4 Ways to Relax a Patient Before a Procedure

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As a surgeon, one of the most challenging aspects of your job is removing your patient’s fear. You understand that their stress complicates your job, thereby endangering their health. That’s why your bedside manner matters. You want to perfect it. Here are four ways to relax a patient before a procedure.

Develop a Relationship

relax a patient before a procedure

Many doctors worry about their schedules. The profession offers incredible demands on one’s time. You have to manage your schedule by lessening your demands. Oddly, one of the best ways to save time is by building a personal relationship with your patients. That’s because connecting with someone on a personal level builds a sense of trust. Patients ask fewer questions of their doctors when they’re comfortable. You won’t have to spend time alleviating baseless fears once you’ve built a rapport.

Offer Stress Management Tips

As a medical professional, you know of several methods people can use to calm down. In the days leading up to surgery, suggest that your patients try these tactics before settling on the one that’s most effective for them. The first one primary relaxation method is a series of breathing exercises. Deep breathing is particularly effective since it’s a brain signal explicitly telling the body to calm down.

You could also suggest that the person think of relaxing mental imagery. Thinking about a happier time calms the nerves, reducing anxiety. While you might wonder about the effectiveness of these tactics, research suggests that this sort of stress reduction has amazing long-term benefits. Men who use stress management practices claim a higher quality of life and better physical recovery a year after the surgery. Yes, the research could involve a placebo effect, but you’d gladly prescribe sugar pills if they helped your patient heal faster, right?

Blanket Your Patients

You’re likely aware of the health benefits of warmth. Swaddling is something that parents do for their children and pet owners do for their cats and dogs. The same logic applies for patients. When you nestle them in comfortable blankets and other warm settings, they’ll feel the stress vanish from their bodies.

One of the most popular medical solutions is 3M™’s brilliant Bair Hugger Therapy. This unique system keeps patients warm and snuggly from the moments leading up to surgery until the last stages of recovery. It reduces stress while providing forced-air warming.

Personalize Your Office

People are always most comfortable when they feel like they’re at home. One of the simplest steps you can take to calm surgical patients is to hire an interior decorator. Many physicians’ offices are sterile environments that are cold and impersonal. When you hire some to redecorate, ask them to turn your office into a friendlier, more inviting space. You’ll enjoy two benefits from this tactic. You’ll make your patients feel cozier and less scared about their situation. Plus, you’ll enjoy your office more since it’s now a more welcoming environment.

As a caring doctor, you want to reduce the stress of your patients. Follow the suggestions above, and you’ll achieve this goal while securing the safety of the people in your care.

 

Image credit: Army Medicine – https://flic.kr/p/qhuMty

 

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The wonders that regular planks can do to your body – Secret to staying fit

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In the world of fitness, bodyweight exercises are gradually gaining momentum due to the numerous people, both men and women who are trying to get back in shape and shed those extra pounds. The simplicity and practicality of regaining the best shape of your body using your own body weight is perhaps the best thing about planks. Planks will literally never go out of fashion as they’re one of the most effective exercises that you can do everyday. You don’t require enough time to invest in doing daily planks and they offer you a substantial result in a very short span of time.

planks

Core strength – What is the importance of it for your body?

Our abdominal muscles should offer support to our entire body and the spinal cord. While providing this support, they even play an important role in preventing your body from injuries. But what should you do in order to make them perform successfully? Our core muscles need to be strong enough and for that you have to train yourself on a daily basis. This clearly means doing plank exercises everyday as this will strengthen your core and also support your spinal cord.

What happens to your body when you start doing planks regularly?

 

  • Improves your performance and core definition

Planks tend to be an ideal exercise for each and every abdominal muscle since they engage the core muscle groups which include the rectus abdominus, the transverse abdominus, the external oblique muscle and also the glutes. You can’t ever underestimate the vitality of strengthening each muscle group as each of them serves their own purpose. Once you start doing planks everyday, you’ll find yourself being able to lift heavier weights, doing better sports performance, better capacity for twisting your waist and above all, a shapely butt.

  • Less risk of injury in the spinal column and the back portion

When you do planks, you allow yourself to build muscle while also ensuring that you don’t exert too much pressure on your hips. As per the American Council on Exercise, regular planks considerably reduce back pain and also make your muscles strong to give a strong support to your entire back.

  • A boost to your metabolism rate

Planking is one of the best ways of challenging your total body as you’ll start burning more calories as compared to all other abdominal exercises like sit-ups and crunches. You will gradually burn more energy when you’re at rest. This is more important for all those who sit in front of a computer for all day. When you do this exercise daily for 10-1 minute everyday, you will also see a boost in your metabolic rate.

