How to Have Clutch Power

The key to your motocross bike’s performance lies in the clutch. You may be an ace as a motocross player but if your clutch is not doing its part, you may find your engine difficult to control. The following are some tips for an excellent clutch.

First of all, take out those Factory Clutch Springs and substitute them with stiffer ones. Bike factories never use maximum performance parts when assembling the clutch. High performance parts usually cost more money than those being used by factories. But keep in mind that you don’t have to change every spring. Usually two or three will do but you can experiment on what works for you.

Do not neglect your   transmission  oil. It’s not the same as cars and trucks wherein you can change the oil once a year only. Ideally, your oil must be replaced every two or three races. It may sound too much for you, but changing the oil is cheaper than a  transmission  overhaul. Remember that the crud that you pick up on the track accumulates and will put early stress on your clutch plates.

Always carry extra shims for emergencies. You’ll never know when you’re going to need these things. It might happen in the middle of a race and you won’t be able to remedy the situation. You can simply insert the right washer under the bolt. The added thickness will preload your springs and take away that spongy feeling in your clutch.

You can top off your  transmission  to the proper level with Automatic  Transmission  Fluid, that is, if it is GM compatible. But don’t use a Ford type fluid. The difference between the two is GM fluid grips better than a Ford fluid which is slick as molasses.

Never use factory-installed aluminum clutch plates. These plates are suitable only for regular use but not tough enough for extended motocross use. They don’t hold up as well as steel plates which are heavier but more durable. There are two drawbacks for aluminum plates. One, they wear more quickly than steel leaving metallic deposits in the oil, thus, hastening mechanical wear. Two, aluminum warps easily when subjected to extreme heat generated in motocross.

Aging plates build up a glaze layer on the surface which makes them slip more noticeably. When this slippage is noticed, take out your fiber clutch plates and sand the surface to remove the slippery glaze. Reinstall after cleaning.

Make sure your clutch lever isn’t set too tight. Set it so that a quarter can slide between the lever perch and the lever without catching the clutch cable.

Top 7 Best MPG Mopeds

Are you looking to find the best mpg mopeds on the market? Are you wondering which are the best gas powered scooters? Would you like to conduct a gas scooter USA comparison, between available models – in order to know, which are the best mpg mopeds that might fit your needs perfectly?

Are you looking at purchasing a moped with a specific number of cc’s, for example the best scooter 150cc gas moped that you can find? Here we hope to provide you with the Top 7 best mpg mopeds available right now on the market today, in order to help you come to making a more informed purchase.

We provide specific details on the best mpg mopeds and the best gas powered scooters, your very own gas scooter USA comparison between models, exploring their individual strengths and further details about each moped in a very easy to read and perfectly clear, understandable format!

Right, let’s get started!

1/ First off the block for your best mpg mopeds is the:

Retro Scooter 150cc RR150RT RoadRunner i-Scooter.

The 2007 150cc Retro vespa style Scooter is an awesome looking gas powered moped, it’s fast, reliable and has plenty of legroom for those of you who are somewhat taller.

This retro scooter is an i-Scooter; it comes with a good sized rear trunk to put whatever you need to into it, an alarm system with remote, disk lock anti-theft and comes with a scooter cover. This scooter is low maintenance. Returning 73 miles to the gallon, it has a 1.4 gallon gas tank which will give you a good range. It’s air cooled, 1 cylinder, 4 stroke, 2 valves and maximum speed is 60mph.   Transmission  is continuously variable and is fully automatic. Fuel is Premium 89 + octane only. Oil capacity and type: 0.9 liters / 15W/40 motorcycle grade. The oil change is done after the first 300km and thereafter every 1000km.

The weight of this i-Scooter is 89kg or 196lbs. It’s maximum load is 145kg or 320 lbs. The total length is 191cm or 75″. Seat height is 73cm or 29″. Handlebar height is 93cm or 36″. Comes in a range of colors. A great one for the category of best mpg mopeds returning as mentioned above an economical 73 miles to the gallon. This scooter is street legal in every state except California, be sure to check out local laws. If bought new, it comes with 24 months (2 years) power train parts only guarantee. New prices start around $1100 or thereabouts.

2/ Second up in the best mpg mopeds and best gas powered scooters top 7 is the:

50cc Speedster Scooter.

Returning a whopping 100 miles to the gallon plus, this is an ideal scooter for all your home errands around town. Achieving a respectable 40+ mph, this is the perfect city commuters bike. This is a reliable scooter. This is a reliable, quality scooter; it’s fun to ride and road handling is superb, a very easy scooter to get used to surprisingly quickly. Saves a lot on gas this one! – This is a very, very economical method of transportation!

