Most of us will suffer from coughs and colds this winter. This is certainly the case for babies, toddlers and children who are more susceptible to illnesses like coughs and colds, fevers, diarrhoea and vomiting. Most of the time, you can treat yourself or your child at home with advice from your local pharmacist, GP or health visitor.
It is a good idea to keep a small supply of useful medicines at home. Don’t forget, if you have small children keep your medicines locked in a cabinet or somewhere up high where they cannot reach them. Make sure you’ve got the right strength of medicine for the age of your child and always follow instructions carefully and check use by dates. Always read the label carefully and use sugar-free options for children where you can.
In your medicine cabinet you could keep:
- a thermometer
- liquid painkillers such as baby paracetamol or ibuprofen
- barrier creams
Don’t forget, your local pharmacist is a great source of information and for most common winter ailments you may need to go no further, keeping your GP or A&E department free for when you really need them.
If you’re unsure of where to go or who to talk to about if you or your child is feeling unwell, please call 111. They will be able to give you advice there and then, and if needs be, where to go to get treatment.
Most colds and flu will go without anything more than keeping warm, drinking lots of fluid and of course rest. If you are concerned that you or your child’s condition is getting worse you can go online to the NHS Symptom checker www.nhs.uk/symptomcheckers or call 111, it could save you a lot of time and trouble.