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Abstaining from tobacco consumption key to prevent head and neck cancer: Doctor

It is a known fact that tobacco consumption is one of the significant causes of head and neck cancers. Dr Satish Rao, oncology surgeon, Lilavati Hospital, highlights the need for quitting tobacco in every form (cigarettes, beedis, and meisheri) and how it can keep head and neck cancers at bay. Head and Neck cancer constitutes 25 per cent of solid organ cancers. Cancer of the cheek, jaw, and tongue are common cancers of the head and neck. The most common cause of these cancers is the consumption of tobacco and pan masala. Tobacco is either chewed in raw form or smoked in the form of cigarettes and beedis. ‘Meisheri’, a form of tobacco paste is used by rubbing it on teeth – especially underprivileged and rural populations.  Common symptomsCancer of the tongue, cheek, or jaw usually starts as a painless ulcer that may bleed minimally upon touching. Symptoms are usually silent. Gradually, if neglected cancer grows to cause pain, difficulty in swallowing, difficulty in opening the mouth, movement of mouth bone, foul-smelling ulcer, and presence of neck nodes. These are signs of advanced cancers.  Need for more awareness of ill effects of tobacco consumptionIt is imperative to diagnose cancer in its early stage, i.e. when it presents as a painless ulcer. There has to be awareness in society that tobacco consumption is the most common cause of head and neck cancer. Head and neck cancers are largely completely preventable.  The government issues warning messages on cigarette pouches and in advertisements on TV, bus stops, and social media. However, the message has to be delivered strongly. Strict implementation of ‘No Sale’ of tobacco within 500 meters of educational intuitions has to be enforced. Rigorous enforcement of the ban on smoking in public spaces and offices is essential. Educating school and college students that smoking or vaping is hazardous to health will contribute a long way to preventing head and neck cancers. The most important message of abstaining from smoking not only preventing cancer and other diseases but also improving a person’s health has to be delivered to everyone from school children to adults. If tobacco consumption is minimised, head and neck cancer, which are largely preventable, will be drastically reduced. The takeawayRemember, abstaining from tobacco consumption is a potent way to prevent head and neck cancer. Tobacco contains harmful chemicals that can damage the cells in the lining of the mouth, throat, and voice box, increasing the risk of cancer. By quitting smoking and other forms of tobacco, one can lower the risk of these fatal cancers. By promoting tobacco cessation and implementing strict smoking regulations, it is possible to curb the cases of head and neck cancers. Disclaimer: This information does not replace professional medical advice. Consult a qualified specialist or your physician for personalised guidance.

17 April,2024 12:40 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
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Love sleeping during the day? It could raise the risk of dementia, says study

If you think you can compensate for your night’s sleep during the daytime you may be wrong, said Dr Sudhir Kumar, a Hyderabad-based neurologist on Wednesday. Dr Sudhir, a neurologist at Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals, in a post on X.com, said that daytime sleep is not aligned with the body’s clock and also increases the risk of dementia and other psychiatric disorders. “Daytime sleep is lighter, since it is not aligned with the circadian clock, and hence fails to fulfill the homeostatic function of sleep,” the doctor said. “This fact is supported by numerous studies of night shift workers, who as a group are predisposed to stress, obesity, cognitive deficits, and an elevated risk of neurodegenerative diseases,” he added. Also Read: Fixing sleep cycle crucial to dodge diabetes, obesity, heart diseases: Doctors This is because the glymphatic system, which is known to clear the brain of protein waste products, is most active during sleep. Hence when sleep loss occurs, the glymphatic system faces failure, raising the risk of dementia, explained the doctor. “Glymphatic failure as the common pathway of dementia. Suppression or failure of the glymphatic system results in accumulation of abnormal proteins in various parts of the brain, leading to many neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease (AD),” Dr Sudhir said. Besides poor sleep quality, age, sedentary lifestyle, cardiovascular diseases, obesity, sleep apnoea, circadian misalignment, substance abuse, and depression are factors that suppress or result in failure of the glymphatic system. Also Read: Sleeping naked is good for health? Expert lists down surprising benefits “Good sleepers live longer, weigh less, have a reduced incidence of psychiatric disorders, and remain cognitively intact longer,” the neurologist said. “Habitually sleeping well at night could result in better cognitive function and reduce the risk of dementia and psychiatric disorders,” he added.  This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever.

