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Friday, September 5, 2008

What can you do about common ailments

As a parent, at one time or another, we are likely to experience or notice our loved our experiencing common symptoms such as aches, runny nose or vomiting. In most cases, ones body can overcome the symptoms by applying simple self-care. However, at times, professional care is needed. Read the signs that your body gives you when you or your loved one is sick and decide whether you can use over- the counter medicines or need to see the doctor.

For the next few Fridays, I will touch on common ailments that affect us explaining about the symptoms, what to do for each ailments, how to prevent it, when to see the doctor and when it is an emergency. The information I am sharing is from a booklet from Health Promotion Board, Singapore. I have found the information very useful and would like to share it with my friends.


For today, lets look at : Abdominal Pain / Indigestion
Abdominal Pain

Abdominal pain or indigestion can be due to

* Excessive acid in the stomach due to drinking, smoking, overeating and mental stress

* irritations caused by taking spicy food or medicines such as aspirin

* infection (bacterial or viral).

Symptom you should watch out for are:

* stomach discomfort or pain
*loss of appetite or unbearable hunger
*bloating and burping
*nausea and / or vomiting.


What you can do

* Avoid solid food on the first day of attack. Eat bland food such as porridge and bread.

* Take antacids or milk to ease the discomfort. Avoid coffee and alcohol.

* Rest and avoid stressful situations.


You can prevent indigestion by:

1. Taking you meals regularly

2. Not overeating

3. Quitting or cutting down on drinking alcohol or coffee and cigarette smoking

4. managing mental stress.


When to see your doctor
See your family doctor

See your family doctor when:

* The symptoms occur regularly
* There is pain or vomiting that lasts more than a few hours
* There is significant loss or weight.

When it is an emergency

Go to the Emergency Department when:

* The symptoms do not subside in spite of medication given by your family doctor

* The symptoms are associated with sweating, breathlessness or nausea

* Vomiting does not subside

* Stools are bloody or black in colour

* There is blood in the vomitus

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