Video Game Addiction: Now Considered a Real Disease according to WHO

Whether it’s FIFA 20 or FORTNITE, you sit down turn it on and the hours start to go by. What was once a way to blow off steam and relax has transitioned into a pattern of behavior that’s downright addictive.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Gaming disorder was recently classified as a mental health disorder in the 11th revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11).

According to the WHO, to be diagnosed, the behavior must be severe enough to cause “significant detriment in personal, family, social, educational, occupational or other necessary aspects of functioning.

The disorder is extremely rare.

The disorder isn’t sudden, but rather is considered as a diagnosis when the negative behavior lasts for about a year and takes over the player’s entire life— often to the impairment of a healthy diet and physical fitness.

If players are not participating in other important behaviours, such as going to work, school or doing homework, then it’s starting to become a problem.

Why does gaming become addictive?
The addiction involved with video games isn’t the same as with alcohol or drug use.

Gambling and gaming addictions have more of the same characteristics, the reward isn’t constant and is very unpredictable. This keeps players actively seeking the good feeling that’s produced in the brain when they reach a new goal or successfully complete an objective.

Video game developers understand a great deal about what’s called “schedules of reinforcement.” Many games, especially massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs), are designed to make players repeat behaviors in the quest of that gaming high. With virtual societies, money to earn and even spouses to be had, the draw to stay connected can become irresistible.

So who is at risk?
People who are prone to other mental health conditions, such as anxiety and depression, may rely on gaming to produce changes in brain chemistry that make them feel good temporarily.

Those at highest risk are adolescents and young adults, who may have greater difficulty judging the negative effects of gaming behavior.

Just as with gambling disorders, gaming disorder can still occur at nearly any age.

What aid can you get?
Putting some limits in place, for some people. In others, complete abstinence from gaming, might be required to treat addiction.

Parents may need to help their children set strict time limits adherence for gaming activities. But if video games are seriously impairing a person’s life, it may be best for them to cut out gaming altogether.
Like other compulsive or addictive behaviors, it’s often hard for individuals who’ve had problems with a specific behavior to develop greater control over it.

Proactively addressing the symptoms of gaming addiction may help individuals find their way to mental health providers who can offer accurate assistance for underlying or co-occurring conditions.

Mental health professionals will soon come to view other behaviors, such as excess use of social media, to be problematic as well.



Oral Sex & Throat Cancer; What You Should Know

You likely think of cervical cancer when you hear about the rising incidence of human papilloma virus (HPV). So you might be surprised to learn that this sexually-transmitted virus is also a leading cause of throat cancer (oropharyngeal cancer), and it spreads from person to person via oral sex.

Often times, oral cancers are linked to smoking but recent medical studies finds that HPV is directly related to some throat cancers. As a matter of fact, these cancers are becoming rampant, and soon will outpace new cervical cancer cases.

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data, there are 18,000 new cases of throat cancer diagnosed annually that are potentially related to HPV. About 10% of men and 4% of women have oral HPV, but only about 1% have the particular type associated with throat cancer: HPV 16.

Most of the time, HPV goes away all by itself and most people never know they have it. It’s not yet understood why HPV stays in others for decades, potentially causing throat cancer.

So what are the risks?
The All Time leading risk in contracting oral HPV and developing HPV-related throat cancer is having multiple oral sex partners. Having a higher number of partners increases the risk for both men and women.

Women experience less HPV-related throat cancer, researchers say, because they may have developed an immunological response to fight off cervical cancer. Men don’t possess the same immunity.

Smoking also raises the risk of developing throat cancer and decreases the response to treatment in patients that are diagnosed with HPV-related throat cancer.

How do you limit your risks?
There are five ways to significantly help you limit your risk of HPV-related throat cancer:
Don’t have many lifetime sexual partners: The increase in risk involved with greater numbers of sexual partners is even greater for oral sexual partners. Also, use condoms or dental dams consistently for some protection.
Get children and young adults vaccinated: For males and females between ages 9 and 45, a three-round HPV vaccine can ward off HPV infection and likely will lead to decreased risk of developing these HPV- related cancers.
Regular Screening & Checkup: Regular screening increases the chances you’ll catch a tumor early. Your doctor will feel your neck, examine your throat and inspect your mouth.
Visit your dentist. Get regular dental checkups because dentists are often the first practitioners to notice abnormalities with the tongue and tonsils.
Limit smoking and alcohol: Cut off smoking completely and reduce alcohol consumption to minimize your risk.