It’s power comes from a 49.5cc air cooled, 1 cylinder, 4 stroke, 2 valves engine which is pretty quiet too.  Transmission  is continuously variable and is fully automatic. A touch over a 200 mile range on one tank of fuel (2 gallons capacity). Gas – Premium 89 + octane only. Brakes front and rear. The maximum load of the 50cc Speedster Scooter is 145kg / 320lbs. The toal length is 167cm / 69″. Seat height is 75cm / 30″ and the handlebar height is 105cm or 41 inches. An excellent nippy little scooter which qualifies for our top 7 best mpg mopeds of choice. It is street legal in all states except California, check local laws first and comes with a power trains guarantee of 12 months (1 year).

This model will cost you brand new about $900. How long before these best gas powered scooters pay for themselves and start earning You money?!

3/ Next up in the Third pole position is the:

Road Queen 250cc iScooter by RoadRunner

This is truly one of the best mpg mopeds that you can buy, another qualifier for our top 7 ratings of best gas powered scooters. If a gas scooter USA comparison needs to be made, this choice could be high up on your list!

The manufacturer is: RoadRunner.

Boasting a top speed of 75-80mph and returning around 60 miles to the gallon this is a great fun scooter / moped to ride! Comes in a range of awesome eye catching colors, it is very stylish too with it’s sleek, aerodynamic design. These best mpg mopeds are perfect for so many uses, whether commuting to work on a daily basis or even for those slightly longer trips on the road. It will give you a smooth ride with good acceleration.

The engine type is water cooled, 1 cylinder, 4 stroke, 2 valves.  Transmission  is continuously variable and fully automatic. Fuel type is Premium 89 + octane only. The maximum load is 180kg or 400lbs. It’s total length 222cm or 87 inches. Seat height is 73cm or 29 inches. The handlebar height is 103cm or 40 inches.

This is one of the best mpg mopeds that you can get for the money, saving you not only lots of money on gas but giving you a great stable and fully enjoyable ride experience also. Perfect for most adults. It comes with an alarm too. 24 months power train parts only guarantee and street legal for every state except CA, check local laws first.

Prices from close to $2000.

4/ Mid way through the range of best mpg mopeds and best gas powered scooters is the moped / scooter taking our 4th position on the starting grid of mopeds or scooters seriously worth looking at with a view to making a purchase and it is the:

Race Scooter 250cc 19HP – RR i-Scooter, manufactured by RoadRunner Scooters.

Prices for this lean, mean racing machine also start at an amazingly low $2000. With a top speed of 85mph this scooter really does take some beating supplied from it’s 19HP engine. With this supremely quick scooter you need not balk at the idea of wasting money on gas, for it still will return for you, a very cool and surprisingly very high number of miles to the gallon.

This scooter is the epitome of stylish good looks and comes in a range of great awesome colors, something to suit everyone’s individual tastes. Acceleration is smooth and very quick at picking up speed.  Transmission  is continuously variable and once again, fully automatic. The engine type is water cooled, 1 cylinder, 4 stroke, 2 valves. Very, very little vibration even at higher speeds. Great specification package. If you are wanting to know which moped is right for you, these best mpg mopeds are certainly worth your very serious consideration. Perfect for near everyone!

Prices start at an amazingly low price under $2000!

Well able to covey most adults in comfort and with ease even upon winding roads or hilly terrain. Loaded with features also which include:

MP3 player, Speakers, Over-Sized Trunk, Pre-Installed Alarm with Remote, Disk Lock and Waterproof Cover. What a great package!

Maximum load is 400lbs. Length is 77 inches total. Seat height 31 inches. Handlebar height 40 inches. Street legal in every state other than CA, check your local laws first and comes with a 24 months, 2 years guarantee for the power train parts only.

An awesome scooter – perfect for someone like you!

Heading towards the back of the grid now, but certainly not least are our final 3 best mpg mopeds and best gas powered scooters. These final three choices will complete our first part gas scooter USA comparison review and best advice, buying tips guide.

In fifth place then, number:

5/ Engine rip roaring to go in the line up of the top 7 best mpg mopeds in fifth position (remember, these are presented to you in no particular order), is the:

150cc Racer Scooter by TANK.

A well balanced and perfectly well behaved scooter returning a good top end speed of 65mph and returning just for you, a quite awesome and astonishing 90 miles to the gallon. Just three dollars of gas in this scooter will take you far. Perfect for light shopping trips or quick errands around your city. Never get stuck in traffic again! Not only will you save money on gas but you will save time too, which means that you can either make even more money from each day or spend the valuable time saved with your family and friends, doing what is more important to you, rather than sitting in a traffic jam wasting gas and time getting frustrated.

