What are the Treatments for Skin Cancer?

Treatment of different types of skin cancer will depend on the location of the cancer cells and the progress of the condition. Among the most common skin cancers, such as squamous cell carcinoma, basal cell carcinoma and melanoma, treatment is often more effective with early detection. Some treatments might include surgery, laser therapy, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, topical treatments, biological therapy, and photodynamic therapy.

If left untreated, the cancer cells can affect the surrounding tissue and metastasize, especially if the individual has chronic inflammatory skin issues.

Squamous and Basal Cell Carcinomas

The recommended treatments for squamous and basal cell carcinomas include the following:

  • Excision is the removal of the abnormal growth so that the sample can be sent to a laboratory to confirm that it is cancerous. Scarring is also treated after the procedure depending on the size of the removed tumor.
  • Topical Medications such as imiquimod and 5-flourouracil may be recommended, but the side-effects are considered before the doctor can hand a prescription.
  • Mohs Surgery is the removal of the visible tumor and the thin layer of tissue surrounding it. The procedure is repeated if there are cancer cells in the surrounding tissue, making sure to leave as many healthy tissues as possible.
  • Cryosurgery is the destruction of the tumor using frozen liquid nitrogen without cutting the lesion. However, it’s not recommended for invasive-type squamous cell cancer and will need several sessions before the patient is declared free from cancer.
  • Curettage and Electrodessication is recommended for small lesions by scraping off the tumor with a curette then burning the affected area with a needle.
  • Radiation is a therapy that uses X-ray beams on the tumors to destroy the cancer cells.
  • Photodynamic Therapy is recommended on growths found on the scalp or the face. The light will destroy only the cancer cells without damaging healthy tissue.
  • Targeted Therapy is recommended for advanced stages of basal cell carcinomas if it can’t be treated with radiation therapy and surgery. The patient is given targeted drugs such as sonidegib and vismodegib so that the abnormal growths will shrink.

Melanomas

Treatment of melanoma will usually depend on the stage and location of the cancer.

  • Stage 0 melanomas often require wide excision surgery or if it’s not possible, radiation therapy and the application of imiquimod cream.
  • Stage 1 melanoma is also treated with wide excision surgery on the affected area, as well as sentinel lymph node biopsy and dissection and adjuvant treatment after the procedure.
  • Stage 2 melanoma is also treated with wide excision surgery, sentinel lymph node biopsy and dissection, interferon treatment after surgery, and other medications.
  • Stage 3 melanoma requires wide excision surgery, lymph node dissection, interferon therapy, radiation therapy, removal of lymph vessels, vaccines and other medications, isolated limb perfusion, targeted therapy, immunotherapy, and chemotherapy.
  • Stage 4 melanoma will require removal of affected areas such as enlarged lymph nodes and skin tumors. If some organs are already affected, the individual will need radiation, targeted therapy, immunotherapy, or chemotherapy.

Diet Guide for Diabetics

One of the most difficult experiences of a diabetic is choosing the right food to eat. There are so many restrictions to the diet that some patients feel deprived of the good stuff. However, once you understand what you are getting from your food, it will be easier to choose the ingredients and to prepare the food.

Healthy Eating Tips

  • Consult your team of doctors if you’re planning to start a new diet or if you need a new diet plan
  • Don’t skip meals if you’re trying to lose weight, instead, eat regular meals evenly spaced out everyday
  • You might need snacks in between meals if you are taking insulin
  • Generally, you are advised to eat avoid meals that are high in fats and sodium
  • No single diet plan will work for everyone, and even children and adults with diabetes have different needs
  • Remember these three nutrients that will impact your blood glucose levels: proteins, fats, and carbohydrates
  • Always choose non-starchy vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, and lean meat, poultry, and fish

Counting Carbohydrates

One of the most important considerations to keep in mind is the amount of energy that you will burn and the matching amount of food taken daily. The effect of carbohydrates on your body will depend on the type and the amount of carbohydrates.

