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Issue 11 | summer 2016




Be personal 2



YOUR EXPERTS Your questions

Interact 3

INTERCARE News & events


SNIPPETS Latest health news


RECIPE PAGE Strawberry Avocado Spinach Chicken Salad

Your body 10



INFOGRAPHIC It's allergy season FIRST AID Test your knowledge

From the experts 6 KNOW IT ALL

Gut bacteria and the brain

16 INTERCARE Salubrity Caring for diabetes in your loved one

18 TRAVELGROUND Luxury glamping


Rock your New Year's resolutions

Your health 12 NEED TO KNOW A silent killer


Back-to-school health checks


Getting enough ZZZZZ's

yo u. .. W e wa nt to hentsarandfrcusom to air their ers tom



ite all patie We would like to inv ing this magazine. us with input regard e vid views and pro will then be able remain relevant and In doing so, we can at healthcare gre a e eat “cr and to make a difference Please email us at er” on a daily basis. experience altogeth ce@ en eri OR myexp ideas and topics you with any suggestions, d about. rea would like to ORIAL ENQUIRIES ADVERTISING & EDIT ng: Health-B ytes Publishi health-b 021 913 0504 | christa@ Grobler ista Chr or Publishing edit : Bernette Becker Design - Health-B ytes t | Printing BusinessPrin Proofing Albert Buhr

ADVERTISING: Language FREE copies of Bod y rcare are distributed at Inte tres. Medical and Dental Cen act cont se To advertise, plea ent. our advertising departm

CEO message



Thinking and acting differently is what makes Intercare unique. Whether it's new innovative procedures offered at our state-of-the-art day hospitals, acquiring technologically advanced equipment for medical and dental centres, or the development of a world-class healthcare centre, we put patients first in all we do. We strive to offer our patients a great healthcare experience and as such liaise with them to determine their needs and to ensure that our service delivery is exceptional. We invite our patients to continue sharing their experiences with us at Intercare remains on trend, and with a total of 25 facilities countrywide, we are one of the leading forces in South Africa’s healthcare industry. Not only did we open our 17th

Thinking and acting differently is what makes Intercare unique. We put patients first in all we do. medical centre in Panorama, Cape Town in June this year, but also launched our first Urgent Care facility in Northriding, Johannesburg on 3 November. People with minor injuries, or who require immediate treatment for acute illnesses, can now receive medical care from professional, experienced doctors without having to make an appointment or a trip to a hospital or ER. No appointments needed – just walk in. It is with great expectations that we are looking forward to the opening of a healthcare centre at 200 Rivonia Road, Morningside towards the middle of 2017. The centre will include an Intercare Medical & Dental Centre, Day Hospital and Sub-Acute & Rehabilitation Hospital as well as a large Dischem pharmacy, Oncology Centre and a Skin Renewal Clinic. In addition, we will open yet another Medical and Dental Centre in Forrest Hill, Centurion in September next year. Our success is built on the support of our patients and for that we thank you. However, the success would also not have been possible without the efforts of our health professionals, team members and business associates, and I wish to sincerely thank each and every one for your dedication, initiative and hard work. We look forward to your continuous support as we enter an exciting 2017.

At this time, I would like to wish you all a blessed and healthy holiday season filled with peace, joy and precious family time. Warmest Regards Dr Hendrik Hanekom Chief Executive – Intercare Group

NEWS AND EVENTS nf er en ce I nt er ca re Bi -A nn ua l Co

“Captain” Hendrik Hanekom

Delegates having fun

Lucky Draw...

Delegates having fun

The theme of the conference was “Time to Fly” and it was presented as if delegates boarded a flight as passengers. The “flight” took off with a welcoming message by the Captain of Flight Intercare 2016, Dr Hendrik Hanekom, Chief Executive of the Intercare Group, whereafter a number of renowned speakers such as Dr Ryan Noach, Deputy CEO, Discovery Health and Dr Azar Jammine, Director and Chief Economist at Econometrix addressed the delegates. Hannes van Wyk and Marietta Kruger acted as MCs at the conferences.

Great entertainment

Winner of the MSC cruise to the Portuguese islands is Dr Moekie Stampa, dentist at Intercare Gonubie!

Op en in g of I nt er ca re Ur ge nt Ca re N or th rid in g

The 2016 Intercare Conference for the coastal region was held from 27 – 28 August 2016 at the Spier Wine Estate, Stellenbosch, and for the inland region from 3 – 4 September 2016 at Mount Grace Country House, Magaliesburg. It was attended by general practitioners, dentists, practice and hospital managers, Intercare management and representatives from participating pharmaceutical companies.

There was some serious conferencing, networking and informative talks by the pharmaceutical industry and also great entertainment provided by Cipla Medpro – the Platinum sponsor of the conference. To add spice to the conference there were lucky draws with fabulous prizes such as a four-day cruise to the Portuguese islands.

Intercare’s first standalone Urgent Care facility opened its doors in Northlands Corner Shopping Centre in Northriding, Johannesburg on 3 November 2016. The facility fills the gap between the normal doctor's rooms and traditional hospital-based emergency rooms by offering walk-in care and the immediate treatment of acute illnesses or injuries – those that can’t wait until the next day. Operating hours during the week are Monday to Friday from 07h00 to 21h00 and on weekends and public holidays from 09h00 to 21h00. A fully-fledged pharmacy and secure parking is also available. Intercare strives to be a leader in the evolution of healthcare in South Africa and the opening of this facility is proof thereof. Michael du Plooy, Urgent Care Manager & Dr Hendrik Hanekom, Chief Executive, Intercare Group

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honey can give bacteria a beating

A type of honey from New Zealand may be able to beat bacteria, a new study found. If proven

effective, the honey could potentially be used to lower the risk for infections among people using medical devices like catheters. Manuka honey has been used for centuries as a natural remedy, and has been shown in the past to have antibacterial and anti-inflammation effects. In the new study, published in the Journal of Clinical Pathology, researchers looked at whether the honey could prevent bacteria from building up on surfaces, too. Medical devices that go inside a person, like a catheter, can develop biofilms – a layer of bacteria that can attach to surfaces. The problem is that these biofilms can become infection reservoirs, causing health complications. To assess Manuka honey’s potential to lower this risk, the researchers tested its effect on two types of bacteria commonly known to cause UTIs from catheter use: Escherichia coli (E.coli) and Proteus mirabilis.

The researchers found that the honey inhibited the bacteria’s ability to develop into a biofilm, even at the lowest concentration levels. More research will be needed before it’s determined whether honey could work to prevent bacteria buildup on catheters in people. Another bonus for honey, according to the researchers, is that so far, studies suggest bacteria does not develop a resistance to honey. Source:

ANGER MANAGEMENT Learning to MANAGE your anger might extend your life. MEDITATION may help as it can involve training yourself to become less reactive to intense feelings.


walking OR RUNNING.. Just keep exercising.

