Saturday, August 27, 2011

Hurricane Preparation the Best Possible Way

With the landfall of Hurricane Irene on the Atlantic coast, it is important to know the best possible way to prepare for such a devastation because the next storm may make landfall where you are.

The coastline of the United States, especially the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts, is regularly battered by hurricanes, about five on average, with the most devastation ones occurring approximately every 3 years.  These storms bring about a lot of heavy wind, with gusts as much as a hundred miles per hour along with water surges reaching as high as twenty feet.      

These cyclones are extremely dangerous; therefore, it is important to prepare for their onslaught, especially during Hurricane Season, which is from June 1 to November 30.  Here are some tips to help you prepare for the worst possible scenario when hurricanes come:

Be Aware and Beware

Know and understand that each hurricane is different, so preparing for the worst possible is the best option since it makes you prepared and pro-active. 

Make a List and Check it Twice

List all outside items and determine which ones you think should be brought inside when a hurricane hits.  This includes outdoor tools and equipment and lawn furniture. 

Trim the Landscaping

Try to keep shrubbery and trees trimmed.  This prevents unnecessary entanglements, including of electric wires, caused by tree branches or the like.

Clear and Drain

Ensure that the gutters and drains are appropriately cleared.  This helps prevent further flooding, especially during long periods of heavy rainfall that usually accompanies strong hurricanes.

Use Shutters Specifically Designed for Hurricanes

Using permanent door and window shutters is much safer than simply taping all the glass as this does not prevent the glass breaking.  Plywood is also good for protecting windows. 

Plan for an Evacuation

Develop an evacuation plan.  You can find the best source of information from your local emergency management office or the Red Cross.  They may be able to provide you with the route for evacuation as well as nearby shelters. 

Stay tuned to local radio and television stations as they also have vital information regarding evacuations.  If there is a mandatory evacuation, do comply as doing so will make it easier for the Red Cross and Emergency Management personnel to do their job.

Prepare Blankets

Have sleeping bags and blankets ready in case you need to rush to a shelter. 

Think About Your Pets Too

Know in advance how to take care of your pets.  Many pets were abandoned during Hurricanes Katrina and Gustav.

Gather Necessary Emergency Supplies   

Prepare supplies beforehand.  Supplies should include flashlights, batteries, a radio, water and food, first aid kits, and a can opener. 

Also, turn your refrigerator temperature to the coldest setting.  This is for when the power goes off as the cool air of your refrigerator will stay longer, thereby preserving your food a lot longer.

Elevate your Home and Furniture

It is also a good idea to elevate your house, especially if you live in an area prone to hurricanes and flood.  This will help prevent potential expensive damage to your home and possessions.  Billions of dollars in damage was caused to homes during Hurricanes Katrina and Gustav, and not all claims have been paid for this.

All in all, preparing for the worst is the best course of action.  It could save you precious time, energy, and money as well as possibly saving your life as well as that of your loved ones. 
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Monday, August 8, 2011

Ways to Handle Sleep Apnea Conditions

If you have no trouble sleeping, you should consider yourself lucky.  It will help in dealing with the various conditions and tasks you have to face each day.  Otherwise, you will feel the negative effects due to lack of sleep, especially if you need to handle certain things with an alert body and a sound mind.  Even animals need enough rest and a full night’s sleep to keep their body fit.  However, there are certain conditions you may not be aware of which could interfere with your healthy sleep patterns; one of which is known as sleep apnea.  Many people suffer from this sleep disorder.

Apnea is a Greek word that literally means “to breathe”.  So when you have this sleep disorder, as you rest, you may not notice that your airway is blocked which is why your breathing will halt.  As this occurs, your brain will help you cope by going into a defensive mode, and your brain automatically forces you to breathe by waking you up.

How do you know someone has this?  The more obvious observation can be the way they snore.  You will hear more of a grunt than a snore because the person is gasping for air; this is why they are making such a noise.  The blockage is there while you suffering from the disorder.  This is why there will be a constant cycle of sleeping then waking up throughout the night.

Tireless Nights

If you are not worried about this condition now, eventually you will be.  You may think this is not reason for alarm because at least, you can still sleep even though you are often being awakened by your brain, but the fact is, this is not healthy.  You are not only losing hours of sleep, but you are not reaching the most important part of this activity.  There are five stages of sleep and among these; the most important part is REM.  REM stands for Rapid Eye Movement, and this is deepest stage and gives you the feeling of becoming refreshed and well-rested.  If you have sleep apnea, you will never reach such stage.

Aside from losing quality sleep each night, there are more serious problems that people who are suffering from sleep apnea face each time they go to sleep.  Because you cannot breathe easily and regularly as you are sleeping, you lack the necessary oxygen that your body must to be supplied with at all times.  This can lead to more serious health problems such as high blood pressure and heart disorder.  If you already have problems with high blood pressure and anything with regarding your heart, this sleep disorder makes matters worse and may lead to even more difficult problems if you do not act as soon as possible.

The Right Actions

The first thing that you need to do is accept there is a problem.  Then, you must take the necessary actions to alleviate the condition.  Here are some recommendations that you can follow:

1. If you are overweight, it is time to lose the excess pounds and become fit.  You have to know that a lot of people with sleep apnea are overweight.

2. You can request available dental services that can help you solve this problem.  You will need to choose the right specialist for this action. 

3. You can also choose surgery to eliminate the problem of sleep apnea permanently.

In addition, there are exercises you can do to help reduce or even eliminate the problem.  There is a great guide that shows you oral exercises you can do to help you get a better night’s sleep and help the oxygen move through your system so you can breathe and sleep easier as well as help you go through all five stages of sleep.  Learn more by going here.