information about this and the last conference  –  see http://fibromyalgiaconference.weebly.com. Hope to see you at conference. Jeanne

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RESEARCH HINTS AT WHY STRESS IS MORE DEVASTATING FOR SOME

RESEARCH HINTS AT WHY STRESS IS MORE DEVASTATING FOR SOME

From the FMS Global News Desk of Jeanne Hambleton Released: 3-Sep-2014                 Source Newsroom: Rockefeller University

 

Newswise — Some people take stress in stride; others are done in by it. New research at Rockefeller University has identified the molecular mechanisms of this so-called stress gap in mice with very similar genetic backgrounds — a finding that could lead researchers to better understand the development of psychiatric disorders such as anxiety and depression.

“Like people, each animal has unique experiences as it goes through its life. And we suspect that these life experiences can alter the expression of genes, and as a result, affect an animal’s susceptibility to stress,” says senior author Bruce McEwen, Alfred E. Mirsky Professor and head of the Harold and Margaret Milliken Hatch Laboratory of Neuroendocrinology.

“We have taken an important step toward explaining the molecular origins of this stress gap by showing that inbred mice react differently to stress, with some developing behaviors that resemble anxiety and depression, and others remaining resilient.”

The results, published September 2 in Molecular Psychiatry, point toward potential new markers to aid the diagnosis of stress-related disorders, such as anxiety and depression, and a promising route to the development of new treatments for these devastating disorders.

In experiments, researchers stressed the mice by exposing them to daily, unpredictable bouts of cage tilting, altered dark-light cycles, confinement in tight spaces and other conditions mice dislike with the goal of reproducing the sort of stressful experiences thought to be a primary cause of depression in humans. Afterward, in tests to see if the mice displayed the rodent equivalent of anxiety and depression symptoms, they found about 40 per cent showed high levels of behaviours that included a preference for a dark compartment over a brightly lit one, or a loss of interest in sugar water. The remaining 60 per cent recovered well from the stress. This distinction between the susceptible mice and the resilient ones was so fundamental that it emerged even before the mice were subjected to stress; some unstressed mice showed an anxiety-like preference for a dark compartment over a lighted one.

The researchers found that the highly stress-susceptible mice had less of an important molecule known as mGlu2 in a stress-involved region of the brain known as the hippocampus. The mGlu2 decrease, they determined, resulted from an epigenetic change, which affects the expression of genes, in this case the gene that codes for mGlu2.

“If you think of the genetic code as words in a book, the book must be opened in order for you to read it. These epigenetic changes, which affect histone proteins associated with DNA, effectively close the book, so the code for mGlu2 cannot be read,” says first author Carla Nasca, a postdoc in the lab and a fellow of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

Previously, she and colleagues implicated mGlu2 in depression when they showed that a promising potential treatment known as acetyl carnitine rapidly alleviated depression-like symptoms in rats and mice by reversing these epigenetic changes to mGlu2 and causing its levels to increase.

“Currently, depression is diagnosed only by its symptoms,” Nasca says. “But these results put us on track to discover molecular signatures in humans that may have the potential to serve as markers for certain types of depression. Our work could also lead to a new generation of rapidly acting antidepressants, such as the candidate acetyl carnitine, which would be particularly important to reduce the risk of suicide.”

A reduction in mGlu2 matters because this molecule regulates the neurotransmitter glutamate. While glutamate plays a crucial role relaying messages between neurons as part of many important processes, too much can lead to harmful structural changes in the brain.

“The brain is constantly changing. When stressful experiences lead to anxiety and depressive disorders the brain becomes locked in a state it cannot spontaneously escape,” McEwen says.

“Studies like this one are increasingly focusing on the regulation of glutamate as an underlying mechanism in depression and, we hope, opening promising new avenues for the diagnosis and treatment of this devastating disorder.”

The Hope for Depression Research Foundation and the American Society for Suicide Prevention sponsored this research.

 

REACTING TO PERSONAL SETBACKS: DO YOU BOUNCE BACK OR GIVE UP?

From the FMS Global News Desk of Jeanne Hambleton Embargoed: 4-Sep-2014        Citations Neuron 10.1016/j.neuron.2014.08.012Source Newsroom: Rutgers University

 

Newswise — Sometimes when people get upsetting news – such as a failing exam grade or a negative job review – they decide instantly to do better the next time. In other situations that are equally disappointing, the same people may feel inclined to just give up.

How can similar setbacks produce such different reactions? It may come down to how much control we feel we have over what happened, according to new research from Rutgers University-Newark. The study, published in the journal Neuron, also finds that when these setbacks occur, the level of control we perceive may even determine which of two distinct parts of the brain will handle the crisis.

