Appointments and Out of Hours Number: 01644 420234
This information was adapted from one of a series of leaflets produced by the Royal College of General Practitioners entitled "How to Work with your Doctor". It is available on their website www.rcgp.org.uk, tel: 020 3188 7400 or by contacting them at 30 Euston Square, Kings Cross, London NW1 2FB.
Burns: Immediately cool down the affected area with lots of cold water and continue to do this for at least 10 minutes. If the burn is larger than 4 or 5 inches across, if it is on the face or if the skin is broken, see the Practice Nurse as soon as possible. If the burn is deep, heavily blistered and very painful, or if the skin has turned white or black, go to the nearest Accident and Emergency (Casualty) department immediately.
Cuts: Try to stop the bleeding from a minor cut by pressing it, with clean hands, for a few minutes; hold a cut arm or leg up high. If a cut bleeds freely, any germs will normally be washed away by the blood. If it is a deep cut and the edges cannot be pulled together, go to the Accident and Emergency Department. Redness or swelling can be a sign of infection in a cut or graze and you should make an appointment to have it seen at the Surgery. You may be advised to have a tetanus injection if you haven't had one for 10 years.
Sprains: Remember I-C-E.
Head injuries: For a minor knock or bump, put on a cold, damp cloth. A person should be seen by a GP or taken to Accident and Emergency without delay if they have any of the following symptoms:
Choking: Stand behind the person and hug them firmly above the waist, pushing your fist up under their ribs to make them cough up the blockage. For a young child, hold the child upside down and thump on the back.
The way we live can affect our health. Lifestyle changes such as giving up smoking, cutting down on heavy drinking, learning to relax, or reducing our intake of fatty foods can have a big impact on our health. The Practice Nurse would be happy to offer advice on changing your diet or making other lifestyle changes. The services of a Smoking Counsellor are also available.
These warning signs may tell you something is wrong and that you should contact your GP soon:
In children, these warning signs mean you should seek medical advice immediately:
A raised temperature often occurs even with mild infections like colds and flu. Normal temperature is 37°C or 98.4°F. People usually know if they have a temperature - they feel hot or cold, sweaty or shivery and unwell. Children may be miserable and listless or look flushed. Small babies may seem very sleepy and not want to feed.
A higher temperature or fever means the body is fighting the infection. Help it along by drinking plenty of water or weak squash, keeping the room at a comfortable temperature with fresh air circulating and sponging with cool or lukewarm water. Paracetamol or aspirin can be taken as tablets by adults and paracetamol syrup can be given to children.
Contact the GP immediately if the person has a temperature of over 40°C / 104°F, if there is a stiff neck, cramps or vomiting, or if a child seems weak and listless or suffers a fit or convulsion.
All these are useful medicines and dressings to keep at home in readiness for minor illnesses or accidents. Ask your pharmacist for advice on other remedies or medicines which may be of use at home.
Keep them up-to-date and out of the reach of children.
For further help and advice, visit NHS Inform by clicking the button below: