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6 Tips to Keep Pests From Harming Your Health

6 Tips to Keep Pests From Harming Your Health

Depending on how squeamish you are, finding a bug or rodent inside your house may cause your stomach to turn or it might cause you a minor inconvenience while you squash the pest or usher it outdoors. Either way, there are some pests whose presence indoors goes beyond annoying. In fact, they can cause serious health problems. Read on for a list of six tips for keeping pests from harming your health.

Keep Your House Dry

    Having standing water around your home is a major attraction for certain pests. Mosquitoes need water to breed. By eliminating bird baths, lingering puddles, and other standing water, you’ll reduce the number of these biting pests. A bite from a mosquito is annoying for most people, but can cause an uncomfortable reaction in some people. In addition, these insects are carriers of the sometimes-fatal West Nile Virus, which can be transmitted through bites. Reduce mosquito breeding grounds around your home to cut back on these health risks.

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    Take away the moisture in your basement to get rid of most spiders. Running a dehumidifier and frequently removing webs slashes the spider population in spaces of your home that are below ground. Taking these steps also makes it less likely you’ll suffer a nasty spider bite, some of which develop serious infections.

    Seal up Holes

      Don’t give pets an opportunity to slither their way in or scurry through a small opening. Mice push their way through tiny openings; in some cases, they make it through a hole the size of a dime. As they move in and out of your home, these creatures carry with them viruses and bacteria that cause serious and even life-threatening illnesses. Hantavirus, leptospirosis, and salmonellosis are just some of the diseases that arise from human contact with mice droppings and urine.

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      Block mice from your home by sealing up areas around pipes and lines that come into your home. Ensure the weather-stripping around windows and doors is secure and thoroughly covers the gap between the bottom of the door and the floor.

      Get an Inspection

      Each year, have a professional inspect your home. This pest inspection is a good chance to identify problems and create a plan to tackle them. A thorough once-over of the inside and outside of your home lets you get a handle on how pests may be impacting your health. Your pest management professional knows which pesticides, traps, and other strategies are safe for your family, pets, and the environment. Be sure to work with a company that provides proper training to its staff and has the certifications and licenses required under state and federal guidelines.

      Make a Clean Sweep

      It’s easy to overlook the daily chore of sweeping up the kitchen, dining room, and any other area of your home where people eat. However, this is an effective way to reduce the appeal your home has to ants and roaches. Besides being gross to have around places where you eat, roaches also carry allergens that cause reactions in some humans. For example, cockroach allergens may trigger asthma attacks and rashes. Be diligent about cleaning up crumbs to mitigate your family’s exposure to cockroaches.

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      Remove Piles of Stuff From Your Yard

        Snake bites cause pain, can transmit diseases, and have a high risk of infection, not to mention the possibility of coming in contact with venom. Reduce your exposure to health risks associated with snakes by ridding your yard of wood piles, scrap metal, or any other debris that could provide a cool damp place for them to live. Eliminating their habitat options decrease the chances they’ll take up residence in your yard.

        Guard Against Tick Bites

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          Ticks transmit Lyme disease; an illness that’s very debilitating for some people. Protect your health by avoiding wooded, weedy areas altogether. If you do ventures into tall grass, make sure you wear long pants with tall socks. Adults should use an insect repellant containing DEET, as long as they follow the repellant’s instructions for proper use. Wear light-colored clothing to increase the chances you’ll see the tiny black insects if they do get on you.

          Check your body after you’ve been in areas where ticks tend to live. Ticks tend to move toward your armpits, groin, and your hair. By being diligent about fending off ticks, you’ll avoid Lyme disease and other tick-borne diseases such as Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever and Ehrlichiosis.

          By protecting your body and home from pests, you’ll nearly eliminate the chance of contracting an illness or condition caused by insects, rodents, and snakes.

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          Last Updated on November 11, 2019

          How to Improve Memory and Boost Your Brainpower

          How to Improve Memory and Boost Your Brainpower

          Have you ever noticed that some people are able to effortlessly remember even the most mundane details and quickly comprehend new things? Well, you can too!

          To unlock the full potential of your brain, you need to keep it active and acute. Wasting time on your couch watching mindless television shows or scrolling through facebook is not going to help.

          Besides getting out flashcards, what can you do to help remember things better and learn new things more quickly? Check out these 10 effective ways on how to improve memory:

          1. Exercise and Get Your Body Moving

          Exercising doesn’t just exercise the body, it also helps to exercise your brain. Obesity and the myriad of diseases that eventually set in as a result of being overweight can cause serious harm to the brain.

          Furthermore, without regular exercise, plaque starts to build up in your arteries, and your blood vessels begin to lose the ability to effectively pump blood. Plaque buildup leads to heart attacks and it also reduces the amount of oxygen and nutrients that your blood carries to your brain. When the nutrients don’t make it there, the brain’s ability to function is compromised.

