Sunburn: General Facts You Should Know About

Track and field running can be a demanding sport as it requires you to practice anytime of the day. Oftentimes, runners have to practice under the heat of the sun, especially if a competition is just around the corner. Without skin protection, runners become more prone to skin problems, particularly sunburn.

Aside from runners, anyone may suffer from first degree sunburn or second degree sunburn. Sunburn is generally characterized by reddening of the skin which can occur hours after exposure to the sun or from other forms of ultraviolet light. While one can have sunburn anytime of the year, more cases are reported during summer because it is the time when many people get to enjoy outdoor activities under the direct heat of the blazing sun.

Aside from reddening of the skin, sunburn can have other symptoms which may include:

  • Pain that is worst within the next 48 hours and then slowly subsides
  • Tender skin that can be warm to touch
  • Blisters that may develop several hours or days later
  • Skin peeling on the affected area
  • Severe reactions such as nausea, rash, fever or chills

Causes of Sunburn

When the skin is exposed to the sun, it does not automatically result to sunburn. Sunburn only happens when the skin is exposed to ultraviolet light or ultraviolet rays that exceed the ability of the skin to protect itself. The skin has a natural protective pigment in the form of melanin. People with dark skin have more melanin, so their risk of getting sunburn is lower that people who have fair or light skin. Also, sunburn normally develops when the skin is exposed to the sun without the necessary sun protection which includes clothing and sunscreen.

Risk Factors for Sunburn

Some people are more prone to sunburn that others because of the following risk factors:

  • Age – Children including infants have more sensitive skin that can easily get sunburned
  • Skin color – People with light-colored skin are more prone to sunburn than those with dark skin
  • Intake of certain medications – Certain medications including antibiotic doxycycline make the skin extra sensitive to the sun
  • Existing medical condition – People with certain medical problems such as lupus have a higher risk of getting sunburn
  • Time of exposure – the sun’s rays are at their peak from 10 in the morning to 4 in the afternoon. Exposure to the sun within these times makes the skin easily develop sunburn

Home Care for Sunburn

Sunburn generally does not require medical attention unless severe symptoms exist. The most basic home care for sunburn is to take a cool shower as soon as you are out of the sun. Aside from a cool bath, spraying vinegar for sunburn may also be effective in preventing swelling. When the pain is no longer manageable, over-the-counter medicines for pain relief may also help.

It is best to prevent sunburn rather than to treat it. The most basic prevention tip is to avoid sun exposure during the peak time, or when you have to, the skin must be protected with appropriate sunscreen or clothing.

8 Underlying Causes for Arm Numbness You Should Not Neglect

Even if a person is considered to be generally healthy, it is normal to feel numbness in left arm, right arm or both arms sometimes, which usually occurs after waking up. Numbness is a loss of sensation which is more often accompanied by a tingling, burning or pins-and-needles sensation. While still numb, the affected arm may feel weak or clumsy.

Just like pain in right arm or left arm, arm numbness does not automatically mean that you are suffering from a serious health condition. When a person experiences numbness after waking up, it is usually caused by sleeping in a funny angle where blood circulation to the affected arm is cut off. Without blood circulation, the nerves will also be compressed, cutting off all the sensations.

However, if arm numbness is frequent and does not easily go away, it should not be ignored as it can be an indication of a more serious health problem. This should be a major concern if a person is engaged in sports like in the case of track runners. Track running is an athletic sport which includes sprints, hurdling, and long distance events where the stamina of athletes will be tested. A person suffering from any type of health problem including arm problems may not be able to endure the physical demands in the sport.

Runner or not, recurring arm numbness that comes with other symptoms should be checked by a medical practitioner as it can be caused by any of the following underlying conditions:

  1. Arm fracture – this condition is likely to be the cause of numbness if the associated symptoms include tingling sensation and sharp pain in the shoulder blade, collarbone, arm or fingers. A recent accident should explain your condition.
  2. Pulled muscles – a pulled muscle happens when a person frequently lifts heavy objects. If no accident is involved and the person experiences the symptoms of arm fracture, it can be a case of pulled muscles as both conditions manifest the same symptoms.
  3. Nerve damage – any damage in the nerves located in the shoulder, spine, neck and arms may also result in arm numbness. Nerve damage to any of these parts of the body results to interruption of blood circulation in the arm, causing the arm to feel numb.
  4. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome – if the numbness occurs close to the arm joint and wrists, its possible cause can be carpal tunnel syndrome, a condition which involves inflammation and swelling of the ligaments. More often, the numbness is accompanied by a tingling sensation in the fingers and sharp pain around the joint.
  5. Raynaud’s Syndrome – sufferers of this condition also experience numbness in arms which usually originates in the fingers, working its way up. The numbness may come with shivering, skin discoloration and cold digits.
  6. Vitamin Deficiency – deficiency in vitamin B may also result to numbness in the arm without other symptoms associated with certain conditions.
  7. Heart attack or stroke – if numbness in the arms comes with numbness in the shoulder and severe chest pain, it could be a sign of heart attack. Similar symptoms can also be a sign of stroke.
  8. Other conditions – other conditions which can contribute to arm numbness include exposure to toxins and diabetic neuropathy.

Any symptoms that come with numbness in the arm should not be neglected. Seeking medical attention is important for diagnosis and treatment.

Understanding Yeast Allergy in Dogs

In any type of sport, athletes need to focus on regular practice to best prepare them for any competition. This also applies to track and field runners. Practice helps them develop endurance and stamina and master the techniques needed to improve their performance. There are various ways on how runners can do their regular practice. Some prefer to practice in the track, while others prefer to practice somewhere else. Some practice alone or with their coach, while others practice with their pet dog. Dogs can be a great companion for runners during practice as these animals generally have high energy and endurance for such activities.

A number of dog breeds are considered to be the best for running. However, it is important to ensure that the dog is in its best health. The dogs should not be suffering from any illness, even minor health problems such as yeast allergy which is pretty common in most dog breeds. Otherwise, the animal may not be suitable for any strenuous activity, including running.

