Archive | September 2015


“People who train to be cooperative extension Master Gardeners report that they stay with the program because it improves self-esteem, offers continued learning opportunities, the chance to help and feel a connection to other people, to feel a sense of purpose, and a way to develop skills for employment .”


Schrock, D.S., M. Meyer, P.Ascher-Reasons for becoming involved as a Master Gardener. HortTechnology.

Part I Believe or not, PLANTS do enhance our lives both mentally and physically!

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Plants by 20% can improve memory, attention span and concentration outside in wildlife. Studies have even shown that tasks performed while under the calming influence of nature are bettered performed (from sitting with our pets to being outdoors with mother nature in pleasant weather to that individual’s mind—from rain to a pleasant sunny day with birds chirping or even by a rain fall dropping near the person).

Keeping ornamental plants in the home and in the workplace increases memory retention and concentration. The calming influence of natural environments is conducive to positive work environments by increasing a person’s ability to concentrate on the task at hand. Work performed under the natural influence of ornamental plants is normally of higher quality and completed with a much higher accuracy rate than work done in environments devoid of nature. Going outside or being under the influence of plants can increase memory retention up to twenty percent, a recent University of Michigan study showed (Sewach). The effect of nature in the home and in the workplace serves to stimulate both the senses and the mind, improving mental cognition and performance. (Bisco Werner 1996; Brethour 2007; Frank 2003; Pohmer 2008; Serwach 2008; Shibata, 2001, 2004; Yannick 2009).

Even take parks or places like botanical gardens that both often play as a host to educational programs and special events, which do contribute to the awareness of culture and education of the community, especially children. The better the environment the better the effect. Example take a highly criminal area as opposed to a lesser one. Installing a park or botanical garden in a community has many direct benefits to residents, but an auxiliary benefit of having such a naturalized landmark in the community is the special events and cultural opportunities it brings to people who might not otherwise be exposed. Botanical gardens and zoos often create educational programs for children in order to teach them how the value of being environmentally-conscious and conserving the environment. They can also impact adults in the community as well, creating a cultural awareness of the importance of natural environments. Parks and gardens foster an appreciation for nature that often instills in residents a sense of responsibility for the caring of and protection of the environment. (Appleseed, Inc. 2009, Dubey 2007, Nadel 2005, Phipps Botanical Gardens and Conservatory 2010)

Parks and urban green spaces impact people’s health by providing them with an inexpensive (often free) and convenient recreational service. There is a positive correlation between the presence of a park in a neighborhood and the level of physical activity of the residents; people are much more likely to exercise when there is a no-cost, aesthetically pleasing area or facility for them to use. Many are more out to do simple (walking) or more intense (running) outside to even handball or basketball do just mental exercise (reading) all outdoors in nice parks as opposed to a high urban area of just warehouses and buildings with no park or in a work out place with all just nautilus and weights all over the public place that has high probability of picking up cold, flu, infections. Why? In high probability your exposed to much more germs and bacteria as opposed to a park or your own home in or outside.   Less host build up of germs and bacteria. Public places are high percentage in where you pick up germs and bacteria.

Believe it or not is helps in the healing process. Shrubs, trees, and flowers have a practical application in hospitals. Whether the the presence of plants are in the patients hospital rooms or viewed outside the room seeing beautiful parks via their window greatly reduces the time necessary to heal. The soothing effects of ornamental flowers and plants are so great that simply having daily views of flowers and other ornamental plants in landscaped areas outside patient recovery room significantly speed up recovery time; now if unfortunately the patient is terminal it’s a much greater atmosphere to be around than just four walls.

Ornamental plants affect the levels of compassion that people feel for others. Studies have shown that people who spend more time around plants are much more likely to try and help others, and often have more advanced social relationships. People who care for nature are more likely to care for others, reaching out to their peers and forming shared bonds resulting from their common interests.

Spending time in nature gives people an increased feeling of vitality, increasing their energy levels and making them feel more animated. Their performance levels are, in turn, increased by this improved state of mind. Natural environments induce a positive outlook on life, making people feel more alive and active. When people experience increased vigor, they put more of themselves and their energy into their work. People who spend more time outside in nature have a significantly more positive outlook on life than people who spend a great deal of time indoors, based on the majority.

One of the more obvious benefits of plants and trees is that many of them have valuable medicinal properties. Cultivating plants helps humanity because it provides opportunities for additional scientific studies of the possible positive medicinal values of plants. Natural herbal remedies are simple and holistic methods for treating common illnesses and maladies.

