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Chiropractic Services: For Your Health

Word Count:
481
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There are a variety of ways that people today can protect and even promote the health of their bodies. There are more than enough diets to choose from no matter what kinds of foods you love or hate. People can join an expensive diet club to receive accountability for their weight loss goals or people can join expensive gyms filled with amazing equipment that many people do not even know how to operate. Diet and exercise are both important elements of any healthy lifestyle, do…
chiropractic

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There are a variety of ways that people today can protect and even promote the health of their bodies. There are more than enough diets to choose from no matter what kinds of foods you love or hate. People can join an expensive diet club to receive accountability for their weight loss goals or people can join expensive gyms filled with amazing equipment that many people do not even know how to operate. Diet and exercise are both important elements of any healthy lifestyle, don’t get me wrong. However, there are also a variety of other elements and services that can be helpful in achieving and maintaining a truly healthy life. Benefiting from chiropractic services is one of these amazing yet underused elements that promote health.
I’ll admit that for most of my life I thought that chiropractic services were only for those people with terrible posture or for people who had just gotten into a bad car accident and needed almost a physical therapy of sorts. So it had never entered my mind to see get chiropractic services done for myself until a friend of mine began boasting about her chiropractic visits and the difference they were making in her life.
Still a bit skeptical, I asked my friend exactly what the chiropractic services did for her. I wasn’t prepared to hear the long list of benefits that she listed off. She shared with me that she had been utilizing chiropractic services for the past several years and that in that time she had been sick with common colds and flus only once. It seemed that the chiropractic services she was receiving every other week made a huge difference in her immune system being able to fight against common viruses and diseases. She also claimed that chiropractics had done wonders for her alignment and posture and that her lower back was no longer in constant, throbbing pain like it used to be. My friend said chiropractic services had simply “straightened everything out for me.”
After hearing about these benefits and more, I decided to give chiropractic services a try for myself. I called to schedule an appointment with my friend’s chiropractor and then I waited for the blessed day to arrive. When it did, I was filled with a little bit of fear and trepidation about what he would say to me and about if his chiropractic services would cause me pain. (I had, for some reason, never thought to ask my friend if the chiropractic services she ranted about hurt at all.)
After one hour of receiving chiropractic services and advice about my health, I left the office a believer. I couldn’t believe what I had learned and how good I felt after just one visit. And now, years later, I am still just as strongly convinced that chiropractic services should be added to everyone’s health and fitness regimen.

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Chiropractic Medical Necessity: The Reviewer Perspective

AllMed Healthcare Management
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Third party payers demand documentation to substantiate the medical necessity of a chiropractic treatment. This documentation should support care by providing evidence that a treatment was necessary for relief from a condition and to alleviate a patient’s symptoms. When a third party payer requests records, there are necessary documents and information that must be included for review. These include a patient’s past and present history, consultation form, chart notes and any required x-rays.
The patient’s past and present history are needed. These must explain why the patient sought chiropractic care, the nature of the complaints, the duration of the complaints and whether the patient was involved in a traumatic event. The documentation should explain if the patient has exhibited the same or similar complaints previously, whether there is a family history of illness or injury and if there are contraindications to chiropractic care.
It is important that the chiropractor include a consultation form. This reiterates the reasons the patient sought chiropractic care. The form should explain any previous medical and chiropractic treatment, as well as any prior examinations and test results, if known. This indicates whether patient’s condition is acute or chronic and what treatment, has been provided to the patient, along with the prior treatments outcome. Diagnoses are necessary.
The initial examination findings are important. These findings should describe range of motion, orthopedic and neurological, chiropractic palpation and postural abnormalities. If treatment proceeds beyond a brief course of care, progress examination findings are necessary to show progress between objective examinations.
Although x-rays can be integral in formulating a chiropractic diagnosis and treatment plan, they are not necessary for each patient. An unexplained complaint of long standing, trauma, and age, along with the consultation and examination findings and clinical experience, will determine the need for x-rays.
A patient’s chart notes are vital to assess the necessity of chiropractic care and critical to the review process. They show how the patient has improved or not, whether the objective findings (at least, range of motion, palpation and postural) reveal that the patient is improving. Chart notes also show how a patient’s response to treatment, the reasonableness of care and the treatment plan presented. If a home program was instituted, they tell whether the patient is taking charge of his or her own healthcare and if it appears that the patient’s condition is progressing or being alleviated.
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Chinese Medicine For Breast Health

