Self Treatment

Back Pain

Back pain causes 13 million working days to be lost in Britain each year.

The spine supports the whole weight of the upper body and therefore it is understandable that it sometimes goes wrong. Because of the complex nature of the spine it is advisable to consult your doctor if back pain persists for more than a few days.

If, as is usual, the pain has been caused by abuse i.e. lifting too heavy weights etc, be sensible and take things easy. Take care to sit as upright as possible with a support for the small of the back. Take aspirin or paracetamol, which will not only relieve the pain but will help to relieve the inflammation.

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Burns

Apply large quantities of cold water to the affected area as soon as possible and maintain this until the pain subsides.

This may take as long as 15 minutes!

If the skin is unbroken but blistered, apply a loose, dry dressing. If the burn is larger than 4 or 5 inches in diameter or if the skin is broken, seek medical advice.

blister after burn

Colds

Even in this day and age there is no magic cure for the common cold.

Take plenty of drinks.

If you have a headache or are feverish, take aspirin or paracetamol.

Do not bother to take any antibiotics you may have in the house - these will have no effect!

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Diarrhoea

Ideally let the illness take its course.

In adults diarrhoea is usually caused by a viral infection and is therefore unable to be treated directly. Holiday diarrhoea is often due to bacteria.

In both the above cases, consult your doctor if the symptoms persist for more than a few days.

Diarrhoea in very young children needs careful attention.

Most babies have loose bowel action during their first six months due to their predominantly liquid diet. If you are concerned about your child’s bowel actions please ensure they are taking plenty of water/fluids. For further advice contact the health visitor.

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