Medical Hotline: May 2006

 
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Headache

Trying to detect a cause for migraine is the first step to eliminating it. Many people are sensitive to chocolate, citrus fruits, certain chemicals and drinks. Others will react to thunderstorms! The triptoh family of migraine medication, although expensive, is often effective, and sumatriptan and zolmitriptan work well. Doctors will often recommend two aspirin, best with metoclopramide (which allows the aspirin to pass through the stomach valve) either as a tablet or an injection. Feverfew leaf has been found to help.

Hangover Buster

People report that their hangovers becomes worse as they get older, even those in their mid-30s. With age, the body is less resilient and increasingly less tolerant of stuff it isn’t meant to have. Alcohol is a toxin, which reacts on all parts of the body, but especially the brain cells. It kills a certain number each time you drink, and dehydrates others. If you do drink, then also have a lot of water, as well as taking a vitamin complex tablet daily, with emphasis on vitamin B1 , which can be swept from the body by alcohol.

For Frayed Nerves

Some people still use Valium for their nerves. Although it has been around 20 or more years, it is now out of favour as a nerve calmer, as it is quite addictive, and other better alternatives are available. Although an improvement on the barbiturates, which they replaced, they are only used as a shortterm treatment. There are methods other than drugs for the treatment of the condition, such as behavioural therapy, which has no side effects.

Which Worm?

Worms found in fruit, if eaten, don’t survive in the digestive tract. Fruit worms are quickly killed by the acid in the stomach, so do no harm! Intestinal worms, especially threadworm, are common in children, but these are a different, unrelated kind. They are readily transmitted by touching infected objects, often at school, where their eggs cling to unwashed little fingers to be transmitted to the mouth. They can be easily treated with Vermox or Combantrin.

Normal BP

What is a “normal” blood pressure? Ideally, around 135/85, but some doctors say even less. Above these figures, negative outcomes are more likely. There are many simple tips to lower an elevated BP. Begin by losing weight and taking more exercise; cut out alcohol and have less salt. These measures can drop BP from five to 20 points. If your BP is a problem, you may want to take your own BP using a manual sphygmomanometer. Record the results to show the doctor on your next visit. BP will often jump up under the stress of visiting a surgery.

Bowel Issue

Many haemorrhoid suffers respond to simple measures. Constipation causes most of the problems, so adding more fibre to one’s daily diet is a first-stop measure. Including plenty of fruit, vegies, and legumes are good for everyone, however, as is drinking a lot of fluids. Figs, sultanas, prunes, dates and other fresh and dried fruits are also effective. Powdered psyllium dissolved in water will often resolve the condition. Many creams help them shrink. Other easy measures include avoiding standing for long hours on hard surfaces.