Feeling unwell - advice to get better

How you can help yourself or get help

Very few people feel well all the time. There are a number of ways you can help yourself or get help when you're ill, or if you just need advice about your health.

For example, sometimes you may feel sick (nausea). Often this will go away on its own. Some of the things you can try that might help are:

  • get plenty of fresh air
  • take sips of a cold drink
  • drink or eat food containing ginger such as ginger tea or biscuits
  • eat smaller meals slowly and more frequently
  • avoid large meals with hot, fried or greasy food or large drinks

NHS ‘Health A-Z’ guide

Your doctor's practice doesn't always need to be your first point of contact when you feel unwell. The NHS has a ‘Health A-Z’ guide (external link) with an extensive list of advice and information for specific issues, such as nausea or vomiting, or other conditions.

Your local pharmacy

There are also other services that can help you directly or put your mind at rest, including your local pharmacy. As well as advice about medications, pharmacists can also help you with minor health problems, such as aches and pains, allergies, sore throats and colds, eye infections, stomach problems and skin conditions.

If you're not registered with a General Practitioner (GP)

Everyone should be registered with a GP. If you're not, you should register with a GP practice (external link) as soon as possible, even if you don't currently have any health problems. You should consult your GP if you have symptoms which aren’t getting better or there’s something about your health you’re worried about. You can get help from a GP for free, but you'll usually need to make an appointment.

What a GP can help with

Your GP can give you medical advice, treatment and prescribe medication and could refer you to other healthcare professionals to diagnose or treat specific issues or conditions. Your GP may currently give this advice over the phone or via video link but safe face-to-face appointments are available, where necessary.

NHS 111

If you have health problems that are urgent, but not life-threatening, please call 111 or visit 111.nhs.uk (external link), available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

NHS 111 can now book time slots in all local Accident & Emergency (A&E) departments across England for those who need them, including at North Middlesex University Hospital, Barnet Hospital, the Royal Free Hospital, UCLH and the Whittington.

If you need urgent or emergency care, NHS 111 will advise you where you need to go for treatment and a timeslot will be booked for you. NHS 111 can also make direct appointments at GP surgeries and urgent treatment centres or send an ambulance if your condition is serious or life-threatening. Please only go straight to A&E or dial 999 if you or someone with you needs immediate care for something that is very serious, including breathing difficulties, chest pain, life-threatening injuries or a loss of consciousness.

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Page last updated:

February 13, 2023