This Your Mouth!


Hey friends! I know it has been a while and too long a time to stay without posting on my blog. Some readers contacted me about it, and trust me, I didn’t ignore. I have just been so preoccupied with life after NYSC, and trying to adjust to being a full working-class lady, not able to get away with being lazy for a second as I could during my internship and service year. I am so sorry!!!! PLEASE FORGIVE ME…*inserts eyelashes smiley*

In the past week, I have been thinking of an appropriate topic to give me that welcome-back bang effect. After racking my head, I finally settled for one that bothers me greatly. One that has ended relationships, stirred bullying, made situations awkward for the affected people and hands out low self-esteem like Santa Claus. I’ll just get right into it.

I was in a supermarket in Lagos one very fine Saturday. I was in SS2 then, when my ‘toasting market was in full bloom. I finished shopping and got on the cashier’s queue to make my payments when I heard a voice behind me. It belonged to a cute dude I had ogled at when I entered the supermarket but he looked older so I just distracted myself. As he spoke the words ‘hey dear, can I help carry your basket’, I literally saw the words spelt out and come from his mouth in a thick fog-like manner. I took 2 steps back and tripped over him, making him bend over to help me up saying ‘wow I’m so sorry dear, so so sorry’. Holding my breath, out of my wits, all I could think of was how to physically clamp his lips together to stop him from talking to me. How, in the name of all beautiful things, is it possible for a grown man to exude all these confidence, handsomeness, sexiness and to top it up, MOUTH ODOUR? HOW? HOW??! HOW???! I felt like crying (I think 1 or 2 tears escaped my tear ducts) because I had to hold my breath for longer than normal to avoid entrance of those foul particles into my respiratory system, although some did succeed and that was the most painful. I didn’t reply him to prevent him from opening his buccal cavity one more time; because I didn’t think I would survive it. That experience scarred me (seriously) and that’s why I have chosen to speak about this weapon of biological warfare, Halitosis, popularly known as Bad breath or Mouth Odour.

                                                 snape

                                                                                     Back off, brother…

Halitosis is a condition in which a noticeably unpleasant odour is present on exhaled breath. It is commonly caused by bacterial activities stemming bad oral hygiene and less commonly by an underlying disease such as that of the liver. It is a social taboo and can trigger social anxiety and depression. About 80-90% of halitosis is caused but bacteria which may or may not be part of the normal mouth flora. When you eat some types of food and refuse to clean up your mouth, these bacteria feed on these remnants, multiply and begin to produce waste products which comes off as the bad smell you experience when you open your mouth. Some of these waste products include

  • Hydrogen sulphide, which gives off the ”rotten egg smell”
  • Methyl mercaptan, which gives off the rotten cabage smell. This also found in farts
  • Dimethyl sulphide, which also has ‘cabbagey’ undertones

Since these products contain sulphur, it is only logical to avoid sulphur containing foods in excess, especially if you suffer from halitosis. Such foods include garlic, onions, cabbage and proteins. Proteins have a disulphide back-bone, hence it is observed that proteinous foods like eggs, beans, fish and nuts give off untoward smells after eating them, if the mouth isn’t properly cleaned afterwards.

I once had the chance to write on halitosis in an online youth forum, and a lady sent in her experience, which is a real life story:

”I had a male friend once who I friend-zoned successfully because at the time, there was no twitter and it was perfectly ok to have a male individual as a friend and nothing more. I never noticed this guy had a bad case of halitosis because I just assumed he just had something spicy or tangy to eat. After like 3 years, he wanted things to become warmer between us even though I wasn’t that interested. But I figured that since I had known him for a while, I could give it a try. It so happened that we started dating and after our first kiss which became a French one, I felt some sticky ‘something’ in my mouth. I quickly went to his bathroom and tried to smell my breath…it smelt disgusting. I used his mouthwash to rinse my mouth, convinced myself that it wasn’t what I thought, and tried not to overthink the matter. Subsequently, I unconsciously found myself gazing deeply into my new boyfriend’s mouth while he spoke. I would sometimes see vegetables and other food particles stuck between his teeth and unfortunately for me, he was quite a talkative. This issue made me detached because I couldn’t bring myself to tell him ”my dear, your mouth dey smell baje baje”. No, I refused to be the scapegoat. The height was the first night I spent the night at his space and he attempted to give me a good morning kiss…the rest they say is history. This affected the relationship because I couldn’t bring myself to be intimate with this guy and it made me so angry because he has all sorts of mouthwashes and toothpastes and I still didn’t understand why his mouth still smelled badly. I eventually ended the relationship, found the courage to tell him about the mouth odour, and secretly felt sorry for the next girl to tickle his fancy.”


                                                                    

 

Sounds heartless right? I’m certain you wouldn’t think so if you have been a victim of having to speak closely to someone with bad breath, not to talk of kissing such a person. If you suffer from this condition solely caused by bad oral hygiene, it’s not all over. You can revive your confidence with the following tips:

  • Daily brushing: You may bail on brushing twice daily but No, you cannot skip brushing your teeth at least once a day, every day. The texture of the brush bristle is very important so please keep that in mind when purchasing them. For people with tooth replacements, dentures, and other dental accessories, please keep them clean as they can harbour bacteria.
  • Tongue cleaning: Some people see no reason to gently scrape the surface of the tongue. I don’t know if they think the white slimy film found occasionally on the tongue is to be kept for national security reasons. That film contains bacteria and other microbes trapped in it that may be left over by food particles. There are tongue scrapers sold for this purpose and even some toothbrushes have a semi-coarse surface at their backs to aid in tongue cleansing. An inverted teaspoon can also be used but it is important to note that you are not scrubbing jeans so tongue scraping should be done very gently no matter the instrument used.
  • Flossing: You may recall from the story that my friend sometimes saw food particles stuck in between her then boyfriend’s teeth. This issue can be overcome by flossing after meals, especially if you feel food between your teeth. A pack of dental flosses is inexpensive and it will do you good if you purchase one to prevent food from decaying in your mouth.
  • Eating healthy: I remember when I was asked in a foods and nutrition exam in secondary school on 3 ways to improve dental hygiene. After writing brushing and flossing regularly, I reluctantly added eating crunchy fruits like carrots and celery to help clean the tongue while chewing (I thought I was just filling in the blank space). When the results came out, my teacher came to specially call me out to congratulate me because I was the only person who wrote that point in the exam *pops collar*. Point is, not every time you make a smoothie, sometimes chew the fruits to exercise your teeth, increase saliva production (which helps clean the mouth) and mildly clean the tongue.
  • Avoid dehydrating the mouth: Have you noticed that a lot of smokers and alcoholics have bad breaths? That is why you see some of them always with like a carton of TomTom candy. Smoking and alcohol rips the mouth of moisture, thereby complicating the bad breath situation. Always drink lots of water to help rinse the mouth and dilute odours.
  • Gargling before sleeping: Gargling with an effective antibacterial mouthwash before bedtime can help reduce the build-up of bad odour while you sleep. This will help that ‘good morning kiss’ you have planned for your lover be accepted without causing an early morning calamity.

