The World Health Organization (WHO) designated October 10 as Mental Health Day in 1992 to highlight mental illness and its impact on lives internationally. Some of the 196 countries that are members of the WHO celebrate the week of October 6-13 to provide mental health education, awareness and advocacy globally. This year’s theme is “Mental Health and Older Adults.” Older adults are at risk for increased isolation and financial difficulty, and this may have a negative effect on physical as well as mental health. Many medical conditions such as stroke, diabetes and high blood pressure, to name a few, are all risk factors for depression. Older people may be reluctant to seek mental health services due to stigma, financial concerns, or fear of loss of independence. Continue Reading →
Conclusion of a two-part column
Last week’s column described some changes during pregnancy besides your growing abdomen — and perhaps your breasts, too — that may take you by surprise. As with many pregnancy changes, hormones and genetics play a major role in most of these changes in your looks. Here are a few more such changes you may notice:
Increased melanin can cause darks spots, especially on the cheeks, forehead, upper lip and arms. These pigment changes will become worse if you don’t protect yourself from the sun. The medical term for this discoloration is melasma. What to do: Protect your face by using a sunblock that offers both UVA and UVB protection with an SPF of 30 or higher, wearing a hat with a broad brim and sun-protective clothing (Coolibar Sun Protective Clothing). If melasma develops, there are several approaches to treating it including topical fade creams, skin peels and lasers. Continue Reading →
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Melasma is a condition where one develops dark brown and gray patches most notably on the forehead, upper lip, nose and cheeks. It can also occur on the forearms and neck. I consider melasma to be a very rapid, uneven suntan.
Why should I care about melasma? Melasma is a condition that occurs in both men and women. Ninety percent of melasma cases occur in women; however, 10 percent of cases will occur in men. Continue Reading →