With a few simple steps you can look after yourself and your family this winter
- Check your repeat prescription, order only what you need, in plenty of time.
- Know how to treat common illnesses at home.
- If you become unwell, NHS Inform can help with useful Symptoms and self-help.
- Find advice on how to stay healthy and well this winter, including ways to keep warm, with Healthy know how on NHS Inform.
- Find information about Covid-19 Booster and flu vaccinations on our Winter Vaccinations page.
- If you need to talk to a healthcare professional it’s important that you get the right care in the right place, which could be your local pharmacy, your GP or by calling 111.
View the different sections below for more information on how to look after yourself and your family this winter.
- Minor injury, illness or urgent health advice?
- Pharmacy services
- GP Practice
- Dental Practice
- Mental Health Support
- Local council and community advice
- Weather and travel advice
- Protect your home
Minor injuries, illnesses or urgent health advice?
Call NHS 24 first on 111 for:
- Healthcare advice
- A telephone or video consultation with a local healthcare professional
- A minor injuries appointment so you don’t have to wait if you need to be seen
To make sure you are going directly to the right service visit our full Guide to Local Services.
If you have a minor illness, such as a cold, an upset stomach or general aches and pains, your local pharmacy is the first place you should go for advice. Your local Pharmacy can offer health consultations and provide free medication for many common conditions without the need for a GP prescription under the Pharmacy First scheme.
For more information visit the Your Local Pharmacy section of our Guide to Local Services.
GP Practice Services
GP Practices are dealing with very high levels of demand and are working really hard to prioritise appointments for patients who need to be seen urgently. However, its important to remember that you can now see a wider range of healthcare professionals at your GP Practice including physiotherapists, mental health workers and Advanced Nurse Practitioners so you might not always need to see a GP.
Reception staff have been trained to ask questions when you call so they can direct you to the most appropriate member of the Practice Team – so please be kind when you call as they are working closely with GPs to help get you the advice and treatment you need as quickly as possible.
For more information visit the GP Practice section of our Guide to Local Services.
If you’re experiencing dental problems such as tooth pain, swollen or bleeding gums, or an injury to your mouth, your local Dental Practice should be the first place you contact. If you’re not registered with a dentist, find your regional dentist helpline at NHS inform.
For more information visit the Dental Service section of our Guide to Local Services.
If you’re experiencing eye problems such as a red or sticky eye, blurred vision, or flashes and floaters, please contact your optometrist who will be able to assist you.
For more information visit the Eye Problems section of our Guide to Local Services.
Mental Health Support
If you’re in need of mental health support, you can contact your General Practice, or call NHS 24 on 111.
You can also call Breathing Space on 0800 83 85 87, open Monday – Thursday 6pm to 2am and weekends Friday 6pm to Monday 6am.
For more information visit our Mental Health & Wellbeing section.
Local council and community advice
Clackmannanshire Council has an out of hours emergency number which you can call on 01259 450000. You can also contact them via email on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Falkirk Council has some useful advice, as well as information on support available with energy costs including grants for people living in the Falkirk Council area. They have set up an emergency helpline which you can reach on 01324 506070. If your call is not an emergency you can email them via email@example.com.
Stirling Council can be contacted via their website’s enquiry form. Alternatively you can call them on 01786 404040.
Ready Scotland have provided simple steps to reduce the harm that unexpected events cause you. Their website contains information and advice about the ways that individuals, groups and local businesses can support their communities through challenging situations.
The British Red Cross is still available over the festive period should anyone need short term use of a wheelchair or commode. If you, or someone you care for is recovering from a short-term injury or ailment, a wheelchair can make a significant difference to their recovery, mental health and well-being.
Help during the cost of living crisis – If you need urgent help with money, food or fuel. Your local council may be able to help if you need urgent help with things like food, heating and electricity.
Weather and travel advice
Sign up to receive the latest weather warnings in your area directly from the Met Office. Or download their app for the latest information where you are. To help get the most out of their advice, you may wish to learn more about their warning system, e.g. what the colour of each type of warning means.
If you’re travelling by road, Traffic Scotland host an interactive map which provides information on all incidents, roadworks, travel warnings and more on Scotland’s major roads. You can also check live traffic cameras across the country to monitor road conditions before you set off.
The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) offers a live flood update service called Floodline. If you live in a flood-risk area or are concerned about flooding, you can sign up for free flood warnings by calling Floodline on 0345 988 1188 or by visiting their signup page.
Get the latest updates on your rail route with ScotRail’s live network map. Check the service on a single route, or see the whole network at a glance. Make sure you also sign up for JourneyCheck alerts on your regular journeys.
Think about how you’re going to get home when you’re out and about during the festive season, before you head out – and remember to consider any journeys the morning after. Even if you’re slightly over the limit, in the eyes of the law you are a criminal. There’s no grey area. Find out more at Road Safety Scotland.
Protect your home
If you are experiencing an unexpected loss of supply or emergency, you can check if it is on the Latest In Your Area map on the Scottish Water website. You can report any new problems, on their dedicated portal.
If you experience loss of power, call 105, which will connect you to the correct network operator for your region. You can also call 105 if you spot damage to electricity power lines and substations that could put you, or someone else, in danger. If there’s a serious immediate risk, you should call the emergency services too.
Police Scotland have shared a lot of good festive safety information on their website. Remember, the 101 number is to be used for non-emergencies when contacting the police and is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In an emergency, dial 999.
The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service have some good advice on Winter safety at home including checking your smoke and heat alarms are working, replacing batteries if necessary.
Home Energy Scotland is an advice service funded by the Scottish Government and managed by Energy Saving Trust. People in Scotland can get advice about creating a warmer, more energy efficient home and reducing energy bills, as well as financial support, including grants and 0% loans.