How to Control Mental Stress Before Exams?

Mental Stress

Generally, exams are considered as memory tests based upon specific blue print, answer key, and certain criteria for evaluation. One can see that exams are interconnected with short-time and longtime internal evaluation to check whether the student did attain the expected level of achievement or not. In general sense, exams conducted after a term or semester determines the future and is termed as turning points in student’s lives. At the same time, this sort of unwanted hype results in stress and anxiety among students. Exams can affect the smooth functioning of a student in different ways.

For instance, some students feel more anxiety and some others handle exams in a cool manner, no matter what. But it is important to manage stress by eliminating anxiety, otherwise it will affect the student’s ability to learn and may lead to depression. A little bit of stress is good for every matter, because it gives more motivation and provides energy to make hard work. But if the stress increases we can easily identify it, because heart rate will increase, and lack of concentration may occur in similar situations. So, it is important to manage stress before exams.

To manage stress, it is important to understand the cause of stress. There are many reasons for exam related stress including low motivation, lack of preparation, high expectation from families etc.  Some tips are indicated below to control stress before exams.

Listening to one’s favorite music

music

Listening, especially to soothing music, will create positive energy to our mind. It will wipe out the bad mood and increase positivity in our mind. While listening to music, mind will become cool and stress free. Because of that, mind will eliminate stress from the mind and it normalizes the heart rate and it mainly makes the mind and body relaxed. This improves psychological functions of the students, by slowing down the pulse and heart rate. Music acts as a brain surgery in our brain it eliminates all the negative thoughts and makes it healthy.

When this idea is superimposed into the scenario of a student who is facing stress related to exams, it is evident that music can play the role of a medicine to illness. To be specific, music can help the student to get instant relief from stress because it helps to gain momentary escapade from exam related stress in general.

Quick walk

Brisk walk without any particular aim is essential for human beings for relaxation. When we indulge in the process of walking, out mind too moves with the same. When exams occur, students ponder over the end result and think that their level of learning is not enough to gain high scores. Similarly, sitting and reading for hours cannot bring forth positive result in exams because it can entrap a student in stress. For instance, sitting for a long time and looking at the pages of a book can disturb human brain because the same too need relaxation. In actual sense, we are forcefully stuffing information into the brain, and it makes the brain weaker.

Making a quick walk before an exam will raise the memory power and it helps to increase the blood flow into the brain. It helps the brain to recollect information stored in different areas of brain. One can see that normal physical activity helps to release the production of endorphins. It makes the brain feel good. A quick walk increases the heart rate and during walk we try to inhale and exhale air more than usual walk. It increases the blood flow to the brain. So, it is important to get indulged in brisk walking before the exam, so as to release stress.

Breathing techniques

You might have seen that some students before exam indulge in final preparation by going thought notes, charts, figures, and one-word question answers. Some others get indulged in utter confusion and stress by conducting brisk discussion on the portions that are not covered by them. Some other students keep calm and take deep breaths and relax. Deep breathing is one of the best ways to release stress before exams. When we breathe deeply, it makes a message to the brain to relax.

After that, brain sends another message to the body to calm down. Because of that, the amount of stress hormones will decrease in the blood. Breathing exercise is a good way to become calm and it reduces stress. Breathing techniques are easy to learn and we can use it in any situation when we feel stress. There are different types of breathing like belly breathing, pranayama, etc. In short, students can make use of any breathing technique to keep them away from stress related to exams in general.

Sleep well

sleep

Sleeping is a normal process in human life. Most of us don’t know the health benefits of sleeping, still we sleep. A deep and sound sleep can help one to reduce stress, and it is essential to sleep for at least six or seven hours. When an exam occurs in a student’s life, his or her brain will crave for rest because mind cannot function properly under stress. If we overload the information into the brain, without adequate sleep, the same will weaken the brain. During an exam, human brain with less relaxation will face a number of problems related to the process of recollecting information, and the end result will be unexpected loss of memory, and perhaps, total blank out. So, it is essential for the human brain to have relaxation in the form of sound and deep sleep. Besides, sound sleep can help students to be free from mood swings.

To be specific, sleeping can help to regenerate the level of energy in human beings. So, it helps the brain to work more powerful than the previous day. There are certain things to be needed for better sleep. For instance, regular time for going to bed can create a perfect biological clock in human beings, and the same can result in positive results. If not, stress will become a usual phenomenon in human life and it will be difficult to have instant escapade from the same.

Author Bio:

My name is Travis Miller. I have experience in writing process from last few years. It’s very nice to share our thoughts and our knowledge through a medium called Custom essay writing service. It’s very flexible and comprehensible for the readers and also supports new writers’ use to write particular topics to encourage and give some positive thoughts to our new generation. Follow me on Twitter

Things to Know About Back Pain Treatment

back pain

Today, many people suffer from back pain problem. It is one of the most common reasons why people visit a doctor. Hectic work schedules, seating on a chair for a long time and fast lifestyle without regular exercise are the main cause of the back pain. Apart from that, post operation back pain and post-pregnancy back pain is very common for all.

In such cases, you can find many back-pain treatments in the market, and the most common treatments are physiotherapy or chiropractic treatment and medication. With physiotherapy back pain treatment, you can get relief without any medication.

How to Get Relief from Back Pain?

Back Pain Treatment

Back pain can differ from person to person, and you need to identify the cause of your back pain to get rid from your problems. You can feel the pain around your neck, shoulders and spine. Initially, shoulder and neck pain can be removed by minimum medication, but if you feel the pain on your spine then you need to go for some medical tests. You can easily treat your lower back pain by chiropractic treatment.

  • If you want to get instant relief from your back pain, then you must consult with your physician. In this regard, you can also consult with spine specialists, and they can prescribe you some painkillers to reduce your back pain.
  • You can also feel the back pain due to your bad posture and sleeping disorder. You need to take proper rest to reduce your back pain, and you can also improve your posture by replacing your mattress. Even you can also go for some yoga and do some regular exercise to reduce your back pain. However, do not go for weight training with back pain problems because lifting weight can stress on your spine.
  • It is better to consult with physiotherapists and they can show you some exercise to reduce your back pain. Even they can also give you some message to remove your muscle stress. With regular exercise, you can make your muscle and bones stronger, and you can easily get rid of your chronic back pain, without any medication. Painkillers have some side effects and they can weaken your nerve system. So, do not take painkillers for longer time.

Major Causes Behind Back Pain:

  • Strain: Strained muscles or ligaments is one of the major causes of back pain. It is painful, and the problem can complicate with time. If the problem intensifies or complicates, it might result in a lot of damage to other surrounding tissues and muscles and surgery might be the only available option. Strain can be avoided by taking good care of the body, avoiding lifting heavy weights and not making sudden movements.
  • Structural problem: These problems include arthritis and ruptured disks among other problems. A person having back pain due to any of these complications should immediately consult a doctor and get a thorough check-up.
  • Posture: Poor posture is another reason for back pain. People tend to sit on chairs in the wrong way which might be comfortable initially but can lead to serious back problems in later stages of life. Bad posture is of the most common reasons behind back pain and people working for long hours in office are the ones who generally suffer from it.
  • Sleeping on the stomach.: Sleeping on the stomach can place stress on muscles and ligaments, thus causing serious back pain. Thus, one should always sleep on the back or sideways as this the spine neutral.
  • Spine cancer: A tumor on the spine may press against some nerves which cause back pain. This shows why we should consider the matter seriously and we should always consult a doctor to know the exact reason behind the pain.

Back pain treatment is one of the most searched health-related keywords on the web. This shows the severity of the problem and the urgency to solve it. With the advancement in technology, science has come up with a number of ways of diagnosing and treating the back problem.

