Showing posts from November 4, 2018

Tips to Relieve Back Pain

The best defense against back pain from ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is controlling your disease with a daily treatment plan. It will usually include medications your doctor recommends. When the pain is worse than normal and you’re having a flare, your doctor may have you try other drugs.

But you can take steps on your own, besides meds, to ease pain and stiffness.

Ways to Get Started

Work with a physical therapist. Exercise is an important part of everyday treatment. When you strengthen the muscles that support your spine, you can boost your flexibility and lower pain.

It’s best to work with a qualified therapist. She can make sure your form is right.  When some exercises are done the wrong way, they can make you feel worse.

A trainer can keep you on the right track and motivated. In addition to strength training and stretching, your program might include exercising in water (hydrotherapy), posture training, and deep-breathing exercises.

Having a flare? Use heat or ice. A physical therapist…

Surprising Reasons Your Hair Is Falling Out

You’re on Certain MedsTake another look at the side effects of the drugs you’re taking -- hair loss may be on the list. Examples of such meds include blood thinners, acne medications high in vitamin A, anabolic steroids, or medications for arthritis, depression, gout, heart problems, or high blood pressure. Swipe to advance 2/15 You Just Had a BabyWhen you’re pregnant, your hormones keep your hair from falling out as often as it normally does. That makes it seem thicker and more luscious. After you give birth, you lose the extra hair you’ve been hanging onto as your hormones shift again. Everything should balance out about 3 to 6 months later. Swipe to advance 3/15 You Don’t Have Enough IronIron helps keep your hair healthy. When levels drop, so can your hair. You’ll likely have other clues that low iron is to blame for your hair loss, like brittle nails, yellow or pale skin, shortness of breath, weakness, and a fast heartbeat. Swipe to advance 4/15 You’re StressedSometimes, large doses of str…

Technology of the Future Should Care for Our Well-Being

As technology permeates our lives, it should be designed to boost our kindness, empathy, and happiness.

By Richard J. Davidson

The other day while I was buying lunch at our local food coop, the check-out person smiled at me and wished me a good afternoon. I did the same, and we shared a beautiful moment of genuine social connection.

As a neuroscientist who has spent the past 30-plus years looking at human emotion and the brain, I have studied the effects of positive and negative experiences. I’ve learned that our brains are in many ways like the muscles in our bodies, capable of developing strength at core skills or losing that strength if we don’t exercise enough.

I’ve discovered that we can learn from the wisdom of ancient traditions to develop the skills to be more empathic and compassionate towards others, using techniques like mindfulness training and meditation. These skills can then have a positive impact on the numerous interactions we have every day—moments like that simple inter…

Letters from Max: A Book of Friendship

"In 2012, Sarah Ruhl was a distinguished author and playwright, twice a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize; Max Ritvo was an exuberant, opinionated, and highly gifted poet in remission from pediatric cancer. Studded with poems and songs, their correspondence is a deeply moving portrait of a friendship, and a shimmering exploration of love, art, mortality, and joy." What follows is an excerpt from 'Letters from Max'.

Proust On Memory and Madeleines

"But when from a long-distant past nothing subsists, after the people are dead, after the things are broken and scattered, taste and smell alone, more fragile but more enduring, more immaterial, more persistent, more faithful, remain poised a long time, like souls, remembering, waiting, hoping, amid the ruins of all the rest; and bear unflinchingly, in the tiny and almost impalpable drop of their essence, the vast structure of recollection." In this celebrated literary exploration of our evocative, mysterious relationship to memory, Marcel Proust vividly describes the torrent of experience unleashed by one 'memorable' bite of a madeleine, and his attempt at decoding the process.

The Gift of Threshold Moments

Like moments of joy, awe, or bliss, threshold moments are experiences to notice, appreciate, and treasure ". . . where sound trails off into silence, time disappears into timelessness, and the known world is engulfed by the great mystery." It is not the full moments sometimes but the empty ones that can touch us deeply and profoundly. The gaps rather than the events that give us a glimpse of great mystery. The transitions, shifts, or pauses rather than the activities themselves that make us realize how much we don't know and cannot comprehend. In this beautiful and profound essay, Sam Keen shines a spotlight on threshold moments, celebrating and elevating them, like jewels of wisdom.