          To prevent this from happening, make sure you get moving every day. Even if it’s just a brisk walk, it’ll help you maintain and increase your mental acuity. Brisk walking, swimming and dancing are all excellent activities. Take a look at these 5 Ways to Find Time for Exercise.

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          2. Eliminate Stressors and Seek Help If You’re Depressed

          Anything that causes you major stress, like anger or anxiety, will in time begin to eat away the parts of your brain that are responsible for memory. Amongst the most brain-damaging stressors is depression, which is actually often misdiagnosed a a memory problem since one of its primary symptoms is the inability to concentrate.

          If you can’t concentrate, then you might feel like you are constantly forgetting things. Depression increases the levels of cortisol in your bloodstream which elevates the cortisol levels in the brain. Doctors have found that increased cortisol diminishes certain areas of the brain, especially the hippocampus which is where short-term memories are stored.

          Prolonged depression can thus destroy your brain’s ability to remember anything new. Seek professional help to combat your depression – your brain will thank you.

          3. Get a Good Night’s Sleep and Take Naps

          Getting a consistent 7 to 8 hours of sleep each night will increase your memory. During sleep, the brain firms up memories of recently acquired information.

          Getting enough sleep will help you get through the full spectrum of nocturnal cycles that are essential to optimal brain and body functioning during the waking hours. Taking a nap throughout the day, especially after learning something new, can also help you to retain those memories as well as recharge your brain and keep it sharper longer.

          4. Feed Your Brain

          Fifty to sixty percent of the brain’s overall weight is pure fat, which is used to insulate its billions of nerve cells. The better insulated a cell is, the faster it can send messages and the quicker you will be thinking.

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          This is precisely why parents are advised to feed their young children whole milk and to restrict dieting – their brains’ need fat to grow and work properly. Skimping on fats can be devastating even to the adult brain.

          Thus, eating foods that contain a healthy mix of fats is vital for long-term memory. Some excellent food choices include fish (especially anchovies, mackerel and wild salmon) and dark leafy green vegetables. Here’re more brain food choices: 12 Foods that Can Improve Your Brain Power

          Deep-fried foods obviously contain fat but their lack of nutritional value is not going to help your brain or your body, so think healthy foods and fats.

          5. Eat Breakfast and Make Sure It Includes an Egg

          According to Larry McCleary, M.D., author of  The Brain Trust Program, an egg is the ideal breakfast. Eggs contain B vitamins which help nerve cells to burn glucose, antioxidants that protect neurons against damage; and omega-3 fatty acids that keep nerve cells firing at optimal speed.

          Other foods to add to your breakfast include fruits, veggies and lean proteins. Avoid trans fats and high fructose corn syrup. Trans fats diminish the brain cells’ ability to communicate with each other and HFCS can actually shrink the brain by damaging cells.

          Having a healthy breakfast in the morning has been shown to improve performance throughout the day. If you’re too busy to have a healthy breakfast, this maybe just right for you: 33 Quick And Healthy Breakfasts For Busy Mornings

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          6. Write it Down

          If there’s something you want to remember, writing it down can help.

          It may sound like a no-brainer, but do you really know why? Writing it down creates oxygenated blood flow to areas of your brain that a responsible for your memories and literally exercises those parts of it. Here’s How Writing Things Down Can Change Your Life.

          You can start a journal, write yourself emails or even start keeping a blog – all of these activities will help to improve your capacity to remember and memorize information.

          7. Listen to Music

          Research shows that certain types of music are very helpful in recalling memories. Information that is learned while listening to a particular song or collection can often be recalled by thinking of the song or “playing” it mentally. Songs and music can serve as cues for pulling up particular memories.

          8. Visual Concepts

          In order to remember things, many people need to visualize the information they are studying.

          Pay attention to photographers, charts and other graphics that might appear in your textbook; or if you’re not studying a book, try to pull up a mental image of what it is you are trying to remember. It might also help to draw your own charts or figures, or utilize colors and highlighters to group related ideas in your notes.

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          Here, you can learn How to Become a Person Who Can Visualize Results.

          9. Teach Someone Else

          Reading material out loud has been shown to significantly improve memory of the material. Expanding further upon this idea is the fact that psychologists and educators have found that by having students teach new concepts to others, it helps to enhance understanding and recall.

          Teach new concepts and information to a friend or study partner, and you’ll find you remember the information a lot better.

          10. Do Crossword Puzzles, Read or Play Cards

          Studies have shown that doing crossword puzzles, read or play cards on a daily basis not only keep your brain active but also help to delay memory loss, especially in those who develop dementia.

          So pick up the daily newspaper and work on that crossword puzzle, read a book or enjoy a game of solitaire.

          Pick one to two of these tips first and start applying them to your everyday life. Very soon you’ll find yourself having better memories and a clearer head!

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          Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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