Thursday, May 29, 2008

Kamasutra on Wheels

A Kamasutra posture on wheels? Yes, it looks like Vatsyayan re-invented, with the ancient Indian treatise on love-making inspiring a student of the National Institute of Design (NID) to design a car.

The idea has given him the rare opportunity of an internship with the world's leading automobile design house, Pininfarina of Italy. If 'Kamas' is Ramesh Gound's creation of passion, it is Ahmedabad's signature landmark — the Sidi Saiyed ki Jali — that has spurred another NID student, Neerav Panchal, to design 'Ratna' which he calls the "jewel of Indian roads". A third student, Shailendra Petwal, was inspired by 'Navras' to create his design.

Panchal and Petwal too join Gound at Pininfarina. They were winners of a competition on the theme 'Luxury Car For India' held by designers associated with auto giants like Ferrari, Ford, GM, Jaguar and Fiat.

"We were asked to define Indian contemporary luxury and how it is rooted in India. When I thought of what the world associates with India, it is Kamasutra that came to my mind. After studying Kamasutra, I realised its essence and my theme emerged — two objects coming together and moving in one direction with a force of passion," said Gound.

He added, "My design is built on this essence, where the exteriors of the body curve and become part of the interiors of the car. It's a two-seater car that has seats like a bike but with a back-rest".

Panchal has always been attracted by the Sidi Saiyed ki Jali, the intricate stone carving at an Ahmedabad mosque which has been adopted as the city's symbol by the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation. So, when he designed his car, its influence was evident.

"My inspiration was Indian architecture, where the roof of the car resembles a dome and the back door has a print of the carvings of the jaili. I call it Ratna, which can be a jewel on the Indian roads," says Panchal.

"My design is inspired by the shape and the layers of the conch and depicts the Shant Ras from the Navrasas.

The design has loose curves and spirals. The seat next to the driver can rotate and has a 180 degree incline, to give a feel like you are in your drawing room," says Petwal.

"The designs are contemporary but rooted in Indian culture. It's a big recognition for the students, which comes right after a good show at the Fiat design competition," says Pradyumna Vyas, head of academics at NID, who initiated the automobile designing course at the institute.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Joint pain


Joint pain can affect one or more joints. See also arthritis (inflammation of joints), muscle pain, and bursitis.

Alternative Names

Stiffness in a joint; Pain - joints; Arthralgia

Joint pain can be caused by many types of injuries or conditions. No matter what causes it, joint pain can be very bothersome.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder that causes stiffness and pain in the joints. Osteoarthritis involves growth of bone spurs and degeneration of cartilage at a joint. It is very common in adults older than 45 and can cause joint pain.

Joint pain may also be caused by bursitis (inflammation of the bursae). The bursae are fluid-filled sacs that cushion and pad bony prominences, allowing muscles and tendons to move freely over the bone.

Common Causes

· Unusual exertion or overuse, including strains or sprains

· Injury, including fracture

· Gout (especially found in the big toe)

· Osteoarthritis

· Septic arthritis

· Tendonitis

· Bursitis

· Infectious diseases, including

. Influenza

. Measles (rubeola)

. Rheumatic fever

. Epstein-Barr viral syndrome

. Hepatitis

. Mumps

. Rubella (German measles)

. Varicella (chickenpox)

. Paravirus

. Lyme disease

· Chondromalacia patellae

· Osteomyelitis

· Autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus

Home Care

Follow prescribed therapy in treating the underlying cause.

For nonarthritis joint pain, both rest and exercise are important. Warm baths, massage, and stretching exercises should be used as frequently as possible.

Anti-inflammatory medications may help relieve pain and swelling. Consult your health care provider before giving aspirin or NSAIDs such as ibuprofen to children.

Call on your doctor if

·You have fever that is not associated with flu symptoms

· You have lose 10 pounds or more without trying (unintended weight loss)

· Your joint pain lasts for more than 3 days

· You have severe, unexplained joint pain, particularly if you have other unexplained symptoms

What to expect at your doctor's office

Your doctor will perform a physical exam and ask you about your medical history. The following questions may help identify the cause of your joint pain:

· Which joint hurts? Is the pain on one side or both sides?

