Ensure you are safe, stop the burning process, remove any clothing over or near the burn (unless stuck to the skin), then cool the burn with cool or tepid running water for 20 minutes or so. Use copious amounts of water if a chemical burn. Do not use ice or very cold water. Keep the person warm. Apply layers of cling film (do not wrap around) or a clean plastic bag if cling film unavailable. Do not apply butter or oily products. Paracetamol or ibuprofen may be given. If the affected area is small (less than palm of hand) and not blistered (or only minimal) you may be happy to manage at home. Otherwise attend A&E or see us urgently for further help.
This condition will often clear without a prescription. Bathing the eye regularly with tepid water or using lubricant eye drops from the chemist may help. If you are concerned that your vision may be affected, we would be happy to see you and advise.
Note: it is not necessary to exclude a child from school or childcare unless there is an outbreak of several cases – as advised by Public Health England (Health Protection Agency/HPA)
Cough, Colds and Flu
These conditions usually start with a runny nose, cough , temperature and aches. They are caused by viruses and antibiotics are of no use in their treatment. Rest, take plenty of fluids and if you have a headache or are feverish, then take recommended doses of paracetamol or ibuprofen. We are happy to see or advise you if you are very unwell or the illness persists.
Please see also, advice regarding Temperature and Sore Throats, as below.
Note: aspirin must not be given to children under 16.
Diarrhoea and Vomiting
Most cases of diarrhoea are caused by a virus caught by contact with other people. Some are caused by bacteria and less commonly, contaminated food (‘food poisoning’). Diarrhoea will usually settle within 5-7 days and vomiting within 2-3 days. It does not usually cause any serious harm.
The most important thing is fluid – drink little and often eg. plain water. Dioralyte and similar drinks can be bought at the chemist without a prescription if wished.
Eat normally. Do not starve yourself.
Paracetamol can help the gripey pain.
Anti-diarrhoeal treatments eg. Imodium, Kaolin and Morphine, Lomotil can make the illness last LONGER, so are NOT advised.
Maintain personal hygiene, disinfect surfaces, avoid food preparation for others and do not share personal items eg. towels. Do not swim for 2 weeks after the last episode of diarrhoea or vomiting.
It is usual for a child or adult to complain from a mild headache after a bump to the head and to develop a bruise. This can safely be treated with paracetamol. Medical attention (usually, by going to A&E) should be sought if: persistent/severe/worsening headache, or irritability/altered behaviour in a child under 5, or if the patient was ‘knocked out’ or had a fit or cannot remember the accident, or if vomiting, drowsiness or blurred or double vision develops.
This is a community wide problem. Regular checking of all the family members’ hair is important in the detection and control of head lice. Lice are most easily detected by fine tooth combing really wet shampooed and conditioned hair from the roots in sections. If no lice can be found by careful combing there is no need to consider applying head lice treatments even if there have been cases reported in school. If head lice are discovered your school nurse, health visitor or pharmacist will be able to give advice and recommend lotions and rinses which are specially made to kill lice and their eggs quickly and safely.
In the event of a nose bleed pinch the soft, fleshy part of the nose (below the bone) firmly for 6 or 7 minutes. The application of an ice pack or cold compress over the bridge of the nose or forehead may help. If the bleeding persists repeat as above until it stops. In the rare event of these measures failing, it would be advisable to go to the Accident and Emergency department for further help.
Sore throat is usually self limiting and most patients will get better within a week. It may help to rest, drink plenty of fluids and take paracetamol or ibuprofen at recommended doses. If you are very unwell, or the illness is persistent , or in certain medical circumstances, we MAY offer antibiotics for delayed or immediate use after we have assessed the situation in surgery.
Temperature /Feverish Illness in Children
Consider either paracetamol or ibuprofen in children with fever who are distressed. Do not use these agents simply to reduce body temperature if the child is otherwise comfortable. Encourage rest and fluids. Tepid sponging is no longer recommended. Do not under-dress or over –wrap the child. Look out for dehydration, non blanching rash and check the child during the night. Keep at home whilst the fever persists. If using paracetamol or ibuprofen:
- Only continue as long as the child seems distressed.
- Consider trying the other agent if distress is not alleviated
- Do not given both agents simultaneously
- Only consider alternating these agents if distress persists or recurs before the next dose is due
Seek help if you are worried about the child’s condition, or if the child has a fit or a non blanching rash, or is deteriorating (even after previous advice) or if fever lasts for more than 5 days.
Note: all babies under 3 months of age with a temperature above 38oC, or age 3-6 months with a temperature above 39oC, should be urgently assessed by a doctor.
(NICE: Feverish illness in children May 2013)
This harmless infestation is very common particularly in pre-school children. Worms may be noted in stools or cause severe anal itching at night. Effective treatment can be purchased from the chemist or we will provide a prescription, usually without seeing the child.