These best mpg mopeds, the 150cc Racer Scooter by TANK is a great all round model to choose for the average user. Acceleration is smooth, the road handling is very good, the ride stable, very little vibration, great rider comfort, just perfect for breezing around on these hot summer days and nights. This scooter is not only very well balanced and designed, it is very low maintenance and comes at a very economical best deal price new at around $1,250 – now that’s what I call a bargain!

Capable of carrying most adults in comfort, the bike comes with extra accessories too.

Engine is Single Cylinder, 4 Stroke, 149.7CC 8.84 HP. Air cooled. Electric or ignition start.  Transmission  is automatic clutchless centrifugal belt drive. Front brake is hydraulic disc brake with ABS and the rear braking system is a hydraulic disc brake. Wheel base 53″. Seat height 30″. Ground clearance 6″. Warranty is 1 year engine and drive train parts only. Alarm and remote control are included.

At around $1,250 this moped / scooter is a steal and will pay for itself in no time at all!

Highway legal in CA and most other states – Check local law. Motorcycle license required in most states.

6/ Second to last in our recommendations in sixth place for the best mpg mopeds and best gas powered scooters is the:

Honda CT70 Replica – Street Legal Mini Bike 110cc

Not intended for highway use (although can be used on highways if you wish), check local laws (see below). This one is ideal for private estates, gated communities, RV and camping grounds, light trail use etc and returns a whopping and incredible 108 miles to the gallon! Certainly it’s not going to set the world alight with any blisteringly hot world records for speed, nevertheless it will return for you 55 miles per hour and can easily convey all you big guys around with a degree of comfort.

Looks wise, it’s not bad, in fact, some might call it pretty stylish in it’s own inimitable way. With a 110cc 7.1hp engine, 4 stroke and manufactured by Lifan, reliability itself is assured for you.

Electric and kick start, 4 speed manual clutch, drum brakes, 7″ ground clearance, it comes with a warranty of 1 year parts only engine & drive train – 30 days limited labor.

Street and highway legal in all States – Check local law. Not legal in California. A motorcycle license required in most States. A great little machine guaranteed to give you years of pleasure and use.

Cost just under $1000!!

Last but not least in our top 7 best mpg mopeds and best gas powered scooters is finally our number:

7/ And what a beautiful looking and totally awesome best mpg moped we have here, the one and only:

Lifan motorcycle Enduro Trail Bike 200cc.

Yours for just under $1,450. This is a proper full size dual purpose Enduro dirt bike. If you have been looking for a wickedly cool dual purpose bike to cruise around and go off road, then you need look no further, we’ve got your ultimate motor bike right here. This is an awesome, supreme, top quality motorcycle by Lifan. It has style, speed and complete and utter reliability. The Lifan 200 cubic centimeters 163FML-2 mono cylinder 16.1 HP motorcycle engine punches out plenty of power to the rear wheel making it not only quick but lots of fun too, to ride on or upon off road conditions. Top speed is a little over 65mph. And if you want to save on gas, this motorcycle is very fuel efficient, deliverly an astonishing 102MPG. Can you better that?! That’s fantastic!

Engine is Single cylinder 4 Stroke, 196.9CC model 163FML-2. Maximum power is 16.1 HP at 8000 RPM. Max Torque 14.5 N.m at 6500 RPM. Electric and kick start. 5 speed manual clutch on the  transmission . Chain drive. Steel frame. Hydraulic disc brake on the front, on the rear, drum brake. Seat height 29 inches. Ground clearance 8 inches minimum. A standard warranty: 6 months parts only engine & drive train – 30 days limited labor. Speed 60-70mph. Over 100 MPG. Highway legal in most states – Check local law. Motorcycle license required in most US states. Color choice is red or blue.

This concludes out top 7 best mpg mopeds article, which we hope has been useful to a good degree for you.

Remember, before taking to the highway, it is highly advised that you undertake some level of training first by fully qualified instructors, this will ensure your safety to a better degree and the safety of other road users too. Also remember that protective clothing is there to do just that, protect you – a safety motorcycle helmet is recommended at all times.

We hope that you have enjoyed our top 7 best mpg mopeds review guide to the best gas powered scooters, so that you can now make a more informed decision upon the gas scooter that will fit your needs perfectly.

Buying a gas powered scooter potentially will save you shed loads of cash and the savings made, particularly with today’s very high gas prices, given time will be quite considerable.

When out on the road, whatever your mode of transport do please ride with care, concentration and consideration for others at all times!

What is CNC?

