Huwag Kang Puputok

Siguro lahat tayo ay may kakilalang tao na malakas magpaputok. Hindi rebentador o kaya baril ang ibig kong sabihin. Ang tinutukoy kong putok ay iyong nakakainis na amoy mula sa katawan. Sa ibang salita, body odor o B.O.

Kung ikaw ang may putok, sana makatulong sa iyo ang artikulong ito.

Isang senaryo sa Pilipinas: nasa loob ka ng jeepney.  Dahil sa sobrang init at trapik ay tumatagaktak ang pawis ng lahat. Tapos, may mamang sumakay at sumiksik sa tabi mo. Pag-arangkada ng jeep, itinaas ng mama yung kanyang braso para humawak. Sakto naman yung kanyang kili-kili sa mukha mo. Pag-hinga mo, boom! Parang gusto mo nang tumalon sa jeep, o kaya’y ilawit ang iyong ulo sa labas at pipiliin mo pang suminghot ng maiitim na usok ng jeep at bus, kesa mamatay sa putok ng katabi mo. Naka-relate ka ba?

Ano ba ang sanhi ng putok?

Ang medical term sa putok o anghit, ay bromhidrosis. Ito at ang masangsang na amoy dahil sa pawis. Ang pawis ay mula sa sweat glands. Maaring tanungin mo, bakit ba ginawa ng Diyos ang sweat glands kung ang magiging sanhi lang nito ay anghit?

Ang sweat glands ay importante sa kalusugan at mismong buhay ng tao. Ito ay para sa thermoregulation ng ating katawan. Kung hindi tayo papawisan tayo ay mag-o-overheat at maaring mamatay, parang makina ng kotse na kailangan ng tubig sa radiator para hindi pumalya. Kaya’t sa ayaw mo man o gusto, hindi lang si Andres Bonifacio, kundi tayong lahat ay anak-pawis.

Isang klase ng sweat glands ay ang apocrine glands. Maraming apocrine glands sa axillary area (kili-kili) at pubic area. Maliban sa pagse-secrete ng pawis, ito ay nagse-secrete din ng hormone, na ang tawag ay pheromones. Ito ay may kakaibang amoy. Ang pheromones ang siyang naamoy ng mga hayop, para ma-attrack sa kanilang ka-partner. Ito ang dahilan kung kaya kahit sa malayo ay nakakaakit ang paru-paro, baboy-damo, o aso ng kanilang kalaguyo.

Pagnagbinata at nagdalaga na ang tao, dumadami ang apocrine glands at secretion nito. Pero sa ating tao, hindi gaya sa hayop, hindi masyadong kailangan ang pheromones upang humanap ng ka-partner. Kasi may on-line dating site na (aha-ha). Isa pa, mas mabisa siguro ang bulaklak at chocolates kesa pheromones para sa tao.

Balik natin ang usapan sa pawis. Sa katanuyan ang pawis ay walang amoy. Ngunit kapag may mga bacteria sa ating katawan, na nagre-react sa ating pawis o hormone na galing sa ating sweat glands, lalo na sa apocrine glands, sa halip na walang amoy, nagkakaroon ng mababantot na mga chemical. Mga chemical tulad ng ammoniaE-3-methyl-2-hexanoic acid at 3-hydroxy-3-methyl-heaxnoic acid, (konting chemistry lesson lang po). Ito ang isang sanhi ng putok.

Minsan ang ating diet, gamot, mga toxins, metabolic disorders, at ibang sakit, tulad ng liver at kidney failure, ay nagdudulot rin o nagpapalala ng mabahong amoy ng ating katawan.

Ang bromhidrosis ay maaring makaapekto sa kalusugan. At sa kalusugan din ng ibang kawawang taong makakaamoy. Pero maliban sa pisikal na kalusugan, ang taong may bromhidrosis ay maari ring magdusa ng social isolation at low self-esteem. Sino nga bang gustong mag-hang-out sa taong may putok?