Simply regarding STRESS, plants help people with dealing with it in a positive way. How you ask; by helping many people transform their stress into a more positive emotion, this can be done commonly done in America in a pent house, back yard to farming, gardening-it gives people an excellent coping mechanism for their daily frustrations. Plants to even nurturing them helps reduce stress levels and gives people a way to cope with their negative feelings, in letting them release rather than build up.   Gardening can have therapeutic effects on people who have undergone trauma, either mental or physical. The act of nurturing a plant can provide victims with a way to work through their issues and heal their wounds, whether they are on the surface of the skin or deeper. Cultivating plants also improves their mental states and helps to put them in a better place for recovering. Gardening is a therapeutic tool.

Beautifying traffic medians not only improves the aesthetics of the roadways, it also affects driver attitudes. Studies show that drivers are more at ease on roadways with natural landscaping, and are much more inclined to think positively about the community that they are driving through if the roadways are beautiful. Furthermore, adding trees to roadways creates a sort of natural obstruction which could reduce the likelihood of cars crossing medians into oncoming traffic lanes. This improves driver safety and makes the community a safer place for everyone to live in.

Believe it or not plants enhance our lives!



“Every citizen who stops smoking, or loses a few pounds, or starts managing his chronic disease with real diligence, is caulking a crack for the benefit of us all.”
Mitch Daniels (born April 7, 1949) is an American politician who is the president of Purdue University and former Governor of Indiana. A member of the Republican Party, he served two terms as governor from 2005 to 2013

What is an aortic aneurysm?

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The aorta is the large artery that exits in the heart and delivers blood to the body. It begins at the aortic valve that separates the left ventricle of the heart from the aorta and prevents blood from leaking back into the left ventricle after a contraction, which is actually when the heart pumps blood. The various sections of the aorta are named based upon “arch-like” initial design and the location of the aorta in the body. Thus, the beginning of the aorta is referred to as the ascending aorta (basically meaning the blood going against resistance due to the vessel being a hill for the blood to go up), followed by the arch of the aorta, then the descending aorta (which is the blood going downward via gravity with the help of the heart pumping the blood of course). The portion of the aorta that is located in the chest (called thorax) is referred to as the thoracic aorta, while the abdominal aorta (the part of the aorta below the thorax region) is located in the abdomen. The abdominal aorta extends from the diaphragm (at the bottom of the lungs like a floor to divide the lungs from the organs in the abdomen) to the mid-abdomen where it splits into the iliac arteries and when it reaches the legs the femoral arteries now start which supplies to the legs oxygenated blood. This is why commonly a cardiac catheterization to visualize the aorta and sometimes the left side of the heart is done starting in the femoral artery since in time it diverts into starting the abdominal aorta.

An aneurysm is an area of a localized widening (dilation) of a blood vessel. The word “aneurysm” is borrowed from the Greek “aneurysma” meaning “a widening”.

An aortic aneurysm involves the aorta, the major artery that leaves the heart to supply blood to the body. An aortic aneurysm is a dilation or bulging of the aorta..

Most aortic aneurysms are fusiform. They are shaped like a spindle (“fusus” means spindle in Latin) with widening all around the circumference of the aorta. (Saccular aneurysms just involve a portion of the aortic wall with a localized out pocketing).

What is inside an aortic aneurysm?

The inside walls of aneurysms are often lined with a blood clot that forms because there is stagnant blood. The wall of an aneurysm is layered, like a piece of plywood.

Who is most likely to have an abdominal aortic aneurysm?

Abdominal aortic aneurysms tend to occur in white males over the age of 60. In the United States, these aneurysms occur in up to 3.0% of the population. Aneurysms start to form at about age 50 and peak at age 80. Women are less likely to have aneurysms than men and African Americans are less likely to have aneurysms than Caucasians.

There is a genetic component that predisposes one to developing an aneurysm; the prevalence in someone who has a first-degree relative with the condition can be as high as 25%.

Collagen vascular diseases that can weaken the tissues of the aortic walls are also associated with aortic aneurysms. These diseases include Marfan syndrome and Ehlers-Danlos syndrome

Aortic aneurysms can develop anywhere along the length of the aorta but the majority are located in the abdominal aorta. Most of these abdominal aneurysms are located below the level of the renal arteries, the vessels that provide blood to the kidneys. Abdominal aortic aneurysms can extend into the iliac arteries.

What shape are most aortic aneurysms?

Most aortic aneurysms are fusiform. They are shaped like a spindle (“fusus” means spindle in Latin) with widening all around the circumference of the aorta. (Saccular aneurysms just involve a portion of the aortic wall with a localized out pocketing).

What is inside an aortic aneurysm?

The inside walls of aneurysms are often lined with a blood clot that forms because there is stagnant blood. The wall of an aneurysm is layered, like a piece of plywood.

