Nurse as Handmaid-Tart

Read why this stereotype is so wrong and dangerous for the patient…

TV, novels, films  and much of the internet portray the nurse as secondary.  As emptier of bedpans and bringer of water.  Period.  As someone killing time until she marries a doctor (G_d forbid!).

The great majority of doctors see nurses as annoyance, as threat, as hated mother and as handmaiden.  Someone once said: “Doctors treat all nurses like old dry dog shit and they treat outspoken nurses like warm, steamy dog shit.”  She was right.

In former times, the nurse was the core of a team.  Because there was no machinery, the doctor was forced to rely on assessment and information from those closest to the patient, the nurses.  They functioned as a problem solving team and physicians were not control-avoidant, they listened and together made plans, set goals and moved on to the next step.  This system worked extremely well and it was heady.

Joys of the job.

The nurse has a goal, driven by fear of failure and the absolute fun of achieving this goal AND THE PATIENT BENEFITS.  The goal is to return every body system and function to normal.  To do this, she must know exactly what is happening physiologically with the patient, assesses every change and define and watch for the next problem.  She watches pressures, body chemistry, neuro changes, heart and lung symptoms and any improvement or degeneration of status.  In addition, she gives medical treatments, medications, personal physical care, and emotional support and kindness to the patient.

She knows the status of her patient, minute to minute but she has a problem.  She can’t tell the patient’s doctor.  She can’t even tell him in private.  The best she can do is drop hints and clues… I use she for nurse and he for doctor because this defines the underlying dynamic of the exchange.  It is the same, however, with nurses and female doctors which means the dynamic is  actually about power, not gender. AND THE PATIENT SUFFERS.

And then there is the sub-text woo woo, (behind the scene and mostly invisible to the patient).  Bully managers that don’t ‘get it’, control avoidant doctors who don’t listen and administrations that have no idea what is going on in their hospital and have only one goal, money, and who make sweeping changes of doubling the nurse’s patient load to save money, (This destroys her ability to do the job correctly, a very, very expensive error.)

As for the tart!  That’s the last thing on our minds and we are generally not delicious, young, compliant and adoring subjects.  We are tired, overworked, sick of hospital politics and pissed-off.

The Nurse as Handmaid-Tart

Read why this stereotype is so wrong and dangerous for the patient…

TV, novels, films  and much of the internet portray the nurse as secondary.  As emptier of bedpans and bringer of water.  Period.  As someone killing time until she marries a doctor (G_d forbid!).

The great majority of doctors see nurses as annoyance, as threat, as hated mother and as handmaiden.  Someone once said: “Doctors treat all nurses like old dry dog shit and they treat outspoken nurses like warm, steamy dog shit.”  She was right.

In former times, the nurse was the core of a team.  Because there was no machinery, the doctor was forced to rely on assessment and information from those closest to the patient, the nurses.  They functioned as a problem solving team and physicians were not control-avoidant, they listened and together made plans, set goals and moved on to the next step.  This system worked extremely well and it was heady.

Joys of the job.

The nurse has a goal, driven by fear of failure and the absolute fun of achieving this goal AND THE PATIENT BENEFITS.  The goal is to return every body system and function to normal.  To do this, she must know exactly what is happening physiologically with the patient, assesses every change and define and watch for the next problem.  She watches pressures, body chemistry, neuro changes, heart and lung symptoms and any improvement or degeneration of status.  In addition, she gives medical treatments, medications, personal physical care, and emotional support and kindness to the patient.

She knows the status of her patient, minute to minute but she has a problem.  She can’t tell the patient’s doctor.  She can’t even tell him in private.  The best she can do is drop hints and clues… I use she for nurse and he for doctor because this defines the underlying dynamic of the exchange.  It is the same, however, with nurses and female doctors which means the dynamic is  actually about power, not gender. AND THE PATIENT SUFFERS.

And then there is the sub-text woo woo, (behind the scene and mostly invisible to the patient).  Bully managers that don’t ‘get it’, control avoidant doctors who don’t listen and administrations that have no idea what is going on in their hospital and have only one goal, money, and who make sweeping changes of doubling the nurse’s patient load to save money, (This destroys her ability to do the job correctly, a very, very expensive error.)

As for the tart!  That’s the last thing on our minds and we are generally not delicious, young, compliant and adoring subjects.  We are tired, overworked, sick of hospital politics and pissed-off.

Freeway Accidents at Night

SH logo photo w grayHow to avoid a huge freeway driving risk at night in America. From 2AM to 4AM when the bars close freeway driving becomes extremely risky. The risk is being hit, head on at high speed by a car driving the wrong way with it’s lights out.

This is why.  Drunk drivers, disoriented and confused, sometimes drive down an off ramp to access the freeway. If they wish to go slowly they will drive in what seems to them to be the inside slow lane but is actually the far left, fastest lane. If they want to drive fast, they will drive in what seems to them to be the outside fast lane but is in actuality our inside slow lane where they drive fast and with lights out. Therefore, the only safe place to drive on the freeway at night is the center lane. Several years ago, in Oregon-Washington there were eleven huge, horrific accidents caused by this with twenty two fatalities in one year. Now, driving the freeways at night in the Pacific Northwest the outside lanes are pretty much empty, everyone, trucks and cars alike use the center lane. There is a fifty-cent fix.  Install road spikes at the top of freeway exit ramps. This will quickly flatten all tires on a car driving over them.  If emergency vehicles need to access it they can have a switch to disable the spikes.

