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Halls Soothers have helped me relief the symptoms of a mild sore throat with their liquid syrupy centres, and their menthol content (derived from the mint plant) helped to relief blocked sinuses
These retail for about 45p for a pack of 10, and I have recently seen them on special offer in Tesco and Asda for 80p for two packs.
Superdrug currently have a buy one, get one half price, across a range of cough and cold products, including Soothers, which are one for 49p. I know that I am not going to get through a winter without at least a mild dose of cold symptoms, so I like to have some in my medicine cabinet.
I like the blackcurrant flavour best, which contains real blackcurrant juice, but they also come in strawberry, cherry, and peach & raspberry.
The ingredients for my blackcurrant flavour variety are given as: Glucose syrup, Sugar, Glucose-fructose syrup, Glycerol, Concentrated blackcurrant juice, Lactic acid, Citric acid, Flavourings, Acidity regulators (Sodium lactate, Potassium citrate), Menthol, Eucalyptus Oil, Colours (E129,E132), Emulsifier (Soya lecithin).
While I don’t eat a lot of sugary sweets normally, to ease the symptoms of a cold, I am happy to eat this sort of thing for a few days. The benefits far exceed the disadvantages in by opinion, unless you are diabetic of course. If I run out, I would use sugary boiled sweets as an alternative, until I could restock with this more effective solution.
These are widely available on the high street for a reasonable price, and have helped me to relief the symptoms of mild sore throats and blocked sinuses.
I have found that the Menthol in Tunes helps clear my sinuses when I have a mild cold, and they have a pleasant cherry taste. (The Menthol comes from the mint plant.) The manufacturers, Wrigley’s, state that they do actually contain cherry juice.
Like any sweets or lozenges, the extra saliva produced in my mouth when sucking them, will also help to relief a mild sore throat.
Their sugar free formula may be popular for reducing acid wear to teeth but is not good for everyone. Like other foods with artificial sweeteners, these come with the warning that this could cause a laxative effect, especially even eaten in large quantities. This side-effect could be good or bad for you, depending on whether you need to “go” more often.
Diabetics will be interested to know that the carbohydrate content is 3.26g per sweet, but no sugar.
They come in 38g packs of 10 sweets, but I have found them increasingly hard to buy on the high-street. So if you want them, you may have to buy multi-packs on-line. Amazon are currently selling 20 for £19.59. Alternatively try your local Co-Op who may still stock them for 55p a single pack.
If you don’t have a problem with eating sweets with sugar, at least while your cold symptoms persist, an alternative is Hall’s Soothers, in a variety of flavours, which are a lot more widely available on the high street. These have the extra advantage of containing a liquid centre to help sooth a sore throat.
Sugar free Tunes are now hard to find on the high street, but I have found them useful for treating mild sinus and sore throat symptoms.
I have found the contents of these sachets, mixed with water, a quick way of feeling much better when I have been dehydrated either due to exercising in hot weather, or being ill with diarrhoea and sickness.
As in all the types of rehydration sachets that I have tried, the blackcurrant ones have tasted the best. When I have felt sick, I have found that the best way of drinking it is with small sips. That way it is more likely to stay inside me than trying to drink a full glass quickly.
Dehydration has caused dizziness, headaches and tiredness in me. It can cause even worse symptoms in severe cases, so I always keep this type of medicine in my first aid cupboard.
This medicine helps replace the essential electrolytes lost during dehydration and restores the patient’s salts, sugars and fluid balance. Each sachet of granules contains Citric Acid Anhydrous 0.128g, Glucose Monohydrate 3.58g, Potassium Chloride 0.30g, Sodium Chloride 0.47g, Sodium Citrate Dihydrate 0.39g.
Of course, always read the enclosed leaflet, and if symptoms persist, seek medical advice, especially after 48 hours.
I have often seen special offers for this type of medicine around the times of year when they most expect people to be visiting hot countries for their holidays. As well as the heat a foreign diet could trigger dehydration.
I don’t see the point in buying big brand names, in this case Dioralyte, when the same medicine can be bought more cheaply as an own brand.
Boots currently sell this for the full price of £2.99 for 6, compared to £3.29 for the similar Dioralyte sachets.
Imodium Capsules in their classic original form contain 2mg of loperamide hydrochloride.
I have taken them and found them to be very effective in the control of diarrhoea.
However, the generic ingredient of loperamide hydrochloride is the same that can be found in a number of own brand products, which can be bought considerably cheaper. Examples of current prices are as follows.
