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Health

Resorting to traditional medicine to curb fatigue

Ever wondered why you are always feeling tired and sluggish while the woman in the next office is forever moving swiftly? Do not despair because you are not alone, countless people are also experiencing the same problem. We are living in a fast paced world where there is less time to prepare a healthy meal and to exercise.

Fast food have now become a norm, worsening the situation. Fatigue can leave you feeling helpless while also chowing away your precious time.

Tebogo Mothupi who is an assistant at a well-known herbal shop in Mahikeng, by the name Matrampan, gives us advice on traditional remedies to fight fatigue. Mothupi who has been working at Matrampan for the past twelve years swears by the Tshupu ya poo, Mathunga, Sekaname, Seswagadi, Phate ya ngaka, Mosokela tsebeng mixture as the best mixture to curb fatigue. He asserts that the mixture does not only give energy but cleanses the blood, kidneys, can treat the waist, colds, STIs, swollen legs and so on.

“All traditional medicine do not have the side effects. 90% of the medicine do not have overdose”, says Mothupi. “Traditional medicine is very helpful. People must not come to us when it is too late. If things don’t work out here it is then that they can resort to western medicine”, he adds, also indicating that some of the western medicine is taken from traditional medicine and given to us in a form of tablets.

 

 

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Health

HIV & TB stigma reduction campaign unfolding in Mahikeng

As an initiative of the Soul City Institute together with Life Line as one of the partners, an HIV & TB stigma reduction awareness campaign kick started in Mahikeng last month.

Headed by a group of four ambassadors and four mobilizers the official launch of the two year campaign is expected to take place next month. The team of eight which targets communities around Mahikeng say they believe that zero stigma and zero discrimination is possible with a well informed and educated community.

One of the ambassadors Thabang Sebotsa indicates that in addition to teaching more on HIV and TB they also counsel the community about the importance of treatment adherence. “With zero stigma and zero discrimination we are saying come out, be free, live your life and get support. People must not hide. There are still those who hide and do not adhere to medication because they fear to be judged”, says Sebotsa.

Nthabiseng Ntsime who is a full time mobilizer shares that they have reached eight hundred people so far since the start of the campaign. “The changes that we would like to see through the campaign is for HIV negative people and HIV positive people to be viewed the same. No labelling or isolating someone because of his/her status”, says Ntsime.

So far the team has made presentations at Montshioa Stadt Clinic and Montshioa and say they plan to engage more with the other communities around Mahikeng, particularly rural villages.

 

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Health

Mental wellness centre enthusiastically tending to caregivers

Situated in Lonely Park, a village outside Mafikeng, Moroka Mental Wellness Centre is determined to improve the well-being of those who care for the mentally ill in the community.

Thato Mpolokeng, the founder of the NPO which was registered in October 2016 says that a lot of people do not realise how important it is to take care of the caregivers. “We assist the caregivers to be the best that they can be”, she said.

The centre was born after Mpolokeng relocated from Johannesburg to Mafikeng to take care of her uncle named Moroka who was diagnosed with schizophrenia in 1983. Mpolokeng shares that her uncle`s condition had deteriorated to a point where he was roaming the streets unwashed and eating from rubbish bins. She explains that while she was taking care of her uncle, she realised that more people needed help and decided to reach out.

The centre is making progress in terms of its development plans. This is evident among other things in their newly erected building,  testimonies from those receiving help, positive response for their painting donations and a garden with a variety of seasonal vegetables. “We are going to be developing programs for kids because we believe that it is where it all starts. We are going to be doing fun activities for the children to get them out of the streets”, said Mpolokeng.

Stephen Bekker who is in charge of gardening for the centre, has built a greenhouse and an aqua phonic system. Bekker who is currently a props buyer for one of mzanzi`s popular soapies Rhythm City, excitedly expressed his passion for gardening. “I am not a farmer as such but I have always been gardening at home. Now it is just taking it a little step further and try to inspire other people”, he said. “I have a Facebook page called Hope seeds hope which is inspired by my Buddhist practice. We are encouraged to develop ourselves and our communities through spreading hope”, he added.

Moroka Mental Wellness Centre wishes to see the community being more kind to each other. “If we are not helping each other, there is nothing we can achieve. Unity is important in order for us to make a difference”, they emphasize. The centre  also wishes to express their sincere gratitude to those who have supported them as they have recently requested paint donations from the public.

