1. Foot pain or ankle pain

Our feet have a complex structure that consists of 26 bones, more than 30 small joints, and many muscles, tendons, ligaments, and nerves. Any problem in the feet or ankles is usually, but not always, related to arthritis.

Due to the arch shape of the feet, the body’s weight is evenly spread over many bones and joints. Feet with lower arches tend to be more flexible than those with higher arches. The arch of a foot is not necessarily a problem but it can increase the chances of developing other problems of the feet. The structure of the foot changes as we get older or if arthritis affects the foot joints. The changes are noticeable in the arch.

Taking care of foot/ankle pain

For most people, foot problems come and go without any prescribed treatment, or can respond well to self-treatment. Certain precautions help prevent some problems.

Common foot care tips

  • Wash your feet regularly, especially the area between your toes and dry them thoroughly
  • Use a proper foot cream
  • Clip your toenails every six to eight weeks and use an emery board to smooth jagged edges
  • Don’t ignore minor cuts, blisters, or grazes. Seek professional advice if they do not heal within two to three days
  • Use proper medications if you have ulcers on your feet
  • If you have athlete’s foot, use cream or powder recommended by the doctor
  • Toenails are vulnerable to fungal infections. Use antifungal creams to expedite the healing process
  • Try foot exercises to ease pain and prevent future injuries
  • Get the right footwear

It is always advisable to consult your doctor if your problem persists.
Book an appointment now.

2. Hip pain

The hip joint is the most important joint of the human body. It allows us to walk, run, and jump. The hip joint not only bears the entire body’s weight; it is also one of the most flexible joints, allowing a great range of motion. However, despite its durability, the joint is not indestructible. Age and overuse can cause wear and tear or the joint may get damaged causing pain. Hip fracture, particularly in elderly people can occur due to the result of a fall or other injuries.

Managing hip pain

  • Activate your muscles by starting your day with regular exercises
  • Ice your inflamed joints four to five times daily for 10–15 minutes
  • Swimming and water aerobics help lower the pain
  • Avoid high impact activities as they can worsen the symptoms
  • Losing weight can help offset pressure on the joint and relieve hip pain
  • If your hip hurts during a certain exercise, stop immediately

It is always advisable to consult your Doctor if the problem persists.Book an appointment now.

3. Knee pain

A lot of factors like a sudden and overuse injury or arthritis can lead to knee pain. You are likely to experience symptoms like swelling and stiffness. Most common knee problems include sprained ligaments, meniscus tears, runner’s knee, and tendinitis. If a previous injury is left untreated, it can flare up suddenly and cause pain. Knee pain can affect people of any age and though its treatment depends mainly on the cause, minor knee pain responds well to self-care measures.

Managing knee pain

  • Too much of rest can weaken your muscles and worsen the pain. So, keep moving
  • Exercise regularly to strengthen your muscles and improve balance
  • Be careful during movement to curb the risk of fall. Remember: Weaker, painful, or unstable knees are more prone to falls and injuries
  • Keep a check on your weight to reduce stress on your knees
  • Wear the right pair of shoes

It is always advisable to consult your Doctor if the problem persists.
Book an appointment now

4. Low back pain

Low back pain is one thing that almost everyone experiences at some point of time in their lives. In most cases, it does not require any treatment and gets better on its own. But if the pain is intense and unbearable, or refuses to go away, then, it requires treatment. A number of factors can lead to low back pain like a sudden injury or lifting something heavy. Other major causes of low back pain can be spine defects, a structural reason like a narrow spinal cord, spinal curvature, bone tumours, etc. Symptoms can range from a dull ache to a stabbing or shooting sensation. If the pain lasts for more than three months, it is considered chronic.

Managing low back pain

  • Apply ice for 24 to 48 hours after an injury and switch to heat after that to reduce the inflammation
  • Keep doing your daily activities only if the pain is not unbearable
  • Maintaining the correct posture is important
  • Try to get enough and good sleep
  • Visit physical therapists for specialized exercises to strengthen core muscles

It is always advisable to consult your Doctor if the problem persists.
Book an appointment now.

5. Neck pain

There can be a number of causes for neck pain, including poor posture and sitting at the desk for too long. However, more serious causes like infections, tumours, congenital abnormalities, age, or even cancers require treatment by specialists.

Conditions which are not serious can usually be relieved within a few days with some basic exercises, physiotherapy, or posture correction. Visit your doctor immediately if the pain continues for over a week or if you experience other symptoms like fever, headaches, swollen glands, weakness, numbness, or tingling sensations.

Managing neck pain

  • Use cold to numb acute pain and reduce inflammation
  • Take over-the-counter pain relievers to control mild to moderate pain
  • Use a neck collar for short periods to rest the painful muscles and tissues and ease your discomfort
  • Use a heating pad to relieve pain or opt for a warm whirlpool bath if one is available once the acute pain calms down

It is always advisable to consult your doctor if the problem persists.
Book an appointment now.

