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Why Medical assessment is important before or during Ramadan for diabetic patients

Fasting during Ramadan, a holy month of Islam, is a moral duty for all healthy adult Muslims. However, there are exceptions to this. Anyone who is ill or has medical conditions do not have to fast. This includes people with diabetes. If you are a diabetic patient and planning to fast, it is important that you speak to your diabetes healthcare team as early as possible before Ramadan begins. Here we are highlighting some possible metabolic complications and how you can manage them. Risks associated with fasting in patients with diabetes: Hypoglycemia: Fall of blood sugar under the normal levels. Decreased food intake is a well-known reason for Hypoglycemia. How to Manage: Limit your physical activity during the fasting period and be more active after the sunset. Never miss your Suhoor meal and also consult with your doctor to modify medicine dosage & timings. Hyperglycemia: Rise of blood sugar above normal levels. Overeating after the fast is broken is the main cause for this. How to Manage: Controlling the diet during Iftar meal. Check your blood sugar levels frequently throughout the day. Dehydration: Due to the lack of fluid intake as well as the hot and humid weather, one may suffer from dehydration. How to Manage: Aim to drink sugar-free and caffeine free drinks frequently throughout the evening and before dawn. Overall Management Goals During Ramadan Fasting: For individuals with diabetes who are fasting during Ramadan, several things require specific consideration, including blood sugar monitoring, nutrition, and exercise. It is also important that the patients receive the necessary education towards self-care, symptoms of hyper-and hypoglycemia, blood glucose monitoring, meal planning, physical activity, and medication administration. Below are some goals to maintain a healthy Ramadan. •    The pre-Ramadan evaluation and risk stratification •    Promoting patient awareness with Ramadan-focused diabetes education •    Providing instruction on dietary modification •    Modification of the dosage and timing of diabetes medication •    Encouraging frequent monitoring of blood glucose levels

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May 14, 2019
M.K Anwar
General Practitioner
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Body
Benefit of fasting during Ramadan

Ramadan is a month of self-regulation and self-training. It's a perfect time to improve the moral character and focus on positivity. Fasting during Ramadan is counted as one of the Five Pillars of Islam.  It has not only been spiritually beneficial but it has many physical, psychological, social and health benefits as well. Let’s discuss all the benefits of Islamic fasting during the month of Ramadan. Psychological effects of Ramadan fasting: Fasting is more than just abstaining from food and drink. Fasting also includes abstaining from any ignorant and indecent speech, from arguing, fighting, etc. Therefore, fasting strengthens control on impulse and helps in developing good behavior. This purification of body and soul harmonizes the inner and outer spheres of an individual. Social effects of Ramadan fasting: Ramadan fasting shows the direction to develop spiritual, moral and social values. It is the message of equality amongst the individuals of the society. Apart from helping to achieve purity of body and soul through this process of self-purification, addressing these areas of social significance is bound to help people shed all those things which are not socially desirable. One of the greatest advantages of fasting in this month is that it adds a true habit of speaking the truth in a person. Health Benefits of Ramadan Fasting: Ramadan fasting is good for one’s health as well as personal development. Here are some surprising health benefits of fasting: •    Metabolism becomes more efficient. Fasting and eating late at night will increase the hormone called adiponectin in our body which allows your muscles to absorb more nutrients. •    Cleanse out the toxicity from the body. By not eating or drinking throughout the day digestive system will get proper time to repair. Then your body will clear existing toxins, and clean up the circulating blood and lymph throughout the month. •    Reduces cholesterol in the blood. Low cholesterol increases cardiovascular health, greatly reducing the risk of suffering from heart disease, a heart attack, or a stroke. •    Ramadan increases the level of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, which causes the body to produce more brain cells, thus improving brain function.

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May 14, 2019
Dr. Aysha Mohamed Arif
General Dentist
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Mind
Things you need to know about Counseling

