All posts by PVH Medical Team

Laughing is good for your health.

Do you have enough reasons to laugh?

When did you last have a really good laugh?

You know, one of those outbursts that literally shakes your whole body. When you can hardly breathe and your sides are hurting afterwards. If you can’t remember the last time you really laughed, it may be a sign you need to make room for a little more humour and playfulness in your life.

Laughter is good for you

Humour balances the seriousness of life, and it’s what helps you endure challenges. Laughter is good for you on many levels:

Laughter relaxes your whole body

A good, hearty laugh relieves physical tension and stress, relaxing your muscles for up to 45 minutes afterwards.

Laughter triggers the release of endorphins

The body’s natural feel-good chemicals, endorphins promote an overall sense of wellbeing.

Laughter boosts the immune system

It decreases stress hormones and increases your body’s production of white blood cells and infection-fighting antibodies, thus improving your resistance to disease.

Laughter protects the heart

Laughter improves the function of blood vessels and increases blood flow, which can help protect against heart attack and other cardiovascular problems.

Ways to laugh more

You can find more reasons to laugh by:

  • Smiling – this is where laughter begins, so find reasons to smile and let it take over your body.
  • Spending time with fun, playful people – seek out family and friends who make you laugh.
  • Moving towards laughter – when you hear people laughing, join them; laughter is highly contagious.
  • Joining a laughter club – these are groups that get together for the express purpose of laughing.
  • Watching comedy – this can be in any form you like, such as a YouTube clip, live act, TV show or movie.
  • Reading funny books or comics – start each day with a funny quote or cartoon.

What or who makes you laugh? Invest some recovery time in these activities and people.

Professional help is at hand

If you or a loved one simply can’t find a reason to laugh or smile, you might benefit from chatting to one of our friendly doctors. You may be entitled to Medicare-subsidised counselling under the GP Mental Health Care Plan Scheme. Please ask your doctor for details and a referral.

For a private consultation with one of our psychologists, no referral is required – you can simply make a booking with Reception.

 

Source: The Life Plan: Simple Strategies for a Meaningful Life by Shannah Kennedy

Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.

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Eat healthy food in 2018.

9 healthy habits for 2018

Now that the new year is well underway, how are you going with your goals and resolutions? If you haven’t already made any, it’s not too late to kick-start 2018.

Here are some ideas to give your year the healthy boost it may need:

1. Cut down on stress

Untreated stress can lead to serious illness. Whether you tackle stress through exercise, meditation, leaving work on time, getting more organised or any other method, everyone can benefit from cutting stress from their lives.

2. Get more sleep

Lack of sleep can lead to serious medical conditions such as obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes. Watch less TV and Netflix and try going to bed on time in 2018.

3. Eat well

No, you don’t need to go vegan or quit sugar (unless you really want to) but eating more vegies and home-cooked meals is simple. Like anything, it comes down to planning and changing your habits. If cooking isn’t your thing, make use of meal subscription services like Marley Spoon or Hello Fresh, or sign up for grocery delivery to make sure you always have fresh, healthy food on hand.

4. Get more exercise

Even little bursts of activity — such as a daily 15-minute power walk — can have big health and mood benefits. Try walking to work or take a couple of laps around the block in your lunch break, or try a fun new activity like indoor rock climbing that will help you get active without seeming like a chore.

5. Read more

Reading has been found to reduce stress and boost memory, focus and concentration, so make a list of books you want to read and stick to it. Consider joining a book club if you think you’ll need more of an incentive to hit your reading target.

6. Travel

You don’t have to travel far to have a good time. Pick a location in Victoria you’ve never been to before, program the GPS and head off for a weekend adventure. If you have the time and money to jet off overseas, make sure you speak to us about travel vaccinations before you go.

7. Log off

Studies show excessive screen time can disrupt sleep and contribute to anxiety and stress, so make yourself a nightly digital curfew and stick to it.

8. Eat breakfast

It’s the most important meal of the day. So do your mind and metabolism a favour and make time for a healthy breakfast each morning.

9. See your doctor

Your relationship with your doctor is one of the most beneficial you will have over your lifetime. Regular health checks with your doctor can give you peace of mind, confirm you are on the road to good health or identify any potential health concerns early.

Make a booking today with one of our friendly doctors. You can book online, on Facebook, on the Appointuit app or by calling 9304 0500.

 

Source: News.com.au

Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.

