Tag Archives: health

Why a scar on a girl’s face is different to a boy’s

OUR boys are always nursing some injury or another – stop! Don’t ring social services, they are boys, and they play sport.

I wouldn’t want to generalise and say boys get more scrapes than girls, but having three sons one after another it seemed from the moment they could walk they were scraping knees and elbows. While we’ve been lucky enough so far (*touches wood) to avoid any broken bones, Jed has a large scar on his elbow plus one on his eyelid, Dougie has several on his knees, plus one on his eye, and Billy Whizz seems to be attempting at every opportunity to get a scar of his own.

But while the boisterous boys will expend their energy on the rugby pitch, their self-appointed princess of a sister has her own daredevil streak and is constantly trying to climb things that shouldn’t be climbed or stand on tall objects.

However it was rugby that gave her a major cut recently, not playing it yet, but falling flat on her face while we were watching Dougie play. For some reason she didn’t put her hands out to stop herself and ended up with a cut on her nose and a grazed chin and lip.

While I was obviously concerned, I found myself fussing about potential scarring, and guilty that I was more worried about our daughter having a scar than I’d been about our sons. Boys can wear scars and scabs with pride. Girls get neurotic and self-conscious about them. Especially when they are right in the middle of your nose.

She’s not bothered, although when I said she mustn’t pick at it or she’d get a scar on her nose, she was instantly concerned. I’d forgotten that to a four-year old, Scar is the baddie in the Lion King . .

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Stabbing and jabbing

IT was after I managed to stab my shin with a broken bamboo cane for the third time in a week when I decided it was time for a tetanus jab.

Slicing though my left index finger with secateurs didn’t help. The bruising hurt more than the wound, but the soil that disappeared under my skin was more worrying.

I bet many of you gardeners haven’t had a tetanus jab since school. I had one 11 years ago, after having Dougie, according to my doctor’s notes, and they are supposed to last ten years. If you haven’t had one that you can remember, it may be worth a visit to the nurse for a booster.

Tetanus is one of those conditions that you think has been eradicated. It hasn’t.

The tetanus bacteria usually enter the body through a cut in the skin. Once inside, the bacteria multiply and release a neurotoxin (poison) called tetanospasmin, which causes the symptoms of tetanus to develop.

Tetanospasmin can spread through the bloodstream, blocking the nerve signals from the spinal cord to the muscles. This causes muscle spasms and rigidity throughout the body, particularly in the neck, face, and jaw (known as lockjaw).

For a tetanus infection, the incubation period (the time between getting the infection and the onset of symptoms) is between 4-21 days. The average incubation time is 10 days.

A tetanus infection must be treated quickly because, left untreated, the condition can be fatal. Tetanus cannot be passed from person to person.

The bacterium is mostly common in soil and manure, which makes it a pretty scary thing for the gardener. But there are less than 10 reported cases a year, thanks to the immunisation of babies for several decades. Those most at risk are over 65, who didn’t get the jab as babies. I was given a combined jab, upper arm, which includes a diptheria and polio booster. Slight swelling a couple of days later, nothing more.

Now I can stab myself with sticks to my hearts content.

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She has Wii arm

I AM suffering from “Wii-arm” (pronounced: Wee-arm). It’s a relatively new condition.

The symptoms are a dull ache in the bicep, inability to fully straighten at the elbow, and a burning desire to try and beat your six-year old on a computer game.

We have too many computer games in our house. I can’t really moan as they were bought by the kids with their own money, but I often wonder if we need both an Xbox and a Wii.

The Xbox is newer and currently gets all the attention. But at the weekend the Wii came off the bench and kept everyone amused when it was just too hot to be active outside.

As the elder two were out doing Saturday clubs, it fell to Mum to be Player 2 while Bonnie reluctantly went for her nap.

Ten tennis matches, boxing, golf, bowling, and far too many baseball games later, I’d been roundly beaten by a six-year old and was actually perspiring. Still stubborn enough to do the Fitness Test though, to find that the machine puts my fitness age at 39.

Don’t worry Mum,” consoled Bill. “At least it’s not your real age.”

No love. It’s one year below my real age. . .

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Is this weather making my leg ache?

I had major cruciate ligament surgery in my knee 20 years ago. Since this hot spell started, it’s been aching like mad, and has become stiff and difficult to straighten.
Without any other explaination, could it be the weather? Or am I just getting old?

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