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The main pigment responsible for the hair and skin color is melanin. Melanocytes are the cells involved in the formation of melanin. Vitiligo is a dermatological condition (depigmentation) characterized by white spots or patches that appear in the body. Lack or absence of melanin is often responsible for the appearance of the white patches. Improper functioning or destruction of the melanocytes may interfere with the cell's ability to produce melanin. The condition can also affect your hair, scalp, eyebrows, and eyelashes, resulting in their premature graying or whitening.
Vitiligo can be localized (only one or very few body parts are affected), generalized (affecting many body parts) or segmented (the condition affects only one side of the body). An autoimmune condition such as Diabetes (Type-1) or Hashimoto's thyroiditis may trigger the destruction of the melanocytes. Vitiligo may also be a hereditary condition. In some cases, stress or exposure to harmful chemicals may be responsible for the destruction of the melanocytes.
While many people confuse vitiligo with leucoderma, there is a small difference between the two. Like vitiligo, the white watches in leucoderma appear due to the destruction of the melanocytes. However, the destruction of the melanocytes in the case of leucoderma may result from an accident, a cut, burn or tear.
When it comes to the treatment, many people prefer homeopathy over conventional treatments and medications. Being natural with negligible or no side effects are the main USP of homeopathic treatment. People with vitiligo and leucoderma have benefitted immensely from the treatment. The treatment may not provide you with immediate results, but it is worth your time and patience. Most of the homeopathic medicines activate the melanocytes. This activation triggers the formation of the melanin, thereby resulting in re-pigmentation.
The following homeopathic medicines are very effective against vitiligo and leucoderma.
- Silicea 30: Silicea 30 is helpful for people with a sensitive skin that appears waxy and pale. In such patients, the patches or spots are not typically white but slightly rose-colored. There is extensive sweating of the hands and feet. The fingertips also appear cracked with brittle nails.
- Arsenic Album: In some patients with vitiligo or leucoderma, the skin may appear dry and rough. In addition to the white patches, a person may complain of exhaustion and asthma (not in all patients). The person may show signs of extreme restlessness and anxiety. They freak out over cleanliness and neatness. Such patients benefit immensely from Arsenic Album.
- Calcarea Carb is used to treat vitiligo where the patches appear milky white in color. There may be a weakness in the bones as well.
- Sepia: Sepia is used when people with vitiligo distant themselves from their families and loved ones.
- Nitric Acid 30 is used in the case of the white spots appearing at the mouth, nipples, nose, eyes, penis, vulva (mucous junctions).
Also, Sulfur, Psoralea Coryl 3X, Staphysagria, Borax, are equally helpful in treating vitiligo and leucoderma. To play it safe, use the medicines only after consulting a specialist. Self-medication may not be a wise idea. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
Urinary incontinence is the unintentional passing of urine. It's a common problem thought to affect millions of people. There are several types of urinary incontinence, including:
- Stress Incontinence– when urine leaks out at times when your bladder is under pressure; for example, when you cough or laugh.
- Urge Incontinence– when urine leaks as you feel a sudden, intense urge to pass urine, or soon afterwards.
- Overflow Incontinence (chronic urinary retention)– when you're unable to fully empty your bladder, which causes frequent leaking.
- Total Incontinence– when your bladder can't store any urine at all, which causes you to pass urine constantly or have frequent leaking.
It's also possible to have a mixture of both stress and urge urinary incontinence.
What causes urinary incontinence in men?
Urinary incontinence in men results when the brain does not properly signal the bladder, the sphincters do not squeeze strongly enough, or both. The bladder muscle may contract too much or not enough because of a problem with the muscle itself or the nerves controlling the bladder muscle. Damage to the sphincter muscles themselves or the nerves controlling these muscles can result in poor sphincter function. These problems can range from simple to complex.
A man may have factors that increase his chances of developing UI, including
- birth defects—problems with development of the urinary tract
- a history of prostate cancer—surgery or radiation treatment for prostate cancer can lead to temporary or permanent UI in men
UI is not a disease. Instead, it can be a symptom of certain conditions or the result of particular events during a man’s life. Conditions or events that may increase a man’s chance of developing UI include
- benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH)—a condition in which the prostate is enlarged yet not cancerous. In men with BPH, the enlarged prostate presses against and pinches the urethra. The bladder wall becomes thicker. Eventually, the bladder may weaken and lose the ability to empty, leaving some urine in the bladder. The narrowing of the urethra and incomplete emptying of the bladder can lead to UI.
