All posts by Kgregory

What is Cystic Fibrosis?

Cystic Fibrosis is a inherited disorder that causes severe damage to the lungs, digestive system and other organs in the body,

The disorder the cells the produce mucus, sweat and digestive juices. These secreted fluids are normally thin and slippery, but people with cystic fibrosis, a defective gene causes, the secretions to become sticky and thick. instead of acting like a lubricant the secretions plug up tubes, ducts and passageways in the lungs and pancreas.

This disorder requires daily care, most patients can attend school, work and have a better quality of life than they would have decades ago.

Screening newborns for cystic fibrosis is now performed in every state in the United States.

People with cystic fibrosis have a higher than normal level of salt in their sweat, Adult diagnosed with cystic fibrosis are more likely to have atypical symptoms such as recurring bouts of inflamed pancreas (pancreatitis) infertility and recurring pneumonia.

Some symptoms are a persistent cough that produces this mucus, Wheezing, Breathlessness, Exercise intolerance, repeated lung infections, inflamed nasal passages or a stuffy nose.

Digestive symptoms are foul-smelling greasy stools, Poor weight gain and growth, intestinal blockage, severe constipation.

Cause is heredity, most likely Northern European Ancestry.

Complications of this disorder, Damaged airways, chronic infections, growths of polyps in the nose, coughing up blood, pneumothorax, respitory failure, acute exacerbations, Nutritional deficiencies, Diabetes, Blocked bile duct, intestinal obstruction, Distal intestinal obstruction syndrome , Osteopororis, electrolyte imbalance and dehydration.

There is a new product invented by Marten Devlieger and the Vest invented allows patients with Cystic Fibrosis to retrieve treatment on the go. @thecfsorceress, www.hill-rom.com Name of Vest is the Monarch.

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One man’s journey with cystic fibrosis !!!!!!!!!!

Marten’s journey with Cystic fibrosis and how he is helping others live better with their disease.

Marten lives life to the fullest and wants others to do the same. He was so empowered by his love for life and wanting to do all the things he enjoyed, but one problem, he had to stop for treatments, This being said Marten invented the Monarch. A portable vest that allows Marten and others to go on there adventures and be able to give them selves treatment portably. What a gift not only to him self but to other CF patients. It had allowed him the freedom to live his life to the fullest. The Monarch information can be received at @thecfsorceress www.hill-rom.com

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The Gift of Anxiety

When you hear the word anxiety, what thoughts often come to your mind? For most within our “fast-paced” culture, anxiety is thought of as a sign or symptom that we are “functional” members of society.

When it comes to our relationship with anxiety, it is most likely something that we believe must be:

  1. Managed
  2. Controlled
  3. Ignored

But what if there was another option? What if anxiety could be viewed as a gift, something that is here to teach us something? Now if you have intense social anxiety, or are unable to leave your house due to a deep sense of fear, hearing that sounds insulting most likely.

Anxiety is most often viewed as something that limits our experience, that stops us from being able to express the fullness of who and what we are:

  • We want to get up on stage and talk to others, but start shaking when we do.
  • We want to go after our “dream job” but walk into the interview and our mind goes blank.
  • We want to go on a trip somewhere, or see a friend, or have a connection and we find ourselves unable to even attempt these things.

So we meditate, we obtain therapy, we do everything in our power to “deal with” this aspect of our experience.

And yet, even those who don’t “struggle” with anxiety disclose that they get anxious. It’s because fear and anxiety are often two words that we put together, due to viewing them as part of a single experience. But, unlike fear, what if we viewed anxiety as our teacher rather than something to resist, cope with, or manage?

A psychedelic forest.

“Entangled Oasis” by Lisa Horlander

I left my session with Darcy very puzzled, unsure of what I did. How was I supposed to help Darcy, when all the treatment planning, amazing therapeutic interventions, and other ideas had been tried? Often when I get stuck with a case I tend to drop my planning and return to the following session intent to listen even deeper to the client’s experience.