Word Count:
620
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So many women these days face challenges with numerous breast problems, the most serious of which is breast cancer. It is estimated that as many as one in seven American women will have breast cancer in their lifetime. In addition to certain nutritional and lifestyle modifications, there are numerous Chinese herbs which can improve the health of the breast and which may help to prevent the development of breast cancer.
fibrocystic,breast,cancer,vitex,carcinogen,dandelion,women,abscess,lactation

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So many women these days face challenges with numerous breast problems, the most serious of which is breast cancer. It is estimated that as many as one in seven American women will have breast cancer in their lifetime. In addition to certain nutritional and lifestyle modifications, there are numerous Chinese herbs which can improve the health of the breast and which may help to prevent the development of breast cancer.
First of all, let’s talk about some basic lifestyle suggestions for maintaining breast health. Deodorants and anti-perspirants that are used in the area of the armpit need to be free of aluminum based ingredients. There are a large number of lymph nodes in the area of the armpit that branch out towards the breast. Many potential toxins, including aluminum, may be absorbed into this region through the skin. It is also important to wear bras that are not too tight, because this can inhibit the flow of lymph as well as blood circulation in this area. Underwire bras may be particularly bad for this reason. Sports bras and other bras that are made of more flexible material can be much better for allowing proper circulation in the area of the breasts.
In Chinese medicine, the functioning of the Liver has a great deal of influence over the health of the breasts. The Liver is adversely influenced by stress and abuse, and by nutritional and environmental toxins. Therefore, in order to maintain proper breast health, it is important to reduce or to manage stress in a healthy way. It is also important to avoid emotionally toxic and abusive situations. It is also important to reduce contact with toxic substances in our personal environment. Drinking purified water or spring water, eating pesticide free fruits and vegetables, eating hormone free meat, and avoiding harsh chemicals, dyes and perfumes can all help by preventing carcinogenic substances from entering the body in the first place. Having a lot of indoor plants can also help to significantly reduce indoor air pollution. The breasts are predominantly composed of fatty tissue which can easily store all sorts of toxins which can eventually become carcinogenic over time.
One herb which can be useful for maintaining breast health is dandelion, or pugongying. Dandelion is an excellent herb for detoxifying the breasts. It is also useful for breast abscesses. Fresh dandelion greens can be mashed and applied topically as a poultice up to three times daily for breast abscesses. This herb is also good taken internally for detoxifying the liver.
For fibrocystic breasts, the herb, vitex agnus castus, or manjingzi, can be very helpful over time. Taken regularly over four to six months it may eliminate fibrocystic breast problems. The Chinese herbal formula, Free and Easy Wanderer, or Xiao Yao Wan, can also be used for fibrocystic breast conditions.
Some Chinese herbs which have been shown to have anti-cancer effects in the area of the breasts are Chinese rhubarb, or dahuang, and oldenlandia, or baihuasheshecao. Chinese rhubarb is a strong laxative, and should only be used under the supervision of a skilled practitioner. Oldenlandia has been shown in recent Chinese research to have anti-tumor effects on many different types of cancers, including breast cancer.
Chinese herbs can be used to promote lactation for breastfeeding or to stop lactation after a child is weaned.
Acupuncture can also be used in the treatment of fibrocystic breasts and chronic mastitis.
In order to prevent serious issues from arising, it is important for every woman to get examined regularly and to give themselves regular self-examinations. It is important to always get a proper diagnosis for any breast problems from your physician. Nevertheless, Chinese herbs and acupuncture can both be useful for maintaining breast health.