Allergy in yeast normally affects the ears of dogs, resulting in ear infection. Dogs suffering from yeast infection in the ear or in any part of the body can lose their ability to function properly, making running or even walking a difficult task. If spotted earlier, allergy in yeast can be easily treated with most types of allergy medicine for dogs, which can be found at

Causes of Yeast Infection

Yeast infection commonly affects the ears because this part of the body has a favorable environment for the yeast to grow. In some cases, it could also occur elsewhere in the dog’s body, causing reddish, crusty and scabby skin. Frequent bathing where water and debris get trapped in the ear canal makes the ear moist. A moist and dark environment is an ideal place for yeast to grow. Also, eating certain foods containing yeast contributes to yeast infection in dogs.

Signs of Yeast Infection

  • Tilting or shaking of head
  • Rubbing or ear
  • Waxy residue formation of scabs around the ear opening
  • Yellow, brown or bloody discharge in the affected area
  • Bad odor
  • Swelling and redness of skin
  • Loss of hair around the ear
  • Loss of hearing
  • Unusual eye movement
  • Walking in circles

ointmentTreatment for Yeast Infection

For yeast infection especially in the ears, veterinarians usually prescribe a topical cream or ointment with antifungal properties if the affected part is only the outer part of the ear canal. The same medication may also be used for yeast infection in other parts of the body. If the infection is in the middle ear, treatment may include the use of systemic medication. For severe cases, surgery may be necessary. Furthermore, regardless of which part of the dog’s body is affected, full cleaning of the area is important to reduce or get rid of the yeast. There are also special cleansers that can be used for this task.

Yeast infection in dogs may not be a life-threatening condition but it certainly deserves attention and professional care. As for your desire as a runner to take your dog along during practice, ensure that it does not manifest any of the symptoms listed above.

5 Home Remedies for Stretch Marks

One of the most vital factors that affect the performance of track and field runners is their body weight. Any extra weight that is more than a person’s ideal body weight can drag a person down when running and can slow down his performance especially during a competition. Additionally, there is this overvalued belief among runners that a lower body weight, even if it is lower than the ideal weight of a person, can greatly increase performance. This leads some athlete to be on an extreme diet that allows them to lose weight quickly before a competition. But there are side effects to sudden weight loss. It can be detrimental to a runner’s performance and it can also cause the formation of unwanted stretch marks.

Stretch marks are lines on the skin surface with an off-color hue. Although they commonly appear in the abdomen, it is also possible to develop stretch marks on the breasts, upper arms, thighs and buttocks. While many people think that stretch marks just appear among pregnant women, men and even teens can get them as well as a result of sudden growth spurt or weight changes. It is not a life-threatening condition that requires medical attention, but the appearance of these unwanted marks can be intimidating especially if they can be seen by other people.

Many people are desperately seeking for ways on how to remove stretch marks, but more often fail in their endeavor. There is no fast cure for stretch marks that can remove them instantly. However, there are some home remedies that can significantly help reduce their appearance:

  1. Water

Keeping the body hydrated helps achieve an overall skin health, particularly in restoring skin’s elasticity. This in turn can have a significant impact on the appearance of highly visible stretch marks. Instead of just eight glasses, try adding two more glasses to your daily regimen and avoid other fluids that are known to cause dehydration such as soda and coffee.

  1. Potato

Potato is high in vitamins and minerals that promote new skin cell growth and restoration. To enjoy its benefits, cut a large potato into several thick slices and rub them gently on the affected area for several minutes. Allow the liquid of the potato to dry on your skin before rinsing it with lukewarm water.

  1. Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera has long been recognized for its various benefits for the skin. It can be used as a home remedy for minor burns and other skin problems including stretch marks. Simply rub the gel from fresh Aloe Vera leaves to the affected area and leave it there for several minutes before rinsing.

  1. Lemon Juice

The acidity of lemon juice can also be effective in reducing the appearance of minor scars and stretch marks. Gently rub fresh lemon juice on the stretch marks, making sure that all these areas are covered. Allow it to stay for 10 minutes before rinsing with lukewarm water.

  1. Olive Oil

Olive oil is rich in antioxidant properties and in vitamins A, D and E which can help rejuvenate the skin and treat various skin problems such as stretch marks. It can be applied by massaging the oil on the affected area and letting it stay for about half an hour to allow the skin to absorb it.

When these home remedies do not work for you, you may also try other products that claim to help reduce the appearance of stretch marks.

5 Underlying Causes of Right Side Back Pain

Many adults suffer from different types of back pain for various reasons. Lower left back pain and upper middle back pain are perhaps the most common complaints among ordinary people as a result of poor posture or muscle strain. Most cases of back pain do not require medical intervention. However, for athletes, particularly runners, any type of back pain regardless of the severity requires special attention. Back pain can be disturbing and can interrupt a person’s normal routine. It can also significantly affect the performance of runners in the track during practice or actual competition. More so in the case of right side back pain as this type of pain may be a sign of a serious underlying condition requiring medical treatment.

Below are the possible underlying conditions associated with pain in the right side of the back:

  1. Urinary Tract Infection

Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) is a condition that can affect the ureters, urethra, bladder and kidneys. Aside from back pain, its other symptoms include pain during urination, frequent urge to urinate, reduced urine output, pressure in the pelvic bone, and reddish, pink or cloudy urine. Oftentimes, patients also experience fatigue.

  1. Slipped Disc

Slipped disc is a condition that affects the cartilage discs in between the small bones in the spinal cord. These discs serve as a shock absorber and add flexibility to the range of motion. When any of the discs slips out of place, the condition is known as slipped or herniated disc. Because the disc can no longer function effectively, it puts more pressure on the spinal nerves which in turn causes inflammation and pain in the back.

  1. Scapular Fracture

This type of fracture affects the shoulder blade as a result of a fall or accident. Aside from back pain, it also causes reduced functionality of the arm and swelling in the affected shoulder.

  1. Lumbar Muscle Strain

The lumbar muscle strain normally causes pain in the lower right side of the back. It can develop as a result of sudden movement that triggers muscle spasm or of routinely lifting heavy objects. The pain associated with this condition can be intense and it may occur suddenly or gradually. Aside from the pain, its other symptoms include bruising, swelling and reduced back movement.

  1. Gallbladder Problems

Gallstones and inflammation in the gallbladder can also trigger back pain. The pain usually starts at the middle right side of the back and extends to the upper back into the shoulder. Back pain caused by gallbladder problems normally comes with nausea, vomiting and stomach pain.