6. Shoulder pain

Pain in the shoulder can be the result of a number of causes that can include muscle or joint strain, sprain due to the lifting of heavyweight, or any other injury. Sometimes an old injury may also result in pain at a much later stage in life, which becomes chronic pain when ignored. Shoulder pain can also be due to tendinitis, swelling of tendons that attach the muscles to the joint. You can experience symptoms like inflammation or tension in the muscles and tendons around the shoulder.

Neck pain can cause referred pain in your shoulder blade or upper arm. Remember, if you feel a tingling sensation in your hands or arm, it can be a problem in your neck which is often referred to as radiated pain.

Managing shoulder pain

  • Take adequate rest to relieve your shoulders from everyday stress
  • Stop exercising if the pain is severe
  • Try cold compress and heat therapy
  • Avoid poor postures like slouching your shoulders
  • Avoid smoking as it leads to poor blood circulation

It is always advisable to consult your doctor if the problem persists.
Book an appointment now.

7. Warm, tender, swollen Joints

Warm, tender, swollen joints can be symptoms of underlying conditions like arthritis or dislocation. Some of the most common types of arthritis include osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, psoriatic arthritis, and septic arthritis. Home remedies can help prevent swollen joints. However, consult your doctor if the pain is accompanied by fever and if you cannot find a specific cause of the pain.

Managing warm, tender, and swollen joints

  • Apply an ice pack wrapped in a cloth for 10 minutes at a time to ease the pain
  • Avoid sitting on low chairs and couches
  • Maintain a good posture
  • Avoid being inactive for a prolonged period
  • Watch your weight and have a healthy diet
  • Regular light exercise is essential

It is always advisable to consult your doctor if the problem persists.
Book an appointment now.

8. Stiffness in joints

Stiff joints become a common phenomenon as we age. Although age is not the only factor responsible for stiff joints. Other factors like obesity, arthritis, lupus, and other medical conditions and lifestyle choices result in stiff joints.

Managing joint stiffness

  • Use a hot and cold compress
  • Opt for over-the-counter, anti-inflammatory medicines
  • If you are overweight, try losing excess weight
  • Be active and exercise regularly
  • Follow a healthy and balanced diet

It is always advisable to consult your doctor if the problem persists.
Book an appointment now.

9. Weight loss

Weight loss generally refers to a reduction of the total body mass due to a mean loss of body fat, fluid, adipose tissue, connective tissues, and other factors. Unexplained weight loss, or losing weight without trying, can many a times be a cause for concern. Unintentional weight loss might indicate an underlying medical condition like:

Hyperthyroidism – Also known as an overactive thyroid, develops when your thyroid gland makes excess thyroid hormone than required. These hormones control many functions in the body, including metabolism. An overactive thyroid, can lead to quick burn of calories even if you have a good appetite. The result is unintentional weight loss.

Rheumatoid Arthritis – Rheumatoid Arthritis patients often lose their appetite as a result can suffer from unintentional weight loss. Also Anti-rheumatic drugs can cause diarrhea, nausea, and stomach upset, which may lead to weight loss.

Diabetes - Patients with high blood sugar tend to urinate a lot, and this can result in dehydration which can be a possible cause for weight loss. Also, muscle breakdown can occur if blood sugar levels are too high, which can lead to an unhealthy weight loss.

Depression - We know that depression has lots of symptoms like appetite disturbances, lack of energy etc. Usually weight gain is associated with depression but weight loss can also be a problem. With severe depression, one might lose weight because they lose interest in food. In patients with low body weight, the brain gets starved and they develop of depression. Proper food habits may make the depression goes away.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease - Weight loss is a typical symptom of the Inflammatory Bowel Diseases of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. There may be many reasons for loss of appetite and weight loss in IBD. Some people may develop food aversions because they associate eating with pain. Some medications and nutrient deficiencies due to IBD can cause taste changes which may make a person less interested in eating leading to weight loss. IBD can also cause changes in the levels of hormones like leptin and ghrelin which have a role in making you feel hungry or full this can lead to weight loss.

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease - Weight loss is a sign of severe COPD. Inflammation of the lungs here gets so severe that the lung volume expands in size. This reduces the amount of space between the lungs and the stomach, and when one eats, the two organs push against one another making it uncomfortable. This makes breathing even more difficult and may ultimately discourage you from eating. Damaged lungs can burn as much as 10 times more calories than normal, healthy lungs thus even if you do have a good appetite, this phenomenon can lead to unintentional weight loss. Depression and anxiety from COPD can result in mental health issues leading to weight loss.

Endocarditis – Endocarditis is an infection and inflammation of the heart valves and the inner lining of the heart chambers, which is known as the endocardium. It occurs when infectious bacteria or fungi, enter the bloodstream and settle in the heart enters the bloodstream through a break in the skin caused by a skin injury; a dental procedure; or a skin prick, especially among intravenous drug users. Poor appetite and weight loss are among some of the common symptoms of Endocardium.

