Spare a thought for ME during holidays

While many children (and hopefully some parents, too) are enjoying their summer holidays, there are tens of thousands more struggling to cope with the chronic, fluctuating condition ME (Myalgic Encephalomyelitis).

Looking after a child with ME is stressful for any parent, be it dealing with the demands of the illness, making sure their child still receives an education, or supporting other members of the family, including themselves.

Action for ME’s informative new booklet, Your child and ME, has been developed with advice from parents, healthcare professionals and the Association of Young People with ME Downloaded a copy for free from or order one on 0117 927 9551. Anyone caring for someone with ME can also join our Carers Forum at

Sir Peter Spencer,

chief executive, Action for ME,


EU costing us £50m a day

For those who still think that PM David Cameron was a eurosceptic and that he will eventually do something about our relationship with the EU, forget it!

He has made it very clear that he will not campaign for a referendum to leave the European Union as he says that it is in British interests to remain in it.

It costs British taxpayers £50m a day for our membership, it imposes rules and regulations that reduces our competitiveness and we now export more of our goods to the rest of the world than the EU.

Next year British taxpayers will be ordered to pay the EU an extra £350m to fund an increase of 2.8% in the EU budget. At a time when Mr Cameron has said that our austerity measures will last beyond the life of this government.

Like most people, I don’t think that remaining in the EU is in our interests and it is high time that we are given a referendum to vote on it.

Philip Griffiths, North West chairman UK Independence Party

Wrong direction for deafness

As One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson becomes the latest in a line of young pop stars to announce he is suffering from noise-induced deafness and tinnitus, Deafness Research UK is reminding everyone that hearing conditions are no respecters of age and this latest case is part of a worrying trend of hearing loss among the young.

Louis joins Plan B, Leona Lewis, Gary Newman, Coldplay frontman Chris Martin and others in publicly admitting deafness and tinnitus symptoms as a result of excessive noise levels at live concerts.

One Direction now wear high tech earpieces to reduce the volume, so have at least taken action; but until a cure can be found, the damage can be permanent. Not all of us have access to high tech gadgets, but low tech ear plugs are cheap and freely available.

Our website has a wealth of information on looking after your ears. Readers can also call our Advisory Service on 0808 808 2222.

Vivienne Michael, chief executive

Deafness Research UK