Lighting and Medicine

Lighting and MedicineWhat do you think the most important thing is when treating a wound? Sure, some kind of antibiotic to kill whatever germs might have made it inside is a nice start, but it’s not the most important step in treating a wound. Neither is stitching up said wound, though that’s certainly important. If you want to treat the correct area in the first place though, the most important part of any setup is the lighting. Without proper, bright lights to guide your eyes, it’s possible to miss scrapes, scratches or other injuries which could become worse over time without treatment.

Why do you think so many doctors’ examination rooms are so very bright? It may not be a flattering kind of light, but it will certainly help them to get a better look at you, and this can be the difference between diagnosing an illness or disease and missing that one visual clue which would lead the physician to come up with a different prognosis, or diagnose something else altogether, incorrectly at that. Now, the kind of lighting used depends on your specific doctor, that office, their budget and a number of other factors. In general, look for bright LED light bars which are light, mobile and effective at illuminating a target.

Effective lighting fixtures could be even more important to dentists than doctors, since the former works predominantly in dark spaces (the inside of the mouth). These professionals especially need mobile, bright lighting, which  is why they often use swiveling spotlights and have patients lie back to get the greatest exposure to said lights. Dentists might benefit more from Whelen Light Bars than other people because of their intense need for intense spot lighting. That doesn’t mean other people won’t find them useful though – if you have something to brighten up, they will do the job wonderfully.

Lighting and MedicineProper lighting is crucial to quality health care, whether we’re talking about injuries to the body, infections, cavities or just about anything else that can go wrong for a person. Of course, lights won’t reveal everything. Some illnesses which can’t be seen or touched, like mental illnesses, won’t be any easier to see for a bright light. That should be a given, but I’m just going to say it like that anyhow, just to be sure people understand. There is no doctor or dentist who wouldn’t benefit from a bright LED light system though, and that’s the point I’m really trying to make here.

Oddly enough, bright lights will actually cause many kinds of medicine to degrade over time, which is why pills of all sorts recommend you store them in cool, dark spaces, away from intense heat and light. This is especially common with dermatological drugs which are notoriously susceptible to extreme light, temperature and moisture. These are good things to keep in mind the next time you go to visit a doctor or dentist at a physical location. If the office is bright but nothing is stored properly, that’s a huge red flag to pick yourself up and find another physician.

What to Expect while Travelling to Africa

What to Expect while Travelling to AfricaSometimes it can be a challenge to know what to expect while travelling to Africa. Africa is a beautiful and amazing continent with the friendliest and warm-hearted people. It offers some of the most attractive land, scenery, food and people. You might be scared of myths and misconceptions heard in the West but it is quite other way around. In Africa, try not to compare the things with your homeland and be a bit liberal about the things here. This will eventually help you have a care-free and pleasurable tour.

One of the things most common things you face in Africa is the unwanted attention. Local people there stare you as you are some kind of aliens to them. Although, there are places where many tourists visit quite often, but still, people will stare at you. By staring they certainly mean no harm to you and it is just the curiosity for the most part. If you are a woman, you might be naturally frightened when a group of men stare at you, but in Africa, it is not like that. Just try to ignore the stares and enjoy the tour.

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Intro to Natural Disasters

Intro to Natural DisastersNatural disasters are the effects of a natural hazard. It negatively affects the lifestyle, the land, the economy and has long-term consequences. Natural disasters can be caused by naturally occurring events. They usually occur when the earth’s natural processes concentrate energy and then release it. In reality, they are just internal process of earth’s energy flow but when they occur, these natural processes becomes natural disasters.

They are events that lead to hardships, sufferings and awful tragedies. The consequences can be critical damage to infrastructure such as destruction of roads, bridges, buildings, houses etc. It can also result into limitless injuries and even deaths. They have negative influence on businesses as well. The cost of rebuilding the business and infrastructure is a solemn problem for the sufferers of natural disasters. The adverse effects of economy leave some of the longest-lasting trauma.

The areas affected by natural disaster are beyond repair or takes a lot of time to become liveable again. Scientists and geologists put together a lot of effort in predicting major disasters, with all the technology available, and prevent as much damage as possible.