Who is most likely to have an abdominal aortic aneurysm?

Abdominal aortic aneurysms tend to occur in white males over the age of 60. In the United States, these aneurysms occur in up to 3.0% of the population. Aneurysms start to form at about age 50 and peak at age 80. Women are less likely to have aneurysms than men and African Americans are less likely to have aneurysms than Caucasians.

There is a genetic component that predisposes one to developing an aneurysm; the prevalence in someone who has a first-degree relative with the condition can be as high as 25%.

Collagen vascular diseases that can weaken the tissues of the aortic walls are also associated with aortic aneurysms. These diseases include Marfan and Ehlers-Danlos syndrome.

What are risk factors for aortic aneurysms?

The risk factors for aortic aneurysm are the same as those for atherosclerotic heart disease, stoke, and peripheral artery disease and include:

  • Cigarette smoking: This not only increases the risk of developing an abdominal aortic aneurysm, but also increases the risk of aneurysm rupture. Aortic rupture is a life-threatening event where blood escapes the aorta and the patient can quickly bleed to death.
  • High blood pressure
  • Elevated blood cholesterol levels
  • Diabetes mellitus The most common cause of aortic aneurysms is “hardening of the arteries” called arteriosclerosis. At a majority of aortic aneurysms are from arteriosclerosis. The arteriosclerosis can weaken the aortic wall and the increased pressure of the blood being pumped through the aorta causes weakness of the inner layer of the aortic wall.


  • The aortic wall has three layers, the tunica adventitia, tunica media, and tunica intima. The layers add strength to the aorta as well as elasticity to tolerate changes in blood pressure. Chronically increased blood pressure causes the media layer to break down and leads to the continuous, slow dilation of the aorta.
  • What is the most common cause of aortic aneurysms?

Smoking is a major cause of aortic aneurysm. Studies have shown that the rate of aortic aneurysm has fallen at the same rate as population smoking rates.


Gerard Way (born April 9, 1977) is an American musician and comic book writer who was the lead vocalist and co-founder of the American alternative-rock band My Chemical Romance from its formation in September 2001 until its split in March 2013. He is also executive producer of a band.

Part 2 Depression vs. Anger

September is SUICIDE prevention month.

Depression is a real thing and know there is treatment for it; know what considerations with red flags to look for and what the key factor is for the person who has depression must have to take the first step in controlling it if not resolving depression completely.


Treatment for anger and depression is based on the risk factors present, and is individualized for your specific needs. Treatment may include group therapy to discuss and rationalize anger, stress management exercises or even medications. Learning what causes anger and what can be done to avoid becoming angry are among the main focuses of treatment. Also important is learning what to do when becoming angry, and positive ways to focus feelings instead of becoming aggressive in response.


It’s important to consider all options when deciding to deal with feelings of depression and anger. A physician can make recommendations as to which type of treatment may be best, or he can refer individuals to someone else. People shouldn’t be embarrassed or feel inadequate because they need help but should focus on the strength shown to solicit the help.


Constant feelings of anger and depression can have a negative effect on overall health. People who are depressed and angry more than most are much more likely to suffer from heart-related problems. Anyone who experiences thoughts of harming themselves or suicide should contact a physician immediately for the appropriate treatment.  If you know someone who maybe with this REACH OUT and SPEAK UP to someone significant to that individual and bring that person to an expert to help this individual.  Look what happen to Robin Williams but alcoholism was the key factor in this unique talented man’s cause of suicide, by media.  Now lets look at the average American; the majority of us are not millionaires to billionaires who have everything financially going for us and more.  Now unless the millionaire or billionaire puts themselves in a situation that they gamble their money away and lose everything remember they could have put away a safe chest of money if that happened but if not done that was their choice.  Unfortunately they have to deal with that poor judgment call caused a crash financially but life does not have to be over.   It is the choice of everyone at an adult age (21 y/o and up)  in where they let their  money go but to those not in that situation  going through depression its up to you to make your priorities regarding what is most important to you and making them reachable.  That step to make priorities in what most important to you is all up to you starting it.  Those things bringing you down, reach out to yourself and list what is bringing you down and address them.  If its work search for something new but don’t walk out until you have s0mething new (but money doesn’t make you happy alone).  Again look at Robin Williams, who at one point had everything going for him.  If its your marriage well it takes not 1 but 2 to work on it.  One thing you both could do that would only help you understand each other better is both address their hurts, needs, desires with each other and if none to express to each other with both parties not wanting to work on it or ending line no resolution than part to allow each one live life to its fullest with letting misery start to heal.   If your in the scenario staying together just for the children if you think fighting and being unhappy in front of them all the time; you may want to think twice (their not blind).  If parting to stay on a friends note is better for everyone maybe that is the choice.  Of course without question if its stay together because of quilt or embarrassed in front of others if you split; just FYI these people are not blind in seeing you happy or unhappy with each other and over a long time of seeing the couple fight or unhappy they might even be thinking to themselves they wish you guys were so each individual could be possible happier.  The key factor in starting to figure out what’s best for yourself is to use self discipline and give yourself a chance to figure out the best way to go to resolve it or control it is get HELP.  Where the MD, or group, or psychologist, etc… can assist you whether the depression be alone or with a significant other you might be having depression over (Ex. Marriage).  Ending line if you could have resolved it on your own you wouldn’t still be in depression.   If this is the situation your in at this time of your life,  set up what your top 3 to 5 things most important in your life is that would make life better for you and DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT don’t stay in the dark hole!  Your just drowning yourself in misery.  It may sound easier than it actually is but it initially takes YOU to make the first move (if you can’t help yourself than who can you help-Noone).  So make yourself a happier individual to some extent to be a good impact to others or those who would want to be around you.  First to reach there its advised to go to a professional (from MD to counselor to group meetings but not simply yourself (its not recommended to try to resolve this on your own if this depression has been going on for a longtime or over 6mths after a devastating situation in your life.)  It’s better than doing nothing to allow yourself and others around you to be happier.  Good luck.

