Many common aches and pains can be simply treated at home without the need to consult a doctor. Your pharmacist is trained and equipped to help with minor ailments.
A temperature occurs commonly even with mild infections. In small children who are uncomfortable with a temperature you may give Paracetamol or Ibuprofen syrup, which may be bought from the chemist and their fluids increased significantly. If they still appear hot, they should be gently sponged with tepid water in order to cool them. If a temperature is very high or does not come down with the above treatment, you should consult your doctor. A child or adult with a temperature will not come to any harm being wrapped up and brought by car or pram to the surgery.
COLDS & FLU
Even in this day and age there is no magic cure for the common cold. Take plenty of fluids. If you have a headache or are feverish, take Aspirin or Paracetamol. Do not take any antibiotics you may have in the house – these will be of no benefit and may cause harm. Inappropriate use of antibiotics is the major cause of the MRSA problem now faced.
DIARRHOEA & VOMITING
In adults and children, diarrhoea and vomiting will usually get better on its own. Treatment consists of replacing the fluid that you have lost and resting the digestive system. Sachets of powders such as Dioralyte and Rehidrat, which can be made into a drink, are available from the chemist. If the diarrhoea contains blood or there is severe pain or high fever, you should discuss it with your doctor. Diarrhoea and vomiting in small babies and young children should be treated with caution and the doctor will be happy to advise you about this over the telephone and arrange to see you if necessary.
Treat as for other burns with cold water to remove heat. Calamine lotion will relieve soreness and Paracetamol with also help. Children are particularly susceptible to sunburn and great care should be taken to avoid overexposure to the sun.
Simple conjunctivitis will not be helped by antibiotic drops and should be treated in adults and children by bathing the eye frequently using cotton wool and water which has been boiled then cooled. Contact lenses should be discarded. If an eye is painful or red and you are not sure it is conjunctivitis or it persists please see you doctor.
Most sore throats are caused by viruses and last 5-18 days before subsiding. Aspirin or Paracetamol gargles or simple lozenges may help with the pain. If symptoms persist please consult the doctor.
On the first day a rash appears with small red blotches about 3 or 4mm wide. Within a few hours these develop small blisters at the centre. During the next 3-4 days further spots will appear and the earlier blisters will turn crusty and fall off. Calamine lotion may be applied to help the itching. The most infectious period is two or three days before the rash appears and until the last crusts have formed dry centres, usually six days after the rash has started. Children may return to school as soon as the last crusts have dropped off.
These creatures prefer clean hair and are not a sign of poor hygiene. Medicated shampoos can be obtained from a chemist without a prescription.
Sit on a chair leaning forward with your mouth open and pinch your nose just below the bone for approximately 10 minutes, but which time the bleeding should have stopped. Sometimes a bag of frozen peas in a damp tea towel, or crushed ice in a plastic bag wrapped in a damp tea towel held on the bridge of the nose if helpful. Avoid hot drinks and hot food for 24 hours. If symptoms persist consult your doctor.
Apply large quantities of cold water to the affected area as soon as possible and maintain this until the pain subsides. If the skin is unbroken but blistered apply a loose, dry dressing. If the burn is large or the skin is broken consult your doctor as soon as possible