Some health problems, such as asthma, sore throat and cold sores, are triggered or worsened by cold weather. Here’s how to help your body deal with cold weather ailments.


You can help prevent colds by washing your hands regularly. This destroys bugs that you may have picked up from touching surfaces used by other people, such as light switches and door handles. It’s also important to keep the house and any household items, such as cups, glasses and towels, clean, especially if someone in your house is ill.
Top tip: If you get a cold, use disposable tissues instead of cloth handkerchiefs to avoid constantly re-infecting your own hands.

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Sore throat

Sore throats are common in winter and are almost always caused by viral infections. There’s some evidence that changes in temperature, such as going from a warm, centrally heated room to the icy outdoors, can also affect the throat.
Top tip: One quick and easy remedy for a sore throat is to gargle with warm salty water. It won’t heal the infection, but it has anti-inflammatory properties and can have a soothing effect. Dissolve one teaspoon of salt in a glass of part-cooled boiled water.


Painful joints

Many people with arthritis say their joints become more painful in winter, though it’s not clear why this is so. Only joint symptoms, such as pain and stiffness, are affected by the weather. There’s no evidence that changes in the weather cause joint damage.
Top tip: Many people get a little depressed during the winter months and this can make them perceive pain more acutely. Everything feels worse, including medical conditions. Daily exercise can boost a person’s mental and physical state. Swimming is ideal as it’s easy on the joints.


Dry skin

Dry skin is a common condition and is often worse during the winter when environmental humidity is low. Moisturising is essential during winter. Contrary to popular belief, moisturising lotions and creams aren’t absorbed by the skin. Instead, they act as a sealant to stop the skin’s natural moisture from evaporating away. The best time to apply moisturiser is after a bath or shower while your skin is still moist, and again at bedtime.
Top tip: Have warm rather than hot showers. Water that is too hot makes skin feel more dry and itchy. Hot water will also make your hair look dull and dry

Today is World Diabetes Day. The day was created to the growing concerns that the threat diabetes has on our health.

What is diabetes?

Diabetes is a condition where the amount of glucose in your blood is too high because the body cannot use it properly. This is because your pancreas doesn’t produce any insulin, or not enough insulin, to help glucose enter your body’s cells – or the insulin that is produced does not work.

There are two main types of diabetes: Type 1 diabetes and Type 2 diabetes

Type 1

Type 1 diabetes develops when the insulin-producing cells in the body have been destroyed and the body is unable to produce any insulin.

Type 1 diabetes accounts for between 10 per cent of all adults with diabetes and is treated by daily insulin injections, a healthy diet and regular physical activity. Type 1 diabetes can develop at any age but usually appears before the age of 40, and especially in childhood. It is the most common type of diabetes found in childhood.

Type 2

Type 2 diabetes develops when the insulin-producing cells in the body are unable to produce enough insulin, or when the insulin that is produced does not work properly

Diabetes Symptoms

In Type 1 diabetes the signs and symptoms are usually very obvious and develop very quickly, typically over a few weeks. The symptoms are quickly relieved once the diabetes is treated and under control.

In Type 2 diabetes the signs and symptoms may not be so obvious, as the condition develops slowly over a period of years and may only be picked up in a routine medical check up. Symptoms are quickly relieved once diabetes is treated and under control.

The main symptoms of undiagnosed diabetes include:

  • passing urine more often than usual, especially at night
  • increased thirst
  • extreme tiredness
  • unexplained weight loss
  • genital itching or regular episodes of thrush
  • slow healing of cuts and wounds
  • blurred vision

It’s that time of year again, Bonfire Night! We are here to give you some useful tips on how to stay safe and also some advice on common injuries that can happen around this time of year.

Fireworks may be nice to watch but like anything they come with risks. Last year over 990 people required hospital treatment due to lack of knowledge on safety around fireworks.

Have fun, but also stay safe. Here are some useful tips for you:

Minor burns

A minor burn is red and painful and sometimes results in a blister – for instance when a child picks up an old sparkler that hasn’t cooled down.

