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Of Mindful Manner

This site crossed my paths and I knew it was one to be shared, I already have purchased two shirts to help support this site, it’s real, its helpful and fits in with my page, I just love the energy these women Cassidy and Savannah have and I am sure you will love there site, check it out, tell your story and lets help get the word out about Invisible Illnesses and rare diseases. There are more out there than you know, knowledge is the key, awareness is the cure and support gives us the want to continue to fight. Check it out.
Our Story
Of Mindful Manner was born out of a need to better represent the individuals of the world who show no outward signs of their illness. Coping with an invisible illness can be frustrating and painful, but these issues are compounded by a lack of knowledge and understanding. Our reason for being is to help enlighten and encourage our friends, families, neighbors, and co-workers to address individuals with empathy and understanding. At Of Mindful Manner we know that what you see is not always what you get, and because of that, each garment is carefully curated to serve as an invitation for conversation. The more conversation that surrounds invisible illness, the less room there is for stigmas, ignorance and misunderstanding.

We want you to know that we see you and we recognize the battle you are facing. There is a whole community at Of Mindful Manner that supports you.

The Founders
Hello, Cassidy & Savannah here! We are so thrilled you have found your way to our shop. We are sisters who have had our lives tremendously impacted by invisible illness. One of us has Dysautonomia and Chronic Migraines. The other one of us has grown up with a front row seat to living with these conditions, and has shared in the burdens they can cause. That’s the thing about invisible illnesses though.. you can’t tell by looking at us, which one of us fits which description.
We know our story is not unique. Nearly half of the U.S. population lives with some sort of chronic illness and 96% of chronic conditions are invisible. So while you may not suffer from an invisible illness yourself, chances are you know one or several family members/friends or co-workers that do. We pray the future holds cures for everyone, but in the meantime we will dedicate our lives to spreading awareness in hopes of making this world a more mindful one.
Search Returns Shipping Contact Us Blog. WWW.ofmindfulmanner, link located on the left hand side of page, bring ya right to it. Kelly

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Types of Weight Loss Procedures that can save your life.

Weight loss although has risks, can be a benefits including curing diabetes, lowering blood pressure, lowering cholesterol, easy joints and arthritis pain, digestive issues. Asthma and lung disease, sleep apnea, pre diabetes, Hepatic Steatosis, non alcohol related cirrhosis, PCOS for infertility, Joint disease, pseudotumor cerebri, uniary incontinense, venous stasis disease which causes swelling and varicose veins, Depression and mental illness, Quality of life. Longer life.
LAGB:
The Lap Band, adjustable Banding System. Placement of a flexible silicone band around the upper part of the stomach. the result is your not as hungry, feels fuller faster and eats less. there is a port left under the skin, so the Doctor can tighten the band or make it looser.

LRYGB, Laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric Bypass, t in involves the creation of a small capacity stomach pouch and a small outlet from the pouch directly into the small intestine, where nutrients are absorbed. The pouch will hold less then the previous stomach, can fee satisfied sooner, eats, Hormonal issues make a difference in your calories being burned.

LSG, Laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy, This removes a large portion of the stomach, the remaining portion of the stomach is formed into a long tube that is unable to enlarge or balloon up with food. The restriction reduces the amount a person can eat and causes satiety with less food.

MGB, Mini-Gastric Bypass or loop Gastric Bypass is a laparoscopic gastric bypass the involves connecting a loop of the small intestine to a small stomach ouch, creating the same sense of satiety and reduced hunger This procedure tissue connection instead of two and can be performed out patient.

The Duodenal Switch, This procedure involves a more complex re-routing of the intestines, that results in reduced stomach capacity and reduced nutrient absorption, It is the most invasive of the procedures and has the most risks but it may still have a role as a revisional procedure of for people with severe diabetes and very high BM!.

Band with imbringcation, This procedure which adds an imbrication or surgical in -folding and tightening of the stomach, to the placement of any adjustable gastric band. this is also out patient procedure it may improve weight loss produce faster results over LAGB Alone.

The laparoscopic improvement allow surgeons to spend less time in operating room and usually can go home that day.

In order the Qualify you must have a approval from a bariatric surgeon, the surgery center, BMI over 55. No history of Pulmonary hypertension, anesthia approval, sleep apnea under control
If you are over 65 most likely you won’t qualify.
You may want to keep your decision to have bariatric surgery to your self, the last thing you need is others opinions, it just between you and your Dr. You can even go under another name in the hospital to protect your privacy, but if you want to share your decision, make sure its with positive people that will support you in your journey and help you in your recovery.

A fantastic Book to read which gives you the in’s and outs, pro’s and con’s to any Gastric surgery. It is called A Sasse Guide, Outpatient Weight loss surgery, Dr Sasse is a highly experienced and accomplished bariatric surgeon, author expert and featured speaker national in the field of Weight reduction, bariatric medicine, remission of diabetes and surgery.

I have met him personally and just felt comfortable with his knowledge, He has refused patients because they don’t qualify, which I think is good, instead of just making the money. His office staff is incredible, kind and not judgmental. You can order the book off Amazon.com
If you would like to contact his office for their information conferences or a consultation the phone number is 775-7999. He resides in Reno, NV

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Ataxia

Ataxia is an autosomal recessive type of hereditary neuromuscular syndrome, includes slow degenerative changes of the spinal cord, peripheral nerves and the brain. Dysfunction of the central nervous system affects coordination of the muscles in the limbs.

Some symptoms could be an awkward, uncoordinated walk accompanied often by poor hand coordination and abnormal speech, eye movement and double vision, sensory loss and cognitive impairment.

Vision disorders: optic atrophy, retinitis, pigmentosa and eye movement paralysis.

Heart: Heart disease, breathing problems, bone abnormalitieies and diabetes

slurred speech.

Although there is no permanent cure there is a times when you can be in remission for periods of time. and comfort measures.