· How long have you been having this pain? Have you had it before?

· Did this pain begin suddenly and severely, or slowly and mildly?

·Is the pain constant or does it come and go? Has the pain become more severe?

· What started your pain?

·Have you injured your joint?

· Have you had an illness or fever?

·Does resting the joint reduce the pain or make it worse?

· Does moving the joint reduce the pain or make it worse?

·Are certain positions comfortable? Does keeping the joint elevated help?

·Do medications, massage, or applying heat reduce the pain?

· What other symptoms do you have?

· Is there any numbness?

· Can you bend and straighten the joint? Does the joint feel stiff?

· Are your joints stiff in the morning? If so, how long does the stiffness last?

·What makes the stiffness better?

Tests that may be done include:

· CBC or blood differential

· Joint x-ray

Physical therapy for muscle and joint rehabilitation may be recommended. A procedure call arthrocentesis may be needed to remove fluid from the sore joint.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Heart Attack Causes

A heart attack is caused by coronary heart disease, or coronary artery disease. Heart disease may be caused by cholesterol buildup in the coronary arteries (atherosclerosis) , blood clots, or spasm of the vessels that supply blood to the heart.

Risk factors for a heart attack are:

* high blood pressure

* diabetes

* smoking

* high cholesterol

* family history of heart attacks at ages younger than 60 years, one or more previous heart attacks, male gender

* obesity

* Postmenopausal women are at higher risk than premenopausal women. This is thought to be due to loss of the protective effects of the hormone estrogen at menopause. It was previously treated by hormone supplements (hormone replacement therapy, or HRT). However, research findings have changed our thinking on HRT; long-term HRT is no longer recommended for most women.

* Use of cocaine and similar stimulants.

Angina Causes

* Angina may be caused by spasm, narrowing, or partial blockage of an artery that supplies blood to the heart.

* The most common cause is coronary heart disease, in which a blood clot or buildup of fatty material inside the blood vessel (atherosclerosis) reduces blood flow but does not completely block the blood vessel.

* Angina can be triggered by exercise or physical exertion, by emotional stress, or by certain heart rhythm disorders (arrhythmias) that cause the heart to beat very fast.

Aortic Dissection Causes

* Aortic dissection may be caused by conditions that damage the innermost lining of the aorta.

o These include uncontrolled high blood pressure, connective-tissue diseases, cocaine use, advanced age, pregnancy, congenital heart disease, and cardiac catheterization (a medical procedure).

* Men are at higher risk than women.

* A similar condition is aortic aneurysm. This is an enlargement of the aorta that can rupture, causing pain and bleeding. Aneurysms can occur in the aorta in the chest or the abdomen.

Pulmonary Embolism Causes

Pulmonary embolism risk factors include:

* sedentary lifestyle,

* obesity,

* prolonged immobility,

* fracture of a long bone of the legs,

* pregnancy,

* cancer,

* history or family history of blood clots,

* irregular heartbeat (arrhythmias) ,

* heart attack, or

* congestive heart failure.

Women who use birth control pills and smoke cigarettes are at higher risk than women who have only one or neither of these risk factors (especially over the age of 35).

Spontaneous Pneumothorax Causes

Spontaneous pneumothorax (collapsed lung) occurs when the pressure balance between the sac that contains the lung and the outside atmosphere is disrupted.

* Injury to the chest that pierces through to the lung sac is the most common cause of this condition.

* This can be caused by trauma, as in a car wreck, bad fall, gunshot wound or stabbing, or in surgery.

* Some very thin and tall people may suffer a spontaneous pneumothorax due to stretched lung tissues and abnormal air sacs in the upper portions of their lungs. It is possible for these abnormal air sacs to rupture with even a sneeze or excessive coughing.

