Thursday, 14 April 2011

Study shows 6 million people in Britain have problems with hearing

A new study of 15,000 people in the UK shows that 6 million of us suffer from some form of hearing loss. And 3.4 million don't use a hearing aid - but could benefit greatly from doing so. Untreated hearing impairment can have serious consequences including isolation, withdrawal, problems at work, depression and low self-esteem.

The study - Eurotrak UK - is the most comprehensive survey undertaken in this field. People answered questions not only about their personal hearing, but also about their attitudes to and knowledge about hearing aids.

It also found the UK has the lowest rate of hearing tests in Europe. The message from this must be to get your hearing tested – and these days you can do this over the phone, online and even via an App – says The British Hearing Aid Manufacturers Association (BHAMA) publishers of the report. Other key findings include:-

- UK has the lowest hearing test rate (31% UK, 47% France, 55% Germany)
- 39% of people who consult their doctor about their hearing do not go any further to seek a solution
- 93% of hearing aid owners use them regularly
- 77% (82% of those with recent models supplied since 2007) of hearing aid users are satisfied with their instrument

Professor Adrian Davis, National Director for Newborn Hearing Screening Programme, and the leading epidemiologist of hearing impairment in the UK commented: “Probably over 3.4 million people in the UK need hearing aids and do not have them according to EuroTrak UK – similar to a figure estimated by the MRC studies and RNID.

"This represents a massive challenge to everyone involved with hearing healthcare, hearing aids and their dispensing. The negative impact on the lives of the undiagnosed hearing impaired cannot be underestimated.”

Lawrence Werth, BHAMA Chairman added: “It is imperative that we get our hearing tested regularly. If hearing loss is detected then a hearing aid can help. They have improved dramatically over the last five years – a fact confirmed by EuroTrak UK - and provide real benefits for the hearing impaired.”

Where can you get your hearing tested? You can be referred for an NHS hearing test by your doctor. Alternatively, visit a private hearing aid dispenser (many offer free tests but some may charge), complete a hearing test online (eg:, ) ring the RNID’s Hearing Check phoneline on 0844 800 3838 (calls from a BT landline cost up to 5p per minute. Other providers' charges may vary. Call set up charge may apply) or download the RNID Hearing Check App.

The EuroTrak UK study was conducted in 2010. The sample size was nearly 15,000 strong.

"Do it yourself" back pain relief could save NHS millions and save you from agony

Back Pain & Sciatica, by Paul Boxcer
It's a common health condition that affects nearly all of us; from office workers to pregnant women. Low back pain can cause long-term misery if left untreated, but a London physiotherapist is claiming that self diagnosis and treatment is possible and could save the NHS millions of pounds every year.

Statistics show that low back pain affects 17 million people in the UK every year and 80% of Britons will suffer from the condition at some stage in their life. It's estimated that the overall cost of back pain in the UK (including the NHS, business and the economy) stretches to £10 billion each year, with up to five million working days being lost per annum.

Paul Boxcer has spent many years observing the condition, which has enabled him to write a book. "The inception of my unique approach began several years ago," explains Paul. "I was becoming very frustrated at seeing many people suffer needlessly for months or even years on end with low back pain or sciatica believing nothing could be done, when all they needed was the appropriate advice and exercise programme in order for them to cure themselves of the pain they were suffering."

Paul has treated thousands of patients just by educating them on how to effectively manage their pain. "The human body has an innate desire to heal itself of any injury it suffers. With regards to low back pain or sciatica, it is nearly always certain activities or postures we adopt during our day-to-day lives, along with muscle imbalances - either weak and/or tight muscles - which are preventing recovery," advises Paul.

"The best part is that there's no need to wait for a physiotherapy appointment to begin implementing my approach. Everyone can begin treating their back pain straight away and therefore avoid weeks, months or even years of unnecessary suffering."


Paul Boxcer qualified as a Chartered Physiotherapist - BSc (Hons) Physiotherapy - in 1997. Since then, he has gained over 13 years of experience treating people suffering with low back pain and sciatica. Before qualifying as a Physiotherapist he spent four and a half years working for a bank in the City of London. Not too keen on spending the rest of his life behind a desk, he decided to spend some time travelling the world before settling down in pursuit of a rewarding career. For more information visit:

Low Back Pain & Sciatica is published by Spinal Healthcare in the UK in May 2011. ISBN: 9780956293107, Hardback, RRP: £27.99. Available in all good bookshops.

Brain injury. Help when you need it

The injustice of being robbed of the right to a basic standard of life that a brain injury can result in is something no financial gain can ever really put right. This is a statement that may ring true with many.

But whilst that is true, a successful brain injury claim could provide the foundation to making a recovery, providing assistance in funding therapy and private care.

Brain injuries are complex. This means the applicable criteria for a brain injury solicitor is much more specific than that of a solicitor dealing with a typical accident claim. A brain injury solicitor is crucial when making a brain injury claim.

But, the small number of serious injury law firms may not fill those looking to make a brain injury compensation claim with much confidence.

However, there are several factors that might make finding a brain injury solicitor a little easier, specifically focusing on the accreditations the firm holds.

In the case of finding a brain injury solicitor, the accreditation to be sought is that of Headway.

Headway are the brain injury association charity; any serious injury law firm accredited by Headway and other such brain injury charities are likely to have brain injury solicitors on their books. A good brain injury solicitor is always an asset to a brain injury compensation claim.

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Tattoos are quick and easy. But what of the removal?

It seemed like a really good idea at the time but for any number of reasons people can grow tired of old tattoos and regret the decision to haver one.

Now thanks for the latest technology at sk:n, the UK’s leading clinic for laser tattoo removal you can say goodbye to unwanted tattoos.

It seemed like such a good idea at the time but for any number of reasons people can grow tired of old tattoos and regret their decision.

