The causes, signs, and symptoms of having foot drop. This article is about my personal experience dealing with foot drop.
Through the years, I have witnessed a few physicians determine the possibility of cancer by using the sense of smell. Cancerous moles exude an olfactory protein that non-cancerous moles do not.
Injuring part of the hand can cause long-term pain if not treated correctly in the initial stages. Learn how a mere pinky injury affected my life, and what I did about it.
Your doctor may not tell you everything about what to expect during treatment for breast cancer. I learned the hard way.
Skin that bruises easily can be caused by a number of factors, including some medications. Here are some self-help ideas to help improve skin that is thin, easily bruised, or torn.
Microcalcifications are common mammogram findings. Some are determined to be suspicious, and a biopsy may be recommended. Learn from my experience after microcalcifications appeared on my mammogram.
Do you plan to get this vaccination? How long should you wait? What might happen if you don't get it? What are the risks of the vaccine, and is it worth the trouble? Learn all about it here!
How can you support a loved one through their grieving process? As people grieve, they need the assurance and support of those closest to them.
Some of us do not feel comfortable hearing the cracking and popping that occur when being adjusted by a regular chiropractor. Alternative chiropractic services offer a much gentler technique.
Avoid tossing and turning (and prevent cricks in the neck!) by using proper pillow placement to align the spine and muscles for optimal relaxation.
Heel pain can have many causes. The most common cause is plantar fasciitis, which can be related to heel spurs and policeman's heel.
Gallbladder disease can mimic other conditions, such as IBS and food intolerances, making it difficult to pinpoint the problem.
The appendix is often thought of as a useless organ, but it may be helpful. In appendicitis, the appendix becomes inflamed and swollen and may rupture.
Psoriatic arthritis is an autoimmune disease coupled with psoriasis. Causes treatments are discussed in full. This article also includes diet guidelines to alleviate the symptoms.
Tips for living with dizziness and inner ear disorders. These are the techniques I use to reduce my symptoms and get on with my life.
Many people fear losing their hair when going on Accutane (isotretinoin) for their acne. I lost 70% of my thick, long hair from this drug and want to share the facts and raise awareness.
We know that type 2 diabetes can be caused by lifestyle factors, but it can also have genetic underpinnings. Learn how to control your blood sugar through diet and exercise.
Suffering from eczema? There are many so-called 'cures' out there, but Silcock's Base stands out from the crowd. It' s cheap, soothes the skin, and gets rid of eczema or dermatitis.
Millions of people are affected by eczema. Understand what causes flare-ups, and learn how to maintain proper skin care.
Symptoms of glaucoma often do not show up until considerable visual loss has occurred. This is not the case for diabetics, however. Someone with diabetes is at much higher risk for vision loss.
The parathyroid glands produce a hormone that controls the amount of calcium in the blood. A problem with the glands may cause hypercalcemia or hypocalcemia.
An article on ASMR, a term we coined to describe a pleasurable tingling sensation on the scalp that might travel to other parts of the body.
Do you know your partner's HIV/AIDS status? Do you know how to tell if they're at risk of having the Human Immunodeficiency Virus?
Shingles is a very serious and painful viral infection. If you have had chicken pox in the past, you have a higher risk. This article explains symptoms, typical treatments, and risk factors.
Here is the scoop about sleep studies. Learn about what to expect from a registered sleep technologist. Also, how you can participate in research studies and get paid!
People with phantosmia have an illusory sense of smell; they smell things that simply are not there. Read more about this uncommon smell disorder.
Working and having a successful career with fibromyalgia is possible! Learn how to save energy, be productive, and stay healthy in the workplace.
If you get up a lot during the night to urinate, this is a method to totally empty your bladder that actually worked for me! No drugs or catheters; just a few extra minutes.
The best inserts for plantar fasciitis replace the flat insoles in running shoes, casual footwear and dress shoes. Orthotics and special insoles help reduce heel pain by providing arch support, contributing to foot stability.
This is my extraordinary cure for fungal toenails. I had lived with the condition for more than ten years and it was getting worse, presenting on every toe nail.
A sleep disorder called catathrenia causes a person to moan in their sleep, which can make it difficult to sleep next to them. Yet, there are several methods which help to prevent this condition.