All the conditions listed above require professional attention. Ordinary pain in the right side of the back usually shows improvement within a day or two. However, if the pain is recurring and comes with other symptoms, then an underlying condition is causing the pain. Although some people might be able to self-diagnose back pain based on the symptoms described above, it is recommended to see a doctor or specialist for proper diagnosis and immediate treatment.

Personal Care for Bunions

When you have a condition that affects your feet, it makes running uncomfortable or even painful. The feet bear all the weight of the body especially when running. If a foot is injured or suffering from any of the various foot diseases, it can no longer function as should be. Among track and field athletes, the feet are considered as one of their most important assets. That is why they put special care to keep their feet in the best shape possible.

Moreover, everyone is still at risk of various conditions affecting the feet. One of them is a bunion. This condition is marked by the enlargement of the tissue or bone surrounding the base joint of the big toe. If the lump occurs on the base of the smallest toe, the condition is commonly called as tailors bunion. Many people are not aware of what causes bunions. But on top of the list is the frequent use of heeled, pointed or tight shoes. People with flat feet are also more prone to bunions.

Fortunately, bunions are not a life-threatening disease. In most cases, personal care and home remedies are all that is needed to make the condition more manageable.

Personal Care Tips

The following personal care tips for bunions will not treat or cure the condition but will help prevent further injury to the affected foot as well as help manage the pain that is often associated with it:

  • Avoid activities that will put pressure on the toes of your feet such as running. If you are contemplating to join the track, it may not be the best option for you as long as you still have the bunion.
  • Wear shoes with extra room in the foot area and avoid wearing uncomfortable and ill-fitting shoes including those with high heels or with pointed toes.
  • In case of pain, use over-the-counter medicines such as acetaminophen and NSAIDs such as ibuprofen. Whenever you can, apply an ice pack to the affected toe for about 10 to 20 minutes every time to soothe the pain. If these medicines do not work for you, you should ask your doctor for advice on managing the pain.
  • For more comfort when using your feet, try using arch support, bunion pads or other similar orthotics to take some of the pressure off of the affected toes. Your doctor can help find the most suitable orthotic product for you.
  • Prevent the affected toe from rubbing against the shoes by putting felt patches or a mole skin around the pressure areas.

If any of these personal care and remedies does not work for you, you should visit your doctor to discuss other treatment options. In many cases, surgery may be recommended if the bunion causes considerable amount of pain or if it is limiting the person’s ability to perform his or her daily routines normally. There are different types of surgery for bunions, the most common of which is osteotomy. This procedure involves removing the lump and aligning the bones in the affected toe. Other procedures include Arthrodesis and Excision arthroplasty.

With the right knowledge about personal care and remedies for bunion, patients would be able to reduce the symptoms of this condition and be able to manage the pain and discomfort associated with bunions.

Hypoallergenic Dog Food: Does Your Pet Need It?

Humans and animals alike suffer from different forms of allergies, the most common of which is food allergy. This type of allergy occurs when the body mistakes a certain food for foreign invaders, attacking it resulting to certain allergic reaction.

For athletes such as runners, it can be a difficult to experience food allergies. Runners are normally required to observe a specific diet especially when a competition is coming. This may involve eating or avoiding some foods to help them maintain a suitable body weight and achieve a healthy physique that is needed for any race. If the athlete has food allergies in meat, fish or other foods that are included in its diet plan, an alternative to that food should be considered. Fortunately, in food allergies affecting people, the trigger food is easier identified because a person is in full control of his or her diet. It can be a different thing if the sufferer is an animal, particularly a dog.

Food allergy in dogs is noticeable for its several symptoms which may include dry skin, skin rashes, itchiness, nausea and vomiting and gastrointestinal problems. Certain foods normally trigger food allergy in dogs and it is just a matter of identifying them and keeping your dog away from these foods.

Because there were a significant number of dogs suffering from food allergy, this is when hypoallergenic dog food started to gain in popularity. It is different from ordinary dog food as it is especially formulated to contain limited ingredients using novel or select ingredients and following a hypoallergenic recipe.

When is Hypoallergenic Food for Dogs Needed?

When a dog manifests symptoms of food allergy but the owner is unable to identify the specific food ingredient causing it, the use of hypoallergenic food may be able to help.

The idea behind giving an allergic dog with hypoallergenic food is to limit the number of ingredients in its diet. If the dog still suffers from allergic reactions despite giving hypoallergenic food, it could help in narrowing down and in identifying possible foods the dog may be allergic to.

Additionally, for owners who have already identified the trigger foods, hypoallergenic foods made from novel ingredients or ingredients other than what are commonly used in ordinary dog foods can help reduce the risk of allergic reaction in the affected dog. Ordinary dog foods normally contain dairy, beef, chicken, lamb, corn, fish, yeast and soy which most likely trigger an allergic reaction. Novel ingredients may include pheasant, buffalo, millet or kangaroo meat which most dogs are not sensitive to.

Some dog owners with allergic foods often ask the question can dogs eat bananas and other fresh produce if they have food allergy. The answer may be a yes or a no. The same answer applies to questions regarding commercial dog foods if they are suitable for allergic dogs. It can be difficult to identify which dog foods may or may not contain trigger ingredients. In any suspected food allergy in dogs, it is essential to have the dog checked by a veterinarian. Some suspected cases of food allergy are not really what they say they are since the same symptoms may also show up in cases of food intolerance and other underlying conditions.

Shoulder Subluxation: A General Overview on the Condition

shoulder dislocation

Accidents do happen to anyone even to the most cautious person. And this is true regardless of your profession or work. In sports, accidents are also unavoidable. Many people think that it is only common in physical sports such as baseball. But even in athletic sports such as track and field running, serious accidents can also affect athletes. Runners oftentimes experience minor injuries such as scratches and skin tear from tripping while running. In worse cases, runners suffer from a more severe injury to a certain part of the body, more specifically the shoulders. This normally occurs when the impact of the accident is placed on either shoulder.