In England, it’s taboo to drive drunk and taboo is a massive control of behavior.  There is no longer anything taboo in America.

The safest time to drive freeways is from 6-8AM, 2-4PM, 6-8PM and 10PM-midnight. These cover the going to work, leaving work hours for Police and Health Care shift workers.  Diving to Seattle some time ago, I stopped at a truck accident and everyone else who stopped was part of code teams from various hospitals.  It was 4 in the afternoon.

End Hotflashes

Hot flashes today are nasty, worse than in our grandmother’s day, because we are losing the vitamins and minerals essential to modify them.

This trick works. Absolutely.

Hot flashes begin at the age your mother and grandmother were when theirs began.  Usually in the mid fifties.  And they can make you crazy.  The body blistering hot, covered with sweat and then, in the next minute, wet and freezing cold.  Not once a day.  In the beginning maybe 50, 60 times a day and then during the night. Forever.

Low Calcium also causes those massive leg cramps at night.  They also happen during pregnancy when calcium is depleted by nourishing the baby’s growth.

The solution is replacing Calcium, Magnesium and Vitamin D, materials we lose through age and living in this modern world, . The normal, routine dose is 1,000 mg  Calcium, (Magnesium and Vitamin D are included in correct balance) and 400 Units of Vitamin E every day.

Vitamin D is essential for metabolism of Calcium and it’s lost through chelation from exposure to flourescent lights and it’s absorbtion from sunlight is blocked by Mineral Oil based lotions. on the skin.  (Working twelve-hour shifts, five in a row with fragile Calcium and under flourescent lights, I’d have bad leg cramps and exhausting hot flashes and that was a clue.  I began researching.)  It takes almost a half gallon of milk a day to gain enough Calcium.

Magnesium is the web, the framework if you will, and Calcium is the material that fills the web to form healthy teeth and bones.

Some forms of Calcium are indigestible, Calcium carbonate is chalk and not metabolized. Calcium Citrate is the most easily digestible and is from citrus fruit. CalAbsorb contains Magnesium and Vit. D in the correct balance, is easily digestible and tastes good.  No big tablets, it’s a powder to mix with water or juice.  You can Google to find sales.  Country Life brand Calcium Citrate in capsule form is often on sale in health food stores and internet.

Calcium and Vitamin E have levels so it may take a few days to see results. You will know when your level is reached when the hot flashes are extremely mild and, in some cases, when there is a bit of pale pink spotting every 28 days. Hot flashes never really end, but this routine will make them so mild you’ll not notice them.

If in treatment for cancer, please ask your doctor if you should take these supplements.  

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Clothes Wet and Smelling Musty?

SH logo photo w grayClothes in the washer wet and musty after forgetting for a week?

Everything ruined?  No way. This fixes it perfectly…                          

 

 

  • Pour at least a quart of white vinegar into the soap dispenser of the washer. Add a very small amount of laundry soap, no more than a spoonful.  (any more and the vinegar will make huge foam that leaks out of the washer.) Soaps today are all surfactants and increase surface tension of water, allowing for the top surface of cloth to release anything caught in it.  Turn washer on for a few minutes to mix soap, vinegar, water and cloth and then stop the washer.  Let it soak for at least an hour.
  • Finish this wash cycle.
  • Now add the normal amount of laundry soap and run the same laundry through a normal complete wash cycle and it’s fixed.
  • Smells wonderful and the musty smell is gone forever.

NICU and Divorce

Parents of small, sick  preemies  can, for many reasons, lose each other.

Parents in NICU have a scenario that the normal newborn family, home in 3 days, never has.  Because of the construct of the small space for isolette and chair etc., parents come into the unit and the mom absolutely zeros in on the isolette,  (Reptilian brain again.). Her body completely fills the space at the isolette and there is almost no way around that.  The father sees her back and little else, and again and again, he eventually sits in a chair and reads a book, appearing as uncaring and callous.  Sometimes the mother will hand the wrapped baby to dad but it’s still an offering from her, not ownership by him which is a must in a happy partnership.

I would tell this to all the parents of long term little ones and now, fifteen to twenty years later, I’m learning that the majority of our families are still intact so this may be the core problem.

Now for the bad news.  The divorce rate in families with long term NICU babies is believed to be 97%.  Tulane calls it 100%.

I believe the father as ‘left out’ is the major cause.

There is an easy way around this for fathers and I have seen many do it.  They come in alone, often before work for the 6AM bath and feeding.  It seems that this experience creates a sustained bonding.

We are enculturated to focus on ourselves with such intensity that everyone else is left out.  Intimacy is frightening and humans no longer look each other in the eye.  They don’t even look their pets in the eye.  It’s too much giving up control and allowing vulnerability.  Force yourself to do it.  Begin with a child or maybe the cat.  Talk to this spirit as independent from yourself.  When brave enough, look an adult you love (and trust) in the eyes… it’s a soul to soul experience.

