What is the Time Difference between Two Menstrual Cycles?

Did you know that it was as recently as the 19th century that doctors realized that the menstrual cycle was linked to ovulation? And did you know that it was only after World War I that sanitary pads became available. The story goes that French nurses in the first World War realized that the disposable cellulose bandages that they were using to absorb blood for wounded soldiers could be used during their periods for the same purpose! It was only in 1921 that the first commercially available brand was launched in the United States.

While one would have imagined that in the 21st century, menstruation would have been completely understood, the topic remains a taboo in many parts of the world, including the Middle East. This has led to many misconceptions and myths to develop about the cycle. Here is some information to help dispel at least some such misconceptions.

What Is a Menstrual Cycle?

Menstruation is the monthly bleeding in woman in which blood flows from the uterus through a small opening called the cervix and finally passes out of the body through the vagina. The discharge is not only blood but also tissue from the uterine lining that is shed periodically. A woman’s periods can last anywhere from 3 to 5 days. The regularity of this monthly blood flow is known as Menstrual Cycle. It is the time between the start of one period till the start of the next. On an average, a cycle is 28 days long. But in certain cases, it can range between 25 and 35 days, which is absolutely normal.

What is PMS?

PMS or Pre-Menstrual Syndrome include physical and emotional symptoms that occur in the week(s) leading up do the start of one’s period. The most common symptoms include feeling bloated, changes in appetite, feeling moody or irritable, lower backache, cramps in the lower abdomen, ache in the inner thighs, constipation or diarrhea, acne and sore breasts. These symptoms can last for 2-6 days, depending upon the individual. A woman may not experience all these symptoms or might have totally different ones. However, if the timing is always just before the start of menstruation, it is likely to be part of the PMS.

How to Predict Your Next Menstruation Date?

Step 1: You need to note down the date of the first day you start bleeding.

Step 2: Write down your PMS symptoms, along with monitoring your blood flow. Also, mention the thickness or the lightness of the discharge.

Step 3: Note down the date of your second period.

Step 4: Calculate the difference of days between the start of the first period and the start of the second. On average, the difference is 28 days, but it could differ from person to person.

Step 5: Once you know how many days it takes to complete a cycle, you can stay prepared for the next cycle.

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Healthcare Products that are Useful for People Who Suffer from Incontinence

Urinary incontinence is a medical condition prevalent in both men and women of all ages, especially people over 45 years of age.

Simply put, urinary incontinence is an uncontrollable urge to urinate, which causes minor to heavy leakage. The condition may be chronic or temporary, depending on the underlying health issue. From aging to enlarged prostate, to pregnancy and complications in surgery, there can be numerous reasons for incontinence.

A large number of people refrain from getting it diagnosed because of the embarrassment associated with it. However, in order to overcome this ailment, it is essential that you consult a doctor and begin your treatment before it gets aggravated.

Incontinence Products for Men & Women

Till the time you are cured of this medical condition, there are several incontinence products you can rely on to live a confident life, without the monumental burden of getting embarrassed in front of people. These products are super absorbent, especially designed for people suffering with incontinence, while giving you the ultimate feeling of protection and security.

There are various products for men such as Protective Underwear, which helps in minor leakage, Protective Cup-Shaped Guards with super absorbent microbeads meant for mild to heavy leakage, Prevail Underwear with soft and breathable fabric meant for minor to mild leakage, Protective Shield – Level 0 meant for mild leakage, etc.

For women, products such as panty liners for minor bladder weakness, Ultra Thin Pads for mild bladder weakness, Protective Underwear with super absorbency for mild to heavy bladder weakness, Overnight Underwear for heavy bladder weakness, Ultimate Underwear for mild to heavy bladder weakness, Lady Maxi Night for heavy bladder weakness, and Serenity Pads are recommended. All these products have a body-contoured shape to fit perfectly with the female anatomy.

So, instead of trying to hide those droplets of urine in vain, opt for these super useful products, which will provide you comfort and security during an uncomfortable situation. The best part is that you can order multiple products to evaluate the right comfort and absorbency.

While these incontinence products are designed to give you solace and comfort during leakage, it is wise to consult a physician to determine the root cause of the problem for effective diagnosis and treatment. You might need to discuss your medical history, including illnesses and surgeries, frequency of alcohol and caffeine intake, list of prescription drugs you are using, etc.

Just remember that avoiding a problem can often lead to a series of new problems. So, stay safe and seek help when required.

Problems You May Face While Travelling to the Mountains

Saudi Arabia is a land of extremes, when it comes to the temperature. The days are hot and the nights see a significant drop in temperature. Well, that’s what you get from living in a desert!

On June 23, 2010, the capital city of Jeddah recorded temperatures of 52oC, which continues to be the highest temperature in the city till date. However, the average temperature easily crosses the 40oC mark in the summers and Abdul Rahman Mohammed Al-Ghamdi, a climatologist, had predicted that it would hit the 65oC mark during the Ramadan in 2015.