One of the more serious conditions affecting the shoulder is shoulder subluxation, a condition marked by partial shoulder dislocation. There are several factors that can cause this condition:

  • Weak rotator cuff and lax shoulder ligaments
  • Repetitive strain injuries (RSI) which could happen at work or any sports activities especially those involving overhear motions such as swimming, baseball and throwing sports
  • Existing health condition which causes ligamentous laxity

Symptoms of Subluxation in the Shoulder

  • Pain in left shoulder or right shoulder (depending on which shoulder is affected)
  • Tenderness in the shoulder
  • Difficulty or discomfort in shoulder movement especially when doing overhead activities
  • The feeling of numbness in the arm after routine activities
  • The shoulder feels like it is going out when reaching something behind the head

Treating Subluxation in the Shoulder

Personal care is vital for the fast recovery of patients with subluxation. Personal care mostly involves avoiding certain activities that can put pressure on the shoulder. This may include overhead activities as well as sleeping on the side of the affected shoulder. The application of ice pack or taking over-the-counter pain medication can greatly help manage the associated pain.

Apart from personal care, physical therapy is also important to manage the pain and inflammation. Stretching, strengthening and rehabilitation exercises may also be recommended by the attending physical therapist to promote faster recovery of the joint. Popular therapy for subluxation includes Manual Therapeutic Technique (MTT) which aims to reduce the pain and improve joint mobilization. There is also the Neuromuscular Reeducation (NMR) which is directed toward helping patients regain stability.

If everything else fails to help improve the condition, surgery may be needed to fix the problem and to avoid future subluxations which could eventually lead to dislocations.

Most people who have suffered from subluxation have a big chance of returning to their normal work or sport after personal care, therapy and exercises are done. Subluxation is not a life-threatening condition but it can greatly affect a person’s performance in its work or sports. Although track running does not generally involve overhead movements, a significant number of runners have suffered from this condition as a result of an accident. And more often than not, this condition stops them from joining a competition during their recovery period.

The key to a fast and complete recovery from subluxation is the appropriate treatment. Patients should be directly involved in the treatment process and not neglect their condition.

Sprains: Management and Home Care

One of the most common complaints among track and field athletes and enthusiasts is foot sprain. Even seasoned athletes can suffer from this condition. Depending on the severity of the sprained foot, movement involving the use of feet can be difficult and painful, forcing some runners to leave the track temporarily until fully recovered.

Sprains are injuries that result from the tearing or stretching of the ligaments which connect the bones, or of the joint capsules which are responsible for providing stability in the joint. Sprains usually occur after a direct or indirect trauma that caused the joint to fall out of its position. In the track, it normally occurs when running on an uneven surface. Its symptoms may include pain, inflammation and difficulty or inability to move the affected limb.

Just like tingling feet and strains, most cases of foot sprains and sprains affecting other parts of the body can be managed and treated at home.

Management and Home Care for Sprains

Managing sprain at home can be done by observing the PRICE method:

P – Protect the affected joint from further injury by using a support or by wearing appropriate shoes that can give your feet better support.

R – Rest from any physical activity especially from the one that caused the sprain for the next 48 to 72 hours following the injury.

I – Apply an Ice pack on the affected area three to four times daily at 15 minutes each time for the next three days after the injury.

C – Compress the injured joint to reduce swelling and to prevent any movement that could worsen the condition. An elasticated tubular bandage or ordinary elastic bandage can be used to snuggly wrap around the joint area, making sure it is not too tight to allow blood flow. The bandage should be removed before going to sleep.

E – Elevate the sprained area, if possible, to reduce swelling.

Aside from observing the PRICE therapy, affected individuals should also avoid HARM during the first 72 hours after suffering from a sprain.

H – Heat such as heat packs, saunas and hot baths

A – Alcoholic beverages which slow down healing and increase swelling and bleeding

R – Running and other forms of exercises which may cause further damage

M – Massage which increases swelling and bleeding

The recovery period for sprains largely depends on its severity. Joint movement without pain may already be possible several days after home care. However, full use of the affected area may not be possible until after six to eight weeks. For athletes, getting back to normal sporting activities may be possible after about eight to 12 weeks. In severe cases, some patients may still suffer from continued problems such as intermittent swelling or pain for many months or even years after suffering from the sprain.

When home management and treatment for sprains do not result to any improvement, but instead is making the symptoms worse, you should seek medical attention immediately.

Understanding Taste Disorder and Its Effects

Running in the track requires a considerable amount of energy. If you are weak, you may not be able to finish your race. That is why before any race, track and field athletes keep themselves at their prime health by regular practice, exercise, and most importantly, having a well-balanced diet. However, in some cases, eating the right foods may be difficult to achieve especially if your sense of taste is distorted. Any abnormalities in the sense of taste can cause a person to lack appetite and eventually lose weight. And this is what any athlete wants to avoid.

The sense of taste has a reputation of being difficult to diagnose and treat. One reason for this is that most cases of taste disorders are not the diseases in themselves but are a sign of another underlying condition. There are also patients who reported having problems with their sense of taste but in actuality, their condition is related to a problem in their sense of smell, as the two are very closely related. The prevalence of taste disorder is also unknown as many patients try to self-medicate or neglect their condition.

Different Types of Taste Disorders

  • Phantom taste perception – characterized by lingering taste in the mouth which may include metal taste in mouth or salty taste in mouth
  • Ageusia – refers to the inability of a person to detect taste
  • Hypogeusia – a condition when a person does not completely lose his ability to taste, but with reduced ability to taste sour, bitter, sweet, salty and umami

Total loss of sense of taste is rare. More often, the patient actually experiences a loss of smell, causing that person to perceive a loss of taste.

Causes of Taste Disorder

Some people are born with this condition but some can develop it through illnesses or injury. Some of the common causes of taste disorder include:

  • Hormonal changes during pregnancy
  • Infection in the middle ear
  • Infection in the upper respiratory
  • Certain medications including antihistamines and antibiotics
  • Poisoning or exposure to toxic chemicals such as lead
  • Head injury
  • Radiation therapy in the head or neck
  • Some types of surgery in the nose, ear and throat
  • Dental problems and poor oral hygiene
  • Vitamin deficiency such as zinc deficiency
  • Other health conditions such as diabetes mellitus and gastric reflux

Treatment for Taste Disorder

Treatment for any abnormalities in the sense of taste is normally directed toward identifying the underlying cause and treating it. Once the underlying cause is treated, the patient will normally slowly regain his or her normal sense of taste. If the condition is caused by a certain medication, your doctor will normally find a substitute that will not affect your taste buds. As for the case of poisoning, emergency treatment is of utmost importance as it could be a life-and-death situation.