CNC is the acronym of Computer Numeric Control and it is often associated with plasma cutting as in CNC plasma cutting. A plasma cutting unit that is controlled by CNC is controlled by a computer. There are two basic classes of controls, industrial PC-based control systems and hobbyist/artisan PC-based control systems. The industrial CNC systems, such as the ones produced by Hypertherm or Burny, are robust enough to stand up the harsh production environments. They have a touch screen that can be housed inside of a heat shield for additional protection. The industrial CNCs are very costly, but they come highly recommended for any application because they are not vulnerable to typical PC problems meaning they have very little down time. Due to the high cost you will not often find industrial scale CNCs in a hobbyist’s garage. The artisan and the hobbyist plasma cutter use standard PC-based controls with I/O cards for controlling the plasma systems and the drives. Since these are regular PCs they are prone to an array of computer problems, but none that cannot be fixed.

If you want to use a CNC for your plasma cutting there are some things you will need. You will need a table for the cutting to take place on. On each side of the table you must have a rail that the drives can use to move the plasma systems; we will call this the x-axis. A bridge or gantry must span the table and each end must rest on the rails. The plasma system must be attached to a rail on the bridge which will allow it to move back and forth; the y-axis. Industrial strength set ups us fabricated steel for the construction of the table, rails and bridge. On the other hand, extruded aluminum is used for the hobbyist and artisan CNC plasma cutter set ups. The difference is that the steel is more robust and will withstand constant use whereas the aluminum can only withstand occasional use. If building one of these machines sounds a little scary to you, there are lots of kits that you can buy or you have the option of buying ready built CNC plasma cutters.

If you cruise the web you will be able to find many videos showing CNC plasma cutters in action. It is not the easiest topic in the world to explain and I suggest you check out some videos if you have not seen a CNC plasma cutter before.

Honda Motor Scooter Guide

Driving a car, truck or SUV can be pricey when you factor in the cost of rising gas prices. If you are a single motorist or only use your vehicle for commuting, an alternative to consider is a Honda motor scooter. There are currently six different models to choose from and of the various designs available, one is sure to meet all of your needs. Running errands around town, seating for two, storage space, long-distance riding and engine performance are just some options to consider when thinking about the kind of scooter you would like to be riding.

The Metropolitan model from Honda offers single seating for the modern rider. This scooter is perfect for the driver looking for sharp European design while being fuel efficient. Automatic   transmission  is also a perk for those who are new to riding scooters as shifting gears may seem intimidating. A 49cc engine gives a top speed of 40 miles per hour which is plenty fast for local around-town driving or commutes that do not involve travel on highways.

Are you looking for a two-seat scooter with generous storage space and a little more engine zip than the Metropolitan? A Honda motor scooter that could be for you is the Honda Elite model. Reach speeds up to 50 miles per hour with its 108cc engine while riding comfortably with a second person seated behind you. And you do not need to worry about taking your helmet with you after reaching your destination with this model’s under seat storage feature.

Honda’s Ruckus model offers a rugged exterior as opposed to the smooth lines of the Metropolitan and Elite scooters. Automatic  transmission , a liquid-cooled engine and electric start are all features of this Honda motor scooter. Oversized tires allow for handling a bit rougher terrain while still enjoying the fuel efficiency that driving a scooter provides.

The PCX scooter offered by Honda engages a 125cc engine that can travel up to 60 miles per hour. A trunk allowing for a full size helmet and an accessory rack ensures you will have the space needed to accommodate all of the items you may be traveling with. Some highway travel is permitted with this motor scooter which may be a great option for commuters.

A sleek model that gets you from point A to point B faster and with room for two is Honda’s SH150i. This fuel-injected scooter features a 153cc engine and a Combined Braking System. A top speed of 65 miles per hour with two riders makes this scooter an ideal option for those looking for local and highway travel.

Finally, the Silver Wing ABS is the ultimate luxury scooter from the Honda line. An ample windscreen and seating for two offers comfort to all riders while the 582cc engine delivers power for those longer rides. The anti-lock braking system and automatic  transmission  offered with this Honda motor scooter model is sure to provide fast and fun transport for the motorist looking for ultimate comfort.

A Fragile Lifeline: Lessons I Learned Answering The Aids Hotline

Dial 1-800/AIDSNYC

Every Monday and Wednesday morning, promptly at 10 a.m., I leave behind

my daily life and turn to volunteering as an AIDS Hotline counselor at New York

City’s GMHC [Gay Men’s Health Crisis], the nation’s largest social service

agency for AIDS.

