Do you have health insurance now? If you have health insurance now, take care of elective treatment while you can. If you lose your job, chances are that in difficult times your health insurance won’t last too long beyond your termination, particularly if the firm goes bankrupt. At best, you'll be offered the opportunity for costly COBRA coverage.
A Check List Before It's Too Late
#1 Mammography. Are you overdue for a mammography? I was and something unpleasant showed up. More friends than I can count have had breast cancer. Some are dead. Don't wait any longer. In our area of the country one in nine women get breast cancer.
If you have no insurance, most counties have free programs. Look into them today. If you are under 40 but have a history of breast cancer in your family, don't be turned away from preventive care. Ask your department of health where you can get a sonogram. If they resist, tell them you might have felt something. I
know knew two women in their 20s who died because they were not diagnosed in time.
Many women took hormones to cope with menopause and other issues before the link to breast cancer became clear. (There are also those who were misguided and took birth control pills.) There are alternates for coping with menopause. Take supplements to help with breast health. They can make a difference safely.
Prayer to Saint Agnes - Patron Saint of Those Who Suffer from Breast Cancer
O glorious St. Agnes, you served God in humility and confidence on earth and are now in the enjoyment of His beatific Vision in heaven because you persevered till death and gained the crown of eternal life. Remember now the dangers that surround me in the vale of tears, and intercede for me in my needs and troubles. Amen.
#2 Blood Pressure. This is a simple test that is actually available for free in libraries and supermarkets across the nation. Know your baseline and work from there. Be sure you haven't taken any cough or cold medications before you check as they can send your blood pressure soaring. High blood pressure is a silent killer. You don't feel any different but it's there. Your heart can go into overdrive to counteract its effects, and then - wham! You're in trouble. One simple step we can all take is watching our salt intake.
#3 Stress is another factor that hurts our health especially in these trying times. Your doctor might check for high levels of stress if you have headaches or other unexplained body aches. Before you start taking Xanax or other potentially harmful drugs, consider natural solutions. Of course, the first solution is prayer.
Fight Stress Headaches with 13 Herbal Remedies
Stress headaches can be caused by a number of things including dehydration, hunger, grinding your teeth, a food allergy, sleeping on your neck wrong, giving up caffeine, and of course STRESS. Whatever the cause, there’s no mistaking that throbbing discomfort that plague so many Americans. Here are 13 natural remedies to attack your agony head on.
Tension, Hormonal, Seasonally-Occurring? Try...
Regular, Ongoing Head Distress? Try...
- Magnesium - Replaces a magnesium deficiency that can cause head discomfort.
- Vitamin B-12 - Refills a Vitamin B-12 deficiency that can trigger discomfort.
- Ginger - Stimulates circulation, thins the blood, and helps blood flow to the surface.
- Valerian - Relaxes the mind and, encourages a healing sleep.
- St. John’s Wort - Promotes a positive outlook after too many “blue” days.
- Licorice - In Chinese herbal medicine, licorice root is an ingredient found in almost all herbal formulas for the purpose of “harmonizing” the separate herbs involved. One of its many active constituents—glycyrrhizin—has been found to possess anti-inflammatory action.
- Angelica - For centuries, Angelica Root has been hailed as the ultimate remedy and a blood purifier. Angelica is believed to be a health-protective herbal, as it blooms on the day of Saint Michael the Archangel.
- Skunk Cabbage - Also known as symplocarpus foetidus,this herb soothes the nervous system, which helps to reduce stress and mental fatigue.
- Chamomile - Calms the body. Ancient Greeks, Romans, and Indians used this herb to treat disorders of the kidneys, liver, and bladder, and mind. Chamomile works well to promote healing.
- Kava Kava - It’s been used for three thousand years by the people of the South Pacific for ceremonial, social and medicinal purposes. Today, kava is proven to relax and de-stress.
- Melatonin - Physiologists know that melatonin helps to regulates sleep patterns, and thus promote overall health.
