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22 November 2017

Stay well this winter

Winter can be a difficult time of year. The drop in temperature, the risk of nasty viruses, health complications and the potential feelings of isolation and loneliness some people may feel can all have a huge impact.

We are working with agencies across Kent, including our NHS and Kent County Council colleagues, to make sure people stay well this winter and are looked after as well as possible.

Here are our top tips for looking after yourself and your loved ones this winter:

1. Have your flu jab

Flu is a horrible virus that can make people very unwell. If you already have an existing medical condition it can be very dangerous and lead to other complications such as pneumonia. People aged 65 or over, those who have a serious medical condition, pregnant women and NHS employees are entitled to a free flu jab. Anyone else who wants their flu jab can pay for one at their local pharmacy. Learn more about flu here.

2. Keep yourself warm

Have your heating set between 19 and 22 degrees in living rooms, kitchen and bathroom and up to 20 degrees in bedrooms, if you can. If you can’t, wear layers of warm clothes and move around as much as possible. You can apply for help with heating costs here.

3. Know which service to use if you need help (don’t just dial 999)

If you are unwell or need medical care make sure you know who to call. Accident and emergency units really feel the pressure over winter so if your injury or condition is not life-threatening, A and E is not for you. If you are not sure, phone your GP or NHS111. Pharmacies can provide advice and medicine if you are suffering from a bad cold, tummy bug or allergic reaction. Injuries such as sprains, fractures, burns and cuts can be treated in one of our local minor injury units. Download the Health Help Now app to identify the right service for you and if you live in east Kent, the WaitLess app will give you up-to-the-minute information on waiting and travel times for services near you. You can download both from the app store on an iPhone or Google Play on an Android device.

4. Be a winter friend

Is there someone in your street or community who is on their own? Be a winter friend and make a little time to check in on them.

 

You can find more information on the Kent County Council website.