Tuesday, September 28, 2010

10 Tips on How to Avoid Bed Bug Bites

Bed bug bites don't often hurt. But there are instances where a bed bug bite can elicit allergic reactions such as skin irritation, rashes or even infections. These blood suckers don't pick out their victims and it's best to know how to prevent and control their infestation.

Know the Facts
To prevent these bugs from invading your home or apartment, it's important to learn what they are and how they grow. They often thrive in well protected crevices and as their name implies, on beds and mattresses. Bed bugs are brown wingless insects that span less than an inch. They can survive for extended periods of time so getting rid of them is important.

Finding Bed Bugs
To avoid bites from these blood suckers, the most important thing to do is to identify places where they could grow and will possibly thrive. The first things to check include the mattress, the bed frame, and areas near the bed. They also live on furniture, cracks and holes, luggage and even on clothes. Examine the whole bedroom and house thoroughly if there's evidence of an infestation. Simple bite marks on the skin and blood stains on the bed sheet are good indicators that they are around.

Cleaning is one the best ways to stay bed bug free. Always make it a point to clean the house and the bedroom. If possible, scrub areas and wipe furniture clean. Cleaning helps remove these pests from their "harborages" or safe havens. One of most effective ways to clean the house from these bugs is through the use of vacuum. Make sure to vacuum areas thoroughly and wipe them clean afterwards.

Steam cleaning can help kill existing bed bugs. They are not tolerant to extreme pressure so exposing them to the steamer can effectively kill them. Make sure to apply sufficient heat on surfaces.

Wash Fabrics Regularly
Blankets, pillow cases, mattress, and sofa covers should be washed regularly using hot water. Hot water kills these pests instantly. A good routine would be to wash fabrics once a week.

Expose Items to Extreme Heat
Likewise, for items that can't be laundered, it's best to seal them in plastic bags and expose them to the sun. The sun's heat is often sufficient enough to kill any bugs present.

Go For Natural
While pesticides are often used to stop insect infestations, it shouldn't be used to treat a bed bug infestation. Oftentimes, they thrive in areas where people frequently rest and hang around. It wouldn't be too healthy for any person to be exposed to pesticides and its residues.

Diatomaceous Soil
Diatomaceous soil is a good natural treatment for these critters. Diatomaceous soil contains jagged fossils that can easily cut insects. They can be placed in cracks and crevices where the bugs thrive and flourish.

Caulk may be used to block the bugs from entering cracks and holes inside the house. It's often hard for bed bugs to penetrate caulk.

Cold Temperature
It's also possible to get rid of bed bugs by exposing things to extreme cold. During winter, seal items in plastic covers and leave them out in the cold for some time.

Professional Help
If all else fails then it's necessary to call in professional pest exterminators. They'll know what to do and how to handle bed bugs and what to do to prevent them from coming again

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Cleaning Your Home Office or Computer Room

Your home office can be the central business center of the home, and oftentimes with all of those papers and documents, it may be hard to focus on where to get started, or exactly how to clean. Dust is public enemy number one when it comes to a home office. It seems to pervade everything, including computer screens, keyboards, bookshelves, and desktops. Of course we all know that the leading killer of dust is pledge and a dustcloth, but here are a few tips you may not have known.

To keep your computer and keyboards from getting dusty, purchase plastic covers for them. You can also make your own out of trash sacks, or, if you have a creative streak, by sewing custom covers from fabric or old curtains.

If neither of those options work for you, there are other ways of keeping computers and their equipment dust-free. The keyboard dusters you can purchase are ideal for this. They are an aerosol can that sprays intense bursts of air, and be used for more than just a keyboard!

Did you also know that it is safe to use Windex on your computer screens? Many people are under the mistaken assumption that using Windex on a computer screen (or rough paper towels) will damage the screen. Not so unless perhaps you own a computer monitor from before 1990 (if you do, please consult the owners manual that came with the monitor before cleaning). Also, a good way to rid computer screens from dust longer, is after cleaning, to give them one good final wipe down with a fabric softener sheet (the kind that you thrown in the dryer). It takes away most of the static from the screen that draws dust.

Also, you can easily clean a mousepad with regular dish detergent and warm water. Just scrub the pad with dish soap, rinse well with water, and pat dry with a paper towel!

A mouse is easily cleaned by removing the cover from in front of the ball, taking out the ball, and cleaning out any dirt inside with cotton swabs dipped in alcohol.

You can also save time and money in a home office in high traffic carpet areas, and places where sliding chairs sit by purchasing heavy plastic floor mats made for this purpose (just like you see in office building) at your local office supply superstore, such as Staples. This will make your floor cleaning so much easier, and will extend the life of your carpet.

To give your office a quick lift if you have artificial flowers or plants is to spray the pants directly with an aerosol air freshener. Not only does it make the leaves instantly shiny, it also leaves a pleasant scent that will last.

