Coughs and coldsAre you and your home #winterready?

Keeping warm during winter is one of the simplest things you can do to protect your health and Stay Well This Winter.

Make sure your home is heated to at least 18C and wear warm, waterproof clothing if you are going outside.

As well as keeping warm, staying well-hydrated and well-nourished with water and healthy foods will ensure you stay well this winter.

This advice is particularly important for the elderly. Check in on elderly relatives and neighbours when you can to ensure they’re looking after themselves.

Stock up on soup and stew ingredients and fruit and keep a plentiful supply so you don’t have to go out if the weather turns icy.

Slips trips and falls during winter account for many unplanned hospital admissions. These can be potentially life-threatening for elderly people or those with compromised immune systems if resulting in fractures and long periods of recovery. Avoid unnecessary trips in icy conditions and ensure you dress appropriately if you must go out. Wear protective boots with a good grip and warm, waterproof clothing. Several thin layers will keep you warmer than one thick layer.

Think first aid and stock up on basic medicines for common ailments like coughs, colds, sore throats and ear infections at your local pharmacy.

Paracetamol, ibuprofen, indigestion remedies, cough syrup and throat sweets, cold and flu remedies and plasters are just a few of the items you might want to think about including in your home first aid box.

Pharmacists can also provide you with access to immediate, free healthcare advice with no need for an appointment and this helps to ease the pressure on other healthcare services such as GP surgeries and hospitals.

Look out for more information on the best sources of help for your different healthcare needs and hints and tips for being #winterready on the Stay Well this winter site, @staywellNE and #StayWellThisWinter on Twitter and from Public Health England @PHE_uk on Twitter.

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