Genetically Modified Mosquitoes: Dropping the Dengue Fever by 91%

The new dreadful disease, Zika Fever strikes with a little headache, little fever, little joint pain and most of the people who have had it, don’t know they have had it. Recently, just a year ago, the outbreak of Zika Virus in Brazil caused a peak of Microcephaly- Children born with a deformed i.e. small size and small brain. It was in the children of the mothers who were infected with the virus. The new England Journal of Medicine published a paper on May 29th, 2016 Entitled “Zika Virus and Birth Defects-Reviewing the Evidence for Causality”.

The Zika virus broke out from a monkey at the Zika forest in Uganda identified by the researchers of the Yellow Fever Research Institute. The first cases were ever reported was in Tanzania, Uganda and that’s how it got spread through West and East Africa then through Equatorial Asia like India, Pakistan, Malaysia and Indonesia but it was just in Mosquitoes and Monkeys. The one of the biggest outbreaks were in the French Region which had 30,000 reported cases in 2013, from there it causes various outbreaks in the islands on the south coast of America. Then, there was an outbreak in the Natal, Brazil which were thought provoked by the people that it was either the 2014 World Cup that brought it or the Canoe Championship races held that year in Brazil.

Now. Let’s leave the fuss about its transmission in Miami and talk about the treatment. You can get Vaccinated but sadly, there is no vaccine discovered till now and maybe there won’t be in the next couple of years. But, viruses like Zika and Dengue are being killed by the insecticidal sprays but they sadly, the bigger amounts of insecticides can have severe reaction and can even kill the person then the infection of the virus. ‘I am a very big fan of Biological Controls and I share that with Rachel Carson, the Author of the Silent Spring” she said. And then because of that she had interest in using the different approach for the treating the viruses like Zika and Dengue.

The Aedes Egypti, the vector for the transmission of the viruses like Zika, Dengue, West Nile, Ancient Plague and many others. It’s the female mosquito which is responsible for this bad work, male doesn’t even have the mouth parts to bite. She bites so she can get a blood to feed her off springs. A British company called OXITECH modified the mosquito in such a way that the female eggs don’t develop to adulthood.

The scientists added a gene in the genome of the mosquito which encodes a protein which feedbacks on itself so it can crack a lot of protein, making the extra copies and where ever they go, kill the organism and now to keep it running, they added tetracycline which shuts down that gene for the promotion of its normal growth. They added another gene which glows under the UV light and they can monitor where it goes? how far it goes? How much time he lives? Now, the male Friendly Aedes was released around in the city of Piracicaba, Brazil by the mayor himself. They were guided by the GPS and the most inspiring thing, just in one year, they brought down the cases of Dengue by 91 percent. Something Impressive? Right.

They are not even being released in the U.S because of the regulation for the Genetically Modified Organism. Some may even call them the “Animal Drugs” but to be fair the results were better than insecticide or any other vaccine treatment. Now, the only reason I picked this was why not in Pakistan? Maybe, no one even heard of this Friendly Aedes. Guess what? We need it more than any other country because of the reported cases of Dengue fever emerging every year or the other viral infections caused. But, the truth is maybe, even in a decade, it won’t happen or maybe it could. Who knows?

How to Become a Peak Performer All Throughout the Day

Do you feel stressed out, unable to focus on chores at home or projects at work? Do you feel lethargic without energy? Fear not – you can easily turn that around. This article gives you several viewpoints so that you can actually transform yourself to be a peak performer all throughout the day tirelessly. Read on to find out.

Here they are:

  1. Get 7-8 hours of good night’s sleep

It depends from individual to individual. Some need less while others need more sleep. Go to bed early and wake up early. Go to sleep at the same time everyday so that it becomes a good habit.

  1. After waking up, drink a glass of water

Your body needs to be hydrated. Here I give you a special tip. Add a drop of honey to a glass of water and drink it all. This is considered very healthy.

  1. Go for a walk in the early morning

Do you like to jog or run? Or, do you hate them? Then simply walk a distance of about a mile and come back home in time to have breakfast.

  1. Have a good and healthy breakfast

You can have corn flakes with milk and a little sugar or a bread toast with jam or something else good and healthy that your dietician has advised. Make a mug of tea or coffee. Having this kind of breakfast will enable you to be fresh and full of vigor, peak performing until it is time for lunch. You can have some light healthy snack sometime before lunch so that you keep performing well.

