NATIONAL EPILEPSY DAY

Epilepsy is a global health problem. It is a varied set of persistent neurological disarray portrayed by the seizure. The disease is universal and needs utmost care if someone suffers from it.

National Epilepsy Day will be celebrated on 17th November 2019, Sunday across the country. Free epilepsy detection and treatment camps were organized in many parts of the country with the support of Epilepsy Foundation India and National Health Mission. Various academic workshops and training were also conducted by the foundation where hands-on training on diagnosis and management of epilepsy were given by various doctors and surgeons.

One month prior to the National Epilepsy Day, ‘World Congress on Epilepsy and Neuronal Synchronization’ was held from October 15-16, 2018 in London which presented the latest scientific improvements in the treatment of epilepsy. The theme for this year meeting was ‘Inculcate the latent knowledge in Epilepsy and Neuronal Synchrony’.  It aimed at the discussion of new findings and recent developments in the field of Epilepsy.

What is Epilepsy?

Epilepsy is a global health problem. It is a varied set of persistent neurological disarray portrayed by the seizure. The disease is universal and needs utmost care if someone suffers from it. Reports say that approximately 50 million people across the world suffer from Epilepsy. Around 80% of the entire epilepsy counts occur in developing nations.

The seizures of Epilepsy are the result of unusual and extreme activity in the brain. It also results from the hypersynchronous neuronal brain activity. However, the cause of Epilepsy cannot be determined in most of the cases; aspects that can be identified are the strokes, brain trauma, strokes, brain cancer, and/or excessive consumption or misuse of alcohol or drug by the person.

The study also says that the disease and its symptoms become more frequent when the age of individual progress. In some cases, Epileptic seizures may arise as a result of brain surgery in recovering patients. The inception of new Epileptic seizures occurs more in toddlers and elder people.

It is considered that the epileptic seizure cannot be cured but can only be controlled. Even though, nearly 30% of the reported people with epilepsy have failed seizure control despite undergoing the best treatments and consuming the best available medications. Surgery is only suggested in some of the most difficult cases. Epilepsy is often misunderstood as a single disorder; in fact, it is syndromic with greatly conflicting symptoms. All such symptoms involve periodic unusual electrical movement in the brain along with many seizures. It is also evident, not all epilepsy syndromes last lifelong; some types are restricted to specific stages of childhood itself.

Main causes of epilepsy are:

  • Irregular levels of substances such as blood sugar or sodium
  • Stroke or any other form of damage to the brain
  • Infections such as encephalitis or meningitis
  • Genetic conditions such as tuberous sclerosis that result in brain injury
  • Brain tumors
  • Head injuries occurred during birth or due to accidents during adulthood or youth
  • Low oxygen during birth

Though these are some of the common causes that may result in Epilepsy, however in almost 70% of all the reports of epilepsy in children, adults or elderly, no specific cause can ever get discovered.

WHY IS NATIONAL EPILEPSY DAY CELEBRATED?

The main purpose of celebrating National Epilepsy Day is to make people aware of Epilepsy. Different research centers and organizations are involved in finding and research for curing Epilepsy. The team at Epilepsy Foundation also makes regular attempt to make sure that the epilepsy patients participate in every walk of life. The people at the foundation work to change the perception of people about Epilepsy patients. The organization also endeavors that the society and community accept and value epilepsy patients with respect.

How to detect Epilepsy?

In order to diagnose epilepsy, it is important that epileptic seizures occur impulsively and suddenly. However, the syndromes of reflex epilepsy need specific triggers for arrests and seizures to happen. For instance, children suffering from epilepsy such as ‘childhood absence’ may be vulnerable to hyperventilation. People suffering from primary reading epilepsy may have arrests activated by reading. People who have photosensitive epilepsy may be limited to arrests and attacks activated by flashing lights.


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Newborn care week | 15-21 Nov 2019

Newborn Care Week is celebrated from 15 to 21 November. The aim of celebrating is to raise awareness about importance of newborn care for child survival and development.

Newborn Care Week is celebrated every year in the country from15 to 21 November. The aim of celebrating the week is to raise awareness about the importance of newborn care for child survival and development.

The neonatal period (the first 28 days of life) is the crucial period for child survival; as this period carries the highest risk of deaths per day than any other period during the childhood. The first month of life is also a foundational period for lifelong health and development. Healthy babies grow into healthy adults who can thrive and contribute to their communities and societies.

Every year 2.6 million babies die in the first 28 days of life; most in the first week and an additional 2.6 million stillbirths occur each year.

Nearly, 0.75 million neonates died in India in 2013; though the neonatal mortality rate (NMR) has declined from 44 per 1000 live births in 2000 to 28 per 1000 live births in 2013. The goal of reducing under-five mortality to 20 or less per 1000 live births by 2035 can only be attained with specific efforts to reduce newborn mortality.