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Truth About the Healthcare System

Despite of political influence, there are a number of facts about the healthcare industry of USA that are not unveiled to the general public. There is a need of realization that there is a desperate need of change.  You might have heard few stories unveiling the truth of the healthcare system in USA. In this article I’ll unveil the facts that may start you to wonder.

  1. The Health Care System Cost Americans around 2.8 Trillion Dollars in 2013

Under the current reforms regarding health care system in US, it costed US 2.8 trillion dollars last year. The cost is still not settled and is expected to increase every year. The ever-increasing costs of health care system and the rising profits of health are corporations have all lead to bankruptcy and personal debt.

US spend more than twice as much per person on healthcare than any other developed country, but still, the quality of treatment is well below its level.  The control of US healthcare system continues to spiral downward. With reference to a report by Health Care for America Now, five biggest United States health insurance companies ended up with a combined profit of $12.2 billion in the end of 2009 year. It is a frightening scenario to even imagine the cost being spent in the healthcare industry in the coming years.

  1. 50 million people with no health insurance

Although, US spends highest recorded budget on healthcare than any other country in the world, there are still approximately 50 million people with no health insurance at all. Many people on salaries are not able to bare the health insurance cost. According to a middle-class American Citizen, Julie Shay, the insurance firms do not realize or care about what patients are going through.

They care more about their profits rather than providing cheap treatments to the patients. There are numerous patients who do not get care and are falling through the cracks. Too much money is spent by doctors on carrying out tests which are not needed. Lot money is wasted on inefficient claims processing as well.

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Surrounded by Signals

As a former nurse with a solid 20 years in the healthcare field, I’ve seen and heard a lot of things related to a person’s health. I’ve also watched as many of those things I heard in the past were utterly undone by things I would later hear. Just for one example that most people should be able to relate to, take a good look at eggs; it’s like the health community can’t decide whether they’re a miracle food or total trash for the body. Some knowledge from back then is a constant though, even today, decades later.

You might wonder what information from years ago would still hold true in a healthcare setting, and I’ll do you the favor of explaining right away. Anyone who has spent time in a hospital, whether working or being worked on in that environment, has probably seen all of the warning signs surrounding electronic equipment. Today more than ever before, we are literally surrounded by signals – infrared, microwave, radio, analog and digital signals, just to name a few. And that doesn’t even count cellular phone signals! Many of these signals can interfere with the function of life-saving medical equipment.

The air is filled with signals though, even though which aren’t harmful to electronic devices. For instance, have you ever heard of wireless door bells before? It might not seem like much, but each of those is sending out a signal along with every other wireless device interacting with anything. We are literally surrounded by signals on all sides, all day every day, and many of us just don’t realize the fact. If you ask me it has a lot to do with this weird illness called tinnitus, which causes painful ringing in the ears with no discernible explanation as to where it’s coming from. Learn more here about bells.

Well, I think I’ve got that all figured out. Of course, nobody wants to say anything bad about all this super convenient technology we have today which improves our lives and makes working easier. But the fact remains that even a hundred years ago, we didn’t have 90% of the signals being transmitted through the air that we have now, today. I’m no scientist. I can’t definitely tell you there is some correlation between all these signals floating around and the headaches and other strange maladies people suffer from. I can just tell you what I see, and this is what I see.

If you find yourself suffering from regular migraines and headaches, I’d suggest finding as many devices as you can around your home and powering them down. Then you can test for yourself if you feel any significant difference without the flood of signals you’re usually exposing your brain to just by living your day-to-day life. I’d love for anyone who tries this to come and comment about it, maybe share some of your experience with the rest of us. This isn’t a case study by far, but gathering a bunch of testimonials could still prove or disprove what I’m thinking here.

Get fit with fun and enjoyment

Get fit with fun and enjoymentHitting the gym may be the best way to get your daily exercise, but it can get dull and dreary soon. I have seen many patients lose their motivation and revert to their original overweight and unhealthy state because they did not like doing the exercises.

