Monday, 19 February 2018

The Common Problems that occur after Brain Injuries

A brain injury can lead to significant and profound injuries that most likely will last us for the rest of our lifetimes. However, there are four main categories of the effects of the brain injury and its very easy to take these abilities for granted but they involve complex skills and involve many different parts of the brain. However, the more severe the brain injury is the more pronounced the long-term effects will be and the individual is most likely to suffer from complex long-term problems that will affect their relationships, their ability to lead an independent life and also affect their personality.
 Right from Cognitive effects, to coma and reduced awareness states, to communication problems, executive dysfunctions, emotional effects, hormonal imbalances, physical effects, post-traumatic amnesia, behavioural effects and
 1)    Cognitive Affects – This is the area affecting how a person ‘thinks’ ‘remembers’ and learns; basically all cognitive processes. Cognition refers to the act of ‘thinking’ or knowing’. So it includes the abilities to reason, choose, understand, remember and make use of information.

It includes – Memory, communication, problem solving, decision making, concentration, attention, controlling impulses, organisational skills and patience.
 2)    Physical Affects: This is the the area involving how the ‘physical’ body functions.

3)    Behavioural Affects: This area of the brain involves how a person behaves and ‘acts’. The most common emotional response is directly related to anger and the regulation of emotions. Irritability, lowered tolerance, agitatio and even impulsivity are also likely to lead to angry outbursts and are most commonly associated with traumatic brain injuries (TBI), but are also known to occur with other types/forms of brain injuries.

There are MANY ways to deal with these behavioural issues, but it can be very difficult for family members and partners or even friends to cope with. Brain injuries impact self-awareness and the person may not even a knowledge that they have trouble with their anger; often blaming other people. In order to gain sufficient self awareness.

It is very important to:

·      Gain structure in one’s life
·      Avoid impulsivity
·      Do not have unrealistic self expectations
·      Be extremely aware of personal thoughts, behaviours and physical states that are associated with anger, like sweating, raised voice, muscle stifness, etc.
·      It takes MANY years to learn these coping mechanisms so it also means relearning certain skills. It is important to maintain a record of triggers, events and associated levels of angers.
·      BACK-Off, Calm Down & TRY AGAIN technique! As easy as it sounds, it is important to:
  •   Remove yourself from a heated situation when there are early signs of anger
  •   Review the situation, untill you prepare to return
  •   Move to a safe okace untill you have calmed down
  •   Talk to other people, upon your return (if needed)    
 4)    Emotional Affects: This is the area of the brain which deal with how a person feels after the head injury, and these are absolutely INVISIBLE! The person may experience rapidly changing moods (emotional lability) pr they may even respond to situations with inappropriate emotions such as crying at good news or laughing at bad news. Anxiety and depression are two common emotional feelings that are caused by damage to the brains emotional control regions. Many emotions surface such as guilt, anger, sadness, insecurity, lost confidence, lost independence, etc.
 Anxiety:  Feeling anxious is quite normal, every NOW and then. However, if this emotion persists and nags in the form of a constant feeling of worry or fear, it is classified as a psychiatric disorder and can be of different types: Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD), social anxiety disorder (SAD), agoraphobia, panic disorder and oanic attacks, seperation anxiety, selective mutism and specific phobias. Even obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and Post-Traumatic stress disorder are closely associated to anxiety disorders
 5) Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD): Known to be one of the mental health problems, this disorder is a result after experiencing a traumatic event. It is a flight or fight response reaction taken by the body to protect him/her from harm. Some of the symptoms include relieving the trauma over and over again 0 especially the physical symptoms such as racing of the heart and sweating (flashbacks), nightmares, frightening thoughts, etc. It is a severe psychological reaction to a traumatic event and most commonly occurs after mild brain injuries.        


       Have we all lost our sense of empathy, emotional stability?

A person who has suffered a brain injury is more likely to develop dementia. The worse the injury the greater the risk, shows a new Swedish study.

Our Society LACKS Sensitivity & it NEEDS to come to TERMS with the REALITIES of Brain INJURIES

Thursday, 15 February 2018

Roseacea: A Rose Family

Rosaceae, the rose family, is a medium-sized family of flowering plants, including 4,828 known species in 91 genera. The name is derived from the type genus Rosa.

Have you ever wondered what kind of lives that we have been born into?

Are they OURS, or do they belong to some distant past and are we busy unraveling the mystery behind this?

For most of my life, it’s been a jigsaw puzzle, figuring this relation and that reason or where I truly belong.

And then the realisation falls upon us that we have to live in the present; think about the NOW, as cruel as it may sound move on from the past.

But, we belong to kin, we belong to a clan; how can we ever let it go and leave behind this mask.

