Everything You Need to Know about Cat Allergy

 

You know that pets are adorable and seem harmless just by looking but sometimes, they carry something that is invisible which can affect how you live your life. Yes, pets can be life threatening sometimes but thankfully most cases here in Singapore are mild. There is such thing as pet allergies and it is time that you should know everything you can about it.

Allergy is a condition where the body’s immune system is hypersensitive to some allergens found in the environment. There are different types including pet allergy. If in this case you have a cat allergy, you have to know its symptoms, diagnosis and allergy management.

  • Symptoms: The symptoms can be mild to severe depending on your sensitivity. If you are highly sensitive to cat allergens, symptoms will develop promptly and seriously from breathing difficulties to rashes. For less sensitive to cat allergens, the symptoms will develop few minutes or hours from contact. Symptoms include skin rashes, itchy eyes, watery eyes, sneezing, runny nose, coughing, shortness of breath, chest tightness and facial pain due to nasal congestion.

 

  • Diagnosis: To be sure, you can always look for an allergist and have them confirm that you indeed have a cat allergy. They will only do simple and painless test on you to really know. They will do skin-pricking test. In this test, a cat allergen will be introduced unto your skin and see for any reaction. It is always a good idea to be tested.

  • Allergy management: The simplest yet painful answer to allergy management is to totally remove the cats inside the premises of the house. If you find it hard to let go of your beloved pet, you should at least let them stay outdoors or else, lock your room so they will not enter. Avoid hugging or kissing your cat and always wash your hands after with soap. You can also choose to install high efficiency filters as it can help eliminate the allergens in the air. Do not forget to give the cat a bath at least once,

 

You just think that pets are only found inside the house but sometimes, you can get allergies just by going to school or work. The thing is, you do not see any allergies and there is no allergen warning issued before you pass or went to a specific place. The best thing to do is be vigilant and make sure that you bring your medicines or whatever tricks you have learned to ease the symptoms.

Common Allergy Misconceptions and the Truths Behind Them

 

Almost all people here in Singapore have specific allergy condition – some just do not know it yet. When you hear allergy, it refers to the hypersensitivity of your immune system. This hypersensitivity will cause little to no problem. There are different kinds of allergy from food allergies, allergic rhinitis, drug allergies, eye allergies and many more.

Now that you know the different types of allergy, it is time that you know its causes. There are different causes of allergy and then suddenly you came across some myth busters so it dawned on you common allergy misconceptions. Many of allergy problems are not resolved because of some misconceptions. It is imperative that you know facts about common allergy.

Misconception 1: Short-furred pets do not bring allergy

Sometimes you hear that kids have this fur allergy. You begin to believe that pets with long furs can cause allergy so instead, you choose pets with shorter fur. Fact: regardless of the fur of your pet, it can cause allergy because it has something to do with their dander, body proteins (like saliva and urine) and their skin.

Misconception 2: Only vegetation nearby can cause allergies

Some people think that a specific plant in their yard is causing the seasonal allergies so the solution is to cut down that plant or tree. Few days after, you still experience allergies. Fact: no matter how you cut down a plant, pollens can travel thousands of miles through wind and currents. So, do not cut down that plant or tree, instead when you do outdoor activities, make sure to do it in the evening or early morning – when winds are not that strong.

Misconception 3: If you feel bloated after eating bread, you have celiac disease

Celiac disease is not that common. It refers to a gluten allergy. When you have this disease, you will suffer from nausea and diarrhoea. Many people think that they have this disease. Fact: it is the inability of the digestive system to break down carbohydrates found in wheat but not an allergic reaction; the symptoms include joint pain, headaches and bloating.

Misconception 3: It is not safe to take flu shots if you have egg allergy

Many mothers believe that the child’s intolerance to egg can have an effect on flu vaccine. Fact:  the egg has this protein that can have little to no effect on flu vaccine. Vaccines these days are egg-free if you are really serious about egg-allergy. Tell your doctor about this. You can even request for skin test before taking the vaccine.

Long-Term Side Effects of Cancer Treatment

The day that a cancer patient finishes his or her treatment, he or she starts a new chapter. Some cancer survivors leave cancer behind and continue with their lives with only minimal health problems, while others might discreetly have ongoing health challenges, which could be due to the treatment’s long-term effects.

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A long-term effect is a side effect that arises months or years after the cancer treatment, and any patient who has received treatment could be at risk of developing these side effects.

Types of After Effects

After-Surgery Problems

When any part of the body is removed, this part’s function(s) is also removed, which may cause imbalance to the rest of the body. Here are some of the most common long-term effects of a cancer surgery.

• For survivors of Hodgkin lymphoma, especially those who had their spleens removed: These survivors have higher risk of developing serious infections because of the eradication of spleen’s role in the immune system.

• For people who survived cancers of the soft tissue and bone: They may experience psychological and physical effects from losing parts of their limb and may feel occasional pain in the area of the limb that was removed. For these people who found a good oncologist in Singapore to ease these side effects, there are rehabilitation programmes that can help cope with the physical effects of the surgery.

