Self Care

Self-care at home is the right choice for most minor illnesses and injuries. Normally, with coughs, colds, stomach upsets, sore throats and headaches, the right medicine, plenty of fluids and proper rest is enough to help you feel better.

Keep your first aid kit stocked with:

  • Plasters
  • Bandages
  • Dressings
  • Safety pins
  • Tweezers
  • Antiseptic cream
  • Insect bite/sting cream or spray
  • Cleansing wipes
  • Digital thermometer
We all get ill from time to time so keep your medicine cabinet stocked with essentials like pain killers, antihistamines, cold and flu remedies, anti-diarrhoea and indigestion medicine. If you have children, make sure you’ve got the right medicines according to their age.
Grazed knee?
Sore throat?

A well stocked medical cabinet can help you to deal with minor accidents and injuries at home. A basic first aid kit should contain:

  • plasters, triangular bandage and two sterile eye dressings
  • small, medium and large sterile gauze dressings
  • safety pins
  • disposable sterile gloves
  • tweezers, scissors and sticky tape
  • alcohol-free cleansing cleansing wipes
  • thermometer, preferably digital
  • skin rash cream such as hydrocortisone or calendula
  • cream or spray to relieve insect bites and stings and antiseptic cream
  • painkillers such as paracetamol (or infant paracetamol for children), aspirin (not to be given to children under 16) or ibuprofen cough medicine
  • Distilled water, for cleaning wounds and as an eye bath

Cough and flu remedies are good at relieving symptoms and can help you feel better. Speak to your pharmacist who can recommend the best remedy for you and your family.

With any medicine you have at home, be careful and make sure they are safely stored according to their labels and are within their use-by dates.

Keep your medicines safe from little ones at all times by locking your medical cabinet. Some medicines can be harmful to children, so be aware of the doses you are giving.


Before you book an appointment with your GP or visit A&E, why not visit your local pharmacy first?

Your local pharmacy can provide confidential health advice without needing to book an appointment.

If you don’t pay for your prescription, the pharmacy can supply your recommended medicines free of charge.

Use your local pharmacy first instead of booking a GP appointment and get immediate advice and treatment.

All Pharmacies have qualified pharmacists.

You can get professional, confidential health advice and treatment for a range of common illnesses, aches and pains, quickly without having to wait for a GP appointment.

Just give them a call or drop in – there’s no need to make an appointment.

There are currently 98 community pharmacies in Warwickshire. A number of these are now open late in the evening, over weekends and bank holidays. If your child is ill, take them along to a pharmacy, they can provide free clinical advice and may also be able to provide free medication.

Find your local pharmacy using the 'find your nearest' tool on NHS Choices 

Pharmacies can:

  • Give advice on treating minor illnesses and injuries and help you choose the right treatments
  • Provide advice on whether you should see your GP
  • Dispense prescription medicines and provide advice on how to take them safely
  • Dispense repeat prescriptions if you have arranged this with your GP
  • Help you to manage long-term conditions and your medication for them
  • Give advice on sexual health and contraception
  • Give advice on staying healthy, including stopping smoking


General Practitioners (GPs) can provide a wide range of health services and support for illnesses or injuries. Nurses and health care assistants often work alongside GPs to help support patients’ everyday health.

Many GP surgeries are now open for longer hours and offer emergency appointments each day for patients with more urgent conditions. However, if you need to see a GP outside opening hours, call 111.

The types of health services provided by GP practices include:

  • Diagnosis and treatment of medical problems
  • Planned care of long term illnesses such as heart disease, epilepsy, diabetes
  • Treatment of minor injuries
  • Prescriptions and repeat prescriptions for medicines
  • Preventive immunisations
  • Contraceptive and sexual health advice
  • Mental health and emotional wellbeing
  • Advice on any health problems or concerns
  • Advice and guidance on healthy lifestyle choices and local groups/services
  • Advice on, and referrals to, other health and social services
  • Travel vaccinations (charges may apply)

If you’re not registered with a local GP surgery, click here to find out how to do so.


Send feedback about this page
© NHS South Warwickshire Clinical Commissioning Group
Westgate House, Market Street, Warwick CV34 4DE