That doesn’t mean, however, that you should avoid carbohydrates completely, but you should maintain your energy levels with the right amount of carbohydrates. Doctors will usually advise you to pick food that have low glycemic index (or the duration of the digestion of carbohydrates to glucose), but are high in fiber content.

Fats

You will be advised to limit your fat intake, because it increases the chances of gaining weight even if it will not directly affect your blood sugar level. You’re not supposed to go for a fat-free diet either, because fats can help you to control the feeling of hunger. You will be advised to avoid animal fat, and pick monounsaturated fats instead.

Protein

Your body needs protein to repair itself, so don’t worry about avoiding your favorite cheese or meat, because proteins can’t break down into glucose and affect your blood sugar level. As long as you don’t have allergies and food intolerances, you can still eat eggs, fish, tofu, seeds and nuts, milk, lentils, legumes, and yoghurt.

Sugar

You don’t necessarily need to avoid sugar, but you need to be careful about its sources, such as added sugars and alternative sweeteners. You can occasionally have high-sugar food, but you should limit these snacks to not more than 3 times a week.

Alcohol and Sweet Drinks

You can still drink alcoholic beverages and sweet drinks as long as your doctor permits it. Limit alcohol to not more than 2 glasses per day and your sweet drinks to low joule or diet types. Beverages such as coffee, tea, herbal tea, and soda water are okay as long as you don’t use artificial sweeteners.

Living with Asthma as an Adult

Adult-onset asthma can be a hassle for people who need to keep up with the demands in the office and at home. In most cases, it is also triggered by workplace irritants or an unhealthy environment at home. The treatment process is more complicated as a result because not only does the affected individual have to handle pressure in the office, but must also manage the symptoms.

Diagnosis and Symptoms
Most cases of adult-onset asthma, sometimes called occupational asthma, also have complaints about allergies and irritants. Add to that the stress, unhealthy working environment, hormonal changes, and a poor lifestyle, a worker will most likely be vulnerable to asthma. You should schedule a checkup with your doctor as soon as possible if you see any of the following symptoms: frequent coughing, wheezing, tightness in the chest, breathing difficulties, and shortness of breath.

Childhood and Adult-Onset Asthma
Although the symptoms are quite similar, asthma attacks are more common among children because their bodies are more sensitive than the adults’. However, most asthma-related deaths are more common among adults, especially the elderly. The treatment process is also different, because childhood asthma is not often caused by allergies or triggers.

Triggers and Medication
Generally, the triggers for adult-onset asthma are the same as those for childhood asthma. Your doctor will advise you to avoid smoke, dust mites, mold and mildew, feather bedding, animal dander, dry air, cold temperature, and anything that can trigger an attack. You will also be given one of the two asthma medications, such as the bronchodilators and the anti-inflammatories. These can be taken by inhaling or swallowing. It’s also important to determine if your asthma is triggered by specific allergies, which can also be treated with other medications. The goal of the treatment is to reduce the severity of the symptoms so that you can still perform your tasks regularly.

Diet and Exercise
Proper diet and exercise will reduce some of the symptoms of asthma, but you need to consult your doctor before starting any program. While there are no convincing studies that link nutrient deficiency to asthma, you will be advised to eat a complete, healthy meal everyday to improve your overall health. Reduce your consumption of trans fat, omega-6 fats, and processed food. Avoid food that will trigger allergies as they can cause life-threatening attacks. Excess weight is often linked to adult-onset asthma, that is why you will also be advised to maintain an ideal weight through doctor- approved exercises and workout routines such as walking, swimming, yoga, biking, and others.

Asthma Attacks
You should also have a plan ready in case you have an asthma attack at the office. Always take your medication with you and get treated as soon as you see the signs. Look out for the following symptoms and get to the nearest clinic or hospital for treatment: shortness of breath, tight chest, bluish lips, inability to speak, confusion, lack of concentration, breathlessness, strained muscles, and hunched shoulders.

