It’s time to push your negative thoughts aside, and read Happymind, part of the well-being and mental health blogging community. This blog caters for all kinds of people, from those who want to adopt a healthy lifestyle, to people who may be suffering from or caring for people with mental health problems.
This well-being guide is all about making things better, whether that be through a greater understanding of different mental health problems, to ways we can improve our minds, or deal with stress at work. Health and fitness news, a guide to the latest well-being book releases, all at the click of a button!
Mind and body is a form of therapy used in treating lower back pains. It is argued that some pain lies in the mind and there are successful instances where mind and body therapy has worked in relieving pain in patients.
The basis of this therapy is teaching self regulation strategies which include hypnosis, biofeedback, and relaxation techniques. They work towards teaching patients to relax better and enhance their pain coping mechanism. They target muscles which promotes relaxation and control of pain. This is done by relaxing muscles so that the amount of energy used in keeping muscles tight is reduced; the patient is able to feel in control of the situation.
Patients are trained to cope with pain through visualization techniques. A patient is asked to imagine pain signals emanating from their spine as electricity wires. When they start feeling pain, this is associated with electricity wires glowing. As they relax and enter a hypnotic state they are asked to visualize the glow on wires decreasing in intensity. As they visualize the wires not flowing with as much intensity and frequency, they are able to numb their pain. This technique is used help patients control pain.
Patients are taught to manage pain using cognitive behavioral intervention. They are asked to change how they view their situation which helps in coping with the situation. The basis is to teach patients to adapt to the situation and function at their optimum given the circumstances.
Depression has become widespread across the country, so much so that antidepressants are one of the most commonly prescribed drugs in the nation. Over the past few decades the amount of people on antidepressants has almost doubled and it is expected to continue to rise even more as future generations are more comfortable with the idea of taking pills.
The common understanding of the disease is that depression is the result of chemical imbalances that occur in the brain and is oftentimes the result of low serotonin.
The main problem with treating depression is that studies have shown that meds work for those with severe depression, but not as well for those who suffer from mild to moderate depression.
The good for those that have mild or moderate depression is that acupuncture is actually proving to be a very effective way to treat depression. In a study published in the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry many different types of acupuncture were studied. The actual study compiled the results of numerous other studies that were conducted on all age groups and both traditional and alternative forms of acupuncture.
The study concluded by stating that there is just as much evidence that acupuncture is effective against depression as there is that medication is useful against depression.
It also found that acupuncture can be helpful when used in conjunction with antidepressants and when administered by itself making it a great choice for someone that is looking for a natural solution to their depression.
Intelligence and nutrition have been studied a great deal independently, but it turns out that there may be many connections to both when studied together as well. Many children that have behavioral problems or learning disabilities often are fed certain diets in the hope to find an ingredient that can be isolated to help prevent some problems.
In the same way, children with ADHD are often times kept away from sugar and processed food to help moderate their problems with focusing. Despite all of this, there has not been a lot of study about how diet can have an impact on intelligence.
During the infant months and early childhood neurological development happens very quickly and so it could be easily assumed that what a child eats during this time would influence their IQ’s. In order to see if there was a different Lisa G Smithers from the South Australian University of Adelaide decided to take a look. She gathered information about what types of foods children were fed from birth to two years old and then evaluated their IQ at age 8 and 15 years old.
The healthiest diet that appeared to have the greatest influence on IQ was the healthy diet which consisted of mostly breast milk with some raw fruits and vegetables mixed into the bunch. On the other hand, those that were fed high amounts of carbohydrates, puddings, and snacks were found to have lower IQ’s than their healthier eating counterparts.
Smithers summarised that clearly the diet that a child consumes does seem to play some role in neural tissues and that further studies that were longer in length would be very interesting to study for further information.
It a universal truth that just about all of us prefers to live with as much comfort as possible. So it would be a surprise if those of us who have difficulty in moving, possibly because of age or a condition that is stopping us from performing basic tasks will also want as much comfort and ease of living as we could achieve.
There are now a very large range of devices specifically designed to assist people with simple problems around the house. One of these devices, for example, is the walk in bath, although modern designs are very sleek and modern in design walk in baths have actually been around for several generations.