Things to Avoid Getting Rid from Back Pain

You can suffer from lower back pain frequently. From the lower rib cage to pelvis areas is known as lumber region and lower back pain is basically caused by the strain injury. There are many kinds of treatments available for your lower back pain, but you need to find out the exact cause of your pain. Some common causes of lower back pain are lifting heavy weight, prolonged sitting, sedentary jobs, smoking, high-level physical activities, obesity, and extreme tallness. Chronic back pain can last up to three months maximum, and the pain can be constant or intermittent. Even if you feel some positional lower back pain then it might be your posture problems. In this case, you need to go for physiotherapy of back pain treatment.

  • Excessive exercise and weight lifting can also injury your back and spinal position. Even excessive exercise can also create muscle strain and to prevent such issues, you need to regulate your exercise under proper supervision.
  • Sometimes you can feel muscle sprain and strain surrounding your spine, and to prevent such back pain you must take proper rest. Running, playing football and volleyball can be the causes of your back pain, and it is suggested to consult with your physician to treat your sports injury.

So now, you can search some physiotherapy clinics in your locality and visit their clinic for back pain treatment. Else, take suggestions from your family physician in this regard.

Author Bio:

Joseph Webb is an excellent writer and blogger. His guidance always helps for the readers to get the best idea. In this blog, Joseph provides an amazing tips for getting rid from back painLooking for more information regarding health care. Follow him on Google+ and on Twitter as @aussiesmag.

What Are Probiotics? Probiotic Supplements, Foods, Uses, Benefits and Safety

probióticos

Probiotics are also known as “healthy bacteria” or “beneficial bacteria”; they are live yeast and bacteria that promote health and support major functions of your body, most especially your digestive and immune systems.

Probiotics don’t cause diseases, rather they fight harmful bacteria and other microbes that cause diseases; besides, not all bacteria are harmful, unlike viruses. Probiotics are present in the body and they are mostly located in your gut, they protect your gut and keep it healthy.

Probiotics

Image source: Sciencedaily

They line your digestive tract, they enhance the ability of the body to absorb nutrients from foods eaten and they help you fight off infections. It is estimated that our bodies have the same number of gut bacteria molecules as the cells of your body.

Over 2,000 bacteria are present on your skin and in your digestive system alone; there are also present in other parts of your body. They have been in your body since from birth; you were exposed to the bacteria when you were in the birth canal of your mother during delivery.

Scientists believe that this starts a chain of reactions inside the baby’s gastrointestinal (GI) tract and the baby’s GI tract begins to produce good bacteria.

These friendly bacteria are one of the most commonly researched natural remedies to gut problems. Your gut is also part of your immune system because it makes of 80% of your immune system.

The digestive system forms the largest part of the neurological system; it is called the “enteric nervous system” and it is situated in the gut. This is why the digestive system is called the second brain; it has a huge impact on the functions of your brain and it regulates your mood your gut produces 95% of serotonin.

Gut problems and disorders have been linked to hormonal imbalance, thyroid problems, autism, joint pains, chronic fatigue syndrome, and psoriasis.

Our ancestors had lots of probiotics in their diet which came from organic foods grown in good soil and they also fermented their foods to prevent them from spoiling and this increased their intake of probiotics.

The story is not the same today, in fact, modern man is deficient in probiotics; this is caused by many factors like chlorination of our foods which kills these healthy bacteria, so-called purification of foods too also contribute to the absence of probiotics in our diet, some foods contain harmful antibiotics which kill probiotics and harm your body, refrigeration, and other agricultural practices also eliminate these beneficial bacteria from our foods.

One secret to long life and good digestive health is to increase your intake of probiotics. It’s more than a century now when Elie Metchnikoff, a Russian scientist and Nobel Prize Winner created his theory that “health and senility can be delayed by manipulating the intestinal microbiome with host-friendly bacteria found in yogurt.”

It is important to note that probiotics are not a new idea or invention; many cultures throughout history have survived on fermented foods and cultured foods, this was the ancient way of preserving food for a long time before the invention of the refrigerator.

Modernization has made man forget the process of fermentation and these practices have been lost as foods are no longer preserved using this method. This is the reason why lots of people are deficient in probiotics and have a lot of digestive issues these days.

Types of Probiotics in the Body

There are many types of healthy bacteria and each has a different benefit or a different function that it carries out in your body. There are two main groups of probiotics and they are mostly prescribed based on your needs.

Lactobacillus

This is the most common probiotic, it is found in yogurts with live culture and fermented foods. Different strains of bacteria in this group help treat digestive problems like diarrhea; they fight indigestion and they are also beneficial to people who have difficulty digesting lactose.

Bifidobacterium

This group of probiotic is also very effective against digestive disorders like irritable bowel syndrome and others; you can find it in organic dairy products.

Saccharomyces boulardii

This is a healthy yeast that can be classified as probiotics; it helps treat symptoms of digestive problems like diarrhea.

Some Beneficial Strains of probiotics

High-quality probiotics that give a lot of health benefits are:

  • Saccharomyces boulardii
  • Bifidobacterium bifidum
  • Bacillus coagulans
  • Bifidobacterium longum
  • Bacillus subtilis
  • Bifidobacterium breve
  • Lactobacillus rhamnosus
  • Bifidobacterium infantis
  • Lactobacillus brevis
  • Lactobacillus casei
  • Lactobacillus bulgaricus
  • Lactobacillus acidophilus

If you are taking them in the form of supplements, you have to take them in moderation because too much of it when taken rapidly causes diarrhea. They are very safe, and if at all, have very few side effects.

The Mechanism of Action of Probiotics

Health experts believe that the gut is a home to both harmful and beneficial bacteria but the reason we don’t feel the negative impact of these harmful microbes and pathogens because the probiotics are higher in population than the pathogens or harmful microbes.

The balance of these microorganisms in your gut is 85% good bacteria (probiotics) and 15% bad bacteria. Probiotics carry out its various functions in the body by maintaining this balance.

If the ratio or percentage is disrupted, this will lead to overgrowth or excess of a certain type of bacteria, fungi, or yeast; this affects the body in a negative way and causes a lot of damages, this condition is known as dysbiosis.

This natural balance can be restored by increasing your intake of probiotic foods and you can also take the supplements.

Functions of Probiotics in the Body

Probiotics carry out a lot of functions in the body; some of them are:

They Prevent Inflammation and Boost Immunity

Probiotics boost immunity and their effects are tripled when combined with prebiotics (probiotics feed on prebiotics). When they are used together, they are called synbiotics.

The root cause of many chronic diseases and health complications worldwide is chronic inflammation. Probiotics fight this condition and boost the immune system and the general health of your body.

Bifidobacteria, a common probiotic fights and protect you from flu, common cold, and other infections.

They bring down High Blood pressure

A large number of studies and reviews online show that probiotics can help hypertensive patients lower their high blood pressure. It does this by improving your lipid profiles (this includes triglycerides and cholesterol), by preventing and reducing insulin resistance, by regulating the levels of renin (this is an enzyme and a protein secreted by the kidneys to reduce blood pressure), and by activation antioxidants.

They don’t give side effects and they are very effective in reducing blood pressure. If you have high blood pressure and you want to see the effects of these probiotics, consume probiotics made of multiple strains of healthy bacteria for at least 8 weeks or more.

This probiotic supplement should contain 100 billion or more of colony-forming units.

They Prevent and treat Antibiotic Resistance

Antibiotic-resistant is considered one of the greatest threat to global health. Overuse of prescription antibiotics and feeding of animals with these drugs are responsible for this.

Probiotics help replenish the dead population of probiotics; they rebuild your gut bacteria by replenishing it with varieties of friendly microbes, and they improve the effectiveness of antibiotics and prevent your gut bacteria from becoming resistant.