* Other risk factors for pneumothorax include AIDS-related pneumonia, emphysema, severe asthma, cystic fibrosis, cancer, and marijuana and crack cocaine use

Perforated Viscus Causes

Perforated viscus may be caused by direct or indirect injury. Irritation to the diaphragm in this case comes from below the chest. The diaphragm is the muscle that allows us to breathe. It is located up under the ribs and separates the chest and abdominal cavity. Any irritation to the diaphragm, even from below it, can cause pain to be felt in the chest.

Risk factors not related to trauma are:

* untreated ulcers,

* prolonged or forceful vomiting,

* swallowing a foreign body,

* cancer,

* appendicitis,

* long-term steroid use,

* infection of the gallbladder,

* gallstones, and


Pericarditis Causes

Pericarditis can be caused by viral infection, bacterial infection, cancer, connective-tissue diseases, certain medications, radiation treatment, and chronic renal failure.

* One life-threatening complication of pericarditis is cardiac tamponade.

* Cardiac tamponade is an accumulation of fluid around the heart. This prevents the heart from effectively pumping blood to the body.

* Symptoms of cardiac tamponade include sudden onset of shortness of breath, fainting, and chest pain.

Pneumonia Causes

Pneumonia may be caused by viral, bacterial, or fungal infections of the lungs.

Esophagus Related Causes

Chest pain originating from the esophagus may have several causes.

* Acid reflux (GERD) may be caused by any factors that decrease the pressure on the lower part of the zsophagus, decreased movement of the esophagus, or prolonged emptying of the stomach. This condition may be brought on by:

* consumption of high-fat foods,

* nicotine use,

* alcohol use,

* caffeine, pregnancy,

* certain medications (for example, nitrates, calcium channel blockers, anticholinergics, estrogen, progesterone),

* diabetes, or

* scleroderma.

* Esophagitis may be caused by yeast, fungi, viruses, bacteria, or irritation from medications.

* Esophageal spasm is caused by excessive, intensified, or uncoordinated contractions of the smooth muscle of the esophagus. Spasm may be triggered by emotional upset or swallowing very hot or cold liquids.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Little about Vitamin K

Vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin. It can be dissolved in fat. Vitamin K is carried through the body by fat and is stored in fat tissue. There are three forms of Vitamin K:

* phylloquinone, which is found in food

* menadione, which is man-made

* menaquinone, which is produced by the body

What food source is the nutrient found in?

Vitamin K can be found in the following foods:

* collards, kale, and other green leafy vegetables

* members of the cabbage family including broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts

* liver

* cheese

* milk

* egg yolk

* some fruits

Intestinal bacteria produce some vitamin K in the body.

How does the nutrient affect the body?

Vitamin K makes several proteins that help blood to clot when bleeding. It also makes other proteins for blood, bones, and kidneys. Along with vitamins A and D, vitamin K is important for strong bone development.


The Recommended Dietary Allowance, called RDA, for vitamin K for adult males, age 25 years and older, is 80 micrograms (mcg) per day. For women, age 25 years and older, it is 65 mcg per day. For pregnant and lactating women, the RDA is also 65 mcg.

Vitamin K deficiency is rare. It is often the result of impaired absorption rather than not getting enough in the diet. Newborns are at risk for vitamin K deficiency. This is because their digestive tracts contain no vitamin K-producing bacteria. For this reason, doctors often give injections of vitamin K to newborns. The main symptom of vitamin K deficiency is blood that's slow to clot. Prolonged use of antibiotics can also cause a low level of this vitamin because they destroy some of the bacteria in the gut that help to produce vitamin K.

No symptoms are known to result from consuming too much vitamin K. Moderation is always the best approach. The most toxic form is supplements. People taking blood thinning medicines, such as aspirin or warfarin, may need to limit their intake of vitamin K-rich foods. This is because the vitamin's pro-clotting actions can work against this type of medicine.

Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautionary measures while following instructions on the home remedies from this article. Avoid using any of these products if you are allergic to it. The responsibility lies with the reader and not with the site or the writer.

Never use any home remedy or other self treatment without being advised to do so by a physician.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Little about Belching

Belching or burping is also medically referred as eructation or ructus. Essentially it is a process of releasing gas from the digestive tract through the mouth. A typical odor or sound may also accompany the process of gas release. Belching is a common universal phenomenon and not limited to few people with any specific disorder. Infants to older adults belch or burp to expel air that has been swallowed in excess. Belching relieves the abdomen of discomfort caused due to the excess air.