Toxoplasma gondii causes toxoplasmosis and may affect brain chemistry and our behavior. The pork tapeworm may enter our brain and cause serious health problems.
Living with lactose intolerance can be difficult. In this article, I identify foods and beverages that are safe to consume, as well as items that surprisingly contain milk.
A sleep study may help you stop snoring and start sleeping through the night. Here's what the experience of having a sleep study was like for me.
A biphasic sleep pattern is a type of segmented sleep that allows one to gain an extra 2 hours a day!! You could do a lot in 2 hours!!
A personal account of symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment for avascular necrosis of the femoral head (AVN). Also, a list of available resources in the UK.
Basic information on using an insulin pump for managing diabetes, and the differences between pump and manual insulin shot therapy.
This article discusses the staging of cancer and the various complications that arise during treatment.
Acne is a disorder of the pilosebaceous unit, which is made up of the sebaceous gland, hair, and hair follicle. Today, almost all types of acne and acne scars are treatable if correctly recognized.
The symptoms of thyroid malfunction can easily be mistaken for other conditions such as allergies, menopause, and depression. It is important to insist on a blood test to determine whether this is the cause of your problems as the thyroid gland plays such a huge part in many bodily functions.
Seborrheic dermatitis is excess production of sebum accompanied by dry, flaky skin. It can be seen in its mildest form as dandruff and in its most severe form as large, thick yellowish scales, that bleed when scratched. Learn about the condition with photographic examples.
My father's story of having throat cancer and his first warning signs. Throat cancer symptoms can include hoarseness, change in voice, and coughing up blood. Read his heroic journey.
Did you know that up to 80% of Americans have a magnesium deficiency? Coincidentally, insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes are reaching epidemic levels in the United States. Is there a correlation between magnesium deficiency and diabetes?
Glucagon is an essential pancreatic hormone that raises the blood sugar level. Glucagon administration is sometimes required to treat hypoglycemia in diabetes.
Many women require therapy for range-of-motion shoulder exercises after mastectomy or lumpectomy. Exercises help stretch the soft tissues to regain shoulder movement, without stressing incision scars.
A stroke can be debilitating. Emotional support may be available for close family, but friends who come to visit the patient may be unprepared. It is difficult to know what to say or do when visiting a friend who has had a stroke. Here are some ways to cope.
Find out more about this frequently misdiagnosed type of headache. It's like a migraine but different. It's called a cervicogenic headache or migraine, and it's a real pain!
Have you ever seen someone who can bend their thumbs backwards? A hitchhiker's thumb is a recessive trait that causes this flexibility. Here is an explanation, complete with video and pictures.
Losing my hair as a result of FEC-T chemotherapy was devastating in ways I did not anticipate. This is my story.
Pneumonia can be a killer. It is often a serious complications of other medical conditions. What exactly is pneumonia, and is it the same as pleurisy?
Have you ever wondered what it feels like to be in a coma? This is my story. I remember hearing people around me. I could feel everyone staring at me—but I couldn't open my eyes or respond.
Scabies is a nasty condition and is usually extremely itchy. Sadly, treatment is not instantaneous, and the condition can get worse before it gets better. Here are some tips to help you cope.
Plantar fasciitis. The name itself might sound frightening. Home remedies can help if done correctly, and this article will explain some of the more helpful home remedies out there.
Did that 3D movie just turn your stomach? Learn more about "3D motion sickness," what causes it, and how widespread it really is.
After being diagnosed with pseudotumor cerebri, I was surprised and dismayed to find so little information about this disease. This is my experience with the disease.
What is Rosacea and how is it identified? Learn about this inflammatory skin condition and how it is treated.
With proper management and some patience, you can overcome molluscum contagiosum. This article will teach you how to manage the condition to minimise its impact on your life.
How do I know when my loved one is near death? What are the signs, and how long does my loved one have left? These are the questions many of us have as we watch the inevitable approach of death.
Men are far less likely to get multiple sclerosis than women. This may be because testosterone provides protection. Studying how the protection works may help both men and women with the disease.
Biotech companies are striving to find new cancer treatments using immune therapies and targeted biologics. New detection and screening tests are also under development to diagnose patients earlier.
When we touch objects, our hands are contaminated by bacteria on the surfaces of the objects. It's very important to wash hands regularly to prevent infections.
