Thursday, November 15, 2012

It pays to lead a healthy lifestyle

In the name of God, Most Merciful, Most Compassionate; blessing and peace be upon Prophet Muhammad s.a.w.
"I have only created Jinns and Men, that they may serve Me." (Zariyat 51:56)
This article was written as I was sitting on a chair facing my 75 years old father who was in bed after performing a Green Light Laser Therapy to treat his enlarged prostate and stone condition in his bladder at a renowned private hospital in Melaka.
Alhamdulillah (Praise to Allah the Almighty), after spending some five hours in the operation theatre, he was brought to his ward and now, at about 3.00 a.m. on the 1st November, I had this opportunity to write this article as he was soundly asleep after performing his 'jamak’ (combined) maghrib (dusk) and isyak (late evening) prayers in bed.
Well, readers, I was in the dark about enlarged prostate, so I was thankful when a nurse at the urology clinic of the hospital provided me with a few pamphlets when my father and I turned up for our first appointment a week ago. That appointment was made after my father experienced difficulty when urinating.
What is an enlarged prostate? In medical terms it is known as Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), also known as enlarged prostate. Historically, this condition has been treated with medication or an invasive medication surgical procedure, Transurethral Resection of the Prostate (TURP).
Today we have the opportunity to choose an advanced, treatment option known as Green Light Laser Therapy. The prostate is a gland in the male genital-urinary tract. The main function of the prostate is to produce fluid that transports sperm during ejaculation. The prostate is located below the bladder and surrounds the urethra. The urethra is the tube that carries urine from the bladder through the penis. Another name for the urethra is the urinary channel. BPH is a non-cancerous (benign) enlargement of the prostate. Your prostate grew to normal size during your teenage years.
Usually, the prostate grows to the size of a walnut. The prostate may begin to grow again when a man reaches middle age. The reasons for this growth are not fully known. By the age of 80, 80 percent of men have BPH. BPH causes symptoms in many older men. An enlarged prostate presses on the urethra. The pressure can obstruct the flow of urine through the urethra.
Obstruction of the flow of urine can cause problems, including frequent urination, especially at night (nocturia) ,weak urine flow, sudden urge to urinate (urgency), trouble starting and stopping your urine stream (hesitation), inability to completely empty your bladder, pushing or straining to urinate and pain or burning during urination. Enlarge prostate is common among men of 50 years and above. Unhealthy life styles have a share in contributing to this illness.
I am thankful to Allah SWT for my father's speedy recovery, I am thankful to the specialists, doctors ,nurses and all staff of the hospital for their commitments. Experiences at the hospital has made me realized the importance of taking care of our health. It is costly to undertake medical treatment and it my father’s case the cost of Green Light Laser Therapy was a cool RM18,000! That amount was a burdensome but when shared equally amongst my eight brothers and sisters, it became a relief with each forking out less than RM3,000.
Perhaps it is timely for us to think about our medical insurance or having a special bank account for our medical expenses especially for uses during our 'veteran' and rainy days. It is good if siblings could agree to provide a fixed monthly contribution for that special fund to finance for medical needs of their parents or even themselves.
But as the old saying goes, ‘preventing is better than cure’, then it is advisable for us to lead a healthy life style and it pays to do so, so watch out the food you eat, exercise regularly and do not smoke. Smoky could lead to serious diseases such as lung cancer and cardiovascular disease and the treatment cost could burnt a very, very big hole in your pocket. Smoking too could lead to erectile dysfunction (ED). About 43% of men smoking are prevalence to ED. Men are advise on benefits to improve health including sexual heath because physical fitness improves overall blood circulation in the body, which is important to maintain vitality in men. It also helps to reduce stress and anxiety, which negatively affects desire, thus promoting optimal sexual well-being.
Physical fitness improves adrenal function leading to men having higher testosterone levels, which increases and the ability to perform It also increases energy levels levels leading to increase endurance and the ability to maintain and erection for a longer time. Furthermore, physical fitness leads to improved self-esteem, which helps to maintain a healthy body image and confidence level. Experts have drawn five tips to better health. They are diet modification, do not smoke or use tobacco, increase physical activity, regular health screenings and maintain a healthy weight (BMI between 20-25).
Regarding health, the Prophet (peace be upon him, s.a.w.) did mention it in a 'hadith' that read: "Take benefit of five before five: Your youth before your old age, your HEALTH before your sickness, your wealth before your poverty, your free time before you are preoccupied, and your life before your death." (Hadith narrated by Ibn Abbas and reported by Al Hakim) If we aim to keep ourselves in good health, in order that we can prolong our lives and worship to Allah, then we would be rewarded handsomely by Him. - ES

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