On the eve of Holi, doctors here have warned that dry colours may cause more harm to the eye as compared to liquid colours.
According to Shantanu Mukherji, a senior consultant with the Sharp Sight Eye Hospitals, "Synthetic colours contain harmful agents like industrial dyes and alkalis, which are incredibly toxic for the human skin, especially the eyes.
Their use can also cause symptoms like irritation, redness, allergies and even permanent loss of vision in case of severe chemical injury to the eye."
"The other thing that causes eye problems is poor hygiene. If one tries to remove colour by rubbing the eye with dirty fingers, it may expose one to the risk of infective conjunctivitis," he added.
Talking about skin problems after Holi, dermatologist Amit Bangia advised applying oil on exposed skin before playing Holi.
"Use colours made from natural ingredients as much as possible like rose petal, marigold flowers, turmeric, beet root etc. Remove colour with mild face wash and moisturise the skin after cleaning the color," he said.
Bangia also said that the festival of Holi involves close proximity in large gatherings, which is a perfect recipe for the spread of Covid.
Children who are not vaccinated and the elderly who are susceptible to complications should avoid playing Holi, he added.
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London: Seven in ten long Covid patients experience concentration and memory problems several months after the initial onset of their disease, with many performing worse than their peers on cognitive tests, according to twin studies.
In the studies led by University of Cambridge, researchers showed that half of the patients reported difficulties in getting medical professionals to take their symptoms seriously. It was likely because cognitive symptoms do not get the same attention as lung problems or fatigue.
In a study of 181 long Covid patients, 78 per cent reported difficulty concentrating, 69 per cent reported brain fog, 68 per cent reported forgetfulness, and 60 per cent reported problems finding the right word in speech. These self-reported symptoms were reflected in significantly lower ability to remember words and pictures in cognitive tests.
Participants carried out multiple tasks to assess their decision-making and memory. These included remembering words in a list, and remembering which two images appeared together.
The results revealed a consistent pattern of ongoing memory problems in those who had suffered Covid-19 infection. Problems were more pronounced in people whose overall ongoing symptoms were more severe.
To help understand the cause of the cognitive issues, the researchers investigated other symptoms that might be linked.
They found that people who experienced fatigue and neurological symptoms, like dizziness and headache, during their initial illness were more likely to have cognitive symptoms later on. They also found that those who were still experiencing neurological symptoms were particularly impaired on cognitive tests.
The researchers noted that their results support other findings that suggest society will face a 'long tail' of workforce illness due to long Covid. It is therefore important not just for the sake of individuals, but for broader society, to be able to prevent, predict, identify and treat issues associated with long Covid.
"Long Covid has received very little attention politically or medically. It urgently needs to be taken more seriously, and cognitive issues are an important part of this. When politicians talk about aLiving with Covid' - that is, unmitigated infection, this is something they ignore. The impact on the working population could be huge," said Dr Lucy Cheke, a researcher in the University of Cambridge's Department of Psychology. (agency)
Read More► Severe Covid Linked to Long-Term Adverse Mental Health Risk: Lancet
Women across the country are aware of how nutrition is closely associated with skin health. The food we eat is as important as the products for our skin, as healthy glowing skin is hard to achieve on a poor diet even with the strictest skincare regime.
It is evident in the survey that highlights a shift in consumers' preferences towards a healthy lifestyle and natural alternatives for daily diet.
According to a recent survey conducted between 7th to 22nd December by YouGov, a research consulting firm, 72 per cent of women in India find healthy dietary changes as an important step for beautiful looking skin.
Overall, the results indicate that majority of the females prefer to snack on healthy and nutritious food items such as almonds and fruits as they recognize the beauty benefits of fruits and almonds in particular.
Talking specifically in terms of maintaining a healthy diet, most women see a consequent benefit of achieving beautiful looking skin with home meals, a fibre-rich diet and snacking on nuts like almonds.
Almonds have emerged as a top choice amongst Indian women as they associate Vitamin E with better skin health. Besides, the survey highlights the fact that 59 percent of women consume almonds on a daily basis, mostly soaked or raw. This makes almonds the most regularly consumed nut.
Females of the age group 30-39 and Millennials rate almonds highly on aspects such as wrinkle reduction, skin glow and skin protection. Whereas Gen X highly associates the consumption of almonds with the reduction of wrinkles.
This assessment is reinforced by their personal experience as they report having observed positive effects on skin after eating almonds.
In fact, those who have been consuming almonds for over 6 months report positive impacts such as skin glow and younger-looking skin more than those who started consuming almonds lately.
Commenting on the results of the survey, Sheela Krishnaswamy, Nutrition and Wellness Consultant, said, "It is great to see survey results indicating stronger adoption of the idea that a healthy lifestyle, including healthy snacking, can elevate one's skin health.
For years now, I have been recommending almonds as a natural healthy snack for better skin health. Almonds are known to be a rich source of antioxidant vitamin E and deliver essential fatty acids and polyphenols, which make them a great choice.
