Your Health

Sensory technology will send you a hug from across the world

Sensory technology will soon allow lonesome grandparents, separated from their loved ones by geography, to touch and embrace via the internet.

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Did you know that wearing flat shoes can actually damage your feet?

WHILE a pair of ballet pumps may seem more sensible and comfortable than towering stilettoes, they can be the source of severe foot and back pain. In fact, with their lack of arch support and cushioning, did you know that wearing flat shoes can actually damage your feet?

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The sleep diet: Can cooler bedrooms improve metabolism?

CAN the temperatures of bedrooms improve our metabolism?

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My child has a fear of needles, what should I do?

My four-year-old son has developed a needle phobia since he had to get a cut sutured a few months ago. 

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What do you recommend for colds and flu?

I want to protect my two children, aged five and eight, from colds and flu. What supplements do you recommend?

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The stress of flying with kids can be reduced

A FAMILY holiday abroad can be lovely, but usually you have to fly to get there and this can be stressful for parents.

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What can I do to help my teething baby?

My eight-month-old son is teething and is very unhappy about it.

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Taking it in my stride one step at a time

Radio personality and nature enthusiast Éanna Ni Lamhna insists on living in the present and refuses to be defined by her age, says Margaret Jennings.

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Fishing for the best source of brain food

Some experts say the claims that omega-3 can halt memory loss are unsubstantiated but that doesn’t mean we should avoid getting our allowance.

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Susan Griffin on the dangers of hidden sugar

SUGAR is increasingly being blamed as one of the key culprits in our obesity epidemic, but it’s not just the frosty coating on a doughnut, or the number of teaspoons of the white stuff you add to your cups of tea that’s the problem (after all, the occasional treat is allowed!).

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Can adults get chickenpox?

I am a woman in my late 20s and, as far as I can remember, I have never had chickenpox.

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Healthy holidays

Looking after your health, by packing medical essentials and taking sensible precautions to avoid falling ill while you’re away, could make all the difference between a brilliant break and a holiday from hell.

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Do I have an allergy in my eye?

Q. I am a woman in my 30s. Recently, my eyes were red and itchy, although it did clear after a few days. 

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Finding her rhythm: Sr Stanislaus Kennedy with her dog Zeb. She practises meditation to help achieve a balance in her life.

A sacred space for soul Sister to reflect

Focus Ireland founder Sr Stanislaus Kennedy realised she had to slow down after she was hit by a virus. But she doesn’t find being mindful easy.

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Food safety: fact from fiction

WITH the weather trying its very best this summer and the World Cup well underway, there are no end of opportunities to turn up the heat and enjoy a barbecue.

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One in four women will develop Fibroids, non-cancerous tumours

I am due to get a hysterectomy to remove troublesome fibroids.

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Older and wiser but no less passionate

WHEN the lights go up at Live at the Marquee on Friday week after Christy Moore has given blood, sweat, and tears to his performance, he will make a beeline for home.

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What can my son take for hay fever?

My eight-year-old son suffers from hay fever. He loves playing sports, particularly football. What over-the-counter medicines are safe for him to take?

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Putting motherhood on hold can be risky

KIRSTIE Allsopp is in the spotlight for her recent comments on women’s fertility. This story is enriched with multi-media content

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No need to get in such a sweat during the menopause transition

Aisling Grimley launched MySecondSpring.ieto help increase awareness about the menopause.

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How to deal with travel sickness

* I suffer from travel sickness, so instead of being excited about holidays, the thought of getting to our destination can fill me with dread.

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Emma Doolan has star power

THE Special Olympics has made the world of a difference to Emma Doolan. Before joining in 2002, she was reluctant to put herself forward.

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Writing through life’s joy and pain

Though her heart has been broken, Margaret Jennings finds author Alice Taylor, aged 76, still has a passion and openness towards life

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Abdominal pain in children is very common

* I am worried about my eight-year-old daughter who has been complaining of stomach pain over the last few weeks.

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Joe Mannix lives independently with the help of Kerry Parents' and Friends' Association.

The good life

JOE MANNIX is happy. He is surrounded by people who care for and about him and hasn’t a care in the world.

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No limits: By having goals, purpose and passion, author Ellen Lubin-Shermin believes you can thrive  as you age.

Positive attitude better than Botox

You don’t have to be younger, thinner or richer to feel ‘Fabulous’ after 50 it’s about zest for life.

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Health benefits when giving up smoking are amazing

* I am a man in my early 50s and have been a smoker for the last 25 years.

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At peace: Ned Keane and his father John, who died at home surrounded by his family.

Being there for the terminally ill makes a world of difference

’You matter because you are you. You will matter until the last moment of your life and we will help you not only to die peacefully but to live as full as possible until the moment you die’.