Effects of Loss Taste Disorder

If left untreated, any disturbance in the sense of taste can have some serious effect on the person. A person may suffer from inadequate nutritional intake which may lead to weight loss. It may also result to decreased psychological wellbeing and social pleasure.

While taste disorders are generally not life-threatening, this problem should be given ample attention because it can have a significant impact on the patient physically, socially and emotionally. So much more if you are an athlete as it can affect your general performance.

5 Home Remedies for Bronchitis

Track running is a sport that is normally only for people with a healthy respiratory system. Running especially in long distances can make breathing difficult for a healthy athlete, so much more for a person suffering from a problem in his or her respiratory system, such as bronchitis or pneumonia which causes shortness of breath. Breathing problems are a big issue for runners as they can cause any runner to lose concentration in the game, show poor performance, or in some cases just quit from the game to address the problem.

Of the various respiratory problems that can cause breathing difficulties, the most common are bronchitis and pneumonia. One can easily mistake bronchitis vs pneumonia because the two share a number of similar symptoms. However, they are entirely different conditions as bronchitis affects the bronchial tube, while pneumonia affects the lungs. Bronchitis is also less serious, with symptoms that may include hacking cough which may last for five or more days. Coughing also normally comes with green, yellow, white or clear phlegm. Low grade fever may also be occasionally present.

Fortunately, there are several effective bronchitis remedies that can be easily found at home:

  1. Thyme

Based on a German study, thyme and primrose can help reduce coughing and mucus and its production by more than 60 percent in patients with bronchitis. You can make a tea out of fresh thyme by steeping two teaspoons in a cup of boiling water. Drink thyme tea twice every day to speed up recovery.

  1. Oregano Oil

Oregano oil is a strong natural antibiotic with antioxidant properties. It is a proven home remedy, not just for flu but also for bronchitis. Its active ingredient carvacrol has anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties that work for easing chest congestion and helping bronchitis patients improve breathing. Oregano oil is available in capsule or liquid form.

  1. Garlic

Garlic contains a compound called allicin which has powerful antibacterial and antiviral properties. As remedy for bronchitis, finely chop organic garlic and mix it with raw honey. Directly swallow the mixture without chewing. Take this mixture twice daily until the symptoms subside.

  1. Onion

Another powerful natural antibiotic that can help in treating bronchitis is onion. The same procedure with garlic can be done with onion. For added benefit, chopped oregano leaves can also be added to the mixture. Drink it twice daily until the symptoms subside.

  1. Raw Honey

Raw honey by itself is already a good remedy for bronchitis. It has antioxidant properties as well as enzymes that boost the immune system and promote overall health. Adding a dash of cinnamon to a teaspoon of raw honey makes an effective remedy for bronchitis. You may drink it twice daily.

Bronchitis can pose a serious problem among athletes most especially to track runners. It is important that every runner is familiar with the symptoms of this condition and should apply the appropriate home remedies to treat the condition. If symptoms persist even after applying these home remedies, it is best to see your doctor for proper treatment.

Coping with Relationship Breakups

If you are an athlete, say a track and field runner, focusing on your sport is very important to win a competition. Distractions should be kept at a minimum; otherwise, your attention might be diverted to other things than practicing and mastering your skills. Focus is important not only during the actual race but also during practice. However, some forms of distraction are inevitable. Some of them are so serious that they can have a significant effect on the overall performance of a person, and one of them is relationship breakups.

A relationship can be an inspiration or a curse for runner. A failed relationship can lead to the downfall of a runner, if the situation is not carefully managed. Furthermore, a relationship breakup is not uncommon. It can happen to anyone including ordinary people, celebrities, athletes and even influential figures. It occurs in boyfriend-girlfriend relationships and even in marriage. Once it happens, it can affect the person emotionally, socially and even physically.

Recovering from a breakup can be very difficult and emotionally challenging. But there are ways on how to get over someone and easily cope with the breakup.

Take a break

Anyone who just went through a breakup needs a break. During this period, allow yourself to grieve and mellow down on your regular routine. It is normal to be not as productive as you usually are, or not be able to do the things you normally do. This is a good time for you to heal and re-energize emotionally. So focus more on the emotional aspect of your life and give the rest a second priority.

Don’t go through the rough times alone

It is easier to get over a breakup when you have someone to confide with like family or friends to whom you can share your feelings. Even people who have only child syndrome and are known to struggle in relating with other people should strive to talk about their feelings out to others. You could also join a support group with other people who are into similar situations. When you isolate yourself, you will just be prolonging the grieving process. But when you share your feelings with other people who can sympathize or empathize with you, the recovery will be faster.

Move on

Remember that your ultimate goal is to move on and not linger on the grieving process. It is okay to grieve and express your feelings but do not dwell on them. You have a life and getting stuck on your bad relationship will not do you any good. Moving on does not have to be abrupt. You could start by slowly returning to your normal personal routine prior to the breakup.

Get professional help

Not all people who go through breakups need professional help. However, if you don’t feel any improvement in your feelings despite trying the other steps outlined above, you may already be suffering from a serious case of depression. Such condition calls for professional help.

When you just went through a heart-breaking separation or divorce, don’t forget that recovery is possible. Just don’t let your situation overcome you; but instead, you should overcome it.

Managing Performance Anxiety in the Track

Anxiety is not uncommon among athletes including track and field athletes. Anxiety helps them stay focused and be able to sharpen their performance during the game. However, for some runners, they let anxiety overcome them. The pressure to win the race takes a toll on them, leading to performance anxiety, which in turn may result in poor performance.

Symptoms of performance anxiety include trouble in breathing and tightness in the chest. It is also normal to feel tense, nauseous or dizzy. Breathing and heart rate can also speed up, and in some cases, runners would experience blurry vision, muscle tension, clammy skin, sweaty palms or dry mouth.

Managing Performance Anxiety

Performance anxiety can significantly affect the performance of athletes. That is why it is important that every athlete should know how to personally manage this condition. There are several steps that can help avoid it.

  • Practice

Practice makes perfect. It is a famous saying that has some truth to it. Practicing can help you master the techniques in running, making it second nature. When practicing, it would be good to practice in a condition that simulates the actual competition so that when you are in the actual competition, you will be more confident in facing it.

  • Breathe deeply

Before the race starts, take a deep breath to relax your muscles and cover your nervousness. Do it several times until you feel more comfortable.