                                                            

  • Chewing gum between meals: A dry mouth can complicate halitosis, and chewing stimulates the production of saliva which has antibacterial properties. If it is impossible to brush after meals especially during work hours or when outdoors generally, chewing gum goes a long way in combatting bad breath. Some gums also contain mint to help maintain fresh breath.

These points may look basic but they go a long way in preventing and controlling halitosis. If you have never visited a dentist in your lifetime, it’s about time to schedule a visit to check up your teeth for any issues. It is indeed truly heart-breaking to see beautifully dressed ladies and when you have to speak to them, the stench that accompanies their words is enough to awaken Sleeping Beauty out of anger. Imagine sitting near someone with bad breath in church and it happens to be a person who prays aloud…there is no way your full attention will be on God, and such a person has successfully distracted you which is kind of a sin. The body is God’s temple and should be handled with care. I recall back then in secondary school that girls with bad breath were given mouthwashes, toothpastes or toothbrushes as birthday gifts. Only the naïve ones thought they were genuine gifts from the heart while the others got the subtle message beneath. Besides, you wouldn’t want to be the one whose phone number is stored as ‘Bobo mouth odour’ or ‘Mimi smelling mouth’.

If the eyes are the windows to the soul, I believe the mouth is the entrance, the teeth the gates and the tongue the red carpet. They must be kept clean! Recoup your confidence and self-esteem this moment by practising proper oral hygiene if you have been found wanting. Until my next post (which will be sooner than you expect), win that fight against mouth odour!

On being healthy…


Hello my dear readers, how have you all been? I know I should be more dedicated to educating you guys through this health blog, but I must confess that its not been easy, and I hope to improve with time♡.

We all desire to be in perfect health all the time. As in, who wants to spend vacation money on hospital bills? Although we have heard of people who pretend to be ill so they can obtain sympathy and monetary compensation from family and sometimes, their places of work. As much as we try to keep ourselves from getting sick, some of us bring such illnesses upon ourselves.

We are engaged in many practices that are downright unwholesome. You don’t have to earn a university degree to discover that a lot of habits we have are unhealthy and can lead to many diseases.

Take hand-washing,  for example. Dettol and Safeguard, among other antiseptic soaps and liquids,have hammered the importance of hand-washing to the general public. Most of us still fail to wash our hands before and after we use them to handle things that are obviously laden with germs. Actions like shaking hands, handling car steerings, doing house chores, shopping especially in open markets, and using the toilets should be followed by hand-washing, before handling food or touching sensitive organs of he body like the eyes. I was at the bank last week to deposit some money and while the cash handler was counting the money, he stuck a finger in his mouth, wetting it to enable him count the money well, despite the money-counter mahine staring at him in the face. So imagine him repeating that action several times a day and he spends about 9 months in that department. When he is struck with ulcerative gingivitis or some other mouth infection, he begins to think he’s been bewitched by a customer.

What about those individuals who find it easy to urinate or defecate anywhere?  It is a bad practice especially for women who have more than one opening into their bodies, unlike the men. Some people have turned the toilets of fast-food outlets as their personal conveniences. Seeing the amount of customers who pass through popular fast-food outlets daily, it is only logical to avoid using their toilets, unless in unavoidable circumstances where other options have been exhausted.

That reminds me of how some of us behave towards food. It’s not every ‘owambe’ that you are invited to that you must eat the food served. Most times the quality of foods served at such gatherings are questionable because of the amount of guests to be catered for. My mother had us growing up with these words ‘To avoid embarrassment my daughter, always eat at home before you attend any function’. I try to abide by that rule and it has been very helpful.  It was a widespread gist in Nigeria a few years back that some guests at a wedding had severe food poisoning with a handful of them hospitalized.  What about a family that was wiped out in eastern Nigeria after consuming a local made delicacy? It’s not every ‘mama-put’ (canteen) you get wind of that you must visit. You visit some canteens and houseflies are competing for breathing space with you. The servers are shouting at one another and at the buyers,  delivering saliva and sweat into the pots containing those meals we drive miles to arrive at and still stand on long queues for.

Personal hygiene can never, ever be overflogged. Some people have no regards whatsoever for hygiene. Several diseases have been shown to stem from lack of good personal hygiene. Once while I was in the university,  I went to a salon to do a pedicure. A well-dressed woman walked and asked that her toenails be repolished. She had artificial nails on the toes, by the way. As the lady doing her toes was about to yank off the old artificial nails,  the woman told her to forgo the normal process of cleaning and filing the nails before applying the polish and immediately cover up her natural nails with the artificial ones. I was curious to find out why she said that, and glanced over to where she was seated. My friends, her toenails were decaying,  and had a greenish-brown colour so I presumed she was ashamed. That is an obvious nail infection that stemmed from carrying artificial nails for more than the normal time (maximum 2 weeks) and/or constant nail fixing without allowing natural nails to breathe. Instead of treating it, she chose the easy but dangerous way out-to cover it up. Some of us don’t wash newly bought clothes especially underwears before wearing, which isn’t good. This is more important to those who buy ‘vintage’ a.k.a  ‘okrika’ clothes. You talk to some people and you are overwhelmed with a terrible stench, making you wishing you were doing anything than talking to such a person, just because there is lack of oral hygiene.  Conditions such as halitosis and skin infections are not hereditary so we are solely responsible when we become infected.

What are our attitudes towards illnesses that are deemed ‘petty’? Like catarrh, cough, unexplained headache or purging? With the rate which young and otherwise healthy-looking people are dying nowadays, it behooves on us to step up our game as far as healthcare is concerned. We should cultivate the habit of going for regular checkups,  seeing the dentists,  cardiologists, gynecologists and other medical specialists so that we are not caught unawares. Cancer screening is very important in our world now as almost everything around us can be said to be carcinogenic.

It’ s unbelievably true that some of us have never been screened for HIV/AIDS, and that is a sad condition as some statistics show that 1 in 18 Nigerians are infected with the virus. Hepatitis virus, especially Hepatitis B is another deadly microbe and screening is readily available, to confirm if one needs a vaccine to prevent,  or treatment to eradicate the virus if already infected. Ignorance is the greatest challenge facing most of us but there many health enlightenment and development programs arranged by government, non-governmental organizations and even individuals and we should endeavour to take advantage of these programs.
 
Most of us are internet-compliant but what some of us are ignorant of is baffling. There are tons of search engines ready to give you ideas about any questions you may have. Having a smartphone isn’t all about social networking and the likes. Let us learn to be health conscious and rely less on superficial products that mask what is really going on inside us.

Feel free to comment and ask questions…

Until my next post – which hopefully will be sooner than you expect- play safe!

Hey! Are you obese?


Hello darling readers, it’s been such a loooooooong while! I have just been carried away with the stress of serving my father’s land (NYSC) and now I’m settled, thank God!

Some readers ‘fessed up to missing my posts and how I’m depriving them of quality health education (pops collar here)… I am sincerely sorry for the long hiatus. Please accept my warm apologies!

