Cranial Aneurysm’s?

Headache after headache and crashing wave over crashing waves, these can be a sign of a migraine or worse yet a cranial aneurysm.

This week I was put on a roller coaster of pain and I didn’t know how to jump off the boat. After the 2nd thunder clap headache in the past 6 months, with no previous history I was worried something was going wrong. I called my insurances nurse line, I would like to say don’t just go with someone over the phone, make decisions based on your symptoms.I decided I would head off to work and by the end of that day I ended up in the local emergency care hospital. This place had more than a regular urgent care, this place was able to give me a CT scan and a lumbar spinal tap. These tests determined I have a cranial aneurysm that had not burst.

With these two tests and about 8 hours later I was sent home given forms to call and make an appointment.

This in itself was a complete headache as the appointment settlers refused to make an appointment with the neurosurgeon until my documents, which I had in my hands was faxed to their office. Needless to say with the lack of sleep I decided to see my primary physician.

At this point I had 2 appointments with two different neurosurgeon all weeks later. Decided must not be that serious so off I end t to work. Work is an hour away from my home so I was met with a lot of concern from fellow employees and director. It took just 2 hours for me to realize it was a big mistake and I should have pushed harder to be seen.

I end up back on my side of town with a migraine from hell, and a packed ER. It was almost 10 hours on a bed in the hallway until I was moved to a room. A liquid dose of migraine cocktail to take the edge off. At no point was it completely gone but it helped me through the night.

The next day I was met by a renowned neurosurgeon that was brought to my city. He did an angiogram through my grown to find the aneurysm and see if it can be coiled (a technique that blocks the bubble). After the procedure I was in a lot of pain with my groin, at the point of the procedure (surgical opening). The doctor has decided that due to the location and size he was not going to coil the aneurysm but will have me seen ever 3 months to determine if it will continue to grow or if he can leave it. His main concern was a rupture.

With all of this information and my headaches still there we have chosen a regiment of medication that will eliminate most of the headache. At this point I have been told to eliminate undo stress, eat healthier, and not do any exercises that would put strain on my brain. All of this is something I should have already been doing but not worked on. Now it is a choice of life or possible death, never thought it would come down to a 3mm cranial aneurysm.

For everyone who might be going through constant headaches don’t let others determine what you feel or what you have, get more than one opinion it could be a matter of life or death.

Homeopathic Trends

Have you ever gone to the doctor, given a diagnosis, and sent off with a prescription? I have and each time I wonder why, there must be a new way, a different way, something that won’t cause side effects. When I was a young teen, I had several kidney infections and after multiple doctor visits my mother went to a homeopathic store and came home with a bottle of acidophilus which after a few weeks stopped the infections and created a Ph balance back in my system.

Today I learned about a technique of going barefoot to absorb the earth with the technique of Grounding.

Grounding (Earthing) is a reconnection with the Earth’s electrons has been found to promote intriguing physiological changes and subjective reports of well-being. Earthing (or grounding) refers to the discovery of benefits—including better sleep and reduced pain—from walking barefoot outside or sitting, working, or sleeping indoors connected to conductive systems that transfer the Earth’s electrons from the ground into the body (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3265077/).

With the alignments that I have had I believe that grounding can help with my fatigue, aches and pains, and overall mood. As I try this daily, I will be excited to see these changes.

On the website medicalnewstoday.com discusses how depression can be changed with herbal remedies. Depression is a serious mood disorder with symptoms that range from mild to debilitating and potentially life-threatening. Some people look to manage depression with herbal remedies, rather than with medication a doctor prescribes. The use of complementary therapies continues to gain popularity, as people look for more natural methods of managing their health. However, herbal does not always mean safe or effective, and knowing which products to choose can save a lot of time and money.

Medical News Today writes about 6 herbs that can help, with the understanding that the FDA has not recognized these herbs as approved over the drugs provided by the medical and pharmacy fields.

