‘Polio-Like’ Illness Occurrences on the Rise

*First off I want to emphasise that the following content is informational only. I am not intending to cause panic, I’m just sharing information that could be relevant to some of you.*

Acute flaccid myelitis- Affects the nervous system, specifically the area of the spinal cord called the gray matter causing the muscles and reflexes to weaken.

  • Acute- Describing a disease that consists of an onset of symptoms of short duration, that is rapidly progressing and needs urgent care.
  • Flaccid- Lacking normal muscle tone, such as can occur with neuritis, poliomyelitis and stroke paralysis.
  • Myelitis- Inflammation of the spinal cord or bone marrow.

This condition has been seen before but rarely, that is until 2014, which is when the disease occurrence started to rise. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that less than 1 in one million people will contract AFM every year. The recent cases reported to the CDC have mostly affected children.

The Colorado Department of Health and Environment announced that 14 cases of AFM have occured in the state this year. Six cases of AFM were diagnosed in Minnesota (a state that may see a case less than once a year). On October 9th, a hospital in Pittsburgh confirmed that 3 children were currently being treated for suspected AFM. October 10th, the Illinois Department of Public Health received recent reports that 9 children had been diagnosed with the condition. As a whole this year there have been 38 cases in 16 states reported thus far. Over the last four year period more than 350 cases have been reported within the United States.

What to look for symptom wise…

AFM affects the nervous system and causes muscle weakness, particularly in the legs and arms, along with a loss of muscle tone and reflexes. Additionally symptoms could include facial drooping, difficulty moving the eyes, swallowing and slurred speech and (potentially) the ability to breath may be impacted.

The cause of AFM and the reason for the increase of cases since 2014 is unknown, yet some cases coincide with an outbreak of a respiratory illness related to an enterovirus D68 outbreak in 2014, actually AFM may have a variety of causes including viruses such as poliovirus and enteroviruses, environmental toxins and even a genetic disorder, no one knows for certain.

Information for this post based on articles covered and written in LiveScience.

Ok all done with that. I truly hope that each of you are having the greatest day possible today and that your tomorrow is even better. ‘Til next time I am interested in your thoughts on this or any other area you would like to discuss, just let me know in the comments.

Thanks

~Heidi~

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Are you aware that October is NDVA month?

*****The following may be a trigger to some please be aware********

 

 

~National Domestic Violence Awareness~ Month

NDVA

*Caution reading this post may trigger issues for survivors*

 

One of the moments of my childhood that stands out in my mind occured when I was around 6. It was the Christmas holidays and my parents had family and friends over. It had seemed as though everyone was having a good time, beers were being drank, whiskey was mixed with eggnog all was good, until it wasn’t. Something happened that made my father angry and he and my mom started arguing. Within minutes this disagreement became extreme. He hit her over and over and it didn’t matter that people were around. My dad’s youngest brother attempted to intervene and was graced with a black eye for his trouble and he left. Actually everyone left, no one tried to intervene again, they just left, no police were called nothing. The next day my father who was a truck driver left for work and my mom gathered up my sister and I and a few cloths called my Uncle, the one who had tried to help, and we went to a motel. We stayed away from our house for two weeks, and then we were back home and life continued.

These events occurred over and over, only my mom never tried to leave again. One of the worst times happened when I was around 15, it was summer time and my father always took a week off and we generally went camping and fishing. We were on our way to a lake in eastern New Mexico called Conchase, my sister and I were riding in the overhead camper and my parents were in the cab of the truck. Thru the window in between the truck cab and camper we saw that they were fighting. Dad was punching her, and then he picked up his steel coffee thermos and began hitting her in the head with it. He then slammed on the brakes coming to a stop in the middle of the road atop a bridge overpass, got out went around to the passenger side opened up the door and drug her out onto the blacktop where he continued to punch, kick and slap her around. My sister and I are standing behind the truck screaming and crying for him to stop. I was terrified he was gonna kill her. People who came upon the scene simply kept driving! Once his rage was placated he picked her up off the road, pushed her up into the camper and told us girls to get her cleaned up. He then got back into the truck and drove to the first rest station he found, pulled in and parked, got out and proceeded to pass out on top of a picnic table for a couple of hours.  Meanwhile my mom was in bad shape, and was barely conscious, my sister and I did what we could for her and I prayed for the best. When dad woke up we got back on the road and headed to the campgrounds we were to stay at. My Uncle, his girlfriend and my cousin arrived the next day. Mom did her best to cover her bruises and black eye with makeup (which she never wore) but you could tell she was hurt. She told everyone that she had gotten up in the night to go to the bathroom and fell as she was trying to leave the camper. I to this day don’t think anyone believed her, but no one said or did anything about it.