During the course of writing this post, I tried so hard not to be biased, but since I’m a female, my fellow species may realize they are being hit harder with this topic. Please accept my apologies in advance. ;)

Today’s topic is on Obesity. Like, Super ‘fatness’. They say being fat is in the eyes of the beholder, but we health promoters would disagree with that. Obesity is now so celebrated in our society; even so a song (‘Orobo’ by Sound Sultan) was churned to celebrate fat women. Don’t get me wrong, it’s good to celebrate yourself, regardless of size, but when one’s features are likened to ‘korodom‘ and ‘molue‘ [she come dey do her waist
like korodom (a VERY huge water container) or 'her front (bosom) be like molue' (a high-capacity bus)], that should be a cause to rethink and for a paradigm shift.

Obesity, plainly, is excess body fat. The consequences of obesity depend not only on the absolute amount of fat in the body, but also in the distribution. This means that the more the fat is distributed in a body region, the higher the likelihood of a clinical complication. For example, a person with high fat distribution around the heart has a higher chance of suffering from a heart disease. Since one can’t really know FOR SURE how fat is distributed among vital organs, and all we can see are chubby faces, well rounded hips, bosoms and backsides, our best bet is to avoid obesity as much as we can.


They are sexy and they know it!

 

What makes us obese? We have come up with a plethora of reasons, but one stands tall: ‘it runs in my family’. Like really. But it can be true, as almost all cases of obesity result from genetic predisposition. The chances of inheriting BMI (BODY MASS INDEX) from parents or relatives are about 66%. Genetic factors also regulate how we expend energy and how body fat is distributed, especially abdominal fat. That is why curvy ladies, more often than not, have curvy mothers.

I’m sure this is a perfect excuse for some of us, to blame it on the parents. Some of us are obese and have skinny parents, and instead of taking responsibility, we blame our paternal ancestors, or maternal great grandmother’s aunt’s uncle’s son whom nobody ever saw to recall if they were skinny or fat. I mean, apart from the genetic factors, it takes you and you alone to determine your weight, unless you are a child and mummy keeps stuffing fried fish and donuts into your mouth and can do nothing to stop her.

Environmental and social factors also play a huge role in being obese. Weight is gained when caloric intake exceeds energy needs. It isn’t rocket science that high-fat foods, processed foods, refined carbohydrates, soft drinks and alcohol promote weight gain. Some of us eat because our friends are eating, even when we’re not hungry. Some blame the binge eating on heartbreaks, while some eat so much because they are just plain gluttons. Gluttony, by the way, is one of the seven deadly sins.

I said earlier that this topic might hit on the females more, and this is why. Some of us are so greedy, that although I’m a female, I get ashamed sometimes. Back then in school when a dude takes a girl out to a restaurant or canteen, she wants to eat EVERYTHING, and this is no joke. Sometime last week I went to a ‘bukka‘ (local canteen) to eat ‘amala‘. This lady came in with a man who was obviously a ‘toaster‘ and after modestly ordering the main dish; she went all out in ordering the proteins. I heard her order ‘kpomo meta, ogunfe marun, eran gidi merin’ (Yoruba for three cowhide pieces, five pieces of goat meat, four pieces of fried beef) and a host of other animal organs I couldn’t make out. I made sure I waited just to see how it would end, and to my amazement, she finished them all, washing them down with a 50cl bottle of chilled coke. Balanced diet, innit?

A plate of ‘amala‘ and ‘ewedu‘ soup

What about the ones who feel that being spoiled by a man is forcing them into supermarkets and chartering all the tastefully made biscuits, chocolates, and juices? Nobody is saying they are so bad but in excess? The other day I was at a popular supermarket and a supposed couple passed by. I was picking up Haribos and the lady came back to me and asked ‘sister please is this thing nice?’(the haribos) and I answered in the affirmative. She then goes on to whisper, ‘shebi he (her partner) say he get money, I go chop am well for am‘ and she added 20 packets of Haribos into her ‘almost-filled-with-junkfood‘ trolley, something she had never even tasted. What shall we then say to these things?

Some guys keep on saying ‘I want a girl with flat tummy’. What about you? With a body like Rick Ross or Faizon Love, you want a Halle Berry or Khaleesi Daenarys Stormborn type of girl. Just because you are men and as such have a higher metabolism rate than women is no excuse for eating as if food is going extinct at that moment. What about alcohol? I don’t understand why some guys feel the need to outdo themselves in drinking themselves to stupor, acquiring pot bellies at such young ages.

Several factors exist that can be responsible for obesity.

Regulatory factors include Pre-natal maternal obesity and insufficient sleep. About 15% of women permanently gain 20 pounds or more with each pregnancy. Rarely, obesity can be caused by brain damage and severe hormonal imbalance.

Drugs such as corticosteroids, antipsychotic drugs, benzodiazepines (e.g., Valium) and traditional antidepressants often cause weight gain. Some of you may have been asked to use some of these drugs, especially corticosteroids, to aid in weight gain. Males who want to look like Dwayne Johnson (the Rock) but don’t want to keep a strict fitness regime also use corticosteroids to boost muscle strength. It is a very unhealthy practice.

Pathologic eating disorders may be associated with obesity. These include

  • Binge eating disorders, where a person consumes large amounts of food quickly, with a subjective loss of control over the food, and feeling bad afterwards. About 1 to 3% of both sexes suffer from this disorder. Obesity is usually severe.
  • Night-eating syndrome, which consists of morning anorexia, evening hyperphagia (increased apetite), and insomnia. This means a person isn’t hungry in the morning, but is always so ravenous at night. This person consumes 25 to 50% of his/her daily food intake after evening meal.

     

The complications of obesity are as enormous as the condition. They include:

  • Reproductive system disorders (male and female): Overweight women have a harder time getting pregnant, studies show that over 90% of obese women develop polycystic ovarian disease, a condition associated with infertility, plus many fertility clinics don’t accept female patients who are obese given their diminished chances of conceiving. A journal of the American Medical Association study found that obesity increases a woman’s chance of having a preterm baby. All these are likely to put strains on a woman’s relationship and self-esteem.
  • Metabolic syndrome: These include Diabetes mellitus.
  • Cardiovascular disease such as hypertension and heart failure.
  • Gastro-esophageal reflux disease a.k.a ‘ulcers’.
  • Less sleep and sleep apnea: Sleep and excess weight are not good bedfellows. Poor sleep also contributes to a host of diseases including diabetes, heart diseases, and ironically, obesity itself. Sleep apnea is a condition in which a person gasps or stops breathing momentarily while asleep, causing the heart to overwork since less oxygen is getting into the bloodstream. That is why most fat people snore very terribly.
  • Many cancers
  • Social and psychologic problems: Obese people are often the butt of jokes. It’s quite hard to be attracted to an obese person. A Yale study found that weight is the number one reason people are bullied at any age. Bullied people have lower self-esteem, higher levels of depression and increased risk of suicide. A University of Florida study showed that slimmer females earned more money annually than obese women. Reasons are quite obvious as employers are unlikely to employ an obese person over a fit one, even if they are both qualified.

