Archives for November 2010

TSA New Screening—My Opinion

We flew home from Maui on Nov. 21st, (a 45th Wedding Anniversary trip) and there was no scanner in the departing airport. Many airports will not have these available for up to one year–so it is back to the PAT-DOWN. My two replaced knees always set off the metal detector, sooo I was introduced to the “new” body pat/rub-down. Wow, in 2 weeks, since we left Denver, what a difference. The pat-down was definitely more aggressive and would make anyone a little uncomfortable when the hands rolled and poked several times over places you would not expect to be touched. The TSA screener, in this case, was very nice and only doing her job, but we have seen ones that have tried to intimidate and some who were verbally aggressive. Why does it seem that it is now only the “older” generation who have things such as knee, hip & shoulder replacements, pacemakers and surgically implanted devices that contain metal or ones that have medical appartus attached to the outside of the body to collect waste; are the ones getting the complete “works’.  Also those in wheel chairs or those with other physical issues (not necessary seen) are asked to lift legs, arms or worse yet, their buttocks to be checked, when it is physically impossible for them to do so? Dah–Wheel-chair. If it is politically incorrect to profile those who “may” be a threat, but those with these problems are the majority checked–just how is that going to be beneficial to our security? It seems that “random” checks are not being done as often for the fear of profiling.

My husband has a pacemaker and cannot go through the metal detector but goes through the scanner, if it is available. Some airports don’t allow those with pacemakers to go through the scanner, so it is back to the pat down, since the metal detector is the primary screening device. We must allow ourselves 1 hr. extra to do all of this and make it to our concourse when departing from DIA. As we are going through all of this we are watching people who look like they might or should be checked, but they are run right through as they have no metal in or on them and no-one wants to look like they are “profiling.”

We either stop traveling by air, which is our only practical method, or we subject ourselves to radiation or humiliation. Another option is to just not travel, which means not seeing family or taking those trips you have dreamed about all of the years you have worked.

We watch people that are using canes or walkers who are asked to put them aside to walk through the metal detector. We watched one lady almost fall when her cane was taken away. My 89 yr. old mother, who has hip and knee replacements, went through the pat down and then all of the contents of her carefully packed carry on dumped out and left for her to repack, as there was nothing unusual in it. She called us later almost in tears. That was when she was 86. She is in a Nursing Home now, so will no longer have to endure the “new” procedures. How humiliating for those elderly seniors. My husband’s C-Pap is completely handled by gloved TSA people who have had their gloves on everyone else’s things & doing body searches. I asked one TSA if they changed gloves–he said, “No, they are for OUR (meaning the TSA people) protection.”

We also saw a lovely lady with darling twin girls (about 4 months old) having to remove them both from a double stroller, fold up all of the things necessary to take for young babies and then be asked by the TSA screener to remove the bottles out of the babys’ mouths and hand them to a “gloved” TSA fellow who handled the bottles and then opened each bottle and stuck a dip stick of sorts into each bottle and then handed it back to the mother. Now the mother was left with handled, contaminated bottles to feed her babies and she was probably late to her concourse to get on her plane. I was appalled at the insensitivity! This was BEFORE the new screening rules were in effect. 

These types of situations are where common sense should be employed. If you are looking for a particular type of flier, then profile! Most of us would never mind being pulled as a random check every now and then, but to have to go through this every time you wish to fly because you are in a wheel chair, have a baby stroller or have surgical implants it is just plain ridiculous. How safe does this make us feel?

I am not pointing fingers at the TSA employees (although some would deserve a little finger pointing) but more at the entire system. When suitcases are not scanned or screened, any person can board a plane and use a cell phone to trigger something inside of their suitcase. Also a “real” pat-down to find hidden objects requires MUCH more than can ever be done in an airport. Flying has become difficullt enough, do we need to be subjected to all of this before we even board the airplane. From now on, I am making sure the screener has on fresh gloves.

The screeners are forced to employ these methods to keep their jobs.

Let’s bring back some respect for human dignity! 

Holiday Recipes

CRANBERRY ORANGE JELLED SALAD

Fits into a 9 inch Jel-Ring or in a rectangular pan.

3–3 oz Pkgs. Orange Gelatin
3 cups boiling water to dissolve jello
Add 1 cup of 7 Up, Gingerale or water.
Add 1 cup orange-cranberry relish. Mix well and pour into lightly greased mold.  Refrigerate overnight.  Unmold onto plate and fill center with whipped topping. If using pan, spread whipped topping over top of molded jello.

Orange Cranberry Relish   (great served in bowl by itself)
*This was my kids favorite made either way.

1 pkg.of fresh whole cranberries
2 medium oranges with skins (wash well)
Cut oranges into small pieces  into a blender (you do not have to add all the skin if you do not wish to)
Add cranberries to blender–blend together with 1 cup suger. Let set in refrigerator for several hours.

10 Quick Health Tips

10  QUICK HEALTH/MEDICAL TIPS

Leg Cramps
Take Calcium at night, especially if you suffer leg cramps during the night. Add potassium and magnesium with the Calcium.  I also take Quinine by adding about 1/3 glass of Tonic water to my juice in the morning.  If I forget to do these things, I can pretty much be assured of having leg cramps during the night.

UPDATED for LEG CRAMPS—Soap in the bed.  And YES it really works!

 Antibiotic Side Effects
It is a good idea to take probiotics (acidophilus) while taking antibiotics.  Antibiotics do not discriminate good bacteria from bad bacteria.  They just kill all bacteria.  You may end up with severe diarrhea, a yeast infection or thrush if your body reacts to the antibiotic. 

Upset Stomach from Taking Medication
If I must take meds at night either at home or in the hospital, I have found that taking a few bites of a banana will keep the stomach calm.

Bee & Insect Stings
I use a paste of baking soda mixed with water and apply to area.  It should stop the hurt.  My Grandson thought it was pretty neat.  Small Cuts

Skin Cuts
I love “New Skin” or “Skin Shield” (liquid bandage).
 Once the bleeding stops, I apply Liquid Bandage over the cut area.  It stings for a second, but it will heal quicker than traditional methods.  I carry a bottle with us on all trips.  It is great for children’s cuts as they do not have a bandage to pull off.  It MUST be applied by an adult and should not be left where children can reach it.  I have used it on my grandkids for small cuts. It evenstays water–proof for awhile.

 Bloody Nose
Sometimes when the bleeding becomes heavy—using a Tampax in the nasal passage will help collect the blood until it stops.  (Probably not something you want to do in public, but is useful).

 Any Bleeding
Maxi pads are very absorbant and can be used for profuse bleeding until the person gets medical help.  Children, particularily teens, aren’t crazy about this idea, but it is better than a wad of kleenex at absorbing blood.

Sunburn
For years I have used a wash cloth that has been soaked in vinegar to pull the heat from the sunburn—works well. 

Warding off Colds or Flu viruses
Use a SALINE nasal spray daily.  It helps clean the nasal passages of bacteria that might collect in the nose and grow.  It washes dirt and bacteria from the nose, which is where colds start.  Both my husband and I use nasal spray just prior to boarding an airplane and if it is a long flight use it several times during the flgiht.  We have found that we rarely get colds or sinus infection after a flight since using this method as we had in the past. 

Colds & Flu
Grandma’s old rememdy–chicken soup–add a fresh clove of garlic for more medicinal effect.  If patient can eat the garlic, that is even better.

The Greatest Ice Pack

My Favorite websites for checking out Diseases, Conditions and Medications are:

 http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/   &  www.mayoclinic.com