Aspirin relieves inflammation by inhibiting the COX-2 enzyme. It also inhibits the COX-1 enzyme. This process may cause stomach irritation and bleeding problems.
Although costochondritis, or Tietze's syndrome, was first described in 1921, little is known about this condition, even today.
The gallbladder stores bile, which helps fat digestion take place. Gallstones are solid lumps in bile that can cause a lot of pain when they enter bile ducts.
I used to suffer terribly from psoriasis. This alternative treatment restored my healthy skin, and I hope it will help you, too.
Vitiligo is a skin disorder involving loss of melanin, the pigment that colors skin. It's most likely an autoimmune condition. A variety of treatments are available.
Have you ever wondered why you have such an itchy buttocks? Well, there are various reasons for a case of itchy buttocks, most of which are no big deal. You can breathe a sigh of relief now.
Many people with chest pain think they are having a heart attack. Costochondritis is a condition that can feel like a heart attack but is not. It is painful, but not harmful.
Did you just wake up to the room spinning? Do you find yourself suddenly dizzy while driving or perusing the grocery aisles? Here are some reasons you might have the spins.
Bone cancer has few symptoms. When my sister received her diagnosis, I learned a lot about the symptoms, treatments, and how to help a loved one cope with this condition.
Anemia is a condition in which you do not have enough red blood cells or your red blood cells do not carry oxygen efficiently. This can lead to many other complications. Knowing the symptoms of anemia can help you treat the condition before it gets worse.
Caring for a Bartholin gland that has developed a cyst does not need to be an arduous or painful process. Learning to recognize your early indicators is important and will aid you more than anything else on your road to recovery. It is important to...
Does it seem like no matter how hard you try, your belly doesn't seem to go away? It could be due to something called diastasis recti, or abdominal splitting.
Ever wonder just why binge drinking kills people? Take a close physiological look at the risks of alcohol poisoning. Understanding how it kills is important.
Personal account of the discovery of basal cell skin cancer, the dangers of ignoring it, and the surgery that could have been avoided.
Does milk cause your body to produce more mucus, making your cold and asthma symptoms worse? The research says no. But you might be surprised at the other tricks that milk can play on your system.
Accutane is a powerful drug with some serious side effects. It is mainly used in the treatment of severe cases of acne. The article summarises everything you need to know about Accutane and acne.
Hantavirus cardiopulmonary syndrome is a rare but serious, sometimes deadly, respiratory disease that has been found mostly in rural areas of the western U.S. The disease is caused by a hantavirus that is carried by rodents and passed on to humans through infected rodent body fluids and droppings.
Improve alignment, mobility, and strength in the affected joint with one or more of these 10 exercises to ease arthritic pain.
Breathe Right strips are great for opening your nasal passages for freer breathing, but if you leave them on too long, they can be hard to remove. Learn how to easily remove them without hurting yourself.
Glial cells affect the activity of neurons, or nerve cells. Problems with astrocytes, a type of glial cell, may cause or worsen amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).
Mycobacterium leprae is the bacterium that causes leprosy. It damages nerves, perhaps by reprogramming Schwann cells or by hijacking macrophages in the immune system.
Many different bacteria live on our skin and in its upper layer. Most are harmless. Some may be helpful. A few become harmful under certain conditions.
A pelvic hematoma can occur when there is serious trauma to the pelvic region. A hematoma in this region is a very serious condition that normally requires surgery.
An ear abscess (medical name - mastoiditis) is a dangerous infection of the skull, provoked by bacteria in the ear. It primarily affects toddlers and infants, although in rare occasions older individuals may be susceptible. The cause is always the...
Iliac crest pain is common in people with lower back pain, older individuals, and athletes (especially runners). This article discusses symptoms, causes, treatments, and prevention.
Warts are ugly and annoying—but more importantly, they're contagious! Get rid of them with these simple steps, and get back on the mats ASAP.
I was born with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome. I am here to share how this condition affects my day-to-day life, including my love life.
Fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva, or FOP, is a genetic disease that turns the human body into a living, breathing statue. There is no cure. Louise Wedderburn and Harry Eastlack are discussed.
Since 1975, when Lyme Disease was first discovered near Old Lyme, Connecticut, the illness has spread to every continent except Antarctica.
