Public encouraged to become 'self care aware'

To mark Self Care Week (13 -19 November), Nene Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is reminding people across Northamptonshire the importance of taking care of their health and looking after symptoms of common everyday illnesses. 

The theme of this year's awareness week is Embracing Self Care for Life. Being active, eating healthily, making greater use of pharmacies and learning when to self treat common ailments are all ways to embrace self care. 

Winter is the busiest time of year for the NHS, which puts pressure on GPs and hospitals, but many common illnesses and minor ailments can be treated at home with over counter products and rest. 

Dr Darin Seiger, GP Chair of Nene CCG, said: “As local GPs, we want to support you to look after your own health. Self Care Week is a great campaign to raise awareness on knowing where to seek the right help when it's needed. 

“Taking some simple steps, such as staying healthy and knowing how to treat minor ailments, could save you time and an unnecessary visit to your GP.” 

Many people still visit the GP or A&E for conditions that could be treated at home. If you do need advice from a health professional, try your local pharmacist, they are qualified to give advice and recommend treatments for conditions such as coughs, colds, sprains and strains. 

NHS 111 can also offer advice and direct you to the right service for your condition. It is free to call 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and is staffed by trained advisors and experienced clinicians. 

Dr Seiger added: “Instead of waiting for an appointment at your surgery, consider going to your local pharmacist or calling NHS 111 first. 

“Pharmacists will help you choose the right treatment and can explain how long symptoms normally last. They can also offer you help to stop smoking, manage your weight, as well as providing flu jabs and blood pressure checks. Many pharmacies even have private consulting rooms.” 

Visit NHS Choices,, for more information on things you can do to improve your health and wellbeing.