Website maps what Americans look for in love

Website maps what Americans look for in love
By Karin Zeitvogel (AFP)

WASHINGTON — In the cosmopolitan US capital, singles are seeking everything from "Morocco" to "Ethiopia", "Kazakhstan" and "steppes", to "Ascot" and "Bourgogne."

In oil-town Houston, lonely hearts are looking for "rich" "entrepreneurs", while in remote Maine, they desire "unmanly" "vampiric" types.

Those are the words that come up most often on the profiles people write to describe themselves and their ideal soulmate when they join a dating site.

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Artist and composer R. Luke DuBois has put them together to form an interactive map of lovelorn America.

DuBois joined 21 online dating services to craft his project, called "A More Perfect Union," which maps the entire United States, replacing the names of towns, cities and neighborhoods with the words people use most on matchmaker sites to say who they are and who they want to be with.

"A More Perfect Union" is a census of people's longings, fantasies and even their dark sides -- like the people or person in Colorado who used "killed" most often on dating sites, and the one in Utah who was looking for "dead."
DuBois did not attempt to explain why American lonely hearts use certain words over and over again. He just mapped them.

He said his lonely hearts census paints a better picture of who Americans are than the official census carried out every 10 years by the US government, which "gives us insight into our income, jobs, homes, ages, and backgrounds."

"What if, instead of looking at whether we own or rent our homes, we looked at what people do on a Saturday night?

"What if, instead of tallying ancestry or the type of industry in which we work, we found out what kind of person we want to love?" wondered DuBois.

The maps contain "20,262 unique words, based on the analysis of online dating profiles from 19,095,414 single Americans," he said.

"Each word appears in the place it's used more frequently than anywhere else in the country."
Words are enlarged by mousing over them, although some of the maps -- such as the one of New York City -- are illegible.

On the easier-to-read state maps, DuBois's research tells us that people in the eastern part of Wisconsin are looking for "blindfolded" "German" "brewers" with a "saloon" and a "suntan", while residents of the Maryland suburbs of Washington are seeking "excitement" with an "interesting", "presidential" "senator".

In Massachusetts, "rugby", "avocados", "asses" and "Irish" are among qualities being looked for in a potential mate.

Southern Californians seek "artistic" "writers" with "tattoos," who are into "acting", "film" or "entertainment".

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Senokot (senna)

Senokot (senna)

Main use Active ingredient Manufacturer
Constipation Senna Reckitt Benckiser Healthcare

How does it work?
Senokot tablets, max strength tablets and syrup all contain the active ingredient senna, which is a type of medicine called a stimulant laxative. It is used to treat constipation. (NB. Senna is also available without a brand name, ie as the generic medicine.).

Senna works by stimulating the nerve endings in the walls of the large intestine (colon) and rectum. This causes the muscles in the intestinal wall to contract more often and with increased force. When these muscles contract (a process known as peristalsis), this moves the contents of the intestine through the colon to the rectum so that the bowel can be emptied. This relieves constipation.

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Senna contains sennosides which are activated by the natural bacteria that are found in the colon, so it does not start working until it reaches this part of the gut. As senna increases the activity of the muscle in the gut it can cause stomach cramps.

Senokot tablets and syrup start to work eight to twelve hours after you take them. The recommended dose should be taken at night to produce relief from constipation the following morning.

What is it used for?

You should not take this medicine if you have severe abdominal pain together with feeling sick and vomiting, as this could indicate that you have a more serious condition that needs investigating. Consult your doctor instead.
You should make sure that you drink plenty of fluids while taking this medicine, as this will also help the constipation.

If you don't have a bowel movement after three days of taking this medicine you should consult your doctor. If you find you need to use a laxative every day you should consult your doctor so that the cause of the constipation can be investigated. Laxatives should not be used on a continuous basis for longer than seven days without consulting your doctor.

Prolonged, excessive use of laxatives can lead to chronic diarrhoea, low potassium levels in the blood (hypokalaemia) and an imbalance in the amount of fluid and salts (electrolytes) in your body, particularly if you are also taking diuretic or steroid medicines. This can cause kidney problems, amongst others. Prolonged, excessive use may also make the constipation worse in the long-term, as the gut can become reliant on the laxative.