  • Visualize

Try to visualize yourself once the go signal is given. Plan out your strategies to win the game, but also anticipate some challenges you might face. It is one of the best ways to prepare for the competition.

  • Focus on what you can do

During the actual race, think on what you can do to win it. Avoid thinking about the “what ifs” such as what if I stumble, what if I get sprained, and so on.

  • Do your best

In any type of competition, just do your best regardless of your circumstances. Even if your opponents are taller or more experienced, simply doing your best can give a boost in your performance. Being in the “here and now” allows you to apply whatever you have practiced and to give it your winning performance.

  • Be optimistic

It will make a lot of difference when you are optimistic in your sport. When faced with challenges, always think that there is a way around it. Always think, “Yes, it can be done” rather than, “It’s impossible.” Oftentimes, self-imposed pressure can drag your performance instead of making it better.

Unlike relationship anxiety and other types of anxiety problems, performance anxiety is easily manageable. And you may not have to take any supplements for anxiety to prevent it.

The prevalence of performance anxiety in sports is undeniable. Many athletes in various sports suffer from this condition, even the seasoned and experienced ones. When you think that you are prone to this type of anxiety, consider the steps mentioned above. They apply not only to track and field athletes but also to players in any other sport.

What to Feed and Not to Feed Bunny Pets

What to eat and not to eat? This is a frequently asked question among track and field runners when a competition is almost coming. Runners can only achieve optimum performance when they have the ideal body weight. Being overweight or underweight can have a significant effect on their performance. To achieve the ideal weight especially if the competition is just a few weeks away, many athletes observe a strict diet that involves avoiding and consuming certain foods, allowing them to shed or earn extra pound.

While selective eating is common among humans especially for those who are observing a certain diet plan, the same applies to animals, particularly to bunnies. Various bunny breeds are gaining in popularity as house pets because of their naturally quiet and gentle nature. However, even with their increasing popularity, many owners are not yet very knowledgeable about some bunny facts concerning the care and maintenance these animals need. In particular, owners need to know what to feed and what not to feed their pet since some foods which may be okay for other pets may have an adverse effect on bunnies, which may even cause their death.

Foods That Are Okay for Bunnies

  • Grass and hay – The bulk of bunny diet should be composed of either or both grass and hay. They should have a continuous supply of these staple foods to keep their digestive system working. However, owners should ensure that the grass is not treated with pesticides and other chemicals.
  • Rabbit pellets – Pellets may also be given to bunnies but this food must be given sparingly and should never be the only source of their nutrition.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables – Contrary to popular belief that rabbits generally feed on carrots and lettuce, this belief may not be true in real life. Owners can feed their bunnies with carrots along with other vegetables such as watercress, sprouts, parsley and wheat grass, but only as an added supplement to their diet and only when the bunny is about six months old or older. Lettuce should be avoided. Apples may also be given in small portions. Too much vegetables or fruits in their diet causes bloating as bunnies cannot burp or pass gas, which normally results when they eat these foods.

Foods That Should Not Be Given to Bunnies

  • Lettuce – Lettuce is high in lactucarium which causes diarrhea in bunnies and can oftentimes become fatal to them
  • Common vegetables – Cabbage, swedes, potato tops, parsnips and tomato leaves as they can also cause abdominal problems to bunnies

Bunnies have sensitive tummies, which make them prone to abdominal problems if they are given the wrong food. Sadly, these animals can hardly recognize what foods are good and what foods are not good for them as they tend to muster almost anything edible given to them. Care must be exercised by their owners on giving their pet the right nutrition. The choice of the right and wrong foods can make a big difference in the overall health of your bunny.

Catfishing Basics for Beginners

If you are into a particular sport such as track running, spending all of your time for practice can easily wear you down. That is why runners are also encouraged to engage in recreational activities or hobbies that allow them to temporarily keep their minds off their sport and simply relax and enjoy. Doing so can help them feel rejuvenated and be at their best condition once they get back to practice.

One of the best activities that runners can try is catfishing. It is an activity that anybody can try and enjoy as it does not require expertise or expensive gadgets. If you have the basic gear, catfish bait and tackle, you are almost ready to get started. One of the most enjoyable things about catfishing is the wide range of catfish types that can inhabit a particular body of water. Popular among anglers are the Cory catfish, flathead catfish, channel catfish, giant catfish and bullhead catfish.

Before finally getting started, it would be good to be familiar first with some basic information about catfishing.

Choosing the Equipment for Catfishing

The equipment to use for catfishing largely depends on the size of catfish inhabiting the waters where you will go fishing. If you target streams, ponds and small rivers, catfish in these bodies of water generally range from 2 to 15 pounds, so your equipment should be based on these sizes. For the most basic, you could purchase a reliable rod and a medium size combo for 20 pounds fishing line. This equipment is easiest to master for beginners.

Hooks for Catfishing

Best recommended hook for beginners is the j-style hook or # 4, #5, #6 bait holder hook.

Sinkers for Catfishing

The type of sinker to use also depends on the water where you will be fishing. For waters with low or no current such as ponds and lakes, the ideal sinker to use is 1-ounce egg sinker. For streams and rivers with current, it would be good to use at least a 2-ounce egg sinker.

Bait for Catfishing

There is a wide variety of readily available bait for catfishing. This includes dough baits, cheese baits, dip baits and preserved natural baits. However, the success rate is higher if fresh natural bait is used instead such as worms, insects, chicken, shrimp, and beef livers among others.

When to Fish

Generally, it is best to start catfishing in the spring. And when you do, it is best to go before sunrise or earlier. During early morning, catfish are active as it is their feeding time. You can easily get a good catch when they are in groups and are feeding. When the sun is up, catfishes tend to be less active, so it is not wise to go fishing in the afternoon. Fishing at night can also give a good yield, but it would be good to go out around midnight until very early morning.

Catfishing can be an enjoyable and fulfilling activity, not just for runners but for others looking for a diversion from their otherwise stressful career. This basic guide should be able to guide anyone who might be interested in this activity and try it for the first time.

Developing Closer Runner Athlete and Coach Relationship

In our society, developing good relationships is very important. Regardless of what type of relationship it may be, a good one can promote happiness, harmony and productivity. Among athletes, especially track runners, the relationship with coaches is vital to mastering techniques and developing personal characteristics that can help in winning any competition. A relationship between a runner and a coach often makes a significant difference between failure and success in the field.