Such heat can be unbearable at times and the best way to tackle is by taking a few days off and planning a trip to a relatively cooler place, such as the mountains. However, the sudden change in climate and altitude can cause a few problems for you. Here’s a look at what you should be prepared for.

Asthma

To ensure a risk free holiday, where you stay physically, mentally and medically fit, the first thing you should do is consult a doctor. If you have symptoms of acute asthma, then the Rocky Mountains and the sudden climate change can intensify the problem, making the situation worse for you.

Ask your doctor to make a precautionary plan for you and carry the medication advised by him, since you may not find the right drugs in the local stores.

Sore Throat

This one of the most common problems and can be contoured by using lozenges for a sore throat. Going to a colder region increases your chances of catching a cold. It is caused by the inflammation due to the cold or other viruses. So, avoid eating ice-cream or drinking cold beverages.

Try to carry a bottle of hot water with you at all times, since it reduces the pain. Lozenges for a sore throat can provide instant relief from the pain too.

Altitude Sickness

This is a common issue with people who travel or climb to more than 25,000 meters (8,000 feet), especially when they ascend too quickly. Most of the times, it is a minor situation and the symptoms improve within a few hours of rest and sleep.

Having said that, sometimes the situation can get worse to a point that it is life-threatening. It can be recognized by that fact the person may not want to descend or come to lower ground. The best treatment is to stop climbing further and rest, but if the situation is not getting any better, it is advisable to come back to lower ground.

High Temperature in Children: Causes and Treatments

In the hot and humid climatic conditions of the Middle East, high fevers and infections are bound to occur every now and then. That is why the health care sector is always a priority for every GCC country. Saudi Arabia, being the top spender on health care, set aside 18.6% of the total budget for 2015 for health care.

With the Hajj season around the corner, health care is a matter of prime concern in the Kingdom. Especially for children, it is much more important to take the necessary precautions to protect them from various diseases. Keep an eye out for symptoms like high temperature in children. This can indicate that there is an underlying infection that needs to be treated.

Fever, in most cases, occurs because of minor infections like a cough or cold. But if the symptoms last long, then there is a definite need to consult a doctor.

What Causes High Temperature in Children?

The body raises its core temperature to kill an underlying virus or bacteria, making fever a useful natural reaction. Here are a few infections that lead to the temperature of a child’s body rising:

  • Viral infections can lead to an increase in the body’s temperature, causing fever. One of the most common fever causing viral infection is the cold. Respiratory infections like chicken pox can also lead to fever.
  • Bacterial infections, like a sore throat, can also lead to fever. These are a little more serious in nature and need to be treated as soon as possible with antibiotics. This infection can have long term impacts, like heart damage, if left untreated for a long time.
  • Allergic reactions can also cause fever in children. For example, even an allergic reaction to a vaccination can lead to high temperatures.
  • Teething is one of the major causes of fever in infants.

Various Indicators of Fever in Children

  • High temperature
  • Sweating
  • Restlessness and irritability
  • Flushed cheeks
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness
  • Headache

Home Treatments for Mild Fevers

In the case of mild fevers, it is ideal to let it run its course. The best thing to do is to help ease the discomfort that occurs at this time. High temperature in children will automatically return to normal after the virus causing infections is completely eliminated from the body.

Here are a few methods by which you can help soothe the discomfort that your child is experiencing during a fever.

  • At regular intervals, keep feeding them light fluids like clear water, diluted lemon or fruit juices, etc. This will ensure that they remain hydrated, since high temperatures can cause dehydration.
  • Make sure to dress them in light clothing so that it doesn’t absorb more heat.
  • To help them sleep, you can give them medication in recommended dosages that will help lower the temperature and induce sleep.

Making Schools Centers of Health Awareness

There have been a number of notable developments in the way the world approaches health and health-related issues. International organizations such as WHO and UNICEF have realigned some of their major programs to reflect the fresh insight and increase awareness where it matters the most. One such area that has recently come under the radar is the school as a center for health awareness.

Building a Better Tomorrow

School sanitation and hygiene is not just a health or medical issue. It is also an important item on the social development agenda. Almost every country in the world understands the need for basic facilities so that children can come back to school to learn and take back to their communities what they have learned from the school environment and hygiene practices. The right combination of hygiene practices, facilities and education is expected to have the maximum impact on communities. This is because increasing awareness and educating children has a ‘multiplier’ effect on society in general.

The children who gain exposure to the right cleanliness and hygiene standards as a part of their school-going experience are twice as likely to question traditional misconceptions and wrong beliefs about cleanliness and hygiene into their families and neighborhoods. Additionally, since children are the future population of the world, by targeting them, it is hoped that we have insured ourselves in the future to come.

Multiple-Awareness Agenda

If schools do not provide a safe and healthy environment, their students will suffer in more ways than one. For example, we know that diarrhea is one of the largest causes of death in children with. We also know that it is a common ailment and 1.5 million children die every year from diarrhea-related diseases. However, diarrhea is preventable and just the simple act of washing hands with a good antibacterial soap such as Dettol Daily Care Bar Soap can reduce the risk of diarrhea by as much as 45%.

