The foot reflex zone therapy is an invention of the Indians. So far, however, no one has been able to prove that certain parts of the feet reflect other parts of the body. Reflexology works in a similar way to acupressure . The therapist uses finger pressure to stimulate certain points or areas on the soles of the feet. She assumes that these points are connected to the corresponding body regions, muscles or organs. This should relieve tension and help with digestive problems, headaches and back pain, for example . However, several studies did not provide any evidence that diseases can be cured with the method. If you want to try this procedure anyway, keep this in mind: Small feet are much more sensitive and delicate than adult’s. And the younger the child is, the gentler the pressure on the sole needs to be. If your offspring complains of more pain than before after the treatment, there is only one thing left: stop the therapy immediately. And you should never massage inflamed, injured, or swollen areas. That’s behind it: Even the ancient Egyptians relied on the beneficial effects of foot massage. The ancient doctors also put pressure on the sole. The foot reflex zone massage practiced today goes back to the American doctor William Fitzgerald (1872-1942). But he had found the method rather than invented it – he further developed the corresponding techniques used by North American Indians. According to Fitzgerald, examining the feet allows conclusions to be drawn about general health. Painful and grainy areas that are assigned to specific areas in the body supposedly show where the flow of energy is disturbed. If these areas are then stimulated by pressure or massage, this should harmonize the body functions. This is how it works: The assumption that certain foot zones are connected to certain organs is scientifically not tenable. There are now also different reflex zone maps, some of which contradict each other. Scientists have repeatedly studied this massage technique. Some studies also certify that foot reflexology has a positive effect – for example for headaches or multiple sclerosis. But the procedure has not been proven to cure or prevent disease. However, reflex zone therapy seems to relieve symptoms that have no organic cause. This is what the expert says: Edzard Ernst is Head of Complementary Medicine at Exeter University in the UK. He has long been concerned with the effectiveness of alternative healing methods and has tested many procedures. His verdict: massaging the feet is definitely pleasant. The assumption that additional therapeutic effects can be expected is not supported by clinical studies.
Ayurveda is more than the Indian version of wellness: The millennia-old medicine can help children with stomach problems, migraines or poor sleep – with massages and herbs. If you are interested in wellness, you know the forehead shower: oil runs over your face, you relax, the stress goes away, the blood flow to the skin increases. But Ayurveda is more than just relaxing in the spa: literally translated it means “science of life”. The complex, ancient health teachings from India also include a sophisticated system of medicinal products and a theory of nutrition and movement. If your child has occasional gastrointestinal problems , migraines , sleeps poorly or is depressed , Ayurvedic medicine can possibly do well. In any case, ask your pediatrician beforehand whether he has any concerns. That’s behind it: Ayurveda has been practiced in India for around 5000 years. According to the ideas of this doctrine, human health depends on the three so-called doshas, the central regulatory systems of the body: Vata, Pitta and Kapha. Kapha is responsible for everything solid in the body, i.e. bones , teeth and nails. Pitta regulates the interaction of biochemical substances: metabolism and hormonal balance. Vata decides on movement sequences and activity. The interplay of the doshas determines a person’s body structure and temperament. Whether you gain or lose weight, for example, when you are under stress, whether you sleep deeply or restlessly , whether you have dry or oily skin has, according to this teaching, depends on how your three life energies mix. Preventive treatments are designed to keep the doshas in balance; in the case of an acute illness, the aim is to rebalance the doshas. That is why every therapy is tailored to the individual. Herbs, diets, enemas, oil massages and meditation exercises are available. Some traditional Ayurvedic schools assume that there are special conditions for the interaction of the doshas in children. That is why they only assign children to a certain type from the age of eight. This is how it works: There are some scientific studies that prove Ayurveda’s success. However, the studies have not yet addressed every single element of this Indian medicine. The oil massage has been proven to be effective in treating stress and circulatory disorders. Certain Ayurvedic medicines are well suited for acne , diabetes, constipation and obesity . However, experts advise caution: some Ayurvedic remedies consist of a mixture of more than 100 different substances. Some contain problematic levels of toxic heavy metals such as mercury. The herb mixtures can contain residues of pesticides. This is what the expert says: Edzard Ernst is Head of Complementary Medicine at Exeter University in the UK. He has long been concerned with the effectiveness of alternative healing methods and has tested many procedures. His verdict: Ayurvedic health is a complex system that is difficult to verify. The research carried out so far shows that a few elements have been shown to work, while most either have not been adequately verified or, like some herbal medicines, can even be harmful to health.
Many of those affected are older, but children also get rheumatism. Diagnosis is difficult, especially at a young age. Parents need to know this in order to give their child the best possible support. By Emily Linow Usually rheumatism is only known from one’s grandparents or old great aunt, but children can also get it. Around 1.5 million people across Germany are affected by rheumatism. Most are adults or very old, but according to the German Rheumatism Research Center (DRFZ) around 20,000 of them are children and adolescents – the number of those affected is rising steadily. It is difficult to recognize the disease, especially in young children. Most of the time, they cannot speak openly about it and it is up to the parents to recognize whether the child is in pain in order to prevent permanent damage. What is rheumatism anyway? Rheumatism is a generic term for many different inflammatory diseases. This inflammation occurs because the immune system is misdirected and then directed against the body’s own structures. Immune cells migrate to the joints and organs and produce substances that promote inflammation. The joint becomes inflamed and starts to hurt. Why the immune system goes crazy and attacks your own body is still unknown. A cure is also not yet in sight. The possibilities for combating the consequences and acute pain have advanced far in recent years, but the disease cannot be cured causally. Various factors control the risk of disease. A combination of genetic predisposition and environmental factors could probably lead to rheumatism – such as a stressful and stressful phase of life, an injury or illness. So some people are simply more prone to rheumatism than others. If they then get into a stressful phase, injure themselves while exercising or get sick, this can trigger acute inflammation. In children, the prognosis is usually much better than in adults. Occasionally the disease may be brought under control and become inactive. The clinical pictures are very different: Joints, vessels and connective tissue can be affected. Joint rheumatism is most common among these rheumatic-inflammatory diseases in children. Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA for short) affects about one in 1,000 children nationwide. In JIA, the joint inflammation occurs before the age of 16, the cause is unclear. The inflammation manifests itself in a variety of ways. AFTER THE SPECIALIST MARATHON Dry eyes, sore knees – only a specialist found the reason for my suffering According to the DRFZ, around every second JIA patient is affected by oligoarthritis (oligo = few joints, arthritis = joint inflammation). The characteristics are: Usually only one or a few affected joints are affected, usually the knee joint at the beginning the disease occurs in infancy. The Systemic arthritis usually manifests itself: Fever and reddish skin symptoms In addition to inflammation of joints, internal organs are also affected. The psoriatic arthritis (psoriasis = psoriasis) is a psoriasis advance – usually by several years. In the case of arthritis with a tendency to enthesitis (entheses = tendon attachments), the following are inflamed: Ankle and ankle joints as well as the tendon attachments – often on the heel. It mostly occurs in boys of school age. In polyarthritis (poly = many) more than four joints become inflamed. There are two versions: One of them has a rheumatoid factor in the blood, for the other, the factor cannot be proven. Most often this disease develops in young girls. According to the DRFZ, about 19% of all JIA patients suffer from this manifestation. In addition to the joints that are often affected, such as knees, hips, hands and feet, inflammation can also affect the jaw in any of the manifestations. Inflammation of internal organs can also be associated with JIA, although this is particularly common in systemic arthritis. The children’s eyes are particularly at risk. A visit to the ophthalmologist should clarify this. All forms of JIA are difficult to identify – especially when the child is still small. Any child, of any age, from small babies to adolescents can be affected. Many small children do not complain about the pain, but simply adopt a protective posture. Even with adolescents it can happen that they only mention their pain in passing and instead try to find relief for their painful joint. Most of the time, they do this pretty well, even if only for a short time. The symptoms differ from person to person. Many children have pain in their joints – when moving and when they are at rest. The joints sometimes show no external features at all. But there is also swelling, strong warmth and reddish tint. Children can also develop a fever. Sometimes the child has difficulty opening their mouth fully or complains of pain when chewing. These clues provide further information: Does the child limp while walking? Does it relieve a leg? Is it different or does it support itself differently than before? Are the joints overheated, swollen or stiff after getting up? Does the child want to hug again, even though they have been walking for a long time? Does the child complain of pain when moving? These could all be the first signs of rheumatism. Of course, the child could only have been injured while exercising. However, if the symptoms occur regularly and with increasing frequency, a doctor should be consulted. The diagnosis – a (often) long road The first way is to see a pediatrician or an orthopedic surgeon. The search for traces begins here. It is particularly difficult to make a clear diagnosis in children and adolescents, as there are usually no clear markers in the blood at the onset of the disease. The imaging is also usually not very meaningful. X-rays rarely show anything and other imaging techniques, such as magnetic resonance imaging or sonography, are difficult to interpret. The diagnosis is like a giant puzzle made up of the patient’s complaints, clinical, laboratory, imaging findings and the previous medical history. If there is even the slightest suspicion of children’s rheumatism, a child and adolescent rheumatologist is involved in the diagnosis. Supply map of the Rheumatism League . The therapy – remedy for pain and inflammation Once the diagnosis has been made, everyone involved needs to breathe a sigh of relief, because even if rheumatism is not yet curable, there are very successful therapy methods that promise rapid pain relief. The aim of the therapy is to combat inflammation in the joints, relieve pain and remedy the restrictions on movement as quickly as possible. There should be no permanent damage to joints or organs. For this, the therapy is based on various building blocks, which all together drive the path to the goal. The first building block is the medication. Treatment for rheumatoid arthritis in children usually begins with prescribing nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). These are cortisone-free drugs that are said to relieve pain, reduce inflammation and lower fever. In the case of acute inflammation, cortisone can also be administered, which is supposed to intensify the reduction in inflammation and pain. Systematic cortisone therapy can take the form of tablets or injections of a liquid containing cortisone directly into the affected joint. High doses over a long period of time come here due to side effects such as weight gain (“full moon face”), increased body hair, growth disorders and bone decalcification, only used in the case of particularly severe disease processes. In addition, children who take a dose of cortisone higher than ten milligrams per day have an up to three times higher risk of infection than children without cortisone therapy. With the short-term administration of cortisone in acute therapy, however, there is little need to worry about undesirable side effects at high doses. If NSAIDs and cortisone do not have a sufficient effect, rheumatologists usually resort to so-called basic drugs. These are supposed to bring the disease to a standstill. Methotrexate (MTX) is used here particularly frequently: an agent from cancer therapy that is dosed 1000 times lower. This can also be taken as a tablet or injected. Most of the time, despite the fear of injections, the children do not take the pill, as this can cause nausea and, if taken weekly, can severely restrict everyday life. With its poison green color, the syringe does not necessarily make the feeling better, but it does not cause nausea. If MTX does not have the desired effect either, biologics are usually added. These drugs are based on a natural group of substances. They inhibit the body’s own messenger substances of the immune system. In rheumatoid arthritis, the messenger substance TNF-alpha is blocked and the transmission of the inflammation can be prevented. The inflammation of the joints will decrease. The onset of action is often quick and with impressive results. Nevertheless, the side effects of biologics cannot be completely neglected: The weakening of the immune system must be considered, especially with regard to vaccinations. With so-called passive vaccinations and dead vaccines there is usually nothing to consider, with live vaccines (such as measles, mumps, Movement therapy is another component of the therapy. Physiotherapy releases tension in the muscles, strengthens them and relieves the joints. The movement stimulates the metabolic exchange in the blood and inflammation – as far as possible – is fought by the body itself. Even acutely inflamed joints should be moved carefully and without strain. Occupational therapy is not recommended for everyone with rheumatism. If it is recommended by the attending physician, you should definitely take advantage of the therapy and take the chance. The aim here is to maintain and improve joint functions. Children learn how to take part in games with other children that is as gentle on their joints as possible, how to avoid improper stress and how to avoid overloading. For this one takes various exercises, but also rails to help. And what does rheumatism mean for the family? Rheumatism in a child or adolescent is not just a big change for their own life. It is also a major turning point for the family. Trips have to be canceled or rescheduled, you can’t just frolic outside, meet friends or take long walks. Those affected often suffer from permanent pain and nothing is able to provide them with relief. When it rains, the pain gets worse, so the child stays inside. This can be a major limitation, especially in the rainy autumn or winter months. TV HOST Diagnosis of rheumatism – Jörg Pilawa’s daughter is seriously ill The therapy determines the daily routine of the entire family: taking medication in the morning, doing physiotherapy, going to physiotherapy or occupational therapy, taking medication. Everything accompanied by the usual pain. Every day the child’s condition can get worse or better. It can go steeply uphill or downhill overnight. Often, from the time of diagnosis, one parent only takes care of the sick child. The other parent goes to work. Both can feel misunderstood and left alone. It is not uncommon for unspoken allegations to appear. The most important thing in such a time would be to stick together and support one another. Open communication and maybe a little support from outside help here: A therapist for the family can perhaps resolve the problem quickly. It can also happen that siblings feel neglected and take a back seat. The parents often don’t mean it badly at all. You are simply just busy with the rheumatoid child all the time. Many siblings not only receive less attention, but are often asked to show understanding and show consideration. Many understand that. They too want to help and support and, above all, not be an additional burden on the parents. Open communication with the siblings is particularly important here. So you can step in early enough