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Chinese Herbs for Menstrual Pain Relief?

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578
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It has been tried and tested that this ancient method has a lot of benefits to treat symptoms of illnesses. Research has found that not only is it beneficial as a tool for relaxation and stress relief, but it is also an effective tool for a lot of conditions most especially to treat anxiety. This article will try to show why reflexology is an alternative therapy that works.
treat anxiety

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It is a gentle art, a fascinating science, and an extremely effective form of therapy that has carved an impressive niche in the field of alternative medicine. Many studies have been done in relation to the effectiveness of this wonder method called Reflexology. Reflexology is the practice of strategically applying pressure to areas of the feet and hands as they correspond with specific body organs. By stimulating nerves on specific areas of the feet and hands, it can stimulate blood flow and eliminate toxin buildup in the corresponding organs and systems of the body.
Reflexology is an art because much depends on how skillfully the practitioner applies his or her knowledge, and the dynamics that occur between the practitioner and the recipient. And because it is based on physiological and neurological study, it is also considered a science. Reflexology is a holistic healing technique. The term “holistic” is derived from the Greek word “holos”, which means “whole.” The goal of reflexology is to treat the individual as a complete entity, incorporating and healing the body, mind and spirit.
Research has found that reflexology is not only beneficial as a tool for relaxation and stress relief. It has been established that it is also an effective device for improving circulation, relieving pain, and speeding up the body’s process of detoxification. Reflexology is also good for people who are recovering from surgery due to its positive stimulating effect on the immune and nervous systems. In fact, many people with illnesses such as allergies, acid reflux, migraines, pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS), menopause, insomnia, fertility problems, and even arthritis have been helped tremendously by reflexology treatments.
Because reflexology works to put the body in a state of well-being, it is beneficial to every system in the body. It has been shown to relieve many common pregnancy complaints including headache, nausea, backache, sleepiness, fatigue, constipation, swollen ankles, and digestive problems. However, a lot of practitioners have been giving this holistic approach for most cases to patients to treat anxiety.
From side effects of chemotherapy to pain and depression, symptoms associated with cancer and its treatment can impinge on quality of life almost as much as the disease itself. No equipment needed nor invasion of privacy are some of the ease of reflexology which can be applied in a medical environment which makes it convenient alternative treatment.
In 2006, a team of medical school researchers at University of Udine, Italy, reported positive results for the use of reflexology foot massage to treat anxiety in patients admitted to an oncology unit for a second or third round of chemotherapy. And, in yet another recent study, to treat anxiety for breast and lung cancer patients, the reports said that the patients experienced relief after reflexology. The breast cancer patients also experienced a decrease in pain. Furthermore,the study also claimed that women that had at least 10 reflexology sessions showed reduced labor times and complications than women who did not have the treatments.
Studies have also shown that patients that received reflexology treatment after surgery experienced far less pain than the patients that took painkillers alone. Moreover, reflexology was shown to be more effective than catheterization in patients with retention of urine after surgery.
Reflexology is safe, non-invasive, and effective therapy for everyone that can and should be used throughout a person’s lifetime. In a society that relies heavily on chemically laden prescription drugs for remedy, reflexology is definitely showing a lot of promise as an effective alternative treatment.

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Chinese Gambling Games: Casino Games with Chinese Origins

Word Count:
744
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Here you can read about some of the most popular casino games and gambling games that were imported to the US from China.
Chinese gambling games, popular casino games, American gambling, American casinos, Pai Gow poker, American poker, Sic Bo, land based casinos, Fan Tan, Mahjong,gambling,entertainment,games,online gaming

