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The Path to Contentment

The Do’s and Don’ts of Having a Tummy Tuck

Posted by on Sep 23, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Do’s and Don’ts of Having a Tummy Tuck

Carrying loose, excess skin on your abdomen can drastically affect your self-esteem and when years of dieting and exercise can’t seem to shift it, cosmetic surgery may be the next logical step for you. But how much do you really know about a tummy tuck procedure? If you’re considering abdominal surgery, read up on a few of these do’s and don’ts beforehand to ensure things don’t go belly up! When considering surgery: DO be close to your ideal weight before surgery For a tummy tuck to give you the best possible results, you will need to have achieved your ideal weight before undergoing surgery. A tummy tuck is not a weight loss solution after all — it’s a cosmetic procedure to remove excess fat from a well-maintained and healthy tummy. This can be frustrating if you struggle to lose weight, but the effort will be more than worthwhile. Being in your best shape will ensure the most effective and long-lasting results, so don’t give up on your dream for a better belly! DO pick the right time to have a tummy tuck As well as being in good health, you should also wait for the most sensible time in your life to opt for a tummy tuck. If you wish to have children, for instance, wait until you have all the kids you plan to have before considering surgery. Tummy tucks can theoretically be carried out before (and even in between) pregnancies, but this can put your body through a lot in a short space of time. If you want to restore elasticity in between periods of pregnancy, a mini tummy tuck may be more suitable, as this is a shorter, less invasive procedure that tightens the abdominal muscles. Depending on your health history and unique circumstances, a cosmetic surgeon will help determine the most appropriate kind of surgery for you. In preparation for surgery and your subsequent recovery: DO eat light in the days before surgery Heavy takeaway foods and spicy meals are a no-no. You want to keep to a light, healthy diet in the run up to a tummy tuck procedure. Lean, unseasoned meat and fish are good choices, as are low-fat dairy foods such as Greek yoghurt and fat-free cheese. Also, avoid fizzy or caffeinated drinks like the plague — any drinks that can cause gas and bloating will only add to your discomfort when coming out of surgery!  Be wary of your sodium intake too, as this may also contribute to bloating and cramps. DON’T watch comedy films after surgery In the first few weeks after surgery, you’ll find that your tummy is pretty tender when it comes to coughing, sneezing and generally going about your day — and then there’s laughter. Laughing can make you pretty sore for a while after surgery, so don’t go out of your way to experience belly laughs (no pun intended). Fill your TV schedule with plenty of dramatic programmes instead. DON’T immediately measure or weigh yourself As tempting as it may be to jump on the scales right after surgery, you will not be able to bask in the fruits of your surgical ordeal for quite some time. For the first few months after surgery, your tummy can typically increase 2 or 3 sizes due to swelling...

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What to Expect the First Time at a Bulk Billing Doctor

Posted by on Aug 21, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What to Expect the First Time at a Bulk Billing Doctor

If you have never been to a bulk billing doctor before, you may not know what to expect. You may wonder if you need to bring cash, how you assign your Medicare benefit or how you take care of other logistics. Luckily, the process is fairly easy and straightforward. Here’s what you need to know: 1. There are no co-pays when you use bulk billing doctors Although the government looked extensively at the idea of adding copays to the Medicare bulk billing system, no copays were added. As of early 2015, copays are not allowed as part of the bulk billing system, and doctors who bulk bill cannot charge copays. That means you can get the care you need, even if you forgot your cash and credit cards at home. 2. You have to sign a form to assign your right to a Medicare benefit to your doctor When you see a bulk billing doctor, the doctor sends the bill directly to Medicare, and he or she is reimbursed for the procedure. If you don’t see a bulk billing doctor, you typically pay the bill upfront, and then Medicare reimburses you. However, in order to have Medicare pay the doctor instead of you, you have to assign your right to your Medicare benefit to your doctor. Don’t worry — that is a simple process. You just need to sign a short form. Make sure that it is fully filled out. It should note the procedures you received. Doctors are not allowed to provide you with an incomplete form and then charge you later for services 3. The form may come in one of two formats In most cases, the form appears on the screen of a small terminal, and you have to click the OK or YES button. If you see that set up, don’t worry about signing your full name. Your consent entered into the terminal is adequate. However, in other cases, you will simply sign a form on a piece of carbon copy paper. That typically happens when the doctor doesn’t have internet, when you see a doctor in a remote location or when the doctor sees you at your home or in a nursing facility.    If you have other questions about what to expect in regards to billing or any other part of the process when you see a bulk billing doctor, contact a bulk billing doctor or a clinic like Shenton Avenue Medical...

