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  • Firearm Concealed Carry Act

    On July 9, 2013, the Firearm Concealed Carry Act became state law and Illinois became the 50th state to enact concealed-carry legislation. The Illinois law allows concealed guns on private property and places of work and worship unless property owners post signage that indicates otherwise; it prohibits guns in schools, parks, child care facilities, government buildings, public transportation, and establishments where the majority of revenue comes from alcohol sales, among other places. Since Illinois is the last state to adopt a concealed carry law, a bureaucracy needs to be built to process applications — which could number in the hundreds of thousands in the first year — screening out people with prohibitive criminal records or conditions of mental illness that police believe could make them dangerous if armed. The Firearm Concealed Carry Act (Public Act 098-0063) permits licensed individuals to carry a concealed firearm in certain circumstances. However, public and private community colleges, colleges and universities are still off-limits for individuals carrying concealed firearms. While many property owners are required to post signs in order to prevent the carrying of concealed weapons on their property, the Act specifies certain categories of places where licensed individuals may not carry a firearm. Licensed individuals may not carry firearms into any property that is owned, leased or controlled by a public or private community college, college or university. This includes areas that might be frequented by the general public, such as parking lots, sidewalks, common areas, university hospitals and athletic stadiums. While the Firearm Concealed Carry Act does not change the status quo for institutions of higher education, institutions should be prepared to answer questions about the Act’s applicability on-campus in light of the significant public attention this new law has garnered. To prepare for inquiries, institutions should review existing policies relating to firearms to ensure compliance with the Act. Even more importantly, institutions may consider enacting policies that specifically address the areas of the Act that authorizes institutions to dictate rules and regulations relating to the carrying and use of firearms.  

  • Menopause and Testosterone

    Testosterone is thought of as “the male hormone”, but testosterone also plays an important role in women.  Testosterone in women is produced in the ovaries and the adrenal glands. The ovaries produce testosterone even after menopause. Women who have their ovaries removed are at significant risk for decreased testosterone levels and the subsequent symptoms associated with it. Testosterone has many functions. In women the hormone is responsible for many male characteristics, such as hair growth, muscles, sex drive and a deeper voice. In females, it is essential for the proper functioning of the ovaries, the libido and is necessary for bone strength as well as the development of lean muscle mass and strength. Testosterone also contributes to an overall sense of well-being and energy level. It is best known for its crucial role is a woman’s sex drive or libido. Testosterone in women is responsible for the sensitivity of a woman’s nipples and clitoris and associated with sexual pleasure. Testosterone not only enhances the sexual mood of women, but the overall sexual experience as well. Menopause and Testosterone Similar to other hormones, the onset of perimenopause and menopause causes the decline in production of testosterone (by at least 50%) in women. A hysterectomy, with or without removal of the ovaries, will also cause a more significant decline in testosterone levels. High stress levels can also contribute to symptoms earlier in the perimenopause when a woman is in her late thirties or early forties. Symptoms include less energy, brittle hair, loss of bone and muscle strength and a diminished sexual drive. Some prescription drugs can also result in lower levels of testosterone for women. Abnormally high testosterone levels in women can lead to a variety of symptoms.  Women with high testosterone levels may develop male pattern hair growth, especially on their faces and chests.  More rarely, and over time, some women may experience virilization, which is increased muscle mass, redistribution of body fat, enlargement of the clitoris, deepening of the voice, male pattern baldness, acne, and/or increased perspiration.  It is important to note that some women develop hirsutism without having a high testosterone level. Hormone testosterone does impact sex drive — as well as remedy other sexual problems — in certain women with sexual dysfunction but the long-term safety of testosterone therapy for women has not been studied. For this and other reasons, some doctors hesitate to recommend it. Testosterone therapy usually is prescribed only[READ MORE…]

  • What is testosterone?

    Testosterone is a steroid hormone naturally produced in the male body. Among other things, it’s responsible for the maintenance of secondary sex characteristics, such as the growth of body hair and muscle mass. Low Testosterone (T) is one of the unintended consequences of taking some medications. The testosterone level of a healthy young male generally ranges from 300 to 800 nanograms per deciliter (ng/dl), with figures of less than 300 ng/dL generally considered to be low T (also known as hypogonadism). Symptoms of low testosterone may include a reduction in muscle mass, decline in bone density (raising the risk of osteoporosis), low libido, memory problems, concentration difficulties, depression, weight gain, erectile dysfunction and lack of energy. Chemotherapy: Various chemotherapy drugs can damage cells that produce testosterone. In many cases the damage is permanent, though testosterone levels may bounce back in some men. Low T is reportedly a problem for between 40 and 90 percent of men diagnosed with cancer. Antidepressants: Use of antidepressants is supposed to help lift your spirits, but these drugs may also lower testosterone levels. If you are taking antidepressants, talk to your doctor about the possible negative impact on your testosterone levels. If you are experiencing symptoms of low testosterone, the drugs or medications you are using may be a factor. Testosterone is a hormone present in both males and females, but males have larger quantities. Men’s testosterone levels peak around age 30 and then begin to decline at a rate of about one percent a year. Around age 40, men might start to notice some changes due to the hormone loss -decreased sex drive, erectile problems, infertility, muscle and strength loss, changes in sleep patterns and emotional changes like depression. In severe cases of testosterone depletion, there may be a prescription of hormone therapy, but, for the average man, a few lifestyle changes can boost the male hormone. Step 1 Get eight hours of sleep per night. During the REM phases of sleep your body produces testosterone; a lack of sleep will reduce testosterone levels. Step 2 Cut out all soy products from your diet. Soy can be found in tofu and edamame but also in hotdogs, lunchmeat, meatless substitutes and even some whip cream. Soy increases levels of estrogen in the body, a female hormone, and decreases testosterone levels. Step 3 Make sure 30 percent of your daily calories come from good fats like[READ MORE…]

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