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Conjunctivitis is an infection of the surface of the eye. It can be due to allergy, a bacterial or viral infection. It can also develop following the lodging of a foreign object in the eye e.g. an eyelash, piece of grit etc. Symptoms include soreness, often described as gritty or burning, redness of the white of the eye, itching, watering or discharge and slight sensitivity to light.

Treatment will depend on the cause of the conjunctivitis. Your Doctor will be able to establish this. Antibiotic drops or ointment is the most commonly prescribed therapy following diagnosis of infective conjunctivitis, if the cause is bacterial. Allergic conjunctivitis will simply require you to stay away from whatever is causing the reaction...

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Irritated Eyes

Small pieces of grit or dirt in the eye are best washed out with plenty of water. Try to avoid rubbing the eye, as this will make things worse. If the eye is still sore after this, then medical help may be necessary

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Vomiting may be caused by a virus infection of the stomach, food poisoning and by eating or drinking too much. It normally stops within 24 hours and may be followed by diarrhoea. Some children will vomit when they have a temperature.


Rest. Take nothing by mouth for 12 hours then try small frequent sips of water every 15-20 minutes, progressing to a light diet for the next day or two. Most cases settle within 24-48 hours. If not, contact the doctor

Children and Infants: Try Dioralyte sachets made up with cooled boiled water to replace body fluids. Make an appointment to see the doctor if vomiting is accompanied by continuous stomach pain, if vomiting lasts for longer than 24 hours, or if a vomiting child has a temperature of more than 38C (100F).

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Diarrhoea is unpleasant but rarely dangerous. It may be due to a change of diet, food poisoning or travel abroad. It is often accompanied by colicky (cramp-like) pains and usually begins to get better in 48 hours.

Adults and Children over 1year
Diarrhoea is defined as three or more liquid bowel movements in a day, and may occur with vomiting and abdominal cramps. It is usually caused by viral infections or food poisoning. Nearly all cases should clear themselves in two to five days, without needing to take any medicines.

Stop all food for several hours or until you are feeling better. Ensure that frequent drinks of water, dilute fruit juice or squash are taken, but stop all dairy products for three days. Eat bland food such as boiled rice or pasta, dry toast or crackers...

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Regular bowel movements are essential to remove waste matter and toxins from the body, otherwise they accumulate, re-circulate and lead to low energy and ill health. Everybody should have at least one bowel movement daily.

Constipation is diagnosed if having a bowel movement is difficult or painful, or infrequent. It may be due to insufficient dietary fibre, too little water consumption, lack of muscle tone in the colon (large bowel) or stress that results in lack of an urge. Very rarely it may be due to a twisted bowel or other medical problem, resulting in an emergency. In this case it would be accompanied by excruciating pain.

A diagnosis of constipation may result in the prescription or recommendation of laxatives. These are a quick fix to stimulate the bowel and allow it to empty...

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Stomach aches

Most attacks are not serious and are usually caused by indigestion or wind. A hot water bottle will often relieve the symptoms and, in the case of indigestion, a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda in half a glass of water will help. If the pain lasts longer than six to eight hours, or increases in intensity, you should consult your doctor.

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Nose bleeds

Alarming – but try to keep your cool. Sit in a chair, leaning forward with your mouth open, and pinch your nose just below the bone for 10-20 minutes, by which time the bleeding should have stopped. If the bleeding does not settle, you will probably need to have your nose treated at casualty – Consult your doctor
Avoid hot drinks or food for 24 hours. Be very gentle afterwards and do not dab or pick it! Vaseline can soften clots in a few days time as they harden.

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Minor cuts and grazes

Wash the wound thoroughly with water and a little soap or mild antiseptic (e.g. Savlon), making sure you remove all particles of dirt. To stop any bleeding, press a clean handkerchief or dressing to the wound for about five minutes, then cover with a clean, dry dressing.

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Apply lots of cold water to the area until the pain subsides, which might take 15 minutes. If the skin is blistered but unbroken, apply a loose dry dressing. If the burn is bigger than 5 inches across, or if the skin is broken, go to A&E or consult your doctor or nurse promptly. Children with burns should be brought to the doctor.

Small children burn easily and should not be left in the sun. There is concern about the development of skin cancer in dedicated sun worshippers.
Everyone should take care in the sun, children and those with fair skins especially. Use high factor sun protection creams, wear loose clothing and a hat, stay out of strong sun especially in the middle of the day...

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Insect bites and stings

These are generally harmless, if painful. Apply an ice cube or cold compress to reduce redness and pain. Antihistamine creams or tablets, and hydrocortisone cream, can be obtained from the pharmacist and can be helpful.
Bee stings should be scraped away rather than ‘plucked out’ in order to avoid squeezing the contents of the venom sac into the wound.
Occasionally bites or stings give rise to a severe reaction, in which case seek urgent medical help.

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