.

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Diabetes and Neuropathy

About Speaking of Diabetes

Speaking of Diabetes is produced by Joslin Diabetes Center for people with diabetes and those who care for them..

Joslin Diabetes Center, a teaching and research affiliate of Harvard Medical School, is a one-of-a-kind institution on the front lines of the world epidemic of diabetes – leading the battle to conquer diabetes in all forms through cutting-edge research and innovative approaches to clinical care and education.

Gastroparesis and Diabetes: Another Aspect of Neuropathy
Posted on June 26, 2015 by Joslin Communications
This entry was posted in Complications, Diabetes Day2Day and tagged gastroparesis, neuropathy. Bookmark the permalink.
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Patients with long standing diabetes usually have some evidence of damage to the nervous system, or neuropathy. If you have neuropathy you may be familiar with pain, tingling, numbness or loss of feeling in the feet or hands (called peripheral neuropathy), but it can affect any organ system, including the stomach and its related organs.

Nerve damage associated within the gastrointestinal tract can result in the motility disorders of gastroparesis and small bowel bacterial overgrowth (SBBO). Gastroparesis is 2 to 3 times more common in type 1 diabetes than type 2 diabetes and may affect as many as 50 percent of those with type 1.

If you eat a low-fat, mixed meal your blood glucose will peak in about 1.5 hours. With normal bowel function, this peak coincides with the peak action of rapid acting insulin.

But damage to the nerves (the vagus nerve) of the gastrointestinal tract causes a loss of stomach and intestinal motor control. This can lead to a mismatch between when you digest food and glucose enters the blood stream and the action time of insulin.

If you have gastroparesis you may experience erratic blood glucose, with a pattern of low glucose readings shortly following the meal and elevated readings hours after eating.

Symptoms include nausea, early satiety, vomiting and in severe cases weight loss. Because of gastric stasis and slower bowel transit times, patients are also prone to constipation.

Gastroparesis is diagnosed by gastric emptying studies. In this test, patients are fed a meal containing a marker isotope and x-ray pictures are taken of the stomach over a 4 hour period.

Severe gastroparesis can lead to malnutrition due to continued vomiting and poor consumption of calories and protein. The goals of nutrition therapy are to prevent muscle loss, provide adequate vitamin and mineral intake, control blood glucose levels and relieve symptoms.

Nutrition recommendations include

1. Eat smaller, more frequent meals;

2. Consume more of your calories with liquids. Liquids pass more quickly than solids through the stomach;

3. Limit dietary fiber especially, for patients prone to bezoars (those are hairball like accumulations of hardened food fibers, and they can lead to obstruction of the passage from the stomach to the intestine)

4. Reduce dietary fats –especially solid fats – as they delay gastric emptying. Fats in liquid form appear better tolerated

5. Consume adequate calories to achieve or maintain a healthy weight

Other recommendations include:

1. Control of blood glucose- high levels (greater than 270 mg/dl) delay GI transit time.

2. Taking insulin after the meal or for patients using an insulin pump, use the extended action bolus.

3. Using a combination of prokinetic (movement stimulating) and antiemetic (anti nausea and vomiting) agents to improve gastric motility and control symptoms of nausea and vomiting.

For patients who do not find relief with the above measures, gastric electric stimulation can be attempted. A small pulse generator is placed under the skin and wires are attached to the stomach. The generator emits a small charge stimulating stomach emptying.

But, as always, talk to your doctor before making any changes to your diet or care.

More information about gastroparesis can be found on the NIH website.

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Let’s talk Vestibular Dysfunction

Dizziness is a general term that describes sensations of imbalance and unsteadiness, such as vertigo, mild turning, imbalance, and near fainting or fainting. Feelings of dizziness stem from the vestibular system, which includes the brain and the parts of the inner ear that sense position and motion, coupled with sensory information from the eyes, skin, and muscle tension.
Description

Because dizziness is a general term for a variety of feelings of instability, it spans a large range of symptoms. These symptoms range from the most dramatic, vertigo, to the least severe, imbalance. Included in these feelings is fainting, which results in a loss of consciousness.

Vertigo is an acute feeling of violent rotation. People with vertigo often feel as if they are tilting or falling through space. Vertigo is most often caused by problems with the vestibular system of the inner ear. Symptoms can be brief, or may last for extended periods of time and may be accompanied by changes in pulse and blood pressure, perspiration, nausea, and a type of rapid eye movement called nystagmus.

Mild turning is a less violent type of vertigo. People with mild turning are still able to function in normal daily routines. However, a feeling of turning may continue for weeks. Mild turning is usually a symptom of inner ear dysfunction. It may also result from transient ischemic attack , or a lack of blood flow to the brain. People who have suffered from strokes may feel mild turning for periods of time. Mild turning may also be associated with multiple sclerosis , AIDS , or head trauma.

Imbalance is a feeling of instability or floating. It is associated with many general medical problems such as the flu or infection. Imbalance can also be associated with arthritis, especially in the neck, or another neurological problem.

Fainting is a sudden loss of consciousness and near fainting is a feeling of extreme light-headedness with a sinking or falling feeling. Vision usually becomes hazy or dimmed and the extremities become weak. Both fainting and near fainting are caused by lack of blood flow to the brain. Anything that causes a rapid drop in blood pressure, such as a heart attack or an insulin reaction in a diabetic, can result in fainting or near fainting. Panic attacks that cause a person to exhale a lot of carbon dioxide can cause fainting or near fainting.
Vestibular system

The vestibular system is the sensory system located in the inner ear that helps the body to maintain balance. Balance in the human body is coordinated by the brainstem, which, with speed and precision, collects information from other parts of the brain and sensory organs throughout the body. It is the brainstem that sends neurological instructions to the muscles and joints. The sensory organs that play critical roles relaying information to the brain-stem include the skin, eyes, muscles and joints, and the vestibular system in the inner ear. Dizziness may result with dysfunction in any of these components or in the nerves that connect them.
Brain

The cerebellum , which is responsible for coordination and the cerebral cortex, provides neurological information to the brainstem. For example, the cerebellum is the organ that informs the body how to shift weight when going down a flight of stairs and how to balance on a bicycle. These processes are accomplished without conscious thinking.