if a child feels neglected. The sick child should also play a role. Because it must also understand that although it is not well, During this time, siblings can develop an even closer bond, because the sick child will not necessarily, but very likely, lose many of his friends to the illness. With persistent pain, the child is often unable to play with other children as often and exuberantly as they would like. Depending on the age of the child and the friends, it can also happen that the other children do not understand the child’s illness at all and show no empathy. Many children do not want to suppress their urge to move. In summer they prefer to race outside instead of watching a movie inside just because a single child friend cannot play outside. In order to counteract this development, however, one can seek a conversation with the parents of the friends, If the loss of friendships can be absorbed by the bond of siblings, it is the greatest gain one can have in this situation. Children don’t want “outsider” status School is often the only place of social contact that children with rheumatism have, and this is where there is a lot of potential for conflict. Many children do not want to be seen as outsiders by their classmates because they wear a splint or get more time for class work. You want to take part in physical education classes and not sit on the sidelines. Go out during the break and romp around with the others – ticking or playing tag. Before the child goes back to school, parents should make sure that they are no longer ashamed of their illness. After all, the child is not to blame for their condition and should never feel bad about it. It can be very helpful to explain the illness to the child as clearly as possible – as graphically as possible. The child can then explain it to their classmates in the same way. Children with rheumatism usually know a great deal about their condition, but cannot explain it well. For example, it would be possible to describe the child’s immune system as a kind of army. The army of the other children only has good soldiers, but that of the rheumatoid child also has bad soldiers in its ranks. These evil soldiers turn against your own body and destroy it. In order to fight the bad soldiers, the good soldiers still need the help of other soldiers. That is why the child has to take so much medication. It is only allowed to do sports and romp around after the evil soldiers have been defeated. Can Diet Help? There is no nutritional plan and no recipe for success as to how diet can best support therapy, but there are a few good tips that are worth trying out. HOW NUTRITION CAN HEAL Eat yourselves healthy! In general, the diet of rheumatism sufferers should be as varied as possible – whole grain products and fresh fruit and vegetables should not be missing. Scientific studies show that many animal foods exacerbate the inflammation. Arachidonic acid is found in meat and dairy products. From this, inflammation-promoting messenger substances are later formed, which can intensify the inflammation. Reducing your meat product consumption to a few times a week or a month is a great way to lower your dietary fatty acid intake. However, it is important to continue to consume fish. The eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) contained in fish has exactly the opposite effect as the arachidonic acid contained in meat. EPA has shown slight improvements in joint swelling and pain intensity according to clinical tests. The components of EPA are also found in many different oils, such as rapeseed and linseed oil. A third tip for the diet are spices: ginger, curry, caraway seeds and garlic prevent the formation of inflammatory substances from arachidonic acid and can also lead to a significant improvement in pain with regular use. In many circles, nutrition tips are considered a miracle weapon. Vegetarianism and veganism are particularly popular. However, there is no scientific evidence as to whether this diet can fight rheumatic diseases in the long term. Here everyone has to listen to their own feelings and try different things. Everyone is different and everyone can digest different foods differently. Once in rehab – please! In the case of acute and very severe inflammation or difficulties in being adjusted to the right medication, it is possible to go to a clinic that specializes in rheumatism patients. Intensive support is very important here. Patients are properly adjusted to their medication, receive physiotherapy and occupational therapy, can try out new therapy methods, manage their pain in pain therapy and get to know like-minded people. Especially for children who feel lonely with their suffering, this can be the most helpful point in a pediatric rheumatology clinic. Rehabilitation is very useful in order to escape from everyday life and to repair the subsequent damage after an acute attack. The aim of rehabilitation is to maintain or restore joint functions. Here it is particularly important that the child comes to a specialized institution. Appropriate psychological care, patient training and qualified pediatric rheumatoid treatment should be provided. Here, too, the social factor is great – children feel less alone. Such a facility is best selected with the treating rheumatologist, who knows exactly what to look out for and whether the clinic or rehab is suitable. The rehabilitation facilities and clinics can also be found on the care map of the Rheumatism League. What tips and tricks are there? Rheumatism comes in many different forms, so there are many different tips and tricks: some help, some less. However, they are always worth a try for acute pain. Parents can relieve their child with simple home remedies, because every warm or swollen joint can be cooled. Simply wrap an ice pack in a towel and use it as a cooling wrap around the joint. The cold removes excess heat from the joint, which can lead to inhibition of inflammation and relief of acute pain. Not every child reacts positively to the cold. Here it is time to try it out. With luck you have discovered the miracle cure! EXCLUSIVE RANKING Service, staff, expert judgment – these are the 150 best hospitals in Germany The child does not have to go to a rheumatism clinic straight away to make contact with children and adolescents who are also affected by rheumatism. A rheumatism forum offers a platform for the exchange of topics about JIA. On social media such as Instagram, many young people share their experiences and exchange ideas about their situations. Even if it is only virtual contact, affected children and young people no longer feel so alone with their problems. You can also find further tips from other sufferers here. Open communication with and in school can also be very helpful. Parents can speak openly with class teachers and school principals. Perhaps the class can be moved to a different classroom so that there are fewer stairs to walk. It is possible to order a second set of school books so that the child does not have to drag heavy school books to school every day. Compensating for the handicap can add more time to classwork or get a computer to write with if writing with your hands is painful. If the water in the swimming pool is too cold during swimming lessons, a certificate can remove the child from class, but perhaps a grade can still be achieved through open communication with the teachers. What if nothing wants to help? There is no cure for rheumatism. Medicine is far and has made many advances in recent years, but therapy only combats the symptoms of the disease – not its cause. In most cases, timely therapy can completely reduce joint inflammation, prevent permanent damage, and reduce movement restrictions. Juvenile idiopathic arthritis has a significantly better prognosis than that of adult rheumatism patients. It is not uncommon for the disease to come to a standstill in children and adolescents and become inactive. There is always a little bit of rheumatism slumbering in everyone affected, but the renewed outbreak is in the stars. The rheumatism may never return. The likelihood that the pain and inflammation will flare up again after stopping medication is around 50 percent – which does not mean that you have to take medication forever. In any case, after successfully combating the inflammation, it is helpful to listen to the doctor and agree to stop taking the medication, even if there may be great fear that the pain will return. In any case, it is particularly important not to lose hope of recovery. There is no recipe for success here, as every person and every disease is different, but many children and adolescents have managed to get the disease under control and many more will follow. Optimism is not the only real road to improvement, but not losing hope is a good place to start.
