Thursday, February 26, 2009

YOUR TONGUE TELLS THE STATE OF YOUR HEALTH


As a medical physician for over 50 years, I strive to give you the best medical information on controversial medical subjects and let you the reader come to your own conclusions. I have no ties to any organization, pharmaceutical, or lobby group. As an acupuncturist since 1982, I find western medicine and medical acupuncture are very complimentary with astounding results.
Visit http;//
www.americanacupuncture.com/ for more super information.





TONGUE  DIAGNOSIS

Look at your tongue and you will get a lot of information about your health.   The shape, color, size, and coating variations all tell a story about your health.  As an acupuncturist, many have asked why I look at their tongues.  I shall try to explain this ancient Chinese method of diagnosing health problems.

The shape and size of your tongue tells if you are over hydrated or dehydrated.  Too much water and your tongue are puffy.  If your tongue is small, and short you may be deficient in fluids. 

The color is also important.  If very red, you have too much heat.  If pale, you are anemic of have a cold coming on.  If it purple, you have some stagnation in some body organ.

The color and coatings may vary on different parts of the tongue.  If the tip is red, her is a problem with your heart.  If the sides of the tongue are different, you may have a liver problem. Just  beyond  the tip, your lungs may be acting up.  The center of the tongue tells a story about your stomach or digestion, and the back of the tongue relates to your kidney.

The thickness of a coating tells how severe your illness may be.  A thin coating indicates a mild pathogen; wile a very thick coating implies a deeper problem. 

If the coating is dry you need fluids, if it is moist, you may have poor water metabolism.  Te color of the coating also tells a story.  If it is white you have a cold condition, if yellow or brown, you have excess heat.  IF gray or black see a doctor soon as you have a serious condition.

Remember drinking red wine, coffee, food dyes, or orange juice can change the appearance of coating on the tongue.  Changes occur slowly unless you have a high fever, cold or a flu bug.

The location of changes tell where in your body you have a problem that needs attention.  For those of you contemplating tongue piercing,you must realize that the underside of the back of the tongue is controlled by the brain.  Piercing may cause emotional changes and depression . 

Most important is the location of some tongue changes.  As the diagram at the upper left of this blog indicates, you will have a clue as to what part of your body may be having some problems, and you know what specialist to see.

If you are thinking of a tongue piercing, you must note that the underside of the back of the tongue is the location of the brain.  Piercing this spot may cause emotional and depression changes.  

For more information and acupuncture points. , visit http://www.drneedles.com

 Sources: Adapted from  http://www.americanacupuncture.com, and tongue images are  from Y. Omura M.D.

 

Monday, February 23, 2009

FLU SHOTS, GOOD OR BAD?

As a medical physician for over 50 years, I strive to give you the best medical information on controversial medical subjects and let you the reader come to your own conclusions. I have no ties to any organization, pharmaceutical, or lobby group. As an acupuncturist since 1982, I find western medicine and medical acupuncture are very complimentary with astounding results.
Visit http;//www.americanacupuncture.com/ for more super information.

FLU SHOTS, GOOD OR BAD?

The flu season runs from Oct 1 until Mother’s Day and peaks mid February.  It was estimated there would not be enough vaccine available this season.

But here we are at the height of the flu season and more than half of all adults have no intention of getting a flu shot.  Recent survey showed only 30% of adults were vaccinated by mid November and another 17% planned on getting vaccinated.   Over 57% of health care workers and caregivers had no plans to get a flu vaccine, despite the Center for Disease Control recommending it for all adults. 

The CDC says the inactivated influenza vaccine is safe for everyone over 6 months of age, including those people with high-risk conditions.  Another vaccine with live attenuated influenza vaccine, marketed as FluMist is approved fro uses among healthy people 2-49, but is not recommended for pregnant women.

The largest effect, says the CDC, was found if all children under 16 were offered the vaccine. Up to 97 per cent of cases of influenza A were  prevented along with 96 per cent of influenza B.

