Testing It Up

Bald Applicant to Irish Police Force Can’t Do Hair Drug Test!

There is a reason why there are various ways through which drug testing can be done — it is so that there can be another way of administering it should one way fail.

In the case of a man (who will remain unnamed) who applied to the Police Service in Northern Ireland (PSNI), there was no way that he could submit to a hair follicle drug test. It’s not because he does not want to – but because he cannot, being as it were that he was bald.

bald headThis caused a bit of a problem in his bid to enter the police force, as shared in a feature on UrineDrugTesting.org. His baldness prevented him from providing hair samples of up to 3 cm in length. He was likewise unable to provide the alternative – about 200 strands of body hair. This led to his rejection from joining the force, even if he was already     at an advanced stage in his application.

We understand, however, the preference of the police force to use hair follicle testing over urine testing. Testing using hair samples is considered as more effective and accurate; it can detect drug use over a 90-day period and has a better track record at correct identification of substance abusers.

He-who-has-not-been-named (excuse the use of Harry Potter-ese) challenged his rejection, however, saying that the decision was both “irrational” and “discriminatory.” Luckily for him, lawyers for the PSNI did not do a whole lot of arguing and informed the judge on Wednesday that the rejected hopeful will now be reinstated into the recruitment process.

June 30, 2010 at 3:54 am Comments (0)

Common Symptoms of Male Menopause

Andropause is the condition similar to women’s menopause — this is why most usually refer to it as ‘male menopause’. This condition is primarily due to the lowering of testosterone production in men. Low testosterone may start to affect men in their late 20s, but it is in their 40s that most men experience andropause-related symptoms. While andropause is comparable to the female menopause, its symptoms vary significantly.

Depression

male patient consultationDepression due to andropause can be attributed to the significant dropping of testosterone level in the body. These lowered levels may cause symptoms such as indifference to the environment, inability to focus, irritability and memory loss. Men who suffer from this usually get easily stressed over menial things.

Fatigue

Men undergoing andropause may feel strangely tired and worn out over an extended period of time. Although it is normal to feel a bit tired after a hard day’s work, it might also be due to the hormonal imbalance that is going on in the body. Testosterone plays a vital role in the production of energy in the body. A diminishing testosterone level in the body could disrupt rest. Lowered testosterone levels usually are the main cause behind insomnia or sleep apnea, which may lead to fatigue.

Decreased Sex Drive and Erectile Dysfunction

Suffering from a lowered libido or sex drive is also a common symptom of andropause. Testosterone levels are highly responsible for man’s erectile functions and sex drive.

June 30, 2010 at 3:41 am Comments (0)

Chris Klein in Rehab After DUI Arrest

The first step is always admitting you have a problem. The challenge is to do something about it, and sustain any progress that you may be able to make.

It seems that Chris Klein has taken a step in that
Chris Kleindirection by checking into rehab less than a week after he was arrested for drunken driving, according to a report on the New York Daily News. The Hollywood set, though, is known for checking in and out of rehab; hopefully Chris Klein’s rehab stint will have permanent results.

The Daily News article revealed further that Klein admitted that he is an alcoholic. This is in contrast to the characters that he is best remembered for – the surprisingly sensitive jock Chris “Oz” Ostreicher in American Pie and the popular football player Paul Metzler in Election.

Chris Klein’s spokeswoman Jaime Primak said the following in a statement: “After recent events, Chris was forced to take a clear look at a problem he has been trying to deal with himself for years. He understands now that he cannot beat this disease alone. He thanks everyone for their support as he takes all the necessary steps to deal with his addiction and asks for privacy while doing so.”

The 31-year-old actor voluntarily checked into a 30-day alcohol treatment program at the Cirque Lodge in Sundance, Utah. Cirque Lodge is considered as one of the top celebrity rehab centers in the country; Eva Mendes, Lindsay Lohan and Mary-Kate Olsen are among the celebrities who have spent time in the facility.

New York Drug Screenin

June 29, 2010 at 5:22 am Comments (0)

5 Undesirable Effects of Sleep Deprivation

In a single day, the brain processes more information than you can possible imagine. We rely on our brain to actively interpret and manage every piece of information our body is in contact with. When we sleep, the brain gets to rest, recharge and get ready for the next day  of activities, thinking, processing, analyzing and more.