Ambien has been a great prescription sleep medication for some, but others need something extra to help them sleep. Is it really safe to take melatonin while using Ambien?
When you first realise you’ll have to wear a colostomy bag, your first thoughts will be “Goodness, I’ll have to wear a s**t bag”. I know because I‘ve been there too.
Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is an eye disease that steals your vision like a thief in the night. What is it? What are the symptoms? Learn more about this silent thief.
Maybe you were diagnosed with IC, but the diet and symptoms don't fit the diagnosis. Could it be something else like a recurrent infection? Find out here.
The hilarious story of what one person did when she discovered she had a problem with ingrown toenails.
Blood platelets help blood to clot after an injury. A low platelet count caused by faulty platelet manufacture or platelet destruction may result in bleeding.
Impetigo is a debilitating skin disease that affects both children and adults. Learn about its symptoms, causes, types, diagnosis, complications, treatments, and remedies.
Hiccups are caused by many factors. They are annoying but usually harmless. Sometimes they are more serious, however. Home remedies or medical treatment may help.
What are some of the most common reasons for not taking thyroid medication? There are many reasons why you might avoid taking medication, but of course there are many important benefits, as well.
Lumbosacral neuritis is a term that is used to describe the irritation of the several nerves that line the vertebrae or spinal column, particularly in the lower back of the person being diagnosed.
Unless you’re having unusual chest pains, you probably don’t have pericarditis—but I wanted to share my experience because of how quickly I was broadsided by this condition.
A staph infection is caused by the bacteria Staphylococcus. Usually, we find these bacteria on our nose, mouth, genitals and anal area.
Hashimoto's is a complex illness with many different symptoms. Here is a snapshot of my experience fighting this debilitating disease, from the countless medical trials in my eight-year path to a correct diagnosis and my current methods for reclaiming my life despite its many difficulties.
Almost a year ago, I had an implantable cardiac loop recorder placed in my chest to monitor my arrhythmia. This is a short tale of that experience.
Insulin resistance is a serious problem for many people who are trying to lose weight but can't. Do you think you might be? Learn about why this is and what you can do about it.
Bright red blood in stool can be from a life-threatening medical condition. It can also be a false alarm, hence completely harmless.
What are freckles and how do you get them? Find out what causes freckles and who is more likely to get them. If you don't like your freckles, there may be ways to remove or fade them.
Exercises to help alleviate pain and muscle stress associated with TMJ disorder. I've had TMJ problems for a large portion of my life.
How to get rid of boils, ingrown hairs, and some MRSA-related skin infections. These home remedies are effective and inexpensive.
Here are the natural and medicinal treatments that I use to control my psoriasis. Everyone is different; they may or may not work for you. Speak with your doctor before trying any new treatment.
The signs and symptoms, causes, treatments, and common medications of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD.
A lifelong journey that serendipitously finds a cure for keratosis pilaris, a skin condition causing red bumps. Read a personal story of suffering, the easy cure, and the resulting freedom.
CPAP use is not common in children, and it can be hard to find practical advice for helping children adjust to this therapy. A basic guide for starting CPAP therapy in children with sleep apnea.
Sneezing is a common but often annoying and embarrassing occurrence. Many myths have developed about the process, which still seems somewhat mysterious today.
If you're reading this, chances are you have Burning Mouth Syndrome, or I've perked your interest. It is a syndrome that has no exact answers.
Ease an aching back by doing these simple stretches for a few minutes every day. An alternative to taking painkillers for back pain.
Many people suffer from the debilitating effects of degenerative disc disease without fully understanding what the disease entails. This article explores what causes DDD and how it is treated.
This is my personal story of polio. I also discuss symptoms, causes, and a brief history of the disease in the United States.
Pareidolia is a condition in which one perceives familiar patterns in inanimate objects. One of the most common examples is seeing faces. This is known as facial pareidolia.
Helpful advice from someone who suffers from pollen allergies every year for others who are in the same boat. This information is based on years of trial and error, and the tips here are the things that have worked well for me!
Though awareness is spreading, fibromyalgia is still considered to be a “controversial” diagnosis. This poses a problem for those of us who have it.
Rosacea is a common condition that afflicts at least 16 million Americans. These are the skin care treatments and supplements that work for me.
