What to Do When “Thoughts of Suicide” is a Listed Prescription Side Effect

While medications that have been proven to include “thoughts of suicide” as a a possible side effect, such as anti-smoking cessation medications, there is reason to believe that medicines that treat such conditions as asthma, epilepsy, and influenza could also cause this side effect, according to the LA Times.

Whether or not the symptom is listed, patients should pay attention to any changes in feelings when they start taking a new medication.  If you suddenly feel sad, depressed, anxious, or have suicidal thoughts talk to your doctor and discuss if any of the medications you are taking could be directly causing these feelings or thoughts.

What to Do if You or Someone You Love is Having Suicidal Thoughts

In most cases, someone who is feeling suicidal will not ask for help.  That’s why it is important to look for signs that point to suicidal thoughts, such as:

  • constantly talking about death and/or suicide
  • depression
  • feelings of hopelessness
  • dramatic mood swings
  • drug or alcohol dependence
  • previous suicide attempts
  • personality shifts, such as shy to rebellious or outgoing to withdrawn
  • change in eating and/or sleeping habits, such as overeating and/or sleeping all day
  • seeking access to ways to commit suicide, such as purchasing new guns
  • getting their affairs in order
  • giving away all their stuff

How to Talk to Someone About Suicide

It can be difficult to talk to someone you love about their thoughts of suicide.  However, you’ll never know if your suspicions are correct unless you ask them.  Having the opportunity to talk about how they are feeling just might save their lives.  If you or someone you know has thoughts of suicide, call 1-800-273-TALK (8255). You can also visit here to learn more about recognizing the signs of suicidal thoughts and how to prevent it.

Tips for Avoiding Peanuts while Traveling

Raising a child with peanut or nut allergies is challenging. Constant vigilance is needed. This is especially true during the early years of childhood. If your child is diagnosed with peanut allergic reactions, the lifestyle choices he or she makes will be forever altered by it. But it doesn’t mean that they cannot have a fulfilling life full of wonderful travel.  Here are 5 tips for avoiding allergic peanut reactions while traveling, or even while home alone.

Traveling Light and Eating Peanut Free

When traveling, the easiest way to avoid peanut allergies is to pack most of your own food. Peanuts are known to be used heavily in Thai, Chinese, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Malaysian, and West African cuisines. Also much Mexican food uses peanut oil for cooking, as do French fries in many restaurants, and don’t forget popcorn from movie theaters, at least in the Western world. In reality, any of these countries is more likely to use peanut oil in the fancy restaurants, but the person cooking chicken grilled on the street isn’t likely to use the same oils.

Have A Translation Ready To Explain

When traveling, it may be simplest to have some ready made translations handy, such as, “I’m allergic to peanuts and peanut oil, if you add these things in my food, I could or will die.” You could also have such important communications printed on cards, so that you can hand them to people in different countries, depending on the language they speak. For example, this is how the statement in quotations above this paragraph would look in the cloish language used in Thailand and Southeast Asia:

กรุณาอย่าเสริฟอาหารที่มีส่วนผสมของถั่วลิสง หรือน้ำมันถั่วลิสงให้กับผม เพราะผมแพ้ถั่วลิสง ซึ่งอาจจะทำให้ผมถึงแก่ความตายได้ ถ้าผมรับประทานมันลงไป

Be Prepared For Allergic Reactions

In truth, being prepared for allergic reactions means being prepared for the unexpected. You should build a medical reference team that you know can be called or made contact with in an emergency. You should have the information for contacting your allergist, immunologist, gastroenterologist, and your primary care physician.

Another important part of being prepared for allergic peanut allergies is creating a mobile first aid kit for when you are traveling. The kit should include some easy to swallow antihistamines, an epinephrine auto-injector like the EpiPen, copies of all your prescriptions, emergency contact forms for your doctors, and any other immediately allergy related items.

Special Accommodations for Air Travel

Peanut allergies and flying are inherently problematic, as peanuts and nuts permeate most airplanes. If flying, several special accommodations must be adhered to. First bring plenty of disinfectant wipes to use on trays, seat cushions, bathroom counters, and anything that is touched by hand. Most of the accommodations must be requested ahead of time, such as a peanut / nut free meal, seating away from the kitchen area, and permission to bring your own pillows and blankets on international flights.



Avoiding Peanuts in Thailand from Thailand


Bringing Home Baby Number Two and Germs

Becoming a parent changes everything and by the time you bring home baby number two, you’ve realized just how germ infested the world really is.  Unseen microscopic enemies lurk in dark corners and on surfaces throughout the house. it seems there is no escaping from germs – they’re absolutely everywhere.

When it’s time to take home a newborn with a toddler already in the house, the question is “How can I keep both my babies safe from germs?”

Understanding Germs

In the beginning, babies explore the world with their mouths.  Everything they can get their hands on usually goes straight to their mouth where they can quickly determine the taste and texture of the object. These babies are not thinking about germs, they are just trying to make sense of the world around them.  Before you stress out about that disgusting thing your baby just put in her mouth, remember that her little body is resilient and can fight off yucky germs quite well.  In fact, she was made that way.  That’s not to underestimate the power of germs to cause serious illnesses, just that germs are a part of life and we live with them everyday from the time we are born.  According to WebMd,  “Exposure to germs builds up a baby’s immune system. Once the body is infected by a specific virus, it learns how to make antibodies to fight it. The next time it’s exposed, the body can fight it off without getting an infection.”

Wash Hands

Soap is an invention that changed the world.  Evidence suggests that soap was first invented in ancient Mesopotamia around 2,800 BC.  Soap did wonders for improving human hygiene and still serves the same purpose today.  Our hands pick up so many germs throughout the day and we  want to avoid giving these germs access to our eyes and mouth. To do this, and to prevent spreading these germs, hand washing is so important, especially before eating.  Encourage your toddler and everyone else in the house to keep clean hands.

Get Vaccinations

Besides hand washing, keep your children safe from illnesses by getting them vaccinated.  Your doctor will recommended a list of vaccines your child needs, such as chicken pox, measles, mumps, the flu and more.

Germs are no joke. But we have to live with  them everyday. To keep your kids safe, follow the above tips and remember, the immune system is strong but it’s wise to give it some help by practicing hand washing and getting your children vaccinated against preventable illnesses.