Talking About Health Problems
When ill it’s important to be able to describe how you feel or the symptoms you are experiencing. This is key in determining what’s going on with your body. Let’s take a look at some phrases we can use to describe one’s health.
“I’m (feeling) sick/ill.”
“I’m in a lot of pain.”
“My (body part) is hurting me.”
“I have a headache.”
“I’m (feeling) nauseous.”
“I have a tummy ache.”
“I am stuffed/congested.”
“I have sinus headache.”
“My sinuses are blocked.”
“My body is aching.”
“I have a fever.”/”My temperature is high.”
“I feel weak (and tired).”
“My eyes are light sensitive.”
“I have a backache.”
“My chest is hurting.”
“There is a sharp/acute pain in my (body part).”
“I am experiencing acid reflux.”
“I am constipated….”
“I’m under the weather.”
“I have a sore throat.”
“You should see a doctor.”
“You should get some rest.”
“I know a great home remedy.”
“You should take some cough/cold/flu/allergy/… medicine for that.”
“You should drink some chicken soup/hot tea/orange juice/… for that.”
“Drink lots of fluids.”
Get Well Comments:
“Get well soon.”
“I hope you feel better soon.”
“I hope you get lots of rest.”
“I hope you’re back on your feet soon.”
“Take care of yourself.”
“I’ll be making happy thoughts.”
Diane went to her family physician, Dr. Tran, because she was feeling really sick.
Dr. Tran: Describe the symptoms that you’ve been experiencing.
Diane: Well I have been experiencing nausea, watery and itchy eyes. My neck has also been aching.
Dr. Tran: How long have you been feeling this way?
Diane: I have been feeling this way for the last 2 or 3 days.
Dr. Tran: Okay. Open your mouth and let me take a look… Great. Say “aaah”.
Dr. Tran: It’s allergies, which seems to have resulted in a sinus infection.
Diane: I see. It’s good to finally know. Thank you.
Dr. Tran: I will write you a prescription for antibotics.
Diane: Thank you doctor.
Dr. Tran: Here you go. Take care of yourself.
Diane: Have a good day.
Dr. Tran: Bye.
Use the expressions above to practice the dialog below.
You: You don’t look so good. Are you okay?
Your friend: No. I’m not.
You: I __________ (use the expressions above to describe your symptoms).
Your friend: You should _____________ (offer some suggestions; use the expressions above).
You: I think I’ll try that! Thank you.
Your friend: You are welcome. I do hope you feel better soon. (use the “get well comments” above).
You: I will.
Now switch roles and keep practicing until you are comfortable with the vocabulary and dialog.