Lockdown Lunacy: Your Greatest Assets In Avoiding Stress and Anxiety During the Pandemic

Feeling anxious? Stressed? Irritable? Moody? First of all, don’t beat yourself up about it. It’s okay not to feel okay. Especially when we’re all in the throes of an international pandemic. We’ve been cooped up indoors for weeks now. We’ve been diligently practicing our social distancing, straining to keep the kids where they should be while under lock down and coping with the learning curve (and reduced paycheck) that comes with working from home. Under the circumstances, you’re doing an incredible job of keeping it together!

Image by Bongkarn Thanyakij via Pexels


But that doesn’t mean you don’t need and deserve a helping hand when it comes to reducing stress and easing your anxiety. Your home can either be your greatest ally or your greatest enemy when it comes to avoiding stress and anxiety. Here we’ll look at some items around the home which can do you a world of good…

 

Your windows

 

Natural light is both the ultimate office perk and the perfect antidote to cabin fever. So make sure you get plenty coming into your home. Great quality windows are a long term investment, so use a reputable company like Plymouth Window Installation if you plan to replace yours. The right windows can help you to make the most of your natural light,are easy to clean, keep you warm in winter and cool in summer, saving you money on heating and AC. What’s more conducive to a relaxed mind than knowing you’re saving money? 

 

What’s more, your window can give you a great view of…

 

Your garden

 

Who could have known that we’d come to view our time spent outdoors as such a luxury? Nonetheless, the time we spend in the garden can be a great antidote to the stresses and strains of your workplace and your home becoming the same location. 

 

Gardening, fresh air and spending time amidst your flowers and plants can all be a fantastic boost to your mental health and allow the stress of the day to melt away. 

 

Your phone

 

Like your home, your phone can either be your greatest ally or your greatest enemy. If you use your phone to trawl through Facebook and Twitter you’ll likely be struck with a feeling of FOMO as everyone seems to be navigating the lock down better than you… or simply watching people being hateful to one another. However, when you use your phone to call or video chat with your friends you can enjoy an endorphin hit that helps your stress simply drift away. Nothing eases anxiety better than seeing a familiar face. 

 

Your pantry

 

It’s not just the plants in your garden that can be a huge boon for your psychological well being. The food you eat can also help you to reduce stress and anxiety. We’re not talking about the guilty comfort foods you enjoy over the weekends. We’re talking about all the wholefoods and plant based foods which can gradually alter your brain chemistry and stabilize your mood. According to recent studies, plant based diets are directly linked to lower levels of stress, depression and anxiety. 

 

Your pets

 

Finally, we cannot underestimate the importance of pet therapy throughout the lock down. Spending time with your furred and feathered friends can help ease stress, make you smile and boost your mood throughout the day.

3 Vital Health Examinations You Should Have Every Year (At Least!)

The thought of visiting a medical professional for any type of examination is scary. You’re worried about the results. Even if you feel healthy and have no concerns, you’re worried about what the examiner might find. As a result, we tend to avoid going for regular health screenings and checkups. 

 

Ironically, by being too scared to get health exams because you don’t want to find out if you have health problems, you will usually end up getting health problems. Exams and screenings are there to spot issues before they present themselves. Medical professionals can see signs and symptoms of a potential health issue and provide treatment to eradicate it. Prevention is easier than finding a cure, and it’s much better to spot things before they have a chance to develop. 

 

With that in mind, here are some vital health examinations you should have at least once per year: 

Picture Credit – CC0 License

 

A Full Physical Examination

Firstly, you need to have a full physical exam at least every year. This is very important when you get older – particularly if you’re a woman who’s had children. It’s a chance for your doctor to have a look at your general health and wellbeing. They can run tests for your blood pressure, heart rate, get blood tests for cholesterol, etc. This exam lets you know an overview of your current state of health and if there are things to act on or keep an eye on. 

 

A Hearing Test

Hearings tests will see how healthy your ears are, and if you’re suffering from hearing loss – or other relatable conditions. It’s something you only need once a year, though the frequency may increase as you get older. If you’ve never had one before, then you should undergo some hearing test preparation to ensure that you know what to do during the appointment, and what will happen. By checking for signs of hearing loss, you can take action as early as possible. This makes it more likely you can prevent the issue from getting bad enough to require hearing aids. 

 

Picture Source – CC0 License

 

A Dental Checkup

This is probably the only thing you need to do more than once a year. The reason being that your oral health can deteriorate very quickly. It takes around 48 hours for calculus to form, which leads to dental caries, fillings, and potentially some missing teeth. So, if you don’t brush your teeth for a couple of days, then you will already end up with plaque forming on your teeth! Dental exams check for things like this and ensure that any problems are dealt with before they turn into expensive and extensive procedures. Also, your dentist will check your neck for any lumps, so it’s crucial to go for that reason as well. 