17 April,2024 11:33 AM IST | New Delhi | IANS
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This is how you can help a loved one suffering from burnout

When a relative or friend is suffering from burnout, they need your help. Burnout is the result of a long period of stress which negatively affects your wellbeing. While seeking professional help and being diagnosed is a first, important step, relatives and friends can also do their part to make things easier for the person affected. The most important thing when someone close to you suffers from burnout is to be understanding, says Professor Petra Beschoner, a specialist in psychiatry, psychotherapy and psychosomatic medicine. "Ideally, relatives should educate themselves about the illness and organise professional help - also for themselves," Beschoner, who heads a clinic in southern Germany, recommends. "People who suffer from burnout often react cynically and irritably, which can be very stressful for their social environment. Those affected also withdraw. However, this should not be seen as a personal offence, but as a symptom of burnout." People tend to think that they need to handle those affected by burnout with kid gloves, Beschoner says. But this can be counterproductive, according to the expert. "Relatives often tend to keep everything away from the person affected. But burnout patients in particular often define themselves by their responsibilities, so restricting their autonomy is not very effective," she explains. Some symptoms of burnout, like signs of exhaustion, overlap with those of depression. According to the doctor, it is therefore important that the diagnosis is always made by specialists or psychotherapists who have the necessary differential diagnostic experience. According to Britain's National Health Service, other symptoms of burnout include muscle pains, headaches, sleeping problems, weight gain or loss and memory problems. This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever.

16 April,2024 04:31 PM IST | Berlin | IANS
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Why are cases of oral cancer rising in India?

India bears a significant burden of oral cancers, and the country contributes to about 30 per cent of all global cases, said doctors on Tuesday. April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month. Also known as mouth cancer, the disease is the most common form of head and neck cancer and includes cancers of the mouth and the back of the throat. Traditionally known to affect older adults, the disease is seeing an early onset, Dr Sowrabh Arora, Senior Director - Surgical Oncology (Head & Neck), Max Hospital, Vaishali, told IANS. “Oral cancer is a significant health concern in India, ranking as the second most common cancer overall and the most common among males. Annually, there are over 100,000 new cases diagnosed. One emerging trend is the increasing incidence of oral cancer among young adults,” he said. “Alarmingly, the incidence of oral cancer is on the rise, with approximately 70 per cent of cases diagnosed at an advanced stage, complicating treatment efforts,” added Dr Mohit Saxena, Senior Consultant - Medical Oncology, Marengo Asia Hospital, Gurugram. The doctors attributed the rise to the use of tobacco, chewing betel nuts, or smoke, accounting for 80-90 per cent of cases. Other contributing factors include excessive alcohol consumption, human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, weakened immune system, poor nutrition, excess body weight, and excessive sun exposure. “This highlights the pressing need for awareness campaigns and preventive measures to curb the rising prevalence of oral cancer, particularly among the younger population, and to address the root causes,” Dr. Sowrabh said. The doctors also advised to be vigilant of symptoms to help in crucial early detection and better outcomes. “Recognising the symptoms of oral cancer is crucial for early detection and intervention. These include persistent mouth ulcers, red or white patches, intraoral swelling or lumps, difficulty in swallowing, hoarseness of voice, neck or throat swelling, and unexplained weight loss,” Dr Mohit told IANS. He also called for prevention strategies such as abstaining from tobacco, and alcohol, practising safe sex to minimise HPV exposure, using sunscreen to protect against sun damage, and undergoing regular oral screenings for early detection. This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever.

16 April,2024 03:21 PM IST | New Delhi | IANS
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Breast cancer to cause a million deaths a year by 2040: Study