• For people who had their lymph nodes removed or had radiation therapy to their lymph nodes: They may develop lymphedema, a build-up of lymph fluid that causes pain and swelling. Lymph nodes are essential to the immune system as they help fight infection.

• For people who had their lymph nodes in the abdomen or in the pelvis removed: They may face infertility problems in the future. Learn more about how you can preserve fertility after surgery by talking to a professional oncologist Singapore.

Heart Problems

Both radiation therapy and chemotherapy to the chest can cause heart problems in the future, especially to people who had treatment for Hodgkin lymphoma as a child, those who had higher doses of chemotherapy, and those who were treated with doxorubicin, trastuzumab, daunorubicin, epirubicin or cyclophophamide. Common heart problems that these survivors may experience are the following:

• Coronary Artery Disease – This heart problem is more common on those people who received high dosage of radiation therapy to the chest. Symptoms to look out for are shortness of breath and chest pain.

• Congestive Heart Failure – This is a condition wherein heart muscles weaken. People with this condition may experience swollen hands or feet, dizziness and shortness of breath.

• Arrhythmia – This heart condition is characterized by irregular heartbeat. People with such condition usually experience chest pain, shortness of breath and light-headedness.

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Endocrine System Problems

Certain types of cancer treatments can affect the mechanism of the endocrine system, including the glands and organs responsible for producing hormones and eggs or sperm.

For instance, oophorectomy (surgical removal of the ovaries), hormone therapy, chemotherapy and radiation therapy in the pelvic area can cause menopause. The symptoms of cancer-related menopause could be considerably worse than the symptoms of natural menopause. Likewise, men with prostate cancer who are treated with hormone therapy or have their testicles surgically removed may experience complications similar to menopause-related cancer.

Hypertension

This side effect can occur along with congestive heart failure or could also be a separate side effect. If a patient has hypertension, it’s important to let the Singapore oncologist consultants know so they can take the health condition into consideration when planning for a cancer treatment. A more serious case is when one’s blood pressure rapidly rises, which is called accelerated hypertension. Because this health problem can cause major damage to any organ, it’s critical to undergo maintenance treatment even after cancer.

Bone and Joint Problems

Steroid medications, hormonal therapy, and chemotherapy can cause osteoporosis in the long-run, and cancer survivors who are not physically active have greater risk of developing this complication. A cancer survivor can lower the risk of osteoporosis by eating calcium rich foods, becoming physically active, avoiding tobacco products, and limiting alcohol intake.

Attention, Memory, and Learning Problems

High dosage of chemotherapy and radiation therapy can take a toll on the brain for both children and adults. People who received such treatments may experience cognitive problem in the future. Make sure to discuss this with an oncologist Singapore to find ways to avoid these effects.

Digestion Problems

Radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and surgeries can affect a person’s digestive mechanism. In addition, radiation therapy or surgery done in the abdominal area can cause tissue scarring, intestinal problems, and long-term pain that may affect the body’s digestive ability. Also, some cancer survivors experience chronic diarrhea, which reduces the body’s natural ability to digest and absorb nutrients.

Secondary Cancers

This cancer is either a new cancer that has developed or the previous cancer that has spread to other parts of the body. It can develop as an effect of previous cancer treatments, like radiation therapy and chemotherapy.

Radiation therapy and chemotherapy, though they fight cancer cells, can also damage bone marrow cells. Because of the said effect, undergoing such treatments can increase the risk of myelodysplasia, a cancer of the blood wherein the bone marrow does not produce enough healthy blood cells. Talk with a Singapore oncologist about how to lower the risk of such disease and what signs and symptoms to look out for.

Emotional Difficulties

Cancer survivors often experience a variety of emotional ups and downs, such as a sense of gratitude to survive the fatal disease, relief, fear of recurrence, depression, anger, anxiety, and isolation. Cancer survivors, as well as their family and friends, may also experience the post-traumatic stress disorder, which is an anxiety disorder. It may arise after a life-threatening circumstance, such as cancer diagnosis and treatment.

Fatigue

Fatigue, the most common side effect of cancer, is a persistent feeling of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion. Those who survived the disease experience fatigue for several months and sometimes years after the cancer treatment. Learn more about cancer-related fatigue by talking to the best oncologist in Singapore.

Curing cancer is not yet the end of the fight. Apart from curing the disease, a cancer survivor should be aware that the aftercare is just as critical as fighting cancer. The survivor should be aware of the possible long-term effects he may encounter down the road and the ways to minimize his risks of developing any of mentioned long-term effects.

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How to Stay Cool in Your Home This Summer

 

The hot rays of the sun during summer of every year is the reason why people get dehydrated, plants especially those planted in the farms were under the dangers of drought, human skin gets burnt from the sun which causes skin irritation or worst – skin cancer, water in the seas and rivers will decrease, and heat stroke patients in the hospitals will increase.