A recent study suggests that almonds can help improve facial wrinkles and skin tone, a finding that supports the belief that almonds promote skin health among survey participants. I urge women to include them into their daily diet, to support healthier skin."
The quantitative survey by YouGov aimed to assess the correlation between beauty and snacking, and understand women's snacking patterns for beauty benefits.
The survey was conducted amongst a sample size of 3,959 women in cities like Delhi, Lucknow, Ludhiana, Jaipur, Indore, Kolkata, Bhubaneshwar, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Pune, Bangalore, Coimbatore, Hyderabad and Chennai. (N. Lothungbeni Humtsoe)
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Besides being the largest organ, our skin is also quite adaptable-when seasons gradually roll on from one to another, it acclimatises to the prevalent one. But even something as adaptable can react adversely when faced with sudden, brutal climate changes.
Blame It On Climate Change
As a rule, a sizable variety of skin conditions and diseases are aggravated by climate change. Inflammatory skin conditions such as dermatitis or eczema are likely to flare up when air pollution or stress is on the rise, as is the case with skin allergies. So, how do you know if it's dehydration that's ailing your skin or dryness?
Dehydration or Dryness?
Dehydrated skin is completely different from dry skin. The former only lacks water and is a condition, while the latter needs additional natural oils or sebum to restore it to health and is a skin type.
While dry skin is something you are usually born with, the prevailing season, hormones or the skin's age may also play spoilsport and cause sebaceous glands to produce less than enough oils to keep it lubricated. Dry skin can also be a result of some health issues.
If your skin is dehydrated, it can co-exist with symptoms such as dullness, under-eye dark circles, itchiness, patchy skin along with the increased incidence of fine wrinkles. And if you are battling general dehydration characterised by dry mouth, light-headedness, etc., then your skin is also bound to suffer from the same.
Dry skin can show signs such as irritated red skin that is scaly with white flakes and is regularly associated with skin diseases such as eczema, psoriasis, etc.
How to Treat Dehydrated and Dry Skin?
Dehydrated: Dehydrated skin is in dire need of water; so increasing water intake always helps, as will reduction in consumption of diuretics such as caffeine that drains water from the body. In addition, if you add an external barrier in the form of an emollient or cream to the outer layer of your skin, you're making additional preparation to protect it from moisture loss.
Dry: Dry skin type, on the other hand, needs intense care from within as well as on the outside and usually all year round. While during in-between climates, it fares more poorly, the skin type in general needs additional care.
So, in the present climate, ensure that you keep your skin moisturised at all times and keep it away from too much water and definitely hot water. Absolutely nothing dries the skin out more than these factors and harsh chemicals. So choose only the heaviest emollients that are chemical-free.
You may also consider adding a humidifier to the house during the winter months and this sometimes hot, sometimes cold climate. If you still feel the need for something extra, after the daily nighttime CTM regime, consider adding a gel mask to the bed. This will keep your skin cocooned in moisture all the hours you're asleep and on waking you will find plump happy skin waiting to be revealed,
In this weather, you will find plant, seed or nut oils such as shea, almond and coconut nourishing for dry skin care while lactic and citric acids work great for the dehydrated condition.
Products that work for both conditions: Then there are those multitasking ingredients that work great for both, such as the ultra-nourishing hyaluronic acid and ceramide. Both seal in the oils into the skin barrier thus boosting its performance and preventing moisture loss.
You can achieve healthy and glowing skin by adding a skin booster treatment or bio-remodeler to your regime, such as Profhilo, which is an ultra-pure hydrating hyaluronic acid in a rich dose delivered directly to your skin and lasts long.
It is because Profhilo is a bio-remodeler, it stimulates collagen production, which improves skin tone, radiance, hydration, and suppleness, making your skin looks firm and moisturised. And your damaged skin will be replaced by a healthy sheen. (Dr. Chiranjiv Chabra, Cosmetic Dermatologist, Director Alive Wellness Clinics)
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Thyroid disorders are quickly becoming one of the most common health concerns in India, with more than 42 million people suffering from some form of thyroid disorder. Also, 1 in every 10 people in India has thyroid problems such as hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, and thyroid cancer, and over 60 per cent of them go undiagnosed.
It can affect people of all ages, but women are more likely to be affected because it is often inherited from family members and also results from iodine deficiency. While traditional treatments usually focus on drugs and surgery, eastern treatments like acupuncture can effectively manage thyroid issues. While acupuncture has many applications, it has proven to be especially effective in the safe and natural treatment of all types of hormonal imbalances.
What is Thyroid?
The thyroid happens to be a butterfly-shaped gland that is situated at the front of the neck. The gland is responsible for metabolism, energy, hormone regulation, body weight, and blood calcium levels.It is one of the endocrine glands that make hormones.