What’s Driving Political Violence in America?

Hate crimes are rising, and so is support for political violence. New research explores why—and what we can do to stop it.

By Zaid Jilani, Jeremy Adam Smith

Last month, Americans saw a bloody spike in politically motivated violence. An anti-Semite killed eleven people at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh. A vocal racist shot down two random African Americans at a Kentucky supermarket, after failing to break into a black church. A man in Florida was caught mailing pipe bombs to politicians, journalists, and celebrity critics of the president.

While political terrorism is still quite rare in the United States, there’s no question that these seemingly isolated acts are part of a larger pattern. Against a backdrop of rising political and social polarization, the Anti-Defamation League has reported a 57 percent increase in anti-Semitic incidents since the 2016 election. Studies of FBI data show that hate crimes—violence against people or property because of group membership—have risen …

Unity and the Power of Love

"Unity holds the essential vision that we are one living, interconnected ecosystem -- a living Earth that supports and nourishes all of its inhabitants. If we acknowledge and honor this simple reality, we can begin to participate in the vital work of healing our fractured and divisive world and embrace a consciousness of oneness that is our human heritage. This is the opportunity that is being offered to us, even as its dark twin is constellating the dynamics of nationalism, tribalism, isolationism, and all the other regressive forces that express 'me' rather than 'we.'" Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee shares more in this thoughtful essay.

How to Inspire Students to Become Better Citizens

Educators can help boost civic engagement among young people

By Amy L. Eva

The political turmoil of the last few years has many of us worried about the future of our country and our globe. The polarization, negativity, and violence make us wonder where this all came from and whether we could have done something to prevent it.

But here’s the good news: Thanks to new trends in education, the next generation may be better equipped than we are. Research suggests that the growing emphasis on social-emotional (SEL) skills in schools can lay the foundation for more active civic engagement among our youth.

How do we inspire more thoughtful, respectful, and compassionate student citizens in our schools? As educators, we have the opportunity to think more strategically about how we teach democratic processes and the skills that democracy requires. If we value a thriving society, we can do our part to empower young citizens who care about creating a better future for everyone.

Lessons for a better wo…

Losing His Voice Led Him to Helping Others Strengthen Theirs

"There are lots of ways to lose your voice in this world." These words were spoken by Kevin Hancock, an award-winning author, public speaker, and CEO of Hancock Lumber, one of Americas oldest and most prestigious family businesses. In 2010, Kevin developed a voice disorder called spasmodic dysphonia. As his speaking voice became quiet, the voice of his soul became louder. This new voice urged him to connect with the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, where he became intimately acquainted with the Native American inhabitants. What happened next, was a deep relationship with a community silenced by injustice. This caused Kevin to evolve a new voice that changed his life and his style of leadership forever. "Strengthen the voices of others; practice restraint; learn the ways of shared leadership through nature; take care of your employees; work should enhance the evolution of the soul." Kevin shares these principles and more in this interview.


Short of Breath? Top Reasons Why

AsthmaYour airways suddenly narrow and swell. You may struggle for air, cough up mucus, or hear whistling when you breathe. It’s not clear why this happens to some people, but lots of things could trigger an attack, including pollen, dust, smoke, exercise, freezing air, a cold, and stress. Your doctor can help you figure out what causes yours. They might prescribe medication for you to inhale during an attack to help you breathe more easily. Swipe to advance 2/15 AllergiesPollen, dust, pet dander, and other things you breathe in can cause allergies. Sometimes the allergic reaction causes asthma. But it’s not always something in the air. It could start with something you touch, or some food you eat. Talk with your doctor about how best to manage your asthma and allergies. Make sure to check in when your symptoms change, too. Swipe to advance 3/15 AnxietyYou may breathe harder when you’re scared or worried. It’s usually not a big deal, but it can be serious if you already have lung problems like …