The holidays are approaching: feasts, parties, weeks of overindulging… but, according to a new study, exercise can protect the body from the harmful effects of brief periods of binge eating. Researchers from the University of Michigan performed a pilot study involving four healthy, lean, active adults between the ages of 21 and 26. For one week, the participants consumed 30 percent more kilojoules than usual. They continued their normal exercise pattern, which included at least 2.5 hours of aerobic activity over a 6-day span. Before and then again after the study period, researchers measured oral glucose tolerance levels, abdominal fat levels, and inflammation markers in blood samples. In people who do not exercise, these levels would be expected to rise after a week of overeating. However, the participants in this study showed no signs of inflammation and no changes in glucose tolerance or fat breakdown. Source: Medical News Today

SICKNESS BENEFITS Morning sickness is associated with a lower risk of miscarriage in women who have had previous losses, according to a study that tracked the symptoms of nearly 800 pregnant women. Those who reported nausea or vomiting were 50 to 75% less likely to miscarry than those who didn’t feel sick. Source: (JAMA Internal Medicine,

Rooibos Tea

SIGNIFICANTLY LOWERS RISK OF TYPE 2 DIABETES Rooibos tea has the potential to delay and prevent the onset and progression of type 2 diabetes (T2D), according to a number of recent studies conducted by the SA Medical Research Council (SAMRC) and their research partners. Prof. Christo Muller, Chief Specialist Scientist at the SAMRC, who has led a number of research projects focusing on the effectiveness of Rooibos in the treatment of T2D, confirms its potential to help control diabetes, in conjunction with healthy lifestyle changes. “Our research found that an aspalathin-enriched extract of green Rooibos effectively lowered raised blood glucose levels in diabetic rats.” Aspalathin is a unique phenolic compound (an element produced by the plant to help protect itself from negative environmental factors), found only in the Rooibos plant (Aspalathus linearis), which has been shown to contribute

significantly to the biological benefits of Rooibos,” explains Muller. Other research at the SAMRC also shows promising cardio-protective benefits of aspalathin in a diabetic heart model. In the most recent study, just completed by Muller and his team of researchers, Rooibos extract achieved significant glucose-lowering results in diabetic non-human primates, which has been described as a breakthrough discovery. These results will be published next year and human trials have been earmarked for 2018. Currently more than 3.5 million South Africans suffer from the condition. Muller says that the development of a Rooibosbased anti-diabetic nutraceutical could be of tremendous value to diabetics

given that it could reduce the risk of some side effects of traditional pharmacological treatments that are currently on the market. The domestic agricultural sector also stands to benefit since SA is currently the sole exporter of Rooibos. The plant grows exclusively in the Cederberg region situated in the northern part of the Western Cape. “Rooibos is a unique South African plant, which offers almost limitless health benefits. The plant’s medicinal properties continue to astound scientists. I believe we’ve only just scratched the surface of Rooibos’ incredible healing potential,” he remarks. HERE ARE SOME OF THE BENEFITS THAT MAY BE DERIVED FROM DRINKING ROOIBOS TEA: • Improved insulin sensitivity • Reduced risk of developing type 2 diabetes • Reduced risk of developing type 2 diabetes associated cardiovascular disease • Maintaining healthy blood pressure • Preventing blood clots Source: Pharmadynamics press release

page 05

know it all

Gut Feeling?

TS C E F F A A I R E T C A B T U HOW G THE BRAIN AND BODY The gut has defences against

cells. So, in a very real sense,

pathogens, but, at the

we are more bacteria than

same time, it encourages

man. Most of our gut bacteria


the survival and growth of

belong to 30 or 40 species,


"healthy" gut bacteria. The

but there can be up to 1000

vast ma jority of these single-

different species in all. Two

celled visitors are based in

thirds of the gut microbiome

the colon, where no less than

is unique to each individual.


1 trillion reside in each gram


of intestinal content and can

Most of us are aware that the


weigh up to 2kg.

bacteria in our gut play an


important role in digestion.

About 40 trillion bacteria call our intestines home.

When the stomach and small

To put that number into

microbes jump in to offer a

perspective, our bodies

helping hand, ensuring we

consist of roughly 30 trillion

get the nutrients we need.

intestine are unable to digest certain foods we eat, gut

In addition, gut bacteria are

might be an important

is unique to us individually –

known to aid the production

factor in inflammatory and

influence our health and risk

of certain vitamins – vitamins

autoimmune conditions such

of disease.

B and K – and play a ma jor

as rheumatoid arthritis.

On the other side of the fence,

are working to find out more

recent research infers that

about how gut bacteria –

an imbalance of gut bacteria

particularly the bacteria that



from Cornell University in

this bacteria to the guts of

More and more studies are

Ithaca, NY, and King's College

mice caused the animals to

looking at the association

London in the UK, found that

gain less weight, indicating

between the gut microbiome

a certain strain of bacteria –

the bacteria may reduce or

and weight gain, with some

Christensenellaceae minuta –

prevent obesity.

scientists suggesting the

was more common in people

makeup of bacteria in the gut

with a low body weight, and

The findings showed that

may influence an individual's

that the presence of this

specific groups of microbes

susceptibility to weight gain

particular strain is highly

living in our gut could be

as well as obesity-related

influenced by genes.

protective against obesity –

role in immune function. Increasingly, researchers

health problems. A study

and that their abundance is

conducted by researchers

What is more, introducing

influenced by our genes.


development of lymphoma,

in mice with a normal gut

Scientists have increasingly

a cancer of the white blood

microbiome. Similar results

investigated the link between

cells. Another 2013 study

were found in another study

gut bacteria and cancer

conducted by UK researchers

by French researchers.

both positive and negative

found that a common gut

in recent years. On the one

bacteria called Helicobacter

An anti-tumour drug –

side, gut bacteria are linked

pylori may cause stomach

cyclophosphamide – was

to cancer development, and

cancer and duodenal ulcers

found to be much less

on the other side research

by deactivating a part of the

effective in mice with limited

has found that gut bacteria

immune system involved in

gut bacteria, compared with

may also be important for

regulating inflammation.

mice with normal gut bacteria.

cancer treatment and aid in

In 2013, a study by

“The research underscores

fighting cancer.

researchers from the

the importance of microbes

National Cancer Institute

in shaping not just our initial

In 2013 US researchers

found that immunotherapy

predisposition to disease,

claimed to discover specific

and chemotherapy were less

but also our recovery from

bacteria in the intestines

effective in mice lacking gut

it,” Harvard University's Peter

– Lactobacillus johnsonii –

bacteria, with such treatments

Turnbaugh told The Scientist.

that may play a role in the

working significantly better

improving the effectiveness of

page 07

know it all Mental Health

controlled by the bacteria

of our microbiome on the

Connections between the

in our bowels. The links

gut-brain axis. In other words,

gut and brain might seem

between our gut and brain

researchers are asking: do the

surprising but we have all

are hormonal, immunological,

bacteria in our gut affect our

experienced it in action. The

and neural, via the central

psychology and behaviour?

relationship between stress,

nervous system and the enteric

Anger, anxiety, stress, sadness

anxiety, and a swift bowel

nervous system, which governs

and excitement can all

movement are no stranger

the function of the gut. The

trigger digestive symptoms,

to anyone. With this in mind,

human gut is often referred

and the other way around.

it is perhaps unsurprising

to as the “second brain” and

Depending on the balance of

that gut bacteria have been

the only organ that possesses

“good” vs “bad” bacteria in

associated with a number

its own independent nervous

the gut, one’s personality can

of mental health problems,


be dominantly aggressive, fearless, calm, or shy.

including anxiety disorders and depression.