They Treat Diabetes

Regular intake of probiotic-rich foods cut down the risk of you developing diabetes. It improves insulin resistance and decreases autoimmune responses usually found in diabetic patients.

To bring down elevated levels of blood sugar, you can take synbiotics, (a combination of probiotics and prebiotics), and they also help you manage the symptoms of diabetes.

They Breakdown Kidney Stones

There are a number of species of Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus probiotics help to break down oxalates, the major cause of kidney stones. These studies need to be carried out on humans though but it is not a bad idea to try this since they have no side effect and they can’t interfere with your treatments.

They Boost Skin Health

Probiotics are highly beneficial for the skin, especially in little children; they prevent pediatric atopic dermatitis in babies and also fight against infant eczema.

They fight inflammation of the skin by reducing antigen-specific skin inflammation, the strain of probiotic that can do this is the L. casei. Having healthy probiotics in your gut keeps skin diseases at bay and it makes your skin healthy.

They Improve Liver Disease (Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver)

This disease affects millions of people around the globe; it is characterized by the buildup of fats in the liver, this leads to cirrhosis of the liver and sometimes it ends in liver failure or death of the patient.

Probiotics improve the life of patients with this disease.

They Boost the Digestive System

These friendly bacteria revamp and boost the health of your digestive system; they prevent gastrointestinal diseases, they treat and prevent indigestion by acting on the nerves that regulate the movement of the gastrointestinal tract.

They treat a lot of digestive problems like antibiotic-induced diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome, infectious diarrhea (caused by harmful microbes and other forms of diarrhea like traveler’s diarrhea and acute diarrhea), and inflammatory bowel diseases like Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.

They also reduce the severity and pain of irritable bowel syndrome, they eliminate harmful microbes like H. pylori which causes gastric and peptic ulcers. They treat pouchitis, this is a health complication that happens after the rectum and large intestines have been removed surgically.

They Prevent Cancer

Preliminary studies suggests that some strains of probiotics help slow down or stop the growth of cancers of the colorectal/colon and bladder.

Regular intake can prevent the formation of cancer in the first place, you can boost its effects by taking along with prebiotics. These studies have shown evidence that probiotics have an anticarcinogenic effect but more research needs to be carried out on these before it can be concluded that probiotics prevent cancer.

Those suffering from cancers should include quality probiotics in their meals every day.

They Aid Weight Loss

There are many studies being carried on this but the results are not obvious and most of them reported that body mass index and body weight were not reduced consistently.

Some years back, this was suggested to be included in weight loss diet, you can still try though but more studies are being carried out to know how to utilize probiotics for weight loss.

They protect you from Food Allergies

Infants and adults with a poor amount of probiotics in their gut are more prone to allergies than those who have healthy levels of these friendly bacteria. Infants with this condition are susceptible to developing allergies in the first two years of their lives.

They reduce the symptoms of food allergies by fighting chronic inflammation in the gut, and they also regulate the response of the immune system in both children and adults.

They Boost Dental Health

A review of a study conducted in 2009 showed that probiotics might be an effective new option for dental problems. Certain strains of probiotics were found to be effective at preventing cavities.

They Boost Mental Health

Your brain and your gut are closely related, they are made from the same matter; in fact, the gut is referred to as the “second brain” and this has been a major point of research since the discovery of the gut-brain connection.

They fight inflammation and relieve the symptoms of anxiety by fighting inflammation along the gut-brain connection. They are also helpful for autistic patients by relieving the symptoms of autism.

It treats the huge numbers of digestive issues suffered by autistic individuals; studies have shown promising results that probiotics might also help correct the abnormal behaviors in autistic individuals too.

In 2016, a study was carried out using a boy with severe autism who was treated for digestive problems with probiotics. The boy showed spontaneous improvement on the ADOS scale.

Lots of studies are going on to see ways in which probiotics can be used to improve the core deficits of autism on brain connectivity and functions, and on language development and cognitive abilities.

Urinary Tract Infections

Urinary tract infection is usually caused by harmful bacteria that spread from the rectum to the vagina during cleansing after a bowel movement. This is common in women and probiotics are regarded as a powerful remedy for this infection.

It treats UTIs and prevents it from recurring, less common strains of probiotics are effective in treating this condition, this makes proper treatment with probiotics a bit complicated.

They Treat Severe Diseases in Babies

Well-designed probiotics can help treat neonatal sepsis and necrotizing enterocolitis, the two most dangerous diseases in newborn babies. These conditions affect premature babies mostly and they are the most dangerous in babies with low birth weight and very low birth weight.

Studies have confirmed that regular intake of high-quality probiotics by a pregnant woman prevents this conditions in her baby. The risk of the baby developing these conditions will be very low and the risk is cut drastically low when the baby is breastfed after birth and the mother is still taking the probiotics or the probiotics are added to the baby’s formula.

Use a probiotic formula that has multiple strains, this is the most effective in these conditions.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

There is a connection between poor gut health and autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and natural health practitioners have long proposed probiotics as a treatment option for this disease.

They reduce inflammation and stop the progress of the disease.

Other functions and importance of probiotics in the body are:

  • They protect the mouth and prevent oral and dental problems like bad breath, tooth decay, and others.
  • They fight skin problems like eczema
  • They prevent and treat colds and allergies
  • They protect the urinary system
  • They treat and prevent vaginal infections and problems
  • They help in the synthesis of vitamin K2, vitamin B12, and butyrate.
  • They stimulate the secretion of regulatory T-cells and IgA
  • They kill and eliminate bad microbes and pathogens from the body
  • They help in the secretion of enzymes that kill harmful bacteria

Ways You Can Increase your Intake of Probiotics

Eat Lots of Sour Foods

Sour and fermented foods are storehouses of probiotics; sour and fermented foods contain both probiotics and certain types of healthy acids that boost the functions of these probiotics; examples of these acids are acetic acids and gluconic acids.

In some cases, they even function like prebiotics. There are lots of fermented and sour foods available today, they are apple cider vinegar, take 6 tablespoons daily, Kvass, kimchi, and sauerkraut are fermented vegetables with a high content of probiotics.

Increase your Intake of Probiotic-Rich Foods

Consume lots of foods rich in probiotics daily to replenish your friendly flora and boost your health. some of these foods rich in probiotics are high-quality milk from organic goat raised in a natural way (left to roam about and eat varieties of green grasses), kombucha, kefir, and coconut kefir.

Kefir can be added to your morning smoothies, or you take organic probiotic yogurt every morning. At the end of this article, I will give a list of some probiotic-rich foods.

Feed the probiotics in your Gut

Probiotics are living organisms and they feed too; feeding them naturally boosts their growth and increases their populations. Prebiotics are what probiotics feed on; they serve as fuel for this beneficial bacteria and fermentable fiber are rich sources of prebiotics or food for probiotics.

Try and increase your intake of high-quality fiber in your diet, doing this will automatically boost the population of probiotics in your gut.

Some foods that are rich in prebiotics are flaxseeds and chia seeds; add these foods to your meals daily, sweet potatoes, vegetables, and fruits are rich in high-quality fiber.

Take Quality Probiotic Supplements

Intake of quality probiotic supplements is a great way to increase the population of probiotics in your gut. There are a lot of factors you need to consider when purchasing probiotic supplements.

There are lots of strains of probiotics and their actions or functions can be completely different from one another. When you want to use probiotics to treat a specific health condition, it is advisable to do research to enable you to select the right one for that condition or you can choose to consume a wide range of probiotics.

Read probiotic labels before buying them, this will tell you the genus, species, and strain of the product; they are usually in the form of capsules and the colony forming units at the time it was manufactured is also stated.