The current data available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.    In 2013, there were 41,149 deaths by suicide in the United States. Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death; homicide ranks 16th.  It is the second leading cause of death for 15 – 24 year olds.  *                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         The chart above which shows the Ten Leading Causes of Death in the U.S. in 2013.  For more data, you may visit or  For more comprehensive data, visit the CDC website’s Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS)


General Statistics

  • Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the US for all ages. (CDC)
  • The suicide rates decreased from 1990-2000 from 12.5 suicides per 100,000 to 10.4 per 100,000.  Over the past decade, however, the rate has again increased to 12.1 per 100,000. Every day, approximately 105 Americans die by suicide. (CDC)
  • There is one death by suicide in the US every 13 minutes. (CDC)
  • Depression affects 20-25% of Americans ages 18+ in a given year. (CDC)
  • Suicide takes the lives of over 38,000 Americans every year. (CDC)
  • Only half of all Americans experiencing an episode of major depression receive treatment. (NAMI)
  • 80% -90% of people that seek treatment for depression are treated successfully using therapy and/or medication. (TAPS study)
  • An estimated quarter million people each year become suicide survivors (AAS).
  • There is one suicide for every estimated 25 suicide attempts. (CDC)
  • There is one suicide for every estimated 4 suicide attempts in the elderly. (CDC)

Gender Disparaties

  • Suicide among males is 4x’s higher than among females. Male deaths represent 79% of all US suicides. (CDC)
  • Firearms are the most commonly used method of suicide among males (51%). (CDC)
  • Access to firearms is associated with a significantly increased risk of suicide. (NAMI)
  • Females are more likely than males to have had suicidal thoughts. (CDC)
  • Females experience depression at roughly 2x’s the rate of men.(SMH)
  • Females attempt suicide 3x’s as often as males. (CDC)
  • Poisoning is the most common method of suicide for females. (CDC)

Age Disparaties

  • 1 in 100,000 children ages 10 to 14 die by suicide each year. (NIMH)
  • 7 in 100,000 youth ages 15 to 19 die by suicide each year. (NIMH)
  • 12.7 in 100,000 young adults ages 20-24 die by suicide each year. (NIMH)
  • The prevalence of suicidal thoughts, suicidal planning and suicide attempts is significantly higher among adults aged 18-29 than among adults aged 30+. (CDC)
  • Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death for 15 to 24 year old Americans. (CDC)
  • Suicide is the 4th leading cause of death for adults ages 18-65. (CDC)
  • The highest increase in suicide is in males 50+ (30 per 100,000). (CDC)
  • Suicide rates for females are highest among those aged 45-54 (9 per 100,000). (CDC)
  • Suicide rates for males are highest among those aged 75+ (36 per 100,000). (CDC)
  • Suicide rates among the elderly are highest for those who are divorced or widowed. (SMH)

Racial and Ethnic Disparaties

  • The highest suicide rates in the US are among Whites, American Indians and Alaska Natives.


  • Over 800,000 people die by suicide every year.  (WHO)
  • There is one death by suicide in the world every 40 seconds. (WHO)
  • Suicide is the 3rd leading cause of death in the world for those aged 15-44 years. (WHO)
  • Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide. (WHO)


(Sources: CDC – Center for Disease Control, WHO – World Health Organization, AAS – American Association of Suicidology, NAMI- National Alliance on Mental Illness, NIMH – National Institute of Mental Health, SMH – Screening for Mental Health).



