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Self-care to stay well this winter

19th November 2020 | By Liz Mattock | Posted in

This Self-Care week (16 – 22 November 2020) local residents in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland (LLR) are being encouraged to learn about how they can take care of their health with no need for medical attention. Many minor illnesses and injuries such as; blocked sinuses, colds, stomach upsets and back pain are examples of the common conditions that can be effectively treated at home.

Dr Avinashi Prasad a GP in Leicester said: “With winter fast approaching we have already experienced a significant increase in demand on all our healthcare services and this year we are under even more pressure due to the impact of Covid-19. That’s why we are urging all local residents to self-care where appropriate, this includes; managing mild illnesses and minor injuries yourself. To further improve your overall health through self-care you can keep up to date with vaccinations including the annual flu vaccine which is now available for patients from either their GP practice or local pharmacy. You can also make healthy lifestyle choices such as eating well and exercising regularly as well as stopping smoking and reducing alcohol consumption.

“As we are now spending more time at home, minor accidents may occur more frequently and as the weather becomes colder sore throats and common colds could pass more easily to others that live in your home. One of the best ways to treat these conditions is to keep a well-stocked medicine cabinet and first aid kit which could help to effectively ease symptoms and tend to minor injuries.”

The Coronavirus pandemic and national and extended lockdown in LLR has inevitably impacted local residents in many different ways. For some it has meant isolating alone or feeling depressed, anxious or worried about debt, domestic abuse or generally feeling low in mood. If you have been experiencing any of these feelings there are a number of self-care tools and techniques available from Every Mind Matters and if further support is required an online talking therapy service is available from Let’s Talk Wellbeing.

The LLR CCGs have also developed a range of short animation videos to help you to prevent and treat many other common minor illnesses yourself: https://www.leicestercityccg.nhs.uk/my-health/self-care/.

Dr Prasad concludes: “Whilst national lockdown restrictions remain in place, it can be hard to know what to do if you continue to feel unwell. If self-care treatment doesn’t work and your symptoms persist you should either:

  • Contact your GP by using the GP surgery’s website, mobile app, or call the surgery directly.
  • If your GP practice is closed or for urgent medical help – use the NHS 111 online service (adults only), or call 111 if you’re unable to get help online.
  • For life-threatening emergencies – call 999 for an ambulance.”

If you suspect that you have Covid-19 you must self-isolate for 10 days and all members of your household must self-isolate for 14 days. You mustn’t leave your home unless it is to get a test which can be booked by calling 119 or by visiting: www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test.

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