Belching can also form as a habit to many people and such belching or burping may not be related to the accumulation of air in their stomachs. Instinctively people resort to belching on account of any form of abdominal discomfort to expel gas and ease the existing discomfort.

Though it sounds like a simple exercise, technically belching is a co-coordinated activity. For egs: the larynx is raised to ensure no liquid or food passing with the air from the stomach get into the lungs and this process also relaxes the upper cardiac (esophageal sphincter) such that air can pass more easily from the esophagus into the throat. The lower cardiac (esophageal sphincter) also needs to open so that air can pass from the stomach into the esophagus. During these activities, the diaphragm descends such that it increases abdominal pressure and decreases pressure in the chest similar to taking a breath. The change in pressure ensures air flows from the stomach in the abdomen to the esophagus in the chest.

Symptoms of Belching

- Burping Sounds

- Odor accompanying burping

Causes of Belching

- Eating or drinking too fast such that excessive air is swallowed in the process

- Consumption of carbonated drinks such as: soft drinks, champagne, beer may cause burping in which case the gas released is from the drink itself

- Certain disorders such as Gastro esophageal reflux disease may cause involuntary burping

- Certain established eating patterns or habits lead to burping as a sign of completing a meal.

Home Remedies for Belching

- Eating slowly or have small meals

- Avoiding chewing gum and carbonated drinks

- Excessive consumption of onions and chocolates may also cause burping, Avoid such foods

- Avoid alcohol especially among individuals suffering from chronic belching or excessive belching

- Reducing stress, following exercise tips from medical practitioners and inducing relaxation can help treat belching

Diet for Belching

To reduce belching avoid gulping food or drink too rapidly.

- Some foods may initiate the belching process such as milk and sugars.

- Certain types of vegetables and fruits containing a particular type of starch are not well digested by the stomach but are effective tools to treat bacteria in the stomach such as: beans, lentils, cabbage, bananas, apricots, prunes, onions and sprouts. It is advisable to avoid such vegetables and fruits to prevent belching.

- Foods made from whole grains may also cause gas and consequent belching or burping.

Suggestions for Belching

Weight loss, avoid tight clothes and maintain a food diary

Treating excessive intestinal gas depends on various factors such as: diagnosing the root cause and treatment may include dietary changes and /or medications that reduce the amount of gas.

Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautionary measures while following instructions on the home remedies from this article. Avoid using any of these products if you are allergic to it. The responsibility lies with the reader and not with the site or the writer.

Never use any home remedy or other self treatment without being advised to do so by a physician.

Monday, May 19, 2008

How to do "Eye Liner"

1. Widen eyes

To make your eyes appear farther apart, line top lash line from the midpoint of your eye to just beyond its outer edge. Continue line from the outer corner about 1/ inch into you lower lashes-this will draw attention to the outside of your eyes

2. Create drama

Line your inner rims with a pencil eyeliner to give subtle eye makeup a darker, and more intense look(skip it if you have small eyes,or they'll look tiny). Liquid and shadow liners are not formulated for this area-neither one sticks to moist skin.

3. Enhance color

Wear a colored liner that complements your eye shade to make it stand out. If you have blue eyes, pick deep blue or green; for brown and hazel eyes, try olive green or khaki; for green eyes, get gold or bronze; and if they're dark brown, try purple.

4. Brighten eyes

Use eyeshadow and a brush to draw a thin strip of linear along top lashes. It will open up your eyes. If your eyes are smal, avoid lining lower lashes and don't use pencil or liquid liners: They're dark and heavy, so they'll lose up your eyes, making them squinty.

5. Take it off

Use pre moistened eye makeup-remover pads that contain vitamin e or aloe to erase eyeliner. They are the easiest to use to take off all liners -even the waterproof ones-and they will help moisturize the skin around your eyes so it doesn't dry out or get flaky.