Collectively, they are termed the gut-brain axis. These

A study published in the

The interaction between

gut-brain conversations have

journal Psychopharmacology

our brain and gut has been

been studied for some time.

(2014) found that prebiotics

studied for years, but its

However, a new level to this

– carbohydrates that boost

complexities run deeper than

partnership has recently been

healthy bacteria in the gut –

initially thought. It seems that

glimpsed; researchers are

may be effective for reducing

our minds are, in some part,

now considering the influence

stress and anxiety.


A more recent study

Most children on the autistic

Autism is estimated to affect

from the team found that

spectrum (67% and more)

1 in 88 children in South

concentrations of specific

respond well to being on a

Africa. While studies have

chemicals produced by gut

gluten- and casein-free diet.

associated environmental

bacteria – called metabolites

factors – such as pollution

– in faecal samples of

Children with ASD (autistic

– and genetics as potential

children with autism differed

spectrum disorder) have

causes of the disorder,

to the concentrations found in

irritated intestines with or

researchers are increasingly

the faecal samples of children

without hyperpermeability

looking at the role of gut

without the disorder. This led

("leaky gut").

bacteria in its development.

researchers to hypothesize that gut microbes alter the

They often need high doses

In 2013 a study by researchers

metabolites associated with

of probiotics and elimination

from Arizona State University

communication between

of sugar intake to help heal

found that children with

the gut and the brain, which

the gut inflammation and

autism had lower levels of

interferes with brain function.


three types of gut bacteria –

The success of biomedical

Prevotella, Coprococcus and

treatment as part of the

Veillonellaceae – compared

treatment regime for autism

with children without autism.

also strengthens this theory:

The more diverse our gut bacteria, the better!


Can we alter our gut bacteria?

Gut. The gut bacteria of 40

that we understand how best

professional rugby players

to maintain good health.

were compared with that

Never has this been more

Since the gut microbiome is

of two control groups. They

relevant than in respect of

influenced by the food we eat

found that the rugby players

our resident microbiota.

and the environment around

had much higher levels of

Understanding the complex

us, it makes sense that there

Akkermansiaceae in their gut

relationship among what we

are ways to make it healthier.

– a bacterium that has been

choose to eat, activity levels

associated with reduced risk

and gut microbiota richness

of obesity.

is essential. Developing new

According to the Mayo Clinic,

ways to manipulate the

a healthy diet can encourage the presence of good gut

Dr Georgina Hold, of the

beneficial properties of our

bacteria. They note that

Institute of Medical Sciences

microbiota by finding ways

consuming fermented foods –

at Aberdeen University in

to integrate health-promoting

such as miso and sauerkraut

Scotland, noted that a better

properties into modern living

– increases the level of

understanding of ways

should be the goal."

fermenting bacteria in the

to improve health via gut

gut. Exercise may also be key

bacteria is crucial:

to improving gut bacteria diversity, according to a

"As life expectancy continues

study, published in the journal

to increase, it is important

Keep yourself and your gut healthy!

Source: Medical News Today, The Huffington Post, Mayo Clinic

page 09


need to know

Linda*, a mother of two young children and a respected primary school teacher, was experiencing the worst headache of her life. "She said it felt like her head was going to explode," recalls her husband, Tiaan*. Along with her awful headache, she had a stiff neck, a tingling sensation in her face, and sensitivity to light. "The headache would last a couple of hours, and then it would subside for a day or two," Tiaan says. "We talked about her getting it checked out, but she didn't feel like she had time, so we dismissed it." That decision, tragically, would prove fatal when in February 2016 – three weeks after her headaches first began – Linda suffered a ruptured aneurysm. "One thing that has haunted me more than anything else is, how could we not have known?" Tiaan says. "The more I looked into aneurysms, the more I found that there's no one out there talking about them, and there's very little public education about the warning signs."

A silent killer... how to spot a brain aneurysm before it's too late...


ANEURYSM BASICS So what is a brain aneurysm?

Risk factors that develop over time:

It's a weakness in the wall of

• Older age

one of your brain's blood

• Smoking

vessels. As blood flows through

• High blood pressure

your brain, that weakness allows the wall of the vessel to push outward, forming a bulge. Like an over-inflated balloon, that bulge can rupture, which

(hypertension) • Hardening of the arteries (arteriosclerosis) • Drug abuse, particularly the use of cocaine

allows blood to leak out into the

• Head injury

surrounding brain tissue.

• Heavy alcohol consumption • Certain blood infections

But many aneurysms don't rupture, so we never realise we

• Lower oestrogen levels after menopause

have one. Even if an MRI or other imaging scan stumbles onto an aneurysm, some doctors don't even recommend treatment unless it is above a certain size,

Risk factors present at birth • Family history of brain

or a person has a family history

aneurysm, particularly a first-

of ruptured aneurysms.

degree relative, such as a parent, brother or sister • Inherited connective tissue


disorders, such as EhlersDanlos syndrome, that weaken blood vessels

Although researchers have made

• Polycystic kidney disease, an

advancements in understanding

inherited disorder that results

how brain aneurysms develop,

in fluid-filled sacs in the kidneys

it is unclear as to what exactly

and usually increases blood

causes the disease. A number of factors can contribute to

pressure • Abnormally narrow aorta

weakness in an artery wall and

(coarctation of the aorta), the

increase the risk of a brain

large blood vessel that delivers


oxygen-rich blood from the heart to the body

Brain aneurysms are more

• Cerebral arteriovenous

common in adults than in

malformation (brain AVM), an

children and more common in

abnormal connection between

women than in men. Some of

arteries and veins in the brain

these risk factors develop over

that interrupts the normal flow

time; others are present at birth.

