The Basics of Wine Tasting

Do you know that wine tasting is more than just gulping down your wine? Wine tasting is an art, and it involves going through certain steps to let you better understand the complexities of each glass of wine offered to you. These steps may be classified into five basic activities and observations:

1. Color

One good way to observe the wine color is by holding your glass of wine upon a white background. Color ranges depending on whether you are tasting a red or a white wine. Color is an important consideration in wine tasting because it helps identify the age of the wine. White wine gains in color as it age while red wine loses its color. Other factors can also affect the color of the wine such as the variety of grapes used, how the wine is aged, and if the wine is unfiltered or not.

For white wine, color can change from pale yellow green to brown as it ages. For red wine, color changes from purple then to red and brown.

2. Swirling

Swirling is also an essential part of wine tasting. It aerates the wine to give you a better look at its overall appearance and also allows you to better smell the wine. When swirling, carefully observe the color as well as how the “legs” trickle the inside of the glass after the swirling has stopped. It is said that if the wine has more noticeable legs, it has a fuller body and has a stronger taste.

3. Smelling

Smelling is perhaps the most important component of wine tasting. It is said that an average person is able to smell more than 2,000 different scents. On the average, wine has more than 200 different scents. After swirling, smell the wine for three times. Think about the kind of smell it has. At third smell, you should be able to know the kind of “nose” the wine has. Nose is a term used by wine tasters to describe the aroma and bouquet of the wine.

Smelling also helps you identify certain components in the wine such as the variety of grapes used. When tasting white wine, it would help you if you are familiar with the major varieties of grapes used to produce this kind of wine. They are the Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Riesling and Blanc. For red wine, common varieties include Merlot, Pinot Noir, and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Smelling also helps you identify certain defects in wine. Normally, wine with traces of vinegar, sherry, dank or musty smell and sulfur has particular defects or overuse of certain substances.

4. Tasting

In tasting, you can normally perceive sour, sweet and bitterness. Different tastes can be found in various parts of the tongue. Sweet taste can be found at the tip of the tongue. The varietal characteristics of grapes as well as the tannin can be tasted at the middle of the tongue while the acidity can be tasted at the sides. To have the best tasting experience, try to sip a wine and then draw a little air inside your mouth to further aerate the wine and bring out its flavors.

5. Savoring

After tasting the wine, put your glass and relax for a while to savor the taste. Think about your overall experience and impressions of the wine you just tasted. Think about if the wine is full or light bodied, if it is acidic or not, or if the tannin is too strong. Also think about the best food you would enjoy eating with your wine. And finally, decide if it is your kind of wine or not.

The next time you drink wine, consider these steps to better appreciate the wine you are drinking.

10 Health Benefits of Drinking Wine

If you are one of those people who drink wine especially after meals, there is good news for you. Drinking wine offers many health benefits that you can possibly enjoy. But it is important to note that these benefits only come when you drink in moderation. According to the American Heart Association, moderate wine consumption involves drinking up to two four ounces of glasses in a day.

1. Reduces the risk of heart attack

Wines are generally rich in resveratrol, an antioxidant that is present in the skin of grapes. Resveratrol contains properties that can help reduce bad LDL cholesterol and protect the blood vessels of the heart.

2. Reduces the risk of stroke

A study conducted on 80,000 women aged between 30 and 55 shows that light drinkers are 20 percent less prone to having a stroke. The presence of resveratrol in wine also boosts the enzymes that protect the brain from contacting damage due to stroke.

3. Protects you from cancer

The phenolic compounds in wine are also said to be beneficial in avoiding your risk of certain cancers such as prostate cancer, colon cancer, breast cancer or oral cancer. It could also slow down the progress of liver cancer. Wine also has a good track record in fighting against Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

4. Prevents Dementia

Dementia results when the amyloid protein builds up and forms sticky balls on the brain, killing brain cells. Researchers found out that resveratrol can stop the buildup of these pesky proteins, protecting you from memory loss.

5. Boosts your testosterone level

Drinking wine in moderation also proves to be beneficial in boosting your testosterone, thereby boosting your muscle mass and stamina and promoting speedy recovery from injuries. A study found out that the quercetin component in wine prevents certain enzymes from blocking testosterone from the body.

6. Lowers your risk of suffering depression

A seven-year study conducted on 5,500 respondents who were light-to-moderate wine drinkers showed proof of the ability of wine to lower the risk of suffering from depression. The resveratrol component in wine boosts the area of the brain that keeps a person from feeling down.

