Articles on immunology

Skin Care and Protection (Mainly for Hands With Eczema/allergy)

Dr. Sandeep Gupta, Dermatologist
Skin Care and Protection1. Wash your hands in lukewarm water. Rinse and dry your hands thoroughly after washingThe skin damaging potential of a detergent is temperature dependent. Warm, soapy water causes more skin irritation than lukewarm or cold soapy water.2. Use protective gloves when starting wet-work tasks  Unprotected wet work is a significant risk factor for the development of skin irritation. Gloves are essential for protecting the skin against water, dirt, detergents,shampoos, and foodstuffs. 3. Protective gloves should be used when necessary but for as short a time as possibleIrritant reactions due to wearing gloves are frequently reported. Prolonged use of gloves leads to impairment of the skin barrier, especially if the skin has previously been exposed to detergents .4. Protective gloves should be intact and clean and dry inside Even a small amount of an irritant may  act as a strong irritant when the skin is occluded. Furthermore, allergens trapped inside a glove could induce sensitization or elicit allergic contact dermatitis in a person already sensitized.5. When protective gloves are used for more than10 min, cotton gloves should be worn underneathWearing a cotton glove inside the protective glove has been shown to protect the skin from deterioration caused by using gloves.6. Do not wear rings at work Eczema often starts under a finger ring. Irritants may become trapped under the ring, causing irritation and irritant contact dermatitis .7. Disinfectants should be used according to the recommendations for the workplaceUse of disinfectants may cause skin irritation followed by irritant contact dermatitis, and was recently reported as a contributory factor for development of hand dermatitis. However, individual factors for each workplace have to be considered.8. Select a lipid-rich moisturizer free from fragrance and with preservatives having the lowest allergen potential, Apply moisturizers on your hands during the working day or after work.Moisturizers have been shown to promote regeneration of barrier-damaged skin. Moisturizers that are rich in lipids promote regeneration faster than those that contain less lipid. Fragrance and preservatives are common causes of allergic reactions to cosmetic products .9. Moisturizers should be applied all over the hands,including the finger webs, fingertips and back of the hand Application of moisturizers to the hands is often incomplete,since many areas are skipped during application .10. Take care also when doing housework, use protective gloves for dishwashing and warm gloves when going outside in winter Development of irritant contact dermatitis is caused by exposure to cumulative irritants, often in low concentrations. Domestic exposure therefore adds to exposure at work. Domestic wet work has been recognised as an important risk factor for the development of hand eczema. During the winter, the skin is more susceptible to irritant exposure.

Bronchial Asthma & How to Boost Your Child's Immunity

Dr. Loknath Kumar, General Physician
Bronchial Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disorder of the airways characterized by an obstruction of air flow.The inflammation of the airways makes them very sensitive resulting in spasm of the airways that tend to narrow, particularly when the lungs are exposed to allergens, cold air, viral infections, smoke and exercise. The reduced airways result in a reduction in the amount of air going into the lungs making it hard for the child to breathe.How Asthma affects children:The tendency to develop Asthma is often inherited. It has also been suggested that there is an association between day care environment and wheezing. Those who started day care early were twice as likely to develop wheezing in their first year of life as those who did not attend day care. Many children with Asthma can breathe normally for a few weeks or months between flares. When flares do occur, they often seem to happen without warning.Bronchial Asthma was found more often in children born during August to October, possibly due to more viral infections during their first six months of life.Children younger than 18 years of age account for a large portion of emergency department visits and hospitalizations due to asthma exacerbation. Asthma causes children and adolescents to miss school and causes parents to miss days at work.Signs and Symptoms:1) Wheezing: A musical high pitched whistling sound produced by airflow turbulence is one of the most common symptoms of Asthma.2) Cough3) Nocturnal/ Exercise induced cough: Children usually tend to cough after midnight, during early hours of morning or after exercise.4) Shortness of BreathDiagnosis:1) Pulmonary function test2) Allergy Test3) RadiographyManagement of Asthma and is it possible to boost the child’s Immunity:Although Inhalers and medications do provide relief, but considering their side effects and the repeated intervention that is needed,parents prefer Natural therapies like Salt Room Therapy that provide a very potent alternative to heavy medications. Kids have a natural aversion to medicines. A few Salt room therapy sessions under the playful environment provided within the Salt room helps the child build up immunity and steer clear of repeated Asthma and Wheezing attacks.Dr.Vanikala VenugopalRespiCare Whitefield

Body Odour (BO)? Prevent It!