  • Your posture will get a noteworthy improvement

When you do planks, it can improve your ability to stand up straight and also with a stable posture. This is also possible due to a strengthened core which will let you maintain the best posture during all times, when you’re sitting or standing. The abdominal muscles have a huge impact on the overall condition of your shoulders, neck, back and chest.

  • Increased overall flexibility

Flexibility is one of the most touted benefits of doing plank daily as this form stretches and expands your posterior group of muscles. Your shoulder blades, shoulders and collarbone will all be improved and you can find yourself hyper-extending your toes.

So, what are you waiting for? Take on the 30 day plank challenge as soon as possible and strive hard to reap the above listed health and fitness benefits from doing planks regularly.

 

Image credits to http://fitnessgoals.com/

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Bad Habits Die Hard: Why It Is So Tough To Establish A Healthy Habit?

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It in an unfortunate truth of the world that we live in that bad habits die hard. Why is It a lot easier to fall into the routine of going to bed at 2 am and getting up at midday, than it is to climb out of bed at 6.30 am? Fresh as a daisy and ready to start the day? Likewise, it seems much simpler to start eating a sweet treat after every meal than to cut out sugar altogether? Why is that? It’s because establishing healthier habits often requires some sort of sacrifice or uncomfort and as humans, we’re programmed to not like that very much. But it is possible with a little effort and a lot of smarts, to establish habits that are good for you. Read on to find out how.

Set a specific goal

bad habits die hard

The first thing you need to do if you are trying to get into a healthy habit is to have a specific goal to work to. For example being fitter is way too vague. Instead, you might say I want to give up smoking. Or, I want to be able to run for 10 minutes a day.

Having a specific goal makes it a lot easier to get into a positive habit because you know exactly what you are aiming for, and when you have reached it. Nebulous targets, where the goal posts move as soon as you get close to them, are something that definitely needs to be avoided.

 

Track your progress

Another important factor in getting into a healthy habit is that you keep track of your progress. OK, so you might have decided that you want to lose weight and eat at least two portions of fruits and vegetables with every meal. But you’ve had chips and pasta at dinner for the last two days. So you decide you are failing and just give up.

But, if you had been tracking your habits, then you would have remembered that you had your two portions for three out of five dinners, and at every breakfast and lunch. So you weren’t really failing at all! It was just a bit of a blip, and these are definitely to be expected when trying to establish a new habit.

The point is that by tracking your positive habits you can see your own success, which is very motivating. It can also show you where you need to adjust things or work a bit harder which is constructive for keeping to your new habit in the long run. You can even track your habits on your mobile device by using an app like this.

Remind yourself why you are doing it

Another important aspect of establishing a positive and healthy new habit is to remind yourself why you’re doing it in the first place. Never underestimate the power of motivation. Your mind is the strongest tool you have, and if you are motivated enough you will definitely be able to reach your goal.

To help you stay motivated, it is important to stay positive. To do this, you can imagine yourself when you have established your new habit, happy and feeling better. Or you can use images or items of clothing to remind you why you want to lose weight. You can even use your kids’ drawings as a reminder as to why you are getting fit because you want to be the best parent to them that you can be.

 

Make it easy on  yourself

Another piece of the healthy habit forming puzzle is to give yourself permission to make things as easy as possible. So many people fail at forming positive habits because they make things way harder than they actually need to be.

For example, if you are looking to exercise more, don’t pick an activity you hate and don’t force yourself to go to the gym if you think it’s boring and you hate being on the show. Instead, research and buy some pieces of exercise equipment that you can use in our own home. You can look at pages like this rowing machine review to get you started.

Remember that there are reviews out there for most types of home exercise equipment you can buy. So make sure you do your research before parting with your money. As getting a good deal on having workout tools in your own home, can make it a lot easy to get into the habit of exercising.

 

Make a pact

If motivation is something that you are really struggling with another great tip in establishing a positive habit is to make a pact with someone else. This can help in all sorts of ways.

Firstly you are actually accountable to someone other than yourself, so if you’re not keeping up with you habit you will have to explain why.

Secondly having someone else around you for moral support, that is on the same journey, can be so helpful. Not only are they there to celebrate your successes but they are also able to commiserate with you when things get hard too.

 

Reward yourself

Lastly, one of the key aspects of getting into a positive health habit is acknowledging your successes and rewarding yourself for these. While it’s easy to see how well everyone else is doing, some people really struggle with giving themselves the credit that they deserve.

This can hold you back from achieving your goal of getting into a good habit because everyone needs a little positive reinforcement from time to time. So to remedy this why not write out a chart with associated rewards on. Then whenever you hit a significant step on the way to achieving your positive habit, you can treat yourself.

The rewards don’t need to be massive. They can just be little things like a night out, a book you have had your eye on, or a small item of clothing.