Granted exercise is must for a fit and toned body, but it need not be monotonous. You can exercise and have fun at the same time, if you take up smart activities or sports that give your body a complete workout without your being aware of working up a sweat. Here are some routines, which I am, sure will spice up your exercise sessions and have you fit without feeling bored or stressed out.

Spice it up

Instead of signing up for a gym membership, try fun filled and physically exacting activities such as dancing, rock climbing etc., which keep you motivated and fit. Since you are happy doing these activities, it would not feel like doing exercise and you will actually put in more effort and reap the benefits.

A new activity every week will keep your body active and the circulation in peak health when compared to your regular exercise routine. The results are also much better this way. One of my clients took my advice and bought a trampoline at http://jumpsportland.com/, which she says her entire family loves to play in, while getting their daily exercise done simultaneously. Adding variety to the existing routine will help fast track your fitness goals and you would achieve them in no time.

Zumba

If you love dancing, Zumba classes are ideal for your fitness routine. The dance moves in this aerobic workout include a blend of flamenco, merengue, salsa and various other dances toning your body and burning all the excess fat. As you dance to the beat, you will find that not only are these classes fun to be in, but are also highly effective. You can easily try this at home or join a Zumba class held nearby your place.

Trapeze classes

If you love the trapeze artists performing in a circus and yearn to fly like them, you can realize your dream and get toned in the process too. Indoor and outdoor trapeze schools are now available, if you are interested in such classes. The beginner classes have basic moves done on ground and after mastering them, you are taught the sky moves. Besides being fun filled, trapeze classes tone your body wonderfully. While I am not up to such activities, I surely do enjoy the nice trampoline I got a  JUMPSPORTLAND, which I have set up at my backyard. Actually, it is more effective than a walk for elderly persons.

Hula hooping

Spinning the hula-hoops may look like child’s play but this is a wonderful cardio workout that slims your thighs, buttocks, hips, waist, and tones the core muscles beautifully. Unlike the lighter children’s hoop, you will have to use a large and heavy hoop to get the benefits. You can easily shed 200 calories in half an hour with the hoops.

What Traveling Safely Really Means

The process of planning a trip is tiresome, but also necessary if you want to arrive safely to your destination. This is why I will give you some tips on how to achieve a smooth and carefree trip just by preparing in advance.

Scan all your major documents

If you get mugged or robbed while on the road, this could really save you hours of paperwork. I recommend to scan the documents you usually need, such as your passport, medical and travel insurance cards, relevant health information and driver’s license. This should be done especially if you are planning a trip to a completely new country and culture, where people might recognize you as a tourist, and ask you for your documents so they can steal it, so beware of situations like this one and never give your documents to anyone suspicious.

Map out your first drive

Some rent-a-car companies will offer you a car with GPS, but those are sometimes broken or set to a language you won’t understand, so plan your route ahead. If you plan your trip by mapping out the first drive, the drive itself is not going to be that stressful.

Upgrade your car with LED light bars

I can assure you that by doing this, you will always know where you are going, even in bad weather conditions. Quality LED light bars, like those you can find on this site, illuminate a much larger area than all the other headlights and thus make it possible to see everything that’s ahead of you. This is really helpful if you are going to drive for a long time, or during the night. Situations like that would make any person feel tired, but LED lights will help you see the road clearly and lose the fear. Bad weather conditions like fog, rain or snow will no longer be a problem.

Pack smart!

Make a checklist of all the things you are planning to take, and make sure you read through it before packing. Carry a minimum number of valuable things. If you are going to take a phone or a laptop, make sure it is packed in your carry-on bag. Also, it is a good thing to check the weather forecast, so you don’t end up pack any unnecessary clothing items.

Manage your money

If you’re traveling within your country, make sure to visit your bank before leaving. For overseas trips with different currencies, my suggestion is to exchange the money while you are still in the country, because changing money in the airport can attract muggers. Also, some ATMs have big fees, which cost Americans billions of dollars annually. Your bank’s websites have maps of ATMs so you can choose and mark locations near your destination.

Get to know the destination

Some places have strict rules about bringing prescription medications into the country, so make sure you do some research. This is just one of the things you’ll need to check before your trip. I also advise you to research the culture and the destination, since there might be things you’ll need to know in order to blend in.