At BOOTS you can buy Imodium Classics 12 capsules for £5.99 or 18 for £7.99. Alternatively you can buy Boots Diarrhoea Relief capsules, which will do the same job, with the same active ingredient, costing £2.19 for 6, £4.29 for 12, or £5.99 for 18.
At SUPERDRUG the prices are Imodium Classics 6 for £3.19 or Superdrug Acute Diarrhoea Relief 6 for £1.99.
At SAINSBURYS 6 Imodium cost £2.30 or 6 Sainsbury’s Anti-Diarrhoea Capsules for £1.
At TESCO 6 Imodium cost £2.50 or 6 Tesco Diarrhoea Relief £1.
CAUSE AND EFFECT OF DIARRHOEA
Diarrhoea is your body’s natural way of getting rid of infections, and if this is the cause of your problem, I believe it is better to stay near the loo and let it run its cause. In the meantime don’t eat for 24 hours, as this may only prolong the problem.
However, if the cause of your symptoms is an irritable bowel loperamide hydrochloride may well be the best medicine for you, but do get a proper diagnosis from a doctor, either to rule out life-threatening causes (for example cancer), or get treatment for them.
Whatever the cause of diarrhoea, it is imperative that you rehydrate your body as quickly as possible. Plain water will help to rehydrate, but I have found that adding rehydration mixes to the water has made me feel a lot better very quickly. Again the supermarket rehydration sachets are a lot cheaper than buying Dioralyte.
If Imodium is the only brand of diarrhoea relief you can find containing 2mg of loperamide hydrochloride per capsule, you will find it effective in slowing your bowel down. However, I have had the same result from taking supermarket own brand capsules which contain the same ingredient, and are significantly cheaper.
I, therefore, recommend either Sainsbury’s or Tesco’s Diarrhoea Relief Capsules as a much better value, but just as effective, alternative.
I live in a small town in south-east Essex, near the Thames estuary. Nearby is farmland and woodland.
HOUSE SPARROWS These are the most numerous in my garden, at up to 40 at the same time.
STARLINGS These also visit in large numbers but mostly just after dawn, or just before dusk. They seem to regard the nearby woods as their main home.
FERAL PIGEONS I would not recommend encouraging these in large numbers, as they could then become a nuisance, but we have had 4 semi-tame ones visit us for years now. Their markings are sufficiently different for us to easily tell them apart.
WOOD PIGEONS We get up to 6 at a time visit us. Neither we, nor the other birds like them. They try to bully small birds, but birds nearer their size gang up to bully them back.
COLLARED DOVES These, up to 8 at a time, seem to be the exact opposite in temperament to the Wood Pigeons and get on well with the other visitors.
BLACKBIRDS We usually only get one pair of these birds with their beautiful song.
ROBINS are another song bird that usually only visit one pair at a time. For both these species, their song is how they define their territory.
GOLD & GREENFINCHES They also have a pleasant sound, even if not as varied as the blackbirds and robins, and visit us up to 8 at a time.
BLUE TITS These are occasional visitors. We are most likely to see them at breading time, when they make use of local nest-boxes.
GULLS These come in their largest numbers when the weather is rough. Unless they get desperate for food, they will not usually land in our garden. If we throw some food onto our flat garage roof for them, there is a good chance that they will leave our garden birds feeding lower down alone.
The Main Predators
SPARROWHAWKS Although I love having the smaller birds in my garden, I cannot help but have respect for the skill of sparrow hawks in catching their prey. We don’t have many covering our territory, so you could say that they do a good job in weeding out the most vulnerable of small birds, which may otherwise die a slower death.
CROWS The other predator is the crow. I do not like these bullies, but they will act as a natural “dustbin”, eating scraps of meat that might otherwise be left to decompose and attract even more unwelcome visitors.
GIVE NATURE A HOME
They all play their part in Mothers Nature’s plan, and we should respect and preserve their environment. Visit the RSPB website for more advice.
== My Early Experience ==
When I was a child in the 1950s, I was given a tortoise as a pet, and knowing no different thought that it was OK to kept it in a run in the garden in the warmer months, and put it in a wooden box in our shed for it to sleep away the winter months. Even if I had been allowed to bring it indoors, our own home would not have been warm enough for him in the severest winters at night after our coal fires had been out for some time.
Other things I learnt from experience were that tortoises can burrow through soil to escape from a standard pen, and they can climb. Climbing up the side of a bowl of water (that was too deep to get out of again), will cause a tortoise to drown.