To develop a good relationship between a runner and coach, it requires more than just compatibility in their personalities. It is different from the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) relationships where the success of a relationship is generally predicted based on the compatibility of the personalities of people involved. For instance, INFJ relationships and ENFJ relationships are commonly perceived to succeed because of the many positive attributes of both the INFJs and ENFJs. In the world of sports, especially in track and field, both parties should exert extra effort to make the relationship work, regardless if their personalities are compatible or not.

Runners and coaches should achieve a high level of understanding in different areas to have a good working relationship. These areas include:

infj relationshipsPersonal and Professional Relationship

A runner and a coach should feel at ease with each other. This is only possible if a close relationship exists both personally and professionally, personally as friends and not secret enemies, and professionally as an athlete-coach. Closeness helps promote respect and trust for each other. When an athlete trusts his or her coach, it allows for more open communication which can help the coach identify the athlete’s areas of concern in the sport. That way, training will be directed more toward developing those areas, thereby helping the athlete grow and improve in performance.


A coach and a runner should be “on the same page” and work from there. This means that both parties should aim for the same end-goal. If the coach is aiming for the gold medal but the runner is aiming to just get through it, the differences in the orientation would cost any possible winning. Having an open communication is vital to understanding the goals of each party involved. With the same goal in mind, both parties can then work together to achieve that goal.


Complementarity in a relationship is that feeling when you feel that you need the other person to grow and be the best that you can be. Developing this area is also vital in any runner-coach relationship to achieve success in the sport. An athlete should not feel that he can stand on his own without a coach. That is when the downfall usually happens. The same is true for coaches. If the coach does not believe on the capabilities of the athlete, there is no point in maintaining the relationship.

If you are a runner or athlete in any other field, it is best to start off developing a good relationship with a good coach before eyeing for the winning prize. The kind of relationship between an athlete and a coach would spell a big difference between success and failure in any sport.


5 Common Diseases Humans Can Get From Cats

roundworms in catsAnyone who is an athlete knows the importance of good health to be successful in any sport. This is why track and field runners are encouraged to eat a well-balanced diet, exercise regularly, and have a healthy lifestyle in order to be at their best health. However, no matter how you take care of your health, diseases are inevitable and sometimes, they may come from the least expected sources: pets.

Many people are not aware that animals, particularly cats, can spread diseases to humans they frequently come in contact with. These diseases are collectively termed as zoonoses. Cat owners ought to know what these diseases are to not be caught unprepared.

  1. Toxoplasmosis

This type of cat infection is caused by a parasite called toxoplasma gondii which reproduces in the lining of the cat’s intestines. It can be a dangerous disease among pregnant women as it may cause miscarriage, still birth or congenital toxoplasmosis among infants. If a person is infected, symptoms may vary greatly but would include fever, swollen lymph nodes and a feeling of malaise. The parasite is normally transmitted when a person fails to wash his or her hands after contact with the feces of infected cats, or by eating raw fresh produce harvested from soil with contaminated cat feces.

  1. Rabies

Rabies is a life-threatening viral infection that attacks the brain and spinal cord. The virus is normally present in the saliva of an infected dog or cat and spreads to humans through its bites. Symptoms of rabies may include fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, depression, insomnia, restlessness and rising paralysis. It could take around 20 to 60 days before any symptom can be manifested. Any case of cat bite should be considered as a medical emergency, particularly if the cat is showing abnormal behavior prior to the bite.

  1. Cat scratch disease

This is a bacterial disease that is commonly spread by kittens or young cats through licking, scratching or biting. Its symptoms include the appearance of crusty blisters that are reddish in appearance, which usually can be found around the area where the cat has scratched. These blisters normally come with headaches and fever as well as swollen lymph nodes.

  1. Cryptosporidiosis

Cryptosporidiosis is an infection caused by the tiny parasites cryptosporidium parvum. This type of parasite produces eggs which can survive for about three months in a moist environment. A cat owner can be infected with cryptosporidiosis through direct contact with the animal or by eating foods contaminated with the feces of an infected cat. In humans, it is a self-limiting disease with symptoms that may include abdominal cramps and diarrhea.

  1. Plague

Plague is another serious condition in the list of diseases spread by cats to humans. The germ Yersinia pestis which causes this condition can spread to humans through a bite of a flea that has fed on an infected cat. Plague can cause large abscesses and sores in the arms and legs, but it is treatable with antibiotics.

While you should care for a pet that has roundworms in cats or mange in cats and other diseases, those diseases that can be spread to humans deserve much more attention. Seek medical attention when you are in doubt on whether or not you are infected with any of the conditions listed above.


5 Home Remedies for Kidney Stones

The kidney is one of the most vital organs in the body. It performs many crucial functions which include natural detoxification and helping the body get rid of toxins. The kidney is also responsible for producing renin which helps in regulating blood pressure and erythropoietin which stimulates the production of red blood cells. Unfortunately, all these functions can be hampered by various conditions affecting the organ, the most common of which are kidney stones.

Kidney stones are prevalent among athletes especially track runners and those involved in long distance high endurance events. More often, runners are not aware that they have this condition because they have no idea on what do kidney stones feel like. This condition especially affects track runners who don’t drink adequate water during practice or while in a competition. Without adequate fluid intake, the urine can become too concentrated, allowing the substances found in the urine to stick to each other and form stones. Symptoms may include painful urination, frequent urination in small amounts, excessive sweating, nausea and vomiting.

One positive note about kidney stones is that they are generally not a life-threatening condition and several home remedies for kidney stones may actually be effective in treating this condition.

  1. Basil

Basil is considered to be a great tonic for kidneys. It can help maintain overall kidney health and induce the passing of stones in the urinary tract.

Application: one teaspoon of basil juice combined with a teaspoon of raw honey to be taken daily for six months. It could also be taken without the honey. Another option is to prepare a tea by steeping five basil leaves in boiling water and drinking the tea once it has cooled. The tea can also be taken with or without honey.

  1. Pomegranate Juice

The juice of the pomegranate juice can also be taken as a natural remedy for kidney stones.

Application: a glass of pomegranate juice or one whole fruit, whichever is available; to be taken daily until any improvement shows up.

  1. Lemon Juice and Olive Oil

The combination of these two ingredients is a traditional home remedy for gallbladder stones, but it may also work for kidney stones.

