Author: TWK Admin

Small Things, Big Consequences

Ever hear ‘A stitch in time saves nine’ or ‘It’s the little things that matter’? You know you could have fixed that little rip in your fav T-shirt and regretted later that you didn’t stitch it up before it made the entire shirt into something you could only wear to bed. There are, however, some seemingly small daily details that can produce very unfortunate outcomes when ignored too long.

“It Doesn’t Really Matter If I Skip Brushing Sometimes, Does It?”

Even when you don’t eat very much on a given day, bacteria still flourish in your mouth and eat away at your tooth enamel. Once that enamel is worn down enough, the interior of your teeth is under constant attack. The only thing standing between your teeth and that bacteria is your regular practice of brushing, flossing and rinsing with a fluoride mouthwash, combined with regular dental care. Leaving all those food particles on your teeth leads to plaque formation, cavities and ultimately, many reasons a root canal may be necessary. Root canals are never a pleasant experience and almost always are a far more expensive process than the simple practice of keeping your mouth clean on the regular.

“80 Percent of Sun Damage Occurs Before Age 18, So Why Worry About It Now?”

Wrong! Try 25 percent, which means the earlier you begin protecting your skin with good quality sunscreens, the less likely that you will be dealing with the damage associated with cumulative sun exposure, such as skin cancer (melanoma), wrinkles, thinning skin, dark spots, and ‘broken’ capillary veins on the skin.

“What’s So Important About A Good Night’s Sleep?”

Getting your daily rest is more important than most of us realize. When we are genuinely exhausted, it can lead to such serious issues as heart disease, lowered immune response, inflammation, erratic moods and inappropriate behavior, forgetfulness, and irritability. Cutting your sleep short over time can contribute to things like poor motivation, being unable to crush it at the gym, and an irresistible craving for high-fat, high-carbohydrate foods, due in part to a rise in cortisol, the stress hormone. Chances are, you’re staying up late because you’re looking at your phone, which can add a whole bunch of other issues as well.

To avoid all these significant problems, try this simple recipe: good dental hygiene, sunscreen SPF 30, and seven hours of sleep a night. For more health tips, check out our other articles!

5 Back-To-School Fashion Tips for Guys

Going back to school can seem like a huge hassle after enjoying a carefree summer where you have likely lived in swim shorts. However, getting back in the school year groove doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. In fact, it can be quite exciting to redefine your “clout” after a long spell away from school. Here’s how:

Define Your Style

Courtesy of fashionetter.com

This first, but important step doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive. In fact, you can use simple idea board searches like “street style,” “hipster guy,” or “fall men’s fashion.” The combinations are endless! Save ideas that catch your eye and shop your closet for the pieces you already own or visit your local thrift store for more trendy looks.

The Perfect Backpack

If your clothes are mostly bold prints and full of color, you will want to find a more neutral backpack that goes with all of your outfits. On the flip side, if you mainly dress in neutral colors, then you might want to find a more interesting pattern or color to add some extra swag.

Shoes Matter

Courtesy of shopcanoeclub.com

You don’t have to own a million shoes to show your style. Try to find shoes that you can dress up or dress down, like Wallys shoes. Often made from comfortable, stretchy material, these shoes are a great neutral basic to go with athletic or casual outfits. The average pair of Wallys shoes sells for as little as $45 on most shopping sites.

Amp Up the Face

If facial hair is allowed in your dress code, don’t be afraid to try something new this year! Don’t invest in a more complicated trim if you don’t have the money or time to keep up the look. Poorly maintained facial hair could turn an outfit from making you look like a snack to “meh.”

Fresh Haircut

Courtesy of menshairstylestoday.com

One of the easiest ways to make a drastic change in your look is getting a new haircut. Nothing speaks louder than a fresh fade with a hard part and some pomade. If your hair is longer, try out a man bun or even braids. Experimenting with hairstyles can be inexpensive and help you stand out.

Regardless of the style choices you make, try to remember what is going to be the easiest to maintain during the school year. With homework, school events, and after-school activities, the last thing you want to do is hassle with your wardrobe.

