Self-Treating Minor Ailments
For many minor ailments, it makes sense to seek advice from the pharmacy rather than make doctor’s appointments or attend A&E.
See below for some of the facts and for advice on when to self-treat
Every year, 50 million visits to the GP are made for minor ailments like coughs and colds, mild eczema and athlete’s foot.
This makes it harder to get a doctor’s appointment when we really need one. The UK government has produced a number of advertising campaigns over the last few years to persuade all of us to self-treat responsibly.
VISIT THE PHARMACY
By visiting the pharmacy instead, we can avoid having to book and wait for an appointment. A pharmacy is only a short journey away for almost all the UK population and unlike GP surgeries, are open at weekends and often in the evening as well. All we have to do is walk in and ask for advice.
As well as being experts on medicines and in filling prescriptions, pharmacists can also recognise most common health complaints, give advice and recommend remedies to clear up the problem. If the problem is more serious and needs the attention of your GP, the pharmacist will recognise this and advise that you see your GP instead.
CAN HELP WITH
- Minor cuts & bruises
- Constipation & piles
- Hayfever & allergies
- Indigestion & diarrhoea
- Nappy rash & teething
- Skin conditions such as mild eczema
- Coughs, colds, sore throats & nasal congestion
- Headache, earache, back pain & other aches & pains
- Period pain & thrush
YOU SHOULD GO
TO THE GP WITH
- Wound & dressing care
- Muscle & joint injuries including strains & sprains
- Minor lacerations & cuts
- Infected wounds
YOU SHOULD GO TO A&E WITH
- Head injuries or loss of consciousness
- Cuts that require stitches
- Foreign bodies
- Overdose or poisoning
- Suspected broken bones or heavy blood loss
- Persistent chest pain or heavy bleeding