HEALTH NOTES: Too lazy to brush teeth properly
More than half of Britons don’t brush their teeth for two minutes, twice a day, research suggests.
About 55 per cent in a survey of 2,000 people said they were either too lazy or didn’t think two minutes was necessary, according to tech firm Philips. Experts say two minutes of brushing in the morning and evening is the most effective way to remove plaque without damaging gum tissue.
Dentist Dr Rhona Eskander said: ‘My advice is get guidance from trusted practitioners and use an electric toothbrush. Keep it simple.’
Dentist Dr Rhona Eskander said: ‘My advice is get guidance from trusted practitioners and use an electric toothbrush. Keep it simple’
Mums miss out on stomach op
British women are unfairly denied vital surgery to repair stomach damage caused by pregnancy, experts have warned.
About a third of new mothers suffer from a condition called diastasis recti, where the muscles that stretch from the stomach to the pelvis separate during pregnancy and never come back together. This can cause severe pain and incontinence.
An operation to tighten the muscles, called an abdominoplasty, is an effective treatment – but currently not available on the NHS. Instead, women are offered physiotherapy, which the researchers say often fails to grant permanent relief.
The research was presented at the annual British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons’ conference. Study author Dr Siobhan Fitzpatrick said: ‘This condition can be treated effectively, so why isn’t it?’
British teens are at greater risk of contracting deadly meningitis by failing to have the vaccine.
Official data shows take-up of the jab, which protects against four strains of bacteria that cause the disease, is at its lowest in six years – likely due to the pandemic. Last year, 69 per cent of 14- and 15-year-olds had the vaccine, compared with 76 per cent in 2021 and 88 per cent in 2018. Cases of the condition doubled between 2020 and 2022, according to charity Meningitis Now.
‘Many who missed out have already caught up, but those who need the vaccine should contact their school nurse, school immunisation team or GP surgery to arrange a catch-up,’ says Dr Vanessa Saliba, consultant epidemiologist at the UK Health Security Agency.
British teens are at greater risk of contracting deadly meningitis by failing to have the vaccine
Less than five per cent of women could spot the signs of cervical cancer, according to a poll.
The survey, by charity Eve Appeal, also found only seven per cent of the 2,000 women polled had ‘good knowledge’ of the signs of intimate cancers – ovarian, vulval and vaginal. Dr Naomi Sutton, a sexual health consultant, said: ‘Education needs to start when we are young. This will help combat the shame some might feel when diagnosed with a gynaecological problem.’
Signs of intimate cancers include irregular bleeding, bloating and pain in the abdomen or during sex.
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