Common Trademark Registration Mistakes and How You Can Avoid Them

The trademark registration process doesn’t stop after submitting official documents. Even after you’ve received the official letter certifying your registered mark, you still need to work on how to protect your brand efficiently. This includes keeping the company’s good reputation among avid customers and acting against any third party who’s using a brand name that is almost the same as yours.

Accordingly, selecting a brand name, logo, or a symbol for your company is crucial. Consider them as the front-liners in representing your company to the rest – with just a simple glance, anyone must effectively have an idea as to what goods/services you offer. Trademarks are significant assets of your business’ intellectual property; hence they must be always protected.

As a business owner, we all have good intentions. However, not all the time do we manage to arrive with good and sound decisions in steering the path of our business endeavors to success. You might recall the times you made mistakes – and that’s alright, so long as you managed to fix your wrongdoings and do it right.

Ultimately, there are also several common trademark registration mistakes made by business owners across Singapore. We’ve compiled them in this article for your convenience and in hopes that you may steer clear from these landmines.

1. Selecting a wrong name

It is important to do your own fair share of research before cashing out a few dollars for marketing and advertising gigs. Who knows, some existing business might have beaten you to the name. This negligence, even if it’s an honest mistake, might hold you liable for copyright infringement lawsuits. Do not rely on a mere google search. Check any local Singapore registration database and see if there are similar names.

The worst-case scenario? Being forced to rebrand your company entirely shortly after you register trademark. A trademarked name that you can register with brandmark at Singapore cannot be used by another business, so you might be forced to halt the selling of any product or service before the complete rebranding.

Keep in mind that this is a costly mistake. The money you allotted on name recognition and marketing will go to waste, and your customers will be left confused as well.

2. Not being distinct enough

One important thing to keep in mind when you register TM is that: not every name can be approved. No matter how creative and unique you get, if the trademark office doesn’t see it fitting with your business, your efforts will be in vain. There’s a spectrum of distinctiveness in trademark law. It is tricky to get the right name for your business endeavor, but worth-it.

It is encouraged to go for arbitrary and fanciful names (like Amazon), if you want your company to uphold a unique meaning in the business world. If you’re having troubles coming up with suggestions, ask for professional service to help you conduct a search for valid names.

3. Hiring a freelance logo designer

Don’t get us wrong – we’re all about supporting artists, but when it comes to legal trademark registration, you are better off hiring an established vendor. It is tempting to get a logo for less, especially if you know someone who happens to be a freelance graphic designer. However, this decision is often described as ‘hasty’.

There are cases where businesses are held liable for logo design copyright lawsuits after some time. This is often observed with businesses who managed to make it big in the corporate world. Some designers hold these businesses financially hostage – with the latter losing legal monetary fees over the case.

An established vendor, on the other hand, will assure you a written contract. This includes giving you the full copyright of the logo to avoid any legal repercussions in the long run.

4. Equating domain ownership with trademark ownership

Acquiring a stable website domain isn’t the same as you legally register trademark. Even if you successfully acquire a secure domain name (dot.com), there is the possibility that existing businesses out there might have trademarked the name already. Remember that not all businesses have websites, especially with local and small businesses.

If the domain is rightfully yours, the trademarked name may not be. This can lead to legal trouble at some point if a larger business files an infringement lawsuit against your company.

Infringement is a serious matter to be dealing with. Hence before you go on building a website, ensure that the name you are using isn’t used by an existing company. This will save you monetary fees (for settling legal issues and claims) and the likelihood of receiving a cease-and-desist letter.

5. Not knowing about copyrights

You’ve registered your trademark/brand name for a reason, and that is to protect your business and the products and services that you sell. Copyrights aren’t intended merely for written work. Rather, they also serve as protection over your designs, drawings, photos, and even your website source code.

For example, if your own product shots show up in another company’s catalogue — you can always file a copyright lawsuit and sue the organization for using the photos without consent and brand misrepresentation. Copyright is considerably an easy remedy to fix this kind of situation.

However, a copyright also demands the highest specificity. You cannot just hold another company liable without sufficient and concrete proof. If you want to take matters to court, you must ensure it’s a literal copy of your own brand, with several instances of plagiarism and content stealing.