     

It’s very safe to say that being obese is dangerous, and we must make conscious efforts to avoid it. Calculating one’s BMI gives an estimated idea of how fit one is, or isn’t. it is calculated (for adults) as weight in kg divided by the square of the height in metres. A BMI of 25 to 29.9kg/m₂ indicates overweight, above 30kg/m₂ indicates obesity. BMI has limitations in that it is race and gender specific, and its use is limited in children and the elderly; that’s why I said it gives an estimated idea.

 

Hope isn’t lost as we can prevent or manage obesity by eating right. You must not eat everything served at that wedding or birthday party. Say no to that extra chunk of cake or glass of alcohol that you absolutely have no stomach space for.



See no evil cake, smell no evil cake, taste no evil cake…

 

Proper exercise plays an important role in keeping us away from obesity, and increases confidence. In addition, keeping a right and positive attitude helps a lot as keeping fit is not easy. Stay away from people with negative energy, especially regarding your weight, including friends and family. Studies also show that about 40 to 75% of overweight patients who are victims of bullying were being bullied by family and friends. Let us learn to encourage others in their quest to be fit. Derogatory statements like ‘who is this one deceiving, after jogging I bet you would eat shawarma‘ are not cool.

 

Avoid obesity; belong to the #fitfam today!

 

Until my next post, God bless us all. J

Love and Genotype!


Good day my dear readers, it’s been a while! How’s life treating you all? I hope this New Year brings a change in the way we handle our health, and other aspects of our lives, amen!

Another opportunity has come for us to learn about and discuss an important issue, one so pertinent in our society now, and I know some of us would have had personal experiences regarding this issue.

Time and time again, we have heard through various sources e.g., the media, family and friends, health workers, etc., about the importance of genotype compatibility before commencing on an intimate relationship with the opposite sex. While some of us heed this advice and abide, to an extent that at first meeting with a person you like and would envisage yourself in a relationship with, you ask the rather pushy and weird question ‘Please what’s your Genotype?’ Such a question might put the other person off, but trust me, especially for those who have the AS (like me) and SS genotypes; it pays off in the long run.

You love the person so much you’re willing to gamble the health of your kids? Even though no one knows the future, it may not be wise to be the potter of a cracked clay jar. You think you can’t live without the person and you would die? Come off it! I have had three ‘love-lost’ experiences due to genotype incompatibility and here I am, alive and kicking. That it would hurt leaving such a person is certain, but the love you once proclaimed might be put into question when handling kids with the sickle-cell disease.

My personal experiences were not funny. The first one happened when I was just a teenager. The dude didn’t even know what his genotype was when I asked him innocently, and he promised to go do a test. True to his word, by the next time we met, he had a result, AS. I started withdrawing from then, very difficult I must tell you, although we remain friends till date. The next two happened when I was much older, and one would think it would be less difficult to break away. In fact I ‘loved’ so much that I started thinking of in-vitro fertilization (test tube babies) and all those complexities. But finally, as a ‘sure girl’, I had to think with my head before my heart. Consequently, it became one of the first questions I ask a guy I like.


…cool story sis.

I shared my personal experiences with you because I have, severally, witnessed the pain and trauma people living with the sickle-cell disease (SCD) go through, especially children. It is TOTALLY heart-wrenching. Some would say, ‘Adesuwa there is nothing God cannot do’, but also we know we are not meant to put our God to the test. Let me educate you a bit on what SCD is about.

Sickle Cell disease, otherwise known as Sickle cell Anaemia, or Drepanocytosis, is a genetic blood disorder in which, simply put, the red blood cells of a person is ‘sickle-shaped’, named after the shape of the farm tool, sickle. This ‘sickling‘, which occurs due to a mutation in the Hemoglobin (Hb) gene, affects the flexibility of the cells, resulting in the symptoms and complications associated with this condition. Normal red blood cells have the hemoglobin gene designated as HbAA, carriers of the sickle cell trait carry the HbAS
gene, while sufferers of SCD carry the HbSS
gene. Under conditions such as low Oxygen, these red blood cells (containing sickle cell hemoglobin) aggregate, causing a distortion of these cells and resulting in loss of their elasticity. This loss of elasticity of the red blood cells is central in understanding this disease condition. In patients with HbAS (carriers of sickle cells), the distortion problems are minor, because the normal allele, that is, the ‘A‘ portion of the gene is able to produce over 50% of hemoglobin. They only have symptoms when deprived of oxygen, or when dehydrated.

Microscopic view of blood sample from a SCD patient. See the cells with the sickle shape?


Red blood cells are transporters of oxygen throughout the body, the Hemoglobin content being the oxygen carrier. Normal red blood cells are elastic and flexible and are able to pass through blood vessels, their flexibility allowing them to change shape when necessary, carrying oxygen to all parts of the body where blood is supplied. So imagine a sickle shaped red blood cell attempting to pass through blood vessels. Because of their lack of flexibility, they get stuck, therefore preventing the transport of oxygen in the body (Ischemia). Assuming they get stuck in the blood vessels supplying the brain, and the brain cannot work without oxygen for more than 5 minutes…death ultimately results.

Red blood cells typically have a life-span of 90-120 days after which they are filtered from the blood by the spleen and new ones are produced from the bone marrow. Sickle cells, however, have a life-span of just 10 to 20 days after which they are destroyed, causing the anemia. The bone marrow in patients with SCD constantly tries to produce new cells to compensate for the lost ones, but it does not match the rate of destruction.

I’m sure you have heard of a SCD patient hospitalized for experiencing ‘crisis. Sickle cell crisis is used to describe several independent conditions which may occur simultaneously. Most episodes of crisis last between 5 to 7 days, although in some patients, may last for longer. Such conditions include:

  • Vaso-occlusive crisis, which is as a result of the sickle cells being stuck within blood vessels, causing blockade of blood flow and oxygen to an organ which results in pain and consequently, organ damage. The pain is often said to be indescribable, requiring strong opioid analgesics such as morphine to bring temporary relief.
  • Splenic sequestration crisis, which occurs as a result of blood flow blockade to the spleen, causing its painful inflammation. Because the spleen stores red blood cells and other blood components (which it releases into circulation in conditions of low blood volume or hypovolemia), an inflammation causes blood to suddenly move from circulation into the spleen, leading to sudden low blood volume. If not treated as an emergency, a patient may die within 1-2 hours.
  • Acute chest syndrome, characterized by fever, chest pain, difficulty in breathing and infiltrates in the chest.

Complications of this disease are diverse and include decreased immunity leading to opportunistic infections, silent strokes, kidney failure, Priaprism (unwanted erections in males), chronic pain leading to patients being dependent on opioids, Pulmonary hypertension, fertility, and bone wasting, among others.

The prognosis of SCD is that about 90% of patients survive to age 20, and close to 50% survive beyond 50 years. The frequency of SCD is found in tropical regions, particularly Sub-Saharan Africa, India and the Middle east; Nigeria is in Sub-Saharan Africa. A recent WHO report estimated that around 2% of newborns in Nigeria are affected by SCD, giving a total of 150,000 affected children born yearly.

You might not fully understand the meaning of all these medical expletives I just typed, but I am sure you understand how pain feels. Not just the type of pain from headache or bruises that makes us often cry and gnash our teeth to God, but deep seated pain that only the hand of God can save a person from.

