The HNB Assurance Blog Celebrates its 1st year, Happy Blogging Anniversary!

1 year ago

We began this particular blog without too much fuss. It was all a bit new, writing about Insurance. We didn’t know it at the time, but we made history; we became the first ever life insurance blog in Sri Lanka. That being said, it was a very simple template which we had, as reflected in the screenshot below.

blog screenshot 2014

 

Yes, the layout was very simple and getting traffic to the blog was certainly a challenge. However, with a fair deal of experimentation the site grew its reach to over 50 countries and now looks like this;

Check out our new look!

HNBA BLOG Screenshot

Viola, a much more engaging theme which aligns with the corporate colours of HNB Assurance. We have spent a significant focus on writing about how you can improve your health, informed our customers about the basics of insurance and kept you abreast of our companies activities such as winning awards at NASCO, new products launches. The fact that the blog has gained a cult following has ensured that they’ve flooded us with questions, and in turn we have made it a point to answer them.

anniversaryMany more years to come

We’ve been delighted with the level of success the blogs have achieved-yes, blogs! We launched a second blog, http://www.hnbgeneralblog.com which places emphasis on transportation, drunk driving and motor insurance. We’ve been well received on both platforms are pleased with the overall result. However, we feel that there is much left for us to contribute. So thank you, to all our well wishers and to all those who have subscribed all around the world and keep coming back to read our posts. Until next time!

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Disclaimer: The views shared in this blog are based on the macro economic conditions & industry status quo as per the time of publishing.

5 Practical Strategies TO: Manage Smoking Withdrawal

Earlier, we highlighted some of the common withdrawal symptoms which ex-smokers face when they try to quit. Today, we can delve further into the topic and provide some answers about how these withdrawal symptoms can be managed. Its not mean feat as we mentioned last week. Here are some useful ideas you can use to manage smoking withdrawal symptoms

Woman Jogging
Exercise often.

1. Exercise

Yes, exercising helps because it releases the feel good hormone (endorphins) which makes you feel better mentally, and also allows you to burn off excess calories. One of the reasons exercising is beneficial is that a lot of people can suffer mental health problems such as anxiety and depression after giving up smoking. In addition, its a great workout which allows you to burn the excess calories. This leads us to..

2. Eating Right

Some former smokers admit that quitting smoking leads to an increased appetite. If you feel hungry, make sure you use that opportunity to eat right. Make sure your diet has plenty of vegetables, fruits and a balanced amount of carbohydrates and proteins. This helps in a couple of ways- it provides you with an outlet to distract yourself and the healthy food assists in reducing the strength and length of your withdrawal period.

3. Achieved a Small Win? Celebrate it!

Start small- if you celebrate a ‘small win’ such as one week, one month without smoking give yourself a mini reward. It is a proven way to motivate yourself further  as you can see that you making progress towards achieving your ultimate goal; stop smoking for good. The celebration doesn’t need to involve food-just indulge in something which you enjoy.

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Celebrate small milestones and other ‘wins’

TIP: If you have a smartphone (you probably do!), then look for apps which help you to manage withdrawal symptoms- they use timers to see how long you’ve given up smoking, the costs you’ve saved and most importantly, the years you’ve added because you have abstained from taking a cigarette. Take a look at your app store and see what works for you.

4. Find Another way to relieve your stress

A lot of people take a puff in order to relieve stress. Since smoking is bad for you, you need to find a better, healthier alternative. For some it could as simple as walking, cycling, yoga, boxing, zumba, listening to music, reading etc. The point? Find something which makes you relieve your stress and keep sticking to it, as it will make you less inclined to smoke since you have another method to relieve your stress.

Young woman silhouette practicing yoga on the sea beach at sunset
Activities such as Yoga can assist in relieving stress. Find what works for you

5. Be the change

Now comes the hard part- be active and change your environment if its not being support. Remember, you have decided that you want to quit smoking. So, ensure that you get the assistance from those who care about you; friends, family and loved ones. Be brutally honest and tell them that you want to quit and they will be more inclined to help you achieve your goal of putting that cigarette down for good. In addition, stay away from situations where people smoke (even if they are friends or family members). If they are respectful of your decision, they will not smoke around you and will refrain from asking you to join them.

Kicking a habit is never easy. We hope that you use these tips to stay in control. Good luck!

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Disclaimer: The views shared in this blog are based on the macro economic conditions & industry status quo as per the time of publishing.