The tragic case of a four-year-old in Bad Hersfeld shows that measles is no kid’s thing. It becomes dangerous when the pathogens enter the brain. Experts therefore recommend vaccinating children. A four-year-old in Bad Hersfeld is dying . She suffers from an inflammation of the brain, a long-term consequence of a measles infection. The tragic case shows that measles is not a child’s thing. The star says what you need to know about the disease and how you can protect your children. We have a case of measles! “You should take such warning signs on the door of daycare or school seriously: The disease is extremely contagious and not without danger. Watch your child carefully, the first clues are coughs, sniffles, watery eyes, fever – as with a thick cold . the only sure sign that it is measles, you can find in your child’s mouth: then sit red spots on the buccal mucosa, emblazoned in the middle of a white dot the rash on the body does not appear until days later.. Viruses are to blame for measles, more precisely: Paramyxo viruses. They fly through the air, well packed in droplets of saliva. Your child may be infected because they coughed or sneezed. Viruses switch from one victim to another even when talking wetly. The pathogens enter the body through the mucous membrane of the mouth, nose and throat. The tricky thing: Before a sick child is recognized as sick because his skin is covered all over with red dots, it has long since infected others. Measles can become a disability The rash all over the body looks dramatic but is the least of a problem. The measles viruses weaken the immune system and also attack internal organs such as the lungs, liver or intestines. If the germs nest in the brain, the nerves there ignite. This so-called measles encephalitis can, in the worst case, lead to permanent mental and physical disability or even death. The following applies to measles : whoever has it once will never get it again. Because the immune system knows the germ that is causing the problem and has suitable defense substances, so-called antibodies, ready to counteract them. This is how it can successfully fight the virus should the pathogen slip into the body again. Measles parties are dangerous To celebrate their child against measles, some parents send their offspring to measles parties. The offspring should be infected there in order to be protected from the disease once and for all. Experts think this is a bad idea. Because measles is no kid’s thing – a mental or physical disability is no fun. Many parents are unsettled by the claim that vaccinating against measles is dangerous. It is correct: Every vaccination can have side effects, including the measles vaccination. These include, for example, swelling at the injection site or allergic reactions. It is also correct: Two percent of vaccinated children develop so-called vaccinated measles. This is measles in a light version, in which the symptoms are much more harmless: moderate fever , a little rash, cough and runny nose . The vaccination can even inflame the brain. However, this happens much less often than with real measles: out of a million vaccinated children, one gets this dreaded measles encephalitis. If, on the other hand, a child is infected with real measles, the risk of encephalitis is much higher: one child in a thousand is affected. The risk of vaccination is therefore many times lower. Symptoms If your child has contracted measles, it will take a while for you to notice. Usually around eight to ten days, that’s how long it takes to visibly react to the virus. The disease has two phases: First comes the fever, along with symptoms that look like a bad cold. Measles only leave clear traces in the oral cavity. It wasn’t until days later that she got sick too, she was covered with red spots. Phase 1: fever, cough and red spots in the mouth First your child will have a fever of up to 39 degrees. It feels dull, its nose is runny, it coughs, its eyes water, its face looks puffy. The symptoms at this stage are reminiscent of a severe cold . In addition, your daughter or son can be sensitive to light. This is not typical of a cold. You can be absolutely sure that it is the measles if you discover the so-called Koplik spots on the cheek mucosa during this phase: red spots with a white dot in the middle. After three to four days the fever drops again and the body temperature drops to values that are almost normal. Phase II: rash and fever again Then it starts behind the ears: the rash blooms. The red spots then spread over the face and back to the arms and legs. The fever is also back – and sometimes even rises to over 40 degrees. Your child is really bad at this stage: he lies in bed listless, is tearful, has no appetite, is tormented by a runny nose and watery eyes, he has coughs and diarrhea . By the fourth day of this phase, the rash has reached the feet and the fever has subsided. If the temperature drops, the child will feel better quickly; the disease is over after about ten to fourteen days. If the fever does not go away, the viruses attack vital organs. Then you should go to the doctor. Blood from the nose and bottom, bacteria in the ear and lungs Sometimes the viruses damage the mucous membranes so much that tissue is destroyed in the process. Then your child will bleed from the nose, mouth or bottom. The measles virus can put such a strain on the immune system that bacteria that would otherwise have no chance can attack the body. Experts then speak of a superinfection. For example, bacteria can settle in the middle ear because the body’s defenses are so weak. Your child will then develop an otitis media. Pneumonia, hepatitis or bronchitis can also result from measles infection. The worst consequence: the child dies A serious, albeit rare, complication is the dreaded encephalitis. One out of about a thousand sick children gets this so-called measles encephalitis. Then your child is partially unconscious, has convulsions and epileptic seizures, some muscles are paralyzed, and your daughter or son can no longer move properly. In a few cases the symptoms do not go away: some children remain paralyzed or mentally handicapped. In the worst case, they will die of measles encephalitis. diagnosis The pediatrician usually recognizes the typical symptoms of measles immediately. In the first phase of the disease, the so-called Koplik spots appear on the mucous membrane of the cheeks: red marks with a white point in the middle. In the second stage, the doctor identifies the disease based on the unmistakable rash. Therefore, she does not need a blood test for her diagnosis, which would put additional stress on the sick children. Only if the symptoms are not quite as clear – for example at the very beginning – will the doctor draw blood from your child. therapy Unfortunately, there is no drug against measles virus. The pediatrician can only alleviate the symptoms. She will only recommend strict bed rest. The children usually comply with this by themselves because they feel really sick. If your child has a fever , they should especially drink a lot. The pediatrician can prescribe suppositories with the active ingredient paracetamol or ibuprofen against the high temperature. If the red spots on the skin become inflamed or if the child even gets pneumonia because bacteria have also infected the diseased tissue, antibiotics help. These drugs can destroy the causative agent, the bacilli. Vaccination helps the body’s defenses to train Experts advise getting children vaccinated against measles. The standing vaccination commission recommends the first vaccination between the 11th and 14th month of life. Before that, the baby is still protected by the mother’s antibodies, which circulate in its blood. Doctors usually also vaccinate against two or three other typical childhood diseases: against mumps and rubella (MMR vaccination) or against mumps, rubella and chickenpox The virus components in the vaccine stimulate the formation of defense substances – antibodies – against the intruders. In order for the protection to last for life, a second vaccination must be given. The recommended period is between the 15th and 23rd month. Only then is the body’s own immune police strong enough to fight the viruses itself for a lifetime. Tips Measles are extremely contagious. If your child is infected, please notify the daycare center or school. And your offspring should of course stay at home, preferably in bed. Because the disease is draining, in order to get well, the child needs all his strength. If he has a high fever , his body needs a lot of fluids. So give him a good drink. In some children, the conjunctivae of the eyes also become inflamed, so they become very light-shy. Darken the nursery and pull up the curtains. Moist air helps against this. Hang up wet towels in the nursery at night, this calms the mucous membranes. expert advice Gerhard Gaedicke, Professor of Pediatrics and Director of the Clinic for General Pediatrics at the Berlin Charité, answers: Why is measles not yet eradicated in Germany – as in other European countries?Measles is still too common in Germany. Epidemics flare up again and again, for example in North Rhine-Westphalia and southern Germany. Often this is because parents do not allow their children to be adequately vaccinated. Many of them get their first vaccination as planned. However, parents miss the second revaccination, which is so important for complete protection. The result: vaccinated children do not build up safe vaccination protection and can become infected later. In some regions, more than half of the children vaccinated are missing the important second vaccination. How safe is the vaccination? An appropriately vaccinated child is protected from measles for life. So-called vaccination breakthroughs are extremely rare: only one percent of children who have been vaccinated twice will later be attacked by the pathogen again . In such cases, however, they are only slightly ill. I therefore recommend that all parents have their children fully vaccinated. Should a child have measles? I advise against that. It is generally better to prevent the disease than to go through it. Measles is one of the typical childhood diseases, but it is very stressful and can lead to complications. If the disease breaks out later, in adolescence or adulthood, it is even worse.
