Choosing Between Cable TV and Streaming Services

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Growing up as a millennial or older Gen Z, cable was seen as the ultimate form of TV entertainment. Returning from school or work just in time for your favorite show or game had you excited. Families built family time around sitcoms, game shows and games – and it seemed like TV was the ultimate form of entertainment – until streaming TV was introduced with on demand and live TV streaming. Now, several people are more excited at the prospect of being able to watch their favorite movies and shows whenever they want to. A recent report revealed that 56% of Americans use cable or satellite while 69% now subscribe to a streaming service.

Understanding the Terms
Cable TV broadcasts video and audio content through networks that carry signals from distribution antennas to the devices of subscribers. Streaming TV, on the other hand, uses the internet to transmit data in the form of audio and video content to televisions, computers and other mobile devices. The content available on streaming platforms are usually in the form of on demand and live TV streams. On Demand streams are content that have been pre-recorded and are available to watch at your convenience or schedule. Live TV streams, on the other hand, are transmitted to viewers in real time as the events occur.

From these descriptions, it is clear that what is required to access the content on both platforms are different. After cable TV is set up, usually through a decoder or other device to receive signals, all that is required is a TV. For streaming services, on the other hand, no special set up process is required. All that is required is good internet and a streaming device.

Cable TV v. Streaming
One of the most hilarious commercials in recent times that illustrates the competition between cable and streaming services is Hulu + Live TV’s. The commercial features Chloe Bailey, who cries and hugs a male auditioner after he reveals that he had been using Cable all his life. She then whispers to him to use Hulu + Live TV instead.

The reaction to the commercial was expected – with many laughing at the obvious jab at Cable TV.

The message of the commercial is clear, “Cable TV looks at the less cool option”. But before we can reach a reasoned stance on this, a comparison on the offerings of both services would be helpful.

Offerings: When it comes to offerings, Cable TV has more diverse topics in its bouquet, with a broader range of channels, shows and listings. Subscribers are allowed to curate their experiences and enjoy content on their interest areas – including politics, religion, sports, lifestyle and science – and content types. Content on streaming platforms are significantly more limited to movies, documentaries and shows. This is, however, not to imply that its offerings are inadequate – because they are often more than enough.

Pricing: Cable TV costs significantly more than streaming. Even though some might argue that there are cable tiers that cost less than streaming, the value that is provided by cheaper packages are typically meagre. Getting the best out of cable TV would then usually require you to pay for medium or premium packages that cost more than the average streaming plan.

In a 2018 report from the Federal Communications Commission, the average amount for basic cable service is $25.40 per month while an expanded basic service costs $71.37 per month. The average streaming service is much less. A combination of Netflix Premium and Disney+, for example, cost $22.98.

In addition to the subscription cost, setting up cable TV and getting a good DVR box, will shoot up the cost.

The analysis that streaming services are cheap might not always be true. Streaming services are made available to the end user over the internet. This means that users are required to purchase data to stream video and audio content of their choice. Depending on how much data you consume, you might increase your streaming costs significantly.

Access: One major perk of using streaming service is that you can access all of its content easily and on the go, without spending money setting up a TV in rooms (or wherever video content is to be consumed). Cable providers are also making their content more accessible by offering dedicated apps for watching videos on mobile devices.

On another note, streaming services are generally uniform within the country they are to be consumed. The only usual draw back in terms of access is the number of devices that can be used for screaming concurrently.

Cable TV would usually have its offerings customized across regions, with some having access to channels and content that others do not.

Reliability: Cable is generally more reliable in their services, unlike streaming providers that rely heavily on the availability of decent and sufficient internet networks – and this is not always guaranteed.

In contrast, cable TV is more reliable because signal transmission is not done over the internet.

It’s Up to You
Deciding on which of the services to subscribe to is ultimately up to you. You can decide based on the kind of content you prefer, subjects you are interested in, your budget, the devices you have at your disposal and which you would serve you best.