Breast cancer is now the world's most common carcinogenic disease with the ailment likely to cause a million deaths a year by 2040, according to a new Lancet Commission on breast cancer. Around 7.8 million women were diagnosed with breast cancer in the last five years until 2020 and about 685,000 women died from the disease the same year, it said. Further, in 2020, women around the world on average had a 1 in 12 risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer before turning 75 years old, and this incidence is rising, researchers found. They estimated that cases of breast cancer cases will increase from 2.3 million in 2020 to more than 3 million by 2040, with low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) being "disproportionately affected". By 2040, deaths due to the disease will be a million a year, the team added. "This is neither acceptable nor inevitable as action now can prevent many of these future cancers," the authors wrote. Knowledge gaps, such as unknown numbers of women with metastatic breast cancer in which the cancer spreads to other parts, continue to prevent effective action, they said. The scale of suffering associated with breast cancer, along with other costs, are not well-measured, with the society and policymakers only seeing the "tip of an iceberg," the authors of the commission said. "Recent improvements in breast cancer survival represent a great success of modern medicine," said the commission's lead author, Charlotte Coles, University of Cambridge, UK, referring to 40 per cent reduced deaths due to the disease achieved in some high-income countries (HICs)."However, we can't ignore how many patients are being systematically left behind," said Coles. The commission builds on previous evidence, presents new data, and integrates patient voices to shed light on a large unseen burden, according to the authors.It points to "glaring inequities" and suffering from symptoms, despair and financial burden due to breast cancer, which are often "hidden and inadequately addressed". Also Read: Breast cancer survivor: ‘I knew this was going to be malignant because of its shape’ Laying out recommendations for tackling these challenges in breast cancer, the commission suggested better communication between patients and health professionals as a crucial intervention that could improve quality of life, body image, and adherence to therapy, and positively impact survival."Women's fundamental human rights have historically been accorded lesser respect than men's in all settings, with implications for patient agency and autonomy," said Reshma Jagsi, Emory University School of Medicine, US. "Every healthcare professional should receive some form of communication skills training. Improving the quality of communication between patients and health professionals, though seemingly simple, could have profound positive impacts that extend far beyond the specific setting of breast cancer management," Jagsi said. "Patients should be encouraged to exercise their voices, choosing their level of involvement in care decisions," she added.The commission also advocated for developing new tools and metrics that can capture the costs associated with breast cancer, including physical, psychological, social, along with financial costs. "Global data are essential to expose and better understand and address the multiplicity of needs of all people affected by breast cancer and significantly reduce the global burden of preventable suffering," said author Carlos Barrios, Oncology Research Center, Hospital São Lucas, Brazil. In countries lacking affordable health care facilities, patients experience these costs more commonly and intensely, too often leading to catastrophic spending and impoverishment, said Barrios. The 40 per cent reduction in deaths from breast cancer seen in HICs has not been achieved in most LMICs, where advanced stages at diagnosis and low diagnostic and treatment capacities contribute to poorer breast cancer survival rates, the authors said. Also Read: Understanding the surge and solutions for breast cancer cases among India's youth While these survival rates exceed 90 per cent in HICs, the rates are 66 per cent in India and 40 per cent in South Africa, they said.The authors also found that every country successful in improving breast cancer survival rates between 1990 and 2020 has the ability to diagnose at least 60 per cent of invasive breast cancers at stages and thus, argued for improved early detection programs. The authors further called for "bold policy changes" that can reduce the population exposed to risk factors in their control such as alcohol consumption, being overweight and physical activity. Up to one-quarter of breast cancer in HICs could be prevented by modifying risk factors for breast cancer, they said."We hope that, by highlighting these inequities and hidden costs and suffering in breast cancer, they can be better recognised and addressed by health care professionals and policymakers in partnership with patients and the public around the world," said Coles. This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever.

16 April,2024 02:59 PM IST | New Delhi | PTI
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‘Remove Bournvita from 'health drinks' category’: Govt directs e-commerce firms

We have all grown up sipping on chocolatey ‘health drinks’ daily. Mothers and grandmothers would be relieved watching us gulp down a glass of milk, even if it meant adding one to two spoons of chocolate powder. Little did we know, these ‘health drinks’ would no longer be considered healthy. Recently, the government ordered e-commerce firms to remove Bournvita and other similar beverages from the ‘health drink’ category.  In a statement, The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) said that the term ‘‘health drink’ is not defined under the FSS Act 2006, rules and regulations as submitted by FSSAl and Mondelez Mondelez India Food Pvt Ltd. Following this, The Ministry of Commerce and Industry issued a letter to e-commerce platforms asking them to remove all drinks and beverages, including Bournvita, from the ‘healthy drinks’ category In a notification dated April 10, the ministry stated that, the “National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), a statutory body constituted under Section (3) of the Commission of Protection of Child Rights (CPCR) Act, 2005 after its inquiry under Section 14 of CRPC Act 2005 concluded that there is no 'health drink' defined under FSS Act 2006, rules and regulations submitted by FSSAI and Mondelez India Food Pvt Ltd.”  Earlier this month, on April 2, food safety standards regulator FSSAI had also asked all e-commerce food business operators (FBOs) to appropriately categorise food products sold on their websites. In its instruction, the government body stated that the companies must not put dairy, cereal, or malt-based beverages under the ‘health drink’ or ‘energy drink’ categories.   Clarifying this decision,  the FSSAI mentioned that the term ‘health drink’ is not defined within the food laws in India, while ‘energy drinks’ are merely water-based flavoured beverages. Additionally, the body also stressed that the incorrect use of terminology could mislead customers and thus instructed e-commerce websites to either remove or correct the advertisements for overall consumer safety.   Bournvita has been in the news for its health aspect for over a year now, especially after influencer Revant Himatsingka posted a video on his Instagram account. In the video, he spoke large about the ingredients used to make this drink highlighting the high sugar content in the product.   Following this, Mondelez India which owns Bournvita sent a legal notice to Himatsingka demanding him to delete the video and issue an official apology, which he did.  With inputs from Agencies.   Also Read: EXCLUSIVE: ‘Longer the life of a food product, the sooner your expiry date: Revant Himatsingka aka Food Pharmer This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever.