“Think of the student who failed an exam,” says Jamil Bhanji, a postdoctoral fellow at Rutgers and one of the study’s co-authors.

“They might feel they would not have failed if they had studied harder, studied differently – something under their control.” That student, Bhanji says, resolves to try new study habits and work hard toward acing the next exam. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) used in the study showed activity in a part of the brain called the ventral striatum – which has been shown to guide goals based on prior experiences.

A different student might have failed the same test, but believes it happened because the questions were unfair or the professor was mean, things that he could not control. The negative emotions produced by this uncontrollable setback may cause the student to drop the course.

Overcoming those negative emotions and refocusing on doing well in the class may require a more complicated thought process. In cases like this, fMRI revealed that activity in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC), a part of the brain that regulates emotions in more flexible ways, is necessary to promote persistence.

Mauricio Delgado, an associate professor of psychology at Rutgers’ Newark College of Arts and Sciences and the study’s other co-author, says people whose jobs include delivering bad news should pay attention to these results, because their actions might influence how the news is received.

“You may deliver the news to the student – no sugar coating, here’s your setback,” says Delgado. “But then you make an offer – ‘would you like to review those study habits with me? I would be happy to do it.’ This puts the student in a situation where they may experience control and be more likely to improve the next time.” This approach, Delgado says, may be far more constructive than curtly delivering a bad grade.

Bhanji says lessons from the study may even guide certain people toward giving up too soon on careers where they could do well. “We wonder why there are fewer women and minorities in the sciences, for example,” he explains.

“Maybe in cases like that it is fair to say there are things we can do to promote reactions to negative feedback that encourage persistence.”

That is not to say everyone should persist. “There are times,” Delgado adds, “when you should not be persistent with your goals. That is where the striatal system in the brain, which can be a source of more habitual responses, may be a detriment. You keep thinking ‘I can do it, I can do it.’ But maybe you should not do it. During these times, interpreting the setback more flexibly, via the vmPFC, may be more helpful.”

As research continues, adds Bhanji, important areas to explore will include “figuring out when it’s worth continuing to keep trying and when it is not.”

 

PROFESSORS PROVIDE MOST UPDATED INFORMATION ON ASPIRIN IN THE PREVENTION OF A FIRST HEART ATTACK

From the FMS Global News Desk of Jeanne Hambleton Released: 2-Sep-2014   Citations Trends in Cardiovascular Medicine    Source : Florida Atlantic University

 

Newswise — The first researcher in the world to discover that aspirin prevents a first attack, Charles H. Hennekens, M.D., Dr.P.H., the first Sir Richard Doll professor and senior academic advisor to the dean in the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine at Florida Atlantic University, has published a comprehensive review in the current issue of the journal Trends in Cardiovascular Medicine.

Hennekens and his coauthor James E. Dalen, M.D., M.P.H., executive director of the Weil Foundation and dean emeritus, University of Arizona College of Medicine, provide the most updated information on aspirin in the prevention of a first heart attack.

Hennekens also presented these findings from the article titled “Aspirin in the Primary Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease: Current Knowledge and Future Research Needs,” on Saturday, Aug. 30 at a “Meet the Experts” lecture at the European Society of Cardiology meetings in Barcelona, Spain. Serving as chair of a symposium on Sunday, Aug. 31, he also delivered a lecture on “Evolving Concepts in Cardiovascular Prevention: Aspirin Then and Now.”

In the article, Hennekens and Dalen emphasize that the evidence in treatment indicates that all patients having a heart attack or who have survived a prior event should be given aspirin. In healthy individuals, however, they state that any decision to prescribe aspirin should be an individual clinical judgment by the healthcare provider that weighs the absolute benefit in reducing the risk of a first heart against the absolute risk of major bleeding.

“The crucial role of therapeutic lifestyle changes and other drugs of life saving benefit such as statins should be considered with aspirin as an adjunct, not alternative,” said Hennekens. “The benefits of statins and aspirin are, at the very least, additive. The more widespread and appropriate use of aspirin in primary prevention is particularly attractive, especially in developing countries where cardiovascular disease is emerging as the leading cause of death.”

Hennekens also notes that aspirin is generally widely available over the counter and is extremely inexpensive. He cautions, however, that more evidence is necessary in intermediate risk subjects before general guidelines should be made.