This is the life within which I grew up.

#DomesticViolenceAwareness; National Domestic Abuse Hotline 1-800-799-SAFE(7233) TTY 1-800-787-3224

Are you involved in an abusive relationship?

  1. Has you domestic partner ever pushed or shoved you, hit you, beat or strangled you, forced you to have unconsented sex?
  2. Is your partner possessive and constantly demanding to know your every move?
  3. Is He or She jealous of your other relationships with family and friends and therefore does their best to isolate you?
  4. Does your significant other criticize and put you down frequently?
  5. Are you the one they blame for their violent outbursts?

In the event your answer is yes to any or all of these questions please contact the number above

People will stay in these types of relationships for various reasons some being…

  • The shared life they have- marriage, children, finances these are the biggest reasons
  • It is far more dangerous to leave. Women are 70 times more likely to be killed in the weeks after leaving then during the course of the entire relationship.
  • Cycle of Abuse- “Honeymoon phase” that follows each abusive occurrence, which makes the abussed believe that the abuser is sorry and really does love them.
  • The abused persons self esteem is totally destroyed.
  • The person who is abusing you has you convinced that everything that happens is your fault.

Well I am going to stop here for now. This is a tough subject and I still have unsavory reactions to these memories. I’ll be back in a day or two with additional information.

Between now and then, I am hoping that each of you are as well as you can be, that your day has been a great one and that your tomorrow is even better.

‘Til next time

~Heidi

Still Putting One Foot…

Hello everyone, I trust that your Thursday is going as well as possible. Today I’m gonna talk a little about Depression. I have dealt with depression for the majority of my life, however it’s only been over the last 6 or 7 years that I have actually received guidance and treatment.

All of us who struggle daily to put one foot in front of the other while battling any physical and/or mental health issue, should really stand up and take a bow! We are facing an uphill climb every single day. I was reviewing a number of advisory thoughts and quotes to help build a person’s strength and fortitude earlier today while trying to figure out what to talk with you all about, and all of them were in fact inspirational, yet they didn’t really give me that ‘Ohhh this is a good area to cover’ kind of feeling, so I’m just winging it this afternoon.

I have long periods of time such as what I have been dealing with of late that can be so hard to crawl out of. I feel always tired no matter how much sleep I manage to get. I’m sad in my heart or so it feels. This is a newly challenging month to work through as it is coming up on the one year anniversary of my Mother-in-Laws passing. Is this what is bothering me? I really don’t know. You see over all I’m doing okay with my health issues, except of course weight loss. Which I’m thinking is a big part of my current funk because for a moment I had been doing okay in this area, and over the last few weeks I have not been doing well with my food choices at all. I have an upcoming Rheumatology appointment and a bone density exam. This is causing nervousness as I have not been doing what she recommended for Vitamin D intake and my weight has gone up since last years visit. I just don’t feel as though I am worth anything.

I feel a constant self loathing for my failures in life and the pain and heartache they have caused. I’m also not finding the success I had hoped to obtain through different avenues of income generation. I do not want to continue to be the burden I am to my girls both now and definitely in the future with what could become. I live in pain on a daily some days worse than others of course and I have to ask what else can I do to improve my lot in this life? My feelings of guilt of late have been particularly heavy with no real apparent cause. So enough of the self pity, some how some way I have to pull myself up and dust myself off and decide that I am worthy, and I do deserve to find whatever joy I possibly can in this life, for none of us know when it will all be gone.

If you have stuck with me to this part then I just want to say ‘THANK YOU’ it means a lot. As always I hope that your day has and is a great one and that your tomorrow is even better.