Dr. Pradnya Shastri, Dermatologist
Here is a joke:“It was a really hot day at the office. There were about twenty people in close quarters and everyone was sweating, even with a fan on.All of a sudden, people started to wrinkle their noses at an odour passing through the air. It was the most hideous smell anyone had ever smelt.One man said, "Uh oh, someone's deodorant isn't working."Mr B. O. Smellywelly from the distant corner replied, "It can't be me. I'm not wearing any."Haha!... No? Not funny right?Yeah, I know it’s offensive towards people with body odour. But there is a reason why I started off with this joke! To let you know that there is hope for all those people who are the butt of all such jokes!Here are a few things that you should know about body odour also called as Bromhidrosis or BO:TYPES AND CAUSES Before I go ahead, let me give you a little background. There are multiple glands in the body. Of which those associated with odour are the apocrine glands (found in armpits, breast, pubic area and groins) and eccrine glands (pretty much all over the body). It is the overactivity of these glands that is responsible for bad odour. Let’s see what are the causes of each type of bromhidrosis:Eccrine bromhidrosisCommon cause of Body Odour and occurs at any age.Possibly caused by ingestion of certain foods like garlic, onions, radishes,  broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, meats and alcohol (remember how you smell after an episode of binge drinking !)Can also be caused by medications like penicillins, bromides etcWhen there is excessive sweating, the keratin ( a substance which is a part of the skin) gets macerated. The bacteria present in the armpit act on this degraded keratin and a foul odour emanates.May be rarely caused by metabolic disorders, e.g. amino acid disturbances (trimethylaminuria  [fish odour syndrome])Apocrine bromhidrosisThis is genetic and occurs after pubertyAxillary bacterial florae have been shown to produce the offensively smelling short chain fatty acids and certain amino acids.Commonly seen infection called Erythrasma caused by Cornybacterium is associated with apocrine bromhidrosisHOW TO PREVENT BO?Take a shower everyday! Sprinkle powder periodically through out the day (talc free is possible) to ensure that the sweat is absorbed. Sounds complicated? It isn’t. Just try it out once. You could carry a small bottle of powder in your backpack or purse.An antimicrobial soap helps. And by that I don’t mean the usual ‘raksha karne wale’ or ‘ kitanu ko marne wale’ soaps. I am talking about medicated and prescribed soaps. As far as the use of such soaps is concerned one should always take advise from  a dermatologist. As shown in commercials, you don’t really need an anti bacterial/ anti microbial soap for daily use. It is a myth that you need it everyday! When you use such soaps everyday you are not only killing the harmful bacteria (which I agree to) but are also killing the necessary and helpful bacteria! That means that you are actually making yourselves more prone to infections in the long run. Which is why I prescribe such soaps only to people complaining of BO.Wearing cotton clothes really helps. Synthetic clothes tend to aggravate body odour. Changing your clothes twice a day isn’t a bad option either. People complaint to me saying that their mornings are fresh and by the time evening sets in they themselves can’t tolerate their own body odour. I say, keep a change of shirt or kurta in your office. That helps in  controlling the bacterial overgrowth.Use a good quality perfume on your clothes rather than  deodorant on your skin. The fragrance lasts longer (since it doesn’t get washed off by the sweat) and because the chemicals are sprayed on the clothes, there won’t be leeching of the deodorant chemicals in your skin either thus preventing any possibilities of developing irritant or allergic dermatitis.Regular shaving of axillary hair also helps keeping the bacterial growth in check. It is an option for all you women out there as well! It’s a myth that the hair will grow back thicker if you use a razor. Yes, it’s a myth! So shave the hair off without fear!Cutting down on foods like onions, garlic etc. and alcohol! Despite all these, you might need to take an extra effort and visit a dermatologist. Like I mentioned, there are certain bacterial infections that can aggravate body odour. And a proper treatment with oral antibiotics and application of antibiotic creams is needed. In certain unremitting cases, there are procedures like botulinum toxin injections or even sympathectomy which can be done. But all these are treatments aren’t simple and need to be discussed with your dermatologist.So what are you waiting for? Try out these simple measures!! As they say, "Stay calm and smell good!"Haha!... no? Not funny?Let me sign off for now!