Application: Combine a quarter of a cup fresh lemon juice with the same amount of olive oil. This mixture should be taken three times daily for three days. When drinking the mixture, it should be followed by drinking plenty of water.

  1. Watermelon

Watermelon is an effective remedy for kidney stones, particularly those that are composed of calcium, carbonates or magnesium phosphates. Watermelon is high in potassium and water which are both vital for overall kidney health.

Application: Consume watermelon regularly.

  1. Celery

Celery has anti-spasmodic properties that make it effective in relieving pain associated with kidney stones. It also has diuretic properties which help increase the amount of urine, thereby allowing the stones to flush out easily.

Application: Daily consumption of celery juice can prevent the formation of more stones and also help in flushing them out. Aside from fresh celery juice, celery herbal tea is also widely available for the same purpose.

These home remedies may or may not work as expected. If the condition does not show any improvement despite trying any of these home remedies, see your doctor for advice.

Different Ways to Treat Acne

Acne is a condition that affects a significant number of people from teens to adults. Although it is not a deadly condition, it can affect a person’s life physically, emotionally and even socially. Acne, especially the severe types such as the nodular acne, normally leaves unsightly skin blemishes and tiny holes on the skin. Depending on the extent of the skin damage, it can cause a person be become self-conscious or even lose his or her confidence.

Acne develops when the skin pores are clogged with oil and dirt. This is more common among people with a naturally oily skin. It is also common among runners and other athletes whose routines allow them to sweat more frequently. Track and field runners often practice outdoors under the blazing heat of the sun, causing them to sweat excessively. When the sweat is not washed away immediately by bathing, it can irritate the already existing acne as well as attract dirt and dust which can clog the pores, leading to the formation of new acne. That is why it is not uncommon for runners to have acne in various parts of the body including the face, scalp and back.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for acne, but certain treatment options are available to control and manage it. The goal of acne treatment is to inhibit the production of sebum and reduce bacterial growth which contributes to acne. Some treatments are also directed toward clearing the skin spots or reducing their future formation and encouraging the unclogging of pores and shedding of skin cells to promote new skin growth.

wash faceSelf-Care Treatment

  • Wash the affected area twice daily with mild soap and lukewarm water. Any less may cause the dirt to accumulate and clog the pores, and any more can irritate the skin, causing the symptoms to become worse.
  • Don’t squeeze or prick blackheads and nodules as they can cause scarring.
  • Avoid using oil-based skin care products and cosmetics as they can block the pores.
  • Do not go to bed without removing make-up.
  • Shower as soon as possible after doing activities that cause you to sweat.

Pharmaceutical Treatments

Aside from observing self-care, the following over-the-counter and prescription medications may also be used for treatment:

  • Topical treatments in the form of lotion, gel and cream that contain salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide
  • Antibiotic tablet or topical cream
  • Topical retinoids
  • Azelaic acid
  • Isotretinoin tablets

Many of these medications can take months before the results become noticeable; but in some cases, they may not work at all.

Non-pharmaceutical Treatments

When all else fails, non-pharmaceutical treatments which are more aggressive forms of treatment may be recommended by your doctor. These include:

  • Chemical peels – Chemical peels such as salicylic acid peel are an acne treatment that causes the skin to peel off, allowing new skin to grow.
  • Comedone extractor – This is a treatment method where a small instrument that looks like a pen is used to clear out blackheads and whiteheads.
  • Light therapy – This treatment method involves the use of light to improve the appearance of the affected area.

Non-pharmaceutical treatments should be the last resort in treating acne. Acne can be hard to treat because it can develop or recur anytime. It is important for patients to thoroughly discuss with their dermatologists the best course of action to control and manage this condition.


General Overview on Folliculitis

If you are a track runner, keeping yourself in good health is very important because track is a physical sport requiring a lot of energy and focus. If you are suffering even from seemingly insignificant skin problems such as scabs on scalp or scalp folliculitis, running can become more challenging. Most skin problems, particularly folliculitis, are usually itchy and painful. The itchiness can be hard to control and it may occur anytime. If the itching and pain occurs while you are on the track, they can easily distract you and affect your overall performance.

Whether you are a runner, a famous person or an ordinary individual, you may suffer from folliculitis, a condition characterized by irritating skin rash that can develop into fluid-filled bumps. It is a type of infection that develops when the hair follicles become clogged with dirt, oil fungus or bacteria. Folliculitis may appear in different parts of the body but it is more common in the scalp.

Risk Factors of Folliculitis

You are at risk of folliculitis if you:

  • Frequent hot tubs, swimming pools or whirlpools that are not treated properly with chlorine
  • Often wear tight clothing
  • Take steroid creams or antibiotics for a long period of time
  • Use oil-based make-up and other skin care products which may clog the follicles
  • Have a wound, cut or scrape that is infected since the bacteria can spread to the surrounding hair follicles
  • Are suffering from conditions that affect your body’s ability to fight infections
  • Are sharing your personal items such as comb, washcloth and towels

scalp folliculitisSymptoms of Folliculitis

Folliculitis initially appears like red pimples with a hair growing in the middle of each one. These pimple-like lumps may or may not have lumps in them. They are also usually itchy and painful. Folliculitis acquired after bathing in a hot tub more often appears about 72 hours after bathing. Most cases of folliculitis normally go away in about two weeks.

Treatment for Folliculitis

The following steps for personal care can be done at home to prevent folliculitis from worsening and to allow for faster healing:

  • Apply warm compress on the affected area using equal parts white vinegar and warm water. This can help soothe the itching.
  • If the folliculitis is on the scalp, medicated shampoos may also promote healing.
  • If your condition does not improve after two weeks despite personal care, you may have to see a dermatologist who can recommend an appropriate treatment for you. Common treatment normally includes the use of antifungal pills or antibiotics.

Additionally, see your doctor at any time if your folliculitis comes with other symptoms, including:

  • Fever of 101 degrees Fahrenheit or higher
  • Recurring folliculitis
  • If the lumps become swollen, reddish in color, warm and more painful

Folliculitis is a non-life threatening condition and is also preventable. You can prevent it by avoiding the risk factors listed above. For track and field runners, a general knowledge on the risk factors and personal care for folliculitis is vital to avoid this condition or to recover from it quickly.