1. St. John’s wort

St. John’s wort is also known as Hypericum perforatum. This plant has been a common herbal mental health treatment for hundreds of years. However, people must use caution if they chose to try it as a potential treatment for depression. A 2016 systematic review found that St. John’s wort was more effective than a placebo for treating mild to moderate depression and worked almost as well as antidepressant medications. However, this review of eligible studies did not find research on the long-term effects of St. John’s wort on severe depression. The authors also advised caution against accepting the results wholesale, as the herb has adverse effects that many of the studies did not consider. St John’s wort can also interfere with the effects of antidepressant medication, meaning that it may make symptoms worse or reduce the effectiveness of conventional treatment. While St. John’s wort might help some people, it does not show consistently beneficial effects. For these reasons, people should not use St. John’s wort instead of conventional treatment. Neither should they try St. John’s wort to treat moderate to severe depression.

2. Ginseng

This supplement comes from the gnarled root of the American or Asian ginseng plant. Siberian, Asian, and Eleuthero ginseng are different plants with different active ingredients. Practitioners of Chinese medicine have used ginseng for thousands of years to help people improve mental clarity and energy and reduce the effects of stress. Some people associate these properties of ginseng with potential solutions for the low energy and motivation that can occur with depression. However, the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) advise that none of the many studies that people have conducted on ginseng have been of sufficient quality to form health recommendations.

3. Chamomile

A study in 2012 reviewed data about chamomile, which comes from the Matricaria recutita plant, and its role in helping to manage depression and anxiety. The results show that chamomile produced more significant relief from depressive symptoms than a placebo. However, further studies are necessary to confirm the health benefits of chamomile in treating depressive symptoms.

4. Lavender

Lavender oil is a popular essential oil. People typically use lavender oil for relaxation and reducing anxiety and mood disturbances. A 2013 review of various studies suggested that lavender might have significant potential in reducing anxiety and improving sleep. Lavender has mixed results in studies that assess its impact on anxiety. However, its effectiveness as a treatment for ongoing depression has little high-quality evidence in support at the current time.

5. Saffron

Some studies cite using saffron as a safe and effective measure for controlling the symptoms of depression, such as this non-systematic review from 2018. However, more research would help confirm the possible benefits of saffron for people with depression. Scientists also need to understand any possible adverse effects better.

6. SAMe

Some supplements have shown promising effects on depression symptoms. However, many investigations confirming their benefits are low quality. SAMe is short for S-adenosyl methionine. It is a synthetic form of a chemical that occurs naturally in the body. In 2016, researchers reviewed all the randomized controlled trials on record for the use of SAMe to treat depression in adults. They found no significant difference between the effects of SAMe on depression symptoms and those of a placebo. However, they also found that SAMe had about the same effectiveness as the common antidepressant’s imipramine or escitalopram. Furthermore, it was better than a placebo when the researchers mixed SAMe with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor medications. As with many other studies into herbs and supplements, the investigations into the safety and efficacy of SAMe are of low quality. More research is necessary to determine its exact effect. People use the supplement in Europe as a prescription antidepressant. However, the FDA have not yet approved this for use in the U.S.

With the information that I have found, it is important to listen to more than one source, I would be careful of removing any prescribed medications before consulting with your physician. It is your body, and because of this you need to make choices that won’t create more problems but having a second or third opinion is a smart option.

When to Turn Off the Television and Other Devices

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The idea of watching the TV for hours can become a strain on a person’s eyes, a play on their psyche, and can create a less energetic person. The generation now watches more television than ever before. I wonder how much of my generation helped with this.

I remember when my kids were young, they did watch television, but I also tried to make sure they experienced other things; sports, trips, nature, zoo’s, and things I thought would make them more rounded. As they grew the more television, we all watched. They are young adults and it is impossible to get my son to come up for air, and my grandson, who is 4, asks for his tablet on a regular basis. I think about how our world has changed, when I was a child and into my teens I didn’t think to sit down and watch television, I was into playing outside and being around friends. I also understand that the idea of human trafficking wasn’t as rampant as it is today. Does it mean kids should be kept inside? I would have to say no, this is the wrong stance. I can say that my health, my age, and my not making friends as I used to, causes me to watch more television.