The Stress Point Factor

The Stress Point FactorThere are a number of solutions that have been provided in various medical fields as a means of maintaining one’s health over the years. However many have forgotten to feature the psychological factor into these calculations and many methods of maintaining one’s health only focus on the physical aspects of the matter.

What one can easily forget is that stress can be an additional factor in deterioration of a person’s health and as such the need to relax every now and then can also serve as a means of keeping up one’s health.

It may seem strange to look at one’s time for leisure as a way of improving their health but the activities that take place during this particular time shows that it actually combines the psychological and sometimes physical aspects of the topic in question.

The Stress Point

Everyone has what can be referred to as a stress point and this refers to the amount of stress that one is able to physically take before it takes a physical toll on their body. This stress point can be reached by individuals who do not bother to search for a means of release from the psychological trials they may endure throughout the day on a daily basis.

A good example of such limits being breached, include the multiple cases of ulcers that walk into hospitals and clinics around the country every day. Most of these cases are caused by the personal happenings taking place in their life at that moment that has caused their body to react in such a manner.

Other stress related symptoms that can found in an individual who has reached their stress point can include:

  • Lack of sleep in recent times no matter how tired they are feeling. This is especially with regard to individuals who are not able to find some sleep during the night.
  • Regular headaches that are a recent occurrence in a person’s medical history.
  • A loss of appetite that cannot be attributed to another medical condition.
  • Frequent mood swings brought on by small changes in an individual’s environment.

All these symptoms can be treated through simple relaxation and taking one’s mind off the particular issues that have been bothering them. A good way to do this is by having a BBQ with a group of friends and loved ones for example.

Stress relief does not always require a medical solution and simply surrounding oneself with people who brighten their environment can do wonders to their spirits. Though stress may have some physical symptoms, it is still mainly a psychological state and thus it goes to reason that the solution would require something with a psychological effect as well.

All matters aside, it is safe to agree on the fact that people who are less stressed live a more enjoyable life and this reason alone could be worth getting out a good BBQ smoker (like the ones you can find here) and having an impromptu gathering.

Goodwill and cheer should not be a holiday themed existence and when one feels that the stress may be getting to them, it is recommended that they pause and try to bring some happiness back into their life. If not for their contentment, then at least for the sake of their health.

The Importance Of A Prepared Mind

The Importance Of A Prepared MindAlways be prepared, that is the very popular motto belonging to the boy scouts and a phrase that is more or less largely recognizable around the globe.

However, despite the familiarity of this phrase by various individuals around the world, it is a sad reality that many people do not take this motto to heart and simply relate it with a bunch of young boys running around the woods in uniform as they go for fun trips such as camping that is considered part of a co-curricular activity to make life more interesting for the youth and possibly keep them out of problem.

However, this phrase when studied on its lonesome is one that makes a lot of sense and can be part of mindset that might one day enable an individual to save another person’s life or even their own for that matter. The sad fact that even individuals who were once members of the boy scouts disregard this good piece of advice later on in life is one that society should look upon to change on a massive scale if possible.

There is another famous saying that states that one should always hope for the best but be prepared for the worst and this is another phrase that oozes meaning and justification especially with all the surprise natural disasters that take place around the world on a natural basis.

The high level of risk that exists in dangerous working conditions such as various factories that operate heavy machinery requires that the organization involved in such activities have a set of safety precautions in place to reduce the aforementioned risk. This is a practice that is required by all organizations around the globe and laws have even been put in place to ensure that such measures are taken by all companies with high penalties for those that do not. It is logical to consider that one should take precautions in their life as well to ensure that they are prepared for any danger that comes their way.

There can be different levels of preparedness depending on the nature of the issue that is being dealt with (that is, medical, financial and even emotional) yet when it comes to personal matters, few people actually take the time to ensure that they are prepared to face any potential calamities that come across their paths. Most individuals as a matter of either never take the time to consider that something bad might happen or simply hope that it does not.

