Clinics & Services
If a vaccine is given when a baby still has antibodies to the disease, the antibodies can stop the vaccine working. This is why routine childhood immunisations do not start until a baby is two months old, before the antibodies a baby gets from its mother have stopped working. This is also why it is important for parents to stick to the immunisation schedule, as a delay can leave a baby unprotected. A delay can increase the chance of adverse reactions to some vaccines, such as pertussis (whooping cough).
There are some excellent websites that will answer all your questions and queries about immunisation and vaccination.
Vaccination Schedule - The most comprehensive, up-to-date and accurate source of information on vaccines, disease and immunisation in the UK.
The following link takes you to the vaccination planner on the NHS Choices website.
Cervical Screening Test
Cervical screening is a method of preventing cervical cancer by detecting abnormal cells in the cervix (lower part of the womb).
Cervical screening is not a test for cancer, but it is a test to check the health of the cervix. Most women's test results show that everything is normal. But for one in 20 women, the test will show some changes in the cells of the cervix. Most of these changes will not lead to cervical cancer and the cells will go back to normal on their own. In some cases, the abnormal cells need to be treated to prevent them becoming a problem later.
NHS Choices - Cervical Screen Test
Human Papilloma Virus (HPV)
Human papilloma virus (HPV) is the name of a family of viruses that affect the skin and the moist membranes that line your body, such as those in your cervix, anus, mouth and throat. These membranes are called the mucosa. There are more than 100 different types of HPV viruses, with about 40 types affecting the genital area. These are classed as high risk and low risk.
What an HPV infection can do
Infection with some types of HPV can cause abnormal tissue growth and other changes to cells, which can lead to cervical cancer. Infection with other forms of HPV can also cause genital warts. Other types of HPV infection can cause minor problems, such as common skin warts and verrucas. Around 30 types of HPV are transmitted through sexual contact, including those that can cause cervical cancer and genital warts. Genital warts are the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI) in the UK.
HPV infection is also linked to vaginal cancer and vulval cancer, although both are rare conditions.
Human papillomavirus vaccine
Cancer Research UK - HPV Virus
Both men and women need to look after their sexual health and take time to understand the issues that surround contraception and sexually transmitted infections (STIs). For instance there are some STIs, like chlamydia, that you could be carrying without having any symptoms. This infection can affect fertility, so it's important to make use of the sexual health services available for free on the NHS.
Sex and Young People
STIs (Sexually Transmitted Infections)
Sexual Health FAQs
Netdoctor - Sex & Relationships
Chlamydia is the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI). Chlamydia is a bacterial infection, most commonly spread through unprotected vaginal, anal or oral sex.
75% of people infected with chlamydia don't have any symptoms. However, testing and treatment are simple.
The National Chlamydia Screening Programme (under-25s) has more information on chlamydia.
NHS Choices - Focus on Chlamydia
Contraception is free for most people in the UK. With 15 methods to choose from, you'll find one that suits you. Contraceptive methods allow you to choose when and if you want to have a baby, but they don’t protect you from sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Condoms help to protect against STIs and pregnancy, so whatever other method of contraception you're using to prevent pregnancy, use condoms as well to protect your and your partner’s health.
The methods of contraception
There are lots of methods to choose from, so don't be put off if the first thing you use isn't quite right for you; you can try another. You can read about each of the different methods of contraception by visiting these pages:
NHS Free Smoking Helpline 0800 022 4 332 open 7 days a week, 7am to 11pm. Here to help you!
The NHS has produced "Smokefree", a dedicated service to inform everyone of the dangers of smoking, the benefits to giving up and how they can help you kick the habit.
Eating Well & Exercise
A good diet is central to overall good health, but which are the best foods to include in your meals, and which ones are best avoided? This section looks at the facts, to help you make realistic, informed choices.
BBC Healthy Living – Nutrition
Information on a healthy diet and ways to make it work for you.
NHS - Good Food Guide
Change for life
These days, 'modern life' can mean that we're a lot less active. With so many opportunities to watch TV or play computer games, and with so much convenience and fast food available, we don't move about as much, or eat as well as we used to. Which means that 9 out of 10 kids today could grow up with dangerous amounts of fat in their bodies. This can cause life-threatening diseases like cancer, Type 2 diabetes and heart disease - so it’s really important that we do something about it.
Prescribing of over the counter medicines
Your GP or nurse will not generally give you a prescription for over the counter medicines for a range of minor health concerns.
Over the counter medicines are available to buy in a pharmacy or supermarket in your local community.
The team of health professionals at your local pharmacy can offer help and clinical advice to manage minor health concerns and if your symptoms suggest it's more serious, they'll ensure you get the care you need.
Please help the NHS to use resources sensibly.
For more information please click on the attached documents:
Prescribing of over the counter medication leaflet
Conditions treatments apply to leaflet
Over the counter patient information leaflet