  1. Drive or commute to work and attack the frog of the day

You should have made a To-Do list the night before, prioritizing your work tasks for today. The frog of the day is that task which you find fearful, doubtful, complex and hard to deal with. Attack the frog first thing at the work place and get over with it. Then slowly orient towards easier tasks during the day, thriving high until it is time to return home.

  1. Have a good nourishing dinner

Eat plenty of whole grains, vegetables and fruits as dinner. Drink water. Do not take coffee or tea before retiring to bed because this may hamper your good night’s sleep.

  1. Enjoy family time

Hold a conversation with your family and watch something funny on TV together. Help each other with problems and discuss to find solutions.

  1. Be at peace with yourself

You have been a peak performer all throughout the day, eating healthy and exercising since morning. You have given your all to your work and family. So be at peace with yourself. Be anxiety-free and relax into yourself so that you fall fast asleep in order to target the next day, the same way you did today.

Summing up, becoming a peak performer helps you to carry out your day’s work tasks smoothly, energetically and productively. So why not choose to be so every single day because there is no better way to achieve fulfillment and satisfaction other than giving your all laser focus into your daily tasks.

Spinal Bracing: A Treatment Option for Scoliosis in Children

When a child is diagnosed with scoliosis, parents mind get filled with visions of him or her wearing a spinal brace to cure the curve. Parents might start thinking about how long this brace has to be worn and how will their child react if it would stop the trajectory.

So before, getting to that point, there are few things one should know about spinal bracing for scoliosis.

Observation Recommended for Scoliosis

After managing various tests and exams, the doctor will develop a treatment plan for the Childs’ scoliosis. Usually, with a small curve, the first step is observation – giving the curve some time to see if it has any progress further.

The child will be inspected every 3 – 4 months, and during that inspection, the doctor will order an X-ray if the curve seems to be increased. It is vital to minimise the number of X-rays taken (because of exposure to radiation), and in many other cases, one X-ray per year should be considered sufficient.

When Is Spinal Bracing Recommended?

With curves or with more severe curves that are likely to progress (to get worse), bracing is a massive non-surgical treatment option to try to stop the curve from getting worse.

Before, recommending for bracing, the doctor will determine:

  1. How much growing the child has left to do?
  2. Where the curve is – because a curve in mid-back (thoracic spine) is more likely to worsen than a bend in the low back (lumbar spine)?
  3. How severe is the curve and how it is affecting their Childs’ life?
  4. How likely the curve will get worse – because if the curve is sharp enough and the child hasn’t gone through his or her adolescent growth period, it is likely to get worse they grow further?

Bracing is the conventional treatment for children having curves greater than 20° and at least two years of growth is remaining. Bracing is never prescribed when the slider is greater than 40°. In that case, surgery may be required.

It is vital to remember that a brace can help to stop the curve from progressing further, but it usually won’t fix the curve which is already there.

Wearing the Brace

Wearing a brace is a significant commitment, provided that the parents and their children need to work on together. For bracing to be as efficient as possible, remember the key points listed below:

  1. Follow the doctors’ order:
    The doctor will decide what kind of brace is best suitable for their child’s curve and for how long they can wear it every day. Some children have to wear their braces up to 23 hours a day (while that is an intimidating number), it is very crucial that the child should wear the brace for full time. The doctor will work out with the parents to figure out when their child doesn’t need to wear his or her brace.
  2. Wear it well:
    The child may be in and out of their brace for few times in a day – during their gym class, for example. It is vital that every time they put their brace back on, it is tight enough and well positioned. If it is not, then it won’t do much good.
  3. Watch out what you wear:
    Beneath the brace, the child should wear a shirt that fits them well and does not wrinkle. This will protect their skin; else they would get irritated from the brace. On the brace, the child can wear regular clothes, though they might have to get clothes of a size or two bigger to fit over the brace.

Bracing may be uncomfortable – both emotionally and physically. At times when kids do not want to be different, a brace is a noticeable difference.

Medical Disclosure

The information contained in this article is presented for the purpose of educating the people. Nothing contained in this article should be construed nor is intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider. Should you have any healthcare-related questions, please call or see your physician or other qualified health care provider promptly. Always consult with your doctor or another qualified healthcare professional before embarking on a new treatment, diet, or fitness program.

Lung Transplants – Risks That You Should Be Aware Of

A lung transplant is achieved with a surgical procedure in which the failing lung of the patient is replaced with a healthy lung of a deceased donor. A lung transplant is usually the last resort after all other methods and procedures fail to make an improvement in the patient’s health. Depending on the patient’s condition one or both the lungs are replaced with healthier ones, in some cases, a heart transplant also takes place with the lung transplant. A variety of disease and conditions are capable of damaging your lung and when the lungs are damaged the oxygen supply is hindered which makes it very difficult to maintain a day to day routine of the person.