It is true that it is relatively recently that they have been begun to be used in a regular house. The advantages of a bath that you can walk into and out of are fairly obvious in that they save a person from having to step over the lip of the bath and possibly fall over, which for many people could have very serious consequences.
There are various different designs to suit different people’s needs, with different additions such as safety handles and many variations of the bath door to suit a particular person’s specific requirements. Whatever your needs it is certain that you will be able to find a walk in bath that will bring back the joys of bath-time.
Another great addition too many people’s homes is to have all the benefits of modern riser recliner chairs. These very specialised chairs are designed so that motors can lower or raise not only the base of the chair but also the backrest so that someone can easily sit down and possibly more importantly stand-up from a chair without any pain or inconvenience.
At first sight these chairs look like any other comfortable soft furnishing you will find in the modern home. But underneath the plush upholstery is modern technology and a series of cleverly devised motors which totally remove any effort from the sitting and standing process.
Anyone suffering from the after effects of knee surgery or ongoing back pain will immediately see the huge benefits of not having to use up all their strength to simply get up out of the chair in order to reach for a newspaper.
As with almost any modern piece of technology that is essential that research is carried out and if possible the opinion of an expert taken into account when buying either a walk in bath or riser recliner chairs. The reason for this is quite simple; as these clever devices are not intended to be “one size fits all” Different riser recliner chairs and walk in baths have been designed to assist people with different problems.
Researchers believe that they are one step closer to figuring out what is actually behind the ‘feel good’ emotions that come from doing things such as meditation and yoga. According to a new study, practised relaxation actually can change the genes that a person is accessing at the moment in just an instant.
While a simple yoga session will not offer you any superhero powers, it will help to change the way your immune system and metabolism functions for a second which is largely the rush that people describe.
Many other studies in the past have shown the positive benefits of relaxation, but the reason why it helps the body relax has been mostly unknown. However, now a survey suggests that many of the benefits might actually be the result of a s temporary shift in DNA while yoga is practised.
Researchers from the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Centre performed the research by drawing blood from a small group of people that had not been previously involved with relaxation practices. They then compared more than 22,000 different genes from different times in their subject’s day including times they were relaxing and times they were simple doing normal day activities.
The blood samples ended up revealing that when relaxing there was much more activity in the genes that are responsible for energy metabolism and the genes that usually induce stress and inflammation were suppressed at the cellular level.
While it is not enough proof to make the complete case for relaxation exercises, it is a pretty good reason to take a second look at relaxation exercises and how they might be able to help you. It’s also pretty neat to think that you could alter your DNA positively by juts learning a few new positions and how to take some deep breaths!
Whatever your age you can be affected by hearing loss, and unless you are incredibly vain you will have sought help to improve your hearing via a hearing aid. Granted, those in the past were not the most attractive of devices, and could easily be spotted, but the modern hearing aids of today are neither ugly or obtrusive, in fact, invisible hearing aids available today can even be invisible due to them sitting snugly within the ear, so only you know they are there.
This revolution in hearing aids can caused those who refused to wear an old fashioned device finally seek help and thus discover a whole new world of sound. These aids are created by many of the world’s top names in electronics, such as Siemens, affording you the luxury of knowing that not only is your hearing being improved beyond belief, it is being done by a device that is of the highest quality and won’t let you down.
Every individual digital hearing aid is uniquely programmed to suit the level of assistance you need, and whether you have profound or slight hearing loss you can be helped with one of these innovative devices. They come in various styles; a full shell, a half shell and the aforementioned invisible hearing aid, and you have the choice of which one you feel the most comfortable with.
The most important job a hearing aid has to do is, obviously, to amplify sound enabling the hearing loss sufferer to be able to join in conversations, watch the television at a reasonable volume level etc, but the technology involved in these tiny devices allows them to perform some quite remarkable functions thanks to the microchip fitted within.
For example, there are now digital hearing aids which adapt to the environment the wearer finds themselves in, and other both amplify and enhance speech and other sounds that would otherwise be distorted due to background noise. This is a revolution in that those wearing a hearing aid will never again have the problem of trying desperately to hear what someone is saying but is being drowned out by the sounds around them.
Once you have had your hearing test, your level of hearing loss established and you have decided on with hearing aid to go for, these features will be finely tuned to best suit your needs by skilled audiologists to ensure it is programmed uniquely for you. In the same way that everyone needs different glasses to correct sight problems, hearing aids should also be tailored to the individual, and generic hearing aids will not perform to anything like the level you want or need.