5 Foods That Boost Immunity

Ms. Swati Kapoor, Dietitian/Nutritionist
Citrus fruitsVitamin C contributes in increasing the production of white blood cells. The key cells to fighting infectionsBecause your body doesn't produce or store it, daily intake of vitamin C is essential for consistent good healthFruits rich in vitamin C are oranges, lemon, amla, strawberries, kiwis, papayaYogurtWhen selecting yogurt, look for ones that have "live and active cultures" printed on the label. According to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, these cultures can stimulate your immune system to help fight diseases.GarlicGarlic is found in almost every cuisine around the world. It adds a little zing to the food and it's a must-have for good health. Studies by the National Institute of Food Science and Technology have shown that garlic helps to lower cholesterol and may prevent hardening of arteries. Garlic’s immune-boosting properties seem to come from a heavy concentration of sulfur-containing compounds, such as allicin.AlmondsVitamin E is the key to a healthy immune system. Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin, meaning, it requires the presence of fat to be absorbed properly. Nuts (especially almonds) are packed with vitamin E. A half-cup serving provides nearly 100 percent of the recommended daily amount.TurmericA key ingredient in many curries, this bright-yellow, bitter spice has been used for years as an anti-inflammatory in treating both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. A recent study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology demonstrates that high concentrations of curcumin, which gives turmeric its distinctive color, helps to reduce inflammation and fever.Green teaGreen tea really has high levels of epigallocatechin gallate, or EGCG, another powerful antioxidant. The fermentation process black tea goes through destroys a lot of the EGCG. Green tea, on the other hand, is steamed and not fermented, preserving EGCG. If that wasn't enough, it's also a good source of the amino acid L-theanine. L-theanine aids in the production of germ-fighting compounds in your T-cells.

Does Backache in the Morning Mean More Than Just Normal Pain?

