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Effective Weight Loss Treatment Plan

When you are trying to lose weight, it seems like everywhere you look someone is advertising the latest, greatest fat reducing discovery. But how do we know which ones are effective? Which ones are safe? Taking any medication for weight loss can be tricky or even dangerous if we don’t educate ourselves about how they will work in the body. While many medications that were once prescription-only now have an over the counter (OTC) version, that doesn’t necessarily mean they are right for everyone. Even OTC brands can be dangerous if misused. To help protect yourself, you should always seek the advice of a physician before trying any diet or weight loss plan.

What are weight loss drugs?

What are weight loss drugs

Prescription weight loss pills (diet pills) are typically prescribed for individuals who need additional help to shed unwanted pounds. The medications approved by the FDA for obesity are intended for patients with a BMI of 30 or above or of 27 or above with a weight-related risk behavior such as diabetes, high blood pressure or high cholesterol. Currently, half the US population is considered overweight with at least 30% of those individuals diagnosed as obese. With such a staggering number, there’s no wonder why diet pills are one of the fastest growing markets in America.

Although there are several different types of weight loss pills, two of the most commonly used are anorexiants and non-stimulants. Anorexiants have been around since the 1950s with the FDA approval of phentermine. Diet pills of this kind work by stimulating the hypothalamus gland and affecting certain neurotransmitters to decrease the appetite. This manipulation tricks the body into thinking it is not hungry, thereby reducing hunger pangs. Some of the most popular anorexiants include Belviq, Contrave, and Phentride as well as many others.

While anorexiants are often avoided due to the dangers associated with stimulants, other non-stimulant medications have come to the forefront of weight loss. Like stimulant weight loss medications, non-stimulant varieties can help individuals lose weight. Non-stimulant drugs inhibit the bodies ability to absorb fats from foods as we consume them. These medications will help patients thin down; however, without changes in the way we consume food or adhering to a routine exercise plan, any weight loss is often gained once taken off the medication. One of the most popular non-stimulant weight loss medications is Xenical.

How to keep the weight off

As any physician will tell you, the key to a healthy, slimmer body is lifestyle changes. While most will agree that it is hard to change our habits and begin exercising when we are burdened down with so much extra weight, it is a necessary part of any diet. Diet pills are not something that should be taken for long periods of time. In fact, most doctors will limit their use for no more than twelve weeks, depending on which medication has been prescribed.

Prescription diet pills are intended to jump-start weight loss. Long term use, especially stimulant varieties, can be habit forming if not used correctly. Addiction to these medications can cause other health conditions such as liver or heart disease and even death.

Where to seek treatment

weight loss doctor market street

If you live in the San Francisco area and are overweight or obese and would like to seek professional help, contact EZCare Clinic today. Our experienced staff of doctors and therapists can help you design an effective weight-loss plan. Practitioners will complete a physical and determine if any additional healthcare concerns should be addressed before beginning a diet. If appropriate, a medication will be prescribed with your specific health and goals in mind. Therapists are also available that can work with patients to determine who may have a mental condition such as depression that exacerbates the unhealthy weight gain. At EZCare Clinic, we believe in treating the whole person, not just the disease.

Lastly, the clinic has an exercise program that patients can participate in that will help them continue losing weight and feel good about themselves once again. The caring and confidential staff are available to encourage and motivate our patients throughout every step of the process.

The clinic is open Monday through Sunday from 11 am to 7 pm to ensure that patients have access to our services when other practices are closed. Though we encourage appointments, walk-ins are always welcome. You can schedule an appointment online, or give us a call at (415) 966-0848.

Weight management is not just something we should look at in individuals who are overweight; it is a lifestyle that promotes good health and a positive self-image. Don’t let excess weight define who you are, take control today, and enjoy a healthier life.

