OTHER DRUGS USED IN INSOMNIAChloral HydrateSold as Noctec, chloral hydrate is one of the ingredients, along with alcohol, of the knockout drink known as a Mickey Finn. This drug is used for patients unable to take other types of prescription sleep medicines, such as the very young, the very old, and the very ill. Since the creation of benzodiazepines chloral hydrate is used less frequently, although physicians concerned about flurazepam’s long half-life may opt to prescribe chloral hydrate instead. Noctec is relatively inexpensive and the risk of overdosage or side effects, such as gastric irritation, is low.Glutethimide; MethyprylonOriginally, these drugs were offered as alternative sedatives to barbiturates, but they were found to have actions similar to the drugs they were meant to replace—and similar drawbacks as well, including the potential for addiction. Many physicians feel the hazards so far outweigh any possible benefit that they will not prescribe these drugs under any circumstances.EthchlorvynolKnown by the brand name Placidyl, ethchlorvynol is unrelated to other hypnotic drugs. Its advantages are primarily that it is absorbed quickly and that it has a half-life of only six hours, resulting in a lower risk of daytime sedation. The drug improves the onset of sleep, but its effects wear off during the middle of the night, and it will be effective only for a few days at a time. Side effects include confusion and emotional distress on the following day, as well as lack of coordination, confusion, slurred speech, and muscle weakness; there is also a strong potential for inducing drug-withdrawal insomnia.Methysergide MaleateGenerally indicated for the treatment of vascular headache, this drug, sold under the brand name Sansert, has some use in the treatment of excessive daytime sleepiness of undetermined cause. Symptoms of this disorder include prolonged sleep and sleep drunkenness, but without the other symptoms of narcolepsy, such as cataplexy.TryptophanTryptophan is not a drug and is thus not subject to regulation or testing by the FDA. It is an essential amino acid that is derived from the protein found in foods such as grains, legumes, and seeds. Tryptophan is also sold as a dietary supplement in health food stores and drugstores. Many believe tryptophan may play a role in facilitating the onset of sleep through its effects on the production of serotonin.*280\226\8*
RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS (RA) AND DISABILITYShould you decide to stop working, you may be eligible for disability benefits. These benefits vary greatly depending on the coverage offered by your employer and the availability of benefits for which you may be eligible. The definition of disability varies considerably among providers, too. The following kinds of disability benefits may be available to you.
Commercial and Employment Disability ProgramsSome companies offer short-term or long-term disability insurance as part of a benefits package. If disability insurance is an optional benefit in which you have chosen to participate, premium payments may be deducted from your paycheck. The insurance also may be a company-sponsored benefit. Disability benefits are often available for military or civil service employees.Some people purchase individual disability policies from private insurance companies. Before signing up for disability insurance, read the insurance contract carefully to determine how long you need to be disabled before benefits begin and how disability is defined. Some policies are quite restrictive in these regards and may not be worth the investment.
State Disability PoliciesSome states have disability insurance programs. People enrolled in these programs contribute a portion of the premium by way of a payroll deduction. Benefits are generally paid in proportion to the amount contributed to the fund. Your doctor will be familiar with your state’s disability benefits and can tell you how to join the program.
Social Security Disability BenefitsYou may be eligible for federal benefit programs if you are disabled by your arthritis. The definition of disability is based on your present and projected inability to perform any kind of work. You may be considered disabled by Social Security standards if:• your arthritis prevents you from being gainfully employed and• your condition is expected to last for at least one year or to result in death.Social Security officers review your history, medical records, and personal physician’s reports to determine whether you are disabled. A physical examination by a consulting physician may be requested by the agency if additional information about your current physical condition is needed. The reviewers will determine whether your arthritis matches disability standards set forth by an objective listing of impairments.According to Social Security regulations, to qualify as having disabling RA, a person must show proof of persistent joint pain, swelling, or tenderness in multiple joints. Signs of joint inflammation (swelling and tenderness) must have been present for at least three months despite therapy and must have resulted in decreased function of those joints. It must be expected that the arthritis will remain a physical impairment for longer than twelve months. The results of such RA laboratory tests as ESR (erythrocyte sedimentation rate), rheumatoid factor, ANA (antinuclear antibody), and biopsy) must also be recorded as abnormal. Other factors taken into consideration include pain, fatigue, ability to perform basic work-related activities, age, education, past work experience, and transferable skills. The process of determining eligibility for benefits may take several months to complete. It is a good idea to keep in touch with the Social Security office during this time to monitor the progress being made on your case.There are different eligibility requirements for Social Security disability insurance benefits (DIB) and Social Security income (SSI), the two programs that are funded through the Social Security Administration. Neither of these programs is designed to cover short-term or partial disability, as many other policies do.*117/209/5*
Chlamydia trachomatis (serotypes D to K) is an important and common sexually transmitted human pathogen. It is much more common than gonorrhoea.
