Understanding Bunions

One of the primary reasons why women like to accessorize is because they want to look their best. Most women think that accessories whether worn in the head, neck, hands or in other parts of the body can greatly enhance their appearance. That is one reason why most of my clients are women.

While most women put much attention on looking good, some put very little attention on things that are less conspicuous, such as those involving the toes. Certain conditions can affect the toes, causing pain and utmost discomfort if not treated. One of them is bunions. Bunions can affect men but are more common among women. Yet, bunions are one of the least understood conditions among many.

What is a bunion?

A bunion is a bony lump that forms at the base of any toe, occurring more frequently in the big and little toe. If it affects the little toe, it is termed as tailors bunion. It can develop as a result of genetic defects in the foot structure or of wearing too tight, poorly fitted or high heeled shoes. Certain jobs that cause much stress on the foot such as those that entail several hours of standing may also contribute to bunions.

What causes bunions?

There are various factors that can cause bunions depending on what type it is. Bunions generally develop when the toes sustain more stress than normal during regular activities. Certain occupations can also be a contributing factor such as the case of ballet dancer where the feet sustain undue stress during practice and performance.

What are the types of bunion?

  • Acute Bunions – This type of bunion forms because of bursitis. Bursitis occurs when there is inflammation or irritation in the fluid-filled sacs that are responsible for cushioning the joints. Constant inflammation then leads to hardening of the skin near the affected toes. In the long run, it will solidify into a bony mass which is not the bunion. Acute bunions can be painful. You can alleviate the pain by wearing the right size of shoes with extra room in the toes or by wearing shoe inserts. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to correct the problem.


  • Hallux Valgus – This type is a chronic but more often painless abnormality in the foot involving permanent bone inflexibility. Hallux Valgus will not only strain or create an abnormal bulge on the affected toe, but it will also widen of the base of the foot. It may also interfere with a person’s normal functions like when standing or walking. Wearing ill-fitting shoes and abnormality in the foot structure are the most common causes of this bunion. To treat this problem, most doctors recommend surgery by correcting the misaligned bones.

What are the symptoms of bunions?

Some people are not aware that they already have bunions. Symptoms include having a firm bump at the base of the big or little toes, swelling or redness on the affected joint and restricted motion of the affected toe.

You may be able to neglect your bunion at its earlier stages. But the more you do nothing about it, the more it will linger and the more you will suffer from its symptoms. It is best to consult your doctor on the proper way to treat it.

Anxiety Disorder: What You Need To Know and Understand

Do you often feel fearful, worried or nervous for no reason? If you do, you may be suffering from an anxiety disorder that affects more than 18 percent of the entire population of the United States. I personally know of some people who have manifested these symptoms, though I am not sure if they were already diagnosed with their condition.

It is normal to be anxious for a reason. I normally feel anxious whenever I encounter something new or challenging, whether it is related to work, people or places. But there is an invisible line between what is normal and what can be considered as an anxiety disorder. If there is justification to the worry or fear, it is considered to be normal. However, if the worry or fear is due to unknown reasons and these symptoms already interfere with the person’s normal functions or ability to sleep, it may be already a sign of a disorder. It can also be a disorder when the reaction is beyond what is generally accepted under a particular situation.

Anxiety disorder is a collective term for disorders with symptoms that include unjustifiable fear, nervousness, worrying and apprehension. In some cases, the sufferer also experiences anxiety chest pain among other symptoms.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

GAD is anxiety disorder characterized by long-lasting and excessive worrying about non-specific objects, events and situations such as those that involve work or school, family, money and health. Generally, sufferers are unable to identify the specific cause of their worry and they have trouble controlling such emotion to the point that it already affects their daily lives.

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

This type of anxiety disorder causes a person to have intrusive, repetitive and distressing thoughts or actions. Most notable symptom of this disorder is when a person obsessively cleans his or her hands or other personal items or constantly checks on light switches or locks.

Panic Disorder

A person who experiences a sudden or intense terror or apprehension resulting to confusion, shaking, nausea, dizziness, and breathing difficulty may be suffering from a panic anxiety disorder. Panic attacks may be spontaneous or they may be a result of prolonged stress or a frightening experience. Furthermore, sufferers normally expect future panic attacks, causing them to make drastic changes in behavior to avoid the attacks.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Those involved in military service are more prone to PTSD. It is also common among those who were victims of serious accidents or crimes, including hostage situations and rape. PTSD sufferers often experience flashbacks of past events, causing them to make behavioral changes.

