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Wed, 1st April 2015

The drama of anti-social behaviour grinds on. Every night television Current Affairs alerts us to the horrors of degenerating lifestyles, violence, hold ups, aggression, negative attitudes, horrific outcomes. Where is it all heading? What is the answer? Would you believe it, but nothing changes. Society will take it all in its stride. The world is not coming to an end, nor is it going to hell. This is real time reality. In thirty years, todays anti-social delinquents will be middle aged to elderly. The baby boomers of yesteryear will have died out, the trouble makers long since vanished. Society and real life have a way of balancing. The razors edge however will continue.

Charles Dickens

Simply read Charles Dickens whose fame peaked in the mid-1850s, as he described London in the 1820s. Disaster, child abuse, poverty, madness, murder, mayhem, social injustices (juvenile and otherwise) were at their height. London drowned in a sea of alcohol, making todays illicit drug scene a non-event. And what took place? Exactly nothing. The world continued, in fact it became more modern and more moderate, less evil. Social injustices, world wars, famine, fire and pestilence wiped out millions, as did the 1918 flu pandemic. The rebels of one era later developed into pillars of society. The "no hopers" and "ne'er do wells" became the lawyers, barristers, doctors, research glitterati, bankers and empire rulers a few years later. The timid and oppressed no hopers of society who never created anything of note simply faded from sight and memory.


My headmaster of a strict boys school would scream and yell about current teenagers, lack of respect (as he doled out the cane) and despaired of the future. He is long since dead and forgotten (thank heavens). Anti-social behaviour appears more intense simply because todays contemporary society can record and regurgitate "crimes" big and small. Australia was built on a criminal history, although most of those doling out the sentences of either hanging or transportation to Australia were little better than the "criminals" they convicted. I have every faith in the upcoming generation. There will be a heap of geniuses that will inevitably float to the top. Simply watch young kids and their achievements in sports, theatre, on telly, radio, papers. Vast numbers are brilliant. Kids that play musical instruments, dance, skate, surf, run events, lead their peers at school. Respectable "little old ladies" often the "victim" of crimes, were often themselves just as wild as those who beat them up.


Today's computer nerds are often youngsters in their teens. Just look at Apple, Microsoft and Google, the latter totally unknown fifteen years ago and now the world biggest companies on the Dow. Parents who instil sensible skills, goals, and lifestyle standards in their kids may run better chances of producing a high level of excellence. But genetics, serendipity and inborn talent ultimately win out. Today's kids are great and this story will never end.



What is the best treatment for simple burns which are common with kids and BBQ'S?


Place the burnt area under cool running water. Most are superficial and heal fairly soon with few adverse outcomes. Then wrap with a cotton bandage for a few days. Occasionally blisters will occur. Do not prick for this may allow infection to supervene. A new layer of skin underneath will gradually toughen and replace the burnt part which will gradually slough away. Anything deeper or more serious should be seen urgently at the burns unit of any public hospital. Supervision of children at BBQ's is essential. But most learn quickly of possible risks.

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I often get an itchy backside and want to scratch.


This is common and there are heaps of causes, mainly fixable. Moisture gathers here from sweat and rubbing skin surfaces. It becomes red and irritable. Cleanse with bits of cotton wool dipped in liquid paraffin. This soothes. Then apply a mild cortisone cream (Hydroform from the doctor is even better). In younger persons worms often exit, crawl around lay their eggs and vanish before sun up. A check with the torch when they are asleep will often reveal them wriggling around like bits of chopped up cotton ("threadworm") Vermox and combantrin cures most. Hand washing with soap and warm water is also vital. Dose the whole family simultaneously.

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If I feel my testes it seems like a bag of worms! Is this serious?


This sounds like varicocele. Blood vessels may readily grow in this area, and screw up and give the strange feeling. Usually it is innocuous, is not cancer and will not turn into cancer (which is fairly common in young people). An ultrasound may give further information. Sometimes surgical intervention may be advised, but most do OK.

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I am early forties and find periods are much heavier and last longer.


Go see your friendly GP without delay. All manner of negative events may occur in the pelvis at this age. A general physical check most probably followed by ultrasound evaluation will be suggested. This may indicate fibroids (non cancerous growths in the walls of the womb), polyps, endometrial thickening, hormonal influences, or other abnormalities. Today, intervention to "fix" these issues is readily at hand. It may include a D and C, or removal of the womb lining (curette or "roller ball ablation") or other interventions. Cancer of course is always at the foremost of medical consideration.

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I have developed a terribly sore throat and the doctor says "quinsy", "your tonsils should have been removed years ago". But years ago I was told they did not often carry out this operation any more.


Removal of tonsils and adenoids called "T and A's" was fashionable fifty years ago, and thousands of kids-unnecessarily underwent this intervention. However, today antibiotics are successfully used and the need for surgery largely has vanished. But throat specialists are now seeing many adults with adult tonsillitis, often severe. They believe in fact it would have been better to have had the tonsils removed as a child rather than in adult life. The world of medicine and "fashions" is a strange one indeed.

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This health advice is general in nature. You are advised to seek medical attention from your doctor or health care provider for your own specific symptoms and circumstances.



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