- Cayenne - This herb enhances delivery of more oxygen to your brain, and relieves discomfort.
- 5-HTP - Your body needs 5-HTP to make serotonin, needed for normal nerve and brain function. It promotes calmness and sleep.
Feel better by taking care of your everyday stress in healthy ways. Visit Botanic Choice to discover other natural de-stressers. It's also good to avoid dehydration or hunger. Take your regular breaks and lunch times. Eat and drink sensibly. Most importantly, be good to yourself!
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Consult your physician.
#4Blood Work. Simple tests can check for diabetes, high cholesterol, thyroid disorders, low iron or too much iron and a whole range of other problems. Ask that a full panel be performed while you're still covered.
Prayer: Precious Blood of Jesus - Cover Me!
If you have no insurance - or know someone who is at risk for cancers, diabetes, or even STDs - or if you're afraid that a diagnosis will rule you out for obtaining health insurance, life insurance or even a new job - Get Tested can give you the information you need with the privacy and peace of mind you want.
If you know some one who is diabetic or borderline diabetic
Click here to receive a free Blood Glucose Meter.
#5 Chest X-ray. The amount of radiation from an occasional chest x-ray is negligible. Check for early signs of lung cancer, emphysema, tuberculosis or other problems. You don't smoke? You haven't been exposed to asbestos? How on earth would you get TB? There are so many carcinogens in our environment that all of these are possible. The downside of an influx of undocumented workers who seek low paying jobs in places like restaurants means that you could be exposed to the pathogens that are no longer caught by immigration screenings. Just a tiny bit of sputum coughed onto a handrail or tracked into your house is enough to make you very sick.
#6 Stress Test and EKG. These are critical in discovering possibly deadly heart and circulatory blockage issues. Seven years ago, my normally robust husband started feeling weak and out of breath after walking just a short distance. Thank God he went to the doctor and had a stress test. He was immediately sent to the hospital where it was discovered that three of his arteries were blocked over 90%. He had an emergency quadruple bypass that saved his life. Please. Don't put these tests off.
#7 Fecal Occult Blood Test and Sigmoidoscopy or Colonoscopy. Blood in the stool can be a sign of colon cancer, and a simple, albeit disgusting, test can check on that easily. The even more unpleasant flexible sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy is recommended for everyone over 40 and should be done every four years. Colon cancer is on the rise, considering our diets of processed food and exposure to chemical toxins. Anyone with a family history should be especially vigilant about taking care of these tests. My own mother had large growths despite a very healthy lifestyle and diet. This is something on my own to-do list.
#8 For Women - Pap Smear and Pelvic Exam. Cervical cancer and ovarian cancer are also on the rise and they are deadly. Take care of these immediately while you are insured.
#8 For Men - Prostate and PSA Starting at age 50 men should have a prostate examination and PSA blood tests to check for enlargement and prostate cancer. Many counties have included these tests in free screening events, like those for women who need mammograms.
#9 Skin Cancer Detection. If you have health insurance, go now. Aside from melanomas, there are a world of other problems that can lead to an untimely and unpleasant death. Again, there are often health fairs that offer free check ups, but a whole body examination is best.
#10 Get Your Shots. In nearly every community there are programs for free flu shots. Sign up and get yours early. Look around for low cost shots for shingles - the very painful adult onset version of chicken pox.
Make sure your children’s immunizations are up to date. Find out what they absolutely must have and avoid the rest. Especially those that contain cells from aborted fetuses. Speak with your doctor about alternatives. Here is a statement from the Vatican on the subject. Learn more here.
If you can, get inoculated for meningitis. It’s no longer just a dorm disease. Learn more at the CDC.
Most of us put these simple tests off until it's too late. In the event of societal collapse or a pandemic emergency, health care, even for those in dire need, will be scarce.
Do it today.
Pick up the phone and make all of those appointments immediately.
Beyond that, get healthy, lose weight if you need to, get strong.