That is why the amount of sleep we get is crucial if we want to efficiently function during the day. This article reveals five undesirable effects of sleep deprivation.

sleep1. Sleep deprivation affects a person’s speech. It has been a general observance that individuals who lack sleep tend to stutter and slur. Vocabulary becomes limited and the tone of the voice is lowered.

2. When we lack sleep, mental functioning is also compromised. Our memory is affected and it will usually take a longer time to remember memories that have occurred way back in the past.

3. In some extreme cases, sleep deprivation has caused hallucinations posing danger not only to the person deprived of sleep but also to the people who are around him or her.

4. Mind processing is achieved at a slower rate. This is not the best time to take an all-important test, join a big contest or solve a critical problem at work.

5. Physical body reaction is usually delayed. The body does not function as fast as the brain tells it to do. One appears to be clumsy and careless, although he or she may only be needing a few more hours of snooze.

June 29, 2010 at 4:03 am Comments (0)

Ways to Fight Off Male Hair Loss

There is a very wide variety of reasons behind hair loss in men. Studies say a predominant cause of hair loss in men is an excess of the androgenic hormone dihydrotestosterone or DHT, which is partially responsible for the development of the male secondary sex characteristics. An increase in DHT may also cause follicular miniaturization. The shaft where the hair grows constantly decreases thus making the hair thinner.

male hair lossThere are drugs available in the market that helps with thinning hair. Originally intended for treating high blood pressure, Minoxidil made its scene in preventing hair loss because of its unique side effect — it promotes hair growth. Minoxidil lotion is applied twice a day to the scalp.

Another drug that has proven to be effective in promoting hair regeneration is Propecia. It is originally taken in order to disrupt the effects of male hormones. Propecia is only available by prescription.

Cosmetic hair replacement surgery has always been considered a solution of last resort as it can be very expensive compared to other hair loss treatment methods. Aside from that, no one is really excited to go under the knife and face the risk of infection, scars and other after-surgery complications. Methods include performing a transplant, where a surgeon transfers non-sensitive hair from the rear of the head to the top or to any target area.

June 28, 2010 at 7:13 pm Comment (1)

Save Middle-School Children from Diabetes

A new study funded by the National Institutes of Health and presented at the 70th Scientific Sessions of the American Diabetes Association shares that if intervention is done in school cafeterias across the country, children in middle school who are at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes can start losing weight and consequently reduce their risk for the disease.

cafeteria foodAccording to a feature on USA Today, researchers suggested such intervention in middle school food programs as reducing fatty foods and adding more fruits and vegetables in cafeteria fare. They suggested further that longer and more intense physical education classes as well as enhanced classroom activities to promote change in behavior be added to school programs.

Griffin Rogers, the director of the National Institutes of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney diseases, shares: “The study shows that a school-based program can help lower obesity and certain risk factors for type 2 diabetes in youth at high risk for the disease.”

The research used data from a test pool that consisted of 4,600 students from 42 middle schools. These children were monitored as they began sixth grade all the way through to the end of eighth grade. While at the national level about a third of children are considered overweight, half of the students included in the test pool were overweight.

During the course of the study, randomly-assigned schools implemented the program that included intervention. By the end of 8th grade, it was determined that kids in schools that implemented the program were 21% less likely to be obese.

June 28, 2010 at 3:42 am Comments (0)

Top Reasons for Male Hair Loss

We see it all the time — in one (or more) of our office buddies, our neighbors, the people we meet every day. It’s all around us. We go through our father’s old photos and we see the shocking difference. We can’t help but ask — what happened? It is normal to lose about 100 hair strands per day, but these certain factors cause some people to lose much more than that.

Stress

hair loss in menI’m sure you’ve seen cartoons once or twice when the villain got so frustrated that he literally blew his top off with his hair flying off the top of his head. Really funny, huh? But it does have some truth to it. Excessive physical or emotional stress can cause hair loss in real life. There are two possibilities when it comes to stress-related hair loss: first, telogen effluvium, when the hair stops growing and falls out after about three months; and second, aplocia areata, which involves white blood cells attacking the hair follicles.

Genes

Yes, you can blame your parents for your hair loss as several studies have shown that hair loss can be linked to your genetic makeup. Most believe that hereditary hair loss is due to excessive falling out of hair, but the ‘falling out’ is actually not the main problem (we naturally lose hair, remember?). The challenge lies on the ‘growing back’ part. Some don’t restore lost hair as quickly as others do.

Men are also more susceptible to pattern baldness than women, mainly because pattern baldness can be associated with testosterone. The balding usually takes place when men reach their late 20s or early 30s.