If you want some extra fashion and wardrobe tips, then you should check out these other articles:

Understanding The Opioid Crisis And Why It’s a Big Deal

You might have heard about the ongoing opioid crisis and the devastation it’s had on communities across America. However, if you don’t know someone coping with opioid addiction, it can be difficult to realize the immense toll it takes on people. This information will help you understand the opioid crisis better.

Prescription Gateway

When you think of opioids, you might just think of heroin. However, many opioids are given as legal prescriptions by doctors. What often occurs is patients will be given strong painkillers following a significant injury. They will develop a dependence on these substances but be unable to keep taking them when their prescription runs out. So, they will turn to use heroin, which seems affordable but becomes more expensive the further they come to rely on it. Over-prescribing of pain medications is definitely a factor in the current opioid epidemic.

Getting Clean

Getting sober from opioids can be incredibly difficult. Dependence can shape an addict’s mind and body in the worst ways. It is definitely possible to get sober, but it needs to be done responsibly and with medical supervision. There are two treatments right now, methadone and suboxone, what’s the different? Methadone primarily helps with opioid addictions (as well as chronic pain), while suboxone helps with opioid dependence. Deciding between methadone vs suboxone (big difference in volume) is, of course, going to be up to the attending physician.  

A Fatal Disease

There were approximately 64,000 deaths due to drug overdoses in 2016. Of that number, over half can be contributed to opioids. Opioid addiction isn’t just a matter of being well or unwell. It’s a matter of life and death. The number of people who die from opioids is unquestionably significant.

It Can Happen To Anyone

When you don’t know anyone experiencing opioid addiction, it can be easy to distance yourself from it. It’s important to remember that no one plans to become addicted to opioids and that addiction can happen to anyone. It doesn’t discriminate based on age, race, gender, or class. Take a moment to think about the people you know and love. It could be family members, friends, or coworkers. People just like them are dealing with opioid addiction.

Even if you have never dealt with opioid addiction, it’s important to understand the dramatic effects of this disease. With this knowledge, you can help your peers focus instead on health and fitness by reminding them of the impact of the opioid crisis in American today. Remember this information and just how severely addiction can take over someone’s life.

References:

Right Path Addiction Treatment Center

The New York Times

Health Line

What Do Colleges Look at In High School Students?

High school is a time for students to get serious about their future. If they are planning on getting into a good college, they need to start the process of looking for one as early as the ninth grade. However, what do colleges look at in high school students? It is conduct, grades, and career goals.

Having Good Conduct

Having good behavior is important. When an Ivy League university looks into your background and transcripts, it needs to be squeaky clean. There should be no suspensions, assaults, theft, or even arrests sitting on your records. Some colleges may accept you, but a prestigious university will not. Your arrest record might not be something that may come up in college admissions talk often, but it’s highly critical for your future success in higher education. Practice safe driving, if you need to

Extracurriculars

To be a well-rounded student, you need have been involved in other things than just school. Whether it’s a sport or some sort of artistic activity, it’s going to look good on your applications. If you’re not big on either of those types of activities, and want to highlight your leadership abilities, look at starting a club (particularly one focusing on bettering the lives of others or serving a community). You should also look into student council and being a member of the honor society. These might not seem as significant as your grades or the classes you take, but they show that you are above the rest.

Having A Good Grade Point Average

The Honor roll is the most important reward a high school student really should attain to achieve. Not only should you make the honor roll, but you should also stay there. Being valedictorian, salutatorian, magna cum laude, and cum laude can help you get good scholarships. That means less student loan debt, if any, to deal with. It is always good to check your high school ranking and improve upon it as much as possible.

If you’re wanting to go to an Ivy League, you’ll need perfect grades. They have the best degree programs and only want the students who are top achievers attending their schools.

Choosing Career Goals

Whatever your career goals are, there is a university to match them. There are schools that have excellent nursing programs and internships available to help you get that high paying job you want if you know that you want to do that. So knowing what your career goals can help you save money in the future, and help you make a more specific college choice, as not all the top colleges will have the best programs for your specific goals.

At the end of the day, try your best at school, get good grades, and keep out of trouble.