== Building Up Knowledge ==
With the internet, it is now easier to find out about pet care. This should, of course, be done before getting any pet.
Only captive breed tortoises are legally allowed to be sold in the UK. (Sadly too many have died in transit from their natural part of the world.)
The 3 types of tortoise must often kept as pets in the UK (Hermans, Spur-Thighs, and Marginated) are all naturally found in Mediterranean areas of Southern Europe, where the climate is a lot different from the UK. Therefore, to thrive in the UK they need to have heated accommodation, and a UV lamp. The exact temperature range will depend on the species. Some always hibernate in winter, some don’t.
The bulk of their diet is leafy plants. (I was particularly pleased that mind liked many of the weeds that grew in our garden.) However, check the exact dietary needs of your species of tortoise, as well and its environmental needs.
The popularity of tortoises as pets seems to have grown quicker than our understanding of their needs. I believe humans still have a lot to learn about keeping tortoises healthy in captivity.
Tortoises are not the cheap, or easiest of pets to look after, that people once thought they were. Do read up on their variety of needs, and think about whether you can afford the expense, and time, to keep one, bearing in mind that a well-looked after tortoise will have a similar life-span to a healthy human.
Over the many years we have lived in our present home, we have had many frogs and toads visit our garden. As we live near a large lake this is not surprising.
Amphibians require a body of freshwater to breed in spring. They tend to return to the same place each year, often to where they were spawned, to lay their fertilised eggs in still water. Frogs will usually choose small ponds or the shallow edges of lakes where their eggs will get plenty of light and warmth from the sun.
Small ponds can seem overcrowded with adults in spring, but they will disperse once their reason for being there is over. In summer, after the tadpole stage, you may see large numbers of young frogs or toads, but again these will naturally scatter.
Our detached garage has remained damp for some weeks now, not getting the chance to dry out fully in between the rain.
Since these damp conditions, a frog seems to have set up home on an odd brick he found in a dark damp garage corner. It does leave the brick from time to time, presumably to go foraging, but it has kept coming back. It might have found some juicy slugs and insects to eat in my compost heap which could be its froggy restaurant. In fact in has been a particularly good/bad (depending on whether you are a gardener or a frog) year for slugs in my garden. Frogs should be filling up with food in autumn to have enough energy to get them through the winter, so it is in luck.
Our frog may choose to hibernate over winter in our garage. If he does he will be safe in the corner he has selected to be in. Most amphibians lie dormant over winter, though may come out and forage if the weather turns temporarily mild.
I am fascinated by the way the frog’s skin changes colour to camouflage it depending on whether it is in full shadow, or partial light because we need to have one or both of the doors open for a while.
If you find a frog or toad, do not move it, unless it is in danger, for example from road vehicles. Assume it has a good reason for being there, or is on route to somewhere good for it.
GIVE NATURE A HOME
If you want wildlife in your garden, make it a home and be patient. Don’t pick any kind of animals up and move them. If you have the right conditions they will come of their own accord. See the section on the RSPB’s website called Give Nature a Home for what you may be able to do to encourage different species.
There are two types of sparrow in the UK – the house sparrow and the smaller tree sparrow. Overall their numbers have shown a worrying decline, but for house sparrows, not in my area. It may be that pollution from vehicles is adversely affecting their numbers in large urban areas, and some farming practices in rural areas.
I live in a town, small by Essex standards, and the numbers of sparrows that we have nesting in our eaves and visiting our garden has increased. I have watched them eat seeds, insects, and human food leftovers.
I have a bird feeding station, and used to give them a mixture of seeds in feeders. However, I am also a keen gardener, and found that too many of the seeds ended up growing as weeds in my borders. As a gardener, I am pleased to report that they eat some of the insects, including aphids, which would otherwise damage my treasured plants.
I have found that the seeds that they like best are sunflower hearts. There is no waste as the outer shell has already been taken off, and few of the seeds end up growing in my garden, as they are too good for the birds not eat as many as they can find.
As well as the extra food and clean water that we put out, I have seen that they appreciate the shelter of trees and bushes in mine and neighbours’ gardens.
In the spring we watched with concern and interest at what fate belonged to a young sparrow that fell out of our eaves before it could look after itself, or even fly. Mother sparrow led it into our nearby compost heap, where it also got shelter from spreading bushes. There were small insects in the compost heap, as well as the seeds and wholemeal bread we put out for the youngster and his family to feed on. It was not just mother sparrow that fed the juvenile, others who we called “the aunties” helped as well. We eventually had the privilege of watching the youngster learn to fly and eventually fully fledge.