15 April,2024 04:42 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
The initiative boosts the United National Sustainable Development Goal (SDG-3), which calls for health and well-being for all

IIT Madras launches India’s 1st mobile medical devices calibration facility

Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras on Monday launched India’s first medical devices calibration facility on wheels. Calibration is key for life-saving medical devices as it will help check the accuracy of medical instruments for precise disease diagnosis, which will lead to improved treatments. Irrespective of geographical locations across the country, the new mobile facility will ensure quality healthcare. This will also help test and maintain medical devices that are used in a wide range of hospitals including those in remote villages. “Proper diagnosis and treatment are extremely important and for that, the medical devices need to be calibrated accurately and frequently,” said Prof. V. Kamakoti, Director, IIT Madras. The initiative boosts the United National Sustainable Development Goal (SDG-3), which calls for health and well-being for all. The infrastructure in the mobile unit includes state-of-the-art equipment that will test the safety of medical devices as per international standards. “With the escalating cost for calibration, this effort not only reduces the cost of calibration but also the transportation cost and time required. This is a progressive step towards affordable, scalable, quality health care for all,” Prof. Kamakoti said. Also Read: Why is India’s fertility rate declining   This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

15 April,2024 04:31 PM IST | Mumbai | IANS
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Using marijuana to treat nausea may worsen health of mother and baby: Study

Taking marijuana for the treatment of nausea and vomiting in pregnancy may cause brain problems in newborns as well as worsen the mother’s health, according to a study on Monday. About 70 per cent of pregnancies experience morning sickness in pregnancy, known medically as hyperemesis gravidarum, and characterised by nausea and vomiting. In severe cases, it can prevent pregnant women from eating and drinking properly, leading to weight loss and dehydration. However, resorting to cannabis may be harmful to the health of both the mother and child, according to a review of studies published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal). “Use of cannabis in pregnancy has been associated with adverse neurocognitive outcomes in offspring, as well as other adverse pregnancy outcomes. Therefore, we advise against the use of cannabis in pregnancy,” said Dr Larissa Jansen, Amsterdam Reproduction and Development Research Institute, Erasmus MC, Netherlands. To date, the cause of morning sickness is not completely understood. Yet pregnancy at a young age, a female foetus, multiple or molar pregnancies, underlying medical conditions, and a history of the condition during previous pregnancies are some known risk factors. “Hyperemesis gravidarum can have detrimental effects on maternal quality of life and may lead to short and long-term adverse outcomes among offspring,” said Dr Larissa. “Management of hyperemesis gravidarum requires considerable healthcare resources, as it is a common reason for hospital admission and emergency department visits in the first trimester,” she added. Anti-nausea drugs and home remedies such as ginger products may help alleviate mild nausea and vomiting for some people, but the evidence of its effectiveness in people with hyperemesis gravidarum is uncertain, the team said, calling for more research.  This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever.

15 April,2024 02:14 PM IST | New Delhi | IANS
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Mid-Day Premium Why is India’s fertility rate declining

