Bangor Health CentreNewtownards RoadBangor, BT20 4LDTel: 02891 515222
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Every year, millions of us visit our GP with minor health problems that can be easily resolved without a doctor's appointment.
It is estimated that every year, 50 million visits to the GP are made for minor ailments such as coughs and colds, mild eczema, and athlete's foot. By visiting your pharmacy instead, you could save yourself time and trouble.
Keeping a well stocked medicine cabinet at home can help you treat many minor ailments. Colds, coughs, indigestion and many other minor complaints can all be treated with medicines that are available over the counter.
Your pharmacist can advise on what you might find useful to keep in your medicine cabinet. Always follow the instructions on the medicine label and consult your doctor if the illness continues or becomes more severe.
Pharmacists offer professional free health advice at any time - you don't need an appointment. From coughs and colds to aches and pains, they can give you expert help on everyday illnesses. They can answer questions about prescribed and over-the-counter medicines. Your local Pharmacist can also advise on healthy eating.
Pharmacists can also advise on health eating, obesity and giving up smoking. Some pharmacists have private areas where you can talk in confidence. They may suggest you visit your GP for more serious symptoms. It is possible to purchase many medicines from the chemist without a prescription. Watch this short video on how you can get the most out of your local pharmacy
Major A&E departments assess and treat patients who have serious injuries or illnesses. Generally, you should visit A&E or call 999 for emergencies, such as:
If you're injured or seriously ill, you should go, or be taken, to A&E. If an ambulance is needed you can call 999, the emergency phone number in the UK. You can also dial 112, which is the equivalent for the European Union.
Major A&E departments offer access 365 days a year and usually open 24 hours a day. Be aware that not all hospitals have an A&E department.
Acute diarrhoea is usually caused by a viral or bacterial infection and affects almost everyone from time to time. A common cause in both children and adults is gastroenteritis, an infection of the bowel.
Bouts of diarrhoea in adults may also be brought on by anxiety or drinking too much coffee or alcohol. Diarrhoea may also be a side effect of a medication
NHS Choices Symptoms, causes, treatment and information
Macmillan Cancer Support Diarrhoea as a result of cancer treatments
To save them on your computer, right-click on any of the links below and then click 'Save Target As..." . Click on any of the links below to play the audio files:
Burns - Explains the immediate treatment for burns and scalds.
Fits - How to deal with fits (convulsions/seizures) in adults and young children.
Wounds - Immediate actions for wounds, bleeding, and bleeding associated with fractures.
Unconscious patient who is breathing - How to deal with an unrousable patient who IS breathing (includes recovery position)
CPR for adults - Adults who have collapsed, unrousable and NOT breathing.
CPR for babies - Babies who are unrousable and NOT breathing.
Collapsed patient in detail - Explains the complete scenario including checks for breathing, circulation, etc.
These files have been prepared by Sussex Ambulance Service and comply with European Resuscitation Council Guidelines.
British Red Cross - First Aid Tips Simple, straightforward and easy to understand first aid tips
St Johns Ambulance St John Ambulance believes that everyone should learn at least the basic first aid techniques.
A cold is a mild viral infection of the nose, throat, sinuses and upper airways. It can cause nasal stuffiness, a runny nose, sneezing, a sore throat and a cough. Usually it's a self-limiting infection – this means it gets better by itself without the need for treatment.
On average, adults have two to five colds each year and school-age children can have up to eight colds a year. Adults who come into contact with children tend to get more colds. This is because children usually carry more of the virus, for longer.
In the UK, you’re more likely to get a cold during the winter months although the reasons why aren’t fully understood at present.
For most people, a cold will get better on its own within a week of the symptoms starting without any specific treatment. However, there are treatments that can help to ease your symptoms and make you feel more comfortable. These are available from your pharmacy, which means that you can treat yourself, rather than needing to see your GP.
There is no cure for colds. Antibiotics, which treat infections caused by bacteria, don't work on cold viruses.
There are a number of self-help measures that may help to ease the symptoms of a cold.
You should try to make sure you get enough rest if you have a cold. It’s not usually necessary to stay off work or school.
Colds & Flu A factsheet on the causes, symptoms, treatment & prevention of colds & the flu
NHS Choices - is it the common cold or the flu? Colds and flu can share some of the same symptoms (sneezing, coughing, sore throat) but are caused by different viruses, and flu can be much more serious. Find out
Factsheet - Common ColdInformation about the diagnosis, treatment and symptoms of the common cold
We're getting to that time of year when many of us will struggle with blocked and runny noses, itchy eyes and a never-ending sneezing pattern. Springtime brings with it the start of the hay fever season, a condition which may affect as many as one in five of us in the UK over our lifetime.1 It's fair to say that severe cases of hay fever can leave people feeling pretty miserable.
What is hay fever?
Hay fever is an allergic reaction to pollen, which is produced naturally within the life cycle of plants. Pollen comes in different forms, which are prevalent at different times of the year. These include tree pollen, which starts in the spring, grass pollen, which we'll experience at the end of spring and the beginning of summer and weed pollen, which can be around from spring to autumn.
If this pollen gets into the sinuses, nose, eyes or throat, it can cause an inflammatory response leading to a runny or blocked nose, sore and itchy eyes, an itchy throat, mouth, ears and nose, and can also lead to a cough. Blocked sinuses can also lead to headaches, earache, fatigue and a sore face.
Hay fever, asthma and the pollen count
Asthmatics may experience a worsening of their symptoms if they also suffer with hay fever. Some asthmatics will need to have their inhaler doses increased, or be moved on to a steroid inhaler by their doctors to try to prevent an attack. Doctors may also provide non-asthmatics with an inhaler if they think they are experiencing certain breathing symptoms such as shortness of breath, a tight chest, wheezing and regular coughing.
While nobody can avoid pollen completely, hay fever symptoms are worse on days when the pollen count is high. The pollen count is measured by testing the number of grains of pollen in one cubic metre of air, and is considered high if that number is 50 or more. During hay fever season, the pollen count is often given out on TV and the radio, and certain areas of the country can be worse than others at any one time.
Treating hay fever
There is no known cure for hay fever, although it can disappear as you get older - equally, people who have never had hay fever before can also develop it later in life. There are several over-the-counter treatments available to help relieve the symptoms. These include antihistamine tablets, nasal sprays and eye drops. If your symptoms are particularly severe, doctors may recommend you take a short dose of steroid tablets.
When to see the doctor
Normally it should be possible to control your symptoms without help from the doctor, especially if you seek advice from a pharmacist. However, there may be a time when you need to see your GP too. If your symptoms are getting worse despite using regular medication, you experience worsening asthma or sinusitis, or you experience side effects from the hay fever medication, you should seek medical advice.
It is impossible to avoid pollen altogether, but these tips may help you reduce your exposure to it. When the pollen count is high:
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