The term chronic disease applies to a group of diseases that tend to be long lasting and have persistent effects.
Some chronic diseases include Heart Disease, Diabetes, Cancer, Chronic Kidney Disease, Renal Disease, Mental Health problems, Respiratory Disease (asthma).
One important sign of your risk of developing a chronic disease is where you store fat on your body. Carrying excess body fat around your middle is more of a health risk than if weight is on your hips and thighs.
Regardless of your height or build, for most adults a waist measurement of greater than 94 cm for men and 80 cm for women is an indicator of the level of internal fat deposits which coat the heart, kidneys, liver, digestive organs and pancreas. This can increase the risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes..
Heart disease generally refers to conditions that involve narrowed or blocked blood vessels that can lead to a heart attack, chest pain (angina) or stroke. Other heart conditions, such as those that affect your heart's muscle, valves or rhythm, also are considered forms of heart disease.
You can reduce your risk of developing heart disease by reducing or removing the risk factors, such as smoking, high total cholesterol, high blood pressure, being physically inactive, being overweight, diabetes, depression and social isolation.
Take any medicines as prescribed by your doctor.
Diabetes is a serious complex condition which can affect the entire body. There is currently no cure for diabetes but you can live a normal enjoyable life by learning about the condition and effectively managing it.
When someone has diabetes, their body can’t maintain healthy levels of glucose in the blood. Glucose is a form of sugar which is the main source of energy for our bodies.
While there is no single cause of type 2 diabetes, there are well-established risk factors. Some risk factors can be controlled and others you are born with.
An estimated 2 million Australians are at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes and there are also large numbers of people with silent, undiagnosed type 2 diabetes which may be damaging their bodies.
People with diabetes should follow the Australian Dietary Guidelines. Eating the recommended amount of food from the five food groups will provide you with the nutrients you need to be healthy and prevent chronic diseases such as obesity and heart disease.
To help manage your diabetes:
- Eat regular meals and spread them evenly throughout the day
- Eat a diet lower in fat, particularly saturated fat
- If you take insulin or diabetes tablets, you may need to have between meal snacks
- It is important to recognise that everyone’s needs are different.
- Matching the amount of food you eat with the amount of energy you burn through activity and exercise is important. Putting too much fuel in your body can lead to weight gain. Being overweight or obese can make it difficult to manage your diabetes.
It's important to keep cholesterol in check because high cholesterol levels increase your risk of heart disease and stroke.
Eating a healthy diet and regular exercise can help to lower the level of cholesterol in your blood. Adopting healthy habits, such as eating a healthy balanced diet and exercising, will also help to prevent your cholesterol levels from becoming high in the first place. If you're concerned about your cholesterol, talk to your doctor about a blood test for cholesterol.
Asthma is not just a childhood disease; it can occur at any age. The symptoms of asthma are coughing, wheezing, getting breathless and tightness of the chest . We have up to date lung testing Spirometry equipment available at Old Bar Medical Centre.
Heart or lung diseases with similar symptoms to asthma, such as wheezing, can mask the presence of asthma.
Mental Health Issues
Providing ongoing care and support for someone who is living with a mental illness can involve many different support organisations.
These may include: G.P’s, psychologists, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurses and other community care providers.
They are all part of the healthcare team, which works together to provide you with the best level of care possible.
At Old Bar Medical Centre we have a highly professional team who can assist people with mental health disorders and illnesses.
Mental Health Care at Old Bar Medical Centre aims to provide you with a health care plan to ensure you can live your life normally. A care plan explains the support provided by each of those professionals and when treatment should be provided. Your care plan might also include what to do in a crisis or to prevent relapse. Having a care plan will help you become more involved in your healthcare.
To assist people with chronic illness General Practice Management Care Plans and Team Care Arrangements can be planned and written by your GP ensure a comprehensive multi-disciplinary team approach to your care
Patients with “Care Plans” may also be entitled to discounts by Allied Health Professionals – this can save you a lot of money
Chronic diseases are increasingly common and all our GPs are very well educated in their management. Care Plan appointments are Bulk Billed
In catering for the over 75 year olds, preventive yearly health care assessments are available. Vicki our aged-care nurse can come to your home for your convenience and help you access the help you may want or need.
Care Plans and Team care arrangements are Bulk Billed.