Too much UV radiation can cause cancer. But new studies show that a lack of sunlight is just as dangerous and increases the risk of diseases such as Alzheimer’s and heart attacks. How much sun do we need? A heated argument has broken out among scientists about this question. On the one hand, dermatologists have been warning against too much UV radiation for years because it can cause skin cancer. However, recent studies show that excessive abstinence from the sun also brings problems: a poor supply of vitamin D and thus not only an increased risk of osteoporosis, but also of common diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular problems, diabetes, Infections or Alzheimer’s. At the same time, a high vitamin D level can apparently extend life. This is the result of researchers from the universities of Ludwigsburg and Graz. Over eight years they examined 3200 people who were on average 62 years old. Those subjects whose vitamin D levels were lower than recommended had a twice as high risk of death, so the result. In addition, too little vitamin D in the blood apparently increased the likelihood of heart failure, a stroke or cancer. Other international studies provided similar data. HYPE ABOUT THE SUN VITAMIN Stiftung Warentest warns against vitamin D pills – why they are not useful for everyone The flood of new studies on this topic can be explained by an important discovery: “The breakthrough came when science recognized a few years ago that there are specific vitamin D receptors in almost all tissues and organs. “They are not there by chance,” says Nicolai Worm. The Munich-based nutritionist has been dealing with the topic for ten years and has summarized the state of research in his book “Heilkraft D” . No vitamin D without UVB rays According to this, vitamin D experts are convinced that this nutrient is involved in a large number of body processes and is therefore of much greater importance than previously assumed. But: in order for the organism to get enough of it, it needs sun, which covers around 90 percent of its needs. More precisely, it is the UV-B rays that set a chemical process in motion in the skin, whereby vitamin D is formed. Strictly speaking, this means that the substance is not a vitamin because, by definition, the body cannot and does not have to supply it itself. Vitamin D is a hormone, say nutritionists. But as soon as someone asks for more sun, skin specialists are alarmed. “We must not try to compensate for a possibly bad vitamin D level with an excess of UV radiation,” says Rüdiger Greinert, biophysicist at the Dermatological Center Buxtehude and warns against jumping to conclusions – much is still unclear. His concern is that people will become careless again and remain unprotected in the sun for hours. A quarter of an hour in the sun is enough Even the vitamin D experts have no license for excessive sunbathing. Because a lot doesn’t help much: Depending on the skin type, about 15 minutes are enough on average for an adequate vitamin D supply, but daily or as often as the sun shines. Preferably between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., when the UVB radiation is at its highest, and without sun protection because it inhibits production, says Worm. After about 20 to 30 minutes, the so-called vitamin D synthesis is over anyway – a natural protection of the body against overdosing. Anything beyond that is of no use, so the following applies again: get out of the sun or apply lotion and protect. Sunburn, even redness, is a risk and should be avoided at all costs. The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) has determined that vitamin D supply is actually problematic in Germany. About 63 percent of children and about 58 percent of adults have too little vitamin D in their blood. Around 10,000 children and adolescents and around 4,000 adults were examined. A frightening result, especially since it is disputed among experts whether the value of 20 micrograms per liter taken as a basis by the RKI is even sufficient for optimal supply. “Various limit values are being discussed,” says ecotrophologist Birte Hintzpeter from the RKI, who evaluated this study. “We have applied a limit value that is based on scientific knowledge.” However, it is still based on the importance for the bones, because we know that a severe deficiency leads to the softening of the bones. A slight undersupply can damage in the long term However, it is not just the obvious deficiency that is problematic. “We are getting more and more data that even a slight undersupply is unhealthy in the long term,” says Hans Konrad Biesalski, Professor of Nutritional Medicine at the University of Hohenheim. He compares this to a car that always runs on a minimum of oil. “You can drive it for a long time. But at some point the car is broken because the small amount leads to signs of wear and tear that would not have occurred with good care.” There are two main reasons for the poor supply of vitamin D. On the one hand, there is the lifestyle: working people often sit in closed rooms all day, and many children spend too little time outdoors. On the other hand, it is the geographical location. In Germany, the sun doesn’t shine often or intensely enough. Especially in winter we are undersupplied for months because the body cannot create an endless supply. Diet can also hardly make up for a deficit. The German Nutrition Society recommends a daily dose of five micrograms for adults and ten for infants and people over 65 years of age – but these are also rarely achieved. Few foods contain any significant amounts of vitamin D: oily fish such as herring or salmon and mushrooms, and very little is found in dairy products. But eating fatty fish every day or drinking gallons of milk is not a solution either. And even if this were enough for the recommended intake, this alone would not achieve a sufficiently high vitamin D level. Children and the elderly are particularly at risk As a result, almost everyone is affected by an undersupply, but there are special risk groups. These are children and adolescents, because if the bone structure is not optimal in early years, osteoporosis threatens in old age, says Biesalski. In addition, the elderly, especially women, and people with darker skin are often dramatically undersupplied. In seniors it is because the skin loses the ability to generate vitamin D through the sun with increasing age – in over 65-year-olds it is still 20 percent. They are particularly dependent on foods with vitamin D, says Biesalski. Dark-skinned people would have to sunbathe longer because of the pigmentation. In southern regions this is not a problem, in northern regions it is. Nevertheless, experts advise against buying vitamin D supplements on your own. There is still a lack of meaningful studies that clarify, for example, whether and in what dose supplements should be used, says RKI employee Hintzpeter. So what remains for now is a conscious but moderate use of the sun. The tanning bed is not an alternative, warns skin expert Greinert: “Only recently the International Agency for Cancer Research announced that the radiation from solariums is highly carcinogenic.”
Even at the beginning of the corona pandemic, it became clear that on average men seem to be more ill than women. Researchers may now have come a little closer to solving the riddle. The immune systems of men and women seem to react differently to the virus. Doctors worldwide have been researching the corona virus for months. But there are still many unanswered questions. Experts are still puzzled as to why men apparently get more sick with Covid-19 than women – and also more often die after a virus infection. The first indications of this were already available shortly after the start of the pandemic based on Chinese patient data. The trend also continued in other countries, including Germany. The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) has so far listed 9280 deaths in connection with Covid 19 disease – 55 percent are men, 45 percent women. And that although both sexes are infected with the virus about the same frequency. US researchers have now examined how the immune systems of men and women react to infection with the virus. The results were published in the journal “Nature” and provide evidence that different immune responses in men and women may play a role in the observed differences. The team around the immunologist Akiko Iwasaki examined a total of 17 men and 22 women who were treated in a hospital shortly after their diagnosis. Among other things, blood samples and throat swabs were taken from these and analyzed. The data from 59 other men and women were also included in the analysis. Men’s immune response is weaker The studies showed that women produced significantly more so-called specialized T cells. In addition to antibodies, T cells are an important pillar of the human immune system . You can recognize and fight structures foreign to the body. For example, there are T cells that kill the body’s own cells that have been infected by viruses. Others activate so-called B cells, which then produce antibodies. In the case of men, however, the mobilization of this defense force was fundamentally weaker. Weak T cells were also associated with more severe disease processes. The activation of the immune cells also decreased with age. Women, on the other hand, had a “pretty good, decent immune response,” even up to the old age of 90, according to immunologist Iwasaki. These results are by no means surprising. It is already known that the immune system of women can generally fight off viruses more strongly than that of men. The reason for this is unclear, but it could serve as some kind of protection for unborn children. On the other hand, women suffer much more often from autoimmune diseases – i.e. diseases in which an excessive reaction of the immune system triggers complaints by directing the immune system against the body’s own structures. The researchers also found elevated cytokine levels in the blood of all patients. These are messenger substances that are formed during an immune reaction and are considered to be important markers of inflammation. Certain cytokines – including interleukin 8 and interleukin 18 – were elevated in all of the men examined, but only in a few women. On the other hand, if women had elevated values, they also became more ill. It is already known that a so-called cytokine storm can occur in individual cases during a Covid 19 illness, a potentially life-threatening derailment of the immune system. Even if the study is quite small and ultimately cannot prove that the observed differences are solely due to gender, the researchers hope to gain new impulses for the therapy and prevention of Covid-19. The observed differences could possibly play a role in immunization by vaccines, but also in the gender-specific therapy of corona patients, they write in a press release. But more research is needed.
