ONE WAY TO BE HEALTH-WISE IS TO MAKE SURE YOU HAVE SOME OVER THE COUNTER REMEDIES FOR COMMON WINTER ILLNESSES IN YOUR MEDICINE CABINET
Things to have in your medicine cabinet include:
paracetamol and ibuprofen for pain relief (check the label or speak to your pharmacist to check it’s suitable for you)
anti-histamines to help allergies
anti-diarrhoeals and oral rehydration sachets for diarrhoea
indigestion remedies such as an antacid
mild laxative for constipation
a first aid kit
medicines specifically for children (your pharmacist can advise on the most suitable ones to keep in the house)
Remember that medicines go out of date, so don’t overstock your medicine cabinet. Always follow the advice on the pack, and if your symptoms persist (or are severe) seek further advice.
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Your medicine chest should be kept out of the reach of children.
Always check age suitability for ALL treatments.
Never give aspirin to children under 16 years.
Always consult the pharmacist or your doctor if you are taking any other medication or are in doubt.
Always follow the instructions on the medicine label and take the suggested dose.
Regularly check medicines making sure they are not past their use-by date (the pharmacist will dispose of these for you).
Make sure you keep all medicines in their original container.
Don’t share prescription medicines with others.
Here could be other items which you need to add to your medicine chest such as anti-histamine tablets if you are prone to hayfever, although remember some of these may cause drowsiness. Anti-viral cream if you suffer from cold sores, etc.
When using a decongestant, remember that children may require a different type or dosage from adults and sometimes simply sitting them in a steam-filled bathroom can help.
Be sure to read the label before using antiseptic solution to clean cuts and grazes, as some need to be diluted in water before use.
Calamine lotion is excellent for soothing the skin after sunburn, and is also effective for taking the itch out of insect bites and stings.