Heat kills probiotics, so store them properly. Go for quality probiotics, go for probiotics that have a number of colony forming units, and choose those with CFS count of 15 billion to a hundred billion. The higher the number, the more effective the probiotic is.

You should also go for probiotics that has many different varieties of strains; there are some probiotic supplements that contain up to 30 different strain, but this is not important if you are looking for a particular strain for its own unique benefits.

Some cultures or formulas are able to make it to the gut and colonize while some cannot; this is known as survivability. Strains with good survivability are Saccharomyces boulardii, Bacillus coagulans, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, and Bacillus subtilis.

You should also consider the stability of the products when buying probiotics; some need to be kept in a cold environment for their potency to be preserved, others don’t need this.

Look at the date of production, the fresher the better. Avoid probiotics that contain sugar, sugar destroys them, rather go for probiotics with prebiotics, that type contains healthy fiber and plant starches which serves as foods for the probiotics. this type is usually called synbiotics.

Killers of probiotics in our Bodies

There are many factors that lead to the death of probiotics in our bodies; this includes environmental and dietary factors, and some of them are:

  • Over-processing and purification of foods
  • Excessive use of antibiotics
  • Poor sleep pattern
  • Sugar and artificial sweeteners
  • Smoking
  • Genetically modified foods
  • Indiscriminate use of both prescription and non-prescription drugs
  • Inflammation
  • Alcohol (red wine is exempted)
  • Emotional stress
  • Sedentary lifestyle and lack of exercise

The above factors cause massive destruction of probiotics in your gut.

Rich Natural Sources of probiotics

Raw Dairy

Raw milk of farm animals raised in a natural and organic way are rich sources of probiotics; this includes farm animals like sheep, cows, and goats. A2 aged cheeses are also rich sources of probiotics.

Pasteurization and other methods of sanitation kill these beneficial microbes.

Tempeh

This rich probiotic food is made from fermented soybeans; it is firm and has a nutty or earthy flavor similar to that of a mushroom. It is a high-protein substitute for meat and it boosts nutrition.

The fermentation process breaks down the phytic acids in soybeans which cause impairment in the absorption of minerals like zinc and iron. This increases the absorbability of these minerals.

It also contains bacteria that can produce vitamin B12, a vitamin lacking in soybeans and this makes this food a great help to vegetarian and all those who want to boost their general health.

Kefir

This probiotic food is similar to yogurt, it is made by combining fermented kefir grains and milk. Bacteria in milk and yeasts in the kefir carry out the process of fermentation and they also break down the sugar (lactose) present in milk. This is why people with lactose intolerance can take kefir.

It has a tart flavor and it is slightly acidic; it is also believed to contain close to 34 strains of probiotics, and it is higher in probiotics than yogurt.

Gherkins

They are also known as pickles; they are made from cucumbers that are pickled in a solution of water and salt. They are left to ferment in this solution for some time and they use their natural lactic bacteria to carry on the process of fermentation.

They have a sour taste, they have low calories and they are rich in vitamin K, a vital nutrient which is essential for blood clotting. Don’t make pickles with vinegar because it kills the probiotics.

Kombucha

This is an effervescent (a liquid that gives off bubbles) gotten from the fermentation of black tea by a symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast known as SCOBY.

This probiotic food has been around for over two thousand years and it is believed to originate in the year 212 BC. It carries out lots of important functions in the body like detoxification of the liver, digestive support, and boosting of the immune system.

Buttermilk

Traditional buttermilk is a rich source of probiotics is a great source of probiotics; it is made by fermenting a wide range of organic dairy drinks.

The traditional buttermilk is more effective and contains more probiotics than the cultured ones. It is also referred to as “grandma’s probiotics”.

It is rich in essential vitamin and minerals and very low in calories and fats.

Sauerkraut

This is made by fermenting cabbage and other vegetables; this is a good source of probiotics but it does not contain varieties of probiotic strains.

It is a storehouse of lactobacillus and other natural lactic acid bacteria, it is rich in organic acids which are responsible for its sour taste and this boosts the growth of good bacteria in your gut.

It is also high in digestive enzymes and vitamin C.

Miso

This probiotic food is a common remedy in Japanese Traditional Medicine; it regulates the digestive system, and it has been used for more than 2,500 years.

It is made by fermenting barley, adding soya beans and rice. The fermentation process can take a few days to a couple of years and it gives a dark brown, white, or red paste that has a buttery texture.

This probiotic food is taken as soups and its preparation is very easy. You simply make miso soup by dissolving one tablespoon of miso inside a pot of water containing seaweeds and other ingredients of your choice.

Majority of the people in Japan start their day with a warm bowl of miso soup, this energizes the body.

Cheese

Not all cheeses are rich in probiotics even though all of them are gotten through fermentation. Cheeses with active cultures and rich in probiotics are cheddar, Gouda, cottage cheese, and mozzarella.

They are very rich in vital nutrients like proteins, selenium, phosphorous, calcium and vitamin B12.

Kimchi

This probiotic food is made in the same way as sauerkraut; it is the Korean way of culturing vegetables. It is produced by mixing Chinese cabbage and spices and other food ingredients like carrots, sea salt, radishes, red pepper flakes, ginger, garlic, and onions.

This mixture is then set aside for a period of three to 14 days three to fourteen days.

Kvass

This is a common probiotic food in Europe, it is made by fermenting beverages, it has been in existence since ancient times and it is produced by fermenting rye or barley.

It has a mild flavor and it can also be created using fruits, carrots, beets, and other root vegetables.

Coconut Kefir

This rich probiotic food is made by fermenting coconut water gotten from young coconuts with the grains of kefir. It has the same level of probiotics as the traditional kefir fermented with dairy and it has lots of strains that improve your health.

It can be added to lime juice, water, and stevia.

Yogurt

This is the most popular probiotic food in our modern times, but this type of yogurt can only rank high in probiotics when they come from organic and grass-fed animals.

Natto

This is popular in the Asian region made with fermented soybeans. It is rich in the powerful probiotic Bacillus subtilis and it has a lot of powerful effect on your health like supporting cardiovascular health, fortifying the immune system, and enhancing the digestion of foods rich in vitamin K2.

It is also rich in vitamin B12 which is usually lacking in vegan meals and it has one of the highest plant proteins; it contains 31 grams of proteins a cup.

Sources of Prebiotics

Prebiotics are what probiotics feed on; they encourage the growth and activities of probiotics and boost their populations. These are the support system of probiotics but yet they are the most under-appreciated nutrient.

They make probiotics more effective and boost their functions. They are mainly non-digestible fiber. They are also known as a type of dietary fiber called “oligosaccharides.”

Prebiotics, when taken alongside probiotics, opens the door to optimum health and longevity. Rich sources of prebiotics are raw garlic, unripe bananas, raw asparagus, raw dandelion greens, raw onions, raw leeks, raw chicory root, acacia gum, raw jicama, and others.

Incorporate these foods regularly in your diet to boost the effects of probiotics and improve your general health.

5 Techniques to Improve Your Blood Flow

Blood Flow

Whether you suffer from poor circulation or notice that you quickly get numb when in binds in yoga, poor blood flow has a number of causes. Sometimes it’s genetic, but even if that’s the case there are ways to improve flow and enjoy better health. Low blood flow can also be a side effect of alcohol abuse, and as you search for a treatment finder it’s also a good idea to research avenues to repair damage done by over-indulging in alcohol.

The circulation system of the body is in charge of sending not only blood, but oxygen and nutrients inside of blood through the body. When blood flow is low, symptoms of slow circulation appear. It’s most common in the extremities. However, “poor circulation” isn’t a condition by itself—it’s always caused by something. It’s critical to determine and treat the actual cause instead of just the symptoms.

