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Surprising Facts About Our Bodies
Surprising Facts About Our Bodies

How many germs live in your belly button? What makes sweat smell bad? How much dead skin do you shed per year? Find out.
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4 ways to put off joint replacement

Also: Hospitalization after fainting can do more harm than good; Why weight matters when it comes to joint pain.
April 23, 2015
Harvard Medical School

4 ways to put off joint replacement

A desire to stay active and a natural aversion to pain send nearly 800,000 Americans to orthopedic surgeons each year for a hip or knee replacement. And we're seeking these operations much earlier in life. According to Dr. Scott Martin, associate professor of orthopedic surgery at Harvard Medical School, this isn't a healthy trend. "A lot of joint replacements are being done because they can be," says Dr. Martin.

Every surgical procedure carries the risk of complications — or even death. Because the average joint that's replaced only lasts 10 to 15 years, having the procedure done at age 50 instead of 70 means there's a good chance you'll need a second procedure when you're older and at higher risk for complications.

Product Page - The Joint Pain Relief Workout
Is joint pain holding you back? Perhaps an achy ankle or sore knee is making it difficult to enjoy a run through your favorite park or taking a short walk. Or maybe a throbbing hip or shoulder prevents you from whacking a golf ball or performing simple tasks like carrying a bag of groceries. The exercises in this report can help relieve ankle, knee, hip, or shoulder pain, and help you become more active again, which can help you stay independent long into your later years.

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Here are four tips that can help you extend the life of your natural joints and keep the need for replacement in the very distant future.

Tip #1: Lose weight

One of the most important ways to care for your joints is to stay at a healthy weight. For every extra pound you carry, you put about three pounds of additional pressure on your knees and multiply the pressure on your hips by six. If you have arthritis, losing just 15 pounds can cut your knee pain in half. If you do eventually need a joint replaced, losing weight beforehand can reduce your risk of having complications from surgery. Even if you have tender joints, you can still work out — as long as you stick with exercises that are gentle on your joints, such as swimming, walking, or riding a stationary bike.

Tip #2: Take care when using your joints

Poor posture and using the wrong techniques during your daily activities add more stress to damaged joints. By standing up straight instead of slouching, you can protect the joints in your neck, hips, and knees. Also use the proper technique when lifting or carrying anything heavy. If any activity hurts, stop doing it right away.

Tip #3: Try nonsurgical approaches before turning to surgery

There are a number of ways to tackle joint pain other than replacing the joint itself. Treatment with steroids is one approach. Benefits can last anywhere from four to six months. However, this doesn't work for everyone. Viscosupplementation involves injecting a lubricating fluid into damaged knee joints to treat osteoarthritis. Studies show this therapy doesn't work any better than steroid injections. Yet it is another alternative for pain relief and mobility if other treatments haven't worked or you can't tolerate them.

Tip #4: Get pain relief

Instead of heading straight to your doctor to treat sore joints, try taking an over-the-counter pain reliever. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) — such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or naproxen (Aleve) — or the prescription medicine celecoxib (Celebrex) can relieve both joint inflammation and pain. Do talk with your doctor before deciding to use an over-the-counter NSAID. These drugs can cause side effects such as stomach upset, bleeding, and kidney and liver damage. Take them for the shortest possible time to relieve your discomfort. There is also some evidence that the dietary supplement glucosamine chondroitin can lead to subtle improvements in arthritis pain. "It doesn't rebuild joints, but it does seem to help with the pain," Dr. Martin says.

When to consider surgery

If you can't escape from joint pain even while at rest, your pain is only relieved by narcotic medications, or your function is severely compromised, it's time to consider a joint replacement. "I would stick with your own joint if you can, but if it's physically, mentally, and emotionally wearing you down, then it's time to go and have it done," Dr. Martin says.

For more ways to keep your joints healthy and pain-free, buy The Joint Pain Relief Workout from Harvard Medical School.

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News and Views from the Harvard Health Blog

Hospitalization after fainting can do more harm than good

Sometimes fainting is nothing to worry about. Sometimes it is. Doctors tend to err on the side of caution and hospitalize many people at low risk for serious short-term problems after fainting who probably don't need to be hospitalized. A research letter in this week's JAMA Internal Medicine points out that hospitalization for low-risk fainting can do more harm than good.

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Why weight matters when it comes to joint pain

If you're having the occasional twinge of joint pain when you go for a walk or climb stairs, or you're worried about arthritis because a parent had it, one step toward prevention is to check your weight.

There are two ways that being overweight raises your risk for developing osteoarthritis (the most common joint disorder, which is due to wear and tear on a joint). First, excess weight puts additional stress on weight-bearing joints (the knee, for example). Second, inflammatory factors associated with weight gain might contribute to trouble in other joints (for example, the hands).