Soft,smoky,' big-eyes' look

A: For years,eyeliner had been banished from dressing tables because of its harsh appearance. Now it's back and so on is the smoky eye. Apply a thin line from the inner to the outer corner of your upper lid.

After it dries, run a soft tip pencil of the same color as the liner over the line you have drawn. Finally, run a damp cotton bud over the line. Your smudged smoky effect! Never use a black liner, navy or dark Grey would be a better bet.

Special effect with liner for smoky big eyes

Experiment with two different shades of eye liner. Run a pencil of a light grey, brownish red (according to the color of your dress) on the lower eyelashes first, especially the outer corner of the eye.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Little About Hepatitis B

Hepatitis B is a virus that infects the liver. Most adults who get Hepatitis B have it for a short time and then get better. This is called acute hepatitis B.

You can have Hepatitis B and not know it. You may not have symptoms. If you do, they can make you feel like you have the flu. But as long as you have the virus, you can spread it to others.

Sometimes the virus causes a long-term infection, called chronic hepatitis B. Over time, it can damage your liver. Babies and young children infected with the virus are more likely to get chronic hepatitis B.

What causes hepatitis B?

Hepatitis B is caused by the Hepatitis B virus. It is spread through contact
with the blood and body fluids of an infected person.

You may get Hepatitis B if you:

Have sex with an infected person without using a
Share needles (used for injecting drugs) with an
infected person.
Get a tattoo or piercing with tools that were not
cleaned well.
Share personal items like razors or toothbrushes
with an infected person.
A mother who has the virus can pass it to her baby
during delivery. If you are pregnant and think you
may have been exposed to hepatitis B, get tested. If
you have the virus, your baby can get shots to help
prevent infection with the virus.

You cannot get Hepatitis B from casual contact such as hugging, kissing, sneezing, coughing, or
sharing food or drinks.

What are the symptoms? Many people with hepatitis B do not know they have it, because they do not have symptoms. If you do have symptoms, you may just feel like you have the flu. Symptoms include:

Feeling very tired.
Mild fever.
Not wanting to eat.
Feeling sick to your stomach or vomiting.
Belly pain.
Diarrhea or constipation.
Muscle aches and joint pain.
Skin rash.
Yellowish eyes and skin (jaundice). Jaundice usually appears only after other symptoms have
started to go away.
Most people with chronic Hepatitis B have no

How is Hepatitis B diagnosed?

A simple blood test can tell your doctor if you have the hepatitis B virus now or if you had it in the past. Your doctor will also be able to tell if you have had the vaccine to prevent the virus.
If your doctor thinks you may have liver damage from hepatitis B, he or she may use a needle to take a tiny sample of your liver for testing. This is called a liver biopsy.

How is it treated?

In most cases, hepatitis B goes away on its own. You can relieve your symptoms at home by resting, eating healthy foods, drinking plenty of water, and avoiding alcohol and drugs. Also, find out from your doctor what medicines and herbal products to avoid, because some can make
liver damage caused by Hepatitis B worse. Treatment for chronic Hepatitis B depends on
whether your infection is getting worse and whether you have liver damage. Most people with chronic Hepatitis B can live active, full lives by taking good care of themselves and getting regular checkups. There are medicines for chronic hepatitis B, but they may not be right for everyone. Work with your doctor to decide whether medicine is the right treatment for you.
Sometimes chronic Hepatitis B can lead to severe liver damage. If this happens, you may need a liver transplant.

Can Hepatitis B be prevented?

The hepatitis B vaccine is the best way to prevent infection. The vaccine is a series of three shots. Adults at risk and all babies, children, and teenagers should be vaccinated. To avoid getting or spreading the virus to others:

Use a condom when you have sex.
Do not share needles.
Wear latex or plastic gloves if you have to touch blood.
Do not share toothbrushes or razors.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Little about Vitamin D


Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin. It can be dissolved in fat. Vitamin D is carried through the body by fat and stored in fat tissue. Getting too much can be harmful. Vitamin D can be produced in the body, as well as, obtained from the diet.

What food source is the nutrient found in?