Expert Tips for Drinking Alkaline Water

Drinking ionized or alkaline water is strongly recommended by health experts in Singapore. Yet, not everyone is familiar with this kind of water and are even hesitant to try it out just because they don’t have any idea how to properly drink it. For that reason, we gathered some tips on how you could consume and make the most out of the health benefits of alkaline water.

1. Familiarize the Levels of Alkaline Water

It’s crucial to know that alkaline water comes in various alkaline levels, and that you should start taking it at level one (8.5 pH) before you go any higher. Most people who use an alkaline water ionizer don’t know this, and just start consuming ionized water at random levels. It’s advised to start consuming alkaline water with 8.5 pH for a week or two to see how it affects your body before deciding to go any higher.

2. Take Note of Your Body’s Reaction

Although it’s inarguably healthier than tap water, drinking alkaline water is not for everyone since it may bring about negative effects if your body can’t adjust to it. If you don’t feel refreshed or if you experience some stomach troubles after consuming the ionized water, try drinking a lower or higher level of alkalized water. However, your safest option is to visit your doctor and inform him or her about the problem you experienced after drinking alkaline water.

3. Use it to Take in Your Supplements

Who would have thought that ionized water could contribute to increasing the potency of your supplements? We often drink tap water with our medications to make swallowing it easier, but if you are in the know, then you would be smart enough to drink quality alkaline water from Singapore along with your vitamins. Unlike drinking your meds with coffee, soda or plain water, taking it with ionized water will help in maximizing its positive effects on your body.

4. Drink it at the Right Time

It’s best to drink ionized water before and after your mealtimes, especially if you just consumed a good portion of meat. A good rule of thumb is to drink it 20 minutes before and 20 minutes after your meals. If you prefer drinking water during your meals, health experts in Singapore suggest squeezing some lemon into the water to add a hint of acidity to your drink. The main reason is that during the initial stage of digestion, your stomach needs a more acidic environment to digest the food you consumed.

5. Hydrate Yourself When You’re Ill

Drinking a healthier type of water becomes crucial when you are feeling ill. Drinking alkaline water will help you recover faster and prevent the worsening of your illness, especially if you are experiencing diarrhoea, vomiting and excessive sweating. Consuming a good amount of water could help in reducing your fever, thinning out the consistency of your secretions, and in rehydrating your body.

6. Drink When You’re Working Out

Our body tends to lose more water when we work out. To rehydrate your body properly, drink two glasses of alkaline water 15 minutes prior to exercising and a glass after every 15 minutes throughout the session. But be sure to drink even more water when you are working out in a hot environment. Alkaline water is a healthier substitute to tap water, as it helps reduce the effects of lactic acid build-up when working out. Spring water is often acidic, while tap water may contain chemicals that will just add to the toxic burden of your system.

Tips to Switching to Alkaline Water

• Look for a Reliable Brand

The pH level of water is often increased by incorporating natural additives like calcium, magnesium and potassium. There are only few water filter brands that follow the norms when it comes to manufacturing and selling alkaline water, so be sure to get the services and product of those who follow these norms.

• Choose the Right pH Option for Your Needs

One of the most important things to remember when you are switching to alkaline water is to choose the right pH option for your needs. Unlike tap water, which only has a pH value of six and seven, alkaline water can rank as high as nine or more on the scale. But as mentioned earlier, avoid just randomly choosing the level of alkaline water you would want to drink. Instead, listen to how your body reacts to the drink and decide whether you would want to drink a higher or lower level of alkalized water.

• Gradually and Fully Replace Your Beverages

Just like with going on a certain diet plan, you can’t expect to see any significant result without completely replacing your regular drinking water. Remember, alkaline water is not a miracle drink that could change your body overnight – but it is a lifestyle choice that will show its results eventually.

• Carry an Alkaline Water Filter

Perhaps the easiest way to make your body more comfortable with drinking ionized water is by carrying an alkaline water filter wherever you go. If your office doesn’t have an alkaline water ioniser machine, invest on a tumbler form alkaline water filter to make your transitioning from regular water to alkaline water as smooth and effective as possible.

