Watch out! What eye drops do not go to the stomach …

Sometimes a small oversight can bring great complications, especially when it comes to active and curious children who can take anything to mouth. Such is the case when they mistakenly take any medication, even if it is over-the-counter or seems harmless. Drops from the eyes or nose, for example, can cause serious injury. Here we tell you more details about this topic and how to keep medicines out of reach of your children.

Young children love to touch everything, they are attracted to textures and colors and are able to take anything to their mouths. Thus, any type of medication, above all those of different colors, can attract the attention of children, who without fear and with total ingenuity can confuse them with sweets or candies.

Similarly, the small bottles of drops that are used to relieve the redness of the eyes, as well as nasal decongestant sprays, can be fun to play. However, they do not know that it could cause them more or less serious health complications.

For example, swallow just 1 or 2 milliliters of eye drops or eye drops or nasal spray (note that a teaspoon can contain about 5 milliliters) containing derivatives of a medication called imidazoline (such as etrahydrozoline, oxymetazoline or nafazolin) ) can cause serious effects in young children.

Specifically, between 1985 and 2012, the US Food and Drug Administration. (FDA, for its acronym in English) identified 96 cases of children between 1 to 5 years who accidentally swallowed products containing these ingredients. Although none of the children died, more than half had to be hospitalized because of the symptoms that caused them. These symptoms included: nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, tachycardia (rapid heartbeat), hypotension (low blood pressure), hypertension (high blood pressure), hypothermia (decrease in body temperature) and coma, among others.

And these were just some of the cases of drug poisoning in the home. According to the educational initiative Out of Reach and the View of Children , in which the FDA collaborates, more than 60 thousand young children end up in emergency rooms every year, for taking medications while adults did not see them.

And it is often a matter of a few minutes for these expert explorers to find just what they should not take. That is why it is so important that you and any other person in charge of the children take certain precautions to prevent the children from swallowing the medication by mistake. Take note and take action to protect them:

  • Keep all medications in a place high enough so that children can not see or reach them. Even vitamins can have harmful effects if they are taken incorrectly or if taken by the wrong person.
  • Never leave medicines or vitamins on the countertop or kitchen counter or next to the bed of a sick child, even if you have to give a dose in a few hours.
  • If the medicine bottle has a safety cap, turn it until you hear a click or until you can not turn it over. If you do not have a safety lock, then make sure to close it properly and, in either case, always store them where the children can not see or reach.
  • Remind the nannies, guests and visitors that if they have medicines in their handbags, purses or bags keep them where the children can not see or reach them.
  • Tell your children what medications are and why you should give them to them.
  • Even if it is hard for you to take your medicine, never tell them that the medicines are goodies to get them taken.
  • Avoid taking your medications in front of young children, because they like to imitate what adults do.

With these simple care you will reduce the chances of your children taking medication by mistake. But since accidents sometimes simply happen, always have on hand the number of emergencies where you can take your children in case they swallow nasal drops or eyes, or in case they take any other medicine by mistake. Write it down next to the phone at home and also save it on your cell phone, so you can act quickly and avoid or reduce the risk of complications.

Fitness and blood pressure

New studies show that exercising, even if moderate, helps keep blood pressure at bay. In this case, in particular, it would allow people who have a family predisposition to develop hypertension to reduce the risk of developing it.

Recently, Víctor’s father died due to a heart problem that occurred because he had high blood pressure . For that reason, although his blood pressure is normal, Victor is a little worried because he knows that he is a little overweight and that he has a higher risk of developing hypertension , due to a hereditary problem.

It is natural that Victor’s concern appears after such a sad moment and that he begins to make comparisons between his lifestyle and that of his father. The fact of having a father or a mother who has suffered from high blood pressure (added to his extra kilos) makes him a person more likely to be hypertensive. For example, there are researches in this regard that estimate that having a parent with high pressure can increase the chances of developing this condition, between 35 and 65 percent.

The good thing in this case is that Victor came to the office when there are still no signs of the disease and can begin to change his habits to decrease the chances that his blood pressure becomes a chronic health problem immediately.

As with other conditions, such as diabetes and cancer, eating a healthy diet accompanied by exercise is the best and most natural way to stay healthy.