Labour, birth and the immediate postnatal period are the most critical for newborn and maternal survival. And 75% of newborn deaths can be prevented with known, effective health measures provided at birth and during the first week of life.

The main causes of newborn deaths are:

  • Prematurity
  • Complications during birth
  • Severe infections

Causes of newborn deaths in India*: The major causes of newborn deaths in India are pre-maturity/preterm (35%); neonatal infections (33%); intrapartum related complications/ birth asphyxia (20%); and congenital malformations (9%).

Newborn care: All newborns require essential newborn care to minimize the risk of illness and maximize their growth and development.

Warmth, normal breathing, mother’s milk, and prevention of infection are the basic needs of a normal baby at birth. These basic needs indicate that a baby’s survival is totally dependent upon her mother and other caregivers. Therefore it is important to provide proper care to all the neonates immediately after birth. This care will also prevent many newborn emergencies.

Care of newborns includes:

  • Immediate and thorough drying,
  • skin to skin contact of the newborn with the mother,
  • cord clamping and cutting after the first minutes after birth,
  • early initiation of breastfeeding, and exclusive breastfeeding.
  • Newborns who do not start breathing on their own by one minute after birth should receive positive pressure ventilation with room air by a self-inflating bag and mask.

After the first hour of life, newborns should receive eye care, vitamin K, and recommended immunizations (birth dose of OPV and Hepatitis B vaccine, BCG).

They should be assessed for birth weight, gestational age, congenital defects and signs of newborn illness. Special care should be provided for sick newborns, those who are preterm and/or low birth weight, and those who are exposed or infected by HIV or have congenital syphilis.

Progress of newborn health interventions in India:

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), Government of  India has made vital policy decisions to combat major causes of newborn deaths, with special attention to safe motherhood interventions,  sick newborns, babies born too soon (premature/preterm), and babies born too small (small for gestational age) with the launch of the Child Survival and Safe Motherhood Programme (CSSM) in 1992; Reproductive and Child Health Programme Phase I (RCH I) in 1997, followed by RCH II in 2005; the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) in 2005 which, along with the National Urban Health Mission, became part of the National Health Mission in 2013; the Call to Action for Child Survival and Development, and the subsequent Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health (RMNCH+A) strategic framework in 2013.

India newborn care action plan (INAP) and RMNCH+A:

MoHFW has developed the India Newborn Action Plan (INAP) in response to the global Every Newborn Action Plan (ENAP) in 2014. INAP aims to significantly reduce preventable newborn deaths and stillbirths and to bring down the neonatal mortality rate and stillborn rate to “single digits” by 2030.

The INAP is implemented within the existing RMNCH+A framework. Its strength is built on its six pillars of intervention packages, which include: pre-conception and antenatal care; care during labour and childbirth; immediate newborn care; care of a healthy newborn; care of small and sick newborn; and care beyond newborn survival.

MAA (Mothers Absolute Affection)** launched in 2016,  is a nationwide programme for promotion of breastfeeding through health system

Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSMA)*** initiated in 2016, is aimed to reduce maternal and infant mortality rates through safe pregnancies and safe deliveries.


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References-

nhm.gov.in/images/pdf/programmes/child-health/guidelines/India_Newborn_Action_Plan_(INAP).pdf

nhp.gov.in/disease/reproductive-system/female-gynaecological-diseases-/preterm-birth

www.who.int/maternal_child_adolescent/newborns/care_at_birth/en/

** nhm.gov.in/nrhm-instate/536-maa-programme.html

* **pmsma.nhp.gov.in/

Over 50% of type 2 Diabetes is Preventable!

14 November is celebrated as World Diabetes Day to raise awareness! The theme for diabetes awareness month and World Diabetes Day 2019 is Family and Diabetes.

14 November is celebrated as World Diabetes Day to raise awareness! The theme for diabetes awareness month and World Diabetes Day 2019 is Family and Diabetes.

While there are a number of factors that influence the development of type 2 diabetes, it is evident that the most influential are lifestyle behaviors commonly associated with urbanization. These include the consumption of unhealthy foods and inactive lifestyles with sedentary behaviour. Randomised controlled trials from different parts of the world, including Finland, USA, China and India, have established that lifestyle modification with physical activity and/or healthy diet can delay or prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes.

Modern lifestyles are characterized by physical inactivity and long sedentary periods. Community-based interventions can reach individuals and families through campaigns, education, social marketing and encourage physical activity both inside and outside the school and the workplace. IDF recommends physical activity at least between three to five days a week, for a minimum of 30-45 minutes.

RISK FACTORS FOR TYPE 2 DIABETES

Several risk factors have been associated with type 2 diabetes and include:

  • Family history of diabetes
  • Overweight
  • Unhealthy diet
  • Physical inactivity
  • Increasing age
  • High blood pressure
  • Ethnicity
  • Impaired glucose tolerance (IGT)*
  • History of gestational diabetes
  • Poor nutrition during pregnancy

*Impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) is a category of higher than normal blood glucose, but below the threshold for diagnosing diabetes.

