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Your health, your way

Your NHS guide to long-term conditions and self care

Self Care Week

Self Care Week 2014 takes place from November 17th to 23rd. It aims to help people take care of themselves, and lets them know what’s available to help them look after their health. The campaign is being run by the Self Care Forum.

What’s the theme for this year?

This year's theme is "Self care for life – be healthy this winter" and aims to raise awareness of how many common winter ailments don't require antibiotics, and that visiting a pharmacy for advice and treatment is often your best bet.

How can I find out what’s happening?

You can find out more about local Self Care Week events through your clinical commissioning group (CCG) or local authority.

What is self care?

Self care means keeping fit and healthy, as well as knowing how to take medicines, treat minor ailments and seek help when you need it. If you have a long-term condition, self care is about understanding that condition and how to live with it.

There’s lots of information on the NHS Choices website about how everyone can use self care to improve their health and wellbeing. You can read about how to:

You can also find a GP, find a pharmacy and find an NHS dentist.

LifeCheck is a free service to help you and your family improve your health. Answer a few simple questions and LifeCheck will give you advice tailored to your age, gender and lifestyle.

If you have a long-term condition, Your health, your way will show you how self care can help you cope better with your condition and get more out of life.

Read about how to make small changes to improve your lifestyle, and use our interactive healthy living tools to get personalised advice on how to improve your lifestyle.

NHS Choices is also a great place to get detailed information on specific long-term conditions. Look for your condition in Health A-Z. Many long-term conditions are covered on the site, including the most common ones, such as:

There's also a long-term condition check to help you find out if you're getting the right type of NHS care and support for your condition and situation.

You can get health advice 24 hours a day from NHS 111, and you can also use the online symptom checker for help and advice.

Page last reviewed: 21/08/2014

Next review due: 21/08/2016


Winter health

Tips and advice on how to stay healthy and well through the cold, dark days of winter

Illnesses your pharmacist can treat

Not feeling well? Your pharmacy can deal with minor health problems and save you a visit to your GP

Antibiotic resistance

Get the facts about antibiotics and learn more about the annual European Antibiotic Awareness Day (EAAD)

Get the most from your doctor's appointment

Practical advice on how to get the most from your appointments with your doctor when you have a long-term health condition

Pharmacy and medicines

Using your local pharmacy's services could save you an unnecessary trip to your GP

Get fit with Strength and Flex

The Strength and Flex plan will help you get up and moving and improve your health and wellbeing in five weeks

Free audio guides to boost your mood

Eight Moodzone mental wellbeing audio guides designed to help you better understand the problems you may be facing in your life

Information for professionals

The Self Care Forum has lots of ideas and free resources to help NHS organisations make the most of Self Care Week. Find out how you can take part