The most reliable source of vitamin D, in the US diet, is fortified milk. All milk sold in the United States is fortified with vitamin D. Vitamin D is also present in:

* cheese

* butter

* margarine

* cream

* some soy milks

* eggs

* liver

* fish such as sardines and salmon

* cod liver oil

* fortified cereals

Vitamin D is called the sunshine vitamin. This is because the body can make vitamin D after sunlight, or ultraviolet light, hits the skin. Ten to 15 minutes of sun exposure 3 times a week is all the body needs. Older people are less efficient with this conversion.

How does the nutrient affect the body?

Vitamin D helps build strong and healthy bones and teeth. It does this by helping the body to absorb the minerals calcium and phosphorous and to deposit them in bones and teeth.


If the body does not get enough vitamin D and calcium, a person is at higher risk for bone mass loss, which is known as osteoporosis. Low levels of vitamin D also increases the risk of bone softening, known as osteomalacia, in older adults. Children who do not get enough vitamin D over a long period may develop rickets, which is defective bone growth. Fortifying milk with vitamin D has made rickets extremely rare in the US.

Vitamin D is measured as micrograms (mcg) of cholecalciferol (koh-li-kal- sif-ah-rall) . The Recommended Dietary Allowance, called RDA, for men and women, 25 to 50 years old, is 5 mcg per day. Children need twice as much daily vitamin D as adults, because their bones are still growing. Pregnant and lactating women also need 10 mcg per day.

Another common measurement for vitamin D is International Units, known as IU. The RDA, in IUs, for vitamin D for adults is 200 IU per day; for children, it is 400 IU per day; and for pregnant and lactating women, it is 400 IU.

In 1997, the recommendations were revised for vitamin D, doubling the amount for adults over age 50, going up to 400 IU or 10 mcg daily. People over age 70 need 600 IU or 15 mcg per day.

No one should have more than 2000 IU or 50 mcg per day of Vitamin D.

Because vitamin D dissolves in fat, it can build up in the fat tissues of the body. This can pose a problem for people taking high doses of vitamin D. While it is almost impossible to get too much vitamin D from foods or sunlight, it is easy to get too much from supplements. High doses of vitamin D can be toxic and cause:

* kidney stones or damage

* weak muscles

* weak bones

* excessive bleeding

Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautionary measures while following instructions on the home remedies from this article. Avoid using any of these products if you are allergic to it. The responsibility lies with the reader and not with the site or the writer.

Never use any home remedy or other self treatment without being advised to do so by a physician.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD)

Understanding the Basics

Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) are caused by bacteria or viruses usually transmitted by sexual activity with an infected person. With the exception of viral infections, i.e. Genital Herpes, Genital Warts, Hepatitis, and HIV infection (AIDS), most STDs can be cured.

The key to treatment is the word PROMPT, since many STDs, if not immediately treated, can go on to cause serious medical problems.

How will you know if you have an STD?

You may notice the following signs or symptoms:

* For a Male

• discharge from the penis

• burning on urination

• sore(s) on or around the penis or anus

* For a Female

• unusual vaginal discharge

• intense itching

• stomach cramps, but not related to menstrual cycle

• sore(s) on or around the vagina or anus

While there may be danger signs or symptoms, you can be infected without knowing it. If someone, such as your sex partner or local Health Department tells you that you have been exposed to an STD, it is very important that you get tested and treated immediately!

How you can protect yourself from STDs, including HIV:

Abstinence is the only sure way to avoid getting an STD.

Having a monogamous relationship. Sex is considered safe if both you and your partner: are not infected, have never shot drugs, and have never had sex with anyone else.

If you're not in a monogamous relationship, be sure to: always use latex condoms, limit the number of partners you have, and have regular exams.

What are STDs?

STDs are diseases that are usually passed through sexual contact with an infected partner. STDs include many diseases, such as AIDS, chlamydia, gonorrhea, genital herpes, genital warts, and syphilis. STDs are widespread; more than 12 million people in the US are infected each year.

Why should I learn about STDs?

STDs are a danger to everyone who has sex, even ONCE. Unborn children are at a risk, too!