If you watch them as we have, you may come to a similar conclusion to us. To me they are not just small brown birds that we take for granted. They are my intelligent and sociable neighbours.
GIVE NATURE A HOME
I hope that more people will have nature friendly gardens to help SPARROWS and other WILDLIFE in decline. The RSPB have a campaign called “Give Nature a Home”, which you can find out more about on their website.
When my daughter first asked for fish as pets, we thought gold fish would be the easiest to keep. Maybe some fish owners find that they are, but repeated attempts by us resulted in quick deaths, despite cleaning our good sized tank out to get rid of any possible infections in between efforts. Maybe our failure was because the shop that we bought them from was not as reliable a source as we thought.
Our neighbour kept tropical fish and suggested that we try them instead. So we went to the added expense of adding a heater, thermostat and filtration unit with an air pump to our tank.
We bought guppies, and a variety of extra colourful tetras. We chose these as being easy to keep varieties, and did quite well.
We liked the tetras best because they were more decorative and did not eat their babies like the guppies. Ideally baby fish should be separated from adult guppies until they have grown up.
We did not go for the full range of fish, but experts, like my neighbour, will tell you that for a fully functioning environment you need varieties that feed at the top, middle and bottom, the latter eating the waste from the bottom of the tank to minimise the cleaning time needed by the owner.
Snails also eat the debris but they reproduce extremely quickly, so we found them more of a nuisance in our limited species collection. Incidentally, you only need one snail to get a large amount of baby snails. I don’t pretend to understand the biology, but can confirm from experience. (The first snail we acquired was on a water plant we bought.)
For cleaning we took out a third of the water about once a fortnight, and replaced it with pre-heated treated water. It depends on the contents of your tank how often you need to replace the water.
CONCLUSION / RECOMMENDATION
I enjoyed keeping our colourful tropical fish, and found watching them relaxing.
After the initial expense of setting up the tank, if you buy the right varieties they will breed and replace the older ones quite economically. Their food and water treatment supplies did not cost much.
I particularly recommend neon tetras as a good variety for beginners, as they are colourful and quite hardy. They naturally live in groups so I think you should buy at least six of them.
THE EARLY MONTHS OF OUR OWNERSHIP
When I was young I asked my parents for two guinea pigs. I said that I wanted two so that they would not get lonely while I was at school.
They bought one male and one female. Before long we had 5 baby guinea pigs as well. At that point the male was separated from the rest, as there was a limit to how many guinea pigs we had room for in our garden. I was told that I could keep any female babies.
My parents would take any males away from mum as soon as she had stopped feeding them her milk. There was only one male baby and he was taken to the pet shop where the owner swapped him for some of the dry food we could feed the others with. (They also had suitable fresh vegetable food.)
However, soon after that even more babies appeared. It appeared that the baby male was not separated early enough!
MY HAPPY MEMORIES
My group of female guinea pigs got a lot of gentle attention from me, as well as enjoying each other’s company while I was not there.
The original adult male stayed with us as well, though in a separate enclosure. He was the tamest, and was allowed to visit us in a room in our house with an easy clean floor. However, if we left the door leading to the garden open, from very early days, he would go outside when he needed to relieve himself. I suspect that he may have been house-trained by a previous owner.
Although he appeared content, with hindsight, I think it would have been kinder to have him neutered so that he could have stayed in the same enclosure as the rest of his family.
I had my guinea pigs a long time before the internet was invented and so information was not so easy to come by.
I recommend all prospective pet owners to read up-to-date information on relevant animal welfare before deciding what to get. I especially like the pet care section of the PDSA site. Here is a summary, but visit their website for fuller care needs.
“Guinea pigs need a large home with a large exercise run. They can be shy animals, so they need shelters and tubes to feel secure. They need plenty of hay in their diet, together with the right amount of guinea pig pellets. The pellets contain vitamin C which guinea pigs can't make for themselves. Guinea pigs need the company of other guinea pigs.”
MY EXPERIENCE OF BUDGIES
I had the pleasure of sharing my home with a lovely tame budgie for 7 years.
We had a very small home at this time, and because of shift work he was very rarely left home alone. This meant that although we only had the one pet, he still got plenty of human company. He seemed very contented when we gave him attention, especially as he often got let out of his cage to exercise, or watch TV perched on or near us. When he did eventually become ill and die, the vet said that he suspected cancer had caused the problem. Though it is sad when pets die, he gave us some great memories.