Hearing is one of those things you think you can manage without until severe hearing loss occurs, for whatever reason, and you find yourself having to try and lip read, or turning the TV so high that other are complaining. Digital hearing aids have revolutionised the auditory industry, and if you want to return your hearing to the quality that it once was then one of the best decisions you will ever make is to be fitted with a digital hearing aid.
A new study reveals that eating a small portion of dark chocolate on a daily basis could help to prevent the risk of strokes and heart attacks in patients that are already predisposed to suffer from heart disease.
The study was published in the British Medical Journal and found that ark chocolate is able to benefit the heart by protecting it and reducing the risk of heart attacks in those that are considered high risk. This includes those that have a heightened risk of heart disease or suffer from diabetes. In order for dark chocolate to be helpful it needs to contain at least 60% of cocoa solids.
In order to determine that dark chocolate was helpful in protecting the heart researchers made use of a mathematical model that could predict the long term effects of consuming a small amount of dark chocolate on a regular basis.
Each of the participants in the study had either a cluster of factors that made them high risk for heart disease, such as high blood pressure, or diabetes. However, they had not yet suffered from a heart attack and were not currently on any medications to lower their blood pressure.
The research found that regular consumption of dark chocolate on a regular basis could possibly avoid around seventy non-fatal heart attacks and 15 fatal heart attacks out of every ten thousand people that are treated in the next ten years.
The model also suggested that if just £25 per person were spend on teaching people about dark chocolate benefits via advertising than the beneficial effects of dark chocolate for the heart could be maximised. The authors added that dark chocolate was only studied in terms of heart attack prevention, and that any effects on other cardio events such as preventing heart failure have not yet been studied.
Although migraines may debilitate the people that suffer from them, they do not hurt your brain long time according to the results of a new study.
Researchers have discovered that women that suffer from headaches on a regular basis do not have any more problems remembering or learning than those that do not suffer from headaches. Although one in five women suffers from migraines, there are still many questions that are unanswered when it comes to the disease.
In the past studies have linked migraines with an increased risk of brain lesions and stroke, but it has not been clear whether repeat migraines could carry with them other negative consequences. However, the good news for migraine sufferers is that researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston have discovered that they are not linked to cognitive decline.
Pamela Rist, the study leader, stated that previous studies on cognitive decline and migraines were too small to really find a link between the two. She explained that her study was large enough to be able to strongly come to the conclusion that migraines are not associated with cognitive decline.
Research team analysed data that came from the Women’s Health Study which included 40,000 women over the age of 45. They then narrowed down the women to about 6,400 who offered information about their migraines at the beginning study and then later took part in cognitive testing as part of the follow-up to the study. No evidence of long lasting effects migraines were found in terms of cognitive abilities.
Take a Stress Test Now To Help you Regain Your Energy and Lose Weight
According to experts there is an estimate that a is possible that as many as a staggering 75% of patient visits to the local GP are in some way to stress. But it is now possible to take a stress test which should allow you gauge your own stress levels and then work out just what steps you can take to lose weight, suffer less tiredness and get a better nights sleep. www.nutritionandvitality.co.uk/stress
For adults, the main causes of stress relate to exhaustion at work and financial insecurity in today’s challenging economic circumstances. Worryingly, doctors and health professionals are also seeing a rise in the number of children with stress-related health problems, often as a result of increased academic pressure.
“Low energy levels, sleep disturbances, exhaustion, anxiety and weight gain caused by stress have become increasingly common”says Victoria Tyler a Nutritional Therapist working in London’s Harley Street. We have found that by using a stress test we are able to identify stress-related health issues in order to evaluate the best course of action for our clients. Anyone can take our simple stress test to evaluate how stressed they are and whether their stress levels are likely to have an impact on their health here:www.nutritionandvitality.co.uk/stress
According to Victoria “a wealth of new scientific research has clearly shown the damage stress can wreak on the body. Long term stress not only causes heart disease and high blood pressure but even seems to be related to loss of memory, diminished immune function and obesity”.