Changes in diet and physical activity related to rapid development and urbanization have led to sharp increases in the numbers of people developing diabetes.

Pregnant women who are overweight, have been diagnosed with IGT, or have a family history of diabetes are all at increased risk of developing gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). In addition, having been previously diagnosed with gestational diabetes or being of certain ethnic groups puts women at increased risk of developing GDM.

KNOW YOUR RISK OF TYPE 2 DIABETES

Brief questionnaires are simple, practical and inexpensive ways to quickly identify people who may be at a higher risk of type 2 diabetes and who need to have their level of risk further investigated.

The Finnish Type 2 Diabetes Risk Assessment Form, developed in 2001, is an example of an effective questionnaire that can be used as the basis for developing national questionnaires that take into account local factors. It has eight scored questions, with the total test score providing a measure of the probability of developing type 2 diabetes over the following 10 years. The reverse of the form contains brief advice on what the respondent can do to lower their risk of developing the disease, and whether they should seek advice or have a clinical examination. The test takes only a couple of minutes to complete and can be done online, in pharmacies or at various public campaign events.

IDF has developed an IDF type 2 diabetes online diabetes risk assessment which aims to predict an individual’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes within the next ten years. The test is based on the Finnish Diabetes Risk Score (FINDRISC) developed and designed by Adj. Prof Jaana Lindstrom and Prof. Jaakko Tuomilehto from the National Institute for Health and Welfare, Helsinki, Finland.

A selection of other national online risk assessments or questionnaires are available at the links below:

IDF RECOMMENDATIONS FOR A HEALTHY DIET FOR THE GENERAL POPULATION

  • Choosing water, coffee or tea instead of fruit juice, soda, or other sugar-sweetened beverages
  • Eating at least three servings of vegetable every day, including green leafy vegetables
  • Eating up to three servings of fresh fruit every day
  • Choosing nuts, a piece of fresh fruit, or unsweetened yogurt for a snack
  • Limiting alcohol intake to a maximum of two standard drinks per day
  • Choosing lean cuts of white meat, poultry or seafood instead of red or processed meat
  • Choosing peanut butter instead of chocolate spread or jam
  • Choosing whole-grain bread, rice, or pasta instead of white bread, rice, or pasta
  • Choosing unsaturated fats (olive oil, canola oil, corn oil, or sunflower oil) instead of saturated fats (butter, ghee, animal fat, coconut oil or palm oil
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It is not too late to reduce the impact of antibiotic resistance!

World Antibiotic Awareness Week is celebrated from 13 November to 17 November to increase awareness of global antibiotic resistance

World Antibiotic Awareness Week is celebrated from 13 November to 17 November to increase awareness of global antibiotic resistance and to encourage best practices among the general public, health workers and policymakers to avoid the further emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance.

This year’s theme is ‘Seek advice from a qualified healthcare professional before taking antibiotics.’ Antibiotics are a precious resource, so it is important to get the right advice before taking them. This will ensure that you and your family get the best treatment and proper use of antibiotics will also help in decreasing antibiotic resistance.

Antibiotic resistance is occurring everywhere in the world and affecting the treatment of infectious diseases. Though the antibiotic resistance occurs naturally, the misuse of antibiotics in humans and animals is accelerating the process. A large number of infections such as pneumonia, tuberculosis, and gonorrhea are becoming difficult to treat as the antibiotics used to treat them become less effective now.

Antibiotics are medicines used to prevent and treat bacterial infections. Antibiotic resistance occurs when bacteria change in a way that reduces the effectiveness of these medicines. The bacteria survive and continue to multiply, causing more harm.

Antimicrobial resistance is called when microorganisms (such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites) change when they are exposed to antimicrobial drugs (such as antibiotics, antifungals, antivirals, antimalarials, and anthelmintics). Microorganisms that develop antimicrobial resistance are sometimes referred to as “superbugs.

Taking antibiotics when you don’t need them speeds up antibiotic resistance. Antibiotic-resistant infections are more complex and harder to treat. They can affect anyone, of any age, in any country. We all have a part to play in preserving the effectiveness of antibiotics by preventing the spread of infections and changing how we prescribe and use these medicines.

Tackling antibiotic resistance is a high priority for World Health Organisation (WHO) therefore the Sixty-eighth World Health Assembly (WHA) in May 2015 formed the Global Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance (GAP-AMR) including antibiotic resistance and one of the key objectives of the plan is to raise awareness about antimicrobial resistance through effective communication, education and training. 

WHO is also coordinating ‘Antibiotics: Handle with care’ a global campaign to raise awareness and encourage best practices among the public, policymakers, health and agriculture professionals as part of the implementation of objective 1 of the global action plan on antimicrobial resistance.

National Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance (NAP-AMR) 2017 – 2021, India*

The Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoHFW), Government of India has formulated the National Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance (NAP-AMR) in alignment with the global action plan (GAP-AMR) in April 2017.

The National Health Policy 2017 identifies antimicrobial resistance as a problem and calls for effective action to address it such as framing guidelines regarding antibiotic use, limiting the use of antibiotics as over-the-counter medications, banning or restricting the use of antibiotics as growth promoters in animal livestock, and pharmacovigilance including prescription audits for antibiotic usage in the hospital and community.

An international conference on antimicrobial resistance-“Combating Antimicrobial Resistance: A Public Health Challenge and Priority”, was jointly organized by the Government of India and WHO in February 2016.

In addition, the MoHFW has also identified AMR as one of the top 10 priorities for the Ministry’s collaborative work with WHO for 2018–2019.

You can help prevent antibiotic resistance:

Preventing infection can reduce the use of antibiotics, and limit the spread of antibiotic resistance. Good basic hygiene is one of the most effective ways to reduce the risk of infection. Good hygiene includes:

  • washing your hands properly
  • preparing food hygienically
  • avoiding close contact with sick people
  • practicing safer sex
  • keeping your and children’s vaccinations up-to-date
  • standing up for your right to safe water and sanitation

v  always following the advice of a qualifi­ed health care professional when taking antibiotics

v  not demanding antibiotics if your health worker says you don’t need them

v  not sharing antibiotics with others

v  not using leftover antibiotics

Messages to promote the safe use of antibiotics:

v  Always seek the advice of a quali­fied health care professional when taking antibiotics.

v  Misuse of antibiotics puts us all at risk.

v  Antibiotics do not treat viral infections, like colds and flu.

v  It is the bacteria itself, not the person or the animal that becomes resistant to antibiotics.

v  Antibiotic-resistant infections can lead to longer hospital stays, higher medical costs and more deaths.

v  Effective waste treatment can protect the environment and reduce antibiotic resistance.

v  For animals, seek advice from a qualified veterinarian.

                           “It is not too late to reduce the impact of antibiotic resistance”.

How much do you know about antibiotic resistance? Take the Quiz by WHO

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References-

www.who.int/campaigns/world-antibiotic-awareness-week/2017/event/en/

www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/antibiotic-resistance/en/

pib.nic.in/newsite/PrintRelease.aspx?relid=161160

Stopping pneumonia isn’t about luck. It’s about action!

World Pneumonia Day is celebrated to highlight the seriousness of pneumonia as a public health problem and to encourage more organizations/nations to look at ways of combating the disease.

World Pneumonia Day is celebrated to highlight the seriousness of pneumonia as a public health problem and to encourage more organizations/nations to look at ways of combating the disease. This day was first hosted in 2009 by the Global Coalition against Child Pneumonia (GCCP) that was formed to help build public and political support to address this problem. It’s marked every year on 12 November to:

  • Raise awareness about pneumonia, the world’s leading killer of children under the age of five;
  • Promote interventions to protect against, prevent and treat pneumonia; and
  • Generate action to combat pneumonia.

Key facts:

  • Pneumonia is the leading infectious killer of children under five years of age worldwide.
  • Pneumonia killed 920136 children under the age of 5 in 2015, accounting for 16% of all deaths of children under five years old.
  • Pneumonia is an easily preventable and treatable cause of death in children and yet a child dies from the infection every 20 seconds.
  • Children can be protected from pneumonia; it can be prevented with simple interventions and treated with low-cost, low-tech medication and care.

What is Pneumonia?

Pneumonia is an acute respiratory infection affecting lungs. Normally the alveoli (small sacs in lungs) are filled with air during breathing, however, in pneumonia, the alveoli are filled with pus and fluid which makes breathing painful and reduces oxygen intake. Pneumonia is caused by a number of infectious agents, including viruses, bacteria and fungi.

Presenting features of pneumonia in children under 5 years of age:

  • Cough and/or difficulty breathing, with or without fever,
  • Fast breathing or lower chest wall indrawing (chest moves in or retracts during inhalation; while in a healthy person, the chest expands during inhalation).
  • Very severely ill infants may be unable to feed or drink and may also experience unconsciousness, hypothermia, and convulsions.

Risk factors:

  • A child with a weak immune system such as undernourished or pre-existing illnesses (HIV, measles)
  • Environmental factors:
    • indoor air pollution(houses using wood or dung as a fuel))
    • living in crowded homes
    • exposure to second-hand smoke by parental smoking

How is pneumonia transmitted?

Pneumonia can be transmitted in a number of ways-

  • The viruses and bacteria that are commonly found in a child’s nose or throat can infect the lungs if they are inhaled.
  • The organism may also spread via air-borne droplets from a cough or sneeze.
  •  Pneumonia may spread through blood, especially during and shortly after birth.