For the next four hours, my co-volunteers and I sit in front of a bank of

constantly-ringing telephones, talking to men, women, and teens who call in

from across the nation with urgent questions about AIDS, the ravaging disease

that has left 13.9 million people dead worldwide.

After almost 20 years, a whole generation, families are still facing the

heartache of tending the sick, while scientists continue to be confounded by

this stubborn, ravaging virus.

Although the federal government currently spends$4 billion per year on

AIDS research, and $15 billion worldwide, there is no cure in sight for the viral

infection and no vaccine available. Small wonder that the GMHC AIDS Hotline,

the nation’s first, is flooded with more than 40,000 calls each year.

Listening to callers 8 hours each week, I often think the Hotline is actually a

direct link to the soul of callers–an anonymous forum that allows each to

reveal secrets and fears that they might otherwise never discuss with anyone.

A Morning in May

This is the way it began: “Good morning, GMHC AIDS Hotline, can I help

you?”

“Yes…I have a question…[hesitantly] My son…he’s 21…and he just found

out…he’s HIV-positive [voice breaking] I’m…..alone, divorced. And I need some

help…someone to talk to…”

“Of course….happy to talk to you…it sounds like this has been devastating

for you….”

“It’s terrible. He told me two nights ago….he’s…he’s so young….I don’t

want him to die. He’s my only child….why did this have to happen?” [crying]

Her son, she explains, had sometimes neglected using condoms, convinced

he wouldn’t contract HIV infection from his female partners.

“How could he be so stupid?” she now asks angrily. “Why didn’t he know

how to protect himself? I don’t understand. What am I going to do?”

We talk for 35 minutes, and by the end of the conversation, I notice I’m

barely breathing. The distraught woman’s anguish is palpable. Her situation is

every mother’s worst nightmare.The life of her child is in jeopardy and she

feels helpless and afraid. I can’t imagine anything worse.

During the call, I do my best to employ the GMHC Hotline protocol of “active

listening,” which involves using silence, empathy and gentle probing with

open-ended questions. I’m also having my own emotional reaction to the panic

in her voice, and I’m worried about whether I’m doing enough.

Toward the end of the clal, when she exclaims: “I don’t want my baby to

die,” my heart plummets: “I know….I understand that, but there is hope,” I tell

her. I find myself on the verge of tears.

The Bad News

This mother’s story is too common. According to the Centers for Disease

Control in Atlanta, Ga., 40,000 Americans (half of them under 25) are newly

infected with the AIDS virus each year. Unprotected sex and intravenous drug

use remain the principal modes of   transmission .

“Teenagers,” notes AIDS activist Elizabeth Taylor, “are being very hard hit.”

She refers to the three million adolescents who contract a sexually-transmitted

disease annually.

“Heterosexual teenage football players who are healthy and drink milk can

get it too!” says the 71-year-old actress, who has singlehandedly raised $150

million for AIDS research. “But teens are very ignorant and feel invincible. They

believe there’s an invisible shield protecting them from the virus, when it’s

actually aimed right at them.”

Taylor believes in addressing the problem head-on: “Tell your teenage son:

‘Maybe a condom doesn’t feel as good, but if it saves your life, it’s better than

being six feet under.’ Intelligence must replace random sex.”

Although a new generation of AIDS-fighting medications is prolonging the

lives of thousands, nearly half of the 900,000 people infected with HIV in the

U.S. cannot afford these drugs. Since the virus was discovered in l981, 410,800

Americans have died from AIDS-related complications, and the disease has left

13.9 million dead worldwide.

Who Calls a Hotline?

Not long ago I took a call from a 15-year-old boy living in a small town who

said he feels guilty about his sexual attraction to other boys and is scared to

discuss this with his parents. I ask him if there’s a school counselor or relative

he might talk to, but he says he’s too afraid to confide in anyone.

Being a teenager is hard enough, I thought, without the pressure of

keeping this kind of secret. I felt angry and saddened that this child can’t

comfortably discuss his feelings with his own parents.

I encourage him to call the Gay Community Center Youth Program in a

nearby city. In the meantime, I assured him that he could call our Hotline

anytime, that we’d be there for him.

This call was typical of the many we get from teenagers,whispering from

their parents’ homes, confiding their blossoming sexual feelings and concerns.

Our Hotline also receives calls from married men who phone from their offices,

worried about extramarital sexual encounters; gay men suffering side effects

from medications; mothers caring for a sick child or grieving for one lost to

AIDS; even health care professionals themselves confused and requiring

burnout support.

One particular morning, I’m struck by the number of single women who

turn to our hotline for help. At 10:15 a.m. a distraught young woman calls,

explaining that she had been dating someone “very charismatic,” after a two-

year period of sexual abstinence.

