Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Damage Control for Unhealthy Habits

Sorry for the late blog today. I put the finishing touches on a story and submited it to Literotica, so once it's up on their site, I'll link the story from here. I'd be interested to get your feedback on this one. I wrote this story without an editor; free-fall writing.

I have some great news to share with everyone. Not only did I read this week that scientists have discovered, not just one, but possibly two new planets; orbiting around our galaxy. These two planets have some of the same characteristics as earth....No. I'm. Not. Kidding.

Isn't that cool?

And, here's more great news: I also read an article titled, “Damage Control for Six Unhealthy Habits”; blog title above. So, I took that as a gift from the universe to mean we can still keep on doing all the really nasty and bad things to our bodies, because there’s a serum to make it all better again. And lets not forget there's two new planet earth's we can potentially live on now after we've completely obliterated the current planet earth.

Ponder this thought, if you will: In the game of golf, a do-over shot, is referred to as a mulligan. Do you think a planet earth do-over would also be called a mulligan, or do we call it something else?

Anyway, I’m only going to comment on the last two unhealthy habits, in the article, only because they’re applicable to my blog, and my personal bests. Ahem; I mean favorites:

The Mistake: Unprotected Sex
You’ve had more than a few sexual partners—and you often skipped the condom.
Gulp. Bad, bad, pussy-cat.

The Expert:
Dr. Jeanne Marrazzo, medical director of the Seattle STD/HIV Prevention Training Center.

The Damage:
Having unprotected sex puts you at risk for HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases—and the more partners involved, the greater the risk.
Damn. I hate that!

Unprotected Sex: Damage Control
“While the incidence of HIV remains low in the U.S. in many populations, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently recommended that all adults be tested for HIV at least once. This is an excellent opportunity to get that done,” says Dr. Marrazzo. Free tests are available at many clinics and community organizations.
Beyond HIV, our expert recommends a blood test for anyone who hasn’t been vaccinated for Hepatitis B or anyone with recurring genital rashes or sores (often the result of a very common sexually transmitted infection called genital herpes). “If a person is in his or her 30s and has no genital symptoms, I would not recommend routine testing for other sexually transmitted infections, like chlamydia or gonorrhea,” says Dr. Marrazzo.
As for guaranteeing your future sexual health, our expert recommends finding a good health care provider with whom you can comfortably and openly discuss any of your concerns. Or maybe just hooking up with one sexual partner for awhile until the scientists who found two more earth planets, find a cure for all our STD’s.

The Mistake
: Heavy Drinking
In college you majored in drinking and your bar-hopping habits didn’t stop on graduation day.
How did they know that?
The Expert:
Dr. Mark L. Willenbring, director for the division of treatment and recovery research at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

The Damage:
“Risky drinking is defined as more than four drinks a day for men or three for women on any given day, and more than 14 drinks for men or 7 for women in a typical week,” according to Dr. Willenbring. “Exceeding this daily limit even 12 times a year places the drinker at increased risk for alcohol use disorders, alcohol abuse, and alcohol dependence. Of course, the impact of drinking to excess differs according to an individual’s mental health history, family history, and personal experiences: “If a parent or sibling is dependent on alcohol, a person’s risk of developing dependence increases by a factor of 2 to 4 times,” says Dr. Willenbring. The good news is that “many people who drink excessively in their 20s incur no lasting damage.”
Huh? What if you're excessively drinking in your 30's, 40's, 50's and higher? When does the damage set in? Did I miss something? I read and re-read the above; learning what defines a heavy drinker, but I'm confused as to why it's so bad to drink so much?

Damage Control:
Former heavy drinkers and binge drinkers (defined as males who consume upwards of five drinks and women who consume upwards of four drinks in a two hour period) should “initiate a personal health promotion program focused on diet, exercise, sleep, and social support,” says Dr. Willenbring. This should include learning new behaviors to fulfill the same purpose that drinking once served. Reformed social drinkers, for instance, might satisfy their desire to interact with others by enrolling in a community class or a recreational sport. Those individuals who used alcohol to self-medicate during times of stress might search for a relaxing new hobby like yoga.

The goal is to promote well-being and self-confidence. Dr. Willenbring concludes, “Remain vigilant. Know how much and how often you drink and why.”

Neve Question:

What do call a recovering binge drinker that gets together with an unprotected sex offender?

Prize goes out to the best answer.


Casey Parish said...

Either happily ever after, or unhappily stuck together.


Neve Black said...

Hi Casey,
How about misery loves company? Or AA meets jail time? or if you can't beat em', join em'?

Well, anyway, please send me your address and I'll send a little Neve, somethin' and somethin your way.

Thanks for participating. ;-)