 

I know you probably hate the thought of seeing any medical professional. You’ll make every excuse under the sun to avoid going, but the truth is that you’re scared. Don’t worry about it! The worst-case scenario is that something bad gets identified very early on, making it easier to treat. If you didn’t go to the appointment, then the problem may not have been apparent until it’s too late to treat it.

Four Signs Of A Bad Nursing Home

When you’re looking for a nursing home or have reservations about the one a loved one might be in at the moment, there are certain things that you can look out for that are a tell-tale sign of a bad one. Here are four signs of a bad nursing home.

Image Source

 

Poor Resident Hygiene

Hygiene is something that a lot of those in a care home will need help with, and that requires staff presence around those individuals. It’s not just helping them to the toilet if they need that assistance, but it’s keeping them well-fed and washed properly. When it comes to residential hygiene, it’s important to keep your senses about you and to give the place a good smell. It can often smell nicer in the communal areas, but it’s important to check in with the rooms themselves to ensure the current residents are clean and well presented. It can be difficult to come across a perfect care home where everyone is always clean, but there will be one or two that are visibly being neglected and that can be a huge problem for the state of their well being and their health in general. If they’re not being given the right hygiene attention, then more problems in their health could occur.

 

A Lack Of Staff Care

Staff are important to a care home, and it can be a tough job for anyone to have to do, but it’s important that every care home has qualified staff who are keen to do the job, no matter how bad or frustrating it might get. A lack of staff care will usually be apparent by the amount of time that goes by where no one is coming to check up on a resident or has popped by to see you with your loved one. Keep an eye on that and just how many individuals work within the care home on a daily basis. It’s something you can ask if you were looking after the nursing home as a potential spot for your loved one.

 

Unexplained Injuries

No one would want to see their loved ones being hurt, but unfortunately, it’s something that’s happened in the past. When nursing home abuse happens, it can be upsetting for everyone involved but more so the individual who is being subjected to the abuse. Unexplained injuries that can’t be explained by the staff or your loved one can’t remember, are important to note. Keep a log of these and take photos, so that if it’s needed, you can approach the care home with evidence and you can take these claims further if needs be.

 

Unsanitary Living Conditions

The living conditions and the level of quality is important to note when visiting a care home. If they’re being funded well, then there’s going to be good living conditions all round. It’s good to keep an eye on this aspect, even if the other signs above aren’t something that feature. A dirty living condition for any ill or weak person can be deadly.

 

Use these tips to help you find the right nursing home or to expose a bad one.

Hearing Loss Is Way More Of A Problem Than You Think

If you think hearing loss is just being a little “hard of hearing,” then you’re sadly mistaken. It can have massive repercussions for the rest of your life, especially if it goes untreated. 

 

Hearing loss affects a substantial proportion of older adults. The machinery in the inner ear begins to break down, and the brain can’t interpret the sounds as well as it did when it was young. A person with hearing loss can then find it challenging to hear conversations around them, leading to all kinds of problems. 

 

In this article, we’re going to spell out some of the damage untreated hearing loss can do to your life. Hopefully, it’ll motivate you to go and see your ENT doctor. 

 

Hearing Loss Leads To Tinnitus

Pixabay – CC0 License

 

Tinnitus is perhaps the most irritating condition out there. People characterize it as a persistent buzzing or ringing in the ears with no external source. For some, the noises come and go, whereas for others, they’re a permanent feature of their lives. 

 

Research indicates that people with hearing loss are at a much higher risk of developing tinnitus. The reasons for this aren’t entirely clear. Doctors, however, believe that it has to do with a lack of stimulation of the auditory cortex. Damage to the ear means that it cannot transmit incoming sounds to the brain. The region of brain tissue responsible for interpreting sounds, therefore, starts hallucinating its own, and the patient begins to experience annoying whining. 

 

Fortunately, you can treat tinnitus by wearing hearing aids. Assistive hearing devices restore communication between the outside world and the brain, helping to stimulate the auditory cortex. If you have tinnitus, then visit your doctor today. 

 

Hearing Loss Can Lead To Social Isolation

 

Hearing loss can often lead to another problem: social isolation. A person who can’t hear finds it very difficult to communicate with the people around them and will sometimes retreat into their homes. This behavior, in turn, increases the likelihood of depression. It is not good for people to spend long periods by themselves, especially if they’re naturally outgoing. 

 

Hearing Loss Can Prevent You From Getting Promotions

 

People with hearing loss typically earn less at work than their colleagues. Researchers think the reason is that they are unable to pick up on nuances in conversations at work. Leaving out key details makes it more difficult for them to ingratiate themselves with their superiors and that they will make mistakes. These effects then combine to result in lower overall pay – not good. 

 

Hearing Loss Can Put You In Harm’s Way

 

Finally, there’s the fact that hearing loss can put you in harm’s way.

 

If you can’t hear sounds in your immediate environment, you’re much more likely to put yourself in harm’s way unnecessarily. For instance, you might not be able to hear the sound of approaching traffic

 

Hearing loss, therefore, is about much more than just being a little “hard of hearing.” It can have a real impact on your well being and life chances.