“At first we used condoms and I was taking the pill to avoid pregnancy,” she

says. But after her partner assured her he was HIV-negative, the couple began

having unprotected sex. A few months into the relationship, she recounts, his

behavior became “unpredictable,” until he finally admitted he was sleeping with

other women and was addicted to heroin. Now she has to withstand the

“terror” of waiting 3 months before getting an HIV antibody test. To help her

cope, I give her the names of three terapists in her area. The call lasts 43

minutes.

At 11:15 a.m. I take a call from a woman who is breathing heavily.

She says that four months earlier she’d had a brief affair with a limousine

driver, “not out of passion, but because I felt lonely. This was so totally unlike

me,” she continues. “I come from a traditional Orthodox Jewish family…”

Although they used condoms, and she has since tested negative for HIV, she

feels deeply ashamed, and has stopped seeing him. And because she has both

a persistent vaginal yeast infection and a rash on her neck, she’s convinced she

must be infected by HIV.

Although rashes, high fever, swollen lymph glands, heavy night sweats, sore

throat, or other flu-like symptoms may indicate HIV, they can just as easily

accompany the common cold or flu, or other type of infection. I encourage her

to seek medical help and counseling, but the calls ends on a down note. “I

must have it [AIDS],” she moans. I’m exasperated because it doesn’t sound

that way to me, yet I can’t get through to her. The call lasts 22 minutes.

It’s 11.38 a.m. when a well-spoken woman, who says she’s an attorney,

calls from her office, asking for the names of anonymous testing sites. At first

very businesslike, she calmly takes down all the information. I ask her why

she’s considering a test. Total silence. Then she begins to cry: “I….I can’t

talk….I’m sorry…you see, I have swollen lymph glands….[crying]….And my

doctor wants to rule out HIV…I feel overwhelmed…” Then, abruptly: “Where

can I send a donation?” She thanks me and hurries off the phone after just 3

minutes.

These were one-time callers, but, as in any epidemic, an element of panic

prevails, and our hotline also attracts an army of “chronic” or repeat callers

who are intensely fearful no matter how benign their risk, many revealing

continued misconceptions and paranoia about a disease that can be effectively

prevented. We do our best to help them, but often they’re impervious to

counseling.

Most poignant are calls we get from AIDS patients, phoning from their

hospital beds, attempting to navigate the exhausting labyrinth of insurance

and health care matters. One man, in hospice care, said he craved

companionship and missed the “good old days” when he was handsome and

healthy.

That call was a tough one for me as just the day before a close friend of

mine, Joe, who had battled HIV for 16 years, had finally succumbed. Although

at the end Joe was a mere skeleton, he was nonetheless at peace. “I’ve done

what I wanted to,” he told me on our last visit. An avid gardener, he insisted

on a final trip to his country house to see his garden one last time. For a

moment the caller’s reality and the memory of my deceased friend blurred in

my mind and I was overcome. Time for a break.

Face to Face

One of the most and unique services GMHC offers is called “A-Team

Counseling,” a one-time, in-person session that’s free and anonymous.

Recently, I was on an A-Team counselling a 26-year-old HIV-infected

mother from the Midwest. She had traveled to Manhattan by bus to find her

estranged boyfriend, who, she recounted tearfully, had kidnapped her 7-year-

old son. Disheveled, painfully thin, the woman was a disturbing sight. She’s

learned that the two had already returned home where the boyfriend was, and

the child put in his grandmother’s custory. custody of his grandmother.

Meanwhile she’d run out of money for the return trip, been refused a loan by

her family, lost her ID, gone hungry and spent two nights on the street.

Fortunately, this woman was registered at a local AIDS organization in her

town. I telephoned her caseworker and persuaded him to buy her a one-way

Greyhound bus ticket for $115.00. I also gave her subway tokens, a basket of

food, juice and coffee. Smiling shyly, she thanked me for caring.

Shaking hands good-bye with this woman was a bittersweet farewell. What

will happen to her? I wondered will her health deteriorate or improve? Will she

gain control of her life and be able to provide for her son? I’ll never know. One

thing I do know: She’d appeared with the sorrow of a difficult life in her eyes,

but when she left, she was elated at the thought of being reunited with her

child. It seems that with faith and a helping hand, almost anything is possible.

* * * * *

10 BIGGEST MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT AIDS AND HIV

(This list would probably be most effective when presented in a vertical chart,

the misconception on the left, the correct answer on the right.)

1)The AIDS virus can be transmitted through saliva, sweat, tears, urine or feces;

also through deep kissing.