 

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What Is Balding and Why Is It Happening to Me?

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Balding is generally considered to be one of the inevitabilities of life, however there’s no doubt that the moment we spot it, most of us would start scrambling for Hims minoxidil or even hair transplant surgery (if you can afford it). Balding, although harmless, can definitely affect a person’s self esteem and tends to be seen as one of the more visible (and very unaesthetic) signs of aging.

What Is Balding?
While losing hair is a completely normal part of life, balding is defined as the excessive loss of hair from the scalp. This means that the hair is being lost at a rate faster than our hair cells are able to replace them. In the worst case, it can involve the hair follicles being damaged which further complicates the regrowth process.

Balding is not a phenomenon that only men go through, and women can also experience it. However, male-pattern balding and female-pattern balding can look slightly different. Male-pattern balding typically begins along the hairline and moves backwards, thus giving the impression of a receding hairline. Female-pattern balding sometimes starts from the top-central part of the head and results in the appearance of thinning hair. However, the type of balding that people tend to want to avoid the most is probably spot balding which involves the hair being lost in patches since it’s not as easy to cover up or pull off and tends to give the scalp an uneven and unaesthetic appearance.

Why Am I Balding?
Balding can occur for a variety of reasons. The most common reason tends to be age related since the sensitive skin on our scalp accumulates damage from stress and as we age our cells have the tendency to be unable to replace themselves as fast as they once could. Other reasons could be related to one’s lifestyle since health conditions such as high blood pressure are known to accelerate the balding process. Some medical conditions such as alopecia and medical treatments such as chemotherapy are also known for causing baldness.

What Can I Do About It?
If you’ve decided that your balding is negatively impacting you by impacting your self esteem or being a big source of anxiety, then your next step would be to see a dermatologist. A dermatologist should be able to diagnose the root cause of your balding and help you start a treatment plan in order to aid the regrowth process. This could also be important for your overall health since balding can sometimes be linked to larger health issues such as autoimmune conditions or irregularities in your hormone production.

Of course, prevention is better than cure, and you should ideally be taking the steps while you’re young and still have a full head of hair to keep your scalp and follicles healthy. Many people tend to underestimate the importance of scalp health in their day to day life which later results in skin issues such as dandruff and balding.

Thankfully, since we live in the age of information, this means that more hair and scalp specialists use platforms such as social media and websites to dole out their advice. This has consequently led to the rise of more people becoming aware of unhealthy hair practices and making better choices in their hair and scalp care routine.

So What’s The Best Hair And Scalp Care Routine For Me?
Well, there’s no one size fits all answer. Everyone’s hair and scalp is a little different and your favorite brand of shampoo might not work for someone else. In order to come up with a good hair and scalp care routine, you have to take into account a variety of factors such as your natural hair and scalp type and what your goals for your hair and scalp are.

For example, if you naturally have dry skin, this may be reflected in your scalp type as well in the form of flaky skin and part of your goals for your scalp care plan should include treatments to hydrate and retain the natural oils in the scalp. On the other hand, if your skin is naturally oily, you may find that your hair gets rather greasy and lank after a while so a part of your scalp and hair care routine may involve treatments to control the oil production of the skin.

Generally, dermatologists and hair care specialists believe that a good hair and scalp care routine should leave the hair and scalp hydrated and without too much product buildup. The hair should also be protected from direct heat from appliances and products like hair masks and hair serums should be used at least somewhat regularly. Most importantly, consistency is key and once you find a hair care routine that works well for you, try to stick to it.

In most cultures, beautiful, lush healthy hair is seen as a sign of vitality and youth, so it’s no wonder that hair loss can make us feel self conscious as it draws attention to the fact that we no longer meet society’s standards of traditional beauty and health. So remember to show your scalp and hair some TLC so that they will continue to be your crowning glory for many more years to come.