Talk to your doctor about how improving your health might help you to eliminate costly medications.
If you have prescriptions, see if you can get them refilled now. Speak to your health care provider frankly and express your worries about your continued ability to pay for needed medication if you lose your job.
If you have no insurance and can't afford to pay for your prescriptions look into programs that can help before you need to. One is Partnership for Prescription Assistance. Another one is Free Medicine. And still another is RxAssist. If you don't find help there, keep looking and be insistent. Call your health department and ask for help.
Do all of this before you need to.
Do it now.
Go to the dentist now. Toothaches are no fun and dental care, even with insurance is expensive. Most dental problems can be avoided by routine check ups which most of us don't keep up with. If you have dental insurance, go for a check up now and be sure to get your teeth cleaned regularly, too. Flossing and the regular use of a waterpik will help keep your teeth and gums healthy.
Do you use a statin drug like Lipitor? If you do, be sure to take Co-Enzyme Q. Most dentists won't tell you this, but statins can cause serious dental problems and Co-Enzyme Q can help. My husband and I found out a little too late. Oh, and while you're at it, visit this site to check out what's in your toothpaste. You might be afraid to brush again.
If you find yourself without insurance or if you have insurance but can't afford the co-pays, there is still help available. Look into these options in your area before you need them.
Dental schools are a good source of quality, reduced-cost or no-cost dental care. Most of these teaching facilities have clinics to allow dental students get the experience they need while closely overseen by experienced, licensed dentists. Post-graduate and faculty clinics are also available at most schools. One friend from our parish has gotten quality implants this way. Find schools in your area by calling your state dental society or association or visit the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research website for a full list.
The Bureau of Primary Health Care, a division of the Health Resources and Services Administration, supports federally-funded community health centers across the country that provide free or reduced-cost health services, including dental care. Call the HRSA Information Center toll-free at 1-888-ASK-HRSA (1-888-275-4772) or visit their web site at http://ask.hrsa.gov/pc/ for a list of centers in your area.
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services administer three federally-funded programs: Medicare, Medicaid, and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). Funding for these programs is shrinking dramatically, so check to see who is covered, what is covered and where you have to go for care. Personally, I'd rather go to a dental school, but that might not always be an option.
· Medicare is a health insurance program for people who are 65 years and older or for people with specific disabilities. Medicare does not cover most routine dental care or dentures. Visit http://www.cms.hhs.gov/MedicareDentalCoverage/.
· Medicaid is a state-run program that provides medical benefits, and in some cases dental benefits, to those who are eligible. Each state sets guidelines regarding who is eligible and what services are covered. As more and more states reach the point of near-bankruptcy, fewer and fewer services will be offered. Be aware that if you have a troublesome tooth that might be saved through a root canal, you won't get one. You'll get an extraction. Most states provide limited emergency dental services for people age 21 or over, while some offer comprehensive services. For most individuals under the age of 21, dental services are provided under Medicaid. Visit http://www.cms.hhs.gov/MedicaidDentalCoverage/.
· SCHIP helps children up to age 19 who are without health insurance. SCHIP provides medical coverage and, in most cases, dental services to children who qualify. Dental services covered under this program vary from state to state. Visit http://www.cms.hhs.gov/SCHIPDentalCoverage/.
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services can provide detailed information about each of these programs and refer you to the appropriate state program - if you can get someone to answer the phone.
If you have Medicare, call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). Others should call 1-877-267-2323 or visit the CMS web site at http://www.cms.hhs.gov.
Try your state or local health department to see if they can refer you to a program in your area for free or low-cost dental care. Ask them about their financial assistance programs, too. Some of them might have money left, but don't count on it. Call The United Way. You've probably donated to them over the years and now it's time for them to give back a little. Ask for a referral and tell them you need help.
Make sure your parish outreach has this information.
They do the best they can, but circumstances are changing and we all need to be smart about resources so we can be Christ to those in need.