Adult Sensory Processing Disorder (ASPD) is a relatively new category of sensory disease, although the problem itself is far from new.
Aspergillus is a mold that can live inside the human body, causing an infection called aspergillosis. Aspergillosis may be a minor, serious, or deadly illness.
The Black Death, or bubonic plague, did not die with its victims all those centuries ago. It is alive and killing right here in the 21st century!
Engaging in rehabilitation soon after suffering stroke or brain damage is critical. This article offers suggestions for how patients can find the necessary motivation to engage in rehab.
If you were diagnosed with cervical dystonia, you may be wondering what it is. I know I had no clue what it was when I was diagnosed with it.
Here are three lessons I learned as I walked with my wife through her fight with breast cancer. There is a way to walk this path every step of the way, and have no regrets.
Twenty-two years after surviving breast cancer, I was diagnosed with stage IV inoperable lung cancer. I decided not to let cancer beat me. This is my story.
IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) affects about 15% of the world's population and can lower the quality of life if left untreated. Read more about lifestyle changes that improve this health condition.
Kidney stones cause a great deal of pain, especially when urinating, and can even cost you one or both kidneys. In this article, I will discuss how to prevent kidney stones from forming.
Cherry angiomas or Campbell De Morgan spots are benign skin growths that are made up of blood vessels. These are common vascular lesions which appear on our skin. These skin growths can also...
Severe GERD symptoms often begin with frequent heartburn. Discover more symptoms that point toward this potentially dangerous disease.
Some vegetables like potatoes, tomatoes, eggplants, and peppers can cause inflammation and arthritic pain in sensitive individuals. Find out why these foods may be bad for your health.
The painful story of how I lost friends after I was diagnosed with cancer. I'd heard from my cancer therapist that it's actually a common phenomenon, but I never thought it would happen to me.
Itching nonstop because of eczema? Find out how to get rid of this condition with these 10 simple tips.
What exactly are parabens, and do they cause cancer? Parabens are found in most widely-manufactured lotions, shampoos, conditioners, and moisturizers.
The story of a young U.S. military academy grad's struggle to become an Army Ranger while battling a life-changing diagnosis.
On September 13, 2016, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. This is my story, with my tips for coping with your own breast cancer diagnosis.
Hair loss for a woman can be devastating. If you are woman facing hair loss, the first step to combating it is to learn about it - the types and causes of hair loss and the myths surrounding it.
Are you still awake? Insomnia leading to sleep deprivation for several consecutive days may cause health problems. Learn effective methods to fall asleep and stay asleep.
This article discusses the causes of excessive flatulence and the key methods to prevent and treat it.
Toenail and foot fungal infections are not a pretty sight. Read this article to find out how we cured my husband's toenail fungus.
A contrast bath is the alternating use of warm and cold water. This technique is one of the best and most simple strategies to relieve arthritis pain and stiffness in the hands.
This article discusses current medical treatment for IBS by examining a case study of a 47-year-old female patient. Diagnosis and disease management is covered.
What I thought was a little bump on my nose turned out to be basal cell carcinoma. In this article, I discuss what causes it, how to recognize it, and what you can do to prevent it.
How to tell the difference between a heart attack, anxiety, and intercostal muscle spasms. All three may cause chest pain and difficulty breathing.
Streptococcus pneumoniae is a bacterium that lives in the nose of many people. It's often harmless but can cause a variety of diseases. Some of these are serious.
What started as a fun weekend at a local water park ended in two surgeries and a hospital stay. Nail infections, known as paronychias, are a serious condition.
This hub explores the seven leading causes of lung cancer, including a section outlining more specific information about the onset of mesothelioma.
How to prevent and treat an ear infection. Also includes tips about how to address the pain associated with ear infections.
Learn the signs and symptoms of diabetes, then ask your doctor for a simple blood test to determine if you have the disease
Acid reflux disease is the result of a variety of genetic, age-related, and environmental factors. Some are controllable and some are not.
How to treat cracked fingers and fingertips. You know, those painful little slits that look like tiny paper cuts, but feel like major surgery.
Road trips and car travel can increase the risk of blood clots. Here are a few easy things you can do to prevent these potentially fatal clots.
There are more people out there with MS than you probably imagine. This is what the progression of the disease has been like for me.