Tuberculosis - In addition to symptoms such as coughing and fever, it often results in significant weight loss and lack of appetite. Most individuals with active TB experience weight loss. Weight loss among people with TB can be caused by several factors, including reduced food intake due to loss of appetite, nausea and abdominal pain.

Cancer- Sometimes people ignore symptoms like that of weight loss. Many a times they don’t even know that these symptoms could mean something is wrong. People having cancer are prone to weight loss at some point or the other. When one loses weight for unknown reason, it is called an unexplained weight loss. A sudden and unexplained weight loss of 10 pounds or more may be the first sign of cancer.

Congestive Heart Failure- First, weight loss congestive heart failure may occur because of a lack of blood flow to the gastrointestinal tract. Low blood flow around the gastrointestinal tract may make it harder for the body to absorb nutrients and move food through the body. Along with that, general symptoms of congestive heart failure – including dizziness, nausea, and fatigue – may make it difficult for late-stage patients to eat. Mood disorders such as anxiety and depression may also cause unplanned weight loss in late-stage congestive heart failure.

It is normal for body weight to fluctuate, but if you’re losing weight without any change in your daily habits, then something may be reason for it. A visit to a doctor is must if you experience 5 percent weight loss in 6 to 12 months.

To know more write in to us at askmedica@medicahospitals.in

10. Snoring & Quality of Sleep

When we breathe, air flows past the relaxed tissues in our throats, causing the tissues to vibrate. The result is snoring, the hoarse or harsh sound that occurs. Though almost everyone snores off and on, it becomes a chronic problem for some. In some cases, snoring may also indicate a serious underlying health issue. Besides, it can be a cause of extreme nuisance and sleeplessness for those sharing the room with the snorer.


A number of factors can lead to snoring, such as the anatomy of your mouth and sinuses, alcohol consumption, allergies, a cold, and your weight.

When you drift off to sleep, and progress from a light to a deep sleep, the muscles in the roof of your mouth (soft palate), tongue and throat relax. When the tissues in your throat relax enough, they partially block your airway and vibrate. The more narrowed your airway gets, the more forceful the airflow becomes. This increases tissue vibration, which causes your snoring to grow louder.

Your mouth anatomy: A low, thick soft palate can narrow your airway. Overweight people may have extra tissues in the back of their throats that may narrow their airways. Similarly, if the triangular piece of tissue hanging from the soft palate (uvula) is elongated, it can obstruct airflow and increase vibration.

Alcohol consumption: Too much alcohol consumption before bedtime can cause snoring, because it relaxes the throat muscles and lowers your natural defenses against airway obstruction.

Nasal problems: Chronic nasal congestion or a deviated nasal septum (a crooked partition between your nostrils) may contribute to snoring.

Sleep deprivation: Lack of sleep furthers throat relaxation.

Sleep position: Sleeping on the back causes the most frequent and loudest snoring because gravity's effect on the throat narrows the airway.

Being overweight: Overweight or obese people are more likely to snore or have obstructive sleep apnoea.

Family history:  Of snoring or obstructive sleep apnoea is a potential risk factor for the disorders

Gender: Men are more prone to snoring or have sleep apnoea than women.


Habitual snoring is more than just a disturbance for your bed partner's sleep. Snoring that is associated with OSA, raises the risk of other complications, including:

  • Daytime sleepiness
  • Frequent frustration or anger
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • A greater risk of high blood pressure, heart conditions and stroke
  • An increased risk of behaviour problems, such as aggression or learning problems, in children with OSA
  • An increased risk of motor vehicle accidents due to lack of sleep


Certain lifestyle changes like losing weight, avoiding alcohol close to bedtime or sleeping on your side, can help reduce or cease snoring. Certain medical devices and surgery may help to reduce disruptive snoring, but these should be used only with a Doctor’s advice.

Sleep Apnoea

Snoring may often be associated with a sleep disorder called obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA). Though not all snorers have OSA, it may be a good idea to seek further evaluation by a doctor if following symptoms are noticed, along with snoring:

  • Pause in breathing during sleep
  • Feeling extremely sleepy during daytime
  • Difficulty in concentrating
  • Headaches in the morning
  • Sore throat on waking up
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Gasping or choking during sleeping
  • High blood pressure
  • Chest pain at night
  • Loud snoring that disrupts sleep of those nearby

Poor attention span, behavioural issues, or poor performance in school children

In OSA, loud snoring is followed by periods of silence when breathing stops completely or nearly stops. Finally, this reduction or pause in breathing signals your waking up, which may be accompanied by a loud snort or gasping sound.

This pattern of breathing pauses may get repeated several times during the night, sometimes as much as five times during every hour of sleep. Due to disrupted sleep, the quality of sleep will be poor.

When to see a doctor

If you suffer from any of the above symptoms, see your doctor. The doctor may advice you too do a sleep study to test for obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA).

Children may suffer from OSA too. Nose and throat problems, for e.g. enlarged tonsils, and obesity, can often narrow a child's airway, which can lead to your child developing OSA. If your child snores, ask your paediatrician about it.

Request appointment with Sleep Apnoea specialist

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