However, regardless of whether you actively seek out treatments to help with the loss of your luscious locks or you decide to rock this rite of passage of aging, the important thing is that you feel comfortable in your own skin!

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Educating the Public on the Essential Needs of Aging Seniors

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It is unfortunate that our culture today seems to show little interest or concern for the invaluable treasures of the society who are the senior population. The needs, wants, and drives of senior individuals may vary based on their unique circumstances and personalities but as the natural course of life flows, some aspects of their lives, in general, converge into specific paths that can be assessed and improved. The later and more vulnerable days of our beloved’s lives can be blissful and gratifying given the right conditions are met and the essential needs fulfilled.

The Sense of Purpose and Being Valued

The sense of one’s purpose and worth is often derived from how one fits in a larger external environment. Our relations to the social surroundings, to a great extent, help us define who we are and how much we are valued. The normality of quotidian engagements, the empowering sensation of being relied on, and the profound joy of being of use to others are feelings that are often flickered and dimmed as people move towards the later stages of their lives.

Creating a sense of dependency—intentionally or unintentionally— in the elderly exacerbates the problem by causing them to internalize the feeling of frailty whereas in most cases, they are more capable than they are assumed to be. They are still individuals with talents, plus years of experience that can provide immense value to their communities and society. Striving to extend the independence of adult seniors as long as possible is the best approach for improving or at least, maintaining their sense of self-worth as for many, the struggle of gradually losing autonomy and control can be mentally and emotionally very taxing.

Socialization and Connection

Seniors are increasingly at higher risks of isolation. They experience loss, suffer from chronic illnesses, their families grow apart and distant, and their circle of friends and acquaintances progressively shrink. While we need to support their independence in their everyday lives, it’s equally crucial for us to help them socialize and get involved with communities to engage with their peers and non-peers.

Loneliness can be considered as a crisis as it rivals obesity and smoking in damaging health and may lead to earlier death especially in seniors who don’t have anybody to have regular and meaningful face-to-face interactions with. Loneliness paves the way for all sorts of diseases in the elderly because the immune system gradually degrades as we age and grow older. Loneliness in seniors has been linked to increased risks for high blood pressure, heart disease, cognitive decline, and depression.

Small gestures like having a short conversation on the phone or checking up on our senior loved ones from time to time can have a notable positive impact on their physical and mental health. Also, encouraging them to partake in voluntary services not only keeps them engaged and soaked in social environments but grants them a purpose that helps them reach self-actualization.

Living in communities that are specifically designed to accommodate seniors is another great way to create or reinforce a sense of belonging in this age group. For example, retirement communities like the over 55 communities in Cincinnati Ohio are built with all of the needs and desires of seniors in mind to facilitate a better quality of living among peers.

Physical Activity and Health

There are a lot of age-related health problems that can be avoided or mitigated by physical activity and age does not limit the options. Water aerobics, walking groups, table tennis, yoga, and many other group-based physical activities can be effective in minimizing the psychological and physical deterioration in older adults.

Strength training is also recommended for anyone over 50 years of age because the resulting increase in muscle strength can bolster daily living conditions and is good for bone density and other health problems like diabetes and hypertension. It also boosts their confidence by giving them a sense of empowerment and enables them to engage more with younger generations and play with their grandchildren.

There needs to be more focus on increasing awareness about the benefits of physical activity among the elderly. Oftentimes, the initial push and encouragement from kith and kin is the only thing lacking that keeps the older people from giving it a try. Being physically active can fill a void in the more vacant stages of life and in addition to the health benefits it brings, breaks the emotionally draining monotonous routine of those days.

Decades of living and experience, by and large, have blessed the older individuals to seek what is the most important of all. They need connection, love, appreciation, and reverence. More than anything, our senior loved ones need familiar surroundings and established communities of family and friends, and we believe that’s not too much to ask. After all, as the Austrian psychoanalyst once said: “How bold one gets when one is sure of being loved.”

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