Thinning hair, receding hairlines and bald spots: hair loss is a nuisance, but nobody has to put up with it. These remedies and therapies curb hair loss and stimulate growth. Whether you realize it or not, you lose hair, anytime and anywhere on your head. This is normal and not a cause for concern at first. After six years every hair says goodbye. And a new one grows back. We lose about a hundred hairs a day. Temporarily it can be more. Typically, more hair falls out in spring or fall. Hormonal fluctuations can also temporarily clear the head. However, if the hair hangs in abundance on collars and pillows or if they hang in tufts in the brush, then that is a bad sign. There are many reasons for this loss: In some people, the hair roots are particularly sensitive to hormones. Or they suffer from iron deficiency. Various medications can also get on the hair. Experts only speak of pathological hair loss if you lose more than a hundred hairs a day over a long period of time. Hair loss is a matter for dermatologists Experts differentiate between four different types of pathological hair loss. They can affect men and women alike: predisposition hair loss usually manifests itself in the form of a receding hairline, light hair on the back of the head or hair loss on the crown. Circular hair loss begins with coin-sized bald patches. With diffuse hair loss, too much hair goes out everywhere. Pitted hair loss leaves bald, scarred areas. The sooner you see a doctor, the greater the chance of successful treatment. Hair is so-called skin appendages – therefore dermatologists are responsible for hair problems. It is best to go to a hair specialist in the university clinic or in a special practice. With the help of various tests, he can determine what type of hair loss you have pretty quickly. The doctor determines the disease with pinpoint accuracy The pull test gives the doctor an initial indication of how severe your hair loss is. For the test, he grabs a tuft of hair between his thumb and forefinger, pulls it gently and plucks the hair out. If this works painlessly in different places, then this is a sign of hair loss. In order to determine more precisely what your hair is like and how it is looking at hair loss, the doctor makes a so-called trichogram. He also plucks hair for this: He pulls the first tuft out where the hair is already thinning. He takes the second sample – as a control – from a healthy area. He counts the hairs under the light microscope and calculates how many hairs are in the growth or resting phase. Usually around 85 to 90 percent of hair grows. The doctor also uses the so-called Trichoscan to check how much hair is in the growth phase and how quickly it is growing. To do this, he shaves a small area on your scalp. Three days later, he dyes the shaved hair and saves a video image of it at twenty times magnification. A software helps the doctor to calculate the total number of hairs and the ratio of hairs to each other that are in the growing and resting phase. For some forms of hair loss , your doctor will recommend a biopsy. To do this, after a local anesthetic, he will remove a small piece of tissue about four millimeters in size from your scalp. He examines this tissue under a microscope and can then determine which disease you have. Stiftung Warentest has tested over-the-counter hair loss remedies for stern.de . You can read the result here . Hereditary hair loss Did you have a receding hairline as a young man? Or is the hair thinning on the back of your head? Perhaps your grandfather, father, and uncle had thinning hair too. Then you probably suffer from hereditary hair loss. It was born in your cradle. Doctors also speak of androgenetic alopecia, which is hormone-related. This means that the hair cells are more sensitive to the male hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT). The hair roots suffer from this . If they die off completely, the corresponding areas remain bare. Constitutional hair loss is the most common reason for a light head in men and women. Men lose their hair on the forehead, parting and back of the head. Women lose their hair along the middle parting. Countless products promise remedies: biotin, panthenol, zinc, vitamins, algae, phytoflavonoids or grapeseed oil. However, it has only been proven that two preparations actually stop hair loss: tablets with the active ingredient finasteride and the minoxidil solution. However, as soon as you stop using these drugs, they no longer work. This remedy only helps men The prescription finasteride is only approved for men. It is ineffective in older women and dangerous in pregnant women: it damages male fetuses. The agent prevents the conversion of the hormone testosterone into the “hair-damaging” sex hormone DHT. The result: the testosterone no longer causes hair loss. Studies over a period of five years confirm the effect. Finasteride was able to stop hair loss in 90 percent of men. In every second man, the hair thickened visibly within six to twelve months. But the undesirable effects of the drug are sometimes considerable: the desire for sex can decrease and the number of sperm in the seminal fluid also decreases. If the product is discontinued, the quality of the semen improves again, but the use of the product, especially for young men, is controversial. This solution stops hair loss and stimulates hair growth The non-prescription and hormone-free minoxidil supports the growth of hair cells. It works in women and men. Women apply a two percent solution to the scalp twice a day, men take a five percent mixture. Studies prove the effect: After that, hair loss stopped in 80 percent of those involved. In every fifth woman, the hair thickened visibly. Occasionally, however, the skin of the head is sensitive to the agent. It’s itchy, reddened, or allergic. Rarely does it grow more hair on the face. Pregnant and breastfeeding women must avoid minoxidil. People with arrhythmias, low blood pressure or migraines should also be careful. So-called antiandrogens also help some women. They are designed to prevent active testosterone from acting on the scalp. But there is no major scientific study to prove this. Also, taking these pills increases the risk of gaining weight and developing a thrombosis or embolism. This is especially true for women who smoke. Circular hair loss (alopecia areata) The circular hair loss is shocking: for no apparent reason, tufts of hair fall out, often within a few days. Bald circles remain on the scalp. They are lined with short hair that gets thinner and thinner towards the tip – the so-called exclamation point hair. In fact, all of your head hair can fall out – including your brows, eyelashes, and nasal hairs. However, those affected rarely lose their body hair. But the fingernails are as rough as sandpaper and interspersed with grooves or pits. Those who suddenly go bald don’t have to put up with it. Because there is hope of spontaneous healing: With every third sufferer, the bald spots grow over again on their own within six months. After a year, the matter is forgotten for every second person. However, the hair can fall out again at any time. A zinc treatment can help with bald spots Experts estimate that around one to two percent of the population will experience circular hair loss at some point in their lives, men and women of all ages. Experts argue about the cause. Circular hair loss is almost certainly an autoimmune disease: the immune system evaluates its own hair root cells as foreign. That is why the immune cells defend themselves against the hair cells. The hair follicles become inflamed and the hair goes out. Scientists have carried out many studies in recent years to test the effectiveness of immune-weakening substances such as tacrolimus and anti-inflammatory drugs such as sulfasalazine or cortisone. Treatment with different lasers was also examined. So far, however, there is no standard therapy for circular hair loss that has proven to be really effective in scientific studies. If you have few bald spots, a three-month zinc treatment may help. The trace element is said to stimulate the immune system. You can also coat the bald spots with corticosteroid solutions or creams that your doctor prescribes for you. However, this treatment should not be a permanent solution. Circular hair loss: In severe cases, doctors trick the immune system If none of the therapies work for you, your doctor will suggest a rather aggressive but effective treatment: immune therapy with the active ingredient diphenylcyclopropenone (DCP). He applies the product directly to the scalp. The chemical triggers allergic contact eczema. It attracts the immune cells away from the inflamed hair roots – towards the scalp. There they can no longer cause damage. The therapy works for about every second person affected, even if the hair loss was