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Health Bulletins
August, 2012

Early Childhood Development

 

The future of any society depends on its ability to foster the health and well-being of the next generation. Today’s children will become tomorrow’s citizens, workers and parents. Thus, early child period (fetus - 8 years) is considered to be the most important developmental phase throughout one's lifespan. In here, we will provide you a brief about this developmental period.

 

As a result of poor development, many children are likely to under-achieve in school and subsequently to have low incomes as adults. As adults, they are also likely to have children at a very early age, and provide poor health care, nutrition and stimulation to their children, thus contributing to the intergenerational transmission of poverty and poor development.

 

Adequate stimulation and nutrition are essential for development during the first three years of life. It is during these years that a child's brain is most sensitive to the influences of the external environment. Rapid brain development affects cognitive, social and emotional growth. Such development helps to ensure that each child reaches his or her potential and is a productive part of a rapidly changing, global society.

 

Many factors can disrupt early child development. Four risk factors affect at least 20–25% of infants and young children in developing countries:

• Chronic malnutrition

• Inadequate stimulation or learning opportunities

• Iodine deficiency

• Others like malaria, exposure to violence or heavy metals

 

Every year, more than 200 million children under five years old fail to reach their full cognitive and social potential.

Psoriasis

 

Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease that appears on the skin. In here we will provide the reader with an overview, symptoms, causes and treatment of psoriasis.

 

Psoriasis seems to be passed down through families. It occurs when the immune system mistakes the skin cells as a pathogen, and sends out faulty signals that speed up the growth cycle of skin cells. Doctors think it probably occurs when the body's immune system mistakes healthy cells for dangerous substances.

 

Usually, skin cells grow deep in the skin and rise to the surface about once a month. In persons with psoriasis, this process is too fast. Dead skin cells build up on the skin's surface.

 

Psoriasis can appear suddenly or slowly. Many times, it goes away and then comes back again and again. The skin may be:

• Itchy

• Dry and covered with silver, flaky skin

• Pink-red in color

• Raised and thick

 

Other symptoms include:

• Genital lesions in males

• Joint pain or aching

• Nail changes, including color and appearance

• Severe dandruff on the scalp

The goal of the following treatments is to control your symptoms and prevent infection.

• Topical treatments: Skin lotions, ointments, creams, and shampoos.

• Whole-body treatments: Pills or injections that affect the body's immune response, not just the skin. Treatments include biologics (Remicade, Humira

etc…)

• Phototherapy: Which uses light to treat psoriasis.

There is no known way to prevent psoriasis so try to keep your skin

clean at all times.

1) Why is smoking addictive?

 

Cigarettes contain nicotine, which is highly addictive. Even if you want to quit smoking, you may find it difficult because you’re addicted to the effects of nicotine. Some research has suggested that nicotine can be more addictive than heroin.

 

2) What if I take an extra contraceptive pill accidentally?

If you’ve accidentally taken one extra contraceptive pill, you don’t need to seek medical advice and you won’t have any symptoms.

If you’ve taken several extra pills, you may:• feel slightly sick (nauseous) • be sick (vomit) • have some vaginal bleeding These symptoms will pass and you don’t need to seek medical advice unless your symptoms are severe.

 

3) What is low blood pressure (hypotension)?

Low blood pressure is a condition where the pressure in your arteries is abnormally low. It means that the force your heart uses to pump blood around your body is lower than ideal. Your blood pressure is considered to be low if your blood pressure reading is around 90/60 or lower.

 

4) What is pre-diabetes?

Pre-diabetes is when a person's blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be type 2 diabetes. People with pre-diabetes are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes and may experience some problems from diabetes already.

 

5) What are eating disorders?

An eating disorder is an illness that causes serious disturbances to your everyday diet, such as eating extremely small amounts of food or severely overeating. Common eating disorders include anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge-eating disorder.

Vitamins

 

Vitamins are a group of substances that are essential for normal cell function, growth and development. Most vitamins are taken from the food we eat, but in some cases they are taken from food supplements. The following table will provide you with a comprehensive guide to essential vitamins:

Deforestation

 

Deforestation is the removal of a forest or stand of trees where the land is thereafter converted to a non-forest use. Examples of deforestation include conversion of forestland to farms, ranches, or urban use. In this article, we will look into the causes and effects of deforestation.

 

Causes

 

1) Conversion of forests and woodlands to agricultural land to feed people.

2) Development of cash crops and cattle ranching, both of which earn money for tropical countries.

3) Commercial logging: this supplies the world market with wood for building homes and for products such as paper.

4) Felling of trees for firewood and building material.

 

Effects:

 

1) The carbon cycle: deforestation causes carbon dioxide to linger in the atmosphere. This is one of the major contributors to the greenhouse effect.

2) The water cycle: trees draw ground water up through their roots and release it into the atmosphere (transpiration).

3) Soil erosion: With the loss of a protective cover of vegetation more soil is lost.

4) Biodiversity: extinction of species which depend on the forest for survival. Forests contain more than half of all species on our planet and deforestation reduces this animal diversity.

5) Damage to forests and other aspects of nature could halve living standards for the world's poor and reduce global GDP by about 7% by 2050.

 

Deforestation has already removed about half of the world’s forests, and in your lifetime threatens to eliminate most of the remaining tropical forests.

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Vitamin

Benefit

Sources & Recommended Daily Intake

A

• Helps eyesight, growth,

appetite and taste.

carrots • liver • milk products 800 micrograms

B1

• Helps nervous system,

digestion muscles, heart

• cereal • red meat • nuts

1.4mg

B6

• Prevent skin conditions

• Helps the body absorb proteins and carbohydrates  

• fish • bananas

• chicken • dried beans

2mg

B12

• Making red blood cells and nerves formation of the nerves

• eggs • poultry

• meat • milk • cheese 1 microgram

C

• Stronger immunity

• Faster healing

• Prevention from scurvy

• citrus fruits

• green leafy vegetables 60mg

D

• Strong bones and teeth

• sunlight • milk

• sardines 5 micrograms

E

• Antioxidant

• nuts • vegetable oil

• broccoli • spinach

• eggs 10mg

Other than food, dietary supplements provide vitamins to the body. But similarly high doses of certain vitamins can be poisonous.

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