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New psychologist in Pascoe Vale

New psychologist at PVH Medical

We’re pleased to announce a new psychologist at PVH Medical – Bronwen Francis.

Psychologist Bronwen Francis has started working at PVH Medical in Pascoe Vale.

Psychologist Bronwen Francis

Bronwen is experienced in helping young people and adults across a diverse range of life experiences and needs including:

  • Anxiety and depression
  • Schizophrenia and schizo-affective disorder
  • Bipolar disorder and adjustment disorder
  • Personality disorders, borderline personality disorder, and addictions
  • Dual disability, dual diagnosis and learning difficulties
  • Relationship issues and life transitions
  • Stress management and parenting strategies
  • Grief and loss, and trauma.

At PVH Medical, we provide comprehensive assessments, interventions, and support for adults and adolescents who seek assistance for a range of emotional and behavioural concerns.

Our aim is to build resilience and enable individuals and families to reach their true potential.

To make an appointment please call Reception on 9304 0500.

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Drink responsibly this festive season.

How to drink responsibly this party season

With Christmas and New Year’s Eve just around the corner, there are plenty of opportunities to drink alcohol.

While it’s ok to enjoy yourself during the silly season, it pays to drink responsibly. Here are some tips to help you be a responsible drinker.

1. Know your limits

Don’t drink too much, and don’t drink too quickly. In practice, this basically looks like having one drink per hour, with a non-alcoholic drink like water in between drinks. When you feel drunk, stop drinking.

2. Don’t drink and drive

If you have to drive, don’t drink. Alcohol is a depressant drug that slows down your reaction speed, which means if you need to think and act quickly, you probably won’t be able to. Make arrangements for how you’ll get home before you go out, like booking a taxi or Uber.

3. Avoid mixing alcohol and other drugs

This includes both prescription drugs and recreational drugs. Make sure you know how alcohol will react with any medications you’re on.

4. Use common sense

If it doesn’t sound like a good idea, it probably isn’t one. If you’re not comfortable with the environment you’re in or are worried about bad things happening, just call it a night.

5. Do things differently

Mix things up – be the designated driver, carry bottles of water with you, or simply turn down an invite to a boozy party. Your body will thank you for it!

Need help?

If you’ve tried drinking responsibly and it’s not working, you could have a drinking problem. The easiest and quickest way to get help is to talk to someone about it. The sooner you open up about what you’re going through, the sooner you’ll start to feel a bit better.

For a confidential chat with one of our doctors, please make a booking today.

 

Source: reachout.com

Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.

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The doctors at PVH Medical wish you a happy Christmas.

Season’s greetings

This festive season we’re closed on the following public holidays:

  • Monday 25 December – Christmas Day
  • Tuesday 26 December – Boxing Day
  • Monday 1 January – New Year’s Day

In the case of an emergency, please call 000.

On all other days we’re open per our usual operating hours – that’s Monday to Thursday 8am-9pm, Friday 8am-6pm and Saturday 8am-5pm.

We would like to wish all our patients and their families a very merry Christmas and a happy new year. Thank you for your ongoing support and letting us take care of your health needs. We look forward to seeing you again in 2018!

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Our doctors in Pascoe Vale can answer any questions you have about skin cancer.

Be SunSmart this summer

Skin cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed in Australia.

Over 434,000 people are treated for one or more non-melanoma cancers in Australia each year and over 11,500 people are treated for melanoma cancers.

In 2011, there were more than 2,000 deaths from melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancers. Australia has the highest rate of skin cancer in the world.

Ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun is our main source of Vitamin D, but it is also the major cause of skin cancer. Skin can burn in just 15 minutes in the summer sun.

Skin cancer is largely preventable

Be SunSmart. When the UV level is 3 or above, protect yourself against sun damage and skin cancer by following these steps:

Our doctors in Pascoe Vale can answer any questions you have about skin cancer.

1. Slip on clothing

Cover as much skin as possible, such as shirts with long sleeves and high necks/collars. Wear clothing made from close-weave materials such as cotton, polyester/cotton and linen.

When swimming, wear material such as lycra which stays sun-protective when wet.

2. Slop on sunscreen

Sunscreen is only effective if you apply enough to your body, including your face, 30 minutes before heading outdoors. Reapply every two hours outside, and immediately after swimming, towel-drying, or heavy sweating.

It’s best to use a broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) water-based sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher every day.