of blood

page 13

need to know Brain

Blood vessels Aneurysm



• Localised headache • Dilated pupils

Unruptured brain aneurysms

• Blurred or double vision

It's not like blood is just

are typically completely

• Pain above and behind eye

squirting out. That might

asymptomatic. These

• Weakness and numbness

happen for a few seconds, but

aneurysms are typically

• Difficulty speaking

usually a little platelet plug

small in size. However, large

• Thinking or processing

forms almost immediately.

unruptured aneurysms can occasionally press on the

problems • Fatigue

Some patients, like Linda, may

brain or the nerves stemming

suffer very small leaks in the

out of the brain and may

Ruptured brain aneurysms

days or weeks leading up to a

result in various neurological

usually result in a

major rupture. But even small


subarachnoid haemorrhage

amounts of blood are "very

(SAH), which is defined

irritating" to your brain. The

Brain aneurysm symptoms

as bleeding into the

leaked blood increases the

may vary by person and

subarachnoid space. When

pressure inside your cranium.

when present, symptoms

blood escapes into the space

Also, leaks or ruptures divert

may be similar to those of

around the brain, it can cause

blood from brain regions and

some other conditions.

sudden symptoms.

supply. Both the pressure

Here is a list of symptoms

The most common symptom

and the lack of sufficient

that may be signs of an

is the worst headache of

blood caused by a ruptured

aneurysm. Any individual

your life, or the “W-H-O-L”.

aneurysm can lead quickly to

experiencing some or all of

This headache could be

unconsciousness and death.

these symptoms, regardless

anywhere or all over, but

About 30 to 50% of

of age, should undergo

patients usually describe it

sufferers will die as soon as

immediate and careful

as being focused behind the

an aneurysm ruptures.

evaluation by a physician.


tissues that require a steady

Seek medical attention immediately if you are experiencing some or all of these symptoms:

techniques. Which option

• WHOL – Sudden severe



is best depends on many factors: aneurysm location,

1 out of every 50 people have a brain

• At least

size, patient condition, patient preference, and local

aneurysm. • Every

headache, the Worst Headache Of your Life

18 minutes a brain

aneurysm ruptures. This decision has to be

• There are almost


• Loss of consciousness

made on an individual basis.

• Nausea and vomiting

Endovascular (catheter-

• Stiff neck

based) treatments continue

caused by brain

• Sudden blurred or double

to evolve so that more

aneurysms and half the

and more aneurysms are

victims are younger than

vision • Sudden sharp pain


worldwide each year

now amenable to durable


above or behind the eye

treatment. On the other

or difficulty seeing

hand, certain aneurysms are

are fatal in about

still best treated with open

of cases. Of those who


survive, about 66%

• Sudden change in mental status/awareness

• Ruptured brain aneurysms

• Sudden trouble walking or dizziness • Numbness and tingling in facial area • Sensitivity to light (photophobia)


suffer some permanent The goals of treatment once an aneurysm has

neurological damage. •

4 out of 7 people who

ruptured are to prevent

recover from a ruptured

further bleeding and

brain aneurysm will have

potential permanent brain

• Seizure

damage. Treatment and

• Drooping eyelid

monitoring during the

• Perceived "gun shot"

three weeks immediately

disabilities. • Brain aneurysms are most

people ages 35 - 60, but can occur prevalent in

noise or extremely loud

following the haemorrhage


are important, since

median age when a brain

that is the period when

aneurysm occurs is 50

complications are most

years old and there are

likely to occur.

generally no warning signs

• Confusion or change of mental status

in children as well. The

in many instances. Most


Medication and sedatives

aneurysms develop after

may be prescribed and total bed rest is necessary. If an

the age of 40. •

10 - 15% of patients

The two main options for

aneurysm hasn’t ruptured,

diagnosed with a brain

treating unruptured or

treatment will typically

aneurysm will harbour

ruptured brain aneurysms

centre on preventing an

are endovascular treatment

initial rupture using either

(which is performed

endovascular techniques or

through catheters inserted

open surgery.

into arteries under x-ray guidance) and open surgical

more than one aneurysm. • Most aneurysms are small

estimated 50 to 80% of all aneurysms and an

don't rupture during the *Names changed.

course of a lifetime.


page 15

Intercare Salubrity

Caring for diabetes in your loved one It’s always interesting to ask diabetics what the single most important part of managing their condition is. Most will answer medication, some lifestyle and others that visiting health professionals, such as dieticians and podiatrists, is. Indeed, these are absolutely crucial to the treatment of diabetes, but many studies have demonstrated that the effectiveness of these interventions are determined, to a large extent, by the support diabetics receive from their family and/or other support figures in their lives.

You care about your loved ones and want the best for them, but may feel overwhelmed about how to assist them in managing their condition. Here are eight simple tips you may want to consider: 1. Educate yourself Educating yourself about diabetes can assist in understanding the elements of caring for the condition better. It will allow you to be more supportive and, very importantly, to identify and manage emergencies which your loved one may experience. The whole family should be involved, including children;

there have been cases where children have saved the lives of family members because they were taught these principles. Make sure that you use reliable sources of information and have an opportunity to ask a knowledgeable professional any questions. 2. Ask them – and listen Don’t assume that you know where the person needs support. Many caregivers immediately focus on the taking of medication or changing the lifestyle, and although important, there may be other more subtle areas, such as feelings of fear, guilt, anger or even embarrassment about

needing to test or inject at work. These are often only uncovered through sensitivity and truly listening to what your loved one expresses. 3. Manage your and their expectations Don’t expect the person to change everything overnight or achieve perfect control of their blood sugar within a month. In addition, ensure that your loved one doesn’t do the same. Irrespective of who sets the bar, unrealistic expectations early on often lead to “achievement failures”, loss of motivation and a sense of being overwhelmed. Start with a single, easily achievable change, and then build on these early successes. 4. Do not judge, blame or nag You’re not living with diabetes, your loved one is. Judging them, blaming them or nagging them will almost always have the opposite effect of what you are trying to achieve. Some individuals like being “supervised”, but most will just begin hiding things, giving you even less insight and opportunity to support them. Find a balance between helping them “stay on the straight and narrow” and exerting too much pressure on them. 5. Be willing to make changes yourself An individual is much more likely to change if those around them change with them. This can

include beginning to exercise together, changing the diet in the household, or stopping smoking together. Inevitably, these can improve your health and the health of your whole family, a useful side effect indeed! Again, do not expect the family’s habits to change overnight; make small changes over a period of time. 6. Join in their care Many diabetics attend appointments alone, and their main support givers have little insight into their current state of health, care plan or advice from health professionals. This is particularly true of adults living with the condition. In addition, “tagging along” also helps give your doctor and other healthcare providers insight into your loved one’s life and any areas which could be leveraged to improve their condition. Depending on their personality, this can be construed as a form of control and “micro-management” by some diabetics, but again, it also depends on the basis on which the care-relationship has been built; a non-judgemental, supportive partner will usually be allowed to join in. 7. Avoid a sick relationship Diabetes is a serious condition and requires many changes of the person and their support figures, but it should also not take over their lives and relationships. Don’t let your relationship become one where

the affected person is the patient, and the supporter the doctor. Remember the original basis of your relationship and why you love them and continue nurturing that. 8. Don’t forget about yourself This is especially prevalent in parents of a child with diabetes. Naturally, a parent will sacrifice anything to care for their child and although noble, this actually does not benefit your child in the long run. Burning out, becoming depressed or suffering from poor physical health yourself significantly impacts your ability to care for them. Ensure that you continue with your interests and hobbies and that you can occasionally switch off.