Anong dapat gawin, o ano ang mga lunas sa isang taong may bromhidrosis?

1. Maligo ng regular.

Malaki ang nagagawa ng personal hygiene sa putok. Dahil may kinalaman ang bacteria sa masangsang na amoy, mababawasan ang bacteria sa katawan kung maliligo ka nang regular. Hindi ko sinasabing maligo ka nang apat na beses isang araw, pero sikapin kahit minsan sa isang araw. Maari ring makatulong ang pag-gamit ng anti-bacterial soap.

2. Gumamit ng anti-perspirant at deodorant.

Ang anti-perspirant ay nagpapabawas sa pagpapapawis. Ang common ingredient ng mga antiperspirant ay aluminum salt. Ang “tawas” na popular na ginagamit para sa anghit ay hydrated aluminum potassium sulfate, at ito’y mabisang anti-perspirant. Ang deodorant naman ay mga pabangong nagkukubli sa mabahong amoy. Marami sa mga produkto ngayon ay magkasama na ang anti-perspirant at deodorant.

tawas

Kryptonite? No, Tawas Crystal!

3. Hair removal

Dahil ang buhok ay maaring mag-trap sa bacteria, maaring makatulong ang pag-aahit ng buhok sa kili-kili. Kaya pwedeng slogan: May anghit? Mag-ahit!

4. Palitan kaagad ang damit na pinagpawisan.

Panatilihing tuyo ang katawan. Hindi sa dahil ikaw ay mapupulmonya kung matuyo ang pawis. Pero mababawasan ang mabahong amoy-pawis kung huhubarin mo kaagad ang basang damit na pinagpawisan mo. Isa pa, gusto ng bacteria ang mabasa-basang environment.

5. Iwasan ang mga pagkaing may maaamoy na spices.

Siguro naobserbahan mo na rin na may mga pagkaing amoy kili-kili. Hindi ko ikinakaila na masarap ang mga ito. Subalit kung amoy kambing ka na, bawasan mo na siguro ang mga maaamoy na spices tulad ng curry, cumin, sibuyas at bawang. Pero pwedeng rason na OK lang mag-amoy bawang, kasi at least walang aaswang sa iyo.

6. Huwag manigarilyo.

Hindi sa nagpapabawas ng pawis ang hindi paninigarilyo. Pero ang sigarilyo ay isang sanhi ng mabahong amoy. At mabahong hininga. May B.O. ka na nga, may bad breath ka pa, eh kawawa ka nang talaga.

7. Removal of apocrine glands.

Sa malalang bromhidrosis, ay maaring i-offer ng mga duktor ang pagtanggal ng apocrine glands. Maari itong tanggalin sa pamamagitan ng surgical excision, liposuction, o laser therapy. Hindi dahil nabasa mo rito ang laser therapy, huwag mo sanang tangkaing na sunugin ang iyong kili-kili. Please consult your doctor.

Hanggang dito na lang at sana ay may natutunan kayo. At tandaan, hindi lang sa Bagong Taon po bawal magpaputok!

(*photo of tawas from the web)

Debunking Folks’ Medical Advice: Part 1

I have received and heard a lot of medical advices from my folks when I was growing up. And now that I have the title MD behind my name, I would like to weigh-in on some of those counsels. It is not my intention to be disrespectful to our elders, I would just like to examine if there is really medical truth on these ‘sage’ advices.

1. Huwag maligo kaagad kung galing sa trabaho o ehersisyo, at baka ikaw ay mapasma.

Don’t take a bath right after working or exercising, for it may cause “pasma” (sorry, no accurate English word for it, though the closest is “spasm”).

There is no medical truth to this. In fact most athletes take a shower after a strenous work-out. After working or exercising, your body heat production is high. This causes your blood vessels to dilate to dispense the heat, which make you look flushed, and your veins more visible. And I think the advice stems from the thought that bringing the body temperature drastically with a bath is harmful. But no studies have shown to support this.

