2012 – New Year, New Driving Laws

Driving safety continues to be an important issue being examined by legislators and citizens alike. The 2012 Roadmap to State Highway Safety Laws shows the many gaps in traffic safety laws across the country. This report used a group of laws to evaluate states, most of which encompassed motorcycle helmet, booster seat, and seat belt measures, as well as limitations and requirements for young drivers, texting bans and stricter impaired driving laws.Many states passed new driver laws for the new year that relate to these areas.Cell Phone Use30 states have already banned or restricted drivers’ cell phone use in some way, with more continuing to do so.

Effective January 1st, 2012, texting while driving is declared illegal in North Dakota and Nevada.
Oregon closed a loophole in a law that enabled drivers to use hand-held devices in work-related situations. Cell phone use is now completely banned.
Safety Measures

Children under the age of eight in California are now required to use booster seats. The previous age ceiling was six. This law came into effect with increased protection as the driving force – booster seats increase the chance of surviving a crash by 45 percent for children in this age range.
Illinois passed legislation that now requires adult passengers in the backseat to wear a safety belt. Previously, adults in the front seat and children in the front or back were required to. Fines will be given to those not wearing a seatbelt in the backseat.
Drunk DrivingDrunk driving costs the U.S. over $132 billion per year. Related laws continue to be adopted by more and more states.

Tougher drunk driving laws have been enacted in Nebraska. Those convicted must have their licensed revoked or have an ignition interlock device installed in their vehicle.
With most states already having some drinking and driving legislation, many are now working to enact tougher legislation and close loopholes in existing laws.Teen Driving

In North Carolina, stricter laws have been enacted that require teen drivers to turn in a record of their driving time in order to obtain their learner’s permits. After this point, they must produce 60 hours of supervised driving documentation. From there, they are able to get a limited license. They then must complete 12 more hours over the following six months to obtain their full license. These types of measures are similar to what many states have instituted, called the Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL).
Additional Laws

Another Illinois law that came into effect January 1stallows motorcyclists to proceed through red lights after waiting two minutes and checking to make sure they can cross safely. This was created due to motorcycles’ weight not activating traffic lights that use ground sensors. Also in Illinois, trackers are now prohibited from using their cell phones without hands-free headsets.
Motor vehicle crashes cost society $230 billion annually. Many of the causes of these crashes are preventable. By being aware of the laws and legislation, as well as safety suggestions and precautions, we can all help reduce the number of accidents.

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) – Women’s Health

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a common disorder affecting approximately 8% of adult women. It is a metabolic disorder and a leading cause of infertility. The major effect of PCOS is the change in insulin resistance wherein a high amounts of insulin is produced in response to food intake particularly carbohydrates and fat. This is instrumental in increasing androgen production which results in hormonal imbalance and causes most of the symptoms mentioned below:-
Menstrual abnormalities – Decreased menstrual flow, delayed periods, secondary amenorrhea (absence of periods) and abnormal uterine bleeding in some cases.
Obesity – around half of the women with PCOS tend to be obese and find it difficult to reduce weight.
Infertility – It is a major cause of anovulation (failure to ovulate) and failure to conceive.
Hirsutism – Dark coarse hair over face and breast and in some cases thinning of scalp hair.
Acne – Some women have male pattern acne on the face and thickening of skin of the back.
Other symptoms – some cases also report increased testosterone levels and increase in LDL (bad) cholesterol.PCOS has long term consequences also like Type 2 Diabetes, Gestational Diabetes, Hypertension, Dyslipidemia and Endometrial Hyperplasia. All women with PCOS do not necessarily have ovarian cysts. A pelvic ultrasound is a major diagnostic tool, but not the only one. The Rotterdam criteria are also used to diagnose and confirm the syndrome. Treatments: Treatment for PCOS is aimed at restoring
normal menstruation
cosmetic improvement
Preventing long term complications, and
assistance in conception if desiredThe main modalities of treatment are -
Decrease in weight
Oral contraceptive pills
Ovulation inducing agents
Anti-diabetic drugs like metformin
Anti-androgen drugs
Lifestyle modifications and herbal preparationHerbal Supplement for PCOS Hyponnid corrects all metabolic reproductive and steroidogenic axis in a PCOS woman. thus alleviating anxiety and providing a treatment modality without side effects. Besides helping women to conceive it also useful in long term complications if started early.

