Coming down with coughs, colds and flu over the winter period is unfortunately a common experience, as I have recently found out!
For many people, their first reaction on contracting one of these conditions is to seek medical attention. However, for those of us who are generally healthy, taking plenty of rest, sucking on lozenges and dosing ourselves up with over-the-counter medicines is usually sufficient while we wait for the symptoms to subside.
If you are suffering from minor illnesses or injuries, there are many avenues you can go down. At this time of year, there is always a lot of national publicity about the strain that our emergency services are under.
We all need to play our part in using our health resources wisely. This will not only enable our services to treat those is real need, but it also means that by making the right choices, we will save ourselves time, and hopefully get better quicker, by getting help from the right source.
Self-care at home is the best choice for most minor illnesses. We all get ill from time to time so keep your medicine cabinet stocked with essentials like painkillers, antihistamines, cold and flu remedies, anti-diarrhoea and indigestion medicine. If you’re a family with children, make sure you’ve got the right medicines for their age.
Your local pharmacist can be a good person to ask for professional medical advice. They are able to offer advice about minor ailments, such as coughs, colds, cold sores and general aches and pains. Pharmacists are also well trained to offer advice and support on other health issues.
If you have a medical issue outside of usual working hours, you can also dial 111 for fast, reliable medical help and advice for anything that is not a life-threatening emergency. If you think you may need to go to Accident and Emergency but you’re not sure, call 111 first and talk to a fully trained adviser supported by experienced nurses and paramedics.
Remember you can call 111 24 hours a day, 365 days a year free of charge from both mobiles and landlines.
In Bourne, we have two local GP’s surgeries that are always busy, especially at this time of year. Please don’t waste appointments – cancel any you no longer need.
A new website has been launched to help you get the support you need at www.choosebetterlincs.co.uk
Wishing you good health!