Reality though, is that if I force myself out than I can help my health, slow down my aging, and create the ability to meet more people. If my grandson was given his tablet less, his television turned off, and taken out more often he wouldn’t miss the brain numbing tools. What can I do, what can families do, and what as a generation raised by television do? I say take less time in front of a television, smart phone, tablet, and computer and let the breeze blow on your face.

I have made sure that every weekend I find a chore of some type take up my day, today was making cookies, cleaning, and going through all of my tools. To think I am a female and I love tools. This to is a change in the generations. I would rather buy a new tool than go get my nails done, however I am still as much of a woman as any other.

Finally, many health concerns can come about by utilizing all these visual aids, it causes less connection from a person to another, not creating memories, lack of exercise, less brain activity, and finally problems with their eyes. So what do you think you can do to help change the next generation?

Night Terrors

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Night terrors for myself are simple defined as a man who tries to kill me. His face is blurry, no true features are created. He is always trying to get close and wanting to not just hurt me but kill me. Last night after many years I couldn’t move as I dreamed of this blurry figure. The side of his face and head pushes hard against mine. The more he presses the more pain I feel against my head as a strong migraine that is screaming with pain starts to come about. As I feel my head trying to explode, he is pushing hard with anger and distain. I feel pain in my neck and all I can feel now is his hot breath speaking on how he is going to kill me. I want to wake up, but he won’t let me go and all I can do is cry and beg for my life. I jump out of the dream with fear and a pounding headache. No, the fear rises, and I jump out of bed looking around in my closet, behind doors and under the bed. No, he is not here. This occurred for several years and without a reason it stopped but now he is back. Back with a vengeance letting me know he will never go away.

What causes these? These came about after two Army men tried to kill me in Tacoma, Washington. I will never forget the act, but I thought I would get through the PTSD.

Interesting how a trigger can set you off. I don’t even know what triggered me yesterday, how I thought I was going to get through this without much harm to my psyche. Didn’t realize I was going to live with this fear for the rest of my life. After counseling trying to stay away from what I thought were triggers, I realize it will never go away.

If you want to understand why you might have these terrors I can first tell you to find a counselor that can walk you through the trauma, second know that they might come back from time to time, but they are just that dreams. All I can say is breath through the horror, if you are at all religious pray that you will get through the dreams.

Moving on After Being Attacked

Being attacked can leave many scars, both physical and mental. Everyone deals with the aftermath in different ways. After being attacked and the perpetrators thinking they left me for dead, was just the start of my trauma. I don’t know how anyone can be in control again, however I try all the time. The pattern of what happened to me happens to men, women, and children all over the world. Race, sexual orientation, social economic status, and even in a group setting don’t matter when a person is attacked.

The real concern I have is what happens after the fact. For me I would check all the windows, doors, under the bed, in the closet, and so on. I was so worried that the two me would show up again. I began to have panic attacks, that moved into PTSD, anxiety, and depression. As the progression continued my mood continued to swing. I acted out in very negative ways and became self-destructive. How is it that some people can move on and some people fall apart?

I have many years later have found my way through a counselor, doctors, and allowing myself to open up to my family and friends. It will never leave me, it has made my senses heightened with my children, probably overprotective but I just never want my kids to be beaten the way I was. I would never forgive myself as a parent and more than likely want to kill the person who would try and hurt them.

I wonder if I will always carry these feelings, if I will always be scared, and if I will ever get over my fear and PTSD. On PsychologyToday.com Some of the triggers after an attack:

Replaying the Memory. Many people find that the mind returns over and over to the upsetting memory, almost as if on a loop.

