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Poison ivy

September 11th, 2015 | Posted by corinne grace in Being Prepared - (Comments Off on Poison ivy)

Poison ivy, poison oak and poison sumac are plants that are found in the wilderness. The leaves of poison ivy have compound or an oily exudate that is called as urushiol and it adheres to anything that is exposed to it and triggers a reaction when it comes in contact with the skin and the mucous membranes. The rash or reaction spreads easily and called contact dermatitis.

Some common symptoms of poison ivy

  • The rash develops within a day or two after exposure to the plant, and if direct contact occurs with the leaves of the plant. In most cases, the rash can be severe.
  • The itchy skin is susceptible to inflammation, redness and blisters. The rash begins as tiny raised bumps and then develops into full-blown blisters and oozes liquid and becomes crusty.
  • The rash can happen anywhere in the body and usually develops streaks or straight lines over the affected areas.
  • The skin is oozing
  • The rash of poison ivy usually will last two to three days which depends on the severity and extent of the skin that is affected.
Poison ivy

The itchy skin is susceptible to inflammation, redness and blisters.

The main cause of poison ivy rash is the resin called urushiol which is secreted by the plant and is found in all the parts of the plant and even those that are already dead. The urushiol is very sticky and does not dry easily and increases the risk of spreading to other parts of the body. Poison ivy rash can be acquired by direct contact with the leaves, roots and fruits of the plant, clothes or other objects that have direct contact with the plant.

Urushiol can survive for years in dry environment. Clothes that are contaminated with resin can cause rash even years later if worn again. Inhaling smoke from burning poison ivy plants affects the mucus membranes in the eyes and nose.

Treatment and home remedies of poison ivy

  • Apply cold compress using water or milk to the affected areas. When taking a bath add oatmeal to the bathtub with water, soak the affected area in the bathtub since it helps in minimizing itchiness and dry the oozing blisters.
  • If there is dizziness, lie down and elevate the legs above the height of the head in order to help the flow of blood to the brain.
  • Apply calamine lotion on the affected area helps to lessen the itching and pain.
  • Make a paste by mixing baking soda, oatmeal, cornstarch or Epsom salts and a few drops of water and apply to the affected area since this helps in minimizing blistering and swelling as well as prevent the spreading of rash to other parts of the body.
  • Avoid scratching the blisters it can cause secondary infections
  • Eat foods high in Vitamin C, zinc, beta-carotene and calcium contents since it helps in boosting the immune system of the body and lessen inflammation of the skin and prevent spreading of the condition. Zinc helps in repairing tissues of skin as well as promoting good health.

Throat obstruction

September 11th, 2015 | Posted by corinne grace in Being Prepared - (Comments Off on Throat obstruction)

Some people experiences throat obstruction due to swallowing foreign objects such as fish bone or bone of a chicken which can get lodged into the throat. It can also be caused by a lump on the throat and excess mucus in the throat since they cause blockage of the passage of the throat. Throat obstruction can also cause changes in the voice or hoarseness.

Throat obstruction is not a serious problem, but it can cause discomfort, difficulty in swallowing, pain and difficulty in speaking. Obstruction caused by mucus is considered temporary and eventually subsides on its own in a few days or weeks. On the other hand, if there is a lump or growth that causes blockage of the passages, there is need to seek medical help.

Throat obstruction

Throat obstruction is not a serious problem, but it can cause discomfort, difficulty in swallowing, pain and difficulty in speaking.

Common symptoms of throat obstruction

  • There are changes in the voice of the individual such as hoarseness.
  • Irritation and a tickly sensation in the throat and there is a need to clear the throat frequently.
  • A high pitched breathing
  • Wheezing
  • Gagging
  • Drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Pain can be felt in the throat, abdominal area and the chest

Severe symptoms

  • Severe difficulty in swallowing or the individual only sips on liquids.
  • An infection in the throat that lasts for more than two weeks.
  • Difficulties in breathing where there is a feeling as if the airways are blocked or obstructed.
  • Color discoloration such as purplish or bluish tint on the face due to lack of oxygen.