  • Hold the affected area under cold, running water for at least 20 minutes. Remove any jewellery while you are cooling. Once it is cool cover the burn with a sterile dressing or clean, non-fluffy material to protect from infection. Kitchen film or a clean plastic bag make a good alternative dressing.
  • If the burn is larger than the palm of the casualty’s hand it will require medical attention.
  • Special care should be taken if the burn is on a young child or an elderly person.


If clothing is on fire

Remember these four key things: stop, drop, wrap and roll. Stop the casualty panicking or running – any movement or breeze will fan the flames

  • Drop the casualty to the ground and wrap them in a blanket, coat, or rug. Ensure they are made from inflammable fabrics such as wool
  • Roll the casualty along the ground until the flames have been smothered


Severe burns

If clothing has caught on fire it is more than likely that the burn will be severe. A severe burn is deep and doesn’t hurt as much as a minor one due to damaged nerve endings.

  • Start cooling the burn immediately under running water for at least 10 minutes. Use a shower or hose if the burns are large. Keep cooling the burn while waiting for professional help to arrive
  • Instruct a helper to dial 999 or 112 for an ambulance
  • Make the casualty as comfortable as possible, ideally lie them down
  • Continue to pour copious amounts of cold water over the burn until the pain is relieved.
  • Whilst cooling, remove any constricting items such as jewellery or clothing from the affected area unless they are stuck to the burn. Wear disposable gloves if they are available.
  • Cover the burn with a sterile dressing or clean, non-fluffy material to protect from infection. Kitchen film or a clean plastic bag make a good alternative dressing.

This week it is National Meningitis Awareness week 2013. The weeks timing coincides with an increase in Meningitis cases being reported as we head in to the winter months .

What is Meningitis?

Meningitis is an infection of the meninges (protective membranes) that surround the brain and spinal cord. The infection causes the meninges to become inflamed (swollen), which in some cases can damage the nerves and brain.

What are the signs of Meningitis?

Anyone of any age can get meningitis, but babies and young children are often affected. The signs and symptoms to look out for in your child are:

  • a very high fever with cold hands and feet
  • they may feel agitated but not want to be touched
  • they may cry continuously
  • some children can become very sleepy and it may be difficult to wake them up
  • they may appear confused and unresponsive
  • they may develop a blotchy red rash that does not fade when you roll a glass over it

In older children and adults, the symptons of meningitis can include:

  • severe headache
  • vomiting
  • high temperature (fever) of 38ºC (100.4ºF) or over
  • stiff neck
  • sensitivity to light
  • rapid breathing
  • a general feeling of being unwell
  • a distinctive skin rash (although not everyone will have this)


If you notice any of the symptoms of meningitis, particularly in young children, seek medical help immediately.


FATE run a first aid course for parents that especially looks at common childhood illnesses including meningitis. To find out more about the course, click here

Under the proposed new regulations, employers will need to clearly identify areas were the two qualifications DO NOT meet all of their training requirements and source the appropriate additional training their staff need.

You MUST risk assess your workplace, use our tool on the website to do this, read the download detailing course content then identify what it is you need.

Three specific areas have been identified (example)

  1. The use of an automated external defibrillator (AED)
  2. Anaphylaxis First Aid, treatment of those who have severe allergic reactions including the administration of medication (epipen)
  3.  Paediatric First Aid, for those working with young children and infants

We can provide all of the above and the AED training can be tagged onto an FAW course, contact us should you need any advise, dont get caught short….. of training


As part of the proposed changes to the First Aid Regulations, employers have been given greater freedom to choose who they want to provide First Aid in the Workplace qualifications. This is great for businesses at asks only that Employers ensure that they undertake Due Diligence of the provider they use to ensure certain standards are met.

The areas that Due diligence covers are:

  • Trainers hold recognised teaching qualifications – Our trainers hold PTLLS qualifications or equivalent
  • Trainers have relevant First Aid Knowledge – All are experienced First Aiders holding a First Aid at Work qualification
  • Trainers are quality assured – Our Trainers are assessed every year at least once
  • Training follows the latest approved first aid protocols – Clinical leadership and training is provided by Paramedics
  • There is a documented complaints procedure in place – available to all
  • Details of topics covered on the course – meets the HSE guidance and is downloadable on the website
  • Existence of a documented course evaluation procedure – we hold records from 2004 
  • Assessors are appropriately qualified – Our assessors hold assessing qualifications

When training with FATE Due Diligence is assured, it has been since 2004 and will be for as long as we exist! we can provide evidence of meeting these requirements for you records if required.