How deep is that love, which you decide to gamble on, using the health of your unborn children as bait? My dear, only Agape love is sure in this world of ours. I know of a couple, who are both medical doctors and possess the AS genotype. One would expect that, health professionals that they are, they wouldn’t be so non-chalant about such an issue. Or is there a special copulation style that allows one to predict the genotype of an unborn child? As fate would have it, all their 4 kids had the HbSS genotype, which means, they were all ‘sicklers‘. Every other week, I see them in the hospital due to one problem or the other. Imagine the physical, emotional and financial stress they go through. They both are yet to start their residency program because of the overwhelming nature of taking care of 4 kids living with SCD. There was also a very beautiful girl in my secondary school, one of the most beautiful I had ever seen. She died at 22 years of age, after she just completed her first degree at the Buckingham University, United Kingdom. Can you imagine the pain the parents would have gone through, paying health and academic bills, and the child dying at her peak?

Checking for genotypic compatibility is very easy. After confirming your genotype, if you are AA, you have no reason worrying about incompatibility. You can even have a child with a person having SCD. None of your kids will suffer from SCD, they would just be carriers. Likewise for those having SCD, they can only have kids with those with the AA genotype.

If you are AS, you are only compatible with the AA genotype. The probability of having a child with SCD from two people with the AS genotype is 1 in 4, that means, you have 0.25% chance of having a child with SCD with each pregnancy.


I sympathize with those who have lost family and friends due to sickle cell disease. Don’t let love, money or whatever passions lead you into making a wrong decision. Firsthand, I know several people living with SCD and it’s a struggle consoling them anytime I hear they are being hospitalized. Learn, educate and heed the warning today. In ancient times, patients with sickle cell disease in Nigeria were said to be ‘ogbanjes‘ among the easterners and ‘Abikus‘ among the westerners, due to the thought that the children die young and are re-incarnated in the next child born to that family. Now, we know better. Let us have a generation where the prevalence of sickle cell disease reduces drastically. It begins with us.

Any experience to share, or questions concerning SCD and how to manage it? Please drop your comments and questions. I’ll be here to answer them.

Be safe, be happy.

The Nigerian Gospel according to Flagyl®


Hello Everyone, how have you been, especially healthwise? I hope everything is going on well. Keeping a blog isn’t easy, I must confess. Let me just blame it on the government (jokes). Actually, with the constant supply of no light in our country, high cost of living (internet bills), insecurities and what-nots, our hope is all we have got until we decide to change. Well, that’s not why I’m here today.

I believe many of us have had cause to use the drug popularly known as ‘Flagyl®’, although variants like ‘Flagin‘, ‘Flygyl‘, and ‘Vagin‘ (yes, I have seen someone spell it like that), exist. Most Nigerians believe they have a license to eat all sorts because their savior, Flagyl® is always on hand to rescue them from making a huge mess of themselves in public.


Take for example, this story. I was in my senior secondary school years, and was using a very popular bus transport service back to school, Ibadan to be precise. As a ground rule, whenever I am traveling by road, I don’t eat any solid meal after 6.30am because I develop very terrible motion sickness, plus there might be the urge to do the ‘big thing’ along the way. With these public transport services in Nigeria, you are on your own when it comes to such matters because if everybody is given permission, our journey may never be completed. Anyway, let me get on to the main story.

I was sitting behind two women in their fifties. As we boarded and settled, they had coolers of food which they started devouring before we even started moving. This particular transport service gives breakfast to passengers before traveling, and that day wasn’t any different. I noticed that these women on receiving the food, opened them immediately and started eating. I was taken aback but I thought maybe they were just released from a refugee camp, or they were ignorant that the bus just had facilities for urinating, and when it comes to stopping the bus for a passenger to defecate, the officials no ‘dey look uche face‘. I couldn’t help but to listen to their conversation (not just me though, they were so loud that 35 buses behind us could hear them), and I overheard one of them asking the other if she brought ‘Flagin‘ along, to which the answer was in a local western parlance, ‘Beeni now, mi o use Flagyl seere lai lai‘, meaning, ‘Yes now, I don’t joke with Flagyl for any reason‘. I wished them well and tried to make myself comfortable for the journey.

All the stops we made – buying fuel at Gwagwalada, picking up some passengers at Abaji (where they bought akara and it wasn’t even 10am yet), and stopping for lunch at Lokoja, these women feasted. As we approached Osun state, there was a slight traffic jam, and hawkers flocked the bus selling their wares, including a type of spiced diced plantain popularly known as “dodo ikire“. These women literally jumped for joy at the sight and bought quite a number. It wasn’t long before I heard muffled noises and as glanced their way, one of them was wincing in pain and began to make her way to the convenience in the bus.

Some 30 minutes later, the bus was filled with a stench that could only be described as a fulminating concoction of rotting eggs and fish garnished with bitter leaves. This woman, in her desperation and for want of avoiding public embarrassment, went ahead to defecate in the urinal obviously meant for urination only. As a result, it wouldn’t flush and the whole thing got out of control… its better imagined than spelt out. It was a scandal. The bus conductor, on finding out, made it a point of duty to call her all sorts of derogatory names, and threatened to expel her from the bus for endangering our lives. I, along with many others, did not feel sorry for this woman because she deserved every minute of embarrassment she got. Plus, she was disappointed by Flagyl®, her stomach savior and defender of her intestines.

I have had the experience of coming in contact with patients in the community Pharmacies and even in the Hospitals where people are assumed to be more enlightened, and on interaction, most of them believe that Flagyl® is the one-stop solution for stomach upsets. Well, that is wrong. If you are part of that bandwagon, you are not only wasting your time, you are also increasing the likelihood of obtaining adverse effects and promoting the development of organisms resistant to Flagyl®.

What is Flagyl®? It is just a brand name by Sanofi-Aventis, a notable pharmaceutical company. Its active component is Metronidazole, which simply put, is a nitroimidazole antibiotic medication used particularly against infections caused by anaerobes and protozoa. An anaerobic organism or anaerobe is any organism that does not require oxygen for growth. It could possibly react negatively and may even die if oxygen is present. Anaerobic microbes include Bacteroides fragilis spp, Fusobacterium spp, Clostridium spp, Peptostreptococcus spp, while Protozoal species include Entamoeba histolytica, Giardia lamblia, and Trichomonas vaginalis.

There are several causes of stomach ache, including Indigestion, Constipation, Stomach flu, Food poisoning, Menstrual Cramps, Food allergies, Gas and Lactose intolerance. The surprising news is that none of these conditions can be treated with Flagyl®, except for food poisoning caused by anaerobic and/or protozoal infections. Therefore in most cases, the use of Flagyl® is not warranted. As I mentioned earlier, its unnecessary and incessant use can cause a plethora of adverse effects including development of neutropenia, increased risk of peripheral neuropathy and/or CNS toxicity.

Metronidazole is listed by the US National Toxicology Program (NTP) as reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen. A carcinogen is any substance that is an agent directly involved in causing cancer. Although some of the testing methods have been questioned, oral exposure has been shown to cause cancer in experimental animals. Metronidazole is listed as a possible carcinogen according to the WHO International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). All these medical jargon point to the fact that Flagyl® is not an antidote for any sort of stomach pain.

