The fallout from ash
The consequence of the erupting volcano in Iceland has been enormous disruption and discomfort, especially throughout Europe. Even so, death and disability directly due to the falling ash has been remarkably rare. Not so rare are the serious health problems associated with the manufacture of ash from smoking tobacco.

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Let’s talk about mental health
A 25-year study of 60,000 Germans has shown that long-term happiness is determined by lifestyle decisions including choice of partner, employment and religion. The results of the study are published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and although the research was conducted in Germany, study leader, Associate Professor Bruce Headey from the University of Melbourne, suggests the findings can also be applied in Australia.

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Changing the face of Mens Health
Self esteem, or lack of it, has an effect on men’s health; a critical issue in times of employment and financial uncertainty. When men feel they have no control over their lives they are sometimes burdened with feelings of guilt and shame. One out of every six men suffers from depression at any one time; and men are more likely to suicide than women. Also, men often do not recognise the symptoms of depression, and so do not seek help.

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Good health gift ideas
For many people, Christmas has deep religious significance; for others, it’s simply a time to relax and enjoy a few days off work. But for almost everyone, this time of year has traditionally become one of celebration. Throughout many societies it is commonplace to exchange gifts or simply ‘season’s greetings’, and to express sentiments of peace and goodwill. Wishes of good health usually accompany greetings at this time of year; so, perhaps some healthy gift ideas could be worth a thought as well.

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Cold sores – not so cool
To most people cold sores might seem to be a comparatively trivial condition; but if you are one of the thousands of people who suffer with cold sores you no doubt find them annoying beyond belief.

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Don\'t stress it
As a nation we are becoming more stressed, a survey last year highlights just how dramatic this trend is. Undertaken by the Australian Psychological Society, the study showed that in 2013, Australians reported significantly lower levels of wellbeing and significantly higher levels of stress and distress than in 2012 and 2011.

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Mental health awareness
Mental Health Week also encourages people to seek help, or for family and friends to encourage people to seek help, when necessary. There are many highly trained professionals who specialise in mental health. General practitioners (GPs) are able to treat and refer patients as appropriate.

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