3. Slap on a hat

A broad-brimmed, legionnaire or bucket-style hat provides good protection for the face, nose, neck and ears, which are common sites for skin cancers. Caps and visors do not provide enough protection.

Choose a hat made with closely woven fabric – if you can see through it, UV radiation will get through. Hats may not protect you from reflected UV radiation, so also wear sunglasses and sunscreen.

4. Seek shade

Be UV cautious in the middle of the day when UV levels are most intense. Shade provides good sun protection, but remember that UV rays reflect off surfaces such as sand, water and paving, so use other sun protection measures when in the shade too.

5.  Slide on sunglasses

Sunglasses and a broad-brimmed hat worn together can reduce UV radiation exposure to the eyes by up to 98%. Sunglasses should be worn outside during daylight hours.

Choose close-fitting, wrap-around sunglasses that meet the Australian Standard AS 1067. Sunglasses are as important for children as they are for adults.

Finally…

Check your skin regularly and see your doctor if you notice any unusual skin changes. If you have a lesion that doesn’t heal, or a mole that has suddenly appeared, changed in size, thickness, shape, colour or has started to bleed, see your doctor immediately.

Treatment is more likely to be successful if skin cancer is discovered early. Remember, if you have any concerns or questions, please make an appointment with one of our friendly doctors.

 

Source: Cancer Council Australia

Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.

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Get your cervical screening test at PVH Medical in Pascoe Vale.

Cervical screening test – starting 1 December

There are some important changes regarding the Pap test.

The two-yearly Pap test for women aged 18 to 69 will change to a five-yearly cervical screening test (CST) for women aged 25 to 74.

The latest medical and scientific evidence shows that having a cervical screening test every five years is just as safe, and is more effective than having a Pap test every two years.

Changes to age brackets

The age at which screening starts will increase from 18 to 25. If you are aged between 25 and 74 and have ever been sexually active, you should have a cervical screening test every five years until you’re 74.

Getting tested

You will be due for your first cervical screening test two years after your last Pap test. We’ll send you a reminder letter so you don’t forget to get tested.

Your doctor will receive your results about two weeks after your test.

If you’ve been vaccinated against the human papillomavirus (Gardasil vaccine) it is still recommended to have ongoing cervical screening tests as this vaccine does not protect against all the types of HPV that cause cervical cancer.

Any symptoms? See a doctor

Women of any age who have symptoms such as unusual bleeding, discharge and pain should see their doctor immediately.

If you have any questions about cervical cancer or the new cervical screening test, please make an appointment with us.

See the frequently asked questions about the cervical screening test.

 

Source: Department of Health – National Cervical Screening Program

Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.

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See a doctor in Pascoe Vale if you're at risk of getting lung cancer.

Lung cancer: the facts

Lung cancer occurs when abnormal cells in the lung grow in an uncontrolled way. It often spreads (metastasises) to other parts of the body before the cancer can be detected in the lungs.

Lung cancer is the leading cause of death in Australia with around 12,000 people diagnosed each year. It’s 1 of the 10 most common cancers in both men and women in Australia.

The signs and symptoms of lung cancer can include:

  • a new cough that has persisted for three weeks or more
  • a changed cough
  • coughing up blood
  • a chest infection that won’t go away
  • chest pain and/or shoulder pain
  • shortness of breath
  • hoarse voice
  • weight loss or loss of appetite.

The symptoms of lung cancer can often be vague and mimic those of other conditions, so it’s important to know what your cough is telling you.

What are the risk factors for lung cancer?

Factors that are associated with a higher risk of developing lung cancer include:

  • smoking cigarettes, pipes or cigars currently or in the past – this is the greatest risk factor for lung cancer, and the risk is greatest for people who began smoking early in life, smoked for longer and smoked more often
  • exposure to second-hand smoke
  • personal or family history of lung cancer
  • radiotherapy treatment to the chest
  • exposure to radon, a naturally occurring radioactive gas that can build up inside houses in some areas
  • exposure to asbestos fibres – this also increases the risk of developing mesothelioma, which starts in the lining surrounding the lungs (the pleura) and is not considered a type of lung cancer
  • exposure to other workplace substances, including radioactive ores (e.g. uranium), chromium compounds, nickel, arsenic, soot, tar or diesel fumes
  • exposure to air pollution
  • infection with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS
  • a history of certain diseases of the lungs, including tuberculosis, fungal infections of the lungs, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and pulmonary fibrosis.