If left untreated, STDs can have serious side effects, including:

• sterility (being unable to have a child)

• brain damage

• heart disease

• birth defects

• low birth rate

• premature Birth

• increased risk for some types of cancer

• death

How are STDs spread?

STDs are spread through contact with:

• infected body fluids, such as blood, vaginal secretions, or semen

• infected skin or mucous membranes - for example, sores in the mouth

Activities that expose you to infected body fluids or skin include:

• vaginal, anal, or oral sex WITHOUT proper use of a latex condom or other barrier methods. Anal sex is especially risky because it often causes bleeding.

• sharing needles or syringes for drug use, ear piercing, tattooing, etc.

• Having an STD may increase your risk of getting HIV. STDs can break down the body's most important defense - the skin and mucous membranes, causing sores and thus provide a way for HIV to enter the body.

Most activities don't spread STDs!

You cannot get an STD from everyday, nonsexual activities, such as:

• giving blood

• sitting next to an infected person

• sitting on toilet seats

• sharing eating utensils

• touching doorknobs

• using swimming pools

How can you avoid STDs?

There are safe alternatives to vaginal, anal, or oral sex. For example:

• Don't have sex. Abstinence is the only sure way to avoid getting an STD.

• Masturbation. Masturbation with your partner (on unbroken skin), or alone,can provide sexual pleasure safely.

• Massage. Caressing and stroking can express affection and give pleasure.

• Kissing. This can be a safe way to be physically close, as long as both partners are free of cuts and sores in the mouth.

• Fantasy. The brain is one of the most powerful sex organs. Use your imagination for satisfying sexual pleasure.

If you have sex, have sex only with one partner who:

• has no STD (monogamy)

• has sex with you only (monogamy)

If you are not in a monogamous relationship, be sure to:

• Use barrier methods like latex condoms. Latex condoms are your best protection from STDs during intercourse. But remember, even condoms are not 100% effective.

• Limit the number of partners you have. The more partners you have, the greater the risk of being exposed to an STD. Remember, you can't tell if someone has an STD just by looking at them.

• Have regular physical exams. Ask you physician to test for STDs if you think you've been exposed. Regular tests help find STDs early, when treatment can be most effective.

Condoms help protect both partners from STDs and unwanted pregnancy.

To use a condom properly, you'll need:

• A latex condom ("rubber"). The HIV virus and other STDs may pass through "natural" or "skin" condoms.

• A water-based lubricant. This helps keep the condom from breaking. Never use products that contain oil or fat, like petroleum jelly or cooking oil. These products weaken latex and may cause the condom to break.

• A new condom. Use one every time you have sex, even oral or anal. Discard any "new" condom that's damaged, sticky, or brittle.

To use condoms correctly:

• Put the condom on BEFORE any sexual contact.

• Leave a 1/2 inch space at the tip to collect semen. Cover the penis completely.

• Smooth out any air bubbles to reduce stress on the condom, and to increase feeling. Apply spermicide to the outside of the condom.

• Check the condom during sex to make sure it's unbroken and still on properly.

• Withdraw slowly right after climax. Hold the condom by it's base so it doesn't slip off. Dispose of properly.

To help further reduce the risk of contracting an STD:

• Don't inject drugs. Sharing needles or syringes can expose you to infected blood. Not injecting drugs is an essential part of protecting yourself from STDs.

• Avoid alcohol and other drugs. They can make you more likely to take chances when having sex.

• Don't douche. You may force germs farther into the vagina or alter the natural balance of vaginal fluids.

The symptoms of STDs may include:

• sores or blisters on or around the sex organs or mouth

• pain or burning during urination

• discharge from the penis or vagina that smells or looks unusual

• itching, swelling, or pain in or around the sex organs

Get tested right away if you think you have any symptoms, or think you've been exposed to an STD (even if have no symptoms, talk about your STD testing needs with your doctor during your health care visits). Remember, many STDs don't have any symptoms, especially in women.

Remember: If you have an STD, seek proper medical care immediately! Home remedies can make an accurate diagnosis difficult!