Use with caution in
People who have recently had surgery on the bowel.

Not to be used in
People with a blockage in the gut (intestinal obstruction).
People with a colostomy or ileostomy.

People with any bleeding from the stomach or intestine.
Senokot tablets are not recommended for children under six years of age. Senokot syrup should not be used in children under two years of age, unless on the advice of a doctor. (NB. When treating constipation in children older than this you should always seek the advice of a doctor first.)

This medicine should not be used if you are allergic to one or any of its ingredients. Please inform your doctor or pharmacist if you have previously experienced such an allergy.

If you feel you have experienced an allergic reaction, stop using this medicine and inform your doctor or pharmacist immediately.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding
Certain medicines should not be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding. However, other medicines may be safely used in pregnancy or breastfeeding providing the benefits to the mother outweigh the risks to the unborn baby. Always inform your doctor if you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, before using any medicine.

This medicine is not known to be harmful if taken during pregnancy. However, as with all medicines, you should seek medical advice from your doctor before taking this medicine if you are pregnant, particularly if you are in your first trimester. Other methods of relieving constipation may be more suitable for you.

There are no known harmful effects when this medicine is used by breastfeeding mothers.

Side effects
Medicines and their possible side effects can affect individual people in different ways. The following are some of the side effects that are known to be associated with this medicine. Just because a side effect is stated here does not mean that all people using this medicine will experience that or any side effect.

Stomach pain and cramps.

Excessive use can cause diarrhoea and low levels of potassium in the blood (see warning above). You should not exceed the recommended dose.

The side effects listed above may not include all of the side effects reported by the medicine's manufacturer.

For more information about any other possible risks associated with this medicine, please read the information provided with the medicine or consult your doctor or pharmacist.

How can this medicine affect other medicines?
This medicine is not known to affect other medicines. However, if you are already taking any other medicines, including those bought without a prescription and herbal medicines, you should ask your pharmacist for advice before taking this one as well.
Other medicines containing the same active ingredient

Ex-Lax senna
Senna tablets and syrup are also available without a brand name, ie as the generic medicine.


pronounced as(lak' tyoo lose)

Lactulose is a synthetic sugar used to treat constipation. It is broken down in the colon into products that pull water out from the body and into the colon. This water softens stools. Lactulose is also used to reduce the amount of ammonia in the blood of patients with liver disease. It works by drawing ammonia from the blood into the colon where it is removed from the body.

This medication is sometimes prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

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How should this medicine be used?
Lactulose comes as liquid to take by mouth. It usually is taken once a day for treatment of constipation and three or four times a day for liver disease. Your prescription label tells you how much medicine to take at each dose. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take lactulose exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.

What special precautions should I follow?

Before taking lactulose, tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to lactulose or any other drugs.

tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications you are taking, especially antacids, antibiotics including neomycin (Mycifradin), and other laxatives.
tell your doctor if you have diabetes or require a low-lactose diet.
tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking lactulose, call your doctor.
if you are having surgery or tests on your colon or rectum, tell the doctor that you are taking lactulose.

What should I do if I forget a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.

What side effects can this medication cause?
Lactulose may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:

Common side effects are abdominal cramping, borborygmus, gas and pungent flatulence that some people find difficult to control in social situations. Excessively high dosage can cause explosive and uncontrollable diarrhea, and possibly vomiting. In normal individuals, overdose is considered uncomfortable, but not life threatening. Uncommon normal side effects are nausea and vomiting.

In sensitive individuals, such as the elderly or people with reduced kidney function, excess dosage can result in dehydration and electrolytic disturbances such as high sodium levels.

If you have any of the following symptoms, stop taking lactulose and call your doctor immediately:

stomach pain or cramps

If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online [at http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch] or by phone [1-800-332-1088].

What storage conditions are needed for this medicine?
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.

What other information should I know?
Keep all appointments with your doctor.

To improve the taste of lactulose, mix your dose with one-half glass of water, milk, or fruit juice.

Do not let anyone else take your medicine. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.

It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.

Brand names
Cholac® Syrup
Constilac® Syrup
Evalose® Syrup