How to Find the Right Air Conditioner Repair Company

For a lot of homeowners, a fully functioning central air conditioning system is a necessity, especially during the summer months – which is why finding out that your unit isn’t working properly often creates a lot of discomfort at home. Things get even worse when you can’t find a good aircon servicing company to perform the necessary repairs on your unit. Worry not though, since we’ve listed down some essential tips on how you can find the right repair service company and get your system back in working order.

1. Look for Local Air Conditioner Services Online

One of the easiest way to find an A/C service company is to search the internet. Researching online allows you to know more about the company even before making a phone call or setting an appointment. As you search online, you’ll want to narrow your options down to local repair companies in your area in Singapore since they’ll probably know your area better, and more likely to service your unit faster.

To have a successful local search, be sure to use specific key terms such as “air conditioning service Jurong Island”. Doing this will give you the list of the aircon maintenance companies available in your area, as well as the possible links to consumer reviews for the said companies.

2. Check the Labelling of the Unit

One of the most commonly overlooked source of information about a high quality aircon servicing company is the A/C unit itself. Before you start calling any repair companies in your area, examine your system first to see if there are any information related to the company that installed or has serviced it before. Most local aircon repair companies place identifying marks on the cooling system that they previously installed or worked on. Aside from saving you the time that you’d otherwise use to look for an experienced aircon contractor in Singapore this information will also give you confidence that your prospective A/C contractor has worked on your unit before.

3. Get Referrals

The best source of information about a particular A/C service often comes from the people you know and trust. Ask your family and friends for some recommendations on A/C service providers who have previously repaired their units. If you’re a business owner, ask your neighbouring business establishments about the company that serviced them and get some feedback. A good and reliable aircon repair company will have a good reputation and a lot of happy clients.

4. Make Sure That the Company is Insured and Licensed

Make sure that the company you’re considering to hire is properly licensed, insured and certified by the state or any local agencies in Singapore. Licensing helps in making sure that the company meets the standards required by the state in terms of safety and performance, while the bond and insurance ensures that both you and the company are protected from any form of accident and liability. Without these protections, you won’t have any recourse if the job isn’t done properly or safely, or if you are not satisfied with the work done on your unit.

5. Ask About the Services They’re Offering

Once you’ve decided on an aircon servicing company, be sure to inquire about the services they are offering, such as maintenance, repairs, installation and other A/C emergency services. Also, make sure that they are knowledgeable about the air conditioning unit that you’re currently using and that they offer full repair and maintenance services for it. More importantly, you should also ask about the emergency services they might be offering, as well as its price and hours of availability.

6. Know the Available Warranties

A reputable company will stand behind its work, so ask about the warranties that they are offering on new parts, equipment and labour. A good warranty ensures that your system runs trouble-free for years or can be repaired at a reasonable cost. Once you’re done choosing an aircon maintenance company, be sure to know all the details and keep the records of the warranty for the work that was done.

7. Inquire About the Financing Options They Have

Air conditioning repairs can be quite expensive at times, and your budget might not be able to cover all the extra expenses. Fortunately, a lot of A/C repair companies in Singapore offer financing options that make the upfront costs of full system replacements or large repairs easier to handle. Before getting the services of your prospective service provider, know all the requirements for their financing programs and the interest rates, and find out whether or not you’re qualified to avail of the said program.

8. Check if They Offer Maintenance Plans

See if the company you’re considering offers service plans for your air conditioning unit. Regular maintenance is what keeps your A/C system running efficiently, extends its lifespan and prevents problems that could possibly lead to expensive repairs in the future. Having a maintenance plan will ensure that your unit receives the maintenance it needs at the recommended intervals. So be sure to ask your aircon servicing company about any maintenance plan they have, what it covers, as well as how much it costs.

Choosing a reputable air conditioning repair centre can be made easier if you just narrowed down your options using these tips. After you’ve made your decision, have the servicing company perform an initial inspection of your A/C unit so they can be familiar with it, suggest any necessary repairs and devise a suitable maintenance schedule.