Social Anxiety Disorder

This type of anxiety disorder is characterized by fear of being embarrassed or judged negatively by the public. Because of this disorder, some people avoid being in a public situation and in some cases, contact with new people, which in turn causes them to live an abnormal life.

Separation Anxiety Disorder

Many people feel secure or safe when they are with someone or they are in a certain place. This is just normal. What is abnormal is when a person displays an inappropriately high level of anxiety when separated from things that give them security and safety.

Anxiety disorders can be controlled by supplements for anxiety and various treatment options. However, what most sufferers need most is our understanding. We can only understand them if we have enough knowledge about this kind of disorder. Reading this article as well as other online resources can help you gain more knowledge and understanding about anxiety disorders among some people.


Get to Know Your Acne Grade

Aside from accessories, most if not all girls also pay much attention to their looks. That is why they spend much time in the mirror grooming or applying makeup just to look their best. However, no matter how much effort put into it, if you have blemishes especially on the face, it can affect your looks in a negative way.

One of the most common blemishes or imperfections that many women and even men suffer from is acne. Acne is a serious skin problem because it not only leaves behind skin blemish, but it can also cause pain and permanent damage to the skin if neglected. Acne comes in different grades and knowing what these grades are is a vital step in selecting the appropriate treatment.

Grade I

This is the mildest form of acne. Grade I is characterized by having small pimples that appear in small numbers. Although there is no inflammation, blackheads are notable and can sometimes appear in large numbers. Milia, which are small or yellowish bumps on the skin, may also be present. This condition is more common among those who are in their early adolescence stage and it normally affects the forehead and nose areas.

Grade 1 acne is the easiest to treat at home using over-the-counter products with salicylic acid. However, if you are allergic to salicylic acid, alternative home remedies are also available including lemon, honey and garlic among others. Grade I acne may easily progress to Grade II if not treated immediately.

Grade II

Considered to be moderate acne, Grade II is also a more manageable condition that can be treated at home. Symptoms include the appearance of blackheads and milia in large numbers and the appearance of papules and pustules. There would also be slight inflammation present and breakout activities would become more obvious. The most common parts of the body affected by Grade II acne are the forehead and nose, as well as other parts of the face. Acne growth and breakout may also start in the shoulders, chest and on the back especially among males. For women, breakout normally affects the chin, cheeks and jaw line, and it normally occurs before or during the menstrual period.

Over-the-counter treatment for Grade II acne includes products with salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide lotion to help kill the bacteria that cause the inflammation. However, when home treatment does not show improvement after several weeks, you should see a dermatologist.

Grade III

Grade III acne is already considered a severe condition. Its main difference from Grade II acne is that there is more inflammation present in this grade. The affected area becomes reddish and inflamed. Papules and pustules are also in larger numbers and nodules are also present. This can affect the chest, neck, shoulder, back and the face. If left untreated, infection and scarring are possible.

Grade II acne can be treated by antibiotics and systemic therapies that are only available by prescription. Treatment should also be under the supervision of a dermatologist.

Grade IV

Considered as the most serious acne, this grade is more often referred to as cystic acne. In this case, numerous nodules, papules and pustules are notable aside from the cysts. Inflammation and breakouts are also severe. Grade IV acne can be painful and it may affect various parts of the body including the entire back, shoulders, chest and upper arms. Sufferers normally experience infection and scarring.

Grade IV acne can only be treated by a dermatologist as it requires systemic medications apart from topical treatments.

An acne-free skin is a beautiful skin. But even if you have acne, whether it be nodular acne on your back, scalp acne or acne on your face, there is still hope of eliminating it. The key is to treat it as early as possible to prevent it from becoming Grade IV acne.

Pictus Catfish: Aquarium Fish Profile

Many people, including myself would like to have their own pet at home. While dogs and cats are the most popular pets, some prefer other types such as fishes, rabbit, hedgehog and others. If given a chance, I would also want to have my own pet, a dog maybe.

As I talked with some of my friends who have pets, one of the common issues they have the most common pets such as dogs and cats is that these animals require time to care or. For instance, if you have a dog, it could take time to feed, play and walk your dog for daily exercises. That is why some people prefer other less-demanding animals such as fishes. One of the commonly sought-after aquarium fishes by many hobbyists is the pictus catfishishes.