- neurological problems—men with diseases or conditions that affect the brain and spine may have trouble controlling urination.
- older age—bladder muscles can weaken over time, leading to a decrease in the bladder’s capacity to store urine.
Treating Urinary Incontinence
Initially, your GP may suggest some simple measures to see if they help improve your symptoms. These may include:
- lifestyle changes – such as losing weight and cutting down on caffeine and alcohol
- pelvic floor exercises – exercising your pelvic floor muscles by squeezing them, taught by a specialist
- bladder training – where you learn ways to wait longer between needing to urinate and passing urine, guided by a specialist
- You may also benefit from the use of incontinence products, such as absorbent pads and handheld urinals.
- Medication may be recommended if you're still unable to manage your symptoms.
- Surgery may also be considered. The specific procedures suitable for you will depend on the type of incontinence you have.
- Surgical treatments for stress incontinence, such as tape or sling procedures, are used to reduce pressure on the bladder or strengthen the muscles that control urination.
- Operations to treat urge incontinence include enlarging the bladder or implanting a device that stimulates the nerve that controls the detrusor muscles.
In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
Pregnancy can wreak havoc in your body; be it your hormones overflowing or the constant crying of your newborn that makes you agitated after a point of time. Your baby will probably be your top priority in times like these but maybe, you can put yourself on the list as well once in a while because carrying a human inside isn’t a very easy task.
On the off chance that you suffered a vaginal tear or an episiotomy while delivering, the injury may sting for a couple of weeks. Broad tears may take more time to heal. Meanwhile, you can promote healing by:
- In case of sitting becoming uncomfortable, try sitting on a cushion or cushioned ring.
- Utilize a squeezer-bottle in order to pour lukewarm water over the vulva while you're urinating. Press a cleansed washcloth immovably against the injury when you hunker down for passing stool.
- Cool the injury using an ice compress, or place a cool witch hazel cushion between the wound and a clean sanitary napkin.
- Take stool softeners or analgesics as prescribed by your healthcare provider.
- For treatment of episiotomy wound in 1st week - betadine wash should be used 3-4 times a day.
While you're recovering, anticipate that the uneasiness will gradually reduce. Contact your doctor if the pain increases; the injury gets swollen, hot and excruciating; or if you notice a discharge with pus.
Vaginal discharge (lochia) might be a problem for several weeks post-delivery. Expect a red, overwhelming stream of blood for the initial few days. The release will continuously decrease, getting to be watery and changing from pink or chestnut to yellow and finally white. Contact your doctor if:
- You have substantial vaginal drying
- The discharge has a foul scent
- You have a temperature of 100.4 F (38 C) or more
You may feel contractions for the initial few days post-delivery. These constrictions, which frequently seem like menstrual cramps help in preventing excess bleeding by compressing the vessels. These contractions have a tendency to get more intense with subsequent deliveries. Your healthcare supplier may suggest an OTC pain reliever as well. Contact your healthcare personnel in the event of fever or if the stomach area is tender to your touch. These symptoms and side effects could show a uterine disease. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
The urologic system includes all problems related to the urinary system including the kidneys, bladder, ureters, urethra, and the prostate. These problems could range from trauma, injury, inflammation, infections, and muscular problems like overactive bladder, prostate hypertrophy, sexual disorders (candidiasis, erectile dysfunction, etc.), tumors or overgrowths, infections of any part along the entire tract, and even erectile dysfunction.
Let us quickly look at the most common ones kidney stones, urinary tract infections, prostate enlargement, erectile dysfunction, and vaginal candidiasis.
- Kidney stones: These are calcium deposits, which can seat themselves in any part of the kidney and sometimes even in the ureter. These can cause significant sharp, shooting pain in the back of the abdomen. The pain is almost diagnostic, and while small stones may pass on their own, others may require shock wave lithotripsy to break the bigger ones into smaller ones, which can then pass on their own through urine. Dietary modifications may also be required to prevent the formation of stones, as most people tend to have recurrence of stones.
- Prostate hypertrophy: One of the most common problems faced by ageing men is benign prostatic enlargement (BPH). There would be a constant urge to urinate, simultaneous difficulty initiating a stream and a feeling of incomplete emptying. These happen more at night, and diagnosis is very easy, any elderly male who shows these symptoms is almost diagnostic of BPH. This requires a standard surgical procedure known as transurethral resection of the prostate, which is a same-day surgery and quite non-complicated.