Global Action Plan for Prevention and Control of Pneumonia and Diarrhoea:

The Integrated Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Pneumonia and Diarrhoea (GAPPD), by WHO and UNICEF, aims to accelerate pneumonia control with a combination of interventions to protect, prevent, and treat pneumonia in children. The goal is to reduce the deaths from pneumonia to fewer than 3 children in 1000 live births, and from diarrhea to less than 1 in 1000 by 2025.

Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India is functioning with other ministries through various national programs (such as MAA, UIPICDS) with the involvement of ASHA/ANM/Anganwadi workers at the community level to protect, prevent and treat pneumonia. Various activities to control pneumonia under the child health program include:

(a)Protect children from pneumonia by promoting good health practices from birth by:

  • Exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months
  • Adequate complementary feeding
  • Vitamin A supplementation

(b)Prevent children from becoming ill from pneumonia and diarrhea by:

  • Providing vaccination against diseases such as pertussis (whooping cough), measles, Haemophilus influenza type B infections (Hib), pneumococcal (PCV) and rotavirus infections (Universal Immunisation Programme))
  • Encouraging handwashing with soap and water
  • Provision of safe drinking water and sanitation
  • Reduction in household air pollution (use of safe fuel for cooking in the household)             
  • HIV prevention and antibiotic prophylaxis for HIV-infected and exposed children

(c)Treat children with appropriate treatment with timely access to trained health care providers either from a community-based health worker or in a health facility if the disease is severe and can get the antibiotics and oxygen they need to get well.

There are three essential steps to reduce deaths among children under five with pneumonia:

1.    Recognize a child is sick: Caregivers may play an important role in recognizing pneumonia’s symptoms and for that all caregivers should know danger signs of pneumonia in children: cough and fast or difficult breathing.

2.    Seek appropriate care: The second step is for caregivers to seek appropriate medical care for a child with suspected pneumonia. (Appropriate care includes providers that can correctly diagnose and treat pneumonia, such as hospitals, health centers, dispensaries, community health workers, maternal and child health clinics, outreach clinics).

3.    Treat appropriately with antibiotics: Health personnel, including community health worker, should treat children with pneumonia with appropriate antibiotics and refer severe cases to health facilities. Inappropriate antibiotic use will waste resources and it will also increase antibiotic resistance.

                                      “Stopping pneumonia isn’t about luck. It’s about action.”

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References-

www.who.int/life-course/news/events/2017-world-pneumonia-day/en/

www.jhsph.edu/research/centers-and-institutes/ivac/resources/isppd8/

* \nhm.gov.in/nrhm-components/rmnch-a/child-health-immunization.html

apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/10665/43640/1/9280640489_eng.pdf

Did You Immunize your child? World Immunization Day

World Immunization Day is celebrated every year on November 10. This day is celebrated to make people aware of the importance of getting timely vaccinations against vaccine-preventable diseases.

World Immunization Day is celebrated every year on November 10. This day is celebrated to make people aware of the importance of getting timely vaccinations against vaccine-preventable diseases.

Immunization is the process whereby a person is made immune or resistant to an infectious disease, typically by the administration of a vaccine. Immunization helps protect the child from life-threatening diseases. It also helps reduce the spread of disease to others. Vaccines stimulate the body’s own immune system to protect the person against subsequent infection or disease.

Babies are born with some natural immunity that they get from their mothers through breastfeeding. This immunity gradually diminishes as the baby’s own immune system starts to develop. Immunization is one of the most cost-effective health investments and vaccination does not require any major lifestyle change.

According to WHO, Immunization is a proven tool for controlling and eliminating life-threatening infectious diseases and is estimated to avert between 2 and 3 million deaths each year but an estimated 18.7 million infants worldwide are still missing out on basic vaccines.

India has one of the largest Universal Immunization Programs (UIP) in the world in terms of the quantities of vaccines used, a number of beneficiaries covered, geographical spread and human resources involved. Despite being operational for over 30 years, UIP has been able to fully immunize only 65% of children in the first year of their life and the increase in coverage has stagnated.

To achieve full immunization coverage for all children, the Government of India launched Mission Indradhanush in December 2014. The ultimate goal of this program is to ensure full immunization with all available vaccines for children up to two years and pregnant women. Under this program, all vaccines are available free of cost.

Read more about the Universal Immunization Program

Read more about Mission Indradhanush

FAQ’s

A vaccine is a biological preparation that improves immunity to a particular disease. A vaccine typically contains an agent that resembles a disease-causing microorganism, and is often made from weakened or killed forms of the microbe, its toxins or one of its surface proteins.

If the babies get antibodies from mother, why is it important to give immunization?

The antibodies received from the mother do not last long, leaving the infant vulnerable to disease. Moreover, immunization gives extra protection against deadly diseases.

