Self care

Self care is the best choice to treat minor illnesses and injuries. A large range of common illnesses and injuries can be treated at home simply with over-the-counter medicines from a pharmacy and plenty of rest.


Keep a well-stocked medicine cabinet

Even minor ailments – such as colds, headaches and diarrhoea – can disrupt your life. Be prepared for common illnesses and injuries by keeping a medicine cabinet stocked with:

Pain relief

Aspirin, paracetamol and ibuprofen help with some minor ailments by reducing aches, pain and high temperatures. They also help reduce the inflammation seen in arthritis and sprains.


Antihistamines are useful for dealing with allergies, including hayfever, rashes, insect bites and itchiness during chickenpox. They can come in cream or tablet form.

Oral rehydration salts

Fever, diarrhoea and vomiting, cause your body to lose water and essential minerals, leading to dehydration. Oral rehydration salts do not treat the underlying cause but they will restore your natural balance and help you to feel better.  

Anti-diarrhoea tablets

Anti-diarrhoea remedies can quickly control the symptoms of diarrhoea by slowing down your gut, however they do not treat the underlying cause. Don’t give anti-diarrhoea medicines to children under 12 as they may have undesirable side effects.

Indigestion treatment

If you have stomach ache or heartburn, a simple antacid will reduce stomach acidity and bring relief. Antacids come as chewable tablets, tablets that dissolve in water, or in liquid form.


It doesn’t have to be hot for you to get sunburn, so keep a sunscreen of at least factor 15 with UVA protection handy.

First aid kit

A well-prepared first aid kit can help treat minor cuts, sprains and bruises, and reduce the risk of cuts becoming infected. Make sure your first aid kit has:

  • Bandages
  • Plasters
  • A thermometer
  • Antiseptic
  • Eyewash solution
  • Sterile dressings
  • Medical tape
  • Tweezers

Don’t forget your local pharmacist can help with many ailments, such as coughs, colds, asthma, eczema, hay fever, and period pain.