Dr. Tanoy Bose, Internal Medicine
Must Read Basics:When the cells and chemicals who are responsible for the security [immunity] of the body from external virus, bacteria and other micro-organisms misdirect their target and start attacking our own normal and healthy tissues considering them to be external to the body, a phenomenon is created which is called AUTO IMMUNITY. This process goes uncontrolled as the cellular security mechanism fail to realise that the tissue under attack are of their own and the very same body and the civil war continues causing damage to healthy tissue and its adjoining structures. In a healthy human body this destruction is characterised by five unique symptoms known as:1. Pain [Lat: Dolour]2. Redness of the affected area [Lat: Rubor]3. Swelling of the local site [Lat: Tumour]4. Rise in local temperature [Lat: Calor] 5. Loss of function [Lat: Functio Lussa]These 5 symptoms and signs together comprise a pathological entity called INFLAMMATION.From now onwards these two terms AUTO IMMUNITY and INFLAMMATION will be quite frequently used in explanation of different Rheumatological disorders. It is worth mentioning that the intensity of INFLAMMATION can roughly be quantified by checking few blood investigation parameters e.g. CRP [C - reactive protein] and ESR [Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate]. The above explanation was necessary to discuss Ankylosing Spondylosis as the disease is an AUTO IMMUNE INFLAMMATORY disorder where the affected tissue or area is the Sacro-Iliac Joints and Lumbo-Sacral Joints of young healthy individuals where boys are more affected than girls. The diagram underneath points out the area of involvement.COMMON SYMPTOMS:Having back pain is a common finding among most of the individuals and almost 90% of these back pains are caused due to mechanical problem i.e. due to excess weight bearing, trauma, poor posturing, excess body weight etc. There is no mechanical component in back pain of Ankylosing Spondylosis. The pain is purely caused due to an Autoimmune Inflammation of previously healthy uninjured normal Sacro-iliac joints. Hence the back pain of Ankylosing Spondylosis is often termed as INFLAMMATORY BACK PAIN which has the following characteristics:1. Pain & Stiffness most severe in early morning 2. Pain can disturb sleep especially during the latter half of the entire sleeping duration3. Pain improves with walking or activity but recurs after prolonged state of inactivity4. Pain may radiate to either of the buttocks and may have alternate buttock pain5. Response to Pain killers is excellent6. Often there is a family history of similar pain in young age7. Often there is a family history of a skin disease called Psoriasis, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Uveitis [An eye problem caused by redness and pain of eyes].Apart from INFLAMMATORY LOW BACK PAIN, there may be involvement of one or two large joints e.g. ankle, knee or wrist in asymmetrical manner. This component of the disease is called PERIPHERAL ARTHRITIS. Apart from joint involvement there may be symptoms of organ involvement other than joints e.g. Redness and Pain of eyes [due to UVEITIS], Skin disease [Psoriasis] and Gastro intestinal problems [Inflammatory Bowel Disease characterised by Painful passage of Stool which is often mixed with Blood and Pus and sometimes along with fever] and Lung Disease [Interstitial Lung Disease characterised by progressive shortness of breath, chest tightness and loss of elasticity of the lungs]These group of disorders are often coined together as EXTRA-ARTICULAR SYMPTOMS.Ankylosing Spondylosis usually affects the age group of 18 to 30 years and Boys or Men are more affected than Females. The presentation is very typical of a Low back Pain which is severe in early morning after waking up from bed and gradually improves on walking or activity and again comes back during prolonged period of rest of on the second half of the sleep. Often there is radiation of the pain into buttocks [Hips] causing alternate buttock pain. In peripheral arthritis one or more large joints of the body is affected causing pain and swelling along with early morning stiffness. Usually ankles and knees are affected but it is not uncommon for elbows and wrists to be affected.IN UNTREATED DISEASE:If the disease is not addressed early and chronic therapy is not started then this disease can cause severe debilitation, deformity, tremendous deterioration of quality of life and ultimately death. Progressive Inflammation of the Sacro Iliac joints may cause ultimately fusion of the Sacrum with Ileum and this phenomenon of obliteration of joint space causing fusion of the two bones over a joint is called ANKYLOSIS. This process of bony fusion gradually proceeds upwards involving each segment of the Spinal Column or the Vertebra causing impaired movement of the lumbar region of the spine [Reduced and painful movement of back leading to complete loss of any movement of low back]. The patient takes a complete erect posture and sometime hyper- erect posture. The process of bony ankylosis gradually proceeds upwards towards the thoracic spine and up to cervical spine [Upper mid back to Back of Neck] causing a straight and rigid body posture with complete loss of neck movement. Often the X Ray of Spine taken at this time looks like a BAMBOO SPINE. Patients are dependent on manual support or walker to move around. There may be difficulty in breathing due to poor movement of the rib cage and may cause severe oxygen shortage of lungs, pneumonias and ultimately death.MANAGEMENT:One should seek consultation from Experienced Rheumatologist at the earliest as the treatment of Ankylosing Spondylosis is getting updated every 3 to 4 years and new treatment guidelines are coming. Recently the researchers have separated Ankylosing Spondylosis from Peripheral Arthritis and Self Limiting Inflammatory Low back pain that resolves automatically without any damage. However, the treatment remains the same.To diagnose the disease classical symptoms as discussed above are strong enough to create a high index of suspicion. A genetic marker called HLA B27 is often asked for and almost 90% of patients of Ankylosing Spondylosis have this test as POSITIVE. If the results are positive along with the symptoms then an MRI of Sacro-Iliac Joints is often asked for. MRI can identify changes in the joint much ahead of X Rays as it can visualise the cartilage, the soft tissue within the joint and even the bone marrow of the adjoining bones. Bone Marrow edema of the adjoining joints is the earliest sign of Sacro-Ilitis and helps the rheumatologists to catch the disease