7. Lowers risk of type 2 diabetes

Over a period of 12 years, a study was conducted on more than 350,000 individuals at the VU University Medical Center in Amsterdam. This study found out that moderate wine drinking lowers your risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes by 30 percent. The same study was also published in Diabetes Care in 2005.

8. Reduces the risk of heart problems

Tanin in red wine contains procyanidins which are capable of protecting the heart from any abnormalities and diseases. This was proven by a study published in Nature in 2006.

9. Lowers risk of developing cataracts

According to a study on 1,379 respondents in Iceland, wine drinkers are 43 percent less likely to develop cataracts than non-wine drinkers.

10. Promotes longevity

On animals, several components in wine activate a group of protein which helps animals live longer. This is also true among humans. Additionally, a Finnish study conducted on more than 2,000 individuals over a period of 29 years showed a reduction in mortality rate by about 34 percent among wine drinkers as opposed to spirit or beer drinkers.

Contrary to what some people may believe, wine is not bad in itself because it offers numerous health benefits. The key here is drinking in moderation and not in excess.

Red Wine and Acne

As much as I love red wine, I was able to research some of its benefits and disadvantages. Wine is known to have many health benefits including protection against certain cancers, heart problems and some forms of degenerative and brain diseases. However, drinking wine, particularly red wine, also has disadvantages. One of them is that it may cause you to develop or worsen your acne problem. And this is something that wine drinkers like me ought to know.

Acne including nodular acne is a serious skin problem because it can be painful and embarrassing if you are infected on highly visible areas such as your face. There are a number of factors that can cause acne including genetics, food habits and lifestyle. However, regardless of the cause of your acne, red wine can aggravate them.

Red wine does not automatically cause a person to develop acne. However, excessive and regular drinking of red wine may indirectly cause acne or aggravate it. Red wine may cause an imbalance in the hormone production and flow. This in turn may cause many side effects including excessive production of sebum which is fatty oil. When sebum combines with dead cells, it will clog the pores, causing oil buildup. As more sebum is trapped, the pores will also enlarge and bulge outward the skin, becoming acne.

Apart from sebum production, there are other reasons why you should not drink red wine excessively. Red wine is diuretic, which means that it causes the body cells to push water out. Without adequate water in the body, red wine slows down the detox process of people with acne, thus aggravating the condition. For many acne sufferers, drinking red wine may also cause redness and irritation on the affected area. One reason for this is that most winemakers add substantial amounts of sulfites to wine to prevent oxidation and bacterial spoilage. But some people including those with acne are allergic to sulfites, causing them to develop allergic skin reactions. Moreover, most red wines are also high in sugar yeast content, making it a perfect breeding ground for bacterial growth, which in turn causes or aggravates acne.

Surprisingly, moderate red wine drinking is healthy to the skin. Red wine is high in polyphenol, an antioxidant which can help keep the skin healthy. It is also helpful in fighting against free radicals and in stimulating blood circulation, promoting skin rejuvenation, elasticity and a glowing skin. Red wine also has stimulating properties that can help soften wrinkles and fight against skin aging. Furthermore, red wine contains resveratrol and other properties that have a detoxifying and nourishing effect to the skin.

Of course, the key to enjoying these benefits lies on how much red wine you regularly drink. If you drink in moderation, you will enjoy these many skin benefits. If you consume in excess, however, you will suffer certain skin problems including acne. Also, it is important to note that drinking red wine or other alcoholic drinks may have varying effects from person to person.

If you are suffering from acne, aside from drinking red wine moderately, you may also find remedies such as using creams or trying out salicylic acid peel or laser treatment.

Knowing the possible effects of drinking red wine, I am now more cautious about how much red wine I should drink. It should also serve as a caution for other wine drinkers.

How to Deal with Bunions

Have you ever experienced discomfort or pain when walking because of foot deformity? Although I don’t have foot deformities, I also experience this same problem whenever I use tight footwear. To avoid this problem, I make sure that I wear comfortable shoes especially if I know that I will be walking or standing for long hours.

I know of some people who have been suffering from unnecessary pain in their foot for many years before they finally sought treatment. Had they visited their doctor earlier to diagnose their conditions, they could have ended their pain sooner. But I learned a lot from their experience. Any persistent pain in the feet should not be taken lightly as it may be a serious condition called bunion.