To know more or make a contribution, Thato Mpolokeng can be reached on 078 991 5233 alternatively you can reach Moroka Mental Wellness Centre on Facebook.

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Health

Reconciliation and HIV/AIDS remains part of government agenda

The North West government recently held the reconciliation and world AIDS commemoration at Mogwase Stadium, Moses Kotane Local Municipality, under the theme ‘Unity in diversity, I have the right to know, prevention is my responsibility’.

“We have gathered here today to commemorate World Aids Day and to highlight achievements reached with regard to the HIV/AIDS programme. As we do this, we also want to reflect on milestones we have achieved as provincial government in fighting the scourge of HIV/AIDS”, said the MEC for health Dr Magome Masike on presenting the purpose and background of the day. “The need to coexist peacefully is greater than to harbour conflicts amongst communities and individuals. It is therefore apt to commemorate these two together”, elaboarated Dr Masike.

Speaking in a humorous metaphoric tone, the keynote speaker Premier Supra Mahumapelo urged the community to refrain from having unprotected sex and to take care of their diet. HIV/AIDS activist Matlakala Maropefela who has lived with HIV for the past 18 years also shared her moving story. The community was also entertained by the likes of Mmausi, Chomza and others.

Prior to the proceedings the entourage visited the Moses Kotane Hospital. The Acting CEO indicated that they are encountering infrastructural challenges. Part of their major concern is a sewage treatment plant which is not functional.

The Acting CEO further indicated that the sewage problem is currently being taken care of. MEC Dr Magome Masike and Premier Supra Mahumapelo further related that they are aware of the matter and is currently being dealt with. “I think we must make time to come back. We will have to start from the beginning, when this hospital was constructed, regarding compliance issues and so on”, said Mahumapelo. “If the quality of service is lower, it means we are compromising the health of our people, and in turn it compromises our image and standing as a government”, Mahumapelo emphasized.

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Health

Your oral health matters

Sometimes you brush your teeth regularly, floss, use mouth wash and still experience bad breath. Halitosis, medical term for severe bad breath, can be uncomfortable for yourself and those around you. Food like garlic and onion can cause temporary bad breath, but not the one you can`t stand. If halitosis persists regardless of good oral hygiene practices, it might be a symptom of something more serious.

UNDERSTAND HALITOSIS

The most common cause of halitosis is poor oral hygiene. Dr Kenewang Mogajane who has been a dentist since 1994 observes that it does not mean that when you brush and floss you will do away with halitosis. The way you brush is important, that is, the time you take and also how you brush. “Some people brush quickly, not removing everything. Others brush only on the outside and think the inside is not necessary to brush”. Most people forget the tongue”, she indicates.

If a person if brushing correctly, the mouth causes for bad breath will be eliminated. In a case where the mouth is not the cause of the problem, Mogajane contends that it could be that a person has an upper respiratory tract infection from the lungs, a post nasal drip or maybe an infection in the stomach. In such instances the patient will be referred to a relevant specialist.

The insightful Dr Mogajane points out that mouth breathing, which is common with people who snore or who have a blocked nose, is also another cause of bad breath. “When the mouth is closed, the saliva helps with lubrication and cleaning, even when you are sleeping”, she explains. “Mouth breathing will result in a person having a dry mouth. You can advise such a person to chew a gum, so that saliva is secreted every now and then”, she adds.

Mogajane further shares that when people with diabetes are hungry, they produce ketones, which can cause bad breath. However, this only occurs for a short while as it happens only when the diabetic person is hungry.

ADVICE FROM THE DOCTOR

“You can`t use a mouth wash without brushing your teeth. It is like applying an ointment on an unclean wound. That is not the correct way”, advices Dr Mogajane who holds a Bachelor in Dental Surgery Degree from MEDUNSA.

In order to keep the mouth smelling fresh it is recommended that one should brush teeth for at least two minutes, twice a day and not forgetting to floss. It is also recommended that a person should visit a dentist after every six months. Mogajane discloses that there is medicine available to counteract bad breath, which of course depends on the cause of the problem.