References and Resources:

How To Stay Safe In A Long Distance Relationship

Around 44 percent of all U.S. adults are currently single, and approximately 40 million adults use internet dating websites. For teens, online dating and long distance relationships are even more so the norm. Now more than ever, it’s important for teenagers and young adults to understand how to stay safe in long distance relationships.

Risks Associated with Online Dating

Since 2013, the proportion of 18 to 24-year-olds using online dating has increased from 10 to 27 percent. However, meeting someone from over the internet for the first time does pose some risks. Around 53 percent of all users lie about their physical appearance on their online dating profile. Over 40 percent of women and over 15 percent of all men say they’ve had a bad experience dating online.

Nearly 30 percent of users dating online say they’ve been harassed or made uncomfortable by how someone contacted them through a dating app or website online. The number of dating scams or confidence fraud cases increased from 2,500 in 2015 to 15,000 in 2016, amounting to $230 million in losses. The average losses in these online dating scams range from $5,000 to $10,000.

Researchers have also determined that around 10 percent of all sex offenders use online dating for meeting victims. Teenagers and young adults like to be independent, but when it comes to meeting someone for the first time, parents and friends should always be aware of your whereabouts. Fortunately, there are red flags to watch out for, and different tips teenagers can rely on to help make long distance relationships safer.

Making the Long Distance Relationship Work

When you’re starting out in a long distance relationship, it’s important to establish boundaries and discuss what each expects and wants out of it. If you’re transitioning from being together to staying together over a long distance, it’s essential to have this discussion before the move. The goal here is to try and avoid confusion or jealousy from ruining things later on.

You’ll want to discuss whether or not the relationship is exclusive and where it could be headed in the near future. Take the time to get to know the person well before committing to anything or getting carried away with ideas of what could be.

Staying Safe When Dating Online

You should keep personal information about your home and family private until you’ve verified their identity and gotten to know them better. You should also be cautious of anyone trying to curry your favor with money or gifts. If someone you’ve never met before is trying to get this information or entice you with gifts, they should be reported to the website’s operators and your parents.

Avoiding Online Dating Scams

There are a number of con artists that are solely interested in victimizing and exploiting people who are looking for love online. Being cautious of compliments given over the internet and keeping real friends close by is how many people can avoid making disastrous decisions while dating online. If not, people and their loved ones can be conned out of their entire savings within a few years’ time. It’s happened before.

In some cases, people have been victimized for close to a decade, being conned out of money by online users, disillusioned by what feels like a meaningful long-distance relationship. These romance cons are not just for the desperate or naive; the average person can full victim to these traps if they don’t have friends or family to counter the ploy. Romance con artists want to isolate their victim so all their time and resources are focused on the online relationship.

Many authorities consider this to be criminal activity classified as advanced fee fraud where the perpetrator cons victims in providing payments upfront for services or goods that never materialize. Despite all the connectivity we do have, it’s clear that many people still feel isolated and yearn for some form of companionship. There are currently international criminal organizations operating through online dating websites attempting to target and exploit these types of people.

Experts say that people with few friends to confide in are the perfect target for the online dating scammers. These people tend to have fewer people and limited networks that can help warn them or vet new profiles. It’s vital to cautious of overly complimentary acquaintances who may be putting on an act to present themselves as the ideal person they believe you’re looking for. With many of the scammers, there’s a proven formula that they will use to manipulate their victim.

The fake profile often has a career related to the military, finance or engineering. Many times they will say they are inconveniently overseas or have a heartfelt story about being a caretaker or a single parent. If meeting in person is not an option, then you should at least be able to video chat on occasion. If they continue to make excuses or put an image up instead of the video, this should be a huge red flag.

Playing it Safe with Long Distance Relationships

Even if they’re likely to disapprove, parents should always be informed about any long distance relationships or potential meets. Anytime your meeting someone online for the first time, it’s important to be cautious. You should also try and verify that the person is who they say they are before agreeing to get into any relationship. Finding mutual friends or running an image search on Google is an easy way to check up on someone online.

For many people, being scammed in a long distance relationship can be devastating. Victims often become isolated and may give up on interacting with others altogether. Long distance relationships can be a great thing when they are done right, and you take the proper precaution. You can go in with an open mind and still protect your financial, emotional and physical welfare.