In order to maintain balance, the brainstem depends on input from sensory organs including the eyes, muscles, joints, skin and ears. This information is relayed to the brainstem via the spinal cord. The combined neurological receptor system, which involves the brainstem, spinal cord, and sensory organs, is called the proprioceptive system. Proprioceptive dysfunction may result in dizziness, and people with problems with their proprioceptive system may fall often. Additionally, as people age, problems with proprioception become more common.
Sensory organs

Visual information is of particular importance to maintaining balance. The visual systems most involved are the optokinetic and pursuit systems. The optokinetic system is the motor impulse responsible for moving the eyes when the head moves, so that the field of vision remains clear. The pursuit system allows a person to focus on a moving object while the head remains stationary. Both of these systems feed information about the person’s position relative to the surroundings to the brainstem. A specific type of eye movement called nystagmus, which is repetitive jerky movements of the eye, most often in the horizontal direction, may cause dizziness. Nystagmus may indicate that neurologic signals from the optokinetic or pursuit systems are not in agreement with the other balance information received by the brain.

Sensory information from muscles, joints, and skin plays a key role in balance. The muscles and joints of the human body are lined with sensory receptors that send neurological information about the position of the body to the brainstem. For example, receptors in the neck muscles tell the brain which way the head is turned. The skin, in particular the skin of the feet and buttocks, is covered with pressure sensors that relay information to the brain regarding what part of the body is touching the ground.
Peripheral vestibular system

The ear, particularly the inner ear, plays a critical role in maintaining balance. The inner ear contains two major parts: the cochlea, which is mostly used for hearing, and the vestibular apparatus, also known as the peripheral vestibular system, which is important in balance. A set of channels connects the two parts of the ear and therefore any disease that affects hearing may also affect balance, and vice versa.

The peripheral vestibular system consists of a series of canals and chambers, all of which are made of membranes. This membrane system is filled with a fluid called endolymph. The peripheral vestibular system is further embedded in the temporal bone of the skull. In the space between the temporal bone and the membranes of the peripheral vestibular system resides a second fluid called perilymph. Endolymph and perilymph each have a different chemical makeup consisting of varying concentrations of water, potassium, sodium, and other salts. Endolymph flows out of the peripheral vestiubular system into an endolymphatic sac and then diffuses through a membrane into the cerebrospinal fluid that bathes the brain. Peri-lymph flows out of the peripheral vestibular system and directly into the cerebrospinal fluid. When the flow pressures or chemical compositions of the endolymph and perilymph change, feelings of dizziness can occur. These types of changes may be related to Mèniére’s disease.

The vestibular apparatus is made up of two types of sensory organs: otolith organs and semicircular canals. The otolith organs sense the direction of gravity, while the semi-circular canals sense rotation and movement of the head.

Two otolith organs in each ear are called the saccule and the utricle. The saccule is oriented in a vertical direction when a person is standing and, best senses vertical motion of the head. The utricle is nearly horizontal when a person is standing, so it best senses horizontal motion of the head. Each organ consists of calcium carbonate crystals embedded in a gel. Special hair-producing cells extend into the gel from below. As the head moves, gravity and inertia cause the crystals to bend the hairs, which are in contact with nerves. Information on the position and motion of the head is thus relayed to the brain. If the hairs or the crystals in the otolith organs are damaged, feelings of dizziness may result.

In each ear, there are also three semicircular canals that lie on planes that are perpendicular to each other. The canals are connected together by a main chamber called a vestibule. The canals and the vestibule are filled with endolymph fluid. Near its connection to the vestibule, one end of each of the canals widens into a region called the ampulla. One side of the ampulla is lined with specialized sensory cells. These cells have hairlike structures that extend into a gelatinous structure called a cupula. As the head moves in a given plane, the endolymph inside the semicircular canal in that plane remains stationary due to inertia. The cupula, however, moves because it is attached to the head. This puts pressure on the cupula, which in turn moves the hairlike structures. The bending of the hairlike structures stimulates nerves, alerting the brain that the head is moving in a particular plane. By integrating information from all three planes in which the semicircular canals lie, the brain reconstructs the three-dimensional movement of the head. If information from one of the semicircular canals does not agree with that of another, or if the information generated by semicircular canals in one ear does not agree with the information produced by the other ear, feelings of dizziness may result.

All of the signals from the peripheral vestibular system travel to the brain along the eighth cranial nerve, also called the vestibular nerve. Damage to this nerve, either through head trauma or the growth of tumors, can also cause feelings of dizziness. Neurological information from the semicircular canals seems be more important to the brain than information from the otolith structures. If the eighth cranial nerve on one side of the head is damaged, but the other side remains intact, the brain learns to compensate over time; however, the mechanics involved in this process are not well understood.
Demographics

Dizziness is an extremely common symptom occurring in people of all ages, ethnicities, and socioeconomic backgrounds. Balance disorders increase with age, and by age 75, dizziness is one of the most common reasons for visiting a doctor. In the general population, dizziness is the third most common reason that patients visit doctors. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), about 42% of the population of the United States will complain of dizziness at some point in their lives. In the United States, the cost of medical care for patients with symptoms of imbalance is estimated to be more than $1 billion per year.
Diseases associated with dizziness

Because it involves so many different parts of the body, the balance system may exhibit signs of dysfunction for a variety of reasons. Dizziness may be caused by problems with the central nervous system , the vestibular system, the sensory organs, including the eyes, muscles and joints, or more systemic disorders such as cardiovascular disease, bacterial and viral diseases, arthritis, blood disorders, medications, or psychological illnesses.
Central nervous system dysfunction

Any problem that affects the nerves leading to the brain from vestibular or sensory organs, the spinal cord, the cerebellum, the cerebral cortex, or the brainstem may result in dizziness. In particular, tumors that affect any of these organs are of concern. In addition, disorders that affect blood supply to the central nervous system, such as transient ischemic attacks, stroke , migraines, epilepsy , or multiple sclerosis, may result in feelings of dizziness.

