Health advice this autumn

How to stay well in winter

Cold weather can make some health problems worse and even
lead to serious complications, especially if you are 65 or older, or if you
have a long-term health condition.

Who’s most at risk from cold weather?

Some people are more vulnerable to the effects of cold
weather. This includes:

  • people aged 65 and older
  • babies and children under the age of 5
  • people on a low income (so cannot afford heating)
  • people who have a long-term health condition
  • people with a disability
  • pregnant women
  • people who have a mental health condition
 

Get advice if you feel unwell

If you are 65 or over, or in one of the other at-risk
groups, it’s important to get medical help as soon as you feel unwell.

You can get help and advice from:

  • a pharmacy – pharmacists can give treatment advice for a range of minor illnesses and can tell you if you need to see a doctor
  • your GP – you may be able to speak to a GP online or over the phone, or go in for an appointment if they think you need to
  • NHS 111 – go to 111.nhs.uk or call 111 if you have an urgent medical problem and you’re not sure what to do

The sooner you get advice, the sooner you are likely to get
better. Call a pharmacy or contact them online before going in person. You can get medicines delivered or ask someone to collect them.

It’s important to get the flu vaccine if you’re advised to. The flu vaccine is a safe and effective vaccine. It’s offered every year on the NHS to help protect people at risk of flu and its complications. The best time to have the flu vaccine is in the autumn before flu starts spreading.

Get a flu vaccine

Flu will often get better on its own, but it can make some
people seriously ill. It’s important to get the flu vaccine if you’re advised
to.

The flu vaccine is a safe and effective vaccine. It’s
offered every year on the NHS to help protect people at risk of flu
and its complications.

The best time to have the flu vaccine is in the autumn
before flu starts spreading. But you can get the vaccine later.

Find out more about the:

adult flu vaccine

children’s flu vaccine

COVID-19 booster vaccine

Some people may be eligible for both the flu and the
COVID-19 booster vaccines.

If you are offered both vaccines, it’s safe to have them at
the same time. 

Find out more about the COVID-19 booster vaccine and who can get it