The process and purpose of Counseling are often misunderstood, and many people have a negative perception of it. People are often very conflicted about approaching a professional who will be discussing and analyzing their hurtful feelings, sadness, and anxieties. But the reality is totally different. Let’s talk about all the questions you get in mind while talking about Counseling. What is Counseling? Mental Health counseling is based on the science of Psychology. The methods and techniques of various treatment modalities are used by mental health counselors/therapists are based on scientific research. These methods are practical, solution that focused; problem-solving based skill building methods whose main goal is the best interest and overall wellbeing of the individual. Counseling is a facilitative and interactive process where a counselor provides to the client emotional help, guidance, insight, nurturance and clarity to life situations, crisis, and dilemmas. People often behave in ways without knowing why they do so and may be living or behaving in ways that they would like to understand better and change. The process of Counselling can help to bring insight and awareness to their unconscious feelings and behaviors and the connection between them. The process eventually allows the client greater freedom in making choices that help the client to achieve self-sufficiency, a greater sense of self-worth and empowerment Essence of Counseling “The Essence of counseling is always the learning of improved skills and techniques to increase one’s ability to better deal with life’s vicissitudes” Who is your Counsellor? Your Counsellor a highly skilled professional with a minimum of a graduate degree in the field of Counselling licensed in the area of mental health and is trained to provide the following core services- Assessment and Diagnosis Treatment planning and utilization review Psychotherapy-Individual, couple and Family Brief and solution focused therapy Psychoeducation and prevention programs Crisis management and referrals to other medical professionals for consultation Crisis management and referrals to other medical professionals for consultation What You Should Know About Your Mental Health Counselor Is your Counsellor licensed by the Department of Health and Medical Sciences (DOHMS) in Dubai? What are the educational Qualifications of your Counsellor? How long has he/she been in practice? Does he or she have a Degree from an accredited and a recognized University? What are your areas of specialization (such as family therapy, women’s issues, substance abuse counseling, etc.)? How can you help me with my problems? What type of treatment do you use? How long do you think counseling will last? How does Counselling work? The therapist listens to the client’s reasons for seeking help. This could be initiated through a phone call, walk in, or a referral. As a follow up a screening/assessment appointment is set in person which generally lasts for about 50 minutes. In this meeting, the clinician conducts an assessment with a thorough screening of the presenting problem, rule out organic symptoms that might be causing the presenting problem, provide a medical referral if necessary and recommends one or more ways of therapy to eliminate the symptoms of distress If it is determined that other professional help is needed, the therapist will assist in making an appropriate referral. All decisions are made in consultation with the client. “Regardless of the length of a session(s), therapy is hard work and client will not see a benefit unless and until the client is committed to exploration, understanding, growth, and change alongside a therapist committed to facilitating that process. It is also critical that the client is committed to making therapy an ongoing and active process even once they are outside the session which means they should be committed to applying the skills and the lessons learned from their sessions outside in the real world and in their respective life and relationships” Says Ms. Menon, Counselling Psychologist, Lifeworks–Holistic Counselling Centre What is the duration of therapy? The time required for therapy varies with each person depending on the nature of the issues presented, personal history and agreed upon goals. The length of therapy is jointly determined by the client and counselor and may be revised as therapy progresses. Appointments are usually once a week and last about 60 minutes. In a therapeutic model such as Crisis Counselling, the session is very solution focused with not more than three one-hour sessions. Otherwise, sessions can be the short term which is about six sessions with one session a week or long term which could range from about 10-12 sessions with one session a week. The objective, duration, and the treatment plan are outlined at the onset of therapy to provide the client with a strong structure and a committed continuity to their treatment. However, they are not fixed considering the therapist will review the progress and the outcomes achieved with the client on an ongoing basis and on a mutual agreement with the client will modify and or terminate the session accordingly. Is counseling confidential? All information shared in therapy is held in utmost confidentiality. As a client, you are guaranteed the protection of confidentiality within the boundaries of the client/counselor relationship. Licensed Counsellors are mandated by their ethical commitments that no information discussed in the sessions is released without the authorization of the client. The only limitations to confidentiality occur when a counselor feels that there is a clear and imminent danger to you or to others. However, no information discussed in the sessions is released without the authorization of the client. Detailed information about confidentiality and privacy will be listed in the Client’s Bill of Rights which is signed by the client before the commencement of the session.

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March 12, 2019
Sailaja Menon
Counseling Psychologist
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Mind
Myths and Facts About Counseling