Scientists are now investigating whether all children should be protected against flu or only certain age groups.  Our government apparently has come to its conclusion.

The new economic stimulus bill just passed, designates nearly a billion dollars for new vaccinations of children.   $954,000,000 shall be used as an additional amount to carry out the immunization program authorized by section 317(immunization program).

COMMENTARY

 Many unresolved questions need answering. 

Is vaccinating children on an annual basis a good use of resources? 

Can our elderly, who have very little immunity, be given another virus to overcome?

 Why must every nursing home insist that the vaccine be given?

 Should the elderly and people at risk of complications with long-term conditions like lung disease, multiple sclerosis or severe asthma be routinely vaccinated?

 Do mass vaccinations for non-fatal diseases actually improve the health and lives of those who receive them?

The pro-vaccine camp believes that the human immune  system is a technological failure and that chemical intervention is the only way to protect children. The anti-vaccine camp believes that exposure to non-fatal infections actually strengthens the immune system, creating stronger protections against future infections.

New research is showing that human health improves when it is EXPOSED to full-strength pathogens and infections that force the body to activate an adaptive response. There is some evidence that over vaccinating the  public may increase their risk of rheumatoid arthritis.

Thus, vaccines may actually interfere with normal, healthy immune function while injecting children with dangerous chemicals and substances derived from sick, diseased animals.

Of course its better to not get infected!   Or, at least, that's the conclusion most doctors choose to endorse.  Yet,  they the medical caregivers choose to ignore the Center for Disease Control recommendations and do not get themselves vaccinated.  What do they know that you don’t? 

Poor GlaxoSmithKline is hurting, but not for long.  The billion dollars of stimulus money is heading their way.

What do you think?

Visit www.drneedles.com for more commentaries on controversial medical subjects.

Source: ACOG TODAY FEB. 2009

Sunday, February 22, 2009

NEW LEAD POISONING LAWS IN EFFECT

As a medical physician for over 50 years, I strive to give you the best medical information on controversial medical subjects and let you the reader come to your own conclusions. I have no ties to any organization, pharmaceutical, or lobby group. As an acupuncturist since 1982, I find western medicine and medical acupuncture are very complimentary with astounding results.
Visit http;//www.americanacupuncture.com for more super information.

LEAD POISONING

Lead poisoning can result in permanent neurological damage resulting in learning and behavioral problems. The sad thing it is preventable and hard to detect at first. There is over 3 million tons of lead in 60 million American homes.

 There are numerous source of lead: in our soil, air, drinking water, and homes. Lead is found on water coolers at school, windowsills, old painted toys and furniture, in the dirt in yards, seals of fine wine, lead crystal glasses, dishes, coffee mugs, crayons, on toys, and even in calcium supplements.

Homes built before 1976 contain some lead in their tap water because of solid lead pipes or lead soldered copper pipes. Lead also can be emitted into the air from motor vehicles and industrial sources, and lead can enter drinking water from plumbing materials.

Lead-based paint may also be a hazard when found on surfaces that get a lot of wear-and-tear. These areas include: windows, sills, doors and doorframes, stairs, railings, banisters, porches and fences.   Note: Lead-based paint that is in good condition is usually not a hazard.

Children absorb 50% while parents only 10%.   Children pick up lead dust from floors, pets, and toys and then suck their thumbs. The lead compound on paints taste sweet. Lead is stored in baby's teeth and their kneecaps. Lead finds to the red blood cell like iron and is stored like calcium in the teeth. When there is a deficiency of protein, phosphorus, iron, or calcium, more lead is absorbed.

Symptoms of lead poisoning include: irritability, loss of appetite and weight loss, paleness from anemia, learning difficulties, sluggishness, vomiting and constipation, mood disorders, pain and numbness or tingling in the extremities.   Adults with lead poisoning have reproductive problems (both men and women), high blood pressure, hypertension, nerve disorders, memory and concentration problems, and muscle and joint pain.