What symptoms should you watch for?
HPV-related throat cancer symptoms can often go unnoticed, because they’re difficult to discern by a non medical person. They could easily pass for a sore throat. If any of the symptoms lasts beyond two weeks, see your doctor or an ear, nose and throat specialist. The symptoms include:

Neck mass or swelling.
Ear pain.
Painful swallowing (like something is stuck in the back of your throat.
Snoring (as a new issue, without sudden weight gain).
Difficulty eating.
Vocal changes (hoarseness).
Sore throat.
Enlarged lymph nodes.
Unexplained weight loss.
HPV oral cancers slow to develop, but quick to spread
HPV-related cancers spread quickly to the lymph nodes. It’s not that the tumors spread quickly due to issues with the immune system — they spread quickly for unknown reasons. However, they show up first as large swollen lymph nodes because the body has an immune response at the site of the lymph nodes once tumor reaches this area, causing swelling and a noticeable neck lump.

It can take up to 30 years for HPV-related throat cancer to appear, making it most common in adults between the ages of 40 and 60.

Know your risks and stay protected.

Get vaccinated. You can book an appointment with the Reliance Family Clinics for the HPV vaccine. It’s three shots and you’re protected for life.



What Does It Mean When Your Poop Floats?

Floating poop is not usually a cause for concern. And floating poop is something very common and usually not a sign of anything wrong. Gas, dietary changes and some minor infections may cause your poop to float. Though some underlying health conditions can also cause persistent floating stool.

Your poop can reveal a lot about your health and here are some possible reasons behind floating stools:

Consumption of dietary fibre
Your poop is less likely to float when it is dense. When you consume foods that are rich in fibre, especially insoluble fibre it can make the poop less dense, making it a little light causing it to float.
Fibre-rich foods including fruits, vegetables and whole grains form an important part of a healthy meal. So, floating poop can be a result of fibre consumption, which is actually a sign of good health.
Women between the age bracket (19 – 50) years should consume at least 25g of fibre per day, while men of the same age bracket need at least 38g of fibre per day.


Gas also makes your poop less dense, causing it to float. Many high-fibre foods can cause gas. Many people also develop gas when they change their diet. So, if your poop floats after you eat something different from the usual, it’s completely normal.

Stomach infection
Infection in the gastrointestinal tract caused by E. coli can also cause the poop to float. The infection can cause gas and thus lower the density of poop.
Some stomach infections are temporary and go away without any treatment, usually after drinking plenty of fluids. However, if the symptoms persists you should see your doctor.

Gastrointestinal disorders

In some people, floating poop may be the first warning sign of gastrointestinal or bowel problem. When you have a floating stool along with other symptoms such as pain, diarrhoea, bloating or constipation, it can be a sign of an underlying gastrointestinal issue.

When the stool is fatty, it floats. The medical term for this condition is steatorrhea. It means your body is not adequately absorbing nutrients from foods you consume.
Some common conditions that may cause malabsorption include:
1. Lactose intolerance: It is a type of allergy to sugar that is found in milk and other dairy products.People who are lactose intolerant can experience diarrhoea and bloating when they consume dairy foods.

2. Small intestine disorders: As the name strongly indicates, it is a disorder that affects the small intestine and can lead to malabsorption. People who have had a small portion of their small intestine removed surgically to treat Crohn’s disease can also experience malabsorption ergo floating stool.

3. Liver and biliary disease: Our liver produces bile that helps the body digest food. When enough bile is not produced or it doesn’t reach the intestines, it may result in fatty stool. Liver disease such as blocked bile ducts and gallstones can also cause fatty and floating stool.

When you should see the doctor
1. If floating stool also looks greasy and the symptom persists for more than 3 days.
2. If you experience chronic constipation or diarrhoea.
3. When you start losing weight without a conscious effort.
4.Dark urine alongside floating poop.

Note: This article should not be considered as a substitute for a physician's take. Please consult your doctor if you're expeiencing any of the above stated.