A word of warning, though, try to ensure that your rewards actually match up with the habit that you are trying to create. For example, if you are trying to develop the habit of healthy eating, by cutting out fried food and sugar. Don’t then reward you with a candy bar, donut or a takeaway.

 

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How Personal DNA Fitness Camps Work

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fitness camps

Our relationship with fitness is changing and nowhere is that more obvious than in the field of personal training and body boot fitness camps. This January a whole, new group of fitness enthusiasts, not to mention those who’ve indulged just a little too much over the holidays will sign up to punishing programs at centres, fields and even retreats that’ll stretch their mental, physical and emotional levels to the limit. These tough boot camps are designed so that participants lose the maximum amount of weight possible in the short time they’re out there.

However, a new, rather strange form of workout program is coming to the fore where the focus is much more on the individual, their goals and personal reasons for wanting to get in shape. The sessions are created on an individual basis, specifically tailored to work with someone’s strengths and weaknesses having previously analysed the best way to improve problem areas. Forget slugging it out with your comrades in arms, being yelled out by a drill sergeant like figure and crawling through the mud at six am as this is far more civilised. Not only could you benefit from one on one sessions over a space of three weeks with a strict but understanding training coach. You’ll also aim to improve your overall fitness yet take away with you a better understanding of who you are as a human being.

What Is It?

Personal DNA Fitness Camps are relatively new however they are starting to make waves in the fitness world thanks to their innovative and out of the box approach. Your program actually begins when you send off a DNA sample to the company, they’ll then analyse the sample you’ve provided and create a specialist program. Here, they’ll also identify certain ‘keys’ or markers that give an insight into what forms of exercise would benefit you the most, as well as identify what you should be eating for an optimal diet. If it all sounds a bit high-tech that’s because it is, technology has given us the ability to understand our body’s needs like never before and now researchers can map out your ultimate workout.

Before you even enter a gym you’ll receive a comprehensive report on your diet, exercise habits and the complete, if scary, picture of your total physical health. Depending on your individual needs the report may suggest a lowering of sugar, carbohydrates and starch and an increase in protein and fiber as well as highlighting anything your body is naturally sensitive to or any allergies the tests have revealed. You’ll also receive a similar report on your workout pattern where you need to improve, what you should focus on and any exercise that may be doing you more harm than good. Once all your results have been tabulated the instructors will get to work designing a bespoke workout that utilises everything the DNA report has given them. The eventual goal is, of course, that you lose fat while maintaining muscle mass, becoming healthier, more toned and able to exercise faster, stronger and longer.

Should I Sign Up?

DNA analysis can be highly useful when it comes to identifying any future health problems, highlighting certain conditions we need to be aware of, and it can also reveal to you activities you should be doing and those that you should cut down on. However, no boot camp is cheap and that certainly goes for a program that requires you to send off a DNA sample to a professional scientific lab, wait a few weeks for detailed reports on your physical fitness and then get started with a personal trainer. Still those looking to push themselves to the next level, gain a better understanding of their own body or aspiring athletes would find this approach more exclusive than a standard class aimed at varying ability levels. Fans of the DNA approved method believe that this is the best way to boost your workout however with a hefty price tag of at least $2,000 dollars attached to the residential camp it isn’t a decision you should make lightly.

Preparing Samples for DNA Extraction

Another thing to think about before you pop that little swab into your mouth is just how fit are you? For beginners with low fitness levels the punishing workout sessions will easily, and quickly, overwhelm you to the point that you may in fact leave in a worse state than when you arrived. Keen gym enthusiasts should be able to keep up but bear in mind that you won’t know what your workout program entails until you arrive and get started. Lastly, three weeks isn’t a long time to make much of a difference and you may be disappointed by the seemingly slow results. This program much like the Bikini Body Guide is also designed to be continued at home, you’ve been given the basic tools on how to take control of your own diet and fitness regime and now you have to learn to do it by yourself which isn’t easy for anyone.

Worth The Hype?

It’s hard to tell if DNA boot camps will end up being the go-to training ground for fitness enthusiasts, bodybuilders, aesthetic followers and Olympic athletes. Or if they, like many people,  would be immediately put off by the rather large price tag. After, all you could just pay for three years of gym sessions that are guaranteed to give you good results instead of putting all your eggs in one basket following a program that is still fairly untested.

However, the computer data presented doesn’t lie and after a mere five days of balanced, individual exercise, sticking to a personal diet plan and getting plenty of rest participants reported losing around 4% body fat so there may be something to this scientific, Star Wars like approach to health and fitness. We won’t really know how good it is until more people sign up, although you can now purchase the DNA results and diet information separately without attending the camp which is much cheaper. Unfortunately, at the moment it’s difficult to tell if the DNA fitness program really works or if it’s another flashy fitness fad.