Getting input from the people you trust and being honest with them about how things are going does help you stay safe in long distance relationships.

References:

Romance On The Internet – Beware The Dating Scammers | Psychic2Tarot.com

10 Ways to Catch out a Catfish | eHarmony.com

What You Need To Know Before You Get Your First Dog

Getting your first dog is a huge responsibility. Frequently, aspiring dog owners do not give it enough consideration. They rush into buying or adopting a dog, only to be caught unprepared for what dog ownership entails. Owning a dog is similar to having your first human baby. You have to walk them, train them, feed them, and make sure they are happy and content. Before going out to your local pet shelter, here are five things you need to know before you get a canine companion:

Breed

If you are adopting a dog, it is much trickier to know exactly what breed he/she is compared to when you are purchasing one from the store. Of course, the latter is ill-advised as it encourages and supports the ongoing operations of puppy mills. Either way, the dog breeds are essential to know as it helps determine what health complications they are prone to as they get older. Mutts, or mixed breeds, usually have fewer health issues than pedigree or purebred dogs. Smaller breeds, such as pugs and bulldogs, are prone to breathing problems, especially in the summertime, while larger and bonier dogs, like greyhounds and African ridgebacks, are more prone to hip dysplasia.

Dietary Restrictions

A dog’s diet can vastly differ. While you can get away with feeding your dog store-brand dry food or kibble, you’ll want to make sure they are getting the right and enough nutrition from their diet. Moreover, some dogs become allergic to some food, such as chicken or beef, in which case you will need to adjust his or her diet accordingly. The amount of food and the number of times you feed your beloved pup will invariably change. Due to biological and physiological differences in the design of a dog’s body compared to that of a human’s, dogs are also not allowed certain foods, such as grapes, chocolate, onions, bread, etc., as their digestive system cannot process it.

Vaccination

Whether you decide to adopt a puppy or a dog in his/her retirement years, you’ll need to make sure they have all the required vaccinations. Not only is this important for his/her health and the health of other dogs that he/she socializes with, but it’s also mandated by most if not all states, and failure to comply could lead to hefty fines. Between six to eight weeks, a puppy should be given vaccines for distemper, measles, and parainfluenza. Between 12 to 24 weeks, your puppy gets his/her rabies shots. Some vaccines are administered in multiple stages while others are required for re-administration every one to three years.

Socialization

Just like how humans need to socialize to function appropriately, dogs also require time with other dogs to achieve holistic health and growth. Without regular and positive social interactions, your dog can start forming aggressive habits and behaviors. As his/her owner, it’s your responsibility to make sure he/she gets enough time outside to socialize with people and other dogs. And because puppies still have high energy reserves, be prepared to invest an hour or two at the local dog run or public park.

Costs

The costs of owning a dog are similar to raising a child. Food alone can cost anywhere between $200 to $600 per month, more or less depending on what your dog’s diet is, such as kibble or human-grade food. To add to that, you will also be shelling out money for vaccinations and pet insurance. It makes sense to get pet insurance as your dog gets older as that’s the time when they start developing health complications and require regular checkups. The cost of pet insurance can range from $25 to $100 per month, depending on coverage. Supplies, such as poop bags, pee pads, and treats, can also rack up a steep bill over time.

Training

You can train your dog in basic commands, such as sit, stay, and come, either on your own or with the help of a professional trainer. The latter is a much faster way of training your puppy, especially if you don’t have the experience or the patience to do it yourself. However, keep in mind that it costs anywhere between $50 to $150 per hour to get a personal dog trainer. A healthy and happy dog requires structure and discipline that comes from regular training exercises.

Getting your first dog is a huge commitment. You’ll want to make sure you are mentally, physically, and financially prepared to take on the responsibilities that come with pet ownership.

References:

https://www.puppyjoy.net/breed

https://www.naplestopdogs.com/the-four-cornerstones-of-positive-dog-training

https://www.caninejournal.com/adopt-dont-shop/

4 Secret Fears You Have That Are More Common Than You Think

Everyone has fears; some of them are well-known, common fears and some are secret fears which are far less common. Secret fears are interesting because they are generally unique to each individual. The secret fears can arise from a traumatic experience during your upbringing or simply from a story you heard that has haunted you throughout your life. Here are four secret fears that are more common than you would think.

