Chikungunya From Experience: On Christmas

It all started with pain in my intermediate phalanges. Well, I thought it’s normal since I just vacummed two cars simultaneously. Although I never had this before, I thought it could be different this time since I’m a bit older. So I went on with my day, not giving it so much of a thought. Later that day, after I took a shower, I noticed some red spots on my chest and much later I felt pain all-over my body.

Arm full of rashes
backside full of rashes from Chikungunya virus

Chikungunya is a viral infection spread to humans by two types of mosquitos called Aedes albopictus and Aedes aegypti which bite during the day. Fortunately, it can’t be passed from person to person. Outbreaks have occurred in Africa, in Europe, and in Asia. Symptoms of Chikungunya appears 3 to 7 days after exposure, and once bitten the person becomes immune to the virus.

Symptoms of Chikungunya from our Experience

Yes, our! I got it and a day after my husband followed suit. We both had it on Christmas! Here are the symptoms from our experience.

  • Joint pain particularly the middle or intermediate phalanges (hand) on the first day. As the pain progresses, there seems to be swelling as evident by redness on the skin around the joints. The pain stayed until the third day, then slowly lessened and was totally gone on the fifth day. Aside from the phalanges, we also experienced pain in the lower back, elbows, knee caps, sternum, and the ankles.
  • Rashes that started on the chest, upper back, neck, and face on the first day. Then it slowly spread on the abdomen, back, then the extremities. However it didn’t start spreading until the fever and the pain were gone. And yes, it’s super itchy. Luckily I didn’t have them in my groin area, palm of my hands, sole of my feet, and armpits.
  • Fever that comes and goes. I have this on and off fever for three days. When the fever was gone, the joint and muscle pain were gone too (or maybe vice versa). But then we noticed that our lymph nodes on the neck, behind the ears, armpit, and groin area were swollen and painful.
  • Muscle pain that seems like you’ve just workout for eights hours straight, non-stop.
  • General fatigue. In our case, we didn’t lose our strength entirely, we were able to walk though with so much effort but the duration with which we were able to do physical movement was short, and that there was an overwhelming sense of relief once rested.
  • Headache
  • Dizziness

As you can see the symptoms are very much similar to dengue. Doctor diagnosis involves hematology and urinalysis.

Cure?

Well, none. As it is viral one has to wait until it’s all gone from the body. Neither is there vaccine for this at the moment. My doctor gave me drugs for the fever, for the pain, cough, and cold. Basically that’s it. And it’s also essential to drink more tham ample amount of water.

Preventive Measures

Basically there’s just one preventive measure and that is an overall mosquito control. Normally, we don’t have mosquito repellents at home since my husband is asthmatic, and strong odor/chemical could trigger his asthma. This time we didn’t have much choice, although we would be immune to the virus as a result, we’ve got our children to think of.

Aside from this, there should also be mosquito fogging in the community as a way of controlling mosquitos. Unfortunately, if I could recall it correctly, there hasn’t been mosquitos fogging in our place for two years now. How could they have forgotten about this?

How about our Christmas?

Well, it didn’t go as we want it to be. Good thing though,I have prepared the kids’ Christmas presents a week before the Chikungunya terror. Although we didn’t have nochebuena, the kids were able to do their tradition of opening their gifts on the morning of Christmas.

Have you heard of or had Chikungunya before?

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Amazing Tips That Will Make You Stop Smoking for Good

Smoking is one of the worst addiction there is.

Not only does it affect you directly but the smoke also has a devastating effect on people around you. It makes matters even worse when you realize that most smokers have a negative view of smoking and would love to quit it for good.

Unfortunately, smoking is similar to coffee: it is something that can easily become a part of your daily routine and it is really hard to quit it when you start. Smokers get used to smoking in certain situations for example, together with coffee and whenever you have coffee the ritual goes in conjunction with cigarettes.

Luckily for you there are numerous ways you can quit this vice. Like most similar things, it is mainly about your mental strength. Nevertheless, there are some tricks that will help you do it more easily. Let’s check them out!

 

  1. Prepare for a long-term quitting

The biggest issue with cigarettes is that people do not have a long-term plan when it comes to quitting. They have general wish to do it but they usually think short-term. This is not right nor does it give needed results. First, smoker needs to prepare for a lifetime without tobacco and cigarettes. If you simply focus on one day or one week, there is a good chance you will relapse when this week is over. Only by telling yourself that you can live without cigarettes and adhering to this can you truly stop smoking.