As Darcy talked about the nature of her anxiety I began to feel in my body that rather than fight or block her anxiety, what if we welcomed it? What if, rather than resisting it, Darcy allowed anxiety to bring awareness to her that nothing was off with reality but instead with her experience of reality?

Or to quote Alan Watts: “When the wrong man uses the right means, the right means work in the wrong way.”As research is starting to show, anxiety is linked to our ability to process information quickly, not correctly. What if anxiety is a call from ourselves to take a step back? “In other words, there’s something wrong with the way that we think, and while that is there, everything we do will be a mess.”

Darcy returned to the following session in tears because she had begun to experience a reality with reduced anxiety. This was not, from my understanding, a sense of “self-love” as so many self-help books suggest. As she told me, “it’s who I am here, right now in this session that matters”. Darcy’s anxiety had become her friend, had become a reminder to return to herself, to the present moment, to the now.

Anxiety is something that we know rests in the body and forms in the amygdala and hippocampus parts of the brain. The amygdala is tied to our fear response, while the hippocampus is tied to our long-term memory and emotional responses.

Therefore, anxiety is a teacher that shows us we are responding not just emotionally, but from a place of fear and memory. It’s almost like we are using this aspect of pure “logic and planning” that anxiety seems to arise within us stronger and stronger. Yet human beings are a balance, between the planned and the unplanned, between the order and the spontaneity of life. It’s not running from our emotional reactions, or medicating them, that provides answers. It’s the awareness of obstacles that allows us to be present.

So what if anxiety, rather than being something we run from, manage or embrace, is a sign, a signifier, a teacher? Is it simply a signal from within? It seems to me that anxiety is a reminder to return to the present moment. Each year, each week, each day unfolds in a way that is at least a little different than how we planned it. What if this teacher, and how we view it, could change everything about our lives.

Healersmagazine.com

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Stress and what it does to you and your body !!!


Let’s start at the top; the brain. First, let’s differentiate good stress from bad stress. Typically, there are two types of stress: acute and chronic. Acute stress is a reaction to an immediate threat. That threat can feel like a physical or an emotional threat. It causes our brain to go into flight, fight or freeze mode. Once the threat passes, our stress hormones return to normal and we feel okay. Sometimes acute stress revs up the brain to perform at a peak level, kind of like revving an engine before the start of a race.

Chronic stress, the kind we face daily, is what tends to cause the real damage. According to an article by Deane Alban, 90 percent of doctors’ visits are for stress-related health complaints. Chronic stress makes you more vulnerable to anything ranging from the common cold to cancer. The article goes on to say that “the non-stop elevation of stress hormones not only makes your body sick, it negatively impacts your brain as well.”

Stress has many hidden negative consequences, because it affects the brain: High chronic stress increases the stress hormone cortisol, which creates a surplus of the neurotransmitter glutamate. Glutamate creates free radicals that attack brain cells in a similar way that oxygen attacks metal and creates rust.

Stress can also decrease or stop the production of new brain cells. The brain cell activity described is not what we can see so we are clueless to some of these damaging affects until we start to experience the signs and symptoms such as increased depression, cycles of anxiety and worry, increased risk of all kinds of mental illnesses, emotional dysregulation (when we feel we can cry at the drop of a hat or be fine one minute, enraged the next), increased forgetfulness, and/or basically feeling stupid.

A stressed woman biting her first.

Untitled by Serena West

Stress literally allows toxins into the brain that can shrink our brain, it can lead to higher risk of dementia and/or Alzheimer’s. Yet, according to Alban, Alzheimer’s disease is the number one health fear of American adults and the sixth leading cause of death. Stress leads to premature aging on a cellular level. As a psychologist who specializes in trauma, I’m especially interested in the part of the brain called the amygdala. It’s the area in the brain where we lose the ability to be present, and we are in fight, flight or freeze mode.