Yet when an individual plans on hanging up a number of items in their house the first thing they do is go out and purchase a framing nailer in preparation for the task to come  (look here for more info on getting framing nailers). If one can bother themselves to get ready for such trivia matters it makes no sense for the same individuals to ignore the larger dangers that could loom in their lives.

For many people, thinking of foreboding experiences that may take place may has a negative influence on their psyche and thus most would rather push them to the back of their minds. But this does not mean that such experiences lose their potential of occurring and one would rather be prepared for them if they ever do.

Safe and Healthy Options for your Painting Project

Safe and Healthy Options for your Painting ProjectI’ve been asked by a friend whether it is okay for a pregnant woman to stay in a newly painted room. I am really not sure about what to tell her so I did a reading. Here let me share with you some things I discovered about natural paints.

Some few years ago, painting a room would mean turning on a fan, opening all windows and leaving the space for a few hours to avoid inhaling the nauseating scent of the chemical. While healthier options were available, they are often sold at a dizzying cost and didn’t offer the same effect as the unhealthy ones. I’ve attended to lots of patients who have developed asthma attacks and other respiratory ailments after being exposed to the smell of unhealthy paint products so I know they are bad to pregnant women. The effects are frightening and you certainly don’t want to put yourself or a loved one into such an ordeal.

Fortunately, there are now plenty of natural paint products for you to choose from. Almost all major paint brands will have their own healthy paints. Natural paints work equally well as their toxic counterparts. They are long-lasting, beautiful and completely free from the dangerous chemicals that can be found on conventional paint products. They work just like the traditional paint on your air compressor (click this link for more information about air compressors).

Some manufacturers even claim that their products are safe even for pregnant women or newborns. As a nurse, I would not really recommend exposing vulnerable populations (pregnant women, infants, individuals with illness, and seniors) to excessive chemical scent, even if they are said to be toxic-free. We are unsure about what chemicals could be inhaled from the paint and how it can affect the growing baby inside you. So it is still best to stay safe and keep away from newly painted rooms. As for people who have no health problems, natural paints should have no negative health effects.

Usually, natural paints cost a little over the conventional paint, but not prohibitively so. You may not be able to find them in your local hardware, but they’re pretty easy to find over the internet.

These toxic-free paint alternatives can be made from minerals, plants, clay and milk-protein. Each of these materials will have unique characteristics. If you’re not an expert and want to DIY paint project, make sure to read about the paint product before using it. If there’s one limitation with natural paints, it’s that it is offered in a limited range of colors. However, these colors have a unique depth and complexity that is difficult to achieve with the regular paints. So, you can give your room a totally natural and unique look.

Cleaning up natural paints is also easier and faster. And since they are made from natural ingredients, you can safely rinse them down the sink or discard them in the garbage – these you cannot do with latex- and oil-based paints.

Cruising But No Bruising For This Old Girl

Longboard on a beachI may have been on so many awesome adventures in my time but I have never been to hell and back. Let me explain. If you have been reading my posts on a regular basis you will have gotten a feel for my great sense of spirited adventure.

Some people may have also told you that having an adventurous spirit can sometimes be dangerous, particularly when you are an old girl like me.

Cruising with care

But the thing is this, and this may surprise some of you, I have always taken a lot more care and given just that little bit more attention to detail when embracing a new adventure. Being a full-time career nurse has had its ups and downs for me over the years. There is trauma.

But for me there is a richness of the spirit when you experience first-hand how wholesome the healing process is, particularly when your relieved patient says her good-byes and leaves the ward for the last time. Whether through the gift of nature or through life’s experiences, being a nurse trains you to take extra care.

This has allowed me to take particularly good care of myself and those that that I share my extreme adventures with. I may have had a few cuts and bruises here and there but being a nurse also has the advantage of knowledgeably applying first-aid skills on the scene of the mishap. And so here we are. Still cruising for more fun-filled escapades.

Cruising safely

And just when I thought I had seen and experienced it all before I came across a new adventure which got the adrenaline pumping once more. Simply put, this new adventurous scheme of mine is called cruising. And in the extreme unlikelihood that I should ever become bored with this new preoccupation there is also something called downhill racing.