Robin Williams said before he traveled for work again he would return home to San Francisco to spend time with family members, who encouraged him to get help and who keep him going by telling him they love him.

“That’s the bottom line,” he said. “That helps the most, and then the rest is up to me, and God. And then you got to keep working it every day.”

Robin William


SUICIDE  suicide_warning_signsSUICIDE2


Part 1 Depression Vs. Anger — What does it all mean and What do I do?

Getting the blues  or down in the dumps now and than in one thing but staying in the blues or down in the dumps just sinking deeper over a long period of time can be diagnosed as clinical depression. Clinical depression presents many forms and symptoms. It is not something just to be brushed off, assuming it will rectify itself in a while. One of the most common symptoms noted when a person suffers from clinical depression is anger. Whether it’s uncontrollable anger toward oneself or outward aggression toward others, it’s clinically proven that depression and anger run hand in hand.

Do you find yourself feeling angry more often than usual, or more often than not, depression could be to blame. Anger is a common symptom of depression, which can lurk beneath the surface of any man, woman, or child as well.

Depressive disorders come in many different types, but each type has its own unique symptoms and treatments. Major depression, the most common type of a depressive disorder, is characterized by a combination of symptoms (see symptom list) that interfere with the ability to work, study, sleep, eat, and enjoy once pleasurable activities. Such a disabling episode of depression may occur only once but more commonly occurs several times in a lifetime. Mental health professionals use this checklist of specific symptoms to determine whether major depression exists or not. Depression is also rated by your diagnosing physician or mental health professional in terms of its severity — mild, moderate, or severe. Severe depression is the most serious type. A less severe type of depression, dysthymia, involves long-term, chronic symptoms that do not disable, but keep one from functioning well or from feeling good. Many people with dysthymia also experience major depressive episodes at some time in their lives. Another type of depression is experienced as a part of bipolar disorder, also called manic-depressive illness. Not nearly as prevalent as other forms of depressive disorders, bipolar disorder is characterized by cycling mood changes: severe highs (mania) and lows (depression). Sometimes the mood switches are dramatic and rapid, but most often they are gradual. When in the depressed cycle, an individual can have any or all of the symptoms of a depressive disorder. When in the manic cycle, the individual may be overactive, overtalkative, and have a great deal of energy. Mania often affects thinking, judgment, and social behavior in ways that cause serious problems and embarrassment. For example, the individual in a manic phase may feel elated, full of grand schemes that might range from unwise business decisions to romantic sprees

Risk Factors

Numerous risk factors can lead to feelings of depression and anger in an individual. Some of these risk factors include but are not limited to: loneliness, financial strain, unemployment, alcohol or drug abuse, marital or family problems, or lack of a social support network. Depression and anger can also be influenced by childhood trauma, or it can be hereditary.


Anger manifested with depression is no ordinary anger. It can be all-consuming feelings of anger and hatred against one’s self, others or the situation that is causing the depression. One of the first signs of depression in a teenager may be a sudden onset of uncontrollable anger. In turn, constant feelings of anger can also trigger a response of depression. Also noted with depression are a tendency to turn away from family and friends, poor performance at work or school, lack of motivation, feelings of guilt, insomnia and hopelessness

Symptoms of Depression

Not everyone who is depressed or manic experiences every symptom. Some people experience a few symptoms, some many. Severity of symptoms varies with individuals and also varies over time.


  • Persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” mood
  • Feelings of hopelessness, pessimism
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, helplessness
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities that were once enjoyed, including sex
  • Decreased energy, fatigue, being “slowed down”
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
  • Insomnia, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
  • Appetite and/or weight loss or overeating and weight gain
  • Thoughts of death or suicide; suicide attempts
  • Restlessness, irritability
  • Persistent physical symptoms that do not respond to treatment, such as headaches, digestive disorders, and chronic painMania
  • Symptoms of Mania (for Bipolar Disorder)
  • Abnormal or excessive elation
  • Unusual irritability
  • Decreased need for sleep
  • Grandiose notions
  • Increased talking
  • Racing thoughts
  • Increased sexual desire
  • Markedly increased energy
  • Poor judgment
  • Inappropriate social behavior

Come back tomorrow for Part 2 on Depression Vs. Anger in Considerations/Treatment and Knowing the Key Factor in what makes us deal with depression, which also can help prevent suicide!!


Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States. Although it’s common, accurate information about acne can be scarce.

American Academy of Dermatology