Among the numerous honors and recognition Hennekens has received include the 2013 Fries Prize for Improving Health for his seminal contributions to the treatment and prevention of cardiovascular disease, the 2013 Presidential Award from his alma mater, Queens College for his distinguished contributions to society, the 2013 honoree as part of FAU’s Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine from the American Heart Association for reducing deaths from heart attacks and strokes, and the 2014 honoree from the Ochsner Foundation for his seminal research on smoking and disease.

From 1995 to 2005, Science Watch ranked Hennekens as the third most widely cited medical researcher in the world and five of the top 20 were his former trainees and/or fellows. In 2012, Science Heroes ranked Hennekens No. 81 in the history of the world for having saved more than 1.1 million lives.

– FAU –

About Florida Atlantic University:
Florida Atlantic University, established in 1961, officially opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University, with an annual economic impact of $6.3 billion, serves more than 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students at sites throughout its six-county service region in southeast Florida. FAU’s world-class teaching and research faculty serves students through 10 colleges: the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters, the College of Business, the College for Design and Social Inquiry, the College of Education, the College of Engineering and Computer Science, the Graduate College, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science. FAU is ranked as a High Research Activity institution by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The University is placing special focus on the rapid development of three signature themes – marine and coastal issues, biotechnology and contemporary societal challenges – which provide opportunities for faculty and students to build upon FAU’s existing strengths in research and scholarship..

Back soon. Jeanne

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

L-DOPA MEDICATION COULD BE HELPFUL IN THE TREATMENT OF PHOBIAS AND POST-TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER

L-DOPA MEDICATION COULD BE HELPFUL IN THE TREATMENT OF PHOBIAS AND POST-TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER  

Scientists at Mainz and Innsbruck explore new treatment approach to overcome fear

From the News Desk of Jeanne Hambleton

Posted on July 9, 2014 by Stone Hearth News /Universität Mainz

A drug used to treat Parkinson’s disease could also help people with phobias or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Scientists of the Translational Neurosciences (FTN) Research Center at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) are currently exploring the effects of psychotherapy to extinguish fears in combination with L-dopa. This drug does not only help movement disorders, but might also be used to override negative memories.

Professor Raffael Kalisch, head of the Neuroimaging Center (NIC) of the JGU Translational Neurosciences Research Center, and his collaborators at the University of Innsbruck are conducting research in mice and in humans into the psychological and neurobiological mechanisms of anxiety and fear. “Fear reactions are essential to health and survival, but the memories of angst-inducing situations may cause long-term anxiety or phobias,” explained Kalisch.

In psychotherapy, the ‘fear extinction’ method is used in exposing people to a threat but without the adverse consequences. Latest research has proven that extinguishing fear also predicts mental health after trauma, suggesting extinction may be an important resilience mechanism.

Fear extinction involves a person being presented with a neutral stimulus, such as a circle on a screen, together with a painful sensation. Soon the person predicts pain in response to the circle on the screen and fear becomes conditioned.

Then the person is shown the circle again, but this time without the painful stimulus, so that the person can disassociate the two factors. A person who is afraid of spiders, for example, will in psychotherapy be confronted with spiders in a way that reassures them that the spider is harmless.

In another research program, Belgian scientists tested the ability to extinguish fear in soldiers later deployed to a war zone and found differences in the soldiers’ resilience to traumatic memories. Some experienced post-traumatic stress symptoms following their deployment, whereas those who were able to extinguish fear in the laboratory maintained a good state of mental health.

“If you are mentally flexible enough to change the associations that your mind has created, you might be better able to avoid lasting damage,” explained Kalisch. In cooperation with other scientists, Kalisch has found first evidence that this process of changing negative associations might involve the brain’s systems for reward and pleasure and depend on release of the neurotransmitter dopamine that helps control them.

However, even after successful extinction, old fear associations can return under other stressful circumstances. This might involve the development of PTSD or a relapse after successful psychotherapy. Kalisch has found that L-dopa, a drug to treat Parkinson’s disease, can prevent this effect and could therefore possibly be used to prevent relapse in treated PTSD or phobia patients.

L-dopa is taken up by the brain and transformed into dopamine that not only controls the brain’s reward and pleasure centers and helps regulate movement, but also affects memory formation. The person receiving L-dopa after extinction will thus create a stronger secondary positive memory of the extinction experience and will thus be able to more easily replace the negative memory. This raises new questions about the role of primary fear memories and secondary prevention by L-dopa.

“We would like to be able to enhance the long-term effects of psychotherapy by combining it with L-dopa,” said Professor Raffael Kalisch. To this end, he is about to start a clinical study of people with a spider phobia to determine the effects of L-dopa on therapy outcome.