early in the course and start management. MRI can grade the intensity of Sacro-ilitis which is necessary to follow up the treatment response. Plain X Rays of the Sacro Iliac Joints cannot detect any changes in early disease but any bony changes can readily be detectable. A normal X Ray is not necessary to be repeated within next 2 years for confirmation of the same diagnosis.Blood Parameters such as CRP [C – Reactive Protein] and ESR [Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate] are frequently measured as these parameters give an idea of the amount of inflammatory activity persisting in the body. The treatment is directed towards relief of symptoms, arrest of disease activity and achieving minimal inflammatory state of the body [or the joints]1. PHYSICAL THERAPY or PHYSIOTHERAPYAll patients of Ankylosing Spondylosis should be physically active all throughout the day. The disease demands more activity in the person than his peers. A normal sacro-iliac joint hardly permits any movement in human body as these joints are formed by apposition of two flat bony surfaces. Hence, the inflammatory chemicals easily get stagnant inside the joint space in highly concentrated amount and can cause easy joint damage. Excessive activity in form of dynamic exercises and games such as contact games [Football, volleyball, kho kho, kabaddi, hockey, basketball, tennis etc] causes jerky movement of body and results in small amount of movement of the sacro-iliac joints. This movement of the sacro-iliac joints results in gradual movement of the inflammatory chemicals out of the joint into blood and fresh joint fluid which is low in inflammatory chemical concentration pours into the joint cavity and thus the intensity of the joint damage is reduced. However, if the disease has progressed a bit it is advisable to avoid jerky movements of the body and start dedicated and guided physical therapy instead.2. PAINKILLERSWe use ETORICOXIB tablets to control the pain. The dose ranges from 60 to 120 mg per day. It has got its own battery of side effects such as gastritis, gastric ulcers, kidney injury and worsening of cardiac pre-existing cardiac problem. But, kindly note that this is the only medicine that can reduce the intensity of inflammation in the sacro-iliac joint and arrest or reverse erosion. Hence for a person suffering only from inflammatory back pain without involvement of any other peripheral joint, this is the medicine of choice. We prescribe concomitant antacids for gastric protection and execute caution in persons who are suffering from Cardiac and Renal Ailments.Other pain killers like ACECLOFENAC, DICLOFENAC, TRAMADOL, PIROXICAM, MELOXICAM and PARACETAMOL are prescribed to control breakthrough pain or when ETORICOXIB is not available but it is ETORICOXIB that scores beyond others as it is the only group of drug that can reverse the process of joint destruction3. PARACETAMOLPARACETAMOL is not a pain killer per se. It is an antipyretic or a drug that reduces fever. But at a dose of 1000mg four times a day, it can address painful conditions. PARACETAMOL has got no role in reversal of the disease process. It is prescribed when ETORICOXIB is not available or is contraindicated as in patients with Kidney disorder or Cardiac Problems.4. SULFASALAZINESULFASALZINE is actually an antibiotic and at a dose of 2 to 3 Gms per day in divided doses it has shown promise in addressing peripheral joint involvement. Researchers have failed to show any benefit with the use of SULFASALAZINE in only axial disease or in only back pain conditions. The common side effects of SULFASALAZINE is gastritis, nausea, heart burn, hypersensitivity, photo dermatitis, rashes, bone marrow suppression, liver problems and sometimes haemolytic anaemia [in patients who are deficient with a specific enzyme called Glucose 6 Phophatase (G6PD)]. Following precautions should be taken while taking SULFASALAZINE:a.Take the medicine in empty stomach. It is well absorbedb.Gradually increase the dose from 500mg once daily up to 2gms to 3gms per dayc.Check for Glucose 6 Phosphatase levels before starting the drugd.Avoid the medicine who are known to be allergic to SULFURe.Periodically monitor Blood Counts and Liver function to look for any adverse effectsf.Any kind of allergic phenomenon of rash should immediately be reported.5. METHOTREXATE:METHOTREXATE was first discovered for its efficacy against different cancers. Currently it is used in treatment of quite a few cancerous conditions. It has got excellent role in management of RHEUMATOID and PSORIATIC ARTHRITIS but unfortunately researchers have failed to show any benefit of its use in ANKYLOSING SPONDYLOSIS. Hence, use of METHOTREAXATE is not recommended in this disease6. BIOLOGICS:Biologics are highly specific molecules which have come into the picture in last decade. The mechanism of action of the biologics is by directly blocking the action of the pro inflammatory chemicals that cause damage to the joint and its structures directly. Due its highly specific action, these dugs are costly. Commonly prescribed biologics in Ankylosing Spondylosis are:1. ETANERCEPT 2. INFLIXIMAB3. ABATACEPT4. TOCILIZUMAB5. ADALIMUMABThese medicines can reverse the process of joint damage and arrest the progression of the disease. They are administered in once a week to once a month dosing basis and have a common class of side effects. Due to their targeted action against the chemicals that mediate inflammatory damage, their use may be associated with opportunistic infection of the other organs of the body. This is because of the blockade of inflammatory chemicals that are also responsible for normal human defence mechanism against external bacteria or virus.The common infections that can occur are Tuberculosis, Hepatitis, fungal and other bacterial infections. Hence, it is always recommended to screen for Latent Tuberculosis Infection and Hepatitis and HIV infection in the body.7. SUPPORTIVE THERAPY:The bones near the area of inflammation and as well as the entire human skeleton undergoes a process of accelerated osteoporosis. Hence we often provide CALCIUM supplementation and anti bone resorptive treatment with BISPHOSPHONATES. These are group of medicines which is used to treat OSTEOPENIA and OSTEOPOROSIS8. COUNSELLING:ANKYLSOING SPONDYLOSIS is a non curable disease. The current medical and physical treatment is directed towards slowing down of the joint damage, improve mobility of the spine, reduce morbidity and improve the quality of life. Since it affects the young age group, proper guidance, education and counselling is necessary for coping up with the disease and its complications.