The most common cause of poor circulation is diabetes, arterial problems, obesity, and various heart conditions. The most common symptoms are tingling, pain, muscle cramps, throbbing, and numbness. Symptoms usually depend on the cause. For instance, a person with peripheral arterial disease can also suffer from erectile dysfunction along with tingling, pain, or numbness. PAD is a leading cause of poor circulation and results in narrowed arteries and blood vessels.

Blood Flow

A related issue, atherosclerosis, causes the arteries to grow stiff as plaque builds up inside of them. In time, a lack of blood flow can even lead to tissue and nerve damage. If plaque in the arteries is the cause, it can even lead to a stroke. This is especially important in the carotid arteries, whose job entails bringing blood to the brain. You increase your risk of PAD If you’re older than 50 and/or smoke.

Cause and Concern

Blood clots can also lower blood flow, sometimes partially. They can happen anywhere in the body but are most common in the extremities. There are many reasons blood clots form, and these clots can be dangerous if they move to the lungs, heart, or lungs. In some cases, a clot can cause a stroke. Varicose veins aren’t just unsightly, but they are caused by a venous valve failure. Most varicose veins are in the legs and are a sign that blood isn’t moving smoothly. Genetics is a leading factor in this condition.

One of the many side effects of diabetes can also be low blood flow. That’s why diabetics often report cramps, especially in the legs. In cases of advanced diabetes, it can be tough to spot low circulation. Diabetic neuropathy can hide the symptoms of low blood flow because it minimizes sensations. Diabetes is linked to blood vessel issues and heart problems, and if you suffer from this disease you have an increased risk of heart disease, atherosclerosis, and high blood pressure.

There’s also Raynaud’s disease, which presents with cold hands and feet. Raynaud’s makes the arteries in the hands and toes spasm, and the narrower an artery is, the more difficult it is to move blood. Symptoms get much worse when a person is stressed and/or in cold temperatures. Although rare, Raynaud’s can narrow arteries in other parts of the body, too, especially throughout the face. Those who live in cold environments and women are at a higher risk.

Diagnosis

Only a doctor can diagnose subpar circulation, especially since it can be linked to so many issues. First, you’ll be asked about family history and diseases. This will narrow down possible causes. You may also need to undergo testing to figure out what might be causing your low blood flow symptoms. It’s impossible to actually diagnose “low circulation,” but doctors consider your symptoms and will pinpoint diseases that can be tested or otherwise diagnosed.

Tests may include antibody blood tests for Raynaud’s disease or inflammatory issues, blood sugar testing for diabetes, CT scans or ultrasounds, and blood tests for D dimer if the doctor suspects a blood clot. Treatment will depend on whether a cause is found. Various conditions require a variety of treatments. However, if no disease or cause is found, there are still ways you can improve blood circulation.

  1. Wearing compression socks can help you avoid clots. It’s a good idea for anyone to wear these socks on long distance travel, especially if you notice that you get puffy ankles after long flights. Blood clots can break away during shifts in altitude, and simply wearing these socks can truly be a lifesaver.
  2. There are also various types of exercises designed to increase blood circulation in problem areas. It’s not enough to simply indulge in 150 minutes of cardio per week—that’s foundational for heart health and will help with circulation. However, a physical therapist, doctor, or trainer specializing in low blood flow can give you key exercises such as focusing on wrists or ankle strength building.
  3. You can opt for laser vein surgery to treat varicose veins if you like. While most of these veins aren’t dangerous, they can be unsightly and, in some cases, develop blood clots. This procedure may be covered by your insurance. It’s usually performed by a dermatologist.
  4. Medications may help, especially if your doctor suggests you have a blood clot. You may be prescribed blood thinners. If you have Raynaud’s disease, alpha blockers and calcium channel blockers can be prescribed.
  5. Change how you sit and stand. You might be unintentionally causing low circulation by cutting off circulation in certain poses. If you regularly cross your legs, that might be the primary cause. It can be difficult to change such positions but adopting a more ergonomic lifestyle can lead to fantastic results.

The good news is that many issues that lead to poor circulation are completely treatable. However, if ignored, you may allow a disease to progress. This can cause potentially deadly situations, especially if you have blood clots. Poor circulation may be annoying, but don’t overlook it. It might actually be your body telling you that something is seriously wrong.

8 Mobile Apps to Help You Sleep Better at Night

sleeping

For many people, getting a good night’s sleep has become an unaffordable luxury. The number of people who have insomnia around the world is on a rapid increase. Studies show that nearly 30% of the world’s adult population suffers from sleep deprivation leading to stress and fatigue. If you have been finding it challenging to fall asleep and stay asleep, you probably have insomnia.

Insomnia is of two distinct types classified based on the severity. If you experience a lack of sleep only for a few days due to a recent occurrence or because you have a big day ahead of you in a few hours, then we can say you have acute insomnia because of its briefness. When sleep eludes you at least three times weekly, and you have suffered from this lack of sleep for a minimum of three months, then you have the “Chronic type of insomnia.”

Sleep deprivation could be as a result of some other illness, stress, work, running shifts, change of environment, or even anxiety.  Not being able to sleep and not getting enough sleep are equally detrimental to both physical and mental health, but there’s good news for everyone!

What’s the good news?

There are ways to find quality sleep again, and I do not mean the sedatives you probably have been taking or the home remedies you are finding difficult to keep up with because you get lazy or forget. We are talking cheap, handy, and stress-free solution available to you whenever you want.

Technology has brought a new turn to our daily life by changing our routines. From making elaborate building plans to teaching kids how to lace their shoes, our computers and mobile phones have been a friend in need. That is why you can now find sleep at the tip of your fingers just by downloading a couple of cool mobile applications and using them.

Check out these eight mobile applications for Android and iPhones that are sure to help you catch some zizz.

  1. Pzizz

Pzizz

“Pzizz” is one of the most cooling 2018 sleep aiding mobile applications you should try. This App uses exciting sounds to induce relaxation while offering you the choice of having either a male or female voice over to go with you on your journey to sleep land alongside any of the available sleep tunes you choose.  The volume to the voice-over and sleep tunes are individually adjustable.

Best part? The App is free, but if you want additional features, you have the option to subscribe to them. Get more from your afternoon naps and night rests with “Pzizz”.

  1. Relax and sleep well

Relax and sleep well

Like the name of this Mobile Application suggests, it helps you relax and get an excellent sleep. The “Relax and sleep well” app was designed by Harold Glenn who had practiced hypnotherapy for about twenty years before the creation of this remarkable piece of work to help people with sleep deprivation out of their misery.

This application does not only help you find sleep, but it also helps with anxiety. You can either choose to use the free features or access over 80 meditation and hypnotherapy sounds for a fee.

  1. Simple habit

This mobile Application is more specific and straightforward to use compared to others. It offers different features that are peculiar to particular moods and helps you handle stress through meditation. Simple Habit App provides a series of five minutes meditation sessions that can help with public speaking and nerve calming which you can listen to while you work or travel. This mobile application has features to help you find sleep when its bedtime or when you just need sleep during the day. It’s one App you should try.

  1. Sleep easy meditations (Available both on iPhone and Android)

If you are one of those stay home mothers who would like a good afternoon nap but still want to wake up just in time to get the kids from school or hurry off to the grocery store, Then the “Sleep easy meditation” mobile application is perfect for you.

Using music by Ali Calderwood and real meditation by an author of many books on meditation Shazzi, this free app offers you a therapeutic session that is sure to help you drift into deep sleep.

