A diabetes diagnosis may mean that you’ll have to change some of your familiar routines, but it doesn’t have to break the bank. Living a healthy and active lifestyle while managing diabetes is well within your reach.

1) Pack a lunch and cook dinner at home

Packing a lunch for work or school and cooking dinner at home means you can save money on eating out. Because you control what goes into the food you make, you can also avoid foods that may disrupt your blood glucose levels. The ADA has an entire section of budget-friendly recipes on their website that you can try. To save even more money, prepare food in larger batches and economize by eating leftovers.

2) Buy diabetic supplies in bulk

Many supplies used for diabetes care have a long shelf life. For those supplies that don’t expire quickly, consider buying in bulk, especially when they are on sale. You can save a lot of money by buying test strips, syringes, glucose tablets, and other such supplies in large quantities at one time. If you’re using an insulin pump you’ll have a different set of supplies to keep handy.

3) Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Try to recycle, reuse, and repurpose household items to save money when you can. For example, you can prepare a sharps container from an empty bottle of laundry detergent. Simply label the container “Sharps. Biohazard. Do not recycle,” fill the container to two-thirds full with your used syringes, and seal the container with its screw cap. You can ask your local health department about disposal options available in your area.

Using green products and devices presents savings opportunities while also being good for the environment. Many diabetes management tools offer sustainable technology, take Tandem’s t:slim insulin pump for example, which uses a rechargeable battery. You can save money on buying new batteries and feel good about keeping more waste out of landfills.

4) Join a local diabetes support group

Most metropolitan areas and some smaller communities have diabetes support groups available for you to join. These groups can be an invaluable resource for cost saving tips, and the meetings themselves can provide a valuable social outlet that comes at no cost to you. Ask your fellow members where they get their supplies. If you meet someone who uses supplies similar to yours, figure out whether he or she gets a better deal than you do, and if so, consider changing your buying practices.

5) Watch your diet

Eating a diet that allows you to regulate your blood sugar levels can save you more money than you think. That indulgent, sugary midnight snack might not seem too expensive, but if it spikes your blood sugar and requires an extra bolus of insulin, the costs can quickly add up. If your diet allows you to administer less insulin, that’s less insulin you need to buy, and less money you need to spend.

6) Look into free samples

Diabetic supply companies and doctors’ offices often have free samples on hand that you can try. Consider asking your doctor what the latest innovations are in diabetic supplies and whether he or she has any samples you might be able to test out. Similarly, you can call the manufacturers of supplies you use and ask them whether any samples are available. You won’t be able to get all of your supplies this way, but you may discover a cheaper alternative that meets your needs.

 


As effective as proper oral care can be to the overall well-being of an individual, if you ask the average person when their last dental visit was, chances are it’s been a while. There are of course varying reasons as to why this is such a common occurrence, but are any of them really logical? After all, taking care of your health is more than just eating right and exercising on the regular basis. It’s also about making sure that you see the appropriate medical professionals periodically to ensure that everything is working as it should. Just as missing an oil change on the car could leave you sitting on the side of the road, missing a dental appointment could leave you in poor condition.

The question still remains, what is it that keeps so many people from getting the help that they need from the dentist? More importantly, what can be done to remedy this?

  1. Dental Anxiety or Fear

According to WebMD, approximately 5-8% of individuals will skip out on the dentist altogether simply because they’re afraid. Dental anxiety is a real condition and it affects many. Whether they have a horrible experience in the past, or have simply heard stories from others, many will shy away from seeking treatment just to avoid the experience.

For Patients: There is nothing to be ashamed of in this instance. If you have a real fear of going to the dentist, you should not let this keep you from maintaining proper oral health. The best thing you can do in this scenario is talk with your dentist about your fears. Many dentists are aware of the anxieties and phobias that are out there and will do whatever they can to accommodate your fears.

For Dentists: The best thing you can do to ensure your patients’ comfort level is to treat every patient as if they have a fear or phobia. Pay attention to their needs, communicate when necessary, and celebrate them for being brave. Sensitivity training for your staff is also beneficial as your patients will feel welcomed from the moment they walk in the door.

