|Home | Issues | The Daily Star Home | Volume 4, Issue 19, Tuesday May 15, 2007|
Check It Out
While fashion does repeat itself, it is still progressive. Hence buttons have given way to zippers, pedalled machines have been driven out by electrical ones and to save millions of animals around the world, leather has been replaced by what is fondly known as “pleather”. Hence it is no surprise that with compactness, comfort and (subconsciously) fashion in mind, one genius came up with contact lens.
Apparently they did an estimate and discovered that one hundred and twenty five million, that is two percent of the world's population, wears contacts. Certain countries seem to claim a larger portion of this count than others. But the thread of commonality, wherever used, generally remains the same: why put something on top of your eyes when you can put them in it without anyone ever knowing?
Debates on who deserves the honoured title of inventor still remains obscure to a certain extent. Even more pressing is the debate about whether they truly match up to the effectiveness of spectacles or whether they are one of technology's many evils. Some doctors seem to swear by them, some prescribe as seen fit and others simply refuse to utter those two dreaded words. But in the end it really doesn't matter who truly invented them or if your doctor likes them or not. If someone wants to get rid of spectacles, now there is a way and without a doubt millions are clambering to use it.
So what really makes contacts so attractive to wearers? The obvious is its size and ability to be near invisible. After all it's easy to carry, fairly easy to wear (that is if you like sticking something in your eye), and obviously it gives the wearer a chance to rectify a problem without actually admitting to it.
But after all the medical mumbo-jumbo, contacts have now become more of a fashion statement where many people who have perfectly fine eyes are using them to bring about a different look. How? The answer is simple: coloured contacts. Such is their prevalence that coloured contacts have gone into the next level with the introduction of what are fondly known as “Wacky Contacts”. Anyone who has seen Sharon Stone's Diabolique knows that to scare the living daylights out of his wife, Chazz Palminteri wears a pair of white contacts to make his eyes look pupil-less. Setting aside the wackier part, coloured contacts are now used to make a huge fashion statement. Want a pair of smoky eyes? Settle on grey ones. For that dark exotic look pick the chocolate brown ones.
Unfortunately for us Asians, especially us Bangladeshis, as much as we'd like to believe that we too can carry off Ash's green gazers or Rani's lilting light browns, the truth is simple: No, we can't. Most Bangladeshis simply don't have the right colouring for light eyes and generally look tacky in anything that is a shade lighter than dark brown. And if there's anything tackier than wearing the wrong coloured lens, it's wearing a different coloured lens to match a different outfits everyday. Come on ladies and gentlemen (too), you should know better. Matching contacts don't make you look glam, they simply make you look gaudy and trying-too-hard!
So for all you contact-crazy cravers out there, if you need them for medical reasons make sure to talk it over very well with your eye doctor before you drop all that moola. And if you're hell bent on making a fashion statement please settle for black, dark brown or hazel at best. After all the whole point is to dazzle without looking diabolique!
The festivities of Noboborsho are over and we should now brace ourselves for the long summer heat. The early summer tends to dehydrate our bodies, especially those who are involved in outdoor work. Dehydration causes fatigue and other related problems. It is advisable to maintain the required fluid level for the normal functioning of our bodies. We should increase the intake of fluids, particularly fresh limewater, green coconut water, and fresh juices from seasonal fruits. In the main meal, we can try out some cold soups and fresh salads prepared from seasonal fruits and vegetables. These will prove quite bracing.
Chilled Salad Soup
Tomato, Melon and Mint Salad
Orange and Chinese Cabbage Salad
People most at risk of heat illnesses are the elderly, those with high blood pressure and those who work or exercise in high temperatures. A good option this summer is to exercise indoors. If you happen to adore outdoor activities and exercise, a good option for you would be to do early in the morning or after 5pm when temperatures are cooler. You should also take frequent breaks fluids in abundance.
One needs to take special care exercising in this heat and humidity because heat illnesses can be life threatening. Medical emergencies can be prevented if you follow some basic guidelines.
There are three major types of heat illnesses:
If you are affected by heat cramp, you should stop exercising immediately and quietly sit in a shady or cool place and drink lots of liquids. Even if the cramp subsides soon, you should not resume the exercise. If the cramp doesn't subside within an hour, you should seek medical help.
Heat exhaustion happens when one is exposed to heat for a prolonged period of time. The body may become overwhelmed by heat when its mechanism of sweating to keep cool breaks down. Symptoms of heat exhaustion include nausea, tiredness, weakness, dizziness, fainting, headache, pale and moist skin, weak pulse, and disorientation. If heat exhaustion is untreated, it may lead to heat stroke.
If you are affected by heat exhaustion, you should avail lots of rest and drink cool water, juice or beverages. A light shower would also be helpful.
Heat stroke, unlike heat exhaustion, strikes suddenly and with little warning. When the body's cooling system fails, the body's temperature rises quickly. Infants and the elderly may fall victim to heat strokes. Signs of heat stroke include very high body temperature, hot, dry skin, lack of sweating, fast pulse, dizziness, hot and red dry skin, confusion, and possible loss of consciousness. Heat strokes occur when the body becomes unable to control its temperature and the sweating mechanism.
Body temperatures may rise to 106°F or higher within 10-15 minutes. Heat strokes are serious and may lead to death and even permanent disability.
Patients of heat stroke need to have their temperature reduced quickly, often with ice packs, and must also be given IV fluids for rehydration; they must be taken to the hospital as quickly as possible and may have to stay in the hospital for observation since many different body organs can fail in heat strokes.
There are some immediate first aid measures you can take while waiting for help to arrive. Get the person indoors and remove clothing and gently apply cool water to the skin. Put ice packs on the armpit and groin areas and fan the person. Immersing a victim into a bathtub of cold water is a recognised method of cooling. Bed rest is generally advised and the body temperature may fluctuate abnormally for weeks after a heat stroke.
Taking all the preventives, summer should offer one lots of fun in the sunshine. Be careful about yourself and your kids and summer is all for you to enjoy!!
By Nazia Atique
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