  1. Noisli (Now available both on iPhone and Android)

Noisli

Sleeping in a noisy environment is usually difficult, even though some people who have a healthy sleep life can find sleep when they are tired regardless of how much noise is around them. If you are looking to improve concentration by blocking out all external noise, then this is your app. “Noisli” was specially designed to help people work and sleep better. People with chronic insomnia will find dis easy to use app helpful as it uses soothing sounds to put you at ease and induce sleep. This app has no free feature for now, so you will have to path with only $1.99.

  1. Calm

This application just might give you a nostalgic feeling at first use.
“Calm” tries to help you find sleep by telling you adult bedtime stories that are targeted at giving you the same soothing effects bedtime stories have on kids. Guided meditations are also a feature of this app, and it is available to both Android and iPhone users.

  1. Sleepo

Sleepo

This mobile application is my personal favorite. If you are a lover of nature and find it easy to relax when it rains, then you should try “Sleepo” From the sound of thunder to birds chirping and everything in between, “Sleepo” sure gives you a range of soothing sounds to choose from.

This app allows you to combine different sounds and regulate the volume of each sound to your taste. The sounds from the sleepo app can help you concentrate and tackle anxiety. Its features are free and available both to Android and iPhone users.

  1. Sleep Genius

Sleep Genius

This application stands out because of its ability to guide your brains through a complete sleep cycle using sounds. Its soothing sounds work with your mind to help you sleep and wake up when your body has had enough rest and is ready for a productive new day.

Why go through the process of taking sleep pills when sound sleep is just a few clicks away?

Download these awesome apps and thank me later?

What Is Anomic Suicide?

Anomic Suicide

In a family where kids are allowed to make decisions for themselves even before they become teenagers, there is bound to be disrespect, confusion, and chaos. Parents set rules and regulations in their homes to achieve a state of orderliness and to teach their kids good manners that will Help them in becoming better people in the society. In the absence of any form of control over the behaviors of children by a parent, children behave in a confused fashion void of purpose and ability to decide what purpose means.

The same way a parent sets standard to help control his/her children so does the society set rules and regulations or policies to draw the line between socially acceptable behaviors and activities that may result in social instability and chaos. This way members of the society have rules as standards for living their lives.

The history of attempts to understand and explain suicide can be traced to the French sociologist David Èmile Durkheim.

We have talked about the other kinds of suicide in previous articles but let’s take a brief recap to give fresh readers an idea of what we are dealing with.

Èmile Durkheim described four distinct types of suicide and identified two factors that influence them; the coefficients are social relationships and social regulations. Both of the Suicide influencing factors (social rules and social integration) have dual characters in which they manifest their influence on suicide in the society in a “word and opposite” fashion. That is, “an excess” and “a lack.”

A lack of social integration in society could cause people to feel out of place and nurse suicide ideation thereby seeking an escape through death in the form of egoistic suicide.

The opposite of a lack of excess social integration, being an excess of social integration could lead to self-annihilation called altruistic Suicide.

Similarly, the presence of severe social regulations or strict laws and policies could lead to frustration and hopelessness that eventually leads to Fatalistic Suicide.

This leaves us with Anomic Suicide.

Anomic suicide is one of the Suicidal forms discussed by Èmile Durkheim that is the opposite of Fatalistic Suicide. To understand Anomic Suicide, we must first have an idea of what anomie is.

What is anomie?

Anomic Suicide

Anomie is a sociological theory first mentioned by Èmile Durkheim in the year 1893 that has been understood as the state of lawlessness and absence of values and social norms. A breakdown of law and order in a society leading to possible alienation and a break of social bond between people and their culture.

However, Èmile Durkheim explained it as a mismatch between groups or personal standards and social standards of regulation (not necessarily an absence of laws or rules) and went further to connect anomic suicide with disappointment and disillusionment.

Anomic Suicide can happen when an individual has set unrealistic goals that make him or her seem over ambitious and then experiences a failure in achieving those goals as a result of a disagreement between the mediums deployed to achieve the desired effect and what is socially obtainable as defined by societal conditions. Both natural and human-made factors can cause the mismatch between the mediums of attaining goals and societal regulations. People whose environments have experienced a natural disaster, or an economic crash are likely to consider an anomic Suicide.

Studies have shown a correlation between unemployment rate and anomic Suicide in the history of the United States of America between the year 1928 and 1932 when the price of unemployment almost hit 24 percent and was followed by a rise in Suicide rate. Also, in the year 2000 when the rate of unemployment was at about 4 percent, less Suicide report was recorded.

When people realize that a sudden change in their environment could be that their lives will never be the same, fright is inevitable. Victims of natural disasters often experience difficulties in recovering from their loss of property and environmental change thus they find themselves in a state of confusion with no guidance as to how to adapt to the changes or possibly get back on track with their previous life activities.
After that 1995 earthquake in Kobe, the Japanese public health department reported rising Suicide rates.

Paint a mental picture of a person who happened to be the sole survivor of a boat wreck and got stuck in a lonely island with zero knowledge about the location of where he has found himself. He tries to search for possible human settlements within the island so he can get help with finding his way home but soon realized he was the only person on the island but there was another island in sight though obviously far away from is located. He then becomes confused and frustrated as it dawns on him that getting any form of help from the outside world might be impossible if he doesn’t try to reach out through signals that can be easily detected by passing boats or aircraft.

Because this character of ours has never been in such a situation before, he finds it difficult to make a signal using the available resources on the island despite knowing the possibility to make a fire from sticks and rocks to send a smoke signal. He becomes burdened about his inability to figure a way to manipulate these signal tools because he has no guidelines on the steps to take. He was not also sure if he was going enough to find help or if he was going to send the right signal even if he figured how to, so he took his own life by drowning himself.

His uncertainty about what to expect from his situation and the mismatch between his desire to get help and what was obtainable on the island is responsible for his anomic suicide.

Confusion characterizes the life of a person considering anomic suicide as to what defines doing enough, being enough, or having enough.

Suicide remains a deviant behavior and an issue of great concern. With recent reports of people committing suicide after posting a series of depressing messages on social media, it is our collective responsibility to look out for pointers in possible suicide risks in the lives of people but on our virtual spaces and around us.

What Is Fatalistic Suicide?

suicide altruiste

We live in a world governed by rules and regulations hence the law of reward and consequences has become a medium for a character, lifestyle and emotional control. When people become hopeless and helpless because they feel stuck in a position due to social rules, what options do they have?

With the event of the industrial revolution and division of labor, lifestyles began to change, and workers began to struggle to adapt to the new nature of their work. Regulations became tightened, and that often made it difficult for some people to fit into the new system of things. The monotony of labor was a resultant effect of the division of labor which made workers during this era bored of their jobs because they had no opportunity to rotate their duties or get promoted thus feeling trapped in their job routine. In other words, they were slaves to their jobs because they couldn’t achieve more than they were offered. Their escape options? Well, they leaving their jobs wasn’t a wise option at the time because the possibilities for a better job was almost non-existent, so suicide was a way out.

You would be correct to say that was a few hundred years ago, welcome back to the present. China’s one child per family policy was a medium to check its population growth and prevent overpopulation. There was a punishment for families who violated this regulation. Thus, citizens were stripped of their rights to plan their families (oppression). This seemingly harsh rule could have caused a couple to commit suicide if they lost their only child after the woman must have past childbearing age. However, this law was reviewed in the year 2015, and the amendment now allows for two children per family.

Cultures with a robust caste system where class Mobility is absent is a possible breeding ground for suicidal people. In a situation where a person is born into a family belonging to the lowest social class and seeks to move up the social ladder but is restricted by stringent societal rules, such a person is most likely to become frustrated and pull out of such social stratification by dying. If you are probably wondering what this kind of suicide is called, it is called Fatalistic suicide.

What is fatalism?