Fantastic Nutirent-packed Foods For Maintaining Eye Health

Put your sight on these vision friendly path
The eyes flourish on nutritional diet, just as any other well functioning part of the body. Medical experts cited some particular foods that can help improve eyesight and prevent eye diseases and problems.
Take a close look at these six tips for nutrient-packed foods and drinks that may do your eyes some good:

This vegetable is loaded with two antioxidants: zeaxanthin and lutein. They may be linked to a lower risk of cataracts — a clouding of the eye’s lens — and age-related macular degeneration, which damages the central vision. These nutrients can be gotten from other leafy vegetables like Spinach.
Carrots. Eating carrots from time to time can improve your eyesight. Here’s why: The orange color in carrots indicates that they’re high in beta-carotene, which may help slow the progress of age related macular degeneration. Other orange-colored fruits and veggies — such as sweet potatoes and apricots are also pretty good for the eyes. Beta-carotene has a bonus night vision enhancing benefit. You’ve never seen a Rabbit wear glasses now, have you?
Certain fish — such as salmon, albacore tuna and sardines — are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. These essential fats help keep eyes healthy as we grow older. Omega-3s can be found in walnuts and chia seeds too.
Have more Citrus.
The vitamin C in citrus fruits — such as oranges and grapefruit — may help protect against cataracts and AMD. Other C-rich gems include cantaloupe, bell peppers, broccoli and strawberries.
Green Tea.
Green tea contains catechins. Those are plant compounds that may help lower the risk of cataracts and AMD.
Legumes are not left out.
Peas, beans and other legumes contain a very essential mineral: Zinc. It may help protect the eyes from the damaging effects of bright lights. You can just snack on some peanuts, they’re zinc filled and easier to chew on.


What's to know about body odor?

What is Body Odour?
Body odor is the perceived unpleasant smell our bodies can give off when bacteria that live on the skin break down sweat into acids.

Some say it is the smell of bacteria growing on the body, but it is actually the result of bacteria breaking down protein into certain acids.


Body Odor Causes

Poor hygiene
Surplus sweating
Certain medical conditions

Tips on preventing body odor

1. Always have a bath
Shower at least twice a day and you’ll wash away sweat as well as reduce the number of bacteria on your skin.

Sweat itself is odorless but when microscopic bacteria that dwell on your skin mix with sweat, they multiply quickly and give off a horrid smell

So washing thoroughly, especially areas prone to sweating, can reduce body odor.

Body odor is most likely to occur in the following places:

  • feet
  • groin
  • armpits
  • genitals
  • pubic hair and other hair
  • belly button
  • anus
  • behind the ears

2. Always wash up with antibacterial soap
Having a proper bath with an antibacterial soap will definitely take out the sweat, dirt as well as the bacteria count on your skin which in turn, gets rid of the odor.

3. Wipe Off Thoroughly
Once you’ve showered, be sure you dry yourself completely. Towel off and make sure you dry any areas where you sweat a lot.

It’s harder for bacteria to breed on dry skin.

4. Apply Deodorants or Antiperspirants
Using an over-the-counter (OTC) antiperspirant or deodorant (or a combination antiperspirant-deodorant) daily, after your shower, can help remedy armpit odor. Sometimes you need to try different kinds to see which one works best for you.

Stronger deodorants and antiperspirants are available without a prescription. Look for products that say on the label they are higher strength due to ingredients.

If you think you need even more help, you may want to ask your doctor about prescription antiperspirants.

Antiperspirants help to reduce the amount of sweat produced by temporarily blocking the pores that release sweat. .

5. Keep Your Wardrobe Clean
Change clothes often when you’re sweating heavily. Wear fresh clothes to help keep body odour down.

Be sure to change your socks as well, especially if you tend to have foot odour. Use deodorant powders in your shoes, replace insoles frequently, and go barefoot if possible.



Illness Anxiety Disorder (Hypochondriasis): When worrying about your health takes over your entire being

The new era has made it easy to overanalyze every ache and pain. Diagnosing yourself of cancer or the next chronic illness is only a google search and three swipes away. You feel your chest tighten a little and after a few searches and clicks, you’re now sure you need an emergency surgery to remove a rare tumor from your buttocks. This article was specially written for you.


The 5 Vital Reasons Why Regular Medical Checkups Are So Important

Regular medical checkups are crucial to fostering your general health, as they offer you a thorough overview of your wellbeing.

Seeing that healthcare is set in place to help us keep track of our health, we need to understand the importance of healthcare and how it can impact our lives.

All you have to do is schedule a regular visit with your doctor, and the rest will be handled. This generally means twice a year or quarterly, depending on a number of factors and how convenient it is for you.