How to Pick the Right Equipment for Your Hotel Kitchen

The hotel kitchen is part of your overall customer service. That is why it’s an important factor in the quality of food your business is serving to the clients. Good food, however, is not only determined by the expert preparation in the hands of the best cooks and chefs in Singapore, but in the planning of the kitchen design, the quality of the commercial kitchen equipment, the menu plan, and the delivery of the food itself.

What Does a Hotel Kitchen Do?

The hotel kitchen is where the food for the guests are prepared before they are served in the hotel’s restaurant, reception or banquet rooms, or through room service.

What makes a hotel kitchen effective is its layout, which must take into consideration the menu and the tasks that need to be performed. Most hotels in Singapore cater to different clients, that is why most hotel kitchens vary in size and the number of staff.

To make the tasks more manageable, the kitchen is usually divided into sub-sections or workstations, a factor that an effective kitchen manager should study before consulting a kitchen designer and a kitchen equipment supplier in Singapore.

The main sections may include the following: hot food, cold kitchen or garde-manger or larder, bakery or confectionery, banquet, room service, receiving, wash up or pot and plate, and stores. The sub-sections for each are listed below.

Hot Food – roast, soup, vegetable, sauce or grill or fry, and fish sections
Cold Kitchen – salad preparation, sandwich station, hors d’oeuvre, juice, and showpiece stations
Bakery and Confectionery – mixing, dough holding or proofing, dough rolling, baking, cooling, dessert preparation, and plating sections
Banquet – bulk cooking, roasting and broiling, holding, and pick-up stations
Room Service – grill, fry, and hot range sections
Receiving – weighing and checking section
Wash Up – pot wash and plate house sections

What Should You Include in Your Hotel Restaurant Kitchen?

Now that the tasks can be divided among the kitchen staff, let’s look at the basic layout of a hotel kitchen. This area might be similar to most restaurant kitchens from http://www.alpscreative.com/ In Singapore you will see outside hotels, but for a larger business, you will find more specialized sections that cater to different types of customers.

When consulting a kitchen designer and a kitchen equipment supplier in Singapore, keep in mind the dimensions of the kitchen, its proximity to the dining area, and its accessibility to the delivery staff. A kitchen should be designed smartly to maximize the use of commercial kitchen equipment and to make the tasks of the staff easier, faster, and more efficient.

1. Storage Area – This section is the area designated for the kitchen supplies and storage of all ingredients. It should be near the preparation area, but must be accessible to the staff outside the kitchen.
2. Preparation Area – The preparation area is usually found in the middle of the kitchen where it is accessible to all the kitchen staff. This is where all the food is prepared before they are cooked.
3. Cooking Area – This area is where all the equipment that use heat or open fire are found. Some restaurants divide this further into the following areas: sauté, grill, fry, pizza, and salad and vegetable sections.
4. Serving Area – This is where all the cooked or freshly prepared food are placed before they are sent to the hotel guests or diners. The serving area is also near the kitchen line, or the area where the servers pick up the food.
5. Special Areas – Some areas in the kitchen include specialized functions such as the sauce section, roast section, fish section, cold kitchen, soup section, vegetable section, bread/pastry/confectionery section, and outdoor cooking section.

What Should be Included in Each Section?

Each kitchen section will require different commercial kitchen equipment, so you should consult your kitchen equipment supplier about the appropriate type of equipment you will need. The appliances should be placed where they can be accessed easily by the staff without having to navigate through a complicated maze of commercial kitchen equipment.

Storage Area

• Refrigerator
• Freezer and coolers
• Storage carts, boxes, and racks
• Shelving
• Ingredient bins
• Soup transport
• Food containers in various sizes and bain maries
• Stainless steel pails
• Steam tables and accessories
• Vegetable crisper
• Keg racks
• Plates, bowl, glass, and cup storage

Preparation Area

• Stainless steel tables, prep tables, and racks
• Sinks and wash basins
• Meat slicers, saws, grinders, and tenderizers
• Food peelers
• Vegetable or fruit cutters
• Cheese cutters, graters, and melters
• Salad vegetable dryer
• Dough mixers, sheeters, dividers and rounders, cutters and scrapers
• Planetary mixers
• Food, bar, and immersion blenders
• Electric juicers and pulp extractor juicer
• Food processors
• Can openers
• French fry cutters
• Hamburger presses
• Chicken slicer
• Breading machine
• Pasta machine, ravioli cutter, and noodle maker
• Spice grinder
• Chef’s knives