As part of their Millennium Development Goals, UNICEF has estimated that 1.9 billion school days are lost every year due to absenteeism caused by diarrhea. In 2003, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) studied diarrhea prevention in school children. They found that after a 9-month hand washing program for school-going children, the chances of diarrhea dropped by 50%. Interestingly, these children also reached their personal development and growth milestones 6 months earlier than those who did not practice personal hygiene. Clearly, it is time to take personal hygiene awareness back to school.

5 Steps for Easier Periods

Dysmenorrhea, which is what menstrual cramps or ‘period pain’ is called, is the pain felt in the lower abdomen before and during menstruation. It is classified into two types. Primary dysmenorrhea occurs a couple of day before the actual cycle begins, while secondary dysmenorrhea happens during the cycle and could be related to medical causes.

A girl missing school and college due to this pain is a rising concern in the Middle East. While a study revealed that about 68% of the girls suffered from PMS in Saudi Arabia and 59% of them were unable to attend school because of it, another study revealed that dysmenorrhea was prevalent in 93% of the girls in Egypt, followed by 65% who reported PMS.

However, with a little knowledge you can have easier periods.

How to Reduce Such Cramps

While most women opt for pain killers straight away, there are better ways to counter this problem:

  • Have a Balanced Diet: Shift to a low-fat diet and increase the quantity of fruits and vegetables you consume. Add products such as fish, which is high in protein and healthy fats. Increasing your magnesium and calcium intake has been known to help menstrual pain too. Magnesium improves muscle and nerve functioning and the recommended dosage is around 320 mg per day. The amount of calcium that should be consumed is 1,200 mg daily.
  • Herbal Tea Can Help: Studies have proven that herbal tea brings relief to menstrual pain. It keeps you fresh and also fights against bacteria. The glycine in the tea relaxes the muscles, reducing the frequency of cramps.
  • Exercise: Sometimes the best way to take out a cramp is by stretching your body. Involve yourself in simple exercises, such as yoga and morning walks. Stretch your body and try to hold your posture for a few minutes while doing yoga. It keeps you fit and gives you the much-needed energy to start the day. Having said that, don’t put too much pressure on the body or get involved in strenuous activities.
  • Get Enough Sleep: This is the universal answer to all your problems. The importance of getting good sleep each night increases exponentially during the periods. Make sure you sleep well at night and try to squeeze in a nap during the day time as well.
  • Use Protection: The last and one of the most effective methods is using the right sanitary napkin or pad. This will keep you dry and comfortable, as well as protect against infections. Remember to change the pad every 4-8 hours, depending on the flow.

What is Acne? Causes and Treatment

Medically known as Acne Vulgaris, acne is a skin infection that involves the oil glands at the base of the hair follicles. It usually occurs during puberty, when the sebaceous glands come to life.

Acne begins to develop when greasy secretions from the skin’s sebaceous (oil) glands plug the tiny openings for hair follicles, leading to plugged pores.

According to Dr. Iyad Hijjawi, Regional Business Consultant for Mena and Turkey at Euromonitor International, the Middle East and Africa have surpassed Latin America in terms of the fastest growing skin care market!

If you’re living in a Middle Eastern country, there are greater chances that you have to deal with pimples, given the hot and dusty climate that fosters the clogging of pores. The hot weather produces oil in the body due to which zits can appear on your face.

But before jumping to acne treatment, it is important to understand why the problem occurs.

Why Does Acne Develop?

  • Hormonal changes – As we approach puberty, our reproductive hormones kick into action. Both boys and girls produce high levels of androgens, the male sex hormone that also includes testosterone, during puberty. Testosterone signals the body to make more sebum, the oil produced in the skin’s oil glands. In women, the hormonal changes due to the menstrual cycle may cause a flare-up of pimples.
  • Bacteria – Excess sebum clogs the openings to the hair follicles, especially those on the face, back, chest and neck. Bacteria grow in these clogged follicles. This leads to blackheads or whiteheads on the skin’s surface.

Treatment Options

  • Benzoyl Peroxide – Benzoyl peroxide is a white crystalline peroxide used in bleaching, which also acts as a peeling agent. It kills bacteria and slows down the production of oil.
  • Sulfur – Sulfur is a yellow crystalline solid that helps remove whiteheads and blackheads. It has been used for centuries and scientists have confirmed that it is an effective acne treatment.
  • Salicylic Acid – Salicylic Acid is a white crystalline substance that is effective agent in eliminating whiteheads and blackheads. It is also helps with inflammation and swelling.
  • Retin-A – Retin-A contains Tretinoin, which is an acid form of Vitamin A. It helps reduce pimples and is also used in the treatment of acute leukemia.
  • Azelaic Acid – Azelaic Acid strengthens cells that line the follicles, prevents oil eruptions, decreases bacterial growth, reduces inflammation, etc. It is found naturally in wheat, rye and barley. It is really useful for people with darker skin.

Having acne is absolutely normal and not at all a serious health issue. However, if not treated at the right time, it can get aggravated and also lead to long term scarring. Therefore, if you are facing a skin problem, make sure to consult an experienced professional for the best treatment.