A note to the “patient”

Hopefully these points have demonstrated that diabetes can be challenging to your family members, as well as yourself, and that they can be a tremendous source of support to you. But to do this, they need your help in the form of communication, commitment and a willingness to change. Take these points to them if you feel they could benefit from reading them. Intercare Salubrity has almost a decade of experience in delivering care for diabetics, which is holistic and focused on health education, empowerment and care coordination.

page 17




Always swooning at the sight of luxurious five-star glamping tents? Still looking for an upgrade from old-school camping that won’t break the bank? Well, look no further. TravelGround’s glamping stays offer the absolute best of both worlds – comfort and affordability!

B’sorah Luxury Tented Camp, Hartbeeshoek, North West

Average price: From R1060 per unit (sleeps 2, Luxury Tent) Hidden in the beautiful bushveld, B’sorah is home to a luxury safari tented camp, a nature lover’s paradise to unwind. Relax in a natural environment where the twitter of birds, the presence of roaming game and the trickle of a gentle stream is all that surround you.

Letsatsi Game Lodge, Smithfield, Free State Average price: From R627 per unit (sleeps 2) This little piece of heaven-on-earth remains a secret to most. Letsatsi Private Game Reserve is nestled in an area of natural beauty surrounded by breathtaking hills and valleys.

Bundox Safari Lodge, Hoedspruit, Limpopo

Average price: From R1250 pp (Bushcamp Tents) Bundox Safari Lodge is the ideal base if you want to see wild fauna and flora or visit the Blyde River Canyon. Indulge in authentic South African cuisine, head out on early-morning game drives in nearby Big 5 Game Reserves, or feast your eyes on the natural beauty of the bushveld from a hot-air balloon.

Motsomi Lodge & Tent Camp, Thabazimbi, Limpopo Average price: From R480 pp (Safari Tents) Motsomi Lodge is nestled in the heart of the African bushveld and boasts a variety of wildlife that can be viewed on foot or on game drives. Swimming pools, braai areas, open-air lapas and birdwatching hides complete the package.

Koesterfontein Farm Glamping, Magaliesburg, Gauteng Average price: From R1680 per unit (sleeps 6) Koesterfontein has a tranquil countryside setting and offers comfortable selfcatering accommodation with lovely views and a peaceful atmosphere. This indulgent glamping stay is the perfect escape for city slickers in Johannesburg and Pretoria.

Jackalberry Ridge, Marloth Park, Mpumalanga Average price: From R950 per unit (sleeps 4) The luxury tents at Jackalberry Ridge are hidden in the indigenous bush on the southern border of the Kruger National Park near the Crocodile Bridge Gate. It's home to more than 300 species of bird and a variety of game.

Koffylaagte Game Lodge and Safari Tents, Karoo, Eastern Cape Average price: From R1800 pp (Luxury Safari Tents) Take a drive, a guided walk, or even a horseback trail through the game reserve, then allow the cares of the world to pass you by as you take a dip in the pool or unwind in the sauna. If you’re feeling adventurous, bring your own mountain bike and take on the ma jestic mountain pass.

Source: All images found on

page 19


AfriCamps Forest at Kam’Bati, Swellendam, Western Cape

Average price: From R445 pp (Luxury Tents) AfriCamps offers all the comforts and conveniences of self-catering units, but also ensures an authentic and secluded experience surrounded by nature. Whether it’s a romantic getaway, family holiday or weekend break with friends, AfriCamps is the perfect solution if you don’t like roughing it too much,

TenteToe, Potchefstroom, North West

Average price: From R1100 per unit (sleeps 2) TenteToe in Potchefstroom is also situated on a game reserve and offers luxurious tents with modern bathrooms and kitchen areas. Come share your stories around the bonfire after a lovely game drive. See if you can spot sables, giraffe, waterbuck, impala, kudu, oryx, eland and so much more.

Frontier River Resort, Namaqualand, Northern Cape

Average price: From R425 pp (Double Luxury Tent) These chalets are ideal for travellers wanting to experience luxury tented facilities in a peaceful environment. A variety of outdoor activities are on offer near the resort, making this a great self-catering option for couples, families and friends seeking tranquility after a day of exploring the surrounds.

West Coast Luxury Tents, Elands Bay, Western Cape

Average price: From R400 pp These tents are located in the bush behind a sand dune just a few metres from the pristine sandy beach that stretches for 40 km. You will find numerous breeding pairs of Black Oyster Catchers (Swart Tobie) and their nests, especially during the summer months, and the most spectacular seaside sunsets over the Atlantic Ocean.


s n io t lu o s e r 's r a e Y New of h family. We make lots great times to spend wit e h tim suc ng are ndi ys spe ida out hol ab The ntional year and we’re pretty inte new year! the o int on memories this time of lity ona nti e. Let’s carry that inte with the people we lov

The key is to start slowly - one resolution at a time.

page 21



Read more books together


– start a family book club.

their school, church or with a charitable organisation.


Exercise and play


– make it fun, goal-oriented


and preferably outside. Train for a 5k run together

Teach your kids about money: start a chore

system or help them make

or aim to complete a

small financial decisions,

particular hike in your area.

like how to spend their

Many people make New Year’s resolutions or goals come

Volunteer as a family: at

birthday money. 6

January. Your list of resolutions looks like a tall order, but you

Practice hellos and goodbyes. It is really

14 Save up for a


important giving family


think this is the year you’re

members warm greetings

definitely going to follow

and farewells. Instead of

through with them all. Before

waving a quick "bye" when

you know it, it’s the middle of

you or your loved ones

January and half of them have

rush out of the house in the

a week in the life of the

been justified into oblivion. It

morning, take a little time

(insert surname) family.

starts with "I don’t really need

to give a hug or a kiss and

to do that" for the first half,

a genuine, "I love you. Have

then it turns to "I just don’t

a great day!" Same goes for

have time" for the rest of the

when you greet each other

once! – and spend the day

list. We have all gone through

at the end of the day.

together. Whether you just


The Bad and The Ugly” of



Take a “duvet day”


school and work – just

it. The key is to start slowly – one resolution at a time…

Have weekly family meetings about “The Good,

stay home in your pajamas 7 Have more (healthy) family

all day, go see a movie, or

meals around the table

plan a trip to the beach,

and let your kids help with

it'll make it that much more

preparing dinner.

exciting knowing you're sort of breaking the rules

8 Go on regular




your spouse and each of your kids.