Product Page - The Joint Pain Relief Workout
Successful weight loss depends largely on becoming more aware of your behaviors and starting to change them. Instead of relying on willpower, this process demands skill power. This report offers a range of solutions that have worked for many people and can be tailored to your needs.

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Let's look at weight and your knees. When you walk across level ground, the force on your knees is the equivalent of 1½ times your body weight. That means a 200-pound man will put 300 pounds of pressure on his knees with each step. Add an incline and the force is greater. The force on each knee is two to three times your body weight when you go up and down stairs, and four to five times your body weight when you squat to tie a shoelace or pick up an item you dropped.

Losing a few pounds can go a long way toward reducing the pressure on your knees — and protecting them. In one study, the risk of developing osteoarthritis dropped 50% with each 11-pound weight loss among younger obese women. For men who get their body mass index (BMI) down from 30 or higher to between 25 and 29.9, knee osteoarthritis would decrease an estimated 20%. A similar change in women of the same age could cut the incidence of osteoarthritis of the knee by about 30%.

The best tactics for losing weight

Increasing physical activity has many health benefits and can help you shed weight. But stepping up your exercise alone is rarely enough to help you lose weight. Every pound you'd like to shed represents roughly 3,500 calories. So if you're hoping to lose half a pound to one pound a week, you need to knock off 250 to 500 calories a day. A good way to start is to try to burn 125 calories through exercise and eat 125 calories fewer each day.

Don't forget that the math works both ways: indulging in an extra 100 calories a day without burning them off can leave you 10 pounds heavier at the end of a year! Over time, routine treats like a scoop or two of ice cream, a calorie-packed coffee drink, or visits to the cookie or candy jar can tip the scales in the wrong direction.

For ways to lose the extra weight and live with less pain, buy Healthy Solutions to Lose Weight and Keep it Off.

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Featured in this issue

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The Joint Pain Relief Workout

Featured content:

Taking the first steps
Safety first
Posture, alignment, and angles: Striking the right pose
Equipment: Choosing the right stuff
Getting started
•  ... and more!

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Product Page - Lose Weight and Keep it Off Read More

Lose Weight and Keep it Off

Featured content:

Overweight and obesity: What's behind the growing trend?
How excess weight affects your health
When to seek professional help
Weight-loss basics
Choosing the diet that fits you best
•  ... and more!

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The Major Types Of Services Offered In Nashville Hair Salons

By Iva Cannon

People need beauty specialists in almost every day of their life. They need them when they want to trim and refashion their hairs as well as when they want to get various beauty procedures. Many of the hairstylists available are properly trained and equipped to offer a number of services. If you want what services you can get from Nashville hair salons, here are some of the main ones.

One major service which is commonly offered in beauty salons is shampooing. Many hairstylist shops stocks a variety of shampoos and all other crucial cleaning products. They also employ professional hairstylists who know how to efficiently use the different kinds of cleaning products. That means, if you visit these shops with the aim to get your hair shampooed, you will be assured of getting quality results.

Another great service most hairstylists offer is haircutting. Many hairstylists know the most trending hairstyles and trends hence will help you choose the best. They as well stock the requisite haircutting products and equipment hence will make sure that they give you the best for your money.

A majority of beauty salons also offer hairdressing. The experts in beauty shops have broad understanding on different types of hairdressing styles. They also know which kind of styles can best harmonize with the nature and style of different hairs. That said, once you visit one, you will be assured of getting quality results.

A great service also offered in many beauty shops is hair-coloring. Most of the shops that deal with offering beauty services stocks and uses different kinds of haircoloring products and dyes. This is to say that regardless of your chosen type of haircoloring style or dye, you can rest assured that you will be served as per your desires.

The more advanced beauty shops also offer tanning solutions. The professionals who operate in these types of shops are fully equipped with the right equipment and training to offer different tanning options. They can likewise advice you on which lotions and creams to buy in order to get the best tanning shade and look.

Some beauty professionals also offer skin care services. These include but not limited to skin moisturizing, skin tantalizing and massage. Once you visit any of these shops with the aim to get these kinds of services, you can be assured of be attended professionally and in timed manner.

Once you make the decision to visit any hairstylist, it is important to make sure that you take time to pick the best one. It is recommended that you search and review different shops in order to know which is rated best. When reading consumer reviews, it is advised that you be careful in order to avoid relying on fake reviews mostly considering that there are many dealers who hire people to write their consumer reviews. To clarify everything regarding to the genuineness of certain reviews, you should speak with some of the customers who wrote such reviews.

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