For example, if your family or lineage has a long history of scary health marks, or you suffer from chronic illnesses, then you need to frequently visit the doctors and have yourself examined, unlike someone free of these diseases. This will enable the doctor to keep a track of your progress and catch complications that might occur early on.

Here are five reasons why regular medical checkups are so important:

Cost of Healthcare
Yes, you might feel that regular medical checkups are kind of costly now. However, when you look at the bigger picture, you can understand how these regular checkups can actually help save a huge cost.

Finding out you’re sick at an early stage and getting right on the matter, or finding out a few months or years later when the risk and medical costs become higher? Note that this can jeopardize your health and financial stability as you won’t be able to work when you are being treated.


These regular medical checkups include a number of physical and mental checks, making sure that you are on the right track. This way the doctor will catch any potential risk, and help clear you off from a number of diseases that are in view.

Blood Test
Getting your blood tested every few months is key because it helps eliminate the risk of various potential diseases.

These are mostly the diseases associated with your blood, which can include but are not limited to high cholesterol, diabetes, high blood lipid, anemia, HIV, AIDS, and other diseases.

Regular healthcare checkups can help you keep a check on these diseases, as they are able to catch on even the slightest bit of change. Also, a blood test can evaluate the proper functioning of your organs.
These include the functions of your liver, heart, thyroid, and kidneys.

Stress is basically a part of our everyday lives as humans.

We’re stressed out about everything, from work, to relationships, to finances; which is why it is important that we keep ourselves in check. The only way to do so is by getting regular healthcare checkups.

This will allow you to steer clear of any stress-related problems, hormone imbalance, high blood pressure, etc.

The only way you can stay aware of what is going on in your life, is by making yourself more aware of your health.

Your healthcare provider can help run tests that will not only help you keep your life on track but also offers you peace of mind. Moreover, most people are able to keep up with a great prevention system that helps them steer clear of diseases that run in their family.

These are five important reasons that should push you towards booking a regular medical checkup. Remember, prevention is always better than cure!





5 Practical Ways To Care For Yourself as a Parent

As the years go by and your kids begin to grow, it can get hard to remember who you were before you started having children.
Being a parent is both all-enveloping and often times different and unconversant. It can be hard to figure out how to find a balance.
The first step is knowing that taking time out to figure out and cater for your needs is not selfish.
It’s like the flight attendant says before take-off: Place the oxygen mask on yourself first before helping small children.
So also, you approach self care as a parent, without any sense of guilt.
Remind yourself that you’re doing something to strengthen your family — if you’re happier and healthier, then you can be a happier, more attentive parent. “Instead of running on stress fumes and being ill tempered, you’ll have more energy to take your kids on outings and do other fun things that they like to do.

5 ways to practice self-care as a parent
Because taking care of yourself is key to rediscovering your sense of self, it is recommended that your practice these five parent self-care tips:

Celebrate Thanksgiving every day. When you’re feeling overwhelmed, try to think about the good things in your life. It may sound cliché, but being thankful helps you focus on the present instead of on potential future anxieties. If things are spiraling out of control, focus on positive self-talk, such as, ‘I have these three beautiful and healthy children who are flourishing.
Exploit your inner yogi. Breathing deep from your diaphragm creates a relaxation response throughout your body. There are no special equipment required, and no one has to know you’re doing it. You can do it whenever, wherever. For example, during a visit from your mother-in-law or when you walk in your children being disastrous and misplacing all the household decorations. Deep breathing helps take the edge off, which means less yelling and guilt and more feelings that you’re rocking parenting.
Create schedules. Take time out for yourself, whether it’s for running or dinner with friends or simply sitting down to read. “If you have a partner, create a schedule together that involves alone time. If you want to go to that Saturday morning dance class, ring that out loud so your partner knows they’ve got the kids then.
Keep fueling your relationship. As parents, it’s easy to forget that your relationship needs some attention, too. Get a babysitter and prioritize date nights or outings where it’s just you and your significant other. It’s great for communication. It also helps re-establish what brought you together in the first place.
Revisit your old life. Revisit the things you enjoyed before driving your kids to school took over your life. Or find a new hobby to indulge. You need an outlet to reset and reflect without the constant din of “mommy” or “daddy” in your ear. Socializing with friends or even exercise can do the trick. “Exercise benefits you physically and mentally – the release of endorphins alone provides a boost. Exercise can also help you focus on personal achievements. For instance, if you set a goal of running a half mile and then you achieve it, it helps you feel good about yourself.


