While there’s plenty of health news that just seems like its designed to scare the pants off us, there’s plenty that we need to pay attention to, too. This monthly update will answer a few questions and give you news that’s relevant to keeping you fit and healthy in Singapore.
New Doc on Duty
International Medical Clinic (IMC) has a new addition to its Camden team, Dr Karien de Groof. Prior to coming to Singapore, Dr Karien worked as a GP in Holland and Geneva, where she was also a Swiss field hockey champion – which explains her love of sports medicine and nutrition! The Netherlands native has special interests in allergies, dermatology, women’s health and travel medicine. In addition to Dutch, Dr Karien speaks fluent French, adding to IMC’s team of multilingual doctors who speak over 13 languages including German, Swedish, Mandarin, Japanese and Arabic.
IMC Camden is located at #14-05/06/07 Camden Medical Centre, 1 Orchard Boulevard.
6733 4440 internationalmedicalclinic.com
Go for Gold!
September is International Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and, believe it or not, there’s a lot that you (yes, you!) can do to help “Shine a Light on Childhood Cancer”. This month-long fundraising and awareness campaign is symbolised by a gold ribbon and was initiated by Singapore registered charity, LOVE, NILS.
The charity was launched by the mother of a cancer patient in 2017, and provides children and their families with the knowledge and resources they need to navigate their paediatric cancer journeys. This includes everything from healthcare guidance and emotional care to social and community support.
From wearing a gold ribbon, creating a buzz on social media or organising a gold-themed event at home, school or the office, there are lots of ways you can help raise much-needed awareness and funds for children and their families struggling with a cancer diagnosis. Need some ideas? There’s a handy toolkit with creative suggestions that can be downloaded at bit.ly/lovenilsadvocacytoolkit.
Elevate Your Yoga Experience
Take your yoga practice to new heights (57 stories up, to be exact!) with Virgin Active’s brand new SkyPark Yoga experience at Marina Bay Sands. Held daily at sunrise and sunset on the iconic Sands SkyPark rooftop, each of the 16 weekly classes is led by a Virgin Active yoga teacher with strict safety protocols in place. In fact, participants are equipped with disinfected wireless headphones so they can hear instructions no matter where they’re situated in the socially distanced session. Each 45-minute class is $30 for the public, $20 for Sands Rewards LifeStyle members or $15 for existing Virgin Active members, and can be booked on Virgin Active’s website, virginactive.com.sg.
Every day, our bodies are exposed to all kinds of toxins that accumulate in the gut, affecting digestion, bowel movements and more. Luckily, there’s a supplement you can take to prevent stomach discomfort, constipation and other potential problems. Now available at online retailer Herbal Pharm, Colon Cleanzer ($50 for a 60-capsule bottle) is designed to clean our blood and address any impurities in our bodies, leaving us feeling refreshed from the inside out. Taking two capsules a day can help prevent constipation, reduce bloating, increase energy levels and support a healthy gut overall.
Order it at herbalpharm.com.sg/product/colon-cleanzer.
Health Help: Why does my elbow hurt when I play badminton and tennis, and how can I stop the pain?
Many racket players experience elbow pains and strains due to overloading, repetitive motions and poor swing techniques. Lateral epicondylitis (known as “tennis elbow”) usually occurs with repeated use of the backhand stroke, causing pain on the inner side of the elbow. Of course, you don’t have to be an athlete to develop tennis elbow. Anyone who overuses his or her forearm muscles with repetitive motions can experience this outer elbow pain.
Additionally, the term “tennis elbow” is a misnomer because it implies that tennis players only experience pain in the outer elbow. In truth, many tennis players also suffer from inner elbow pain (medial epicondylitis). This inner elbow pain is also quite common in badminton players, as they tend to overload their flexor muscles when smashing the shuttlecocks. A tell-tale symptom of medial epicondylitis is inner elbow pain when turning doorknobs or twisting the cap off of a jar.
The correct treatment of elbow pain hinges on being able to identify the cause of the pain, so an x-ray or MRI may be necessary. Inflamed tendons can often be treated with rest, pain relief medication and/or steroid injections. Physiotherapy and shockwave therapy can help quicken recovery, and forearm straps or braces can help reduce the stress on the injured tissues.
Of course, it’s also important to limit or stop the activity causing the pain. Racket players can consider revising their playing techniques to prevent recurrence of the strain. They can also increase the cushioning or wrapping around the handle grips of the racket, or reduce string tension.
– Dr Low Mun Hon Medical Director, Spire Orthopaedic Centre
Spire Orthopaedic Centre
• #18-03 Royal Square Medical Centre, 101 Irrawaddy Road | 6970 4468
• #08-04 Gleneagles Medical Centre, 6 Napier Road | 6970 6628
Health Help: What should I do about blocked breast ducts while breastfeeding, and when should I see a doctor about it?
“Blocked ducts occur when a breast duct is not emptying well. It tends to arise when you miss a feed or did not empty the breast completely. You might find that a painful breast lump appears within the day and it radiates out from the nipple area. A warm compress, and regular massaging and emptying can help to unblock the duct.
If left untreated, blocked milk ducts can progress into mastitis, an inflammation of the breast tissue that can turn into an infection. Symptoms of mastitis include redness on the skin, fever and chills. At this point, it’s important to see a doctor in case antibiotic therapy is necessary. Seeing a doctor is also an opportunity to exclude the formation of a breast abscess, which needs surgical intervention. Also, always be on the alert if there is a painless breast lump that persists even after the breasts are well emptied. Check with your doctor if you are unsure.
To help minimise blocked ducts in the first place, avoid external pressure on the breasts, especially wearing a tight sports bra or lying on your chest.”
– Dr Georgette Chan Breast surgeon
Dr Georgette Chan
#11-09 Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre, 3 Mount Elizabeth
6836 5167 | georgettechan.com.sg