A lung transplant is not an easy treatment, it is not everyone and certain things about a patient are suggestive of the fact that he/she is not a good candidate for the transplant. Every patient is examined individually to make the transplant a success. Complications can arise in a lung transplant and it can be fatal for the patient, there are some risks associated with a lung transplant:

1. Rejection – This is one of the major risks in lung transplant. Our immune system defends us against whatever it perceives as a foreign element invading our body. If the immune system perceives the lung as something foreign then it will attack it which can result in a lung failure. This danger is highest after the transplant and reduces with time. Some drugs are given to the patient to prevent this organ rejection.

2. Anti-Rejection Drugs – Medication is given to the patient to prevent this rejection of lungs by the immune system and, there are some cases where these drugs prove to be fatal because of their side effects. These drugs, called “immunosuppressants”, can be usual like weight gain, stomach problems and acne but these can also develop new conditions and can cause blood clots, kidney damage and even cancer.

3. Infection – These anti-rejection drugs, if worked properly, will suppress your immune system which makes you further vulnerable to the infections and not surprisingly this vulnerability is most intense in the lungs. You have to be extra careful to be safe and have to cultivate habits like regularly washing your hands, brushing your teeth and protecting your skin from any scratches.

It is very important that you don’t ignore any instruction from your doctor and follow everything strictly for a healthy recovery. Your doctor will instruct you to make some lifestyle choices like eating healthy and quitting smoking and all you have to do is follow them.

The American Style of a Perfect Smile

Jennifer Garner, Megan Fox, Tom Cruise, Morgan Freeman, George Clooney – it is not difficult to identify an American celebrity on TV, as they all have the flawless Hollywood smile! The Americans are known to be obsessed with straight and pearly white teeth. According to a survey conducted by the New York magazine, 39% of the Americans are prepared to sacrifice dessert if that will give them a better smile. The question here is: Why are they so fanatical about perfect looking teeth?

The American perception towards the ‘perfect’ smile is greatly influenced by their history. During the time of the Great Depression, Charles Pincus the dentist opened his practice in Hollywood and Vine. He then began advertising to the movie studios. He used veneers to cover up teeth imperfections and created great smiles for famous actors like James Dean, Judy Garland and Shirley Temple to match their symmetrical faces. Since then, symmetrical and aesthetically pleasing smile has become synonymous with wealth and fame. Americans believe having a Hollywood smile can boost self-esteem, confidence and give a better first impression. In fact, this may be true! As studies suggest that people with white and straight teeth are 38% more likely to be perceived as smart and are 62% more likely to get a date. In addition, it is a social norm to receive orthodontic treatment in America. 80% of North American teenager visits the orthodontist and the average age of first visit is 7. Straightened teeth means it will be easier to maintain good oral hygiene which leads to reduce risk of gum disease, dental decay, chewing problems and uneven enamel wear. Patients have also shown an increase desire to whiten their teeth after orthodontic treatment. With a wide variety of easily accessible teeth whitening products, approximately 39.09 million Americans used tooth whiteners in 2017. Among all the products, teeth whitening strips are the most popular. Based on the U.S. Census data and Simmons National Consumer Survey, 21.32 million Americans have used it in 2017.

Different components are taken into account to create the ideal American standard smile. We are going to discuss the extra-oral and intra-oral criteria in the following sections.

Extra-oral components – Facial Proportion, The Jawline and Lips:
In America’s present culture, facial proportions that coincides with the golden ratio is thought to be beautiful. The golden ratio is a standard method of measuring different parts of the face. The distance between certain facial features are compared to other facial distances. The closer the measurements is to the ratio 1.618, the more attractive the person is.

Men and women with prominent, chiselled jaw are thought to be more attractive. A strong jawline helps evoke a confident and powerful look. A chin implant and buccal fat pad removal, are common procedures to create a more pronounced and sleek facial profile. On the other hand, BOTOX® cosmetic injection is quite popular among the female patients to help create a less squared, more feminine appearance. Fat injections are used to reinforce cheekbones. To remove wrinkle, excessive skin and double chin, facelift or neck life is often a treatment option.

Thick lips can enhance the smile by hiding imperfections. A full, symmetrical lip can optimize the smile. Lip augmentation using BOTOX® or filler is not an uncommon treatment choice.