If you are experiencing some sort of stomach ache, it’s important to know the cause, at least try to. It could be something unwholesome that you ate or drank, and it is wrong to assume that taking Flagyl® is the solution to the problem. Rather than continuing to ingest such substances, because Flagyl® is available in your bag, its best to stop at once.

If you are feeling constipated, you could drink extra water (more than your normal intake), drink warm liquids, and eat more fruits and vegetables. If you believe you have food poisoning, self treatment is not the best. Most cases of food poisoning go away on their own in several days, but if the condition is persistent or severe you should see a doctor. If a particular food you are eating is causing you repeated stomach pain or discomfort, you may have a food allergy. There is no way to cure food allergies, so the best way to avoid a reaction is to strictly avoid the allergy-causing foods. What of a feeling of excess gas?
Traditionally, one of the top recommendations, including from the American College of Gastroenterology, to keep gas to a minimum is to identify gas-forming foods in your diet, then avoid or reduce them. Foods that are considered to be increase gas discomfort include Beans and Cabbage. Do away with or reduce the frequency of these foods in your diet, and save yourself from producing biological weapons of destruction.

 You mean to tell me I just farted? Oh my…                      

After all said, eating should be done in moderation, especially when out of the convenience of a home. Your date took you to a Chinese restaurant and you have never eaten Chinese before? Instead of choosing Sesame Chicken mixed with Lettuce Wraps, in collaboration with Peking Duck dipped in Wonton Soup, all stirred in Hot and Sour soup, respect yourself and stick to good old rice and fried chicken or something familiar. Apart from the embarrassment your running stomach may cause you, you also risk being dumped because you would have succeeded in wasting some poor dude’s money. Better still, suggest that he takes you to Mama Delta or Jevenik restaurant, or somewhere you would be comfortable in. Don’t dull yourself.

Well I hope you have learnt a thing or two…on a lighter note, have your stomach caused you any embarrassing moment(s)? I would love to hear about it. Still feel free to ask questions and drop comments.

Until my next post, stay safe.

Not another red wine…


Red wine is a type of wine made from dark-colored (black) grape varieties. One might wonder why red wine is well…red. Its color can be derived from a vast assortment of grape varietals ranging from grapes that are reddish, deep purple, and even a beautiful blue on the color scale. These grapes give rise to a wine that is color classified with such descriptors as garnet, almost black, dark red, light red, ruby red, opaque purple, deep violet, maroon and the list goes on. It is the grape-skins that are responsible for the red wine’s distinct color spectrum. The skins are in contact with the grape’s juice during the fermentation process, allowing the dispersion of both color and tannins.

Red wines are often classified by “body-type”. For example, one might say that a certain red wine is “light-bodied” – referring to the mouth-feel and tannin structure.

  • A light-bodied wine will have fewer tannins present and less presence on the palate. These wines tend to be less demanding partners with flavor-filled foods. An example of a light-bodied red wine would be one derived from the Gamay grape varietal, such as France’s famed young red wine: Beaujolais Nouveau.
  • A medium-bodied red wine will contain more tannins than the above Beaujolais Nouveau, but will not have near the pucker power of a high-powered California Cabernet Sauvignon or an Italian Super Tuscan. Typical examples of medium-bodied red wines include: Merlot, Shiraz or a Chianti.
  • Full-bodied red wines boast the highest tannin (and often alcohol) content. Prime examples of full-bodied reds are France’s esteemed Bordeaux wines, California’s key Cabernets and Italy’s sizzling Super Tuscans.

In general, light-bodied wines tend to “feel” more like water in the mouth. In contrast, “full-bodied” wines feel heavier, more like milk, this effect is due in large part to the higher tannin (and again, alcohol) content.

The top red wine varietals that you are likely to encounter are: Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petite Sirah, Syrah, Shiraz, Sangiovese, Malbec, and Grenache.

Well, I’m here to talk about a particular wine, a premium wine, and first of its kind in Nigeria; RIVERSTONE red wine. Riverstone red wine is a South African red wine made from Cinsaut and Ruby Cabernet grapes.

My babydddddc.jpg

A Cinsaut or Cinsault is a red wine grape, known for producing light, fruity and heavily perfumed wines, most often as either a Rose or blended with another heartier grape (usually a Carignan), whose heat tolerance and productivity make it very important in wine production. A Ruby Cabernet is a redgrape variety that is a cross between Cabernet Sauvignon (widely accepted as one of the world’s best varieties) and Carignan.

The purpose for the creation of the crossing of the grape varieties utilized to produce Ruby Cabernet was to obtain the superior quality of a Cabernet wine, and the resistance to heat of the Carignan, to create an all-round specification of wine meeting quality, taste and affordability.

Cinsaut grapes                                            Ruby Cabernet grapes

The result of a combination of Cinsaut and Ruby Cabernet grapes gives a balance between medium-bodied and full-bodied, and the taste is one that can be described as heavenly, and I am a witness to that. The aroma of currants, teasingly rich taste, and the subtle alcohol feeling is one best experienced than narrated to.

I think I have enlightened you enough on some information about Riverstone wine, and wines in general. For that occasion: weddings, birthdays, album launches, bridal showers, bachelor’s eve parties, annual general meetings, and celebration of life (funerals), supplies to restaurants and bars, why not make your guests happy and serve Riverstone red wine? You are going wine shopping? Pick some bottles of Riverstone red wine off the vendor’s shelves. You would be absolutely glad that you did, plus red wine is good for the heart and soul {contains Resveratrol which is heart-protective…but that’s a story for another post :)}…and yes, I am advertising this wine!

Distributors are available in Abuja, please call 07031990172, or 08097020069. We will be waiting, as huge, unbelievable discounts await you.

Have a nice week ahead!

It’s painfully BIG!


First things first, Barka da Sallah to my muslim friends. May the blessings of this season remain with you today and forever.

I am quite ashamed to be back her after a very long time. I was asked by many if I was serious at all…I apologize, my absence was due to nothing in particular, I promise not to repeat such behavior again.

I hope you all have been good since your last visit here. I will just go straight to the point now.

From my teenage years, I have heard a lot about the size of a guy’s packs (penis, but henceforth will be referred to as packs). I heard it was a major attractive physical attribute in a guy, and I actually wondered why.

In my 4th year in the university, a lady came up to me, a schoolgirl like me. She seemed a bit ruffled, because we were just the ‘hello/hi’ type of friends. What came out of her mouth was a bit unexpected, and for her to actually sum up the courage to ask a not-so-close person that question, it meant that the thing tire the sister. She said to me, in her words, ‘Adesuwa, please is it possible to react to big stuffs, is it like a disease? I’m like stuffs? What stuff? Shifting uneasily from one leg to the other, it took her up to 4 minutes to say big packs.