Cooking Area

• Ranges
• Wok range
• Stock pot range
• Hotplates
• Broilers
• Salamanders
• Ovens
• Microwave ovens
• Fryers
• Tilting kettles
• Braising pan
• Steamers
• Griddles, charbroilers, and outdoor and specialty grills
• Pasta cooker and rethermalizer
• Exhaust hoods
• Rice cookers and warmers
• Cookware

Serving Area

• Warming and holding equipment
• Refrigerated display cases
• Trolleys and delivery carts
• Bus and service carts
• Lockers and storage cabinets
• Ice machines, bins, and chests
• Coffee maker, dispenser
• Autofill water boilers
• Lid, cup, and straw dispensers
• Juice dispenser
• Milk dispenser
• Soda syphon
• Wine cooler
• Draft beer cooler or bottle coolers
• Bottle opener with cap catcher
• Liquor displays
• Underbar equipment and supplies
• Cocktail equipment
• Water dispensers
• Banquet equipment

Others

• Dishwashers
• Sushi equipment, rice mixer, sushi cutter, and towel warmer
• Tuna press and strainer
• Oyster shucker
• Lobster cutter or cracker
• Shrimp cutter and deveiner
• Shell separator
• Garnishing equipment
• Candy slicer
• Bread slicer and/or bagel slicer
• Sealing and wrapping equipment
• Wrap stations
• Vacuum packaging machine
• Scales
• Fryer oil filtration equipment
• Waffle cone makers
• Crepe makers
• Sushi rice maker and containers
• Toasters
• Bun grillers
• Mongolian barbecue range
• Teppanyaki griddles
• Dim sum equipment
• Waffle makers, omelet maker, panini grills, and tortilla press and grill
• Outdoor stoves/burners, grills, fryers, and steamers
• Portable bar
• Condensate hoods

Worst Health Advices You’ve Probably Heard and Followed

We all know that not all health living advices we read and see in the news are true. However, some advices are so persistent that they sound scientific and factual, even if they are simply wrong. And since medical knowledge consistently change, many health advices we assume are true are actually still under debate—or even considered downright bad. Here are a few of the trendy advices that health professionals in Singapore strongly disagree with.

1. Eat Low-Carb Diet to Optimize Workout

If you’re an athlete or even just a gym rat, you have probably been told to minimize carbs to be able to perform at your peak, but this could actually be doing the opposite to your body. Carbohydrate is your body’s natural fuel during high-intensity training, and that is scientifically proven. While lowering carb intake may work for elite athletes for their endurance training, it isn’t something that average people should be doing, unless you’re advised by a professional.

2. Start the Day With Whole Grains

You’ve probably heard that whole grains make you feel full for longer hours, but experts disagree to this idea. Since they spike up the glucose level in your blood, they could leave you craving for carbs sooner than expected. If you want a hearty breakfast that keeps you full until lunchtime, eggs and toast are better option.

3. Eat Lots of Small Meals

This one may surprise you, since we often hear this as a weight loss tip. Although this can be done and may be effective for some, it’s not for everyone. While some people manage their weight better with frequent eating, others do better with three square meals a day. If you think you’re doing better with intermittent fasting, there’s no need to force yourself into the inconvenience of eating every two hours, especially if that’s unsustainable with your lifestyle and schedule.

4. Lose Weight By Burning More and Taking Less Calories

Counting calories alone is not an effective weight loss technique. The amount of calories printed on the label isn’t going to be the same once the food is in the body. For example, some food can cause your metabolism to speed up or slow down. And if you plan to reduce your caloric intake, you have to make sure that you are still getting enough nutrients and eating foods that satisfy you, or you’ll end up in the unhealthy cycle of frequent weight loss and weight gain.