- Urinary tract infections: This is one of the most common infections, which can be acquired from the use of public bathrooms and unhygienic bathroom practices. There is chance for infection of the entire tract starting from the urethra to the ureter, the bladder, and the kidney. These run the course of any infection. Treatment is usually with a course of oral antibiotics along with symptomatic treatment of the other symptoms like fever, muscle ache, etc. In very rare cases, systemic antibiotics may be required.
- Erectile dysfunction: One of the most common, but undisclosed male sexual problem is erectile dysfunction. There is inability of the male to achieve and/or sustain an erection, sufficient to have a satisfactory sexual intercourse. This has both physical and psychological reasons, and may also be due to hormonal imbalance. Very often, a discussion with a counselor would be required to treat the couple, as involving the partner is very important.
- Vaginal candidiasis: The normal vaginal flora is very rich with the fungi Candida, and when immunity is low, candidiasis develops. There could be symptoms like foul-smelling discharge, itching, and redness. A course of topical antifungal agents is usually effective in treating this condition.
In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
Lack of sleep can make you feel tired, worn-out and less productive the next day. However, it might not be your fault entirely because the brain tends to become active when the body is at rest, which could be a reason why you aren’t getting enough sleep at night.
Here are a few tips which might be useful for you to sleep at night:
Keep your room dark: Even the faintest light from your mobile is enough to disrupt your sleep. Thus, try and switch off all your lights and gadgets before going to sleep. If doing that doesn’t help either, use an eye mask to keep the light out.
Carefully select your dinner: Don’t go to bed hungry or overstuffed because either of them might cause discomfort while sleeping and lead to a disruption in your sleep. Also, limit your alcohol consumption at night to refrain from making numerous trips to the washroom. Avoid consuming nicotine and caffeine before going to bed as they take a long time to wear off and can cause havoc in your sleep routine.
Don’t exercise before going to bed: Exercising daily is a necessity as it keeps your body healthy and in shape, but exercising right before going to bed can be disruptive as it might make you more pumped up due to the adrenaline rush. Thus, you should avoid exercising heavily right before going to bed.
Plug out all your devices: Create a technology free zone by plugging out all your devices one hour prior to your usual sleep time. The blue light radiated from your devices can trick your brain into believing that it is daylight and cause a disruption in circadian rhythm (which is an ongoing 24-hour physiological process which is regulated by external factors such as sunlight and temperature).
Consume snooze food: Certain food items can be classified as snooze foods as they ensure better sleep at night. Warm milk contains ‘tryptophan’ which is a precursor to melatonin (hormone that is responsible for the onset of sleep) and ensures better sleep or you could have a spoon of honey which releases ‘orexin’ (a chemical that affects wakefulness and appetite) that reduces alertness levels.
In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
Ending one’s life is terrible. But often, instead of analysing the patient’s mental condition at that time, we tend to judge them. The most common cause for suicides is undoubtedly depression. Adverse social or financial conditions often contribute to the mental condition of patients. However, a recent paper published in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology might change the way we think about suicides. Lena Brundin and her co-workers have come to the conclusion in the paper titled “Role of inflammation in suicide: from mechanism to treatment,” that our immune system can trigger off suicidal thoughts and tendencies. Let us find out how.
- There is proof that certain medicines that are used to treat cancer patients can affect the immune responses. This in turn can trigger off suicidal tendencies.
- Certain injuries can lead to brain disorders which are related to inflammatory responses that might be responsible for some changes in behaviour often leading to suicidal thoughts.
- Just like certain medications trigger of suicidal thoughts, there are some that might diminish them like Lithium. It is used to treat bi-polar disorder. What it does is decrease immune related chemicals. Another drug has proved to be very effective in reducing suicidal thoughts and tendencies – Ketamine. Ketamine, like Lithium, has been found to block certain chemicals that are related to immune response.
- Though the whole topic is still under extensive research, it can perhaps be concluded that certain drugs have the ability to lessen suicidal thoughts and depression because they block some chemicals that are related to immunity.