Surprised as I was, I tried to act all professional, but I wondered why she came to me of all people. I took her to a nearby ‘love garden’ and asked her to shed more light. Who doesn’t like such stories? She said she was very concerned about big packs and how it affects her vagina (henceforth to be called coochie). She said she had just ended her 3 years relationship with her boyfriend, because of, among other things, the injuries she sustains anytime they have sexual relations. In her words also, ‘…before the walls of my coochie peel off before i get married…’

Does the size of a man’s packs matter? I hear some girls believe size is important for sexual satisfaction. Guys believe it increases sexual confidence. Some girls have come to the realisation that bigger packs do not always equal great sex, while some guys have realized that hefty packs do not always land ladies on their beds. But this is not why I’m here, lest I derail.

My worry is, as a guy, wouldn’t you know if and when your packs are hurting your partner? Some guys just go on and on and on and on and on, assuming the girl is having the time of her life, not knowing that your generation might be under a plethora of silent curses. Ladies are also fond of faking sexual satisfaction for reasons best known to them, but if you keep quiet when something hurtful is unknowingly meted out upon you, something should be wrong somewhere. Let me help you with some reasons why speaking out is very important.

  • INFECTIONS: I can’t get tired of talking about this, because statistics show that females are more inflicted with STDs than males, which isn’t fair. Injuries sustained from painful sex often produce sites from which one can be infected. Ladies already have enough openings through which microbes can invade and I don’t see the need creating additional ones. If you feel, see, or physically realise that his packs are too big for your coochie, please say something or forever remain in pain. Unless you strongly believe you can ‘grow into him’.
  • PAIN: I no go lie, but the pain that accompanies a bruised coochie (by any means such as falling down) is not beans, at all, especially when its in contact with moisture. That is when you’ll see some ladies walking as if there are pieces of hot yam between their thighs. Don’t laugh, they might just be experiencing a ‘wrath of the packs’. In a marriage where sex is required to be regular, the walls of a wife’s coochie can actually peel off one fateful day. Old or young, black or white, e dey pain.
  • EMOTIONAL UNEASINESS: Our society doesn’t really support being vocal about sex, so in a relationship where pain is inflicted on a lady via sex, she tries to avoid it since she can’t say much about it. The guy begins to think there’s another guy (as they always do). Brother, she’s just scared of the size of your packs.

Ok. Hefty packs are not all bad news. I have read about good reports (since nobody wants to share the good times with me, only the bad). I have also read about cool ways for guys to wield such packs for the betterment of the ‘woman’ race. Such ways include adequate foreplay and use of lubricants. Don’t forget that vegetable oil is not a lubricant. Also do some research so that you would stop making your woman cry without actually beating her.

On a lighter note I remember my Integrated Science teacher in my JSS3 back in Queen’s College, Mrs Achinivu, barking in class one day after we received the news that a senior student got pregnant. She went ‘GIRLS, FEAR PENIS, PENIS IS FIRE! WHAT DID I SAY??? And we all went ‘PENIS IS FIRE!’. Sounded funny to us then, but I am certain that some of us in that class learnt the hard way that penis truly is fire.

Please bear in mind that I’m not a sex therapist. I am just extending my views as a Clinical Pharmacist :) but feel free to ask questions and drop comments.

I hope I have been able to convince you that huge packs aren’t all that. If you agree with me please send me sallah ram ASAP. I will be waiting in my office.

Until my next post, stay blessed!

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20121026-145851.jpg

20121026-145857.jpg
…I believe they are crying due to obvious reasons…

Aside

My friends, how are you all?

Your week? Hope everything is going on fine.

It is with great ‘para‘ (an emotion similar to anger) that I write this post, and I sincerely hope somebody doesn’t take it personal. This is the point where I’ll put up a disclaimer.

‘This post is strictly a work of fiction and entirely from Adesuwa’s imagination, research, and experience. Any semblance to any being, living or dead, is merely a coincidence’.

Some 2,3 months ago, I was going through the recent updates on my BBM where I saw some disturbing updates about the so-called wonder drug, Truvada.Some guy said ‘Ope o, I can now stop spending money on condoms, because Truvada don come oo‘. Another one read ‘abeg Abeg abeg, when Truvada go reach Naija, I wanna get my freak on‘. These utterances were made based on some misguided, or misinterpreted reports saying Truvada was the cure for HIV/AIDS. I solemnly say I’m not making this up, plus I never knew I had such ignorant people on my BBM. But hey, nobody knows everything, that’s one reason why I decided to write something on this matter. Let me start by giving you a little information about how HIV drugs perform their actions.

Hey you. I know you know everything about HIV, it being deadly and all that…let me inform you that HIV/AIDs can NEVER be over-flogged. Never. So do yourself some good by reading and learning something you might not know.

HIV is ‘Human Immunodeficiency Virus’ as most of you know. It belongs to a class ‘Retroviridae‘, which makes it a Retrovirus. Unlike other viruses, a Retrovirus (trying so hard not to use big big medical jargons) is not a DNA molecule, but an RNA molecule. So it converts to DNA by the help of an enzyme, ‘reverse transcriptase’ . The resulting DNA is then integrated into the host’s (e.g., humans) nucleus by another enzyme, ‘integrase‘, from where the virus takes over DNA synthesis. By the way, DNA is necessary for production of proteins,( not dietary ones) which are important for proper functioning of the body and it’s organs. HIV belongs to a subclass called ‘lentiviridae‘, (lente-, Latin for “slow“) characterized by a long incubation period, meaning they can stay in ones’s system for a very long time, usually the duration of one’s life.

Back to the drugs, which are known as Anti-retroviral drugs, they act by inhibiting the actions of those enzymes. Truvada is a combination of two drugs, Tenofovir (as Tenofovir dinoproxil fumarate) and Emtricitabine. Both act by inhibiting the ‘reverse transcriptase’ enzyme.

This is the post that supposedly caused the confusion:

According to Huffingtonpost.com, The Food and Drug Administration approved the first drug shown to reduce the risk of HIV infection, the latest milestone in the 30-year battle against the virus that causes AIDS. The agency approved Gilead Sciences’ pill Truvada as a preventive measure for healthy people who are at high risk of acquiring HIV through sexual activity, such as those who have HIV-infected partners.

But if I’m seeing clearly, there’s nowhere in this report and that reported by CNN that Truvada is a CURE for HIV/AIDs. From Truvada.com, the makers gave this notice:

TRUVADA is used in HIV negative adults along with safer sex practices to reduce the risk of getting HIV-1 in men who have sex with men who are at high risk for getting infected with HIV-1 through sex, and heterosexual couples where one partner has HIV-1 and the other does not. This is called Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis or PrEP.

TRUVADA blocks the action of a protein that HIV needs to infect your body (as I earlier explained).

TRUVADA does not cure HIV or AIDS, using it alone may not keep you from getting HIV. If you have HIV infection, you may still get other infections that happen in people with HIV like TB (tuberculosis) or fungus, while taking TRUVADA.

For those asking if Truvadais available in Nigeria, Yes it is. I have seen and touched it…(look at the picture below, i’m holding a generic brand) Nigeria isn’t that backwards.