Getting me started was as easy as snapping my fingers for the porter. Firstly, all I needed was my usual comfortable tee, jeans and sneakers.

And because this relatively new sport can be dangerous if not mastered, I needed a good, strong helmet. The one I got is light-weight and similar to those worn by hang-gliders. Safe as houses. Then there were knee-pads and elbow guards, pretty much the same accoutrements worn by your traditional and much younger skateboarders.

But the most important piece of equipment of all was what the Longboard Mafia call, well; you guessed it, a long-board. So, now I am more than adequately prepared to try my hand at the tricky art of cruising over gravel hills and dirt roads.

Downhill racing

I may be an old bat when it comes to extreme adventures but I think this sport is better suited to younger, more agile bodies. Now, this may be more dangerous (but when have I ever said no to the possibilities) but I think downhill racing on a long board may be just the thing for me.

How To Get Rid Of Dry Hair

How To Get Rid Of Dry HairDry and cracked hair is a big aesthetic problem for many women. These deficiencies are generally associated with harmful hair treatments, like an often exposure of hair to chemicals or heat. That is true. Yet, there are those who do not treat their hair in any way, and still have this problem. Here we can talk more about genetic predispositions. But did you know that hard water can cause dry and cracked hair?

Hard water is water that has been enriched with various minerals, predominantly calcium and magnesium. You will easily recognize it by markings on the tiles of your bathroom or the toilet bowl. These are actually calcium deposits. These same deposits, after washing of hair with hard water, also appear on your hair and may affect the appearance of the scalp. The plaques make for us invisible barrier and prevent hair that gets its wetness. Dry skin of the head leads to the formation of dandruff on the scalp. And besides all this, if you use colors for your hair, hard water can change that color. All in all, hair washing with hard water will cause that you look more like a scarecrow of straw, and less like a woman with beautiful hair.

How to help dry hair?

Hard water and its minerals can put you into a vicious circle of washing hair. The hair becomes thin, tattered and dry, you have more dandruff, hair is greasy very quickly and makes you start to wash it more often. Perhaps shampoos solve the problem of excess minerals in your hair, but they should be rinsed. Every washing with hard water is a step towards dry and damaged hair. Here’s what you can do to help your hair.

Get water softener

Hard water does not only affect the appearance of your hair, but also on your skin. This may particularly be a problem in people with eczema. In such cases, it is best to solve the problem at its source and to buy a water softener. Water Softener Land is the right place for that. In this way, you will solve all the problems that can cause hard water – from lime deposits on the hair, through those on the tiles and those in the form grayness on your laundry.

Rinse your hair with vinegar                                                                                                      

This is a natural variant that is available in every household. Make a solution of 1 tablespoon of vinegar and 3 cups of water and apply to your hair after a shampoo. Let it stand for a few minutes, then rinse. Any vinegar is good because the acid will balance the pH value of your hair. Yes, and vinegar is rinsed, but it is believed that it is more efficient than regular shampoo when this problem is concerned. The only drawback of this method is the unpleasant smell of your new shampoo. It is enough to use it once a week.

Try a lemon juice

This is another acidic variant intended for your hair. Squeeze some lemon juice on the hair after shampooing. This method has a similar function as the vinegar, only the odor is much more pleasant.

If you break mineral deposits on your hair and skin, your hair follicle will be strengthened. The hair will eventually be able to pick up moisture, and it will not look like you’ve burned it. Soft water is the treatment for beautiful hair, and it is no longer a secret.

Importance of Trees in Our Ecosystem and Disaster Prevention

Importance of Trees in Our Ecosystem and Disaster PreventionTrees are among the most important components in our ecosystem. They are not only important for humans but for all creatures on earth.

Having experienced the wrath of nature, I have since advocated the care for our natural resources – this includes the trees and forests. I admit, I own a log splitter at home but after the flooding I have since reduced the use of logs for my fireplace. I happened to read a nice review about my log splitter from this site so I bought it. Aside from reducing my consumption of logs, I also make sure that the logs come from sustainable forestry.

