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Various health concerns: Signs & symptoms which may be misleading

Various health concerns: Signs & symptoms which may be misleading

Cyberchondria. The online Oxford Dictionary defines this as “A person who compulsively searches the Internet for information about particular real or imagined symptoms of illness”.

Michele Carelse, Clinical Psychologist for Feelgood Health was invited to share her views about how health experts feel about your self diagnosis.

Panic Attack/Heart Attack 

Over the years I have had many people referred to me by doctors who have seen patients in emergency rooms with suspected heart attacks - shortness of breath, chest tightness, pain and dizziness. After an extensive medical workout, 'nothing' is found and the diagnosis of panic attack is made. Panic attacks can be as a result of stress or anxiety and are relatively easy to deal with, especially if they are identified early. If left untreated, they can become entrenched and patients often become dependent on psychiatric medication, with many negative effects on social and occupational functioning. In my professional experience, anxiety and panic attacks can be successfully treated with a combination of natural remedies and management techniques.


These symptoms could be indicative of a range of neurological problems - but stop to consider whether you have been eating regularly as low blood sugar levels could be the culprit. You could also pop into your pharmacy and have your blood pressure checked - low blood pressure could also cause these symptoms.


While children with hyperactivity and concentration problems do not usually end up in the emergency rooms, they (and their desperate parents) frequently end up in doctor's rooms at their wits end. High schedule prescription psychiatric drugs for Attention Deficit Disorder (ADHD) tend to be the standard treatment - often without a proper assessment or consideration of alternatives. Besides a diagnosis of ADHD, the list of problems that could contribute to the constellation of hyperactivity, concentration and behavioural problems is very long and parents should make sure that a proper assessment is done. Psychiatric drugs should be the last resort due to their high risk of side effects. Most cases respond well to parent and teacher counseling, natural remedies and work done with the child and family to manage the problem.

Michele Carelse is a Clinical Psychologist and Director of Feelgood Health Natural Remedies. For more info, please go to

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