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Health

Maintain healthy vision: informative knowledge on cataract

Mamorake Sedibe holds a Bachelor of Optometrist Degree from the then University of the North, Limpopo Province. Sedibe has been practicing as an optometrist for close to eighteen years. She now shares her knowledge on cataract with us, as it is one of the major contributors to blindness worldwide.

WHAT IS CATARACT

Cataract is the changing of the interior lens inside the eye. Naturally, the inner lens must be transparent. Immediately when it starts to be cloudy it means that cataract is developing. Sedibe explains that this depends to a large extent on where the cataract starts. “If it starts outside of the inner lens, it is going to take long before you realise that you have cataract”. “If it starts on the inside, towards the pupil, it is then a person can notice quickly that he/she can`t see clearly”, Sedibe elaborates. She further clarifies that “if it starts on the inside, already it is going to close your vision. If it starts on the outside of the lens it is going to take longer until it closes your vision”.

TYPES OF CATARACT

Congenital cataract is found in children. They can be born with congenital cataract or it can develop in childhood. This type of cataract can be caused by injury, infection or poor development of the child. Sedibe explains that, although there are cases of congenital cataract, however, it is not very common.

Another example of cataract is acquired cataract which is age related. When a person is young he/she can jump and run. Sedibe argues that it is the same with our eyes. “When you are young the eyes are flexible. The lens is held by cyliary muscles. As we grow older our muscles become stiff and those cyliary muscles are not flexible like before”. “You will find that a person can see properly at a distance but not when it comes to reading. The person prefers to put the book very close when reading. The cyliary muscles have to stretch and make the lens roundish so that the person can see”, Sedibe explains.

Sub-capsular cataract occurs at the back of the lens. People with diabetes or those taking high doses of steroid medications have a greater risk of developing a sub-capsular cataract. Furthermore, traumatic cataract occurs when the eye experiences injury. For example, when something hits the eye.

MORE FACTS ON CATARACT

Cataract is treatable only through its removal, which is done through surgery. According to Sedibe, cataract can affect one or both eyes. In a case where it has affected both eyes, you will often find that it progresses quicker on the other side. Cataract is not easily self-diagnosed. The only way to obtain an accurate diagnosis is to consult with a professional. “Not all distorted vision is a result of cataract. If you have developed a blurred vision, consult immediately as a professional is the only one who can do a proper diagnosis”, advises Sedibe.

 

 

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Health

Delicate parenting for your dog

For ages a dog has been known to be a man`s best friend. Dogs are mainly kept for companionship, for their ability of distinct sniffing and for guarding purposes. Regardless of its usefulness, there are dogs which continue to endure poor nourishment and improper care. Kgakgamatso Moseki, an inspector at SPCA Mafikeng enlightens us about dog cruelty and how to ensure sound care for your dog. Moseki holds a BSC Degree in Animal and has been serving the organisation for close to seven years.

PROPER DOG DIET

Dog diet is a critical aspect which should never be overlooked. A properly nourished dog is a happy, active, and healthy dog. Moseki points out that you can feed your dog twice or once a day. What is important is that the quantity should be adequate for the dog`s particular weight and age. Moseki advices that canned food is fine as a treat but not as daily food. Regular canned food will give your dog dental problems in the long term.

In some homes dogs are fed left overs and bones. Moseki points out that some dogs do adapt to that, depending on how that particular dog was brought up. She also cautions that some dog`s stomach might be sensitive and can react to food such as onions and peanuts. Furthermore, bones can be hazardous as they sometimes get stuck on the throat. “We normally ask people to buy scientific vet approved dog food. Unfortunately most people cannot afford them because they are expensive”, she says. “Any nutritious dry pellets would do. You have to look at the back of the package, for the contents of the nutritional value”.

MORE WAYS FOR DOG CARE

Regular bathing of your dog is essential for hygienic purposes. “Washing your dog and dipping it prevents so many parasites like fleas and tricks. You also get to see if there is anything wrong with your dog”, says Moseki. “The water should be warm, depending on the weather. For example, you can`t bath your dog when it’s very cold”.

Effects of poor dental care on the dog includes halitosis and gum diseases such as gingivitis. Moseki relates that regular eating of dry pellets usually cleans the teeth naturally. She forewarns that if you notice that your dog has gangre, which can be identified by a black spot on the teeth, you have to take it to the vet.