Whether you’re aiming to lose weight or just be more health conscious with your decisions, it’s important to follow the right tips and advices. Your best option is to consult a healthcare professional to ensure you’re getting the effects you’re expecting.

10 Historical Fiction Books for Beginners

Reading history books can be a bore sometimes. The good news is, a lot of writers have attempted to bring life to some figures in history by adding elements of fiction.

Here are ten books to get you started in the historical fiction genre.

The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

This novel is set in the 12th century England during The Anarchy. A cathedral is built in Kingsbridge during this tumultuous time in history. The book is divided into eight parts and is considered the author’s best work.

The Egyptian by Mika Waltari

Also known by its original title Sinuhe the Egyptian, the book is set during the rule of Pharaoh Akhenaten. Sinuhe is the court physician of the pharaoh who was later exiled after the latter’s fall. It is based on the Story of Sinuhe.

The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck

This Pulitzer Prize-winning novel is about the triumphs and struggles of Wang Lung and wife O-Lan just before the first World War.

The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco

When the friar William of Baskerville and Adso of Melk arrive at a monastery, they heard news of a suicide. As the mystery unravels, more deaths occur, each investigation leading to a dead end.

Cloud of Sparrows by Takashi Matsuoka

Set six years after Japan opens up to the West, American missionaries came to the country to establish churches. Meanwhile the Great Lord of Akaoka ,Genji, is fighting for his clan against enemies.

The Masters of Rome by Colleen McCullough

Set in ancient Rome, this book series has a total of seven installments. The first novel tells about Marius and his rise to power after he married Julia. The series includes familiar names from history such as Sulla and Julius Caesar.

The Persian Boy by Mary Renault

A list of historical fiction books is incomplete without a novel from Mary Renault. Known for her novels set in Ancient Greece, The Persian Boy is about Bagoas who was captured and made a slave to King Darius III.

Shougun by James Clavell

The book is part of the Asia Saga series and covers the events just before the Battle of Sekigahara in the year 1600. Characters in the book are based on historical personages. Englishman John Blackthorne chronicles the rise of Toranaga.

Etruscans by Morgan Llywelyn and Michael Scott

Morgan Llywelyn is known for her novels set in mythical and historical Ireland. She teamed up with fantasy writer Michael Scott to write this story of Horatius, then known as Horatrim, son of an Etruscan woman. The Etruscans were the first casualties of the Romans in their quest for world domination.

The Haj by Leon Uris

One of Leon Uris’s most well-known novels, The Haj is about Haj Ibrahim, the Muktar of Tabah, who wants to protect his family and his village amid the conflicts between the Jews and Arabs. The story is set just before the rebirth of Israel.

What to Look for in Aloe Vera Products

Aloe vera has been used as a healing plant since ancient times. There are a lot of documents supporting its effectiveness in treating a lot of conditions from skin diseases to psychiatric illnesses. Although there are contradicting studies about the benefits of aloe vera, the problem lies in the correct processing of and the mislabeling aloe vera products. What should you look for in an aloe vera in Singapore?

Aloe Vera History

For centuries, the ancients considered the aloe vera a plant that could grant immortality and was a universal panacea. It means that it could be a remedy for almost any disease. Aloe vera is the plant’s common name while its botanical name is Aloe barbadensis miller. The word “aloe” is an Arabic term that means “shining and bitter substance.” “Vera” is the Latin word for “true.”
It lived up to its name when it was used to treat dermatitis caused by severe radiation. It is the only known treatment for nuclear burns, according to some claims. Among its least impressive qualities is that it’s used as a laxative and a beauty product. It’s not uncommon nowadays to find aloe vera extracts in shampoos, soaps and creams.

Aloe Vera Plant

Aloe vera is a hardy succulent, perennial plant that can survive in almost any climate, but thrives in tropical countries like Singapore. There are many varieties of Aloe, but the most common is the green, stemless plant with fat green leaves. The leaves sometimes have white spots. It also has flowers that look like yellow tubes and fruits with seeds.