The suicidal mentality is very complex. It requires not just medicines, but counselling, empathy, love and understanding. Often, many patients cannot come out of their depression, resulting in therapy sessions that are fruitless. In those cases, medicines that might reduce the negative thoughts and moods will come handy. It will help the patient initially to deal with the situation and start with a lot of positivity. Every year, almost one million deaths occur due to suicide. Not only does it leave behind survivors who attempt to kill themselves but also broken families that struggle to get over the death. If this research is successful, several people will benefit from it, all over the world. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
Uterine fibroids are abnormal growth that manifests in the uterus of the woman. Hormones and a family history of the same are the usual causes listed for such a growth. As per many medical reports, about 70 to 80% women over the age of 50 years, experience such growths. The most common symptoms of the condition include heavy bleeding during the menstrual cycle or even at other times of the month, as well as severe pain in the abdomen.
Read on to know eight facts about these fibroids.
- These fibroids may be caused by a family history of the same and is usually passed down by the mother. The other causes include excessive hormonal imbalance and changes as well as pregnancy and obesity.
- Heavy urination is one of the most common symptoms of this condition, as the fibroids may press against the uterus and cause pressure in the area. Also, for those who have not reached menopause yet, this condition may also cause heavy and prolonged menstrual bleeding.
- A Pelvic MRI scan is one of the most common ways of diagnosing the condition with the creation of images that will show any anomalies and growth in the uterus, ovaries and cervix.
- Medication may be used in order to control and regulate the levels of hormone production and release. This can affect the fibroids by making them shrink eventually.
- All fibroids do not point at the progression of cancer. If you have uterine fibroids, it does not mean that you have to have cancer. The symptoms may be similar and the condition is usually called uterine sarcoma. Usually, the diagnosis can only be done with the help of a sugary which will remove the growth and then study the same in the lab to find whether or not it is malignant. This process is known as a biopsy.
- They are the most common reason behind undergoing a hysterectomy. Many women, the world over, have to go through a hysterectomy, which removes the uterus and even the ovaries in some cases. This usually happens when the uterine fibroids become too huge to handle and may give rise to a variety of risks and complications.
- Pregnancy may become a difficulty if you happen to have uterine fibroids. While it is still possible to become pregnant and conceive naturally, many women face problems in doing so easily because these fibroids cause changes in the uterus when it comes to the shape and size of the same.
- Many women do not experience any symptoms of the condition at all. In such cases, no treatment will be required. Yet, even in these cases, the doctor will recommend regular clinical check ups and observation in order to ensure that there are no complications.
The prostate gland is a male reproductive organ at the base of the urinary bladder and urethra is a thin tube that carries urine out of the penis. It runs through the prostate gland. A fluid produced by this gland helps to carry sperms produced by the testes outside during intercourse.
Cause of urinary problems in men
Men experience urinary symptoms either due to inflammation of the prostate gland or prostatitis or symptoms may be the result of a blockage of the passage due to enlargement of the prostate gland.
Symptoms of urinary problems
Urinary symptoms commonly experienced with prostate problems include;
1. The need to urinate frequently during the night.
2. Urinating more often during the day.
3. Urinary urgency is the urge to urinate can be so strong and sudden that one may not reach the toilet in time.
4. The urine stream is slow to start.
5. Urine dribbling for some time after finishing urination.
6. A sensation that the bladder is not fully emptied after urination.
7. A lack of force to the urine flow, which makes directing the stream difficult.
8. The sensation of needing to go again soon after urinating
1. A long course of antibacterial medication (for bacterial prostatitis) is prescribed, because infection is difficult to get rid of, the antibacterial medication will need to be taken for many weeks.
2. Medication to improve urine flow and other symptoms (for obstruction caused by an enlarged prostate).
UroLift: A new method of treatment for men, where medication has not been successful, but their prostates are not so enlarged that they need more invasive surgery. It involves the Transurethral Insertion of staples to separate the lobes of the prostate. It has minimal side effects and preserves ejaculatory and erectile function.
A number of other procedures that have been developed to reduce urinary symptoms.
Medication for urinary problems
Various medications to help ease your urinary problems, including;
1. Medications to reduce the tone of the muscles of the urethra and prostate to minimize any obstruction to urine flow caused when these muscles contract.
2. Medication to reduce the size of the prostate gland. These drugs work by blocking the action of male hormones produced by the prostate gland.
3. Medications to relax the bladder, making unwanted contractions less likely and reducing the symptoms of urgency and frequency of urination.
4. Over-the-counter medicine 'Saw Palmetto' (Serenoa repens) is used sometimes. This may help some men, especially if frequent urination at night is a problem. However, recent reviews of the evidence for using Saw Palmetto as a treatment for mild or moderate urinary symptoms did not show any improvement compared to no treatment, in men with BPH.