5 Signs that you are dehydrated

How do I know if I’m dehydrated? Given that we live in hot, humid conditions, we are far more prone to being dehydrated. Being dehydrated in these conditions isn’t good as it can lead to all sorts of health  problems.We have identified 5 signs which indicate that you are dehydrated-and should you encounter any of them make it a point to drink some water immediately.

water

1 –Dry skin

If you don’t have sufficient water, chances are your skin will be dry-it will be a little rough and white. This may be because you don’t take showers often or simply because you are dehydrated. The effect is more profound in cooler climates. Yes, some people do use moisturizers to bring the skin back to normal, but we strongly suggest that you ‘go natural’  by drinking water frequently.

2– Dry mouth

This is by far the most obvious sign, your lips will feel dry and your tongue can also swell up. If you feel this at any stage have a glass of water immediately. Other warning signs are cracked lips, a dry feeling in the throat. If you have taken water frequently and the feeling does persist, do consult a doctor as soon as possible.

dry skin
If you have dry skin, keeping drinking more water

3 – Feeling Dizzy

When you are dehydrated, the body adapts by taking water out of your body, including your blood.  Subsequently, your blood pressure drops which will causes you to feel lightheaded, nauseous and dizzy. If you feel dizzy, please STOP whatever you are doing and sit/lie down. Take good care of yourself until you have sufficient water in your body.

4 – Difficulty in going to the bathroom

When you don’t have much water in your system, then your pee becomes more concentrated. The lack of water means that its more dehydrated and becomes more yellowish. Sometimes, going to the bathroom can be problematic due to a lack of water. As a result,make sure that you drink frequently; these individuals often go to the bathroom with  be able to go the loo with the urine being a clear white colour.

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Hard to go in the bathroom?           Quench your thirst

5 – Lack of sweat

Sweating is the body’s natural sprinkler system. When we sweat, the water evaporates from your skin and helps to cool down your body. Once you are severely dehydrated, sweat production stops as sweat is mostly made up of water. When this happens, you will overheat, leading to  numerous heat related illnesses such as heatstroke.

Bottom line: If you encounter any of these signs, you are dehydrated. So make it a point to rehydrate now and then for your own health. If you have any trouble remembering, try and keep a water bottle in your line of sight, or use a mobile app such as Water Alert or Daily to remind yourself to drink a glass of water every hour or two. Until next week, stay hydrated!

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Disclaimer: The views shared in this blog are based on the macro economic conditions & industry status quo as per the time of publishing.

10 Common Withdrawal Symptoms when you stop smoking

If you’ve been following our series on quitting smoking {insert link(s) here}. Given that the first few weeks are usually described by ex-smokers as the toughest, smokers ought to put away their pride and seek assistance in order to kick the habit for good. Withdrawal symptoms can often begin as early as a few hours after the last cigarette, peak for about one week and gradually fade away after 2 weeks. Here is an overview of the physical and mental withdrawal symptoms:

Physical Symptoms: If you’ve experienced one of more of the following symptoms, do try to take it easy and understand that your body is adjusting due to a lack of tobacco;

  • Intestinal disorders (cramps, nausea)
  • Symptoms of the cold (sore throats, coughing as your lungs clear out the nicotine)
  • Tingling in the hands and feet
  • Headaches
  • Excess sweating
headache
Headaches are very common during the withdrawal process. Hang in there

Mental & Emotional Symptoms: Most, if not all heavy smokers have experienced at least one of the following emotional and mental withdrawal symptoms listed below:

  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Significant craving for tobacco
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Feelings of anger & depression
stress ball
Follow our tips so that you stay in a good frame during the withdrawal process

It usually takes a few months for an individual to feel comfortable and be able to describe themselves as being ‘smoke free’. A recurring issue is that nicotine (a chemical found in tobacco products) is highly addictive, which is why those who are trying to quit need the urge to have ‘just one puff’ in order to satisfy their cravings. Now, if the body has developed a need for nicotine, and then stops entirely (because you’ve quit smoking) – your body undergoes these particular symptoms highlighted above.

I know the symptoms, now what?

Be mindful and take appropriate action. Arguably focus on eating healthy and exercise (link to how to start exercising), as well as taking time out to de-clutter your mind with activities such as yoga (link to yoga article). Most of all, do make it a point to build a good support network- stay with a trusted group of family and friends who help you stay grounded and inspired. If you prefer doing it online=try 7cups of tea (http://www.7cupsoftea.com/) or call Sumithrayo on 011 2692909. If you’re feeling brave, you can do a little volunteering and give back to the community, as there are a lot of opportunities available in Sri Lanka.

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Activities such as yoga can help you to declutter your mind

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe for more and leave a comment if you can relate to this. We wish you the best on your road to recovery! HNBA logo new

Disclaimer: The views shared in this blog are based on the macro economic conditions & industry status quo as per the time of publishing.