How and Why You Should Scrape your Tongue.

Even if you’re the oral hygiene MVP, you brush your teeth twice daily, floss regularly and conscientiously visit your dentist every six months, you may still be missing one step that could help keep your mouth fresh and healthy.

It’s your tongue! – that fleshy bulk of muscles that helps you speak, chew, taste and swallow. It’s covered in little bumps called papillae that aids tasting and feeling textures in your mouth. Downside is, your tongue can also accommodate bacteria.

While most of those bacteria are the “good kind” that foster a healthy environment in your mouth, other kinds can cause bad breath, tooth decay and gum infections.

So, cleaning your tongue is vital to keeping that bad bacteria away, as well as food debris and dead cells that may accumulate there and cause you trouble.

How to clean your tongue
Brushing your tongue gently a few times with a toothbrush and toothpaste is one way to clean it out but tongue scraping can do a better job at removing that plaque and bacteria off the tongue’s surface.

Indeed, studies suggest that tongue scraping can remove bacteria and improve bad breath more than brushing.

Tongue scraping devices made from plastic, copper or stainless steel are available at most drug stores and generally cost under N500.

Brush your teeth normally then scrape your tongue.

Here’s how to add tongue scraping to your routine in the morning and at night.

Brush your teeth, floss and rinse like you normally would. Then, stick your tongue out and use light pressure to run the scraper across the entire surface of your tongue once or twice, starting all the way at the back of the tongue and scraping toward the front. It shouldn’t hurt or do any damage to the tongue – if it does, use less pressure.

Rinse the scraper in warm water after each pass, and finish by rinsing it again and swishing your mouth out with water.

Taking these steps can help leave your mouth feeling squeaky clean.

PS: If you see any signs that your tongue is unhealthy — like white, black or red discoloration, or sores or pain that persists for more than two weeks – see your dentist.


12 Common Epilepsy Myths, Dispelled.

Myth 1: People with epilepsy are mentally ill or emotionally unstable.

Fact: Epilepsy is a term that encompasses many types of seizure and epileptic disorders. It is a functional, physical problem, not a mental one, and it has many unidentifiable causes.

Myth 2: If you’ve ever had a seizure, you have epilepsy.

Fact: A person is only diagnosed with epilepsy when he or she has two or more unprovoked (unexpected) seizures that occur more than 24 hours apart. But when something provokes a seizure, such as heavy drinking, sleep deprivation or a new medication, these are not related to epilepsy.

Myth 3: People with epilepsy aren’t as smart as other “normal people”.

Fact: First of all, people that are epileptic are not “Abnormal people”. So people are just people. Secondly, Epilepsy has little to no effect on a person’s ability to think, except during some seizures, during a short period following some seizures and sometimes as a side effect of certain anti-epileptic medications.

Myth 4: People who are epileptic can’t handle high-pressure, demanding jobs.

Fact: They often can, and they do. Most professions — including those in the highest tiers of business, government, justice system, sports and medicine — can accommodate a person with epilepsy.

Myth 5: It’s easy to tell when a seizure is about to happen.

Fact: Medical experts can’t yet predict when seizures are beginning, although some patients say they can feel a brief sensation within seconds of a seizure — which we call an “aura.”

Myth 6: Seizures hurt.

Fact: A person is unconscious and not in any pain during most seizures. Afterward, the patient could feel discomfort if he or she falls down, has muscle aches or if he or she bit their tongue (during a grand mal seizure).

Myth 7: Epilepsy is most common in children.
Fact: Epilepsy is most common in both the very young and the elderly. However, it can develop at any age.

Myth 8: During a seizure, a person could swallow or choke on his or her tongue.

Fact: This is impossible. The worst thing that can happen during a seizure is that a person could bite his or her tongue.

Myth 9: You should force an object into the mouth of someone having a seizure.
Fact: Never put anything into a person’s mouth if they are having a seizure. This could actually injure them. Roll the person on one side, keep him or her a safe distance from any nearby objects, and let the seizure run its course. If you see any signs of distress or if the seizure persists for more than a couple of minutes, call in an emergency.

Myth 10: Women with epilepsy can’t conceive or shouldn’t get pregnant.

Fact: Epilepsy does not generally affect a woman’s ability to conceive and has a minimal effect on a child’s development. However, if women are taking anti-epileptic drugs, the risk of birth defects ranges from 2% to 10% and this is a bigger concern.