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Lifestyle is written all over your face

Expensive lotions and potions won’t stop the clock, but watching what we eat and easing off on the sun and stress can reduce damage to our skin.

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Protect your children’s skin from sun damage

* I’m going on a sun holiday with my two young daughters (aged six and eight) later this summer.

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Golden oldies keep on rockin’

IN normal life they would be drawing the pension but a growing band of older musicians are, as Neil (not so) Young, would say, ‘rockin’ in the free world’, shaking it all out on stage.

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Ideal care

WHENEVER Maureen O’Neill pulled open her hall door in Renard Point, she could see Valentia Island rising out of the Atlantic.

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SITTING PRETTY: Joan Walsh, Árd Cúram, Listowel, Co Kerry.

Caring and sharing at Listowel’s Árd Cúram day-care centre

IT’S only right and fitting that Joan Walsh is a regular visitor to Árd Cúram, a day-care centre in Listowel — two decades ago she was on the original committee that set up the Listowel centre for the elderly.

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Defiantly colourful: Three of the participants in the documentary Advanced Style, which offers intimate glimpse into lives of fashionable seniors.

The Beauty Project: Women who refuse to fade with age

MENTION reaching the age of 100 in Ireland and we think of the congratulatory letter and cheque which the president issues and the hope that the recipients can still enjoy their very special birthday. This story is enriched with multi-media content

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How to avoid getting threadworms

* A couple of children in my son’s class in primary school have been diagnosed with threadworms.

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There for you: Joan Freeman wants a Pieta House within 100km of every Irish person.

Pieta House offers hope to suicidal people

THE statistics are stark: ten people die by suicide every week — eight of whom are men — and 70,000 people attempt suicide every year.

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The therapeutic harmony found in joining a choral group

MOVE over yoga — communal singing is the new activity taking centre stage, offering therapeutic benefits and stretching more than those vocal chords,for a growing number of older people in Ireland.

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NOTE: The information contained in Dr Bernadette Carr's column is not a substitute for medical advice. Always consult a doctor.

Can I prevent my child from getting chickenpos?

* My son is in first class and a number of children have recently got chickenpox.

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Happy man: James McDonnell, Irish Red Cross, Tralee, Co, Kerry.

A Red Cross volunteer - why he loves his job

JAMES McDonnell always knew he would volunteer with the Irish Red Cross in Tralee. There was no decision to be made.

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High road: Helen Campbell gave up her job and took off to Europe for a couple of years in an ancient car, with her husband.

One woman's adventure - you're never too old to travel

Helen Campbell was pushing 60 when she decided to go on a road trip, she tells Margaret Jennings.

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Dealing with stress - how to balance work and life

Helen O’Callaghan talks to five people in highly pressured jobs and lifestyles about how they manage their work/life balance.

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NOTE: The information contained in Dr Bernadette Carr's column is not a substitute for medical advice. Always consult a doctor.

Include iron-rich foods in your diet to increase your haemoglobin level

* I am a woman in my late 30s and have donated blood over the last few years.

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DAY BY DAY: Damien O'Carroll at the Acquired Brain Injury regional office, Castleisland, Co, Kerry.

Damien O’Carroll is a miracle man

DAMIEN O’CARROLL was living the dream in Australia until the nightmare happened.

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Silver screen: The Love Punch, starring l-r Timothy Spall, Celia Imrie, Emma Thompson, and Pierce Brosnan is one of a host of new movies for oldies which have hit the big screen in recent years.

Lights, camera, action attract an older audience to the silver screen

An increasing number of films are being made for the 50 plus market, and the trend is set to grow, says Margaret Jennings. This story is enriched with multi-media content

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We complain that we are overwhelmed by chores, but we have gained five hours per week free time since the 1960s.

We're not squeezed for time, we're just not managing it properly

Because being busy is a badge of honour now, we underestimate the number of hours we have to ourselves, says Áilín Quinlan.

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NOTE: The information contained in Dr Bernadette Carr's column is not a substitute for medical advice. Always consult a doctor.

How do I treat scarlet fever?

* Two children in my daughter’s crèche have been diagnosed with scarlet fever in the last week.

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United couple: Betty and Patrick Carmody at their daughter's wedding last year.

The cruel road of motor neurone disease

PATRICK CARMODY could not walk his daughter up the aisle on her wedding day last year.

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Fabulous fifties: With age women become more confident and continue to enjoy being sexual.

Frisky business at every stage of life

IRISH women in their 50s and upwards are having great sex, but can struggle to feel attractive in an image-driven society.

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De-clutter physically and mentally to put a spring in your step

Spring is the perfect time to dust off the cobwebs, but our minds can benefit from a good de-clutter and polish too, says Abi Jackson.

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NOTE: The information contained in Dr Bernadette Carr's column is not a substitute for medical advice. Always consult a doctor.

