Health news for February

February is officially the coldest month of the year. For sufferers of Raynaud’s, this can be an incredibly difficult time. You can check the symptoms of Raynaud’s here: https://www.sruk.co.uk/raynauds/what-raynauds/

Do you suffer from cold hands and feet? Do they change colour or cause pain in the cold? You can check whether you may have Raynaud’s here https://www.sruk.co.uk/raynauds/raynauds-test/

If you suffer from Raynaud’s there are some things that you can do to help with your symptoms. Avoid cold and fluctuations in temperature. Wear lots of thin layers and loose clothing to maintain insulation. Wear gloves when you are outside in the cold. Hand warmers and thick socks can also help. For more ideas and information see here: https://www.sruk.co.uk/raynauds/managing-raynauds/

Have you ever been tempted to ‘Google’ your health condition, or have you used the Internet to try and check what your symptoms might mean? You might be interested to know that the NHS have developed a standard which you can look for to ensure that the content you are looking at is current and accurate. https://www.england.nhs.uk/tis/about/the-info-standard/

Do you know why it’s important to keep warm over winter? If you are over 65, or vulnerable for another reason, then you are more susceptible to problems caused by cold weather. We have some useful information here https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/keep-warm-keep-well/

4th February is World cancer day. This is a disease that affects millions of people in the UK each year. This year, Cancer Research are fundraising through unity bands. Why not try stacking them up for a stylish statement. http://www.cancerresearchuk.org/support-us/donate/world-cancer-day

38% of cancer cases are preventable. Find out what you can do to reduce your risk here. https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/about-cancer/causes-of-cancer/cancer-risk-health-quiz

Every year 360,000 people in the UK are diagnosed with cancer. Macmillan does a fantastic job of supporting sufferers, their families and friends. You can find out more about the vital work that Macmillan does here: https://www.macmillan.org.uk/about-us/index.html

OCD can be very misunderstood, it isn’t all about counting and hand washing. Families and friends often struggle to understand sufferers’ compulsions. If you think you know someone who is affected, you can find out more here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/obsessive-compulsive-disorder-ocd/

Do you sometimes have obsessive thoughts or struggle to manage everyday tasks without checking repeatedly that they have been done? If you are concerned that your thoughts or checking might be affecting your life there is a simple quiz to help you make sense of it here: http://www.ocdaction.org.uk/do-i-have-ocd
If you are still concerned, you should speak to your GP who will be able to offer help and advice.

Are you over 65, pregnant, or have a chronic health condition, such as asthma, COPD or diabetes? If so, you should be eligible for a Flu vaccine if you haven’t already had one. Time is running out to get your vaccine for this year, so please contact the practice to check if you are eligible, and to book an appointment.

Flu is a really unpleasant illness, and Dr Chris Smith talks here about the £20 note test. There really is quite a big difference between colds and flu. Find out all about it here https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/2XXmw4tLK39hdmtMtx9DFZ8/six-questions-about-cold-and-flu

Let’s sock it to eating disorders. It’s eating disorders week, could you wear your funkiest socks (and no, we don’t mean funky smelling) to support this fantastic charity? https://fundraising.beateatingdisorders.org.uk/page/35328/data/1?ea.tracking.id=carousel

There are some well- known types of eating disorder, which include anorexia and bulimia. There are other less well-known eating disorders, such as pica (eating non-food items with no nutritional value) and avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder (very selective eating in either quantity or types of food), referred to as ARFID. You can find out more about the different types of eating disorder here: https://www.beateatingdisorders.org.uk/types

If you are worried about someone who you think may have an eating disorder or are currently supporting someone who you know does, there is support available here: http://www.anorexiabulimiacare.org.uk/family-and-friends/parents

The first rare disease day was 29th February 2008, a rare day. It falls each year on the last day of February. Some diseases are so rare that there are few sufferers in the world, and may, therefore, take a long time to diagnose. If few people suffer from a disease, there may be little funding available to help research into the causes and treatments available. It is estimated that 1 in 20 people will be diagnosed with a rare disease in their lifetime. Find out more here: https://www.raredisease.org.uk/

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