Total fertility rates (TFR) — the average number of children born per woman — has been falling across the globe. A Lancet study estimates, “By 2100, the estimated fertility rates will be below the replacement level in more than 95 per cent of the world’s countries and territories but disparities in rates will remain.” What this means is that global population is set to fall than current levels.  Researchers have raised concerns regarding India’s falling total fertility rate, which has been declining for decades now. The country’s fertility rate has reduced from 6.2 in 1950 to less than 2 in 2024, and is set to drop to 1.29 in 2050. It is important to note that in 2021, India’s fertility rate of 1.91 was below the required replacement fertility level of 2.1. We asked Dr Nandita Palshetkar, obstetrician, gynecologist, director of Bloom IVF India, and President of IVF Society of India (ISAR) to help us understand some of the reasons behind this, the impact of lifestyle choices, and ways to optimise fertility.  Factors contributing to the significant decrease in fertility rate 1.    One of the main drivers of low fertility rates is economic progress. When countries such as India undergo rapid economic development, families opt for smaller sizes. An improved healthcare infrastructure along with reduced child mortality rates contributes to this trend because parents become more confident about their children’s survival chances. The necessity of having a big family decrease hence reducing the Total Fertility Rate. 2.    The other major factor that determines trends in fertility is women’s education and empowerment. As women gain access to education and opportunities for personal and professional development, they increasingly prioritise their own aspirations and well-being. Delayed marriage and childbearing, coupled with greater autonomy regarding reproductive decision-making result into smaller family sizes. 3.    More so, the availability and access to family planning methods has really influenced how people decide on how many children they want to have or not. Couples can use contraceptives or even visit family planning clinics whenever they think it is necessary. By allowing individuals to control their own fertility, family planning programmes have contributed greatly towards these declining rates of fertility observed today.  Also Read: Death by suicide after 1st period: Why menstruation education is important Understanding the influence of lifestyle choices The fertility outcomes are heavily influenced by diet and lifestyle choices especially in the context of India where its culture is diverse and dietary habits differ much among different cultural groups. For instance, a healthy lifestyle is essential because factors such as stress, smoking, and environmental pollution have a significant impact on reproductive health. Some Indian women experience difficulties such as premature ovarian failure that directly affects their chances of conceiving. Similarly, there are issues like low sperm count and poor sperm motility that many men face, further complicating the fertility landscape.  Furthermore, abnormal dietary patterns may hinder ovulation causing menstrual cycle irregularities thus escalating challenges of infertility. Thus, there is need for adequate nutrition and regular physical exercise for fertility optimisation. By changing unhealthy eating habits into good ones plus integrating physical exercises into daily routine people can overcome adverse impacts of lifestyles upon reproductive health which result in improved prospects of conception plus a successful pregnancy.  Essentially, there are several lifestyle factors such as obesity, smoking or excessive drinking of alcohol that have been found to significantly affect fertility rates. By engaging into healthier lifestyles and reducing smoking, moderating on drinking habits, people can minimise these threats consequently improving on the possibilities of improved fertility.  Also Read: ‘Drafting a living will safeguards your right to live and die with dignity’ The role of weight in reproductive health Both men and women experience significant reproduction difficulties caused by obesity. In addition, excessive weight alters hormone balance thereby causing irregular periods and ovulation problems for women. Additionally, obesity increases the risk of conditions like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), which can further impair fertility.  Due to the tobacco’s harmful substances, smoking is detrimental to reproductive health in males and females alike. Smoking reduces the quality of sperms thus reducing fertility in men. Likewise smoking impairs egg quality which hinders conception in women.  Consuming alcohol excessively has adverse effects on both male and female fertility. It disrupts sperm production and impairs sperm quality hence alcohol can interfere with these processes in males. Also, alcohol can cause hormonal imbalances that result in irregular menstrual cycles and reduced fertility rates among females. Moderation is key to alleviating the adverse effects of alcohol on reproductive health.  The relationship between stress and infertility Stress plays a major role in fertility due to the challenges of contemporary way of life that are characterised by relentless working hours and emotional stress. The disrupted balance of hormones caused by chronic stress affects the process of reproductive system leading to irregular period and ovulation in women. This may lead to reduced chances of successfully conceiving and longer waiting periods before getting pregnant.  Managing stress for reproductive health becomes an important aspect in developing countries where there is urbanisation and fast-paced life. In terms of coping with stress effectively, different relaxation techniques can be applied. Yoga, meditation, mindfulness and deep breathing exercises are helpful in relieving stress and improving mood. Thus, individuals can reduce negative effects of stress by relaxation techniques integrated into their everyday lives.  Furthermore, prioritising mental wellbeing along with physical fitness is vital in order to optimise fertility outcomes. Developing ways of managing anxiety like hobbies participation, spending time with loved ones or seeking professional help when needed, assists in creating a healthier environment for reproduction. Therefore, addressing stress as well as self-care enhances fertility potential and increases the chances of conception.   Also Read: Doctors urge consideration of homoeopathic treatments for chronic and lifestyle diseases, here’s why Conclusion Couples planning to get pregnant are encouraged to optimise fertility through lifestyle changes and dietary interventions. Proper nutrition is the first step toward achieving reproductive health. Regular physical activity also is an equally important foundation of fertility. It not only helps in weight maintenance but also enhances general metabolic function as well as blood flow. Exercise induces a release of endorphins into the body system and helps in lowering stress levels and promoting emotional wellbeing thereby encouraging fertility.  Men’s sperms and women’s eggs are affected negatively by tobacco while alcohol consumption can disrupt hormonal regulation and impair fertility. Chronic stress can upset hormone balance disrupting menstrual periods making conception difficult. Managing stress requires engaging in relaxation techniques, getting enough sleep and seeking support when needed so that body can create an atmosphere conducive to conceiving. In summary, proper nutrition, mental health considerations as well as exercise and avoiding harmful habits form the basis for fertility improvement.  Disclaimer: This information does not replace professional medical advice. Consult a qualified specialist or your physician for personalised guidance.