Help save the environment. Take steps to become more

1 Begin or end the day with a


family devotion. 2


Start a weekly ritual: have a

Leave love notes

in your

Get your children involved

spouse’s mirror.

in recycling, teach them to always turn off the water


family movie or game night.


Put down devices.

11 Keep on top of family

No phones, tablets and other devices at mealtime. Connect by disconnecting.

eco-friendly as a family.

kid’s lunchbox or on your


fewer things.

while they brush their teeth, and make sure everyone

find a system for

switches off the lights when they leave a room.

digital files and hard-copy prints.

18 Keep things tidy.




Learn new skills or try new activities together.

two things to focus on for

when life gets a little hectic, as

January, and then February

it always does.

Tuck your kids into bed

help you achieve those two

As you consistently achieve

and snuggle with them,

things – let’s say you want to

these two goals, you’ll start

even when you’re exhausted

drink more water and start

having success and seeing

and just want to collapse

going to bed earlier. Systems

results. Once these things

on the couch. Remember

that help you drink more

start to become habits and

that someday they won’t

water are: carrying a water

you feel comfortable with

want you to anymore.

bottle with you most of the

them, add a couple other

time, buying flavoured water

goals from your list. Slowly

until you adjust to regular

as the year progresses,

water, writing post-its in

you’ll have more and more

places that will remind you,

goals incorporated into your

etc. Systems to help you get

everyday lifestyle, not causing

to sleep earlier are: setting an

you stress and leaving you

alarm for when it’s time for



and so forth. Build systems to

you to start preparing for bed, having a ritual that relaxes you, reading a favourite book

Look back at your list of

each night, etc. Systems are

resolutions and pick one or

the key to achieving goals

Wishing you and your families a wonderful 2017! page 23

MELOMAG | 13 |



health checks

Preparing your child for another school year requires more than buying school supplies and new clothes. No matter what grade your child is entering, routine physical examinations, including hearing and vision tests, help ensure that your child is truly ready for school.


were not required when parents were younger may


be needed. To be sure, ask

If your child takes

your doctor.

medication for asthma,



chronic problem, make

Clues to hearing loss include

If you suspect that your

hand for home and school.

listening to the television or

child is developmentally

Inform teachers of your

music at a very high volume

delayed, including not

child’s needs, especially

processing information

if a school employee will

the other. If indicated,

correctly, speak to a

administer medicine.

your paediatrician

teacher or contact a

Speak with staff members

learning centre for advice.

before school begins and

A diagnosis usually

work out a course of action

requires one to two days

for emergencies.

diabetes or any other

or favouring one ear over

can recommend an audiologist for an in-depth evaluation.

of professional testing. disability, the sooner your


child can be taught how to

Is your child having trouble


sleeping? Issues such as

The sooner you discover a


sure you have plenty on

sleepwalking, insomnia and

An annual screening is

nightmares can impede

for schoolwork. A vision


problem can likely be

What’s your child’s

about two weeks before

corrected, preventing

behaviour like? Are his

school begins; the body

children from falling behind

reactions appropriate

needs more than just a

in school. Be sure that

in most situations? Is he

couple of days to adjust

glasses or contact lenses

anxious or apprehensive

to factors such as earlier

are in good condition

about school? Children


and that your child’s

typically need about a

prescription is current.

month to adjust to change,

vital to ensure that children can see well enough

school performance. Begin a routine sleep schedule

but factors such as a new



school, class bully or new

Provide all necessary

transportation routine

protective equipment for

Immunisations are

may cause ongoing

children involved in sports.

necessary to prevent

anxiety. If your child seems

Children with braces and/

infectious diseases. Your

anxious or unsteady, talk

or glasses require extra

child will not be allowed to

to your paediatrician or

protective measures, even

attend school without the

a counselor who can help

for physical training class.

required immunisations.

you identify the source of

Invest in sports frames for

Vaccines or booster doses

the behaviour and work

the eyes and a mouthpiece

for older children that

out a solution.

to protect dental work.

page 25

health strategy

Getting enough TO BRING



u can do for your health. one of the best things yor growth and development bly ua arg is ep sle gh ou Getting en as vital to ou lping your body most of it? Sleep is just How can you make the tter what age you are, sleep plays a role in he ma No . air erate. as breathing reset, repair, and regen A good night’s sleep is

relationship troubles, poor

facets of good health, it

incredibly important for

job performance, job-related

seems we are also failing to

health. Lab rats deprived

injuries, memory problems

get enough of it. A recent

of sleep die within a month,

and mood disorders.

report says we get an hour

and people who inherit the

Increasingly, a lack of sleep

less than we need each

rare disease fatal familial

is implicated in mental

night. We sleep on average

insomnia meet the same fate,

health problems including

7 hours in stead of 8 hours

but on a longer timescale.

depression, bipolar disorder

per night.

We still don’t know why.

and schizophrenia, and

But while the fundamental

neurological conditions like

To reap the benefits of a

reasons for sleep remain a

Alzheimer’s disease. Recent

good night’s rest, there are

mystery, the many ways it

studies also suggest sleep

three things you need to

affects our well-being are

disorders affect your immune

consider: how much you

frequently in the news.

system and appetite and may

sleep, how well, and when.

contribute to heart disease,

Carving out the time to visit

obesity, and type 2 diabetes.

the land of nod is one thing,

Lack of sleep can take a toll

but guaranteeing good

on nearly every part of your life. Research links sleep

But just as we are learning

quality rest can be beyond

deprivation to car accidents,

that sleep is vital for so many

our control.


• SCREEN TIME The blue light given off by computers, smartphones, tablets, and TV prevents


body become sleepy. That


People often sleep poorly

makes the effects of blue

The earlier the better?

their first night in a new

light on our body clocks

11 PM? Sundown? Sleep

place. This may be an

particularly insidious – it

experts say it’s not that

evolutionary adaptation,

affects sleep quality as

simple. But there is a time

keeping part of your brain

well as quantity.

range you should shoot


the production of melatonin which helps the

alert to make sure the new environment is safe.

for if you’re questing for a A recent study compared

perfect night’s sleep. The

the sleep patterns of those

more sleep cycles we go

who read a book on an

through, the longer the

Even in a familiar

iPad before bed with those

duration of REM sleep in

environment, sounds like

who read print. After a

each cycle. REM sleep is

your partner snoring, a

few days, those using the

crucial for incorporating

snuffling dog or planes

electronic devices were

things we’ve learned into

overhead can interfere

getting less REM sleep,

our existing knowledge, for

with sleep, whether you’re

not only because it took

regulating our emotions,

aware of them or not. They

them longer to nod off,

and might also play a critical

may force us to transition

but because their circadian

role in brain development.

out of a deeper stage of

rhythms also shifted about

The bulk of REM sleep tends

sleep. If they wake you up,

an hour and a half later.

to happen in the hours just

you may not realise it was

Something similar happens

before we get up. That’s

a noise that roused you.

when you have to get up

because more builds up in

unusually early.

the second half of the night.