BRAINTUMORS Although rare, acoustic neuroma is a benign tumor growing on the vestibulo-cochlear nerves, which reach from the inner ear to the brain. It may press as well on blood vessels that flow between the peripheral vestibular system and the brain. Symptoms included ringing in one ear, imbalance, and hearing loss. Distortion of words often becomes increased as the tumor grows and disturbs the nerve. Treatment requires surgical removal of the tumor, which nearly always returns the sense of balance to normal, although some residual hearing loss may occur.

Other brain tumors may also cause feelings of dizziness. These include tumors that originate in the brain tissue, such as meningiomas (benign tumors) and gliomas (malignant tumors). Sometimes tumors from other parts of the body may metastasize in the brain and cause problems with balance.

CEREBRAL ATROPHY Age causes atrophy (deterioration) of brain cells that may result in slight feelings of imbalance. More severe forms of dizziness may result from other neurological disorders.

BLOOD SUPPLY DISORDERS If the blood flow and oxygenation to the cerebellum, cerebral cortex, or brain-stem is not adequate, feelings of dizziness can result. Such symptoms can result from several types of disorders, including anemia, transient ischemic attacks (TIAs), and stroke.

TIAs are temporary loss of blood supply to the brain, often caused by arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries). In addition to a brief period of dizziness or vertigo, symptoms include a transient episode of numbness on one side of the body, and slurred speech and/or lack of coordination. If the loss of blood supply to the brain is due to a blockage in one of the arteries in the neck, surgery may correct the problem.

Strokes, or cerebrovascular accidents (CVA), occur in three major ways. A thrombotic stroke occurs when a fatty deposit forms a clot in an artery, blocking blood supply to the brain. An embolic stroke occurs when part of a clot from another part of the body breaks off and obstructs an artery leading to the brain. A hemorrhagic stroke occurs when blood vessels in the brain hemorrhage, leaving a blood clot in the brain.

PERIPHERAL VESTIBULAR SYSTEM DYSFUNCTION When balance problems are brief or intermittent, the peripheral vestibular system is usually the cause. Many different problems may be at the root of vestibular disorder.

BENIGN PAROXYSMAL POSITIONAL VERTIGO (BPPV) Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo occurs following an abrupt change in position of the head. Often, onset of vertigo occurs when patients roll from their back onto the side, and it usually subsides in less than a minute. BPPV can result from head trauma, degeneration of the peripheral vestibular system with age, infection of the respiratory tract, high blood pressure, or other cardiovascular diseases. Those who suffer from an infection of their vestibular system, causing severe vertigo that lasts up to several days, can develop BPPV any time within the next eight years. BPPV is also associated with migraine headaches .

Two theories on the cause of BPPV currently exist. One suggests that BPPV will occur when the calcium carbonate crystals in the otolith organs (the saccule and the utiricle) are displaced and become lodged in the cupula of the semicircular canals due to head trauma, infection, or degeneration of the inner ear canals. This displacement will stimulate the nerves from the semicircular canals when the head rotates in a particular position, indicating to the brain that the person is spinning. However, the rest of the sensory organs in the body report that the body is stationary. This conflicting information produces vertigo. The calcium carbonate crystals dissolve after a brief time, and the symptom is rectified. The second theory suggests that cellular debris accumulates into a mass that moves around the semicircular canals, exerting pressure on the cupula and causing vertigo. When the mass dissolves, the symptoms subside.

INNER EAR INFECTIONS Inner ear infection, or vestibular neuronitis, occurs some time after a person has suffered from a viral infection. Onset includes a violent attack of vertigo, including nausea, vomiting, and the inability to stand or walk. Symptoms subside in several days, although feelings of unsteadiness may continue for a week or more. A swelling of the vestibular nerve following a viral infection causes vestibular neuronitis.

Sometimes the inflammation can recur over several years. A viral infection affecting the inner ear, but not the vestibular nerve, is called viral labyrinthitis. Labyrinthitis can cause hearing loss, but all other symptoms are similar to vestibular neuronitis.

Severe bacterial infections can also cause inflammation of the inner ear. These cases include risk of deafness, inflammation of the brain, and meningitis (inflammation of the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord). Otitis occurs when fluid accumulates in the middle ear, causing feelings of imbalance, mild turning, or vertigo. When the infection reaches the inner ear, the disease is called acute suppurative labyrinthitis. Treatment for any bacterial infection in the ear is critical to prevent long-term damage to hearing and balance organs.

PERILYMPH FISTULA Perilymph fistulas are openings that occur between the middle ear and the inner ear. This allows a hole through which perilymph can flow, changing the pressure of perilymph flowing into the brain and causing dizziness. Fistulas often form as a result of head trauma or abrupt changes in pressure. Symptoms may also include hearing loss, ringing in the ears, coordination problems, nystagmus, and headaches. Most fistulas heal with time; however, in severe cases, surgical procedures are used to close the hole, using a tissue graft.

MÈNIÉRE’S DISEASE In 1861, French physician Prosper Mèniére described Mèniére’s disease as having four particular symptoms: vertigo lasting for an hour or more, but less than 24 hours; ringing or buzzing sounds in the ear; feeling of pressure or fullness in the ear; and some hearing loss. Some people are affected in both ears; others just one ear. Onset of Mèniére’s may be related to stress, although not in all cases. Nystagmus is usually associated with the attacks.