 

  1. Find a substitution

Unfortunately, even though long-term approach is the right way to go most people have difficulty during initial weeks and months. Vice has become a part of your daily routine (as previously mentioned) and it is hard to imagine other rituals without it. This is why it is good to get a substitute. Traditional ones are chewing gums and patches. However, due to development of technology today we have even better solutions. Electronic cigarettes are amazing way to do it. They use e-juice or vape liquid as the main substance. According to health in situations, they are much better than nicotine and do not harm your health.

 

  1. Remove and reduce things that remind you of cigarettes

These rituals that I’ve mentioned are the main reason for relapsing. Coffee and alcohol are to the main culprits however stress can also be very dangerous. In these situations smokers are used to having a release. Besides the fact that you can find a substitution, you can also try to eliminate things that initially cause you to smoke. If you reduce coffee and start drinking something else, you increase chance of avoiding morning smoke. A lot of people smoke when they go to a cafe or a pub. If you reduce alcohol, you are again able to reduce smoking.

 

  1. Find a hobby

Although this may seem farfetched, there is a good reason for it. Most people tend to smoke when they don’t know what to do with their hands. They are used to having something in them and this becomes a habit. During your free time, find some hobby that will keep your hands occupied. Even if it’s something seemingly stupid such as mixing playing cards or squeezing rubber ring grip, it can be a great help in getting rid of this nasty habit.

 

  1. Do physical activity

Smokes and training do not go well together. If you are doing some aerobic training, you will constantly require more air and bigger lung capacity. This will prevent you from doing anything that goes against your biological organism. Even if you smoke at first, there is a good chance you will quit it after some time due to sheer inability to keep you physically fit. Just make sure to be persistent with training and you can slowly reduce your need for nicotine.

 

Conclusion

 

Anti-smoking tips are in fact small tricks that should dissuade you from continuing to smoke. They are simple things you can use to reduce your addiction and lose will to smoke. If you make them a part of your routine, you will be on a good path to a healthier life.

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Life Starts At 40

There’s some truth in “Life starts at 40”.

A relatively healthy person frequents clinics or hospitals during his 30’s.  Pains and sickness seem to appear out of nowhere during this time. If these symptoms are left unattended could complicate into something serious, as often told by doctors to patients.  Our body is like a car.  After the warranted years, bolts loosen up and parts wore off.  As we near our 40’s, people start thinking of lifestyle change such as quit smoking, limit alcohol in-take, engaging oneself in a regular exercise, and eating healthy.  Reasons vary.

For us, we want to live long enough to see our kids grow and attain stability in life, and if our bodies permit maybe meet our grandchildren.

Among the lifestyle changes mentioned above, the latter two are the most challenging for us.  But since we need to start afresh on our 40’s we have to take on the needed changes.

  • Exercise your way to a healthy you.  We are home buddies and a bit of couch potatoes, sadly.  Up until this time we haven’t settle on a regular exercise routine.  Aside from this, we also found our super structured schedule 24/7 a great hindrance. We hope to get our acts together on this ASAP.
  • You are what you eat, so eat healthy.  We LOVE to eat. The health issues we are facing at the moment is food related. So this is definitely the first thing in the MUST Change List.

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Be Guided Know What’s On Your Grocery Labels

There are lots of labels on every product in a grocery store—fat, sugar, calories, low-sugar, low-carb, glycemic index. How do you decipher some of them in order to know what you’re getting?

Every label tells you something about how animals were raised or how crops were grown. It can also tell you a little bit about the regulation related to that label—whether it’s government or self-regulation, for example. There are also processes that the label can key you in on—for example, if antibiotics or growth hormones were used. Other labels may also tell you about the human element involved in your food—whether workers and farmers receive fair wages or fair prices.

For example, grain fed on a label only suggests that animals are fed a diet of grain—but it isn’t a guarantee. Grass fed, on the other hand, indicates that animals have natural grass or forage—but they may not be raised in pastures.

This graphic breaks down all of those labels for you, proving a helpful guide as you do shopping for your family, your health, and the earth.

How to Decipher Confusing and Misleading Grocery Labels

 

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