Some risk factors are modifiable, such as lifestyle or environmental risk factors, and others cannot be modified, such as inherited factors and whether someone in the family has had cancer.

Having one or more risk factors does not mean that you will develop cancer. Many people have at least one risk factor but will never develop cancer, while others with cancer may have had no known risk factors. Even if a person with cancer has a risk factor, it is usually hard to know how much that risk factor contributed to the development of their disease.

Lung Cancer Awareness Month

November, Lung Cancer Awareness Month, provides the opportunity to raise community awareness of lung cancer and the signs and symptoms of the disease.

Cancer Australia has released a lung cancer awareness video called ‘What’s your cough telling you?’. It highlights symptoms that could be lung cancer and the importance of early assessment by a GP or healthcare worker.

Make a booking today

Are you at risk of getting lung cancer? See your doctor to be sure. Finding lung cancer at an early stage can lead to better outcomes.

Make a booking today with one of our friendly doctors. You can book online, on the Appointuit app or by calling 9304 0500.

 

Source: Cancer Australia

Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.

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PVH Medical supports Movember.

Movember is for men’s health

The Movember Foundation is the only global charity focused solely on men’s health.

Since 2003, $850 million has been raised and countless men and women have been empowered to join the global men’s health movement. Through the moustaches grown, the connections created, and the conversations generated, more than 1,200 breakthrough men’s health projects have been funded in 21 countries.

A bit about the history of Movember

The seed of an idea first sprouted over a few beers in Melbourne in 2003, when two mates challenged each other to grow a moustache for the duration of November. Recruiting the support of 30 loyal friends, together they experienced a month of inquisitive conversation as a result of their newly acquired facial hair. The power of the Mo as a conversation starter and awareness raiser was realised.

What it’s all about

Movember is about helping men live happier, healthier, longer lives through investing in these key areas: prostate cancer, testicular cancer, mental health and suicide prevention.

Funds raised go towards supporting innovative world-class men’s health programs supporting the key areas.

Getting involved is easy. Simply sign up at Movember.com and fundraise by growing a moustache, setting a movement challenge (like walking, running or swimming), hosting an event or making a donation.

Startling statistics about men’s health

Across the world, men die an average six years younger than women, and for reasons that are largely preventable. The stats are startling:

  • 1 in 8 men will get prostate cancer in their lifetime
  • 1 in 2 men will be diagnosed with cancer
  • Testicular cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed in men ages 15-29
  • 3 out of 4 suicides are men
  • More than 500,000 men take their own life every year. That’s one every minute.

“When we look at these stats, it becomes so clear that there is a men’s health crisis,” says Owen Sharp, CEO of Movember Foundation.

“There is a lot that needs to be done, but by talking about it, by encouraging our friends to take action for their health and supporting them, we can help keep the men we love around to live happier, healthier, longer lives. They don’t have to miss out on those key moments that matter most.”

Men’s health matters

At PVH Medical, our men’s health services aim to provide professional treatment of all types of men’s health problems in a confidential setting. From routine check-ups to screening tests to treating chronic ailments, our doctors have the experience and expertise to ensure optimal health and wellness.

So if you or a loved one needs to see a doctor, we’re here for you. You can make a booking online, on the Appointuit mobile app or by giving us a call on 9304 0500.

 

Source: Movember

Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.

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Exercise physiology in Pascoe Vale.

New exercise physiologist in Pascoe Vale

We’re excited to introduce our new exercise physiologist, Mike Fitzsimon, to our medical practice in Pascoe Vale.

Mike has over 17 years of clinical experience. He specialises in the delivery of evidence-based, person-centred exercise services that enhance your health.

As head of exercise physiology at Clifton Hill Physiotherapy / Clifton Hill Pilates and Rehab, and previously in his role at No Limits Exercise Physiology, Mike has developed excellent clinical skills and created innovative exercise programs for a range of patient groups.

Mike enjoys collaborating with like-minded clinicians to deliver and coordinate care that enhances health. He provides patients with education, guidance and support that enables them to make better exercise decisions and reach their full potential.

Exercise physiology in Pascoe Vale, Melbourne.

As an exercise physiologist, Mike is committed to:

  • Delivering high-level performance for the prevention, management and rehabilitation of illness, chronic disease and injury
  • Delivering quality, evidence-based exercise
  • Developing innovative service models that enable a wide range of people to access exercise physiology services, and
  • Developing specialised group services for special populations, particularly those with complex medical conditions.

