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Health And Wellness

Anxiety: Can You Really Blow a Gasket?

An illustration of a heart
Can Anxiety Cause High Blood Pressure? I have to confess, I didn’t even know what a gasket was until I Googled it. I was learning different things while the rest of the world was learning about the things that make our lifestyles possible. Still, a failed mechanical seal between parts is an accurate, if horrifying, metaphor for having a stroke, which is one of the worst-case end-point scenarios of hypertension (high blood pressure), the other being a heart attack. The Mechanics Of Blood Pressure Control Or The Lack Thereof Your blood circulates with enough force to deliver oxygen to everywhere in your body. The walls of your arteries are somewhat elastic in that they can rebound by sudden rises in the loads passing through them, like what happens when your heart races, causing pressure from the inside of the blood vessels. Another mechanism, vasoconstriction, causes the walls to tighten up, which puts pressure on the blood within from the outside. The body, in its brilli ...

Postpartum Depression, the baby Blues or a nasty color much deeper?

A woman sitting on a window sill looking out the window
  There’s an old joke that asks, “Why did God make babies so cute?” Answer: “So you wouldn’t throw ‘em out the window.”   While this may be funny on the surface, there is an ominous overtone that isn’t very funny at all. The joke underscores how much hard work there is in having a baby and raising a baby, but there is redemption in it because it’s all worth it. In Obstetrics, this has become the least funny joke of all, because there is a condition in new Moms that goes way past the Baby Blues she gets from saying goodbye to her old way of life; this condition, postpartum depression, is true mental illness. Thankfully, it is temporary and treatable.   Postpartum depression, what is it? Postpartum depression (after birth depression) is a mysterious illness that is true clinical depression. It can occur in up to 14% of all new Momsi. It usually begins any time during the first year after delivery, even as soo ...

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