Only the last years in NICU did I begin looking newborns in the eye and talking to them as an adult (and what was looking back at me was very adult… try it.)  I’d say to the boys:  “You are born onto earth and have parents who are going to give you a great childhood.  And you are quite handsome, like your father.”  And they smiled!

The notion that newborns smile is gas is complete nonsense, driven by those who have no experience.  We in NICU see it all the time and a classic example is the photo called  Laughing Premie from Loma Linda.

So, how can parents avoid divorce after NICU:

  • Choose a baby sitter.  Have the person take a CPR class for infants.
  • Include Dad in the daily care of the baby.
  • Do not focus completely on the baby.  It’s hard on the marriage and hard on the baby.
  • Make some feedings by bottle so Dad can see the curve of his baby’s cheek, that beautiful corner of the baby’s mouth where tongue, bottle and cheek meet.  So he can feel how strong the baby’s pull on the bottle is.
  • Don’t always hand the baby to Dad, he must be a full partner, not a participant.  There’s a difference.
  • Do not criticize parenting of the other.  It turns the critic into everyone’s parent, not a nice place to find yourself.
  • Once a month, go to a restaurant with booths (so no one can shout and no one can cry) for a family meeting. Bring notes if you want to.  The agenda is to be objective and to answer the question:  “How’re we doing?”.  This way, gripes don’t ooze out and ruin the time at home.  Just put it into the notes and save it for the family meeting.  Home must be safe for everyone, always.
  • Plan a date.  Once a month, every other week, you each plan something very special that will please the other and make good memories.  Not a dinner and movie date.  Something like sitting on a dock in morning mists, with a thermos of coffee and breakfast treats.  Feeding ducks in a rose garden pond. Visit art galleries on a First Thursday.  Sit on a bench and guess what passerby’s do for a living.  Visit a toy train store. Go to garage sales or a flea market.  It need not cost money.  The upshot of this is that you know your mate is thinking of how to please you and you are thinking of your mate in positive, loving terms.
  • Learn Partner Yoga.  Do it with your mate.  Do it with your children.
  • Become romantic.  Set up candlelight dinners.
  • Look into your partner’s eyes.

Causes of Hoarding and How to Prevent It

Hoarding is not a psychological disease. Our reptilian brain and childhood experiences drive us to hoard. All species hoard.

Our reptilian brains are about survival and continuation of the species. These two functions are beyond control and override everything else we do.  Scarcity and it’s companion fear, drive us. This is true for every living thing.

We are not all the same.  We are molded by our experiences and adapted by our drives.

From childhood, females build the nest and males build the support system.  Little girls play with dolls and boys with building.  Watch them playing… a boy may drive a plastic truck through the dirt, silently for hours and adults tend to see it as mindless pastime.  It’s not and if you watch long enough you will see the purpose.  Girls nurture and boys support.  The reptilian brain at work, busy, focused and with intense purpose.  Serious stuff.

Part of that drive includes amassing a collection of ‘things’.  Everyone does it.  Sports hero memorabelia for boys, pretty things for girls and most of the time it remains orderly and within control.

Hoarding is when it becomes out of control and the hoarder is not crazy, bad or low class.  The hoarder is trying to fix something damaged in childhood.

When a parent throws away or gives away a child’s toys, or more importantly the little things the child brings home, a stick or rock or flower…  when they pack up the child’s clothes and some favorite thing is lost forever.

Make a shelf for the child’s very favorite things.  Assure him that his shelf is off-limits to everyone but him.  When he outgrows his clothes, ask him if there is a favorite he would like to save.  Cleaning out the toys?  Ask him if there is anything he’s not finished playing with yet.  This implies that he will be finished with it eventually, a normal occurrence.

Children will look for things they loved and that have vanished and it continues into old age.  A terrible thing to do to someone.  They will have a lifetime of feeling unstable, vulnerable and certainly unsafe.  Remember that someone else’s things are important to them for reasons we will never know and the repercussions never end.

Adults need to remember also that leaving behind a room of childhood /teenage treasures when they leave home is absolutely not fair and reflects another problem.  They never wanted to leave mom and dad’s house and need an excuse to come back .  There is a bumper sticker that says ‘They haven’t left home until their stuff is out of the basement.’

So, the hoarder is keeping everything close to home, safely protected around him.  It may be a pile of newspapers but something happened to cause that.  Maybe someone interrupted a statement he made to arrogantly say:  “What is your source of information?”

Be kind to the hoarder.  Anything else is just another case of blaming the victim.

Why Women Shop, Why Men Fight and More About Hoarding

 Why Women Shop:

Girls begin to prepare the nest at about age 5.  It probably has a relationship

to estrogen production.  For generations a girl was given a ‘Hope Chest’, usually a large cedar lined rectangular box that was put at the foot of her bed.  This happened at puberty, around age 12 and was long awaited and expected, a rite of passage if you will.  Into this box, she was to put linens and things she had made for her future home.  It recognized the reptilian brain drive for reproduction and the required nesting.  All species do it!

As a child, she saved and protected and thought about things she liked.  When teenage years gave her freedom to move about, she began to shop.  The initial shopping was mostly for things to beautify herself in order to attract a mate, originally the primary requirement of the nest.  Later she shops for the nest.

