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Fainting

Fainting is the temporary loss of consciousness when the brain lacks oxygen, it may last for a short moment or for longer periods of time depending of the severity of oxygen deficiency. Fainting spells are usually preceded by the appearance of many kinds of warning signs, such as visual blurring which occur suddenly second before the actual event. Many other warning signs exist; some of the more prominent ones include sudden light-headedness, or spells of dizziness, sudden, and evident physical weakness, profuse and sudden sweating or rapid waves of nausea. A fainting spell normally does not last more than one to two minutes before the individual awakens. The actual reason for fainting is beneficial to the person as the action permits the body to increase the amount of blood reaching the brain-fainting can thus be considered an automatic action on the part of the body to a lack of oxygen-it is a corrective action. It is thus important to let the body to recover by lying down for sometime immediately after a fainting spell-a person who has just fainted must refrain from getting up suddenly after losing consciousness, to allow the body to recover by improving the rate of oxygen flow to the brain.

A low blood sugar level, in combination with a temporary circulatory imbalance within the body of the person is the actual reason behind the spells of fainting experienced by most individuals. Fainting is thus largely related to a low blood pressure which can overload the venous system within the body, disrupting oxygen transport. The circulatory system becomes sluggish and slows down gradually because if the person stands for long periods of time, and events like an over exposure to heat, being dehydrated and the presence of emotional stress can all cause the circulatory system to malfunction. Other related conditions are the sudden blackness that appears before the eyes, sudden dizziness and fainting that can occur when a person rises too quickly from a position of rest.

Whenever fainting spells occur, the possibility of conditions such as heart attacks and strokes or even internal bleeding must be suspected, it is therefore advisable to consult a doctor in such cases to preclude a medical emergency. The fainting spell will be related to problems such as loss of blood, heatstroke and heat exhaustion particularly if the person was over exposed to sunlight or to heat some time prior to the incident-even an injury involving the head may be responsible for the spell of fainting. Very low blood sugar levels may be responsible for fainting spells in individuals suffering from diabetes, diabetics in general can suffer this form of a fainting spell on a regular basis. Fainting in an n individual who uses insulin, is considered very serious and immediate medical attention must be given in order to restore the blood sugar level to a normal state. Medications for high blood pressure used in high doses will also lead to fainting spells in those individuals who use them.

The presence of sudden bouts of fear, and nervous conditions like anxiety and even sudden physical activity which changes the breathing patterns can all bring about spells of fainting, due to the improper oxygen exchange that can occur during the event because of the physical shock experienced by the person. As it is a protective response of the body to all manners of injury, fainting spells can occur from the shock of intense pain felt during an injury, and the first reaction of the body to physical trauma is usually the loss of consciousness. There may exist underlying reasons if fainting occurs in an individual again and again over a period of time, disorder such as anemia, where the red blood cell population is inadequate for the transport of oxygen to the brain can cause recurring fainting spells as the brain receives too little oxygen at most times.

Supplements and herbs

In any individual, fainting occurs because of a variety of problems having both internal and external causes; thus all supplementation must allow for individual needs and should be tailored to the particular physical attributes of the patient in question. Supplements of a multivitamin along with relevant minerals must be used for people who suffer from the effects of a deficient dietary regimen. Since fainting can also be caused by anemia leading to loss of iron-all individuals must be checked for this factor through the use of a hemoglobin test.

The following herbal remedies can be used as supplements.

If a person faints suddenly, a few drops of peppermint oil dripped on a handkerchief can be held to cover the nose-this will immediately revive them. Once the person regains consciousness and comes to, an herbal tea made using ginger or licorice can be given to stimulate circulation in the body. A useful herbal tea can be made using a combination of herbs for use when people faint. Mix two tbsp. each of herbs like the mint, the rosemary, the lavender and some vanilla bark. Let this herbal mixture steep for about twenty minutes in three cups of boiling wine vinegar till the herbal essences have had a chance to escape into the liquid. The mixture must then be strained, and sealed in a bottle. To revive people from recurring fainting spells, dip a ball of cotton into this mixture and hold the cotton under the person's nose whenever he or she faints. This method of reviving a patient can be continuously used for three weeks with people who suffer regular fainting spells. People suffering from fainting spells can also benefit from drinking an herbal tea made of basil; the tea can help revive people who have fainted.

Additional things you may do

Here are some alternative therapies you can try over a treatment period lasting three weeks at a stretch, drink a cup of mineral water to which 2 tbsp. of apple cider vinegar and 2 tbsp. of non-pasteurized honey has been added to prevent the occurrence of persistent fainting spells. To revive people who have suffered a fainting spell, use an onion which has been cut in half and place this under the person's nose. People can also be revived by holding a piece of cloth soaked in apple cider vinegar under the nose. To prevent the obstruction of airways when a person faints, lay the down person gently on a flat surface or with the body slightly on one side if some vomiting occurs as a result of the fainting. Loosen all clothing and carefully place the head of the person a little lower with respect to the body as to promote the circulation of blood into the brain. Pat the face gently to awaken the person and to get a response, call out the person's name gently near his or her ear. Do not splash cold water on the person's face and please do not shake the patient harshly. Make the person lie down for some more time even after he or she has revived and do this even after consciousness is regained, the person should lie down for an additional fifteen minutes to regain sufficient strength so he or she can walk. Immediately call for help, get a doctor if the patient does not response within two to three minutes after fainting or if you can feel the pulse is getting weaker as time passes while the person is still unconscious.

For kids

See age-appropriate dosages of herbal remedies

Children may complain of dizziness and physical weakness moments before the occurrence of a fainting episode, in addition they may have a feeling of numbness in the hands or the feet before fainting. The child's skin may feel very cold to the touch and he or she may rapidly turn pale before a fainting spell-watch out for these symptoms in a child. Children may feel very tired and could develop a headache following revival from a fainting spell.

Children can be said to have experienced an episode of fainting whenever a child loses consciousness for any of the reasons that are mentioned above, provided they regain consciousness and recover completely within fifteen minutes from the time of losing consciousness. The use of smelling salts will awaken a child who has fainted easily enough in the vast majority of cases. Children become immediately aware of their surroundings and orient themselves much better upon awakening than do adults.

Circulation within the body can be improved in children who have just recovered from their fainting episode if they are given a single dose of an herbal tea made from ginger or licorice - this tea refreshes them upon awakening.

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