Nightmares. While the actual experience probably felt like a nightmare, it’s common for real nightmares to haunt our dreams in the aftermath of a trauma.

Flashbacks. A flashback occurs when the trauma memory gets cued and makes it feel as if the trauma is happening all over again.

Fear and Anxiety. Perhaps the most common emotional reaction to a trauma is feeling fearful and anxious.

Anger. In addition to fear and anxiety, anger is a very common reaction to trauma. We might feel anger at the person or situation responsible for our trauma.

Sadness. We often will feel sad and cry after a highly traumatic event.

Guilt. If the trauma involved someone close to us being injured or killed, we may blame ourselves and feel guilty that we didn’t somehow prevent it.

Feeling Numb. Sometimes rather than feeling strong emotions, we feel shut down emotionally, as though we’re made of wood.

Trying Not to Think About the Event. By definition, a traumatic event is not a pleasant memory, so it makes sense that we would want to avoid thinking about it.

Avoiding Things Related to the Event. Sometimes we avoid people, places, or things related to our trauma because they trigger the painful memory.

Difficulty Trusting People. When we’ve been attacked by another person, it can be hard to know whom we can trust—especially if we were caught off guard.

Believing the World Is Extremely Dangerous. Immediately after a trauma, the mind is likely to see the world as very dangerous. Whereas we might have underestimated the danger in the world before the trauma.

Blaming Yourself for the Trauma. It’s common to feel guilty after something terrible happens to you, as though you’re to blame that it happened.

It’s easy to use the advantage of hindsight to see the “mistakes” we made. In reality we almost certainly overstate our own responsibility for the traumatic event, and as a result feel unnecessary guilt.

Thinking You Should Have Handled the Trauma Differently. So many trauma survivors I’ve treated have talked about how they “should have” had a different response to the trauma,

Seeing Yourself as Weak or Inadequate. It’s not uncommon after a trauma to start to see ourselves as being “less than” in some way.

Criticizing Yourself for Reactions to the Trauma. In addition to beating ourselves up for having experienced the trauma, we might also be upset with ourselves for being upset.

Feeling Constantly On Guard. When the nervous system has had a terrifying shock, it doesn’t immediately settle down.

Seeing Danger Everywhere. When your nervous system is highly attuned for danger, it’s going to be set to detect any possible threat, which probably means you’ll have a lot of false alarms.

Being Easily Startled. A nervous system temporarily stuck in the “high” setting is going to be easily startled by things like a slamming door.

Difficulty Sleeping. Sleep is a vulnerable state, and when the brain and body are revved up, we’re likely to have a hard time sleeping.

Loss of Interest in Sex.​ As with sleep, the brain may be inclined to avoid sexual activity following a trauma.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/think-act-be/201609/21-common-reactions-trauma

Cigna gives ways a person can support their natural resilience to help the healing process, even if a person can’t forget the pain, mental and physical, you can help work through some of the trauma a person sustains:

Allow your feelings. Don’t try to ignore or deny them. You may feel grief, anger, anxiety, exhaustion, or something else. You may just feel numb. These are all normal reactions.

Balance your thoughts. When feeling overwhelmed by tragic events, it’s easy to forget the good in the world.

Minimize your exposure to news media. Once you have the facts, it’s a good idea to limit watching replays of the events.

Focus on what you do have control over. The images we see, the stories we hear, and our own thoughts about what happened can increase our anxiety.

Turn to others for support. Being alone with your thoughts and emotions means there is no other voice in the conversation. Others offer different perspectives, while giving you a chance to talk about how you feel.

Tap into your compassion. Reaching out and supporting others can shift your mental and emotional focus.

Understand what is being done to protect your community. The more you know about what has happened, the more effective steps you can take to minimize your risk and increase your sense of safety.

Move from fear to awareness. Being constantly fearful is not helpful. It can limit awareness. Awareness – paying attention to your surroundings and noticing anything unusual about people and their behavior – is helpful.

