Tag Archives: Healthy mind

NHS care – know what your choices are

The government is committed to giving you greater choice over how you receive your NHS health care. A new NHS guide sets out some of the options available to you. It explains:

• when you have choices about your health care

• where to get more information to help you choose

• how to complain if you are not offered a choice.

A new NHS guide sets out some of the options available to you.

In some situations you have legal rights to choice: in other circumstances you do not have a legal right, but you should be offered choices about your care, depending on what is available locally.

To find out what the options are, follow the links:

• My NHS care: what choices are available to me?

• Choosing your GP and GP practice

• Choosing where to go for your first appointment as an outpatient

• Asking to change hospital if you have to wait longer than the maximum waiting time

• Choosing who carries out a specialist test

• Choosing maternity services

• Choosing services provided in the community

• Choosing to have a personal health budget

Healthy body – healthy mind?

September was World Alzheimer’s Month and a report released to mark the event points out that some of the ‘modern’ diseases which plague today’s population, such as diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease, could be linked to an increased risk of dementia in later life.

Healthy mind

A person with diabetes, for example, has a 50% higher risk of developing dementia, according to the report. Studies in the elderly have also shown a link between smoking and dementia. While risk is similar between ex-smokers and people who have never smoked, those who continue to smoke are at much higher risk of dementia.

It is important, says the report, to ‘preserve brain health during mid-life’ as people who enter old age with well-developed, healthy brains have a reduced chance of developing dementia. The changes in the brain responsible for dementia can begin decades before symptoms appear, so, like saving into your pension fund, it is never too soon to start looking after your health. A visit to the pharmacy for advice would be a good start.