Moseki agrees that it is important for you to observe your language around your dog. “The way you talk to your dog it is the way it will react to you. If you are aggressive, it will not bond with you as well”, she says.

Denial of vet treatment is a form of abuse and a contravention to the animal`s protection act. “Make sure that your dog is fully up to date with vaccinations. Ensure that your dog is vaccinated every three months and dipped every month”, she says.

CRUELTY THAT DOGS ARE OFTEN SUBJECTED TO

Not cleaning after your pet, giving it drugs, hitting it, terrifying it, denial of food and water is considered as abuse to the animal. Moseki strongly condemns animal mutilation. She cautions that dogs use their body parts to show emotions. “If a dog is angry it will raise its tail, if it is happy it will wag the tail. If you mutilate such parts, then you won`t be able to read your animals, she says.

Moseki argues that there are some people who tie their dogs to an extent that the dog is not able to move, which is another contravention to the animal`s protection act. She maintains that if you have a dog your reason for tying the dog should justify why you have to tie it. Moseki elaborates on the correct way of tying a dog. “You have to get a runner which will allow the dog to have easy movement. A runner is where you have a wire which is about five to eight metres, you can make it longer”, she says. “There is a chain that extends from the dog to the wire, which allows the dog flexible movement. It should be able to access, shelter, food and water.

ADVICE TO THE COMMUNITY

Moseki emphasizes that it is important to integrate the pet into the family. “You have to decide as a family that you are going to get a pet and it is going to be a part of the family”, she says. “You have to take it into consideration that you will have to take it to a vet when it is sick, provide nourishment, and clean the animal and where it stays”.

SPCA is an acronym of Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. They go out and do inspections when cruelty complains have been launched. They also do educational talks and outreach in the community.

If you have a complaint with regard to animal cruelty, call the SPCA on 018 381 0374. They promise that their sources remain anonymous.

 

 

Categories
Health

MAINTAIN HEALTHY VISION: INFORMATIVE KNOWLEDGE ON CATARACT

Mamorake Sedibe holds a Bachelor of Optometrist Degree from the then University of the North, Limpopo Province. Sedibe has been practicing as an optometrist for close to eighteen years. She now shares her knowledge on cataract with us, as it is one of the major contributors to blindness worldwide.

WHAT IS CATARACT

Cataract is the changing of the interior lens inside the eye. Naturally, the inner lens must be transparent. Immediately when it starts to be cloudy it means that cataract is developing. Sedibe explains that this depends to a large extent on where the cataract starts. “If it starts outside of the inner lens, it is going to take long before you realise that you have cataract”. “If it starts on the inside, towards the pupil, it is then a person can notice quickly that he/she can`t see clearly”, Sedibe elaborates. She further clarifies that “if it starts on the inside, already it is going to close your vision. If it starts on the outside of the lens it is going to take longer until it closes your vision”.

TYPES OF CATARACT

Congenital cataract is found in children. They can be born with congenital cataract or it can develop in childhood. This type of cataract can be caused by injury, infection or poor development of the child. Sedibe explains that, although there are cases of congenital cataract, however, it is not very common.

Another example of cataract is acquired cataract which is age related. When a person is young he/she can jump and run. Sedibe argues that it is the same with our eyes. “When you are young the eyes are flexible. The lens is held by cyliary muscles. As we grow older our muscles become stiff and those cyliary muscles are not flexible like before”. “You will find that a person can see properly at a distance but not when it comes to reading. The person prefers to put the book very close when reading. The cyliary muscles have to stretch and make the lens roundish so that the person can see”, Sedibe explains.

Sub-capsular cataract occurs at the back of the lens. People with diabetes or those taking high doses of steroid medications have a greater risk of developing a sub-capsular cataract. Furthermore, traumatic cataract occurs when the eye experiences injury. For example, when something hits the eye.

MORE FACTS ON CATARACT

Cataract is treatable only through its removal, which is done through surgery. According to Sedibe, cataract can affect one or both eyes. In a case where it has affected both eyes, you will often find that it progresses quicker on the other side. Cataract is not easily self-diagnosed. The only way to obtain an accurate diagnosis is to consult with a professional. “Not all distorted vision is a result of cataract. If you have developed a blurred vision, consult immediately as a professional is the only one who can do a proper diagnosis”, advises Sedibe.