“Manipulating the dopamine system in the brain is a promising avenue to boost primary and secondary preventive strategies based on the extinction procedure,” he continued.

Anxiety, Phobias & Panic

My comments

This article is supported by book called  Anxiety, Phobias & Panic by Reneau Peurifoy published in 2004. The sub title is A Step by Step Program for Regaining Control of Your Life.  The book has however been updated  as a paperback in 2010.

The original book discusses reducing anxiety symptoms,  understanding and reducing stress,  identifying the sources and distorted thinking.  By chapter six  the reader  is learning to Enjoy Being Human.  With over 300 pages and  15 lessons   about sleep, relaxation, listening skills and developing a group, it is pretty good value  with Amazon.co.uk   for just 40p. . Not a typing error – forty pence. It has great testimonials and rates 5 stars.  The later book is considerably more expensive.

I always like to add something extra  and thought  you might enjoy these techniques.

5 THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT RELAXATION TECHNIQUES FOR STRESS

From the FMS Global News Desk of Jeanne Hambleton

Source National Center  for Complementary & Alternative Medicines (NCCAM)

When you are under stress, your body reacts by releasing hormones that produce the “fight-or-flight” response. Your heart rate and breathing rate go up and blood vessels narrow (restricting the flow of blood). Occasional stress is a normal coping mechanism. But over the long-term, stress may contribute to or worsen a range of health problems including digestive disorders, headaches, sleep disorders, and other symptoms.

In contrast to the stress response, the relaxation response slows the heart rate, lowers blood pressure, and decreases oxygen consumption and levels of stress hormones. In theory, voluntarily creating the relaxation response through regular use of relaxation techniques could counteract the negative effects of stress.

  1. Relaxation techniques are generally safe, but there is limited evidence of usefulness for specific health conditions. Research is under way to find out more about relaxation and health outcomes.
  2. Relaxation techniques include a number of practices such as progressive relaxation, guided imagery, biofeedback, self-hypnosis, and deep breathing exercises. The goal is similar in all: to consciously produce the body’s natural relaxation response, characterized by slower breathing, lower blood pressure, and a feeling of calm and well-being.
  3. Relaxation techniques often combine breathing and focused attention to calm the mind and the body. These techniques may be most effective when practiced regularly and combined with good nutrition, regular exercise, and a strong social support system.
  4. Most relaxation techniques can be self-taught and self-administered. Most methods require only brief instruction from a book or experienced practitioner before they can be done without assistance.
  5. Do not use relaxation techniques as a replacement for conventional care or to postpone seeing a doctor about a medical problem. Talk to your health care providers if you are considering using a relaxation technique for a particular health condition. This will help ensure coordinated and safe care.

 

From THE STRESS MANAGEMENT SOCIETY

Taking time out to relax!

This is from an email  newsletter they sent me but I  thought the advice was  worth sharing.

With good weather and sunny days, we need and want to enjoy the sunlight. Sunshine, a principal source of vitamin D, which is necessary for our health. So take breaks at work to distract you. Go on a weekend break, allow yourself to forget the daily routine and stresses that surround you. Taking time out to relax allows you to connect with family and friends. Use this opportunity to go for a walk, drink tea or practice relaxation exercises like yoga.

Keep calm in stressful situations!

Stress can affect you in different ways. For instance when you are in your car at the beginning of your work day or when you are running late for that bus, you will most likely be stuck in the morning traffic with various commuters traveling to different locations. It is important you stay relaxed, concentrated and begin the day with an open mind. The Stress Management Society Director Neil Shah was featured on the ITV tonight show on the 15th of May . Reporter Aasmah Mir asked Neil Shah to provide his expertise on stress management, Aasmah also asked Neil to analyse the responses from the drivers in these various very stress driving situations, by looking at ways in which to improve as well as how to handle such situations better. ITV also provided a comparison by having one of Britons oldest driving instructor take part in the show. It was a great programme to watch for any commuter!  Well done Neil.

Cleaning

The sunshine and good weather provides you with the perfect opportunity to clean, and store away any clutter, freeing up some open space. All these actions allow us to draw a line from the past, like the winter which is now behind us. However, a spring clean is also beneficial for your morale; it allows you to live in a clean and tidy environment, helping you free your mind at the same time.

Healthy eating

Simple methods such as reducing your calorie intake and trying to avoid un-healthy foods can make a significant difference, instead we recommend having green tea as an alternative to normal milky tea’s and coffee’s. If you feel peckish small snacks, such as nuts, or small pots of yogurt may help fill the void between meal times.