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How Physiotherapy Can Support Those With Cystic Fibrosis

Posted by on Jul 28, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How Physiotherapy Can Support Those With Cystic Fibrosis

Symptoms associated with cystic fibrosis such as a build-up of thick mucus in the lungs, a persistent cough and breathing difficulties can make simple daily tasks a challenge to complete. You doctor can prescribe medication expand your lungs and encourage mucus to clear, but these medications come with a range of side effects and patients are increasingly keen to avoid drugs. Physiotherapy can help you manage the respiratory symptoms associated with cystic fibrosis, so regular sessions with your physiotherapist should form part of your care plan. Here’s an overview of how physiotherapy can support you: The Active Cycle Of Breathing Technique Your physiotherapist can teach you this technique, which is used to clear your airways and promote the drainage of mucus. The active cycle of breathing technique has three stages. Firstly, you’ll be taught how to control your breathing and use relaxed breathing to keep your airways open. Secondly, you’ll be shown how to do deep breathing exercises, which will encourage your lungs to expand and move mucus up your airways. Thirdly, your physiotherapist will teach you how to use forced breathing such as huffing to move mucus out of smaller, harder to clear airways. Postural Drainage Postural drainage involves positioning your body to encourage mucus to drain from specific areas in your lungs. Your physiotherapist will advise you on the positions best for your symptoms and create a treatment plan outlining how often and how long to spend in each position. They may suggest you spend a period of time each day with your head lower than your chest, so if you have gastrointestinal problems as a result of your cystic fibrosis, let your physiotherapist know. This will allow them to modify the positions they think would work best for you and you’ll avoid unpleasant gastric reflux symptoms. Positive Expiratory Pressure Therapy This treatment uses a small device that your physiotherapist can supply and show you how to use. The therapy involves breathing in air through a one-way valve on the device and expelling air through another valve that creates resistance. As you blow through this resistant valve, your lungs will open more fully and air will be able to get under trapped mucus and push it up to be coughed out. Your physiotherapist can also advise you on suitable forms of exercise to encourage good posture and lung health. If you’re concerned about the impact of cystic fibrosis on your respiratory health, schedule an appointment with your physiotherapist for a thorough...

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The Pros & Cons Of Photochromatic Eyeglass Lenses

Posted by on Jun 26, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Pros & Cons Of Photochromatic Eyeglass Lenses

Photochromatic lenses are often advertised as sleek, futuristic devices, but in actual fact they were first developed back in the 1960s. Often sold as ‘transition’ or ‘reactive’ lenses, photochromatic lenses automatically darken in response to sunlight, and lighten in darken conditions. Naturally this a boon for people required to wear prescription glasses. How do photochromatic lenses work? A photochromatic lens may appear to be a simple piece of glass or plastic when not exposed to sunlight. However, embedded within the lenses are millions of microscopic particles. In glass lenses, the particles are typically tiny crystals of silver chloride, while a plastic photochromatic lens contains organic, carbon-based molecules known as oxazines.  When these molecules are exposed to the UV radiation present in sunlight, they grow, darken and clump together, and while they are too small to obscure vision, this reaction has the effect of darkening the lenses. Essentially, the reaction is similar to the way film darkens when exposed to light, except that the process is reversible, and a photochromatic lens will revert to their normal, clear tint when taken indoors or out of direct sunlight. What are the advantages of using photochromatic lenses? Convenience: The most obvious advantage of owning a pair of reactive glasses is that it removes the need to carry around a pair of prescription sunglasses in addition to your normal glasses. They also make it much less likely that you’ll break or lose your glasses when you’re not swapping them all the time. Cost: While photochromatic lenses generally cost more than standard lenses, you only have to buy one pair of prescription glasses for all weather. This is usually significantly cheaper than buying a pair of normal glasses and a pair of prescription sunglasses. Variable tint: The degree to which a photochromatic lens darkens directly responds to how much UV radiation they are reacting to, and they will darken much more on a sunny summer’s day than a clear winter’s day, when sunlight is much less intense. This means that your glasses are never too dark for the ambient light conditions. It also means that your eyes are fully protected from UV radiation on days where you might not consider it bright enough to be worth wearing sunglasses. In the long term, this can help prevent cataracts and other eye conditions caused by excessive UV exposure. What about the disadvantages? Darkening time: Reactive lenses do not darken immediately in response to sunlight, and you may have to wait for your glasses to darken sufficiently in very sunny weather before you can see properly. The same is true when leaving direct sunlight, as you wait for the lenses to clear up. Different brands boast different reaction speeds, but no lens will take longer than a couple of minutes to adjust to ambient light levels. Shop around for the quickest lenses you can afford. Driving: Because a car windscreen filters out UV radiation, your photochromatic lenses will not darken as much inside a car, even when the sun is very bright. Special polarised reactive lenses have been developed for driving, but even these may not be as effective as a pair of sunglasses. Sensitivity to heat: In hot weather, the potency of the reaction that causes your lenses to darken is reduced, so your glasses may not darken sufficiently in the height of...

