Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Swine Flu Worries

If you have questions about the current Swine Flu situation, please take a moment to ready what the Center for Disease Control (CDC) has to say.

Swine Influenza and You
Is this swine flu virus contagious?
CDC has determined that this swine influenza A (H1N1) virus is contagious and is spreading from human to human. However, at this time, it not known how easily the virus spreads between people.

What are the signs and symptoms of swine flu in people?
The symptoms of swine flu in people are similar to the symptoms of regular human flu and include fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Some people have reported diarrhea and vomiting associated with swine flu. In the past, severe illness (pneumonia and respiratory failure) and deaths have been reported with swine flu infection in people. Like seasonal flu, swine flu may cause a worsening of underlying chronic medical conditions.

How does swine flu spread?

Spread of this swine influenza A (H1N1) virus is thought to be happening in the same way that seasonal flu spreads. Flu viruses are spread mainly from person to person through coughing or sneezing of people with influenza. Sometimes people may become infected by touching something with flu viruses on it and then touching their mouth or nose.

How can someone with the flu infect someone else?
Infected people may be able to infect others beginning 1 day before symptoms develop and up to 7 or more days after becoming sick. That means that you may be able to pass on the flu to someone else before you know you are sick, as well as while you are sick.

Are there medicines to treat swine flu?
Yes. CDC recommends the use of oseltamivir or zanamivir for the treatment and/or prevention of infection with these swine influenza viruses. Antiviral drugs are prescription medicines (pills, liquid or an inhaler) that fight against the flu by keeping flu viruses from reproducing in your body. If you get sick, antiviral drugs can make your illness milder and make you feel better faster. They may also prevent serious flu complications. For treatment, antiviral drugs work best if started soon after getting sick (within 2 days of symptoms).

How long can an infected person spread swine flu to others?
People with swine influenza virus infection should be considered potentially contagious as long as they are symptomatic and possible for up to 7 days following illness onset. Children, especially younger children, might potentially be contagious for longer periods.

If you become ill and experience any of the following warning signs, seek emergency medical care. In children emergency warning signs that need urgent medical attention include:
• Fast breathing or trouble breathing
• Bluish skin color
• Not drinking enough fluids
• Not waking up or not interacting
• Being so irritable that the child does not want to be held
• Flu-like symptoms improve but then return with fever and worse cough
• Fever with a rash
In adults, emergency warning signs that need urgent medical attention include:
• Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
• Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
• Sudden dizziness
• Confusion
• Severe or persistent vomiting

Friday, April 24, 2009

8 Hours to a lifetime of relationship satisfaction

Dr. Gayle Klaybor gave a workshop on April 25 for the MS Society. This intensive workshop focused on practical skills for enhancing communication in a marriage, teaching listening skills, and providing a forum for couples to explore how to improve their marriages. Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease that affects the central nervous system CNS:the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves. The damage caused by MS creates lesions or "scars" that can be seen on your brain and spinal cord. The process of developing lesions is called "sclerosis." So, MS actually means "many scars."

Who gets MS?

* 2.5 million people around the world have MS
* Approximately 400,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with MS
* More than twice as many women as men have MS
* Most people are aged between 20 and 50 years when they are diagnosed with MS
* MS is more common in people of Northern European descent, but anyone can get MS


1. Balance

Your spouse may not fully understand what is like to have multiple sclerosis, but the major life changes involved affect you both. While you bear the physical brunt of MS, you both have to deal with the emotional toll, the financial impact, and role changes. My own life changed with such great speed that my head is still spinning five years later. I try to never lose sight of the fact that Jake was every bit as blindsided as I was.

2. Communication

Unless he is so fortunate as to possess telepathic abilities, he is not a mind reader. Make the effort to share your deepest thoughts and feelings with him. If you are experiencing depression or fatigue, and you don't tell him, he just may miss the signs. If you need extra assistance... ask. We can't expect our loved ones to get inside our heads and accommodate for our needs on their own. We've got to communicate with them.

3. Understanding

MS is a huge issue in both your lives, but it is not the only issue. Don't forget to ask him how his day is going and how he's feeling. Take the time to find out what's on his mind today... besides MS. Show that you care about his hope and fears. Don't assume he knows.

4. Appreciation

Don't fall into the trap of taking him for granted. Just because he always does the grocery shopping, doesn't mean that you shouldn't tell him how much you appreciate it once in awhile. We tend to dispense with the niceties with the people we love the most. That's a mistake.

5. Romance

Romance is good for the soul. Without it, you might as well just be roomates. Under no circumstances should you let romance slide. MS can make things more difficult, but there's no reason to let it take the romance, too. Cuddle up on the sofa together... light some candles... play soft music... you know where to go from there.

Why Worry? Recently, a reprint of the book  Why Worry  by friend and prolific author, Eric A. Kimmel was recently released. Gayle and ...