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The Chinese culture has a significant influence on the American gambling industry. Many of todays popular casino games were introduced to American casinos by Chinese immigrants. In this review, you can read about some of the most popular Chinese gambling games that had a successful immigration to the West.
Pai Gow Poker
Pai Gow Poker is a hybrid of American poker and traditional Chinese tiles game called Pai Gow. The original tile game Pai Gow, which means Make 9, is one of the most ancient gambling games that are still available in cotemporary casinos. Pai Gow Poker is played with playing cards instead of tiles and it uses the traditional poker hand ranking. It is one of the most popular casino games worldwide and it can be found in almost every major casino in the US. Its online version can be played at most casinos on the internet.
The object of the Pai Gow Poker is to form the highest possible two poker hands, one five card hand and a two card hand, out of the seven cards dealt to each player. Each player competes against the banker that can be either the casino dealer or one of the players who can afford paying the players winnings.
Sic Bo
Sic Bo is yet another popular casino game with roots that go back to ancient China. The chance game came to the States around the beginning of the 20th century by Chinese immigrants. It can be played in most land based casinos in Macau, the US and the UK. Sic Bo has an online version as well.
The meaning of Sic Bo is Dice Pair. It is played with three standard dice on a special table. Each player places any number of bets on the table and then tosses the dice. The outcome is determined by the combinations of the three dice. Each combination has a different payoff according to a payoff schedule, which vary from one casino to the other.
Fan Tan
Fan Tan used to be the most popular gambling game among Chinese gamblers but the glory days of Fan Tan have already passed. During the 1890s, Chinese immigrants brought the game to the United States. At that time, every Chinatown in American City had several Fan Tan houses that were always full of enthusiastic gamblers. Nowadays, you can find Fan Tan in some casinos in Macau as well as in some online gaming sites.
Traditional Fan Tan, not to be confused with the card game of the same name, used to be played with any objects such as coins, dried beans or small buttons on a table with a square marked on it. Fan Tan. The object of the game is pretty simple and odds are 1: 4.
The play begins with the banker puts on the table a pile of objects then covers them with a bowl. Each player has to bet on one of the numbers that mark the four sides of the square, or on one of the corners of the square. After the bowl is removed, the croupier removes four of the objects each time until the last group remains. If 1 object is left, then the player who placed a bet on 1 wins the pot, and so on.
Mahjong
Mahjong is probably the biggest inherit of Chinese culture to the gaming world. The ancient Chinese tile game has many variants worldwide including variety of online games. According to the myth, Mahjong was developed by Confucius around the 500 BC. The game was brought to the United States during the 1920s and soon was very popular especially among women. The game was played in Chinese style decorated rooms with waiters wearing traditional customs.
The American version of Mahjong was developed during the 1930s and it is played in America until today. At the same time, the National Mahjong league was founded. In addition to American Mahjong, there are Japanese, Vietnamese, Cantonese and other variations of the game, which vary from one to the other by their scoring structure, number of tiles and rules variants. In 1998, the China State Sports Commission had set a standard set of rules that will differentiate the illegal gambling game from the skill game.
Mahjong Solitaire, the online version of Mahjong, gains wide popularity recently. The online version of the classic Chinese game is a matching game that uses the Mahjong tiles. Online Mahjong games can be found in many online gaming sites in variety of layouts and versions.

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Chinchillas Staying Healthy With Pellets and Hay