The serotypes of С trachomatis isolated from genital infections differ from those usually isolated from trachoma (serotypes A to C). Serotypes LI, L2 and L3 cause lymphogranuloma venereum.
Non-gonococcal (NGU) and postgonococcal urethritis (PGU) in males and non-gonococcal cervicitis (NGC) in females were referred to as nonspecific genital infections because no aetiology was known. It has been shown that these conditions are commonly due to С trachomatis. The genital mycoplasmas including U urealyticum can commonly be isolated from the genital tracts of sexually active people and may be involved in genital infection. Other possible causes include some anaerobic bacteria and viruses.
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Patients should attend 1 week after therapy for evaluation and test of cure. All infected sites should be cultured. Investigations to exclude concurrent STDs should be considered. Single dose penicillin regimens usually eliminate incubating syphilis but not primary, secondary or late syphilis. Spectinomycin is not treponemocidal. Treatment for chlamydia is indicated if the patient develops post-gonococcal urethritis.
No vaccine is commercially available. Washing with soap and water and the use of topical chemicals are not effective in the prevention of sexually transmitted gonorrhoea. Antibiotic prophylaxis is unreliable and is not recommended. Proper condom usage affords some protection.
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It is advisable to back up the treatment by means of natural remedies, such as Gelsemium 6x and Urticalcin, calcium always being valuable in such cases. Nux vomica 4x is helpful in counteracting nausea. All these remedies contribute to improvement. As for the diet, fruit juices are indicated so as not to overburden the digestive organs. What is more, never lose sight of the necessity to rid the body of toxins, not only through heavy sweating, but also through the bowels and kidneys. Since this treatment has proved to be reliable and effective in practice, it should be tried first.
Polio epidemics occur periodically and regionally, although less so today than formerly. Hot and sultry weather seems to encourage the development of the virus, for the incidence of the disease is greater in summer than in winter. In tropical countries it continues all year round. Research specialists have found that a number of people, particularly children, although immune to the disease themselves, nevertheless are carriers of the polio virus. Among primitive peoples very few cases of polio are found and this would lead to the conclusion that the advantages and disadvantages of our civilisation are responsible for our predisposition to this disease and undermine our resistance to it. Our food and life-style, living in overheated houses, and so forth, no doubt play their part in our susceptibility.
So how can we protect ourselves from this dreadful affliction? In the same way that we should protect ourselves from all infectious diseases. The main requirement is a natural way of life. Healthy exercise is also important – and we should not become ‘soft’. Plenty of fresh air, light and sunshine should be our ‘companions’ whenever possible. Since it is now thought with reasonable certainty that the polio virus attacks by way of the nose and mouth, do not neglect to paint your children’s throats with Molkosan when a threat of polio occurs in your locality. By doing so we can thus protect our children from infectious diseases and build up their resistance. However, should the infection have already taken place, remember the keynote to successful treatment: detoxify and eliminate – profuse sweating and elimination through the bowels and kidneys. This will help to avert the worst.
Repartnering or remarrying has its own set of sexual difficulties. There might be an ex-partner or two to consider and it can be difficult to avoid the comparisons of personality, size, shape and sexual performance.