70 pairs of shoes and gold faucets is a perversion.

Why Men Fight:

Young boys can play intently with toy trucks and heavy loaders for hours on end, day after day and never tire of it.  Or throw basketballs through hoops endlessly and never tire of it.  It’s all like a mantra, the precursor to adult jobs that will give him money to support family, his part in the reptilian brain’s nesting drive.

And men fight.  From our days in the cave, the male, stronger and testosterone driven was free to patrol and defend the nest.

Stabbing a passerby on the street and destroying villages with bombs is a perversion.

More About Hoarding:

Where the statistical numbers of 3-5%  are hoarders.  People who, by instinct and conditioning would hoard but fight it every day, are most likely well over 50% of us!

There are many events that initiate hoarding, all of them bullying, unkind behavior.

During childhood, someone threw away the child’s things… sometimes with the child watching and sometimes the child just found it missing.

The child quickly recognizes the threat and begins to keep his possessions close, thereby acting in accordance with his reptilian brain’s demand that he protect himself.  He is doing what he must.

And it can initiate as an adult.  If a husband says to his wife after she’s made a declarative statement in a social setting;  “What is your source of information?”, it will forever launch her into hoarding books, papers, documenting bits of proof and now computer links.

Hoarding is not the psychological disease.  Not hoarding is!

Hoarding is the natural reaction, part of the ‘taking good care of myself’ paradigm.  Those who do not hoard have been enculturated out of it.  If, therefore, hoarding is the norm, throwing things away is the deviance.  The trick is to, like everything else in life, use moderation.

When hoarders and would-be hoarders begin to throw things away, a scenario begins.  There is a very rapid assessment known to the victim, of how will I be harmed by this, and a flight-or-fight panic begins.  When done in old age, it’s preparing for death.

Jules Feiffer, the cartoonist, identified things as ‘little murders’.  This is a little murder.

It Only Takes Seconds to Make a Child Autistic.

If your child was normal and speaking before the age of three, and suddenly he withdrew and only made sounds… SOMETHING HAPPENED TO HIM.

Something so terrifying, so world shattering, so beyond his comprehension that he could not process it.

And you may not have been in the room.

From birth to two and a half, a child’s main focus, his every thought is to define and understand what is human.

The thing that happened to him is Television.  Not the programs, you can control that.  It’s the commercials quickly flipping on and off when a toddler walks by…

In the 1990s software appeared that could morph one thing into something else and it began… to accelerate.  Commercials where a man in a suit, talking has his head suddenly burst into flame.  Another where a man’s head becomes a cat.

The horrified child is thinking:  “When will daddy’s head burst into flames?”. ” Will my head be a cat?”, “Is a cat really a person?”

More recently a man in a suit is talking and he rotates where you see the back of his head is gone and in the space is a band playing.  Now there are commercials where flames come out of a man’s body, again a man wearing a suit.  Another where there are big holes in a person’s body that you can see through.

We must begin talking about this, good sensible talking, sharing information.  No name calling, no ‘experts’ saying this idea is wrong.  Just common sense.  I can tell you the event that made my daughter autistic, not TV but something so terrifying to her that she changed.  I can tell you the date and time my son became gray, tachycardic, sweating with terror when he saw Captain Kangaroo’s Grandfather Clock, a clock with the face of a human.  His physical reaction happened instantly when the clock began to talk.  I turned the TV off but it was too late. He was two and a half and he changed in that minute, he withdrew and lost trust in humanity.  He would score in the Autistic Quotient test.

An infant and young child is not just a little adult and he is not a blank slate.  He has a brilliant mind involved in learning a language, often two, maybe three.  He is problem-solving constantly, defining a question  and working out the solution and he is learning how to please the parents (food source), he is figuring out what is human and how the world works.

So we as a society can just wait for studies to be done so experts can tell us what to believe or we can turn the television off and provide a gentle, safe surrounding for young children.

My baby was diagnosed at 11 months and ‘they’ wanted to institutionalize her.  I said: “Over my dead body.”  and the adventure began.  I did nothing for 2 years but work her out of it, and another 2 years to cement her sense of a safe world. She was severely Autistic and stared at lights, made the loud, monotone, no-tears cry that parents of autistic children know and dread, and she would not be touched or even approached.  Now she is perfect, beautiful, fully normal, genius mind and fearless.

This was in 1971..  Five years later the book Son Rise  by Barry Neil Kaufman came out and they had done pretty much the same thing I had and with the same result.

Just turn television off.  There is no way you can moderate what your child sees on the commercials and you cannot risk turning his life and your life into hell forever.

 

 

Children’s Ear Infections, the Cause and Cure

Don’t let young children blow their noses!

Sinus means cavity and our faces have 4 of them.  Two in the forehead and two large ones in the cheekbones close to the nose.  When born, these sinus spaces are closed and as the child grows to adulthood, the sinus’ elongate filling with air and the face lengthens.

The Eustachian tube  goes from the area behind the nose to the middle ear.  In children under 7, the Eustachian tube is short and more horizontal due to the compressed sinus.

