Doctor, doctor: Dr Tom Smith answers your questions

Are there any statistics on what type of area is best to live in for a longer life? What are the differences between country and town?

The most complete statistics come from the Japanese. They are renowned for living a long time, and for urban overcrowding. Their research suggested that those who live near trees and parks, with the most sunlight in their homes, live longer than the average Japanese citizen, who already lives around five to 10 years longer than average Brits. We don't know whether the extra years come from purer air where they live (which seems unlikely), or because their surroundings give them a greater sense of tranquillity and peace.

Even though I don't remember bumping my legs, I get large purple/black bruises which take weeks to go down. Could it be anaemia or something more sinister? Or is it just getting older? I'm in my early 40s. Should I have a blood test?

Your bruising may be a sign that your capillaries (the smallest blood vessels in the skin) are a little brittle, or that your clotting mechanisms aren't quite right. Are you on any medication? It is a side-effect of some drugs, especially steroid hormones such as prednisolone or (rarely) the pill. I'd show them to your doctor, who may do blood tests to rule out any of these causes. Most of the time we find nothing - it seems to be a phase that people go through. The time of the month may matter, for example, as peak hormone levels occur at the end of the cycle. That sometimes coincides with bruising.

Thanks to guardian.co.uk who have provided this article. View the original here.