Eliminate Credit Card Debt With 7 Easy Tips

Here are 7 common sense guidelines to eliminate credit card debt:1) DO make a budget listing all your fixed expenses. Rent or mortgage, car insurance, car payments, cell phones, utilities, day care, fixed loans, etc. Then try to estimate a reasonable budget for discretionary items like food, drinks, dry cleaning, etc.2) DO make a second list of all your outstanding balances and sort by balance, minimum payment, and interest charges if you have multiple credit card debts.You may think the wisest thing to do is paying off the credit card with the highest interest rate. However, there are 2 preferred methods to follow.First, you should first reduce the number of credit cards. Pay off the smallest balance first with larger payments until the number of credit cards you have in debt is down to one. Your ultimate goal is zero, or when you can pay your monthly balance in full every month.The other strategy is to pay the balance on any card exceeding 50 percent of your credit limit because balances above this level may cause your credit score to diminish.3) DO use cash or a debit card from your checking account. You can’t spend what you don’t have.4) DO look for extra income. Most likely your rent or mortgage is your biggest expense, so consider a roommate. If you like your occasional privacy, consider an International student for shorter periods of time.Consider starting a Blog. Blogger and WordPress blog platforms are free. If it becomes popular, slap on some Ads with Google Adsense. Your first payout will be issued when you reach $100.5) DO look for the little things that add up in your expenses. Maybe change your cell phone plan if you are constantly going over the monthly minutes? How about that $2.75 Starbucks latte or cappuccino every work day? That’s almost $7,000 a year!6) DON’T sign up with a new credit card with a 0% APR for the first 6 months.You probably receive a lot of junk mail enticing you to sign up with a new credit card with a 0% APR for the first 6 months before it jumps to 24% or even higher. Then 6 months later you would transfer your huge balance to another piece of plastic. Unfortunately, the biggest risk is they are simply giving you more credit to spend, and the number of cards and liability increases.Unless you are extremely disciplined, this doesn’t really work as you end up bigger and deeper in the hole! Reducing the number of credit cards is the goal.7) DON’T get a consolidated bank loan to pay off all your debt.Logically, a 12% bank loan APR is less than 24% APR on a credit card. It sounds like good advice, because you can’t spend what you don’t have. You will be asked to have all your cards cut up (except maybe one with a small credit limit) and you have reduced the number of credit cards.However, your bank may not accept your loan application if they have no collateral, or if your Debt to Service ratio is too high. Often, a co-signer is often required. These types of loans are not like regular loans for a car or house where they can repossess it should you default on your payments.But if you do choose this method and default on this loan, either your co-signer will end up footing the bill (and really getting them angry!) or losing your assets assuming you own one. The ultimate downfall is you might end up in bankruptcy. It’s better to upset one creditor than to lose your entire home.Research, educate, get creative, and get out of credit card debt now!

Grappling With the Multiplicity of Losses In Grief

“Grief seems to create losses within us that reach beyond our awareness – we feel as if we’re missing something that was invisible and unknown to us while we had it, but now painfully gone.”
- Bren√© Brown, Rising StrongBRAKES fully locked, life finds us spinning dangerously out of control through a hairpin bend of grief. At its simplest it’s just the one massive loss – a partner, a child, a parent, a family member, a marriage, a career – lost, gone. There are so many kinds of loss. And within every loss there are many splinters of loss that ripple outward, and all of these losses are grief-worthy of the own right, let alone the actual loss itself.What I want to explore here is twofold: 1) the fact that grief, though its source seems obvious, can be a hard thing to pinpoint; and hence, 2) recovery from grief, with all good intent, can seem like trying to escape from a confounding labyrinth.Grief rattles not only our conscious reality of life, it pulverises our identities. We doubt who we were and we’re not sure we like who we’ve now come to be.In our losses it’s not just us who’s affected, it’s those who rely on us – those who depend on us – who are affected. We get anxious about how others are affected, and depressed because we cannot help them as we’d like to be able to. In our losses, we have to get used to the end of something we never actually contemplated would end. It’s only in our losses that we find our identities were fused to something that could be, and now is, lost. We may feel confused about, disappointed with, or angry at God, or all of the above. Not only is our world shaken, so too is our faith. Our losses bring to an end hopes that would not have appeared to be under threat, but now are; some of which are now gone. And loss brings us to a point where life – the life that was – can no longer be – as it was. It’s now forever redefined. That alone can bring incredible heartache.There is a presence in the loss that hardly ever seemed real in real life, as it was, but which now feels untenably cogent – a loss of something that never was but felt like it was. And the maddening thing is it probably was.Something I’ve tended to ask all those I counsel through grief is to make a list of losses, and to work on such a list until they feel it’s complete. It makes the losses more tangible. Just knowing all the varied losses and the areas of life that have been affected helps because we’re able to compartmentalise grief better over the longer haul. This is good forwards work when we’re feeling up to it.Nobody wants to be forever defined by grief. Everyone wants to move through and out of it. If we’re diligent in identifying what losses we’ve suffered we’re more readily able to process each loss with time.On the other side of grief love shelters the grief of loss, and newfound compassion swells life exponentially.God compensates our journey through grief through our gradual acquisition of empathy, warmth, and genuineness.Grief’s best compensation is a life we never had before; a life we never dreamt we might create. Now we can.Grief seems like hell at the time, but God brings heaven out of it.¬© 2015 S. J. Wickham.