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Taking the Sweat Out of Hyperhidrosis

Posted by on Jun 2, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Taking the Sweat Out of Hyperhidrosis

Excessive sweating, or hyperhidrosis, is a medical condition that is sometimes an indicator of a number of underlying medical problems, and as a result should not be trivialised. Additionally, excessive sweating is a potentially embarrassing condition that can lead to unpleasant odours, difficulty using electronic devises, and a clammy handshake. To be clear, hyperhidrosis is not a condition that is related to profuse sweat caused by exercise; that is just the body’s method of cooling you down as you heat your body through exertion. No, the reason why excessive sweating is a problem is exactly because the body is producing more sweat than is required for cooling your body. Causes Possible causes of excessive sweating are divided into two groups: primary and secondary causes.  Primary causes of hyperhidrosis are, as yet, unknown, as they have no clear linkages to any other, underlying condition. Primary hyperhydrosis generally occurs in children or adolescents and affects the palms, soles, armpits and sometimes the face and scalp. In rare cases, it may affect the whole body. Secondary causes are clearer, as they are thought to be triggered by an underlying medical condition, such as diabetes, an overactive thyroid gland, obesity, menopause, infections, damage to nerves from disease or injury, some medicines (especially antidepressants) and, rarely, some tumours. In addition to the social embarrassment that excessive sweating can cause, there are real implications for the ongoing health of a sufferer of this condition. For example, due to the excessive sweating, some people become more susceptible to skin infections such as warts and tinea. For those who also suffer from unrelated skin conditions, such as eczema or other rashes, these are likely to be exacerbated and break out more often. Treatment However, there is good news. If you suffer from hyperhidrosis, but are hygienic (i.e. you bath at least once a day), wear natural fibres rather than polyester or other synthetic materials, moisture-wicking socks, go barefoot as often as possible, and avoid foods that might make you sweat, such as curries, you may be able to reduce the effect of the condition. While these tips are helpful, they won’t actually stop you sweating. There are a number of medical treatments that you might be able to try, including running a mild electric current through the affected area (especially useful on feet), botox and in some severe cases, surgical removal of the sweat glands. Of course, before embarking on any kind of treatment plan, aside from looking after your personal hygiene, make sure you consult your medical practitioner.  He or she will be able to steer you in the right direction and help you raise as little sweat as...

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What Are the 5 Types of Glaucoma?

Posted by on May 5, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Glaucoma, a vision condition that tends to be hereditary, is one of the leading causes of blindness, next to diabetes. It is a progressive disease that is caused by too much fluid pressure in the eyes, which damages the optic nerve cells. In addition to being hereditary, there are other risks for developing this disease, including age (over 40 years old), nearsightedness, hypertension, and eye injuries. Once you get to a certain age, your optometrist will likely start testing you for glaucoma. While it is not something that can be reversed, it can be treated so slow down the process and help you retain your vision. There are actually a few types of glaucoma that the optometrist will test for. Primary Open-Angle This is the most common type of glaucoma that affects many people. This type of glaucoma is most commonly diagnosed once a person is age 50 or older. The fluid in the eyes does not drain properly, causing pressure to build up behind the eyes, and the optic nerves begin to stop working as they should. In time, the patient will notice blind spots in their peripheral vision, and this will eventually turn into blindness in the central part of the eyes. This is non-repairable damage, but your optometrist will recommend treatments that will help you to feel more comfortable. Angle-Closure This type of glaucoma is common in people who are of Inuit or Asian descent, farsighted, or female. Angle-closure glaucoma can be a chronic condition, or one that is only intermittent, depending on how far the condition has progressed. It can cause the iris to swell or move forward, and it can also cause the lens and iris to become thicker, creating a blockage that keeps optic fluid from draining properly. In Normal Tension If there are no pressure problems, but there is damage to the optic nerve, you may have what is known as in normal tension glaucoma. This is often caused because there is not enough flow of blood getting to the nerve, making it susceptible to problems. With this condition, any pressure in the eyes can cause significant damage. Pigmentary While in most cases it is those over 40 who are affected by glaucoma, pigmentary glaucoma tends to affect people who are younger and nearsighted. The iris and the pigment layer (where the eye colour is held) rub together, and the figment starts to flake off. This causes pressure behind the eyes. Traumatic The final type of glaucoma is traumatic. This occurs when there has been an injury to the eyes, and it can happen to anyone, at any age. In many cases, glaucoma doesn’t appear until many years after the original eye injury. Visit an optometrist like John Mountford Optometrist before these symptoms get...