 

Image credits:

Image 1 – Port of San Diego – https://flic.kr/p/c3bo7o

Image 2 – https://flic.kr/p/a5aV3S

 

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Differences between X-ray and Radiology Technicians

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Many people find it difficult to tell the difference between radiology technicians and x-ray techs. It is even more difficult for people who are not familiar with radiology to distinguish the two. Both radiology and x-ray technicians work in the same field. However, the training and qualifications required for the two positions vary altogether. The job duties of a radiology technician are relatively more complex and wider in practice and scope than those of an x-ray technician. One of the similarities between the two is that x-ray and radiology technicians have to continue their education for them to remain registered within their respective fields.

Gamma camera.jpg
By BrendaicmOwn work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Educational Requirements

Radiology technicians are professionals who provide imaging solutions including digital x-ray imaging and radiation therapy in hospitals and other health care facilities. These professionals are trained in radiation safety, anatomy, radiation protection, patient positioning, equipment protocols, and examination techniques. Despite the fact that X-ray technicians may have similar academic qualifications as radiology technicians, it takes more job experience and training to become a radiology technician. It may take between nine months and two years to complete a radiology technician program.

A radiology technician program can take an average of fourteen months to complete. During this period, candidates may cover their coursework, sit for state licensing tests, and qualify for various categories of state licensing including extremities, chest, and torso-skeletal. X-Ray technicians also have their respective tests and licensing requirements.

On the Job Responsibilities

One of the main differences between x-ray and radiology technicians is the scope of their job duties. Licensed radiology technicians can carry out any diagnostic imaging process including CT scans, sonograms, and mammograms. On the other hand, X-ray technicians are limited-service technicians who can only carry out chest x-rays and x-rays of the limbs (wrist, hand, and feet). Various websites on the Internet provide individuals who want to pursue careers in radiology with the information they need including the different careers in the field, salary expectations, job duties, qualification requirements, and state licensing requirements.

Radiology technicians often work in various healthcare institutions including big healthcare facilities. On the other hand, many x-ray technicians work for smaller healthcare facilities including orthopedic doctors’ offices, emergency care facilities, physicians’ offices, and imaging centers.

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5 Benefits Patients Get From Seeing a Nurse Practitioner

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Getting the most out of your healthcare provider takes time and a little bit of research. When you are an informed consumer, you can be a better patient. One thing that many informed patients know is that seeing a nurse practitioner instead of a doctor can give you access to top quality care. Here are five benefits patients can get from regularly seeing a nurse practitioner during their well and sick visits.

nurse practitioner

Image source: https://flic.kr/p/eap9Rs

1. Quicker Access

One of the biggest benefits that patients can get when their primary care provider’s office employs nurse practitioners is faster access to care. Instead of having to wait several days for an appointment with the doctor, patients can typically get seen within a few hours with a nurse practitioner. When you’re feeling under the weather, this can be a great way to get relief much faster. Sometimes, nurse practitioners are more available after hours as well, making it easier for patients to schedule well visits outside of work hours instead of taking off time from their job.

2. Lower Costs

Seeing a nurse practitioner may also help lower the cost of healthcare across the board. In one model, visits for patients seen by nurse practitioners incurred lower costs than the same type of visit with a doctor. For the average consumer, he or she may not initially notice this cost difference in a visit, but an increase in the price may eventually be passed down in rising insurance premiums. Likewise, a lowered cost of care may also be reflected in cheaper premiums for some plans.

3. More Understanding

Some patients find that the care they receive from a nurse practitioner is excellent, not just with the quality of the medical advice but also with the amount of compassion and understanding. Nurse practitioners often start their careers as registered nurses and have spent many hours providing supportive care to patients and developing a strong bedside manner. Graduate programs like the University of Cincinnati help fine tune these attributes in nurse practitioners. Learn more about UC’s fnp online programs that are preparing tomorrow’s providers for family practice.

4. Better Outcomes

Another way patients benefit from having a nurse practitioner on their team of medical providers is with better care outcomes. When a patient is struggling with severe symptoms, it’s best to get seen right away before it gets even more serious and requires a hospital admission. Additionally, having many different types of medical staff members working for you in a collaborative approach can help you get the best diagnoses and treatment plants. Students at Maryville University learn this team approach in their nurse practitioner program.

5. Healthier Lifestyle

The last benefit that patients can get from nurse practitioners is a potentially healthier lifestyle. If you make a commitment to your wellness and are a regular visitor to your primary care office, whether you’re being seen by a nurse practitioner, physician’s assistant, or doctor, you can learn more tips and techniques for a healthier you.

 

Seeing a nurse practitioner is a great way to access convenient and sometimes more affordable health care. As the need for providers grows, expect to see more nurse practitioners in the coming years.

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