Therefore, if the child has stuff running from his nose and he blows, the stuff (schmutz)  will be forced into the short Eustachian tube and into the ear where it multiplies, causing pain and bulging the eardrum, often with enough pressure to burst the eardrum.  Then the mucosa swells, closing the little hole that drains the ear.  (Bacteria need a perfect culture medium to multiply and this dark, moist, warm, sweet apace provides that.)

You can fix it.  A marvelous Pediatrician, Dr. Robert Day,  taught me this long ago, using nose drops designed to reduce swelling…

Privine is an over the counter nose drop that’s been around for a long time and it instantly reduces swelling..  They’re the only drops that work and hard to find.  Amazon has them also.  (Nose sprays don’t work for this trick.)

Open and drain the ear canal:

  • Lay on the the child on the bed with head slightly tilted back over the edge and put one drop into each nostril.  Wait a few minutes.
  • Now, still tipped back,  turn the head slightly to one side and put another drop into the nostril on that side.  Wait again.  He can feel a tiny pop as the sinus tract opens.
  • Repeat this with the other side.
  • Sitting up, he will feel the secretions running down the back of the throat.
You can get rid of the schmutz by just wiping the nose but that will make the skin sore.  Kid’s instinct is to eat it and this causes no harm (other than being disgusting).  Stomach acids will kill the bacteria.  Mucous in the stomach is not digested so if there is enough of it, the child may throw it up and that’s fine.

End Winter Colds

To prevent winter colds put water pans in bedrooms, under the beds is fine.  In one day, adults loose 200cc of water from breathing (one large glass full) and this must be replaced by moisture in the air we breathe back in.  If the air is dry, and it becomes dry with the heat on, the nasal and bronchial mucosa thickens to protect itself.  This thickness is the perfect culture media for the first bacteria that flies by!  It’s warm, sweet, dark and moist.  This is how colds begin.  Echinacea increases t-cells to fight the bacteria and Vit. C  kills it.  At one time in evolution these things were in our diets but difficult these days so they should be added.  The water pans should have a large surface exposed to air.  In Wisconsin, they were in everyone’s home.

I have had many beginnings of colds in the last 40 years but only one severe one.  (A co-worker came to work sick and spread it everywhere… in an NICU!  Employees who go to work sick ought to be punished as should parents who send sick children to school.)  At the first tiny glimmer of a cold, I fluff up the pillows, dress warmly, get a good book, some tea, take Echinacea (the root, not flowers, roots are concentrated) and drink Odwalla C-Monster.  The cold lasts 1 day, no green stuff, no coughing, no fever, just the tiny scratch to the throat that’s the first clue.

To fix chest congestion use Vicks Vapor Rub on the skin.  It contains Camphorated Oil, Eucalyptus and Menthol.  Camphorated Oil, rubbed on the chest and covered with a little piece of cloth, wool is best.  It acts as a counter-irritant, bringing greater blood supply to the outside of the chest (the skin gets pink) but it  also brings increased blood supply to the inside of the chest cavity.  This loosens the thicken mucosa and it’s coughed up.  Never take Vicks Vapor Rub internally!

Kids should be calm and quiet when they are sick.  Make them go to bed. The time when a cold is risky business is if the cause is a Strep bacteria and not a virus.  Strep creates debris and if the patient is active, that debris can get pumped everywhere in the body.  Streptococcus A causes Strep throat, an extremely sore throat with white things spotted on the back of the throat.  That’s  bacterial debris and can migrate throughout the body causing kidney damage, Rheumatic Fever or Sub-acute Bacterial Endocarditis, an infection inside the heart.  SBE produces bacterial debris plaques which stick to the underside of heart valves and can, with exertion, break loose into the blood stream and plug the first small size blood vessel which is often in the brain, causing a stroke.  Use the handle of a spoon and with a flashlight, check the back your child’s sore throat, maybe morning and night for white spots. This is the ‘cold’ that needs antibiotics.  Antibiotics do nothing for virus infections and simply sensitize the body to the medication, meaning that it loses the ability to kill bacteria. Strep is mostly seen in school age children.

Rule Out Allergy Headache

ALLERGENS:  Allergens enter the body through the nose, mouth and skin and they have a half-life  (the amount of time it takes the body to metabolize them out).  that can range from hours to days.  The diagnosis for allergy headaches is Claretin, an over the counter anti-histamine that will not make you drowsy.  If it’s a short term allergy, the headache will fade.  An allergy headache that lasts for many days or weeks may mean that it’s in the house or workplace, some toxin in the environment or walls that reinfects constantly.

  • Search your house for mold or call an expert with equipment to find hidden mold.  Glidden sells a vapor barrier paint that is rated to 2 mils of plastic.  There is another product, Ames Vapor-Barrier paint  that, with 3 coats gives a vapor barrier the thickness of a dime.
  • If the house is new construction, go to an ancient hotel for 3 nights and when the symptoms clear, go back to your house. If the headache returns the toxin is probably in the bedroom because it’s the place one spends the biggest block of uninterrupted time. A house built with particle board will have formaldehyde leaking through walls.
  • Food allergy diagnosis:  Make your diet very simple for at least 2 days.  Then add foods one at a time.  Start with dairy.  When a headache starts, stop eating the newest food added.  Shrimp /Shellfish has an allergy with very severe headache and it’s instantaneous.  MSG also.
  • Some perfumes, hair sprays, deodorants, lotions, body powders etc.  in America from the 1990s to about 2005 contained a chemical in the Butyric Acid family that caused the smell to remain in the room long after the person had left.  One breath of this chemical could be allergic in the form of asthma to an instant blinding headache that could last up to 4 days.  It was outlawed in European cosmetics and has, after lawsuits, been removed from American cosmetics.    French and European perfumes are made of flowers and they are expensive.  (It takes bushels of rose petals to make one oz. of perfume.)    The link Perfume Anaylsis  gives a gas chromatography and mass spectrometry analyzed list of ingredients of two popular American perfumes.  Not all American cosmetics contain  chemicals.  Essential Oils and organic perfumes are lovely and safe.