How and where can a child be immunized?

A child can be immunized in a nearby government health center. Vaccinations are also provided by private hospitals and private doctors.

How much does it cost?

Immunization is free of cost in government hospitals against the vaccine-preventable diseases under the Universal Immunization Program (UIP).

Are there any reasons to delay immunization?

There are very few medical reasons (contraindications) to delay immunization:

  • The child has a high fever
  • A bad reaction to another immunization
  • Severe reaction after eating eggs
  • Past history of convulsion(fits)
  • Cancer or any illness which affects the immune system, for example, HIV or AIDS.

My kid is healthy, active and eats well. Is it necessary to go for immunization?

Vaccination provides a shield against the disease before it develops. If you wait to get vaccinated after the disease, it might get too late. Prevention is better than cure.

Are there any side effects of vaccines?

Vaccines are mostly safe. Only some individuals may develop side effects such as swelling, redness or a minor fever. These side effects last only for a couple of days.

Can my child receive vaccination even if he has missed a few doses?

Definitely yes, even if your child has missed a few vaccinations, it is still advisable to follow the immunization schedule.

Safe Injection Practices:

It is very essential for patients to be aware that unsafe injection practices can cause a serious threat to their health. It is the duty of healthcare providers (doctors, nurses, and anyone providing injections) to be alert while giving an injection to the patient.

Points to remember for patients:

  • Ensure that one needle; one syringe is used only one time.
  • Make sure that both needle and syringe must be discarded once they have been used. It is very unsafe to change the needle and reuse the syringe as this practice can transmit disease.
  • Follow the immunization schedule as per the guidelines. Keep a track of your immunization record and carry it along before getting any subsequent vaccination done.
  • Always consult your doctor before getting any type of vaccination done.
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References:

http://www.nihfw.org/pdf/nchrc-publications/immunizationeng.pdf

http://nihfw.org/pdf/nchrc-publications/immunihandbook.pdf

http://www.who.int/topics/immunization/en/

http://www.missionindradhanush.in/

http://mohfw.nic.in/WriteReadData/l892s/Immunization_UIP.pdf

1 in 4 will have a Stroke!

Nearly 14 million people will have a stroke this year and around 5.5 million people will die as a result. Stroke can have different short- and long-term effects depending on which part of the brain is affected and how quickly it is treated.

Survivors can experience wide-ranging disabilities including difficulties with mobility and speech, as well as how they think and feel. Fast access to treatment saves lives and improves stroke recovery.

Today on 29 Oct 2019 | World Stroke Day, Let’s understand how to Prevent a Stroke?

Hypertension or high blood pressure

High blood pressure affects about half of people in the world and often has no noticeable symptoms. Left untreated it damages blood vessels and can lead to a number of serious diseases including stroke. More than half of all strokes are associated with hypertension or high blood pressure. A simple blood pressure check can determine whether you have high blood pressure and a health professional can advise on whether your condition can be managed with lifestyle changes and/or the right medication. 

Exercise

1 million strokes a year are linked to physical inactivity, by getting the recommended amount of exercise each week you will reduce your risk of having a stroke. Just 30 minutes of exercise five times a week can reduce your risk of stroke by 25%.

Diet

Over half of strokes are linked to poor diet but making small dietary changes can make a big difference to reducing your risk.  Making good food choices will help you to maintain a healthy weight, reduce your blood pressure and lower your cholesterol, all of which will help you to prevent stroke.

The best diet for stroke prevention is a diet that is mostly plant-based with small amounts of meat and fish. This diet has been described as a ’Mediterranean Diet’ and there is a large body of evidence to support its benefits for cardiovascular health and stroke prevention.

Weight

Being overweight is one of the top ten risk factors for stroke and is associated with almost 1 in 5 strokes. Being categorized as overweight increases your risk of stroke by 22% and if you are obese that risk increases by 64%. This is because carrying too much weight increases your risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, high cholesterol and type 2 diabetes which all contribute to higher stroke risk. Maintaining a healthy weight will help you reduce your risk of stroke.

Atrial Fibrillation (AF, or AFib)

AF is a condition where the heartbeat is irregular and often very fast. It is very important to know about atrial fibrillation because left untreated, AF is a major risk factor for stroke. People with AF are five times more likely to have a stroke than the general population. Strokes caused by AF are more likely to be fatal or cause serious disabilities. AF related strokes are, however, highly preventable.

Smoking

Smoking tobacco increases your risk of having a stroke. Someone who smokes 20 cigarettes a day is six times more likely to have a stroke compared to a non-smoker. If you are a smoker, quitting will reduce your risk of stroke and a range of other diseases. If you live with a non-smoker, quitting will reduce their stroke risk too.

Alcohol

Drinking too much alcohol either regularly, or ‘one-off’ overconsumption can increase your risk of stroke, globally excessive alcohol consumption is linked to over 1 million strokes each year.