Going to the dentist

The dentist’s office is a place that many people dread going to for a whole slew of reasons. There is the fact nobody wants people shoving pointy metal objects in their mouth for an hour, the pain aspect, and lastly, the judging dentist. Dentists totally judge you for your flossing habits. Murfreesboro Dentistry explains that “Sometimes people tell us that they’re flossing on a daily basis. But we can just tell that it’s not getting done quite as efficiently or as effectively as they say that they are.” So don’t try to fool your dentist. They can tell by looking at your teeth whether or not you brush and floss the recommended amount.

Having your car break down

Now some people might be used to this occurrence, but the majority aren’t. Having a car break down anywhere just plain sucks, but doing it in a crowded intersection or busy stoplight might just be the worst possible scenario imaginable. People are awkwardly driving past you imagining where you went wrong in life for you to end up in a broken down car. You are an inconvenience to literally everyone.

Public speaking

When you are called upon to speak or answer something suddenly in front of a group of people and don’t have the answer or misspeak, it can be a really embarrassing and uncomfortable situation for everyone. You stumble upon your words, your face gets all red, and your voice shakes. That is why, according to Psychology Today, “Surveys about our fears commonly show fear of public speaking at the top of the list.  Our fear of standing up in front of a group and talking is so great that we fear it more than death, in surveys at least.” Death, one of the greatest fears of all, falls short of the dread that most people get when they are asked to give a presentation or appear on a stage.

Choosing the wrong career path

Now, this fear is a bit mundane, but it definitely has a few serious implications. It is a very common secret fear that isn’t talked about as much. When an individual chooses a career path, it doesn’t necessarily have to be what they stick with for the rest of their life. Many people fear what is ahead, and choosing a line of work that you will dedicate your life to is a matter that weighs heavily on many young minds. Although many people fear the future, pursuing your passions and the opportunities that come along will take you on an adventure.

Natural Ways to Combat Acne

Acne is the most common skin condition today, affecting nearly everyone at one time or another. While it can become serious and in some cases require medical treatment, many less aggressive types of acne can be treated at home. Instead of popping your pimple, which can cause other issues, or relying on chemical products that may do more harm than good, consider one of these all-natural treatments.

Honey and Cinnamon

Research into acne has found that it can be alleviated in many cases by merely increasing the level of antioxidants in the skin. Honey and cinnamon both have high levels of antioxidants that may help fight acne at a deeper level. They’re also natural anti-inflammatories, which may give them extra fighting power against the development of pimples. Combine two tablespoons of honey with a teaspoon of cinnamon and blend into a paste. After cleansing your skin, apply the paste and leave it on for 10 to 15 minutes. Rinse and pat dry.

Sea Buckthorn

While sea buckthorn is not something you might have heard of, it has been known to help with many types of health issues. One surprising problem it has been known to help with is acne. Sea Buckthorn has been known to keep your skin moisturized which can help counteract other acne treatments which occasionally result in dryer skin. It also has an effect on easing inflammation which can have a positive effect on improving acne redness.

Tea Tree Oil

This is an oil extracted from the Melaleuca alternifolia tree, found exclusively in Australia. It’s popular because it has properties that fight bacteria and alleviate inflammation in the body. According to research, applying just 5% tea tree oil to the skin can reduce the appearance and symptoms of acne within three months of use. It’s important to dilute the tea tree oil to just 5% because it’s very potent and may cause damage in higher concentrations.

Witch Hazel Extract

Taken from the witch hazel shrub, or the Hamamelis virginiana, this extract can also fight bacteria and relieve inflammation. In addition to acne, it can also be used to treat eczema, insect bites, burns, varicose veins, and bruises. To prepare it, place one tablespoon of witch hazel bark with one cup of water and allow it to soak for half an hour. Next, bring it to a boil and simmer for up to 10 minutes. Strain the mixture and store in a sealed container. Cotton balls should be used to apply the concoction to the skin one to two times per day.

