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Understanding Infections

BACKGROUND   Humans may hold dominance over most other life-forms on Earth, but a few varieties of organism have long held mastery over us. Ironically, these life-forms, including bacteria and viruses, are so small that they cannot be seen, and this, in fact, has contributed to their disproportionate influence in human history. For thousands of years, people attributed infection to spiritual causes or, at the very least, to imbalances of "humors," or fluids, in the human bo...

Obesity

Definition Obesity means having too much body fat. It is different from being overweight, which means weighing too much. The weight may come from muscle, bone, fat and/or body water. Both terms mean that a person's weight is greater than what's considered healthy for his or her height. Obesity occurs over time when you eat more calories than you use. The balance between calories-in and calories-out differs for each person. Factors that might tip the balance include your genetic ...

Diets

The principles of a healthy diet A diet is whatever a person eats, regardless of the goal—whether it is losing weight, gaining weight, reducing fat intake, avoiding carbohydrates, or having no particular goal. However, the term is often used to imply a goal of losing weight, which is an obsession for many people.   Standard healthy diets for children and adults are based on the needs of average people who have certain characteristics: They do not need to lose or g...

What is the addiction

Addiction definition Addiction is a primary, progressive, chronic disease with genetic, psychosocial, and environmental factors influencing its development and manifestations. The disease is often progressive and fatal. It is characterized by impaired control over use of the substance, preoccupation with the substance, use of the substance despite adverse consequences, and distortions in thinking. [Published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (Vol. 68, No. 8), Mo...

Gambling

GAMBLING ADDICTION Problem gambling is an urge to gamble despite harmful negative consequences or a desire to stop. The term is preferred to compulsive gambling among many professionals, as few people described by the term experience true compulsions in the clinical sense of the word. Problem gambling often is defined by whether harm is experienced by the gambler or others, rather than by the gambler's behavior. Severe problem gambling may be diagnosed as clinical pathological ga...

Understanding Pain

Pain definition An unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage, or described in terms of such damage. The inability to communicate verbally does not negate the possibility that an individual is experiencing pain and is in need of appropriate pain-relieving treatment. Pain is always subjective. Each individual learns the application of the word through experiences related to injury in early life. Biologists recognize that those st...

Low Back Pain

The back is an structure of bones, muscles, and other tissues that form the posterior part of the body’s trunk. The centerpiece is the spinal column, which supports the upper body’s weight and protects the spinal cord which carries the signals that control the body’s movements and convey its sensations (see focus : “Understanding Pain”). The spinal column, also known as the spine has made by more than 30 bones (the vertebrae) stacked on top of one ot...

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