The chinchilla’s process of consuming food is quite different than other animals. They should have a lot of roughage and fewer nutrients. One of the things that they must have enough of is pellets.
Chinchilla pellets can be purchased from a breeder or a pet store. Not all brands contain the same ingredients. When your purchase them, be sure that the basic ingredients are in the mix. This would include alfalfa meal, wheat germ, molasses, oats, soybean oil meal, corn, and added vitamins and minerals. The chinchilla pellets are long because the animals eat with their hands and they must be able to grasp them.
The chinchillas consume the pellets until they feel full. When they get to that point, they will stop and refrain from overeating. You can either feed them once or twice a day. You’ll want to figure out which feeding regimen is best for them. Stick with whatever works best and be consistent. If you’re not, the chinchilla will know and the inconsistency will cause them to be stressed.
A chinchilla’s livelihood is based on routines. You can feed the pellets to them either from a hopper feeder or a ceramic bowl. The hopper feeder is good to use because you don’t have to concern yourself about it falling over. Ceramic bowls are good because they are heavy and the chinchilla can’t chew it, like they would a plastic bowl.
Chinchilla pellets are one of the best things they can eat; but if for some reason you can’t locate them, you can substitute rabbit or guinea pig pellets for them. These are fine to consume as long as they contain plenty of fiber and are low in fat. If for some reason you do have to switch their pellets, do it gradually. Once they get used to a system, it’s difficult for them to change suddenly. They will adapt, but they get stressed if it happens all at once.
Hay is good for them because it also provides fiber for their system. You can choose from two kinds: alfalfa or timothy. They can be purchased in loose or small compressed blocks with a measurement of 1″ X 1″ X 2″. The animals will eat both kinds and it must be chemical and mold free. Because of their sensitive digestive system, chinchillas can only consume fresh hay. To remain fresh, it must be stored in a dry place.
Fifty-pound bags may be too much for a chinchilla owner, so cubes can be purchased in smaller amounts. It’s better if the cubes are broken into smaller pieces. This way, they can handle them easier as opposed to being one cumbersome piece. One pressed cube or a handful of hay is all an adult chinchilla usually eats.
An alternative to hay would be Bermuda grass. If your house has a lawn with Bermuda grass, you can feed that to your chinchilla. However, the grass must be chemical and fertilizer free. Just wash it off and give your chinchilla a few. Bermuda grass helps to remedy any digestive issues.

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Children’s Vitamins

Raquel Hunter
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Many parents are concerned that their children do not consume the proper foods they need to stay strong and healthy. The truth is children can be picky eaters. Some children will go through stages where they will refuse to eat anything other than a favorite food, while other children will try new foods, but do not take to them.
Children’s vitamins are available to parents who want to ensure their children are receiving the necessary nutrients he or she needs to grow strong and healthy. Even parents who have children who eat well are supplementing their children’s diet with vitamins. The fact is the earth’s soil is rapidly being depleted of nutrients, and the rigors of food processing also leaves many foods deficient in vitamins and minerals.
Children’s vitamins are packaged in such a way that they are attractive to children. Most children’s vitamins come in colorful and fun shapes. Many manufacturers of children’s vitamins are packaging their vitamins in lollipop, gum ball and gummy bear varieties. Because these vitamins resemble candy, it is important that you keep them away from a child’s reach and that you monitor their intake. If you find your child has taken extra vitamins, you should consult their pediatrician or your local poison control center.
There are instances when a pediatrician will prescribe vitamins for a child. If a child has a vitamin deficiency, does not have access to fluoridated water, or has anemia or other illness or disease, vitamin supplements may be prescribed for a child. However, in general, many pediatricians believe that children do not need vitamin supplements if they are being fed properly. They feel that children can receive all the vitamins and minerals they need if they eat according to the Food Pyramid. Consult with your child’s pediatrician before starting them on a vitamin.
Vitamins are supplements and not replacements. Children’s vitamin supplements should never be looked upon as a replacement for healthy eating. Encourage your child to eat the foods they need, and do things to make nutrition fun and flavorful for them. For instance, letting children add grated cheese to their vegetables will make some children more interested in eating them. Allowing a child to drink calcium fortified orange juice over milk works well for a child who does not like milk. Let your child participate in making a vegetable pizza, or let them pick out fruit at a market and place it in their own special area at home. All of these tips can go a long way in helping a picky eaters overcome their fears so they consume the vitamins they need.
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Children More At Risk With Effects Of Smoking

Word Count:
499
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For many years, medical science believed that children and adults were at the same general level of risk when it came to exposure to the negative effects of smoking. However, recent findings and concluded long-term studies have found that smoking can be far more damaging for children than adults. This is probably because the lungs and systems in a child’s body have not yet fully developed, and therefore are not as resistant to the problem as an adult’s.
effects of smoking