Questions to ask your GP about cholesterol

I recently had my cholesterol checked as part of the occupation health programme run at work. It was 6.5 but I hadn’t fasted before the test.

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Passionate life: Garry Hynes says she don't feel any less enthusiastic about life than when she was in her 20s.

Artistic director Garry Hynes stays centre stage

Garry Hynes co-founded Druid in the 1970s, and is not going to stop and rest on her laurels yet. This story is enriched with multi-media content

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Rising star: Dublin GAA footballer Paul Flynn also works for the national airline, Aer Lingus.

Shape I'm In: Paul Flynn, GAA footballer

DUBLIN GAA footballer Paul Flynn is flying high. Seven months ago, he joined Aer Lingus in employee engagement, working across all the different functions, with managers and employees.

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Eye opener: Eye tests not only monitor sight but can detect other diseases.

Get regular eye checkups to prevent vision loss

EYE tests don’t just assess the need for glasses. They can also detect health problems, like tumours and diabetes.

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Lifestyle changes will help reduce blood pressure

* I had a chest infection recently and visited my GP. He measured my blood pressure, it was 145/95.

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Helping hand: Temple Grandin is concerned education system may be ignoring unique minds of autistic children.

Wider issue: We need to be more aware of autism

IF a new colleague seems unfriendly, sticks rigidly to a routine and doesn’t get your sarcastic jokes, don’t immediately dismiss them as weird. They may be autistic. This story is enriched with multi-media content

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Can a mental workout stop aging brains?

Brain training apps and games are hugely popular but can they stop our brains ageing, asks Margaret Jennings. This story is enriched with multi-media content

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Dr Bernadette Carr is Medical Director, Vhi Healthcare For more information visit www.vhi.ie or lo-call 1890 444 444

Steps to help clear your baby’s nappy rash

* My eight-month-old son has developed severe nappy rash which is upsetting him.

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Essential oiling: Don't be afraid to take time out to care for your body and soul.

Grab some time for yourself each day

Abi Jackson talks to health experts about their time-out routines.

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Reaching out: Donor ambassador Mary Kennedy with the 'forget-me-not flower', part of a fundraising drive for the Irish Kidney Association.

RTÉ's Mary Kennedy on embracing the ageing process

IT’S the question many are tempted to ask a woman who’s ageing gracefully on our television screens: has she had a little bit of ‘help’? This story is enriched with multi-media content

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NOTE: The information contained in Dr Bernadette Carr's column is not a substitute for medical advice. Always consult a doctor.

How to deal with hand, foot and mouth disease

¦ I have got a letter from the crèche saying there has been an outbreak of hand, foot and mouth disease.

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Cholesterol lowering statins 'have almost no side effects'

Cholesterol-lowering statins have almost no side-effects, with patients experiencing fewer adverse symptoms than when taking a dummy drug, researchers say.

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Fighting back: Antibiotics can eradicate bubonic and pneumonic plague.

'Bacteria that caused the Black Death are still a threat'

THE plague, the rodent-borne infection that killed half the population of Europe during the 14th century’s Black Death, still afflicts thousands of people every year.

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Young at heart: Mairead Devlin, with puppet 'Paddy Gillespie', and Mary O'Driscoll, from the Carnation Theatre Company.

Third Age: Playtime once again as Carnation Theatre performs to nursing home residents

FIVE years ago, Mairead Devlin and her friend, Mary O’Driscoll, formed a small theatre company to perform plays in nursing and care homes, and to encourage the residents to get involved.

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Despite decades of research no male contraceptive ready for market

NOT long before Christmas, newspapers, radio stations and TV networks were abuzz with some exciting news: the male pill could soon be a reality.

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NOTE: The information contained in Dr Bernadette Carr's column is not a substitute for medical advice. Always consult a doctor.

Husbands elbow pain may be medial epicondylitis (golfer’s elbow)

My 50-year-old husband has been complaining of pain in his right elbow for the last few weeks.

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Deep down: You don't have to go into a meditative pose to take deep cleansing breaths throughout the day.

Breathing is a simple means of reducing anxiety

ARE you increasingly impatient and irritable? Maybe your palms sweat and your pulse rate rises?

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Stepping forward: Joe Crowley will walk 32 counties in aid of St Vincent De Paul, to promote exercise, and to grieve his late wife.

Widower plans 32 marathons in 32 weeks in 32 counties

NEXT Saturday, Joe Crowley, 61, a pharmacist from Killorglin, Co Kerry, will begin his challenge of a lifetime.

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NOTE: The information contained in Dr Bernadette Carr's column is not a substitute for medical advice. Always consult a doctor.

Has my mother another cataract in her eye?

¦ My mother, who is in her 60s, had cataract surgery in her right eye about 18 months ago.

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