  1. High Out of Pocket Expense

Whether insured or uninsured, the price tag for a dental procedure is often huge; something as simple as an x-ray and a cleaning can cost hundreds of dollars. Many patients, especially those without dental insurance or on a tight budget, avoid going for fear of having to pay too much to get treated. Many dental offices require large upfront payments and only offer financing to patients with stellar credit – which in many cases is not many people.

For Patients: If you are afraid that the dental costs will be too high, it is best to look around for dentists that offer flexible payment arrangements or discounted services. Many dentists have options that allow you to make monthly payments, or even sign up for preventative care insurance for a low fee which would take care of your annual cleanings and basic dental needs.

For Dentists: Of course you can’t go slashing your costs as you do need to make a living, however, finding ways to be more flexible with your patients and dental costs is beneficial to your practice. Look for low cost insurance options, dental discount programs, or even offer flexible payment arrangements for higher costing procedures.

  1. Lack of Knowledge

Another reason people stay away from the dentist is because their misinformed. Many might be under the assumption that as long as they brush their teeth and floss twice a day that they never need to set foot inside of a dentist office. Unfortunately, this is not the case as some oral conditions don’t show any symptoms and can be detrimental to your health.

For Patients: The best way to stay on top of your health is to be informed every step of the way. Talk to your dentist about providing you with information on the importance of oral health and various oral conditions that need to be treated right away. Knowing the consequences for not seeing the dentist on the regular basis can easily provoke you to schedule an appointment.

For Dentists: Solution Reach, a company that provides technological solutions for medical facilities, suggests that the best way to build patient relationships is through patient education. By providing your patients with up to date information as it pertains to their specific oral health, you will encourage them to keep their appointments.

The bottom line is that oral health is essential to overall health. Both patients and dentists play a crucial role in making sure that the best oral health is achieved. Patients must learn to communicate effectively with their dentists about their fears, anxieties, financial woes, and lack of knowledge. Dentists on the other hand need to improve their level of sensitivity, provide flexible options for all economic backgrounds, and communicate effectively in providing pertinent information to their patients. In doing this together, it is almost certain that the “dentist office visit” will no longer be taboo.

 


For individuals suffering from addiction, the decision to stop using drugs can be life-saving. However, for whatever reason, some people forego professional treatment in favor of an at-home detox and other self care methods. And while this decision is noble, the refusal to seek professional care can have dangerous consequences.

Keep reading to learn more about the importance of professional addiction treatment, including the impact it can have on physical health, psychological well-being and overall quality of life.

The Early Stages of Recovery: Why Professional Help is Crucial

Depending on the substance, the abrupt discontinuation of drugs can result in withdrawal symptoms. Drugs like alcohol, heroin, cocaine, narcotic painkillers and sedatives are associated with withdrawal symptoms that include the following:

  • Intense cravings for addictive substances.
  • Aches and pains in the muscles, bones and joints.
  • Nausea and vomiting, which increase the risks associated with dehydration.
  • Severe depression or anxiety.
  • Insomnia.
  • Hallucinations, especially in cases of alcoholism.
  • Tremors.
  • Fever, sneezing, chills and other flu-like symptoms.
  • High blood pressure, which can result in stroke and cardiovascular complications.
  • Risk of seizure.
  • Aggression or violent behaviors.
  • An increased risk of suicide and other types of self-harm.

Because of the risks associated with detoxification, undergoing this process in a medical setting is essential to the patient’s well-being, as well as to a healthy recovery. During inpatient detox, patients are closely monitored, and the risks associated with this process are significantly reduced. Also, since detox can result in strong cravings for drugs or alcohol, professional treatment can reduce the risk of relapse, and lay the groundwork for a successful recovery.

The Psychological Side of Addiction

Mental health plays an important role in the development of addiction. For example, for many people, substance abuse is used as a means of self-medicating the symptoms of depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder and other types of mental illness. If left untreated, mental illness can result in continued substance abuse, as well as a worsening of psychological disorders.

