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How to Make Sure Your Security System Will Work in a Real Emergency

How to Make Sure Your Security System Will Work in a Real Emergency

Having a security system can ward off burglars, but you should test this system at least once a month to ensure the safety of your cherished possessions and your loved ones in the event of a true emergency.

So, how do you test your alarm without freaking out your family and annoying your neighbors? Read on for step-by-step instructions for making sure your alarm system is ready for an emergency.

1. Read the Manual

For the most part, the testing process will be the same regardless of your home security system. Many manuals will include something called a “walk through” test for testing your alarm. Double-check the testing instructions in the manual in case there are any steps not covered in this tutorial.

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2. Call Your Service Provider

Your alarm service provider will be able to take your system offline during a test. This way, the test will not cause any accidental dispatch.

3. Alert Your Family and Neighbors

The sound of the alarm can incite panic in any unknowing family members or neighbors, so make sure everyone in the house and in the surrounding homes knows you will be running a test.

4. Make Your Pets Comfortable

Don’t forget about Fido! Since animals have very sensitive hearing, make them as comfortable as possible during the alarm test. Secure pets in an enclosed room with familiar items to help keep them calm.

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5. Prepare for the Test

Run the test as if you were actually leaving the house. Lock all protected windows and doors.

6. Arm Your System

Now is when the fun begins. Once everything is in place, activate the test mode on your system and allow the delay time to expire so it is active.

7. Test the Sensors

Your system may tell you which sensor areas to check, especially if any are not working properly. Test each sensor to make sure the signal is strong and the alarm sounds each time. All it takes is one unchecked area to allow an intruder to enter your home.

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8. Test Other Detection Methods

If your system includes other forms of detection, read the following sections as they apply to your security system:

  • Smoke detectors: Test the smoke detectors by pressing the test button or by using a can of smoke, but whatever you do, do not test it by burning something.
  • Heat detectors: Rub your hands together for 30 seconds and place your hands on the heat sensors to see if they respond.
  • Motion detectors: Walk back and forth in front of the motion detector. Motion detectors will usually respond when they sense heat and motion, so make sure that you create motion in the area where the detector is aimed.
  • Flood sensors: Create the same response as a rising water level by completing the circuit with a piece of metal to join the two prongs on the end of the sensor.
  • Low temperature sensors: Put an ice cube or tray of ice water in front of the sensor to mimic freezing conditions.

9. End Test Mode and Review Results

Once you have completed the test, end the test mode and rearm the alarm. If you experienced any errors, contact your service provider.

Consider testing your alarm system monthly. However, this is no substitute for professional maintenance; also arrange for periodic inspections and servicing from your alarm service provider.

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False alarms cost consumers thousands of dollars in fines every year, so make sure you understand how to operate your alarm system and test it properly.

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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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