15 April,2024 10:02 AM IST | Mumbai | Maitrai Agarwal
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Mid-Day Premium Cleansers to sunscreens: Essential summer skincare tips for healthy skin

The first thought that pops up after coming across terms like ‘summer skincare’ or ‘winter skincare’ is that the process is bound to be lengthy and complex. While that might be true, you can simplify and customise your skincare regime. Complex or not, having a skincare routine in place is essential, especially during the summer season.   The hot and humid climate triggers multiple skin issues that range from acne, sweat-induced rashes, sunburns, tans and fungal infections. These conditions can exacerbate if not treated in time.  Dr Trishna Gupte, clinical cosmetologist and trichologist, founder, The Cosmo-Square Clinic, ISCA tells Mid-day.com, “It's critical to understand that the summer poses special skincare problems because of increased UV exposure, rising temperatures, and higher humidity. Consequently, it's essential to modify one's skincare regimen to shield the skin from damaging UV radiation, avoid sunburns, and reduce the chance of skin damage and early ageing.”  Agreeing with this, Dr Shefali Trasi Nerurkar, consultant dermatologist, Dr Trasi clinic and La Piel Skin Clinic adds, “A summer skincare is similar to winter skincare. A cleanser-moisturiser-sunscreen and night serum are the common steps involved in skincare for any season. However, the ingredients change with the skin type and the weather around.”  “In winter, one is constantly trying to hydrate the skin to prevent any dryness or cracks on the skin. While in summer, we prevent the skin from getting oily.”  Switching from winter to summer skincare“Spring is a transitional period between winter and summer months. This is a good time to start changing the skincare routine from winter to summer. In India, February is the month when this transition happens; especially in the last two weeks,” Nerurkar tells us.  According to Dinyar Workingboxwalla, skin guru and co-founder, Beauty by Bie, there is no specific month to make the switch. “Instead, keep an eye on the weather. Ideally, you want to start transitioning your routine when spring arrives, typically around March or April. This allows your skin to gradually adjust to the changing climate.”  He adds, “Spring can be unpredictable, with occasional chilly days mixed in with warmer spells.  A lighter routine during this time helps your skin adapt without feeling overly stripped on cooler days.”  The skin guru suggests swapping out your products to make a gradual switch: Cleansing:  Ditch the heavy cream cleansers you use in winter. Opt for a double cleanse routine that includes a lightweight, oil-based cleanser to remove sunscreen and makeup buildup, followed by a gentle water-based cleanser to remove any remaining impurities. Moisturising: Bid farewell to thick creams. Embrace lightweight lotions, gel-based formulas, or even oil-free moisturisers with hyaluronic acid for deep hydration without the greasiness. Exfoliation: Summer is a great time to incorporate gentle exfoliation (one or two times a week) to remove dead skin cells and reveal a brighter complexion. Chemical exfoliants like AHAs or BHAs work well, but for sensitive skin, opt for a gentle physical scrub. Sunscreen: This one's a no-brainer. Start using a broad-spectrum SPF 30 or higher sunscreen every single day, rain or shine. Look for lightweight, non-comedogenic formulas that won't clog pores. Common skin issues to look out for Gupte states sunburn, heat rash, breakouts of acne, and increased oiliness are common skin conditions in India during the summer months. “Sweat and increased oil production from the skin can cause acne outbreaks and other issues due to clogged pores and accumulated dirt.” Similarly, according to Nerurkar, folliculitis and other bacterial infections, fungal infections like tinea, pityriasis versicolor, miliaria, and sun allergy are some of the other common skin problems faced during the summer season.  Step-by-step summer skincare guideWorkingboxwalla shares a detailed guide that you can follow to keep your skin fresh throughout the hot and humid weather.  Step 1: Double cleanseAs the temperatures rise, so does our skin's propensity to produce excess oil and sweat. A thorough double cleanse becomes paramount to rid the skin of impurities accumulated throughout the day. Begin with an oil-based cleanser to dissolve sunscreen, makeup, and pollutants, followed by a gentle water-based cleanser to purify the skin without stripping its natural oils. Step 2: Mask (once or twice a week)Once or twice a week, treat your skin with a clay mask to draw out impurities and keep the oil in check. Opt for a hydrating mask if you have dry skin – a boost of moisture will keep it plump and balanced. Step 3: HydrateDon't be fooled by the heat – summer is not an excuse to skip moisturiser. Summer skincare is all about lightweight moisturisers that deliver deep hydration without a greasy finish. Look for formulas packed with hyaluronic acid, ceramides, or aloe vera to keep your skin dewy and fresh all day long. Step 4: Eye treatmentThe delicate under-eye area deserves special attention, especially in summer. Swap your rich eye creams for a lightweight, cooling eye gel. Ingredients like cucumber extract or caffeine can help reduce puffiness and dark circles, keeping your peepers bright and refreshed. Step 5: Sun protectionNo matter the season, sunscreen is non-negotiable. In summer, however, it's even more crucial. Opt for a broad-spectrum SPF 30 or higher that's lightweight and non-comedogenic (meaning it won't clog your pores). Reapply religiously every two hours, and even more frequently if you're sweating or swimming. Bonus Tip: Embrace facial oilsA few drops of dry face oil can be a game-changer for summer skin. Look for oils like jojoba or squalane, which mimic your skin's natural oils and lock in moisture without feeling greasy. Using sunscreen the right wayDr Deepti Ghia, consultant, dermatology, Jaslok Hospital and Research Centre, Mumbai tells Mid-day, “When transitioning to summer skincare, one must start using sunscreen with low SPF and gradually move to a higher one.”  “For Indian summers SPF 40 and more with broad spectrum coverage is needed. If you are inside the house, apply sunscreen twice during a day.”  Commenting on the harmful effects of UV rays on the skin, Ghia says, “UV exposure is intense from 10 am to 2 pm. So make your schedule of sunscreen application accordingly. If you are out in the sun, you must apply sunscreen from 7 am to 6 pm every 3 hours.”  “For those swimming, using a waterproof sunscreen is recommended. If you are not exposed to pollution and dirt, use sunscreen sticks for repeated protection. If you are exposed to sun, dust and pollution, ensure you rinse your face and then re-apply sunscreens.  To enhance the effectiveness of sunscreens, Ghia suggests adopting physical protection too, like wearing full-sleeved clothing, wide-brimmed hats, and sunglasses. She says, “All these add to the value of using sunscreens.”  Other sun protection tips she shares include: 1. Avoiding wearing tight jeans and synthetic material clothes. 2. Washing clothes regularly. 3. Staying well hydrated by consuming lots of refreshing and healthy fluids.4. Masking yourself while out in the pollution and cleaning yourself properly once you are back. 5. Eating healthy foods and maintaining a balanced diet free from excessive greasy and spicy foods.  Home remedies for skin ailments in summer Although skincare products come in handy and save a lot of time and effort, many prefer to go the natural way. Nerurkar states, “Soothing the skin with ice and aloe vera gel are some natural ways of treating sunburn or heat rash. Calamine lotion is also an important skincare one can use for a heat rash. Nowadays mists or thermal sprays containing micellar water or other soothing spring water can be used to cool the skin and protect it from skin rash.”  Gupte also shares some helpful remedies: Applying cool compresses to a sunburn might help relieve discomfort and inflammation by soaking a clean cloth in cold water or milk.  To reduce pain and encourage healing, aloe vera gel, which is well-known for its calming and anti-inflammatory qualities, can also be applied directly to the injured area.  Furthermore, colloidal oatmeal compresses or baths might help calm sensitive skin and lessen sunburn-related soreness.  The symptoms of heat rash can be lessened by taking cold baths or showers and dressing in loose, breathable fabrics like cotton.  Additionally, applying cucumber slices or a paste consisting of sandalwood powder and rose water to the affected areas might help reduce the swelling and itching brought on by heat rash.  However, if symptoms increase or persist, you should definitely see a doctor. For a generic natural summer skincare routine, Workingboxwalla shares recipes of face packs to make and apply at home.   Watermelon Sorbet (for the skin)This face pack is a perfect toner for your skin during the summer months. Watermelon and cucumber act as summer essentials that help calm and soothe the redness and irritation caused by the extreme heat conditions.  Ingredients: Watermelon juice - 2 tbspCucumber juice - 2 tbspMilk powder - 1 tspYoghurt - 1 tbsp Method: 1. Take watermelon juice and cucumber juice, mix them with milk powder and yogurt.2. Once a thick paste is ready, apply it on the face with an applicator. 3. Keep it on your face and neck for 15 minutes.4. Rinse off with lukewarm water.  Tropical Paradise (Mango-based face pack) This face mask helps fight the free radicals and heal the sun-damaged skin from the UV rays.  Ingredients: Fresh mango pulp - 2 tbspTurmeric - a pinchYoghurt - 1 tbspHoney - 1 tspSandalwood powder - 1 tsp Method: 1. Take mango pulp and mix sandalwood powder honey. 2. Add a pinch of turmeric powder blended with yoghurt. 3. Now mix all the ingredients in a bowl.4. Apply the paste on the face and neck and keep it for 20 minutes. 5. Rinse with lukewarm water.  Common skincare mistakes to avoid 1. Skipping sunscreen: This can result in sunburns and long-term damage to the skin; dehydration, which can cause dry, dull skin and aggravate pre-existing conditions.  2. Over-exfoliation: While exfoliation can help remove dead skin cells and promote healthy skin cell turnover, overdoing it can strip away natural oils and irritate your skin, especially in the summer sun. Stick to gentle exfoliation two-three times a week. 3. Using thick moisturisers: Doing so can clog pores and cause breakouts in hot weather. Opt for a lightweight, oil-free moisturiser to keep your skin hydrated without feeling greasy. 4. Forgetting to hydrate from within: Drinking plenty of water is crucial for overall health and skin health. Aim for eight glasses of water a day to keep your skin plump and glowing. 5. Wearing heavy makeup: Opt for lightweight, mineral-based makeup in the summer to avoid clogging pores and cakey look. 6. Not cleansing thoroughly: Sweat, oil, and makeup can build up on your skin throughout the day. Ensure you double-cleanse your face thoroughly to remove impurities and prevent breakouts. Disclaimer: This information does not replace professional medical advice. Consult a qualified specialist or your physician for personalised guidance.