Cholesterol

Cholesterol is a fatty substance that circulates in your blood. Cholesterol is contained in the food that we eat – mostly saturated fats. Most of the cholesterol in your body is produced in your liver and is carried in your blood by proteins known as lipoproteins. There are two types of lipoprotein – low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and high-density cholesterol (HDL). Stroke is linked to high levels of LDL cholesterol. LDL cholesterol can be managed with lifestyle changes and/or medication. A blood test can tell you what your cholesterol levels are.

Diabetes

1 in 5 people who have a stroke are diabetic and people with diabetes have poorer outcomes from stroke compared with the rest of the population. Stroke and diabetes share many risk factors, most of which can be addressed with lifestyle changes and/or medication. Diabetes is diagnosed by a doctor using a simple blood test. If you have diabetes it is important that you talk to your doctor about your stroke risk and how to manage it. Diabetes can be managed with medication, diet and exercise.

Depression and stress

Around 1 in 6 strokes are linked to mental health. Depression and stress are linked to almost two times a greater risk of stroke and TIA (mini-strokes), particularly in adults who are middle-aged and older.

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Why Handwashing is Important? | Global Handwashing Day 2019

It’s 15 Oct 2019, a normal day for many but not so normal more about 1.8 million children under the age of 5 die each year from diarrheal diseases and pneumonia, the top two killers of young children around the world who could have been saved if they had access to Handwashing!

Yes! You heard it right! Handwashing is that important. It can save the lives of Millions! It’s the Global Handwashing Day Today!

How germs get onto hands and make people sick?

Feces (poop) from people or animals is an important source of germs like Salmonella, E. coli O157, and norovirus that cause diarrhea, and it can spread some respiratory infections like adenovirus and hand-foot-mouth disease. These kinds of germs can get onto hands after people use the toilet or change a diaper, but also in less obvious ways, like after handling raw meats that have invisible amounts of animal poop on them. A single gram of human feces—which is about the weight of a paper clip—can contain one trillion germs 1. Germs can also get onto hands if people touch any object that has germs on it because someone coughed or sneezed on it or was touched by some other contaminated object. When these germs get onto hands and are not washed off, they can be passed from person to person and make people sick. Washing hands prevents illnesses and spread of infections to others

Handwashing with soap removes germs from hands. This helps prevent infections because:

  • People frequently touch their eyes, nose, and mouth without even realizing it. Germs can get into the body through the eyes, nose, and mouth and make us sick.
  • Germs from unwashed hands can get into foods and drinks while people prepare or consume them. Germs can multiply in some types of foods or drinks, under certain conditions, and make people sick.
  • Germs from unwashed hands can be transferred to other objects, like handrails, tabletops, or toys, and then transferred to another person’s hands.
  • Removing germs through handwashing, therefore, helps prevent diarrhea and respiratory infections and may even help prevent skin and eye infections.

Watch the Video of Top 4 Reasons to wash your Hands:

Teaching people about handwashing helps them and their communities stay healthy. Handwashing education in the community:

  • Reduces the number of people who get sick with diarrhea by 23-40% 2
  • Reduces diarrheal illness in people with weakened immune systems by 58% 
  • Reduces respiratory illnesses, like colds, in the general population by 16-21% 
  • Reduces absenteeism due to gastrointestinal illness in schoolchildren by 29-57% 

Not washing hands harms children around the world

About 1.8 million children under the age of 5 die each year from diarrheal diseases and pneumonia, the top two killers of young children around the
world.

  • Handwashing with soap could protect about 1 out of every 3 young children who get sick with diarrhea and almost 1 out of 5 young children with respiratory infections like pneumonia.
  • Although people around the world clean their hands with water, very few use soap to wash their hands. Washing hands with soap remove germs much more effectively.
  • Handwashing education and access to soap in schools can help improve attendance.
  • Good handwashing early in life may help improve child development in some settings.
  • Estimated global rates of handwashing after using the toilet are only 19%.

Handwashing helps battle the rise in antibiotic resistance

Preventing sickness reduces the number of antibiotics people use and the likelihood that antibiotic resistance will develop. Handwashing can prevent about 30% of diarrhea-related sicknesses and about 20% of respiratory infections (e.g., colds).

Antibiotics often are prescribed unnecessarily for these health issues. Reducing the number of these infections by washing hands frequently helps prevent the overuse of antibiotics—the single most important factor leading to antibiotic resistance around the world. Handwashing can also prevent people from getting sick with germs that are already resistant to antibiotics and that can be difficult to treat.

Must know info on World Mental Health Day!

World Mental Health Day is observed on 10th October every year, with the objective of raising awareness of mental health issues around the world and mobilizing efforts in support of mental health. World Federation for Mental Health founded the awareness day in 1992 to make mental health care a reality for people worldwide.