Intra-oral components – White aesthetics, the teeth:
Generally, an aligned, medium smile line that follows the curve of the lower lip and runs parallel to the horizontal line joining the pupils is desirable. The smile is thought to be the most aesthetically pleasing when only a third of the upper teeth (from upper right second pre-molar to upper left second pre-molar) are shown and without the presence of black corridors. Symmetry around the central line is usually aimed by the dentist when contouring the teeth. Usually, the incisal edges of the front teeth are not at the same level, lateral incisors are often 1mm shorter than the central incisors.

Overall, females prefer oval, slender and slightly tall teeth. In contrast, males think square shaped, round, bulky teeth give them a more masculine look. To ensure a natural look, embrasures should be created.

Intra-oral components – Pink aesthetics, the gums:
Healthy looking gum should be bright pink in colour, stippled and follows the contour of the teeth. Minimal gum exposure is favoured. Americans are willing to contour the gum or move the teeth to get rid of the gummy smile.

Types of Mental Health Services

In the last few years we have gained awareness of the various needs that individuals with mental health issues need in order to achieve overall well-being. Many times, we talk about the importance of medication, individual counseling, family counseling, and, socialization.

Those are all of extreme importance when it comes to mental health but the one service that seems to be forgotten is care management. A lot of people attribute care management services to individuals who are aging or who have chronic medical conditions. Although, care management can be very helpful for those issues, we also see a huge need for intense care management for individuals who have a chronic mental illness and cannot get access to any services. It is not a secret that severe and persistent mental illness like schizophrenia, bi-polar disorder, and major depression can require intense care management and advocacy.

Just as a refresher, the duties of a mental health care manager include

  • Acting as a connector between the individual and the community resources
  • Advocating on behalf of the individual so that he or she gain access to needed quality services
  • Overseeing the care of an individual including medication management, doctors’ appointments, therapy, psychiatric services, and anything else related to their care
  • Connecting the client’s family to support services such as individual, family, or group counseling
  • Being an advocate if there is need for hospitalization to ensure the safety of the client and their family members
  • Facilitating access to needed benefits
  • Assisting the individual with navigating all the different services so that it does not become overwhelming for them
  • Crisis intervention
  • Alleviating family members of some stress regarding the care and wellbeing of their loved one
  • Coordinating for advanced planning for the individual
  • Connect individual with social services and programs
  • Any service that the person may need the care manager will make that connection.

As professionals in the field of mental health, we see that families with loved ones living with a mental health condition often want an immediate and instant “fix” for their family member. It is important for them to keep in mind, that a mental illness is a lot like a physical illness that needs constant care. This is not to say that you cannot live a “normal” life with a mental illness however extra care is needed. In addition, as family members it is important to remember that you also have a vital role in the recovery of your loved one. The more involved you are, the more likely your loved is to recover.

There is a lot of value in having a care manager involved in the care of your loved one with a mental illness. A care manager will initially do a full initial assessment of your loved one’s needs and wishes and will explore what services can add value to the life their life. They will explore the physical, psychological, social, and emotional well-being of your family member and will assess for possible gaps that need to be filled. For example, your family member may be living with schizophrenia and has been in and out of the hospital while being non -compliant with medication. Once this happens we know that your loved ones has probably had many psychotic episodes resulting in severe impaired functioning. Therefore. he or she may need home care services to assist with activities of daily living such. However, every case is different some more severe than others.

Another common case for care management is one that your adult child has recently been diagnosed with a mental illness and you as parents/family members do not even know where to start. In cases like this, the care manager steps in and coordinates for all initial care. When this occurs we often see a sense of relief in our family members as they often will say “I do not even know how I would have started this process without you”. A care manager is also a huge support system for the individual as they now know that they have an advocate overseeing their needs and wishes.

It is important to remember that living with a mental illness or having a family member with a mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of. In addition, the diagnosis of a mental illness does not mean that the person’s life is over as many people mistakenly think. We have worked with many individuals and their families as they cope with diagnoses like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression, generalized anxiety disorder, agoraphobia, and many others. The beginning of the process is usually made up of what we like to call growing pains full of discomfort. It is important to note that many of our clients with these diagnoses live normal lives but are able to do so because they gained access to the resources in the community. One very important step is accepting the presence of this new diagnosis and what it may mean. Another important step is realizing that you may need the help of psychiatric and/or home care services. It is important to act as early as you can, as early intervention can lead to the best results.

