Stock up on your medicine cabinet while doing your Christmas shopping


Pharmacies are the topic of discussion in this week’s Health Matters column, written by the Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group.

This is the time of year when many of us are busy shopping for gifts, planning meetings, and vacation trips.

While you’re out, why not also think about stocking up on medicine cabinet essentials to make sure you’re ready for winter?

A pharmacist

There are a lot of bugs going around this time of year. Your local pharmacist can offer you free health advice at any time, and no appointment is necessary.

From coughs and colds to body aches, they can give you expert help with everyday illnesses and answer questions about prescription and over-the-counter medications.

Throughout the year, pharmacists can also advise you on healthy eating, obesity and smoking cessation and have private spaces where you can discuss with confidence.

So, before the vacation schedule gets too busy, check your medicine cabinet and make sure you have the following basics, all of which can be purchased at your local drugstore or supermarket:

Pain relievers;

· Cold and flu remedies;

· Anti-diarrheal medication;

· Oral rehydration salts;

· Remedies for indigestion;

· Plasters;

· Bandages;

· A thermometer;

· Fabrics.

If you are already taking other medications, check with your pharmacist first to make sure the medications are right for you.

Check any medications you already have to make sure they can still be used. If any medications are past their expiration date, do not take them and return them to your local pharmacy for safe disposal.

If you need new prescriptions for your regular medications, make sure you order them on time. Check the opening hours of your doctor’s office and remember to collect your prescription before the holiday season.

Dr Dave Baker, GP and Head of South West Lincolnshire, NHS Lincolnshire CCG, said: ‘Getting ready for winter and stocking up on medicine cabinet essentials that can easily be purchased at your local pharmacy and supermarket, many people could treat illnesses at home, avoiding unnecessary doctor visits.

“The last thing you want around Christmas is to be sick. Sadly, every winter colds, flu, upset stomach and other ailments are all too common, so we urge people to stock up on essentials for their medicine cabinet. Online advice on managing common illnesses is available at

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