A family is a family and we truly do belong to our ancestors or our forefathers or someone from before.

But, how often do we take our families for granted and put off today till tomorrow

Not realising that tomorrow is not even certain and your jobs are not the ones at follow.

While wealth leverage may take you far, it's the love and admiration of family that will keep you privileged!

Saturday, 10 February 2018

Celebrate This Valentine's Day Differently & Instead Create a Smile for Someone Else!

The society is full of ambitious, agile and nimble new generations of talent that is constantly emerging in the industry. It is hard to avoid Facebook posts, tweet, speeches, presentations and even the “war of talent” that is currently going on. 

Alia Bhatt, Deepika Padukone, Kangana Ranaut, Anoushka Sharma, Shraddha Kapoor, Diana Penty, Parineeti Chopra, Jacqueline Fernandez and Sonam Kapoor. Shahid Kapoor, Ranbir Kapoor, Imran Khan, Emraan Hashmi, Ruslaan Mumtaz, Akshay Kumar, Shah Rukh Khan, Hritikh Roshan, Amitabh Bachchan, etc.        

Love is surely in the air, and its not surprising that many charity fundraisers make use of Valentines Day as a hook to engage with donors.  Does it always have to be about a reciprocal relationship, in a nation that is sadly plagued by social evils even till date such as poverty, illiteracy and other social evils? 

Through engagement, reciprocity, relationship fundraising and so on don't you think we CAN MAKE a difference to the PEOPLE who really 

What is it about love that you think about? Is it really romance or it is friendship or the feeling that you will always be backed up by your friend? Why does romance have to be linked with lust and lust has to be linked with romance; especially on this day?

Can’t love just be about humanity, about caring, about being compassionate towards the other? Why does there have to be a ‘LABEL’ of LUST attached to it at ALL?

When cupid was invented (or so he was discovered), was he really alone, was he happy or was it all just “maims” of the mind to make us believe that we NEED SOMEONE?

Love comes with a price, a heavy one too; but with this year I just cant help myself from overlooking how underpriced it is.

This Valentines Day would mean nothing to me if homeless children would remain bereft of parental love.

Thursday, 8 February 2018

Caught in an Antidepressant Hoax

Don't you think we live in a culture of extremes, where it’s very difficult to see the gray or even FIND the MIDDLE ground?

Its easy to look after our PHYSICAL health or AT LEAST TRY to when you go to the gym; but when it comes to our mental health its not quite the same; is it?

Many things are often taken for granted and overlooked. Our mental health is a combination of our psychological, emotional and social well being, and not to forgot diet!

Most often we are exposed to one of the two treatments: traditional medicine or alternative medicine. However, psychiatric medicine have only surged despite the potentially life altering side effects. It is an extremely important component of our health at each and every stage of our lives, right from childhood to adolescence and to adulthood.

It impacts how we feel, think and behave (act). It is important to be emotionally healthy too so that you can be in control of feelings, thoughts and behaviours. Therefore you will be in a better position to cope with any of life’s challenges.

The most common combination of environmental, genetic and psychological factors which lead to high amounts of hopelessness, sadness, pessimism, fatigue and irritability. However, in today’s fast paced times no one really bothers about taking the time out to look after themselves and just go for the easy way out – POP THE PILL and deal with all of the consequences.

ANTIDEPRESSANTS – MEDICATIONS, which are used to treat many different brain chemicals known as brain transmitters.  One may even tempted to take antidepressant for a month or so, with the hope that it may alleviate one’s pain, but the stark reality is that it leads to a whole bunch of negative side-effects and is NOT AT ALL the normal, desirable way to deal with stressful situations.

Why run to medications that leave behind ‘ZOMBIE’ effects – ‘effects’ that make YOU dissociated with, drowsy and sluggish! The precise ‘depression’ feelings’ do not get targeted but assault every conceivable emotion – HIGH and LOW!

Each and every one of these medications has to some effect their OWN SIDE-EFFECT (OF COURSE NEGATIVE!) which may be a headache, sleepiness, insomnia, nausea, dizziness, agitation, changes in appetite, dry mouth, increased blood pressure, excessive sweating, etc.

Anxiety is one of the most common worries amongst all young     adults and this is one of the main concerns is youthful ennui and adolescence angst is highly worrying. Anxiety causes so many mental health problems such as generalised anxiety and panic attacks.

Benzodiazepines are a class of drugs that are used for the treatment of anxiety and panic; and have been found to be effective in the treatment of seizures (convulsions), trouble sleeping and insomnia). They are also used for depression, nausea and vomiting and muscle relation. There are many different types of benzodiazepines that treat anxiety.