There are several myths and stigma attached to the complete process of Counselling. People are often very conflicted about approaching a professional who will be discussing and analyzing their hurtful feelings, sadness, and anxieties. Therefore, there is a constant sense of uneasiness and uncertainty in the minds of people and questions arise such as “Can this professional really help me?” or “Would it be a painful waste of my time?” or you might convince yourself that “I really have no idea what I would say.”? Especially if you have never ever been in counseling or therapy. Here we will talk about some common myths about counseling. Some Common Myths and Facts About Counseling MYTH Counselling is only for people who have serious emotional and mental problems. FACT Seeing a counselor does not mean you are mentally ill or “crazy”. In life, almost everyone has difficulties and challenges at some point and being able to ask for help to overcome these challenges are a sign of strength and taking responsibility to get your life “back on track.” MYTH Seeking Counselling is a sign of weakness. FACT Seeking counseling in fact assign of taking responsibility for your wellbeing. In fact, it takes courage to explore sensitive feelings and painful experiences. It is the first winning step for an individual in resolving their difficulties. MYTH The counselor will “fix” your problems. FACT Counselling is not a “quick fix” to cure your problems. The counselor’s role is to help you reflect and explore your feelings, thoughts, and concerns, to examine your options, and assist you in achieving the goals you set. MYTH The Counsellor cannot understand you unless she has had similar experiences or is of the same background. FACT Counsellors are trained to be sensitive to and respectful of individual differences, including the specific concerns/needs with regard to gender, race/ethnicity, culture, religion, age, and socio-economic status. Many Counsellors who are trained in the US and other Western countries have a super specialization in Multicultural Counselling considering diverse cultures in those countries. Counselors are professionally and extensively trained to treat a variety of life crisis and issues. MYTH Seeking Counselling suggests you do not have enough faith that God will take care of you, and fix your problem. FACT While prayers and the complete trust in God are always beneficial to your life, these practices are not the only options available to you for sorting through issues. Most people who seek counseling are people who lead very normal lives and want to find solutions to their life and the problems they face. It is important to bear in mind that everybody has significant problems at various times in their lives. Counseling is just a normal part of the process of resolving things and providing you the tools and the skills to handle them effectively. Counseling can help with multiple areas of life, including parenting, breakups, grief, financial stress, wellness goals, work-life balance, and many more. There is a myth that only “crazy” people seek counseling when the fact is that counselors do not use the word crazy and help people with all degrees of concern.

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March 12, 2019
Sailaja Menon
Counseling Psychologist
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Mind
Decoding Depression- Recognise The Symptoms

For a while now, you have felt this great weight on your shoulders. You drag yourself out of bed every morning with great reluctance. You go through your daily chores as if they are just that: mundane chores to be done with. You don’t enjoy anything you do, nor do you feel motivated enough to try something new. Everything feels ‘too much’: your work, your commute, your family, friends even the things you once used to do with great enthusiasm. At night, you find it hard to fall asleep, and when you do, it’s only to wake up a few hours later. Then you toss and turn for a long time, and fall asleep in the wee hours of the morning, which makes you dull and lethargic throughout the day. You no longer have much to contribute to conversations, and sometimes, with very little provocation, you have a strong urge to break down and weep. But of course, you won’t let it show. You try to hide it all by taking an extra effort to talk and be cheerful, neither of which lasts long enough. It feels as if a grey cloud has descended, darkening your life. And it refuses to lift. If this sounds like your story, then you have a fair idea of what depression feels like. “Everyone goes through periods of sadness, but those are usually in response to life events. ‘Blues’ brought on by a setback of some sort, like losing a job. Such sadness is transient, and you will be back to normal once the situation is under control.” Clinical depression, however, is different. “It’s a prolonged state of melancholy, usually lasting more than two weeks. You feel a persistent, continued, pervasive sense of sadness, most of the days, most of the time. And you are unable to detach yourself from it. Fatigue, loss of sleep and appetite, lack of motivation/enjoyment and sudden weight loss can all indicate depression. Conversely, in some cases, there is a tendency to eat and sleep excessively, and gain weight. People going through depression often have persistent feelings of excessive, inappropriate guilt, you feel that you’re not living up to the expectations of your family and friends that you’re somehow letting them (and yourself) down. And nothing can convince you otherwise.” Sometimes depression is somatized, manifesting itself as a physical symptom such as persistent headache with no identifiable cause. The most alarming symptom of clinical depression, however, is a death wish. When a person feels that life has become so unbearable that death is preferable, or they are haunted by the thought that they don’t deserve to live, it is time to seek urgent professional help. Never take such feelings lightly or brush them aside. According to statistics, about two-thirds of all clinically depressed people contemplate suicide, and a staggering 10 to 15 percent commit suicide. While most of us go to great lengths to ensure our physical wellness, we often ignore the warning signs that our minds send us. The stigma associated with mental illnesses is still very real to most of us, despite education and social awareness. Seeking professional help is seen as a weakness, and well-meaning people advise us to ‘snap out of it’ rather than approach a counselor. Clinical depression, however, is not something that can be wished away. There are multiple factors that contribute to the condition which will be discussed soon, but one thing is clear: those who are going through it should be given the attention and support they require, and at the earliest.

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March 12, 2019
Girish Banwari
Psychiatrist
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