4 differences between bulging and herniated discs

Back pain can be debilitating! It can cause issues with most daily activities including standing, walking, bending and changing positions. Along with the flu, it is one of the most common and believable reasons for taking a sick day in the U.S. It is also the leading cause of disability worldwide with almost 80% of people experiencing it at least once in their lives.

Causes of acute back pain mainly include strains and pulled muscles in the lower back which typically arise from improper form while lifting heavy loads. Other causes of back pain include herniated discs and bulging discs. This may be slightly more unfavorable to the integrity of the spine because herniated or bulging discs increase the likelihood of a compressed nerve root in the spine which can lead to more serious issues. The spine is made of vertebrae which are separated by fibrous discs with a gel-like center which serve to allow movement and stability of the spine. A disc bulge or herniation simply occurs when the gel-like substance within the discs protrude out of its walls due to injury or gradual degeneration overtime.

In reality, a disc herniation refers to the latter stages of a bulging disc where the bulge is so far out of position that it compresses a nerve root causing pain and abnormal sensations to corresponding limbs.

Herniated discs and bulging discs are usually mistaken for one another. Here are 3 ways to differentiate between the two.

5 main things to avoid if you are at risk of seizures

A seizure is a sudden, electrical disruption in the brain. Seizures are controlled with medications but when they are recurrent or difficult to control, one could be diagnosed with epilepsy or seizure disorder. Epilepsy is quite common, and it affects nearly 3.5 million people in the United States, including almost half a million children. It can be characterized by episodes of uncontrolled movements, convulsions, loss of consciousness or changes in behavior.

These episodes could last for a few minutes at a time and it is important to avoid certain environments which could complicate them.

DRIVING

Similar to popular notions such as “Do not drink and drive”, patients who are at risk for seizures should avoid driving at all costs. The few minutes of disruption caused by a seizure could be fatal to yourself and other drivers when behind the wheel. Texas regulations state that drivers who are at risk of seizures should be free of seizures for 3 consecutive months before going back on the road. Driving includes forklifts, golf carts and any other off-road vehicles.

UNSUPERVISED OUTDOOR/AQUATIC ACTIVITIES

It is very important to stay as active as you can when you can. But, if you are at risk of seizures it is even more important to have a chaperone who is skilled and alert enough to assist you in the event of a seizure. Activities like swimming, hiking, horseback riding, kayaking, cycling etc, require a certain level of coordination. In the event that your coordination is lost during those few minutes of inattentiveness, you would need someone around to either anticipate dangers before they occur or help out afterwards. Drowning and outdoor accidents are leading causes of death in seizure patients.

HIGH PLATFORMS/HEIGHTS

Being diagnosed with a seizure disorder isn’t exactly the best time to act out your Spiderman fantasies. Platforms such as cliffs, ladders or rooftops should be simply avoided to prevent seizure- induced falls. If your job requires high platforms, communicate with your supervisors to request alternative assignments.

HANDLING FIRE, CHEMICALS & ELECTRICAL TOOLS

If it is dangerous to handle it is even more of a danger when seizures are involved. Hazardous materials, even when enclosed, are dangerous and need to be handled with utmost care. People who are seizure risks stand the risk of convulsions which can expose themselves and others to those dangerous materials in their possession. If your job requires you to handle such substances, communicate with your supervisors to request alternative assignments.

OVERHEAD HEAVY LIFTING

When exercising, you are more than welcome to use weights you are comfortable with to train your muscles. However, those who are seizure risks should avoid lifting heavy loads over their heads to prevent any accidents. This is because any loss of sudden loss of coordination while performing such exercises could cause the weights to fall and cause serious injury or trauma.

3 common signs of dilantin toxicity

Dilantin, also known as phenytoin, is a very popular medication used by physicians for seizure management. It has gained its popularity overtime because it is one of the most thoroughly studied and affordable medications available to the general public.

For those diagnosed with epilepsy, it is important to work with a doctor to achieve the most effective Dilantin dosage for seizure control. This is done by regularly checking Dilantin levels in the blood and reporting any unusual side effects to your physician so that any signs of overdose are caught immediately and corrected. Blood levels of Dilantin (and other medications) are also a very good way to tell your doctor if you are taking your medications as directed.

The average starting dose of Dilantin tablets in adults is 100mg, three times a day, by mouth (300mg/day). It takes an average of 22 hours for half of that dosage to be cleared from the body. Depending on weight, lifestyle and activity, it could take as little at 7 hours or as high as 42 hours. Because this medication is processed at different rates from person to person, it is important to be aware of the 3 most common signs of that could indicate toxicity even though your blood levels may come back normal from the labs.

#1 ATAXIA

Ataxia comes from the Greek word “taxis” which means order and the prefix “a” usually indicates the opposite of the comes after it. Hence, ataxia is simply a lack of coordination which can lead to difficulty walking, speaking an using hands.

#2 NYSTAGMUS

Nystagmus can be described as involuntary eye movement which can be present in one eye or both eyes. It can cause blurred vision, imbalance and dizziness.

#3 DROWSINESS

Drowsiness is a feeling of unusual sleepiness or fatigue which can occur as a result of Dilantin toxicity.