According to an article by Carolyn Gregoire from the Huffington Post, increased cortisol hampers the activity of the hippocampus (an area of the brain associated with learning, memory and emotion), and it increases the size and activity of the amygdala, the brains center where we hold our unprocessed emotions, thoughts and body sensations. If stress increases the activity in this part of the brain, then that could mean we are in a heightened state of reactivity to a perceived threat. This increases our emotional reactions and decreases the ability to have rational thoughts and take in new information. It takes a lot more energy for the brain to be in flight, fight or freeze mode then to be calm and relaxed. As stated earlier, the ways in which stress affects the brain is extensive. We could go more in depth, but these are some of the common ways stress affects the brain and therefore, affects our daily lives and journey of healing.

There is no way to make recommendations as to how to manage stress and decrease the negative effects on the brain without taking in the entire mind, body, spirit approach to wellness. I will be going much more in depth in the next two parts of this blog; for now, a good place to start would be to:

  1. Reconnect to your spiritual life and belief system.
  2. Incorporate yoga and/or meditation to your exercise regime.
  3. Consult with a nutritionist who can advise you on proper nutrition and appropriate goals for mindful eating.
  4. Consult with a doctor (my preference would be an Ayurveda specialist or Naturopathic Doctor) who can/will go more in depth with proper testing and recommendations for managing stress. Checking your adrenals and cortisol levels will be important in the process of decreasing the effects of stress on the brain and body.
  5. Consult with a professional counselor who can work with you on identifying and managing your stress.
  6. Engage in a healing process that can benefit you inside and out.

As we are all on our journey of healing, we face a variety of challenges consisting of health, family, relational, financial, spiritual, and emotional experiences.


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Nocturnal Seizures


I myself have been not knowing what’s going on with me. All the symptoms, new and old seem to fall under the category of the “Norm” of Autonomic Disease and Dysfunction. But this last year I have noticed waking up having what feels like a seizure, I can actually feel like my brain shaking, it feels like my chest in shaking, my nerves and muscles in my hands are moving, I get jerky muscle movements as well. It’s been scary so to be honest I haven’t said anything as it was happening just once in a while and every time you go to the Doctor that just look at you like your nuts!

So instead I emailed Stanford asking my Doctor and telling him of some worsening symptoms I was experiencing and this seizure thing happening, because its happening more now. Some times 3 times a night, then of courses going back to sleep is not going to happen, the fear of going back to sleep keeps me awake.

So after writing him and his quick response to get into the office right away, it scared me a little bit. Well a lot. So what do I do, what I tell people not to do is go on the internet. Okay, it happens more then you think, and most people don’t know they have them. but I do. Because of the different stage of sleep I’m in, I am aware of it which then makes it worse.

Good news is there are medications to control seizures, epilepsy and if those don’t work you can have a device put in your chest that sends electrical shocks up to your brain to try to keep you from having them all together. To be honest, I am so tired of drugs, there site effects, I ‘d rather have the device put in. I know that sounds crazy but I have already tried a lot of the epileptic meds due to migraine headaches and they made me very sick.

So that being said there are several reasons for having these seizures, one forget medication, alcohol withdrawal or drug withdrawal, lack of sleep, insomnia, misfiring in your brain. or previous drug use, well I have never tried drugs unless given by a Doctor, I don’t really drink, I do have insomnia and I can tell you I have my wires misfiring in my brain. I can tell something is wrong, I can feel it. I am so tired. I can sleep 20 hours a day everyday. my brain fog is so bad. I forget from one thing to the next. Head pressure galore. So I am off to Stanford. Hopefully since there is no cure, symptom control is all I can expect.

So hopefully this visit will be a new beginning for symptom relief.

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Misophonia!!!!!