When Mike is not working he enjoys spending time with his family, coaching junior sport, playing golf, exercising regularly, listening to music and travelling.

What does it cost?

One-on-one consultations are as follows:

  • Initial consult (60 minutes) is $85
  • Follow-up consult (60 minutes) is $75
  • Follow-up consult (30 minutes) is $50

Bulk billed EPC and DVA appointments are also available.

Free consultation if you were previously enrolled

You can enjoy a free initial consultation if you were previously enrolled in exercise physiology classes at PVH Medical.

Exercise physiology classes available

You can benefit from joining a group exercise class. View the current exercise timetable here.

Group classes are $20 each. Alternatively, you can buy a 10-class pass for $200 and get a bonus class (i.e. 11 classes for $200).

Mike looks forward to implementing the following classes at PVH Medical:

  • Chronic disease management
  • Shoulder and neck conditioning
  • Knee strength and conditioning
  • Exercise oncology
  • Pelvic function and conditioning
  • Strong to the bone (osteoporosis management)
  • Women’s exercise
  • General fitness.

Make a booking today

Patients can book directly with Reception for an initial consultation. An initial consultation is required before enrolling in an exercise group.

Mike is accessible through EPC referrals as well as DVA and private patient bookings.

Feel free to have a chat with Mike in our clinic or email ep@pvhmedical.com.au.

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Pascoe Vale podiatry.

How healthy are your feet?

According to the Australian Podiatry Association, one in five Australians suffer from foot pain.

Podiatry is about more than just the foot, however, it’s about uncovering the root cause for pain anywhere from your lower back down.

Podiatrists are the experts in foot and lower limb health. They assess, diagnose and prescribe treatment plans so you can continue living an active, pain-free lifestyle.

Podiatrists are fundamental to getting people moving and active, preventing injuries and prolonging healthy lives.

Growing demand for podiatry

In recent years, the demand for podiatric care in Australia has increased significantly. Contributing factors include our aging population and the increase in the number of Australians diagnosed with diabetes.

An astounding 4,400 diabetic amputations occur in Australia every year. Most of these can be prevented through proper podiatric care.

October is Foot Health Month

Foot Health Month is a national campaign that aims to raise awareness for foot health, highlighting the benefits and importance of visiting a podiatrist as part of your annual health check.

From children and athletes right through to seniors and those suffering from chronic illness, a visit to the podiatrist can have a positive impact on people’s lives.

Make an appointment with a podiatrist in Pascoe Vale

If you have ongoing pain in your foot, ankle or knee or have noticed a change in the way your walk, make a booking with one of our on-site podiatrists at Pride Podiatry.

You may have podiatry cover under your Extras health insurance policy to help cover some of the cost. No referral is needed. Appointments can be made online too or on the Appointuit app.

See a podiatrist today as part of your regular health check.

Pride Podiatry Pascoe Vale.

 

Source: Australian Podiatry Association

Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.

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If you find a suspicious breast change, make a booking to see a doctor at PVH Medical Pascoe Vale.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

This October is an opportunity for Australians to focus on breast cancer and its impact on those affected.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer among Australian women. According to the Department of Human Services, over 17,000 women are likely to be diagnosed with this cancer in 2017.

Detecting breast cancer

Early detection of breast cancer can saves lives.

Detecting any abnormalities early on ensures that women have all treatment options available to them. The earlier breast cancer is found, the better the chance of surviving it.

In Australia, free routine mammographic screening is available through BreastScreen Australia services in each state for women aged 50 to 74.

Women aged 40 to 49 can also have mammography, but breast screening is less effective because the density (thickness) of breast tissue makes it more difficult to see a cancer in the x-ray and fewer women are diagnosed in this age group.

This free service is not offered to women under the age of 40. This is because research suggests that younger women do not benefit from routine mammographic screening because they have denser breast tissue than older women. It is also not offered to men due to their lack of breast tissue.

All women are encouraged to be ‘breast aware’ – that is, familiar with the normal look and feel of their breasts.

If you find a suspicious breast change, make a booking with us immediately. Our friendly team of GPs can refer you to imaging tests to confirm the presence of the change.

If the imaging results appear suspicious, you will be referred for a biopsy for confirmation and diagnosis.