The leaf is the part of the plant where the aloe vera gel is acquired. The leaves are fleshy and serrated at the edges. When examined closely, you will see that it is made up of three layers. The outer layer is called the rind. It is made up of 15 to 20 cells. The middle part is found just beneath the leaf skin. It contains a yellow sap called the aloe vera latex. This part of the leaf is taken orally that has good aloe benefits and used to treat a number of diseases. The innermost layer is a clear jelly made up mostly of water. This is the aloe vera gel.

Aloe Vera Properties

According to studies, aloe vera contains at least 75 active ingredients. An active ingredient is a biologically active component that will deliver the benefit of a product. Let’s break down the constituents of aloe vera.

    • Vitamins – vitamin A, C, E, and B12; choline and folic acid. These are antioxidants that fight free radicals in the body.
    • Minerals – calcium, potassium, magnesium, zinc, sodium, chromium, selenium, copper, and manganese. Minerals are needed for enzyme and antioxidant production.
    • Sugars – monosaccharides such as fructose, glucose and polysaccharides such as polymannose and glucomannans.
    • Enzymes – lipase, aliiase, amylase, alkaline phosphatase, carboxypeptidase, bradykinase, cellulase, peroxidase, and catalase. Enzymes help break down fats and sugar.
    • Hormones – gibberellins and auxins. Hormones make the wound heal faster and stop inflammation.
    • Anthraquinones – aloe vera has 12 anthraquinones. These are laxatives called phenolic compounds. Two of these, emodin and aloin, are analgesics, antivirals and antibacterials.
    • Fatty Acids – cholesterol, beta-sisoterol, campesterol and lupeol. These are plant steroids with anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antiseptic properties.
    • Other Components – salycylic acid, lignin, and saponin. Aloe vera contains 7 out of 8 essential amino acids. It also has 20 out of 22 required amino acids.

Aloe Vera Products and Benefits

The parts used in the plant are the leaves. There are two kinds of products that can be processed from the aloe vera leaves. These are the aloe vera gel and aloe vera latex. The latex is taken orally for its healing properties. The gel is used in a variety of products. Some manufacturers in Singapore also crush the aloe leaves to get both the latex and gel.
Aloe vera in Singapore is used primarily in dermatological products. It increases the collagen content so that skin heals faster and is more elastic. Elasticity makes fine lines and wrinkles disappear or look less noticeable. The antioxidants protect the skin from the harmful ultraviolet and gamma radiation from the sun.

The following are other benefits of aloe vera:

1. Aloe vera contains 6 antiseptic agents such as sulfur, lupeol, salicylic acid, cinnamonic acid, phenols, and urea nitrogen.
2. Aloe vera increases the resistance of the immune system against infections because of the presence of anthraquinones.
3. C-glucosyl chromone and alprogen are isolated from the aloe vera gel. They are used for their anti-allergic and anti-inflammatory properties, respectively.
4. The enzyme bradykinase found in aloe vera is used as an anti-inflammatory agent in topical creams.
5. Hormones such as gibberellins and auxins are used for their healing and anti-inflammatory properties.
6. The anthraquinones are used as laxatives. These help make bowel movement easier.
7. The fatty acids are used as antiseptics and analgesics.
8. The salicylic acid has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties used for acne and other skin problems.
9. The saponins from aloe vera are used for making soaps and gels. They are also valued for their antiseptic properties.
10. The lignin is used in topical creams or ointments because it helps other ingredients penetrate the skin.
11. The vitamins help in detoxification, energy balance, hemoglobin and nucleic acid synthesis, strengthening the immune system, and neutralization of free radicals.
12. The minerals and micronutrients also improve the immune system, increase blood coagulation, help enzymes function, and assist in detoxification.

Reading the Label

When purchasing aloe vera products in Singapore, you should read the label carefully. Some might contain only water. Others use methods that lose the effectiveness of the active ingredients. Check the container for proper labeling. It has to include a list of the ingredients and the quantity of each ingredient. There should also be instructions on how to use the product. If you have purchased vitamins or supplements, consult your doctor about the correct daily dosage.

Adverse Effects of Over-Illumination

Here in Singapore, the streets come to life at night with the help of artificial lights. Yes, some are unnecessary lighting but it can attract attention, that is important. But do you stop for a while and contemplate about light pollution especially when you see high intensity lighting? Singaporeans should understand light pollution particularly its one type – over-illumination.