Have you ever heard of this Brain Disorder. People are driven to fight and flight mode, anger, anxiety, uncontrollable behavior in a negative way because of sounds. Sounds that are in the category is chewing gum, smacking, slurping, chewing food, voices, walking in certain shoes, playing with plastic, water dripping could be any sounds even someone’s voice or even a swallow of water. It doesn’t just irritate you it actually causes you to not be able to think before actions, whether you yell, throw a tantrum, leave a room, some people become closed in there home, to avoid the sounds, there is no cure but there are exercises you can do to help the symptoms but very few Doctors treat this disease, let alone have ever heard of it. There are online tests to see if you have this disease and this disease is described as a neurological disorder and the brain’s wiring not working correctly. I found a clinic that specializes in this disorder and it is a disorder not in someone’s head, it is recognized by the neurological society as a disease. You can even take a class through the Brainclinic.com Dr. John Hatch. There are located in Utah but if you want to take a class with out having to go to Utah on there site they offer a class for a small fee to not only help you understand you what’s going on but also teaches your exercise that can help you deal with your disease. I can remember my dad going absolutely go nuts at the table if her heard anyone chew, slurp, swallow, he would get so angry and other videos I have watched the patients being diagnosed recognized a family member to have had the same sensitivities. If you find your self having any of these systems you can test yourself online. Again, the Brainclinic.com in Utah offers a class online, it was less than $50.00 for all the education and exercise’s to help you cope. There is a youtube link below to watch the first video. Copy and paste the link below to watch the Video.

https://youtu.be/BDbLNisb0Js

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Cervical Cancer

Cervical cancer staging helps to determine the disease prognosis and to select an appropriate treatment strategy.  FIGO (International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics) is the most commonly used staging systems for cervical cancer. Following table describe the characteristics of ovarian cancer according to different stages: The best way to prevent Cervical Cancer is by limiting your partners, getting your annual exams, having your pap’s done as your guidelines for your age recommend. Or If you have a new partner, Also making sure your Doctor is doing the HPV test on or off your pap and follow the follow the guidelines again by your age. Your Doctor will know this information. The worst thing you can do is ignore a abnormal result, Being tested regularly makes a different is a successful treatment, less treatment. If you don’t get your results from your Doctor’s office call and ask, Sometimes results can be lost. If you don’t feel comfortable with your Doctors decision on treatment, make a appointment and discuss with he or she, If you are still uncomfortable , seek a second opinion. If you choose to not take your Doctors recommendations, they can terminate your care, or you can ask to sign a release that you refuse treatment. If you have been told your Doctor you know longer need pap smears, you should still see your Doctor for annual pelvic exam. Or if you get a new partner even being released from Pap Smears, let your Doctor know.

FIGO StageDescription
IThe primary tumor has invaded into deeper cervical layer but is present only in the Uterus. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IAThe cancer cells are visible only under a microscope. Cervical stromal invasion </=5.0 mm in depth and horizontal epithelium invasion </=7.0 mm. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IA1The cancer cells are visible only under a microscope. Cervical stromal invasion </=3.0 mm in depth and horizontal epithelium invasion </=7.0 mm. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IA2The cancer cells are visible only under a microscope. Cervical stromal invasion >3.0 mm but </=5.0 mm in depth and horizontal epithelium invasion </=7.0 mm. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IBThe cancer cells are visible without a microscope or those visible only under a microscope but tumor size larger than T1a2. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IB1The cancer cells are visible without a microscope and tumor size </=4.0 cm. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IB2The cancer cells are visible without a microscope and tumor size >4.0 cm. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IIThe cancer cells have invaded beyond the cervix and the uterus but haven’t spread to the pelvic wall or to the lower part of the vagina. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IIAThe cancer cells have invaded beyond the cervix and the uterus but haven’t spread to the parametria (tissue next to the cervix). It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IIA1The cancer cells have invaded beyond the cervix and the uterus but haven’t spread to the parametria and tumor size </=4.0 cm. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IIA2The cancer cells have invaded beyond the cervix and the uterus but haven’t spread to the parametria and tumor size >4.0 cm. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IIBThe cancer cells have spread to the parametria. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IIIThe cancer cells have spread to the pelvic wall or to the lower part of the vagina. It may have blockage the ureter causing hydronephrosis. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IIIAThe cancer cells have spread to the lower part of the vagina. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IIIBThe cancer cells have spread to the pelvic wall. It may have blockage the ureter causing hydronephrosis. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IVAThe cancer cells have invaded beyond the pelvis wall into the bladder or the rectum. It might or might not have spread to nearby lymph nodes without any spread to distant body parts.
IVBThe cancer cells have spread to distant body parts such as distant lymph nodes, lungs, bones, or liver.