Many people are not aware on what causes bunions. There are even misconceptions about bunions, causing some people to simply ignore their symptoms. But bunions are more than just a bump on the base joint of the big toe. It is a serious deformity which causes the bones in the big toe to misalign, producing a bump. Bunions develop progressively over the years. They first begin with a leaning of the big toe to the opposite side until the bones change in angle and slowly produce a bump. If not corrected, the bump will increasingly become prominent, causing discomfort or pain later on. Other symptoms include soreness, redness or inflammation, numbness, and burning sensation in the affected big toe.

There are various reasons why people develop bunions. Some types of feet are simply more prone to this condition. Also, some people develop them because of constantly wearing certain footwear such as those with high heels or with pointed toes. Also, if your daily activities or work involves standing for long hours, you are at risk of developing this condition.

Treatment for bunions can only be started when your doctor has diagnosed the problem. That is why it is important that you should pay attention to what is happening in your toes. Any redness, sores or deformity must not be taken lightly. If your doctor detects that you have a bunion, several treatment options are available.

Doctors normally recommend using best shoes for bunions to reduce the pressure in your toes. You may also have to use pads over the bunion to minimize the pain. Your doctor may also recommend reducing your time spent standing, as it causes much pressure on the toes, thereby increasing the pain. In certain cases, oral medication such as ibuprofen may also be necessary to alleviate the pain. Some less common forms of treatment may also be used such as injection therapy and using orthotic devices. However, if these remedies fail to relieve the pain and your bunion already interferes with your normal activities, your best remedy may be surgical treatment.

It is important to note that because of the progressive behavior of bunions, the earlier you get treatment, the bigger is your chance of correcting the deformity. That is why it is important to not neglect earlier symptoms of bunion but to see your doctor immediately.

Basic Facts About Catfish Angling

Fishing may not be one of my interests but I have met quite a number of people who are into angling, a fishing technique that uses a line and a fishing rod. I have met most of them during wine parities. It became of particular interest to me since some of them mentioned about catfishes that go well with wine. I was thinking I might try it one of these days.

Catfishes are one of the most popular groups of fishes among fish anglers. In the US alone, there are more that 7 million catfish anglers. The wide distribution, potential sizes, fighting abilities, simplicity to catch and table-fare qualities of catfishes are among the reasons why beginners and advanced anglers prefer them over other fishes.

Catfishes have high adaptability because of their acute senses. They thrive in lakes, rivers, reservoirs and streams in a wide range of water conditions from clear water to muddy water. With their exceptional sense of smell and taste, they can detect the smallest traces of scent up to the billionth parts per level. This is the reason why many catfish anglers use stinkbaits and odiferous offering like cut fishes to attract them. In clean water, they have a very good vision and can also hear well. They have the ability to detect vibrations with their lateral senses. And this is something anglers must take into consideration when fishing.

One of the biggest questions among catfish anglers is whether to fish at daytime or at nighttime. Many anglers suggest that nighttime is better, but you may still be able to have a good catch during daytime. There are baits that are excellent during daytime especially during cooler climates when the water is cold. It is also ideal to fish during daytime during prespawn because it is when catfishes feed aggressively. However, during summer months or when the water is warm, many anglers prefer to fish during nighttime.

There are several species of catfish that are popular among anglers. Among them are the flathead and the blue catfish which are known for their food quality as a trophy. They possess unique qualities that require know-how to catch them. Few anglers are interested in fishing smaller species of catfish such as the cory catfish and others.

Flathead catfishes are among the large-sized catfishes. They mostly feed at night and prefer live fishes. That is why when you prefer this species, it is best to fish during nighttime and using live baits such as large sucker, bullhead or a carp. You can find them around tangled woods, downed trees and in deep freshwater holes.

Blue catfishes are also large-sized catfishes. They can be found in reservoirs and rivers, mainly in the south central, southeastern and eastern parts of the US. They eat both live and dead catfish bait in the bottom of the water, but they can also be found in open water sometimes.

Many, if not most, of the people I know who are into catfish angling consider it a reason for celebration when they catch a huge one. And that is when the wines come pouring out. I wish one day I could also try catfish angling.

Alcohol Consumption and Kidney Stones

If you don’t have kidney stones, then you are one lucky person. I personally know a number of people including some relatives who have kidney stones. And what do kidney stones feel like according to them? They all share the same answer: painful. Experts believe that one in ten women and one in five men will have kidney stones in their lifetime. These stones are caused by several risk factors including gout, overactive parathyroid gland, kidney diseases and genetic predisposition.