Hobbies like making pottery or stained glass, refinishing furniture, and soldering and melting lead is a great source of lead poisoning. Burning colored newsprint or wood coated with lead paint, results in a release of lead into the air. 

Lead gasoline, phased out in 1976, was also a great source. Storage, preparation and serving of foods are another source. Juices from containers that come from lead soldered cans can leak the acids into the juice and be absorbed.

Pigmented designs on pottery dishes and mugs are glazed with lead to make them washable. The glaze contains deadly cadmium. This lead can be absorbed when hot food is served on them. Leaking is increased by acidic food as coffee, pop, fruit juices, or alcohol, combined with the decorative glaze and lead pigment.

In 1990, 90 % of all canned food was packaged in lead soldered cans (98%lead and 2% tin; lead is 10% the cost of tin.).  Note that soldered seams are raised and lumpy with gray metal while welded seams are soft, smooth and flat.

Wine formerly had corks sealed with hot wax and lead foil wrapped around it. The lead went into the wine. Place the wine in fine crystal and you also have immediate absorption of lead also from the crystal directly into the wine.

Calcium pills are made from bone meal and oyster shells (sources of lead). Best to choose calcium carbonate or antacids for your source of calcium. _Brass bowls contain 3% lead. Pewter is made from tin and lead. Silver plates contain often an alloy of lead. 

Newspapers with colored print contain lead. (So don't wrap your fish in the comics.) Water coolers had lead lined storage tanks until 1988. Sandblasting of old bridges releases a large amount of lead.

Pregnant moms absorb more that non-pregnant woman. The average lead levels were 17 micrograms per cc in 1976 and today are 4 micrograms. In 1965 the levels were 60 and dropped down in 1985 to 30 and by 1990 to 10 micrograms.

NEW STRICT LEAD RULES GO INTO EFFECT

Strict rules for lead in kid’ products go into effect on Feb. 24.  The Consumer Product Safety Commission  (CPSC) helped librarians, clothing makers, craft sellers and thrift stores get temporary exemptions.   Crafts made of natural woods are getting exemptions.  Librarians said they might have to ban kids to keep them away from books that are safe. They also delayed lead testing until next year.

The new law states kids’ products must have less than 600 parts per million of lead.  The sweeping bill is broad and could drive out some business.  The bill  had a tight deadline and unfortunately has no new funding.  The thought is good, but the execution seems poor.

Source www.americanacupncture.com

Visit www.drneedles.com for more information on thought provoking medical controversial subjects.  Your comments as usual are greatly appreciated.

 

 


CAUSES OF ALZHEIMERS

As a medical physician for over 50 years, I strive to give you the best medical information on controversial medical subjects and let you the reader come to your own conclusions. I have no ties to any organization, pharmaceutical, or lobby group. As an acupuncturist since 1982, I find western medicine and medical acupuncture are very complimentary with astounding results.
Visit http;//www.americanacupuncture.com/ for more super information.
  
       
CAUSES OF ALZHEIMERS, DIET HELPS REDUCE RISK

The dominant view of Alzheimer’s is that deposits of beta-amyloid accumulate in the brain, and destroy memory nerve cells.  It is the result of normal processes out of balance and going wrong.

Excess nerve cells and nerve fibers are pruned from the brain of fetuses and become reactivated in the adult brain.  This  causes  the death of normal nerve cells.  This activation is very necessary for fetal brain development.

The developing fetus makes twice the number of nerve cells that it needs.   We make too many and then we prune back so me make the right set of connections.  The brain makes and breaks connections all the time. 

The pruning is sparked by another APP fragment called N-APP that triggers an excess number of nerve cells and nerve fibers.   APP’a pathway is unknown and may be quite novel.  These neurons each make hundreds of nerve fibers that try to connect with other cells.  Those cells and nerve fibers that make the connections are the survivors. 

Beta-amyloid is a fragment of amyloid precursor proteins (APP).   Researchers are trying to block this buildup of beta amyloid plaques in the brain.   Yet some people accumulate a lot of this beta-amyloid without having any memory loss.  