Myth 11: Epilepsy is hereditary

Fact: Kids of parents with some forms of epilepsy are at higher risk of developing it, but the risk is very low. This is because a single gene problem rarely causes epilepsy; it usually involves a combination of multiple gene defects.

Myth 12: You can’t live a full, normal life with epilepsy.
Fact: Epilepsy can affect a person’s lifestyle, but you can live a full life. Live your life, but live with moderation. Avoid extremes in lifestyle.


Symptoms of Anxiety Disorder

Symptoms of Anxiety Disorder

Anxiety is a very normal emotion, which gives rise to feelings of nervousness every now and then. An anxiety disorder is a serious medical condition in which people experience a high degree of distress and mental trauma, which causes difficulties in leading a normal life. 
People suffering from this medical condition experience high levels of anxiety and nervousness almost all the time. Here are the symptoms that indicate you’re suffering from anxiety disorder.

Health Insurance Updates

RelianceHMO Reimbursement Process

We would thus like to acquaint you with steps to follow if you ever need to get a reimbursement from us.

We realize that sometimes, you may have to access care in a hospital outside the network or your required medication may be unavailable at the hospital or you may even have an emergency.  Should any of these situations arise, please follow the steps below:


Picking The Right Birth Control

Babies are cute and cuddly, but not everyone is on board with a baby on board. Thank goodness for birth control options — there are plenty of effective ways to avoid getting pregnant. (Yippee!)

As a matter of fact, every time you flip through a magazine, it seems there is another new birth control on the market. So how can you decide which method is the best for you?

The most important question is always, ``What's most important to you? One woman says, the answer is fewer side effects. Another, it’s a less painful period.

Birth control pills

One of the most commonly used birth control methods is “the pill.” Birth control pills regulate your hormones to control the menstrual cycle. You take three weeks of active pills. During the fourth week, you take placebo pills, which don’t have hormones. That’s when you get your period.


  • Less painful and lighter periods.
  • Reduced acne.
  • Reduced risk of ovarian cancer and endometrial cancer.
  • More than 95% effective at preventing pregnancy.
  • Can omit the placebo pills to skip a period (though discuss with your doctor first).


  • Slightly increased risk of blood clots, usually in smokers and women with a history of other medical conditions. (There is a special type of pill called the “mini pill” or progestin-only pill, which is safe for women with medical problems that prohibit the use of regular birth control pills.)
  • Slightly increased risk of cervical cancer.
  • Needs to be taken every day.

IUD (intrauterine device)

The IUD is an excellent birth control option for women who want to take action and not think about it again for a while. Your Ob/Gynae inserts a T-shaped device into the uterus during a quick in-office procedure. There are two forms of IUD, a copper version and a plastic version that contains hormones. IUDs work by making it nearly impossible for the sperm to reach the egg.


  • More than 99% effective.
  • Lasts three to 10 years before needing to be replaced.
  • Hormonal IUDs: Can make periods lighter or even nonexistent (copper IUDs do not have that benefit).
  • Hormonal IUDs: May reduce risk of endometrial cancer.


  • Requires a pelvic exam before insertion.
  • Insertion may be uncomfortable or even painful.
  • Risk of perforating the uterus during insertion (though that occurs in one of 1,000 women).
  • Unpredictable spotting for several months after insertion.

The condom serves as a barrier that prevents sperm from entering the uterus.


  • The only birth control method that also protects against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
  • Can be used with other birth control methods for STD protection and improved protection against pregnancy.


  • Inconvenience.
  • 20% failure rate.

Hormonal implant

It’s a small plastic rod inserted under the skin of the upper arm deliver a constant supply of pregnancy-preventing hormones into the bloodstream for three years.


  • Similar to those of hormonal IUD.
  • Highly effective.
  • No pelvic exam required.
  • Inserted during a quick in-office procedure.


  • As with the IUD, can cause unpredictable bleeding.
  • Could cause heavier periods, though in some cases periods are lighter.

If you’d prefer that an overflowing diaper bag not be in your immediate future, talk to your primary care doctor or Ob/Gynae to find the birth control method that fits your lifestyle.


