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Learning English
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medicinal drugs

Learn the language of the street - what people say and the topics they like to talk about. Take a look at these health words and phrases and then try out the Lingo Challenge!
 Feeling ill more Lingo

  • I feel really rough.
  • I'm shattered.
  • I'm on my last legs.
  • You look poorly.
  • You look like death warmed up.
  • You're looking peaky.

All these are informal expressions that indicate you are feeling ill or unwell, tired and exhausted.






Going out





 Feeling great

  • I feel great! / I'm on top of the world / I feel like a million dollars! - I couldn't feel any better!
  • He's glowing with health. - He looks very well.
  • I'm a picture of health. - There's nothing at all wrong with me.

 Common complaints

  • She's sprained / twisted her ankle / wrist. - She's damaged her ankle or wrist in a fall.
  • She's broken her arm. She'll be in plaster for weeks. - Her broken limb is in a hard plaster cast.
  • My back aches / I've got backache - I have a sore back.
  • I've got toothache. / a headache. / a stomachache. - These are phrases using -ache to describe what hurts.
  • I feel sick. - I'm feeling nauseous.
  • I think I've got food poisoning. - I've eaten something bad and I feel unwell.
  • I've got a really bad cold. - I've got a temperature, a sore throat and a runny nose. [A typical English winter infection!]

 Getting treatment

  • Make an appointment at the doctor's / the GP. - Go and see the general practitioner.
  • I've been referred to a consultant at the hospital. - My doctor has arranged for me to see an expert at a hospital to help me recover.
  • I need a check-up at the hospital. / I need an X-Ray. / an examination. / a scan. - These are treatments you might need at a hospital.
  • I need to see the specialist- someone who knows about one health issue in particular.

 On the medicine bottle

  • Consult your doctor if symptoms persist. - If you still feel ill after taking the medicine, see your doctor.
  • Do not take more than the stated dose. - Don't take more [pills or medicine] than you're told to.
  • Always read the label. - Make sure you take the advice given on the medicine container.
  • Keep out of the reach of children. - Do not let children play with the medicine or its container.

You will also hear:

  • 'She's a pain in the neck!' and 'she's a pain in the arse!' (this is very impolite!) - This doesn't mean she's ill - it means she's very annoying!

 Lingo Challenge

Try using as many of these phrases as you can in a one-minute conversation! How many will you manage to use? Have fun!

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