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Who would ever want to go out and play when the sun is drying our system? Doctors and scientists discovered different ways of how to keep the air cool even if the hot rays of the sun strike. No need to buy an air cooler in your home. Let’s see the cheapest way possible. Here are some ways of keeping the air and your body cool during hot seasons:

  1. Keep the circulation of air constant. The use of electric fans is much better than using air conditioner which is the main reason for a high electricity bill. Unwanted heat comes from your windows. Utilizing shades and curtains would lessen the heat inside your home. A breeze might be enough to cool, but in an extremely hot season, turn on the fan. And if the night is on, let the cool wind enter your home.

 

  1. Lessen outdoor activities. A very hot weather will surely ruin your day. Those outdoor activities which you think is less important, better cancel or postpone it. Think about your health first before your appointments.

 

  1. Change your sheets. Changing beddings is not seasonal. It’s necessary and it’s better to change your thick bed sheets into a cooler one. Use colors that are cool enough for your eyes. New bedding freshens up the room.

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  1. Turn the lights off. Too much light can never help reduce the heat inside the home. During daytime, there’s no need to open the lights in your bedroom, kitchen, or in the living room most especially when your house is facing the sunlight. Turn the lights off if not in use. You are saving energy, at the same time, you are keeping your home cool.

 

  1. Avoid doing things that make the area hot. Energy-consuming household devices such as oven and fridge release waste heat which makes your home hot. Make meals that are easy to cook to avoid too much heat in the kitchen. Avoid baking when you feel that the area is heating too much. To make it safer and cheaper, use solar technology such as a clothesline to dry the laundry.

 

  1. Water be your partner. During this kind of season, all you need are bottles of cold water and a cold shower. Drink water regularly to avoid getting dehydrated. Take cold showers before your body gets dehydrated. Taking a bath twice is better so that your skin won’t get dry which may cause you skin cancer. Heat stroke is the worst of all, be water friendly.

 

  1. Plant more trees. The very common yet the most important of all the things mentioned above is to plant more trees because these are the only thing that can make our environment cool and healthy. Plants block the sunlight and absorb the heat in the area.

Since there are so many ways of keeping the air cool, don’t let chances of heat stroke, dehydration, skin cancer, and other sicknesses ruin your career. Keep it cool!

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Eating Habits You Should Abolish  

For our 2016 New Year’s resolution, we are determined to change our eating habits because we finally realized how badly it affects our health. We have to adopt new and healthier patterns and stick to it. To do this, we have to abolish eating habits.

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Here are eating habits that we should abolish right away to give way to a happier and healthier life:

  • Too much drinking: Drinking alcohol will lower your inhibitions thereby spiking the appetite. Remember that cocktails have extra calories not to mention foods in between drinking. The surplus calories will accumulate.
  • Overeating foods that are healthy: There is nothing wrong to consume veggies and whole grains but there are some Singaporeans who love to eat healthy foods too much that they tend to overdo it.

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  • Skipping meals: You so desperately want to lose weight faster so you skipped meals. This is not good since it can undermine weight loss efforts. There is a big chance you overeat to compensate for a skipped meal.
  • Emotional eating: Food is indeed a great and fulfilling refuge but it is not advisable to eat due to anxiety, boredom or anger. Even when you are happy, you tend to indulge. Emotional eating is difficult to challenge but you can overcome it.
  • Calorie counting: Your intentions are noble when you try to count calories but there will come a time that counting calories will make you more anxious and stressed out. You will never enjoy a good meal because you are counting the calories.

These habits should be abolished as soon as possible for a healthier and leaner you.

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Consuming Ginger Makes You More Energetic

Living in the big city means living a fast-paced life daily. There are days when we just feel too tired to accomplish anything and when lethargy attacks, we want a pick-me-up to get an energy boost.

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Before you reach for that big mug of hot coffee, you may want to consider something natural and without caffeine. In comes ginger, the flavorful spice that does not only elevate the flavor of food, but can also boost energy naturally.

Here are the following ways ginger helps in increasing the energy levels of the body.

 

Reducing inflammation. Ginger contains a number of active ingredients named gingerols, which are compounds proven to have strong abilities of reducing inflammation. This is very helpful in lessening risks of developing chronic diseases like cancer and heart disease.

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Lowering risk of infections. Another source of fatigue are bacterial infections. Good thing ginger helps with this one too. Ginger has active ingredients that fight off bacteria responsible for these infections. In fact, in the past, ginger has been used as a medicine in fighting illnesses because of its strong antibiotic properties.

 

Viral infections are out, too! During cold and rainy seasons, viral infections are very common. Cold and flu are respiratory infections that can result to over fatigue and energy drain. Make yourself feel better by including daily doses of ginger in your diet. You can add it to your meals or enjoy it as a smoothing hot tea. Studies show that ginger is an effective remedy for the RSV virus.

Fresh, dried and powdered ginger