Frequently Asked Questions About Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding might be a little uncomfortable at first, but it shouldn’t be painful or cause any emotional stress. A lot of new mothers struggle with breastfeeding at first, for different reasons. You already have enough on your plate, you don’t need any extra pressure or anxiety right now, so ask for help if you need it. Your healthcare professional can help find the right position for you, make sure your baby is feeding properly and give you any other support you need.

How do I know if I’m doing it right?
Don’t worry if it takes a little while for you to get the hang of breastfeeding, you and your newborn are both new to this. If all is going well, by the fifth day your baby should:

  • be generally calm and relaxed while feeding and content after feeds
  • have 8 feeds or more in 24 hours
  • be feeding for between 5 and 40 minutes at each feed
  • have a normal skin colour
  • have wet and dirty nappies
  • swallowing frequently during the feed, which you should be able to hear.


I feel like I haven’t got enough milk
One of the major reasons why women give up breastfeeding is because they feel they can’t, or are physically unable to produce enough milk for their baby.

Most women produce enough milk for their baby, but there are some reasons why some women have difficulties. The most common reasons are poor attachment and positioning, and not feeding your baby often enough.

Some babies start slow because of circumstances surrounding their birth such as type of birth, pain relief in labour and if they were separated from their mum at birth. Other factors that may make breastfeeding difficult include:

smoking and drinking alcohol while breastfeeding
anxiety, stress or depression
illness in you or your baby.
medical problems such as hypothyroidism or anaemia

You could try the following to increase your supply:

  1. express some breast milk after feeds once breastfeeding is established
  2. offer both breasts at each feed and alternate which breast you start with
  3. keep your baby close to you and hold them skin to skin.
  4. feed your baby as often and for as long as they want.'
  5. Why do my breasts feel painful?
  6. If your breasts feel heavy, it can help to feed your baby, massage your breasts or express by hand. But do not express regularly as it can increase your milk supply and worsen the initial problem.

A heavy build-up of milk can sometimes cause mastitis. This usually affects one breast and symptoms can come on quickly. These include:

a red, swollen area on your breast that may feel hot and painful to touch
a breast lump or area of hardness on your breast
a burning pain in your breast
nipple discharge, which may be white or contain streaks of blood
flu-like symptoms, such as aches, a high temperature (fever), chills and tiredness.

It’s common to develop mastitis in the first 3 months of breastfeeding, although it can happen at any time. It’s important to see your GP if you have any symptoms because you may need antibiotics. Most women recover quickly, but if mastitis isn’t treated properly you may need hospital treatment.

It also can help to:

stay well hydrated
take paracetamol or ibuprofen
avoid tight fitting clothes, including bras
continue to feed your baby and express any remaining milk after a feed.
Your GP, midwife or health visitor can also help you improve your breastfeeding technique to make sure your baby is well attached during feeds.

My nipples feel cracked and sore.
Sore nipples usually occurs between 3 to 7 days into breastfeeding. It happens because your baby isn't attached effectively to your nipples.

If your nipples are painful, you may find it helps to:

hand express a little milk at the end of a feed and massage it on to your nipple
let your nipples dry before getting dressed again
use breast pads and change them regularly
wear a cotton breastfeeding bra.
Some women treat cracks using soft paraffin, such as Vaseline. There are also some specialist nipple creams available.

It’s important to talk to your healthcare professional about this so they can look at how your baby is feeding. If your baby isn’t properly attached, your nipples won’t heal.

If the pain continues, you may have thrush and will need antifungal cream.

Can I breastfeed in public?
There is no reason why you shouldn’t breastfeed in public, but we still hear stories from women who have been made to feel uncomfortable.

If you don’t feel confident about breastfeeding, you may want to stay close to home, at least to start with. Your baby will need feeding quite often and will not be willing to wait until you get home!

There is nothing wrong with breastfeeding in public. In fact, in some countries, it is illegal for anyone to ask a breastfeeding woman to leave a public space. Don’t feel like you should hide away, for example in a restaurant toilet. You wouldn’t eat there, so your baby shouldn’t have to either.

Some women find it helpful to take a supportive friend or family member out with them if they’re feeling uncomfortable, and for a pair of extra helping hands.

Can my partner help with feeds?
Your partner can help with feeding the baby. If you want to just breastfeed, there are practical ways they can help. For example, they can:

make sure you’re sitting comfortably and fetch extra pillows or cushions if needed
bring you a snack or a glass of water as you feed
take the baby when you’ve finished so you can adjust your clothes.
If you choose to introduce a bottle but want to carry on using just breast milk, try to practice expressing to gain confidence before you start your baby on the bottle.

