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Sometimes trying to do the right thing can be difficult, especially when it comes to taking care of your health. Drinking too much coffee, smoking, and not getting sufficient rest are just a few of the unhealthy things people do.

The list doesn’t end there. Here are five things many people do that they might not realize could be potentially bad for their bodies.

Mouth Piercings Can Be Bad for Dental Health

Even though piercing your lip or tongue can look cool, oral piercings may lead to chipped teeth, increased saliva, and tooth decay, which may ultimately lead to tooth loss. However, that’s not all.

Oral piercings may cause gum deformities that surgery might not be able to repair. They also increase the risk of oral infection by acting as a breeding ground for bacteria, interfere with chewing and speech, and cause nerve damage that may lead to a numb tongue or loss of taste.

While some of these issues may be temporary, such as a swollen tongue that could potentially block your airway. Be sure to speak with a health care professional before undertaking any potentially risky procedure.

Not all Tattoos are Created Equal

Here’s the good news: the FDA regulates the inks in tattoos. To protect yourself, be sure to ask about the ingredients in the ink. While allergic reactions are uncommon, nickel and mercury may cause problems for some people.

Now for the bad news: cities and counties regulate tattooing. Therefore, there is no national standardized certification process for tattoo artists or the tattoo parlors where they work. Additionally, whenever you pierce your skin with a needle, you risk infections like staph and hepatitis. The cleanliness of the shop and the tools is vital to your health. Needles should always be new. Ink should be in single-use pots. The tattoo artist should always wear gloves.

Finally, a new tattoo trend you’ll want to avoid is sunburn tattoos. Sunburn tattoos use sunblock to create a design on your skin. You then purposely become sunburned. Wash off the sunblock and viola, you have a temporary tattoo that in the future could lead to premature skin aging and even skin cancer.

Too Many People Don’t Get Enough Exercise

Because of the work we do as farmer, we might thing we’re getting sufficient weekly exercise. But the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently reported that 80 percent of all American adults don’t get the recommended amount of exercise, no matter what kind of work they do.

Adults need a minimum of 2.5 hours of moderate aerobic exercise weekly. Activity that is more vigorous requires only 1.25 hours per week. Additionally, the CDC strongly recommends muscle-strengthening activities at least twice a week.

Right now, less than 25 percent of the population gets the recommended amount of weekly exercise. This lack of activity increases your risk of developing heart disease and your chances of gaining weight.

Not Enough Regular Physical Checkups

“If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.” That might be how the saying goes but when it comes to human beings, just because you feel healthy, doesn’t mean you should ignore routine checkups.

Depending on your age, gender, and medical history, speak with your doctor about these health exams:

• Annual dental, vision, and hearing exams
• Annual physical checkups to assess blood pressure, cholesterol level, weight, eating habits, exercise level, and tobacco, drug, and alcohol use
• Health risk screenings for diseases such as diabetes and cancer
• Colonoscopy (age 50 and over unless there is a family history)
• Prostate exam (for men age 50 and over unless there is a family history)
• Abdominal exam (for male smokers over 65)
• Pap smear (annual for women)
• Breast exam (self-administered monthly) and annual mammogram (for women over 40)
• Bone density test (for women over 65)

Don’t put off health screenings. Too many people forgo checkups when they feel healthy, only to find out later that they could have prevented an unseen ailment.

Being Too Clean May Have its Drawbacks

Lest you be afraid that you might smell, showering daily is outdated. There are several reasons:

First, showering dries out skin and hair. If you want to retain the natural oils in your skin and hair, limit bathing to twice (maybe three times) a week and avoid very-hot water and harsh soaps. Instead, choose a mild soap that moisturizes your skin as it cleans, and be sure to use a conditioner on your hair. After you shower, don’t dry off frantically. Blot your skin dry and then add a lotion to retain the natural moisture.

Next, researchers suggest that your skin contains good germs that you don’t want to wash away. Consuming foods with good bacteria (probiotics) can help to treat, even prevent, certain skins problems such as eczema.

Finally, if you do vigorously work out or encounter people on a regular basis, consider a sponge bath for just the smelly parts. It’s never good to overlook your personal hygiene.

It’s important to take care of yourself. It’s even more important to be sure that the things you do are the best way to keep your body healthy. Take care of your body and your body will take care of you.

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Planning For ‘Hygge’ This Winter On Your Farm

The first cool breeze of fall is here, and that means everything’s coming up hygge. Hygge (pronounced ‘hyur-guh’) always makes a comeback as fall and winter approach. This Danish word loosely translates to ‘coziness’ or ‘wellness,’ and is particularly important during dark and dreary winter months.

Winter is quickly approaching, and that means it’s high time to add some hygge to your homestead. Use these fun suggestions to add a little fun, warmth, and self-care to your homestead.

A Roaring Fire

Nothing says ‘cozy’ more than a fire. Ideally you’ve been chopping firewood since the spring months, but if you’re behind, never fear. See if you can barter with neighbors to build your firewood stores. You can always purchase firewood, too.

Thick Blankets

There’s nothing quite like cozying up under a fluffy blanket with a good book. Knit or crochet your own homemade blankets for ultimate hygge. Bonus points if you make the blanket from homestead fleece!

Burn Candles

Winter is the perfect time to turn down the lights and break out the candles. If you raise bees, whip that leftover beeswax into soothing homemade beeswax candles. Adorn them with dried herbs for a delicate scent and added comfort.

Bake!

Nothing is more comforting than a big batch of homemade cookies. Use eggs, milk, or honey from the homestead to bake delectable treats to keep you warm all winter. Tasty baked goods from the homestead also make fantastic gifts!

Homestead Potluck Parties

Hygge isn’t just about holing up in your house under a blanket. It’s about fostering a sense of community, too. Invite a few other homesteaders to a homesteading potluck party. Ask everyone to bring a food, game, or self-care item made with homestead materials. You’ll learn a few things and have a great time trading with each other!

The Bottom Line

Who says winter has to be dreary? Arm yourself with coziness to enjoy life on the homestead, no matter the weather.


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