We moved home soon after that, and got another budgie. Again it was a single bird, but as we then had 2 main rooms downstairs, a kitchen dinner and a lounge, he did not get the same amount of company. We spend our time split between the 2 rooms, and he stayed in just the one. He was never as tame as the first one, and didn’t live as long. I see this as proof that you should only keep a single budgie if it is going to get lots of attention, for example from a mostly housebound person who needs company themselves.
Otherwise I think it is definitely kinder to have at least two budgies who are brought up together. Don’t mix the sexes if you don’t have room in an aviary for baby budgies! You may not easily be able to find a new home for them.
Their cage should be out of direct sunlight but away from any draughts. If this cage is too small to fly around in, they should regularly be let out to exercise, but first make sure the environment is safe for them and any windows shut.
For ease of cleaning we used sheets of sandpaper at the bottom of our cage. We also had sandpaper covers for our perches to help prevent toe nails becoming too long.
We gave clean water and new food daily, as well as clearing away the droppings. They should be given as varied a diet as possible. Buy budgie mixes that contain more than just seed. Small amounts of fresh fruit and vegetables, washed to remove any chemicals on the surface, can also be offered.
I think the PDSA (People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals) charity website is a great source of information on budgie, and other pet, welfare. Despite their title they would much prefer to offer information on how to keep pets healthy, than treat them because they have become ill.
I have kept two different types of rabbits the small Netherlands Dwarf, and an averaged sized Lop Eared Rabbit.
Having kept two different breeds of rabbit, I know that it is just as important to consider personalities as size.
My NEVERLANDS DWARF was usually good tempered with adults, especially those he knew well, but was not a suitable pet for children to be around. When my neighbour’s grand-children even came into the garden next door to ours, his first instinct was to hide. One tried to stroke him once. Once was enough for the child and the rabbit. The child was not particularly rough with him, but not quite as gentle as the adults that he was used to. He went to bite the child, but luckily the child’s reaction was quick, and the hand quickly disappeared back over their side of the fence.
With adults that he knew and trusted he could be very patient. If his usual carers accidentally did something he didn’t like, as a first warning he would put his teeth onto their skin but did not bite down. He would bite anyone if he was scared though, without any warning, and he quickly reacted to anything unusual happening.
The LOP EARED rabbit has a very docile nature, and has been extremely patient while we have taught a toddler how to stroke his fur gently in the direction of growth.
My NETHERLANDS DWARF easily beats the Lop for intelligence. Perhaps the fact that he is more aware of danger makes him more nervous, and therefore less tolerant.
The Netherlands plays with us, pushing things back and forth with his nose, but he is harder to catch, for example when it is time for him to go to bed in his hutch, because he seems to have a sixth sense as to when this is likely to happen.
The LOP EARED is a big cuddly softy in comparison, but this is what makes him so trusting and loveable. He loves being affectionately stroked, but hasn’t invented any games to play with his human companions.
They have needed similar as far as food, housing and companionship are concerned. The only obvious difference to me is that the Lop, with longer hair than the Netherlands Dwarf, can do with a bit of extra human help with his grooming. Brushing hair, especially when mounting, is more time consuming in the longer haired varieties.
With limited space, my review is purely about my personal experience of individual rabbits. The RSPCA gives excellent general advice on how to care for rabbits and other pets, and I recommend their website to all animal owners.
I was diagnosed with mild osteoarthritis in my shoulder several years ago.
My husband had already been diagnosed with osteoarthritis many years earlier than me, after doing a physically demanding job, with a high risk of injury to joints. To be able to cope with a delay to a knee replacement, he continues to do the exercises given to him by his physiotherapist, eating well (a balanced diet, and not over-eating to stop his knees needing to carry excess weight), and taking the dietary supplement Glucosamine and Chondroitin.
As my husband’s consultant was very interested in how this supplement seemed to be helping him, when I was diagnosed with the same, though thankfully less severe, condition, I decided to take it too.
DOES GLUCOSAMINE & CHONDROITING HELP?
Studies about the benefits of Glucosamine and Chondroitin have been inconclusive. Here is what the NHS website says. “Glucosamine hydrochloride has not been shown to have any beneficial effects, but there is some evidence that glucosamine sulphate and chondroitin sulphate help symptoms and do not cause many side effects. These supplements can be expensive. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) does not recommend prescription of chondroitin or glucosamine, but recognises that patients often choose to take them."
The experience of both myself and my husband is that it has been easier to cope with osteoarthritis after taking Tesco Glucosamine and Chondroitin.