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Smoking is easily among the most widespread hobbies in the world. Nicotine is also perhaps the second most abused substance
in the world, followed closely by alcohol. Medical science has already presented quite a bit of evidence to show that smoking
has adverse effects of smoking on one’s health, though for many years, smokers persisted that second-hand smoke was not
harmful to the human body. Only recently has data detailing the effects of inhaling or exposure to second-hand smoke been put
to light, dispelling the myth that only smokers were at risk of smoking. Even more recently, information has leaked that
certain individuals may be at more risk at the effects of smoking than others.
Science has found enough evidence to point out that second-hand smoke is more dangerous than first-hand smoke, primarily
because there is no filter to “soften” the blow. It has generally been accepted that second-hand smoke and the effects of
smoking were roughly similar no matter who had been exposed to it. However, recent studies found that the younger the person
being exposed to the smoke, the more potential damage could be done to that person’s respiratory system. The lungs of young
children and infants, in particular, are at a critical stage of development and, theoretically, even small amounts of smoke
can cause irreparable damage to their system. The effects of smoking also extend further, with medical science finally
confirming that tobacco, like alcohol, has effects on developing fetuses in pregnant women.
The first noticeable effect was in the weight of the newborns who were carried to term by smoking mothers. The newborns were
noticeably far below the average weight, with some being dangerously small upon birth. Long-term observations have also found
that children who were born from mothers who smoked during pregnancy were at greater risk of exhibiting symptoms of
developmental and behavioral disorders later on in life. There have also been some pieces of information that suggest that,
among the effects of smoking, it is also possible for a child to be more susceptible to mood disorders if the mother smoked
while pregnant. Learning disabilities are also increasingly common among children born under such circumstances, with
cerebral palsy being among the more common.
Children are at considerably higher risk than adults when it comes to smoking and the dangerous effects it has. Asthma is
among the most common of the many possible consequences, with roughly 100,000 to 200,000 cases of childhood asthma are
worsened by second-hand smoke. The estimates on how many cases of childhood asthma are worsened by the child becoming a
smoker are unknown, though most believe that the numbers would be similar to those of the second-hand smoke category.
Bronchitis and pneumonia are also common side effects of being exposed to second-hand smoke, with the numbers being roughly
in the 300,000 range. Children are also at risk of developing an ear infection. Inhaled smoke causes damage to the Eustachian
tube, which causes that part of the ear to swell and, eventually, become infected.

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Children in need, not misdeed

Word Count:
688
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Child maltreatment is a behavior toward a child that is outside the norms of conduct and entails substantial risk of causing physical or emotional harm. Research indicates that without some form of intervention against child maltreatment, the long-term consequences for children can be nightmares, feeling of insecurity, feeling unsafe, poor school performance and low self-esteem. They are also more likely to be abusive or become victims of abuse themselves.
counseling, depression