General Appearance and Characteristics

A pictus catfish is very attractive fish in the aquarium. It is characterized by its elongated body which can be white, silver or black in color. Just like other catfish species, its dorsal fin is also large and normally has a black tip. It has oval spots all over its body and fins that are very noticeable. In fact, these spots are commonly the first thing that people notice aside from its long whiskers. The long whiskers of these fishes which in reality are called barbels are not only attractive but are also beneficial to the fish. They have an acute sense of smell and are used for navigating and finding foods in muddy and dark waters. This is what makes pictus catfishes a good scavenger that will consume any food at the bottom of the tank.


If you like to own or already own a pictus, one of the important things to consider is its diet. While it can scavenge for leftover foods, you should not rely on these scraps for its food. They are carnivorous fishes and they prefer to eat meat. That is why if you like to catch these fishes in their natural habitat, you should use meaty catfish bait such as worms and bloodworms. In the tank, you could also feed them with shrimp pellets. If they are underfed and they are mixed with smaller fishes, they may start eating small fishes in its tank. Although they are not generally an aggressive feeder, they have the tendency to feed on small fishes when hungry.

As a Tank Mate

Because they are not an aggressive species of fish, pictus catfishes make a peaceful tank mate for a wide range of fishes. Many hobbyists combine them with cichlids, oscars, eels, loaches and tank sharks like iridescent sharks. Just make sure that when combining them with other fishes, you do not mix them with small fishes that can fit into their mouth.

Precaution when Handling

Pictus catfishes have sharp fins which may occasionally hurt other fishes if those fishes try to attack them. Their fins may also injure you when you try to handle them. It is important to note the dorsal and pectoral fins of pictus catfishes contain poison that may not kill you but may cause the injury to eventually swell. For this reason, avoid handling a pictus.

What You Need to Know About Bronchitis

Have you ever experienced having a persistent cough that produces mucus? All of us may have experienced this at one point in our life, including me. Oftentimes, I just don’t put much attention to it because it normally goes away after several days. However, there are cases when this kind of coughing can linger for weeks. And when that happens, it can be an indication of a more serious health problem such as bronchitis.

Bronchitis is a condition that affects the bronchial tubes. In this case, the mucus membrane in the tubes which carry air to the lungs becomes inflamed. As the membrane swells and becomes thicker, the passage to the lungs becomes constricted. Eventually, the passage could shut-off, resulting to coughing accompanied by breathlessness and phlegm. It may also come with other symptoms such as mucus, wheezing sound, chest pain, shortness of breath and fever.

While most of the reported cases of bronchitis are viral in origin, bacteria may also be the culprit. The resulting bronchitis may either be acute which could last for up to three weeks, or chronic which could last for up to two years.

Acute bronchitis is normally caused by the same virus that causes colds and flu. The virus can spread through the air when a person with bronchitis coughs or when there is physical contact. Aside from the virus, there are also risk factors associated with acute bronchitis. They include exposure to second-hand tobacco smoke, fumes, dust, air pollution and vapors. If you are exposed to any of them, you have an increased risk of developing bronchitis. Although acute bronchitis is not a very serious condition, you still need to see your doctor if you are experiencing its symptoms so that he or she may rule out other serious conditions with the same symptoms.

You are lucky if you only have acute bronchitis because chronic bronchitis is a long-term condition that needs medical care. One of the main factors that cause this condition is smoking, although it can also be caused by viral or bacterial infection. One bad news to those who suffer this condition is that there is only a slight chance of complete recovery despite treatment.

Most people would rely on medical treatment to treat or alleviate their symptoms of bronchitis. But there are also bronchitis remedies that you can easily do at home. These include avoiding smoking and drinking plenty of water, which are effective for treating acute bronchitis. Your doctor may also prescribe an expectorant so you could cough up easily in case you have mucus. But for the case of chronic bronchitis, supplemental oxygen and oral steroids for reducing inflammation may be necessary. One important consideration to note is that regardless of what type of bronchitis you have, you must never take any over-the-counter cough medication unless your doctor prescribes it.

We should always be watchful of our health. A simple cough which we are neglecting may already be a sign of a more serious condition. If you have been coughing for several days now, it would be good to see your doctor immediately.

Serious Diseases on Cats

Who among you love cats? I will raise my hand to that question as I also love cats. Unfortunately, not all people have passion for cats. In fact, the Humane Society of the United States estimates that there are about 70 million cats roaming in the country. And these stray cats are often the carrier of dangerous feline diseases.