Sustainable forestry is a practice wherein new trees are replanted with every log that is cut down. This ensures that the ecology is not disturbed while providing sufficient supply for human consumption.

Trees are very helpful microorganisms.

A large tree can provide oxygen for four people for a full day. We’ve all been taught at grade school that trees provide shelter for animals, absorb carbon dioxide, and play a role in the nitrogen cycle. Many of these trees also a provide foods and goods for human use. Trees can also help prevent calamities such as landslides and floods. No question about it, trees are doing great at their job.

But we humans just tend to ignore just how important these microorganisms are. Every year, thousands of trees are cut down to supply human consumption for wood, log, paper, land area and many other purposes. Trees are often the first victims in development. Between deforestation, poor forest management, over logging, and faulty land-use policies, humans have had the most devastating impact on tree populations in the planet.

It is estimated that since the dawn of human civilization, the number of trees has almost halved. The coming of more advanced cutting tools, such as the modern log splitters, has made cutting of trees much easier.

While trees still outnumber humans, the unabated decimation of trees poses serious question for the future of our ecosystem.

TreeAs someone who has survived natural disasters, I could only hope that we start to act and find ways to conserve the remaining trees and forests. While it is true that wood or logs are basic necessities of development, we can start doing simple things that will foster more trees around the world. Instead of going for illegally logged trees, we should patronize logs that come from sustainable forestry. Better yet, you can opt for other environmental-friendly alternatives of wood.

We can also spare our forests by cutting on our consumption of paper or by choosing recycled paper. You probably didn’t know that paper composes the largest percentage of solid waste. And there are thousands of trees cut each day to produce the papers that we need. Think about this: for toilet paper alone, 27,000 trees are cut each day.

Let’s show our love for our planet by making smart choices. Although we need more sustainable solutions to this global concern, our simple contributions can have a big impact! We need every last tree in this planet. We need to act now!

My Tips for Buying a Used Car

car-448553_1280I love to travel, and I spend a lot of time in my car. So, a friend of mine recently asked me to help her around buying a used car. I am not an expert for cars and their maintenance – I know the most basic things. We looked a lot of cars together, and that inspired me to make a list of tips that you should keep in mind when you are buying a used car.

Narrow your selection. When buying a new car, the choice is smaller because it needs to fit into the budget. When buying a used car, the offer becomes much wider. Determine your budget. How much money can you actually spend on a vehicle? How much does it cost maintenance of a given’s car and whether your monthly budgets can cover these costs? These are some of the ways to narrow the selection of used cars.

Do your research. Online research will save you time and money. Find out which brand of the car you can buy for the money that you are taking and choose a few models that work best for you. Look for other people’s experiences on forums, blogs in the talks.

Go and see the car. While you can find a great offer online, you need to look the car live. Evaluate its look. I do not mean the shape of the car – that you have chosen when you narrowed your choices on particular brands. I think about the appearance of sheet metal. Check for signs of corrosion inside and outside. Check the trunk, move the upholstery to see the situation under it. If it is possible, check if the car is well preserved underneath.

Check “the health” of the car. Even if you are not an expert, a good OBD2 scanner can diagnose a used car and recommend repairs that need to be done. Repairs are an additional cost that may not fit into your budget.

Check the tires. It is clear that the markings on the tires must be good, and that reserve tire must be in good condition. Make sure, however, whether some tire has significant differences in appearance. This may indicate a problem on the car.

Try the car in driving. Check the brakes, how the car works when the engine is cold, how when it is heated. You do not need a lot of wisdom to conclude that a lot of bumping, grinding and unusual noises during the driving are not the best sign.

Take a peek under the hood. Even if you’re not an expert on cars, look under the hood has a lot to tell you. Dirty or oily areas under the hood mean that there are plenty of oils spilled. That’s not a trustworthy sign. Check hoses. They should not be brittle and with cracks.

Take the car to the mechanic. Let a qualified person check whether the car you want to buy is correct and good enough.

Personally, when I pick the car, the brand and look are less important. Safety and reliability are first on my list of requests that a used car should have. Sometimes a quick overview can tell you a lot about the car. Best is, however, when all the pieces coincide.