No one knows what triggers the reappearance of the unwanted death of prenatal cells in the adult brain.   Other researchers recently found a protein called netrin-1 that regulates the production of beta amyloid that accumulates plaques in the brain.  

MEDITERRANEAN DIET HELPS PREVENT ALZHEIMERS.

It seems the Mediterranean diet helps prevent Alzheimer’s as it prevents heart disease.  People who eat fish, olive oil, vegetables, and other foods in Mediterranean diet reduce their risks of memory loss by 28% and have a 48 % less chance of Alzheimer’s.  If you do get Alzheimer’s, the disease occurs 4 years later.

The Mediterranean diet menu includes: pasta, rice, polenta, whole grain bread, spinach, eggplant, tomatoes, broccoli, peppers, garlic, olives, avocados, grapes, almonds, walnuts, peanuts, lentil, salmon shellfish, yogurt, and a little red wine.

We know Alzheimer changes occur in the brain decades before memory loss occurs.   So you might want to start eating more vegetables, legumes and fish and cut down on meat, dairy products, and high fat foods.  Get started on your red wine and olives now.

 Sources: Archives of Neurology, Feb 2009, Scarmeas,  Columbia Univ. Tessler, Journal Nature, Feb. 2009

                  Bredesen, Journal Cell Death, Feb 2009/   Mayo Clinic

Visit www.drnccdles.com for more information on medical controversial subjects.  Your comments are always appreciated.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

LISTEN TO YOUR BIOLOGICAL CLOCK

As a medical physician for over 50 years, I strive to give you the best medical information on controversial medical subjects and let you the reader come to your own conclusions. I have no ties to any organization, pharmaceutical, or lobby group. As an acupuncturist since 1982, I find western medicine and medical acupuncture are very complimentary with astounding results.
Visit http;//
www.americanacupuncture.com/ for more super information.

YOUR BIO-CLOCK IS TICKING

What makes your biological clock tick?  We all have tiny timepieces inside us that keep us on our 24-hour cycles, the time it takes the earth to spin around its axis.    Your body clock resets itself daily.  Your cells can actually tell the time and use it to control your behavior.  But how does your clock work at the molecular level? 

This timekeeping is a core property of life around your revolving planet.  Your survival and your functioning are vitally dependent on it.   Day and night, your pacemakers keep running.  Your inner clock tells you to wake up and when to sleep.   

When your clock loses it’s timing due to lack of sleep, your body temperature, appetite, blood pressure, hormone secretion, urine production, changes in blood, and sleep timing are all affected.  These changes can shift or disrupt your cycle.

ROLE OF GENES AND PROTEINS

The clock genes in your cell’s DNA control these timing mechanisms.   The first clock gene was discovered in 1971, followed by dozens of clock timing genes.  They make long stings of protein molecules that control your bodily functions.

These genes and proteins fit together like the gears in a clock turning the crank out into a 24-hour circuit.   You can reset the timing to make up for daylight saving time, night work, and jet lag.

DISTURBED RHYTHMS

Disturbed rhythms have adverse health consequences on peripheral organs outside the brain, particularly in the development or exacerbation of cardiovascular disease, bipolar disorders, decreased melatonin production, and jet lag.

YOUR 25-HOUR CLOCK

You can advance your sleep phase by one hour each day.  After starting a new routine, which requires you to get up earlier than usual, you start to fall asleep at night earlier

Without clocks or time clues, you tend to go to bed an hour later and to get up about an hour later each day. Experiments demonstrate that the "free-running" circadian rhythm in humans is about 25 hours long.

 

To maintain our 24-hour day/night cycle, the biological clock needs regular environmental time cues called Zeitgebers, e.g. sunrise, sunset, an alarm clock, meal times, and change in your daily routine. Time cues keep your normal human circadian clock aligned with the rest of the world.

WHAT CONTROLS YOUR CLOCK RHYTHMS?

