The summer is here and whether you’re heading off on holiday in the UK or abroad, planning barbecues with family and friends or simply enjoying the sunshine at home, it’s important to stay healthy.
On this page you can find bank holiday health advice as well as tips to help keep safe and well this summer.
Bank Holiday health advice
There will be changes to opening times for some local healthcare services over the bank holiday, including closures on Monday 28 August. For protection against illness, people are asked to stock up on vital medicines and also check their local pharmacies ‘opening times’.
Over the bank holiday there are many ways you can receive treatment depending on your symptoms. These inlcude self-care, expert opinions from pharmacies, online and telephone advice, and access to GP appointments 7 days a week or Rochdale Urgent Care Centre.
Pharmacists are qualified experts in the use of medicines, and can give advice on a range of common symptoms, medicines, healthy living and self-care. Pharmacists may be able to help people with skin conditions, coughs, colds, minor cuts and bruises and much more.
Pharmacies open on Monday 28 August are listed here.
Some local GP appointments will be available at four ‘extended hubs’ across the borough. Patients can book by contacting the Central Booking Service on 0161 763 8292. More details here.
NHS Choices www.nhs.uk and NHS 111
NHS Choices is a dedicated website where you can find up-to-date and expert advice on a range of illnesses and complaints, as well as find your nearest NHS services, such as GPs, dentists, pharmacists and walk-in centres. Visit NHS Choices here.
Call NHS 111 24 hours a day, 365 days a year for fast, free medical advice when it's not an emergency.
Rochdale Urgent Care Centre
Rochdale Urgent Care Centre can assess and treat minor illnesses and injuries which are not serious enough to require a visit to A&E. No appointment needed. Details here.
Summer health advice
Did you know that sunburn increases your risk of developing skin cancer? That’s why it’s so important to protect yourself from the sun. This advice will help you enjoy the summer sun safely:
· Spend time in the shade when the sun is strongest –approx. 11am-3pm
· Cover up with suitable clothing
· Choose a sunscreen with at least SPF 15 and 4 star UVA protection
· Adults need two teaspoons of sunscreen to cover head, arms and neck adequately, or two tablespoons
of sunscreen to adequately cover the entire body if wearing swimwear
· Take extra care to protect babies and children
· If you get sunburned, sponge skin with cool water, apply soothing after sun or calamine lotion, take
painkillers to reduce the inflammation and seek medical advice if you feel unwell.
BBQ food safety
Barbecues are a great summer treat and here are some tips to help avoid food poisoning and keep your food safe:
· Always wash your hands after handling raw food
· Never put cooked food on a plate or surface that has had raw food on and always use separate
utensils for raw and cooked food
· Check frozen food is fully thawed before you cook it
· Barbecue charcoals should be glowing red with a powdery grey surface before you begin cooking
· Cook meat thoroughly to kill any germs. Remember when meat is cooked it will be piping hot in the
centre, no pink meat will be visible and any juices will be clear
· Don’t leave food out of the fridge for more than two hours- eat it and cook it, or discard it.
Staying fit and active
Being active is great for our health, and it’s wise to plan ahead if you're going to be out for the day. Think about:
· Avoiding extreme physical exertion in the heat
· Being realistic about your fitness
· Taking enough food and water for the outing, and some extra in case of emergency
· Knowing where you are.
What to do if you or a family member begins to feel unwell this summer:
· Try to get help if you, or someone else, feel dizzy, weak, anxious or have intense thirst and headache;
move to a cool place as soon as possible and measure body temperature
· Drink water or fruit juice to rehydrate
· If you suffer painful muscular spasms after sustained exercise during hot weather (particularly in the
legs, arms and stomach), rest immediately in a cool place
· Medical attention is needed if heat cramps last more than one hour
· Consult a doctor if you feel unusual symptoms or if symptoms persist
· A&E and 999 services are for emergency and life-threatening conditions only. Call NHS 111 24 hours
a day, 365 days a year for fast, free medical advice when it's not an emergency.
For more information about staying well this summer, visit the NHS choices website.