Breast cancer in Australia: the facts

  • One in eight women will develop breast cancer in their lifetime.
  • On average, eight women die from breast cancer every day.
  • There are more than 65,000 people currently living with breast cancer in Australia.
  • This year, 17,586 women (an average of 48 every day) are projected to be diagnosed with breast cancer, although mortality is predicted to continuously decline.
  • Women diagnosed with breast cancer have a 90% chance of surviving five years after diagnosis.
  • Increasing age is one of the strongest risk factors for developing breast cancer.
  • More than two in three cases of breast cancer occur in women aged between 40 and 69 years.
  • Breast cancer spreading to other organs (metastasis) is the main cause of death from breast cancer. The survival rate of women that have metastatic breast cancer at first diagnosis is alarmingly low, with only one in four women still alive five years after diagnosis.
  • Improvements in survival are attributed to earlier detection of breast cancer through regular mammograms and improved treatment outcomes for breast cancer.
  • Although rare, breast cancer can also affect men, accounting for about 1% of cases.

Donate now to help save lives

Research is the only way to end breast cancer.

The National Breast Cancer Foundation, which does not receive government funding, is calling on all Australians for a donation.

It’s one way you can help the Foundation take a step closer to achieving its goal of zero deaths from breast cancer by 2030.

Remember, we are here to help. If you have any questions about breast cancer, please ask one of our GPs.

 

Source: National Breast Cancer Foundation.

Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.

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Get your blood taken in Pascoe Vale.

Pathology now available in Pascoe Vale

We’re pleased to announce that pathology is now available at PVH Medical Pascoe Vale.

We can take your blood on weekdays from 8am to 12pm.

If you have any questions, please call our friendly practice on 9304 0500 today.

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September is Dementia Awareness Month, an initiative of Alzheimer’s Australia. PVH Medical in Pascoe Vale is helping raise awareness.

What is dementia?

Dementia is a condition that affects a person’s thinking, behaviour and ability to perform everyday tasks. It comes in many forms, greatly impacting individuals and their loved ones.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia, and accounts for about two-thirds of dementia cases. It causes a gradual decline in cognitive abilities, usually beginning with memory loss.

According to Alzheimer’s Australia, over 400,000 Australians are living with dementia. An estimated 1.2 million people are caring for a person with dementia including partners, carers, family members and friends.

Dementia is not restricted to older people – people in their 30s, 40s and 50s can get dementia too. In fact, 25,000 Australians under 65 have dementia. It affects more people than you think.

Dementia Awareness Month

September is Dementia Awareness Month, an initiative of Alzheimer’s Australia.

The theme for this year’s campaign is ‘You are not alone’. It encourages people to become aware of issues surrounding dementia, have a better understanding of what it’s like for a person to live with dementia and create more supportive communities for people with dementia.

World Alzheimer’s Day

Every year on 21 September, Alzheimer associations around the world unite to acknowledge World Alzheimer’s Day. The aim of the day is to make a difference for people with dementia, their families and carers worldwide.

Early warning signs of dementia

The early signs of dementia are very subtle and may not be immediately obvious. Early symptoms also vary across individual patients.

The early signs of dementia include:

  • Memory loss that disrupts daily life
  • Repetitive behaviour
  • Difficulty performing familiar tasks
  • Social isolation
  • Confusion about time and place
  • Problems with abstract thinking
  • Loss of initiative
  • Poor or decreased judgement
  • Language problems
  • Other behavioural changes.

Worried about dementia?

If you’re concerned that you or a loved one may be experiencing dementia, please make a booking with us. We’re committed to helping patients of all ages in Pascoe Vale and the surrounding area.

Call us on 9304 0500 or make a booking on the Appointuit app.

More information

  • Find out how you can get involved in Dementia Awareness Month by visiting the Alzheimer’s Australia website.
  • Download the Dementia Guide, an important resource for anyone who has recently been diagnosed with dementia or has been impacted by the disease.
  • Visit the Your Brain Matters website to learn how to keep your brain healthy and reduce your risk of dementia.
  • Download the BrainyApp developed to raise awareness of the risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia.
  • Call Alzheimer’s Australia for information, support and advice on 1800 100 500.

 

Source: Alzheimer’s Australia.

Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.

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Get help from PVH Medical in Pascoe Vale, Vic.

Are you struggling with the day to day?

You can’t put your finger on it but you’re not in top form. You feel tired more often, you’re emotional and the things you used to enjoy doing now don’t hold the same appeal.

It’s hard to generalise how struggling to cope can make you feel or act, but if any of these symptoms sound familiar please consider having a chat with one of our doctors.