Since organisms like  cyanobacteria, without brains have circadian rhythms, how can your rhythms need and be controlled by your brain?  Plants also have a circadian clock, which controls photosynthesis and flowering.

LESS SLEEP, MEANS  LESS CORTISOL PRODUCTION

Research shows when you get only 6 hours of sleep compared to your usual 8 hours, your cortisol levels drop 50%.  A midday snooze the next day restores those cortisol levels. 

ROLE OF LIGHT

Light is the number one influence and most powerful internal clock the quantity and quality of light plays a significant role in mood and work performance.

Spending a lot of time in front of your computer and/or under indoor lighting conditions where the light is fluorescent (green) or incandescent (orange), results in physical, mental, and emotional disturbances.

You can prevent these problems by buying a full spectrum light bulb and put it in your desktop task light.  It is a good idea to use a full spectrum light for everywhere you read, write, do computer key entry or do close work of any kind.   Although full spectrum bulbs cost more for each bulb, they use less energy and last five to seven times longer than regular light bulbs.

WORK DAY CYCLES

Every workday is divided into cycles that match your naturally heightened abilities, both physically and mentally. The trick is to take advantage of identifying and using this information to schedule your work and non work activities.

The adrenal glands in coordination with your pituitary, hypothalamus, pineal glands control both your internal clock and your stress levels.  Your natural rhythms shorten as you age.   Staying healthy keeps your innate circadian cycle all through your life.

To work and live at your best, you need your internal circadian rhythm in harmony or synchronized with the your environmental cues (i.e., light and dark, temperature etc).

LACK OF SLEEP

 Several nights of sleep deprivation leads to dull sensory perceptions (vision, hearing etc.), longer reaction time, slower motor coordination, reduced memory retrieval, lowered new memorization ability, as well as increased irritability.

TEMPERATURE FACTOR

When the sleeping temperature is above 75 degrees, your sleep and Rapid Eye Movement (REM) or dream cycles are disturbed and you tend to wake up more often.

When the sleeping temperature is below 65 degrees, your dreams become unpleasant and contain emotional conflicts.

COLD IS A STRESS FACTOR

Working in a cold room increases your chances of a repetitive stress injury.  Your mental abilities and physical functions coordinate with your body temperature.   Your body temperature warms up in the morning and cools down at night. No matter what time it is, the colder you are the slower your senses will function.  

Your ability to multiply quickly and accurately varies directly with body temperature also. Around 4 AM you settle into your lowest body temperature.  The pituitary and adrenal glands start sending out wake up hormones.  

Your temperature begins to gradually rise until around 5 AM - 7 AM.   This also gives your body the opportunity to discharge the chemicals that keep you paralyzed during your dream state (so you don't hurt yourself).

Then, you can get up and move about trying not to lose your balance.   A quick warm shower wakes you up by raising your body temperature.  Both men and women's hormones flow more quickly as body temperature rises and then peaks out around mid-morning.

EXERCISE FACTOR

Regular exercise increases everyone's cognition capability and releases stress from our bodies. For most men, the best time to exercise is in the afternoon.  Women who exercise in the morning raise their serotonin levels.   This prompts a positive mental state.

Exercising in the evening disturbs the natural slowing down cycle leading to sleep. So a good thing like exercise can be even better if you know your best timing.

EATING FACTOR

Japanese people who are most Americanized have five times the heart disease compared to those who continue to practice their more traditional cultural habits and diets. 

The heavier the meal (high fat, more than 4 ounces of meat, etc.) the more physical lethargy you will have and the deeper your loss of mental focus. Heavy meals make the stomach use more oxygen that would otherwise be available for your brain functions.

SOUND FACTOR

 Studies have indicated that among people living under the airport approach route there is a thirty percent higher rate of admissions to mental hospitals.

STRESS FACTOR 

Stress causes your internal rhythms to lose synchronicity.  It subverts your natural circadian rhythms that affect your sleep, eating and all body functions.  Stress breaks down the immune system and leads to weakness, illnesses, and injuries.