3 Healthcare Marketing Secrets You Never Knew

Marketing a healthcare business is tough! the Healthcare Industry is a unique field because while you deal with the very sensitive nature of your patients’ treatment, which often frighten you, make you vulnerable or confuse you, you also work in a very scientific and avant-garde industry where treatments, tools and systems in constant evolution. Today, healthcare providers are rarely caught up in the new health marketing strategy and sales processes or respond to technological advances.

The healthcare marketing landscape has shifted dramatically the past decade with the increase of technology tools, social media, and digital devices. A recent article for Socialnomics quotes Tricia Wilkerson, Senior Marketing Specialist at Conifer Health Solutions, on the state of B2B Marketing in the Healthcare industry: “Healthcare is notoriously behind other industries when responding to technological advances and audience expectations, so it remains important that marketers push the industry with smart trend adoption.”

Here are some important stats to consider as you begin planning out your marketing strategy:

  • As of 2016, there were more than 326 million people in the U.S. Each one of them with their own personality and each one of them a potential patient.
  • 52% of smartphone users gather health-related data from a smartphone.
  • 91% of adults have their smartphone within arm’s reach 24/7.
  • According to recent Facebook data, the number one most asked for recommendation is a doctor or a healthcare provider.
  • There are 8.2 billion health-related video views on YouTube.

As in many B2B industries, long sales cycles can mean change comes slowly to marketing strategy. So, to make it a little easier for you, here are some essential truths we’ve discovered about healthcare marketing. Here are the three healthcare marketing secrets and how they can rejuvenate your business:

#1 Research and Define Your Ideal Customers

When you try to reach a particular audience, your success depends on how deeply you can guide them. Focusing on a certain segment of the market to generate and attract potential customers will not only help you polish your marketing, but also ensure that the customer association you get from your sales and marketing operations will have a better success rate.

How to Reach Your Target Audience in the Healthcare Industry?

If you are looking to improve your health care marketing, you may have realized that not all messages will be adapted to all audiences. Partnering with a marketing professional with health care experience is always a smart strategy. Before doing anything else, you need to consider your audience:

  • For whom are you creating this report?
  • What do they want to know?
  • What will they do with the information?

For any organization and practice of medical care of all kinds (hospitals, manufacturers, doctors and surgeons, dentists, pharmacists or groups), the more specifically the target audience defined, the greater their capacity to inspire a positive response.

Once you have identified your targeted audiences, it is helpful to gather some information about them. This information can help you determine the information needs of your audience, how you can communicate with them more effectively, and where and how you can contact them.

#2 Create Valuable Content

How do healthcare marketers develop and promote relevant content? First, they must understand the needs of clients by building insight through primary research, syndicated sources, and behavior analysis. Next, they need to create content that meets their needs, such as video, blogs, articles and supports brand objectives. Finally, promote content in the media where customers interact and share.

According to a new report, 85% of healthcare B2B marketers have a content marketing strategy, but only 4% believe their programs are extremely effective.

For a healthcare marketer focused on a pediatric service line, creating helpful content could mean writing an educational article on the merits and concerns of pediatric psychology. When planning to increase content production when the vast majority does not believe that their content marketing efforts are highly effective, B2B marketing specialists are potentially prepared for failure.

Content marketing nurtures a long-term relationship with customers, which is critical in the medical industry.

3 Tips to Grow Your Healthcare Company with Content Marketing:

  1. Know what your customers want to learn
  2.  Be a healthcare industry leader
  3. Capitalize on current events

The following tips will set you up with the knowhow you need to produce better content for your readers. Content marketing is an excellent way to both position your healthcare company as a thought leader and to generate new leads and customers for your business. Be creative and offer information that provides real insight for your customers.

Target Ideal Buyers with Content

Creating and sharing successful Healthcare marketing content is all about your audience: who you’re speaking to and what you’re trying to say. To make the most out of your healthcare services, you first have to define the group of people you’re creating your content for and what they’ll find useful about it. Content marketing involves creating and sharing quality content that is specifically designed to attract your target customers. If you’re not sure how to get started with your content marketing strategy, we can help! Here’s how to target your buyer persona through content marketing.

  • Defining And Developing Buyer Personas
  • Consider The Buying Team
  • Mapping Content To The Buyer’s Journey

The beauty of the specific content is that it was created with a specific group in mind to enjoy and learn from the way they prefer to consume content. Without a persona-based content marketing initiative, you run the risk of allowing your competitors to influence buyers by talking about their needs and addressing uncertainties through specific content, which increases the consideration of purchases as along the road.