Victoria is not alone in her concerns about the role stress has come to play on our health. The American Medical Association estimates that 80% of all illnesses are caused by stress to some degree, and alarmingly, a recent gallup survey found that 80% of us feel stressed at work. Stressful situations trigger the release of adrenaline, the fight or flight hormone, to help us cope. The trouble is, many of us feel pressured and stressed on a day to day basis, and over the long term the stress we face in an increasingly competitive society can result in serious health problems. If left unchecked, stress can be a killer.
Take the stress test online and to evaluate your stress level and discover measures you can take to alleviate stress. You’ll be glad you did it.
For further information on stress, visit www.nutritionandvitality.co.uk/stress
From Egypt, Thailand and Nepal Uncovered
Tours for the mind, body and soul
Spring has finally shown its self and and that change of weather and mental attitude is in the air. So, if you are looking for some much needed time away from the routine of life to let you restore the mind, body or soul, adventure getaway specialists Egypt Uncovered, Thailand Uncovered and Nepal Uncovered are offering inspirational exotic trips to some of the great must-see destinations that are so special for stimulating the physical and mental senses. Tours start from just £379 per person and include:
MIND – History & Culture in Egypt
With thousands of years of ancient history, Egypt once staked claim to one of the world’s earliest civilizations, influencing many aspects of modern culture – from literature to art and religion. Now, Egypt’s ancient culture exists with the new, making for a stimulating destination for culture vultures and history buffs. Egypt Uncovered has an eight-night Nile Explorer tour from £379 per person (saving £50). Valid for departure on 11 and 25 May, the price includes transfers, varied four to five-star accommodation on a mixed-board basis and the services of an expert Egyptologist.
Let history come to life as the Egyptologist guides travellers around Cairo, uncovering the history of the Pyramids and Sphinx, stunning mosques and the famous Egyptian Museum. Then visit the island temple of Philae and the huge High Dam before stepping on board a traditional Felucca sailboat that meanders down the Nile. After spending two nights on board, head to dry land to explore Luxor and its markets, the Valley of the Kings and end the trip back in Cairo.
BODY – Jungle Trekking & Bamboo Rafting In Thailand
Thailand is the place for weary bodies to not only rejuvenate with a signature Thai massage but also challenge oneself with jungle treks, bamboo rafting and much more. For those looking to explore all this eclectic country has to offer, Thailand Uncovered has a 12-day Thailand Encounterstour from £599 per person. Valid for departures from 26 May – 28 July, the price includes transfers, varied accommodation on a mixed-board basis and the services of an expert guide.
Jet off to the city of Bangkok and explore the capital’s majestic monuments and vibrant nightlife before sleeping on a rustic rafthouse in Kanchanaburi and discovering the ancient caves and waterfalls at Erawan Falls National Park. The highlight of the trip is a three-day jungle trek and bamboo rafting experience. Journey through Huay Nam Dang National Park to rural villages, climb aboard Thai elephants and amble on to the rafting camp, try bamboo rafting along the Mae Tang River, stopping at small tribal settlements en route. Finally, visit Chang Mai for some much needed R&R, indulge in one of the country’s famous massages and a Thai cooking class.
SOUL – Spiritual Pilgrimages & Stunning Sunrises In Nepal
Nepal boasts majestic scenery and some serious spiritual connections as it’s home to the awe-inspiring Mount Everest and the birth place of Buddha – the perfect destination for a spiritual awakening. For tired souls, Nepal Uncovered offers a 15-day Nepal Explorer tour departing on 5 May from £699 per person (saving £100) and on 26 May from £749 per person (saving £50). The price includes varied accommodation on a mixed-board basis as well as a trekking pack (sleeping bag, trekking poles and down jacket).
Begin this tour of discovery by visiting Kathmandu’s temples and important pilgrimage sites, then journey to Nagarkot for the best mountain views in the valley to see the sunrise over the Himalayas and embark on a short trek in the foothills of the mystic Annapurna mountain range. Learn how to raft down the Trisuli, sleep under the stars on the river bank, take a safari through Chitwan National Park and a guided tour of the Peace Pagoda and Tibetan refugee camp before heading to Pokhara for a walk to Sarangkot offering spectacular scenery.
Prices do not include international flights. Contact Egypt Uncovered, Thailand Uncovered or Nepal Uncovered: 0845 130 4849. Facebook:www.facebook.com/UncoverTheWorld/ Twitter: @utworld