This week is Self Care week and local organisations are encouraging people living in Dorset to be more aware of what they can do to care for themselves and make the best use of local health services.

Use your local pharmacy

Many people are not aware that they can get advice on minor ailments from their local community pharmacy service. Expert help can be provided to people for them to manage their long-term conditions or for ailments such as a bad cough, wheezing, a cold or sore throat. Many pharmacies have longer opening hours than the average GP practice, and most have a private consultation area. If people need to see a doctor, they will be advised accordingly.

There are over 150 pharmacies in Dorset – find your local one via

Read our pharmacy blog on Staywell Dorset.

Earlier is better

Don’t wait until your symptoms get serious before seeking help, the earlier you speak to someone the quicker you will be back to normal.

If you aren’t sure who to speak to call 111 and they can direct you to the most appropriate care – if necessary they can book you an appointment with a local out of hours general practice service.

Online help is available

There are a range of online services available which offer advice and help including the national NHS website (, Staywell Dorset ( and Kooth ( an online counselling service for young people in Dorset between the ages of 11 and 18.

Get protected against flu

Flu on top of any long-term health condition can easily develop into something very serious, and you could end up in hospital. If you are eligible for a free flu jab don’t put it off – contact your GP or pharmacist as soon as you can. It’s free because you need it.

Find out more about the flu vaccine on the NHS website.


Further information

Self Care Week is an annual national awareness week that focuses on embedding support for self care across communities, families and generations. For more information visit

For more information on staying well during the winter months visit