Maintain a normal routine and lifestyle as much as possible. When an attack occurs, life can feel chaotic in many ways.

Feeling physically strong can help you feel emotionally strong. Make sure you get enough sleep to feel well rested. Eat a healthy diet. Exercise and being physically active can reduce stress. Avoid overuse of alcohol and/or substances.

Give yourself a break. It may be hard to focus and concentrate at times after a traumatic event. Your energy level may be low.

Try relaxation techniques such as deep breathing or meditation, when emotions run high. Even taking a short time-out to bring your thoughts to the here and now can help.

https://www.cigna.com/individuals-families/health-wellness/managing-distress-after-violence

Suicide Watch Is Always Needed

It can happen to anyone; happy, sad, medicated legally or illegally, or being bullied. Do you know what to look for? I remember the first time I was affected by suicide; I was a freshman and a boy in our class shot himself in his family’s barn. That was just the beginning and didn’t think I would ever be touched by suicide. As the years pass, I found myself touched through family, friends, co-workers, and celebrities. Why does this happen? What are people thinking when they try or commit suicide? For me, it was depression. I was able to pick up the phone and call my dad and then a friend. I realized I was lucky to make the decision to call my dad. So many others are not. We want to be mad at them, we cry and can’t wrap our heads around it. Some people leave notes and letters, others do it through drugs and end up overdosing, thinking drugs will make it better.

You can learn more about why people try and do commit suicide. Alex Lickerman with Psychology Today gives 6 reasons why:

They’re depressed. This is, without question, the most common reason people die by suicide. Severe depression is almost always accompanied by a pervasive sense of suffering as well as the belief that escape from it is hopeless. The pain of existence often becomes too much for severely depressed people to bear. The state of depression warps their thinking, allowing ideas like, “Everyone would all be better off without me” to make rational sense. They shouldn’t be blamed for falling prey to such distorted thoughts any more than a heart patient should be blamed for experiencing chest pain; it’s simply the nature of their disease. Because depression, as we all know, is almost always treatable, we should all seek to recognize its presence in our close friends and loved ones. Often, people suffer with it silently, planning suicide without anyone ever knowing. Despite making both parties uncomfortable, inquiring directly about suicidal thoughts, in my experience, almost always yields an honest response. If you suspect someone might be depressed, don’t allow your tendency to deny the possibility of suicidal ideation prevent you from asking about it.

2.They’re psychotic. Malevolent inner voices often command self-destruction for unintelligible reasons. Psychosis is much harder to mask than depression, and is arguably even more tragic. The worldwide incidence of schizophrenia is 1 percent and often strikes otherwise healthy, high-performing individuals, whose lives, though manageable with medication, are often derailed from their original promise. Schizophrenics are just as likely to talk freely about the voices commanding them to kill themselves as not, and also, in my experience, give honest answers about thoughts of suicide when asked directly. Psychosis, too, is treatable, and usually must be treated for a schizophrenic to be able to function at all. Untreated or poorly treated psychosis almost always requires hospital admission until the voices lose their commanding power.

3.They’re impulsive. Often related to drugs and alcohol, some people become maudlin and impulsively attempt to end their own lives. Once sobered and calmed, these people usually feel emphatically ashamed. The remorse is often genuine, but whether or not they’ll ever attempt suicide again is unpredictable. They may try it again the very next time they become drunk or high, or never again in their lifetime. Hospital admission is, therefore, not usually indicated. Substance abuse and the underlying reasons for it are generally a greater concern in these people and should be addressed as aggressively as possible.

4.They’re crying out for help, and don’t know how else to get it. These people don’t usually want to die but do want to alert those around them that something is seriously wrong. They often don’t believe they will die, frequently choosing methods they don’t think can kill them in order to call attention to their challenges, but they are sometimes tragically misinformed. For instance, a young teenage girl suffering genuine angst because she feels lonely or has gotten into a devastating fight with her parents, may swallow a bottle of Tylenol—not realizing that in high enough doses, Tylenol causes irreversible liver damage. I’ve watched more than one teenager die a horrible death in an ICU days after such an ingestion when remorse has already cured them of their desire to die and their true goal of alerting those close to them of their distress has been achieved.