I mentioned this information in connection with keeping your cats healthy. Keeping your cat indoor is one way to help your cat avoid contracting some of the serious diseases that can possibly be spread by stray cats.

Feline Leukemia Virus

Feline leukemia is a disease that can be spread through urine, saliva or nose discharges. Indoor cats normally get this disease by sharing of foods or water bowls, living together or bites of infected cat. Mother cats can also pass this disease to their kittens. In some cats, symptoms immediately manifest themselves after contracting the virus, while in some cats, it could take several weeks. Contracting this virus could lead to several serious conditions including anemia, infertility, skin infection, bladder infection, respiratory tract infection and cancer.

There is no cure for feline leukemia but it can be prevented by restricting your cat indoors and avoiding exposure with other cats.

Although there is no cure for feline leukemia, the disease is easily preventable. You can help prevent feline leukemia by keeping cats indoors, restricting exposure to other cats, maintaining a clean living environment, and ensuring that your cat is vaccinated. According to the Merck Veterinary Manual, veterinarians rarely see cases of feline leukemia among vaccinated cat populations.

Renal failure

Among older cats, renal failure is a leading cause of death. Risk factors for this disease include genetics, age and environmental factors. Two types of renal failure affect cat. Acute renal failure is when the kidney automatically stops functioning, while in chronic renal failure, the deterioration of the kidney is progressive.

A number of symptoms are obvious when a cat suffers from renal failure. These include vomiting, excessive urination, nausea, increased thirst, a cracking or grinding sound in the jaw, constipation and dehydration.

A number of symptoms can show up as a result of kidney disease, including constipation, excessive urination, nausea, increased thirst, a grinding or cracking sound in the jaw, vomiting, dehydration, loss of appetite, halitosis, weight loss, and lethargy. If your cat starts to manifest these symptoms, bring your pet to the veterinarian so that diagnosis and immediate treatment can be started. Treatment includes changing your cat’s diet, medication and hydration therapy.


Pancreatitis in cats is a condition when the pancreas becomes inflamed, causing the digestive enzymes to escape and cause damage to the pancreas itself and the liver. It is a serious health problem because it could lead to other complications such as diabetes, hepatic lipidosis and others. Cats suffering from this condition may not be acting as they normally do. They may also experience abdominal pain and vomiting.


Tapeworms, hookworms and roundworms in cats are pretty common. Symptoms include pot-belly, weight loss, poor coat and vomiting. Worms can easily be treated, but if neglected, they could lead to serious complications.

If you have a pet cat, you ought to know what these serious diseases are so that you will be able to take precautionary measures to help your cat avoid them or to perform certain actions if it starts to manifest those symptoms.

When to See Your Doctor for a Tingling Feet

Have you ever felt those pins and needles in your feet after sitting for too long or after crossing your legs? I frequently experience this as I tend to sit for long hours when working on my creations. Normally, the tingling sensation will just go away after a few minutes of slowly moving the feet. This kind of condition is just normal and should not cause you any worries.

However, there are cases of tingling feet which do not go away immediately. This kind of condition is more serious as it could be indicative of an underlying ailment. Just like having a strained or sprained foot, any tingling in the feet that has become more than the normal deserves a doctor’s attention.

Among the serious health conditions that send a tingling sensation in the feet are peripheral neuropathy or nerve damage. It is estimated that there are about 20 million Americans suffering from some type of peripheral neuropathy who also suffer from persistent tingling in their feet. The tingling normally occurs daily for no reason, like even if they are not crossing their legs or sitting down for long periods.

But how would you know that the tingling is already serious and medical attention is needed? It is important to know why or we will think that every case of tingling sensation is just normal.

An abnormal tingling sensation is normally accompanied by other symptoms aside from the pins and needles effect. These symptoms include:

  • itching
  • pain
  • numbness
  • dizziness
  • muscle spasms
  • changes in vision
  • difficulty in walking
  • weakness
  • loss of consciousness
  • confusion
  • rashes
  • loss of bladder control
  • loss of bowel control

There are a variety of underlying conditions that may cause these other symptoms. Aside from peripheral neuropathy, your doctor may also rule out nerve dysfunction or entrapment, poor blood circulation, systemic diseases such as multiple sclerosis and hypothyroidism, injury to the nerve, vitamin deficiency, and hormonal imbalance. In some cases, the occurrence may be a sign of infections like shingles, autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and lupus, ruptured disc in the spine, diabetes, and stroke. In rare cases, it may also be a sign of Raynaud’s phenomenon and Tarsal tunnel syndrome. Additionally, the tingling may also be a side effect of certain medications you are taking, or an indication that you have been exposed to toxic chemicals. Alcoholism and vitamin deficiency could also bring about the tingling sensation.