years ago. However, DCP is not officially approved for circular hair loss. Therefore, only special treatment centers offer the therapy. Diffuse hair loss You are slowly but surely losing your hair all over your head. You can already see your scalp. Then you may have diffuse hair loss. With a little luck it will pass. Because your hair is not destroyed. Their growth is only hindered. A disease can be to blame for this, but also a lack of iron or protein. A high fever can trigger hair loss, as can serious surgery or a so-called crash diet. Even for specialists, the cause is not easy to find. Also eligible are: Infections such as the flu or tuberculosis, impaired function of the thyroid gland, hormonal changes shortly after giving birth or after stopping the pill, Medication, such as after chemotherapy, or heparin injections that thin the blood, Poisoning or environmental influences. During the conversation, the doctor will therefore ask you whether you are taking medication and, if so, which ones. He will take your blood and, depending on the suspicion, have your iron or thyroid levels determined in the laboratory. A trichogram is also helpful when looking for the causes: The doctor can use this light microscopic examination to determine how much of your hair is growing and how much is in the resting phase. He can tell the extent of the hair loss from the result. Once the cause of the hair loss has been identified, it is easy to treat. If the problem is with one medicine, your doctor will recommend another one. If you have an iron deficiency, he will suggest an iron supplement. If the thyroid is sick, he will prescribe appropriate medication. Basically, once the underlying disease has been treated or the deficiency has been remedied, the hair usually grows back completely within three to six months. Pitted hair loss If your doctor speaks of pitted hair loss, it unfortunately means for you: The hair will not grow back. Where your hair has fallen out, scars, pustules, scales or hairless spots form . The mostly rounded scars can look pale inside. Outside it is surrounded by an inflammatory, red-colored edge. The scars occur because the hair stem cells become inflamed before the hair falls out. They lie in the hair follicle at the lower end of a narrow hair tunnel that medical professionals call the hair follicle . The hair stem cells control the growth of the hair. If the hair follicles are destroyed by the inflammation, they are completely destroyed. The scarred scalp remains. This inflammation is a result of Skin damage, injuries , Burns , scalds or chemical burns, Autoimmune diseases such as lupus erythematosus, Infections caused by viruses, bacteria or fungi, Tumor-related hair loss, for example in basaliomas and daughter tumors. In some cases it is possible to stop the inflammation in time. The doctor then tries to calm the immune system: with antibiotics, virus-inhibiting agents or preparations such as cortisone ointments . He will only recommend cortisone tablets in very severe cases , as these have too many side effects if they are taken over a long period of time. The treatment is intended to prevent the hair follicles from disappearing completely and only leaving scars. It is important that the doctor gets an exact picture of the disease before treatment. A tissue sample from the scalp can help. He will also thoroughly examine the remaining skin, oral mucosa and nails. In order to be able to observe the further course, he measures the size of the affected area and possibly also photographs it. expert advice Hans Wolff, hair expert at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, answers your questions: I have circular hair loss. Do I have to have it treated or can I wait for the hair to come back? One to two percent of people are affected by circular hair loss at some point in their life. The position is often limited, the size of a two-euro coin and often grows back in after three to six months. Fortunately, with this type of hair loss, the hair roots do not break. So for now you can wait and see. Then we try a three-month zinc cure in Munich. If it doesn’t help, we move on to immunotherapy with diphenylcyclopropenone, or DCP for short. Occasionally we also inject cortisone crystals under the scalp. Cortisone pills or infusions leave marks all over the body. They sometimes have severe side effects such as weight gain, bone loss and skin changes. This treatment is therefore usually not justified. How quickly does a treatment for hereditary hair loss work? Medicines and other therapies can only influence the hair during the growth phase. If they are already in the resting phase, they will definitely fail – with or without treatment. The drug can only work again on regrowing hair and lead to less hair going out. So whether the funds help can be assessed after three to six months at the earliest. Can alternative methods such as acupuncture or Chinese medicine also help? Alternative procedures and acupuncture do not work at all in treating hair loss. I also advise against having an expensive hair analysis for missing minerals. Such an analysis has no informative value – neither for recognizing nor for treating the disease. I don’t lose a lot of hair and still my hair is getting lighter. Why is that? With some, the hair on the head thins out, although hair is barely noticeable; others lose more than a hundred hairs a day and still do not go bald. Constitutional hair loss often develops slowly over the years without severe hair loss becoming noticeable. Does frequent washing make the hair thin? It does not matter how often you wash your hair for the course of hair loss. Only the hair that is already in the resting phase will fall out.
The skin under the eyes is very thin and sensitive: if the body suffers from lack of sleep or stress, dark shadows appear under the eyes. A new beauty trend now promises a remedy for dark circles, bags under the eyes and wrinkles: eye pads. Too little sleep and too much stress literally leave their mark on the face. But how do the dark shadows actually come about? In fact, dark circles are a result of poor blood flow to the vessels: If the lymph circulation is restricted due to too short nights, tissue fluid can collect under the soft skin. But dilation of the blood vessels can also lead to dark circles under the eyes. There are also other factors such as the aging of the skin and UV rays, which promote wrinkles and bags under the eyes. Proper eye care is all the more important with increasing age, for example with special care creams or eye pads. This is how eye pads work on your skin In contrast to conventional care creams, eye pads have a cooling effect on the skin – they should not only combat dark circles and minimize bags under the eyes , but also counteract skin aging . In addition, they provide the skin with moisture and give tired eyes a real boost of freshness. This is made possible by the active ingredients it contains, such as hyaluronic acid and collagen – both can also be found in many anti-aging products. How to use eye pads correctly In order for eye pads to develop their full effect, you should clean your eye area before using for the first time to remove any make-up residueto remove. Then proceed as follows: Place the eye pads under your eyes and press them down lightly so that they don’t slip. Leave the eye pads on for ten to 20 minutes, during which time you can move freely. Massage the excess remains of the eye pads into the skin so that no active ingredients are lost. Then take care of your face with a moisturizing cream. Another tip: It is best to store the eye pads (especially in the warm summer months) in the refrigerator to intensify the cooling effect. The best home remedies for dark circles Even before eye pads hit the market, there were already effective home remedies for the dark shadows under the eyes. The best known are these three: Green tea It contains valuable antioxidants and tannins: Green tea can help fight dark circles quickly and effectively. Take two ready-made tea bags and let them soak in warm water for a few minutes – then put them in the refrigerator for 30 minutes before placing the bags over your (closed) eyes for ten minutes. Cucumber slices Cucumbers also have a cooling effect and counteract dark circles by reducing possible puffiness and making dark shadows disappear. In addition, cucumber slices keep the skin hydrated – all you need to do is put them in the refrigerator before use and then place them on your eyes closed. Coconut Oil That Coconut Oil is good for skin and hair shouldn’t have been a secret for a long time. In fact, however, very few people know that its active ingredients can also help against dark circles: Rub the moisturizing oil gently on the swollen areas of skin and let it soak in overnight so that it can work more intensively.
