Take Care of Your Health

A long term condition is one that cannot currently be cured but can be controlled with the use of medication and/or other therapies.

Living with a long-term condition brings challenges and it’s important to have the confidence, support and information to manage your health. Self care can help you make the most of living with your condition, rather than avoiding or missing out on things because of it. Self care puts you in control.

Research shows that people with long-term conditions who take more control of their health feel more able to cope with their health problem, have better pain management, fewer flare ups and more energy.

As your GP surgery we play a significant role in managing your long-term condition. We are committed to working in partnership with you to support you to be as independent and healthy as possible, and therefore believe in working with you and specialists in the community to provide personal and high-quality care.

Did you know?
If you are living with a long-term condition, you will spend, on average, six hours a year with a healthcare professional and the remaining 8,754 hours managing your health for yourself?

Why is self-care important?

If you are living with a long-term health condition, being good at self-care will also enhance your quality of life. Being more confident about self-care can significantly help you live as well and healthily as possible.

Self care can help you make the most of living with your condition, rather than avoiding or missing out on things because of it. Self care puts you in control. 

Download this long term condition Self-care toolkit booklet which provides you with some handy tips and skills.

Dave Campbell from Carlisle, has shared his story on taking up parkrun in a bid to shed some weight but more importantly, improve his health. Having had a diabetes scare with his practice nurse, Dave realised it was time for change, so he joined Carlisle Parkrun and hasn't looked back since. Thanks to the power-walking around the parkrun laps with his buddies, Dave lost over 1 stone within the first month, spurring him on even more.

Weight Management

NHS Digital Weight Management Programme offers a digital support programme for adults living with obesity plus either diabetes or hypertension, or both, to help them to manage their weight.

Currently, over 11.4 million adults across England are living with obesity (25% of all adults). Obesity is a serious health concern that increases the risks of many other health conditions, including Type 2 Diabetes, cardiovascular disease, joint problems, mental health problems, and some cancers.

Think of the 12-week programme as your virtual toolkit, with everything you need for a healthier and happier you. Each week, you will gain access to a series of videos, activity sheets, podcasts and quizzes, a facility to log your weight and additional content such as recipes and useful websites. Participants also have access to our closed Facebook groups where you can share your journey and experiences with others in a friendly social setting.

Anticoagulant medicines

It's important to have a healthy, balanced diet that includes lots of fruit and vegetables if you're taking anticoagulants. But you should avoid making frequent changes to the amount of green vegetables you eat if you're taking warfarin. Foods with a lot of vitamin K, such as leafy green vegetables, chickpeas and liver, can interfere with how warfarin works. You can still include these in your diet while taking warfarin, as the clinic will adjust your dose accordingly, but it's important to be consistent in the amount you eat. 

Do not drink cranberry juice, grapefruit juice or pomegranate juice while you're taking warfarin. They can increase the blood-thinning effect of warfarin. 

Moderate exercise (eg walking, jogging, or swimming) is fine. However, you should avoid contact sports and those activities in which physical injury is more likely to occur. 

Asthma Management 

Asthma self-management refers to the things you can do for yourself to keep your asthma in control, have fewer asthma symptoms and enjoy life. The best medicines and best healthcare providers in the world can only do so much to help you manage your asthma if you are not also doing your part. For this reason, self-management is essential. There are key goals of asthma self-management education, click HERE to download a quick guide. 

It's very important you are using your preventor and reliever inhalers correctly and appropriately. Overusing reliever inhalers can be dangerous, because, unlike preventers, they treat the symptoms and not the underlying inflammation that leads to symptoms, asthma attacks and hospitalisation. 

Reliever inhalers are lifesaving during asthma attacks but do nothing to treat the inflammation in the airways that causes asthma symptoms and attacks in the first place. That’s the role of preventer inhalers, which if taken every day build up protection in the lungs by suppressing the inflammation.

Improve your inhaler technique in three minutes! Watch these short videos to learn how to use your inhaler properly and better manage your respiratory symptoms. 
How to use your inhaler | Asthma UK 

Did you know?
New research from Asthma + Lung UK (2022) found more than a million people are overusing their reliever inhalers

We strongly encourage you to attend your yearly annual review appointments to ensure your asthma management action plan is up to date and your long-term condition is safely monitored and controlled. The Practice will invite you in each year, when you are due to attend. 

A sustainable self-care practice that is good for you and the environment is switching to an inhaler with a lower carbon footprint. This kind of self-care initiative will help us reach carbon neutrality and goes beyond “me” to “we”.

For full information please click HERE