What interests me about this particular condition is that I found several resources online that say alcohol consumption including wine consumption may cause kidney stones. Being a wine enthusiast myself, I studied more on this subject.

Kidney stones develop when substances present in your urine including uric acid, oxalate, calcium and phosphorous become concentrated. Common kidney stones include calcium stones and uric acid stones which are common in people with gout, struvite stones which are common among people with chronic kidney infections, and cysteine stones which result when cysteine leaks into the urine.

Kidneys stones can be prevented by drinking at least eight glasses of fluids every day. The more fluids you can drink, the less prone you will be to developing kidney stones. But it is important to remember that not all liquids have the same effect. Water is still the best fluid you can take because water dilutes your urine, making it less concentrated. Alcoholic beverages, on the other hand, can either have a negative or positive effect on your chances of having kidney stones.

There are important facts about alcoholic beverages and their connection with kidney stones. Below are five facts to keep in mind about the effects of alcohol on kidney stones:

1. Purines can wreak havoc.

Alcoholic beverages contain high amounts of purines which are then broken down by the body into uric acid. Normally, this acid should be excreted in the urine. But when there is much uric acid than what the body excretes, it can accumulate and develop into uric acid kidney stones.

2. Dehydration increases your risk of developing kidney stones.

When a person is dehydrated, the urine also becomes concentrated, allowing the formation of kidney stones. Not only can inadequate water intake cause dehydration but also excessive alcohol drinking. Alcohol is known to have a diuretic effect. In moderation, it offers benefits in cleansing the kidney by making more urine. However, in excess, it dehydrates the body, leading to concentrated urine.

3. Alcohol allows a person to gain weight which can subsequently make a person at risk of developing kidney stones.

A person who consumes excessive amounts of alcoholic beverage can become overweight or obese. According to a study conducted at the John Hopkins University, obesity can easily double a person’s chances of acquiring kidney stones. They speculate that it is caused by hormonal and metabolic changes experienced by obese people.

4. Excessive drinking of alcohol can lead to irreversible kidney damage.

Chronic alcohol drinkers are prone to irreversible kidney damage in conjunction to liver disease. Long-term side effects include disruption of the body’s acid-base balance, lower sodium excretion, and difficulty in urine production. All these conditions may lead to having kidney stones.

5. Moderate drinking helps.

In contrast to the risk of kidney stones among heavy or chronic drinkers, people who drink one bottle of beer a day are 40 percent less prone to develop kidney stones, while wine drinkers get 33 percent. This shows that moderate drinking helps a person avoid kidney stones.

Knowing these facts, drink wine moderately since wines, particularly red wine, contain alcohol.

Facts You Should Know About Stretch Marks

Most women like me invest time, effort and money to take care of their skin. I believe that taking care of my skin is part of basic personal care. However, it is unavoidable to have skin imperfections. You could have pimples, scars or stretch marks. Among skin imperfections, stretch marks can be one of the most challenging to deal with.

Stretch marks are common among women. Many women consider them as an embarrassment especially if they appear in highly visible areas. They usually result when the skin does not return to normal after being stretched. They can appear as purple, red or pink in color which later fades into white or silver streaks on the skin. They can also appear on various parts of the body such as the thighs, breasts, arms, buttocks and abdomen.

There are several factors that can cause stretch marks. Essentially, they involve rapid stretching of the skin. The most common of them is pregnancy, excessive weight loss and sudden weight gain.

Pregnancy is marked by extreme stretching of the skin especially in the abdominal area. This is what causes stretch marks which become more obvious after childbirth. For those who are gaining weight, stretch marks are also unavoidable because the skin forces itself to stretch to accommodate extra body fat. This is pretty common among bodybuilders and weightlifters where the stretch marks usually appear on the arms. Additionally, some people who are losing weight can also quickly develop stretch marks.

There is still hope when you have stretch marks. If you have been asking how to remove stretch marks, there are several treatments on how to do it including salon and over-the-counter or prescribed treatments.

As soon as you notice your stretch marks, it is important to treat them as soon as possible before they can cause permanent damage to your skin. There are over-the-counter and prescribed skin creams that can do the trick. Most of these creams are useful in reducing the appearance of stretch marks but not to permanently remove them. Some women can attest that consistent application of certain skin creams can make your skin appear normal.