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The Benefits of Regular Physiotherapy After Surgery or an Accident

Posted by on Apr 16, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

When a patient has had an accident or surgery, he or she may be prescribed regular physiotherapy sessions with a physical therapist. Unfortunately some patients may skip these sessions simply because they don’t understand the benefit of having their joints manipulated by someone else or of taking the time to get a professional massage as prescribed. Consider some of the benefits of regular physiotherapy after surgery or an accident and note why you should never skip these types of appointments when they’ve been prescribed for you. 1. You May Experience Less Pain One common reason for pain after an accident is that muscles on one part of the body get injured so that muscles in other areas work harder to provide support. These muscles that are working harder are not meant to keep the body upright or support it when you move and walk, so in turn you feel the pain from them being overworked and stressed. This is often a cause for feeling pain in the back or hips after an accident, as the large muscles in those areas may be doing the most work. Physiotherapy can help to relax and strengthen muscles in an affected area so that they heal more quickly and can provide the support they should as soon as possible. In turn, these other areas of the body won’t be in so much pain as they won’t be overworked as much. 2. You May Heal Properly When muscles and other soft tissue are torn or damaged due to an accident or surgery, a doctor may sew them together so that they heal in those areas, but physical therapy can also ensure that you heal properly after an accident or surgery. You may learn how to take pressure and stress off that area of the body as you move throughout your day so that you don’t do further damage, and so that these areas heal quickly, before scar tissue forms. Physical therapy can also keep muscles and soft tissue stretched so that blood can flow through more readily, and blood brings oxygen and other healing agents with it. 3. Your Healing Progress Can Be Monitored A physical therapist is not like a personal trainer who simply tells you how to exercise, but he or she is trained in monitoring your progress of healing for particular accidents or injuries. They are often in touch with doctors about whether or not a patient is experiencing more pain than they should or if they’re taking longer to regain their mobility than recommended. In turn your doctor can note your progress and if you need further treatment for your injuries, even additional surgery or an adjustment to certain medications. For more information, contact Doncaster Physiotherapy & Sports Injury...

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Utilising Wireless Technology to Get the Most out of Your Hearing Aids

Posted by on Mar 27, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Are you currently removing your hearing aids each time you want to listen to music through headphones or use a hands-free kit for your mobile phone? It can be frustrating to have to lose sound quality when using certain devices and accessories, but wireless technology can enable you to hear clearly even when using headphones. You can link your hearing aids with a wireless streamer, which transmits sound from your personal audio devices straight to your hearing aids. Here’s what you need to know: Wireless Streamers Explained A wireless streamer is basically a small device that can transfer sound, using radio waves, from any wireless-enabled device to your hearing aids. Most personal audio devices, such as MP3 players, now come with a wireless function. When the wireless function on your personal audio device is switched on the streamer detects the wireless signal and transmits the sound to the end device it’s synced with, which would be your hearing aids. Wireless streamers are small and can be clipped onto your belt or kept in your pocket. They usually have a small antenna that’s vital for transmitting sound, and this cannot be located far from your hearing aids or the sound transmission won’t work, so you must keep the streamer on you. Advantages of Wireless Streamers Wireless streamers are easy to use and eliminate the need for you to remove your hearing aids when you want to use headphones. They turn your hearing aids into headphones, so you can listen to music when you’re out and about without compromising on sound quality. Many models have a volume control and can be synced with your TV. This means you can listen to your favourite shows at a volume that’s comfortable for you without disturbing your family or neighbours. In fact, your family can sit and watch a TV show with you at a volume that’s comfortable for them and you can turn up the volume on your wireless streamer if the TV is too low for you. You can link several audio devices to the wireless streamer, which means you don’t have to adjust your hearing aids each time you switch between devices. For example, if you’re using the streamer to listen to music on your MP3 player and your mobile phone starts ringing you can answer it with the streamer. Simply accept the incoming call and your streamer will stop transmitting music to your hearing aids and start transmitting your phone call. Your hearing clinic or audiologist can advise you on the most suitable streamer for the type of hearing aids you currently wear, so schedule an appointment with them if you’d like to give it a...