A Very Bad Pacifier

Very good in NICU, but using this pacifier with older infants and children creates problems with feeding, tongue and teeth.

About 20 years ago, a new pacifier came into production designed for babies in NICU.  It was completely latex free which was it’s feature.

It is OK for very small NICU babies… definitely not OK for bigger babies.  This is why.

Teaches bad sucking:  There are 2 ways a baby gets milk out of the bottle or breast; by sucking, an event that uses tongue, palate and cheeks to pull a stream of milk out and by chewing the end of the nipple which only empties milk at the end of the nipple into the baby’s mouth.  A full term baby is born knowing how to suck, he has probably been sucking a thumb for months, but not so the preemie.  Sucking occurs at the back of the tongue and he must be taught.

Keeps the tongue in the front of the mouth or sticking out of the mouth: There is not enough of a hub on this nipple to capture for sucking or to keep the pacifier from falling out of  the mouth when at rest. Therefore the baby must press it against the top of his mouth with his tongue, and this is a mistake.  You can understand the problem if you put this pacifier in your mouth and attempt to hold it in place without using bottom teeth.  Then try sucking on it, there is no bulb to keep the back of the tongue down and curled… no way to engage it to suck and therefore it essentially blocks the throat.

Risking ‘buck teeth’:  The basic physical things a baby learns remain his preference for a lifetime.  Learning to apply pressure with the tongue against the upper ridge of teeth will possibly cause him to tongue-thrust during deep sleep.  This applies heavy pressure against the back of his upper teeth, pushing them outward.  Braces will change it but his tongue thrusting will continue recreating the problem.  The tip of the tongue has a normal position, gently resting against the upper palate.

For more pacifier tips and tricks see PACIFIER posts on sidebar.

Personal Birthing Plans

There should be only two things on a mother’s birthing plan…  anything else is self-indulgent and frivolous.  This is not a social event.  Childbirth is deadly serious and must remain professional.

BIRTHING PLAN  (2 item)

  • My baby will be born quickly.
  • The doctor must be in the hospital.  If not, the baby will be delivered anyway.

BIRTHING PLAN  (single item)

  • The doctor will be in the hospital from the time I arrive  until I deliver.

Here are the reasons:

  • Problem with a long birthing plan.  Nurses and doctors have done the things you need to have happen, hundreds of times.  They are experts and most importantly, with this level of skill much os the success is in their automatic responses.  They may look calm and friendly but each of them is a machine with hair trigger alertness to the smallest clue that something is out of the ordinary.  And they jump on it.
  • Anything distracting attention from this alertness, making sure you have fresh water next to you at all times for example, or the lights dimmed, removes focus from THE BABY.
  • A personal birthing plan, written down and presented to the hospital or it’s agents (the staff) becomes a legal document and completely changes the focus of every minute, away  from the baby and task at hand to ‘how do we keep from being sued?’  Instead of a staff of experts at your side, your birthing plan has changed them to a group of people wary and self-protective.  And that is against your best interests.  Instead of a partnership that flows perfectly, the event becomes one of possible adversaries and clumsy.    We had a mother one night who came in with a 27 item birthing plan and the R nurse said:  “You know nothing good’s going to come of this.”

Who benefits?  No one.

Who is at increased risk?  The baby.

Why  does the ideal birthing plan have only these two particular things?

  • If a doctor is on the golf course, the mother can labor on and on until he is ready.  Each contraction is the force of 2Gs on the baby’s head.  I’ve seen mothers allowed to remain in active labor for 24 hours…  720 compressions of the baby’s head with the force of 2 Gs.
  • In the 1950s and 60s, nurses were instructed by the doctor to prevent delivery by holding the mother’s legs together until he got there.  In those days if the doctor wasn’t there, you did not have to pay him.

Stay Warm at Night

Staying warm is a matter of heated air (heated by the body) contained in a space surrounding the body. When blankets lay on a bed undisturbed for days, they loose all of the air between them and there is nothing for the body to heat.  After crawling into bed at night, put an air layer back into each space between the blankets and don’t forget to do it for your children also.

Beginning with the first blanket, just flap it, (lift and let it fall back down.) capturing air, then do the same with the next blanket until they are all flapped.  When layering blankets, put the down comforter near the top and as a barrier of heat loss by conduction, cover everything with a thin Polar Fleece blanket.