• TEMPERATURE Studies show that people


When it comes to bedtime,

with sleep disorders who

Mental health problems

there’s a window of several

wake up a lot during the

such as depression,

hours – roughly between

night can benefit from

anxiety, and post-

8 PM and midnight – during

wearing a suit that slightly

traumatic stress disorder

which your brain and body

warms the skin. Counter-

can also cause insomnia.

have the opportunity to

intuitively, this helps the

Unfortunately, some of the

get all the non-REM and

body to release more

medications used to treat

REM shut-eye they need

heat. The cooling effect

these conditions can also

to function optimally. Your

reduces the number of

cause sleep problems.

genes dictate whether

awakenings and also leads

If you think you’re losing

you’re more comfortable

to more restorative slow-

ZZZs and your medication

going to bed earlier or later

wave sleep. Taking a hot

is to blame, talk to your

within that rough 8-to-

bath before bed can help

doctor about adjusting

midnight window.

achieve the same thing.

your treatment. Sources:,,,

page 27

health strategy THE SLEEP TRICK

to weight gain. In fact, short

studies show a strong link

To pinpoint the exact time,

sleep duration is one of the

between short sleep duration

the easiest way is to go

strongest risk factors for

and type 2 diabetes risk.

backwards. Figure out what

obesity. Studies show that

time you need to wake up

sleep deprived individuals

and subtract seven to eight

have a bigger appetite and

hours, adding about 15

tend to eat more kilojoules.


minutes for your body to fall asleep. Do this for about



as depression, are strongly

10 days, suggests the sleep


linked to poor sleep quality

specialists, and you should


and sleeping disorders. It

start naturally waking up

Cognition, concentration,

has been estimated that 90%

a few minutes before your

productivity and performance

of patients with depression

alarm sounds.

are all negatively affected by

complain about sleep quality.

sleep deprivation. Poor sleep

Lack of adequate sleep

has been shown to impair

affects mood, motivation,

brain function. Good sleep

judgment, our perception

General guidelines are: (it

can maximise problem-solving

of events, and reduces our

varies from person to person)

skills and enhance memory

ability to interact socially.

• 12-15 hours for infants

and athletic performance. In

One study found that people

• 11-14 hours for toddlers

a study on basketball players,

who had not slept had a

longer sleep was shown to

reduced ability to recognise

significantly improve speed,

expressions of anger and

accuracy, reaction times, and



(ages 1-3) • 10-13 hours for preschoolers (ages 3-5) • 9-11 hours for

mental wellbeing.

schoolchildren (ages 6-13) • 8-10 hours for teens (ages 14-17) • 7-8 hours for adults




Even a small loss of sleep


has been shown to impair

Keep in mind that some

We know that sleep quality

immune function. One large

adults need 5 hours, while

and duration can have a major

two-week study monitored

others need as many as 10.

effect on many risk factors

the development of the

believed to drive chronic

common cold after giving

diseases. Sleeping less than

people nasal drops with the

7-8 hours per night is linked

virus that causes colds. They

to an increased risk of heart

found that those who slept

disease and stroke. Sleep

less than 7 hours were almost

deprivation can also cause

three times more likely to

pre-diabetes in healthy adults,

develop a cold than those

in as little as six days. Many

who slept 8 hours or more.



in the US use their cellphone when trying to OF PEOPLE get to sleep


for you to fall asleep if you are sleep deprived - the ideal MINUTES is 10-15 minutes



is the sleep lost per night for each cigarette you smoke MINUTES during the day

ng does double duty A simple balsamic dressi n in this fresh cke as a marinade for the chi berry salad. aw spinach, avocado and str


• ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil • 1 tablespoon golden balsamic vinegar • 1 teaspoon sugar • 1 tablespoon roughly chopped fresh tarragon • ¼ teaspoon salt • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts • 6 cups loosely packed fresh spinach


• 6-8 large strawberries, hulled and quartered • 1 avocado, peeled, seeded, cut into chunks • 3-4 thinly sliced rings of red onion • ¼ cup feta cheese • 2 tablespoons sliced almonds


avocado spinach SALAD

with chicken


1. Whisk the extra-virgin olive oil with the balsamic vinegar, sugar, tarragon, salt and freshly ground black pepper in a small bowl until blended.

2. Place the chicken breasts in a shallow bowl and cover with half of the dressing, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 2 hours.

3. Spray a grill pan or non-stick pan with cooking spray and heat to medium high. Place the chicken breasts on the hot grill pan. Cook for 3 minutes then flip the chicken breasts. Cook for another 3 minutes, and turn. Reduce the cooking temperature to medium low and cook for 20-25 minutes more, turning every 5 minutes or so. Cooking time will depend on the thickness of the chicken. Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes, then slice.

4. Arrange the spinach, strawberries and red onion in a bowl. Lightly toss with the remaining dressing. Add the avocado, sliced chicken and top with feta and almond slices. Serve immediately.


page 29



Test your knowle




Someone you know, who is

You are with a three-year-

You have been chiselling

a diabetic and takes insulin,

old girl, who has a runny

rust off some steel and

starts to become confused,

nose, a cough and a high

suddenly feel something go

slur their words and stagger

fever. She suddenly loses

into your eye. On looking

as they walk. Between these

consciousness, goes stiff

closely, you can see a tiny

options below, what is the

and begins to shake and

spot on the clear part of the

best first aid steps for you to

jerk violently. What

eye (the cornea) that covers


should you do?

the pupil and iris. What

A) Give them an injection

A) Place her in the recovery

should you do? of their insulin B) Offer them two paracetamol tablets with a glass of water C) Give them a sweetened drink, such as orange juice with added sugar D) Encourage them to go to bed and sleep it off

position and protect her from injury B) Place her in a cool bath to bring her temperature down C) Give her the correct dose of children's paracetamol D) Try to rouse her by calling her name

A) Rub the eye vigorously with a clean handkerchief B) Try to remove any foreign particles with a cotton bud C) Leave it for a couple of days and see what happens D) Get professional help to remove the particle



Your partner accidentally

You come across a car

places their hand on a hot

accident. You find the

stove top and burns themself.

female driver is still in her

What is the best thing for

seatbelt, crying in pain and

remove his wet clothes,

you to do?

holding her neck. She is

dry him and wrap him in

complaining of tingling in

blankets and a space

A) Rub butter onto the

her fingers and toes. What should you do?

burned area B) Hold their hand under cold running water for up to 20 minutes

B) Give him a warm drink and then walk him out of the bush C) Protect him from the wind,

blanket as soon as possible D) Place him on a stretcher and get him to transport

A) Reassure her, ask her to

as soon as possible

keep still and support her

C) Immerse the hand in a bucket of iced water D) Cover with antiseptic

head from behind B) Reassure her and get her to take deep breaths C) Get her to breathe in and

cream and a cloth bandage

out of a paper bag D) Release the seatbelt and

QUESTION 8 What should you do if the person next to you suddenly makes a strange sound then falls to the ground unconscious, lying stiffly


carefully help her out of

on their back for a few

What do you do if a child

the car to the side of the

seconds, before beginning

has fallen from their bike,


to jerk their arms and legs?

hit their head on the ground and is lying unconscious on


the ground?

