What causes Bunions

Brief introduction on Bunions

Bunion is also called as Hallux valgus. It is an unusual bony bump that is formed on the joint of the great toe. The person suffering from bunion might experience symptoms such as swelling, soreness and redness around the big toe, persistent pain, thickening of the skin at the base of the big toe, bulging bump on the outside of the base of the big toe, and limited movement of the big toe. The skin surrounding the bunion also becomes swollen most of the time.

What causes Bunions

If your body weight falls on the tendons and joints of your feet in an uneven manner, there is an imbalance in the pressure, which gives rise to bunions. The pressure molds the parts of your joint into a solid bump, which pokes out beyond the normal shape of the foot. The causes of bunions are as follows:

  • Wearing tight fitting shoes or high heeled shoes
  • Foot injuries
  • Defect present during the birth
  • Inherited foot type
  • Occupation that requires you to put extra stress on your feet
  • Various types of arthritis

Treatment for bunions

Treatment for bunions depends on its severity and the pain caused by it. Treatments that can give relief from the pain include changing shoes, taping and padding the foot, padded shoe inserts and medications. If these do not give relief and the pain is very severe and interferes in your day to day activities, then surgery is recommended.

What causes Stretch marks

Brief introduction on Stretch marks

Stretch marks are also known as striae. These are a form of scarring on the skin with indented streaks that may be of reddish, purplish or pinkish shade. Stretch marks frequently appear on the abdomen, upper arms, buttocks, thighs and breasts. They are very common in pregnant women, mainly in the latter half of pregnancy.

What causes Stretch marks

Stretching of the skin is the literal cause of stretch marks. This is due to an increase in cortisone. Adrenal glands produce a hormone called as cortisone that is known to weaken the elastic fibers in the skin. Stretch marks may be caused due to the following:

Pregnancy: Majority of the pregnant women experience stretch marks by the time they reach the end of their pregnancy. This is because the skin stretches physically and also hormonal changes occur during the pregnancy. A combination of these two results in stretch marks.

Weight gain: Stretch marks can occur due to an considerable increase in the weight. Stretch marks are also seen in those who do weightlifting, mainly on the arms. Youngsters might also experience stretch marks during the puberty period.

Medications: Stretch marks can be provoked due to usage of corticosteroids creams, pills or lotions. Constant use of systemic or oral steroids can trigger stretch marks as well.

Certain conditions or diseases: Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, Cushing’s syndrome, adrenal gland infections, Marfan syndrome and other hereditary disorders can cause extensive stretch marks.

Stretch marks are seen more commonly in women as compared to men. Also these are seen more frequently in white women than black or Asian women. The chances of stretch marks are high in the following:

  • Females
  • Those having a family history of stretch marks
  • Making use of corticosteroids
  • Overweight or obese people
  • If a person gains and losses weight rapidly
  • Pregnant women
  • Giving birth to larger babies

Treatment for Stretch marks

Stretch marks are absolutely harmless and often fade away with the passing time. Stretch marks may be cosmetic concern. The treatment for stretch marks can help partially in removing the scars, but not completely. The following treatments methods can be prescribed by your doctor:

  • Tretinoin cream
  • Pulsed dye laser therapy
  • Fractional photothermolysis
  • Microdermabrasion
  • Excimer laser

Many ointments, creams and products claim to fade away or prevent stretch marks, but these hardly make a difference.

What causes ridges in fingernails

Brief introduction on Fingernails ridges

Bumpy ridges or the white color moon like lines that appear on the nails are known as finger ridges. They mainly appear in 2 ways i.e. horizontal lines known as horizontal ridges and vertical lines known as vertical ridges. Vertical ridges extend from the cuticle to the fingernail tips. Horizontal ridges extend from one corner of the nail to another. Both men and women can get ridges on the finger nails and it is a sign of being unhealthy.

What causes ridges in fingernails

Vertical ridges are common and do not indicate any danger to health, whereas appearance of horizontal ridges indicated risk to heath.

Horizontal Ridges are caused due to:

  • Malnutrition
  • Iron deficiency
  • Zinc deficiency
  • Chemotherapy
  • Diabetes
  • Kidney disease
  • Nail injury
  • Metabolic conditions

Vertical ridges are caused due to:

  • The most common reason for appearance of vertical ridges is age. These occur mostly in older people. As we age, lots of changes take place in the body and nails are also a part of it.
  • Lack of moisture is another cause for the appearance of vertical ridges. Dry nails get affected with ridges really quick.
  • Deficit of vitamins and minerals
  • Skin conditions such as Psoriasis

Treatment for Ridges in fingernails

Incase of horizontal ridges, medical help is suggested as it might be a sign of serious health issues (not necessarily in all cases). Vertical ridges will disappear if you take proper care of your nails. Keep your nails moisturized always. Regular use of a moisturizer during the night time is suggested. Nutritious food should be consumed. Zinc supplements and multivitamins can be taken. Gloves should be worn while dish washing, gardening or house cleaning. A continuous care helps in making your nails appear healthy.