Physical factors like temperature, sound, vibration, movement and humidity all disturb your clock rhythms.

Physiological stressors as sleep disturbance, irregular eating, alcohol and nicotine (depressants) and caffeine (stimulant) also change your rhythms. 

Psychological stressors as fear, frustration, social problems, and work pressures all play roles in disturbing your natural clock rhythms. 

COMMENTARY

Your body operates in ninety minutes activity cycle.   Under stress, the cycle shortens to a one-hour cycle (the same as in infancy). The natural activity cycle you are programmed for is made up of 30 minutes rest followed by 60 minutes activity followed by thirty minutes rest.  Now being at rest doesn't mean sleeping!   It means alternating the kinds of activities you do every day for a little physical and mental variety.

You will think faster, produce more offspring, enjoy better health, do better work, and live longer  when your time settings and environment cycles match.  

Listen to your body clock and stay healthy.

Your comments are always appreciated.

Visit www.drneedles.com for more blogging on controversial medical subjects.

Sources: 

Nimmo, Univ. Glasgow, Scotland/   Dunlap, Dartmouth CollegeArnold, Univ. Georgia,   Journal National Academy of Sciences Jan 2009

 

DOCTOR, ARE YOU LISTENING?

As a medical physician for over 50 years, I strive to give you the best medical information on controversial medical subjects and let you the reader come to your own conclusions. I have no ties to any organization, pharmaceutical, nor lobby group. As an acupuncturist since 1982, I find western medicine and medical acupuncture are very complimentary with astounding results.
Visit http;//www.americanacupuncture.com/ for more super information.

DOCTOR,  ARE YOU LISTENING TO ME?

 Many Americans feel disconnected from their doctors, compared to a generation ago.  There seems to be less confidence in the whole profession and the health system.  Frequent publicized mishaps and misinformation make the patient question the doctor’s decisions.  They even today question the doctors's financial motives.  

There is a grooving divide between us.  We all want the same thing, the best care possible.  But we have lost the ability to talk to each other..  The meaning illness, care, health and policies are important to us all.  How can we bridge the gap?  We might not be able the change the health care, but we sure can at least begin to talk about it.

But it is reasonable to expect him to listen to your own developed interest in a subject even if he sees gaps in your articulation. He may have a superior knowledge of health care but you may be more informed on one particular facet of your care.

The medical profession is your friend, not your enemy.  Somehow you and your doctor must get mutual respect for overcoming your disease and maintaining your health.

 

Over one third of patients seek alternative or complimentary treatments and fail to tell their doctors.  You can’t act behind your doctor’s back.  There must have been something that caused your doctor to shut himself off from considering alternatives.  It is out of date to think that doctors can’t learn anything from their patients. 

GOOD  MEDICAL  PRACTICE  BEGINS  WITH  GOOD  LISTENING.

 

It is unlikely that healing will occur if trust is not a part of the physician patient relationship.  Some doctors have a simpleminded philosophy about illness.  Illness is the enemy hat is assaulted with all the medical skill and technology in his command, even if the suffered succumbs to the treatment. 

 

No one benefits from comments if the listener has not actually heard what the other is saying.  Listening is life’s quest.  As people talk over the years and share intimate details of themselves we can get glimpses into their lives.  Looking into the patient’s eyes tells a lot.

How can we  add a spiritual dimension to medical professionalism?  Our age is crude and secular.  I  feel sad for my profession. When I started medical school 54 years ago, I believed in having a good relationship with my patients.  We worked together.  I am not sure that is the situation today.  

We must remedy this disconnect by listening and at least talking to our patients again.

Visit www.drneedles.com for more blogging on critical and controversial medical subjects

Your comments are always appreciated.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

ONE DAY YOU TOO WILL BE OLD!