If you can afford it, laser therapy is another option for stretch mark removal. But of course, you should not do it without consulting a doctor. You may or may not be allowed to undergo this treatment depending on your age, the affected area in your body, and your skin condition.

For older stretch marks, one of the effective treatments is microdermabrasion which involves removal of the top layer of the skin so that a new skin layer can grow. This treatment involves a process that is similar to exfoliation but is more extreme.

For some women who prefer the quickest solution, they resort to having a tattoo over stretch marks. But this solution will not remove stretch marks; instead, it will just make your stretch marks less prominent as they will be covered in ink.

I have seen how stretch marks can be unsightly as some women can be seen in sexy party dresses but with obvious stretch marks in some part of their bodies. That is why many women really invest to remove their stretch marks. But regardless of what solution or treatment you choose, it is best to consult your doctor before doing so.

How to Use Vinegar for Sunburn

Many of us have experienced having sunburns on some occasions in our life. This is especially true in the summer when the sun’s rays hit a particular place at a steep angle, increasing the intensity of heat. And summer time is when people usually spend more time outdoors in a wide range of activities such as trekking, camping, playing in a nearby park, swimming, and others. With the intense heat, it can be inevitable to have sunburns after several hours of exposure under the sun.

Although sunburn can be prevented by applying a sunblock or sunscreen lotion, some people still have them for other reasons. When that happens, it is important that you know what to do with a sunburned skin.

One of the popular remedies for sunburn is vinegar. Vinegar for sunburn has been a tried-and-tested remedy for first degree sunburn and second degree sunburn. But of course, it is important to note that there are different types of vinegar, and one type may be more effective than the other. Apple cider vinegar tends to be effective for sun relief and in preventing the skin from developing blisters and from peeling.

When using vinegar to treat sunburns, it is recommended that two parts vinegar be diluted with one part water. But you should not directly apply vinegar to the affected part without first removing any lotion or chemicals you may have applied on your skin. You could take a lukewarm shower first and then wipe your body dry with towel. But make sure to be extra gentle with the sunburned skin.

Once you are through, here is what you could do:

1. Vinegar compress. Prepare your vinegar solution together with a small clean towel. Soak the towel into the mixture and then place it on the sunburned area and let it stay for up to 15 minutes. You could soak the towel again in the solution and repeat the process until you can feel some pain relief.

2. Vinegar bath. If the sunburned area in your body is large, taking a vinegar bath instead of vinegar compress may work better for you. Using the same solution of two parts vinegar and one part water, soak in the bath for up to 15 minutes, making sure that the sunburned area is covered in the mixture.

3. Vinegar spray. If you have a sunburned skin, it is also important to keep it hydrated. One way to do it is by spraying a vinegar solution in the affected area from time to time. You could use the same mixture as mentioned above.

To promote quick healing, you could do the above procedure every day until the sunburn is completely healed.

Vinegar can help neutralize sunburn and rejuvenate the skin’s pH level, thereby promoting healing and relief for sunburned skin. Do not underestimate the power of vinegar for treating sunburns. However, if you can see that it is not working or is not showing any sign of improvement, it is better to see your doctor for proper treatment.

How to Alleviate Dog Allergies

In my past blogs, I mentioned about my interest in dogs. I also have a number of friends who have dogs as their pets. What I like most about dogs is that they are very loyal and playful. They can be a great stress reliever from a long day of work.

Dogs are generally cuddly and huggable, but not until they develop allergies such as yeast allergy, food allergy and flea allergy that could affect the quality of their coat and cause lesions in different parts of their body. I just couldn’t bear seeing dogs scratching and gnawing on their skin because of the itchiness.

Allergies are one of the leading conditions that affect dogs. And allergies could manifest in various ways. Apart from skin irritations and poor quality of coat, respiratory symptoms may occasionally occur such as sneezing, coughing and ocular and nasal discharge. As for food allergies, aside from skin irritation and itchiness, the dog may also experience vomiting and diarrhea.

As a pet owner, you can alleviate the suffering of your pet with the following steps:

1. Avoid exposing your dog to toxins.

Think about the toxins that your dog is possibly exposed to, both indoors and outdoors. This could include cleaning products in the floors and furniture, and lawn pesticides and fertilizers among others. These toxins are potential irritants that can trigger allergic reactions to your dog. To reduce the allergens in your dog’s environment, it is best to switch to natural and environment-friendly products instead of using the toxic ones.