Copyright 2008 Christine Hirschfeld Catholic Home and Garden All Rights Reserved
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Blessing of Medicine
The Roman Ritual presents the prayer below to ask God's blessing on medicine. Many doctors testify that the prayer said over it eliminates collateral effects and makes it a more effective remedy.
V: Our help is in the name of the Lord.
R: Who made heaven and earth.
V: The Lord be with you.
R: And with your spirit.
Let us pray: O our God! You marvelously created man and more marvelously redeemed him. Please help with Your numerous aids the human condition in the land of Your children, who are always
susceptible to diverse infirmities. Answer our prayers and bless these medicines (and medical instruments) so that everyone who uses them or is under their influence may enjoy the presence of
Your providence in body and soul.
You who, through Your Son Jesus Christ, healed so many infirmities, and who reigns with Him and the Holy Spirit forever and ever. Amen.
(Sprinkle with Holy Water)
Colon Care is essential to good health and it can help you lose weight, too.
Take a Look at Purity Health below. You'll find offers for free 30 day supplies (pay shipping only) Multi Super Greens Vitamins, Omega 3 Fish Oil and HA Joint Health Supplements.
Botanic Choice has a wide range of $5 nutritional supplements with free shipping
House of Nutrition offers lots of sales on premium health products
Organica Research offers a wide range of colon cleansing products to help you rid yourself of toxins or to loose weight. (Did you know that the average American is walking around with about 20 lbs of fecal matter inside?)
Use coupon codes for 10% Off
10OFFOR - Most products
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10OFFUCC - Ultimate Colon Cleanse
SmartBomb is a well known mail order firm where you can find your favorite brands of vitamins like Twin Lab, Stockbridge Naturals, Solgar and others for 65% off regular prices.
If you live in Canada, FemMed offers natural solutions to common female issues. Those in the USA might want to compare prices as they are competitive.
What I am about to write here will sound like a crazy sales pitch. But it's not. Every word is true. We have a number of close Filipino friends from Church. They are all incredibly healthy and frankly I was shocked to learn their true age. Granted that most of them eat a diet that is rich in fish and vegetables, but not all of them do. The one thing they have in common is that they all drink ionized water. The health benefits that they claim are amazing, to say the least. One claims the disappearance of a cancerous tumor. I don't know if that's true or not, but I have no reason to think she was lying about it. Others have lost weight, cleared up acne, and lost any digestive problems they suffered. Some of them are married to men of European descent who, like me, were skeptical. After using this water for several months, they are now believers. As for my family, the jury is out. We have just begun using it - collected in bottles from a friend's home. I'll let you know how it goes. I do know this. The water that comes out of our tap tastes awful and I use a Brita filter that removes a lot of awful stuff that you can see.
Visit the site below and decide for yourself. This type of water is also called Kangan water, but this machine is much less expensive than Kangan or the Jupiter Water Ionization System.
The basic premise is that this machine produces alkaline water. It doesn't taste any different than regular water ... well, except the awful water in our community which even smells bad! The acid water is removed from tap water. It's so strong that you can save it to use for cleaning your oven! Really.
The machine itself is the size of a bread machine and easily attaches to a faucet.
Take a look at the resources area for scientific explanations of how it works.
FREE (Or Almost Free)
In other areas of this site - like the "What to do when there is no work" page - you'll find information on Mystery Shopping. There are a few companies that need shoppers to go to well known eyeglass shops to evaluate them. You can get a check up and some inexpensive eye glasses using coupons that are online or in the Sunday papers If you have a prescription plan, so much the better. You'll get that money back in your pocket. You'll have to lay the money out initially, but after you submit a successful report you will receive $95. If you're in a remote location, you can probably negotiate it up another $20-40. Learn more about mystery shopping at www.mysteryshop.org and the Volition Forum
If you can't find one of these opportunities, see if you can get a free check up and walk out with a prescription. You'll be able to get inexpensive eyeglasses online at one of these businesses.