Summer is finally here. Well, British summer that is.

But if we do happen to have a few nice days, you certainly won’t want to waste them sat in a dark room because you got too much sun the day before, stressing out because you’ve gone away and forgotten your prescription or queuing in A&E.

Not to worry. We’ve got some helpful hints and tips to see you through, no dramas.

Tip 1

Firstly, don’t be caught out by the sun. Tomato-face has never been a good look. Make sure you cover up, use at least factor 15 sunscreen and reapply every few hours. The shade is your friend.

A tan = skin damage not health. Fact. (sorry!)

You’re at greater risk of sunburn and skin cancers if you have fair skin, moles, freckles, red or fair hair, so if you notice any moles or freckles change size or shape, see your GP asap. There’s loads of advice out there about sun safety.

Tip 2

If you’re headed to a festival this summer, off camping or otherwise exploring in the UK, remember to bring any medication you need with you. If you’re like me, it might help to put it by the front door so it’s impossible to forget (…nearly impossible).

If the worst happens, you may be able to get medicine from a pharmacist in an emergency. They’ll probably need to see you face-to-face and need evidence that you have been prescribed that medicine before. Everything you need to know is the other side of this hyperlink.

Tip 3

One final nag while I’m on the festival-front as we are a health website after all…

Don’t take illegal substances. People who do ultimately have no idea what’s in the stuff they’re putting in their body. They might even think they can do it in a controlled, safe way (*eye rolls*). It’s ended very tragically time and time again.

Luckily we’re not naïve enough to think everyone will take our 10/10 advice. If you see anyone who’s unwell, find a medic immediately. If they’ve collapsed, put them in the recovery position (turn them on their side) and call an ambulance. Tell them everything you know – medical services are there to help, not to judge.

Tip 4

Final thing…

If you’re visiting Dorset, welcome, and even if you’re from these parts it’s still good to know what services are about to help you should you need them.

Download the WaitLess app for free on the App Store or Google Play. We’re the first county in the south west to introduce the app, just sayin’, which helps you to make an informed choice about where to get treatment for minor, non-emergencies.

WaitLess combines live feeds from A&E departments and Urgent Treatment Centres and gives average wait times combined with travel time to each location from where you are. Pretty nifty.

Tip 5

As always, if in doubt go to NHS 111 Online. Answer a few questions about your main symptom to find out where to get help and get a call back from a nurse, if you need one. Alternatively, give 111 a call to chat to a trained adviser who’ll quickly direct you to the best medical care for your needs.

Stay well.