Journalism in the service of society

Can we adopt a child?

My wife and I have been married for 12 years without a child. We have carried out all forms of tests and procedures to no avail. We are now considering adopting a child. Kindly let me know if this is a good idea and how to go about it.

— Adesina (by SMS)

Yes. Adoption is a well –known process for childless couples. It is a legal procedure which transfers the parental responsibility for the child to the adoptive parents. An adoption cannot be reversed once the adoption order has been granted, except in very rare circumstances. A child who is adopted no longer retains any legal ties with their birth mother and father, and become full members of the new family and usually change their surname to that of their adoptive parents. Since regulations about adoption vary from place to place, you will need to consult the authorities of the Ministry of Social Welfare in your area of abode for the way forward.

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My brother’s neck lump

My 65-year-old brother has had a lump in his neck for the past five years. The doctor we saw suggested that the lump should be removed. However, my brother doesn’t want to remove the lump because he says, it doesn’t bother him. Kindly advise me.

— Lukman (by SMS)

Even though the Lump may not bother your brother, it is usually advisable to remove any suspicious lumps in the body. The important thing is to consult a specialist doctor for the procedure.

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I sleep too much

I am a 35-year-old mother of two. My problem is that I sleep too much. Please let me know what to do about this.

— Iyabo (by SMS)

The commonest cause of ‘Sleeping Too Much’ (Narcolepsy) is not getting enough sleep. Working at night and sleeping during the day is another. Other causes include drug, alcohol, or cigarette use, lack of physical activity, obesity, and the use of certain medications. However, the condition can also be caused by an underlying condition such as Depression or a sleep disorder. It will therefore be advisable for you to check if you are on any medication that could be making you to sleep too much. In addition, you should stay away from alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine. It will also be useful to maintain a healthy diet, exercise regularly, and try relaxation techniques such as hot baths and massage. If these do not work, kindly see a Medical Doctor who will arrange a thorough Physical examination and Laboratory investigations to get to the root of your problem.

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I am always feeling tired

I am a 25-year-old postgraduate student of a Nigerian University. My problem is that I always feel tired even when I have not done any work. The tiredness is now affecting my work. What can I do?

– Jeremy (by SMS)

Fatigue may be caused by simple factors like a lack of sleep or coming down with a cold or the flu. However, it can also be caused by underlying health conditions. In most cases, fatigue can be remedied by lifestyle or dietary modifications, correcting a nutrient deficiency, or treating an underlying medical condition. Still, to improve fatigue, you need to get to the bottom of what’s causing it. Other causes of chronic tiredness include, Drug and Alcohol dependence, poor water intake, a sedentary lifestyle, as well as the consumption of certain medications including steroids, blood pressure medications and antidepressants.

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No menses at twelve years

My 12-year-old daughter, unlike her ten -year old younger sister is yet to commence her monthly menstrual cycle. Kindly help me.

 — Josephine (by SMS)

Even though most girls start their periods when they’re about age 12, there is no reason to worry about your daughter. You may be concerned however about your daughter’s cycles if she hasn’t started her period within three years of developing breasts.  You can also be concerned if she hasn’t started her period by the age of 13 and shows no signs of breast budding or pubic hair development. Until then, you should just observe her.

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