Body heat is captured by the kind of covering.  Fur is warmest because there are thousands of tiny air pockets, (hair is the perfect example, your head stays warm at night).   Polar bears walk on ice because the bottom of their paws are covered with fur. Wool has little barbs on the fiber that capture air.  Alpaca is not wool, it’s actually fur. Feathers capture air in the same way and the down in comforters is the fluffy little under feathers of ducks and geese.

A modern fabric that’s as warm as fur is Polar Fleece… it’s made from recycled plastics and has the added warmth of a heat loss barrier.

Mattress pads of wool, sheepskin or feathers also retain body heat and add a barrier to conduction heat loss.

Camping and survival gear includes a foil sheet.  Wrapping in this locks body heat into the spaces and, with little cost,  prevents heat loss by evaporation and convection.

Fix Rotator Cuff and Frozen Shoulder

TORN ROTATOR CUFF

  • A sharp, intense, straight line pain on the outside of the arm, just below the bottom of the shoulder bone that hurts when the arm is raised.
  • Caused by a sudden, pulling trauma to the arm.

Stop the pain, and protect the joint:

  • Fasten your arm down at night.  During sleep, rolling over onto the arm in bad alignment causes extreme pain and more damage to the cuff and the  joint.  The OTC Shoulder Immobilizer with sling and swathe is the only style of sling that correctly splints the shoulder, fastening the upper arm to your side and holding the wrist firmly, reducing abduction and arm rotation.
    No other type of splint works.  Photo is below and it’s available at Walgreens and Amazon.

Apply Kinesio tape

  • The world was introduced to Kinesio tape while watching American Keri Walsh playing beach basketball at the Bejing Olympics with a torn rotator cuff.  She showed no sign of pain, no hesitation in movement and great strength.
  • You can apply Kinesio at home, shower with it and bathe with it on for 2-3 weeks each application.  It’s available on Amazon and some sporting goods stores.  There are now copy tapes on the market but they do not have the same effect.
  • Before applying the tape, have the skin clean and dry.  Then round the corners of each piece of tape so it won’t begin to roll off.  I put a great deal of traction on each piece.  Lift the arm out to the side, shoulder high, shoulders back and straight. Put the 2 shorter pieces on first and then the longer piece over top. Illustrations below.
  • How does Kinesio work?  The sticky side has waved ridges in a diagonal pattern and with every movement, the ridges lift the deep layers of skin to allow continuous drainage of lymph.  There is no other tape that does this.

Kinesio is also used to reduce lymphoedema.   There is a how-to book on Amazon.

FROZEN SHOULDER

  • Not raising the arm and bracing it reduces the joint’s ability to continue a free range of motion and it rapidly becomes a ‘frozen shoulder’, a joint that has become so solid a mass from adhesions (tough fiber bands), created by inflammation that one can no longer put a shirt on or get a fork to the mouth. When the shoulder joint is frozen, lifting the arm comes from the collar bone, ‘hunching the shoulder’  and has no effect of loosening the shoulder.
  • If the shoulder is frozen, you must break the adhesions.  Injecting the joint is fantastically painful and it doesn’t work.  (Be careful of your memories!).   These adhesions can be broken under general anesthesia but there is a poor man’s way, no more painful than the shoulder in general.  Choose a very strong friend.  Sit on the floor, back against the sofa, legs crossed.  Have the friend put his knee on your shoulder, (between the shoulder and your neck), firmly grab the arm close to the shoulder and quickly force it all the way up straight.  When it’s up straight, have him rotate the arm through the full arc of the socket.  Give him great thanks and undying gratitude and head for a hot shower.  With hot water beating on the shoulder joint, put your hand against the wall and walk it up, slowly higher and higher.  The heat allows you to go beyond the limits of pain and it chelates lactic acid from the muscles.  Do this twice a day if you can.  There may be little residual pains in the rotator cuff but ignore them, they will vanish.
  • You must keep the shoulder moving in a full range of motion frequently during the day so new adhesions won’t form.  Rotate the arm, pull your arm over your head,  walk the hand up a wall often, leaning into it to stretch the muscles.  It feels so very good.
  • Note:  It’s important that you don’t have the friend yank on the arm. You don’t want the adhesions to pull off of the bone because that will cause bleeding into the joint and make further adhesions. It’s the thing that caused them in the first place. Have him hold the arm close to the shoulder (holding it further down will risk breaking the bone) and without pulling, quickly bend the arm straight up. This will hurt you much less than the pain you have now. (adhesions have no pain receptors).

Get Rid of Crows, Squirrels and Maybe Deer.

There are few solutions to discouraging crows and critters from city gardens but frightening them is easy, non-toxic and always  works.  They are all afraid of fire.

Crows will usually spend only one day in a tree and then move to another unless they are nesting and have eggs.  They travel and nest in flocks, often huge.  They become territorial and bold, attacking  cats, dogs and sometimes people.

Twisted Mylar ribbon, when hung from a high point and allowed to hang freely, will move as flames in a fire, warding off crows and squirrels but not the little songbirds.  Crows immediately silence and within minutes they leave your trees. They will move into trees nearby and out of sight of your ribbons so when making  Mylar twists, make extra and pass them out to your neighbors.