June 27, 2010 at 3:15 pm Comments (3)

More American Women in Their 40s Are Childless

Whether it is by choice or circumstances beyond their control, more women in America reach the age of 40 – generally considered as the beginning of the end of a woman’s child-bearing years – without having children.

childless womanAccording to a feature on The Washington Post, a report released on Friday by the Pew Research Center revealed that one in five women in her early 40s are childless; this is in contrast to figures in the 1970s when one in ten women between the ages of 40 and 44 did not have children. The report mentioned social and cultural changes, which includes less pressure to have children, an improved and wider range of contraceptive measures as well as more career opportunities for women as the reason behind the decrease.

Ironically, there are also more sophisticated means available nowadays to help women and couples who have difficulty conceiving to bear children.

Generally, the report found that white women were more likely to be childless by age 40. This is also true for women who have more education. Interestingly enough, however, more women who have a master’s degree or higher already have children by the time they were in their 40s in 2008 than in 1994. Sociologist Tanya Koropeckyj-Cox of the University of Florida explained that it was more difficult to be build a career and a family at the same time in the 1990s than today. Now, she says, it is “more feasible to have a career while still also having a family.”

In addition, professional women have more access and resources to get infertility treatments.

 

Florida Health Screening

 

June 27, 2010 at 6:00 am Comments (2)

South Carolina Church Offers Support for HIV/AIDS

With National HIV Testing Day just a day away, various news reports share the efforts of cities, counties and organizations towards increasing awareness regarding HIV/AIDS and HIV testing. In a previous post, we shared with you the effort of Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed towards eliminating the stigma that usually accompanies the test by submitting to it.

AIDS ribbonAt the Healing Waters Wesleyan Church in Beaufort, support for those who would like to discreetly undergo HIV testing is not just confined to an observance such as National HIV Testing Day. According to a feature on the Beaufort Gazette, small goodie bags that are decorated by a heart and filled with multicolored prophylactics as well as information packets on contraception and sexually-transmitted diseases are provided to those who would like to undergo testing every Sunday.

Serving as prevention education coordinator and health director for the church HIV/AIDS Ministry SHAPE (Spiritually-based HIV/AIDS Prevention and Education) is Donna Farrington, whose objective is to help prevent others from being HIV-positive, like she is now. In addition to providing awareness regarding HIV/AIDS, the ministry also provides spiritual and mental support to those who have been diagnosed with the disease, as well as for their families.

A National HIV/AIDS Fair has been organized for Saturday, beginning at 10 in the morning and lasting until 1 in the afternoon at the Healing Waters Wesleyan Church in Beaufort. There will be 20-minute HIV testing available, as well as counseling services for those who need them. There will also be diabetes and blood pressure testing available.

June 26, 2010 at 6:09 am Comment (1)

Get the Sleep You Need Any Time of the Day!

Are you one of those people who struggle in maintaining continuous sleep because of your frequently changing work schedule? Many are now involved in the more dynamic working services various companies offer. This has resulted to working hours that have evolved from the usual 9am to 5pm schedule to unusual shifts such as 2pm to 11pm or 10pm to 6am.

The challenge most people complain about is the lack of having a consistent pattern that the body can maintain due to the frequent shifting of schedules. It is hard to induce sleep even though your body is tired because your mind is still working and on the go.

That is why we are introducing five healthy tips to help you achieve quality sleep regardless of what time of the day you need to hit the sack.

sleep1. Do some relaxing (not strenuous!) exercises before going to bed. You can try a little stretching and deep breathing to calm your nerves and joints from a stressful day. These exercises will help condition your body and your mind to slowly transition into sleeping mode.

2. Propping your feet could also help. This may put you in an unfamiliar and awkward position but it in fact helps in your body’s blood circulation. By doing this, you necessarily rest your feet and promote a healthier body rhythm.

3. It is also advised to sleep in a dark room that may resemble night time if you happen to be trying to sleep during the day. The eyes have sensors that distinguish night from day. That’s why we are usually sleepy when the dark kicks in.

4. A comfortable pillow will aid you to sleep more soundly. Use sheets and clothing that promote an environment conducive to sleeping.

5. Lastly, it might help to keep some light instrumental music on the background to help empty your mind and relax your thoughts. Several studies reveal that the sound of sea waves helps the body to relax.

June 26, 2010 at 4:16 am Comments (0)

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