This week is national Self Care week and is a great reminder to us all that it is so important to make sure that we take good care of our body, mind, and soul every day, not just when you get sick. Learning how to eat right, reduce stress, exercise regularly, and take a time-out when you need it are touchstones of self-care and can help you stay healthy, happy, and resilient.
Self-care means looking after yourself in a healthy way, whether it’s eating healthily, avoiding health hazards such as smoking or drinking too much, taking medicine when you have a cold, or doing some exercise to stay well both physically and mentally. Keeping yourself fit and healthy can help you boost your immunity
to illnesses like colds, flu and infections. Making big lifestyle changes like quitting smoking or losing weight can also decrease your chances of getting a serious illness like cancer or heart disease.
Self-care can also be the best way to treat common illnesses and injuries such as coughs, colds, slight cuts and grazes. You can tend to them at home with a range of medicines and a first aid kit bought from a pharmacy or supermarket.
You can also prepare for many common illnesses and injuries by having a chat with your local pharmacist who can give you advice on what self-care medications to have at home.
During the winter months as we see the nights draw in and the temperature outside start to turn colder, it’s important that we look after our health by taking up vaccines which for many people will be the flu and COVID booster dose. These are free and essential in providing protection for you and those around you.
It is also important for people to stay warm during the colder spells. By taking simple steps residents can help keep the winter chill away and look after their own health better. Some self-care tips to keep warm, safe and well during winter include;
- Having plenty of hot drinks like tea, coffee and hot water
- Hot meals will keep you warm – make sure you stock plenty of food
- Make sure you enough of you prescription medicines
- Be prepared with essential medicines like paracetamol and aspirin
- Make sure you have the flu jab if you are offered one – flu can be a very serious illness
- Keep a simple thermometer so you can keep an eye on the temperature
- Keep covered up – thin layers of clothing and blankets and simple and easy ways to keep warm.
- Stay active. Keeping moving can help you to stay warm and can help you live a healthy life.
- take regular exercise to support general wellbeing and help maximize our immunity
- get outside as much as possible in natural daylight
- enjoy a good night’s sleep
- stop smoking
- watch alcohol consumption and have alcohol-free days every week
- support mental wellness by keeping connected, ensuring a sense of perspective, and taking further steps to maintain our health
- look out for vulnerable family members, friends and neighbours and keep in touch regularly
- understand how to manage our minor and long term health conditions better
If you feel unwell get advice, you can get help and advice from:
NHS 111 – go to 111.nhs.uk or call 111 if you have an urgent medical problem and you’re not sure what to do
a pharmacy – pharmacists can give treatment advice for a range of minor illnesses and can tell you if you need to see a doctor
your GP – you may be able to speak to a GP online or over the phone, or go in for an appointm
ent if they think you need to
We can also help protect ourselves this winter by remembering to our wash hands thoroughly on a regular basis and to always wear face coverings in all healthcare settings such as GP practices, hospitals and crowded public places