Skip to main content

Make sure you are ready if illness or injury strikes this Christmas

Christmas is fast approaching. Make sure you have got everything you need to help keep you healthy during the holiday.

Self-care at home

As well as the turkey and trimmings, make sure you add self-care essentials to your Christmas shopping list. For example:

  • paracetamol for aches and pains, and headaches from too much sherry and excitement
  • rehydration powders for stomach upsets
  • antiseptics for cuts
  • plasters, bandages, and a thermometer for your first aid kit

A well-stocked medicine cabinet will help avoid making unnecessary trips to find an open pharmacy or shop during Christmas. In some cases, it could prevent a journey to the minor injury unit.

Order and collect your prescriptions

If you require regular medication and do not want to have Claus for concern, order your repeat prescription in plenty of time. Do not forget to collect your prescription before the Christmas weekend.

Get help from your pharmacist

Some pharmacists will be open over Christmas. Best of all, you do not need to make an appointment. They are available to provide expert, confidential advice for:

  • minor injuries
  • cystitis (women only, aged 16 to 65)
  • insect bites
  • sticky red eyes (conjunctivitis)
  • impetigo (a skin condition)
  • mild skin conditions such as rashes and eczema

Pharmacists can also prescribe an emergency supply of medication if your Christmas visitors forget to bring their supply of their regular medication.

Check pharmacy opening times.

Childhood illness? There’s an app for that

Parents can download the free NHS Handi App for advice about common childhood conditions. Most fevers, and coughs can be treated with Calpol, drinking water, and improve within a week. Contact NHS 111 if your child does not get better, or their condition worsens.

Think NHS 111 first

Protect our NHS by only calling 999 or going to the emergency department in a genuine, life-threatening emergency. For example:

  • a serious illness or injury
  • major blood loss
  • chest pain
  • loss of consciousness

Contact NHS 111 before visiting any of our hospitals. This is so we can make sure everyone stays as safe as possible during the pandemic. It will help the NHS manage the flow of patients, maintain distancing and reduce the risk of infection.

Go online to NHS 111 or call 111 if you need medical help.

Collect your loved ones

Help us by taking your relatives home when they are ready for discharge from hospital.

Book in for your winter vaccinations

Please help us to keep COVID-19 infection rates low by getting vaccinated, and staying at home and getting tested if you have symptoms of COVID-19. Book your appointment today.

The flu vaccine is safe and effective. It’s offered every year on the NHS to help protect people at risk of getting seriously ill from flu. Find out if you are eligible.

It’s okay not to be okay

For some, Christmas is an exciting time but for others, it can be stressful.

To talk to someone about your mental wellbeing call the 24/7 NHS mental health support helpline on 0800 038 5300 for advice.

Support is available to anyone, regardless of age, all day every day. If you, or someone you know, needs urgent mental health support, the team will listen to you and assess how best to help.

Have a healthy Christmas day

There are an estimated 2.4 million cases of food poisoning in the UK each year. If you want to be the host with the most, remember to cook your turkey properly. The Food Standards Agency has a guide on how to cook your turkey safely.

Worst case scenario, food poisoning is rarely serious. It usually gets better within a week. You can normally treat yourself at home. The most important thing is to have lots of fluids, such as water or squash, to avoid dehydration.

Be sure to Santa-tise your hands before dinner!