Ask our Doc
Don’t be shy – Chat’s Dr Martin Edwards is a family GP who’s seen it all before…
Q I’ve had swollen glands in my neck for weeks now. Why won’t they go down? Angelina, 29
A A series of colds and sore throats, or an infection elsewhere, such as in a tooth or on your scalp, might leave your glands swollen for weeks.
But more serious infections such as tuberculosis, or a kind of cancer called lymphoma, are rare possibilities, so you should see your doctor.
Q My eyes water and clamp shut when I’m in bright sunlight.
I feel silly constantly wearing my shades. Milly, 21
A An optician can rule out eye inflammation or infection or diseases of the retina at the back of your eye.
Migraine is a possibility, especially if you also have headaches. But sometimes light-sensitivity is a habit you just develop. If it causes you problems, talk to your doctor.
Q After a brilliant holiday with lots of snogging, my jaw hurts!
Surely I can’t damage it through kissing? Tulip, 27
A Yes you can! Vigorous kissing can temporarily put your jaw joint out of place. It’s called Costen’s syndrome and can also happen with teeth that don’t meet properly, or through tooth-grinding.
It should get better with painkillers, a soft diet and jaw exercises if necessary.
‘Erm, it’s a bit... personal’ Smear concern
Q I’m gay, so why does my doctor want me to have a smear test?
I thought only having sex with men put you at risk of cervical cancer. Trudy, 34
A Many gay women have had sex with a man, so could catch the virus, which increases the risk of cervical cancer.
Even if you haven’t, there’s a tiny risk from gay activity, so it makes sense to have a smear test.
Q I get water in my vagina after a bath. It dribbles out and wets my briefs.
Is this normal? Sheila, 53
A Normally, the entrance to your vagina is closed and water won’t enter, but weakened muscles around your vagina and pelvic floor, usually the result of childbirth, might let it in.
Pelvic-floor exercises can help restore muscle tone, meanwhile wear pads after a bath.