In the hospital I work in, it is very much available but reserved for patients in which first line treatment has failed.
From all I have mentioned, there should be no reason why an otherwise healthy individual would want to become promiscuous because ‘Truvada don come‘. It is very expensive, and the side effects are not palatable at all at all. Apart from the usual nausea, vomiting and diarrhea, a buildup of acid in the blood (lactic acidosis, life-threatening), Serious liver problems (hepatotoxicity), with liver enlargement (hepatomegaly), and fat in the liver (steatosis). In some cases, these serious conditions have led to death. Besides, one would have to take this drug for life, and in combination with other anti-retrovirals. Why not save yourself the stress?
For those living with the virus, it isn’t a death sentence I assure you, and I will give you real life situations in my next post. For those living without the virus, be rest assured that nothing exempts you from being infected…absolutely nothing. So before you act recklessly, in hopes that a cure is available for HIV/AIDs, please think again.
Methinks I have vented enough. As a rejoinder, we should learn to make use of internet search engines. Blackberries, androids and iPhones are not only for social networking. When you are in doubt, browse. If not for anything, when people are discussing about an issue, you would have something positive to say, instead of looking like a ‘suegebe‘. Nuff said.
Stay blessed,stay safe, and refuse to set that intimate ‘P’ with that hot chic or cute guy you know absolutely nothing about!

20120810-183119.jpgAn HIV patient with kaposi sarcoma, a form of cancer.

20120810-183224.jpg Me holding a generic brand of Truvada

20120810-183239.jpg The patent brand

Some truths about Truvada

By pharmadesuwa Posted in health

Suffering and smiling?hell yeah!


Hello everyone! How has the week been? I’m sure we are all looking forward to the weekend…

Kai, keeping a blog ain’t easy as I thought, as I have been cracking my brain for a suitable topic to write about. Sorry about the wait (for those who actually waited), but it sure feels good when visitors to the blog pester me to put up a new post. I hope this will be worth your wait.

E NO EASY EHHHH

I don’t know why people see me as being short-tempered. People who eventually become close to me are usually surprised to find out otherwise. I just have a sharp mouth, as some would say. This sharp mouth though, becomes handy when some annoying people ‘need to be put in check’, as we Nigerians are always quick to do. I did this a lot as a teenager, and it stopped several bullies from messing with me. I even bullied a prefect back in Queen’s college, who didn’t know I was her junior by 4 years…true cool story. I should get a pat in the back for that, no?

Anyways, as I grew older, and learnt more about diseases and drugs, some things became clearer. I discovered that some people act inappropriately because of some underlying factors, which may or may not be health-related. Let me give you a real life illustration.

I was in my office in that same community pharmacy in Wuse 2, on a warm, cheery evening. A woman walks in, and after exchanging pleasantries, she handed me a prescription. Among other drugs contained the prescription was the popular ‘Chemiron’ capsules, a haematinic (or blood tonic as we call it). I brought out the drugs and was about costing them when the woman started screaming ‘I don’t want Chemiron, why did you give me that rubbish’. You know most Nigerians believe when an item is cheap, it is of extremely low quality. I apologised, and explained to her that I just followed what was written on the prescription, but she would hear none of that. After trying SOOOO hard not to reply her, she said and I quote ‘ I don’t know what is wrong with all this useless graduates of nowadays…I train people like you, you girls without home training’. All these while, I was still attending to her, and the next words i heard was‘If you try this rubbish again, I would bring my 9-year old daughter to give you a dirty slap’. GHEN GEUN!!! Maybe my ears’ connection were touching, but she said it again, and I became certain I was dealing with a really sick woman. Because of the professional environment I was in, I called on my colleague to attend to her before I did something unprofessional, and went into the inner office. At the close of work, I was going through the treated prescriptions when I found out that the woman had come earlier to get a particular drug, Haloperidol, which is an anti-psychotic drug. You can’t imagine how happy I was that I didn’t exchange words with her, because she obviously had problems that were beyond her control.

Now, there are millions of frustrated people out there, believe me. People just flare up for very funny reasons. Before you ‘attack’ that girl who insulted you, or secretly curse your boss who continually berates you, or think your boyfriend or girlfriend is changing and you want to break up, He or she may be experiencing the following, knowingly or unknowingly.

  Horrible boss!  But let him be…

  • Diarrhea: This is My personal number one cause for irrational behaviour, a.k.a ‘running stomach’ (only Jah knows where its running to) or purging. My friends, shit don hook you before? Especially when you are nowhere near a convenience. It really can make one mad, causing an actual ‘verbal diarrhea’. Rather than reply that girl in your office whose yab touched you in the wrong place, keep quiet or smile. You don’t want her to accidentally ‘drop it like it’s hot’ while exchanging words.
  • Diseases affecting the brain: This includes Schizophrenia, Depression, and Alzheimer’s disease. Part of the non-drug therapy is Tolerance. Since you can’t tell who is affected by this disease, it pays to make an extra effort to tolerate people unknown to you.

                                           

  • Substance addiction: Items ranging from Super glue, Horse faeces to Benylin with Codeine and Marijuana are abused by people. Most addicts have violent behaviours, and an attempt to correct, insult or put them in check might just leave you wounded or dead.
  • Migraine/Cluster headache: This can make someone super-irritable, surely i can get witnesses to this fact.
  • Hypertension: From the prefix ‘hyper’ (jokes), you can imagine how such an individual will behave, especially when not controlled. Let the anger pass, before he drops dead on you as you both are having an altercation.
  • Sex deprivation: Yes,oh yes, this is a huge cause of people’s frustration. You see that young man jumping queues in the banking hall, and when confronted, insults the generation of everyone present? You can be sure that his wife has refused copulation for 7months, and he hasn’t the heart to cheat on her. Help him by smiling and refusing to get caught in his frustrating web.

Happy couple, eh? Look well, he might be sex starved. It’s called ‘Suffering and smiling’.

  • Emotional trauma: This is more common in females. The other day in the hospital, a nurse, well in her ‘marriageable years’ but unmarried had this to say to a woman who had just put to bed, when she called out for help…‘abeg no be because of you i come work today o, me self go born pikin one day’. Because other members of staff knew about her irrational behaviour caused by her unmarried status, she was ignored. Morale of the story? A lot of people are undergoing emotional problems, and it will do you well to just ignore and let them be.

                        WHY NOT LAUGH IT OFF!                                         

  • Financial handicap: This is otherwise known as ‘being broke’. Some girls resort to being in the “INEC – I NEVER EVEN CHOP” group when they are broke. We all have had our broke stages. So when next you see that handsome, well dressed man in the restaurant with a surprisingly nasty attitude, he’s probably thinking how’s he’s going to raise the money to foot the bill of the lunch he, his girlfriend, and 6 of her friends had just had. We girls can be that wicked.
  • Living in bondage: Some are being followed from their villages. You don’t wanna mess with such people, before they skype you with broken mirror.

I could go on with more reasons not to be nasty to that annoying person. But I’m sure I have bored you already. :)

P.S. Nigerians, please take it easy on the Ghanaians, they have just lost their president. Laughing at our loss in the Basketball match might just be their way of grieving. Tamper justice with mercy. (Nigerian voltrons please don’t shoot me o, lol).

Until next post, be a nice, happy bunny.

Mwah!!!