Q. Are there any recommended medicines that I should keep at home?

A. To help you recover from minor illnesses a few items available easily from supermarkets or pharmacies can help. Having them at home can avoid needing attention from medical professionals, help you recover quickly, and enjoy

a full happy summer!

I’d recommend your home kit has the following:

· Pain relief such as paracetamol and ibuprofen - highly effective at relieving most minor pains

· Antihistamines  - useful for dealing with allergies and insect bites. They're also helpful if you have hay fever. They may be creams or tablets but some can cause drowsiness

·Oral rehydration salts – to replace any loss through Fever, diarrhoea and vomiting

· Anti-diarrhoea tablets - to be used if struggling to keep up with fluids or having numerous episodes of diarrhoea 

· Indigestion treatment – antacids can help stomach upset after a celebration or party – many different formulations available to suit most people

·Sunscreen –It is best to always keep a lotion of at least factor 30. Even brief exposure to the sun can increase your risk of skin cancer. Ensure it has UVA protection

· A basic first aid kit to  treat minor cuts, sprains and bruises should be available. This should contain: Bandages, plasters in a range of sizes, a thermometer: antiseptic cream, eyewash solution, sterile dressings, medical tape and tweezers.

With any medicines follow the instructions and

never take more than the stated dose – keep them out of sight and reach of children in a lockable cupboard and always take expired medicines back to your pharmacy.

 Q. How do we provide services in our area?

A. Our health service staff are brilliant. Whether they are in the hospital, in our community or in a GP Practice; whether  they are a doctor, a nurse, a therapist, a receptionist or one of the supporting team that help make

things work.

However , they’re not superhuman – and still need to learn continuously so you receive the best treatment possible.

And there is always new drugs, methods and ways of looking at things circulated to GP Practices from a number of different sources.

As a consequence, we work together to ensure the most important stuff is enacted as soon as possible by all.

Because there’s a finite resource which hasn’t increased in the last seven years our GP Practices have formed a formal alliance across south Cumbria, and along with colleagues in north Lancashire,  we are trying to learn across

Morecambe Bay. This allows us to future-proof your General Practice and ensure it continues to improve and provide the best quality care it can.

In recent times this has helped us improve local recruitment, and ensure things such as dressings provision or phlebotomy are provided in a quality way. Whilst we hope this just appears seamlessly to you, all of general practice

are working with other organisations such as your local hospital to do this.

The service is not perfect, we know, but if you have suggestions on how to make it better then please tell your practice or local hospital. It might be possible. 



June 26th

Q. How do I deal with hayfever – I’m always sneezing in the summer?

A. Hayfever can make a beautiful summer miserable if you suffer from it. The symptoms of hay fever include sneezing and coughing, a runny or blocked nose, itchy, red or watery eyes, itchy throat,

mouth, nose and ears, loss of smell, pain around your temples and forehead, headache, earache and feeling tired.

There’s no cure but there are some things you can do to reduce your chances of suffering.

If you put Vaseline around your nostrils to trap pollen, wear wraparound sunglasses to stop pollen getting into your eyes, shower and change your clothes after you've been outside to wash pollen


stay indoors whenever possible, keep windows and doors shut as much as possible, vacuum regularly and dust with a damp cloth. You can also buy a pollen filter for the air vents in your car and

a vacuum cleaner with a special HEPA filter.

If you do suffer – don’t cut grass or walk on grass, spend too much time outside, keep fresh flowers in the house, smoke or be around smoke – it makes your symptoms worse, dry clothes outside

– they can catch pollen or let pets into the house– they can carry pollen indoors.

Speak to your pharmacist if you have hay fever. They can give advice and suggest the best treatments, like antihistamine drops, tablets or nasal sprays to help with itchy and watery eyes and sneezing

and a blocked nose.

Q. Am I at risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT)?

A. Now is around that time of year that people’s thoughts turn to holidays. If you are travelling far – particularly on a flight – but actually in any vehicle, people do start to worry about DVT.

There are conditions which may increase your risk of DVT on flights of eight hours or more.

These include having a history of DVT or pulmonary embolism, cancer, stroke, heart disease, inherited tendency to clot (thrombophilia), recent surgery in pelvic region or legs(less than 6 weeks),

obesity, pregnancy or hormone replacement therapy.

Before you travel, don't leave it until the last minute to buy medication, compression stockings or anything else for your flight.

Wearing compression stockings during flights of four hours or more can significantly reduce your risk of DVT, as well as leg swelling (oedema).

The below-knee stockings apply gentle pressure to the ankle to help blood flow. They come in a variety of sizes and there are also different levels of compression. Class 1 stockings (exerting

a pressure of 14-17 mmHg at the ankle) are generally sufficient.

It's vital that compression stockings are measured and worn correctly. Ill-fitting stockings could further increase the risk of DVT.

Flight socks are available from pharmacies, airports and many retail outlets. Take advice on size and proper fitting from a pharmacist or another health professional.

During your journey, wear loose, comfortable clothes, consider flight socks, walk around whenever you can, drink plenty of water and don't drink alcohol or take sleeping pills.