Hyperthyroidism and Hypothyroidism
Hyperthyroidism, or overactive thyroid, occurs when the thyroid gland produces too much thyroxine hormone. Similarly, hypothyroidism, or underactive thyroid, is a condition in which the thyroid gland doesn't produce enough of certain crucial thyroid hormones. Here are the symptoms of hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism:
Weight loss despite good appetite
Increased heart rate, higher blood pressure, heart palpitations, nervousness and excessive perspiration
Frequent bowel movements, sometimes accompanied by diarrhoea
Shorter or lighter menstrual periods
Development of a goiter (an enlargement in the neck)
Lethargy, depression or slower mental processes
Increased sensitivity to cold
Reduced heart rate
Numbness or tingling in the hands
Heavy menstrual periods or dry hair and skin
Hormones are like messengers in the body that are responsible for numerous functions, such as overseeing the regulation of sleep cycles, emotional health, reproduction, physical growth, metabolism, mental acuity, body temperature, the immune system, and energy levels.
When they go out of balance, all of the body's systems can be adversely affected. Fluctuations can be a natural occurrence, but long-term imbalances are not. That is why it is important to get diagnosed by testing the levels of thyroid hormones in the blood.
How Acupuncture Helps
According to traditional Chinese medicine philosophy, most diseases stem from imbalances in the key energies of the body and spirit. "Qi" which can be defined as life force energy, flows along pathways through the body known as "meridians".
It must be kept strong and flowing freely. If Qi is weak or the meridians are blocked, certain organs will not get the nourishment they require, and illness will result.
Acupuncture is a process that involves inserting very thin needles into the skin at specific points on the body that coordinate with particular pathways of Qi. By targeting these meridians or pathways, an acupuncture practitioner aims to bring back into balance a disruption of Qi believed to cause thyroid disorders or other symptoms of a disease.
According to the British Acupuncture Council, acupuncture can treat thyroid disease in many ways, such as:
Lowering thyroid hormone levels in patients with hyperthyroidism
Increasing thyroid hormone levels in people with hypothyroidism
Reducing sensitivity to stress and pain, as well as promoting relaxation
Improving joint mobility and muscle stiffness by increasing blood circulation in small blood vessels
Enhancing the release of the chemical adenosine, which reduces sensitivity to pain
Reducing inflammation by helping in the release of vascular and immunomodulatory factors
Along with acupuncture, certain lifestyle changes like a diet rich in calcium, protein, magnesium, and iodine help support thyroid function. Also, certain foods known as goitrogens may interfere with thyroid hormone production and should be limited.
These include cruciferous vegetables (e.g., cabbage, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts), soy, and peanuts. Stress-reducing exercises like yoga or tai chi can also be helpful. (Dr.Srividya Nandakumar - Senior Naturopath, Jindal Naturecure Institute)
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While heart disease has been one of the major health concerns in India, Covid-19 has exacerbated the condition significantly, said experts on Monday.
According to the Global Burden of Disease, nearly a quarter (24.8 per cent) of all deaths in India is due to cardiovascular diseases (CVD).
"Heart disease and Covid are intricately linked. If you remove the 'O' and 'I', Covid becomes CVD. Covid- 19 is like a stress test for the heart," Dr Ramakanta Panda, cardiac surgeon and head of Asian Heart Institute, Mumbai, told IANS.
"Covid affects the heart in 20 per cent of the cases," added Dr Bipin Kumar Dubey, Head of Department and Consultant, Cardiology, HCMCT Manipal Hospitals, New Delhi.
The cardiologists explained that Covid affects the heart in two ways: first it blocks the coronary artery, second it results in the weakening of the heart muscles.
For people who already have a blockage, Covid can cause a full blockage. In those that do not have a blockage, sudden clots can form, leading to a heart attack.
In the case of weak heart muscles, these cannot pump blood, patients become breathless, and the risk of an attack increases.
Typically, Covid causes heart conditions in those above 60, and with some form of blockage in their body, or co-morbidities like hypertension, obesity, diabetes, or are smokers.
However, Dubey noted: "In the last few days, I have seen asymptomatic patients come in, and complain of pain and then suffer from a heart attack.
"It is not dependent on how severe Covid is. Even asymptomatic patients can suffer from heart attacks and heart related issues."
Even a mild case of Covid-19 can increase a person's risk of cardiovascular problems for at least a year after diagnosis, according to a recent study published in the journal Nature Medicine.
Researchers found that rates of many conditions, such as heart failure and stroke, were substantially higher in people who had recovered from Covid than in similar people who hadn't had the disease.
"The logic is simple: Covid is known to affect the lungs. The air we breathe contains oxygen and goes to our lungs. When the lungs don't do their job, the heart gets stressed and has to work harder. This increased demand for oxygen may cause heart rhythm disturbances; which in turn might lead to heart attack or heart failure," Panda said.
He stated that Covid unmasks silent cardiac symptoms among people with previously undiagnosed heart disease. Further, Panda noted that several chemicals are released by the body to fight the Covid virus.
"These can also weaken heart muscles causing clotting of blood among infected patients. Hence, Covid-19 can also present itself as heart disease," he said. (Rachel V Thomas)
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