As a medical physician for over 50 years, I strive to give you the best medical information on controversial medical subjects and let you the reader come to your own conclusions. I have no ties to any organization, pharmaceutical, or lobby group. As an acupuncturist since 1982, I find western medicine and medical acupuncture are very complimentary with astounding results.
Visit http;//www.americanacupuncture.com/ for more super information.

REFLECTIONS ON AGING
 It seems the word old is no longer a compliment, but something to be ashamed of.  We all want to live a long life, but none of us want to grow old.  Be trendy and call me a senior.  When I am dying you can call me ‘old’.   If I am mugged, then you can call me a ‘poor old thing’.

Everyone is a certain age and one day you too will become an old person and be aged.  Growing old is about changing and living a different life.

The last hour of life is worth as much as all those that went before it.  I am a living history of a work that never stops, that of creation continuing.

Look at me!  I see wrinkles appearing, and my hair is disappearing.   I need dentures, glasses, a cane, hearing aids, pill and capsules, ointments and syrups.  TV programs bring out the unbearable fact that I am aging.  I am a reminder of the fragility, precariousness, and limits of my existence.  I seem perishable.

Everyone is mortal and everyone grows old.  Yet you find me out of date, and call me “that old fool”, and “old codger”.  I have gone past my sell date.  I am out of the race, not with you swingers.  I see the flame in your eyes, but my old eyes see the light.   My life has been a marvelous gift from God.

Look into my eyes and see my understanding and love found in my words, eyes, and caresses.  Let me sensitize you with all my natural resources.  I can still enrich your world with my advice and prayers.  I know when to scold and when to hug, when to be adored and when to be obeyed.   I want to dearly be open to all of you.

I lost my job and have retired.  I have lost my role in the family and society, but I still can vote and have not lost my mental faculties.  Now I can at last become involved in a new social life, associations, and groups.  I can travel and discover the world.  I am not well off, but belong to a world of privileged people.  How can I complain as long as I have my health?

I am little by little, slowly and inexorably losing my health, my autonomy and soon will lose my head.  My legs have stopped working; my bladder does its own thing.   As I grow older, my memory fails, my sight dims, my hearing are fading, and my joints are creaking.  I have lost my strength, lost my bearings, lost my friends, and recently even lost my partner.  I battle against disability and seek the support of my doctor, my pharmacist and my hospital.  My body is slipping away; my movement is still and contact with my friends has become restricted.

What are my future plans?  What is left of me?  Soon I will have to leave my lovely home, part with my memories and possessions and especially part from you my loved ones.   I am finally condemned to slowness and feel discarded like some useless object.   This road I am on is lonely as I pass through rebellion, then acceptance, and now hope. 

Today’s message is that everyone is young, beautiful, dynamic, winners, and go-getters with seductive smiles.  You have no time for us old people.  We pose several problems for you: our growing number, our longevity, our resources, and yes our need for care.  You see your youth as fascinating and you see death as fearful. 

You can only look to yourself, not the needs of others. Your world is infatuated with performance, speed cost-effectiveness and novelty of new gadgets.  Your youth and wealth are delusions.  You have no insurance against having an accident, sickness, or even death. 

Your society needs my serenity, patience, memories, tenderness, my listening and my wonder.  My old age is a stage of life in which I ought to be able to continue to develop.  I am still self sufficient and lucid.  When there is a change in my physical ability and mental ability, I know I will lose my precious independence. 

My Prayer

Please give me a sense of humor and keep me smiling and laughing.  Help me love and be loved.  Make me a generous old person who shares with those who have nothing.  I don’t want to be yesterday’s person talking about the good old days.  Help me live this present day and enjoy this complex stage of my life.  

Make me a person for all seasons.  Help me see the beauty around me, which is You my Lord!   You never change the way you look at me.  Your love for me is still as fresh as the morning dew.  Soon I will graduate from this life and come to a new life in your dwelling place.

One day, you too will look into other people’s eyes and they will tell you:  “You’ve become an old person”.

  Signed:  Grandpa

Your comments are always appreciated.  visit www.drneedles.com for more blogging on medical controversial issues.

Labels