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Organising Medical Conferences

Posted by on Mar 4, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

For many medical communities in Australia, working in research can be very isolating. While Australia is famous for its medical advances, medical research often, by its nature, attracts quiet and introverted personalities who enjoy working alone. Getting scientists together to network and connect can help the big break-throughs occur by sharing of important data and insight. Most of the medical conferences in Australia tend to be organised by not-for-profit organisations, where professionals with day jobs do most of the organisational work for the conference, so planning is extremely important to make sure the conference is a success. Here is how to make sure that your medical conference is a success, both short term and  long term.  Profitability To ensure that your conference can operate this year, as well as future years, you need to make sure the conference turn a slight profit. By integrating a small margin into your conference budget, you can hire a professional conference organiser that makes sure the conference runs smoothly and build a buffer so that future conferences can proceed. Your conference co-ordinator needs to promote your conference through formal routes, such as journals as well as informal routes such as forum posts and blogs. Offer a small discount to early enrolees so that you can get an early indication of the attractiveness of the programme, and can modify and add speakers as required. Attendance A large part of the impression of your conference is ensuring that your conference is attended by enough audience members and has a lively audience for question and answer sessions. Approach organisations to organise ‘scholarships’ to allow professionals and high performing students to attend your conference for free, in exchange for the organisation getting naming rights to specific events and mentions on your website and promotional materials. Networking events are often popular events for companies to sponsor. Connections Ensure that the people who connect at the conference can continue their conversations and update participants on their research moving forward. Start a newsletter and social media groups for your conference participants so that people who have not managed to exchange business cards can still connect later on. Offer participants a speaking chance to share their research paper and future speaking events in your group in order to maintain their relationship with the other participants. By hiring a professional conference organiser, you can ensure that all of the small details that ensure a conference is successful are...

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New, Effective Treatment for Osteoarthritis in Pets

Posted by on Feb 19, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

One of the serious ailments that pet owners fear is canine osteoarthritis also referred to as degenerative joint disease. This ailment is a progressive and long-term worsening of the cartilage neighbouring the joints, which eventually leads to bone changes. Osteoarthritis is attributed as the major cause of lameness in dogs. Despite the fact that the ailment has no cure, much can be performed to control the related pain, stop the disease progression, and boost the quality of life of dogs. One of the novel treatments for osteoarthritis is stem cell therapy. Remember, physicians already implement stem cell treatments to treat persons with leukemia, blood disorders, and solid cancer growth. Thanks to medical advances, dogs can as well take advantage of stem cell therapy. A stem cell is basically a blank slate of tissue cell with the ability to regenerate tissue. They can do their work in an area of the body where illness has caused its damage and loss of functionality. Stem cell treatments make use of stem cells derived from the bone marrow or fat tissue cell. The veterinary officer subjects your dog to a simple surgical operation to derive a fat tissue sample from the abdomen or the shoulder section. The tissue sample is then processed to obtain the high viable and effective stem cells. The veterinary officer then injects the regenerative stem cells into the injured area, for example a knee joint ruptured by osteoarthritis. Given that the injected stem cells are obtained from the dog’s own body tissue and undergo minimal manipulation there isn’t any threat of reaction or rejection. The stem cells travel to the damaged tissues, stifle the inflammation, provide pain relief, and generate new tissue growth. Note that the new tissue is akin to the original tissue and not a scar tissue that is typical of an untreated swollen area. Stem cell therapy is not for every budget. In other words, it is an expensive type of treatment. However, if you have the budget and your dog is still young, stem cell therapy is indeed a good option. Look for a veterinary officer or clinic such as Channel Highway Animal Hospital who has plenty of experience with stem cell treatment. They will be able to help you know if your dog will qualify for this treatment. They might also help you create a personal payment plan if the procedure is way beyond your budget’s...

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