Mèniére’s disease is thought to be caused by an accumulation of endolymph within the canals of the inner ear, a condition called endolymphatic hydrops. This causes produces a swelling in the canals containing endolymph, which puts pressure on the parts of the canals containing perilymph. The result affects both hearing and balance. In severe cases, it is feared that the endolymphatic compartments may burst, disrupting both the chemical and pressure balances between the two fluids.

The cause of the accumulation of endolymph is unknown, although it can be related to trauma to the head, infection, degeneration of the inner ear, or some other regulatory mechanism. Syphilis is often associated with Mèniére’s disease, as are allergies and leukemia. Some suggest that Mèniére’s disease is an autoimmune dysfunction. There may be a genetic predisposition to Mèniére’s disease.

Mèniére’s disease is usually treated with meclizine (Antivert), antihistamines, and sedatives. Diuretics can be used to rid the body of excess endolymph. Salt-free diets can also help to prevent the accumulation of fluid in the ears.
Systemic disorders

Dizziness may be a symptom of a disorder that affects the whole body, or systems within the body. Dizziness may also be the result of systemic toxicity to substances such as medications and drugs.

POSTURAL HYPOTENSION The major symptom of postural hypotension, also called orthostasis, is low blood pressure. When a person stands up from a prone position, blood vessels in the legs and feet must constrict to force blood to the brain. When blood pressure is low, the blood vessels do not constrict quickly or with enough pressure and the result is a lag before blood reaches the brain, causing dizziness. Postural hypotension can be treated with an increase in fluid intake or with blood pressure medication.

HEART CONDITIONS A variety of heart conditions can cause feelings of dizziness. In particular, arrhythmia, a dysfunction of the heart characterized by an irregular heartbeat, decreases blood supply to the brain in such a way as to cause balance problems. In most cases, symptoms of dizziness associated with arrhythmia result from problems with heart valves, such as narrowing of the aorta and mitral valve prolapse.

INFECTIOUS DISEASES Influenza and flu-like diseases can cause dizziness, especially if accompanied by fever. The virus herpes zoster oticus causes painful blisters and shingles . If the virus attacks the facial nerve, it may result in vertigo. Several bacterial diseases can result in dizziness, including tuberculosis, syphilis, meningitis, or encephalitis. One of the major symptoms of Lyme disease , which is caused by infection of a microorganism resulting from a deer tick bite, is dizziness.

BLOOD DISORDERS A variety of diseases of the blood result in feelings of dizziness. These diseases include anemia, or a depletion of iron in the blood, sickle-cell anemia, leukemia, and polycythemia.

DRUGS AND OTHER SUBSTANCES A variety of substances ingested systemically to prevent disorders of diseases can result in feelings of dizziness. In particular, overdose of aspirin and other anti-inflammatory drugs can cause problems with balance. Antibiotics taken for extended periods of time are also known to cause dizziness. Streptomycin is known to damage the vestibular system, if taken in large doses. Medicines that are used to treat high blood pressure can lower blood pressure so much as to cause feelings of light-headedness. Quinine, which is taken to treat malaria, can cause dizziness, as can antihistamines used to prevent allergy attacks. Chemotherapy drugs are well known to have various side effects, including dizziness. Alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine are also known to cause dizziness, when taken in large doses.
Diagnosis

Because maintaining posture integrates so many different parts of the body, diagnosing the actual problem responsible for dizziness often requires a battery of tests. The cardiovascular system, the neurological system, and the vestibular system are all examined.

Blood pressure is one of the most important cardiovascular measurements made to determine the cause of imbalance. Usually the physician will measure blood pressure and heart rate with the patient lying down, and then again after the patient stands up. If blood pressure drops significantly and the heart rate increases more than five beats per minute, this signals the existence of postural hypotension. Dizziness in people suffering from diabetes or on blood pressure medicine may be caused by postural hypotension.
Neurological tests

Because the central nervous system is integral to maintaining balance, neurological tests are often performed on patients with symptoms of dizziness. A test of mental status is often performed to ascertain that mental function is healthy. Physicians may test tendon reflexes to determine the status of peripheral and motor nerves, as well as spinal cord function. Nerves in different parts of the body may also be evaluated. In addition, physicians may test muscle strength and tone, coordination, and gait.

Neurologists may also perform a variety of computerized scans that determine if tumors or acoustic neuromas are present. These tests include magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) , computerized tomography (CT ), and electroencephalogram (EEG).
Tests of the vestibular system

Most often performed by a otolaryngologist, the battery of tests performed to determine the health of the vestibular system include the Dix-Halpike test, electrostagmography, hearing tests, rotation tests, and posturography.

DIX-HALPIKE TEST The Dix-Halpike test, also called the Halpike test, is performed to determine if a patient suffers from benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV). The patient is seated and positioned so that his or her head hangs off the edge of the table when lying down. The patient’s head is moved 45 degrees in one direction. The patient is then asked to lie down, without moving his or her head. The same procedure will be repeated on the other side. If feelings of vertigo result from this movement, BPPV is usually diagnosed.

ELECTRONYSTAGMOGRAPHY (ENG) Considered one of the most telling diagnostic tests to determine the cause of dizziness, electronystagmography consists of a series of evaluations that test the interactions between the vestibular organs and the eyes, also called the vestibulo-ocular reflex. Results from this test can inform the physician whether problems are caused by the vestibular system or by the central nervous system.

The most common diagnostic feature observed during ENG is nystagmus, an involuntary movement of the pupils that allows a person to maintain balance. In healthy persons, nystagmus consists of a slow movement in one direction in response to a change in the visual field and quick corrective movement in the other direction. In persons with disorders of the vestibular organs, nystagmus will produce quick movements in the horizontal direction. People with neurologic disorders will show signs of nystagmus in the vertical direction or even in a circular pattern.