14 April,2024 01:04 PM IST | Mumbai | Aakanksha Ahire
Image for representational purposes only. Photo Courtesy: iStock

Why are young adults at high risk of irritable bowel syndrome?

Young adults with increased stress in their lives, and who live a sedentary lifestyle with no exercise and also eat a poor diet may be at high risk of developing irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), according to health experts on Sunday. IBS is a common disorder that affects the stomach and intestines, leading to abdominal cramping, diarrhoea, constipation, bloating, and gas. While there are no specific causes of IBS, it may be related to an overly sensitive colon or immune system, said health experts. "Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a form of gastrointestinal disorder. It is most commonly reported among young people in the age group of 20-40 due to increased stress, sedentary lifestyle, and poor dietary choices," Bir Singh Sehrawat, Director and HOD-Gastroenterology, Marengo Asia Hospitals, Faridabad, told IANS. Also Read: Exploring the gut-mind relationship and its impact on mental health The young are more at risk as consumption of fast food that is spicy, oily, and also contains added sugars, salts, fats, and artificial ingredients; and intake of aerated drinks are high among the young generation. These food items not only lack nutrition but also can impact the balance of gut bacteria triggering IBS symptoms. Further, excessive mental stress can create hormonal disturbances which may have an impact on digestion. Anxiety also changes the regulation of blood and oxygen throughout the body which impacts the stomach causing diarrhoea, constipation, gas, or discomfort. These factors are leading "to a rise in cases of IBS in India", Manish Kak, Consultant Gastroenterology, Manipal Hospital, Ghaziabad, told IANS. Also Read: Doctors urge consideration of homoeopathic treatments for chronic and lifestyle diseases, here’s why He explained that although IBS does not damage the digestive tract nor does it increase the risk of colon cancer, it can be a long-lasting problem that changes daily routine. To reduce the risk of IBS, one must adopt a fibre-rich diet, refrain from alcohol use, do regular exercise, and manage stress through yoga and meditation. However, the doctors warned not to overlook the symptoms of IBS such as bloating, constipation, diarrhoea, excessive strain when passing a stool, repeated belching, abdominal pain, or cramps, particularly with bowel movements. "On experiencing these symptoms, consult a gastroenterologist. If left untreated, IBS can hit the colon, or large bowel, which is the part of the digestive tract that stores stool," Bir said. Also Read: ‘Drafting a living will safeguards your right to live and die with dignity’ This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever.

14 April,2024 12:22 PM IST | New Delhi | IANS
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