Clonazepam (Klonopin), chlordiazepoxide (Librium), diazepam (Valium), quazepam and flurazepam (Dalmane) are known as long-acting agents that have durations that can last up to 1-3 days.

Mental health diagnosis, in recent years is more circumstantial than pathological and is even driven by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) framework.

How can children and young adults feel that they are in control of their thoughts and emotions when doctors are TELLING them that medications (drugs) will be able to solve the chemical imbalance?

However, another popular form of treatment is available that requires patients to take antidepressant drugs known as SSRI’s (selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors). It can take, however up to four to eight weeks to fully feel the effects of the SSRI’s.

It is used as antidepressants for the treatment of anxiety disorders and for major depressive disorder.

Medication may be suitable for you, if your anxiety and depression is interfering in your ability to function in normal life.

However, many people make the MISTAKE of continuing to take medication despite having therapy, self-help strategies could work for better, exercise.

Antidepressants, by nature are designed to help you return to your former demeanor. There are many medications such as Lonazep (Clonazepam 1 MG), Prozac, Zoloft, Lexapro, bupropion and even Celexa.

Of course, Anxiety and depression can both be treated WITHOUT medication as well! However, for this, several mind-body techniques are required and cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) can be used to treat anxiety.

There are plenty of ‘benzodiazepines’ such as:

1.  Alprazolam (Xanax); that can be used for the treatment of generalised anxiety, PTSD and panic disorders.
2.  Lorazepam (Ativan) is used to treat generalised anxiety, phobias and anxiety.
3. Clonazepam (Klonopin) is used for the treatment of social anxiety, generalized anxiety, panic and phobias.
4. Chlordiazepoxide (Librium) is used to treat phobias and generelasiled anxiety.
5. Oxazepam (Serax) is used for the treatment of phobias and generalised anxiety.
Diazepam (Valium) is used for the treatment of phobias and generalised anxiety.

Beta-Blockers: Also known as Beta-adrenergic blocking agents, these are drugs that are known to block norepinephrine and epinephrine (adrenaline) from binding to the beta receptors of the nerves. Some of them include propranolol (Inderal) and atenolol (Tenormin) which can be used for the treatment of social anxiety.
They are known to be effective in the treatment of social phobias, treatment of anxiety, panic disorder, treatment of hyperthyroidism, aggressive behaviour and  akathisia (restlessness or inability to sit still). They are especially useful in controlling the rapid heartbeats, trembling, shaking and even blushing in anxious situations that may take place for several hours.

Tricyclic Antidepressants (TCAs): Physicians many prescribe these for the treatment of depression that occurs with anxiety, generalised anxiety, panic disorder and PTSD. They are most often taken in capsule or tablet form. People who have a history of epilepsy (seizures) difficulty urinating (urinary retention), glaucoma (an eye disease) and/or a heart condition may observe that these tricyclic antidepressants may worsen the symptoms.    

Other Medications: Trazodone (Desyrel)- This antidepressant boosts the serotonin activity in the brain; thereby treating anxiety,depression, pain and sleep (insomnia). So, this medication will help improve your moods, appetite and allso improve your energy levels. You willl therefore have decreased amounts of anxiety and insomnia related to depression. This drug works by helping to restore and maintain a balance of a certain natural serotonin (chemical) in the brain.

Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors (MAOIs, MAOI): MAOIs were the first class of antidepressants that were developed; but they fell out of favour because of various concerns about their interaction with different drugs and foods. It is also used for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease. While they were known to elevate the serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine levels by inhibiting an enzyme that was known as monoamineoxidase. This enzyme breaks down the serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine.

SSRIs (Aka- Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors): One of the most commonly known antidepressants are knownn as SSRIs - selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. These medications ease depression by increasing the levels of serotonin in the brain. Serotonin is one of the chemical messengers (i.e. neuro-transmitters) which carry signals between brain cells.

These SSRIs block the reabsorption (reuptake) of serotonin in the brain, thereby making the serotonin more available. There are many different SSRIs that can be used for the treatment of anxiety, depression, poor mood, sexual dysfunction, stress and OCD. Some of the generic names of the drugs include  fluoxetine (Prozac and Sarafem) and escitalopram (Lexapro).

SNRIs Serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs): As they affect two very important brain chemicals, serotonin and norepinephrine; SNRIs are a class of antidepressants that were introduced in the mid 1990s. They are also known as dual reuptake inhibitors or dual acting antidepressants and are mainly used to treat depression.     
As psychiatrists and other physicians prescribe such medications, it becomes more than obvious that medication is not a panacae. The number of people using psychiatric drugs and antidepressants is alarming and continues.

There are not many areas of science such as psychopharmacology and psyciatry that have been locked in such a bitter controversy such as how drugs affects the brain and mind.