Light pollution can have ill effects on humans as well as the ecosystem. Light pollution is actually the result of globalization and development. With this in mind, many people just think that it is inevitable. This kind of thinking will be our downfall. It is time that we are aware of our surroundings and do our part to make it a better place.

Where does over-illumination come in? Over-illumination is actually one type of light pollution. It happens when there is too much light for a particular activity. Before resolving this issue, it is crucial that we know the ill effects of over-illumination. Getting too much artificial light can have ill effects. Here is the list:

• Headaches: Having headaches with over-illumination is not a surprise because you often suffer from this. Over-exposing yourself to artificial light can even trigger migraines. While it is true that headaches or migraines have different factors that trigger it, the bright light can always intensify the pain.

• Hypertension: It is important that lights are turned on and off at appropriate times. If not, it can disrupt circadian rhythms and melatonin production. This will eventually lead to imbalances like high blood pressure and other related health problems.

• Insomnia: The disruption of melatonin production can cause sleepless nights. The disruption is caused by over exposure to artificial lighting. If your brain is overly stimulated because of intense lights, it cannot relax.

• Fatigue: Fatigue is actually stress that is taking over the body. It was mentioned earlier that artificial light can disrupt the body rhythms and it can cause chaos inside the body. Remember that when melatonin and circadian rhythm are off, it will be severe.

Now that you know over-illumination is not as harmless as it seems, you have to act while it is not too late. There are things that you can do to make it better. For example, when lighting a room, make sure that it is just enough and when it is not in use, turn it off. You do not only address over-illumination but also energy consumption.

Just continue to think of things to curb over-illumination. Do not wait for it to strike before taking action.

How to Clean Your Front Windshield More Effectively

There is a reason why glares are very annoying and uncomfortable – it is eye sore. This is the problem for many drivers especially at night. Dealing with glare prove to be challenging. Perhaps you already know that some road-related accidents here in Singapore are caused by glares. Glare is a type of light pollution that is often painful because of the bright light.

The good news is that there are ways you can reduce glare while driving at night. The first thing that you should do is to adjust your side mirrors and rearview mirrors. You should not miss cleaning your front windshield too. Do you know that if the glass surface is streaked, light that hits it will scatter thereby the glare? Knowing this, you have to clean your windshield well. Here’s how you can effectively clean your front windshield:

• Initial cleaning: You have to secure different materials like glass cleaner, sponge pad, microfiber towels and squeegee. After that, remove stuck things like bugs or tree sap. Spray the glass cleaner unto the substances and let it be for ten minutes. If it is softened, use the sponge to remove scrub it and then rinse it with water.

• Tackle exterior glass: After the initial cleaning, it is time to clean it thoroughly. Lift the wiper arms (in upright position) and then spray cleaner again. After spraying, use the towel and wipe the cleaner. For better results, wipe vertically and then horizontally after.

• Tackle interior glass: Now you are ready to clean the interior glass. You can also spray glass cleaner and wipe it using the towel. It is important that you wipe it in sections.

• Clean other surfaces: The front windshield does not only constitute your car. There are other glass surfaces that you should clean like the side mirrors, rearview mirror and the windows. Clean other glass surfaces as instructed above.

Of course you can choose to have your car washed. The washers will make sure that everything is cleaned inside out. There are many carwash stations here in Singapore that you can consider so do not worry about it. Oh, car wash here is not that expensive so you can have it as often as you like.

Aside from the glare, a clean windshield can be good for seeing. A dirty one will undermine the visibility. If all things fail, you have to go to your doctor and have your eyes checked. If it is the eyes, no matter how you clean your windshield or adjust your mirrors, you are vulnerable.

6 Hidden Signs of Dementia

 

Dementia doesn’t only rob people of their memories and other cognitive abilities, but also causes other conditions marked by a number of symptoms, especially during its early stages. Making things worse, these symptoms are not easy to recognize. From failing to recognize irony to losing one’s balance, many early symptoms of dementia seem normal at first and so are often missed.

How will you know if you or someone you know are already showing signs of dementia? Here are some early signs you should be aware of.