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In the Philippines, there are more than 36 million people under 19 years old who are living in utterly inhuman conditions. About a million and a half children are estimated to live on the streets. They survive by begging for food and through petty theft. In spite of laws against child labor, more than three and a half million children from 5 to 17 years old work under grueling conditions. The data regarding child abuse and neglect in the Philippines are considered to be below the actual figures since the current statistics only reflect reported cases of abuse.
Recently, a survey by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) reflected a sudden increase in the number of children that resulted from increased awareness and reporting in the community. Most of these children in this survey were victims of child abuse and neglect, also known as “child maltreatment.” Child maltreatment is a behavior toward a child that is outside the norms of conduct and entails substantial risk of causing physical or emotional harm. Child maltreatment can be a single incident, but it is usually a pattern of behavior that takes place over time. There are four types of recognized maltreatment. These are physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse (psychological abuse), and neglect.
The causes of child maltreatment are varied and not well understood. Abuse and neglect are often associated with physical injuries, delayed growth and development, and mental problems. They are more common in poor and extremely poor families than in families with higher incomes. Child maltreatment is also associated with psychological and emotional problems such as aggression, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder. In extreme cases, child abuse and neglect can lead to death.
Child abuse is also linked to an increase risk of substance abuse, eating disorders, obesity, depression, suicide, and sexual promiscuity later on in their lives. Women who were victims of physical assault during their childhood are twice as likely to be victims of physical assault as adults. There are also evidences which suggest that victims of child maltreatment are more likely to engage themselves in criminal behavior as juveniles and adults than others.
Although it is said that the most important relationship for all beings is that with their parents or with their families, child maltreatment often starts at home. Unfortunately, an alarming number of parents do not understand the importance of the parent-child relationship. They are often too young or unprepared for such responsibility. Their inability to commit to good parenting techniques causes serious detriment to the lives and well being of their children.
Children who have been maltreated are usually unwilling or unable to reveal their situation to someone because of parental threats, or a feeling of loyalty to the family. For children who are in school, while carefully asking a child may help to unearth details of maltreatment, teachers need to be aware of non-verbal ways in which the message of abuse may be communicated. The presence of one indicator alone does not necessarily mean that maltreatment has occurred. If there are a number of indicators, then immediate counseling is needed for the child. It is the process by which a professional helps a person cope with mental or emotional distress, and understand and solve personal problems is called counseling.
Individual and group counseling sessions usually take two years or even longer. The goal of undoing life-long damage can be very difficult because the damage pervades every aspect of a child. There may also be physiological changes that cannot just be “counseled” away. Medication can be useful for the symptoms of depression, anxiety and other symptoms, but should never be dispensed in the absence of counseling for the root of the problem. For children, play therapy and family therapy can be helpful.
It is important to help a child deal with the abuse as well as the psychological problems they report. Research indicates that without some form of intervention against child maltreatment, the long-term consequences for children can be nightmares, feeling of insecurity, feeling unsafe, poor school performance and low self-esteem. They are also more likely to be abusive or become victims of abuse themselves.

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Children and Acid Reflux

Hanif Khaki
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Acid reflux is a condition normally associated with adults. Sadly, many children also suffer the effects of acid reflux.
This desease, also referred to as gastro-esophageal reflux, occurs when stomach contents churn and rise up into the esophagus, the tube connecting the stomach with the mouth. A muscle between the esophagus and the stomach, known as the lower esophageal sphincter, is responsible for keeping the stomach closed off until food is swallowed. The lower esophageal sphincter then opens up and allows the food into the stomach before closing again. Although Acid reflux can begin during infancy, it can carry over into early childhood.
Though quite common in children, most people are not aware of it’s occurrence. In most cases, the process of gastro-esophageal reflux occurs quickly, the acid comes up into the esophagus and then rapidly goes back down into the stomach. In this case, the esophagus suffers no damage. However, if the stomach acid stays in the esophagus, it damages the esophagus lining. In some cases, the stomach contents rise up all the way into the mouth, only to be swallowed again. This process causes a number of symptoms such as a chronic cough, or a hoarse voice. More serious symptoms can include difficulty in swallowing, wheezing, and chronic pneumonia.
Anyone who suspects that their child is afflicted with acid reflux, should have the child seen by his or her pediatrician. After examining the child and evaluating the symptoms, the doctor may run tests to diagnose whether acid reflux is present. Often, the doctor will begin treatment before testing for acid reflux.
In one of the tests, called an upper GI-series X-ray, the child’s X-ray is taken after being given a glass of barium to drink. This particular test is successfully used to locate hiatal hernias, blockages, and other gastrointestinal problems.
Another test, thought to be more effective than the X-ray, is the endoscopy. Typically, the child is sedated and put to sleep during the test. An endoscope, which is a thin, flexible plastic tube with a camera attached to the end, is then placed inside the throat. With the help of endoscope, the doctor is directly able to examine the esophagus lining, stomach, and a portion of the small intestine. The endoscopy also allows the doctor to perform a biopsy rather painlessly.
Yet another test, the esophageal pH probe, may also be used. This test consists of using an extremely light, and ultra-thin wire with an acid sensor tip and inserting it through the patient’s nose and into the lower esophagus. This method is used to detect and record the presense of stomach acid in the esophagus.
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