Fatalistic Suicide

Fatalism is somewhat similar to predeterminism. It is the belief that we as humans have no role to play in influencing what happens to us as we have no power over the future nor our actions thus we take things as are and believe the hands of fate orchestrate all occurrences. Struggling to get more from life than is already offered or fighting to change one’s situation is regarded as destiny’s plan, and the outcome of every move one makes, no matter how spontaneous is already predetermined. Thus, an attitude of pulling out of perceived inevitable unfavorable consequences is possible.  In various religions, devotees are made to believe in the existence of a higher invisible being/beings who are responsible for everything that occurs in their lives and also is responsible for their human presence. This entity or entities are believed to reward people according to their deeds and cannot be influenced by lower life forms.  Now that we understand what fatalism means, we can proceed to learn about fatalistic suicide.

Èmile Durkheim grouped the conditions that lead to suicide into two; Social relationships and social regulations. Each of these two groups has two suicide types under them, but for this article, we will be focused on high social rules and its relationship with suicide.

Fatalistic suicide is self-destruction caused by tight regulation and passive oppression. Marriage, family, occupation, government, religion and the military are social institutions that have in one way or another, regulated the activities of people through extreme rules and high expectations.

The life of an individual with fatalistic suicidal ideation is characterized by a lack of purpose and a feeling of hopeless in his predicament because he has no option of an escape from dormancy to living a better life or achieving his dreams.

In a study data collected from 1997 to the year 2000, it was discovered that there was a high Fatalistic suicide rate among women in Iran especially in areas with little female education, urbanization, less or no female participation in the workforce. Because Iran is a patriarchal country, these women are restricted to a life of childbearing and handling of household chores under the supervision of their sometimes physically abusive husbands. The passive roles played by women regarding social and economic activities coupled with the stress of birthing and raising plenty of children pushes them to seek freedom in the form of Fatalistic suicide.

Nigeria is one of the fastest growing economies in West Africa. Universities in Nigeria produce up to 5000 graduates yearly, and the country had an estimate of 148 universities as at 2017. With the labor market having little or no capacity to absorb this population of young people launched yearly into the society, there arose a fierce struggle for the few available job opportunities. Most of these fresh graduates have no job experience thus they seek entry-level positions that offer on the job training. These are often very scantily available.

However, With most of the available employment opportunities requiring a minimum of five years and above work experience, it becomes difficult for these youths to become gainfully employed and have a sense of fulfilment after acquiring an education.

How does this lead to Fatalistic suicide?

With the strict regulations when it comes to years of working experience as a prerequisite for employment, youths who have got no skill and have relentlessly sort employment opportunities for years and found none, are likely to get frustrated enough to slip into depression and nurse suicide thoughts out of hopelessness.

Furthermore, Fatalistic suicide is paid the least attention amongst all the types of suicide Èmile Durkheim described because of the limited information he provided on it. Hence, to fully understand it one has to relate the little information he provided in his work to the present-day situations.

Even though strict social regulations can lead to suicide, a lack of it can equally yield the same result in the form of anomic suicide.

There are other forms of suicide which are egoistic suicide and altruistic suicide, do check them out as well.

What Is Altruistic Suicide?

suicide altruiste

Every human who has ever existed and those who still exist have a lot of things in common and one of those things is the need to create a strong lasting impression in the minds of other people. History tells us stories of great men and women who took up responsibilities and fought wars for the greater good and became heroes and heroines as a result of their selfless sacrifice for the betterment of other people.

Altruistic Suicide

In the present day, we have the movie industries paint us motion pictures of fictional characters with superpowers who take on an identity completely different from their everyday person for the sole purpose of saving the world from impending doom, villains, or an alien invasion. These characters are not just tagged regular heroes but superheroes because of the unique powers each of these individual fictional characters possesses.

While you watch Superman and the other superhero characters do their thing and wonder how the world would be if they were real, someone somewhere just might be reinventing himself to play the role of your fictional superhero in real life. the question now is, who or what does this person aim to save and how does he/she plan to achieve this goal? With suicide attacks been an inexpensive and effective way to destabilize political dispensations and drawing attention to religious, political, and ethnic demands, some set of people have chosen to lay down their lives to achieve their superhero goals but is it worth it?

Let’s take a little journey to understand altruistic suicide and why people commit altruistic suicide.

What is an altruistic suicide?

Altruistic suicide is one of the four types of suicide identified by Èmile Durkheim. This kind of suicide, just like the egoistic suicide, is influenced by social integration. Altruism means a social behavior of doing good for the benefit of other people. Hence, altruistic suicide (also called benevolent suicide) happens when a person sacrifices his/her life to save other members of the society, for the benefit of a group, or for the purpose of preserving tradition.

Altruistic suicide happens in a society where there is an existing over-integration. In this kind of society, people have a sense of belonging and thus may feel the urge to put other members of their society first before themselves even in life-threatening situations. This means the society is void of individualism and people have access to maximum social support. Suicide, in this case, is a social practice that isn’t driven by psychopathology only but is influenced by support from the society. Thus, the act of self-annihilation by the victim is result driven.

Let us view two examples of suicide in a society with an existing over-integration.

Meet Mr. Albert, he is a 43 years old husband and father of four children who has managed to build a healthy relationship between himself and his family over the years and tries his possible best to give them the life they deserve. Mr. Albert notices strange symptoms in his 18yr old son Sam. He becomes very uncomfortable and takes him to the hospital for proper diagnosis of his condition. The doctor reveals that Mr. Albert’s son has cancer and must start treatment before it gets too late.  Sam knows his parents cannot afford his chemotherapy because of their standard of living thus they will have to secure an interest loan of a huge sum of money for his treatment. He loves his parents and hates to see them worried or overwork themselves just to take care of his siblings and himself, so he drowns himself in the bathtub to prevent them from spending the little they have and getting a loan.

Sam has committed an altruistic suicide even though his family has to bear the pain of this early demise. What mattered to him at that point was his seemingly good intention of saving his family from debt and stress.

Let us also meet Anna.

Anna is a member of the military in her country and loves her job regardless of the fact that she hardly ever spends time with her family. She feels a sense of satisfaction and achievement because she has fought for her country many times and her family are super proud of the life she chose. Anna and her colleagues go on a rescue mission to save the lives of some people in a restaurant who unbeknownst to them, had a suicide bomber in their midst.

The suicide bomber is also a female who is proud of the step she is about to take because her society needs ethnic cleansing from a particular sub-ethnic group that is becoming overpopulated and will sooner than later, dominate her ethnic group and religion. Thus, she has chosen to be the savior of her people. She is sponsored by the rulers of her ethnic group and religious body and has been promised a better life for her family if she achieves the purpose of wiping out a large number of the sub-ethnic group that has become a threat to them.

Anna and her colleagues get into the restaurant early enough and try to get people to evacuate the building before an explosion takes place. While the crowd was running out of the building, Anna spots the suicide bomber and decides to hold her down, so she doesn’t mix with the crowd and denote the bomb. Anna knows she is likely to die in the process, but she would rather save the 1500 lives and lose hers, so she battles with the suicide bomber and they both die as the bomb blows up the building.

Anna and the suicide bomber committed altruistic suicide the only difference was their perception of good. From both examples above we can see an interaction between altruistic suicide as a social process and social institutions like family politics, and religion.

In 2017, the highest number of female suicide bombers was recorded despite 2017 being the year with the lowest recorded suicide bombing attacks since 2013. A total of 348 suicide attacks leading to 4310 deaths and leaving 6,700 people seriously wounded was recorded to have been carried out in 23 counties around the world. Existing data shows that Approximately 623 suicide attackers were suspect to have been behind these attacks and 137 were women and young girls.

