Stay well this winter
Winter can be seriously bad for our health but there a number of things you can do to keep you and your family well this winter. There are some tips and advice to help you on this page or you can visit www.nhs.uk/staywell
Get your flu jab
When the weather is cold it is particularly important for certain groups of people to get their flu vaccination. Flu can turn serious very quickly for high risk groups and in some extreme cases it can even be fatal.
You are eligible for a free vaccination if you are:
- Over 65
- Living with a health condition (particularly heart or lung disease)
- A child aged two, three and four, or in school years one, two and three.
- The main carer of an older or disabled person.
- A frontline health or social care worker
Children can receive their vaccination as a nasal spray instead of a needle injection. Adults can get the vaccine via their GP, or, alternatively, at many local pharmacies.
More information is available on the NHS Choices website www.nhs.uk/staywell
It is important to keep warm in winter – both inside and outdoors - as it can help to prevent colds, flu and more serious health problems, such as heart attacks, strokes pneumonia and depression. Heat your home to at least 18°C (65°F); if you can, you might prefer your living room to be slightly warmer. More information to help you keep warm is available on NHS Choices.
See a pharmacist early
If you start to feel unwell, even if it is just a cough or cold, don’t wait until it gets more serious, get help from your pharmacist. The sooner you get advice the better – pharmacists are here to help you stay well this winter. Find your nearest pharmacy.
If you’ve been prescribed antibiotics or other medication, don’t forget to pick up your prescription before the Christmas holidays start. Many GPs and pharmacies will close over the holidays. It’s also a good idea to have a well-stocked medicine cabinet at home to help you with pain relief and minor injuries. Visit our Self care page for more advice.
If you do need help over the holiday period when your GP surgery or pharmacy is closed, call 111 or visit www.nhs.uk who can direct you to a local service that is open. NHS 111 is free to call from landlines and mobiles and is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can also make an appointment at one of our primary care hubs which offer evening, weekend and public holiday appointments with a nurse or GP.
The Stay Well This Winter campaign can help you prepare for winter. Visit www.nhs.uk/staywell for more information or download our 'Stay well this winter' leaflet.