On the other hand, counseling, group therapy and other professional treatment methods are designed to address the underlying causes of addiction, as well as the debilitating effects of this disease. For example, during one-on-one counseling, patients are encouraged to explore their histories with addictive substances, and formulate coping strategies in the interest of lifelong health and sobriety. Plus, when it comes to mental illness, a trained professional can effectively diagnose conditions like depression and bipolar disorder, and prescribe medications that will keep symptoms at bay. Combined, medication and talk therapy can reduce the need to self-medicate with drugs and alcohol, and greatly enhance the odds of a successful, lasting recovery.

After Treatment: Staying Sober with Professional Help

Recovery is a lifelong process; even after completing a treatment program, the risk of relapse is significant. However, with professional followup care, continued sobriety is more easily achieved. For example, followup counseling, group therapy and other professional methods can help recovering addicts avoid addictive substances, as well as learn to live without the crutches of drugs and alcohol.

 

Addiction is a powerful disease with life-threatening consequences. And, for someone struggling with this illness, professional help can mean the difference between life and death. Through the proper treatment methods and the help of trained addiction specialists, this disease can be treated, safely and effectively.

Sources:

http://thecanyonmalibu.com/detox/dangers-at-home/

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000949.htm

http://archives.drugabuse.gov/TXManuals/IDCA/IDCA7.html


Sex is a pleasurable experience that most people enjoy. Why is it that certain people become addicted to it? There are myriad of factors that can lead to sex addiction, including both genetic and environmental factors. The difference between a normal interest in sex and addiction are the destructive nature of the addiction. Consequences to actions are not taken into account prior to the act, though guilt or remorse may be felt after it’s over. This is similar to other addictions like to drugs or gambling.

What is a Sex Addict?

What causes sex addiction is not readily understood. There does seem to a biochemical component as antidepressants and psychotropic medications can help to curb the addiction. Sexual interests, food, and drug abuse, follow the same reward system in the brain. Drug abuse is a combination of genetic and environmental pieces, which can combine into a dangerous addiction. Since sex is closely tied with drug abuse in the brain, the components that can form into sex addiction could possibly share the same components.

The sex addict has a greater euphoric response to sex that goes beyond what most people experience. This is similar to many drug addictions where the dopamine system of the brain is exploited by the drug. Sex addicts are more likely to have come from dysfunctional families and/or have been sexually abused. This suggests that environment is a factor in the expression of sex as an addiction. They also have trouble forming strong personal bonds in a relationship. There is a tendency to have multiple partners, because they cannot maintain a long term relationship. Unable to manage their sex lives, sex addicts dive into destructive behaviors such as prostitution and one-night-stands.

Treatment/Control

Most addicts cut themselves off from their addictions, but this is not necessarily an option for a sex addict. Sex is a healthy and normal adult behavior, and abstinence is not considered a feasible treatment for most people. The sex addict must learn to distinguish between healthy and non-healthy practices. It is difficult to treat sex addiction, because if the addict is to maintain sexual relations it is like teaching an alcoholic to be a social drinker only.

There are support groups like Sex Addicts Anonymous and Sexaholics Anonymous that work very similarly to Alcoholics Anonymous. This provides a support network to help the addict keep from acting upon their urges.

A better option is to seek out in-patient sex addiction rehab for men or women. Such programs can require at least a 30-day commitment. The length of the stay might be tied to the fact that sex is a natural human instinct: the time required to teach the brain how to have a healthy sexual relationship takes longer.

As mentioned above, medication can curb the habits of a sex addict. Just as other addictions are tied to anxiety and depression, sex addicts also suffer from these ailments. A course of drug therapy can help both the addiction and the mental illness.

Untreated sexual addiction can lead to many undesirable results. The addict’s unchecked urges can lead to run-ins with the law either from prostitution, stalking, or indecent exposure. There is also an increased chance of contracting sexually transmitted diseases due to multiple sex partners. The emotional damage cannot be ignored either. An untreated sex addict is destined to be lonely as they try to get their next fix, and not try to build relationships. Sex addiction is a real disease, but there are ways to manage the addiction to allow the patient an opportunity to lead a normal life.