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Just what is a invisible illness?

What are Invisible Disabilities?
Invisible Disability, or hidden disability, is an umbrella term that captures a whole spectrum of hidden disabilities or challenges that are primarily neurological in nature. Invisible disability, or hidden disability, are defined as disabilities that are not immediately apparent. Some people with visual or auditory disabilities who do not wear glasses or hearing aids, or discreet hearing aids, may not be obviously disabled. Some people who have vision loss may wear contacts. A sitting disability is another category of invisible impairments; sitting problems are usually caused by chronic back pain. Those with joint problems or chronic pain may not use mobility aids on some days, or at all. Although the disability creates a challenge for the person who has it, the reality of the disability can be difficult for others to recognize or acknowledge. Others may not understand the cause of the problem, if they cannot see evidence of it in a visible way.
People with some kinds of invisible disabilities, such as chronic pain or some kind of sleep disorder, are often accused of faking or imagining their disabilities. These symptoms can occur due to chronic illness, chronic pain, injury, birth disorders, etc. and are not always obvious to the onlooker.
Invisible Disabilities are certain kinds of disabilities that are not immediately apparent to others. It is estimated that 10% of people in the U.S. have a medical condition which could be considered a type of invisible disability.
Nearly one in two people in the U.S. has a chronic medical condition of one kind or another, but most of these people are not considered to be disabled, as their medical conditions do not impair their normal everyday activities. These people do not use an assistive device and most look and act perfectly healthy.
According to the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) an individual with a disability is a person who: Has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; has a record of such an impairment; or is regarded as having such an impairment.
About This Image: Woman with migraine sitting on a bed holding a white mug with her head resting on her hands and knees.
Generally seeing a person in a wheelchair, wearing a hearing aid, or carrying a white cane tells us a person may be disabled. But what about invisible disabilities that make daily living a bit more difficult for many people worldwide
Invisible disabilities can include chronic illnesses such as renal failure, diabetes, and sleep disorders if those diseases significantly impair normal activities of daily living.
For example there are people with visual or auditory impairments who do not wear hearing aids or eye glasses so they may not seem to be obviously impaired. Those with joint conditions or problems who suffer chronic pain may not use any type of mobility aids on good days, or ever.
Another example is Fibromyalgia which is now understood to be the most common cause of chronic musculoskeletal pain. Sources estimate between 3 and 26 million Americans suffer from this hidden condition.
Other Types of Invisible Disabilities
Chronic Pain: A variety of conditions may cause chronic pain. A few of those reasons may be back problems, bone disease, physical injuries, and any number of other reasons. Chronic pain may not be noticeable to people who do not understand the victims specific medical condition.
Chronic Fatigue: This type of disability refers to an individual who constantly feels tired. This can be extremely debilitating and affect every aspect of a persons every day life.
Mental Illness: There are many mental illnesses that do qualify for disability benefits. Some examples are depression, attention deficit disorder, schizophrenia, agoraphobia, and many others. These diseases can also be completely debilitating to the victim, and can make performing everyday tasks extremely difficult, if not impossible.
Chronic Dizziness: Often associated with problems of the inner ear, chronic dizziness can lead to impairment when walking, driving, working, sleeping, and other common tasks.
People with psychiatric disabilities make up a large segment of the invisibly-disabled population covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.
Invisible disabilities can also include chronic illnesses such as renal failure, diabetes, and sleep disorders if those diseases significantly impair normal activities of daily living. If a medical condition does not impair normal activities, then it is not considered a disability.
96% of people with chronic medical conditions live with an illness that is invisible.
Many people living with a hidden physical disability or mental challenge are still able to be active in their hobbies, work and be active in sports. On the other hand, some struggle just to get through their day at work and some cannot work at all.

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