5.They have a philosophical desire to die. The decision to die by suicide for some is based on a reasoned decision, often motivated by the presence of a painful terminal illness from which little to no hope of reprieve exists. These people aren’t depressed, psychotic, maudlin, or crying out for help. They’re trying to take control of their destiny and alleviate their own suffering, which usually can only be done in death. They often look at their choice to die by suicide as a way to shorten a dying that will happen regardless. In my personal view, if such people are evaluated by a qualified professional who can reliably exclude the other possibilities for why suicide is desired, these people should be allowed to die at their own hands.

6.They’ve made a mistake. This is a recent, tragic phenomenon in which typically young people flirt with oxygen deprivation for the high it brings and simply go too far. The only defense against this, it seems to me, is education. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/happiness-in-world/201004/the-six-reasons-people-attempt-suicide

A way we can help is with the “Out of Dark” suicide walks.  I have been a part of the suicide walk where people share their stories. The walk is healing because you meet so many people who understand what you are going through. Sharing stories that are sad and give hope to others.

The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention puts on the suicide walks through out the US. They believe that having the walks and donating monetarily will save lives and bring hope to those affected by suicide. The website will have information: https://afsp.donordrive.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=cms.home

Anytime someone is showing signs that they want to hurt themselves, reach out to a professional. We might feel we are imposing but I would rather impose than loose someone.

Dealing With a Stomach Virus With Autoimmune Disease

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The idea of a common cold or stomach virus makes me cringe. The reason being I have several areas that has created a mass issue with my autoimmune system.

Immune system disorders cause abnormally low activity or over activity of the immune system. In cases of immune system over activity, the body attacks and damages its own tissues (autoimmune diseases). Immune deficiency diseases decrease the body’s ability to fight invaders, causing vulnerability to infections.

I am always hiding from those at work who come in sick. It makes me crazy because 1 day for them is 2-5 days for me. When I got home of Friday, I felt weak and went to bed very early, hoping that I would feel better in the morning because I promised my grandson a movie and Chuck E Cheese after. Waking up Saturday I felt a tad bit worse with stomach cramps. I was worried that my Colitis was starting to act up. This is always an issue because at this point, I must know where all the restrooms are and how much pain I am going to have with my stomach.

Before I discuss the stomach virus, I would like to add that my autoimmune disease is combined with Colitis and a few other diseases: Rheumatoid Arthritis, Hypothyroidism, Severe Osteoporosis, and Heart disease.

Some other autoimmune diseases are as follows:  Systemic lupus erythematosus (lupus), Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), Crohn’s disease, Multiple sclerosis (MS), Type 1 diabetes mellitus, Guillain-Barre syndrome, Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, Psoriasis, Graves’ disease, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, Myasthenia gravis, and Vasculitis.

With these issues many people have issues with basic germs others think is just some sniffles they will go away. Unfortunately, it isn’t that simple. With my stomach that started on Friday by Sunday I was in the thralls of stomach issues that had me double over, constantly going to the restroom, and feeling like I was having a heart attack. I now know the symptoms and don’t pick up the phone, but they are overwhelming non the less. This lasted well into this morning and caused me to come home by noon.

The way I deal with my diseases is to try to take preemptive measures. There are times that I am not able to be proactive but reactive. Colitis is one of those reactive measures. Eating has changed for me I will not eat anything spicy or with acidic. As I sit here talking about these challenges, I am wishing the pain would subside.

If you have any autoimmune diseases know you are not alone, make sure you see your doctor to come up with the appropriate plan. Being aware of what you have is half of the battle, the other is to take care of yourself. Getting old can be a pain but it can also be great if we don’t let our body call all the shots!