When there are children involved it can get very complicated. One of the main problems for a new relationship is that there never seems enough time to be alone and that will be intensely frustrating. The system of jealousies can be incredibly complex. The reactions of children will depend a lot on their age but seeing your parent relating physically or sleeping with a person who is not your other parent can create confusion, resentment and even anger at any age. If your parents’ relationship was strained for some time you may never have seen the adults around you engaged in any sort of intimate behavior before and that can be particularly confronting. Children can be very protective of their parents and new partners may find themselves competing for attention, physical affection and personal space with their partner’s child. Stepparents may feel inhibited about showing affection in front of each other’s children for fear of setting off a reaction. So establishing a blended family raises a multiplicity of sexual issues that will take time, patience, understanding and a big dose of common sense to unravel.
The main answer to dealing with relationship problems and breakdowns is early preparation. Obviously the example set by your own parents is a vital element, but in any relationship the backgrounds of the two people will be different in some respects. Just because one of you knows how to communicate emotions, it takes two to tango. It would be like sending a message over the radio when your intended audience is tuned to another station. The missing link is relationship education by specially trained teachers in schools. In fact, understanding relationships is so integral to our emotional survival that it needs to be a cornerstone in the education system. To survive in the modern world we need the ‘four Rs’ … Reading, wRiting, aRithmetic and Relationships.
Commitment doesn’t have to have a timeframe. Kay has been married to the same man for sixteen years. ‘We met when we were at school and we became good friends. We would sit together in class and have lunch together most days. Then one weekend when we were about seventeen I was invited to a friend’s birthday party and she said to bring a partner. So I asked James if he would like to go with me. That night we kissed each other for the first time and it just felt so wonderful. We talked for ages after the party and we agreed that we were officially “going steady” (that’s what they called it back then). I know this sounds weird but we decided then and there that one day we would marry. Of course nobody believed either of us at the time … but that’s exactly what we did as soon as we graduated from university and one of us got a job. We’ve had our ups and downs but we’re still here!’
Two people can make a mutual commitment after only a few weeks and keep to it but a relationship can go on for years without any real commitment beyond next Saturday night.
Colin talks about the other side of the coin. ‘Michelle and I started our relationship when we were fifteen. We would go to all the parties together, we went to the beach, we would go on holidays with each other’s families and all that. As we got older our relationship became sexual but in a way we were like brother and sister. We never talked about marriage or children. In fact, we never even talked about living together. Anyway, by the time we were about twenty-three our parents started dropping little hints about us “tying the knot” and about how they would like to be grandparents one day and how well suited we were. At first we just ignored it but by the time we were twenty-five the thumbscrews were really on. I suppose they managed to convince us that because we had been together for ten years we were duty-bound to get married. Well it lasted about eighteen months.’
Now at first glance the concept of agreeing to a set of restrictions doesn’t seem all that appealing, but making a commitment can mean a lot of plusses — a degree of security, mutual support, companionship, trust, and being able to make longterm plans together.
Finding out about an STD can be a double whammy. A married woman in her forties found out she had trichomonas after she developed a vaginal discharge that smelt like old socks. As her only partner was her husband she put two and two together. ‘We had a huge scene at home. I told him there was no point denying it because there was only one way I could have picked this up. I was so furious that he could have put me at risk like this. He didn’t even have the sense to wear a condom with her. It took me months to get over my anger with him for the other woman … and the infection.’ This particular situation is one that needs a closer look. Obviously, apart from celibacy, the next safest situation is for both partners to be monogamous.
But it’s not enough to silently hope that your partner, no matter how committed they may be to the relationship, will never have a sexual encounter with another person. If you look at the statistics, the truth of the matter is that the majority of married men and women will have an extramarital liaison at some time. Denying this reality or just refusing to acknowledge it or talk about it leaves far too much to chance. Some therapists argue that it is not necessarily the affair itself, but the exposure of the affair or the fear of what it might do to the relationship that actually does the damage. The feeling of betrayal and loss of trust that follow can tear a relationship apart. Catching an STD and then having to tell your primary partner is a sure way of exposing an extracurricular relationship, and it can be devastating.