Only the twisted loops of red and silver, in the sun and moving, completely mimic flames and are the best.  Untwisted streamers need a strong wind to move them about and do not look like fire.  Twisting  the tape provides loops at the bottom that catch wind like a sail making them move with only a slight breeze.

The plain silver are holographic and when caught in the sun, reflect with thousands of prisms and changing colors.  While this does not mimic flame, holographic images confuse animals and apparently crows also.

Hanging these in larger clumps may also ward off deer and hopefully local  raccoons.

To look like fire, the Mylar must be twisted.  Cut a piece as long as your arms will reach or less.  Twist it about 5 times (3 for shorter lengths) and join the 2 ends.  Now twist again several times and again join the ends. Staple the ends together and tie  a string tightly around the stapled end to hang.  

If the crows return it will be brief and only because there is not enough wind to move the Mylar. They leave when the hanging begins to move again.

The red and silver Mylar ribbon, called “Bird B Gone Flash Tape” is available at Home Depot and Amazon,

Types of Autism and the Causes of it.

I believe there are two entirely different phenomena lumped into Autism.

  • Brain damage with symptoms of Autism.
  • Fear based, autism acquired between the ages of  6 months to 3 years.

Brain damage includes  powerful tongue thrusting during sleep, causing a deformity, a pushing out  of the teeth.  This originates in the brain stem and the behavior is completely involuntary.  The fear based autistic child does not tongue thrust and has normal appearing teeth.

This is about fear based Autism.  A huge, overwhelming fear /depression in a pre-verbal child.

The infant and young child is not a blank slate.  Not at all.  He is learning a language and learning how the world works.  His brain is assessing and sorting and storing information continuously, brilliantly and with accuracy.

Between the ages of 8 months to 3 years, the child is sorting what is human and what is not.  Every thought has this at it’s center.  It’s his primary function because it’s essential to survival.

If something happens during that time that is so far off of reality and so terrifying that it can’t compute, the child retreats into his own world and locks everything else out.  Because he is essentially pre-verbal, he can’t tell you what frightened him.

Some years ago, software appeared that gave the ability to morph a face into something else and television changed.  Parents can control the TV shows for what the child sees but not the commercials.  A child could walk past a TV left on and see a man in a suit, talking and smiling and suddenly his head morphed into a ball of fire.  Terrifying.  When was daddy’s head going to burst into flame?  Would mine?

There was one where the man’s head became a cat’s head.  Recently there was one where, again, a man in a suit slowly rotated to show the back of his head missing and a little group of people inside.  Terrifying to a toddler.  Absolutely terrifying.

Maybe the toddler was in the room seeing this with parents there and the parents were not reacting to what he was seeing with horror.  Does that mean this happening to a man was normal?

My son at two and a half watched Captain Kangaroo for the first time and turned purple with tacchycardia when Grandfather Clock began talking.  This brilliant, happy child changed forever at that moment but never became fully Autistic.

My 4th child did.

Severe Headache. Causes and Solutions.

While it feels like headache pain is from the brain, our brains have no pain receptors.  The tough covering of the brain (the meninges), however, has very sensitive pain receptors, as do the blood vessels on the meninges. Any traction on the meninges causes pain.  The outside of the skull also has blood vessels and musculature which reacts to tension from tight neck muscles.

Causes of migraine type headache:

  • True migraine with aura,  and sensitivity to noise and light.  Vomiting.
  • Tension headache.
  • Caffeine withdrawl headache.  If you have a family member who drinks coffee or coke in the hospital, unable to talk, tell the doctor about the violent headache he must be having from sudden loss of caffeine.  Caffeine can be given IV to wean the patient.
  • Allergy to scents.  Allergy to Butyric Acid additives in American perfumes and cosmetics.  This can cause a violent migraine that lasts for days.  Not found in French perfumes.
  • Cluster headaches, an intense headache lasting for days,  may be caused by allergens that have a 3 day half life… the time it takes to metabolize out of the body.
  • Heavy metal toxicity.  Lead paint removal, Mercury fillings. Long half-life, severe headache may last for weeks.
  • Menstrual headache at onset of period.  Several day cluster headache caused by fluid retention, softened cartilage and straining upper back scenario.
  • Grinding or clenching teeth during the night.  Wearing an Invisalign type retainer will prevent them.
  • Sleeping with a pillow too thick, causing neck to be extremely bent.  A soft pillow, pulled down behind the neck will keep head straight with chin up.  This also gives a clear airway.
  • Cervical spine injuries.
  • Bright sun.
  • Low calcium.
  • Allergy to Codeine.
  • Sinus blockage.  See post in archive.

Solutions:

  • Reduce or remove stressors.
  • Take supplemental calcium
  • Excedrin Migraine contains acetaminophen, aspirin and caffeine in unusual dosages that work when taken at the first hint of headache.  In the UK, Nurofen Migraine a somewhat different ibuprofen, Ibuprofen lysine, works very well.
  • Do stretching exercises of the neck and back in a hot shower
  • Sleep it off in a dark room… take muscle tension off the neck and back with pillows.  Put pillows under the knees in bed and pull your head pillow well up under the neck.  Listen to the music of PACIFE.
  • Use the Omni Massage Ball or your fingers to apply Shiatsu type pressure to contracted muscle points.  See tension headache posting in archive.

    Tension Headache