Disease burden varies widely depending on location, wealth, gender, age, and race. This article looks at the top 5 causes of death in high-income countries, and how you can prevent these illnesses.
Tons of easy, fun, and successful breast cancer fundraising ideas that allow you to simplify your group's fundraiser planning and get down to the business of raising money for charity.
Are you really flexible? Have you dislocated your knees or other joints? Hypermobile joint symptoms may mean you have a disorder often called hypermobility joint syndrome, or Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome.
When Geraldine Ferraro was diagnosed with cancer, she was given 3 years to live. She lived for 12 more years. Learn what she believed helped her cope—and why she survived far longer than expected.
After you decide to have a mastectomy, you will have many other decisions to make. Do you want reconstruction? If not, do you want to wear a prosthesis or will you "live flat"?
If you suffer from frequent nosebleeds, it can be distressing and embarrassing. What are the most common causes?
Rabies is found throughout the world, caused by lyssavirus that is transmitted through bite wounds. The disease is now treatable, though the success rates vary immensely.
After 6-½ years of chronic sinus infections, I finally cured myself and regained my life with a self-help book. I followed a regime of immunity-boosting supplements to regain my health.
Years ago, I was plagued with terrible sleep quality which left me tired almost all of the time. After employing these tips, my sleep quality improved, and I started performing better in all aspects of my life.
Your feet can itch for all kinds of reasons, ranging from skin irritations to systemic health issues. This article will explain everything you need to know about itchy ankles.
Aldosterone is a hormone that affects blood pressure. Excess aldosterone can cause high blood pressure and low aldosterone can result in low blood pressure.
Osteoarthritis has become quite prevalent in our society, and there are several types. This article is based on my own experience with this condition, as well as my research.
No one else cares as much about your health as you should. Never be afraid to ask questions. In this article, we will discuss how to properly measure and interpret your blood pressure.
This article explains the lung disease of bronchiectasis, including tests and treatments. Childhood cystic fibrosis is also discussed, as it can be related.
Most people today have heard of Crohn's disease but do not fully understand it. Here are three things you should know about the painful disease—from someone who has lived with Crohn's for over 20 years.
I noticed my son itching the back of his knee and noticed it was not his eczema. It looked like warts. In fact, he had molluscum contagiosum. Find out what the condition is and how to treat it.
I had a herniated disc (L5-S1) and suffered for five grueling months of different treatments before I got surgery. Here I explore those options I tried; others share their experiences in the comments.
Histamine has important functions but also causes the symptoms of hay fever. It's released from mast cells. Helpful techniques can prevent or reduce hay fever symptoms.
Solanine is found in green potatoes and other nightshade vegetables. It's poisonous at high concentrations. Some people say that nightshades make their arthritis worse.
When your spouse passes away, you may experience broken heart syndrome, which puts you, as the grieving mate, at a higher risk for cardiovascular events. Tips for the bereaved spouse along with suggestions for family and friends to help get through the grieving process are included.
I suffered from toenail fungus for years before I decided to take real action. After trying many snake oil cures, I finally used Lamisil to cure my toenail fungus forever.
Here are five great online resources for MS patients and their families that provide emotional support, disease information, need-based grants, registries for clinical trials, and more.
An explanation of effective treatment options to help relieve plantar fasciitis foot pain and inflammation. For me, I found that the cure was actually free and easy.
Remedies for every stage of the cold sore. If you get cold sores, these are some of the best ways I've found to get rid of them.
How to make taking insulin less painful and more convenient. These tips are based on my personal experience.
Colon bacteria make butyric acid. This acid improves the health of the intestinal lining. It may also reduce inflammation and decrease the risk of colon cancer.
An in-depth review of the early signs of diabetes. Find out what the symptoms are, discover whether you should be screened, and learn if you fall into one of the high-risk groups.
Can fallen arches cause knee pain? Not only that, flat feet affect the entire body structure. Learn how the foot works and practice these simple exercises to cure the painful symptoms of fat feet.
The final goodbye can be a daunting date, especially if it has been put off months from the death of your loved one. Know what to expect and how to make it through the day.
Whether you’re young or old, the thought of being housebound due to illness or disability is probably pretty horrifying. For some of us, though, it’s a reality—and not an easy one to live with.