Persisting tingling accompanied by other symptoms listed above should never be ignored. And it is important that your doctor is able to diagnose your underlying condition at the earliest time possible so that treatment could also be immediately started. Many of these underlying health conditions are very serious such that early detection and treatment are critical to the life of the patient.

While many of us experience tingling in the feet, that sensation may or may not be normal. If you notice other accompanying symptoms as listed here, see your doctor as soon as possible.

When to See Your Doctor for Back Pain

Oftentimes, I experience back pain when I have to spend hours working on a complex hair piece. I put much attention to detail and that explains why it normally takes me many hours just to finish one piece. And I know that I am not the only one who suffers from back pain. Many people also suffer from this problem from time to time as a result of their work or daily activities.

Back pain is normal especially if you just went through a strenuous day of activity. Depending on how severe the pain is, it might just go away after several hours or days. The pain could also be alleviated with a massage, pain reliever, rest and exercise. However, your back pain may also not be what you think it is. And when that happens, you need to see your doctor right away.

Regardless of the type of back pain you are experiencing such as a right side back pain, lower left back pain, or upper back pain, there are red flags that should alarm you that your condition is something serious and needs your doctor’s attention.


If you have a persistent back pain accompanied with fever, it may be a sign of a systemic problem. Your doctor might rule out infection. If you are diagnosed with infection, you may be prescribed to take antibiotics. Aside from that, your doctor may also recommend resting for several days until the pain alleviates.

Numbness or Tingling

Back pain accompanied by numbness or a tingling sensation in the legs, arms, groin area, genital area, thigh and buttocks could be a sign that you are suffering from nerve irritation or damage. It can be a case of spinal stenosis or a herniated disk which, if left untreated, may cause permanent disabilities.


If you recently fell from a ladder or had a car accident followed by back pain, you want your doctor to check what is actually causing the pain. It is possible that the pain is a result of a fractured back. Your doctor may recommend that you take an X-ray for proper diagnosis.

Loss of Bladder or Bowel Control

Back pain accompanied by any of these symptoms could be indicative of a rare disorder called cauda equina syndrome. This is normally a result of having spina stenosis, trauma in the spine, or herniated disk. Additional symptoms include weakness or numbness in the legs. Cauda equina is a condition that requires medical attention at the soonest time possible.

Family history of suppressed immune system, osteoporosis or cancer

Family history of these diseases can make your doctor rule out that your back pain is caused by the same condition.

Night Pain

Back pain that occurs at night should not be ignored as it could be a sign of sprain, disc degeneration, tumor or even cancer. Your doctor may request that you to have a blood test or MRI to help diagnose your condition.

If you think that these are all the red flags for back pain, they are not. I have sources that also list down unexplained weight loss, pain that lingers for more than four weeks, advanced age, and use of IV drugs as other red flags. If you have any of these red flags, see your doctor immediately because early treatment may be able to cure the problem.

Different Causes and Treatment for Itchy Armpits

When I design and make jewelries, focus and tireless arms are very important. A pain in right arm or the left arm can render me unproductive in what I do. This is especially true with many artists like me who work with their hands and arms.

Aside from pain in the arm, another common problem that can render our arms less productive is itchy armpits. The armpits may not be part of the arms but since they are connected, whatever pain or itchiness there is in this part can also affect the usefulness of our arms.

Having an itchy armpit can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. At times, you cannot resist scratching it even in front of other people. If your armpit is itchy, it can be caused by several factors. Its treatment largely depends on the cause. Knowing the cause can help you deal with this problem if you know the possible causes and treatments for itchiness in the armpit.
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What Causes Metallic Taste in Mouth

Have you ever experienced having a metal taste in mouth? I have experienced this several times in the past after taking certain medications. But for some people, a metal or salty taste in mouth also implicates their health condition. Since it is common for many of us to have this kind of taste in our mouths, it would be good to know what really causes it and if there are some reasons for us to be alarmed if we experience it.

One of the most common reasons why a person has a metal taste is Dysgeusia. Dysgeusia is a condition wherein a person would feel like having eaten loose coins instead of what he really ate for a meal. There are several explanations why a person may have this condition.
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