Q: My parents did not want me to study engineering, as I am an only child and a girl. Their old fashioned idea was that I should get a bachelors degree and get married. I finished my BE and was recruited on campus. Unfortunately, the company has been postponing my joining. Now I feel I may never get the job. I feel lethargic, am putting on weight and sleep all day.
A: Perhaps a feeling of being out of control and uncertainty about your professional future has caused this change in your personality. It is unsettling and depressing. Try to establish a routine even though at present you do not need to. Get up in the morning, jog for 40 minutes, do some ground exercises and keep an eye on your diet. Join a course that will enhance your skills. If you are still worried, check your haemoglobin and thyroid functions to see if your symptoms are due to some correctable extrinsic cause like anaemia or thyroid malfunction.
Irregular periods ..
Q: I have irregular periods which appear embarrassingly unscheduled. I am now 23 years old and my parents are looking for a “suitable alliance”. They are convinced that “everything will be alright after marriage” but I am not. Will pregnancy be a problem?
A: Your body won’t change and start behaving differently just because you are married. It is better to investigate the reasons for your irregular periods before you proceed with an “alliance”. The doctor will probably do an ultrasound scan of your uterus and ovaries and suggest blood tests to check your hormone levels. The cause of the irregularity can usually be treated. It is better to know and be aware rather than proceed blindly with the surmise that “everything will be alright after marriage”.
No sex :-
Q: I was recently diagnosed as being diabetic and hypertensive. Now I am facing erectile problem and the problem of premature ejaculation. Can these be cured?
A: This problem can occur in people with diabetes and hypertension. It is due to a neuropathy or nerve dysfunction. It can get aggravated if the diabetes is uncontrolled and also by some medications prescribed for hypertension. You need to control your blood sugar well and inform your physician about this problem so that suitable alterations can be made in the medication.
Small head :
Q: My child has a very small head and is also not developing normally. The doctor said this is “microcephaly”. She is three years old and has stiff limbs. She speaks only a few words and has seizures. Will this recur in the next pregnancy?
A: Microcephaly can be present at birth or it may develop in the first few years of life. It occurs due to interference with the growth of the brain during the early months of development in the uterus. It can be genetic, or occur because the mother unfortunately develops an infection with cytomegalovirus, rubella (German measles) or varicella (chicken pox) virus.
If there are other affected family members, or if you are married to a close relative, the likelihood of recurrence is greater. Immunisations against varicella and rubella are available. Folic acid supplements (5 mg a day) started even before pregnancy occurs and continued for the first five months of conception also helps normal brain development.
Thumping headache :
Q: I develop a severe headache on one side of the head whenever I have a cold and then I cannot concentrate.
A: Your nose may be blocked because of the discharge caused by the cold. Try putting saline nose drops into each nostril with the head tilted back and then take steam inhalations. Avoid vaporising mosquito repellents (available as mats coils and liquids) or room fresheners which aggravate the problem. If the headache still persists try taking paracetemol and an over the counter antihistamine like non-sedating levocetrizine.
Sources: The Telegraph (Kolkata, India)