I really don’t like breastfeeding. Is it okay to stop?
Breastfeeding is good for you and your baby, but don’t feel guilty if it isn’t for you. There are lots of reasons why some women don’t breastfeed or stop before they thought they would.

If you’re having problems breastfeeding but want to carry on, there is support available. But if breastfeeding is affecting your health or causing stress and anxiety and you want to stop, then you should stop. Your baby needs you to be happy and well.


The Link Between Typhoid Fever and Eating Out.

A lot of people virtually depend on restaurants and street food vendors for their daily food. They leave the house early in the morning for their workplace; by midday, they look for one restaurant to go eat in or beckon on the regular food vendors on the street to buy food. They do this almost daily and everything is fine. Then something happens.

One guy who regularly eats outside--buys food from food hawkers and sometimes goes to a restaurant to eat--starts having a fever. This fever becomes very high as the day goes by and then falls the next morning to start rising again as the day progresses. This continues for about 5 days, and a week later, the guy starts having pain all over his abdomen (tummy); he feels like vomiting sometimes and finds it difficult to defecate.

The young man thinks he has both malaria and worm infection and decides to buy an anti-malarial drug, Flagyl for the worm and a pain reliever (paracetamol) for the abdominal pain. After taking these medications over the next one week, he didn't experience any improvement.

Instead, this guy begins to feel a very tightening pain at the right upper side of his abdomen and he notices that his abdomen is gradually getting bigger than normal. He has lost appetite for food, feels weak most of the time, people tell him he is losing weight, and whenever he manages to defecate, the stool passed out is a foul-smelling, green-yellow liquid.

This young man could have died in the next few weeks if a friend of his didn't persuade and accompany him to see a doctor in a hospital. After asking him different questions, the doctor took a sample of his blood, urine, and stool (faeces) for lab tests. The doctor then placed him on some antibiotics while awaiting the result of the lab tests. When the result came out, it showed he had typhoid fever. Based on the history he gave the doctor it was very likely he got it from eating contaminated food from either one of the restaurants or food hawkers.

Typhoid fever is a disease caused by a bacterial organism called Salmonella typhi. It can affect many, if not all, systems in the body and it can kill the person infected within one month if he or she doesn't receive the right medical treatment.

If untreated, a person with typhoid fever can develop complications like intestinal bleeding and rupture of the intestine. He or she can also become mentally confused and begin to see or hear things that are not in the environment in reality (psychosis); this impact on the mental status of the affected individual can be long-term or permanent.

Some people with typhoid fever and who don't receive treatment may go on to survive and not manifest any symptoms again. But they become chronic carriers of the Salmonella typhi organism, meaning the bacteria stay in their system for years (over ten years or indefinite) without causing any symptoms and they pass them out in the faeces and urine. This group of people is the major source of infection of healthy people who go on to develop typhoid fever:

1. If someone who has a restaurant or sells food on the street is a chronic carrier of the typhoid fever bacteria, he or she is likely to pass on the bacteria to anyone who buys food from him or her. This occurs if this person doesn't wash his or her hands properly with soap and water after using the toilet or urinating and then handles food or water meant for other people.

2. Another way a healthy person can get typhoid fever is by not washing his or her hands properly after using a public toilet which a chronic carrier of the typhoid fever bacteria may have used. Eating food with those poorly washed hands increases the risk of typhoid fever in the person.

3. Drinking water from unknown or unhygienic sources is a risk factor for getting typhoid fever because that water could come from a source where people urinate or defecate frequently.

To prevent typhoid fever:

  1. Avoid eating food from food hawkers on the street and be very selective in terms of the restaurant to eat in: however, the most effective way here is to prepare one's own food at home. Although this may be very challenging for a lot of people who depend on eating outside, it is the most effective way to prevent the disease.
  2. Minimize the use of public toilets, and if you must use one, wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water immediately after and before eating.
    Always boil water before drinking unless it is bottled water.

If you have some of the above symptoms (of typhoid fever) and you regularly eat outside, drink water from public sources without boiling it or use public toilets frequently, you may have typhoid fever. You should see a doctor at once. After treatment, your doctor will likely want to follow you up for the next 3 months to monitor you for any complications of typhoid fever and a possible re-occurrence of the typhoid fever.

For more advice and help, feel free to consult a doctor via The Reliance Care App