Factors that cause obstruction of the throat

  • Infection
  • Swallowing hard objects
  • Enlarged thyroid
  • Abnormal growth
  • Mucus

Treatment and home remedies for throat obstruction

  • Drink plenty of water at least 8-10 glasses every day in order to help the body stay properly hydrated and minimize infection. It is also recommended to include fresh fruits in the diet.
  • Drink warm liquids such as warm water, green tea or soup. Avoid beverages that contain alcohol, caffeine and some carbonated beverages.
  • Gargle using warm water since this helps in minimizing the symptoms of throat obstruction. In a glass of warm water, mix ½ teaspoon of salt and gargle the solution for 10 seconds and spit it out. This must be repeated at least 5 times every 3-4 hours every day. This helps with blockage that is caused by enlargement of the tonsils.
  • Using honey can also help the body in eliminating the phlegm that causes blockage of the passage. You can utilize honey either raw or take it with white pepper at least twice every day in order to help dry up the phlegm.
  • Boil a handful of eucalyptus and mint leaves. When the mixture begins to boil, remove it from the fire and drape a piece of cloth or towel over the head and inhale the vapor from the solution. It helps in drying up the phlegm that causes obstruction of the passage.

Conjunctivitis

September 11th, 2015 | Posted by corinne grace in Being Prepared - (Comments Off on Conjunctivitis)

Conjunctivitis is also known as pinkeye which is an inflammatory condition affecting the eyes, especially the conjunctiva. The conjunctiva is a membrane that functions in covering the whites of the eyes and the inner surface of the eyelids. The membranes have small blood vessels that become visible when there is inflammation. The white part of the eye becomes red when infected with conjunctivitis.

Common symptoms of conjunctivitis

  • There is itchiness of the eyes
  • Inflammation, swelling and the white portion of the eyes becomes red
  • Tearing or yellow and green discharge coming out of the eyes
  • There is crusting over the eyelids and blurriness
  • Increased photosensitivity
  • Burning sensation can be felt

Possible causes of conjunctivitis

Conjunctivitis

Tearing or yellow and green discharge coming out of the eyes.

  • Infectious conjunctivitis which can affect one or both eyes is caused by infection due to bacteria or virus. Both types of infections are very contagious that can be spread by direct contact with eye secretions or contaminated surfaces.
  • Allergic conjunctivitis is an allergic reaction upon exposure to an allergen or irritant such as smoke, pollen and other substances and both eyes are usually affected.
  • Non-infectious conjunctivitis can be caused by exposure to irritants such as a splash of chemical or entry of foreign objects in the eye. Flushing of the eyes in an attempt to get rid of the irritant can cause irritation and redness.
  • Neonatal conjunctivitis is common among those suffering from STDs such as chlamydia and if not properly treated, it can lead to blindness.
  • Giant papillary conjunctivitis affects contact lens users which affects both the eyes and usually common in among individuals who utilize soft contact lens.

Treatment and home remedies for conjunctivitis

  • Apply a compress to the affected eye. Soak a clean and lint-free cloth in water and wring out excess water. Apply it to over the closed eyelid of the individual for a few minutes several times every day. Using a cool water compress helps in soothing the affected eye, but a warm compress can also be used to help with the condition.
  • Use a prescribed over-the-counter eye drops called artificial tears that help in relieving the symptoms. Some eye drops contain antihistamines that help with allergic conjunctivitis.
  • The individual should avoid wearing contact lens until the affected eyes are totally healed.
  • Wash personal belongings such as clothes frequently if suffering from allergic conjunctivitis.
  • Take a bath or shower before going to bed helps with the condition.
  • Maintain a well balanced diet every day, especially foods rich in vitamin A that are essential for the overall health of the eye such as green leafy vegetables, yogurt, tomatoes, papaya, butter and carrots.

Other remedies for conjunctivitis

  • Apply a thin layer of potato peels over the eyelid. This helps in minimizing the swelling and inflammation.
  • Prepare an Indian gooseberry juice and mix with honey. This solution is used as eyewash in order to treat conjunctivitis and must be applied at least twice every day.
  • Boil some dried coriander in a cup of water and use this as an eye wash in order to treat conjunctivitis.