We choose to take the version sold by Tesco, as I have found that they have been the best value for money. Currently 90 tablets cost £12 and 240 tablets cost £19.90. We budget so that I can stock up when we are running low, so that we can take advantage of the long running 3 for 2 offer that Tesco has on their food supplements.
While the NHS consultant can’t officially recommend that we continue to take them, he has made a note that we find them helpful, and included the information in a report he made to our GP.
They are NOT SUITABLE for those with a shellfish allergy.
If, like me, you have osteoarthritis, I recommend Tesco’s own brand as the best value for money that I have come across.
However, as all brands are quite expensive, only try them if you can afford to do so, and the cost allows you to buy them without foregoing other more important things that benefit your general health and well-being. They appear to help some suffers of osteoarthritis, like me, but not others. Any positive effects will probably be apparent up to 2 months from first taking.
== My Experience ==
Hay fever badly affected my ears last year. After applying prescription strength drops, I ended up having to have them syringed twice in 2 weeks, at my local Heath Centre, to get all of the hardened wax out.
This being something I didn’t want to repeat this year, I took my GP’s advice and am using preventative olive oil in my ears to stop them ending up in the same state again.
My doctor didn’t recommend olive oil of any particular brand, but when I saw it in spray form in the healthcare department of Morrison’s, I thought it an easy and non-messy way of getting an appropriate dose into my ears.
However, after a couple of months Morrison’s discontinued this and I couldn’t find it anywhere else on my high street.
I have since bought it from Amazon, who currently sell it for £4.99 a bottle.
How often you need to use it will depend on the degree of ear wax problem you have.
I have used it as a preventative treatment for the past year, and have had no excess ear wax since doing this. I use it more in the summer than winter, because pollen seems to trigger excess wax production in my ears lately. When the pollen count is high, I have one spray in each ear daily. In the winter I use it about once a week.
Follow your health professional’s advice if using before they syringe your ears, but for adults this is usually 1 or 2 sprays, twice a day, in each affected ear.
It will work best if the bottle is warmed in the palm of your hand and shaken before use. To deliver a dose, hold the bottle upright, with the nozzle in the ear canal, and press the actuator down fully.
I have found that this Earol Olive Oil Spray is a much more convenient way of loosening ear wax than using drops.
The fine spray, directed into the ear by the nozzle, means that I can use, and then carry on with my life, as there is rarely any excess to worry about. One spray all gets used up in each of my ears.
After having an extreme ear wax problem that needed syringing, I now use this as an effective preventative treatment.
Using Earol Olive Oil Spray should not cause pain, or any other unpleasant side effect. Patients with ear pain, a perforated ear drum, or under 1 year should use only under medical supervision.
As with all medicines, you should read the up-to-date leaflet that comes with it, before use.
** My Experience **
My hobbies of gardening and walking in the countryside are not obviously good ones for someone who seems to be a magnet for biting insects.
Two things have helped me cope.
The first is that, although I still get stung as much as ever, by the end of the season, my reaction seems to lessen as my body gets used to dealing with the problem naturally. Sadly, the next spring I seem to have to start from “scratch” to build up partial immunity again. (Despite my description, scratching will, or course, only make the problem worse by helping the irritation to spread more widely over the skin.)
However, I have found that the best treatment for me is Anthisan cream. I always carry a tube with me, because if applied to the skin before my allergic reaction to a bite has a chance to fully kick in, the less the reaction and the quicker the symptoms go.
Anthisan cream contains an antihistamine called mepyramine, which has helped me by reducing the swelling and itching caused by such things as insect bites and plant irritants.
As I am very vulnerable, I keep tubes in my home medicine cabinet, in my car glove compartment, handbag and rucksack, so that I can apply it to my skin as soon as it is needed. Occasionally my husband will ask to use one of my tubes, but when I am around, insects are much more attracted to me.
** Availability **
I have bought this in both supermarkets and pharmacies.
Do seek advice from a pharmacist, or other health professional, before use, if the patient is a child under the age of 2 years, or the area of skin affected is cut or sunburnt.
As I have seen quite big differences in the price of a tube, between £2 - £4, I look out for the special offers that usually appear around the time of year when people are most likely to get insect bites.
A 20g tube is currently selling in Tesco for £2.
I have found Anthisan cream very effective in reducing the effects of insect bites and plant allergies, when I have applied it to my skin soon after contact has occurred.
As with all medicines, do read the up-to-date leaflet that comes with it, before use.