There is almost no way to stop someone who has chosen to commit suicide not only because he/she is sponsored or supported by the group to which they belong, but also because they themselves see and believe in a bigger picture of group benefit. There is no sense of self outside of the group thus the group becomes life itself and worth sacrificing for. This goes to show that not only people who are perceived as depressed, mentally unstable, or lonely are vulnerable to this deviant behavior called suicide.

What Is Egoistic Suicide?

suicide

Living every day of our lives as members of a society comes with various challenge, and as the magnitude of these challenges differs, so does the effect every challenge has on individual human beings. It is our basic survival instincts that push us to engage in the various activities we find available do make ends meet, and also controls the actions we take when we sense danger or threats to both our physical and mental well-being.

For some people, living has become as easy as possible because of the growth and development of their society, the kind of support system obtainable in their society, and their standard of living. Some other people have been able to get by every day by developing a coping mechanism to suit their daily activities and life experiences (this too is survival instinct) helping them to maintain both their sanity, physical well-being, and manage social interactions with other members of their society.

However, there is a larger group of people who find it difficult to deal with their daily struggles the same way the others do. Not because they do not have survival instincts, but because the society does not encourage the means or paths they have chosen as a medium to help them remaining functional members of the society. These people sometimes try as much as they can to find better socially acceptable alternatives to get themselves out of their predicaments, but none seems to work for them like it does for other people, so they develop agoraphobia or simply seek to completely stop existing. Another group of people are brainwashed by other members of the society to stop existing for a greater cause, with promises of rewards in the afterlife or a better life for their families when they are gone. In this article, we will discover what suicide is and just how prevalent it is in today’s society.

Almost every day on the news we hear about people jumping from bridges and tall buildings, poisoning themselves, or killing themselves and others in suicide bombing attacks worldwide. The rate of suicide bombing attacks in 2016 alone was recorded to be 469 in 28 counties and was believed to be carried out by 800 perpetrators causing about 5650 deaths in the affected counties. Thus, making the year 2016 the deadliest year for such attacks as at the time of this publication. That’s a huge record of human lives lost as a result of 800 people’s self-annihilation.

According to French sociologist David Èmile Durkheim who doubles as the founding father of modern sociology, Suicide is classified into four distinct types on the basis of various kinds of relationship between individuals and their society. The four types of suicide are;

  1. Egoistic suicide,
  2. Fatalistic suicide,
  3. Anomic suicide,
  4. Altruistic suicide.

For the purpose of this write-up, we will be focused mainly on the Egoistic type of suicide.

What is Egoistic Suicide?

Egoistic Suicide

It’s quite common to hear people talk about feeling out of place, lonely, odd, or generally feeling like they do not fit into the society because they see themselves as weirdos or societal misfits due to their inability to live up to societal expectations. These set of people often exhibit suicidal behaviors because of the idea that suicide is the way out of their misery since they’ll cease to be a part of the society once they are dead. This kind of suicide is called egoistic Suicide.

Èmile Durkheim described egoistic suicide as the type of suicide that takes place when there is the presence of a low degree of social integration in a society. When there is a weak bond between individuals and their society, excessive egoism or individualism becomes inevitable. The society expects different things from people at different stages in life. Take typical West African societies, for example, a married couple is expected to have children within the first few years of marriage. When this expectation of procreation is not met after a period of time, societal pressure on the couple increases and takes a negative toll on the wife and in rare cases both the husband and the wife. This could result in a feeling of worthlessness and a feeling of being a failure for not achieving societal goals as at when expected. Suicidal thoughts often thrive in such an atmosphere, especially because in situations like this there is usually Little or no social support for individuals in this category.

Durkheim described the self of an individual who commits Egoistic suicide as one characterized by self-examination and deep meditation.  This means the egoist is subjected to a life of depression, melancholy, and lack of purpose thus he needs adequate social and emotional support from other members of the society for him/her to find a reason to continue living.

With the emergence of social media came the evolution of cyberbullying and the display of seemingly perfect lives on social media. This coupled with the redefinition of beauty standards by the society (the major cause of body shaming) is increasing suicide ideation in teenagers and young adults at an alarming rate.

A large majority of young adults and teenager in 2018 have social media enabled devices and spend an excessive amount of time engaged in social media activities which exposes them to the lives of other people within their age range who seemingly are meeting social expectations. This might cause them to have a sense of low self-esteem that’ll further lead to depression and eventually suicidal thoughts. Thus it is not far from the truth that there is a relationship between social media use and suicide.

Furthermore, recent studies have shown a correlation between an individual’s perspective on their physical appearance and suicide ideation. Young people who do not look like the perfect picture of beauty as defined by the society, are often bullied(body shaming) both on social media and physically, causing them to feel uncomfortable in their bodies and take extremely dangerous measures to meet these beauty standards. For those who are unable to achieve this take of reinventing themselves, if there is an absence of social support, depression begins to set in and the thought of suicide as an option almost becomes unavoidable.

Every suicide is premeditated, and all egoistic suicide attempts are preventable if only we pay attention to the struggles of other members of the society and support them as humanity intended.

An Emotional Support Animal for Your Child’s Anxiety

Emotional Support Animal

Mental health issues affect millions of people each year, both children and adults. With so much medication and external influences to consider, it’s no wonder that many are moving toward more holistic approaches to treatment, especially when children are involved.

Various anxiety disorders impact children. These disorders can have negative implications for their development and social life. Working with an emotional support animal can help children offset the effects of these disorders.

What is an Emotional Support Animal?

Emotional Support Animal

An Emotional Support Animal (ESA) is an animal that has been designated as a form of support and therapy for those who experience mental illness. It can be any animal– though dogs and cats are most common– and requires no special training. Emotional support animals are allowed on most commercial airlines and in rental buildings with a no-pet policy, as long as the animal in question has an ESA registration letter.

It’s important to note that an ESA is different from a service animal, which is specially trained to help one person with a specific problem. Service animals are also allowed in all public areas, whereas an ESA is not.

How an ESA can Help Your Child

As a parent, there’s nothing worse than watching your child struggle and being unable to help them. When your child has an anxiety disorder, the days can feel long and difficult. There are many ways in which an ESA can help your child with the various aspects of anxiety. Here are a few of the most notable benefits.

A Comfort in Social Situations

Social anxiety is incredibly challenging for children, as most children are social creatures and struggle to pick up on cues. When your child with anxiety is feeling overwhelmed, an ESA (especially if it’s a dog) can act as comfort during a social exchange. Larger animals can also act as a physical barrier, which can help your child feel safe during the exchange. For children who struggle to make connections, an animal might be the perfect starting point for a conversation with new friends.

Focus for Centering

A common way to offset an oncoming anxiety attack is to find something on which to center and focus your five senses: find something you can touch, something you can hear, something you can smell, etc. An ESA can act as that focus for centering, engaging the senses and calming your child as they pat the animal.

An ESA can also be something on which to redirect your child’s attention if you sense a trigger or oncoming attack. As anxiety attacks can be exhausting for all involved, it’s beneficial to be able to stop them in their tracks. With proper training, your animal may even be able to pick up on potential triggers and warn you.

A Healthy Outlet

For children who have trouble communicating their feelings or talking to others, an ESA can be a listening ear and judgment-free confidant. Having an ESA ensures that your child is still getting some healthy social interaction, even if their illness makes it hard for them to socialize with other humans. Social anxiety is commonly tied up in other anxiety disorders and often affects both children and adults.

In many ways, an ESA can act as a living journal. Your child can share things with them, knowing that their animal will never tell their secret hopes, wishes, and fears. This is a healthy outlet for emotions, which will reduce or prevent outbursts caused by bottling things inside.

Whichever approach you take to helping your child deal with their anxiety disorder, showing that you understand and care will be the biggest help. Consider working with an ESA to help your child overcome their barriers caused by anxiety.