University Medical CentreUniversity of East AngliaEarlham RoadNorwichNorfolk, NR4 7TJTel: 01603 251600
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
NHS Walk-In Centres offer convenient access to a range of NHS services. You can receive treatment for many ailments including:
NHS Walk In Centres treat around 3m patients a year and have proved to be a successful complementary service to traditional GP and A&E services. Some centres offer access to doctors as well as nurses. However, they are not designed for treating long-term conditions or immediately life-threatening problems.
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.
Diarrhoea and/or vomiting can occur for a number of reasons: overeating or over-drinking, change of diet, viral or bacterial infection, following travel to a foreign country, or can be a symptom of another underlying illness...
NHS Choice - Diarrhoea
Symptoms, causes, treatment and information
Influenza (flu) is caused by a virus and usually more prevalent during the winter months (October - February). It can be a debilitating illness and treatment is aimed at relieving the extremely unpleasant symptoms which can last from 7-10 days...
These can include a raised temperature, headache, sore throat, aches and pains, cough and tiredness.
If you get it then you feel lousy - weak, shivery, with pains in the head, eyes, back and limbs. You’ll have a temperature, sweat a lot, won’t want to eat and may feel sick.
You may also have a dry, irritating cough that hurts your chest, but if it produces phlegm it is white and sticky.
Influenza is infectious, so keep away from other people...
You should attend/contact the Medical Centre if;
NHS Choices - Flu
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.
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.
Clean thoroughly by holding affected part under running cold water if possible. Ensure grazes are thoroughly cleaned. Minor cuts should be covered with an plaster.
Bleeding can normally be stopped by applying pressure for 3-5 minutes. Minor burns, where the skin is not blistered or broken, do not usually require a dressing.
The pain from these minor burns can be greatly helped by immersion in cold water.
Further treatment will be required if:
A tetanus booster is not usually required if you have had a full course of immunisation previously (5 doses, usually given as part of the childhood vaccination programme). Always keep a note of your tetanus injections and contact the Medical Centre for advice if you think you need immunising.
It would be useful for you to keep a supply of plasters, paracetamol, throat sweets and a thermometer in your room for use when you need them.
The Medical Centre staff are here to help and advise you - please do not hesitate to contact us if you need to.
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