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ASK THE EXPERTS: Sex & health solutions; Stuck on a tricky problem? From approaching your office love to coping with workplace stress, our expert panel has the answers[ETH].

Byline: Edited by: Lynne Michelle.

Unspoken crush

QI have deep feelings for a bloke at work. Now he tells me heOs planning on leaving both the company and the country. I feel if he goes I will lose him forever and never meet anyone like him again. How could I stop him leaving without disclosing my feelings, and should I try?

AYou canOt stop him leaving if he is absolutely committed to it. But as you have not told him how you feel about him, he has also made his decision to leave without ever knowing how you feel. I canOt guarantee that sharing your feelings would change his mind, but it seems sad for you to see him go without ever saying anything. It is possible he secretly feels the same about you, and if you stay silent you will always have that doubt. Do you really have anything to lose by talking to him? You donOt have to get heavy with him, but please think about telling him how much you enjoy his company and how fond you are of him. Even if he doesnOt change his mind, I really think you will be left with less regret if you open up to him. OIf onlysO can be very painful once the opportunity to deal with them has gone. BC

Bags under eyes

QIOm in my early 30s and have bags under my eyes. Is it worth having the operation to remove these now, or do you think I would be better waiting until I need more extensive anti-ageing surgery?

AThe operation you are referring to, called lower lid blepharoplasty, disguises or removes bags underneath lower eyelids. This surgery can have excellent results in appropriate patients. Whether you should have this done alone or wait is a difficult question. If you believe your lower eyelids are ageing more quickly than the rest of your face, I feel it may be worth operating now. If, however, you feel everything is in keeping, but that other areas of your face may warrant surgery in the near future, wait. The final decision should be made with the guidance of a qualified (BAAPS or BAPS-registered) plastic surgeon. VV

QI have a very stressful job and lately I have been getting so wound up with everything my chest gets really tight and I find it hard to breathe. Is there anything that will help calm me down?

AYou are describing some of the classic symptoms of stress-related anxiety. Others include palpitations, sweating, shaking and an inability to concentrate. Look hard at your jobOs stress levels, as treatment papers over the cracks but does not cure the problem. However, treatments do exist without the need for tranquillisers or antidepressants. Beta blockers can help reduce your stress levels and have few side effects in small doses, though these should not be taken if you have asthma. If you would prefer a natural treatment to a prescription medicine, then many people find St JohnOs Wort helps reduce anxiety and even mild depression. See your GP for a proper mental health assessment first, though. RH

Boiling over

QEvery six months or so I get large boil-type spots in the crease of my bottom. They look like red lumps but when squeezed they ooze gunk like a giant spot. My doctor says they are caused by overactive glands and has prescribed strong antibiotics and Roaccutane, but these make me feel very ill. Can you suggest a herbal alternative?

AAccording to traditional Chinese medicine, boils are the result of a liver imbalance. The actual condition is called Oliver heatO, and typical symptoms are hot, red, raised boils that ooze yellow pus. The liver can be treated through food and herbal medicine. Cut out all sugar, yeast products, saturated fats and alcohol and increase your intake of water, green vegetables, essential fatty acids and wholegrains to aid liver function. Milk thistle, or Silymarin, has also been clinically proven to help the liver. BiocareOs Milk Thistle Complex (pounds 17.15 for a monthOs supply) combines this herb with black radish and curcumin to support liver and gall bladder function (not recommended for hepatitis or liver cancer sufferers). New ChapterOs Liver Force (pounds 26.49 for a monthOs supply) can also aid liver detoxification. Both are available from www.revital.com (0800 252 875) JY

Scary stools

QWhen I went to the toilet this morning, I was rather startled to see what IOd done was black in colour. I had been drinking the night before. Should I go to my doctor about this?

AThe answer is definitely yes. This symptom is usually a sign of blood in the motions, and can be due to a range of possible causes including ulcers and other conditions affecting the large bowel. Some tablets such as iron supplements will also darken stools. I doubt an eveningOs drinking will have had much to do with what has happened, though there is a chance consistently heavy drinking could have caused you to bleed from the gut. Even if you have no other symptoms and do not feel unwell, get checked out now I doctorOs orders! RH

THIS WEEKOS EXPERTS...

Beechy Colclough runs his own practice in Harley Street and has counselled celebs such as Robbie Williams.

Dr Roger Henderson is a GP, occupational health expert and consultant for NetDoctor.co.uk

Jacqueline Young specialises in complementary medicine and runs the Healthcheck Clinic (call 020 8449 7771)

Vikram Vijh is a leading NHS consultant plastic surgeon. See www. plasticsurgeryonline.co.uk

OUR PANEL OF EXPERTS IS HERE TO OFFER ADVICE ON ANY PROBLEM UNDER THE SUN.

Write to: Problem Panel, Celebs On Sunday, One Canada Square, Canary Wharf, London E14 5AP, or email problems@sundaymirror.co.uk Contact us at the same address if you want to be a tester for Does It Work? Sorry, our experts cannot give personal replies.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Sep 18, 2005
Words:982
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