What causes Varicose veins

Brief introduction on varicose veins

When the veins become gnarled and enlarged, it is known as varicose veins. This can happen to any vein, but most often the affected veins are those of your feet and legs. This is so because there is an increase in the pressure in your lower body veins due to standing and walking upright. Not for everyone, but for some it can cause pain and discomfort. At times, it can also lead to serious health issues and develop the risk of circulatory problems. A person might experience symptoms like dark purple or blue color veins, bulging veins, heavy and achy feeling in the legs, cramping, burning and swelling on your lower legs, itching around the veins and skin ulcers near the ankle (in serious cases).

What causes varicose veins

Varicose veins are caused due to:

Age: With age, your veins can lose elasticity due to which they get stretched. This weakens the valves in your veins, because of which the blood that is suppose to move towards the heart begins to move backwards. Due to this, blood is gathered in the veins causing them to expand and become varicose. The veins look bluish in color as they contain deoxygenated blood.

Pregnancy: Varicose veins might develop in some pregnant women. The volume of blood increases in the body during the pregnancy, but at the same time there is reduction in the flow of blood from the legs to the pelvis. This is a natural process designed for the growth of fetus, but unfortunately causes enlarged veins in the legs as a part of side effect. As the time passes, uterus exerts more pressure on the veins in the legs and worsens varicose veins. Hormonal changes during pregnancy might also contribute in giving rise to varicose veins.

Other factors that increase the risk of developing varicose veins are:

Gender: Varicose veins occur more often in women as compared to men. Hormonal changes that take place during pregnancy, menopause or premenstruation can increase the risk of varicose veins. The risk of varicose veins is also increased by intake of birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy.

Obesity: Being overweight can increase the pressure on the veins.

Family history: If any of your family members had / has varicose veins, it increases your chances of getting it too.

Sitting or standing for a long period of time: Being in a same position for a long time prevents blood flow.


Treatment for varicose veins

Varicose veins caused due to pregnancy do not require any treatment and fades away on its own within three to twelve months after giving birth to the baby. Severe varicose veins can be treated by sclerotherapy, laser surgery, catheter-assisted procedures, vein stripping, ambulatory phlebectomy and endoscopic vein therapy. The following self care measure help in treating as well as preventing varicose veins:

  • Exercise
  • Reduce weight (if you are overweight)
  • Take low salt diet
  • Avoid wearing high heels or tight clothes
  • Elevate your legs
  • Avoiding sitting or standing in one position for a long time
  • Don’t sit with legs crossed

What causes heart Palpitations

Brief introduction on Heart Palpitations

Palpitation refers to the abnormality in a person’s heartbeat. The heartbeats may be too slow or too fast or irregular during the palpitation. It often feels like your heart is throbbing or racing. At times it also feels like your heartbeats are skipped or stopped. Heart palpitations are the unpleasant sensations of the heart. A few people suffering from palpitation may not have any heart disease or arrhythmias, but in most of cases, palpitation results from Arrhythmias. When the heartbeats are too slow or too rapid, irregular or very early, then it is termed as Arrhythmias. Palpitations may last for a few seconds or few hours and might occur infrequently or even daily. Symptoms experienced during palpitation are nausea, sweating, dizziness, vomiting, light headedness, tightness in the chest, skipped heart beats, fluttering or fullness of the chest, shortness of breath, pain in legs and arms and blackouts.

What causes Heart palpitations

Heart palpitations at night are mostly due to stress, anxiety and worry. Probably certain events of life which upset a person might come up as thoughts while lying in the bed and thinking about those again and again can cause palpitation at nights.

Heart palpitation after eating can occur as the heart needs to pump more blood to the stomach for the digestion process. Other causes of heart palpitation are as follows:

  • Changes in the heart’s electrical system will reduce the hearts ability to pump the blood. When the levels of electrolytes like magnesium, calcium and potassium are not normal then palpitation can occur
  • In women, change in the hormone level at the time of premenopausal period, menopausal period or post menopause can lead to palpitation
  • Stressful situations can boost the adrenalin levels of the body which will in turn lead to heart palpitation
  • Anxiety
  • Drugs like Cocaine, Amphetamine, marijuana, and PCP are few of them which cause palpitation
  • Exercise
  • Fever
  • Caffeine
  • Heart palpitation during pregnancy is often seen due to changes in the hormone levels and also because the heart pumps blood to the uterus for development of the fetus
  • Anemia
  • Low oxygen level of the blood
  • Nicotine
  • Heart valve disease
  • A few medications used to treat thyroid, asthma, heart problems and high blood pressure
  • Alcohol
  • Blood loss
  • Excessive pain
  • Lack of oxygen
  • Panic attacks

Treatment for heart palpitations

Treatment begins after diagnosing the exact cause of palpitation. Bringing about slight changes in the lifestyle will reduce the effects of the symptoms. Consumption of caffeine and alcohol must be completely blocked. Maintaining a journal to pen down the circumstances that surround the palpitation can help in self analysis. The pattern and symptoms of palpitation should be made note of. Heart beats and blood pressure should be regularly monitored. If you notice any signs of heart attack like chest pain, jaw pain indigestion, fatigue and shortness of breath then one must seek urgent medical help.