In most of the ENG tests, electrodes taped to the patient’s head record nystagmus as the patient is exposed to a variety of moving lights or patterns of stripes that stimulate the vestibular system. The patient may be asked to stand and lie in various positions for the tests. Also, included in the ENG is a caloric test in which warm water and cool water are circulated through the outer ear. This causes a slight expansion or contraction of the endolymph in the inner ear and simulates movement cues to the brain.

HEARING TESTS Because the cochlea and the vestibular organs are adjacent to one another, hearing dysfunction can often be related to problems with dizziness. Audiograms include tests for both hearing and interpreting sounds, and can determine whether or not problems exist in the middle ear, the inner ear, or the auditory nerve.

ROTATION TESTS Rotation tests evaluate the vestibulo-ocular reflex and provide important information when the dysfunction is common to both ears. Electrodes are usually taped to the face to monitor eye movement, and the patient is placed in a chair. The chair rotates at different speeds through different arcs of a circle. The audiologist may also ask the patient to focus on different objects as the chair is rotated.

POSTUROGRAPHY During posturography tests, a patient stands on a platform that measures how weight is distributed. During the test, the patient will close and open his or her eyes or look into a box with different visual stimuli. The platform is computer controlled so that it can gently tip forward or backward or from side to side. Posturography measures how much the patient sways or moves in response to the stimuli. This provides information on the function of the proprioceptive system, as well as the vestibular system.
Treatment

If symptoms of dizziness are found to be associated with systemic diseases such as diabetes, hypotension, or other infectious diseases, or with neurological disorders, treatment for the dizziness is usually successful.

In many patients, dizziness caused by vestibular dysfunction tends to dissipate with time and with little treatment. However, available and common treatments for vestibular problems include physical therapies, medications, and surgeries. In addition, low-salt diets, relaxation techniques, and psychological counseling may be used as treatment.
Exercises and therapy

The physical therapies to decrease dizziness fall into two major groups. Compensation therapies help train the patient’s brain to rely on the sensory information it receives to maintain balance, and to ignore information from damaged organs. Exercises in a compensation program are designed to focus on the movements that cause dizziness so that the brain can adapt to these behaviors. In addition, exercises that teach the patient how to keep the eye movements separate from head movements and to practice balancing in various positions are used.

Specific exercises aimed at relieving benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), called canalith repositioning procedures, have recently been developed. By turning the head to one side and moving from a sitting to lying position in a certain sequence, BPPV can be quickly relieved. The movements in the canalith repositioning procedures are intended to move calcium carbonate crystals from the semicircular canals back to the utricle. The success rate with these exercises can be up to 90%.
Medications

A variety of medications are used to treat vertigo. These include vestibular suppressants, which seem to work by decreasing the rate of firing of nerve cells. Common vestibular suppressants are meclizine (Antivert, Bonine, and Vetrol). Also prescribed are anti-nausea medications such as promethazane (Phenergan) and anti-histamines (Benadryl, Dramamine). For dizziness brought on by anxiety attacks, anti-anxiety drugs such as diazepam (Valium) and lorazepam (Ativan) may be used. These drugs all have side effects and are seldom prescribed for long periods of time.
Surgery

Surgery is usually the last step in the treatment of dizziness, only used after therapy and medications have failed. One of the more common surgical procedures for treating vestibular disorders is patching perilymph fistulas, or tears, at the tops of the semicircular canals. Surgery may also be used to drain excess fluid from the endolymphatic canals to relieve endolymphatic hydrops. Cutting the vestibular nerve just before it joins with the auditory nerve to form the eighth cranial nerve can also be performed to alleviate severe problems with dizziness. Finally, the entire labyrinth can be destroyed in a procedure called a labyrinthectomy, although this is usually only performed when hearing has been completely lost as well.
Resources
BOOKS

Blakely, Brian W., and Mary-Ellen Siegel. Feeling Dizzy: Understanding and Treating Dizziness, Vertigo, and Other Balance Disorders. New York: Macmillan USA, 1997.

Olsen, Wayne, ed. Mayo Clinic on Hearing: Strategies for Managing Hearing Loss, Dizziness, and Other Ear Problems. Rochester, MN: Mayo Clinic Health Information, 2003.
OTHER

“Vestibular Disorders: An Overview.” The Vestibular Disorders Association. November 3, 2003. (April 4, 2004). .

“Equilibrium Pathologies.” Archives for Sensology and Neurootology in Science and Practice. January 2004 (April 4, 2004). .

“Dizziness.” The Mayo Clinic. October 10, 2002 (April 4, 2004). .

“Dizziness and Motion Sickness.” The American Academy of Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery. January 30, 2004 (April 4, 2004). .

“Balance, Dizziness and You.” National Institute on Deafness and other Communication Disorders. November 20, 2003 (April 4, 2004). .
ORGANIZATIONS

Vestibular Disorders Association. P.O. Box 4467, Portland, OR 97208. (503) 229-7705 or (800) 837-8428. .

Juli M. Berwald, PhD

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The Dioxin Glyphosate Vagina Cocktail!!! What’s in Tampons???

Tampons: The Dioxin Glyphosate Vagina Cocktail

Tampons: The Dioxin Glyphosate Vagina Cocktail
By Meghan Telpner / Beauty Care
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Several years ago, when this little blog was just getting rolling, I wrote a 3-part series on tampons. The title was aptly named Tampax Tampons: Toxic Sticks of Death.

Seven years later, sad but true, this topic needs to be revisited. I wish I was revisiting it with good news to share. I wish we could celebrate that dioxins and other bleaching agents and synthetic fibers have been removed from tampons, leaving us ladies to live a life that includes a happy vagina. Unfortunately, it seems the situation has gotten worse.

When chemical lobbyists and the government approval boards talk about chemicals, they often describe them in parts per million or parts per billion with the common statement that the average exposure of the average consumer isn’t enough to cause issue. Here’s the thing though: it is enough and it is an issue. A big one.