Engage in physical activities

Remember your New Year’s resolution!  You can use this time to go for a short walk during your break, get some fresh air and stretch your legs. It is important to do regular exercise as this can help you relax and get in a better mood. If you are time constrained or may not have enough time to go to the gym, simple activities such as stretching at your desk or even using the stairs rather than elevators. These are all good initiatives and can be done anywhere.

As ever, if you have or need any help, please feel to call us on 0203 142 8650 or drop an email to info@stress.org.uk. The Stress Management Society taking you from distress to de-stress since 2003 – eleven years.

 
 I will be back tomorrow all relaxed and de-stressed, honest engine… Jeanne

 

 

 

 

New Poll Shows Use of Alternative Medicine on the Rise

From the FMS Global News Desk of Jeanne Hambleton

Courtesy Healthnews.com

By: Lara Endreszl 

 

Complementary and Alternative Medicine—commonly shortened to CAM—is often thought to be a secondary form of treatment, or fallback, when conventional medicine on its own fails to succeed. In 1990, a Harvard researcher published a poll showing that approximately one-third of Americans were using CAM treatments, and that news shocked the public. A new poll published this week shows that while alternative and complementary methods are still popular, the numbers have only increased by a small amount annually over the last few years.

Alternative medicine has gone back thousands of years and is deeply rooted in Indian Ayurvedic practices and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), believing that mind, body, and spirit are interconnected and using those beliefs to produce results through spiritual remedies, meditation, natural herbs, and oils. Complementary treatments use Western medicine in conjunction with alternative practices such as massage, chiropractics, and acupressure in order to quell pain symptoms and alleviate stress or anxiety involved in complex routine treatments such as radiation and chemotherapy for certain cancers.

The last time the government kept track of CAM records was back in 2002. The National Institute of Health (NIH)  along with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released the new results Wednesday showing only a 2 percent increase between 2002 and 2007. Instead of a steadily climbing each year, it seems CAM has reached a bit of a plateau, allowing Western medicine to be considered as reliable as ever. The alternative trend seems to be waning and the definition is becoming fuzzy as more and more methods are being called CAM, thinning out its meaning.

CAM therapies include acupuncture, yoga, and herbal supplements along with chiropractics, meditation, and some simpler ideas like massage and heavy breathing exercises. The data was collected from the 2007 National Health Interview Survey involving 9,500 children and 23,000 adults. Results show that 12 percent of the children (17 years old and under) surveyed and 38 percent of adults—compared to 36 percent from 2002—are using CAM methods.

Those results convert into 1 in 9 children and 4 in 10 adults tuning into their heads and bodies in order to help solve their aches and pains. Officials say this is the first survey to include children under 18. Children seem to be frequenting the use of CAM therapy because of a wide range of afflictions. For the first year round of surveys including children, the officials admit that the risks involved are not yet clear. From anxiety and the common cold, to attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and stress, children seem to be growing up quickly with more aches and pains than usual.

Ranging from lowest to highest percentage, the 38 percent of adults are turning to alternative and/or complementary procedures for the following set of ailments: insomnia, migraines or intense headaches, other musculoskeletal conditions, chest or head cold, cholesterol, anxiety, arthritis, joint pain, neck pain, and back pain being the number one cause of seeking CAM treatments.

Director of the U.S. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) at the NIH, Dr. Josephine Briggs tells reporters of the surprising results behind chronic sufferers decisions, “As I look at this data, what I am most struck with is how much people are turning to CAM (complementary and alternative medicine) approaches as part of the management of chronic pain conditions, particularly chronic back pain, but also neck pain and musculoskeletal pain and headache,” then she continues to understand the need to seek out any form of relief, “And from my days as an internist seeing patients in my office, I know that these are conditions that are hard to manage and tough to treat.”

Even though the natural supplement and vitamin world is booming within the economy right now, the data showed that the most common types of CAM treatments that were used throughout both adults and children, were herbal medications, followed by dietary supplements, and lastly vitamins and minerals. Demographically, 42.8 percent of women were shown to use CAM over 33.5 percent of men, and those with a higher education were also shown to be more susceptible to trying complementary and alternative remedies. 

Though reaching a small plateau, CAM should not be ruled out as a way to treat certain conditions either instead of or alongside Western traditions. Though most alternative methods are not scientifically proven, side effects and risk factors are not concrete and should always be used with caution, especially when given to children. With the increasing approval for high-profile trials looking for results in CAM treatments, the numbers may continue to rise, even if they are slow.

 

 


(http://www.healthnews.com/natural-health/alternative-medicine/new-poll-shows-use-alternative-medicine-rise-2256.html)