  • Lacking energy or feeling tired
  • Feeling restless or agitated
  • Feeling tearful
  • Not wanting to talk to or be with people
  • Not wanting to do things you usually enjoy
  • Using alcohol or drugs to cope with feelings
  • Finding it hard to cope with everyday things

While our doctors have loads of experience helping patients with all sorts of issues, you may be referred to one of our in-house psychologists for specialised care.

You could be entitled to Medicare-subsidised counselling under the GP Mental Health Care Plan Scheme. Simply ask your doctor for details and a referral.

No referral is required for private consultations with a psychologist.

R U OK? Day – 14 September 2017

R U OK is a suicide prevention charity in Australia, reminding people that having meaningful conversations with friends and loved ones could save lives.

On 14 September we’re getting behind this charity’s special awareness day called R U OK? Day.

R U OK? Day is about staying connected and having meaningful conversations. That’s something we can all do. You don’t need to be an expert, just a great mate and a good listener. So if you notice someone who might be struggling – start a conversation.

Some conversations are too big for friends and family to take on alone. That’s why we encourage you to speak to a doctor at PVH Medical Pascoe Vale.

If you need urgent support outside of hours, call Lifeline on 13 11 14.

 

Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.

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Speech pathology in Pascoe Vale

Speech Pathology Week 2017

This year, Speech Pathology Week runs from 20 August to 26 August.

It seeks to promote the speech pathology profession and the work done by speech pathologists with the more than one million Australians who have a communication or swallowing disorder that impacts on their daily life.

The theme for Speech Pathology Week 2017 is ‘Communication access: Everyone gets the message!’. This theme reinforces the important role that speech pathologists play in the lives of Australians with speech and swallowing difficulties.

What is communication access?

It’s when everyone can get their message across.

Communication access is about creating a world where people with communication difficulties can communicate successfully with everyone – a world where everyone gets the message.

Communication by definition involves at least two people. People with communication difficulties often experience communication barriers to their full participation in community life.

People with communication difficulties may communicate with others using a variety of means, including electronic speech devices, word-based or picture-based communication boards or books, sign and gesture, and spelling.

Like mobility access, communication access involves the provision of community supports and strategies for people with a communication disability to participate fully in social, educational, economic, sporting, and community life. This involves greater awareness and understanding of communication disability within our community, and for all of us to learn how to interact with people with communication disability.

Speech Pathology Australia estimates that over 1.1 million Australians – around five per cent of the Australian population – have a communication disorder.

Our communities need to be accessible for everyone, including people with communication difficulties, physical disabilities, reading difficulties, vision impairment, hearing impairment and intellectual disability. Building communication accessibility will ensure everyone is treated with dignity and respect. When we create communication-accessible communities, everyone gets the message.

Tips for successful communication*

  • Always treat the person with the communication disability with dignity and respect
  • Be welcoming and friendly
  • Understand there are many ways to communicate
  • Ask the person with the disability what will help with communication
  • Avoid loud locations, find a quiet place
  • Listen carefully
  • When you don’t understand, let them know you are having difficulty understanding
  • If you think the person has not understood, repeat what you have said or say it a different way
  • Try asking the person yes or no questions if you are having difficulty understanding them
  • Ask the person to repeat or try another approach if you don’t understand
  • To make sure you are understood, check with the person that you have understood them correctly
  • If you ask a question, wait for the person to reply
  • Allow the person time to respond, so always be patient
  • Speak directly to the person and make eye contact (though be mindful that there are some people who may not want you to look at them, e.g. some people with autism spectrum disorder)
  • Speak normally – there is no need for you to raise your voice or slow your speech.

What is a speech pathologist?

Speech pathologists study, diagnose and treat communication disorders, including difficulties with speech, language, reading and writing, stuttering and voice. People who experience difficulties swallowing food and drinking safely can also be helped by a speech pathologist.

Do you need to make an appointment for you or a family member?

Our on-site speech pathologist at PVH Medical Pascoe Vale is Naomi DeNicolo. She’s a member of Speech Pathology Australia and is a Certified Practising Speech Pathologist with over 18 years’ experience.

To make an appointment with Naomi, call 9304 0500 or download the Appointuit App on your smartphone.

 

*Source: Adapted from SCOPE, Communication for all booklet, www.scopeaust.org.au

Note: This information is of a general nature only and should not be substituted for medical advice. It does not replace consultations with qualified healthcare professionals to meet your individual medical needs.

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