 


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Anxiety and Nervousness

Everyone feels anxious and nervous to some degree throughout their life. While fear and anxiety can be strong emotions to deal with, they are also helpful in that they warn us to danger or threats and help keep us safe while adapting to a new environment. When fear or anxiety becomes so extreme that it causes an overwhelming amount of distress, or impairs one’s ability to function at work, in school or disrupts our relationships, an anxiety disorder may be the underlying cause. Anxiety disorders are an umbrella term used to describe several different conditions in which fear and anxiety are common factors. While it is not fully understood what causes some individuals to have an anxiety disorder, most mental health providers believe that there are multiple risk factors associated with their development including life experiences, environmental factors, genetic markers and neurobiological conditions.

Types of anxiety disorders

Anxiety disorders types

Depending on who you are asking, there are five different anxiety disorders, but several subcategories can be distinguished as well.

5 Anxiety disorder types

Although each disease has unique characteristics, they can also have overlapping symptoms such as

Anxiety Symptoms

  • Panic, fear, and uneasiness
  • Sleep problems
  • Not being able to stay calm
  • Cold, sweaty, numb or tingling hands or feet
  • Shortness of breath
  • Heart palpitations
  • Dry mouth
  • Nausea
  • Tense muscles
  • Dizziness

Individuals who are concerned about symptoms can take an online self-assessment quiz to determine their extent. While this quiz isn’t a diagnosis, it can help individuals decide if they need to consult a medical practitioner.

During an examination, your doctor will complete medical assessment and review the history as well as conducting tests to rule out any illness that might be causing the symptoms. Unfortunately, there are no lab tests that can identify or diagnosis anxiety disorders.

Anxiety Treatment

Treatment for anxiety disorders can include medications, coping techniques, and therapy. While there is often a stigma attached to counseling or therapy, neither should be discounted. Therapy can offer patients a safe space to talk about their anxiety and issues that may be contributing factors. Also, the counselor can help patients pinpoint their fears and focus treatment. While discussing the things that can be the source of anxiety is very helpful, patients often need medications to aid them in controlling all the physical effects that anxiety can produce.  

There are three different classifications of medications that can be used to treat anxiety, antidepressants, benzodiazepines, and Buspirone. Buspirone is an antianxiety medication that can be effective for generalized anxiety disorder but is used much less frequently than other medicines.

Antidepressants are often the first line of treatment for patients that have been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. Of these antidepressants, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as Prozac, Zoloft, and Lexapro are often the first choice. Despite what many may think, antidepressants aren’t addictive in the traditional sense and are very useful, although it can take several weeks to feel the effects entirely.

Benzodiazepines affect the chemical messengers that work in the brain’s fear response system. They are used as quick relief from the symptoms associated with anxiety. Because they act immediately, they are typically prescribed during the first few weeks of treatment while waiting for an antidepressant to take effect. Although benzodiazepines are considered reasonably safe, they are usually prescribed for a relatively short amount of time because the body can become accustomed to how they feel, making them less effective over time.

Side effects of anxiety medication

Side effects of Anxiety medications

While the effects of these drugs can vary from product to product, there are a few that seem to be shared among most, nausea, headache, and dizziness. Some of the most prescribed medications can result in weakness, loss of appetite, dry mouth, excessive sweating, and nervousness or weight gain and occasional difficulties with sexual function. Benzodiazepines, used for immediate relief, are known to cause personality changes in some individuals, including aggressiveness and violent behavior as well as suicidal thoughts. Although serotonin reuptake inhibitors can cause any number of these symptoms, they typically produce the least amount of side effects when compared to other antidepressants and anxiety medications.   

Anxiety Treatment at EZCare Clinic in San Francisco

Although any medication prescribed for anxiety can cause side effects that range from mild to severe, not getting treatment for such a life-altering condition can be much worse. The caring staff at EZCare Clinic is trained to help patients work through their disease with the least invasive methods possible. While no treatment is perfect, suffering from the effects of an anxiety disorder is unnecessary. Our goal is to design a treatment program that is safe and effective.

The clinic is open every day, including weekends from 11 am to 7 pm. Walk-ins are accepted, however, you can make an appointment online or give us a call at (415) 966-0848.