If you have an STD, be sure to:

• Talk to all sex partner(s) who may have been exposed. Encourage them to get tested. Both partners need to be treated to avoid reinfection.

• Avoid sexual intercourse until your physician says it's okay to resume so you don't get reinfected, or spread the disease to others.

• Follow your treatment plan and finish all medications, even if you feel well. Follow up exams can make sure treatment was effective.

• Get counseling if you're worried or upset about having an STD. Your physician or STD clinic can recommend a counselor.

What other types of birth control help protect against STDs?

Only latex condoms are considered effective protection against STDs. Birth control pills, diaphragms, sponges, and other contraceptives do not prevent STDs.

A lot of men carry condoms in their wallets. Is this a good idea?

No. Exposure to body heat, sunlight, and extreme cold can all damage condoms and make them more likely to break.

Once I've had an STD, can I get it again?

Yes. Sex without a condom can result in getting an STD, no matter what STD you've already had.

Be Informed About AIDS

What is AIDS?

AIDS (acquired immuno-deficiency syndrome) is a serious illness. The virus that causes AIDS attacks the immune system, the body's natural defense against disease. Damage to the immune system leaves the body vulnerable to secondary illnesses that can be fatal. There is still no known cure for AIDS, but effective treatments are now available. Research continues in the hope of developing better treatments and a vaccine.

Why should I learn about AIDS?

You should learn about AIDS because you may be at risk for it or you may be HIV positive, or your job may involve helping people who have AIDS. Learning about AIDS can help you understand the facts and reject the myths about the illness. Knowing about AIDS will also help you respond without fear to people who require your help.

What causes AIDS?

AIDS is caused by a virus called HIV (human immunodeficiency virus). A healthy immune system includes special kinds of white bloods cells called B cells and T cells, and depends on a balance of certain kinds of T cells. "Helper" T cells assist B cells in fighting disease. "Suppressor" T cells call off the attack when the invading disease has been stopped. HIV apparently destroys the helper cells without affecting suppressor cells proportionately. When suppressor cells outnumber helper cells, the immune system fails.

What are the effects of HIV on the body?

HIV may be in the body for many years before there are any signs of illness. As HIV weakens the immune system, signs and symptoms may appear. People may have:

* swollen lymph glands in the neck, underarm, and groin area

* recurrent fever, including "night sweats"

* rapid weight loss for no apparent reason

* constant fatigue

* diarrhea and decreased appetite

* white spots or unusual blemishes in the mouth

* other illnesses

People infected with HIV can't fight off a number of serious illnesses without medical treatment. One common illness of this type is Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (PCP), usually a rare lung infection. Symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath.

Scientific research also shows that HIV can damage the brain and spinal cord. Signs of damage may include memory loss, indifference, inability to make decisions, partial paralysis, loss of coordination, and other problems in controlling the body.

How is HIV transmitted?

HIV is mainly spread:

* unprotected sexual contact with an HIV-infected person

* by sharing a needle to inject drugs with an HIV-infected person

* from HIV-infected mothers to their infants before, during, and after birth (breast feeding)

HIV may also be spread through blood products. This is very unlikely now because:

* all donors are carefully screened

* all donors' blood and blood products are tested before being used

Current research shows that HIV is NOT spread by casual contact. For example, it is not spread by nonsexual, everyday contact, such as:

* touching, hugging, and shaking hands

* breathing and coughing

* using toilets, telephones, drinking fountains, etc.

Anyone can get infected with HIV.

So far, most cases have occurred among:

* homosexual and bisexual men who contracted HIV through sexual activity with an infected person

* heterosexuals who contracted HIV from sexual activity with an infected person

* injection drug users who contracted HIV by sharing needles and drug "works" to inject drugs

* hemophiliacs who, years ago, contracted HIV through the use of donated blood and blood products

* children who contracted HIV from an infected mother

Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautionary measures while following instructions on the home remedies from this article. Avoid using any of these products if you are allergic to it. The responsibility lies with the reader and not with the site or the writer.

The service is provided as general information only, and should not be treated as a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor.

Recent posts

Label Cloud


template by