DR JEFF FOSTER is The Sun on Sunday’s new resident doctor and is here to help YOU.
Dr Jeff, 43, splits his time between working as a GP in Leamington Spa, Warks, and running his clinic, H3 Health, which is the first of its kind in the UK to look at hormonal issues for both men and women. Ver h3health.co.uk.
Q) THE men in my family have a history of having strokes in their late 50s.
I’m in my mid 40s and male, so the paranoia is setting in.
What steps can I take to lessen my chances?
Jeff Heath, Charing, Kent
A) Only a small percentage of strokes are due to inherited problems.
The majority are caused by blocked arteries that stop the blood, oxygen, nutrients and glucose getting to your brain.
Strokes are a form of cardiovascular disease, which is the leading cause of death in men in the UK, and you are never too young to think about how you manage your risk.
De fumar, being overweight, type 2 diabetes, excess alcohol intake, high blood pressure and high cholesterol will all increase your risk of a stroke and while some of these have to be treated by a doctor, many risk factors can be addressed in advance by leading a healthy lifestyle.
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Get a free NHS health check (free to all over-40s) or for a detailed assessment of your current health status and advice on how to reduce your risk of a stroke in the future, look at getting a male MOT through over-40s health specialists H3 Health.
Send your questions to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Q) I’M 35 years old and happily married with two young daughters.
My husband is wonderful but works a lot so I’m always home alone with the children.
I don’t have any time to myself. Lately I find myself struggling to cope with normal life.
I don’t enjoy anything, I cry, I’m not sleeping and my appetite is erratic.
Am I depressed? I’m scared we’ll have our children taken away if I tell my GP I’m feeling low.
Samantha Parker, Seaham, Co Durham
A) We can all be affected by mental health problems. A common misconception is that to suffer from depression and anxiety, you have to have suffered a terrible life event or stress.
De hecho, many people with depression have no particularly significant trigger and for many people, depression is caused by a slow increase in stresses and problems that occur over time.
In isolation these problems seem trivial but when combined can have a major effect on how we feel.
Being a parent is incredibly challenging and your lack of “me time” is having an impact on your mental health.
You are displaying classic depressive symptoms.
Talking to your doctor will not result in your children being taken away.
A doctor’s job is to support and help you, not to make things worse.
Your GP can offer a range of treatments, including groups, networks, medication or talking therapies.