An alkaline water ionizer may seem like an expensive purchase to make, but it’s actually highly recommended by health experts across the globe. Although some people might still be unaware of the importance of drinking the right type of water, having the right guidance and knowledge will certainly help in maximizing the health benefits that this water has to offer.

What You Need to Know About Drug Management  

 

When we hear about drugs, it is either of two things – drugs that are prohibited and drugs that can reduce pain or discomfort. Of the two drugs, the most necessary and of course legal is the latter. If we take drugs every time pain kicks, it is crucial that we know what analgesia to take.

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Analgesia refers to medications that have the capacity to render the person insensible to pain without the loss of his/her consciousness. World Health Organization reminds Singaporeans to observe pain ladder when managing analgesia.

Here are the common types of pain and its distinctive drug management:

  • Headache: If we experience headache, the typical drug treatment is Paracetamol acetaminophen and NSAIDs (Non-steroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs). If the headaches are severe accompanied by vomiting or fever, a doctor should be consulted.
  • Migraine: Many Singaporeans suffer from migraine. For migraine episodes, we can take Paracetamol or NSAIDs also but if migraines are severe, many consider triptans.

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  • Menstrual cramps: Many girls have this problem and we take NSAIDs most of the time. The good news is that any NSAID will work.
  • Muscle ache: When we suffer muscle ache, Paracetamol or NSAIDs can make a difference. If inflammations are present, NSAIDs will work better.
  • Strain: For strains, we can use muscle relaxants and NSAIDs.
  • Severe trauma: Severe trauma includes burn, severe sprain and bone fracture. Opioids can help a great deal but if it is more than 2 weeks, it is a different thing.

Before taking drugs, it is crucial that we see our doctors first. The prescription and the advice should come from them.

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Kid’s Health: 5 Stomach Ache Symptoms to Watch For  

Stomach aches can happen frequently, though most of them are just minor cases. However, some can be an indication of more serious things, so make sure to be in the know and stay alert when it comes to your child’s health.

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1. Abdominal Pain: This is simply a feeling of discomfort in the abdominal area. Most of time tolerable, but sometimes can hamper a child’s day-to-day activities.

See a doctor if: The pain just suddenly came and seems like it’s not going away.

2. Vomiting: In children and infants, vomiting is common. This happens when the child is too full or stomach contents are involuntarily brought up back to the mouth whether or not the child is full. It could also be a gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) if your child complains about a sour or foul tasting substance in the mouth or points the pain in the upper middle part of his abdomen.

See a doctor if: Vomiting has tinges of blood, or if it’s becoming more frequent and is accompanied by abdominal cramps and diarrhea.

3. Constipation: Constipation is among the three most common causes of tummy aches in kids. Adding more fibre to your children’s diet, along with prune juice or apple juice can help a lot in maintaining healthy digestion.

See a doctor if: You see signs of rectal bleeding. It could be a chronic constipation, which can be a sign of celiac diseases or underactive thyroid gland.

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4. Dehydration: When a stomach ailment causes your child to vomit more frequently, accompanied by diarrhea, he is at risk of dehydration. This means that the body will lack electrolytes and fluid to function properly.

See a doctor if: Your child shows signs of moderate to heavy dehydration, such as sunken fontanelle (the soft spot on an infant’s head), sunken eyeballs, constant thirst, absence of tears, and dry skin.

5. Diarrhea: This is a condition wherein the child produces loose or watery stool, usually three times in a day. In this condition, the consistency of the stool is much more important than the frequency of the bowel movements. So even if the child makes more than three movements a day, with formed stool, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s diarrhea.

See a doctor if: There’s mucus or blood in the stool and if it’s accompanied by abdominal cramps and fever or follows vomiting after a meal, as this could be a sign of food poisoning.

Tummy aches among children is common, but knowing what this indications could mean—along with other signs—can save your child from serious health condition.

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