Smoking and health check advisors available at the practice today

Come along to our free health clinic today at Firstcare Practice, Blenheim Centre, Hounslow. Everyone is welcome. We are open until 3pm on the 12th July.

If you would like help to stop smoking, we have a team of smoking cessation advisors at our practice today.
They will be able to measure the amount of carbon dioxide in your breath,

Carbon Monoxide In smoking

They will also be able to give you your lung age, so you can see how old your lungs are. Smokers then to have ‘older’ lungs and so can see where your lungs are on this graph.Lung Age Pic

We can also measure your height and weight and calculate your Body Mass Index, so as you can see where you are on the graph below. If you need help with loosing weight, we can give you advice on access to free services available locally.

BMI Pic

You can also download these leaflets which have lots of useful information.

Shisha is thought to be less harmful than smoking. This is not the case. The leaflet outlines some useful facts and dispels some myths. Smoking Shisha

Smoking at home can cause cot deaths and chest infections. Read more in this leaflet. Smoking at Home

Here is a leaflet about the harms of smoking in pregnancy. We can help you stop if you are pregnant or planning to get pregnant. Smoking – Pregnancy

The Flu Vaccination 2014

The flu jab

Flu vaccination by injection, commonly known as the “flu jab” is available every year on the NHS to protect adults (and some children) at risk of flu and its complications.

Flu can be unpleasant, but if you are otherwise healthy it will usually clear up on its own within a week.

However, flu can be more severe in certain people, such as:

  • anyone over the age of 65
  • pregnant women
  • children and adults with an underlying health condition (particularly long-term heart or respiratory disease)
  • children and adults with weakened immune systems

Anyone in these risk groups is more likely to develop potentially serious complications of flu, such as pneumonia (a lung infection), so it’s recommended that they have a flu vaccine every year to protect them.

The flu vaccine is given free on the NHS as an annual injection to:

  • adults over the age of 18 at risk of flu (including everyone over 65)
  • children aged six months to two years at risk of flu

Find out more about who should have the flu jab.

Flu nasal spray vaccination

The flu vaccine is given as an annual nasal spray to:

  • children aged two to 17 years at a particular risk of flu
  • healthy children aged two, three and four years old

Read more about the flu nasal spray for children.

How the flu jab helps

Studies have shown that the flu jab does work and will help prevent you getting the flu. It won’t stop all flu viruses and the level of protection may vary between people, so it’s not a 100% guarantee that you’ll be flu-free, but if you do get flu after vaccination it’s likely to be milder and shorter-lived than it would otherwise have been.

There is also evidence to suggest that the flu jab can reduce your risk of having a stroke.

Over time, protection from the injected flu vaccine gradually decreases and flu strains often change. So new flu vaccines are produced each year which is why people advised to have the flu jab need it every year too.

Read more about how the flu jab works.

Flu jab side effects

Serious side effects of the injected flu vaccine are very rare. You may have a slight temperature and aching muscles for a couple of days after having the jab, and your arm may be a bit sore where you were injected.

Read more about the side effects of the flu jab.

When to have a flu jab

The best time to have a flu vaccine is in the autumn, from the beginning of October to early November, but don’t worry if you’ve missed it, you can have the vaccine later in winter if there are stocks left.

The flu jab for 2014/15

Each year, the viruses that are most likely to cause flu are identified in advance and vaccines are made to match them as closely as possible. The vaccines are recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO).

The 2014/15 vaccine protects against three types of flu virus. This year’s flu jab protects against:

  • H1N1 – the strain of flu that caused the swine flu pandemic in 2009
  • H3N2 – a strain of flu that can infect birds and mammals and was active in 2011
  • B/Massachusetts/2 – a strain of flu that was active in 2012

The nasal spray flu vaccine offers protection against four strains of virus, as it includes a virus strain that was active in 2008.

Is there anyone who shouldn’t have the flu jab?

Most adults can have the injected flu vaccine, but you should avoid it if you have had aserious allergic reaction to a flu jab in the past.

Read more about who shouldn’t have the flu vaccine.

You can find out more by reading the answers to the most common questions that people haveabout the flu vaccine.