2. Watch out what you are feeding your dog.

Your pet’s food has a great impact on its immune response. Regular dog foods may be okay for some dogs, but these foods normally contain preservatives, fillers and unnecessary carbs which may put your pet at risk of developing allergic reactions especially if your dog is extra sensitive to some of these ingredients. There are now hypoallergenic dog foods that are more appropriate for dogs with sensitivity to common commercial dog foods.

3. Bathe your pet regularly.

Bathing is perhaps the most underutilized forms of preventive measure and even treatment for skin allergies. Bathing can rinse the allergens and toxic irritant that may be present in your dog’s coat or skin, thereby preventing allergic attacks or alleviating the symptoms.

3. Do not over-vaccinate or over-medicate your pet.

Dogs, in particular, seem to be the victims when it comes to the number of unnecessary vaccinations and, for example, flea and tick preventive medicines. Sadly, indoor housecats are vaccinated annually as well, despite their exposure to many viruses being non-existent.

4. Give your dog clean and fresh water.

Some of the irritants that trigger your dog’s allergic reaction may also be present in the water it is drinking. Be sure that you are giving your dog clean and fresh water with no contaminants. Change the water bowl from time to time to ensure it has clean water.

5. Do not over-medicate your dog.

Allergy medicines for dogs are readily available in many pet stores. But do not give them to your dog unless it is the last resort available. If you can use natural home remedies, they are still the best option. And before giving your dog any medication, be sure that it has your veterinarian’s approval. You don’t like to complicate things by giving your dog the wrong medicine.

Dogs are like humans that also suffer from certain forms of allergies. And just like humans, their allergies also need attention in order to be treated. If you care enough for your pet, it would be good to be familiar with the five steps listed above on how to prevent or alleviate allergies in dogs.

What is Anxiety Disorder and How to Recover From It?

Have you ever felt anxious or stressed for a long time? When I was still in school, I used to get stressed before an exam. Now that I am already working, I also get stressed or even anxious from time to time because of my work. But that feeling was never long-lasting. Normally, a sip of wine at the end of the day relieves me of stress and anxiety.

Stress and anxiety are normal emotions which each of us experiences from time to time especially during a busy or over-stimulating day. However, if your anxiety lingers for a long period of time and you cannot seem to recover from it, then it might be time to take a closer look at your condition to understand if it is still normal or not.

There is normal anxiety as well as abnormal anxiety. That feeling of cold sweat before an examination or job interview is normal anxiety, which is your body’s reaction to real stresses. More often, this kind of anxiety helps a person prepare for things ahead and motivate you to perform better. This kind of anxiety is short-lived and normally ends once you overcome the cause.

However, there is also long-term anxiety which affects some people. Layoffs, breakups or divorce, and death of a loved one are among the common causes of this kind of anxiety. And when anxiety takes its toll, the body also recognizes and responds to it. That is when a person starts to have trouble in concentration, sleeping and eating. Other symptoms may also come out such as an upset stomach, headache, lightheadedness or a panic attack. And when the anxiety becomes so severe, it could already interfere with a person’s day-to-day activities and normal thinking. And this is when anxiety becomes a disorder.

If you are experiencing anxiety disorder, you are not at a loss because this condition is treatable. Many people who have suffered from relationship anxiety and other forms of anxiety problems were able to recover after a series of treatment. But first, you have to see a psychologist for advice on the best course of treatment for your condition.

One of the approaches that psychologists use to treat anxiety disorder is through cognitive-behavioral therapy or CBT. This approach helps sufferers identify what is causing them anxiety so that they could also learn to manage it. There is also behavioral therapy which aims to help the sufferer reduce or even stop the negative behaviors relating to the disorder. Many patients also undergo cognitive therapy to help them understand how their thoughts could contribute to their anxiety. During this therapy, they will be taught how to change those thoughts.

Aside from these various therapies, there are also medications or supplements for anxiety that can help a person manage the anxiety. But these medications may have side effects which should be closely monitored.

Anxiety disorder is something that can affect any of us because of certain circumstances. Knowing how to deal with it helps us overcome this disorder before it takes a toll on us.

Important Facts About Mange in Cats

Many people have their own favorites when it comes to house pets. For me, I personally like cats and dogs because they are among the cutest and friendliest pets around. And because of my fascination with these animals, I have become familiar with their needs as well as with the diseases that could affect them such as roundworms in cats, pancreatitis in cats and others.