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Ritalin Medication for ADHD Treatment

Patients who have been diagnosed with ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) have several medications available to them to treat their symptoms. Ritalin is one of them. It is a slow-releasing form of methylphenidate, a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant. Developed in 1944 and approved by the FDA in 1955, methylphenidate is one of the oldest medications used to treat ADHD. Typically marketed under the name Concerta, Daytrana or Methylin methylphenidate is an effective treatment option. While Ritalin is available in tablet form and must be taken three times a day, Concerta is a specially formulated capsule that slowly releases its ingredients over time so that the patient doesn’t have to re-administer the medication throughout the day.

Like all methylphenidate prescriptions, Ritalin works by affecting chemicals in the brain and nerves that contribute to hyperactivity and impulse control. First, it blocks the reuptake of dopamine and norepinephrine (neurotransmitters) at the synapses. Because of this Ritalin behaves like other stimulants. Secondly, this medication promotes the release of more dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain. Because of the two pathways working together, the increased amount of neurotransmitters are present at levels that improve the symptoms of ADHD but not high enough to induce the euphoria associated with amphetamines and opiates. This means that even though Ritalin is a stimulant that can be addictive when abused, the risk of developing an addition is low when it is taken correctly.

How to take Ritalin

how to take ritalin

 

Ritalin is an extended-release medication that is used to treat ADHD in patients age 6 and older. This medication should be taken in the morning with or without food to prevent disrupting the sleep cycle. Be sure to follow the directions on the label. Do not crush, chew, or break an extended-release tablet or capsule. Doing so may cause too much of the drug to be released at one time, an action that is potentially fatal.

While using Ritalin, routine visits to your physician are necessary to check your progress. As with any medication, consult your surgeon several weeks prior to the procedure. Because of the effects of stimulants on the body, you may need to suspend use.

All medications have the potential to cause unwanted side effects. Some of the more common that can be seen with Ritalin are:

Ritalin side effects:

  • Mood changes
  • Nervousness or irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Loss of appetite or weight
  • Excessive sweating
  • Nausea
  • Stomach pain
  • Headache

While this is not a complete list of possible side effects, some patients may experience others. Signs of a severe allergic reaction such as swelling of the face, tongue or throat, hives, or itching may occur and should be treated by an emergency facility.

How to get prescribed Ritalin?

In San Francisco, patients should seek the advice of a qualified healthcare professional. During your examination, your provider will review your medical history and discuss your symptoms and how they affect your day to day life. Because other conditions can have some of the same symptoms as that of ADHD, your doctor will need to determine if those conditions are present as well. Typically, patients are asked to rate their symptoms as well as a loved one. Once the doctor reviews all of the information, a determination of diagnosis is given. If appropriate, your doctor will prescribe Ritalin or one of the other medications available for ADHD, such as Adderall.

Often, ADHD doctors will also suggest that patients seek the help of a qualified therapist who can offer beneficial coping techniques as well as an outlet for the emotions that can accompany this disorder. Though many patients are hesitant to see a counselor, most doctors find that a combination of pharmaceutical treatment and therapy result in better outcomes than just one treatment alone. It is not uncommon for patients who have ADHD also to have an anxiety disorder or suffer from depression as well. Treating the whole patient will help to alleviate the emotional symptoms that can impede treatment.

Ritalin Treatment in San Francisco 

ADHD treatment with Ritalin in San Francisco

Individuals who live in the San Francisco area that are concerned with the symptoms of ADHD can find help at EZCare Clinic. Our staff is made up of doctors and therapists who are dedicated to working with you to find the best plan of treatment for your specific needs. Our doctors are trained to determine the subtle differences between ADHD and other health issues. If a diagnosis of ADHD is appropriate, they can work with you and the therapist to ensure all your needs are met.

We are open seven days a week from 11 am to 7 pm. Although appointments are appreciated, they are not necessary. Walk-ins are excepted. You can schedule an appointment online or call us at (415) 966-0848. Don’t wait for the symptoms of ADHD to ruin all that you’ve worked for, call EZCare Clinic today. We can help you feel normal again.


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