Vitamins are important for the skin: The relationship of vitamin A can fight acne and psoriasis. These substances are also found in moisturizers and anti-aging products. Our body produces vitamin A itself from precursors of the substance; it takes the appropriate building blocks for it from food, for example from egg yolks, carrots or cream. The vitamin – also called retinol – can then be converted into other important substances: These retinoids can perform very different tasks in the body. Our eyes, for example, need retinal to perceive light impulses. Other retinoids play important roles in skin cell growth. Local application with ointment is preferable to tablets; doctors should only prescribe tablets for severe forms of psoriasis. Patients with acne should only use retinoids as part of a combination therapy. Overall, retinoids can also help in the long term, and in the best case scenario they can even cure the skin disease. Certain retinoids do their job in the top layer of the skin , in the epidermis. There are the cells that produce the horny layer. The retinoids ensure that too much horny substance does not form. Also, the relatives of vitamin A can reduce inflammation in the skin. Because retinoids can control horny cells, dermatologists prescribe this substance to people with psoriasis . Because with this disease, the horny cells are too active, they cause, among other things, the dandruff. Retinoids also help with acne because they decrease sebum production. If the sebum glands are blocked and inflamed, the vitamin A relationship can curb the infection. Retinoids are usually added to ointments. You can apply it to the infected areas. But there are also tablets. Then the drug works throughout the body and can cause serious side effects. In the meantime, many cosmetic manufacturers have started adding derivatives of vitamin A to creams and lotions . The retinoids are supposed to hold moisture in the skin and thus make wrinkles disappear. But so far there are no studies that prove such an anti-aging effect .
What is inflammation? A distinction is made between visible and silent inflammation. You are familiar with visible inflammation : it is caused, for example, by cold viruses or a bloody wound on the knee. When viruses or bacteria enter the body, our immune system mobilizes an army of white blood cells (leukocytes) to fight the hostile microbes. If areas of the skin are affected, they swell, become red and hot. If we have a cold, we may develop a fever. These are all signs that our immune system activates the body’s own defense cells and sets repair mechanisms in motion. This inflammation can be seen, felt and observed as it subsides. They are absolutely important and useful in protecting our bodies. Silent inflammations, on the other hand, are less noticeable but constant in the body and initially manifest themselves with at most diffuse symptoms, which include fatigue Difficulty concentrating Headache, muscle pain and aching limbs Listlessness and listlessness Frequent infections Night sweats Food intolerance or cosmetic products Symptoms are rarely concentrated. But if you notice some of them repeatedly, you shouldn’t dismiss them as stress, but also consider silent inflammation as the cause and get examined for it. Because this subliminal but permanent inflammation mobilizes aggressive radicals, which act effectively against pathogens, but can cause great damage in the long term in the tissue of your body. Like a smoldering fire, they can spread throughout the body and cause great damage in the long term. How can I recognize inflammatory processes? In the blood count, silent inflammations could be recognized by a constantly increased CRP value . This C-reactive protein is a non-specific inflammation marker, which should normally be below 0.5 mg / l, in the case of a flu-like infection, for example, it can rise to more than 100 mg / l, and again to below 0.5 after the illness has been overcome mg / falls. In the case of silent inflammation, however, it is usually slightly increased. Another marker is an increase in the number of white blood cells ( leukocytes ); a decrease in the blood count can also provide clues. If you have symptoms of exhaustion over a long period of time or repeatedly, you should have your CPR values checked at the next check-up. Because silent inflammations are usually only felt indirectly, but in the long term they can shorten your life. What are the consequences of silent inflammation? As already mentioned, the first signs of silent inflammatory processes can be constant exhaustion and diffuse pain, which could also be associated with stress. The darned thing is that the symptoms are often rather unspecific: one person has a slight headache, another fatigue and a third irritation. Some do not even notice that they have silent inflammation in them. In the long run, autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatism, and dementia have been linked to it. But that’s not all. “Long-term elevated CRP blood values are associated with an increase in cancer, heart attack, stroke and general mortality risk,” explains human medicine specialist Dr. Peter Niemann in his book ” The Anti-Inflammation Strategy (ab 15,99 € ) “. The National Center for Biotechnology came to the same conclusion in a study with around 85,000 participants. Expert Niemann sees inflammation as one of the main causes of aging: “I am of the opinion that everyone can live to be 100 years or older and live happily and healthily. The fight against inflammation in us plays an important role in this.” How common is silent inflammation? Experts argue in detail about the frequency. “But if you take into account that 5 to 7% of the population already suffer from chronic inflammatory diseases, then it can be assumed that a third (or more) of the population suffers from one form or another of silent inflammations,” says Niemann. What are the causes of silent inflammation? Anyone who deals with the topic of silent inflammation will be shocked to discover that a lot of everyday life causes silent inflammation. Much depends on what we eat how much we move (at least 30 minutes / day with a pulse of 180 minus age) how big the waist circumference is (should be less than 94 centimeters for men), how much stress we have what environmental toxins we are exposed to Too much sugar and too much white flour are strongly suspected of triggering silent inflammation when eating . Like excessive alcohol consumption , they contribute to the development of fatty liver , which, like being overweight and above all too much belly fat, provokes chronic inflammation in the body. Niemann: “The environment is full of influences that affect both body and psyche. For example, they arise from inflammatory substances that occur in many foods. These include certain flavor enhancers and additives, residues of pesticides or so-called wrong fats such as certain trans fats or saturated fats are consumed. “ Which foods help against inflammation? It is amazing how easy a healthy life can be and the wide range of ways there are to counteract silent inflammation in your body. Above all, you can control a lot through diet. “Anyone who drinks coffee or tea has less inflammation in them, as do those people who can keep their sugar content below 20% , ideally below 10% of the required daily calorie requirement”, says expert Niemann. To curb the silent threat of internal inflammation, foods high in antioxidants should be on your diet regularly. Antioxidants are chemical compounds that protect your body from damaging free radicals by neutralizing them. Ideally, these ingredients should be found in your food every day: Onions garlic turmeric pepper ginger cinnamon chives “Switching to organic food can reduce the amount of pesticides ingested by more than three quarters, which in turn reduces the silent inflammation in us,” explains Niemann or plastic containers should be avoided because of the coating chemicals. ” It is also important which ingredients are used for cooking, with fresh foods with lots of spices, vegetables and fruit being preferred, and whether the ingredients have been sufficiently washed. What else can help against inflammation? In addition to nutrition, these components are extremely important for reducing disease-causing inflammation in the body: good sleep , lots of movement avoiding or coping with stress such as noise healthy gums, good dental care sufficient social contacts Of course there are also drugs (e.g. anti-inflammatory drugs or glucocortcoids) that can stop the inflammation in the body. However, for the most part these have enormous side effects and mostly suppress the immune system. Your doctor will only prescribe them in very severe cases. Better to try your diet and your lifestyle first.