One of the less common diseases that could affect cats is mange. And because it is not as common as other diseases, most pet owners are not familiar with what it is and how to deal with it.

Otherwise known as Demodicosis, mange is an inflammatory skin disease caused by Demotex mites which are not visible with our naked eyes. Demotex mites are normally found in the skin of mammals and in most cases, they do not cause any abnormal conditions. However, when the immune system of the animal is compromised by illness or stress, or when the body produces excessive oil or hormones, Dermotex mites can multiply very fast leading to hair and skin problems as well as problems in the immune system.

Among most breeds of cats, the most noticeable symptoms include lesions, hair loss in the head, neck, and around the eyelids, scales, crusty patches and flank.

The severity of mange in cats, greatly depend on the type of mite that is causing it. One type is Demotex gatoi which is contagious and could be transmitted in other cats especially among cats living in the same household. Another is Demotex cati which is associated with immune and metabolic diseases in cats such as diabetes.

It can be hard to diagnose mange at home because normally, veterinarians conduct skin scraping for diagnosing this problem. Testing the hair samples also help in determining the specific type of mites that affects your cat. Sometimes, a urine test may also be done to rule out other possible causes of skin conditions.

In most cases, mange will just resolve itself over time. However, there are severe cases when mange is so severe that long-term medication becomes necessary to control the condition. Medications may include cortisone to relieve itching, application of lime sulfur dip, using medicated shampoo to rid of the mites and in some cases, hair clipping may also be necessary. There are also topical creams that can treat the mites and prevent their future infestation. Moreover, in all cases of mange, the health status of the cat must be constantly evaluated.

While mange is curable, prevention is still the best. Keeping your cat in good health is one way to prevent it. Another way is to keep your cat clean to discourage Demotex mites from overpopulating in its skin. Additionally, if your cat has chronic mange, breeding is discouraged because this condition may be passed on to the offspring.

If you have a cat at home, keeping it clean and in good health is necessary for preventing various feline diseases including mange. If you start to notice some symptoms of this condition in your cat, visiting your veterinarian should be your next course of action.

Challenges of ENFJ and INFJ Relationships

ENFJs and INFJs are among the people you would like to spend time with in a party or any gatherings. I have several friends who have these personalities and they are among the best I know. But I also know of some people who are ENFJ or INFJ but are not as successful in their interpersonal relationships, particularly romantic relationships.

MBTI (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator) ENFJ and INFJ personality types are known as masters of human dealings or interpersonal relationships. However, INFJ relationships are among the less successful relationships and INFJs are viewed as highly dissatisfied with their romantic relationships, but not so much for ENFJ relationships. But both personality types experience various challenges in their relationships.

There are three characteristics that are common among ENFJs and INFJs and they focus on intuition, feeling and judging (NFJ). Understanding these characteristics in relation to how they relate to other people can help us understand their relationship challenges. Generally, NFJs believe that they know what is in the other person’s mind more than what that person knows. They feel that they can see through anything superficial and they can apprehend a person’s motivations or dysfunctions. They are also strongly extravert in their judgment and evaluations of others. These tendencies more often cause relationship conflicts as most NFJ partners find it hard to handle these tendencies effectively. And when not effectively handled, they can cause dissatisfaction in their relationships.

Both INFJ and ENFJ are strong personality types. They can be assertive, intense and emotionally charged in their judgments, which oftentimes are not well-received by others. That is why it is best for them to be very careful about their judgments to avoid uncomfortable situations where they would have to hold their judgment or emotions inwardly. Furthermore, INFJs and ENFJs are generally great motivational speakers and they are also good in giving advice to people who seek them.

One of the challenges encountered by NFJs is in delivering their judgment if under romantic relationships. From their perspective, not all people can effectively handle a relationship. This assumption is often resented by their partners and viewed as a sign of egotism or arrogance. That is when relationship conflicts normally begin.

Additionally, complicating their relationship is their belief that they are beyond reproach to some degree because of their ability to know and interpret human behavior. While they are good in giving judgments and opinions, they may become hypersensitive or close-minded if they are the recipients of such judgments. Also, while they may be objective in evaluating the relationships of other people, they may be less objective in examining their own relationships. Seemingly, their fears and personal needs lead them to be less objective.

Examining the attributes of INFJs and ENFJs in connection with their relationships with other people, it is clear that they both have positive and negative aspects in their personalities. Generally, their focus on intuition, feeling and judgment is what makes their relationships at the top or at the bottom of the wheel.