Health Tips for Kids to Beat the Heat This Summer and Build Immunity

Vanikala Venugopal
During summer, our body becomes hotter, muscle enzymes speed up and burn glycogen more rapidly, depleting stores of the sugar that your muscles use for fuel. Hence it is necessary to make the child drink plenty of fluids that would help hydrate the muscle and skin adequately in order to maintain internal cooling down.Safety tips for children:Hydrate their body: Make them drink at least 8-10 glasses of water/ day. Parents should provide fresh juices, coconut water, butter milk or lemon juice as refreshments to their kids as they replenish the fluids that are lost in sweat.Keep kids out of midday sun: try to keep your kids out of direct sunlight especially during peak hours from 12-4 pm and instead engage them in indoor activities during that time of the day. Evenings are best for recreational activities,especially for kids playing outdoor games.Dress children in light coloured cotton fabricsNo junk food please! Avoid making your children eat a lot of spicy junkies like pizza, pasta and burgers. Instead go for fresh fruits like water melon, muskmelons, chikku and kiwis as they have antioxidant properties and water content which helps in preventing dehydration.Let them eat light and small frequent meals.Every mother wants to help her child stay healthy and fight off infections, especially during winter and flu season. A strong immune system is very important for children to stay healthy as it protects their developing body from diseases. We need to boost up their immunity so that they do not get infected with germs easily. Feeding children a balanced and healthy diet is very important for having a strong immune system. Food rich in antioxidants should be fed to children. Eating yoghurt everyday is good for health. It strengthens and stabilizes the immune system. Apart from these, parents should also take other steps to ensure that children stay healthy also during later winter months where infection prevalence is high. Beneficial action is to be taken to strengthen their Immunity. So in case your child is particularly susceptible to allergic attacks, then plan a few sessions of SALTROOM THERAPY which is a drugless treatment to increase immunity in a natural way. This therapy can be taken even when the child is not necessarily under the allergy attack at that particular point in time. Vacation can be the best times to future protect your child.

Why Is 'Everything Around Me' Adding to My Allergy Woes?