You are a member of a search party and have found

A) Put something between their teeth to stop them from biting their tongue

A) Call an ambulance

the missing person, who

B) Roll the child into the

has been lost overnight in

may hurt themselves on

the mountains in winter.

and roll them on to their

recovery position C) Check and if necessary,

The person is inadequately

clear their airway, then

dressed and very wet. What

place them in the recovery

should you do?


side C) Restrain their thrashing arms and limbs by holding them down on their back

D) Pick them up and carry them home

B) Remove any objects they

A) Light a fire and sit him in front of it with a hot coffee

D) Commence mouth-tomouth resuscitation

Turn the page to check your answers.

page 31

first aid Answers & First Aid Steps

stop further heat injury • Seek medical help,


especially for burns

• If a diabetic person is

in children, burns with

confused, always treat this

blistering or charring, or

as a low sugar emergency

burns that extend over a

• Immediately give them a sweetened drink.

wide area

use clothing or another support) • Whenever possible, let the experts get the person out of the vehicle • Remember to ensure your own safety at all times

• If significant blistering or charring has occurred, carefully cover the burn



using cling wrap or

• Move the person out of the

• Put the child in the

aluminium foil to prepare

recovery position to

them for transport to

protect her airway

medical care

• Gently restrain the child to

• Do not use cotton wool,

protect her from

cloth and fibre-based

accidentally harming

dressings or antiseptics

herself during the jerking

and ointments unless

phase of the seizure

advised to by a medic

• Once the seizure subsides


symptoms of the fever

• Make sure the child can

optometrist, who will inspect your eye, remove

wrap them in blankets and a space blanket • If necessary, use your body to warm them – this can

• If the person is conscious, give them a warm drink –

breathe properly by

but not alcohol – and heat

clearing any obstruction

packs to warm them up as

from their mouth

soon as possible

• Place the child in the recovery position • If the child recovers quickly

the foreign body and if

and sits up, take them to

necessary, refer you to


an ophthalmic surgeon.

clothing, dry them, and


enough, you can treat the

• As soon as possible, see an

sheltered place • Remove all their wet

be life-saving in severe

and the child is alert


wind and rain to a dry and

• If the child is still

QUESTION 8: B • Remove any objects that they may accidently hurt themselves on

A foreign body on or in

unconscious and not

• Roll them onto their side

your cornea should only

responding to their

• Clear their airway (mouth

be removed by trained

surroundings, call an

and throat), making sure


ambulance to take them

there is no obstruction and

• If you can’t get to an optometrist then go to your

to the nearest emergency centre

local Emergency Room.

that they can breathe • Place them in the recovery position • Call an ambulance if the

QUESTION 4: B • Place the burned area


seizure lasts for more than

• Encourage the person to

five minutes, occurs again

keep still and support their

soon afterwards or if there

under cool running water

head and neck against the

is no one to look after the

for up to 20 minutes to

headrest (if there isn't one,


YOUR s to Email your question .za

Recurrent ear infections

My 4-year-old son suffers from repeated ear infections. Is my child likely to outgrow recurrent ear infections or should we consider grommets? Are there any overthe-counter remedies for a child with an ear infection? Children under the age of 5 years are more susceptible to middle ear infections due to their small anatomy and narrow tubes which become infected after common upper respiratory tract infections. If your child has at least 5 middle ear infections in one year or persistent fluid behind the eardrums then grommets should be inserted to prevent the recurrent blockage and thus secondary ear infections. A grommet is a small plastic tube inserted under anaesthetic by an ENT and normally falls out on its own after 6-18 months. To try and prevent recurrent upper respiratory tract infections which are often viral and the precursor to middle ear infections, teach your child about regular hand washing. Also don't lie a toddler on his back while drinking a bottle. Once a clear nasal discharge shows itself with a common cold, use a regular saline nasal spray and a nasal decongestant (available over the counter) for 5 days. This tries to prevent a secondary bacterial middle ear infection which may then need an antibiotic.

These questions were answered by Dr Neil Richards, a family physician from Intercare Blaauwberg. Contact our Intercare experts at INTERCARE BLAAUWBERG Tel: 021 521 9000 | Fax: 021 521 9001 Email: Address: Corner of Link & Park Roads, Parklands, Cape Town

Diabetes and blood flow

I am a 43-year-old woman and a diabetic. Why do my legs hurt when I start walking and stop hurting when I sit down? The red flag in your question is the comment that you are a 43-year-old diabetic. Are there any other risk factors such as smoking, hypertension or elevated cholesterol? One's muscles need more blood flow when used in order to deliver nutrients and oxygen to the working muscles. The symptom of pain in your legs when walking which is relieved by resting and sitting down is called claudication. It means reduced blood flow to your muscles when they need it most. There is thus a concern that you may have a narrowing of your arteries in your legs called peripheral vascular disease. Please see your doctor to assess for other risk factors and to check the blood flow to your legs.

IBS remedies

I am a 36-year-old woman. I would like to know if there is anything stronger than peppermint oil as it’s not doing anything for my IBS? I have not been diagnosed with IBS, yet. My pharmacist suggested the peppermint oil as my symptoms (stomach cramps, bloating and flatulence) indicated IBS. To make a diagnosis of IBS (irritable bowel syndrome or spastic colon) please see your doctor first for a history and examination to pick up any red flags which may need further investigation for another pathology. Once a diagnosis of IBS is made, understand that it is not dangerous, but a functional problem with the intestines causing pain, bloating and alternating diarrhoea and/or constipation. It is a multifactoral problem with a higher incidence in women. Etiologies are commonly related to diet, emotional stress and hormones. It is thus treated symptomatically with an improved diet avoiding trigger foods and adding probiotics and physical exercise. In my practice I find a good over-the-counter medication to be Iberogast drops.

page 33

Bodylanguage Issue 11 Summer 2016  
Bodylanguage Issue 11 Summer 2016  

Creating a great healthcare experience altogether