April Health news

Bowel cancer

April is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month. Bowel cancer is the UK’s second biggest cancer killer. However, if diagnosed early, nine out of 10 people will survive: https://www.bowelcanceruk.org.uk/

Bowel cancer can have some symptoms you might find embarrassing, but if you are at all concerned, you should make an appointment to see your GP, they’ve seen it all before.

If you’re over 50 in Scotland, or over 60 in England, Wales and NI, and under 74, you should receive a bowel cancer screening kit through the post every 2 years if you are registered with a GP.https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/about-cancer/bowel-cancer/getting-diagnosed/screening

There are some things that make you more likely to get bowel cancer. These are…

  • Aged over 50
  • A strong family history of bowel cancer
  • A history of non-cancerous growths (polyps) in your bowel
  • Longstanding inflammatory bowel disease such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • An unhealthy lifestyle


You can take action to reduce your risk of Bowel Cancer

  • Avoid processed meat and eat less red meat
  • Maintain a healthy body weight
  • Be more physically active in your everyday life
  • Eat plenty of wholegrains, pulses, veg and fruit
  • Limit your intake of alcohol
  • Don’t smoke
  • Use your bowel cancer screening kit


Stress Awareness Month

April is Stress Awareness Month. Do you know whether you are suffering from stress? https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/understanding-stress/#symptoms-of-stress

There are some ways you can help to reduce your stress levels. Long-term stress can be damaging to your health. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/reduce-stress/

The type of relaxation or mindfulness you should try to de-stress depends on the type of person that you are.

7th April is World Health Day:
This World Health Day, the World Health Organisation is raising awareness of universal health coverage. This aims to ensure that all people have access to the healthcare that they need. At present only half of the world’s population do. #HealthForAll https://www.who.int/campaigns/world-health-day/world-health-day-2019

In the UK we are fortunate to have a health care system which is ‘free at the point of need’. It’s important to remember what equality in healthcare looks like in the NHS.https://www.england.nhs.uk/about/equality/equality-hub/edc/pfd/

1st to 7th April Diabetes Awareness Week (Type 2):
Around 200,000 people are diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes every year – you don’t need to be one of them.

Make small changes to your lifestyle now and start your journey to a healthier you with the healthier you: #T2Diabetes prevention programme #PreventingType2 @NHSDiabetesProg

It’s #T2Diabetes prevention week from 1-7 April 2019. Go to www.riskscore.diabetes.co.uk to get an estimate of your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. If you think you might be at risk, ask at your GP practice about your local healthier you service #PreventingType2 @NHSDiabetesProg

Aged between 40-74? Take up the offer of a free NHS Health Check to assess your risk of Type 2 diabetes and other diseases. You’ll be given advice to help you lower these risks such as information about your local healthier you: NHS #T2Diabetes prevention programme #PreventingType2 @NHSDiabetesProg

Did you know? The average person diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in their 50s is likely to die six years earlier than someone without the condition.

Find out your risk of Type 2 diabetes by using the Diabetes UK know your risk tool at https://riskscore.diabetes.org.uk/start #PreventingType2 @NHSDiabetesProg

7th to 13th April – World Allergy Week:
This year the World Allergy Organisation is raising awareness of food allergies.

Did you know that there are two types of reaction to allergens in food? https://www.kidswithfoodallergies.org/page/what-is-a-food-allergy.aspx

Do you know what the 14 most common food allergens are? They aren’t all what you might expect, and they appear in many foods even those you might not expect.https://www.food.gov.uk/sites/default/files/media/document/top-allergy-types.pdf

11th April is World Parkinson’s Awareness Day:
11th April is Parkinson’s Awareness Day. Do you know what Parkinson’s is? https://www.parkinsons.org.uk/information-and-support/what-parkinsons

Parkinson’s is a serious neurological condition. There is no known cure and symptoms get progressively worse over time. There are several conditions which have similar symptoms, collectively known as Parkinson’s. https://www.parkinsons.org.uk/information-and-support/types-parkinsons

The search for a cure for Parkinson’s disease is ongoing and you can find out how you can get involved here: https://www.parkinsons.org.uk/get-involved

17th April World Haemophilia Day:
17th April is World Haemophilia Day. In people who have haemophilia, blood does not clot properly causing problems if they are injured.

Did you know that there are a number of different types of bleeding disorder. Some are so rare that they have only been discovered in the last 40 years.

If you are a parent or carer of a child living with haemophilia, this game may help your child to understand more about their condition https://elearning.wfh.org/resource/hemoaction-playing-cards-2/

24th to 30th April – European Immunisation Week:
European Immunisation Week is dedicated to raising awareness of the benefits of immunisation for the individual and the community as a whole.

In the US, a county in New York State recently declared an outbreak emergency for Measles.

Did you know that one of the benefits to the community of immunisation is herd immunity? Herd immunity happens when a high percentage of the population is protected through vaccination against a virus or bacteria, it makes it difficult for the virus to spread as there are so few people left who could catch the disease. https://www.vaccinestoday.eu/stories/what-is-herd-immunity/

Smallpox was a destructive virus with a mortality rate around 30%. The Smallpox vaccination was incredibly successful and resulted in the eradication of the disease globally in 1979. This demonstrates the effectiveness of a vaccination programme with high uptake.

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