Treating acne is important because it can worsen and become a more serious problem over time. While medications are effective, natural treatments can resolve the condition without adding additional contaminants to your skin. This may be particularly beneficial to individuals interested in living a clean lifestyle.

Resources:

4 Ways To Get A Headstart On Your College Credits

Transitioning beyond high school can seem complicated, but with specific resources getting a headstart on college is possible. Here are four ways you can approach earning college credit before you ever step foot in your first lecture hall:

1) Take AP classes in high school

Advanced Placement (AP) classes are designed by The College Board and implemented in high schools across the country which allow students to take college-level courses without the college price tag. Students who take AP courses can take subject exams that could qualify them for placement in upper-division courses in college, or college credit. However, if your school doesn’t offer college courses, online high schools generally do. Be sure to do your best with these courses, as they can be touch and accelerated – read up on some tips we have on better ways to study.

2) Consider an online high school

Admit it, and you already spend a lot of time scrolling through your feed. Why not consider spending some of that screen time earning a high school diploma online? Like other programs that give you a leg-up on your way to college, online high schools can be a worthwhile investment towards your future. In addition to earning dual credit, online high schools also tend to offer flexible schedules, and some are even affiliated with existing colleges. Whether you want to zoom through or take your time, the choice is yours with online high schools.

3) Enroll in community college courses

Community colleges can have a bad rep, but they are actually useful resources to high school students. Many community colleges offer semester-long courses to high school students looking to get ahead. When courses during the semester are not offered, there are often summer options that likewise count towards college credit. Though costs are involved, the U.S. Department of Education recently rolled out a plan that would help provide some financial aid assistance to students seeking dual enrollment, making prices more affordable.

4) Take your college’s placement tests

English 101 and Math 98 are just a few of the introductory courses you may have to take during your freshman year of college. However, you can often opt to take a placement test in any of these subjects to skip ahead to upper-division coursework, or claim the general credits. These tests will determine whether your existing knowledge of the subject meets college standards, and can be requested through advisors or individual departments depending on your college.

Regardless of the approach you use, earning college credit before or within your freshman year is doable, all it takes is knowing about your options.

References:

https://apstudent.collegeboard.org/home

https://www.connectionsacademy.com/curriculum/online-high-school

https://www.ed.gov/news/press-releases/fact-sheet-expanding-college-access-through-dual-enrollment-pell-experiment?utm_content=&utm_medium=email&utm_name=&utm_source=govdelivery&utm_term=

 

7 Daily Habits To Improve Your Grades

Getting good grades is really something that doesn’t happen overnight. It is the result of decisions over a whole semester. You need to develop good habits and skills if you want to end up with good grades. Here are seven daily habits that will help improve your grades.

Don’t procrastinate

Procrastination is a great way for you to have your grades drop and have a whole lot of stress. As long as you are working on big projects a little bit at a time and studying for your big test every day, you won’t be overwhelmed when it comes time for your due dates or exams.

Find a great place to study

Finding a great place to study can really make a big difference. When you are used to studying in a certain area, your mind and body will be ready to get to work once you enter this quiet place that is free from distractions.

Be consistent with your work

If you are trying to shove out a ton of work on certain days but not others, you are going to have a hard time consistently getting good grades. Make sure that you are taking time out of each day to study and do your homework.

Re-solve tough math problems from the day before

If you really want to have an edge, work on tough math problems from the day before. You will learn the concepts much more efficiently this way.

Find free tutoring programs

There are many free tutoring options for those who want to maintain good grades. Whether you are in high school or college, you will be surprised by the many different tutoring programs that are available to you.

Listen to music that helps you focus

It is amazing how much music can help you focus. The best type of music to listen to when you are doing your homework is instrumental music without lyrics. This way, you won’t be distracted while reading or writing.

Prioritize your activities

While having a social life is very important, you need to realize that grades are a big part of your future. It also feels a whole lot better to go out with your friends after you have gotten all of your difficult work done.

These are just a few habits that can really help you improve your grades. If you are able to create great study habits, you are probably going to have some pretty great grades.

References:

Campus Explorer | Top 10 Study Skills for High School Students

Collegewise | Want Better Grades?

US News | 10 Study Methods for College-Bound Teens