But now, thanks for the latest technology at sk:n, a top UK clinic which offers laser tattoo removal, you can say goodbye to unwanted tattoos.

The advanced laser tattoo removal technology means the process is simple: the laser energy breaks up the ink into tiny particles. These particles are taken up by the ‘scavenger’ cells in the skin, and are carried away from the tattoo, resulting in a gradual disappearance of the tattoo.

The treatment is safe and effective and can be used on tattoos of all shapes and sizes, allowing them to simply just fade away over time leaving you to reveal your skin with confidence.

The emergence of the sun is the perfect time to stop covering up so if you have unwanted tattoos you’re sick of hiding away give the skilled laser treatment experts at sk:n a call and take the first step to feeling comfortable in your skin.

Sk:n is currently offering 30% off laser tattoo removal, for more information on sk:n or to check out the treatments available visit: or call 0800 822 3305 to speak to an expert at sk:n.

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Healthcare can’t afford to ignore compliance issues

Recently, the General Medical Council said that existing European rules, banning its testing of GPs’ language skills, represent a risk to patient safety after reports emerged that some doctors are unable to communicate in English.

With growing awareness of professional misconduct in the medical sector and GMC plans to introduce changes to the way it treats the fitness to practice impairment, it’s time for medical recruitment to increase its focus on compliance, says medical recruiter, Your World.

Tony Moss, Managing Director of Your World says: “The problems that have arisen from recruiting EU citizens who are unable to communicate in English and have little knowledge of UK hospital procedures, are now spreading from being an issue surrounding doctors into the nursing profession.”

Poor English is not the only issue affecting the medical profession. Reports have indicated that bogus doctors from overseas can enter the NHS by showing fake certificates or ID, and some are even capable of hiding suspensions in their home countries due to a lack of standard checks. Even qualified doctors from other countries can struggle to carry out procedures that are standard in Britain, due to the differences in training. Tony Moss believes that EU directives need to take language and cultural gaps into account.

“The problem lies with lenient rules and lack of prevention plans” says Moss. “Recruiters and the NHS should not be afraid to say no to those who are unprepared for the fast-paced NHS environment or to decline EU professionals whose standard of English is not high enough. If they don’t perform enough security checks they could be employing unprepared or even unqualified medical staff who will be responsible for people’s lives. Medical institutions and recruiters alike should be taking greater steps in ensuring that their candidates are up to par.”

Your World has its own dedicated compliance teams in both the UK and Australia, as well as having a strict vetting procedure, regular training courses and continuing professional development for candidates. Moss adds “We ensure that our compliance and recruitment teams check everyone’s qualifications, experience and references throughout the registration process and beyond.”

The GMC EU directives will be reviewed in 2012 and the GMC is consulting separately on major changes to the way fitness to practice cases are dealt with at the end of an investigation.

Monday, 11 April 2011

Sk:n Clinics are offering a royal 25% off all treatments over the April bank holidays

Top UK skincare chain, sk:n Clinics, has announced a magnanimous 25% off promotion covering its entire range of procedures from laser hair removal to liposuction.
The new promotion comes soon in the wake of the Spring Revival, a package of deals and offers laid out by sk:n Clinics over March and April.

This promotion will be accessible for clients all over the UK, this is thanks to the chain having a presence in over 30 locations. Whilst many are in London, clinics can be found in almost every part of the UK.

For over 20 years, sk:n have gained a reputation for providing a competitive standard of cosmetic treatment, carriying out over 3 million treatments over a 20 year period.

The spectrum of therapy that will fall under this offer, which is timed to coincide with the generous bank holiday allowances made possible by the Royal Wedding, ranges from minor procedures such as Botox and laser hair removal to surgical treatments including breast enhancement and liposuction.

Treatments are carried out by an experienced team of sk:n experts and trained practitioners in a calm and relaxing environment.

Free consultations can be booked by calling 0800 180 8702, or by visiting the website at

Specsavers. Saves you time, saves you money

A while ago a workmate was complaining about her visit to a well-known chain of opticians. It seems -though they unhelpfully forgot to mention this to her when she paid up front for her spectacles, they no longer offered  the one hour service that they boast about in their adverts.

In point of fact in the end it took them the best part of two weeks to have her glasses made. And even then, somehow,  they had managed to fit the lenses the wrong way round!

I looked at her and said: "How much did that lost cost you?" When she told me I said: "You should have gone to Specsavers! Like I did!"

She was shocked that my really very funky and high quality designer frames were from Specsavers. But they were. She was also somewhat put out by the price I paid. Only a fraction of what she had paid for, in my opinion, an inferior service.

My trip to Specsavers in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, was an eye-opener. (Sorry!) But it really was. The eye-test was one of the most thorough I have had in many years and the staff and the optician clearly all knew their jobs inside out. The optician was  professional and very careful in what he did. I knew my eyes were in good, capable hands.
They also provide a free text service when the day before your appointment telling you the date and time of your appointment. Very handy, especially as I had got the right day but the wrong time firmly fixed in my head!

The employee who helped me with the frames was also very good. She was able to point out that I was able to get a pair of sunglasses included in the price. And that included some rather snazzy Animal frames that I liked the look of!

The glasses were ready for collection in a little over a week and the fitting service was excellent.
All the way through the process I knew exactly what price I would be paying as it is always in front of you. Literally speaking, that is. Specsavers make a point of ensuring there's no room for doubt. No room for sudden price rises after the deal is done. Specsavers (unlike some opticians) don't work that way. You will always know the price you are to pay. And it is substantially less than other large opticians.

Prices can vary from budget options for about £30, Two for one offers from £69. If you want to go for designer frames, they start at £99. Varifocal lenses do not cost extra. They also offer contact lenses and some have hearing aid centres attached, too.