The average woman menstruating for five days a month for 38 years will use approximately 11,400 tampons in a lifetime, with direct contact to the chemicals in tampons for 2,200 days. And pads. Pads too. Oh, and also baby diapers. Yes, these chemicals are in diapers, ear swabs, cotton pads and toilet paper, too.

The average woman is using tampons or pads for 2,200 days of her life.

Tampons require contact over an extended period of time with one of the body’s most porous and highly absorbent mucous membranes. They are categorized by the FDA as a ‘medical device’, which means that manufacturers aren’t required to adhere to the same chemical regulations or labeling regulations as foods, drugs or cosmetics. Testing on chemical levels in tampons is done by the manufacturer or private researcher with findings presented to regulating bodies for review. When we consider that North American women spend an average of two billion dollars per year on these commercial brands of sanitary napkins and tampons, and few are asking questions, brands like Proctor & Gamble – the makers of Tampax – have no incentive to fix what is very, very broken.

Tampon Use

What I didn’t know when I wrote my first series of posts on tampons back in 2008 was that Monsanto had pulled up a chaise lounge in my vagina and was serving up a chemical vag cocktail of glyphosate, dioxin and chlorine. If my vagina could talk, it would likely have said, “What the f— are you doing here?!?!”

If my vagina could talk, it would likely have said, “What the f— are you doing here?!?!”

Let’s back up a minute and go through this in an orderly manner.
What Are Tampons Made Of

Originally tampons were made of 100% cotton, and if you are still using them, this is what you want to look for: 100% organic cotton. Current conventional tampons may include:

Conventional Cotton: Cotton is one of the most heavily sprayed crops in the world. More below.
Polyester: Polyester is a plastic derived from crude oil. We often see this in clothing when it is drawn out in long thin fibers and woven together. It also doesn’t hold liquid well, making it an interesting choice for a tampon.
Viscose Rayon: A plant-derived fiber of regenerated cellulose. It can be produced from a variety of plants. In north america, rayon is most commonly produced by wood pulp, sugar cane and soy. Remember that in North America 93% of soy is genetically modified. Overseas you’ll find bamboo-derived rayon.

Polyacrylate Rayon and Carboxymehtylcellulose were both required to be removed from tampons by law due to their association with Toxic Shock Syndrome. In private testing, these synthetic materials were attracting the bacteria that lead to TSS. The lesser of the evil synthetics was the Viscose Rayon blend and this is what remains in conventional tampons.

Additional ingredients typically include:

absorbency enhancers
synthetic deodorants
artificial fragrances

Each of these chemicals carry their own list of ingredients but under the labelling laws for medical devices do not need to be disclosed.

Curious about what’s in tampons? via @MeghanTelpner
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The Pearly White Tampons + Dioxin

The pearly white tampons used in commercials sure look pretty, don’t they? But why? Why do they have to be so white? We all know what’s going to happen when they get used. None of us are filling a glass with blue water and watching how pretty it looks as tampons suck up all that liquid. No. They are being inserted into the dark nethers of our vagina to absorb menstrual blood. They are white for the thirty seconds between taking them out of the package and inserting them.

The chlorine bleaching of tampons is where we used to think the greatest danger was. The bleaching process creates chlorinated hydrocarbons, a hazardous group of chemicals with byproducts that includes dioxins, some of the most toxic substances known. According to the Environment Protection Agency [EPA], no safe level for dioxin exposure exists. Dioxins are what we call persistent organic pollutants – they do not break down, and instead accumulate in our tissue with repeated exposure. Tampon use would be a rather perfect example of repeated exposure.

This causes something called toxic accumulation and one of the most powerful ways a woman detoxes these chemicals is through the umbilical cord into her fetus.

Responding to protests from consumers, the tampon industry changed its bleaching method to Elemental Chlorine Free (EFC) bleaching. This method replaces chlorine gas with chlorine dioxide, recognized for its disinfectant properties. Chlorine dioxide kills microorganisms by disrupting the transport of nutrients across the cell membrane.

As I wrote in my original post:
“The makers use the theory that chlorine dioxide is far less reactive with organic materials than the previously used chlorine bleach. With no pure chlorine involved, EFC bleaching should theoretically result in a dioxin free product. This, however, is not the case. Studies have shown that the manufacturing of chlorine dioxide does not produce a pure product, as chemical reactions that take place during the bleaching process free elemental chlorine atoms, therefore releasing dioxin. The Worldwatch Institute has referred to ECF bleaching as a ‘low-tar cigarette’ strategy’, lowering the amount of dioxins, not eliminating them.”

According to the world health organization, dioxins are “highly toxic and can cause reproductive and developmental problems, damage the immune system, interfere with hormones and also cause cancer.”

The vaginal wall contains moist and highly absorbent fatty tissue and toxins have an affinity to fat cells. One of the diseases most directly linked to the endocrine-disrupting effect of dioxin released from tampons is endometriosis, and there is an accumulating body of evidence connecting dioxin levels with infertility. Dioxin induces an increase in estrogen levels, which is linked to sex-hormone related cancers of the breast and reproductive organs.

In addition to cancer and endometriosis the enzyme, hormonal and growth disruption caused by dioxin exposure has been linked:

birth defects
the inability to maintain pregnancy
decreased fertility
reduced sperm count
diabetes
immune system suppression

And the list continues.

Given that the ECF bleaching also acts as an anti-microbial agent, it also serves to imbalance the vaginal ecosystem, making it a prime environment for yeast infections.

But wait, there’s more.

Learn more about your natural beauty and personal care options with my free natural beauty resource directory. Learn More

Glyphosate In Tampons

Glyphosate is known to cause severe damage in the body and has even been implicated in the rise of gluten sensitivity. One of the many concerning areas of research I found when I was doing research for The UnDiet Cookbook was how glyphosate impairs the body’s natural ability to detoxify itself.