1) HIV can ONLY be transmitted through four bodily fluids: blood, semen,

vaginal secretions and breast milk–and can also be transmitted from a mother

to her child before birth, during birth, or while breast feeding. The exchange

of saliva through kissing is no-risk, unless the saliva has blood in it and both

you and your partner are bleeding in the mouth simultaneously.

2) HIV may also be transmitted through casual contact with an infected person.

2) You can’t get infected from toilet seats, phones or water fountains. The virus

can’t be transmitted in the air through sneezing or coughing. You can’t get

HIV from sharing utensils or food or from touching, or hugging. HIV dies after

being exposed to the air. Therefore, touching dried blood on a shaving blade, a

toothbrush or a bathroom counter top is no risk. In any case, unbroken skin is

impermeable, like a rubber raincoat, and cannot absorb the virus whether it’s

alive or dead.

Blood transfusions and medical procedures in the U.S. are safe. Giving blood is

completely risk-free. The chance of getting HIV from dentists or other health

care providers is too low even to measure.You can’t get it from mosquitoes or

other insect or animal bites.

3) Oral sex is just as risky as vaginal or anal intercourse.

3) Although not 100% risk-free, oral sex is considered a low-risk

activity,except if: you have bleeding gums, recent dental work, open sores such

as a herpes lesion, any cut, blister, or burn in the mouth, or if you’ve just

brushed or flossed your teeth. Also, oral sex with an infected woman is riskier

if she is having her period, since menstrual blood can contain HIV. Overall,

latex barriers, (such as condoms or dental dams) used during oral sex reduce

the  transmission  of not just HIV, but other sexual transmitted diseases.

4) Animal skin, latex and polyurethane condoms are all equally effective in

preventing HIV infection and you can use ANY lubrication on the condom

desired.

4)Only latex or polyurethane condoms may be used, as HIV can pass through

an animal skin condom. With latex condoms, only water-based lubricants–like

K-Y jelly or H-R jelly–may be used. No lubricants with oil, alcohol, or grease

are safe.Petroleum jelly,Vaseline, Crisco, mineral oil, baby oil, massage oil,

butter and most hand creams can weaken the condom and cause it to split.

However, with polyurethane condoms, petroleum-based lubricants can be

used.

5) Women have to rely on men using condoms during intercourse to protect

themselves against HIV.

5) Women may employ the “female condom,” a plastic sheath that can be

inserted in their vaginas and used for protection against HIV. It can be inserted

up to 8 hours before sex, has rings at both ends to hold it in place and can be

lubricated with oil-based lubricants that stay wet longer. In addition, women

can carry conventional condoms for their male partners’ use.

6) If a woman is HIV-positive, her offspring will automatically be born infected

with HIV.

6) With no medical treatment taken, about 25% of HIV-positive women will

give birth to infants who are also infected. However, the use of anti-HIV

medications has resulted in a significant decrease of mother-to-child

 transmission  of HIV in utero and during delivery to less than 5%. (NYT 10/19/

99].

7) AIDS is fundamentally a gay disease contracted by white males.

7) Recent data compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

indicate that young gay Hispanic and African-American men and heterosexual

women are the fastest growing segment of the population being infected with

HIV. Women now account for 43% of all HIV infected people over age 15. [NYT

11/24/98] African-American and Hispanic women account for more than 76%

of AIDS cases among women in the U.S.

8) Heterosexual men are not really at risk for contracting HIV, even if they

don’t use condoms.

8) The inside opening of the penis is composed of highly-absorbent, sponge-

like mucous membrane tissues, which can provide a route for HIV-infected

vaginal secretions or blood to enter the bloodstream. Proper condom use

protects men from infection.

9) The AIDS epidemic is largely over because new AIDS medications like

protease inhibitors and others have turned AIDS into a chronic, not a terminal

disease.

9) In the U.S., AIDS is the fifth leading cause of death for people 25-44 years

old. Roughly half of all those infected with HIV in the U.S. are not receiving any

medications or medical care. AIDS now kills more people worldwide than any

other infection, including malaria and tuberculosis.[NYT 11/24/98] In 1998

alone, 2.5 million people died of AIDS worldwide. 13.9 million people have

died since the virus was discovered in 1981.

10) If you think you’ve been exposed to HIV through unprotected sex, you can

take an HIV antibody test 2 weeks later and get an accurate result.

10) The standard “window” or waiting period remains a full 3 months. However,

because the widely-used HIV antibody tests (The ELISA and Western Blot) have

become so sensitive, about 95% of people will procure an accurate result 4-6

weeks after a possible exposure to the virus.

* * * *

[Note:The information stated above was reviewed for medical accuracy by Dr.

