Over half of Brits are suffering in silence with up to four ailments

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More than a quarter of sufferers have had specific ailments for several years or more, with eight percent having been forced to cope for over 10 years.

And the impact is wide-ranging – of all those with health conditions, nearly half (46 percent) said they struggle to sleep, while 28 percent have developed mental health conditions, and nearly one in five (18 percent) can’t work.

Commissioned by Perrigo, the research found 70 percent of sufferers try to adopt a “keep calm and carry on” coping mechanism to their ailment.

And 28 percent do so because they feel their GP doesn’t “seem interested” – while over a quarter (27 percent) claim they can’t get an appointment with their doctor.

But 52 percent admitted it’s never crossed their mind to visit a pharmacy for advice – while more than one in five (22 percent) simply don’t like going to their local GP.

Farah Ali, superintendent pharmacist at Warman-Freed, said: “As Brits, we’re used to keeping calm and carrying on – but when it comes to our health, this shouldn’t be the case.

“Even minor issues and ailments can impact our quality of life and the way we want to live, when they really don’t have to.

“Don’t ignore your body by putting up with discomfort and suffering in silence.

“There are ways to manage conditions early through self-care, so that problems don’t build up and disrupt everyday activity.”

The study also found a tendency to suffer in silence is very much a nationwide problem – with over half (57 percent) of those polled admitting they usually keep schtum when they develop health conditions.

And 54 percent admit they are “better” at looking out for other people’s health than their own.

This approach also appears to extend to self-care, with 56 percent admitting this isn’t one of their strong points – and worse still, 43 percent don’t consider it to be a priority.

However, the same percentage think they have improved in this area of their lives during the last two or three years.

And over two-thirds (69 percent) claim to be “good” at listening to their body and understanding its needs.

The research, carried out through OnePoll, found the typical adult has taken seven days off work during the past year.

But this figure should perhaps be higher – as 59 percent said they’ve worked despite feeling too ill to do so.

Reasons for this include not liking to take time off (37 percent), having “too much work to do” (31 percent), and not wanting to acknowledge there was a problem (20 percent).

Farah Ali added: “You must always seek the advice of a healthcare professional for any prolonged condition.

“Your community pharmacist is an accessible and great first point of call if you’re struggling to get an appointment with your doctor.

“Pharmacists are experts in minor health conditions, able to provide self-care solutions.

“They can offer clinical advice and over-the-counter medicines for a range of minor illnesses.

“And they’ll signpost you if you need to see a GP, nurse, or other healthcare professional to treat your condition.”

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