And if your situation is similar to Victor’s, the first suggestion is to decrease the salt of your diet as much as possible. This includes sodium, which is usually present in many products prepared for daily consumption, such as broths and preserves (check labels carefully before choosing and remember that the recommended sodium or salt intake for a healthy adult should not exceed 2,300 mg daily (equivalent to one teaspoon of salt per day), although the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently suggested that maybe we should decrease this amount to 1,500 mg per day, which is even less).

In addition, it is very important that you exercise regularly. This will not only help you lose weight and keep your circulatory system healthier, which includes your heart, but also help your blood pressure stay within the ranges considered normal.

Even, it is not necessary that it be an intense sport. A recent study has shown that moderate exercise every week, can decrease up to 34 percent the chances of developing high blood pressure, in people who have a family predisposition to develop it (as is the case of Victor).

Specifically, according to researchers from the Arnold School of Public Health at the University of South Carolina, in Columbia, in the United States, 150 minutes of weekly walking (a little over two hours in total) are enough to make a difference.

To arrive at these data, which were published in the specialized Hypertension , the scientists evaluated more than 6,000 adults, of whom a third had a family history of hypertension, either the mother or the father, and followed up on his physical activities for about five years.

They found that people who exercised a lot were 42 percent less likely to develop high blood pressure and those who exercised moderately had a 26 percent lower risk of developing hypertension, compared to those who did little or no physical activity.

Among people who had a parent with high blood pressure, those who were in good physical condition had only 16 percent more chances of developing hypertension, compared to those who exercised but had no family history of the disease.

Conversely, those with a family history of high blood pressure and who did not practice physical activities or did so at a very low level had 70 percent more chances of developing hypertension, compared to those who did sports and had no family history.

And you, are you practicing your exercise routine? Remember that even if you have already found high blood pressure you can practice some kind of physical activity , taking certain care (for example, it has been shown that swimming helps in these situations ).

Therefore, be that as it may, if you want to stay healthy and your blood pressure does not exceed the recommended limits, remember to put your body in motion, whether it is a light or intense exercise .

Types of surgery for the treatment of breast cancer

Taking advantage of the fact that October is the month of raising awareness about breast cancer, this article tells you about the different types of surgery that are available as part of breast cancer treatment. Learn about these options, but above all, remember that early detection through self-examination and frequent visits to the doctor saves thousands of lives every year. Do not neglect yourself!

In Life and Health I have always stressed the importance of early detection when it comes to fighting breast cancer. As October came again, the month of raising awareness about this type of cancer, it is important that we remember the self-examination. You more than anyone know your breasts, and if you find any irregularity, you can go to the doctor immediately to examine you, although as you know, although you do not notice changes, the medical evaluation and periodic mammography are also essential. You know that the earlier it is detected, there are more options for a successful treatment and that you get out of this battle.

If you are diagnosed with cancer, there are options for the treatment of breast cancer. These depend on the type of cancer, the place of the breast where it is located and the stage in which it is located. But the safest thing is that surgery is one of the options for the treatment of breast cancer.

Each case is different, and each woman different, so, here I tell you roughly what the different types of surgery are, but only you and your doctor can decide which is the best option for you.

  1. Lumpectomy: Also known as “conservative surgery”, this procedure removes only the cancerous tumor and an area around it, for safety. It is also likely that an axillary lymph node is removed. The idea of ​​this surgery is to preserve (as the name implies) the general appearance of the breast. It is complemented with radiotherapy treatment. Not all women with breast cancer qualify for this type of surgery, especially if they have more than one cancerous area in their breast.
  2. Partial mastectomy: In this type of surgery the cancerous mass is removed with part of the tissue that is around it, as well as part of the covering of the chest muscles and some lymph nodes. In these cases, radiation therapy is often recommended for six to eight weeks once the recovery from surgery is complete.
  3. Total mastectomy: As the name implies, this type of intervention removes the entire breast, but not the lymph nodes, if they have not been affected by cancer. This surgery is done as an additional prevention to the reappearance of breast cancer.
  4. Modified radical mastectomy: this surgery removes the breast tissue in its entirety along with the nipple and lymph nodes in the axilla. The chest or thorax muscles do not touch. On many occasions, patients undergoing this surgery undergo reconstruction of the breast using tissue from their abdomen or using a breast prosthesis (an artificial piece).

Thanks to the technology of today, the emotional impact of this type of surgery is reduced because there are tools to reconstruct the appearance of the breast. Do not forget to talk with your doctor about the different options so that you have the information you need in your particular case and, if you have questions, ask for a second opinion from another oncologist.