It is then thought that a warm shower after a work-out is acceptable and probably will relax the muscles. But there has also been a practice by few elite athletes of taking an ice bath after an intense activity. The thinking is that the cold water will reduce the production of lactic acid (by-product of anaerobic muscle metabolism) and reduce muscle pain. Several studies published in sports medicine journal however have not shown benefits of the ice bath, but it has not shown ill effects also.

So with our current knowledge, taking a bath after work or exercise is not deemed harmful. For me it is more harmful not to take a shower, not to you, but to the health of others who have to smell and be suffocated by your body odor.

2.  Huwag maglaro o magtrabaho pagkatapos kumain, at baka ikaw ay ma-appendicitis.

Don’t work or play right after eating, because you might have appendicitis.

Appendix is a blind-ended tube connected in your cecum (part of large intestines). Appendicitis is inflammation of this organ when it is blocked by a fecalith. What  is triggering the blockage and subsequent inflammation is not very clear. However, it is definitely not by any activity right after a meal.

When we eat a meal, it takes 4-6 hours before our food leaves our stomach. Then the partially digested food particles will travel through more than 20 feet of small intestines, where most of it will be absorb. Whatever is left undigested will make it to the large intestines. So the food you eat now (or whatever is left of it), will probably arrive at the vicinity of the appendix by tomorrow. Not right after eating. You may feel sluggish though, especially after a large meal, as most of your blood circulation pools to your digestive system. So it may not be the best time to do your work-out also.

The bigger question is why do we have the appendix and what is the use of it. Nobody knows for sure, though some experts believe it contributes to the immune system. A research a few years back suggests that the appendix is a “safe house” for the good bacteria in the gut. If you ask my friends from surgery, they will tell you, that it is there for them to operate on.

beltran-005

3. Huwag kumain ng manok, o ng pakwan, kapag may malaking sugat. Ang mga pagkaing ito ay malansa at baka hindi gumaling ang iyong sugat.

Don’t eat chicken or watermelon if you have a large wound. Those foods are “malansa” (sorry again for no exact English translation, though “fishy” is close, but in this context, “dirty” is more appropriate), and your wound might not heal well.

Wound healing is dependent on many factors, like adequate blood perfusion to the site, nutrition, absence or presence of infection and others, like proper wound care.

Chicken is a source of protein, which is needed as building blocks for growth and wound healing. As long as it is properly prepared and cooked, I don’t see any reason that it will hinder wound healing. Watermelon on the other hand is rich in vitamins and anti-oxidants which are vital not just for wound healing but for overall nutrition as well.

So go ahead and gorge on watermelons, even if you have an open wound. Unless your open wound is in the stomach or GI tract, then it’s a whole different discussion altogether.

4. Matulog nang maaga para mas lumaki ka.

Sleep early so you will grow more.

The science of growth is very complicated. The growth process depends on the intricate interplay of genetics, hormones, nutrition, exercise, and possibly sleep. One hormone that affects growth is the growth hormone, which is secreted by the pituitary gland. This is released throughout the day, but studies showed that in children, it is released more intensely during stages of deep sleep.

While adults needs 7-8 hours of sleep a day, children needs more than this. Kindergarten or younger kids, need 10-12.5 hours of sleep a day, and older elementary kids need 9.5-11.5 hours of sleep. Inadequate sleep can cause growth problems, including slowed or stunted growth. Recent studies also showed inadequate sleep to be related to obesity.

If you are an adult and is way beyond the growth period, I don’t think sleeping more than 12 hours a day will add any more inches to your current height, and may just earn you a label of being lazy. However, if you are really requiring more than 12 hours of sleep a day and still sleepy, it’s time to seek medical advice.

So does sending your kids early to bed make them grow more? Yes, even with my board certification in Sleep Medicine, I have to admit that my mother was right.

Do you know of other folks’ medical advice? Let us investigate them if there’s scientific truth behind them. However, I know knowledge is power, but only if we show repect that we gain wisdom.