~Heidi

Checking In

Hello Everybody;

I hope this finds each of you as well as you can be. I have been neglectful this week in touching base with you all, I have found it to be a difficult week.

I believe this is due to the change in season and temperature. The Fall is truly a beautiful time of year, with the leaves changing colors and for those who like to bake (and those who enjoy the product of the baker) the warm smells of pumpkin spice and other favorites. I am experiencing one of those times that tend to bring us all down, and I’ve been trying to figure a way through it. I am at a loss as to how to get myself to get stuff done. I haven’t any energy or desire to do anything, I’ve spent huge amounts of time, or at least seems like it, sleeping and still I have no pep in my haphazard step. This is all of course on top of the pain I and others live with daily.

So I come to you my wise blogging world to ask for guidance. How do you manage to bring yourself to the plate every day? When medications and rest don’t seem to be of any benefit, how do you continue to put one foot in front of the other? What wakes you up in the morning? Share your wisdom in the comments below.

‘Til next time I hope your having an awesome day today and that tomorrow is even better.

~Heidi

September is…

Hey everyone I hope this bit of conversation is finding each of you happy and well. I want to touch base with you all about a subject that is very close to some of our hearts and can and is very difficult to discuss and or get past. In addition to September holding the memory of one of the worst events to hit the United States, The “Attack” on the World Trade Center Towers, the Pentagon, and attempt of the flight headed to the White House.

September is ‘Suicide Awareness’ Month. Suicide isn’t something that I discuss lightly as it is an issue for me personally. I have since childhood had suicidal thoughts, tendencies and attempts. I am grateful that the higher power within the Universe has been diligent in not allowing my attempts to be successful. Yet these thoughts do linger within the far reaches of my mind and are always just a whisper away from charging to the forefront. I will tell you that the last severe episode I had with this evil smoldering antagonist was just shy of two years ago. As is not an out of the normal situation, I was headlong in a battle for survival and was feeling as though the best way to end it was for me to just get it all over with. The constant ebb and flow of pain, feelings of worthlessness and the belief that I am simply a burden to my girls. I was also angry with the Universe for all of the shit that goes on in my world everyday since I can remember. Growing up in an emotionally and physically abusive home, being ridiculed by what seemed like the world at the time, not believing that anyone could or would care or be willing to help and terrified to actually reach out and try. Living a life that has been filled with anger and self loathing, never believing in myself or my abilities, never communicating with anyone in a healthy way. I could go on and on. My adult life has been hellishly trying in my eyes as well with the only true light being that of the two beautiful young women that I was blessed to bring into this world. Yet through all of the love and joy I have found with them I still have the suicidal whisper twining through my subconscious. I do feel better equipped now than I have ever been since overcoming my fear and accepting the need for help and actually taking advantage of it. I feel somewhat more stable and stronger in my determination not to attempt this horrible step.

Please know for those of you out there that have similar thoughts feelings and or desires there is a way out. Please please know that someone is willing to listen and help you to overcome your self challenges and desires that are driving these thoughts and tendencies. You are important and you do have meaning and a purpose even if it doesn’t seem likely, talk to someone. You can always reach out to me and I will do everything within my ability to help.

Now some statistics- Between 1999 – 2016 rates of suicides have reached a 30 year high in 49 of the U.S’s 50 states (not including territories). With the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stating that suicide is a major health issue in the United States. Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death here, successfully claiming the lives of nearly 45,000 people according to 2016 statistics. For individuals between the ages of 10- 34, it has become the 2nd leading cause of death and for people between the ages of 35-54 it is the 4th leading cause of death. Within the United States suicide deaths are twice the number of that of Homicide deaths. In addition Men are more successful than women regardless of age with the highest rates among American Indian/Alaskan Natives, followed by White/Non-Hispanic populations.

I will end hear by hoping that this finds you having a great day and and an even better tomorrow. In addition if anyone of you are experiencing overwhelming feelings of despair, sadness, or feelings of wanting just to end it all, PLEASE reach out to someone, and in the event you don’t feel that any of your friends or family can or will help or understand call the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) any time 24/7 there is no judgement or criticizing here only compassion and understanding.

I would love to hear your thoughts or of your own experiences, talk to me in the comments below.

~Heidi