Half of all mental illness begins by the age of 14, but most cases go undetected and untreated. In terms of the burden of the disease among adolescents, depression is the third leading cause. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among 15-29-year-olds.

Harmful use of alcohol and illicit drugs among adolescents is a major issue in many countries and can lead to risky behaviors such as unsafe sex or dangerous driving. Eating disorders are also of concern. If untreated, these conditions influence children’s development, their educational attainment, and their potential to live fulfilling and productive lives.

As about 356 million people in India are between the ages of 10 to 24 years; India, is a young country, with about 30% of its population being youth. Prevention and management of mental distress among adolescents and young adults should begin from an early age by increasing awareness and understanding the early warning signs and symptoms of mental illness.

National Mental Health Programme: Government of India has been implementing National Mental Health Programme (NMHP) since 1982 to ensure the availability and accessibility of minimum mental healthcare for all with its key implementation unit- District Mental Health Programme. The aim is to integrate mental health care in to primary health care and to proceed towards community health care.  

The National Mental Health Policy announced in October, 2014 and Mental Healthcare Act 2017 also act to strengthen mental health services in India.

Adolescent reproductive and sexual health programme (ARSH) under National Health mission (NHM) provides various health services related to young adults.

The Government of India has several national and international programs and has various schemes and initiatives at the national level (National Social Service Scheme, Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan, National Youth Policy 2014) that outline pathways for positive youth development. 

If you feel anyone in need of Mental Support, feel free to contact:

  • 112 is the National emergency number for India.
  • Samaritans Mumbai: (samaritansmumbai.com) – +91 8422984528, +91 8422984529, +91 8422984530 – 3 pm to 9 pm, all days. samaritans.helpline@gmail.com. Helpline providing emotional support for those who are stressed, distressed, depressed, or suicidal.
  • AASRA (http://www.aasra.info/): 91-22-27546669 is a 24-hours a day, 7 days a week nationwide voluntary, professional and confidential services.
  • Sneha India (http://www.snehaindia.org) is available 24/7 on the phone by calling 91 44 24640050.

References-

www.who.int/mental_health/world-mental-health-day/2018/en/

dghs.gov.in/content/1350_3_NationalMentalHealthProgramme.aspx

www.prsindia.org/uploads/media/Mental%20Health/Mental%20Healthcare%20Act,%202017.pdf

pib.nic.in/newsite/PrintRelease.aspx?relid=137749

pib.nic.in/newsite/PrintRelease.aspx?relid=102397

www.ijcmph.com/index.php/ijcmph/article/view/1936/1460

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_suicide_crisis_lines

10 Habits which can destroy your Health

Habits play an important role in our lives. From the time we wake up, till we hit the pillow at night most of the things that we do during the day are wrapped up in some form of habits. Of these habits some are towards keeping our self healthy and there are some habits which might be unnoticeable but yet very harmful for us.

1:- Having fruits along with meals:- We do get a good dose of carbohydrates in our regular meals and by adding extra carbohydrates, it will exceed the limit and lead to over intake of carbohydrates.

2:-Not having our meals on time:-We should always have our meals on time. Once you do that it helps us set up our body clock according to that specific meal time so that digestion and nutrient absorption happens at the same time every day and it won’t get distracted.

3:-Skipping breakfast or any other meals:-Skipping our meals and above all skipping breakfast is not a good idea. It may lead to muscle loss/fatigue/irritation as there might not be any energy and glucose for us to go on during a hectic day.

4:-Having a heavy dinner:-The calories and carbs which we have during dinner will not be utilized during the night time as we tend to sleep and unfortunately that is turned into fats and stored in our body.

5-Less water intake:-Less water intake may lead to dehydration and that can directly hit our immunity, which in turn can be the cause for many diseases. At least 2 to 3 liters of water in a day is must!

6:-Keeping a long gap between your meals:-We should never keep long gaps between our meals. Long gaps will lead to over eating our next meal and it will also slow down our BMR so that we eat more and that is the cause for weight gain.

7:-Chewing your food fast:-We should always take at least 20 minutes to complete a meal, as chewing fast will not help in absorption and breakdown the nutrients of the food that we consume.

8:-Having processed foods:- Having processed foods which contain sugar, white flour, corn flour, may risk us with water retention in our body and will also increase our salt intake because of the preservatives.

9:-Confusing thirst with hunger:-Sometimes when we feel thirsty we may confuse it with hunger and start eating an untimely meal, so it’s best to first feel, recognize and keep yourself hydrated so that we don’t feel hungry because of less water intake.

10:-Overeating:- Overeating can easily go unnoticed and this can cause problems like weight gain and obesity. This is often regarded as an eating disorder. If you are a binge eater, it’s time to make some changes. Controlling our portion is the best way to eat mindfully.

So sit back and think for a minute, are we performing any of these habits in our day to day life? If yes! Then don’t do it and bring on the positivity in your life!

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