Winter health advice ahead of cold weather

The flu jab is free for the over-65s and other sections of the community.
The flu jab is free for the over-65s and other sections of the community.

NHS Scarborough and Ryedale CCG is advising residents on the best ways to stay well during the cold weather.

There are a number of effects the winter can have, and they are not just physical – the colder weather and shorter days can also affect your mental health.

NHS Scarborough and Ryedale CCG, Governing Body member Dr Peter Billingsly is offering useful tips to help residents stay well this winter.

Dr Billingsly said: “Norovirus outbreaks are more common this time of year.

“There is no specific treatment for norovirus, but you can take steps to ease your symptoms. If you’ve got sickness and diarrhoea, stay hydrated. Don’t see your GP unless symptoms persist more than a few days, the best ways to avoid catching norovirus is wash your hands thoroughly after using the toilet.

“The best way to stay protected against the flu is to get the vaccination. The jab is free for pregnant women, over 65s and those with underlying health conditions. If you have a child ages 2–3 they are entitled to a free flu nasal spray to keep them protected.

It is also important to keep a stock of over the counter medicines in your home over the Christmas period as your local surgery or pharmacy may not be open.

“The colder weather and shorter days can affect your mental health, get out in the sunshine if you can. Even short bursts can improve your mental wellbeing. Also check on your elderly and vulnerable neighbours to make sure they are OK.

“Finally, please use the right serviceif it is not an emergency, you can get medical advice 24/7 by using the NHS 111 service, they have trained medical professionals available who can direct you to the most appropriate medical care.”