If you own a pet, like I do, and you are constantly trying to remove pet hairs from chairs in your home office, a simple way to remove them is to wrap clear shipping tape backwards around your hand, sticky side out, and pat away at the chairs. An even simpler and faster way is to use an old paint roller, wrapping the tape backwards around it, and rolling it quickly across the furniture to remove hair. The tape can be reused until it has lost its stickiness.

Remember, motivation and perseverance are the keys to a clean home! Stay focused, and best of luck!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Quitting Smoking Benefits - The Good Stuff Starts Right Away!

Yes, quitting smoking is very much worth the effort.

Within 20 minutes after you smoke that last cigarette, your body begins a series of positive changes that continue for years.

- Your blood pressure starts to go down.

- Your pulse rate drops (My resting pulse has dropped from 84 to 62 since I stopped).

- Your blood circulation begins to improve. This is actually one of the biggest quitting smoking benefits of all. Smoking constricts (makes smaller) your blood vessels and capillaries, which means your heart has to work harder to get blood and oxygen to those places in your body where it needs to go. When you stop smoking your veins and capillaries begin to relax and open up, which lowers the work load on your heart, which is why you'll experience a lower heart rate, lowered risk of heart attack, lower blood pressure, and higher energy level.

The quitting smoking benefits go on and on.

8 hours after your last cigarette:
- The carbon monoxide level in your blood drops to normal (the bad stuff is going away).
- The oxygen level in your blood increases to normal (the good stuff is increasing).

24 hours after your last cigarette:
- Your chance of having a heart attack begins to decrease (I've been told this is a big plus).

48 hours after your last cigarette:
- your damaged nerve endings begin to regrow - your ability to smell and taste begins to improve
The first and most noticeable quitting smoking benefit that I personally experienced was that my cigarette cough, which was terrible before I quit, was almost totally gone after three weeks. Three weeks! Amazing!
The worst nicotine withdrawal symptoms are gone after the first month.

2 Weeks to 3 Months After Quitting
- Your lung function begins to improve. - Circulation improves - Walking becomes easier

1 to 9 Months After Quitting
- Your coughing and shortness of breath decrease.

1 Year After Quitting
  - Your added risk of coronary heart disease is half that of a smoker's.

5 Years After Quitting
- Your stroke risk is reduced to that of a nonsmoker's 5-15 years after quitting.

10 Years After Quitting
- Your lung cancer death rate is about half that of a smoker's. - Your risk of cancers of the mouth, throat, esophagus, bladder, kidney, and pancreas decreases.

15 Years After Quitting
  - Your risk of coronary heart disease is back to that of a nonsmoker's.

Friday, September 3, 2010

List of Foods For Diabetics to Eat - Cure For Diabetes

Best cure for diabetes is hidden in list of foods for diabetics to eat. It is true that natural cures for diabetes are effective as well as safer.

Diabetic Foods To Avoid

* It is strongly recommended that diabetics should stay away from foods like glucose, sweets, jam, syrups, molasses, pastries, ice-cream, condensed milk, chocolate, fried food, cream and soft drinks.
* There are many fats like ghee, butter and any hydrogenated oils.
* White sugar and white flour must be avoided.
* The consumption of junk foods, pastries and cookies, processed foods and canned foods must be avoided.
* The diabetics must stay away from smoking and fried food items.
* Smoking eats away the oxygen of body as a result comparatively lesser oxygen is left for the routine metabolic process of the body.

Foods to Be Limited

* The salt intake must be reduced to minimum. Enough amount of salt can be obtained from vegetables as well as fruit as they have natural salt content that is enough for the human body.
* Animal protein consumption like that of red meat must also be limited.
* The poultry and egg consumption must be reduced.
* The diabetics must not consume more than 2 cups of tea or coffee. The better substitutes of tea and coffee are water, green teas and other herbal teas. Water that has been soaked in pods of kidney beans is excellent for the patients of diabetics.
* Diabetics must not consume alcohol on an empty stomach. Excessive consumption of alcohol may cause low blood sugar or hypoglycemia.
* The diabetics can only consume honey, dates, white sugar and palm sugar in moderate amount. The consumption of eggs, pasta, nuts and unsweetened juices are also limited. The better substitutes are brown rice, white grain and soya products.
* Peanut oil, olive oil and sunflower oil are better than hydrogenated fats. Low fat skimmed milk, low fat cottage cheese should only be consumed in moderate amount.

List Of Foods For Diabetics To Eat

* The diabetics should drink 10 to 12 glasses of water in one day
* Nuts, fish, dairy products and whole grain are good for the patient of diabetics. Raw vegetables are good for the patients of diabetics. Cooked food increases the level of blood sugar. Unpeeled and raw foods are best for diabetics as cooking destructs most vitamins and enzymes of vegetables.
* The diabetics must consume 5 portions of fruits in one day. Better fruit choices are bananas, fig, pomegranate, blackberry, kiwi fruits, grapefruits and blackberry are good for diabetes patients. Likewise better vegetable choices are carrot, turnip, tomato, cucumber, radish and cabbage.