Do not be discouraged, rather be happy that this possibility exists and that you can fight this disease.

Does your child have ADHD? Tips to relieve the side effects of medications

Medications for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) relieve the symptoms of that disease, such as irritability, anxiety or difficulty staying calm.But they could cause side effects, which can be mild or quite serious. Fortunately, there are ways to control them.

When Marta saw the effects of the treatment for ADHD in her 6-year-old son, she thought that the remedy had been worse than the disease: the child did not want to eat and to top it off, she began to have a nervous tic that made her feel ridiculous before her classmates. of school. If before the problem in the classroom was the lack of concentration and continuous movement, now the child felt ashamed and unhappy. The doctor had already warned him of possible side effects, but even so, Marta consulted him again. The doctor tried to calm his doubts with the following reasons:

  • The treatments currently available offer good results, but we must also face possible side effects.
  • Most of these effects are mild and only last for a while.
  • To reduce the most severe ones, doctors start with lower doses of medication, adjusting them and gradually graduating them.
  • He also offered you a guide to alleviate the more severe symptoms that we share with you later.

Are you familiar with the case of Marta and her son? Thousands of children and their families have to deal daily with the treatment and management of ADHD. Maybe the same thing is happening to your son. Even with the lowest doses, you may be suffering from some side effects. Although the lightest tend to disappear on their own, you should talk to the doctor if you notice them in your child. If they last more than a month, it is important that the doctor knows and takes action.

Side effects depend on the type of medication. There are two main types to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder ( ADHD): stimulants and non-stimulants. Stimulants include those of methylphenidate (such as Concerta , Focalin , Metadate ER , Ritalin ), and amphetamine stimulants (such as Adderall , Adderall XR ). Among the non-stimulants is atomoxetine ( Strattera ), an antidepressant and an anxiolytic.

Stimulant medications are the best known and most used, and between 70 and 80% of children react to them positively. Some side effects of these medications are lack of appetite, problems with growth, irritability, altered behavior to the point that the child can not express their emotions. They can also develop tics (blinking excessively, grimacing, tilting the head), although many times these tics are a result of the disease, and the medication only makes them worse.

Some children, however, do not react well to stimulant medications, and respond better to non-stimulants. These can cause lack of appetite, stomach problems, nausea and drowsiness, but those symptoms usually disappear after the first month of treatment. Although rare, there are other more serious side effects. One is its potential to elevate liver enzymes and to cause damage to this important organ. The child’s pulse may also be slightly accelerated and his blood pressure may increase, as may depression and suicidal thoughts, although these cases are very rare.

Although it is important to consult with the doctor if you notice any side effects of medications taken by your child, there are some tips that help you relieve them:

  • Lack of appetite . If the child feels unresponsive after taking the medication, give him the dose after breakfast. As you probably have no appetite at lunchtime, make up for a good dinner at night. And always have low-calorie, nutritious snacks on hand. If the inappetence is prolonged, the doctor may decide to lower the doses or suspend the medication on weekends.
  • Stomach pain or discomfort . To avoid them, never give the child the medicine on an empty stomach.
  • Difficulty sleeping . Set a routine at bedtime, which includes relaxing activities, such as reading or bathing. If the child still does not sleep well, ask the doctor if he or she can take the medication earlier, reduce the dose or suspend the evening dose so that he sleeps well when he goes to bed.
  • Drowsiness for the day . Ask the doctor if you can give the medication at bedtime and not in the morning, or maybe lower the dose.
  • Rebound effect . If the effect of the medication ends in the evening or at night, some children have even greater symptoms of ADHD. To avoid this, ask your doctor to use a longer medication, or ask if you can take small doses of a fast-acting stimulant later in the day.
  • Changes in mood . Watch the child. If you notice changes such as an inability to express yourself emotionally or suicidal thoughts, immediately stop the medication and notify the doctor.
  • Heart problems . Although rare, there have been cases of serious heart problems due to medications for ADHD. That is why it is essential to tell the doctor about any history of heart disease in the family, if necessary, make the tests and be aware of any symptoms that may arise.
  • Liver damage . The doctor should give the child periodic blood tests and the tests necessary to determine if the liver enzymes are OK.

If in doubt, consult with the doctor. Do not change the doses yourself or stop giving the medication to the child without the doctor’s consent. You will see that probably with perseverance and patience, the side effects will disappear and the child and you can better face the challenge of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).