I’m absolutely thrilled that we have got our first Parents First Aid session booked in, I think its so important that Parents and carers have a knowledge of First Aid, just being able to identify when a child is really unwell can make the difference between life and death. Our first session is booked on the 1st July at Marl Pits Swimming Pool in Rawtenstall 6.30pm – 8.30pm and we will be covering basic Lifesupport skills, please consider coming if you can.

All of these links will take you to the Royal Lifesaving Society’s Drowning Prevention Week website, you can download lots of teaching session plans and useful information about water safety, please remember they are a charity and can use all the help they can get to improve water safety for everyone!

Colouring sheets and learn to spot the dangers about water

Information about dangers around water

Printable safety poster aimed at children

UK drowning statistics for 2010 (the latest available data)

 In general

  • Most drownings are avoidable
  • One in five adults in the UK cannot swim
  • Usually more than half of people who drown knew how to swim
  • Drowning is the 3rd most common cause of accidental death in children in this country.
  • Many more thousands (as many as 1 in 500 people) have near drowning experiences, some of which cause long-term physical effects, such as brain damage

 Overall figure for 2010

  • 420 deaths by drowning (not including suicides or suspected suicides) – this equates to nearly one drowning every 17 hours


  • Only 57 of the casualties were children up to the age of 19, which is less than 14%

 Time of year

  • The highest numbers of death by drowning occurred in April, June and August, coinciding with school and bank holidays

 Drowning venues

  • Nearly 50% of the deaths by drowning were of people who did not intend to be in the water
  • The most common place for drownings in 2010 were in a river (25% of all drownings), followed by the sea (about 17% of all drownings), followed by the coast/shore/beach (roughly 15% of all drownings)
  • Amongst 0 – 4-year olds ponds were the most common venue for drownings in 2010, with 8 deaths.  This is 4 times higher than death by drowning in other venues
  • Amongst 15 – 19-year olds the most common drowning venue was in a river, with 9 deaths.  The second most common venue was a lake, with 5 deaths.


  • Of recorded accidental deaths, more than 75% were male.
  • The most common age for male deaths was 20 – 24-years old (25 deaths).  The most common age for female deaths was 50 – 54 (9 deaths).
  • Amongst 0 – 4-year olds 11 boys drowned and 1 girl

Drowning activities

The top 5 determinable activities that were being undertaken by people as they drowned were:

  1. Walking/running (58 people)
  2. In manually powered boats (33 people)
  3.  Swimming (31 people)
  4. Commercial (31 people
  5. Angling (30)

 Statistics provided by National Water Safety Forum

To find out more about Water Safety Awareness Week please visit

What is Drowning Prevention Week?
Drowning Prevention Week is the annual campaign run by the Royal Life Saving Society UK which aims to promote water safety and help reduce incidents of drowning.

The campaign, running from 22 to 30 June in 2013, uses positive messaging within the media and local communities to promote having fun and staying safe near water. Schools, leisure centres, clubs and organisations are asked to deliver water safety messages and events throughout the week.

Participants are also encouraged to raise money for the charity’s drowning prevention programmes via the fundraising aspect of the campaign – Top Trunks.

The campaign was launched by national water safety and drowning prevention charity the Royal Life Saving Society UK in 2011.
Members of the public:

• Are being urged to download water safety tips from here and to look out for free water safety classes that RLSS UK volunteers may be running in their area. All sessions will be advertised on the above website.

• Are being asked to take part in the fundraising element of the campaign – Top Trunks – and raise money for the Royal Life Saving Society UK’s drowning prevention programmes.
Leisure centres with swimming pools

• Are being asked to host free lifesaving classes.

Primary schools

• Are being urged to run classroom-based water safety awareness sessions for pupils.

To find out more about Drowning Prevention Week please visit