  1. Unusual Food Cravings

Big changes in the kinds of foods you crave, especially when it’s leaning towards sweets, could be an early sign of dementia. Some Japanese researchers said that disease-related changed in the part of the brain that controls your appetite and taste buds explain the sudden change of cravings.

  1. A Tendency to Hoard

Hoarding and other compulsive habits are linked to dementia, according to one research. Buying a newspaper everyday and storing it but never actually reading it is a common example of compulsive behaviour related to the onset of dementia.

  1. Missing Sarcasm

Sarcasm is part of our culture. It’s a “nice” way to be critical, and so we use it all the time even among friends. However, research suggests that people with Alzheimer’s disease and frontotemporal dementia can hardly pick up on sarcasm and almost couldn’t tell if someone is lying. It is because the disease messes up the part of the brain that interprets and spots higher-order of verbal information.

  1. Changes in Personality

A frequent change of mood is a sign of dementia that is often overlooked as it can also be a sign of less serious condition like pre-menstrual syndrome in women. However, when it’s accompanied by a shift in personality, it would be best to check for other dementia symptoms. An example of a personality change is a sudden change from being shy to outgoing. The reason behind this is that dementia can affect a person’s judgment.

  1. Failing Sense of Direction

Sense of direction and spatial orientation are among the first things that deteriorate with the onset of dementia. This could mean failing to recognize landmarks and forgetting regularly used routes. You may also find it challenging to follow directions and step-by-step instructions.

  1. Confusion

People in the early stages of dementia are often confused. This is unavoidable: when thinking, judgment and memory fails, confusion arises. Confusion can happen in different situations. For instance, misplacing one’s car keys, forgetting what it was you meant to do, and difficulty remembering someone they have met before.

Although dementia is more common in people over 65 years old, it can also affect younger individuals as young as 30 years old. With early diagnosis and treatment, you can maintain optimum mental function for longer and slow down progress of the condition.

Make Your Monday Feel Like Saturday With These Tricks!

 

Most of us will agree that Monday is the worst day of the week (and we’ve got the Sunday night blues to prove it). However, it doesn’t have to be this way all the time. You’ll face weekdays a lot easier if you learn how to love the beginning of the week. Easier said than done? Here are a few tricks to make your Monday—and the rest of week—feel like Saturday.

  1. Bring a Weekend Habit Into the Week

You don’t have to save all the fun stuff for the weekend. While a night parties certainly is appropriate for Friday nights, dinner with friends or yoga session with girls in the office can be done after work hours. Doing something on a Monday that allows you for some fun will make you look forward to begin the week instead of hating it.

  1. Wake Up Early

Weekend mornings are the best because you don’t have to rush yourself on doing things. On weekdays, mornings tend to be rushed. To emulate relaxed Saturday mornings, wake-up a bit earlier. Not as much as an hour early; just enough for you to enjoy your coffee, take a relaxing shower or even lounge around.

  1. Do Some Preparation During the Weekend

One of the reasons why Mondays are overwhelming is because we’re overloaded with work, from choosing an outfit to answering emails. To avoid the chaos, dedicate an hour of your Sunday to plan for your outfit and meals for Monday—or for an entire week—and do some light works like clearing you email of junk mails. This enables you to start your week smoothly and make your Mondays less hectic.

  1. Make a To-Do List

Let’s face it, Mondays have the tendency to make us to more things than we’re capable of. Take a moment to pause, and prioritize what needs to be done. Before Monday comes, make a to-do list to keep you guided of what needs to be done first. As much as possible, avoid multi-tasking, work through your tasks one thing at a time.

  1. Be Nice

Human as we are, we get easily carried away on how much Mondays make us feel. Sometimes, we end up starting the week grumpy and forget that it’s Monday for everyone else as well. By treating your colleagues, clients and everyone around you nicely, you’ll make other people’s Monday a bit better, and in return make you feel good and encourage positivity on others, too.

Whether you crawl back in bed or own it like a boss, Monday is going to come and go. Maybe you won’t be excited for it, but there are things you can do to make the day a gateway to a successful week rather than just another step of a long march to the next weekend.