“A 2013 study showed the connection between glyphosate, an active ingredient in [Monsanto’s] herbicide, and the impairment of cytochrome P450, an enzyme that helps the body detoxify environmental toxins. The study states, “Characteristics of celiac disease point to impairment in many cytochrome P450 enzymes, which are involved with detoxifying environmental toxins, activating vitamin D3, catabolizing vitamin A, and maintaining bile acid production and sulfate supplies to the gut.” The connection between the introduction and increased intake of other GMO foods and increased levels of stress and toxins, coupled with gluten-induced intestinal damage, creates the perfect storm for gluten-sensitivity and celiac disease to blow in and leave a wake of damage, indigestion, and nutrient malabsorption.” – The UnDiet Cookbook, page 20

While Monsanto is busy suing independent farmers and demanding that the World Health Organization retract its classification of glyphosate as a possible carcinogen, it’s being used widely in both genetically modified crops as well as in the common herbicide Roundup that is sprayed on conventional crops, including cotton. In fact, Monsanto also makes a genetically modified cotton called Roundup Ready Flex Cotton.

According to the report, Impacts of Genetically Engineered Crops on Pesticide Use in the United States: The First Thirteen Years, by Charles Benbrook, “In cotton, the average rate of glyphosate rose from 0.63 pounds in 1996 to 1.89 pounds in 2007 — clearly good news for the manufacturers of glyphosate herbicides, but bad news for farmers and the environment. Most of this increase was driven by the need to make additional Roundup applications. One application of glyphosate brought about adequate control in 1996 on most cotton farms. Just two years later, 1.5 applications were necessary. By 2003, an average of two applications were made, and by 2007, 2.4 applications. During this time period, the average one-time rate of application went up by 25%, from 0.63 to 0.79 pounds per cotton acre. Glyphosate use on cotton per crop year rose 18.2% per year from 1996 to 2007 as a result of the introduction of RR cotton.”

Conventional farmers in North America have been using glyphosate increasingly since Monsanto introduced genetically modified crops into the food supply in the mid-90’s. The concept being that these crops are genetically engineered to withstand being sprayed with Roundup herbicide – allowing the bugs to be killed, not the plant. The cute part here is that nature is wiser than greedy corporations and “Roundup Ready” corn, soybeans and other crops have developed resistance to glyphosate, leading farmers to use even more of the herbicide.

What is #Monsanto doing in our vaginas? via @MeghanTelpner
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In 2003, 84 million pounds of pesticides were sprayed on 14.4 million acres of US conventional cotton. These chemicals are some of the most toxic used in agriculture and the Environmental Protection Agency has declared seven of the top 15 to be ‘possible’, ‘likely’, ‘probable’, or ‘known’ human carcinogens. In India where over one third of the world’s cotton comes from, cotton accounts for 54% of all pesticides used annually while occupying just 5% of cropland. One of these chemicals is glyphosate.

According to a study released in late 2015, an Argentinian research lab reportedly found glyphosate in eighty-five percent of the tampons, and other cotton sanitary products that were tested. Further, 62% of the samples tested positive for AMPA, glyphosate’s metabolite, according to the study conducted by researchers at the Socio-Environmental Interaction Space (EMISA) of the University of La Plata in Argentina. The brands tested included the American brands, Kotex and O.B.

In 2012, it was estimated that 80% of the cotton grown in the US was Roundup Ready. Herbicide tolerant cotton was approved in Canada in March of 2015 under a table referred to as “Novel Food Decision”. Novel is one word for it.

Tampon Ingredients

Additional pesticides found in tampons include:

Malaoxon & Malathion
Dichlofluanid
Mecarbam
Procymidone
Methidathion
Fensulfothion
Pyrethrum
Piperonyl Butoxide

What Can We Do To Keep The Chemicals Out

Add Your Name: When you see those petitions come your way, or there is a vote in your local election, opt to have GMOs labelled so we at least get to choose what we eat and insert.
Vote With Your Dollar: Buy from the brands you want to support. Leave the rest on the shelf. If we stop buying toxic products, companies are going to change how they’re making them.
Share this post: Share this on your social media channels to help get the word out that something has to change.
Send Letters To The Makers: There are humans behind these products. Lots of them. You can find brand managers for products like Tampax, Pampers, QTip and more very quickly on LinkedIn. Or simply post to the Facebook pages of these brands.

– Tampax
– Kotex
– Q-Tips
– Huggies
– Pampers

You can come up with your own creative message, or share this simple one:

Over 84 million pounds of pesticides are sprayed on cotton crops every year in the United States. You are part of this problem. It’s time to ditch the endocrine disrupting, carcinogenic chemicals in your products. The health of your farmers, suppliers, and customers matter. http://undiet.me/toxictampons
Thankfully There Are Options

To help you vote with your dollar and reduce your toxic load, try these wonderful options by these great companies:
Organic Cotton Pads and Tampons

Natra-Care
The Honest Company
Seventh Generation

The Menstrual Cup

This is my preferred option. I find it comfortable, low maintenance, reliable and works with my lifestyle.

DivaCup
The Keeper
The MoonCup
Lunette
Instead Softcup

Reusable Pads

GladRags
Lunapads
Party in My Pants
New Moon Pads
Willowpads

Please help ensure the health and safety of the women in your life.

All of this matters and though I know people will argue about the technicalities and safety levels, at the end of the day, our bodies are being overwhelmed by chemicals. There are currently 80,000 chemicals approved for use and 60,000 of these were grandfathered in, assumed safe but never tested. We don’t know for sure what’s causing the increasing numbers of cancers and other diseases, but the chemical load we carry is not part of the solution. When in doubt, get it out. There are many things we can’t choose and can’t control, but this is one of the things we very easily can choose.

This instead of that and it just might make all the difference in your world.

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