Todd J. Yancey, an infectious disease specialist practicing in New York City and

affiliated with New York Presbyterian Hospital, NY, Cornell Campus.]

THE CHILD LIFE PROGRAM

“Mommy takes a lot of medicine and Mommy’s really tired sometimes and she

can’t take you to the park as much as she used to. It’s not that I don’t love

you…and that I don’t want to…but Uncle Jack’s going to take you to the park

today.” –A mother living with AIDS, a client at GMHC, talking to her 6-year-

old son.

In New York City alone, 28,000 children have been orphaned by AIDS since the

epidemic began [NYT 12/13/98]

GMHC’s unique Child Life Program serves HIV-infected parents and their

children–who may, or may not, be infected with the virus. “We help families

strengthen their ability to cope, relieve the pressure of parenting with support

services, and teach parents how to talk to their kids,” says Child Life Program

Coordinator Alison Ferst. “Unfortunately, should a parent or child be sick

enough to be facing death, we also help them walk through it with grace and

dignity—as opposed to feeling alone, isolated and frightened.

“We also encourage sick parents to make stable legal plans for their

children who may be left behind,” adds Ferst, “and to have disclosure

conversations with the children in advance, so you don’t have a child standing

at her mother’s funeral, not sure where she’s going next.”

When an HIV-infected Mom arrives at GMHC to have lunch, attend a support

group, consult with a lawyer, or access the acupuncture clinic, she can leave

her children in a spacious playroom, decorated with fanciful murals and a giant

tree hand-painted by the famed children’s story writer and illustrator, Maurice

Sendak, who donated his art. [see photos] The program provides: child-

sitting, nutrition services, a food pantry, art and magic classes, and

recreational trips–church picnics, seasonal apple-pumpkin picking,

amusement parks, zoos, museums, beaches. Also: homework help sessions,

holiday parties, hospital visits, summer sports and weekly support groups for

HIV- positive parents and their HIV-negative children.

This unique program also features: Cooking classes for kids who sometimes

prepare meals for sick parents; Pediatric Buddies, GMHC adult volunteers who

play with sick children and also assist with family chores; Fun With Feelings

Support Group, Friday Evening Family Time, Birthday parties, and a Holiday Gift

Drive.

“Children infected or affected by AIDS,” concludes Ferst, “want to be like

other kids: They want to play with their friends, want to know that someone

will always take care of them, want to know they’re not alone, and often

wonder if it’s their fault when Mom or Dad gets sick.” These children need a

helping hand and any of us can provide one.

Tips To Find Best Dental Assistant Programs

Dentistry is an area of medical practice that will always be in demand. Assistants skilled in the field of dentistry are confident about their job prospects. One needs to undertake years of training and learning to get qualified as a full-grown dentist, but if a person, who is looking to exert their energy in an area of less job responsibility than a dentist, then dental assistant programs can be a good choice. Joining the right school with the sound schooling is what makes a great career in healthcare industry worthwhile. Bear the following tips in mind when searching for best dental assistant programs:

Duration of the Course:

Before you put your name for any of the dental assistant programs, you must consider how long the program duration is and how rigorous the training will be. The duration of classic training programs ranges within 6 to 9 months. With a 6-month program as a dental assistant, you can begin earning sooner, but your level of knowledge will be unlike a dental assistant with a 9-month training period, as these encompass a broader range of areas related to dental care under discussion. With one of these longer more in-depth programs, you will be in a better position to get more job opportunities. On the other hand, if you plan to carry on with advanced dental schooling in future, a program of lesser duration can prove sufficient to grant you the certification you need. Even if you do not intend to go on to higher education, a fundamental 6-month training gives you an opportunity to participate in placement programs and get you a good job.

What Is The Teaching Method Used?

Regardless of your choice of a six-month or nine-month dental assistant programs, you must ensure that the training blends wide-ranging education points and purposes, dedicated lecturing and practical training. This practical training part is supposed to be the central feature for you to try to find, as here they prepare you for the real thing via this facet of schooling. With practical training, you will be all geared-up when starting to work at dental clinics, hospitals and miscellaneous healthcare centers soon after your education.

What Is The Course Syllabus Made Up Of?

There are many facets concerning dental assistant programs. As healthcare is a serious question of public interest, suitable and appropriate training is indispensable to ensure that patient care and safety is not compromised in any way. Each patient deserves to get the best possible care. Thus, you must search for a training program that will educate you in the following crucial areas: (dental/medical) urgent situations, skiagraphy, dental orthopedics, dental terms and expressions, tooth morphology, disease   transmission , clinical procedures, oral surgery and preventive dentistry and nutrition.