Mrs. Anju Chandna, Yoga and Naturopathy
Allergy sufferers are unanimous on the issue of ‘change of season’. Be it professionals, doctors, businessmen, mothers, teachers, students, grandparents - you name it and everyone thinks that for all their health problems and those of their kin, relating to cough, cold, allergies, fevers, aches etc. the weather is to blame. Poor weather!It’s easy to understand why people blame getting sick on the weather. There are times of year when everyone around us seems to be suffering from some kind of an allergy. It could manifest itself in the form of eczema eruptions on the skin or allergic and dry cough or show up in the form of asthmatic symptoms, or sneezing & sniffling, runny nose, clogged sinuses or itchy skin.But can frequent weather changes between hot/cold days really make people sick? Illnesses occur at all times, at different times in the year, whether in February, May or September but often get attributed to the weather. Now some food for thought. Isn’t it more likely that the infection that you caught beginning of summer was not from the weather but your carelessness to wear a sweater while it was still cold in the evening? Or that the coughing that caught you unawares was not sent from the sky but from the ice cream you had in the beginning of winter? So can we safely believe that allergies are caused by ignoring the indications of the weather, not dressing up appropriately to suit weather conditions or eating something not recommended for you?If the answer is YES, then our life becomes easier. Because then we can surely avoid the allergy by avoiding all triggers that could lead to the allergy. But sadly this is not so simple. The answer is complicated.Occurrence of allergies has been increasing at a phenomenal rate throughout the world. What is it that has catapulted allergy to the position of a global epidemic. Apart from declining air quality and rising pollution levels in many parts of the world, the primary reason that comes to the fore is Lifestyle. We eat fast foods, we eat processed foods, we go to sleep late, we get up late, we sit in our closed office spaces the whole day through, go only to gyms for exercise, worse still we don’t exercise at all and to make matters worse all of this is done in an environment that can easily be termed as ‘stressful’. Are we still looking for reasons to develop an allergy? How is it related to allergy? Let me start in the reverse order with stress. Stress can trigger an allergy and also aggravate it. I will discuss this in greater detail in my next write up.Fast foods are low on water content and vitamins. Eating fast food lowers body immunity like nothing else ever could. Processed foods have chemicals that can trigger allergic reactions in people. Faulty sleeping habits or lack of proper sleep gives less time to the body to repair itself thereby lowering body immunity. Low immunity makes the body more susceptible to allergies. Sitting in closed spaces throughout the day in air-conditioned offices dries out the fluids from the body including the mucous membranes of the nose making it weak so it cannot protect against viruses entering your nasal passages. Not to forget the stress such closed spaces can do to your mind with too much positive ionization all around. And yes Gyms. With everyone sweating profusely, gyms can serve as a haven for all kinds of infection-causing microbes if proper care is not taken to clean the equipment. Exercising in a closed space with barely any inlet for fresh air attracts dust mites and people with sensitive airways might be allergic to it. So what is the solution? The solution lies in fighting not the allergy but the root cause of allergy. In all my write ups about allergy I never forget to mention the fact that allergy is not a disease on its own. It is our body’s reaction to the environment. So lets look for a simple solution to the complex problem of allergy. Start by eating fresh. No saturated fats, no junk food, no excess carbs. Lots of water and fruits so that your system is cleansed of toxins. Sleep is a wonder drug. Its miraculous healing properties for both body and mind are irreplaceable. It’s a stress booster too. Remember allergies and stress go hand in hand. Exercising in gyms is okay but exercising outside in the fresh air is wonderful. The effects of negative ionization cannot be undermined. A walk in the open after a day’s long work is the best tonic for your body and mind. So enhance your body immunity and say goodbye to your allergy woes forever! Salt therapy is an effective therapy for enhancing body immunity by cleansing your lungs the natural way with no side effects!

How Allergic Itchy Hives and Sneezing Transform Into Assertive Health

Dr. Satish Sawale, Ayurveda
Most people, at some point of time, have been affected by said allergic reactions. An allergic reaction is a hypersensitive reaction triggered by an Allergen (substance that has the potential to trigger an allergic reaction). Allergies can be Perennial or Seasonal. Perennial allergies are not season specific and can occur throughout the year.Seasonal allergies, on the other hand, are season specific, for example, Hay fever (triggered by pollen) is a common allergic reaction during the spring season. A number of substances can act as a potential allergen, triggering a hypersensitive reaction in a person. The allergens can be (Mostly shares Mental status of fear/Anxiety)Environmental factors, such as pollen, dust mites, sunlight, fur of some animals, or moldCertain foodstuffs like milk and dairy products, peanuts, wheat, soy, tomatoes, eggplant, alcohol or shellfish.Synthetic and natural substances like pesticides, nickel, latexCertain medications like sulfa drugs, penicillinAnimal stings; mostly wasps and bees, can also trigger an allergic reaction.The allergic reactions affecting a person can vary depending on the source of the allergen. It can be a skin allergy, nasal and cough allergy, food allergy or a dust allergy. The best way to treat is to transform old way of responses to the stimulus.Ayurveda  treatments (Panchakarma and Rasayan thrapies) are very effective to deal. Ayurveda treatment provides unique approach at acute and chronic stages for long lasting and permanent relief. In addition, the Ayurveda medicines have better acceptance comparative amazing recovery and no drowsiness at all. No wonder, more and more people are choosing for Ayurveda management on priority basis.The person mostly gets triggered initially at night after dinner or after contact with cold/open wind breeze or water.