However, the discovery of an STD may have nothing to do with infidelity, so it’s essential to have your facts right before you pick up the phone to call your lawyer. (For that matter call a counsellor before you call a lawyer.) Find out all you can about the infection. Take chlamydia for example. By the 1980s it had become the most common sexually transmitted bacterial infection in North America, Europe and Australia, so its impact has been widespread. Chlamydia is one infection that can lay dormant for years before it is detected, so even though it may be found on a test today it may have been the result of a sexual contact some years before. It can go on causing damage for all that time with no symptoms at all, until it ultimately leads to infertility in both men and women.
Calcium deficiency shows itself in various ways and can still be found quite frequently among small children. It prevents them from developing properly and makes them prone to catching frequent colds. If the mother wants an inexpensive, natural and good calcium preparation, she can make one up herself by doing the following. Pick some young fresh nettles, which can be found in most places, maybe right by the house or in the garden. Next, take some egg shells, which are on hand in practically every kitchen. People who live by the sea might like to use oyster shells instead. Crush the shells together with the fresh nettles and leave to dry in the air. Once pulverised, a light green powder will result. The child should take half a teaspoon of this 2-3 times daily. After a few months the teeth will improve and, in time, will become noticeably stronger. The bones will benefit also, and the susceptibility to colds and catarrh will diminish. If preparing this powder is too much of a bother, simply use Urticalcin, a ready-made calcium product containing stinging nettles.
If, in addition, the child has a deficiency of vitamin D, then you have the basic cause of rickets. Although serious cases of rickets, resulting in underdeveloped or deformed bones, are now extremely rare, less severe forms of rickets are still seen even today. It may seem strange, but children suffering from this mild form of rickets are usually very lively, react to everything quickly and their facial expression is almost too intelligent for their age. They tend to be precocious and always remind me of an apple that has grown ripe too soon. On closer examination the apple proves to be worm-eaten, and that is actually why it has ripened prematurely.
Such children who lack both calcium and vitamin D need help and can be helped. Homoeopathic or biochemical calcium triturations are excellent for this purpose, for example Calcarea phos. 6x, Calcarea fluor. 12x (for the teeth) and Silica 12x. The calcium preparation Urticalcin contains several calcium salts in various potencies, as triturations, as well as Urtica (as a vitamin D carrier), and is therefore also an efficacious remedy. Orange juice and cod-liver oil are rich in vitamin D and are highly recommended. Furthermore, carrot juice or the concentrate Biocarottin, which is made from fresh carrot juice, is another natural remedy for overcoming calcium deficiency.
Perhaps even more importantly, it helps to know that there is no way of spotting the person in the crowd most likely to be carrying an STD. It won’t necessarily be the most attractive or the most ugly person, not the best dressed or the sloppiest, it will have nothing to do with income or personality. Anyone who has vaginal or anal intercourse or oral sex can catch an STD. Anyone. Clearly some sexual behaviors will put you at more risk than others but thinking you can predict the risk beyond doubt is naive.
Women who have sex with other women have traditionally thought that they were exempt from any safer sex messages. Now while these women are still statistically in what we call a low risk group for HIV/AIDS, there is real concern about a false sense of security. The reality is that some women who have sex with other women will be HIV positive, some will also have sex with men, and some will use intravenous drugs so there is the possibility of exposure to the virus. An HIV positive person can transmit the virus through cuts or ulcers in their mouth by oral/vaginal contact. Menstrual blood and vaginal secretions are also potentially infectious, so unprotected oral sex during a period, or unprotected hand and vaginal contact (when you have cuts, dermatitis, or broken skin around your nails) could transmit infection. The trouble is, until the research is conclusive and the risk is perceived to be significant, it’s going to be difficult to sell this safer sex message. The biggest risk people seem to perceive at the moment is choking on the dental dam mid-gasp. The prospect of using a condom to cover sex toys like vibrators or dildos is not such a problem. Using a sheet of rubber (like a condom cut lengthwise) or a dental dam for oral sex, or latex gloves for genital touching might be stretching the friendship at this stage. Still, there are some health researchers who are starting to recommend safer sex between women to prevent the whole range of STDs from HIV/AIDS to warts and herpes simplex. Of course, the same applies to male partners of women. Maybe the total body rubber suit is the only answer.