7 Practices of Highly Effective Parents!

Ms. Sneha Bhat, Psychologist
We adore our children & want the very best for them. However, are we taking right actions toward that very best? Most of us know that children learn or are shaped by what we do & not what we say. However not many know the implication of these words on our very own lives. At this moment let’s take a glance at the way we are shaping our children with our “actions” or “non-actions”.Most of us come home from work tired?Let’s accept it. Day by day we are reaching home from work all the more tired. It’s as if we have been rolling mountains whole day. Only one thing we wish to do, back home is to relax. Children are extremely instinctual. They read you more from your body language than from your words. So they interpret that work of any sort is something that gets you tired & sulky. From very young age they develop an aversion against working. They think that life is great when they do not work and just have fun in some way or the other. They are getting a message that work is not fun..!!We seem happy when we communicate over phone or with friends?We humans being highly evolved beings have learnt the art of pretending. Whatever our energy level & mental state is, all of a sudden we sound happy & excited when we are speaking over the phone or with an outsider. These masks we wear, in our definition; might be the social face which we ought to hold for a successful living, looks like a puzzle to our little ones. They get an impression that phone is that magic device which makes you happy & also you are to be relaxed & gay with friends & grim & uptight with family…We are teaching them to wear masks..!!We install ourselves in front of television at first opportunityAny child, you might have observed, has very high energy level. He/she wants to play all the time. We do not realize that it is actually the work they are doing. They are born with a tendency to work passionately. As they grow up, they come across their role models whose keenness at home is to catch up with something or the other on television. On top of it, they also see their father & mother criticizing each other for their choice of program to watch. Eventually, children learn to choose that show, which closely portrays what they want to do & fall in line with the competition within the family. We are teaching them that pleasure is to be gained through senses & not by action..!!We are too tired for real action, we dislike our work!Most of us lead a life where we imagine or watch what we want to do & work only for the sake of money, time pass or status. Our attitude portrays work to be a very distant ally. We are not in a state to talk passionately about work to our children. On the other hand we cannot even sit for a minute without filling our time. Our children grow up watching us mostly disinterested in any sort of physical action. Just think about the number of fathers or mothers who go out & play while their children watch them, number of parents who actively play at least an hour with their children, number of parents who take their children to their work place & explain how fabulous it is, to work..!! Our children are left with no choice but to play in computer or phone imitating their parent’s obsession with phone or computer…We are taking them towards non-action.!We are connected more through technology than intimacyTechnology with its huge advance has brought whole world together. Now we receive appreciation & attention from people we barely know though several ways which is highly addictive, though superficial. We beam to see 100+ likes on a picture posted on Facebook over a genuine appreciation from the partner. Now we have started to live for the sake of that wide range of appreciation over the joy from depth of appreciation. This depth can be felt when we can sense the presence of another person wholly with us, moment to moment; Sharing not only our outstanding experiences but also creating intense moments together. In any experience whether it’s a small discussion with family or quality time vacationing, the depth of experiencing depends on the focus. Right now our focus is not on the task at hand but on capturing the task for appreciation from some faceless friends on social media. We are teaching our children to live an empty life right from the beginning.We do not make an attempt to establish intense connection with partnerMost of us eventually take our partner for granted & communicate only about some facts or about a decision to be made. A child keenly watches the way parents interact. It is highly rewarding to watch parents who care for each other, understand each other & truly connect. Child learns it’s interaction style & emotional expression by observing parents. At the moment, to a child home looks like a place where people collect nice stuff, watch television, eat, blame people, discuss some anxiety arousing topics occasionally & relax as much as possible, not with each other. Home, where children are supposed to learn to work, to love, to communicate, to resolve an issue is slowly becoming a place where one learns to pretend all the more. We aren't teaching our children to establish true & genuine connection.Influence of the media on our children..!!Media is the bedrock of any civilization. It is a huge player in shaping the culture & tomorrow’s existence. It is yet another article to discuss the role media plays in shaping our children. Only one thing which has to be mentioned here is that media needs to be thoroughly reflective & aware of its role in shaping the whole society. Every single person is influenced to great extent by what’s portrayed in media. The society where media is biased, negative, overly objectified or irresponsible takes the society in that very direction. Media needs to remember that it has to lead the society than to reflect the society to create enriching life.We all love our children & wish a fulfilling life for them. However let us remember that our children can have a fulfilling life only if they find us leading one. Anything is possible if we truly intend to & start acting towards it. We need to lead our children by example. Let us reflect on our lives & create the very life we wish for our children, from this very moment…!!